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Thursday, August 10, 2017

That homeschool spirit

During my homeschooling years, I often found myself saying, "why would I bother homeschooling if I am going to follow someone else's rules?" I found that most homeschoolers were homeschoolers in deed, but not necessarily in action.  They would pronounce they were homeschooling, but then look for a full curriculum in a box or homeschool program online to follow.  They might get desks and even turn the dining room into a classroom and have the kids call them teacher(mom) and principal (dad).  Sure that's cute, and a good way to present homeschooling to previously schooled kids, but there comes a time when the transition ends and the actual homeschooling begins.

I often get requests on how to homeschool, and I have been struggling with finishing a book for a couple of years because I do not believe that my rules for homeschooling are the end-all, be-all for how a person should proceed. I believe that you should be guided by your intimate knowledge of your children and any advice you solicit or receive should be filtered through your unique circumstances.

On the other hand, I know several public school families who do have the homeschool spirit. Sure they send the kids to school and put up with all the stuff that comes with that, but they do not for a minute believe that the school is responsible for their child's education. These parents overlook homework and check it themselves. They correct (or at least challenge) misconceptions learned in school.  They are fixtures at the school making sure everyone knows that their child is a priority (this makes a difference in how a child is treated).  Finally, when school lets out the last day of spring, they have a full curriculum planned for the summer months.

In my experience, I have found these parents and children to be more successful than even most homeschoolers. Sure, homeschoolers that truly have a homeschool spirit and the drive this family has to work toward each child's needs will be the most successful, but some of these public school families are just killing it.

We could learn something from them.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Stranger Prayer

My three-day migraines are an expected inconvenience.  They are hormonal and on schedule. It starts out with some light sensitivity and my back and neck start to tighten up. Eventually, I get a feeling of a spike being driven up my nose. I do my best to hydrate and take migraine medicine, but all that said, I typically survive day 1 intact.

Day two I usually wake up wondering why I am still alive. the railway ties that have been driven up my nose feel like someone is still smacking them with a hammer. If I'm not busy, I spend the day in bed, hiding, but lately, it seems I still have things to do, so I take drugs and keep moving.

Day 3 is marked with an aching head and mental confusion and a bit of eye twitching. I literally don't know which end is up, but the good news is the headache is beginning to fade. It's usually gone by the end of the day if I eat well and hydrate properly.

So let's discuss stranger prayers. Those times when a well-meaning person asks if they can pray for your... broken arm, leg, worries, pinched nerve, whatever. I have encountered stranger prayer several times in my life... not all of them were strangers though, and that made it worse.

One time a teenage girl was with me (family friend) and using crutches. A group of other teens asked to pray for her and said, did it stop hurting? Can you walk? Her answer, omg, I think I'm better and hobbled to my car without her crutches... that is dangerous, and it could have caused more injury because guess what?  They are not Jesus and could not heal her fractured foot.

One time another homeschool mom asked to pray for my eyes... I was wearing glasses. She asked about my sight, and I explained what I could to her... a bit of a lazy eye, a bit of a stigmatism. I agreed to prayer and she asked, has your sight improved... sure... I lied. After that, every time I saw her I felt the need to remove my glasses.

So when a lovely young man that I know a tiny bit asked to pray for my headache last night (end of day 2) , I replied no.  He was a bit taken aback but I had a headache and hence no humor to play "healed" and be responsible for his self esteem as far as his personal faith was concerned... ya know?

That is all.




Sunday, July 23, 2017

That time ATT & Best Buy let someone steal phones on my account

As we were heading out to the restaurant for my son's 23rd birthday, his phone went dead. Since his phone is kinda old, we figured it was a fluke and went ahead and ate. (Side note, if you phone goes dead, call the phone company immediately).  After eating, we got on the phone and called to find out someone had just upgraded my son's phone, and "purchased" two more phones on my account that I would have to pay for.

I caught it quick so it will be OK... but...

Folks are not doing their jobs. That person either had a fake ID or knew my PIN, but probably not both.  Anytime I have to do anything on my account, I have to give my first born's blood type, but this person could waltz into Best Buy and get 3 phones in my name and go about their happy business.... that pisses me off.

But OK... I spoke to pre-fraud and will speak to fraud in the morning.  They re-simmed my son's existing phone so his phone is usable... and the guy at the store had me change my password and suggested I manage my account online... I wasn't sure what he meant, but I figured out how to disconnect and block those phones online tagging them as stolen... I was told don't worry about it, but I could not sleep after reading that someone could possibly use the phones to get into my personal information, so I took my own steps.

So, ATT?  What's up?  Best Buy... Really?

I am wondering if it is an inside job on either side.  My son did buy the phone that is now out of contract at Best Buy... did someone access that info?  Or... did the one of the two people who I upgraded my service with last month (who buy the way did not finish the orders, I had to call 3 time)... did one of them use my info to steal phones.

I would like to know.

oh, and I will be following the steps in this article tomorrow. https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/blogs/techftc/2016/06/your-mobile-phone-account-could-be-hijacked-identity-thief

Friday, July 07, 2017

Mammograms and my scattered life

Unlike last time, I got a letter back from the women's center saying my mammogram is all clear. "No abnormalties that indicate breast cancer. The last time THEY acted completely freaked out, called me back in, did another mammogram while making no eye contact, then left me laying on a table for over an hour while a doctor went around looking at women's results, doing a hands-on exam and telling them whether or not they had cancer.  I lay on that table for over an hour listening to women crying... I started planning my will.  Fortunately, I had some pearl-cysts he said... not cancer...  but what an ordeal.  To rub more salt in the would, they completely messed up my billing (hence the experience this time).  But the cysts eventually went away, I poked them daily for like a year until I could not feel them anymore, and I am all good.

I don't know about this FitBit. Maybe I'm nuts, but I think I can feel the sensors... I am very aware of my wrist the whole time. I am tracking my meals and keeping them 500-1000 calories a day under what I burn. It is making me get up more and to exercise more... and I have lost a couple pounds so I will keep using it for a while.

My work has me perplexed. I need to finish the book I am working on...It needs to be finished, and I need to get going with my homeschool advocacy.  There never seems to be the time.  It is probably the most important thing I am doing.

Meanwhile,... The industry I jumped into last year (vintage and antique furniture) is actually struggling right now as an industry and I have moved shops and am trying different things, because the most dedicated people do make money. I am just really mad that one of the places I joined recently over represented their sales... sure, there are always cars in the parking lot, but they are all vendors cars, so... yeah... The good news is the newest place I found is doing well, and kinda effortlessly, but it is a design center, not a vintage or antique place, and the things I find attractive seem to sell well there. I am looking forward to putting up my Christmas display.  In addition, my bestie just got her Real-Estate license (remember when I was trying that) and I am helping to set up her business... I will be introducing her soon... she's kinda awesome. I have dabbled in real-estate my entire life and have a paralegal degree, and as her career takes off, I could unintentionally end up with a job.

Since the last election, I have quietly participated in groups that discuss politics, but they are starting to lose focus and bicker too much for my comfort. As the next election draws near, I know focus will come back, but for now, I have retreated because my sanity is important.... and thinking about the state of our politics non stop will make anyone angry.

Yes, this is all too much, and if you follow me you know I also make costumes and am on the board of a community theatre... This kind of work probably needs to be passed on to my daughter... I like being valued, but it is her real gifting, I only got into it due to her.

Oh yeah, I'm an artist... I really need to paint something... and things seem to be MOVING on the home front... I may be building a house.  Shoot me now.