Long Time, No See!

I’m not at fickle at life as I am at blogging. Luckily.

Life got busy, as it does, and its slowing down a bit now, as it does. So, I thought I might give it a try again, blogging on a regular basis. And I’ve got a lot to share with all y’all!

Youngerandson.net

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Our home business has a blog now! And I’m one of the two bloggers. It’s been an adjustment, as I blog here as I’m inspired. But there, we are blogging on a schedule.

Co-op is done until August

Our last day was April 27. I was glad to be done, but sad that we are done. Does that make any sense? And next year I’m teaching Physical Science, which I’ve taught before, and When Einstein Dines, which is a class of my own creation. It’s basically science in the kitchen, a practical application of biology and chemistry. I’m super excited, but I’ve got a lot of planning to do for it. Since I’m teaching Physical Science for a 2nd time, I’m excited to organize it better.

Still doing alignment work

Someday we will be earning enough in other ways that I won’t be doing this. But for now, I continue giving a few hours each week to matching educational materials with state standards. Not exciting, and as a homeschool parent who is a bit disdainful of state standards, it’s ironic I do this work. But it pays well, so I keep at it for now.

Extended “summer” Break

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I’m practicing Masterly Inactivity. And the kids are having a great time.

We started our ‘summer’ break a few weeks ago. It’s nice outside and both boys want to be outside. I want to be outside. So, we are taking a break with school and will start back up when it gets HOT. I think this means we are ‘year round’ home schoolers. I’ll take the flexibility that gives us.

Embryo Adoption Update!

We started the protocol to do a transfer last fall, but then hit some paperwork snags. Those were overcome and we started the process again a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, the timing didn’t work for a transfer this cycle. We will try again next cycle. The protocol this clinic uses is less invasive, but harder to schedule.

 

Reviving the comatose blog

Yeah, okay. My last post was December 11, 2015. It’s been 20 months since I’ve written. In that time, we transferred 2 embryos, found that 1 had implanted, gave birth to that one baby boy, did school, graduated Hubby with his PhD, got to the Great Sand Dunes National Park, got the Lego business running at a higher level, and started Year 1 for Little Man’s schooling. It’s true, the days are long, but the years are short.

In the past few months I’ve found that I want to start writing again, but starting writing after not writing for so long is hard. What will people think? What explanation should I give for not writing? Can I keep it up this time or will I flake out again at some point?

And when you don’t know exactly what to write about, you write shorts. Yes?

Year 1

This is how we label the year of school a child is in when using a Charlotte Mason method of education. I’m using Amblesideonline.com, and I’ve been delving deep in Mason’s philosophy of education. We started back on July 5, as it was just too hot to be outside much. I plan a longish break come mid-Sept so we can do lots more outside than the minimal 30 minutes in the morning.

Mr Wigglesworth

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Oh, my, this last year has gone so fast! He is now 11 months, and has gone from an awkward army crawl to pulling up, without doing any classical crawling in between. He’s working on lots of words and is all over the place.

PhD

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graduation!

Finally! We got Hubby graduated. It was 8 years to finish a 5 year program, but he had successfully defended the dissertation in March of 2016 (which was only 7 years). The department head was able to be generous and let him stay on that extra time which allowed us to do the small business thing….

Younger and Son LLC is up and running!

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Me playing with Lego Printing

Mostly…. We’ve got some work to do on the website and blog before it is uploaded, but we have many ideas brewing and hope to bring them to the wider public soon. We are creating Lego Mosaics, Busy Bags, Printing kits…. oh, it’s so exciting!

CM Biology

I am teaching a high school biology class this next school year at the co-op we participate in. As I’ve been delving into the CM (Charlotte Mason) philosophies so deeply, I so very much want to do this class as CM as possible. I have plans! I have ideas! I want to write about it so others can do the same, particularly for all those homeschool moms who are fearful of dissection. So, we will see how this pans out.

Great Sand Dunes National Park

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I cannot leave this out. We had such a wonderful time, and it was the first time to take Mr Wigglesworth camping. The night was so cold (mid 30s), and we were not fully prepared for camping with a baby over a cold night. He didn’t want to sleep with me in the sleeping bag, which is what we had planned. So, it was the car seat to the rescue. Luckily, we had brought a blanket to go under us and a comforter to go over us, so we could put that over him and there he stayed warm enough, even if he did wake every hour or two to nurse.

The dunes were a ton of fun, and it was great to get out camping again.

Any fun things going on for you right now? I’d love to hear about it!

Summer Shorts

Since I can’t seem to keep myself writing on any regular basis, I’ll stick to publishing shorts.

-We are staying busy swimming, swimming and swimming. And now climbing. Yeah, every time we’d go to the university pool to swim, we had to stop and watch who ever was climbing. Yesterday, one of the guys working that area asked if Little Man wanted to climb, and he did! We went back today and he worked really  hard at it. He never got all the high, but he’s figuring it out, and working all his muscles to fatigue. This is the first thing we’ve found that really pushes him that hard.

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-On July 5, we got to join the youth group to set off firecrackers. Little Man really enjoys them and found that the little smoke bombs he could light himself, until he got a spark on his hand. That reduced his enjoyment some.

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-What, you don’t watch someone else on the computer while sitting on their shoulders? This is the preferred watching position of Little Man these days.

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-I was told on this day, “I am an artist.” And when he had finished he said, “I’m done being an artist.” I had always assumed ‘artist’ was a more permanent descriptor, but I guess I was wrong.

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Spring time shorts

Yes, I’m wearing shorts more often, but this is more short blurbs about life right now. And no pictures of me in shorts because it might blind you. Its still somewhat early spring.

Little Man is still totally in love with water. He is all about water play, which means turning on the hose and watching the water flow. We shut down our raised beds a year ago, and they’ve over grown with grass, but I did dig up a 2’x2′ square so he would have access to loose dirt to play in. Yes, and mud. Since the area was ‘raised’, there is an incline to watch the water flow down as it floods the dug up area. He would stay at that for hours if he didn’t get cold. Yes, the boy has found the ability to get cold… when its 70′, cloudy and he is wet.

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We are doing more ‘science experiments’ these days. Little Man is interested in different things and I’m just going for it. We made Oobleck (even made it green!), a paper mache volcano (we did make it errupt!) and we have three Forest Tent catepillars in a big jar on the table, and a Swallowtail butterfly catepillar also in a big jar on the table. No we aren’t doing any kind of worksheets, but we are learning and talking about the natural world.

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I mentioned life being unpredictable lately in my last post. I thought I might offer more explanation of it. For the past year, we have been ‘approved and waiting’ for domestic infant adoption. About 6 months ago, God started working in our hearts to consider embryo adoption. After losing a baby to early miscarriage in June 2013, we are starkly aware of the emotional risk and the resulting grief of losing a baby. We reached a point recently where we realized we were ready to take on that risk and the possibility of such grief. And so, right now, we are in the midst of the application process for embryo adoption.  Of course, we are also doing all kinds of thinking on the ethics of IVF, fertility clinics, and our society’s attitudes towards babies in the embryo stage. Hopefully, I’ll be able to more fully articulate our thoughts, but its such a deep, intense, and sensitive set of topics, its rather scary to approach.

I got a hair cut today. This is monumental because I’ve cut my own hair for the past 5 years. I decided this was what I wanted. My goal is to grow and donate my hair for as long as I can, and this is the 4th time I’ve been able to do this. A before picture….

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and after….

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I do think my hair is getting curlier as I get older.

What are you up to?

Random Shorts (in other words #myunfilteredlife)

A random collection of short burbs from my life of late. Mostly unfiltered.

–Last night, I started dinner by cutting up chicken, getting out the pan, putting a tbsp or two of oil in the pan and turning on the burner. I began wondering what they smell was, and why wasn’t my oil in the pan looking hot. It was nearly 5 minutes later when I realized I’d turned on the wrong burner. I’d turned on the burner that I’d set the plastic oil bottle on… I lost about 1/2 gallon of oil to the top of the stove, which, luckily, has sides high enough to contain most of the oil. I’m grateful we live in a place such that the loss of so much oil was disappointing and a stink to clean up, but it did not limit my ability to cook or provide food, nor will it.

–We have learned that water balloons last longer in a pool of water than not.  Of course, if you leave the balloons in the pool all day, they all deflate. Though if that is due to osmosis or weaking of the latex, I don’t know.

water balloons in the pool

water balloons in the pool

— I was walking across the yard when I realized on particular step sounded like I was stepping on plastic. The step felt like it, too. So I stooped to look and poke at the ground. Sure enough, there was a bottle buried in the yard. Several years ago I found a spark plug while digging up the garden. Not sure if I should thank the owners of the land from before the house was built or the construction crew or, perhaps both. I’m guessing the previous owners provided the spark plug and construction crew provided the bottle formerly containing Mountain Dew.

what I found in the yard

what I found in the yard

— When Little Man and I head outside, I usually imagine I will sit and read. But I always find something else to do. Most recently, I took apart our 8 year old box fan and cleaned it. Oh, it was gross.

 a distraction from reading

a distraction from reading

— Earlier this week, I was chatting with a friend about raising a little boy and she mentioned “It sounds like he’s bored, really.” It was like a light bulb. So, I got more sand for our sand bin/table. He will happily play for an hour… quiet… as in not talking… and I get to read, quietly, without distraction. Why did I let the sand run out and not get more? Oh, yeah, teaching conservation….

how I find quiet time

how I find quiet time

— I found myself reflecting on my general inability to keep my dining room table cleared off. My mom had us clear the table off *every day* for dinner. And we put all the stuff away *every day*. I think I might be physically incapable of such a feat.  I am thankful we have a large enough table that we can just move most of the stuff to the far end and sit at the near end to eat. (this is a picture after I’d been working on clearing if off for 10 minutes or so.)

Why can I not keep my dining room table cleared off?

Why can I not keep my dining room table cleared off?

— Little Man is into ‘creating creations’. Yes, those are his works to describe a particular painting of his. This is a recent duplo creation. I didn’t think to have him tell me about it at the time, so we can only guess what he was thinking of.

creations. by Little Man

creations. by Little Man

— More fun “science”: rooting an avocado seed.

'growing' avacado

‘growing’ avocado

— And we played with modeling clay. He started out making ‘snakes’, but they became snails soon after. Family member might begin receiving clay snail when they finally dry. 😀

making snails

making snails

 

— Really, life is going well. I’m getting reading done and enjoying. I’m exploring new ideas, and reviving old ones (got my sewing machine fixed!).

Christmas Shorts

Taking a cue from another blog-friend, here are a few tidbits of our Christmas.

–We took it easy this season. Put the tree up, did the advent train, and a single manger scene on the mantel. And a candle on the dinning table with a runner under it. I made cookies with Little Man on Christmas Day (or was it Christmas Eve? no, Day of, I think). No guests. We didn’t travel. It was so nice. I’m realizing I’m not sure how I feel about decorations, per say. I think manger scenes, angels, shepherds and wise men about are quite appropriate, and I do love putting up and having a tree up, but I’m not sure I’m interested in the rest of the hoopla of the season. Though, based on Little Man’s love of the various displays of lights around our neighbor, we might put up a few more lights around the house next year.

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Christmas morning, before anyone else was up.

— We mainly did stockings for each other. Not sure why, but I *love* stockings. Hubby did a great job for his first time doing stockings and got me The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mammals. Yes, I can google, but having  book is so much for useful when you know its a fox, but you don’t know what kind. I decided I’m pretty sure it was a Grey Fox that came through out yard last May. And that we have Fox Squirrels running around.

–Little Man has become very interested in letters and spelling lately. He can form a recognizable “H” now, which I think is pretty impressive for 2 1/2. He has begun ‘spelling’ things, though most of the time the words are all p’s, g’s and a few c’s. I’m seeing how fine motor skill development really opens a whole new class of activities for a child. (see about the sewing card below)

— I’m thinking and reflecting on goals, habits and 2014, of course. This is just part of who I am! I think, based on my failure to finish any of my 2013 goals, I ought not do ‘goals’ right now. I think its just time of life, really. So, I’m going to focus on ‘habits’. First up, the daily routines habits, like ‘morning routine’ and ‘evening routine’. More on the details of these later…

–I’m still finishing off the Christmas gifts for the niece and nephews. I’m now declaring them ‘Epiphany Gifts’, since I think I can get them to the kids by Jan 6…. I hope. 15 mins of work a day, and they will be finished in 2 or 3 days, but Little Man doesn’t like to let me work unless its what he is doing also. I did create a ‘sewing card’, and he really enjoyed it. I need to remember to pull it out for him more often. I think road trips got easier with this activity. Maybe its time to explore putting together some ‘busy bags’. Might make ‘afternoon rest time’ easier.

working hard on his sewing card

working hard on his sewing card

— Little Man appears to have mostly given up the afternoon nap. I’ve maintained an ‘afternoon rest time’ for my own sanity (and patience), but that has its own learning curve. He is getting better at it, and is understanding better that its as much for me, as for him. I’ve also realized the ‘quiet time boxes’ that I’ve put together are woefully inadequate, so they will get some revamping soon.

There are more things I could talk about, but I think this is long enough! Again, I have intentions of getting back to blogging, but we will see. I’m working to make the internet and the computer a smaller part of my life, but I’m still working to find the right balance, I think. I’m not back on facebook, and I’m still thinking about when I might open that can of worms. I miss some of the interactions of facebook, but I’m also enjoying that I have one less thing to bother with on the computer.

Until next time….