Monday, August 31, 2015

Things That Shouldn't Be Said To a Pregnant Woman

Soon after Froggy was born, he was baptized in our parish by a rather loud mouthed deacon.  At one point, he felt the need to address everyone attending (there were two other families also having babies baptized) to remark on how large I had been before the baby was born.  I don't remember his exact words, something to the effect of, "Before her baby was born I just kept wondering when she was going to pop!"  Note that this particular deacon was not a close family friend.  In fact, he was a newer deacon who didn't have an ounce of tact.

This past weekend our family had a few different outings in which I received comments that really should just never be said to a pregnant woman (or any woman/mother for that matter).  The first was from an elderly woman, who frankly should have known better, but for some reason felt the need to share her opinion.

"Wow!" She said to me as I sat down with a baby in one hand and a plate of food in the other. "When are you due?" 

When I told her November, she raised her eyebrows in a dramatic fashion and said, "Really?!  You must have triplets in there!"

And then she asked if this would make four children, and when I replied that it would actually make five here on earth, she again raised her eyebrows and said, "I only said four to be polite!  Five!  Goodness!"

I had no idea what to say to either of these comments (I have more manners than to just lambast her in front of a large group of people) and was thankfully saved by having to help one of my (numerous) children.

Later that day, our family went to the evening Mass, which while not ideal for us, has been what lately has worked due to a hectic traveling schedule.  During the sign of peace another not so elderly woman (but who also should have known better) said, "You are really getting big!  When are you due?"

I mumbled November simultaneously with a sign of peace, but what I really wanted to do was throw tomatoes at her (if I carried tomatoes with me, which maybe I should start doing).

I try really hard not to be too sensitive, but when twice in one day complete strangers remark on the largeness of my pregnant self (when there are still 2 1/2 months to go), it's hard to not think that perhaps I should not venture out into public for the next few months as if my mere presence is an obscenity.

My husband did not hear any of these comments, so when I told him on the way home, he was furious.  "You are beautiful when you are pregnant."  Now that is a man who knows what is acceptable to say.

While I'm sure most of you would never say anything but the sweetest things to a pregnant woman, take this as a lesson.  Hold doors open for her, give her your seat, offer to carry her groceries to the car, ask her how she's feeling, when she's due, and if she knows what gender the baby is.  Congratulate her.  Do not express shock when you see her lumbering around, or struggling with her (four!) born children.  Do not comment on her size.  Just don't.  She feels awkward enough already without having to go home and wonder how she could possibly get any bigger (because she will, oh yes, she will).  Pregnant women are vulnerable, both physically and emotionally.  They do not need to deal with your poor manners as well.

My huge self at 28 weeks.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

{pretty, happy} OR Just {funny, real}

I don't really have anything pretty or happy for you today.  My hubby is traveling (again, with more trips coming soon!), I can barely walk (SPD), we are on week 6 of the school year (dragging), and my dishwasher is broken (an opportunity for the littles to learn to hand wash?).
Fritter was assigned to draw a picture in the bible book he is making about the creation of the first man and woman.  He drew what you see below, with the following explanation, "I made the sun blue, because it's a very young star.  It's both scientific and bible-icious!"  You may now call us weird homeschoolers.  :)
This was the temperature for most of last week.  And people wonder why I never go outside.

Go visit Like Mother, Like Daughter for more contentment!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

{pretty, happy, funny, real} - Anniversary Edition

For our ten year anniversary, my husband and I did something we have never done before.  We left the children with some trusted friends, and headed on the road to San Diego for a weekend all to ourselves.  While I did miss my children, the weekend was lovely, and after a stressful few months, exactly what both of us needed.  
Watching a sunset on the beach.  I could have sat there forever.
The "old" couple.  Happy just being together.
When we first arrived in San Diego, we headed straight for the USS Midway Museum.  Just outside was another "giant" happy couple.  I tried to get Dan to kiss me like that in front of the statue, but my sailor refused me.  :)
A happy hubby.  Standing at the bow of an aircraft carrier, watching a battleship go by.
This was actually the following day. We went back down to San Diego proper and walked around the pier and beach area while we waited for our dinner reservations.  By this point all the stress in life had completely disappeared.  I could smile!  Naturally!  Without feeling like it was forced!  Amazing!
We attended Mass at the Mission Basilica de San Diego, which was the first mission started by Blessed Junipero Serra (soon to be Saint!). We arrived early and were able to tour the grounds before Mass.
On board the Midway my hubby got thrown in the brig.  :)
We are back to real life now, with all the stressors (more work travel coming soon.  Ug.).  It wasn't until Monday that I realized just how stressed I actually am on an everyday basis.  It's good to realize this because it means I can adjust how we are doing some things to lower that everyday stress.  In the meantime, I'm really trying to take things a day at a time and make sure we have room carved out to just be and enjoy.
Time for an impromptu science lesson...

A cicada nymph the kids spotted while we were enjoying the not-so-hot day we had here the other day.  I think this guy was looking for a place to latch on to so he could bust out of his shell and join the summer orchestra.

 Go visit Like Mother, Like Daughter for more contentment!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

10 Years

Ten years ago, I did something that changed my life forever.  I married the man of my dreams and started on the real adventure of life.  

On our honeymoon.  We took a road trip in his parents' RV through Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, and South Dakota.  This was at Louis and Clark State Park in Montana.
This being our ten year anniversary, we have taken advantage of the kindness of dear friends and are heading to the seaside all by our lonesome (read - no kids!).  We fully plan on reveling in cooler temperatures, eating three square meals a day without spilled milk (hopefully!), and enjoying each other's company.  I am SO looking forward to the weekend. 

Would you mind sending up a little prayer for safe travels for us, and for the angels to watch over our children?

Monday, August 3, 2015

2015-2016 School Plans

We are already on week 4 of our school year.  But before anyone gets to thinking that a) they are behind or b) we are way ahead, remember this.  We have a baby due in mid-November and will be taking off ALL of November and December (and in reality January will probably be a slow month school-wise as well).  Also, we basically floated through the last six weeks of school last year because of morning sickness.  With that said here are our plans for this school year.

We have decided to try to keep things pretty simple this year.  We are mostly following Mother of Divine Grace, with a few changes and additions.  And four weeks in, I can tell you that things are running pretty smoothly and I am happy with the plans we've made.

Fritter - 3rd Grade

Fritter makes Confirmation and First Holy Communion this year, so on top of Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at our parish we will do the following:

Continue Baltimore Catechism 1
Child's Bible History
This Coloring Book

I'm thinking we will be making a 10 Commandments lap book, together with Ladybug and this 7 Sacrament stained glass window.

Abeka Arithmatic 3
Math It
Last year we used Saxon 2 and both of us HATED it.  So I switched us back to Abeka and we have been much happier with our choice.  I'm not a fan of Abeka in general, but I've yet to find a primary Math program that's a better fit.  So I made sure to purchase through Christian Book instead of directly from Abeka, though I'm not sure if that makes any difference money-wise for the company.

Language Arts
Primary Language Lessons
So far I am loving this program.  It's challenging in the right places, and simple in the right places.  Plus it's a vintage reprint which is right up my alley.

Spelling & Phonics
Writing Road to Reading
Starting a Spelling Notebook
The jury is still out.  It seems complicated, but we are starting to get the hang of it.  It helps that we did Sound Beginnings last year and already have familiarity with most of the phonograms.

Memoria Press New American Cursive 1
Memoria Press New American Cursive 2
Memoria Press Cursive Copybook
Last year we used Getty-Dubay, and while I think the script is a nice one, I do not like how different it is from most other cursive scripts.  Plus Fritter struggled with it.  So we've started cursive over (although we are going fairly quickly and are already half-way through book 1) and he is doing great with it.

Continuing memorizing poems from the Harp and the Laurel Wreath following Mother of Divine Grace's schedule.

How Our Nation Began (for American History)
RC History (Finishing Ancient History from last year and then continuing with Medieval History)

Maps, Charts, & Graphs C
Uniquely Arizona
My First Book About Arizona

Behold and See 3
Nature Notebooking
MODG recommends an Abeka text, but I just couldn't do it for science.  As Catholics we have had a huge hand in science, and studying from a text that would purposely leave out (or twist) this fact seems wrong.  I thought that there had to be some science program from a Catholic perspective and after many reviews and research we settled on the one from CHC.  So far it seems to be a good text with many hands on activities and experiments that Fritter can do by himself (because otherwise they just would not get done.  Just being honest).

Childsize Masterpieces Level 4 & 5
Various Projects that I'll probably come up with by the seat of my pants

Music Masters CD's
Let's Learn Music 2
Piano Lessons (Yay!)

English From the Roots Up (just the cards, not the whole program)

Fritter also wanted to learn about Australia this year, and I did get a couple of books for him, but this seemed like enough and we haven't pulled it out yet.  My guess is that will make it's appearance next summer or maybe during our long winter break.

Ladybug - 1st Grade

St. Joseph First Communion Catechism
Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

The 10 Commandment Lap book and 7 Sacrament Stained Glass Window mentioned above.

Abeka Arithmetic 1

Sound Beginnings
MODG recommends continuing with 100 Easy Lessons, but we finished it (mostly) last year.  As I did with Fritter, I plan on breaking this program up for both 1st and 2nd grade, because it really is a lot.

Memoria Press Copybook 1

Memorizing Poems from the Harp and the Laurel Wreath

Nature Notebooking

Childsize Masterpieces Level 2
Aesop's Fables to create a Fable Book
Again various crafts that don't make me want to pull my hair out.

36 Traditional Roman Catholic Hymns
Peter and the Wolf
Carnival of Animals
Bach's Goldberg Variations
Gershwin's Rhapsody
The Farewell Symphony
Piano Lessons (Yay!)

RC History with Fritter above

Ladybug wanted to learn about Seasons, so I've been looking up ideas for a season related lap-book.  We'll see what we get to.

Sunflower - PK

I was given a stack of various preschool workbooks, and so far that has been enough to satisfy her and keep her busy until Daniel Tiger comes on PBS.  Ahem.  I mean, we have various Montessori style activities for her to work with in quiet peacefulness.  Right.

Froggy - The Terror Age

Right now we have him sitting on a blanket in the school room and playing with whatever I have at hand.  One day it was a bucket of beans that he was supposed to be content with scooping into an empty bucket.  It seems it was more fun to dump the whole bucket all over the floor.  The sounds!  The sights!  So much stimulation!  And then he goes in the playpen for Daniel Tiger time.

There you have it folks.  Our school year in a nutshell.