Liam Marcus’ and Megan Ryan’s Voice - Breastfeeding seems to be falling within a newer level of awareness. It has not been long since we started breastfeeding our three younglings (only the past six years), so we did not know about the taboo or discouragement towards breastfeeding until now. We always thought, “It seems natural, why not do it?” We never thought it could have such ramifications as being kicked out of an airplane or a food court.
It is funny how ignorance can hold a society back thousands of years in evolutionary intellect, or could it be because these same ignorant people were never breastfed thus losing forever an opportunity at utilizing one of the most nutritious sources of food to help develop their gray and white cells. I mean, come on! If they are so naively concerned about nothing, then one would have to assume they have been dumbed down somewhere, somehow, no?
Nevertheless, it seem that Pope Francis has his head located in the northern part of his torso, right where it belongs because he seems to think breastfeeding is as natural as breathing oxygen. Maybe his mommy breastfed him thus allowing his brain to develop to a level of intellect all the rest of the sheep tend to get stuck on.
Megan Ryan’s voice - Last night we gave the little new addition to our lives a little bath. After a few minutes of wading and playing, I took the little guy, put him on the changing table and started to dress him up. Halfway through what should have been an easy task, I stopped and realized why I was having so much trouble. The jammies were two inches too short. The little guy is growing fast and cooing and all that other jazz. He is beautiful. They are all beautiful. The new birth of our fourth son has brought much to our lives, including a bit of memory and intellectual degradation.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Liam Marcus’ voice - Don’t fret, going to sleep and actually sleeping between the hours of 11 pm and 1 am has been proven to help improve many of the issues related to sleep deprivation, e.g., memory lapses, etc. It seem that during this time the adrenal gland dumps waste/toxins, but you have to be asleep in order for this to occur. If you are not sleeping or enjoying a fantastic trip to nowhere land, then the adrenal gland does not do its job properly. This is why when we wake up the next morning we look like a two-ton steak hit us across the face.
The precursors to adrenal gland stress are too much sugar and caffeine in you diet, among others things.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year indeed!
Liam Marcus’ Voice – We started. Yep. Collecting pennies is a thing of the future again. Remember when you saw a penny on the streets? You picked it up. Why? Because back then you could use it to add to your other four pennies and buy a piece of chocolate candy somewhere. Today you should still pick them up. Why? Because one penny is worth two pennies and rising. Some people are calling them the “new silver” and by the way, when I bought my silver coins a few years back they were $22/each. Today those same silver coins are worth about $40/each. 50% profit, huh? Not bad. With the death of paper dollar(s) soon approaching and the institution of one world currency, copper, which pennies predating 1981 (and some 1982) is what they are made of, will be worth a bit more than a couple of pennies. Mind you, you’ll probably have to melt them pennies, but not yet, because remember, it’s illegal to melt currency. Just wait until it’s dead first.
Megan Ryan’s Voice – I have a little coin collection passed down to me from my paternal grandfather. It’s not worth anything but the fond memories of my late father. Dad got me into coin collecting by bringing home the occasional coin that was a bit different looking from the rest. Now the children enjoy coming across those ‘State Quarters’ and giving them to me. Once we collect them all, we’ll put them in a little display Papaw got me before he went home to Jesus.
Megan’s Ryan’s Voice – Murphy’s Law of Homeschooling States: Once you get into the swing of things something will happen to ruin it. Last week the big boys caught the colds from the wee ones. Since I am not a MERCILESS slave driver I gave them a bucket next to their desks in case they had to stop working long enough to toss their cookies. No, we took a couple of days off but now they will have to do some catching up since some of their classes are online and therefore less forgiving.
Kindergartener promptly contracted the same cold back from them and got sick again. Fortunately that doesn’t phase his school work since he still has just as much energy as always. It’s turned out pretty nicely having him on a schedule of work rather than the very loose lessons that comprised his preschool education. He is old enough now for me to tell him to complete X Y and Z before leaving his place at the table. That leaves me a few free moments to attend to Toddler 1.1 or do REALLY important things like…take a bath.
Liam Marcus’ Voice – Homeschooling is the kewlest thing one can ever do for their children, bar none – period. Those individuals who argue about, “Well, how about their social skills?” and this and that don’t know squat. Peons of a communistic educational system – indoctrinated zombies thinking in the same manner. Unfortunately, these are the individuals whom we need to be careful of. The may stop at nothing to destroy our right to educate our children just because they think they can do better.
Neither here nor there, it is exquisite to watch our children growing right in front of us. It is a treat to be able to teach them everything we know too. Oops, we get in trouble for that.
Megan Ryan’s Voice – I have been experimenting with Kindergartener 5.0 for about six months now. All his life he had these strange bouts of what I called the Screaming Meemies approximately once a month, sometimes more. He would wake up in the middle of the night crying uncontrollably. He would sob and sob but any attempts to hold and cuddle him and he would start flailing his arms in a ‘don’t touch me!’ way and not allow much physical contact. He would be hysterical and unable to tell us what was wrong, and inconsolable for upwards of twenty minutes. Eventually Marcus figured out that if he told him a story, usually made up right there on the spot, he would gradually calm down enough to listen…if the story was interesting enough! Afterwards, or the next morning, he would tell us he didn’t know why he was crying, and that we was ‘just crying’ because he had to.
One day it clicked for me. Maybe he was suffering from the same manic type of restless leg syndrome I sometimes get late at night. I only suffer from it when I’m not getting enough magnesium in my diet. So to test my theory I instituted Magnesium Monday in our house, this helps me to remember. Every Monday I make sure the children and I get magnesium. My preferred method is eating swiss chard or other magnesium rich foods, but second best is a bath with epsom salts. I’m happy to report he has not had an attack of the Screaming Meemies since his first Magnesium Monday. Thank You Lord for the insight into his/our problem, and the natural means of curing it!
Liam Marcus’ Voice – Magnesium is the key? Well, I’m dumbfounded, but hey, if it works it works. However, don’t stop telling him those awesomely made up stories. Remember, as soon as he wakes up, he will remember the story line and then start telling you, “Remember when the bad man was put in jail by the good guy? Good guys always win.” In our stories, yes, good guys always win.
Megan Ryan’s Voice - It’s only week four of this year’s homeschooling, and already I can’t wait until it’s over…sometimes. Most people automatically assume the material/teaching is the hard part about homeschooling aka am I smart enough to teach? That’s not it. The REAL hard part is discipline, especially schooling teenagers. Being the teacher AND the principal and meting out the punishments, then stickin’ to yer guns. Teenagers are professional soldiers when it comes to emotional battles, and it’s all too easy to get stuck in trench warfare with them. Our teens are no different. They aren’t sassy, gum poppin’, eye rolling brats like a lot of public schoolers, but they are stubborn all the same. (Aren’t ALL teens??) They are having the usual difficulty (denial) in getting back into the new/old routine of school, and they are making everyone pay by shirking work and walking around with silent but dark thunderclouds over their heads. I’m SURE I was the same at that age – I freakin’ hated school.
As you know, I already warned them not to try last year’s shenanigans, but they’re doing it anyway. Neglecting subjects A, B, and C because they are at their mother’s house those days, and she doesn’t sit on their shoulders (like us) and ensure they complete all their work by the end of the day. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t crack a whip behind them all day shouting, “Heeyah mule!”. I write out the days work in a notebook and leave them to do it during the day. When it is finished, THEN privileges begin like having friends over and TV watching. If it isn’t done by 6 PM they have to stop for the day, do some push-ups (disciplinary action), and roll the work over into the next day and even into Saturday if need be.
It’s times like these Marcus and I fantasize about throwing in the towel. And I DO mean fantasize. “Hey honey the kids are in school! What do you wanna do today?! Drink ice cold beer at the beach?? Done! WHEEEeeeeeee!” Then we wake up and stick to our guns for one more day, then another, and another after that.
Liam Marcus’ Voice - Duh gone it! I don’t know how we’ve been able to manage without the public school system for, what, seven years. Well, well, well, a lot of patience and stamina; brain stamina. Ha ha ha. Hey, don’t sweat it, let’s have some fun. You know it’s been fun.
Megan Ryan’s Voice – Wow it has been a busy two weeks! Not only was it our first and second week of homeschool being back in session, but then we upgraded Preschooler 4.12 to Kindergartener 5.0 on Saturday with a little party. He had a blast with his friends being silly, munching snacks, and blowing out candles. The candles on my first homemade, 100% organic birthday cake. It’s a feat I’m proud of and never thought I would (or could) accomplish if you asked me two years ago. I digress. It was so cool to watch him have so much fun. Thank you, Jesus for all of our children. Thank You for parties, and little friends, and big fun.
Liam Marcus’ Voice – Kindergartener 5.0 was in love. It is a remedy to being alone with a pair of old peeps like us, right Megan? The little rascal was distributing, “I love you” to everyone he met this weekend. Hey, at least it wasn’t, “Mami, Papi is that lady naked?” – this one is for another post. For now, let’s reminisce on the fact that this little rascal is incredibly outgoing, something I lack from time to time. Hey, I was, but I ain’t no more ‘cause peeps kept drilling my social-ness into the ground.
Last Monday was a great example of this little rascal’s outgoingness. We went to a nearby theme park and it so happened that the park was nearly ours to enjoy, but wait, no not really. We experienced a British invasion of sorts. We didn’t mind. It was like being over there, in England, without having to pay for an airfare to visit them. Well, the little guy went on the River Rapids Ride for the first time and it blasted him, but he enjoyed it so much he proclaimed it to every single Brit that came onboard the (five trips) rafts we occupied. He had a blast, and the people around him had a blast and appeared to enjoy the little guys’ comments, “We are going to get wet… again!” Sure enough. People got wet, and he told them, “See, I told you!” and they laughed.
Yes, a few times he said, “Papi, it was all right, but there were some ladies naked.” i.e. wearing skimpy clothing. Nevertheless, I think he will rise to the occasion again and again.
Megan Ryan’s Voice – Woohoo! I’m so excited! I feel like a little kid again. Why? One word….tadpoles. Yep, those little squiggly things that turn into frogs. We found approximately one billion tadpoles in our rain barrel today, and I started jumping up and down like a kid on Christmas morning. They are tinier than the ones I grew up catching on the farm (think big fat North American bullfrogs) so I’m guessing they are the offspring of the tree frogs who recently made a home of our back porch. (Sigh!) I have great memories of growing up on the farm and catching about a million tadpoles and other watery creatures with nets and bare hands. Preschooler 4.11 was napping so I grabbed an old giant pickle jar, scooped some inside, and brought them inside for him to find when he woke up. He was delighted too. We talked about how they would transform into frogs, and how we would then put them back outside to catch all the bad bugs like mosquitoes. Honestly, what could make a better homeschool science project for a little one?? Stick ‘em in a jar and watch them grow. No feeding, cleaning or death involved! Only we had to cover the top with a rubber band and a coffee filter so the cats wouldn’t drink the water. :-S
Liam Marcus’ Voice – Ah, well, yes you do have to feed them ‘yo. I dropped a few bread crumbs after you went to bed, sorry. The little creatures started acting like piranhas over the crumbs. It is always delightful to see creatures enjoy themselves from something one gives them. I know the little guys will have a ton of fun watching them, and feeding them.
Megan Ryan’s Voice – We spent last week getting ready to start school today. I planned out the subjects the Teenagers would be learning on a marker board while they assembled the needed folders, notebooks, and textbooks. Then we mapped out each subject and wrote out a course outline to help us determine how to pace the school year. I decided to imitate the same style we had last year where they do subjects A, B, and C at our house and subjects D, E, and F during the days at their mother’s house. Since she is too busy to help them with their work they can bring the finished assignments back here with them for me to grade. I can already smell trouble brewing though. Last year they started to slack off at mom’s house and come back here with little to no work done on those subjects. I fear they’re going to give that another try this year. I’ll just have to be very frank with them and warn them ahead of time not to try it. It didn’t fly then, and it won’t fly now.
This will be Preschooler 4.11’s first official year of school On his 5th birthday coming up I’ll have to upgrade him to Kindergartener 5.0! Even though we’ve been doing preschool and kindergarten workbooks since he turned four, he is still excited about having ‘school’ like his big brothers. The only thing I’ll change is to switch out his Pre-K workbooks for K and start teaching him to play the piano and read music. He has Marcus’ gift for music so we want to give him the tools to unlock his potential as soon as possible. As always, the biggest challenge will be to keep order and a loose daily schedule running smoothly. And most importantly, keep the TV turned off! It’s nice to have that ‘electronic babysitter’ for Toddler 1.0 at times, but the trick is to keep it to a maximum of thirty minutes per day – if I have to turn it on at all!
Liam Marcus’ Voice –It’s special. Once in a lifetime event. Okay, hey, maybe he can do some ka-ra-TE too. Just read an invite to “Meet ups” karate event. It seem inexpensive too. $40 per month for 4 lessons. One can even pay as one goes – kewl, heh?
I’d rather he start playing hockey, but hey, we will have to resort to roller hockey for a while instead. Musical talent?? Ah, shucks! I don’t have talent at all. It’s been hard work my lady, hard work, and even then, the work one has to continue to put in is even harder.