Monday, March 31, 2008

video YouTube... Catholics Come Home

video from

H/T to Esther


Saturday, March 29, 2008

My first baby turns 11 !

Celebrating J's 11th birthday today.


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Thursday, March 27, 2008

YES you can go in the pool w/your clothes on.

The kids were so excited that I said "Yes" they could go in the pool with their clothes on.

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File under: Me saying "Yes" to their requests.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Time for a funny story ......

H/T to Esther. I copied it from her.

Swallow your drink before reading.

A new sign in the Bank Lobby reads: "Please note that this Bank isinstalling new Drive-through ATM machines enabling customers towithdraw cash without leaving their vehicles. Customers using this new facility are requested to use the procedures outlined below when accessing their accounts."
"After months of careful research, MALE & FEMALE procedures have been developed. Please follow the appropriate steps for your gender."

1. Drive up to the cash machine.
2. Put down your car window.
3. Insert card into machine and enter PIN.
4. Enter amount of cash required and withdraw.
5. Retrieve card, cash and receipt.
6. Put window up.
7. Drive off.
1. Drive up to cash machine.
2. Reverse and back up the required amount to align car window with the machine.
3. Set parking brake, put the window down.
4. Find handbag, remove all contents on to passenger seat to locate card.
5. Tell person on cell phone you will call them back and hang up.
6. Attempt to insert card into machine.
7. Open car door to allow easier access to machine due to its excessive distance from the car.
8. Insert card.
9. Re-insert card the right way.
10. Dig through handbag to find diary;with your PIN written on the inside back page.
11. Enter PIN.
12. Press cancel and re-enter correct PIN.
13. Enter amount of cash required.
14. Check makeup in rear view mirror.
15. Retrieve cash and receipt.
16. Empty handbag again to locate wallet and place cash inside.
17. Write debit amount in check register and place receipt in back of checkbook.
18. Re-check makeup.
19. Drive forward 2 feet.
20. Reverse back to cash machine.
21. Retrieve card.
22. Re-empty hand bag, locate card holder, and place card into the slot provided!
23. Give dirty look to irate male driver waiting behind you.
24. Restart stalled engine and pull off.
25. Redial person on cell phone.
26. Drive for 2 to 3 miles.
27. Release Parking Brake.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

study paleontology @ disneyland

I love this picture spot for the kids at Disneyland.
Paleontology, motion, friction, so much to study. he he ;)

(It is in line waiting for the Thunder Mountain rollercoaster.)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Nim's Island movie coming 4/4

Cute new movie coming out April 4th : Nim's Island

"Anything can happen on Nim's Island, a place where imagination runs wild and adventure rules."

From Publishers Weekly
Orr (Peeling the Onion) blithely throws credibility to the wind and inventively tweaks coincidence to create a fantasy tale as welcome as a breath of fresh tropical air.
Ever since her mother died when Nim was a baby, the girl and Jack, her scientist father, have lived on a remote island. When Jack sails off on a three-day trip to collect plankton, Nim stays behind with her three best friends: a sea lion, a marine iguana and a green sea turtle.
But a storm disables Jack's boat, and Nim remains alone for a full two weeks, in contact with her father only through notes delivered by a frigate bird. As the author describes the girl's daily routine of foraging for food, doing chores and playing with her pals, she neatly slips into her narrative slivers of information about the tropical habitat (e.g., Chica the sea turtle returns each year to lay her eggs on Nim's island, where Chica was hatched).
A story within a story emerges as Nim strikes up an e-mail correspondence with an author who begins writing an adventure novel set on an island that looks exactly like Nim's. With ample doses of suspense and comedy, and a pleasingly sappy happily-ever-after ending, the tale portrays the improbable so cleverly that readers will want to believe everything about the likable Nim and her idyllic isle. Pen-and-ink drawings that resemble Quentin Blake's bring these enchanting characters and setting to life. Ages 9-12

Homeschoolers in California support

I haven't written anything about the scuffle going on in California about homeschooling.
I'm waiting for the dust to settle.
We continue to do our day to day activities and follow the news.
The Governor vowed to help us keep homeschooling last week.
Here is some news today that there should be some clearer skies ahead.

SACRAMENTO - State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell announced today that the California Department of Education has completed a legal review of the February 28 California Court of Appeal ruling regarding home schooling. O'Connell issued the following statement:
"I have reviewed this case, and I want to assure parents that chose to home school that California Department of Education policy will not change in any way as a result of this ruling. Parents still have the right to home school in our state.
"Every child in our state has a legal right to get an education, and I want every child to get an education that will prepare them for success in college and the world of work in the challenging global economy."
As the head of California's public school system, I hope that every parent would want to send their children to public school. However, traditional public schools may not be the best fit for every student.Within the public school system there are a range of options available.Students can take independent study classes, attend a charter school, or participate in non-classroom-based programs.
But some parents choose to send their children to private schools or to home school, and I respect that right.
"I admire the dedication of parents who commit to oversee their children's education through home schooling.
But, no matter what educational program a student participates in, it is critical that the program prepares them for future success in the global economy. I urge any parent who is considering or involved in home schooling their children to take advantage of resources and support available through their county or district offices of education."# # #

March 11,2008

Monday, March 10, 2008

we don't need chairs

a quick pic of the kids doing homework for art/history class.

no chairs or desks needed. table tops and floors will do.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Field Trip Thursday to Tidepools of Point Loma

Today's field trip was to the Tidepools at Cabrillo National Monument. This is at the end of Point Loma in San Diego.

Suzanne found a great handout for us.
Student notes for an Intertidal zone. We had a scavenger hunt!
Here is the link to the pdf file.
Have fun!

U.S.National Park Service Website

A Tidepool Study from SDSU

GORP website about Coastal Hiking in San Diego

CURR-Click Grand Opening!!

CURR-Click Grand Opening on Monday March 10th !!

The website formerly known as the "Homeschool"
will change over to on Monday, March 10th.
As always, we'd love for you to help us spread the word.

Come by and check out the Grand Opening!

Curriculum in a Click!
EVERY week there is a FREE downloadable product!!

The Same great site and customer service … but better! Experience our improved previews of thousands of your favorite homeschool titles, easily and from the comfort of your own home!

Get 10% account credit on every purchase you make from March 10th-March 17th, add future purchases to your wish list, experience a more intuitive browsing experience that makes it easier to find what you’re looking for, send your wish list to friends and family members and find out what other people think about the curriculum you are considering, by reading our staff and customer reviews. is the only eBook and audio site specializing in instantly downloadable Homeschool curriculum. At CurrClick, you can choose from thousands of homeschool titles from hundreds of your favorite publishers, cheaply and completely free of shipping costs.

MY Favorite product from is the LITERATURE POCKETS from Evan Moor.
James wanted to study Greek Myths and it was so convenient to go to, download the literature pockets and be able to print out the pages on the paper we want, the color we want and as many pages as I need for my 3 kids.

I was also able to download a Guide for D'Aulaires' book of Greek Myths.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Disneyland Trip w/ Homeschoolers

We had an awesome trip to Disneyland for 2.5 days.
We were going to drive up leaving, hopefully at 6:30 a.m. Thursday morning to make the 9 a.m. class and I was stressed.
Geoff said around 10 a.m. on Wednesday to call the hotel and get another night and drive up Wed afternoon. YOO HOOO!!.
So we packed up quick. Loaded most stuff in the truck and dropped James off at Lissa's for Shakespeare class while the rest of us ran to wal mart for groceries.
Pick up James, say our goodbyes and stop by the house for the rest of the stuff.
We got on the road at 3:20. The drive up was absolutely clear. The traffic was null and we arrived at the hotel by 5. Checked in, unloaded the car and ran over to Disneyland for the evening.
One of our goals for the trip was to see Toon Town. Somehow the past few trips we either got there after it closed (for fireworks) or forgot about going there.
So we jumped on the train first thing at the front gate and headed back to Toon Town!

Oh, before the train we went into the Town Hall and requested a Birthday Badge for Katie for Thursday. We were the only ones in there so I chatted with the ladies behind the counter.
We let them know we were there for the next two days. We were going to take the Animation Class in the morning and go to the Minnie & Friends breakfast on Friday.
She gave all of us "Honorary Citizens" Badges to wear!
Then she had Katie pick up the phone on her counter and listen to a special Birthday message from Goofy.

In Toon Town we had a great time riding the Gadget Coaster. Derek was hesitant as we waited for the next train (there was no one in line in front of us!). But when the ride ended, he was the first to ask if we could ride it again.

Next we went to Mickey Mouse's House. We have never done that. We followed the rooms down hallways, past the barn, into another hallway and into a waiting area. We had no idea what we were waiting for. But the line was fairly short and I can imagine that in peak times those hallways and rooms we passed through are the usual waiting areas for this line.
In the end we were taken back into a room and had our picture taken with Mickey Mouse!
**See Photopass link below**

Next we walked over to The Nemo Submarine ride. The line was about 20 minutes. Better than over an hour that it will be during the daytime. The first time we rode Nemo I thought it was worth the 45 minute wait. I really liked it. This time it didn't seem as exciting. But I was paying more attention to the movie details this time to see things we might not have seen the first time we went on the ride.

We left the park when it closed @ 8 p.m. and were very hungry. We crossed the main road and there was an IHOP on the other side. The kids warmed up with hot chocolate and dinner.

We met up with Disney Schoolers and attended the Youth Education Series (YES) class on the history of Animation called Disney Animation Magic.
We had a very animated :) young lady to lead our group of 22 children and a few parents.
The kids were able to:

  • Draw a Disney character - Pooh - using simple geometric shapes.They were guided by a Disney Animator!
  • Demonstrate storyboarding.
  • Create a kineograph.
  • Create a thaumatrope.
Class ended at 1:30. We went back to our hotel, the Fairfield Inn by Marriott and had Pizza Hut that was inside the hotel. This hotel is across the main street and a short walk down. We were very happy with the hotel. The first night was $129. The second night was $139 but included 2 medium pizzas and 4 drinks that we had for lunch.
There is a Mimi's Cafe next door. We went there for dinner.
And McDonald's is pretty much in the parking lot! Of course we went there... Derek's dream come true.

I thought we had to be early at the gate for our 8:30 Minnie & Friends Breakfast so we arrived at 8:15 a.m. The gates don't open until 8:30.
It was exciting though. As they announced that it was time to open the crowd standing in lines cheered! The ticket takers opened the outside gates.
Then there was a countdown to the actual opening..... 5,4,3,2,1 and a cheer and clapping from the crowd. Geoff said, Wow he'd like to come to a job were everyone cheered as you started working!

The Breakfast was AWESOME! We can't wait to do it again.
I read up a lot about it on message boards and blogs so we would know what to expect.
It was very expensive, but this was my birthday present.
For the 5 of us it was $105. I wasn't sure what the food would be like... there were compliments as well as complaints all over the internet.
I thought the food was GREAT. The Mickey Mouse waffles were great. They offered syrup, strawberries, blueberries, whipped cream & butter.
We had made to order Omelets that were delicious. I had spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, green peppers & bacon in mine, oh and cheese too.
Online I found that I needed to try the Latte. (I had 2) There is a machine with all the drinks... water, OJ, coffee, that you push a button for a latte or cappuccino or hot chocolate.

THE BEST PART of course was the Characters. As you see in my photo slide show.
Each Character really took their time with each child. Enough to sign each child's autograph book and take a picture. Then they would often take a group photo with all 3 kids.
They never hurried or felt like they had 100 other people to see when they were at our table.
We loved it!

Friday was crowded though. After breakfast we tried to get on Nemo with Geoff before he left to drive back to San Diego to go to work. The line was already an hour.
We went over to Space Mountain.... another long line. I got FastPasess and we all went into the "3D Honey I Shrunk the Kids". After the show we said Bye! to dad.

We've has great experiences at DL that we have never had to get Fast Passes before. The kids were confused. Did i have to pay for them? No. Why? Because we didn't want to wait in line.
It was a new thing for them. We have rarely had to wait in a line the past 5 times we have been there. So, Note to self, Friday's are busier than other days of the week.

We met the DisneySchoolers in front of the castle @ 2 p.m. for a group photo:

Then we went on the sailing ship and sang a song about homeschooling.

The NEW thing I learned @ DL this trip is the Disney PHOTOPASS.
Next time you go let them take your picture as you enter the gate.
I avoided the photographers before because we would never buy the pictures or even go look at them. I'm not good at saying no when someone wants me to buy something.

But NOW they take your picture and hand you a Disney Photo pass card.
Every time you see a Disney Cast member carrying a nice camera let them take your picture, hand them your Photopass and they load all the pictures on the card. You can go to the Camera Store at the end of Main St. nearest the Castle, right before Plaza Inn Restaurant and see the photos on their screens.
The BEST thing is you can come home and look at them at the

I won't be buying the $50 photo CD or photo book this time. There are only 48 pictures on there. Next time we may get a card and make sure to get LOTs of pictures on there.
The link is below, but we can only view them for a month. I think it is fun that you can email all your friends and post it on your blog for everyone to see.

Thanks for reading about our fun trip. I hope I had some good tips for you.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

"Liberty Kids" on History Channel @ 7 a.m.

Pass the word.........
“Liberty’s Kids,” is being tested right now on The History Channel at 7:00 in the morning.

For the next ten days we need to get the word out to people like you who may favor putting an award winning animated series about the America’s Revolution on the air. As you know, this series was done with PBS and has received Emmy nominations (Two for Walter Cronkite’s rendition of Benjamin Franklin) and features an all star cast. This is a great show but it is hard to get shows like this on TV when so many toy and game supported shows fill up the network time.

This is an important opportunity for us to let The History Channel know that they will be rewarded by bringing this type of programming to kids.

Thank you for your time and please let others know that we are on the air for the next ten days at 7 in the morning (except for Sunday).

Sincerely,Mark Bennett<>

This is only a test marketing of the show. The History Channel needs to know that this is the kind of programming, we as parents want for our children. So, tune in and watch, then contact The History Channel and let them know how much you and/or your children enjoy the program. If the show does well, the producer's are prepared to create more programs highlighting other historical eras in American History.
How to Contact The History Channel
The History Channel doesn't exactly make contacting them simple so, here are the steps to follow, in order to send your comments about Liberty's Kids.
Visit The History Channel website using their contact form.
Select the following...
Step 1 - Scroll down to "Programming"
Step 2 - Select "Program Comments"
Step 3 - Select "Where do I send comments about a specific show?"
Click Submit
A new page will open, select "Contact Us", which will open a pop-up form for you to fill out.
On the form select "Programming/TV Listings" from the menu and complete the rest of the form.

I briefly stated "Thank you for running Liberty Kids. Please continue."