Jeneric Jeneralities ~ by JenIG

**** edit and update below on the incredibly impossible email I got yesterday….

It’s just non-stop excitement round these here parts.  First of all, check this out: 


My husband sent me and Jess and Coie to pick up a goat, right?  And being the impulsive personality I am, I also brought home a puppy.  I couldn’t help it.  I mean, here was this cute little hotdog jumping around my feet just begging to come with us.  So I said to the goat-dealer, “Can I have this dog?” and she said, “Sure”.  And that was that.  I named her Phoebe.  


She and the new goat, John Crumb, snuggled all the way home.


But the big news is that I got my sister here until Tuesday.  More importantly, we’ve got her husband. 

Jess married the coolest guy on the planet.  Boy did we luck out to get him in the family.  I mean, she’s cool too and all, but she can’t build stuff.  Except salsa.  She’s a pretty good salsa constructor. 


So anyways, Charley is always “Mr. Project” when they come out.  Guess what he’s doing right now?  He’s in the process of building a 500 ft amusement-park style zip-line that’s gonna run lengthwise across the pond.  

Here’s the starting point…  see the yellow climbing rope at the bottom?  You probably cannot tell from the picture, but he’s building the platform about 40 ft up in this tree.  He also got a bunch of harnesses and other zip line paraphanelia — this thing is gonna be a real-life professional grade zip.   My kids are beside themselves.

I am now taking reservations and selling tickets.  When he’s done, Curry Farm will officially be the funnest place in all of East TN.  Now you have more of a reason to come visit when you’re passing thru.  I will be posting pics soon.   


Lastly, I got an email with some extraordinary impossibly incredible unbelievable news.  But I think I must be mistaken and could not have read the email correctly, therefore, I will hold off telling you about it.  Seriously, it cannot be true. 

Ok, I gotta go figure out where to find a roller skating rink. 

*** edit… ok, this is completely impossible… I don’t know if you guys remember last year when our van broke down, but (thanks to our church and certain friends) we were able to get a little car for Geoff, and Coie had her little car … but ever since, we’ve not been able to drive anywhere together as a family.  Ok, so get this, yesterday my SC friend — whom I won’t name because I didn’t get permission, but it starts with SH and rhymes with hay — sent me an email saying that they want to GIVE us their 96 Suburban, which has a new transmission and new AC unit.  um…. WHO in the WORLD just GIVES a family their Suburban????  So, we’re all freaking out over here and now we will also be able to take a trip to CA and haul back all our junk in storage.  Did you hear that Kate?? We’re gonna be able to come to CA!!  I’m about to faint.  I still think it’s impossible.  It is impossible.

And while I’m relating impossibly good news, this week when me and Coie got back from our Rosetta Stone FL trip, my husband was able to give his notice and quit his graveyard job… so now, after a year, we finally get him back.  He will not be CONSTANTLY gone nor eternally sleep deprived.  He’ll now only work 50-60 hours a week instead of 105.  I am so praising God.  I cannot tell you how overjoyed my family is.  I am still waiting to wake up.

May 29th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 38 Comments

What a weekend, there’s just too much to tell. This was by far the funnest trip so far. I guess I should start with the most important highlight: Me and Coie went to Chevys three times.


It was pretty much all we ate over the whole weekend. The first time we went I almost cried. After dinner Coie and I both got ridiculously giddy. I ordered the same thing every time. Soft chicken taco (no tomatoes) flautas with chipotle sauce — but most importantly, four baskets of chips and 14 bowls of salsa. And that is no exaggeration. Phylis and Jennifer E, came with us on and they will testify.

Actually, when Phylis was with us we needed 28 bowls of salsa. She is my Chevys soul-sistah


 Coie, Jennifer E (my wardrobe twin) Phyllis (does she look like a Phyllis?!!?) and me

Ok, to be honest, the real highlight was seeing all my friends. First, we stopped part way thru SC to see Shayand her fam. Here they are with Coie (minus Mr. Shay)

I love this family so much. I wish we could have stayed longer. But they are gonna come stay with us for a week in Aug. As we were leaving, her little girl came charging out of the house with an old box and ran up and said she had a present for me. So I peeked inside and saw a very much-loved doll. When she handed it to me, she looked like she might cry, but she insisted she wanted me to have it. Then I looked like I was about to cry.

 We are taking good care of her.  We named her Daisy-melon, and she was a great help at the convention.  She carried all the heavy luggage for us. 

Ok, so when we got to Orlando it was a shocker… Florida is CIVILIZED. Restaurants, shopping malls, neighborhoods with sidewalks. Weird. At first, me and Coie didn’t know what to do with ourselves.  Oh yeah, but before that, it took us a total of 15 hours to drive there. That was on account of me having to hit rest stops every 15 minutes and then our trip was considerably lengthened when a semi burst into flames and we were trapped in a line of cars on the freeway for two hours. Felt like 12 hours. 

Anyhow, on Thurs, before the convention started, me and Coie splurged and treated ourselves to a pedicure at a fancy spa. It was the best $25 I’ve ever spent.

 This was the first time we’ve gotten our toesies done in three years. That was great fun. And look how original we are… we picked the same nail color and got the same design.

 The other major highlights were seeing bloggers Kim , Judi and (two)Lisa(‘s). Kim brought me a huge bag of presents from South Carolina INCLUDING a big bag of chocolate covered caramels. Apparently “thieving children” is genetic because Coie practically ate the whole thing before I got *any*. And she was entirely unrepentant.

And thanks to Judi, we were able to stay alive. She kept stopping by to make sure we were ok and kept us supplied with peanut butter crackers.  For the record, I did NOT get to spend enough time with Kim and Judi… and I also was very sad that Micki and Jo’s Boys were not there. 

We also partied with Maggie Hogan one of the nights we were there. Since she is a big-time speaker, FPEA put her up in a hospitality suite. Just guess what the room occupancy sign said for her room? SEVENTY SIX. Good Heavens. I think there were about 10 of us and I can’t tell you anything that happened up there. You wouldn’t believe me anyways. Maggie’s crew is CuhRAZY. I just hope they don’t get charged for the guitar amps they threw off the balcony. 

So anyways, I am in the car right now on the way home and we’re listening to Blue Man group to keep awake. I cannot WAIT to pull up to my house because my sister and her most excellently awesome husband are there waiting for us. Hopefully my most excellently awesome husband is also there along with my kids — it is unlikely they even realize I am gone with Jess and Chachi there. This is shaping up to be the best summer of my life. 

And oh yeah, the ‘convention part’ was exceptionally smashing. We sold an incredible amount of programs (even more than the other two shows!). Simply thrilling. What an inconceivable blessing.

May 26th, 2008 - Posted in conventions | | 17 Comments

May 20th, 2008
Things to Cry About

I’m using Google Documents to type this out  I usually use Microsoft Word, but I can’t use Microsoft Word because guess why?  Nevermind, I’ll just tell you.  My most excellently perfect Darling restored my computer (which had a nasty cold) and when I pulled it back up EVERYTHING was wiped out.  All of my programs like Word and Excel, but even more exciting, all of my personal documents were also wiped out.  All of them.  So I was a little shaken up but didn’t freak out or anything, but then I remembered that I had about 14 articles in a folder for a (top secret) project I’m working on and it was gone. GONE.  TOTALLY GONE

So I cried.  And that’s saying a lot.  It takes a bunch to make me cry (unless one of our friends from church gives Ryann a new keyboard — then I also lose it).  So I called my beautiful excellent perfect husband and quivered, "I law-aw-awwwawwww-st evevev-every-thth-thing — sniff sniff snort snort".  And he told me, "Sit down at the computer…ok, now push this button and that button and then type in such and such" and to my surprise absolutely every one of my files popped up.  Magic.  So then I cried for joy.  Good heavens, I’m turning into a blubbering buffoon in my old age.  Anyways, the programs still need to be re-loaded, like Word and stuff, but… big deal.  Besides, I’m sorta liking this Google Documents option.  And it automatically saves my stuff as I go.  I wonder if it is just stored on the net so if my compy crashed I’d still have everything.  I’ll have to look into that.

Ok, so, tell me if this is normal.  My little son, Tyrannical James, has got this pair of blue jammies, right?  He’s had them for about a year (I think I got them from Shay — who I get to see tomorrow on the way down to FL — WHHHHOOOOO HOOOOOO!!) anyways, he wakes up everyday and puts them on.  Every day.  He wants to wear them constantly.  And when I put other clothes on him he’ll wear them for a bit, but then the next thing I know, I’ll turn around and he’s in those blue jammies.  I am starting to hate those blue jammies… 

And I tried to get rid of them.  I put them out of reach (planning to give them away) and then when he went rummaging thru his drawers he came to me *more* than a little stressed and said, "uhhhhh, mommy?  Where my bew jammies at?" and I told him, "I took them away, son, they are getting too small and I want you to wear other things now".  He looked panic stricken and said, "You please give me my jammies, mommy?" and I told him, "No, my son.  No more jammies" and then his eyes welled up and his chin started to quiver and he said, "…. mommy?  mommy? please mommy? mommy please get my jammies?" and then he put his head on my knees and sobbed.  Heavens to Betsy! Even *I* wasn’t cold hearted enough to tell him to stop being a ninny.  So I got his jammies and he pulled them on, and he still wears them every day. EVERY DAY.  Ridiculous.

Anyhow, I should be packing right now.  Happily, yesterday I got pretty much everything caught up before we leave, including ironing.  I actually like to iron. It’s relaxing.  Which reminds me, after finishing a pair of Geoff’s pants yesterday, I turned around and guess what I found on the ironing board?  James’ blue jammies.  I looked at that child and said, "What is this?" and he told me "You can iron my jammies".  That’s where I drew the line.  No, I did not iron the jammies.

This is gonna be one busy day.  I have to pick up a rental, and then pick Ryann up at our pastor’s house (I think she’d like to move in with them – they’re exceedingly swell), go to the store, and then hopefully get everything together because me and Coie are leaving for FL bright and early in the am.  Yipppeeeeee!!!  I am looking forward to this trip SO much.  And, while I’m thinking of it ATTENTION FL BLOGGERS, almost everyone who emailed about meeting at Chevys is coming in on Friday rather than thursday so THURSDAY at Chevys aint gonna work. So just meet us at the Rosetta Stone booth sometime on Friday and Kim Murphy will have a plan all put together, won’t you Kim?  heh heh

Oh yeah, and did you see Coie’s latest post?  That also made me get all teary. 

May 20th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 23 Comments

I’m such a sucker for presents.  Get this… what are the odds?…. yesterday, which happened to be May 16th, which also, incidentally, happened to be a full 31 days after my birthday, I got TWO birthday presents in the mail.

The first one I got came by UPS, my sister sent me this giant-ly huge beautiful basket stuffed full with all things Coffee, Hot Cocoa and Chocolate Carmel related.  Huge. See?  It practically took up my whole table. 

The card enclosed said, “Happy Birthday” which was funny to me because she had already got me a card (which she lost and is still looking for).  It was totally unexpected. She also sent me all sorts of Isagenix vitamins, minerals, and potions.  Good stuff.  Works fast.  

Also, out of the blue, on the very same day I got a birthday card with a birthday check from my most excellent momsie and daddems-in-law.  I’m the luckiest girl alive.

Later, tho, things took a downwards turn when I realized my son ate the entire bag of chocolate covered caramel treats that was included in my ‘Jessica Basket’.  I had *thought* he asked for something else when I answered, “yes”.  I still can’t believe he asked for the whole bag. Audacious.  Boy was I mad.  Immediately afterwards the man-child disappeared for about an hour and a half, and then, to my surprise, when I went into my bedroom, I found my entire room sparkling clean and my dresser was decorated with a hand made card that contained the following (in its entirety):   

The Land of Friends” – however the word ‘friends’ was crossed out and replaced with the word “Happiness”.  This title was situated within a colored-pencil sketch of a flower dotted green meadow and two stick figures fishing in a blue stream running thru said flower dotted green meadow.  And then below the lovely sketch was a note that read, “I love you very much Mom and I’m sorry I ate your caramels.  The least I could do was pick up your room.  Happy Late Mother’s Day.  I love love love love mom love love love.” 

And I suppose it should be noted that this child had indeed forgotten me on mother’s day, which I made him feel duly guilt-ridden for.  It was clever of him to make a combination “I’m Sorry  / Happy Mother’s Day” card.  He’s all about saving time.  Although that might be something he should outgrow before he gets married.  And while I’m thinking about it, this same child came into my room yesterday morning, stared intently at me for 30 seconds and then announced, “You’ve got a pretty good beard growing, Mom”.  Yeah, I suppose he needs some work before he reaches a marriageable age.  For the record, my three chin hairs have indeed doubled themselves within the last two and a half years.  

In other news, my extraordinarily industrious daughter has begun another ministry.  She decided that any new baby (as opposed to any old baby) born at our church, should get a hand made baby hat. 


Aren’t they sweet?  They’re so small!  I don’t know how she makes them but they’re ever so cute.  I think it is a really lovely idea.  She’s a good girl.  Oh my heavens!!! Look at how dusty the leaves are on my fake flowers. They’re caked!  I wonder… are there people in the world who really remember to dust?  I suppose there is little chance of me ever belonging to that mythical group.  

May 17th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 26 Comments

My pain tolerance is ludicrously low.   Anyways, I am feeling tons better and — despite the advocacy to the contrary — I am now officially off drugs.  I was surprised at the amount of emails I got saying the same thing: “You are a much better writer when you’re doped up”.    Which leads me to wonder…. of those who consistently show up here, how many are under the influence?   I submit it’s probably quite high.

So anyways, I’m glad I’m feeling better cause I gots all sorts of things coming up.  I can’t believe me and Coie leave for FL in just six days.  Did I already tell you that we’re renting a car and driving down?  Whooo hoooo!! Who wants to meet us at Chevys Fresh Mex in Orlando?  I cannot wait to get down there and eat stuff.  I haven’t been to Chevys in TWO YEARS. Unacceptable.  But seriously, there are about six of you in FL (you know who you are!) and I want to have a bloggers party at Chevys.

Speaking of Chevys, we are also going to hit the Chevys in Naperville, IL when we’re at the ICHE convention at the beginning of June.  And while we’re there, as an added bonus, we’re meeting up with the Lewis family (publishers of Home School Enrichment) and the Masloskes (publishers of Godly Girls and Abandoned to God).   That’s gonna be one fun lunch… unless somebody gets too close to my chips and salsa.  It’s all fun and games until somebody loses a finger.  

Ok, in other news, nothing in my garden is growing.  I can’t figure out why. 

In other-ly news, my friend Amy S, over at Heart of the Matter, asked if I’d join their team and submit monthly articles.  Neato times 2!  I’m excited; I love those guys over there.  

ALARMING UPDATE ALERT.  While writing this, I’ve just been informed that the Chevys in IL has been closed. CLOSED. Good Heavens, what is the world coming to??!!

Lastly… Congrats to my little brother Jay (you guys didn’t know I had a brother, did you?  I have two, actually.  Both of them are named James, after my dad).  He is graduating high school today, and last night he went in to sign up for the marines. 

Ok, i just read thru this post, and I’m afraid that my ‘being off drugs’ claim is rather unconvincing.  Does Excedrin count as drugs?

May 15th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 21 Comments


First of all, I just want to say (while I remember), that there is nothing so cozy, nothing so comforting, nothing so ‘safe’ as the feel of my husband’s big hand on top of my head.  It has carried me thru all sorts of crisis and non-crisis alike.  And the only thing better than that, is when he is also praying out loud for me while he’s got his big ol’ hand on my head.  I hope he is around for awhile.  I don’t think there’s another hand out there that could fit my greasy head like his does.

Ok, so my field trip to the UT Medial Blasting Zone was, um, entertaining.  I guess it would have been fun except for ‘pain’ was involved.  And any sort of pain, in any form, negates any level of potential fun.

So first thing I saw (as I checked in late) was a lady in an orange jumper, complete with handcuffs and ankle chains, escorted by a policemen filling out paperwork.  I wondered at my chances of getting her as a roommate, but as it turned out, I didn’t get a roommate.  That would have undoubtedly made things more interesting.

I got checked in and then after an x-ray (done by three overly chipper blonde girls who must’ve been 13 and 14), I made my way up to the surgery room.  Room. Ha.  It was a little cave in the wall with a curtain pulled across the front. The whole hall was full of other little caves.  Most of them had their curtains open.  I kept mine all the way closed.   The nurse told me to put on a ridiculous purple gown and then when I was halfway thru changing she flung open the curtain of my cave and asked some dumb question. Unpleasant.

She was nice enough to come back when I was fully concealed in the ridiculous purple gown and then she asked a billion questions. 

“Hello again…. Mrs. Ug-sha-wishuh?” 


Do you smoke?  Do you have a tumor?  How many cats do have?  What’s the square root of thirty six? Are you able to stand on your head? And so forth.  My answers were ‘no’ to all, and happily, my husband did not contradict me when she asked if I had a history of mental problems.  

Then she asked if I had any fears or anxieties over the surgery.  And I told her “Yes, actually, I do”.  Which is the truth.  Anything hospital related gives me a beastly fright.  She looked concerned but I assured her that they were all unfounded and unreasonable. 

Then she asked, “Well how do you cope with your anxiety, is there anything you’re able to do to pull you thru stressful situations?”  So I told her, “Yeah, I panic.  That’s my approach to pretty much anything scary”.  And she said, “ha. ha. ha.” and left.

The next thing I knew a creepy guy with a white coat, decorated with sharp shiny needles, came shuffling and hobbling over holding up a large spike filled with smoking, bubbling yellow liquid. 

“Are you Jenefer Eshu-ee-mushga?”


Then he aimed that spike at my IV.  Panic struck, I asked him, “Uh…. What the heck is that?” 

And he replied, “bwwaaaaa ha ha ha ha hee hee heee… you will likey.  All people in hospital bed likey likey”

And then he squirted that stuff right into my IV tube and the next thing I knew – to my horror—I started giggling like a loon.  

Then suddenly, I opened my eyes and I was in this weird circular room with about six men in their separate beds wearing ridiculous purple gowns.  Half were sleeping but the ‘awake half’ were all staring blankly at one another. I realized I was staring, too.  And then I started shaking.  Hard.  Like I was afraid I was going to shake myself right off the bed, and a nurse came over and stared at me and started talking to me about the Olympics.  I’m almost positively sure that happened.  And then she signaled for Igor and he shuffled over and started poking around with my IV again.

Sometime later I woke up again in that weird circular room; I think there were new ‘blankly staring’ guys but I can only remember one very large and hairy man who was directly across from me who had his mouth wide open and he was snoring.  His ridiculous purple gown did not fully fit. 

I was suddenly struck with a dreadful thirst.  So the Olympics nurse came over and I told her, “Could you pl—what in the wor–? How come I can’t talk?” and she told me, “You had a tube down your throat; it’ll probably smart for a day or so”.  

So I rasped, “Please get me some water” and she told me, “No”.

No? What do you mean no?  So I repeated, “Please get me some water, I’m really thirsty”

And she said, “No.  You can’t have any water.  It’ll make you sick”.   

You can’t imagine how thirsty I was.  And then she started to walk off and I began to panic.  “Hey,” I rasped, “Then get me some ice, ok?” and she turned around and real sing-songy like she snickered, “Ummmmmm, ICE… is… *WA-TER*”. Smart alek.  So then I got mad and I told her, “Oh yeah?!! Well that’s what they give you when you’re in labor!!!!!!!!”  

Thinking back on it, that isn’t as cuttingly clever and triumphant as I thought it was at the time.  None-the-less, she came back at some point with a cup of ice a little flat popsicle stick to eat it with.

Then all of a sudden I was in a new room with a TV, and Little House on the Prairie was on.  Mr. Edwards was singing about a frying pan and brushing his teeth with a wagon wheel.  That was a very irritating way to wake up.  And then minutes later Geoff the Great was shown in and he asked me, “Uhhhh, are you watching that or can I put on FOX news?”  Which was sort of funny but I think I got offended.

And then a new nurse came in.  I think.  And I sat up a bit and GREAT JEHOSAPHAT, I felt like somebody harpooned me straight thru the side.  YEEEOUCH.  I asked the nurse if it was supposed to hurt that bad, and she told me, yes, in my case, it would.  But then she told me she’d get something for the pain, and at that point I was hoping to see my little buddy Igor again.  That guy and his magical needle was starting to grow on me.  But nope, she just came back with a big white horse pill.  

Then Geoff the Great said that the doctor told him that they put me on the machine and ended up cranking it to the highest possible level and my bowling ball refused to crack.  I’m sorta proud of the little fella.  The dr. said they gave it all they got but he didn’t think he was able to break it up enough. The rock was too hard.  SO, not only will I have some ‘minor discomfort’ (minor. Ha), but he said I will have to come back soon and undergo the exceedingly horrifically unthinkably unpleasant option number 2.

Plus, as a bonus, soon after being wheeled into the Little House on the Prairie room, I realized that I had lost an important body function vital for survival.  Alarming.  The nurse was able to help (and I use the term ‘help’ loosely) by use of a long tube and a pouch.  Ok…  GROSS and YEEEOUCH.  They said I would have to stay until my body started working again, but nope, my rebellious body refused to corporate.  But it was not practical for me to spend the night, so they ended up reluctantly giving me and Geoff and quick EMT lesson and sending us home with that diabolical tube and pouch “to use if needed”.  They told me to either do that or go into the Emergency Room if my body still wouldn’t to what it was told.  

I’m happy to report, as of this morning, my body has begrudgingly begun to cooperate again.  We had stopped at a health food store on the way home yesterday and I was able to remember a concoction that my sister once used to cure me of kidney / bladder issues and it seems to be doing the trick again.

So there you have it.  More info than you wanted or needed.  It will be fun to read this tomorrow because I’m writing this shortly after my breakfast of hot tea and a big hearty bowl of Vicodin Flakes.   And I don’t know when I’m supposed to go in for option number 2.  

I am very tired. The End.

May 13th, 2008 - Posted in Awful Medical Procedures | | 35 Comments

Um… something weird is going on.  And I think I know what the source is.  It’s drugs.  Drugs in the water.  Lots of drugs, especially hallucinogens.  Today I got two emails almost at the same time.  One asked if I’d like to be interviewed as a featured homeschooler, and another asked if I would be a speaker for an upcoming conference.  Drugs in the water.  At any rate, if I end up doing either, perhaps I will offer pillows and blankets for the poor unsuspecting attendees (snore drool).    

In other news, I’ve been to the doctor ‘more times than what’s pleasant’ within the last two weeks.  Zero, actually, is the only number of times that would be pleasant, but alas.  Dumb dang darn dumb old dangitty dang blasted bowling ball of a kidney stone.  The doctor has given me two surgical options.  One option is very unpleasant.  The other option is exceedingly horrifically unthinkably unpleasant.  So I’m thinking about just leaving my bowling ball alone.  He’s a part of me now, and perhaps I should not be inhospitable. 

Anyways, I’m supposed to go in this Monday to get it dynamited.  It’s super creepy to get put under / knocked out.  Hopefully they will wake me up with no prob when they’re done.  All in all, I suppose it will be relatively fun.

In different other news, the goat stew was a great hit with half the family.  I was part of the half that didn’t love it.  Marshiemellow suggested that I try making goat jerky.  I bet I could do that.  I have a dehydrator.  Did you see the goat pictures on Coie’s pg?  My apologies if you did.

Lastly… My sister comes in just two and a half-ish weeks.  Hippity hip hip hooooray!  We’ve got a list of things we’re gonna do, roller skating being one of them.  Admit it, there are very few things in this world (besides playing softball and disco dancing in the living room) that’s as fun as roller skating.  Its been a loooooong time since I’ve been, and I don’t think any of my four youngest kids have ever been.

And oh yeah, it’s almost Mother’s Day.  Believe it or not, I am not in an adamant frenzy of dislike over Mother’s Day.  I actually like that one.  I can’t help it.  Maybe it’s because I had such a sweet mother.  And now I have such an excellently great mother in law.  And plus I have such ridiculously entertaining kids whom are quite easy to like.  Mother’s Day is one of those rare holidays that’s hard to find reasons to rant about.

May 8th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments


I suppose I’ll get the grodie news out of the way.  My dear darling fellow Watch-From-A-Distance-And-Make-Snappy-Comments-Until-We-Laugh-Ourselves-Silly-friend came over with her family, and her highly well-rounded and diversified husband talked Geoff and Coie thru butchering two goats.  Boy that was a long sentence.  I wonder if it makes any sense to anybody besides me.

Anyhow, back to the story, my daughter (mostly) killed the goats (long and gross story) and then gutted and cleaned them.  Um…. Sick.  And then the talented Mr. Roy and Geoff the Great skinned and carved up the goats.  I won’t give the details, but it was not as gag-inducing as I imagined. Me and Maria sat in our Princess Chairs and watched the whole thing. They almost looked like large piñatas – never mind, I said I wouldn’t give the details.

So now, we have over 30 pounds of fresh goat meat in our freezer (and two bagged goat hides that we’re bringing to Bo’s friend today so he can tan them – I cannot BELIEVE I actually have those things in my fridge right now).  So if you are planning on coming over for dinner any time soon, you’re probably gonna get some goat meat on your plate.  (That means YOU Charlie and Jess and Dad)   Our friends from MO are also coming down to stay a few days in July and we’re gonna spring some on them without telling ‘em what it is first.  That’ll be fun.  I’m gonna make stew.  Which I think will be good.  It always makes me hungry when I read about the goat stew that Jacob brought his dad when he was weaseling his brother’s blessing away.

Ok, in non-carnage news, I thought I’d share an email with you guys (I got permission first), I’ll also share the answer I gave.  It’s an interesting question and I thought getting other thoughts on it would be interesting as well.  I think this is something that a lot of us hyperventilate about around this time of the year… 

Hi Jen,

I have been a "blogstalker" of yours for a while now.  I don’t believe I have ever written you though.  I really enjoy your advice and your approach to schooling most mimics my own so I wanted to ask for some much needed advice if you wouldn’t mind giving it. 

1. Do you always finish your curriculum for that year?  For example, we use mostly Abeka books…some Saxon…and Spelling Power.  Out of all the lessons the books offer, we have just now reached lessons in the 80-90 ish range.  Granted we do lots of field trips, zoo and museum trips, etc. I am fearful that if I stop at the end of May they will be behind when we move up to the next level in the fall.  I am mainly talking about the subjects of math and phonics/language.

It just feels like crunch time to me right now and I could easily lose my mind over it! 🙂  Not to mention now is the time of curriculum fairs and matters of the upcoming year….I haven’t even completed this year!  Ergh!  Any advice would be greatly appreciated!



Dear Talysa, ok, your email totally made me laugh.  i will tell you the absolute truth.  We have never ever ever in the history of homeschooling ever EVER finished a curriculum book within a school year.  Most the time i skip around and pass over lessons or add ones of my own.  I’ve been going thru our Mystery of History book for THREE YEARS.  And i love it.  This is *our* class room and we get to pick and choose and pull and skip or re-do just as much as we want.

It is very easy to fall into the government school way of doing things… and just looky how well it works fer them!  no thanks, that’s one system i do not want to follow or reproduce in my own home.  Believe me, if you are consistently teaching your children, they are more than likely already way ahead of many of their public school peers (except in the lessons they would have learned on the playground… teasing, fighting, relating the latest rated R movie, playing doctor, etc).  

The goal of curriculum is not for it to be completed… but rather it is a tool for you to implement the lessons you choose to teach — and on *your* timeline.   Don’t let those schoolbooks hold you hostage, sister!

 Much love, jen


I think a lot of us deal with that – or have dealt with that – especially when we are relatively ‘new’ schoolers.  I still will have those days where I will begin questioning my methods – but I think that is a good thing.  Self evaluation plus a little bit of stress and/or worry can be a good motivator to make sure we are doing well.  But it is easy to cross that line and start blindly running around and bumping into walls inside that ‘paralyzed with fear / overwhelmed / ready to quit’ crazy lady room. 

In other news, our tree is starting to get plums on it, but I’m not getting my hopes up because every year the birds eat every single last one of them.

Ok, I’m off to make something goatmeat-ish.

May 5th, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

Ok, so anyways, our water *really* smells.  It’s heinous.  But that’s what you get when you live out in the country and have well water.  I actually prefer well water to city water, but it’s a trade off.  It stinks.  So to counter-reek our house, Bo periodically “treats” the well, which simply means he dumps a bunch of bleach down it.  

Yesterday I woke up to a rotten egg house, so I told Bo to do his job.  And I don’t know what that boy did, but about 12 hours later I stepped into the shower and nearly passed out from the fumes.  TOO MUCH BLEACH.

So then this morning rolled around, and I would have skipped the shower altogether, except my husband decided to take half the day off and whisk me off for an extraordinarily romantic date to Sam’s club.  So once again I braved the deadly acidic cascade, and then happily dried off, slapped on some lotion (I was feeling QUITE parched), lightly painted my big pancake face and then dashed out for my afternoon get-away with Geoff the Great.  

About two hours later I was feeling rather itchy, but didn’t give it too much thought. And then Geoff decided to really spice up our shopping date by taking me to lunch first.  Yipppeeee!  It’s a little Mexican restaurant across the parking lot from Sam’s Club and boy is it good.  So anyways, we get into the restaurant and I go to the bathroom to wash my hands and GRACIOUS HEAVENS I about fell backwards when I looked in the mirror. 

My whole face was completely peeling off.  But the worst and most noticeable peeling was happening all around the outer rims of my nostrils.  Not Pretty. There were hundreds of these little white flakeys lined all around both nose holes.  So in desperation I started picking at them and trying to pull them all off – you would have, too.  You can imagine what they looked like.  And then a toilet flushed so I was forced to stop my frantic picking and escape the bathroom before the stall intruder caught me.  So I gave my big old schnozzer several hard rubs with the back of my hand and helplessly went back to the table.  My husband pretended not to notice but the waitress kept looking at me as if she were trying to decide whether on not to offer me a box of Kleenex with my enchiladas.  

So, yeah, that’s my whole story.  But my date was still splendid.  My husband was exceedingly funny today and made me laugh so hard that I got a headache. And then we went to Sam’s Club and I got a very swishy, twirly new skirt.  And I also got a chocolate malt shake from Hardees (whom I’m still boycotting since they have such ridiculously dumbed-down commercials).  Holy moly do they make good shakes.  It was a perfect date.

And my last bit of news… even though you thought I was finally done talking about goats, we just found out that Bobo’s goat, Spot, is pregnant.  He is quite thrilled.     

May 1st, 2008 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 19 Comments