Thursday, October 30, 2008

Colored Leaves are Falling Down

The weather here lately has been absolutely amazing! Fall colors have stormed onto the landscape, and it just makes me feel so warm and peaceful inside. I love the fall, can you tell?

We have had a wonderful fall season so far. For the very first time, the kids and I have participated in a soccer league. I am coaching one of the U8 teams, so Lydia and Stephen are both on my team. (Can you say *challenging*? Who would have thought that my own kids would end up being my biggest challenge when coaching a soccer team for the first time?!) It has been so rewarding, though, and all of the kids are having a blast. Me, too! We have also been taking drives down Skyline Drive to get a breath of fresh air and enjoy the scenery. Cabin fever can come on quickly when you are homeschooling...

I did finish my classroom; did I post that yet? Gosh, I am a pathetic blogger! Having the dedicated classroom space has made a fantastic difference in our homeschooling efforts! WOW!

A big change in our homeschooling style has come about because we have learned that Zack has Asperger Syndrome. His teachers in the public school (back in 2002) told me they were sure he had it, but we were not able to get him evaluated at the time because of Stephen's cancer treatment. Now he is seeing a therapist to help him learn to deal and she says he meets the diagnostic criteria for Asperger's. So I now know that he processes things differently and can gear my own teaching style to his learning style. I have much to learn, but the both of us are happy that we are figuring this out. Yay for us!

On the craft front: I have not tried to do any business in well over a year, so I closed down the website for now. This past year rocked me pretty bad... but I am better and I am crafting again. I learned to knit this year, and have been making all kinds of things! My daughter is expecting a baby (due in March) so I am knitting baby stuff of late. Right now I am knitting a bunny toy, found in the book "Knitted Toys" by Zoe Mellor. I love it!

This past Sunday we took the day of rest very seriously, so I relaxed and spun up about 4 oz of merino wool. It is really pretty! It is still fairly inconsistent, but much better than my last effort. I will use it to make Jon a hat, probably. I really love spinning, and i know it gets better and better each time. It is so fulfilling to make something out of yarn you have spun yourself...

I have started making jewelry again, too. Just a little here and there. I am going to build up an inventory of jewelry and textiles, and just see what I enjoy the most. The beauty of having a "Handcrafts" business is that you are not limited by media!

One last crafty note: I have fallen for podcasts. I have found some through iTunes on spinning, knitting, and weaving and they are like brain candy for me. I want more.... Anyway, one of the benefits i have found through the podcasts is a site called Ravelry ( Since over 200,000 people have registered there before me (!!!) I know it is no big secret, but now I know about it! WooHooooooooooooo! It is like crack for the yarn crafter, let me tell you! Patterns, blogs, forums, contests and challenges, info info info! If you enjoy knitting, corcheting, spinning and don't know about it yet - check it out.

Friday, October 3, 2008

School Is Back in Session!

It makes such an incredible difference having our own classroom! The kids are so much more cooperative wtih their studies now. Wow, what a blessing! We got the classroom and tv areas set up downstairs. We don't get any TV channels, but we do like to watch videos sometimes. All that's left to do down here is to put in the bathroom (which entails busting up concrete to move the toilet - NOT a pleasant undertaking!) and a play area on the other side of the stairs. These last two rennovations will have to wait a while until we finish paying off doctors and hospitals.

Stephen (who now likes to be called Steve...) is doing so very, very well! He does not have to go back to oncology until next June or July, and at that point he will attend a different clinic. This one is not so worried about recurrence of cancer, but they will monitor his growth to look for any effects of the chemo. Not worried! He also sees an orthopedist who is monitoring the curvature in his spine. He has to go back in December because his last xrays showed increased curvature. I think he was just leaning... Anyway, if the increase remains, then she will put him in a brace. I don't think it will be an issue! Steve is doing *great*! You should see him play soccer! Wow!

All of us are doing soccer this year, except Jon (who has to work, of course.) I am coaching one of the U8 teams and I LOVE it! Lydia and Steve are on my team; Danny and Zack are on different teams. We all practice and play at the same times at the same fields, so Wahooooo! No typical soccer mom stress!

Okay, time to get back to kiddies. Thought I should update for a change! Y'all be blessed now, ya hear? :)