Thursday, September 26, 2013

Tuesday Tunes (Belated, clearly)

Encouraging, uplifting song anyone?  What if I tell you it comes with flash mob dancing, minus the mob? There's a name for that I'm sure, but I don't know what it is and I don't have the time to Google.  It's a busy life I lead.  





Sarah Bareilles - Brave

You can be amazing
You can turn a phrase into a weapon or a drug
You can be the outcast
Or be the backlash of somebody’s lack of love
Or you can start speaking up
Nothing’s gonna hurt you the way that words do
And they settle ‘neath your skin
Kept on the inside and no sunlight
Sometimes a shadow wins
But I wonder what would happen if you

Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

With what you want to say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I wanna see you be brave

Everybody’s been there, everybody’s been stared down
By the enemy
Fallen for the fear and done some disappearing
Bow down to the mighty
Don’t run, stop holding your tongue
Maybe there’s a way out of the cage where you live
Maybe one of these days you can let the light in
Show me how big your brave is

Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

With what you want to say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

Innocence, your history of silence
Won’t do you any good
Did you think it would?
Let your words be anything but empty
Why don’t you tell them the truth?

Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

With what you want to say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I wanna see you be brave

I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you
I just wanna see you

Friday, September 20, 2013

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Tuesday Tunes

New Arcade Fire!  New Arcade Fire!  New Arcade Fire!


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tuesday Tunes

Fun stuff!!!!  This song and its video are just straight up fun.  Guaranteed to become an ear worm.  You're welcome!




My Number - Foals
You don’t have my number, we don’t need each other now
We don’t need the city, the creed or the culture now

'Cause I feel, I feel alive, I feel, I feel alive
I feel the streets are all pulling me down

So people of the city I don’t need your counsel now
And I don’t need your good advice, you don’t have my lover’s touch

You don’t have my number, we don’t need each other now
The creed or the culture, we can move beyond it now

Now the wolf is knocking at my door, bang-banging, ask for more
Stand here, we stand tall, we could move beyond these walls

I don’t need your counsel, I don't need these city streets
I don’t need that good advice 'cause we can move beyond it now

You don’t have my number, we don’t need each other now
The creed or the culture, you don’t have my lover’s touch

'Cause I feel, I feel alive, I feel, I feel alive
I feel the streets are all far from there

Do you even hear me? Do you even know my name?
Can you see the ocean now? You don’t have my lover’s touch
You don’t have my number, you don’t have my number
People, can you hear me? Are you even listening now?

'Cause you don’t have my number, we don’t need each other now
You can't steal my thunder 'cause you don’t have my lover’s touch
You don’t have my number and I don’t need no one else
And I don’t need these city streets, the creed or the culture now

Monday, September 9, 2013

Famous Last Words

We've taken to visiting our local Humane Society fairly often.  Ben asked to go a few weekends ago and so we did.  Not a bad way to spend a few hours on a Saturday, meeting some nice cats and dogs who are looking for new homes.  We always go knowing we are not adopting anything, especially not a cat because of Nate's allergies.  It's also highly unlikely we'll adopt a dog either, unless they happen to have a Schnauzer who is need of a new home - that's a game-changer.

*SIDE STEP - The following is random, but relevant.  Patience please! This summer, Sydney discovered the Pigeon series by Mo Willems. If you are parent to a child over the age of three and have not read these books yet, get your butt to the library NOW.  Stop reading my nonsense ramblings and go.  So, as I was saying, Syda is in love with them, she borrows at least three every time we go to the library and she asks to read them constantly.*

Naturally, on our way to the humane society, the kids were talking about what animals they'd see.  Ben visits their website often and was speculating on whether or not Rocky would still be there or Trixie.  Nate told us he only want to see the cats for a few minutes, but the dogs for longer.  It was a typical planning meeting. Then Syda asked the most logical question , "I can get a pigeon?"  We all smiled and I even laughed a little when I said, "No, sorry Syda.  There are no pigeons at the shelter."  Then we got there.

Look at his smug expression.  My three year old will never believe another word I say.

This dude made me a liar.  

I kid you not, he was waiting for us as we walked in.  With a big sign informing us that his name was Chico, he's a homing pigeon who has decided to make the humane society his new home.  Note the band on his leg - he's legit.  This is not some random pigeon that got lost on his way between the Target and Wal Mart parking lots.

Fortunately, he and Syda didn't strike up a bond that day.  But she was thoroughly excited that the animal she had asked for was delivered.  I've tried asking for a million dollars to be greeting us on the walkway when we visit the shelter. Hey, if Syda can get a pigeon, I can get my dream too! 

This Saturday we went for another visit, and Chico greeted us again.  And, what I feared most happened. He noticed Sydney. He liked Sydney.  He tried to bond with Sydney.  She was sitting out in the courtyard area playing in the grass and rocks, which happens to be right near where Chico likes to lie in the sun.  So, while she was out there waiting patiently for me to fill out some paperwork (more on that later) Chico kept inching closer and closer to her.  Sadly, I didn't manage to get a picture of them, but he got all of two feet away from her and I'll be damned if it wasn't some human/pigeon parallel play going on there.  One of the CVHS Employees even commented on it.  Chico clearly knows about the pigeon books and he knows that Syda doesn't side with the bus driver.  She's Team Pigeon.  She would totally let him drive the bus, eat a hot dog, get a puppy, and stay up late.  Which is exactly why Chico will not be living in our backyard anytime soon.  Unless she gave him our address.....crap.



*If you are local and looking for a new pet, please visit CVHS.  If you can't adopt there are plenty of other ways to help, volunteer, donate, spread the word.  






Saturday, September 7, 2013

Birthday Love


video
How the kids chose to wish Tim a Happy Birthday this year!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes


The boys started school this week.  Today is only Day Two - we're still very new to all of this and so I'm reserving full judgement for a bit. But I AM hopeful and I am encouraged by what the past two days have brought to us.  The boys are connecting with other kids, they are learning the rhythm of the day, and they are having fun while building a positive association with school, other adults, and new experiences without our help.

I'm not sure exactly how to address the elephant in the room - homeschooling, except to say that we still believe in homeschooling and we may return to it.  We didn't enter this thinking we were switching teams. the best way I can think to explain it is to say that we don't root for the Public Schoolers and boo the Homeschoolers now, we're just trying a new sport.  A season of Soccer instead of Baseball.  We've always tried to do whatever worked best for our family at the present moment. Whether it was homeschooling or schooling, screens, no-screens, two WOH parents, one SAH parent, etc. There is not one, certain approach to parenting, or to life for that matter, that is going to work for every family.  If there was, we'd all be using that one method because it works so well.  There would be no "mommy wars", no debates about the merits of different parenting books or philosophies, no defensiveness about our choices when it comes to our children.  I don't feel defensive about putting my kids in school after homeschooling them for their entire "school careers" thus far, but I do feel a sense of uncertainty because it is new.  I also felt this when we pulled Ben from Headstart and decided to homeschool.  I don't feel relieved that they are going to school, or that I have found a magic solution for the issues we were having with homeschooling.  It all falls on a spectrum, and for us right now our local public school may be the best untapped resource to help us help our kids succeed.  

We made the decision to send the boys to school last week - a week before school started.  We (we = our family, not just Tim and I) had been talking it over for most of the summer.  We weren't hating homeschooling, but we weren't loving it as we once had either, it had somehow just stopped working well for us.  ALL of us.  There are so many variables in this equation, it's hard to know which one or which combination of factors were involved with our decision, but the short version of why we decided to try school this year is that the kids needed/wanted more interaction with friends, more challenging work, and more experiences and our budget, and schedule couldn't facilitate that as well as the kids deserved. ALL of this is possible to fix via homeschooling or public schooling. Again, it comes back to what is right for you family at this point in time.  

So we decided to tap into our local resource, the school.  Our idea was just to sign the boys up for specials, where they would go to school for about an hour each day to join in gym, art, music etc.  They would do their academic work at home with us as they always had.  Somewhere in the last few weeks, that idea morphed into full time school and was met with a strong interest from the boys.  Last week, we took a tour of the school, met some teachers and the principal and then talked it over with the boys.  They were unanimous - they wanted to go.

Tim & I have always said that if any of the kids ever expressed an interest in going to school we would let them.  We've tried hard to not make school out to be the "bad guy" that it can often appear to be to homeschoolers.  We haven't always succeeded in that, and we do still see the downfalls possible with public school.  But, at the moment, the positives of school are outweighing the negatives for our family. When the scale shifts, as I suspect it will at some point, we'll revisit homeschooling, or look into private school, or online schooling, because our needs change throughout our lives and the solutions keep evolving too.  The one thought I keep focusing on as we go forward parenting our kids, and living life, is how fortunate we are to live in a time and place that affords us such choices.  It is a luxury that should be blessed upon everyone.

*Syda is not going to school this year, but man, it was not fun being the one to break that news.  She might be getting a mini schoolhouse for her birthday in a few weeks.  Oh, and a pony.