Friday, August 29, 2008


TWS has been such a wonderful experience for my girls this week. Leah and Rebecca chopped vegetables for veg. soup yesterday -- today they did the story of The Little Red Hen. They love the school so much and I am so happy for them. I miss them terribly, though.

The 3rd/4th/5th grade downstairs class began Freehand Geometric Drawing today (using some of my form drawing books) with the first lesson: the straight line and the curve. The teacher is using it to lay the foundation for String, Straight Edge and Shadow, which she purchased from Bob & Nancy's and is going to integrate with her Ancient History lessons and to help some of her students improve their handwriting. She was tickled pink at how well the lesson had gone and I so enjoyed seeing her enthusiasm. :-)

Waldorf is just wonderful, isn't it?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Christmas Dreaming

My preference would be for the girls to each get only a few things this year, which should help to make them really special. But it is hard for me because I have saved up all these craft supplies and I just want to create all I can... I want to give them each the world! Plus this is the time of year when I keep my eyes open for craft kits, new books, dolls, silks, toys and things on the waldorfcurriculum-supplies list.

But here's a tentative plan to help me exercise some restraint.

1) for everyone (for the dollhouse) - a basket of magic wool in different colors to make little beds and things - Willow Tree

and I'd like to make the Magic Wool picture of Rumplestiltskin to hang on the wall

I'd also like to give each girl a Christmas ornament in her stocking, so that will probably mean a little needle felted animal for each one

2) Natalie - Rose Child Doll (her middle name is Rose) - Quartett Game: Trees

3) Leah - two pulleys so we can arrange to carry baskets of things up from the living room to the loft - Large White Playsilk which we can dye together

4) Rebecca - felted play mat with a little gnome - some new knitted and felted play kitchen foods (the play store and play kitchen are still a big hit)

Done. That is $9.00 + $50.95. Under $60.00 -- not bad for the biggest shopping holiday of the year and three children!!! And now I've ordered the things I'm buying and I can concentrate on the handmade stuff. I already have the pulleys so Leah is in luck. That girl absolutely has to have action toys. She is always jonesing to figure out how things work, it's quite funny. I think it hurts her sometimes to not know how something is made or how something is done. And she asks such specific questions too! If I actually answered all of them, I think she'd try sneaking out one day and driving our car. At the age of FOUR. I keep it vague, of course. But she is asking really specific questions about how to read the traffic light signals and rules for right of way and things like that...

That girl is going to keep me on my toes when she's a teenager, there's no doubt.

Back to the question of Christmas, it is likely they will also get some books. It's hard for me to keep from book shopping (especially if I go to Colorado in October for Rahima's conference, they have lovely book tables there). Perhaps I can ask my mom to take care of that want/need. I always forget that they'll also get things from other people! I'd love to get the Flicka Ricka Dicka and Snipp Snapp Snurr series. Especially as Natalie becomes a reader. The print is so nice and clear in those books.

Getting Ready for Sunday School

Just wanted to quickly share this little poster (I'm not usually a poster person but I quite like this one for starting out the school year) from Really Good Stuff. It is a pdf called How to Be a Good Friend.

How to Be a Good Friend

This is my 3rd year using Waldorf Old Testament Stories (3rd grade block) in my 3rd/4th/5th grade Sunday School classroom. This year I think I am going to really go whole hog with the Waldorf thing. I have been a little unsure in the past about the reception but I think as long as it's clear what Bible story we're doing and there's a play at the end of the year for the congregation to enjoy, I get a lot of free reign. I'm going to try to refurbish one of the rolling bulletin boards to be a chalkboard so we can try out chalkboard drawing! We begin with The Passover which is such an awesome story... I can't wait. Since I'm not homeschooling this year I really get to throw all my energy into SS (until the toddler program begins). I'm also in charge of Special Programs at Tidewater School so that means I can do a lot of cool stuff with all this restless energy I have inside me. :-) Anyway, for S.S. I am going to begin each morning with the candle and verse for grades 1-4 and I think that we'll really focus on a lot of painting and modeling this year. Each child has a MLB but I've not done much with them in the past, which I want to change. I also want to find a way to incorporate Form Drawing if I can. Ambitious. Fun! :-) Since my superintendent wants me to follow the Lectionary it has to be a different story each week but I think we'll do the storytelling at the end of the session, then the recall and the going deeper (art, drama, handwork, etc) at the beginning of the next Sunday and then finishing up the 45 minutes with the next story or section of the story. Many of the weeks go on and on with back-to-back sections of the Bible so it really is like going on with your container story. I also want to begin by sewing beanbags since I'd like to do some of the Waldorf circle time movement to help us memorize Bible verses, something I've failed miserably at before. I really want it in the curriculum, though, and a circle time might be the way to do it.

I only get 45 minutes so we'll see how it all pans out... I wonder if there's a way to choose forms that match the Bible story we're doing. Especially if the Jews are wandering all around on foot. There's waves for Noah and the Ark...

I haven't done well at updating 3rd grade OT with my S.S. ideas so I'll try to work harder on that for this year. It is just such an awesome block.

Ummm... Mama?

Leah (4 years old) has been hitting me with some real doozies lately. Yesterday it was, ummm... Mama? How do they make cars?

And today was, why does the weather change?

Her preschool teacher is very receptive to Waldorf (today they made little boats of walnut shells, beeswax, a toothpick and a leaf) so I have to make sure she is clear that I don't want Leah going up into her head with too technical answers. (The rain clouds come and visit us and then they go and visit some other little children around the world.)

Today we made bread in a lovely 3 section ceramic dish I got from Taste of Home Entertaining (wonderful for my 3 girls) and I put the melted butter in a little pitcher and they each got to pour some over their own loaf of bread. I hope it will be delicious!

Coyote Run

This morning while on the school run a coyote raced across the road right in front of me. I had heard that they were in all the counties of MD but this was the first one I had seen! I suppose they are a natural response to the increase in the wild turkey population.

School is going well for my kiddos -- Leah is so excited every night she can hardly sleep. I am getting a lot of housework and errands done (set up my Sunday School classroom today, yesterday was a trip to the lawyer, Tuesday I got a new cell phone and bought my girls Sigg water bottles). Today for some reason I have been a cooking fiend. Lentil and Tomato Stew (which we'll have for dinner with homemade bread), a Fruit and Nut Bread Pudding, and Cherry Peach Cobbler. Now that our Dishwasher is Broken, this means a lot more dishes but it is worth it to actually enjoy the food we eat. I go in cycles on the Cooking from Scratch question and right now it is hip. :-)

Thinking about Christmas presents already... am I the only one? Natalie is going to a birthday party on Sunday where there are no gifts for the birthday boy, each child brings a present for a gift exchange. That means we need to think of something gender neutral so I am having Natalie sew a beanbag with streamers (I got one of these before from Harmony). When you toss them they look like they are going super fast. Very snazzy.

Saturday is food pantry, veg. pickup at Clagett Farm and the 142nd Jousting Tournament (the offical state sport of MD). Sunday is the kickoff to the new year of Sunday School with a picnic at the church at noon and then the birthday party in the afternoon. Monday there is no school and we are just going to hang out at home for a Family Day.

The website has been spruced up a bit so feel free to wander around and enjoy:

Thursday, August 21, 2008

More Thoughts About Tomatoes

Today I am dealing with the tomato bounty from Clagett Farm. A delightful task! One of the women who I met at pick up shared that her mother always used to wash the tomatoes and freeze them whole in their skin. In the winter she would add to sauces. So I have a piece of parchment paper spread out in my freezer and a dozen or so tomatoes enjoying the frosty chill. I have 6 pounds of tomatoes in the crockpot, trying out a tomato sauce recipe I found. You add some olive oil and chopped garlic to the bottom of the crockpot, stir, and cook on High for 15 minutes so the garlic gets slightly brown, then add your chopped tomatoes and some veg broth (a few teaspoons), dried oregano and a sprinkle of sugar. Cook on Low for 3 hours then season with fresh basil and salt and pepper.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

New Beginnings

It is 11:45 pm but I am so excited about the news I have to share that I am up late on the computer. (This is after I swore to Nicole Correri that I have finally begun going to bed at 9 pm and waking up at 6 am. Well, I was...)

First of all, the experience at Barbara Dewey's conference was awesome and I am totally inspired to write it all up and share what I've learned about Grades 2, 3, and 4. And to update my website and give it a thorough dusting out of all the neglected corners.

Second of all, I am lucky to be alive & very grateful! I was nearly blown up a few days ago in my car, a vintage 1966 MGB, which I love dearly but left it running in my driveway while I went in to close the garage door and lock the house and when I got back in and was driving along I realized that gasoline was streaming down the accelerator pedal and when I popped the hood it was spraying everywhere. I quickly turned off the car but I am so lucky that it didn't catch on fire.

Third of all, Natalie's school had a staff meeting yesterday, which I was privileged to be able to attend, and parent orientation tonight, which I was also a part of. And I found out that they listed me in the Staff (Rhoda McGrane: Special Programs) and on the substitute teacher list! Then I learned that there were, in fact, 2 spaces left in the Preschool program and when I was talking to my mother tonight she said that my grandfather's will provided for me to be left $5000.00 and the checks have been mailed. So I am enrolling Leah and Rebecca at Tidewater at the crack of dawn tomorrow. Friday is their classroom visit and Monday is the first day of school. I have gone through a mix of emotions on this one. First, I was thrilled to have gotten them in. It's a tremendous school (as everyone at the conference who saw the photos of it knows) and I love the preschool teacher. She is very respectful of Waldorf and, in fact, just purchased All Year Round, Earthways, and Painting with Children. I gave the director the Nova Natural catalogue to discuss designing the toddler program with it as inspiration (it is such a beautiful way to summarize the Waldorf environment and spirit) and she loves it and doesn't want to give it back! So great inroads are being made on that front. Having the two younger girls in school from 9 am to noon gives me a chance to work at the school as a consultant without constantly having to send them off to babysitters, it gives them that warmth and consistency as we get evicted (the house went into official Foreclosure on August 4th and will be for sale soon) and have to move, and I have the flexibility to be working while still spending time with them each day. Natalie is getting a ride home from school at 3 pm each day with a friend and I am driving the little boy in with us in the mornings, so it will be a lot of fun. Of course I am sad to give up on my homeschooling dreams but bringing Waldorf to a school as a consultant is a lovely job and the school is very receptive. And I can still have a wonderful Waldorf home, especially if we end up in the little cabin by the Chesapeake Bay.

The website is getting a reorganization and I have a new project, in addition to designing the toddler program and Saturday enrichment classes, which is to collaborate on a Waldorf kindy program in French! ie. French verses, songs, blessings, rhymes, fairy tales, color stories, and so on. What fun. :-)

Finally, I just want to share this wonderful link to an organic heirloom tomato seed company which organizes its tomatoes in a way I've never seen before: by color. This makes it easier to find the name of the tomato you saw at the farmer's market, or in your neighbor's yard, or which your grandmother always used to grow. I love it!

Gary Ibsen's Tomatofest

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Rhus Tox

If you are familiar with homeopathic medicine, you know full well what jumped up and bit me on my nature walk. And it wasn't a wasp.

It was

Yes, poison ivy!

I think this because it started as a wide swath of raised bumps along each ankle, then they began to itch and spread. It's up to my shoulders but began at my feet. So I am guessing poison ivy and not chicken pox but last time I thought I had poison ivy it was chicken pox (just this same time last year) sooo I guess I should check with a doctor.

I also got 16 ticks.

Et tu, Mother Nature?


I am so excited to be able to go to the Waldorf Without Walls Teacher Training this weekend in Ohio! I love Barbara Dewey. I will be training on grades 3 & 4.

Can't wait!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Making Granola

Today after the Nature walk we had tick check and baths, made strawberry jello, had dinner (chili) and then made granola for tomorrow morning's breakfast. The FP gave us dried cherries so it was the perfect time to try the recipe. They also gave us the kidney beans and ground beef for the chili and the tomatoes were free off the side of the road. All I can say is Thank God for people who donate to the hungry. I can say from firsthand experience that it is a wonderful experience to be on the receiving end. Every once in a while it is a can that expired in 1997 :-) but for the most part we have had many many meals that I never could have been able to afford otherwise.

Tomorrow is the final day of camp and I am really sad about it. My girls have been counting down the days since I'll be home again full time but I am sad about packing up all my books and supplies, moving out of my classroom, and -- mostly -- not seeing these people again. My aide and I have gotten really close and a lot of those children I have spent the entire summer with and have really gotten to know them. I will miss them.

Running Shoes and Other Ramblings

RUNNING SHOES WASTE NATURAL ENERGY OF FEET -- well, apparently I'm right about something with a more elastic sole.

Zola Budd, one of the world's top middle-distance runners, runs barefoot.

However, the article goes on to say, the researchers do not advocate running with no shoes at all. (I wonder who funded their study?)

Running barefoot is certainly cheaper than buying an expensive new pair of biodegradable running shoes ($140). FREE is always good! I have back problems, though, so is it really a good idea...

"Running barefoot is associated with a substantially lower prevalence of acute injuries of the ankle and chronic injuries of the lower leg in developing countries, but well-designed studies of the effects of barefoot and shod running on injury are lacking. Laboratory studies show that the energy cost of running is reduced by about 4% when the feet are not shod. In spite of these apparent benefits, barefoot running is rare in competition, and there are no published controlled trials of the effects of running barefoot on simulated or real competitive performance."

I guess I could always try it and see if I like it.

Tune in for tomorrow's edition where I step on a wasp (just kidding).

Laurel Loop

Well, we did it! Today the girls and I hiked the Laurel Loop trail on the ACLT -- 1.24 miles. There were some steep hills but it was lovely. Ferns, laurel bushes, pine trees (all at different levels of course). I was thinking as I walked that I used to run cross-country in high school and am now so completely out of shape, it's laughable. I wonder if I could run the trail? I could do it once around while I got in shape and then do it several times if I got really into it. One always hates exercising where other people can see, but if you convince yourself you'll do it at home, no way. There's always laundry or dishes or something more appealing, like dusting the radiators. I'm speaking for myself, of course. I have done exercise videos in the past but now that there is no TV there is no way to watch them. So perhaps I'll start my day with a little run. :-)

In camp we made dipped candles and soap with your choice of lemon oil or dried lavender blossoms. It was a lovely day. Tomorrow is our cumulative project: a rain barrel for the school. We also need to give the sheep a bath, ha ha. I have grown so fond of Kylie and Jasper. It is hard to know that they will be sold at the county fair in a few weeks and slaughtered.

In my quest for natural living I have been wondering -- do you have to run in tennis shoes or is there a more natural alternative? Something not full of chemical foams. Perhaps little leather things that are like being barefoot? Time to do some online hunting!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Hiking the Trails

I grew up near a wonderful set of hiking trails but have never been out on them. Today I made a solemn vow that I was taking my children hiking when I got home from work but just as we were walking up the road it got dark and began to thunder. Now the wind is blowing. Oh, well, I guess it will be another day!

We had a lovely day in camp. Papermaking in the AM -- we enjoyed tinting the pulp different colors. After we added red to the blue we got the most marvelous purple. It was a very royal purple. And no snails had to die! :-) Then we made Greek vases and painted geometric designs around the borders of our cloth napkins. In the afternoon we made pita bread. It turned out well except that it didn't puff like it should because we didn't set the stove up correctly. You have to remove the top element so it is only getting heat from the bottom. Still tasty, though, especially with a little feta cheese.

Stories for today were Athens and Sparta teaming up against the Persians, the pass at Thermopolye and the successful win for the Greeks, the Golden Age of Athens, and then Athens vs. Sparta in the Peloponnesian war and the life and death of Socrates.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Skin and Hair Swatches

I don't know if it's negative... because it's selfish

Or positive... because it means I'm always really enthusiastic about what I'm teaching

But I like to integrate crafts that I'm interesting in learning how to do into my lessons. So this summer, for example, we did papermaking in all four camps. Because I wanted to learn more about papermaking. We dyed fabric and did wet felting in all four camps too.

Now I am anxious to learn more about dollmaking. So the lucky children in my Sunday School class will probably be making a baby Moses Waldorf doll this year.

I've chosen the end of the year class play -- "The Child of the Nile" in 25 Plays Inspired by Waldorf Teachers edited by David Mitchell. My supervisor wants me to follow the lectionary this year and we will begin with the Passover. Moses comes up again later in the year so he'll definitely be a key figure. I think it will be a good cumulative play.

I have no idea what the appropriate skin and hair colors for Moses would be so I ordered the Doll Skin and Hair Swatches card from Magic Cabin ($4.95) and we can vote on it in class. I'll have to do some historical research beforehand to get an idea of what direction we ought to head in. But overall I'd like democracy to have the final say.

In camp today we began by making slings (the kind David used against Goliath) out of brown butcher paper and finger knitting. Each child got a chance to use them out on the playground. Most came out quite well but the paper did sometimes tear if the rock was too heavy. I chose it for the leather look-alike quality (especially if you crumple it first) and I wasn't willing to give up that much wool felt. However, mine is made of leather and that is definitely the way to go if you have the budget. I recommend going to a thrift store to find an old leather purse, then cutting that up. For the straps, you can buy strips of rawhide at craft stores.

Storytelling was several chapters of Hillyer's A Child's History of the World. We began with Romulus and Remus ("A Bad Beginning" ) and made our way through the Assyrians ("Kings with Corkscrew Curls") and all the way to the fall of Babylon ("A Surprise Party"). Along the path we encountered Lydia and Croesus and the invention of the first real coins. So this afternoon each child made something for our trade drama -- a kind of a fair, to be held tomorrow morning -- and a small felt pouch with a drawstring and beads to carry their trade goods in. The pouch was a simple circle of felt; actually, the template was the lid of my round crockpot. We like to keep it simple. :-) They came out really lovely. The children made a wide variety of things to trade. It was a secret what each person made. They worked with me one at a time in a different room. Some chose to string pasta shapes for "jewelry." One young boy wanted to fill his pouch with magic beans (dried beans). Most people wanted to try their hand at the felting needle -- the real reason I worked one on one, but the secrecy thing was fun too -- and so we had vegetables including a carrot, an eggplant, an apple and an orange. The girl who made the last 2 used some of the dried beans in the center of her felted pieces. She said that she wanted her swap item to be something that could be food AND could be used for something else, so the seeds mean you can plant a tree. I made an adorable little felted chicken. One girl had her heart set on a dolphin which I raised an eyebrow at (internally, of course) but I think a lot of people will want to swap for it! One child made a pair of wool roving hoop earrings. One girl felted a little doll in a bunting. Then there were some other, odder, materials. A boy wanted to make a scythe (he figured that would be a useful tool) so he made that with paper. The last child wanted to make a sand timer -- a very useful thing to swap! -- so she made something using the dried beans, the pasta shapes, and the construction paper. It will be fun to see how tomorrow turns out. After the trade drama we will make our own coins using polymer clay and a balance to make sure they are the exact weight before we stamp them with our seals. I think the seal will actually be the tines of a fork because I can't think of anything strong enough to make an impression in polymer clay but soft enough that children can carve it safely.

the Moses basket my children slept in

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Responding to Myself

In grade school I was famous for Q.A.C. Question, Answer, Comment. I would ask a question out loud and then always answer myself. To this day, I think better when I'm talking it out. Anyway, here's a cool link Rhoda!

Drooling over


the complete package

The next website subscription payment I get, Natalie's going to get one of these To-Go Ware containers! I don't think she needs the carry bag and utensils, since the stainless steel container has a handle and she can put her silverware in her backpack, which she is already required to carry. So excited about this! My daughter can be such a trendsetter this year. And I've never bought a lunchbox but the price seems like it can't be that far off from a traditional one.

(Ooh, I just checked and I got a renewal payment today. And PayPal is a payment method they accept. Hooray! I'm so pleased to be doing something special for Natalie and for the environment. Dishwasher safe, too, which makes cleanup at the end of each school day easy. If you buy 2 or more they are $14.95 each but the other two girls don't yet need one. So just one for us. I can't even tell you how excited I am about this!!! Finally, I feel like I am doing lunch "correctly".)

To "P" Or Not To "P"

Here's a question for you. Since I'm moving and making all kinds of philosophical changes in my life, including downsizing our home and being happy with less, I have run into lots of opportunities. Today's question is what about plastic? Of course, as a mom on the Waldorf path we already don't have any plastic toys or furnishings. Or dishes. The only things left to confront are plastic food storage containers. I hate them and already threw them all out. Nasty slippery things. But now I am preparing for the school year and Natalie's school likes a no-trash lunch. They also don't like the kids to use plastic. Nancy L. recently threw out all the plastic dishes and replaced them with glass (Montessori was big on children, even the little ones, having real adult glasses so they could learn to be careful). The glass plates and bowls are swirly and lovely. And I agree BUT how do you pack a no-trash lunch AND not use plastic????

For example, N won't eat sandwiches, only leftovers like pasta and soup and so on. How on earth do I pack that in a reusuable container that isn't plastic? Or if I get her on board with the sandwich choice are we looking at wrapping them in wax paper? Where does wax paper come from? Is it recyclable? Is there some kind of cool website with watertight lidded lunch dishes made of bamboo or tin or something? In the 1800s it was a tin lunch pail, right? What kinds of food did they put in it? I remember a story in Katie John where she tried putting a hot baked potato in her coat pocket to keep her hands warm in the winter -- she had read that in the olden days children at one-room schoolhouses used to do this. Then they would eat the baked potato for lunch. She tried it and the b.p. burst in her coat pocket and she ended up with potato all over her mittens. Not trying to be a Luddite here but if you take away the plastic where do you go from there?

Any thoughts on this subject or website links would be appreciated.

The lunch thing is a big concern for me as we roll towards the beginning of the school year. Setting up for school is always an expense and Natalie's school requires more than most -- cloth napkins, a potted plant, rolls of film, and so on. It's a lovely school but it is a private school so they assume that families are working with a pretty big budget. I have seen some of the lunches that children packed for summer camp and it's like oh... some of them have three different sorts of fruit and a sandwich and chips and a dessert or two and a nice drink. I can't afford to pack all that food every day, not to mention that Natalie would never eat that much. She's very picky. But I'm feeling dreadful, like I can't get lunch "right".

One thing we did manage to accomplish yesterday was my goal of buying more local produce. In addition to the Clagett Farm pickup we went to a locally owned small grocery store for the dairy products and fruit I need to supplement what the FP gives us each week. It is a tiny little local store. AND I stopped at a pickup truck at the side of the road and bought my watermelon and cantaloupe from a man who grows them not four miles from my house. So cool. The girls got to thump on a bunch of melons to check them out -- we ended up picking a really good one. I'm feeling very proud of myself for buying local. I always have such a craving for watermelon, even in the winter. I guess this means I need to be more hydrated. I love the texture of it, too, not just the flavor though. There's nothing else that feels the same way in your mouth. Happy Summer!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Auction Night

Today was a lovely day. First we went to the food pantry, then to the grocery store, then to the farm for our vegetable pickup. The girls and I headed out to the field to gather Sweet Potato Greens. We also got cucumbers, okra, a bell pepper, tomatoes, garlic, and 5 ears of sweet corn. This evening I made an "unstuffed zucchini" casserole with cooked brown rice as the bottom layer, mild pork sausage as the next layer (someone gave this to us), a layer of diced zucchini pieces sauteed in the pork fat with some Italian cheeses mixed in, and a layer consisting of a partial jar of pasta sauce, an undrained can of diced tomatoes and a quarter cup of water. Covered tightly with alum. foil and baked in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes. It turned out quite well, considering that I was inventing it as I went along.

After dinner we went to the community house for the annual fundraiser auction. This is for a big pot of money for the teenagers to spend on something benefiting the community and then they take the leftovers and do an end of the summer party. Leah was the only one to get a dollar to spend; the other two girls lost theirs for some dinner table behavior that was inappropriate (for example, Rebecca climbed on the table and stuck her finger in the lemon meringue pie!). My dad was the auctioneer -- he has been ever since I was a little girl. When I was a child I was always itching to spend my money. Leah, however, is completely different. She held on to her dollar and when something came up she would turn to me and say, we don't need that. We already have three dressers, or, that rocking chair is too big for our family. The few things she did want went over a dollar quickly. But at the end there is a big free-for-all where people race over to the tables, grab what is left, and take it to Dad and haggle. She ended up with a box of Japanese watercolor tube paints (100 yen on the price tag on the back) for 25 cents. Which meant 75 cents left over! And she was so pleased with herself for buying something she actually really needed, and to have so much left over, that she went around showing everyone in the Community House her box of paints and her three quarters. And I was so happy for her.

Lemon meringue pie with blueberry sauce for dessert; yum!

Two recipe links I found online and want to save so I can make them this week:

Fried Okra and Potatoes

"A granola recipe from my mom's hippie youth"

Friday, August 1, 2008

Bonfires & Ponies

Today while I was teaching summer camp my Yahoo Group caught on fire.

I sent a message clarifying that the website is a subscription site (if you pay to be a member you are charged every 6 months until you cancel) and it was misinterpreted that the members of the Yahoo Group were being charged behind their backs and lots of people were very upset. So I had to issue a clarification of my clarification. I hate that! But I am not taking it personally that people are upset because I know that I didn't do anything wrong, I just could have been clearer in my wording. Not taking things personally is one of the steps in the Four Agreements.

Ancient Civ is going marvelously; we were written up in the paper today. After dinner I will try to write up the fun and excitement of Thursday and today.

I have been using my paychecks to pay down debts (my highest interest credit card is now completely paid off) and have set aside $132.15 from that to spend on my children on a vacation. I would like to take them camping for 2 or 3 days and have friends who will happily lend me a tent and other camping equipment. I had originally thought I would have to rent but they insisted on sharing -- which I really appreciate. This means the gas, campground fees, and food will be the only costs. I have to do a campground within MD so I was thinking about Assateague Island. It is supposed to be really beautiful and I think the girls will love the ponies walking idly down the beach.