Mar 30, 2012

Good Thing I Know A Guy...!

WARNING:  This post contains graphic tooth images!

Max:  (runs to me sobbing...)  "I was in the garage and I stepped on something and it flew up and hit me in the face!!!"

Me:  "Okay, let me se...WOAH!!!  YOUR TOOTH!!!"  (Not my best parenting moment.)

Max:  "My tooth?  What happened to my tooth???  (feels with tongue...)  MY TOOOOOOOTH!!!"
(more tears.)

Me:  Immediately sends a picture to Doug on his phone.  And calls his office and asked the Front Desk to please interrupt him and have him look at his phone.

Doug:  "Find the missing piece!!!"

Me:  Searched nasty garage floor for 30 minutes and finally recovered missing triangle amidst camouflage "Sport Court" flooring, dust, sand, and popcorn.
Placed it in milk per instructions.  
(Our garage doubles as a play room.  That doesn't mean it's clean though...!)

Doug:  Finishes work, drives an hour to get home, eats dinner, takes Max to the office, and saves the day and the tooth!  (And cleaned and polished M's teeth while he was at it!)
Being married to a pediatric dentist has its perks!!!

Mar 13, 2012

How're Things? Home School Edition

Maybe you've noticed I don't blog much any more.  I also don't read blogs any more, clean the house, do the dishes, grocery shop, make dinner, or play with Gabe or Gray.  That can be blamed entirely on HOME SCHOOL!

Although I think we're in a grove now, and although Max loooooooves it, it is extremely time consuming and at times overwhelming.  (At least I don't think I'm making him stupider by the minute anymore...which is what I thought for the first few months.)

Like I said, we're sorta in a grove and I think it's going pretty well.  We've switched to a charter school closer to home and they provide the curriculum free of charge (if you don't count my state taxes) as well as providing some structure and deadlines to get things done.   This charter school told me "If you're spending more than 3-4 hours a day on school, you're trying to cram too much in."  (As opposed to the last school which told me  "Regular school day!  6-7 hours!")

The great part is, it's very flexible.   If we set a goal that proves to be too much work or too overwhelming, we adjust it the next month until it's doable.  Sometimes I think it's worth the pain and effort and that next year we'll pull Sam out and home school the whole family forever.  The next day, I pull my head out and decide Max is going back next year.  ...then I hear about yet another wacky California public school policy and want to run the other way screaming.
So for next year?  Completely up in the air and undecided!

The one thing that has even made home schooling possible for me?  Math curriculum from Teaching Textbooks.  I don't have to teach math!  Max watches/listens to the lecture on the computer.  Does the assignment (or quiz) on the computer, and the program grades the lesson and keeps a record of his scores.  There are many things I love about it.  And Max likes it too!  He does two lessons a day no problem!  If he misses more than 2 or 3 problems, I can go in, erase those answers, and have him do the ones he missed again.  (If you're interested, you can go to their site and click on the "sample lesson" button to see what it looks like and how it works.  It's pretty genius.)

One home schooling bonus:  We got to go to Sea World for a field trip!  Sea World has a 'home school day' twice a year where they offer tickets for something like $5.75 per kid!
The boys had never been so I let Sammy ditch school and took all four kids.  
It was a lot of stressful fun!  
(Next time I will leave Gray with a friend and take Doug instead!)

And that's how home school is going.

Any questions?

Mar 10, 2012

One Year Later

In just a year, most of the fear from that day has faded.  But watching something like this brings it all back in an instant.

This one is pretty long.  Something to watch as a family tonight perhaps?  (After little kids are in bed.)

This one is pretty fascinating.  For all those people who tell me "California has earthquakes too!"
Yep.  I know.

Skip to about 1:45 if you're short of time

The first time I saw this (second movie) I started feeling sick as the days clicked past.  And then the explosion on March 11th was like being punched in the stomach.

I don't think most people in the states comprehended that the earthquakes never stopped.  And with the constant reminders, it's hard to get the fear out of your head and heart.  I never felt completely at ease until I left Japan.  Which was a sad way to leave a place we all loved so much.
The stress decreased over time, but those constant little earthquakes were constant little reminders.  (Some not so little.)  My friends there are still living with them.

The thing is, we wouldn't have traded our time there for anything.  Although the earthquake was a low point, the great things that started happening after were amazing high points.  It was a great experience to be part of the clean-up.  To see the amazing pride and grace and resilience of the Japanese people.  To see destruction repaired.  To see things rebuilt.  To see the outpouring of love from other countries including America.  It was great to be a part of that.

We will always love Japan!

Looking Back:

First post post-quake:  surviving-earthquake-in-japan.html
Aftermath:  earthquake-aftermath.html
Mormon's go to work:  humanitarian-aid-for-hachinohe.html
Sharing hugs from America:  american-refugees-from-sendai.html
Frustration:  sigh.html
One Week Anniversary:  should-i-stay-or-should-i-go-now.html
Feeding the French:  feeding-french-rescue-workers.html
Cleaning Up!:  cleaning-up-mess.html
Perspective:  an-american-mom-in-japan/
Emergency Preparedness:  preparing-to-be-prepared.html
Short Video by Me:  more-ways-to-help.html
Doug cleaning up in Noda:  operation-tomadachi-noda.html
First Preparedness Post by Janeen:  misawa-monday-paeparedness-perspective.html

Thanks for remembering with me!