Thursday, May 24, 2012

May Book Review

I finally got a little more time to read this month.  I was able to finish American On Purpose by Craig Fergusen, Star Trek Memories by William Shatner and Can We Come in and Laugh Too by Rosetta Schwartz.

American on Purpose was a great book.  Craig Fergusen is by far one of most favorite comedians.  He is down to earth and doesn't put on airs.  Its an autobiography about he went from Scotland to host The Late Late Show.  He was honest and funny.  His language might set some people off but if you have ever seen him work before you know everything is laced with profanity.  Its not that he does it to get a rise, its just the way he talks.  It was a quick read, sadly.  And its a good book to read if you just got done with something serious.  I much enjoyed it.

I admit it - I am a Trekkie.  Star Trek Memories by William Shatner was great.  I loved it.  Its not that the authors were phenomenal but I loved it because I love the subject.  It was only about the making of the original Star Trek series.  I was sad when it ended, "But where is the rest?!"  And wouldn't you know it but I went to the thrift store 2 days later and found...dat da da Star Trek Movie Memories!  Yay for me!  It started up where  the original book left off.  I enjoyed all the behind the scenes stories, the practical jokes, and the secrets.  It also has a bunch of pictures, which was fun to look through.

Can We Come in and Laugh Too really disappointed me.  The tag line was "Growing up in a zany family of 10" but there was barely anything in it about her life in a family of 10.  The vast majority of the book was about her adult like, her husbands, her kids.  Which is fine, but not at all what I was looking for.  Its a cute story, good for kids too as it was not long and was easy to read.  I got it for free and am glad I didn't pay for it.

Don't forget to check out what everyone else is reading at 5 Minutes for Books.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

12 Life Lessons Leukemia Taught Me

This week my son who has leukemia had a seizure.  The incident made me realize all the ways that his diagnosis has changed me.  All the things I do differently now, the ways I think.  Some of them I wished I had known before hand because it would have made this ordeal easier in some ways. So I am going to share them with you, and maybe if something ever happens you will be a bit more prepared than I was.

1. Always have an emergency box in the car(s).  Tooth brush, tooth paste, some cash, tissues, change of underwear, hair brush, granola bars, note pad, pads, pen and paper, phone charger that plugs in to a wall or a disposable phone that is fully charged. (I will post pics of the one I made some time)

2. Always own a pair of slip on shoes and have them near the front door.

3. Land lines are not outdated.  If you can afford one, even the $20 a year ones, keep it.  And/or have multiple cell phones on hand. If you are on the phone with 911 someone else can be calling another adult, a next door neighbor, doctors.

4. CPR - an afternoon class can save a life.  And don't give me any bull about how it hardly saves lives, blah blah blah.  Because the second your child stops breathing you will try to resuscitate.  Its a natural instinct, you will want to know CPR.  Take it from someone who has had to do it.  Get trained, take a refresher course.

5. Practice calling 911 with your children.  Have them also practice calling their emergency contacts.  "There has been a medical emergency..."  "There is an intruder in our home..."  Just the facts, remain calm.  Confusion causes delay.  Even small children can know how to handle emergencies, and in my experiences are more calm then the older children.

6. Post those emergency numbers in big bold font near the front door.

7. Stop thinking it will never happen to you and start thinking if it does you will be prepared the best you can.  Life changes in an instant, don't have regrets.

8.  Those frozen meals you keep meaning to make  - do it.  Frozen meals are easy to make for those coming to your house to help out.

9. Have an overnight bag ready in your closet: Baby shampoo, lotion, some sweats and a t-shirt, wash cloth, basics for an emergency overnight.

10. Get rid of the clutter.  If someone needs to get in your house would they be able to?  If you need to send someone to your house to grab your overnight bag, can they find it?

11.  Shower and dress everyday like you are going to go out.  Because even if you don't plan to, you might have to.  You don't have to look nice, but make sure your butt ain't hanging out or your clothes aren't see through.  Bras would be good.  Basically if you wouldn't answer the door like that, go change.

12. There is a fine line between protecting your children and empowering them.  Don't be scared to teach your children about disease and suffering, pain and death.  Don't be scared to let them watch those you tube slide shows about families with special needs children, or music videos by cancer ward patients.

I know there are people who have gone through the things we are, and have acted and done things differently.  That's fine.  What works for one family may not for another.  But until it happens you just don't know how you will respond.  So don't scoff at someone offering you advice (like me) because that's what I did, I thought I knew.  And when it came down to it, I didn't.  I thought I would be more calm when I was calling 911.  I always think "I will do it tomorrow, I am too tired today." but tomorrow I am just as tired and it still doesn't get done.  I always procrastinate and I always think: "What are the chances?"  Don't be like me.  Think ahead and be prepared.  Some of these things are so easy, so simple.  98 cents at Walmart for flip flops, an overnight bag is free, cleaning and purging are free, getting showered and dressed every day might be hard but less hard then trying to throw on clothes when faced with an emergency.  Even if nothing ever happens to you, something might happen to someone else when you are around.  It might be you or your children that make the difference in their outcome.

Lastly, Leukemia taught me to find the happiness, the positives even when faced with hardship.  There is always hope and beauty and love if you look hard enough.  And most times its staring you right in the face, you just need to realize its there.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Homeschool Round Up

Its been a while since I posted free homeschool stuff so I thought I would give you a list of all the awesome stuff I have found lately.

By far my favorite site has to be TLSbooks.com.  They have the most wonderful free worksheets that you can print out.  There is enough Music worksheets to fill out an entire semester - instruments and composers alike.

In the same vein is worksheetsforkids.net.  Their science worksheets have been a huge help for reviewing body parts before a test.

I haven't downloaded any yet so I can't attest to the quality but Books Should be Free has a whole section of free audio books for kids that include Swiss Family Robinson,  Tom Sawyer and other classics.

Lapbooks are all the rage, make yourself some - about just about everything!  Be warned, there are A LOT of pages to print out.  Homeschoolshare.com has lots of resources, check out the other stuff too.

Coloring isn't just for fun.  Kids learn and don't even know it.  Check out the beautiful Alphabet coloring pages at Daily Coloring Pages.  These would be great to hang on the wall when you are done.




Saturday, May 5, 2012

And I wonder where my kids get it from

We are all full of laughs here.  Yesterday when my mom came over to pick up my niece, who I was watching but she realized she couldn't because she had no car seat!  So we did the next best thing -  left the kids with the dh and went for 1/2 price fraps at Starbucks.  As we were getting into the car my grandfather called and she talked to him all the way to Starbucks.  It must have thrown off her concentration cause when she got there she was ordering herself an Amiercano instead of the Frap she wanted.  She realized AFTER they made it.  So she had them put it IN a frap.  And its Frappy Hour so the place is packed, and its making quite the scene.  Finally she gets her drink, its awful (duh) and I tell her I have to go to Target for deodorant.  We do our "shopping" - they had no deodorant - and go home.

But my mom is starving now so she wanted to get a Fallupa from Taco Bell.  I said, "You mean a challupa?"  She looked at me funny as if to say, "What a stupid name."  In this particular parking lot Taco Bell and Jack in the Box are right next to each other. I should have seen this coming a mile away, but she pulls up to the speaker and asks, "Do you have Chicken Tacos here?"  I about died..."Ma, this is Jack in the Box."  She responds, "Uh oh."  So now I am laughing hysterically because this is NOT the first time she has done this.  The guy taking the order must have thought we were drunk.  She decided on a chicken sandwich and asked him "Its not made with that Slime stuff is it?"  He says, "Slime?" So my mom wants to clarify, "Its real chicken?"  The guy asks, "You want grilled chicken?"  You can imagine I am dying at this point.  My mom had enough and just said YES and drove up to get the order.  I couldn't even look at the guy.