December 2009: An Overview of life and learning

Because things have been crazy busy and I have yet to find a simple way to import my flickr images into WordPress. 🙂 Also my camera has dust on the lens and so has been tricky to use…which is why I am not taking so many photos. Sad.

The end of November was both my brother’s 18th birthday and Esther’s 10th birthday and since I didn’t get the photos up earlier they are in my December folder. (Aren’t I so organized?)

We made a whole bunch of chocolates and cookies (in between kid colds) and sent some geeky candy and chocolates off to The Escapist (who actually pay my hubby to write about what he loves– aren’t they awesome?) I made a whole lot more candy sushi, some more and some less realistic but due to camera issues this is the only that I got a photo of (the less realistic sushi was for people like my dad who couldn’t get past the whole “this looks like it should be raw fish and seaweed so I can’t enjoy it” thing.)
candy sushi

Also made Super Mario Brother’s stars
stars
And Pac Man cookies

Had a whole slew of work to do– both painting and computer and then got to take photos of my mother-in-laws new furniture for her (and her angel on her tree so she could share it with her facebook friends).
Angel

And then we got lots of snow (well, for December)…

which made my skiing brother VERY happy.
James

Not to mention the kids

The rest of the time has been spent doing things I didn’t get photos of like:

  • Logging many hours on the Wii Fit Plus.  It was an early Christmas present because before the snow we got lots and lots of rain, cold, wet, muddy rain and there is nothing like Christmas excited stir crazy kids who can’t get outside to drive a mother mad.  Issac alone logged 3 hours a day skateboarding and juggling while Rach enjoyed the Super Mario Brother’s like obstacle course, and Esther enjoyed trying out all the new stuff.
  • Alf, Scooby Doo, and Fraggle Rock.  The kids were looking for a new old tv show to watch and discovered these , which have triggered many pop culture and real versus fiction discussions.
  • Baking, crafting, and candy making, not to mention much  present planning, purchasing, wrapping and kidding (mostly the kids using money they have been saving– we didn’t buy that much this year.)
  • Rach made and sent out Christmas cards (myself not so much– this year I am just trying to stay on target).
  • We have been spending a lot of evenings playing board games, especially Trivial Pursuit Young Players edition (from the 80’s).
  • The kids have been spending a lot of days “playing school”.  Apparently this entails less work books and work sheets and more copying straight from the dictionary.
  • Esther and Rachel have been using the dictionary to look up ancient writing and copy it, writing out various things in early alphabets.
  • Due to a hiccup in our finances (hubby is on part time at one of his jobs so we are relying more on  his kind of  quarterly paycheck from his other job)we have spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to make our money go further.  The kids have been very active in this helping plan shopping trips and figuring out ways to save.
  • Issac is reading anything and everything though not really picking up books yet, instead preferring to spend much of his spare time in his room doing what looks like tossing all his small toys around the room but which apparently is him playing out huge battle scenes and building giant Construx robots which he occasionally runs down and tells us all about.
  • The kids have also been spending a lot of time using Garry’s Mod (the program Shamus uses in his comic making at times) to create various scenes and mini games for each other.
  • We are continuing our chronological trek through the Bible.  Due to taking a month off when my bmother passed away we are in the end of the Gospels now.  It is very interesting to read about the resurection at Christmas and I think has done more for our attitude thios Christmas than anything ever before– especially as we were reading the Beatitudes and Sermon on the Mount when Christmas lists were being made and now as Christmas day approaches we are reading of Christ’s death and suffering.  VERY interesting and has led to many discussions and thinking processes which do not naturally occur when just reading about the newborn baby.  (For instance the 8 year old finally realizes that Jesus didn’t stay a baby like people always seem to imply at Christmas).
  • Climategate (another good article here), the Copenhaegen conference, and the giant East coast snowstorm and several other things have led to more than a few discussions of truth and why Chistians shouldn’t get too caught up in the world and what the world media says is going on and how to have discernment and peace when everyone is panicking.
  • Finally and most recently the girls have discovered the Dungeons and Dragons 4.0 handbook and decided they wanted to play.  They have thus been studying it, designing and rolling up characters, and learning how to figure out armor class, hit points, bonuses, etc.  For those who have no clue about these things–  think probability, formulas, and real life mathematical application combined with play acting, logic, and character development based along set lines of behavior (the girls chose character alignments based on their natural character–Rach by nature is Lawful Neutral and Esther is Neutral Good) but when they play they will have to make sure their characters adhere to those characteristics and make decisions based on that.  There also will be quite a lot of math and pencil paper work to do but they are both excited and willing to take it on. 🙂