This week I’ve been lucky enough to see some of my best friends that I haven’t seen in WAY too long. You know those people that just get you, even when you haven’t seen them in months or years? The ones who understand the weird language that comes out of your mouth, when no one else understands what the heck you’re talking about? Yeah, I got to hang out with those people and they make everything awesome. I saw this video last week and thought to myself, I’m gonna make the girls do this with me over the holiday…did it happen? You’ll just have to wait and see. Until then, enjoy, smile and call your best friend. They probably miss you too!
I was browsing on Hulu the other day and saw this fantastic web series called Stiller and Meara, which features Ben Stiller’s parents, Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara. The two are both comedians who have been married for almost 60 years, and became famous as a comedy duo on the 1960s and 1970s, doing appearances on TV like The Ed Sullivan Show. The new series was taped a few years ago, and the two cover topics from Lindsay Lohan to Unemployment Insurance. I can only hope in 50 or 60 years I’ll still be as funny as these two…well, I’m probably not that funny today, but that’s not the point. Enjoy a little bit of Stiller and Meara!
A few weeks ago, a mom at Lucy’s school stopped me to ask if I’d like to participate in a Writers and Illustrators Workshop for the 4th, 5th and 6th graders at our school. Me, being a total goof, responded, “Um, why? I mean, why me?” She very kindly said they were looking for a few online writers to fill out the schedule that was full of real life, big time authors and illustrators and she’d thought of me because of this here blog you’re reading right now. I was pretty dumbfounded, but agreed to do it! Honestly, up until the day of the workshop I was a little panicky because…HELLO! I’M NOT EVEN A REAL AUTHOR I’M NOT GOOD ENOUGH AHHHHHH LOTS OF SELF-ESTEEM ISSUES BUBBLING UP I NEED ICE CREAM!!!!! But I was lucky to have some sweet advisers that told me to get it together, smile, tell my story, and bring candy to bribe the kids if needed.
Turns out, I didn’t even need the candy! The kids were engaged, curious, great participants, and not one fell asleep while I was talking. I’m considering that a total and absolute win. I spoke with them about being a self-published author, and how that gives you so much freedom to create and grow as a writer. I talked about how I started and have managed this blog, from silly stuff like where the name “Crazybananas” came from (see the FAQs for that zinger) to real tips like “How to Use an Editorial Calendar.” I also talked about photography and design, and how starting a blog can help you find creative talents you never even knew you had.
I feel so lucky to have been asked to participate in such a fun event, and want to give a special shout out to all the kids who listened and asked questions. Thank you for not falling asleep! And a huge thank you to the organizers who took a chance on a silly blog author. You made me feel pretty darn special.
Is Halloween already over? I think I’m still in a Snickers coma or something, because I can’t believe it. This year I feel like the days/months/minutes/hours are flying by so quickly, and I’m still stunned when I realize how much time has passed. I am one of those annoying weirdos who loves the holidays so much. October to December is totally my jam, and I do a happy dance when certain stores put up their holiday decorations in August. I mean, Christmas trees in August? C’mon, what could be better?
Anywho, back to Halloween. This year’s was pretty fun. Lucy went as an Aqua Fairy, because she likes the ocean and wants to be a marine biologist, but she also thinks fairies are the very best. Perfect combo. She also threw in some pieces from the Renaissance Fair, which we attended a few weeks back, which caused many people to ask if she was a gypsy. This was a huge problem, but all the candy seemed to cure the issue. Tate went as a KU Basketball Player because once again he refused to wear his planned dragon costume (Remember last year? I should’ve known…). He wore his KU warm-ups to school on Halloween day, so I just gave him a little basketball and called it good. Works for me!
Hope you all had a great, sugar-filled day as well! We were lucky the huge rainstorms that pounded the Midwest left our area a few hours before trick or treating, but it was definitely a little soggy. To those of you who had Halloween cancelled (boooo!), I hope you enjoy your belated Halloween tonight!
My poor little family can’t catch a break. After about two weeks of fevers and colds, yesterday we found out that Lulu’s persistent cough had turned into early stages of pneumonia. And while Tate is finally feeling much better, now I seem to have contracted Lulu’s stomach bug from last week. Positive? Due to the weeks of sickness, my pants are fitting much looser. Negative? I’m freaking hungry.
Today, even though Lulu was feeling 90% better due to antibiotics and an inhaler, she couldn’t go to school. Yesterday evening she still had a slight fever, so she can’t go back to her 2nd grade class until tomorrow. But after so many weeks being stuck inside with one kid or another, we were all ready to pull each others hair out. So after the millionth argument over the iPad, I decided we needed to get out of the house and at least spend an hour or two in the sunshine.
We decided to take a picnic and head over to Deanna Rose Farmstead, an incredible, free destination in Overland Park (suburb of Kansas City) that has animals, parks, food and everything else you’d ever want on a beautiful fall day. We are big Deanna Rose fans, and have spent many fun days there, but today was a little different. Lucy and I decided to make it in to a homeschool experience, seeing if we could cover all her school subjects in one day. Between the Native American lodge replicas (a huge hit, and a great social studies lesson), the mining area (mining for stones covers both history, science AND math) and some time at the huge playground (can’t forget recess!), we had a great, educational day. When we got home, Lu spent about an hour reading and then gave me a mini book report. She also worked on some new jewelry and gifts for friends, a perfect art project.
While today was more of a fun experiment, I have been thinking about homeschooling more and more lately. Unfortunately, this year Lulu’s grade is overcrowded, but a few children short of adding another teacher. While in the past she has had around 20 kids in her class, this year it’s more like 27 kids. And that’s WAY too many 7 and 8-year-olds for one teacher. Lulu has been coming home tired, worn out from the chaos of her class. Teachers are having to be more strict, and Lu has even complained about her favorite subjects “not being fun” anymore. This breaks my heart, but I am not sure what more I can do, other than advocate for her to the district. Lu is creative and free-spirited, and I often wonder if a more laid back homeschool schedule would benefit her. I think the hands-on learning would be so wonderful, and I believe she would excel. I’ve been reading up on homeschooling blogs, like Pioneer Woman and Bleubird, and dreaming up all the fun we’d have at our little homeschool.
But, for now, Lulu still loves school. She loves seeing her friends everyday and thinks her teacher is awesome. And I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love her heading off for the day so I have time alone with Tate and to work. While we had fun today, I know both the kids are looking forward to tomorrow and fun at school with kids their own ages. And I really, really can’t listen to another fight about the iPad.
So what do you think? Is homeschooling something you could ever see yourself pursuing? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your opinions!