I’ve been playing hooky
And seeking out beauty
That comes this time of year
While running after cuties
Confession #1: I have a lot of books.
Confession #2: I have a lot of bookshelves (but I could always use more.)
Confession #3: I keep my most treasured books behind closed doors.
I first started hiding my books after my eldest child started to “wear out” his own books. Lift-the-flap books with no flaps to lift. Using books as bridges, literally walking on them across the floor, was a favorite activity. And with his books, spines were optional. I feared for my beloved books, as well as my husband’s collection.
Our favorite books went from the top shelves—he could scale the bookshelves—to high levels inside cabinets. I could hear the cabinet doors opening, but I didn’t always hear him at the bookcases until it was too late.
In the past three years that I’ve been homeschooling, the book population has hit overdrive.The non-fiction area has doubled and the sum of the middle grade novels that my oldest son reads every night is greater than anything I ever held as the lone reader of them. My youngest has a two shelf bookcase of picture books and all things pink while the middle child hoards The Magic Tree House and military history.
Last year I wrote a post about my oldest turning into a reader and he hasn’t slowed down. The other night, when he came looking for another book amid the post holiday explosion, I realized he hasn’t read Bridge to Terabithia or A Wrinkle in Time. All of the Katherine Paterson, Madeleine L’Engle, Laurie Halse Anderson, Terry Brooks, and Orson Scott Card books are behind closed doors. Not to mention Narnia, Green Gables, Hogwarts, and The Shire.
So, my goal this month—hopefully this week—is to get these books out and into circulation among my household. No more restricted section in the family library. I’ll document this effort with photos, so stayed tuned!
Four years of blogging, and I finally met THE milestone. Just the other night my 2012 Stats were revealed—I’ve had slow but steady improvements. I believe more networking, both locally and online, have a lot to do with it. Plus switching to Word Press from Blogger. Maybe the new dot com. Or the fact that there is now a “Carrie Cox” publishing very much adult books over on Amazon.
But who really knows?
I write to process life and share with others. The fact that people read what I write—or at least click the link—is a bonus. I’ve written about my kidlets, my reading habits, homeschooling, autism, and a bit about current events. This past week I’ve posted a few excerpts from CORRODED, the novel I’m querying publishers about. It’s been great to revisit Mary, Ben and the others and I hope to bring them back to the forefront of the blog when the time comes to publish the book. (No news, yet.)
Now, back to work on my historical—FORTITUDE. Check out my Pinterest page about this gem at http://pinterest.com/wonderwegian/fortitude/
You’ve stopped by so please share your comments. What would you like to read on here in 2013?
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And my favorite part of the wonder of Christmas is the magic of Christmas stories. Rather than stowing a bunch of gifts under the tree for the month—tempting little fingers to pick and peek at them—I scatter our collection of Christmas books under the branches. This gives my kids something they can handle, old friends they can revisit from the previous years.
We spend a few days reading through a chapter book or read a picture book each night while enjoying the sparkle and messages of the season. So far this year, we’ve read CHRISTMAS MAGIC by Patricia Hermes and YOU ARE MY MIRACLE by Maryann Cusimano Love and Satomi Ichikawa.
Another thing I love is Christmas music. Here’s a sample of one of my favorite voices—Mitch Malloy—singing Silent Night.
What are your family’s traditions? Your favorite Christmas story? Song?
It’s no secret that my oldest child is on the autism spectrum (check out posts under the “Autism” category) but this summer we passed a milestone: a READING benchmark.
Call me a bad parent, but one of my only questions for the neurologist who “helped” diagnosis my son with PDD-NOS was “Will he ever learn to read?” My sweet son didn’t sit still long enough for me to read more than a page or two of a picture book—he was more interested in lining up his video cassettes.
Thankfully, he did learn to read and in the past year he’s been reading for pleasure. Every night, he’d read aloud to himself from The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh, The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter or the Curious George cannon. Over and over. I was happy to see him reading, and had to brush tears from my cheeks the first few times I caught his little brother and sister huddled around him in bed after lights out to listen to the stories, but I didn’t want him stimming on the same stories.
When his fourteenth birthday approached this July, I decided to formerly introduce him to my bookshelves which he passed dozens of times a day. I pointed out a section of middle grade novels and let him pick one of the E.B. White books since he was familiar with the characters from their movie reincarnations. He went through Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little, and The Trumpet of the Swan the first week. He plowed through the complete Bunnicula series by James Howe and several Newbery books like Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, Shiloh, The Whipping Boy, and Sarah, Plain and Tall. He even read Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea.
SIXTY books in two months! I gave him a journal when he began his novel reading journey and in it he draws the cover of each book he completes. Now, I need to go back to the bookstore and buy another journal.
I’ve always had a major children’s book collection happening but last week I started fearing for my home library. He’d moved from the lower middle grade novel—typically for 7-10 year olds—bookshelves to my personal favorites—the ten and up category.
So, we began this week with a trip to our local library branch like a good homeschool family. Usually, my guy would only look at the DVDs and a book or two if pressed. This time, I showed him the children’s fiction section and he started putting Roald Dahl and Beverly Cleary books in our bag. I’m majorly excited but a little sad that he’s got dibs on Lair & Spy by Rebecca Stead before me.
It appears there’s been a flare-up in the war between SAHM and working moms.
And my favorite out of the recent stories:
I’ve been a working mom but more often a stay-at-home mom. I now consider myself a work-from-home mommy, though I haven’t sold/published anything for more than a year (because I’m focusing on my novels.)
I could list facts about all the work devoted mothers do from their homes—both for their children, spouse, and others—but it’s all been said before. Or I could mention the documentation that’s been done showing that SAHMs are worth over $112000 a year for the work they do. Wouldn’t that be nice, especially since I homeschool there’d be probably be even more compensation.
But it seems like the attacks on Ann Romney are more of the “class warfare” that’s spreading like a disease the past several years. So-and-so paid less taxes than those working below them. Don’t up the tax percentage based on income—make taxes the same percentage for all so the people making a million will be paying more than the people who make thirty thousand. The tax codes are broken so please don’t begrudge those who have been successful—look at the motives behind those who wish to tell others what to do with what they have.
I’ve taken this from writer buddy Stephanie, who took it from another friend, etc but I changed a few alphabet words to mix it up a bit.
Since my WIP is a teen novel, I felt the urge to reconnect to my younger, emotional self. Pictures from the era provide an opening but it’s my poetry that drags all the emotions back—kicking and screaming. And, wow, was I in touch with my inner angst! Check out my brooding self in Pebble Beach, 1992…. Oh, I miss my hair!
I thought it’d be fun to start adding a few poems to each post—providing a flash-portrait of some of the imaginings of my former self. I’ll even put the desperately awful ones up.
I’ll start things off with a poem which I turned in to my Creative Writing teacher and he wrote a “please see me” note on the bottom of it. I was too embarrassed to confront him, thinking he might be suspecting abuse or something. But he never followed up on it, not sure if that’s good or bad… hmm.
The poem, written by my sixteen year old self, was inspired by the movie ___________.
Wait, you tell me! (Hint: 80′s fantasy. No, the movie title is NOT in the poem/title.)
Illusions surround my every move Walking through the corridor of eternity I feel tampered with and used
Down the path I see someone I know look again it isn’t who it seems to be A face turned and twisted in my mind to become fantasy
But after all what is a face environment or a smile? They are things we hide behind truths we run from for miles.
What movie do you think it is? Comment!
The first correct person might win an autographed copy of the poem.
And don’t forget to vote.
The principal tells me about the standardized testing they are doing this week and that the children in A’s fourth grade class take their tests in the morning and he does his in the afternoon, in a separate room. (This set-up is part of his I.E.P. to allow him the best environment for testing, which usually translates to less distractions and more time.) She also says that the aide that usually works with him is assigned to a different child this week. THEN she tells me A will be sent to a “holding room” during the mornings and asks if I would be willing to just keep him home during the mornings and only send him in the afternoons this week.
I say “I suppose I could arrange to bring him later. Before lunchtime or after?”
She seems to be stumbling around her words, hearing the uncertainty in my voice, because she then tells me the room is a first grade classroom with a competent teacher… and two adults will be in the room with him. “How do you think he’d do?” in the other classroom she wants to know. I said if he was allowed to do activities he enjoys he should be fine. And then she remembers that he rides the bus and me having to bring him to school might be a hardship.
I have the idea and agree to keep him home in the mornings IF he becomes a distraction to the first grade classroom.
I sent him to school Tuesday morning with a new box of crayons and notebook, knowing he can happily draw for hours to keep himself occupied. There was no phone call or note so I assume he did fine. So, I sent another new notebook with him today.
But the longer I think about it, the term “holding room” conjures images of animals locked away. As if my child is livestock to be moved around when convenient, or inconvenient as it may turn out to be. That Ammon’s structure/routine is not important to them since they are willing to toss him into an unfamiliar room, with no adults (or children for that matter) who understand his quirks.
Hear mommy growl under her passive facade.
It appears he won’t be getting any schooling this week, just babysitting and standardized testing. Maybe I should just keep him home and do workbooks with him here.
Wouldn’t it be nice to get a whole new wardrobe every month? To pass on the discarded clothes to others and refill the drawers and hanging spaces in your room with a complete new assortment of adorable, and sometimes even trendy, outfits.
Such is the life of Princess S. She turns four months this week and each month I have to bump her wardrobe up to the next size. At birth she wore (filled out in most cases) 0-3 and 3 month clothing. At one month she was wearing 3-6 months. At two months it was 6 months. At three months she wore 6-9 months. Now, she’s on to 9 and even some 12 months (depending on the cut- she has a long torso).
Both new and used clothes keep coming our way; thanks to generous family members and friends and even my son’s bus driver (not to mention my impulse buying of things so sweet and cheap I couldn’t pass up over the years) we more or less have her first year of clothes taken care of. I always thought I’d use gender neutral clothes with a girl, like I did with my boys, but it’s just too much fun playing dress-up. I’m loving purple tones more than ever. So whenever I do need to buy something to fill-in the gaps I gravitate toward purple and lavender and wisteria…
On a side note, the goldfinches are arriving! My favorite time of the year to bird watch in the yard. The goldfinches usually stop here mid-late January through March. Long enough for them to start looking gorgeous in their summer plumage before they head back north. But it’s a good thing they don’t stay around all year- I couldn’t afford to feed them. Thistle seed is pricey. “Gold” seed for the goldfinches. And when you get 60-100 goldies eating from your feeders for a month (it takes a few weeks for the numbers to max out and some start leave earlier) the seed bill adds up quickly! But it’s worth the (short term) expense to watch them change and have them here for the Great Backyard Bird Count. I can always count on them for some impressive numbers (to my standards) on my daily counts. http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc/