Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Blast From the Past: Wheel of Fortune

For some reason this afternoon, one of my children asked me where my tape was of my appearance on Wheel of Fortune.  I looked and looked, and after about 20 minutes, I found it!  Jimmy actually transferred the original VHS to a DVD.  It has been years since we watched the recording, and I am not sure that Sam and Leah have ever seen it!

For those of you who don't know me personally, or maybe you do, but you never knew this--I was a contestant on Wheel of Fortune over 15 years ago.  I was pregnant with Clay, and going to Los Angeles was a treat for Jimmy and me!

I saw on TV that Wheel of Fortune would be holding tryouts in our area (Jackson, MS).  The instructions were to go by Burger King and pick up a postcard.  I filled out one for both Jimmy and myself and mailed them to the local TV station that was hosting the tryout.  They randomly chose postcards and called those people to invite them to a group tryout.  I am not sure why I even put Jimmy's name on a postcard.  He was a fellow, and it's not like he could just leave the hospital and go try out for Wheel of Fortune.

So the TV station called and asked to speak to Jimmy.  I said, "Are you calling for Wheel of Fortune tryouts?" The lady said that she was, and I begged her to let me come instead.  I explained that he could not leave work, and I was totally available.  She agreed!  And so I went to the tryout!

The tryout was held at a hotel, and I am guessing about 100 people were there.  I really can't remember all of the details.  We took a written test (solving word puzzles), we stood up and introduced ourselves with enthusiasm, and then they narrowed us down to a much smaller number (I can't remember…20-30 maybe?).  Then we played a couple of rounds of Wheel of Fortune complete with a cardboard wheel.  It was so much fun!  They told us that if we were not selected to be on the show, we would never hear from them again. But, if they did choose us to be a contestant, we would be called two weeks prior to the date that they needed us in California.  And, it may be 2 months to a year (I think that was the time frame) before they called us.

So, I was excited for a couple of weeks, and then I got busy with my life, and I forgot.  I also got pregnant with Clay, and my life was consumed with taking care of a 3 year old, a just turned 1 year old, and trying not to vomit all day.  (Actually that was my life for all five pregnancies, all day "morning sickness" and vomiting, but that is another story!)

Sometime in early October of 1998, I got the the call!  I was selected to be a contestant!  I wrote down the dates and then I called Delta Airlines.  (This was back when you called and talked to a real live person to buy airplane tickets!)  I was so excited!  I told the reservations agent that it was going to be my first time to fly! and that I was going to be on Wheel of Fortune!  Then I called and made our hotel reservations, asked my parents to keep Olivia and Julie, and asked Jimmy to beg the hospital to let him go with me!

We packed our bags, I prayed that I wouldn't throw up on the airplane, and we were off!  Jimmy and I enjoyed a few days in Los Angeles, and the filming of Wheel of Fortune was the highlight for me.  I also hoped and prayed that I would not throw up on the set or even backstage of Wheel of Fortune, and thankfully, I did not!  (I was sick plenty at our hotel and other destinations though.)

The day on the Wheel of Fortune set was fun.  It was an all day affair.  We had orientation, practice, lunch, hair and make-up touch up, and then the recording of the actual shows.  A week's worth of shows were recorded in one day.  I can't remember how we were put into our groups of three for each show, but I do remember we drew numbers to see which group went on each day.  I was part of the Tuesday recording.

When Sam was watching the show today, he said, "Mama.  You have such an accent!"  I did sound pretty country.  I am sure that I still do!  We all enjoyed watching my show today, and I even forgot a couple of the puzzles until some of the letters were filled in--and I had already solved them!  On the show I solved all of the puzzles but one, and I was also the big winner.  Which meant that I picked a letter (I think I got an E) and after attempting to solve the final puzzle, I was able to look to see what my grand prize would have been.  At the time, $25,000 was the grand prize.  My prize (that I did not win) was a trip for 10 (I think) to Lake Tahoe.  I won $11,500 cash and prizes, and that cash helped pay our bills the last year of Jimmy's cardiology fellowship. My prizes included a big screen TV, and I mean the kind that was big…in a brown cabinet that sat on the floor like a huge piece of furniture, and a DVD player (which at the time I had no idea what that was).  We still have that DVD player.

Here is my final puzzle.  If you have not seen the recording of my show (or if you forgot!), you can guess.

I was given R,S,T,L,N,E.  I also guessed B,P,O.  I think I guessed P.  Anyway, the letters below are all I had.

_ E _
_ _ _ _ N

What do you think it is?

For a trip for 10 to Lake Tahoe!  Ha!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The 10 Minute Challenge

I had a brainstorm this morning while making me daily To-Do list.  There are always these little odd jobs that I want accomplished, but I never seem to make the time to get to them.  So, I had the bright idea to make a list of these tasks, and then enlist my wonderful children to help me.

Each morning during our Bible study time, I always go over the Plan For the Day with my children.  I remind them of the day and date and whatever we have planned for that day…piano lessons, xc practice, errands, etc.  I also tell them our cleaning plan for the day (we don't clean house every day) and any other extra thing I need them to do that day.  This morning I announced that I had a really great idea to help Mama out!  One of my children said, "Great!  Like cleaning baseboards!" :)

I explained to them my idea of setting the timer for 10 minutes and doing one of the items on my list.  The 10 Minute Challenge!  Today we cleaned out our shoe baskets.  Those are baskets of shoes beside two of our doors that lead outside.  I have trained my family to put their shoes in that basket as they take them off, but periodically the shoe baskets get too full!  I like for them to have no more than two pairs of shoes in each basket at any given time, and I do not like for them to put their church shoes in there.

It took us less than 10 minutes and we were done.  Shoe baskets cleaned out and the extra shoes all put away in each person's closet.

Other items on my 10 Minute Challenge include:

  • various drawers throughout the house
  • the kitchen computer desk (where the children do all of the school and leisure computer work)
  • our magazine bucket 
  • a different magazine/Bible class material basket 
  • the kids' upstairs built in desks
I know that I will think of many more tasks to add to this list, but the drawers alone may take us a month!  I hope to have the 10 Minute Challenge 3 times a week.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Menu and Miles

I am following a Marathon Build-up Plan.  I began it last week.  It is a 18 week running plan that slowly builds up your mileage to 35 miles/week.  And then you are ready to begin a marathon plan.   I don't have a marathon scheduled.  I actually don't have any race scheduled, but I needed to begin somewhere.  This week's miles are:  4,4,4,3.  Plus I plan to do a T25 workout two days this week too.

I am not assigning days to the meals, but I have all the ingredients on hand to make the following suppers.

  • hummus and vegetable pizza on homemade pizza crust.  Recipe here.
  • black-eyed pea cakes, mashed potatoes, raw veggies and homemade dip.  Recipe here.
  • quinoa salad and pasta salad (not everyone in my family likes quinoa salad, but I love it!)  Recipe here.
  • minestrone.  Recipe here.
  • taco soup
  • baked fish, roasted potatoes (golden and sweet), salad
  • stir fry vegetables and brown rice
Be sure to visit OrgJunkie for more menu inspiration. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Sleepless Night

Well.  An almost sleepless night.

The night's drama began when our power went out due to a storm in our area about 7:30 PM.  The younger children freaked out, and I am not exaggerating!  It was really dark.  I don't know if street lights in town still work when the power goes out (like are they on some sort of generator back-up or something), but out here in the country, when the power goes out, it is dark. 

So we used flashlights and candles.  We visited with one another a little bit (we had the Olympics on prior to the power outage), and I read some of Johnny Tremain to Leah.  Sam fell asleep in Jimmy's lap before 9:00.  By 9:30, we just all went to bed!

I woke up at 10:30 when the power came back on.  Then I slept on and off (many people in our house were coughing, coughing, coughing, and the dogs were howling and barking) until 1:30 AM.  That is when Leah woke up me to tell me her ear hurt (a slight infection in her newly pierced ear) and that she could not sleep because she could not stop coughing.  Really?  I could not sleep because she could not stop coughing!

Leah and I worked on her ear, and I convinced her to take some cough medicine.  I cleaned the kitchen and started the dishwasher (we had not done that in the pitch black dark before going to bed, and anyway I couldn't have started the dishwasher without power anyway.)  I set up the coffee pot to come on in a few hours. We turned off all the lights that had come back on at 10:30.  We had a cup of tea.  We read Facebook.  She watched me play spider solitaire.  And finally at 4:00 AM, I told her that we had to go to sleep!

So I slept until 6:50 when I thought I heard Sam calling for me.  (He wasn't.  I must have been dreaming).  He actually slept until 7:30.  Thankfully, Jimmy is off so we are not doing school today.  I need to run and make a grocery list.

As you can see, I am putting off running by blogging instead.  Even after almost 7 years of consistent running, I still struggle most days with the motivation to exercise.  I am always, always happy once I am done, but it's the getting started that is hard.  I used to think that I did not need a marathon or half-marathon looming in the future to motivate me to run.  But I have changed my mind.  I think I do need that accountability and I need the weather to warm up so I can meet friends to run in the early morning.

Finally, thank you to everyone who has left comments, emailed me, texted me, and contacted me on Facebook with your suggestions for my Moms' Night Out talk.  Thank you!  I have a place to begin now.  I really appreciate your ideas.

So.  I am off to the treadmill.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Moms' Night Out Ideas

I have been asked to speak at our homeschool organization's Moms' Night Out in April about planning and organizing.  I must admit that I am nervous about this.  While I can talk non-stop with a friend while running or just visiting in our homes or somewhere else, I actually have very little experience in speaking in front of a group.  Especially a group of fellow homeschooling mothers who expect to learn something from me!  Help!

Can you help me?  I am beginning to work on my presentation, and I need some input.  If you were coming to this meeting or a similar meeting, what topics would you like addressed?  Would you like handouts?  Should I focus on planning and organization only as it relates to homeschooling, or should I include homemaking tips as well?  Since my time is limited, what would be the three or four things you would definitely want addressed?

Thank you for your ideas!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Our Valentine's Day

Our family had a fun time celebrating Valentine's Day.  We all love each other very much, so it was nice to show that to one another.

We have a few Valentine's Day traditions...nothing fancy or Pinterest-worthy, but it's what we do.  Jimmy gives each child a large heart-shaped box of Russell Stover chocolates (which they love!), and I buy them something practical or educational (which they pretend that they like.)  I like to think that they like my gift as much as that chocolate!  Even if it is new running socks or underwear.  (Yes,  I gave the children underwear for Valentine's Day one year…I noticed while folding clothes that everyone needed some, so I that's what I added to the fun gift of chocolate!)  

This year I went the educational route.   Julie received a new cookbook; Clay a book with 101 knife-making designs; Leah a Fancy Nancy book; and Sam, a Pete the Cat book.  The children all made Valentine's for each other, and I bought pretty Valentine's for them.

Jimmy took them Valentine's shopping earlier in the week, and the children bought some candy for Jimmy and me too.  Julie lovingly made homemade gummy squares for her siblings and the very best ever homemade chocolate peanut butter cups for me.  They are so delicious! 

 My Valentine's Day gifts from my sweet family.

 A heart-shaped chocolate pancake I made for our breakfast--Leah and I cut only two pancakes into heart shapes, the rest we just left as circles.  

My sweet gift from my dear husband:
My favorite candy of all inside my favorite drink (empty bottle) of all!

And now after all of this wonderful, delicious chocolate, I have got to make sure that I exercise every day!

As usual, the only sad part of the day was not being able to share it with sweet Olivia!  But when we visited her a couple of weeks ago, Jimmy took her a heart-shaped box of chocolate.  She was so excited, and did not eat it until Valentine's Day.  I sent her several Valentines in the mail along with some heart-shaped cookies (I did not bake them. I ordered them from Cheryl's--on sale, with a coupon and free shipping!)  We talked to her on Valentine's Day, and she reported that she had had such a fun week receiving packages.

Our family ended our special day by dining at Chick-Fil-A.  All together.  It really was nice.  

Monday, February 17, 2014

Sam's 8th Birthday

About three weeks ago, we celebrated Sam's 8th birthday. We began the day like we always do for birthdays, with a special breakfast and present opening.  Julie crocheted Sam a red hat, and Clay made him a knife.  He spent the day playing with his new toys, and enjoying his siblings doing his chores for him!  We ate his birthday lunch at Abner's, and then he had a few little boys over to play and eat birthday cake.

It was a very cold day, but Sam insisted on the boys playing outside!  So I asked all of the Mamas to make sure they brought warm clothes for their sons.  I let them play outside 40 minutes, and then I rung the dinner bell for them all to come inside for cake and snacks.  I think it was 23 degrees that day!

I think Sam had a super day!  

 Sam and Leah

 The birthday boy

Sam and Julie

 Sam and Clay

 Blowing out the candles
Julie made his delicious cake.

 The little boys, all dressed in their coveralls and ready to play in the woods.

The birthday table
No, it's not Pinterest worthy--but Sam liked it!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Does Your Den Look Like This?

On any given day either my den, or Leah's room, or Sam's room, or our upstairs hallway look just like this picture!  That tent is full of dolls and stuffed animals and all of their paraphernalia.  Leah and Sam really enjoy playing together, and they usually set up some elaborate play land--a pretend world that can last for days.  Until I have them clean it all up so I can vacuum, which is usually about once a week.

Sam has been sick for a couple of days.  He is coughing and running a fever. He really feels badly, and I have spent the last two days waiting on him, sitting with him, sleeping with him, and generally doing what I can to help him pass the time until he feels better.  About 2:00 this morning he asked me if I could take him to the doctor to get some medicine!  I explained that doctor's offices are not open in the middle of the night, but he insisted that doctors are always at work!  Yes.  But that's the ER, and this was not an emergency.  Bless his heart.

While sitting beside Sam and keeping him company and just generally trying to be sympathetic to his illness, I read Melanie Shankle's new book, The Antelope in the Living Room.  It was hilarious!  I laughed out loud in every chapter, and then Sam had me read aloud what I was laughing at….of course it was not funny to him!  I enjoyed reading it, and if Sam was not sick, I probably would not have taken the time to sit down and read it.

That's the wrap up of my weekend.

Oh, I exercised 6 days last week.  6!  I am finally getting back into the swing of working out.  Between running that marathon distance in the freezing cold and recovering from the flu, my attitude toward running and working out in general has been lackluster.  But I think I am on a roll!  I hope to run/do T25 6 days again this upcoming week too.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


One of my focus word for 2014 is SIMPLIFY.  The other is UNSELFISHNESS.

Today I want to share one way that I have already simplified my life.


There was a time many years ago that I got online once a day.  Once.  And that was in the morning, after I had completed my Bible study, exercise (I actually ran only 2 miles a day at this time), and I was all dressed and ready for my children to wake up----this was also back when I had only three children, and the youngest was 3.

As I began homeschooling I discovered the wonders of websites dedicated to homeschooling, homemaking, and parenting.  I also began emailing online friends that I met in various yahoo groups (either homemaking, homeschooling, or parenting related).  I joined a homeschool unit study co op, and we communicated and shared lesson plans with one another via email.

But once a day for about 30 minutes pretty much covered it all.  I did have a three year old, five year old, and seven year old, and once they were awake, I stayed busy without much down time until they went to bed.  And then I went to bed too!  So I didn't spend that much time online.

Fast forward 12 years.  I now have 5 children, and my youngest is 8.  I still get up at the crack of dawn each day, but my exercise takes much longer than running 2 miles, and I am serious about beginning our homeschool day with our group Bible study at 8:00 AM sharp.  I no longer limit my online time to 30 minutes, once a day, and I can't get all my online work done in the early morning.

I have a laptop on my kitchen counter, and I use that thing all day long--looking up recipes (mostly my own recipes that I have typed and saved in a document), printing out Bible lessons from our church, reading email, printing out Bible verses, typing papers for Leah, reading email, blogging, reading email, looking up addresses for cards to send, reading email, paying bills, reading email, etc.
Email. Too much email.  And hardly any of it personal.  I also have my smart phone at my side most of the time so I can respond quickly if my husband or daughter who is at college contacts me.  I pretty much ignore all other phone calls and texts until our lunch break or until all of our schoolwork is done.  But, that little red number on the mail icon distracts me--WARNING!  YOU HAVE UNREAD EMAIL!  I do not like that little red number.  So I was scanning and deleting.  Scanning and saving.  Scanning and deleting.  All throughout the day.

Not any more.

About a month ago, when I had the flu, I did not feel like looking at my emails one little bit.  That red number kept getting higher and higher, and I did not even care.  I felt too badly.  However I did notice something that served as a wake-up call.  I was getting well over 100 emails a day--closer to 150 I think, and about 95% of them were things I did not even read.  Scan and delete.  That's all I did, and it was eating into my time.  It was time to simplify.  I wanted to simplify my email.  That may not sound like a big deal, but having done it, it has made me so happy!

Here is what I did.

One by one, as I got an email from someone that I know longer wished to get emails from, like all of those stores and websites that I have shopped from over the years, before I automatically deleted it, I scrolled way down to the bottom of the email.  And near the bottom, in microscopic font, I would find the words "unsubscribe".  Sometimes it would say "remove me from this email list", but whatever it was called, I clicked on it.  Then it led me to a website.  This took a couple of minutes for me per email because we have slow internet, but once I connected to the site it was either one or two clicks to unsubscribe.  Done.

It took me about a week to unsubscribe from all of those lists, but the time spent was well worth it.  Initially I hesitated to unsubscribe from my favorite online shopping sites, because I still wanted to receive the great coupons, but I decided that I could probably find the same coupons on the website itself.  Plus I have two really close friends that will forward me any "must have" coupons!

Now I receive less than 20 emails a day, and for the most part they are things that I really want to read.  Of course, I still get bill notifications, but that is only once a month per bill.

And the red number on my phone is always a single digit!

So there you have it.  A simple thing I did to simplify my life.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

No Snow

Well….we didn't wake up to 2-4 inches of snow.  In fact, we woke up to no snow at all, much to my children's disappointment.  All we have is drizzly cold rain.  The temperature is in the upper 30s, so it is still cold.  Just wet and cold.

We didn't have school today because Jimmy was off, so Leah and Sam have spent all day playing inside a tent.  They had it set up in the den until recently, but now they have moved it upstairs to Sam's room.  I am so happy that can play for hours together with rarely a conflict.  They are always pretending--they create their own little world with dolls (Leah) and stuffed animals (Sam).

I have had a little bit of down time while I am waiting for my clothes to dry, so I did a little blog reading.  I came across a post about why this mother still lays down with her seven year old son each night.  I can identify.  I think Sam will want me to lie down with him at night until he goes to college.  That's ok.  I will.  I never want to look back and wish that I had held/rocked/laid down beside my kids more.  I want no regrets.

I'm ready for sunshine and warmer temperatures.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


We woke up this morning to a light dusting of snow.  There must be ice and even more snow in town, because the local schools and even Jimmy's clinic are closed today due to the winter weather.  I let the kids play outside as long as they wanted, which was until about 9:45 AM, and then we began our school day.  Leah and Sam had lots of fun sledding down our hills--even though the snow was not very deep. Where we live, any minute amount of snow is fun, fun, fun!

The weather forecast calls for even more snow tonight, so maybe tomorrow they can build a snowman!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Scripture Memory Box

I first blogged about my Scripture memory box about three or four years ago.  We are still using the box, and it has proved to be a successful tool for Scripture memorization for our family.

I found directions for making my box by conducting an online search.  At first I had my verses and card stock dividers inside a little plastic basket, but later I purchased a filing box, some 4 x 6 printable index cards, and tabbed dividers.  I used to print the Bible verses onto the card stock (which is perforated into four 4 x 6 cards), but now I just print the verse out on regular paper using a small font, and then I tape them onto the index cards.

Each week I choose and print out a new Bible verse for us to learn.  I alternate short verses with long passages which we learn 2-3 verses at a time.  Some of the longer passages my children have learned include Psalm 103, Psalm 91, Psalm 1, the Beatitudes, and Proverbs 31:10-31.  I print two copies of the week's verse:  one on regular sized paper to hang on the window beside our kitchen table and one smaller copy for the Scripture memory box.

We recite the verse 5 times each morning as we begin our Bible study time.  Since the verse hangs beside our kitchen table, it is is plain view to be read throughout the day.  On Fridays, the children copy the verse into their Bible memory notebook, which is just an inexpensive spiral bound notebook.  When my children were younger, I copied the verses for them.

When Olivia went to college last fall, I presented her with a journal that I had copied inside every single verse that she had memorized since she was in kindergarten. It took me a couple of months to copy all of those Scriptures!  I wanted her to have a copy of the verses that she had hidden in her heart for 13 years--and I wanted her to be able to review them from time to time so that she would not forget them.

Ok.  Here is the procedure for setting up your own Scripture memory box.  If my directions are not clear, then you can Google instructions.

Supplies Needed:
1 filing box (mine holds 4 x 6 inch index cards)
1 set of blank tabbed dividers (you need 39-41 total)
4 x 6 inch index cards


  1. Choose verses for you and your children to memorize.  
  2. Copy the verses you already have learned onto the index cards, one per card.  You can print onto the cards, print the verses on paper and then tape them on the cards, or just hand write them onto the cards.
  3. Label the tabbed dividers in this manner: 1-31, Daily, Even, Odd, and the days of the week--either Monday-Friday or you can include Saturday and Sunday too if you plan to drill on those days.  I just drill the Scriptures on Monday-Friday.
  4. Place the card with the Scripture that you are learning this week behind the Daily tab.
  5. Put last week's Scripture behind the Even tab.
  6. Place any other Scriptures that you have learned behind the Odd tab and the days of the week tabs.  If you have even more Scriptures already learned, begin placing them behind the days of the months tabs. (1-31).  For Daily, Even, Odd, and the Days of the Week tabs, just put one care per tab. 
  7. Each week create a new card for that week's Scripture.  Place the new card behind the Daily tab, and then move each card one tab back, until you get through the Friday tab.  Then take the card that is behind Friday, and put in behind the next blank numbered tab.  When all 31 tabs have a card behind them, begin putting the cards behind 1, 2, 3, etc. again.  Just keep distributing the cards evenly as the years go by.  
Daily Drilling:
Pick a time of day that is convenient for you, and drill your Scriptures daily.  Each day you will practice the Scriptures behind the following tabs:  Daily, Even or Odd (depending on whether the date is an even number or an odd number), the day of the week it is (Monday-Friday), and then the date (1-31) of the day.  So, you will be reciting at least 4 Scriptures a day when your box gets full.  As you learn more and more verses, you will have more cards behind the numbered tabs.  

This system really works.
My children can recall over 100 Bible passages--some short and some fairly long-- with very little prompting, just by using this simple system day in and day out.  I am so glad that I took the time to create my Scripture memory box a few years ago.  It takes me less than five minutes once a week to type up the week's memory verse, tape one copy to the window and the other smaller copy on an index card and put it in the box.  Then I take about 10 seconds and move the cards one tab back, and then we are ready to go!  It's really that simple.

Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.
Psalm 119:11

Friday, February 7, 2014

Our Newest Dog


I am not much of an animal person, but my children are!  Of course I have compassion for them.  

Most of you know that our dog Joy has required special care for 5-6 years now (I can't remember), because she had a dog version of a stroke kind of thing that left her paralyzed on one side. I had to feed her water with a syringe and spoon feed her softened dog food for quite a while.  She can go up and down our back porch steps because they are very low, but that is all!  She can't jump up on the couch or a bed, and when she is on a bed or a chair, she barks to get down.  We put that dog up and down all day long!  She likes to sit right beside me when I am reading to the children, and she barks at Clay whenever he eats near her--waiting for a snack!  She is really spoiled.

We have buried two of our beloved pets over the last few years, Lilly and Lucky, and I cried and mourned for those sweet dogs.

Our current pets besides Joy include three indoor cats--Marmalade who was scarred for life 5 years ago when we rescued 2 baby kittens from our yard and brought them into our home to play with (or torture!) Marmalade, who didn't know he was a cat.  The newer cats' names are Bo and Frisky, and all three cats are males.  Bo came to us with broken arm.  It healed sticking straight out from its body.  It is useless and has no feeling, so he gets around on three legs.  So living inside our house we have one crippled dog, one crippled cat, one psycho cat, and one normal cat.  I guess Frisky is normal!

Joy and one of the cats--not sure which one, because they all are orange.  When they are walking around I can tell--Bo has a front leg that sticks straight out!

Outside we have Ribsy, the dog who showed up, skin and bones, just as we were moving into our house nine years ago.  She was infected with heart worms, and she appeared to be about 6 months old.  We treated her conservatively for heart worms for eight years, and last year she was pronounced heart worms-free!  She is a very fat and happy dog now. 

Ribsy, coming home from the vet a few months ago after she had this weird thing on her ear---it's always something with these dogs!

And we have Pokey, the 5 pound puppy we rescued from the city park two and half years ago.  He had been hit by a car and had a broken leg (which healed just fine on its own), and he was infected with all kinds of intestinal parasites….maybe heart worms too, I can't remember!  But we dewormed him (fun times!) and now he weighs over 50 pounds and is the picture of health.  Pokey has always been a lively dog since he recovered from all of those worms, and he likes to chew everything!

About two weeks ago another dog showed up at our house.  It was freezing cold, and she came inside our garage.  She was so skinny, and just walked around slowly with her tail tucked between her legs.  Of course we fed her, and she has claimed us as her family!  I finally took her to the vet Wednesday.  I was really, really hoping that we would have a pet that had no health issues.  Please.  A healthy dog!

But, of course, all infirmed dogs and cats find their way to the Johnson Pet Rehabilitation Center…..and Lady (as we named her) was no exception.  Lady has heart worms, which we will begin a 6 month conservative treatment for on Monday, and she also has mammary cancer!  She will be scheduled for surgery to remove the mass in a couple of weeks.  The vet thinks that her prognosis will be good--but she is nine years old, and he can't make any promises.

I have on my to-do list to order Lady a shocking (I mean correction!) collar for our electric dog fence.  When pets join our family, they get spayed or neutered (Lady will get her surgery when she has her cancer removed), and the outside dogs also get a nice correction collar!  I can't have our pets getting in the highway!

So that's the latest update on our animals.  

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Hello! Hello!

Yes.  I am still around.

I have no idea why I have not blogged in OVER TWO WEEKS! 

We have celebrated Sam's 8th birthday, survived freezing cold weather (No ice.  A dusting of occasional snow.  Just cold, cold, cold.), visited Olivia at college, and been very diligent in our homeschool.

On Monday, I had a post published at The Homeschool Classroom.  It's all about scheduling your homeschool day.  I think I shared earlier that I made a few changes to our previous 2013-2014 school day schedule.  The last month has flowed fairly smoothly.

I plan to get back to blogging on a regular basis, beginning right now!  :)

In the meantime, you can click here to read the scheduling post.