As you can see, my personal blog posts have been quiet for quite some time. It’s because I’ve been living life – the good and the bad- the past few years. All while focusing more on my freelance writing and the college communication courses I now teach. I hope to eventually get back to blogging for myself- or writing those book ideas swirling in my head.
For now, however, enjoy sampling my personal blog posts or hop over to my samples page to see my published work for clients.
Today we are wrapping up our unit study on the solar system. My youngest prompted this unit study when he got a solar system map in a kid’s meal. He looked at it, turned to me and said, “I want to learn about the solar system.” Thanks to the library, online resources and YouTube, we have enjoyed learning about our solar system. And I’m seeing how much science has learned in the many years since I was in elementary school.
I thought I’d simply share some of our favorite clips from YouTube, and I’d share the unit study we used to make little notebooks on the solar system. We didn’t use all aspects of this solar system unit from Teachers Pay Teachers, but it was a great resource! Enjoy!
The sound of the helicopter changed all my plans for the evening. Well at least two hours of my plans.
I sat down with my laptop and a pile of personal paperwork. Tonight would be the night I’d actually finish this pile, which I’ve been tackling a little bit at a time. But first I had to check Facebook. And then I saw the post about the helicopter circling our usually quiet development. It was a helicopter that I hadn’t paid much attention to before I saw the post about its police activity.
Instead of finishing that paperwork, I found myself following a Facebook thread. I found myself emailing friends in the area. I found myself listening to the police scanner online. My boys joined me.
“Can this count for school, mom?”
“Of course. You are learning how police keep us safe,” I agreed.
“So. I don’t have schoolwork tomorrow, then,” he pleaded.
I laughed and told him that it didn’t get him out of tomorrow’s school work. Nice try!
Our international student joined us as we listened to the scanner and watched updates online. Eventually the helicopter noise stopped. It was so quiet outside. I kept on following the Facebook group posts. Was it over? No one could confirm. And then we decided we had had enough. Family game night took over the rest of the evening. My pile of paperwork left for another day. All because of that one helicopter.
After our family game night festivities, I did discover that the whole incident was safely over.
Many years ago I moved away from home to go to college. If I timed the 12-hour drive right, I could leave in the daylight and reach my destination in daylight.
Years after that I moved even further away from home to go to grad school. It took almost 30 hours to drive home. I depended on the airplane to get me home.
A few years later, my husband and I moved again. This time we were a 20-21 hour drive from my home. We’ve flown to my home. We’ve driven to my home.
People often ask if we would want to move back to my home. We’ve talked about it. We’ve looked into it seriously. Yet we stay at our home. The one my boys will reference someday as their home.
Some days I wish I lived closer to home. Some days I wish I could have more than a phone call or a online connection with my family back home. Some days I wish I wouldn’t have to say, “I can’t easily get home right now.”
Because no matter where I live or how old (or young) I am. It is still my home. And there are days I still just want to be there.
Tonight I slowly lifted the spoon from the sauce pan to my lips. The first taste of the blueberry-honey sauce was amazing. I had just made it for the pork shoulder that sat in my crock pot all day with spices, honey and olive oil. I took a slice of pork out of the crock pot. I drizzled the fresh sauce on top of the tender piece of pork. I savored the first and second and third bites. Amazing.
I chuckled at myself. “You’ve come a long way baby,” is what I thought. And then I really chuckled because I don’t smoke, yet that slogan seemed to fit perfectly.
When my husband and I first met, my cooking skills included making turkey sandwiches, mac and cheese from a box and warming up a can of soup or SpaghettiOs. Prior to that I didn’t HAVE to cook. I either lived at home (thanks mom!) or lived in a college dorm (caf food or take out!). Ironically, my husband cooked for me when we celebrated his birthday for the first time together. We both get a good laugh out of that now!
When we married, we had a deal. He cooked. I cleaned. That worked wonderfully for the first (pre-kid) six years of our marriage. That all shifted when I became a stay-at-home mom. It was all of a sudden my responsibility to make sure we had a warm (or sometimes cold) meal to eat.
Sometimes I have done a great job taking care of this. Sometimes I have failed miserably. I’ve stared at the clock thinking, “Oh. No. What can I throw together?” I’ve attempted recipes that turned out horrible. I’ve been reminded by my kids and husband, “Please don’t try three new meals within the same week.” And sometimes, I simply amaze myself. Tonight is one of those nights.