Friday, December 23, 2011

Oh yay, Barney

Just heard my 6yr old (watching tv) lament, "Oh yay, Barney. *pause* This is for toddlers."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Lets eat nuts

My 6yr old was just singing the Prince song "Let's Go Crazy"...in his rendition, it sounded like this: "Let's go crazy...Let's eat nuts!"

ROFLMAO!! Always a source of amusement, this one is!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, December 10, 2011

"I'll do it!"

Maeven: Dad, can I play on your iPhone?
Adam: No
Maeven: Why not?
Adam: Because I'm mean.
Maeven: No you're not.
Adam: Yes I am...see I'll come over there and whack you. *whack*
Maeven: *laughing* That didn't hurt! Do it again!!
Adam: No.
Tyren: *piping up* I'll do it!!

Friday, December 09, 2011

Looking up...

I woke up this morning dwelling on how I want to live somewhere else...how I think it would be better to live in the cohousing development a friend of mine lives in, as everything's new and energy efficient and the whole community takes care of all the little things that we ourselves cannot seem to handle as independent home owners in this run-down house we currently own. Thinking how I'd like to move...thinking how I'd like to get the hell out of Fresno...thinking how I wish things could be different...Pricing homes in the San Jose area (oh yeah, RIGHT!! good GOD they are high, even in this crappy economy!)...looking at how little our house is worth currently (less than our mortgage, like so many houses these days)...wondering when the market will be better, and thus enable us to sell...thinking about all the crap that needs fixing around here...realizing we're stuck with this place for some time to come...

Then just now I thought...you know what...things are truly going better lately...I need to stop dwelling on what we don't have and look at what's actually going on and revel in the GOOD. That's really really hard for me. I do tend to be an optimist...but when it comes to life in general, I get really bogged down by all my what-ifs...all the dreams of a better life.

So I'm going to force myself right now to look at the facts...we are stuck in Fresno right now. And its looking like it will be quite some time because we couldn't sell our house right now if we wanted to. We're not ready anyway...but the fact is that until its worth more than our mortgage again...its just not worth even thinking about because we canNOT afford to lose all the money we've put into this place! So I am going to stop, for now, all the dreaming and googling of a better life elsewhere and make do with where I'm stuck...and think about all the good that's been going our way lately...

I have the kids in a fabulous homeschool charter program that is REALLY going WELL! For the first time in our homeschool career (and I've done this since day 1 with both of them...neither have ever been in school, always been homeschooled...) I am actually feeling like I'm getting in a groove and things are going WELL! With just a little bit of accountability I have started turning into the homeschool mom I've always wanted to be. I'm not completely there yet in the sense that I have a lot of tweaking still to do...but I really am feeling like things are going well. And while its not super-happy-fun every day...everyone is adjusting well and we are not fighting day and night about what needs to get done...The kids are mostly cooperating (still some struggles but surprisingly less than I had anticipated) and I am mostly staying on the track I've set.

Also, since Maeven's birthday party, when we cleaned the HELL outta this place...we've managed to maintain a lot of the neatness. Not all of it...but we've kept on top of dishes and a lot of the clutter. Kids are doing better about clearing their spaces at the table and so are the grownups. And Adam and I have slowly gotten into a dish routine that is working. Adam actually initiated it and its really been a wonderful surprising change in how much he's helping around here lately! Makes our lives a lot easier. This has been a difficult thing for us...we're just not good housekeepers. I think it just does not come naturally to some people and we are just that kind of people, sadly. So, even though we still fall behind here and there...we are doing WAY better than we ever have, so I'm quite happy about that!

Also, we made a decision to do our damnest to not eat out...and I've actually been menu planning and, for the most part, sticking to it. We ran out of money to buy all the ingredients on our grocery list recently but I am making do with what we have and trusting that the money will come. (Still don't have a clue how we're going to pay for Xmas, but trusting that will come too). So this has been a HUGE change, as we all know how much I HATE HATE HATE to cook, and all the things needed to lead up to it (plan, shop, etc).

So we are doing really good. I hope I didn't just jinx us by writing all that but I really needed to do some thinking about how things are looking up around here lately. Kids have even been doing chores more often, yay! :) 

Well, I must now go and get our morning started as we have a lot to do today.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

So obvious, Mom!

Me: "Daddy needs to get up now, but he doesn't want to"...6yr old Tyren: "That's obvious." ROFL!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Multi-generational education

Since enrolling my kids in a homeschool charter at the beginning of this school year (just about a month ago)...I've had a chance to see what I now strongly believe education SHOULD look like. Multi-generational.

NOT segregating specific age groups and having them in a classroom with just one or 2 adults...but the WHOLE FAMILY being involved! My kids now get to go to classes which might be similar to their public schooled peers (although I like to think these classes are higher quality...) BUT the difference is that they only have to go to a 2 per day/2 days a week (this is what I have chosen for them...other families will pick differently. The classes are entirely optional.) AND there are ALL AGES on the grounds at all times!

I LOVE watching the children in between classes (and even IN the classes sometimes, as siblings sometimes accompany mom/dad into the classroom to watch big brother/sister) playing with all ages...even babies and toddlers! There are even the occasional grandma/grandpa, and there's more than a couple dads. It varies day to day, but on any given day, the children on the property are surrounded by MANY loving adults, many of whom they know quite well! (As time goes on, I expect to continue to get to know more and more of these families...we're still quite new.)

Its truly heart warming. And makes me realize that THIS is what I've been wanting! Multi-generational education!

This week there are no classes but instead a family class and field trip! On Tuesday we will get together with friends of all ages at the school and learn about caves...Then on Friday, all of the families that attended the class will be taking a field trip to the Crystal Caves! Adam even took the day off of work!

This is really just so exciting to me. THIS is what I've been missing. THIS is what I've been wanting for my kiddos. I'm not at all interested in sending them away to school. I want to be a part of it! But not JUST me. I have wanted a community. And even though now I have to drive an hour to get to it, I finally have this.

I'm still sad we couldn't create something like this here in Fresno...but I'm happy that I have access to it anyway. Its well worth the hour long drive.

And having the accountability of having to report to someone what my kids are doing (but in a pretty relaxed manner...I simply have to show that we are covering all subjects. Its much simpler than I had originally thought.) has really helped me to get on top of things. Before I had a hard time getting anything done regularly...It was here and there and while we certainly did a lot of educational things (I mean, heck, Maeven's a little book worm and Tyren is picking up both math and reading REALLY FAST, so I must be doing SOMETHING right!) it wasn't anywhere near the level that *I* wanted it to be.

I don't care about the standards. I just care about MY standards. And I wasn't happy with what we were accomplishing. Now I am MUCH HAPPIER. This seemed to be just the kick in the butt I needed to be able to get a schedule going and maintain it, for the most part. I'll probably never be a really strict, structured homeschooler. I don't really want to be. And I know I will NEVER follow the schedule of learning that the public schools use...but I am feeling MUCH better about how I'm able to keep things moving forward now. And we're having FUN!!

And, a side benefit seems to be that when I keep the kids busier during their day, they fight a bit less. Still happens, but I've definitely noticed a decrease in recent weeks since we started our new schedule.

The kids are still not entirely certain about all these changes...but they seem happy, for the most part. And they are adapting. In class, they seem to enjoy their times with new friends...and at home, the fighting with me when I ask them to do something is decreasing. (They do this whenever I present any new rules or things to do. So it wasn't a surprise.)

I'm really really glad I did this for our family! Now, hopefully, we can maintain our ability to pay for all this extra gas and wear and tear on our van!

Friday, September 09, 2011

Big changes for us

Yesterday we went to the "Welcome Back" potluck at ERCLC. Got to re-connect with old friends and make some new ones! It was very friendly and wonderful! I am feeling VERY good about this choice to try this charter. The drive is a bit much (one hour, one way, so 2 hours each trip), but we listened to an audiobook and the kids did just fine. I just have to remember to get plenty of sleep the night before because I was getting pretty sleepy on the way down!

The kids got right out there and played with others, which surprised me...both can be quite shy in a new environment. Luckily, we had gone to Lego Club a couple days prior and Tyren had reconnected with his little buddy Levi (who had played with him at park days when they were both toddlers), so once we got there I pointed out that Levi was there and Tyr was happy as a clam. He's such a social kid. He is constantly asking to play with one of his friends. I have to keep him much more active with playdates than Maeven. He craves it much more.

So Tyr hung out mostly with Levi, but also made some new friends (at one point he partnered up with a little girl and played in the dirt under the walnut tree with some dump trucks and got absolutely covered head to toe in dusty dirt. Too funny!) And Maeven, who I was concerned would hang around me the whole time and not interact, since she tends to be more shy in new situations than Tyr...took off and spent a bunch of time in the playhouse (which is covered inside with chalkboard paint and so is one big drawing board), made new friends and reconnected with her friend Leah, who we have known for awhile from Learning Village activities.

I got to hang out and talk to moms about ERCLC, and learn more about how much I'm going to love the place. Had a really nice time. Quite a few people came up to me and introduced themselves when they saw my "new" face, which was really nice! This is just what I was hoping for!

Met Maeven's science teacher...he seems really cool! Love that he came up and introduced himself to me! :)

I love that this is all working out so well...will continue to update as we get more situated. My mom has decided to fund our gas money so we can go 2 days a week! YAY MOM! :)  I was having a hard time decided which day to go...Tues and Thursdays are for the K-6 kids, and the classes are divided up evenly, so Tyr has art one day, Maeve on the other, and the same with every subject...Maeve science one day, Tyr the other...so I was really loathing having to decide which kid gets which class. So I'm very excited that Mom stepped up to help! And of course, Shauna and Keizo (& Remi) will be coming down with us on Tuesdays, so will split the gas for that trip weekly...so we just might be able to afford this afterall! I also found out its not every single week...they do 3 weeks of classes and one week off for coordinator meetings. But since our coordinators will work with us to plan our meetings during the weeks we are already down there, we will have a week off where we won't have to drive down there. (Except this month, when there is a cave class and trip to Crystal Caves! SO EXCITING! Adam is all jazzed and is taking the day off to go with us!)

Lastly, I got a few more books from the library for the kids. I had wanted to get a handwriting curriculum and check out some different grammar curricula to find something that wasn't boring. Found some stuff that looks promising. Had been talking via email with the librarian so she had helped me pick a few things...they are just so very helpful here!

Overall I'm very happy so far! Very eager to get started on classes next week so we can really get the full picture!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

So we're venturing into the charter school realm...

I founded The Learning Village Homeschool Resource Center a couple years ago because I had heard about this fabulous homeschool charter in Visalia (an hour away)...and I wanted something like that here in Fresno. I decided, after many online discussions with local homeschoolers, that we could make that happen here and went about making it so. I got our 501(c)(3) status and founded and led the board, and did nearly all the classes myself, and enlisted help in other areas as needed...And it seemed so promising initially...there was lots of interest and lots of people who said they'd help. But as time went on, I became more and more frustrated as everything and everyone fizzled.

I ended up cancelling all the classes from lack of attendance...And due to a difficulty in getting any help with the program or governance of the organization...I became extremely disheartened and my own energy and passion for this dream fizzled and has practically died at this point.

Apparently Fresno Homeschoolers simply don't want a homeschool resource center.

OK, so I'm facing this reality...and hating it...and pissed as all hell about it (why did so many people say they DID want it when I started throwing out the idea? Why did people say they'd help then never stepped up to the plate or then disappeared once things were finally happening?) But life must move on.

I'm not completely giving up on the dream. The lending library is still there and waiting to be organized and made available. I fully plan to continue with that...and keep the nonprofit status for that library. I plan to get all those items online and visible and once the library is ready, start making it available to local homeschoolers again. We've even decided to drop the membership rate significantly to make it more accessible to more people...But I don't hold a lot of hope that this will help. I've come to be so disheartened by the homeschoolers in my area that I just don't expect anything to work anymore.

I get that not everyone wants what I want. I get that. So a lot of our local homeschoolers don't feel a need for more activities and programs. That's fine. But I never would have even attempted this if I hadn't gotten a LOT of positive feedback.

I grew up in a church community...I'm used to being surrounded by a community...I no longer attend church so I naturally have wanted a homeschool community around me. But the Fresno homeschool community is so fractured into pieces. And those in any one of those pieces that are well organized and cohesive are perfectly happy and not interested in anything else. These are the religious groups typically. That's fine and dandy. I wanted to bring all these groups together in The Learning Village and find a way to have one large cohesive group of ALL local homeschoolers...I seriously believed "If you build it, they will come." Not so in Fresno.

I've just gotten so fed up with the failure of so many businesses and ideas in this area. I've talked at length with other people who attempt to organize groups in this area and they all say the same thing...that people in this area just don't want to commit. They lack in follow through. I don't know if this is really true or not...but its been my experience. And I keep thinking that no, its me, that I've been a lousy leader...that I've not done what I need to do to get things going properly....But then I think about all that I HAVE done. And yes, there's always room for improvement...but it really comes down to a lack of support in the things I'm trying to do. It ALWAYS ends up being an issue eventually. I've done a LOT of things here in this area...but nearly all of them have fizzled and died or fizzled down to just a simple online group (where there are no commitments necessary...and most members don't even post!) because anything more just hasn't gotten the people behind it to make it happen.

I cannot do it all on my own. I just can't. I keep thinking I won't have to...that if I start organizing things that people will naturally just join in and help out. They don't. Or not for long. Its SOOOOO FRUSTRATING!!

So I'm about at the end of my rope. I'm done. I'm just not going to organize things that no one wants to help with, or even take the time to attend. I'm just so done. I'm so very fed up and pissed off and DONE. (And right back at desiring to move away again.)  And its so sad and exhausting. Sad more then anything. :(

So I went back to the original desire I had for Eleanor Roosevelt (that Visalia charter I mentioned earlier)...and finally have decided that even though I never wanted to be plugged into the public school system in any way (don't get me started on all my reasons...I could go on for hours...)  I decided, after looking further into it, that this particular homeschool charter could be the best of both worlds. I have talked a LOT to friends that have been going there and what they like about it...and I even went down there and visited last week. I LOVE IT. Hopefully the reality of the programs will be as awesome as the stories I've heard...We'll see...Worse comes to worse, it doesn't work and I'm back to where I have always been...in having to create something myself. But I have very high hopes that this program will be just what I've been wanting.

Yes, I have to drive about an hour (one way) to get there...but we will only go once a week for the enrichment programs. I have a dear friend that has decided to give it a shot as well and carpool with me and split the gas money. I am going to give this a shot and sincerely hope its just what I have been desiring.

This place just sounds fantastic...very open to what *I* want for my kids....letting me have the flexibility to choose the style of education my children get...but provide guidance for me. They have a community which sounds like just what I've been looking for. They have enrichment programs and outings that I have been wanting for myself and my kids...AND I DON'T HAVE TO ORGANIZE IT!!! And its FREE! (public school charter, funded by public school funds.)  Wish they were closer but at this point, I'll take it.

I'm VERY EXCITED about getting started! Will be updating here when we get some things to report about. Wish me luck! :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bedtime frisbee throwing

Oh my, Tyr's version of me gently nudging him to bed..."You tossed me over here! Like a frisbee!" LOL!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Butt goggles

There's something you don't hear often...Adam just told Tyr: "We don't wear goggles on our butts."

Friday, June 03, 2011

Danger: arm loss

just heard maeven say, while watching tyren spinning: "careful! if you spin too fast, your arms will fall off!" ROFLMAO!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Low riders

Tyr was walking around w/his shorts hanging half off his bare butt...I hope this isn't an omen about what is yet to come when he's a teen!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Nakey butt

Just got to bed & found Tyr (bed next to me) kicked his covers off & tshirt he's wearing (mine) is hiked up, revealing little nakey butt.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

New bed!



tyr's first night in his own bed (next to ours) was a success! i asked him how he liked it and he said "i loved it!!"

so funny...at one point in the night, tyr was snuggled up to my side of the bed with his head on me, body on his bed. too cute.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Another day, another dollar

OK not really...but I AM making more money with my businesses and I feel big things coming!! I'm really excited by it all! At the same time I'm feeling particularly overwhelmed with life right now...but that is pretty much a given with me. I hate the feeling of overwhelm and just tonight I'm starting to feel like its smothering me again...but this isn't an uncommon feeling. I am just thankful that its not super regular. For the most part I just keep on keepin on at life and I truly look forward to each new day to get more things accomplished and feel like I'm living my life to its fullest.

 And seeing these faces daily helps a lot:
My kiddos & husband, remembering our sweet baby Baelin on his birth/death day this month.
The thing about me is that I truly do believe that everything will work out eventually, somehow. Truly. I'm not even playing that up. I'm not a Pollyanna, mind you...but I just tend towards optimism. I'm happy that way.

I do wish that I could figure out how to juggle all the things in my life better though...This feeling of having far too many things to do and not able to do any of them well is tiring. But, it will all work out. And I don't doubt I'll eventually figure it all out...hopefully before my kids are grown!!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Future barber?

so it finally happened. tyr decided to cut his own hair. apparently the front was bothering him yesterday. luckily it doesn't really show.

Monday, February 28, 2011

What my life has been like lately

Ok this is going to be a whinefest...just warning you. I think I deserve to whine a bit after the last 2 weeks I've had.

Starting at or around Valentine's Day Maeve got sick. Sore throat, lots of crying about how her throat hurts (she always gets a sore throat when she gets sick, and she has NO tolerance for pain whatsoever. Its a joy to listen to alllll day long, lemme tell you.) Midweek Tyr also caught the same bug, presumably. Both coughing, snotty and unhappy. Adam started feeling it by the end of the week (another that has NO tolerance for discomfort, so he was not a happy camper either) and by Friday my throat was starting to be sore and by Saturday my body starting to ache.

Saturday Feb 19 we had a trip to SCICON to see the salamander migration. An annual tradition. 5 families planning on caravan-ing with us and enjoying the adventure so there was no way I was going to consider post-posting. So the Smith family trekked around the trails with 4 other families (1 couldn't make it last minute), and halfway through Maeve couldn't hike any further and Adam stayed with her at a pretty spot while I took the rest of the families. After we got back to the center of campus from that trail, both kids were exhausted (the bug was making hiking difficult for them), so Adam took our 2 kiddos back to the car in the parking lot while I took the remaining 2 families who still wanted to hike some more out another trail to find more elusive amphibians. (Disappointing trip as there were not nearly the number of the little buggers as last year). Upon returning my trail group to the parking lot, I felt like my body needed to crash for a week. The aches and tiredness had made it to my bones.

The drive back to Fresno (about 2 hours) I don't know that I moved much. I slept a lot and just couldn't move.

Sunday we all were drop-dead sick. Adam took off the first couple days of the next week as all of us were coughing up a lung and blowing noses like trumpets all over the place. Body aches and pains and general all-over weakness and exhaustion were the norm for everyone.

Maeve recovered first...early the week of Feb 21. Then she was not so fun to be around because she was whining how bored she was. Tyr appeared to be mostly better so I let the 2 of them go on Monday with my parents so that Adam and I could just sleep. The next day Tyr was worse. And he's not better yet...nearly 2 weeks later.

Maeve continued to be well though and spent most of that week of the 21st with my parents. Adam went to work for a couple days but was back home resting on Friday and the entire weekend just laying about, coughing and blowing nose.

Me, I was pretty sick last week, since I was the last to fall...Hating life, coughing up a lung, blowing my nose like crazy, tired and achy all over, dosing with nyquil and dayquil to be functional to care for Tyr, who was the only one of all of us to get a fever.

Tyr, on the other hand, manifested this virus differently...Vomiting and fever and developing a head to toe rash. He has been just miserable. Somewhere in the midst of all this he has developed a severe aversion to taking medicine. Made getting him to take something to help, darn near impossible. Crying, thrashing, demanding that he have me right there next to him at all times laying with him (with his head on my arm at all times). His fever went from 99 to 102 for days on end. Finally took him to Dr K on Friday Feb 25 since the rash was the last straw. Now not only was he coughing, snorting and lethargic and feverish but he was constantly scratching. Dr K said its not a bad cold or even the flu...but he thinks its a different virus. All 4 of us in that tiny exam room waiting for him, alternating coughing, was a real fun trip, lemme tell ya.

Now here I am on the tail end of it and I'm finally not coughing so much and my nose is tolerable...but I'm still tired all the time, and just feeling weak. I've been out on errands here and there and feel fine about that, but I just can't get my body to bounce back entirely. Probably the lack of sleep for over a week is contributing. Tyr wakes me up constantly still. He's still spiking a fever the 2nd half of the day, though he's had 3 days now of waking with no fever. First half of the past 3 days he seems to be finally on the mend then halfway through the day he crashes and wants to lay down with me and not do anything. Wants to go to sleep early too. And not eating much.

With the exception of Maeven, who's only got the lingering cough now, we all seem to keep going back and forth with this thing. We feel better then worse again. We are not even doing anything, just laying around for days on end and still we can't get our energy back. Its very frustrating! I want all of us to be fully WELL again!

And today I'm just pissy. I'm sick of the state of our house (which, I've been slowly working on as I am feeling better, but can only do short bursts of work), and of forcing my kids to sit around and not go anywhere or do anything for days on end. Sick of the inside of this house. Sick of everything. Sick of trying to scrape together meals for sick people who are even pickier eaters lately with food that is practically nonexistent and we don't even have the money to go out and buy what we need because as usual we are broker as hell. (Payday is tomorrow, but that's going to be all used up practically on our mortgage payment. Not sure how much food we'll be able to get. I need to get some more advertisers to buy us some food!)

Anyway, I'm just sick and tired of being sick and tired. Now Tyr is demanding that I feed him more food...not sure what else I can find for him...but I should go. *sigh*

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

making the best of where i am

i woke up this morning after having some very vivid dreams about moving to jersey (where i spent my high school & early college years) to a fabulous old house i used to live in with lots of big rooms...that house was in a cute little town of freehold (bruce springsteen's "hometown", which isn't so small anymore)...but in my dream it was on the beach (which, as i recall, was only about a half hour away from freehold...correct me if i'm wrong, my friends-who-still-live-there). it was just a gorgeous dream. made me wake up with a strong yearning for that kind of joy: the joy of living somewhere beautiful where you are truly happy.

i have not pulled any punches about how i feel about where i am living now. i hate this city. not the people, there are some really awesome people here...but there's great people everywhere so there's nothing special about that...but just the energy here brings me down. high crime, high heat for months at a time, ugly environment nature-wise and even architecturally...this city has some of the worst air in the nation, and there's little to no nature left here in the actual city limits, which is a great sprawling city that continues to grow in leaps and bounds annually...though the economy has slowed it some recently.

i moved here after living an entire year literally in nature. no town, but out in the middle of forest land. it was a rough move that i suppose i still have not gotten completely over. when i used to visit this city during my life living in nature, i used to say that the energy here was literally palpable...dead energy...life-sucking (vs where i was living which was just full of living energy that made me feel soooo good). i could literally feel it physically. no joke. and its not just contrast of city vs nature. because i used to also visit san fran a lot during that time...and there was a vibrant energy there, despite the fact that it was also a city. i suppose its because S.F. has the beach and all the energy of so many really vibrant people there with all the wonderful architecture and things to do and see that make san francisco just tingle with life. i wouldn't want to live there, its far too expensive, but i love visiting S.F.

but this city i live in now...there's only a couple areas of town that i can feel that sort of energy, beauty and life. most of the city is just ugly and dull.

but this is where i live and where my kids are being raised. and so i do what i can to make it work for me. i dive into project after project to bring the life and energy to this city that i so desperately need in my life.

but its beating me down. i feel sometimes like i'm fighting a losing battle. its damn near impossible to get things going and sustain them. i've tried so many things. and some are successful for awhile, but they always seem to dwindle. activities, groups, classes, organizations...its so friggin hard to get them going and keep them going. it feels like a constant uphill battle. literally.

but i keep trying. i've never in my life lived in a place that i couldn't make work for me. its just taking me decades to get it to work here. i guess i've just lived in some pretty damned amazing places before. (well, living in sicily and okinawa IS pretty ding dang awesome! N.C. too.) i even liked jersey, although my parents hated it with the passion i dislike where i am now. i suspect that was because i was a teen and saw it from different eyes. i had a rockin social life back then, and my friends were my life. and honestly, jersey IS a gorgeous state. they don't call it "the garden state" for nothing.

anyway back to my topic "making the best of where i am." i have to. i find myself sinking in despair after dreams like i had this morning...knowing that i cannot find that sort of feeling here. but i must. i think perhaps the way to make this work is to move our family to the outskirts of town or into the foothills to where there is nature and beauty. my soul yearns for it. and we'd still be close enough to still have family be a part of our lives. that is what keeps me here. my whole family and my husband's whole family are all here. and that is something i missed out on growing up and i swore i wouldn't allow that with my own kids. i wouldn't change my childhood for anything but i do feel a loss from not knowing any of my extended family...my children won't have that feeling.

but getting a new house won't be happening anytime in the near future. money is a huge issue and we are having problems even with monthly bills. but we survive and we keep on keepin on. and i am determined to find a way to add to our income to the point that we are able to have some of the things that i yearn for...to live in a beautiful house in a beautiful area, to be able to travel with the kids all over the country and the world. to be able to make the world our school. oh the things that i want to show my kids and my husband! someday.

but i don't want life to be too easy either...i do believe strongly that financial struggles like we have do indeed build character. i don't want my kids growing up with everything handed to them, everything easy. i believe strongly that that is a great disservice to a child. life isn't easy so i am very open with them about how we just cannot afford to do some of the things that they want to do, or get the things that they want. and i'm ok with that. as long as its not done in a stressful way that burdens the child with worries. my attitude is now and always has been that everything will always work out somehow. it always does. even my pessimistic husband is starting to see that. :)

and so i must make the best of where we are, physically and socially and financially and psychologically. i must make my joy here. somehow. i must. yes, i will. i have it within me to do this. i just haven't figured the details all out quite yet, but i will.