Sunday, December 30, 2012

My Juicing Journey

I actually did this fast in May of 2012 but just now got around to putting in on my blog. I had it all written out in word but just kept putting off posting it until now.

My juice detox fast.
Over the last few years I have become enlightened  to what is really in our food and as a family we have cut out all processed foods and gluten. We now eat whole foods from REAL farmers. It was amazing that after I got all the junk out of our diets how much the kids and I really enjoyed and craved good foods like fruits veggies and wanted to pass up non food items like cookies and cakes. I knew the next step I wanted to take was going to be some sort of detox diet. I have read about a few but knew I really  needed a detox buddy to get through it. I had asked a few of my natural health friends but none were on board so I  just put my detox plans in the back of my mind for awhile until my husband brought it up to me.
He had to have blood work done for  insurance reasons  and was scared for his life after he looked at the numbers then did some research online and realized he is close to liver failure. He had just watched Fat , Sick and Nearly Dead and was ready for a juice fast.
He spent a few days researching about juice fasting and types of juicers and he finally came to the decision of this juicer
 Omega VRT350 Heavy Duty Dual-Stage Vertical Single Auger Low Speed Juicer. Its a masticating juicer that yields much more nutrients than your average $100  high speed spinning juicer.
 The first juice we made- it was just random fruits and veggies in the house, but it was good.
We bought our juicer just 4 days before we were leaving on  trip to the coast  we were eager to start our detox but knew that it wasn't logical to start then go on vacation so we drank 1 juice a day  experimenting with our new health toy just to get our bodies used to all the micro nutrients.

Day 1
Today is the beginning of our fast we replaced lunch today with juice.
feeling excited and motivated to start.

Day 2
Today I will be replacing 2 meals with juice

My breakfast juice concoction:
2 handfuls of spinach
1/2 inch chunk ginger root
1 banana
1 half lime
3/4  of a small pineapple
a few strawberries
It was a very sweet juice, too sweet for me I think next time I will cut back the pineapple and increase the spinach. The lime and ginger added a wonderful zing to it that I very much enjoyed.
I was feeling quite hungry when lunch came around today and I really want to eat some roasted pine nut hummus I bought a few days ago but I resisted the urge and made some juice.

I am feeling...
Very tired today.

Day 3 All juice All Day!
Today is the first day that we have juiced all day with no solid food.  It was very difficult to feed the kids lunch and dinner and not even sneak just one little bite. I did very much enjoy smelling dinner even though I didn't get to eat it! My husband told me today that he is so hungry  that he wouldn't even complain about anything I put in front of him. ( he has been unhappy over the last year that we have been eating gluten free, he loves his white bread!)

I don't know who ever said that they were never hungry when juicing because they LIED I am STARVING! It must have been the same woman that said she forgot all about the pain of childbirth as soon as she saw her beautiful baby. I didn't forget that pain either, it hurt and it sucked and

I am feeling ...
Very tired  and weak today and went to bed very early.

Day 4
 My dinner tonight
green beans
beet root
It tastes like DIRT! The beet is so earthy and over powering I will not make this combo again.

I did like the apple carrot beet root I had as a snack yesterday though.

I am feeling...
So full of energy today and I am no longer STARVING, just hungry now. When I was at the grocery store today picking up more organic celery and kale I was not as bothered by all the foods as I was yesterday. It looked good but I didn't really want any of it.

Day 5
My dinner tonight was pretty yummy.
salsa juice
5 Tomatoes
1 pack cilantro
1 whole lemon
1 red bell pepper
1 clove garlic
1 small  brown onion
Jalapeno pepper with seeds

I am feeling...
I defiantly have detox symptoms now. I have canker sores in my mouth which I read is a result of  a toxic build-up in the mouth and the absence of the washing-action of chewing food can allow an increase of bacteria between the teeth. The tongue becomes coated with waste. So I am brushing like 4 times a day now to help get rid of waste, YUCK! I have severe low back pain due to toxins in the lower intestine. Blood vessels that draw nutrients from the colon are very close to the nerves of the spine. Still feeling motivated to continue though I am a bit more tired today but I did take a 1 hour walk with the kids.

Day 6  
I  am feeling...
 Weak and energetic if that makes sense. I wake up and feel pretty energized and well rested. I have never felt like that in the morning before juice fasting. I always hated mornings and was tired and groggy as I dragged my butt out of bed. My limbs feel very week like I have been working out hard but I also feel energized like I want to get up and move. I took another 1 hour walk with the kids this morning. In the evening I had so much energy still so I went for a 30 min bike ride.

Day 7 
I am feeling.....
Good and Bad I am feeling full of energy I wake up in the morning feeling bright eyes and bushy tailed. On the down side my mouth is so sore from all the canker sores, my tongue in white and the  lymph glands in my neck but there is a bright side that means that my detox is working (YaY) I am not doing this for nothing. I went on another long walk with kids.

Day 8
 I am feeling ...
That I finally got the hang of  juicing and not eating. The hunger pains are still there but they have dulled quite a bit. I go to bed early most nights so I don't want to indulge in nightly juice snack. Before juicing I would indulge in a light snack after the kids were in bed, that has been one of the hardest habits to break. I have been. I now am in the habit of going on evening bike rides. I throw in my ear buds clip on my ipod and take off, the peace and quite from the kids in nice and I find that I feel so much better about myself now that I have found a way to get a workout in everyday. 

Day 9
I am feeling...
Good, most of my detox symptoms have subsided I am now full of  energy.
Enjoying Mean green juice

Day 10
Food at last we broke the fast a bit earlier than we had planned but since  my Hubby was heading to South America for a business trip we thought we should end it a bit early so strange food from another country wasn't a total shock to his system.

Our first meal was:
 A mix of raw peppers, cucumbers, onions and tomatoes with Raw apple cider vinegar. It was sooooo good I really missed chewing!

Some recipes I love that I invented along the way.
 Juice all skins if they are organic, if they are not organic peel all skins.

Citrus Delight 
1 whole pinnapple
2 whole carrots
1 orange
1 lemon
5 oz of spinach
1/2-1 inch chunk of ginger

 Berry Spectacular
1 Whole orange
1 apple
1 whole lemon
1- 1 1/2 cups of blueberries
1-2 whole carrots

Mean Green: from the movie Fat Sick and Nearly Dead 
6 kale leaves 
4 celery stalks
1 lemon
1 granny smith apple ( I found that I didn't like the juice if I used a sweet apple)
thumb size piece of ginger
1 cucumber
The Green juices are not my favorite tasting but they have great health benefits so I choke them down. I have found using a straw helps get them down easy. You are supposed to chew your juices though swishing the juice around in your mouth for a bit to get the saliva flows which helps aid in digestion. I cannot always stomach chewing my whole green juice. 

You should also always drink juices on an empty stomach to maximize absorption.

I add spririlina to a lot of my juices as well.

My final thoughts:
Juice fasting was HARD I did not do it for weightloss I did it for my health getting  in mirco nutrient in my body and detoxing all the junk. I did lose 7  lbs on the fast and have since lost 20 more just adding more juice into my daily life and not eating wheat or processed foods. I think when people makes changes for the right reasons you will find more success in whatever you do. It was a hard and amazing experience and I plan on fasting at least 2 more times in 2013.

In case you are new to my blog I do have 4 kids and I cooked and fed them meals throughout the whole process I took great joy in just smelling the foods because I couldn't eat them. I would  make a big juice before I started cooking each meal so at least I wasn't STARVING and sip as I was cooking so I wasn't tempted to snack.

A big inspiration to me was Drew Canole from fitlife TV  you can follow him on Facebook he posts weekly juicing videos as well as all sorts of great juicing facts.

Happy Juicing!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

5 Simple Goals for 2013

My 5 goals for the year 2013.
1. The most important goal for me this year  is to let go, just breath and walk away from those who are negative and want drama and chaos in their lives.I have come across  Zen and really like the ideas, this website I have found very helpful. 

I have a had a difficult year full of family drama, negativity, bad news and stress it has affected me in ways I do not like. My primary goal in life is to be the best mom I can be and this year I feel that was not always in the best of moods which has affected my children. I have come to the difficult decision that if I need to distance myself from those who are not happy to make a better life for my kids then I will, they are my priority.
I love rainbows they make me smile! When I was a kid my mom decorated our bathroom in all rainbows we had a rainbow rug, shower curtain towels and all the accessories it as so fun. I just pinned this cute rainbow craft on my pinterest page, planning on making it soon with my kiddos,

2. I am going to set aside time each week where Falcon and I take the time to write our books, helping to motivate each other. Who knows we could succeed and be duel published!

3. Play more games with my kids and try to focus more on fun hands on learning instead of lots of book work.
Funny that this is just a web image I picked out but we actually own this game but have only played it once, guess I will move it to the top of our game playing pile especially since the kids were playing with the display just last week at the teacher supply store.

4.Continue working out and do at least two  5-7 day juice fasts in 2013.
I love the message in this picture, so true!

5. Continue on with our famous artists study and introduce famous composers as well. We will study 12 composers and 12 artists making a replica painting of each artist.
The Van Gogh  replica we did last year that I framed and hung above the stove.

Curious to see how I did on my goals last year? Read below:

My 5 Simple Goals in 2012

1. Write at least 1000 words a week for my novel in hopes of completing it by August 2012

Did I complete that NO but I did make progress toward that goal I did write every week for the first few months but it died down. My 12 year old thought that it was really neat that I was writing so he started writing a book as well. Him and I both don't write as much as we  would like we both want to write but just find other things to do instead.So  for the year 2013 Falcon and I have decided to set aside time each we were we will both sit down and write.

2. Make a kids created monthly scrapbook.
Did I do this? NO, we did for the first 3 months but nothing after that I am hoping to spend the rest of our winter break finishing that up. What I did do though is photo project that was called "Our Lives in 366 days" ( leap year in 2012) I posted a picture a day on facebook of our everyday lives with a little snippet on what we were doing in that picture. It was such a fun project I LOVED  doing it and I LOVE looking back though the pictures. I can't wait to put all the pictures into an album.

3.Do yoga at least 2 nights a week
Did I do this? NO, I did at first but I made excuses, got lazy and just didn't follow through.
I do not plan on  trying to make this a goal for next year but I would like to check out a new Bikram Yoga studio near my house.

4.Jog outside, kids free at least once a week.
Did I do this? NO I did more! I stared out just running  once a week then as the year progressed I started adding more and more workouts in. As soon as it got warm I would ride my bike every night. It was so nice to have some alone time and just pop in my ear buds turn the music up LOUD and sweat. I lost 35 lbs this year. I also tried my first juice fast. That was an amazing experience it was very hard but I felt so great afterward.

5. A year long study of 12 famous artists. Each month we will focus on one 1 artist and create an art project replica of a famous painting.
Did I do this? NO, we did not  study an artist every month but we did focus more on famous artists and we studied at least 7 and did replicas of their work.I will be continuing this onto next year striving for 12 new artists instead of just 7.

Here is one of the famous artist projects that we did last year. Robin won 1st place in the State fair for this one.

I did not complete each of the 5 goals  exactly as I had set for myself but I did move forward and am happy with my progress. I strongly believe that if I had not set any goals, I would not have achieved these great results. I am very happy with myself for what I did accomplish.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Homeschool Mothers Journal Week???

I compose so many blog entries in my head during the week but sometimes when I sit down at my computer at the end of the day I draw a blank. With that said here are some highlights from our week:

History and Geography:
China: All my children are studying ancient China right now, which Robin  LOVES, she adores anything  to do with China.

Robin's pictographs from the Shang Dynasty

Robin made up her own pictographs from the Wild Bird Dynasty (our made up family rule over China)

Robin has this sticker book which she loves to play with, I usually have her play in sticker books or color pictures when I am reading history lessons to her. I have found it helps keep her attention and retain the information better than just sitting there staring out a window or fidgeting  around. At the back of the book there are stickers that you can place on a map per the location that the little girl is dressed.

So we did that, Falcon helped her on a few. Tibet was hard to find! Notice Robins attire I found that shirt for her around Halloween at Goodwill and saved it until this week when we started our China studies. I love our laminated wall maps bought at Costco 3 years ago. I  was always bad at geography  as a child because the teacher only pulled down the maps to show up where things were once in a blue moon. Plus I had bad eyesight and usually sat at the back and never even saw what the teacher was pointing to. So I love that we have the U.S map and the World map on the wall that the kids and I use daily to look up places we are studying and reading about.

We also just started a month long study on Indonesia for our homeschool geography club. We are going to have a lot of fun learning about that country.

Both Robin and Falcon are still using Teaching Textbooks Robin grade 3 and Falcon Alg 1

We went to the science museum this week and while I was there I decided that I do not do enough Science experiments at home so next week or the week after we are just going to have science experiment week and use up and the really cool kits and projects that are just collecting dust on my shelves.

We spent a great deal of time discussing the Winter Solstice and of course the Mayans.

We started our study on Joan Miro.We also picked up some of the pottery we painted at a  paint your own pottery studio. The kids want to go there everyday now. I am hoping to find one closer to our house.

Falcon has been reading through some poetry I didn't want to start a novel this close to a break. Robin has been reading through A Weed is A Flower : The life of George Washington Carver, as well as some other non fiction books and biographies.

What I am reading  in my free time:
 The author was suggested by a friend of mine, so far it's a really good read.
 I melted plastic in my oven ( I preheated my oven without knowing there was plastic being stored inside) and I melted plastic all over my oven to I got this book and used an all natural oven cleaner from the book.
This is a new book Falcon is really enjoying. The cover inside states the critics are comparing this book as a combination of Harry Potter and The Hunger Games. So far he can't put it down.

Clever little box Duck made out of Trio Blocks (which we love) to hold his Legos in.
Owl hammering nails into scrap 2x4's.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Argentina Inspired Art Project.

My Favorite art blog Deep Space Sparkle posted this project last year and I have been waiting for just the right lessons to combine this with.

We have been studying Argentina all month as part of our homeschool geography co-op so when we read that most houses and buildings in Argentina are bright and colorful I decided that this was the right time to do this lesson.
This is our finished projects. Falcon (12) is on the far left, Owl (3), Robin (6) and on the far right Duck (4)
These are house on the water in Mar Del Plata, Argentina.

All our educational supplies
Action shot of Robin
Action shot of Owl
The drying rack, I mean my oven that really needs a cleaning! Anyone else use their oven as an art class drying tool?
Next month we are studying Indonesia and will be doing an art project on the mangrove trees that grow there.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Back to blogging - What we are up to this week.

We. made gingerbread cookies for the firefighters at station 17 that helped put the fire out in our house on Thanksgiving morning. You can read all about it here. We came at just the right time the  ladder truck was just coming back from some weekly maintenance. Every week they have a "tool" day where they test all the tools on the truck and make sure they are working properly. They checked the ladder and extended it all they way up then rotated it and checked all the nozzles on the top. They shoot out 1000 gallons of water per minute! The kids were so excited to see the ladder go up so high. The fire captain then gave us a tour  of the fire truck and explained to us what all the tools are used for and the different types of trucks. I was very entertained by all the information he gave us. It was a really neat experience.
My 4 little birds all lined up from tallest to shortest (so cute that never happens in a picture!) watching the ladder going WAY up.

Robin is doing well with her school work we just added vocab and spelling to her weekly work. She also started reading eggspress and is having fun with that.
On Monday morning after we did a bit of school work I shut all the drapes and got all snugly with the kids on the floor with loads of blankets and pillows and watched:

Chimpanzee -  A Disney Nature Series Movie

We love nature shows!

We read the FIAR book Down Down the mountain and read all about mountains
My 3 younger kids made mountains and we looked up actual mountain ranges and some facts about each one Robin choose K2 because it is in China and she loves anything China, Duck chose Everest because its the biggest and  Owl chose a mountian in Argentina  (that I  cannot pronounce or spell for that matter) because he liked the name of it. I had the kids cut up white paper and glue snow at the peaks.

Here is a picture of our mountains ( the facts are on the index cards) our elf  Peppermint decided that it was going to try and climb K2 last night!

Robin checked out a huge pile of Panda books  from the library (she has an obsession with all things China)

We finished up our short unit on ancient India we still need to go to the store this weeked and get some sand and dirt so we can make mud bricks like the ancient people of  India.

Speaking of India, Robin wants this Indian Barbie for X-mas but it is $47! Makes me think that the American girl doll ins't so bad of a deal for $120 When this barbie is $47. She also wants the $40 2012 Holiday Barbie for $40. Crazy expensive Barbies!

For Science we finished up out unit Matter
Robin loved making a Matter book that I printed out from Teachers Helper magazine I get them from the library and make copies of items I want to use, they have the best worksheets.

We  had a  "3 states of Matter snack"
Solid - ice cream
Liquid- root beer
Gas- carbonation 

Robin Joined Webrangers, Falcon did it may years ago and really liked it. She really liked that she got an official WebRanger ID to carry in her purse. If you are not familer with Web Rangers it's a cool site that kids earn badges and such my completing lessons based on historical sites and national park information. It's a lot of fun and free. I had forgotten all about this site until earlier this week I was borrowing Falcon's library card ( the only card with fines) and saw his ID in there.

We studied Abraham Lincoln  this week by going over greatest accomplishments, then we had a discussion on why John Wilkes Booth shot him. It was pretty ironic that the day we discussed his assassination was the day we actually went to the theater to watch A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. We had a silent  moment in the theater where we thanked Abraham Lincoln for all he did to improve our country.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

House Fire = Why Fire Safety is Important.

On Thanksgiving morning at 5:30 am I woke up to the sound of a smoke alarm, I knew instantly that it was the dryer ( I will explain later how I knew)  so my husband and I went running to the basement only to find flames inside under the drum where we could not reach them.. He yelled for me to fetch him some water so  I ran upstairs to the kitchen to get water from the sink, I was standing right next to the big utility sink  but didn't think to use that. After I reached the dryer again it dawned on me to use the sink I was standing next to. I still was not fully alert as the smoke alarms had awakened us from a  pre thanksgiving slumber. I saw my Husband put a towel over his nose and mouth so I did the same using a thick  mattress pad. "Should I call 911?" I asked "No we got this" he replied. I kept looking at the rafters above the dryer knowing that is where my daughter's bed is, where she is still sleeping soundly.( my gut was telling me to call 911 but I ignored it at this point). The mattress wasn't really helping me much and my lungs were burning so bad from the smoke, I still kept handing  him water though. I thought if he can still take it and he is right over the fire then I can take it as well. Minutes passed and we were still trying to drown  out the fire that was not getting any better. More smoke alarms started going off  as the smoke started quickly  creeping through the house. Despite the fact that I was holding a cloth over my nose and mouth my lungs burned worse that I had ever experienced and I wanted to cry. Finally, I left my husband in the room with the dryer that he was determined to extinguish and called 911. After I hung up with them (I was an a stationary land line in the basement) I ran upstairs  to the main level of our house and yelled up to the 2nd floor to wake up my 2 boys that sleep up there. "Wake up. wake up, Fire! Fire! There is a fire in the house we need to get out" My 12 year old son thought it was just a fire drill and was strutting down the stairs with a half smile on his face. "This is not a drill there is a real FIRE" I shouted. He then picked up speed and came down quickly, my 2 other children were now awakened by my yelling and coming out of their room as well. After I got all the kids out of the house I ran through the house opening all the windows to let the smoke out (not thinking that the drafts could help feed the fire). I grabbed a few blankets on the way out for the kids who were outside freezing.
We stood there staring at our house shivering in the early morning hours and  I was thinking was how much I had to be thankful for this year.

We could hear the fire trucks from far away and I tried to get the kids focused on how neat it is that those sirens we hear are just for us, racing their way to us.
Eight fire trucks arrived and they quickly got to work and did their magic. Luckily the dryer was up against a concrete wall and a concrete floor. The Fire Captain stated that if  the dryer had been on anything else but concrete and next to anything else but concrete that our house would have defiantly went up in flames. Scary thought!

In this picture you can see the side of the dryer that was up against the wall.
              The inside of the dryer, The clothes in the dryer were not salvageable most were burnt and charred.

The walls around the dryer were all black and charred. Here is the room that it all happened in. The ladder is where the dryer used to be. I repainted the walls and rafters with Kilz primer to cover up the blackened stains and help to seal in the smoke smell.

My youngest lost his favorite stuffed Giraffe. He asked for it before bed but I told him I would bring it in to him after he was asleep, I forgot :( It has been 6 days since the fire and he hasn't even asked where it is yet (fingers crossed he never does) not sure what I am going to say to him. I have tried to find that same giraffe on the internet but no luck so far. Poor sad Giraffe, he is all burnt and has holes in him from where the skin is just missing. The whole bottom of the giraffe was just gone!
The item we did manage to save was my youngest child's   favorite mini size Minnie Mouse. Just a good soak in baking soda and the smoke smell was gone!

Fire safety month is in October and we did a much more in depth study this year than years before, and I am so glad that we did. Most of what I knew was right we didn't do but we did all make it. Thankfully we tested all our smoke alarms last month and put fresh batteries in all of them because that's what woke  me up. I try not to think of what would have happened if the smoke alarms didn't work and I cringe when I think about the fact that my 3 yr old and 6 yr old sleep in the room directly over the washer and dryer. I will be placing a fire extinguisher near the washer and dryer from now on. 
When you are done reading this please check all of your smoke detectors and replace batteries if more than a year old.

I am extremely thankful that there was less than $1000 worth of damage and that everybody was safe.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Sunset in the Graveyard

Fun toilet paper turkey we made next to the Trio block Robot. I have these cute little turkey's all over the house!

I have not been blogging lately  my life has been quite busy with the many trips back and forth to the Hospital to help care for my dad for the last 3 weeks.It  feels like I have been  treading water in rough seas and just barely keeping my head above water.Schooling has bean rather sporadic, I have been unable to keep a routine in  my day due to the needs of my father and the many long phone calls I have had to make to get medical insurance stuff dealt  with.

This week I was able to get back in a routine. Well for 2 days I did. Then my printer ran out of ink causing  another kink in my plan. Life never does go according to plan does it?

As a family I have been reading the American Girl of the year in 2006 Jess. We did a fun jungle bird art project from this great art book.
On the far left was Falcon's  the middle one Duck did (I was so excited to seem him actually want to take part in a project we were doing) Robin's is on the right.

Falcon has been working on writing his memoir on the speech he wrote for our library and his interview on the news about it.

We had a fun  afternoon playing pop for letters,  Zingo  Boggle Jr., and Mermaid island 

I came across this wonderful letter recognition program on pinterest. I was sad to find out that I needed to purchase it but I did so anyway and am glad I did.
Duck working on with the  new letter program, he loved it. I even bought the hand pointer that they use which was such a hit. Duck loved using it and pointing to the letters with it.

I am reading...
 Almost through with this one!
 I am reading this for the boys tween book club I started.

I just finished this book, I LOVED it! So glad I cam across this series.

Beautiful sunset that I shot while watching the sunset in the graveyard

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Joy Journal

A wise Friend of mine who moved to Thailand last year with her family posted  the following message on facebook
"Yesterday, I learned about the death of a boy I had never met and only knew of him and his family through their facebook page I had been following. After feeling so sad yesterday, it hit me. Whenever his mom wrote, no matter how terrible things were, she would always have a positive spin on her post. Because of them I am going to be challenging myself (and I hope others do this along with me) to... look for the joy in each day. Life can be so frustrating, stressful & busy, but there are joyful moments in each day. I know some days I will really have to search for those moments and other days I will have trouble choosing, but I am challenging myself to find 3 moments of joy in my day. I would love to hear if you would like to do this with me too.:)"

This post came at just the right time in my life. I have been looking at the negative to much and not looking for the positive. It has been my experience that most people focus on the negative in life and not look at the positive. I will try hard to do the same everyday.

My 3 moments of joy today
1. Watching my first born son blow his candle out on his birthday cake celebrating the start of his 12th year of life!

2. Seeing my husband hug and kiss Duck numerous times when we were out to dinner tonight. ( Papa bird doesn't usually show much affection to the kids or I so this was an amazing sight)

3. Enjoying the cool breeze and slight warmth from the sun on this beautiful fall day.

As I write this I think I may go buy a journal tomorrow and call it my Joy Journal and write down 3 moments in everyday that have brought me joy and leave out for everyone to read. Moods are contagious infectious even, maybe this new found positivity will spread beyond this post and to others..

It all started with
A stranger on facebook who  inspired my friend
My friend now inspired me
Now who will I inspire??

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Homeschool Mothers Journal

In My Life This week...
I got hit with bad bad news that was quite emotional. I lost my mom to cancer 5 years ago and my dad is now struggling with Cancer, and a broken back. He is not dealing with the pain well and the doctors won't give him any more pain  meds. It's frustrating because the meds he is on to keep the cancer at bay is causing his bones to soften therefore causing bones to break in his back causing him great pain and back surgery. It's no fun to see your parents in pain and unable to care for themselves. When I was giving my father a bath yesterday he was screaming and asking me to get his gun for him so he could end the pain. I was half tempted to do it just to call his bluff, but that's a risky game to play and I wasn't 100% positive that he wouldn't do it. Its frustrating to me because I believe in natural medicine not traditional Western medicine and my Dad is hard core Western medicine. When he was 19 he had Hodgkin's lymphoma and they gave him 6 months to live. With and insane amount of chemo and drugs he beat it, so he very much believes ANYTHING  that the Doctor tell him.

In Our homeschooling week (well 2 weeks I did not post last week)..

We had our first American Girl book club this week and are studying New Orleans in 1853 with Marie-Grace and Cecile. I am working on a longer blog post on that to post next month after our last meeting. The moms and I have some great ideas planned for next month.

We had a great opportunity to stop by and visit a house that in still under remodel that was part of the underground railroad. Which was great timing since we have been reading and studying a lot on slavery recently.They rebuilt the basement but used all the original stones from the house to keep it authentic. The house had to be moved about  500 yards to east due to the fact that a church (of all places) wanted to tear it down and build a parking lot. Thank goodness it was saved and moved, but it has been closed and under construction for over 6 years. They are almost though now and should have it up and running by next fall. ( fingers crossed)

Falcon and Robin touching the original stones on the newly built wall. If these stones could talk oh the stories we would hear!
 The secret steps leading to the basement.

Here you can see the original tree truck beams (with bark and all ) that were used to support the house.

The double fireplaces, the one on the left has a hidden door that leads to a secret room.

The city is ripping up the road near our house so have have spent countless hours sitting in strangers driveways watching all these big machines work! Duck and Owl were super excited to get up close and clean big chunks of dirt of the treads.

This weeks documentaries we  watched
Zeitgeist Poster
Great one about Religion and government conspiracy ( on netflix)
 Falcon has been interested in this war so he watched this 2 disk set and wrote a summery on  Desert Shield and Desert Storm.  He didn't seem to comprehend a lot of what he read so we went to the library to get books for him to read.
 An interesting self help type film ( on netflix)
A great one that goes along with our studies on Egypt

I needed some laughter in my life so I watched this stand up comic and laughed my butt off! ( not a homeschool thing, just a little something for my sanity).

My favorite thing this week...
A quick trip to the beach, there is just something about the waves and the water that calms me. It's definatly my happy place. The kids ran along the beach, threw sticks in the water, collected shells, climbed on the rocks and sat  with me and watching the waves crash against the pier.

What I am Thankful for....
I am so thankful for the awesome group of moms who I know who go out of their way to help each other and keep all our homeschool events running, fun and smooth.