Sunday, April 29, 2012

Well after weeks of obsessing over Minecraft and watching endless hours of videos of people playing it on You Tube, my son finally got his chance to play the game last night.  It was much harder than he anticipated and he couldn't do anything.  That on top of the fact that he discovered PokePark, the Wii Pokemon game, on You Tube and watched all of those videos and was extremely sad there were no more to watch.  I found the game at Wal-Mart, but it was $50.00, too much to spend and I suspect it would also be too hard for him.  My son went to bed with tears in his eyes.  I wish I could shield him from disappointment, but I guess that is part of growing up.  A bad day.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

I didn't finish this one.  See The Unfinished below.

This is the book I am now reading.  I have to share the excerpt.  It is the BEST description of the challenges of raising a child with ADHD I have ever read!

"Creating a good life and crafting a promising future for a child with ADHD is incredibly complicated.  Lest you've gotten so down on yourself for "failing" that you've forgotten what you're trying to accomplish, let me remind you how high the bar has been set for you:  You have to convince an underfunded school system that may be understaffed with undertrained educators to learn and use new classroom and homework systems to ensure that your child has the same chance to learn as the dozens of other children under its tutelage.  You have to work with a doctor pressured by managed care to treat patients faster and more cheaply in finding medication that will calm your child down and help him concentrate, without keeping him up at night or causing other intolerable side effects.  You may very well have to negotiate with your insurance company with the skill of an experienced arbitrator to get coverage for therapy, medications, and even visits to the prescribing physician.  You and your child's other parent have to set aside philosophical differences and marital conflicts to form a united front to help your son or daughter with ADHD.  And you have to take on these time-consuming, exhausting tasks without neglecting your other kids, harming your own health, or going broke." 

Just when I was ready to download Minecraft and try to figure how to help my son (age 7) play it, he discovered some Pokemon Wii game.  I even had a membership number ready to go, thanks to a co-worker that gave me her husband's unused membership.  Midwestern son will, no doubt, come back to wanting to play Minecraft, but I have had a reprieve.  My son's fixation on things is a result of his Aspererger's and his impulsiveness is all ADHD.  He is not the easiest kid to raise, but he's a great kid and a constant joy (when he's not begging non-stop for the latest object of his current fixation).  

Well, it reprieve didn't last long.  My son is having a fit because I took the computer away and won't go do anything else except lay next to me yelling.  In the midst of this, he reminded me about Minecraft.  Oh Joy!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hey fans of Charlene Harris' Sookie Stackhouse books check out this interview:

The new book, Deadlocked, comes out Tuesday, can't wait!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My son has discovered Minecraft.  I know nothing about it.  Is 7 too young to play minecraft?  Anyone know anything about it?  This is all new to me, my daughter isn't remotely interested in video games.  I have learned to play the Pokemon card game, learned all about superheros, read book after book about dinosaurs, have navigated You Tube for him so he can watch how to build Lego videos, helped him build Lego's, and now it's Minecraft.  What's next?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

My husband started a new job April 2nd.  He went from one large international company to another.  It should have been a painless switch and it was except for one thing--insurance coverage.  We were only without coverage for a weekend, but it is now the third week in April and we still do not have health insurance cards.  I have been forced to pay for Doctor appointments with cash, hoping that I will be reimbursed at some point.  I have had to miss three weekly allergy shot appointments and have been without medication for allergy and my daughter has been without acne and eczema medication.  When we finally did get the Rx cards, the new insurance only covered two of the five Rx's. 

What is going on?  We are the richest country in the world.  My husband had a good job and works for a good company and yet we can not get affordable medications.  My daughter's generic benzoil peroxide acne cream retails for approximately $170.00.    Why do the politicians kowtow to the pharmacy lobby?  People are suffering, in pain, and even dying because they cannot afford the medications they need.  This just isn't a political issue, it is a moral one as well.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

This one is going to take a while

I'm trying to read an actual literary novel (Hide Me Among the Graves by Tim Powers), albeit it is still about things that go bump in the night.  Why are literary novels so vague?  I read something and then I wonder, was the big mouth guy a vampire, a ghost, or what.  So then I'm still reading, but not really sure what's going on.  Also, I hate the poems at the beginning of each chapter.  Do I need to read them?  Is the content important?  How much time should I spend puzzling about the meaning?  Anyone have any answers?  We will see how this goes.  I try to read things of substance every once in awhile.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Weekend's Over

Another weekend flew by.  I was busy doing a lot and nothing at all; where does the time go?  I wish I had more time to do scouting activities with Midwestern son.  I did help Midwestern daughter bake, that was fun.  Even the weekends where we don't do much are great.  I love just hanging out and doing stuff together around the house. 

(I didn't take this picture, I found it on the web, but it reminded me of how things looked around here this weekend.)

Dark Needs at Night's Edge by Kresley Cole

Book 4 in the Immortals After Dark Series
Paranormal Romance

It took me forever to finish this one.  Not because I didn't like it, but just being busy.  I really enjoyed this book.  An interesting story line and a great romance all add up to a really good read.  I also really liked that characters from previous books were woven into this book adding a continuity between books. 

Conrad is a fallen vampire, one who has drunk a victim to death, and seems to be beyond help.  Neomi is a ghost bound to the house she was murdered in.  Neomi turns out to be Conrad's bride.  A vampire's bride is his eternal wife.  Only a Neomi can render Conrad fully alive, starting his heart beating and breathing.   

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Old Fashioned Money Saving

I'm not a big fan of Super Couponing.  My money saving method is to try not to buy commercially prepared food.  It is amazingly expensive for what you get.  It is much cheaper to make homemade food and go without things like frozen dinners and mixes.  The time spent searching the Internet, planning, and clipping could be spent making something.  The extra benefit is that your food will have a lot fewer preservatives and chemicals.  Yes, coupons for things like trash bags and bathroom supplies help and I do clip coupons and use them, but only for things I already use.  Usually, the generic brand is cheaper than the name brand even with a coupon anyway.

For Example:

I purchased a spiral cut ham for Easter for $18.00.  We ate or will eat it for the following meals:

Easter Dinner
3 Ham sandwiches
6 Ham salad sandwiches
Split Pea Soup, (easily 2 dinners and 2 lunches)
Quiche (1 dinner, 1 lunch)
Scalloped potatoes with ham, (1 dinner, 1 lunch)

All those meals for $18.00!  That $1.00 a meal.  (yes, I realize the other meals require more ingredients, but it is still amazingly inexpensive)

I do that once or twice a year.  I also do a similar thing with turkey.  These kinds of meals were the kind of meals our grandmothers made.  With food prices so high, we can't afford to waste.

I also made egg salad out of the dyed Easter eggs.  Delicious homemade food and cheep too, it doesn't get any better than that.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

I think raising my children is the most important thing I will ever do in my life.  They are my legacy.  They are my connection to the past and my link to the future.  Raising them has been and is the most challenging, frustrating, joyful, and difficult thing I will ever do.  I worry about them incessantly and am so proud of them.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Time Starved Chef

I've struggled for years to put dinner on the table that not only everyone will like, but that is easy and quick, and fairly inexpensive.  I have decided that lots of people (myself included) can put dinners on the table is cost were no option and I had lots of time.  The real challenge is when you have picky eaters, with everyone being picky about different things; a short cooking time, some nights only 30 min. to fix dinner and eat; limited resources; oh and don't forget it should be at least a bit healthy. 

That should be a reality show.  Contestants have to work a full day, come home at 4:15, go though back packs, unpack lunch boxes, feed dogs, get dinner fixed and kids fed, and then have kids changed and ready to leave at 5:45 two days a week and 4:45 one day a week.!  I say, "Good Luck!"

Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice

Anne Rice is back, thank God!  I wasn't too thrilled with her Christian works, but I did read them.  In this book, she takes on the werewolf myth.  She manages it to turn the werewolf myth into something new.  In her version, the wolves are driven to destroy evildoers only.  They seem driven to this.  The book is all about spirituality, the purpose of life, what we are here for.  I liked that the wolves were basically good and there wasn't a lot of moaning and groaning about being evil. 

A good read.  I liked it, but didn't love it.  It was lush, beautifully written, had a very interesting myth story, and was full of details.  I will definitely read future books in this series.


Drag out of bed early

Baskets smiles chocolate

Fancy clothes church

Singing Alleluia

Relaxing sunny day

Family dinner ham pie

A perfect day

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Morning Coffee

I love waking up early when my family is still sleeping.  It is quiet and peaceful.  I sit and enjoy a cup or two of coffee and read and enjoy the silence.  It's a great way to start the day.  Today I am listening to Native American spiritual music.  Soon it will be all chaos and activity getting ready for a family gathering, but not right now.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Anne Rice Interview

Any Anne Rice fans out there will want to watch her interview with Steven Colbert on The Colbert Report last night.

Garlic Mustard

This is an invasive weed called garlic mustard.  It is really bad stuff.  It grows in woody or shaded areas and negatively affects native plants and insects.   It should be blooming soon, if not right now, which is a good time to remove it.  Please take a moment to read about it.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

I am tired tonight.  I had about an hour to read before I got busy with chores and I was having a hard time because my eyes are watering and burning.  Did I put the book down to take a much needed nap?  No, of course not! 

I am currently reading Anne Rice's, The Wolf Gift.  More about that later.  I am going to go make a cup of coffee, a cup of much needed energy then it's dinner and egg dying.  (Yes, we waited until Maundy Thursday to dye eggs!) 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Easter or Christmas?

No new books to report on.  We are all still reading the current books; trying to find time to read with all the business.  It is all a juggling act.  I have been strangely energetic lately.  It will be a busy, fun weekend and I don't want to miss the fun feeling tired and stressed out.  So, I am working hard this week to keep up so I can have fun this weekend.

At lunch today, a co-worker was asking what the Easter Bunny should bring her kids.  At every suggestion, she stated they all ready had that.  I was thinking, if your kids all ready have everything then they are obviously overindulged and don't really need much for Easter.  When did every holiday become overloaded with gifts and food, requiring entire aisles of special food/candy in the grocery store?  It used to be a basket of candy was a treat, now kids get wrapped gifts like it is Christmas?!  Really!  My kids will be receiving small gifts and candy, not unlike a Christmas stocking.  And that is it.  I try really hard not to spoil my kids with everything they could ever want.  It isn't what I want to teach my kids.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Fair Game by Patricia Briggs

Book 3 in the Alpha & Omega Series
Urban Fantasy

I love Patricia Briggs.  Her Mercy Thompson Novels are on my favorites list.  The Alpha & Omega books are set in the same world as the Mercy Thompson books.  This book reads a bit like a mystery novel.  Charles and Anna are off to Boston to help the local authorities catch a serial killer.  I liked the book.  I really like that Patricia Briggs writes about couples that are married and in love, and she still manages to weave romance into the mix.  I don't like this series as well as the Mercy Thompson books, but I look forward to every new book.  Well worth reading.