Jeneric Jeneralities ~ by JenIG

It looks like we will take a trip to MI in a few weeks and stay with my in-laws for Thanksgiving.  I’m assuming you guys have in-laws too; what are they like?  I’m one of those very rare unheard of specimens whom have been extraordinarily lucky in the in-law department.  My MIL has been like a real mom (especially after my own mom died years ago) and her husband, my FIL, was the guy who ultimately influenced Geoff to marry me.  He said, “Geoff the Great, I think you ought to tie the knot”.  I will always love him for that.  They are funny and fun and very loving and supportive and they are easy to beat at pinochle.  I am looking forward to our trip.


In other news… I have a grave confession to make.  I nearly decided against telling it, lest you think me what I am:  an irresponsible non-farm animal overseer.   It was bad enough when we took Gena’s dumb dog, Liesel, after their landlord wouldn’t let them have pets.  She had just had a bucket of puppies a year earlier and then right when we got her she decided to have seven more (just a few months ago).  Well… we had kept two of the mutts from last year’s bucket of puppies and last night one of them had NINE puppies of her own. NINE.  Whoever heard of a puppy having NINE dogs in her first litter?



I am seriously pulling my hair out.  Just last month me and geo had determined to take Liesel and the two girl puppies to the vet so this type of thing wouldn’t happen.  But alas.  It seems it is our destiny to single-handedly over-populate Tennessee with dumb, very fertile, dogs.   


PS Emmiko is SO excited… her dress that we listed on HomeschoolBuy is up to $30 !!! holy smokers!



Barn Dance Deadline
Please sign up to attend our
barn dance/ fund raiser
by the October 31st deadline
Details here:

October 29th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 27th, 2006
Hear Ye Hear Ye…..

Announcing a Special Event for East Tennessee Homeschoolers:

Gena Suarez: The Well-Integrated Homeschool

Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn: Ten Things to Do with Your Child Before Age 10

We have a wonderful evening of homeschool encouragement to share with area homeschoolers. Paul & Gena Suarez, Publishers of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, and Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn of Trivium Pursuit are joining together to encourage homeschoolers in a special 2-hour presentation.

WHEN: Tuesday, Nov. 7, 7-9 p.m.

WHERE: The Blount County Public Library (Sharon Lawson Room) in Maryville, Tenn. Mapquest for directions at 508 N. Cusick Street, Maryville, TN 37804.


* Gena Suarez will kick off the night with her Well-Integrated Homeschool presentation. In the Well-Integrated Homeschool, Gena goes over the numerous ways to achieve a relaxed mindset while homeschooling. Homeschooling should never be a chore! A laid back, joyful homeschool is a realistic, long-lasting homeschool. Long term is the goal, and Gena encourages families to stick with their commitment to home educate their children all the way through. After sharing a brief, panoramic view of the history of both compulsory and private education (parent-based vs. institutional-enforced) Gena offers some compelling strategies to help families lighten up and help their children enjoy learning as much as life itself.


And JenIG will be there to heckle her from the back row….

* Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn will share with the audience a little bit about what homeschooling was like in the late 70s and early 80s, along with their thoughts on Ten Things to Do With Your Child Before Age Ten.

Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn began homeschooling their children in 1980 and have given workshops on homeschooling and classical education for support groups and at conventions across the country. Their publishing company, Trivium Pursuit, produces books and curricula to help parents use classical education in their homeschool. The Bluedorns live in New Boston, Illinois, and can be reached by visiting their web site

* To wrap up the evening, Gena, Laurie, Harvey, and Genas husband Paul, will open up the floor for a Q&A time. Past audiences have really enjoyed the opportunity to ask questions and to get to know the speakers even better.

RSVP: Space is limited. Please contact Sarah Small (Blount Home Education Association) at if you would like to attend. No admission will be charged, but a love offering will be taken to offset travel and production costs. (No childcare will be provided for this event.)

Dont miss this night of encouragement and insight from these leaders in todays homeschooling world!

There will be opportunities for door prizes, including a subscription to The Old Schoolhouse Magazine and book giveaways by the Bluedorns!!

See you there! love Jen


PS Check out this awesome book that I am going to win from

October 27th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 25th, 2006
Gingersnap Ice Cream

After lunch I was boiling hot (I made chicken soup and it honestly made me break out in a sweat), so the only reasonable thing to do after that was to eat ice cream.  And since I've been making crate loads of very spicy gingersnaps, I took a handful and crumbled them on top. Holy moses it was good.


Anyways, check this out…. HomeschoolBuy is up and running now, so I listed Emmiko's 'Back Then' dress, which she unfortunately outgrew.  You can see it HERE.  If you haven't registered for, you ought!  It is just getting started but I think once it gets sufficiently seeded it will be a great place to buy and sell…. so if you have something to sell, go list it! and then let me know so I can browse.

October 25th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

Over the weekend my family learned the Virginny Reel.  Below, you’ll see Julia Suraez and Julia G as the flawlessly performing lead couple, sashaying along with my Tennessee posse that I’m bringing up for the Hoe-down Show-down. 


Oh Bluedorns… I bet you’re shaking in your dance shoes now!  


Watch closely; you’ll also see Coie (jean skirt black shirt) and Ryann (green sweater white skirt) twirling and leaping and catapulting as if they were made to dance this very dance.  And we even went home and practiced.  Just wait until you see Geoff the Great in his first ever public dancing debut, you’ll be fully astonished.  What.  A.  Man.


Image Hosting | Video Hosting |


And, here am I, along with my valiant, oldest son, BoBo, as the lead couple.  I like this dance…. Just look how many countering positions I am able to indicate at once – head; shoulders; knees; elbows; feet – all going in completely different directions.  I’m a regular Gumby doll!



And now! rumor even has it that Jay from Cleveland and HIS whole family is going to make it! Jay… I promise not to talk about chewing on my toenails if you promise to control yourself about any talk regarding big hairy oozing goober back zits.  guh-ROS


If you haven't yet reserved your family for the barn dance, you really ought to do that right now.

October 23rd, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 21st, 2006
Shaving is Futile

Is there anything more cheery than being too cold?  I love it.  This morning was so chilly I was tempted to ask Geoff the Great to start a fire in our wood stove.  It was so chilly that I almost decided against taking a shower.  You’ll be proud to know that I did take a shower, though.  It was one of those unsatisfying showers where before you get a chance to become sufficiently too hot, the water heater peters out and your shower starts to go cold.  I actually don’t love that.  It is impossible to shave your legs when you have goose bumps.  It’s practically a worthless endeavor because, try as you might, after your done shaving you're still all stubbly since the goose bumps serve as little hair follicle armor.  At any rate, it makes me over-abundantly glad now that it’s finally cold enough to complain about the weather.


PS check out Gena’s latest post about Anxious Homeschoolers.


PPS you’ll be happy to know that my dancing toe is all healed up and ready to see some action


PPPS if you have not registered for the barn dance, do it TODAY!  You will not want to miss the chance of bidding on the auction basket that I am bringing.  I’m not telling what it is, you’ll have to come and see it for yourself.  Plus, there is going to be somebody there to give us all Virginia Reel lessons before the dancing commences.  I sort of like that word, commences.  It reminds me of casseroles.

October 21st, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 19th, 2006
The Good Way to Get Hurt

This is so odd to me…  I have an extremely low pain tolerance;  I'm known to yell “YOWCH” at the mere thought of pain (whilst remaining untouched and unharmed).  So anyways, I was walking around this morning and I realized somehow I messed up my big toe.  I don't know when or how, but today it totally aches and I have no recollection of how I hurt it. This happened once before.  Sometime in Jr. High I broke my toe in gymnastics (I'm assuming) but I didn't even realize it until several years later when I figured out my right-footed-big toe didn't bend anymore.  The joint busted and fused back together, so now i just have one thick unmovable toe-cicle (the kids think it's grand to play with).  I still have no memory of breaking it, and you'd think an occassion like that would have been a great heap of hurtin'.


The best way to get hurt is to never notice that it's happening.  That is my deep and thought provoking blog entry for today.

October 19th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 16th, 2006

I was in the kitchen making bean and bacon soup (yum! Gena's secret recipe) and I looked out my window onto the car port.  My husband had four little kids around him, watching with rapt attention, while he was building some sort of ingenious contraption to attach to the riding mower.  I was totally filled with an overwhelming sense of thankfulness.  Moments earlier I was feeling a little guilty that my kids were not inside at the table working thru their workbooks, but my goodness, how much more meaningful their impromptu ‘woodshop’ class was instead!  I am so so so very grateful that my husband loves our family and that he is around to teach them things… even small things like this (probably was only out there for a total of 15 minutes0.  I don’t know if my husband will always be able to work at home.  I don’t want to take a single moment for granted.  And if our situation drastically changes and we have to endure years of suffering (as we had to for seven years earlier in our marriage) I will always remember these special moments and know that heaven will be filled with even more.  We serve a very gracious God.  May I love Him always, during the hard times and the sweet times.



October 16th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 15th, 2006
What Are They Thinking About?

In the same vein of one of Madame Bluedorn's recent posts, I ask the following:


What are they thinking about?



Our young, goofy, friends Tyler (15) and Tanner (13) sent this over this morning, with the title “Igs on Vacation” in the subject line

October 15th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

October 13th, 2006
Rumors Rumors and More Rumors

Things are heating up in Abingdon VA.  Perhaps you have seen Gena’s blog and the announcement of the upcoming Barn Dance being held there on Nov 4 (if you read the comments in that entry you'll see where the high stakes challenges appear). 


What you may not have heard is that this Barn Dance is also a fund raiser / pie cook off / cake walk – but most importantly, we have reason to believe Laurie Bluedorn will be breakdancing in efforts to hold on to her Barn Dance Championship tiara.  Now surely that is something everybody reading this will want to see.  


So we need your help.  1) We want you to come to this event and 2) We think you can help us raise more than $8,000 for the missionary family for whom this fund raiser is being held so we can beat the Bluedorn Barn Dance record.   Click here to see what the Bluedorn’s shin-dig looked like.  And click here to witness that Laurie Bluedorn does actually indeed promise that she will absolutely come to Abingdon to breakdance in her comments section.


Plus, we are covering this event in the upcoming Winter issue of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine and we need lots of pictures of dancing homeschoolers.  Let Julie, our beautiful and gracious hostess and event planner, know you are coming and be sure to bring your dancing boots.

October 13th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 24 Comments

October 9th, 2006
A Revolution. The American One

I have always mixed up the words revolution, resolution, revolves and rotate.  The American language has too many R words.


I have a homeschool curriculum book called The American Revolution up for grabs today.  Click here to check it out.  It looks like a fantastic resource.  I also have a full set of communication / speech books that look *really* superbish.  You guys know who JoJo Tabares is, right? This is her full five book “Say What You Mean” set, which includes Preschool, Elementary, Jr. High & Highschool, Advanced, and an 18 week lesson book called Know Your Audience.  You can see them here.  This prize is worth $94! And it is VERY cool.


Here is how to enter…. first, you have to tell me which prize you want to win.  Second, I want to know how you, or other people around you, describe the way you laugh.  Everybody used to tell me I laugh like a chimpmunk machine gun.  How come you can't change the way you laugh?  You're like totally stuck with it.  Anyways, good luck.


And congrats to Maria, who finally had a massive boulder of a baby boy!


October 9th, 2006 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

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