Nov 25, 2008

Thanksgiving Humor

11/25/2008 — cori
Today, in school, I decided to teach the kids a different take on Thanksgiving. Meaning...I wasn't just going to sit down and read the same old story. I wanted to get to the heart of Thanksgiving. I started by asking what character traits both parties (by that I mean Pilgrims and Indians) exhibited.

They stared at me blankly.

Okay then...let's try another direction. So then I asked, "Do you think the Pilgrims and Indians really wanted to sit down and eat together? Don't you think they were scared of each other?"

Mmmhmm.

The audience participation part of this lesson isn't going according to plan. As I'm mentally scurrying to reinvent this lesson so as not to loose any participants, Chloe raises her hand and politely says, "Um, Mommy, this is too hard for me. So, I'm just not going to do this, okay?" I decide to 'pardon' her and excuse her from having to delve into the depths of her brain and pull out a story related to the character traits that surround the original story that is Thanksgiving. I should have just surrendered then...but like an idiot, I trudge on hoping that just one of my children can tell me what a 'character trait' is.

I go on to explain how the Indians exemplified mercy to the Pilgrims and how the Pilgrims in turn showed the Indians great trust even though they were probably terrified of them. I just introduced two key vocabulary words and was hoping that the boys could expound on those a bit more, so I ask another question. "How would you feel if you were the Pilgrims?"

"Sad and hungry."

Oh really...that about sums up all character traits. I'm thinking no one is into this lesson but me. What am I wasting my time for. (It is vital to input here that homeschooling doesn't always go the way you want it to. Some days are awesome; others feel as though you're talking to a wall.) So I just dispense the assignment and hope for the best. I asked each of them to write a Thanksgiving story but to highlight the character traits that Thanksgiving is known for.

Bennett is all over that one. Finally, something he can understand that I'm talking about it. He rushes down stairs and immediately gets to work on his story. He starts with:

1 day a pilgrim died and a Indian said we shooed help them they are ding so they went over and said 5+5=10.

He can't wait to show me his progress and even beckons me down to come look at it right away. He's cracking himself up. Instead of showing the internal seething I'm feeling at the moment as a bad homeschool mom who obviously cannot get across the seriousness of the first Thanksgiving, I play along and ask him, "Why does he tell a dying man what 5+5 is, Honey?".

Bennett can't believe he has to explain, "Because he wants to make him laugh." Duh!

He later went and edited it to show a little more seriousness and the graveness of the situation...but I think I personally like the first edition better. Who knows, maybe there was a personality like Bennett at that first Thanksgiving.

Nov 16, 2008

A Fly on the Wall

11/16/2008 — cori
If you were a fly on the wall in our house the past few days, these would be a few of the conversations you may have heard:

Bennett: "Mom, every time we drive past a house, I think to myself 'I wonder how different my life would be if I lived there'?"
Me: "Wow, Bennett, that's a deep thought. What do you think of next?"
Bennett: "Then I think, 'what is 2 take away 2'?"
Me: Hmmmm. I don't know what to say now.

Me: "Hey guys, guess what?! Mommy and Daddy get to go dancing tonight!"
Chloe: Eyes huge as saucers, and with a gasp as if she just saw Cinderella herself exclaims, "You're going to a ball???!!! Oh Mommy, can I please pick out your gown and your clackity heels?"
Me: Knowing I was about to burst her bubble, admitted that it was just country western dancing and that you don't wear gowns there. But, I did promise that if I ever go to a ball, I will definitely let her pick out my gown!
Chloe: The let down of the century.

Gavin: Offering to pray before dinner, says, "Dear God, thank you that I am so good at the piano and please help this food be good. Amen."
Me: We obviously have not discussed prayer etiquette in this house yet.

Nov 14, 2008

Twinkies

11/14/2008 — cori
This past weekend, Chloe and I were blessed to have a "girls only" weekend. It was awesome. I can't remember that last time her and I spent so much time together. What a difference time together makes! We didn't have any agenda other than to have fun together. The only thing we had to do was go to her last soccer game (where she made another goal). We shopped till we dropped (not really buying, just looking). She loves to go to the mall and I rarely go there. So we walked all around the mall and finally came to LibbyLu's. It is a very girly place where you get your hair all made up, buy sparkly clothes and jewelry - pretty much a place the boys would never step foot in. Chloe wanted to buy some dangly clip on earrings with the money she brought - but opted for this instead:
getting her ears pierced!!! What a big girl thing to do! I was so surprised that she wanted to and thrilled that she actually did. The funny thing was, she was just talking about it earlier in the week saying she was going to wait until she was a mommy before she ever got her ears pierced (I think maybe my flashback horror stories of my experience may have erroneously put negative thoughts about it in her impressionable little mind). It was such a fun, girly thing to do together and memory to share on our 'girls only weekend'. We also had a pajama party and watched an old Doris Day movie before going to bed.

I'm so thankful she wants to be like me, dress like me, have 'fparkly earwings' like me. Its fun being twinkies!

Nov 9, 2008

No More Pedestal

11/09/2008 — cori
Well...I knew the day would come eventually...I just didn't know Bennett would only be 7 when it did. After a whirl-wind weekend visiting with his newly married Uncle, Bennett came home with some news for me. He was sure to lavish me with much love before he dropped his bombshell. "Mom," he said real sweet with a little grin on his face, "you're beautiful. I mean, not as beautiful as Aunt Karen. I mean...she's REAL beautiful. But, you are loving."

That was it. I have officially been dethroned. But of all the people to loose my title to, I'm thrilled Aunt Karen will now be taking over the title of "Most Adored by Bennett". She is a sweetheart AND beautiful!

I may not be beautiful any more...I'm just glad I still have loving going for me.

Nov 7, 2008

If You Were Gavin...

11/07/2008 — cori
You would have said these three things to me within the past 48 hours. You would have also said a multitude of other, equally important things, but my brain capacity only holds 3 important items at a time.

1. "Mom, my goal in life is to count to 1 million. I'm at 20,600 so far."

My pride level is swelling at this very moment. This is an intimate look inside his brain. I can only imagine what his next goal will be. And trust me, there will be a next goal - just not until this one is accomplished. He hates to do more than one thing at a time. When this is done, he'll think of the next most important thing in his life he'd like to accomplish and go after that.

2. After entering a large gathering of people and singling out the lone other boy in the crowd, they begin immediately playing together. This baffles Gavin, but he goes with it because of his immense love of play. Once the event is over he confides in me, "Mom, this boy wanted to play with me even before I had a chance to become acquainted with him."

Maybe, just maybe, I'm having Gavin read one too many books written in the 1800's. Just a hunch.

3. He delivered this note to me as I was getting ready for the day. It read: "Note to my Mom - open now. Hey Mom, did you know that I get 365,000,000 dollars a year because I'm paid 1,000,000 dollars a day just to be a geunis!?"

I was about to launch into a speech about humility and boastfulness when he informed me that this was all in Gavinworld. In Gavinworld, he always refers to himself as 'the human genius'. I'm trying not to read into this one. I'm focusing more on the fact that our spelling is greatly improved, that he put his commas in the correct place when writing out the millions place value, that's he's doing mental mathematical calculations and that he has ample self esteem. This is actually very ironic, because in 'the real world' where the rest of us live and Gavin sometimes decides to join, he is very humble, non-boastful, a little clueless, quiet (in front of others) and very helpful (when asked). This is directly opposite of his 'Gavinworld' persona. In his diametrically opposed world, he's everything he wishes he was here, I think.

I'm beginning to think I like the sound of that. I might just escape into 'Cori World', become the person I always wished I could be and invite others to join my world periodically. What a safe little haven that would be. I wouldn't even have any imaginary friends or anything. Why isn't it as cute when adults do that? Don't we call that 'mentally unstable'? On second thought, I guess I'll just stay here in 'reality' and wait and let God change me here instead. Maybe Gavin can witness God's work in my life and realize that he doesn't have to escape to his world to be perfect...that we're loved just as we are right now and that our whole lives are a work in progress.

Nov 4, 2008

Observation

11/04/2008 — cori
The morning we woke up after sleeping in the tent, Bennett went to the restroom and upon further review of himself in the mirror announced, "I think I should look better than I do."

Nov 3, 2008

Bug Issues

11/03/2008 — cori
We spent this past weekend camping in this amazing setting:











What could possibly go wrong? Thankfully, there was only one incident that earns honorable mention for this trip. And as it turns out, it's another story of Chloe and I in the bathroom. Chloe and me and bathrooms don't go together very well. Especially when one of these is involved:

Unfortunately for us, these little harmless Daddy Long Legs were all over the place. So were 35 species of snakes, 3 of which were venomous - but we won't even get into that right now. For whatever reason, these spiders really liked the women's restroom. This was the cleanest, neatest camping facility I've ever been in - minus the spiders. But thank God these were only Daddy Long legs....the last camping excursion had tarantulas in the bathroom (which Chloe couldn't see).

So...there we are brushing our teeth and washing our faces before bed. Chloe is done and standing exactly in the middle of the room where nothing can get her while she waits for me to wash my face. I'm in the middle of lathering my face when all of the sudden I hear her let out a blood curling scream. I don't want to get soap in my eyes so I feel around quickly for my face cloth. The screaming and crying only intensify. Once I'm able to open my eyes and look at her she is pointing at me and looking as if dracula was behind me ready to pounce.

I ask her in the calmest voice I can muster, "What's wrong, Sweetie?" Unfortunately, she's way to freaked out to talk and just keeps pointing, screaming, crying, and backing away from me. I then gather that possibly something is on my sweatshirt. I look in the mirror, but can't see anything. The more I step towards Chloe to calm her, the louder she screams and stops with hands up to her face covering it like she can't dare watch what's about to happen to me.

Without trying to appear panicky myself, I rip off my sweatshirt in record speed and throw it to the floor (a little too close to Chloe). Now she feels that whatever was on my sweatshirt is now about to attack her and she ups the screaming decibel a few more notches. She's frozen in fear. At this point, I'm wondering why Chuck hasn't rushed in yet to save the day.

I finally muster enough courage to rub my foot all over the sweatshirt and find our little bathroom friend crawling around on the back of it. I just nudge him out of the way a bit and pull Chloe close to assure her that she and I are both safe now. She is sobbing uncontrollably. I finally am able to deduce that she saw the spider fall from the wall right beside me onto my back and then proceed to explore my hat, hair and back.

Truth be told, if it was anything other than a Daddy Long Legs I would have reacted the exact same way as Chloe. I would have been flinging my sweatshirt all around, whipping off my hat and shaking my body like a madman to get the unknown intruder off me. But under the circumstances, I wasn't allowed to act like that in front of Chloe - or she never would agree to go camping again. I had to pretend not to be freaked out - even though I had a huge case of the hebee-jebees.

Us girly-girls have to stick together. Camping is not for the faint of heart - nor is it for princesses.

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