New Jen's Horde

Monday, March 31, 2008

It's Snailing!

It's snowing and hailing, so the kids have decided it's "snailing."

Are you guys all geared up for the new season of Battlestar Galactica? If you're not, it looks like the SciFi channel is running it 24/7 this week. I'm exciting, I hope they find Earth!

I've been helping out with a new local homeschooling wiki, it's called Hands On Homeschooling, and it's pretty interesting. The woman who created it has some neat ideas, and the site has lots of local contributors so I hope it catches on. I'm learning how to edit her pages so that I can add museums, etc, to her listings.

My book discussion went well. I'm thinking of doing another one next co-op, but I'm not sure which book to choose. The book doesn't have to be recent (in fact, it's kind of better if it's not, so folks can get it at the library), I just want it to be interesting and influencial in some way. Do you have any suggestions? I was considering Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, because I've always thought it was hilarious, but I'm not sure it's a book I want to make other people read. I think that's one you have to come to yourself... Any ideas for me?

Congratulations, we made it! That's one less Monday between us and the End of Days, whew.

Labels: , ,


Friday, March 28, 2008

Happy Friday!

I've been away for a bit. So, it will be a longish post while I catch you all up.

First of all, I just have to say YAY about the newly announced X-Files sequel.

OK, back to my life.

We're over being sick, but it took far longer than I was expecting. I think the government should move their top-secret biochemical warfare labratories to Iowa, because they've obviously got some natural leg up in the supervirus production department. I can't remember the last time I've been so miserable! Even after the symptoms were gone, it sort of felt like the life had been sucked out of us for a while, hence no posts. Sorry about that, I did think about you all a lot!

Today we toured the Edgar Mine, up in Idaho Springs. It was great! I'm glad I was there with a group of friends, though, because I gave myself the giggles a few times. I just can't seem to take anything seriously, I'm such a juvenile. Stuff like when the tour guide was explaining how the ore was taken from the mine and sent to a "smelter," and I just knew there had to be a joke in there involving a "dealt-er" but I couldn't find it. I slay myself.

The other interesting thing that happened was that I think I had a panic attack. I mean, I definitely had a horrible panic moment, I just don't know if it would qualify as an attack or not. I've never felt like that before. During part of the tour I nearly lost control of myself. We were in a "refuge chamber," an area where the miners would gather behind a metal door if there were some sort of disaster in the mine. I was doing fine, cracking myself up with jokes like always, when suddenly I just HAD TO GET OUT! RIGHT NOW!

It is hard for me to understand, because on the one hand I wasn't worried about anything REAL, I knew there was plenty of air, I knew the mine wasn't going to collapse, I knew in my heart I was safe. But, at the same time, I felt a nearly paralyzing sense of fear. I started to tear up, and I couldn't catch my breath. I felt that if I couldn't calm down, there was a pretty good chance that I was going throw up and then make a run for it. It was as if I had two minds, one was rational, and one felt like I was going to literally die if I didn't do something. When the tour guide lifted the door I was fine again, in the space of seconds. What does all that add up to?

I have to say that I've been in lots of enclosed areas like this, including two other mines (Lackawanna and Argo) in the last few years with no ill effects. Weird.

Enough of that!

We've been learning American Sign Language for the last couple of weeks. That's been fascinating. If you've never looked into it, you should! Since it's relatively new, it does away with a lot of the hassles of other languages you might learn. Forming tenses is quite simple, and much of it is intuitive, so it tends to stick pretty well, even for the kids.

Of course, Tiernan, who has a few issues with appropriateness in elimination, has decided that he needs to learn how to say, "I would like to pee and poop in your toilet, which I will then drink out of." He'll have LOADS of friends in the deaf community, you can tell.

Oddly enough though, I can't seem to find how to say things like "pee" and "poop" in ASL. I finally found a sign for "toilet," but that doesn't allow me to convey the depth and subtlety of the process. Perhaps deaf people are just far more polite than my family? I supposed that's a given.

And, I can't wrap up the week thus far without letting you all know that my debit card was hacked and over $400 was taken from my account. No word yet on whether it will be put back, but I'm not holding my breath. You know, with a debit card, they can only get out however much money you have in your account, which 75% of the time would be a big fat zero. So, we've been victimized by the luckiest thieves ever, who happened to hit right after pay day. Figures.

Tomorrow I will be leading a discussion of the book One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest for some of the adults in my homeschool group's co-op. If you've read the book and you're in Denver, email me and you can come hang out with us! Unless you're some kind of perverted axe murderer, that is. I've had quite enough drama this week.

Labels: , , ,


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Hats Off

Arthur C. Clarke Died Today

Labels: , ,


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Apparently, I was mistaken

I don't know what's up with this killer virus we picked up in Iowa, but we can't seem to kick it. I thought it was gone, but now we're in another round of fevers and coughing. We've got Pestilence here, if we can round up three more horsemen I think we can get the Apocalypse off the ground.

While I'm up tending the ill, I ran across this on Youtube. It's a recut of the Mary Poppins trailer, as if it were a horror film. Maybe it's the sleep-deprivation talking, but I thought this was pretty funny.

The other day, Cube asked if I'd named my laptop yet. I haven't, but I've already decided that to nerd it up properly, I need to get a bumper sticker for the outside that says, "186,000 miles/second. It's not just a good idea, it's the law." Whaddya think?

Labels: , ,


Saturday, March 15, 2008

Finally well again!

Man, that influenza is NASTY! Even with the Tamiflu, it knocked us flat for a few days. We're mostly better now, just hoarse and still coughing. No fevers or aches, though, and that was some of the worst.

There's an interesting article out today. Apparently, they've found more possible graves at Barker Ranch, one of the hideouts of the Manson Family. It's worth a read, there's a lot of interesting forensic information even if you're not interested in the Manson case.

Forensic experts at Manson site: Dig

And the results of just-completed followup tests suggest bodies could indeed be lying beneath the parched ground. The test findings — described in detail to The Associated Press, which had accompanied the site search — conclude there are two likely clandestine grave sites at Barker Ranch, and one additional site that merits further investigation.
According to Family lore, there should be a few bodies up there still. I'm curious to see how this comes out. I hope they follow up.

Yesterday was our 16th Anniversary. Or, as Davin says, our 2 to the 4th power Anniversary. We were supposed to get silver holloware (yeah, I didn't know either, you can read about it here), but instead we got a BRAND NEW LAPTOP!!!! Could you tell I was typing from somewhere else when you read this? Of course you could...

I'll be in and out all week, we have family in town and a ton of sightseeing planned.

Hope all is well with you, Happy Saturday!

Labels: , ,


Sunday, March 09, 2008


We made it home today, and now we're mostly just dragging around and trying to find the stuff we need to go to bed. More later...



Thursday, March 06, 2008

102 degrees

All day today I felt fine, then the hammer hit around 9pm. Two of the kids are fine, 2 are sick. I'm not sure how/when we're going to get home, I can't see doing 800 miles like this.

But, up until now, we've been having fun. I wonder if you guys can figure out what we went to see yesterday? It's was nerd heaven for us in Riverside, Iowa. I'll post the pictures later, after you all get a chance to guess...

Labels: ,


Tuesday, March 04, 2008

So far, so good.

No one here at my mom's has the flu. I took my sister on errands today, though, and she has a fever of 103 right now. Oh, and I may be leaving in a bit here to take her to the ER. It depends on if she can get her fever down or not.

I got a little more information on the pee/poop situation. Apparently, Liam has a little friend from school who consistently pees, etc, in inappropriate places. Julie had some reservations about this kid, but has found out more while researching this latest. So, it's good to know that, even though Liam came up with the idea to do this the other day, he didn't think it up himself. And the boys are both pretty mortified and have been really good since then. And, Liam can't be with this other boy any more.

We had a big talk with Tiernan about not doing what other kids are doing when you know it's wrong. Weird. I didn't think I'd have to give my homeschooled kids the "if so and so jumped of a bridge, would you?" talk.

Unless we have the plague here, we're planning to go into Cedar Rapids tomorrow.

Labels: , ,


Monday, March 03, 2008

Pee, poop and the flu

We're here in Iowa, and we had a great time at my Grandma's party. She's pretty neat, and a bunch of people showed up to wish her well. I think she was surprised so many people came, but I wasn't. She's always been surrounded by tons of folks!

The night we got into town, we went over to my sister Julie's house to help her decorate the cakes for the party. (They were beautiful, I'll post pictures when I get my camera hooked up.) While the grownups were busy, the 2 six year old boys, ie Tiernan and my nephew Liam, apparently had way too much time on their hands.

I can't believe this actually happened.

Apparently, they were off in Julie's craft room, and decided to pee on the floor. Both of them. All OVER the floor. I would not have thought two boys could produce so much urine! Then, Liam pooped in a drawer. Yes, right in a drawer. The story went through a few stages before we got the final version, and I guess the only reason Tiernan didn't poop too was not that he had a moral objection, but that he couldn't. He tried, but he was empty. Such a proud moment.

A couple of people have told me this is a boy thing, but I can't imagine that's so. It seems like we wouldn't have gotten to this point in our history, because the moms would have killed all the young Neanderthals for peeing on the floors of the caves...ESPECIALLY their sister's caves.

Then, we found out that my niece, Amelia, had to go to the ER this afternoon with a fever of 105. The official diagnosis is Influenza Type A, and she's been contagious while we've been hanging out with her. Hopefully we don't get it, or if we do it waits until we're home.

It just occurred to me. Maybe Julie made up the story about the flu, just to keep us from coming over and peeing on her floors anymore? Gosh, I hope not.

Labels: , ,


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?