Monday, August 18, 2008

Will Someone Please Clue Me In?!

In a former post I wrote about a project Tom had to do for school which involved drawing his shoes. Here's the link to the post -

I have written before about how I am able to see where visitors to my blog come from. Although I can't see who you are, I can see where you're from, unless you're using a proxy blocker. Anyway, over the last year or so there have been countless visits to this one post about Tom's shoes from literally all over the world. Just this morning there was a visitor from Australia looking at it. Over the weekend someone from Egypt looked at it. There have been visits from Italy, France, Spain, England, and just about every state in the United States.

Here's my request - will somebody PLEASE, PLEASE tell me what the attraction is to this post?! I did track it down and found that it was being used on an art school site (unfortunately not Tom's!) and was in a collection of drawn shoes, but I can't find anything else beyond that. Personally, I don't find my son's shoes all that interesting, but evidently SOMEBODY does - or at least his drawn rendition of them! I think I'll edit the post that is attached to the picture to ask directly on there for somebody to clue me in as to this picture's popularity. I even found it on a Google photo gallery of drawn shoes. I'm not asking for royalties here, I just would like to know what the great attraction is! Anybody?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Where'd This Week Go?!

Has it really been a week since I last blogged? Time is flying WAY too fast these days. And the worst part is that I don't see that I'm accomplishing anything!

The boys had a great time fishing. Everyone caught their limit and the fish were cleaned at the dock so they brought home ready-to-eat fish. They caught blue and rockfish. Thankfully, no one caught a tagged and valuable fish! Wait - let me rephrase that - thankfully no one UNKNOWINGLY caught a tagged and valuable fish and accidentally threw it back. UNFORTUNATELY, no one caught a tagged and valuable fish!

Last Monday I seasoned the bluefish fillets with a spicy dry rub, let them sit in the refrigerator for the day, and then smoked them on the grill using mesquite chips. There were no leftovers! The rest I put in the freezer for later. We are having some of the rockfish tonight. Well, the boys and I are having fish - Jerry will be having a New York strip steak. A while back I bought a large pack of New York strips and divided them for the freezer. When Jerry comes home from Delaware I cook him one while the boys and I eat something else. We don't mind, because the boys and I like spicy stuff and smoked stuff, and Jerry is a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy, so we're all happy. Unless I go to Delaware with him, Jerry doesn't get a home-cooked meal while he's there so I try to spoil him when he's home.

Andy and I will be getting his high school curriculum stuff together this week. Well, deciding what it's going to be, anyway. I can't believe how quickly this summer has gone by. We might try turning the air conditioning off this week as the temperatures look a little cooler - at least this week. When I mentioned that to Jerry, he said that just because I want it to be autumn doesn't mean that it is, and that I should probably leave the air conditioning on for a couple more weeks!

Well, Tom just came home from work and between his working, my working, and his going over Sam's house, I haven't hardly seen him lately. I think I'll go catch up with his world. Besides, my 15 minutes are up!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Gone Fishin'

The boys (all three of them!) are fishing today. The crew that Jerry works with doing tree work chartered a fishing boat and Andy and Tom went along too. I am being optimistic that we will have fresh fish for dinner and so have not taken anything out of the freezer for dinner.

Earlier today I was reading the local news stories online and I saw where the Department of Natural Resources here is trying to promote fishing in the state and so have tagged and released several fish into the bay. If you catch a tagged fish then you can win a prize corresponding to the tag. One of them is worth $10,000. I really, REALLY wish I had known about this before they left this morning! I can just see one of my boys catching a tagged fish and just throwing it back because they don't think the tag means anything other than it is being tracked by DNR and unwittingly watch $10,000 swim away.

So, I have the day to myself. Jerry asked me yesterday what I was going to do with a free day. I worked, watched Food Network for a while, straightened the house, and worked some more, and now am writing this. When my 15 minutes of writing time are up, I think I'll read for a while. Or maybe get something out of the freezer for a dinner backup plan!

And yes, this did take 15 minutes to write. I didn't have much to say and spent most of the time thinking! Did y'all smell something burning?!

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Karen Who?

I'm back from my hiatus. Calm down. You know you weren't just waiting for my next epistle to get on with your lives! I'm not even going to try to recap the past two months - just bits here and there. I have decided to use Flylady's 15-minute method to write. Her theory is that you can do anything for 15 minutes and so I have set my timer. Maybe I'll be more consistent now. Or not.

Jerry has been in Delaware a lot lately so the boys and I have been hanging out. Well, Tom's been working and going places with Sam, so Andy and I have been hanging out!

I have made changes to Andy's homeschooling for next year and we are excited about it. I wanted to do something different for him for the high school years, since those are what really counts as far as transcripts go. I also was really getting unhappy with the Board of Education reviews. The whole point of homeschooling is to teach differently according to the individual child. If I wanted him to follow a public school model he would still be there! I was butting heads a little more often with the reviewers as I really didn't feel like I had the freedom I wanted as far as subjects and what to teach within those subjects.

I did a LOT of research (partially the reason why I haven't written in FOREVER) and finally decided on Conowingo-Rising Sun Christian School. When you homeschool in our state you are given two choices - either let the local Board of Education review your curriculum and progress, or go under what is called an "umbrella" school - an independent institution who will review your curriculum and handle things with the state for you. With Tom we went under the umbrella of the church we were attending at the time because they were accredited to do that, but since we weren't attending there anymore with Andy, I just went with the Board of Education. The reason I think we'll be happy with Conowingo is because although they have credit requirements just like any other high school, what you teach within those credit requirements is strictly up to the parent. For instance, he needs three math credits to graduate. He can choose which math he would like - business math, geometry, or he can even use his math knowledge in cooking skills to count for credit. The same is true with all of the subjects. And the best part is that life experiences can count towards credits. Helping people or doing things for them (as long as it's not for pay) counts towards the Bible credits (it is, after all, a Christian school). I keep track of his credit hours earned and once a year I am reviewed by a reviewer from their school. This way Andy gets to learn what he wants, when he wants, and in what order he wants. I think it makes a lot more sense to study what he actually is interested in and that he may use in his future career. How often do YOU use Algebra II in your day to day life? I thought so.

Once Andy has completed his credit requirements he is issued a diploma from Conowingo. They have a graduation ceremony each spring for students meeting their credit requirements. The diploma is an actual, for really high school diploma that is accepted anywhere, plus they keep his records and will provide transcripts to any future colleges he may apply to. There is no set age for graduation; just when your credit requirements are met. Since the culinary schools Andy has looked into accept students as young as 16, he is thinking about trying to finish by then, but I won't push him to do that. Now, on the other hand I don't think Conowingo will take kindly to a 28-year-old student, either!

Well my timer just went off so I think I'll go. More later in the next 15-minute increment!


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