Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day Means Summer is Right Around the Corner

Can you feel it? Summer is not even sneaking up. It is barging right down the aisle. I am tempted to not even send my kids to school this week. I will. Sheesh. This is probably the funnest (that is a word now, right) week of school anyway. No homework. Field Day. Parties. Incomplete Sentences. Love it all. On the last day they only attend for an hour and a half. What?

(Short intermission)
I mentioned summer. It is hot here. My windows are open. Is there a peacock in my neighborhood? Or do chickens make some terrible moaning noise that sounds like a child screaming?? It is really creepy.

Anywho. Where was I? Oh yeah. Summer. I am ready for summer. My allergies are in full swing. (Bless you parents and the genetic structure you passed to me. Bless you even more modern day medicine for making chemicals that help me breathe again.)

(Medium intermission)

Sorry. We will never get anywhere with these intermissions. This should be its own post, but heidy-ho, I'm in a chatty mood tonight. So. I have terrible allergies. I have a nasal spray that keeps me sane. It is good stuff. But for some reason, (possibly my dad telling me it is a steroid) I am still open to the idea of other remedies. A neighbor recommended MSM. It is a nutritional supplement (with sulphur) mainly used for horses. You can buy it for humans, but it costs a lot more. She just buys it at her local Cal-Ranch and it has done wonders for her allergies. I thought I would give it a go. Tyler supported me, but did some research online. (He is a good husband.) He found this site where they describe all the conditions MSM may help with. Are you ready for this??

Crohn's disease
Ulcerative colitis
Osteoarthritis (glucosamine sulfate has also been shown to help with this, but little effect was seen with chondriton sulfate.)
Heberden's nodes
Back pain
Herniated discs
Heartburn and hyperacidity
Headaches, including some migraines, mostly due to the anti-spasmodic effect and increased blood flow.
Chemical sensitivities
Athletic injuries
Muscle pain
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome (TMJ)
Rheumatoid arthritis
Interstitial cystitis
Keloid reduction

Wow! I say wow! The person did mention that they hesitated to list all these things, because it makes MSM sound like a snake oil? You think? Well, even if it didn't help with my allergies, it should help something right??

Sadly, it DIDN'T help with my allergies. Phooey. So, I guess I will be leaving it to the horses. And back to my good ole nasal spray. (Which is already helping. Thanks for asking.)

Okay. I promise no more intermissions.

Summer. Yes. Back on track. Last summer we moved. Complete Chaos. The summer before, we had a nice little system and I really liked it. And it didn't totally fail; bonus points to me. So I have ramped it up a notch this year. We will still have daily activities, but we also have stations in the morning. This is because I have noticed that when kids start the day bickering, it only goes downhill. If everyone is separated in the morning, I think this will bring general peace to the rest of the day. (A mother can dream, can't she?)

I wasn't quite sure how it would all shake down, so since we had a holiday today, I made them practice the stations. Yep, I took away a free day and made them work. And since I am doing that all summer, I didn't even feel bad about it. They should know what they are in for. Check out my well oiled, slightly creaky, machine.

Station 1 is worksheets. The kids really liked these actually. And if I can get their brain gears working for even twenty minutes a day, it is a good thing. (I would like to say that my kids are very creative and I see daily occurrences of their brains working. And many instances where they clearly are NOT.)

Station 2 is music. Two kids don't really do much here, but the other three have no choice. Their mother likes to hear the music and she is in charge. (At least for another year or so.)

Station 3 is chores. If they don't have a chore, they can clean their room. If their room is clean, they can play in their room and mess it up. It's cyclical. I know. (sigh) Not like laundry. That just goes one way as far as I can tell. Down. (I think my personal hell would be doing laundry all day. Wait...that sounds familiar. I just won't think about it.)

Station 4 is reading/writing/coloring. They can do whatever they like. Mostly. This time offers journal writing, or scripture reading. (Seriously, that peacock won't SHUT UP!!) *breathing* (Let's pretend it feels more exotic with a peacock in the background. Sorta.)

Station 5 is computer time. I will most likely make the older kids do some kind of typing exercise. We'll see. Daisy is watching Cyberchase because that is what Pearl did. Usually they are doing something a bit more interactive. (But hey, Cyberchase is educational.)

And there you have it. The stations. And the rest of the days break down like this:

Monday: Game/Activity Day
Tuesday: Field Trips
Wednesday: Crafts
Thursday: Baking
Friday: Movie/Friend Day

I know I sound crazy over scheduled. And I am. But it is way easier to let go of some activities than to suddenly try to make ones up to fill up time. The girls will have plenty of free time too. I am not going to be a summer nazi.

Take today for instance. After stations, the kids played. Some played too much. Hmm....I know I sunscreened three out of five. Where did those other two go?

Oh, found them. Don't judge. We all need a good sunburn once in a while. Or maybe that is what my parents told me every year when I got one.

I did remember that it was Memorial Day. I talked to many of the kids about why there were so many flags out, and we even got one for our house. Daisy has been asking about a flag for a long time.

Tyler took the kids out this evening to see this show.

They just got home. Wow, it is ten. I think I need to get kids in bed. After all, there is school tomorrow. Sorta. One last pic. My flowers are blooming. There are some great things about summer.

p.s. The peacock is asleep.


Emma Jo said...

I love catching up when it's been a while! Love the stations idea and good night blessed peacock :)

meganmushrat said...

You put me to shame, child. I never did anything so proactive when you and Miranda were kids. Of course, I was working and not home a lot of the time - but still. Do I need to set up stations here for when you come to visit?

¡Vieve! said...

Those stations are such a great idea! And your summer is shaping up to be a good time. Good luck avoiding the sunburns in the future.