Monday, October 18, 2010

Field trip-Constitution Day

So on one of my homeschooling support group web sites, they mention a week-long celebration of Constitution Day. I had no idea I lived only 2 hours away from one of the founding fathers' homes, so we went to learn about Charles Pinckney and life in Colonial Times. It was a long drive from Columbia to Mount Pleasant so we got there a little later than we thought. Lesson learned .... (by mom only). C. Pinckney's plantation is a national park now but they didn't charge an entry fee, which was really nice.

You could see people in period dress walking around and manning tables that each spoke of a facet of Colonial life. The first one we walked too was a "mommy" interest, but they got a little interested once the woman explained that the cotton she was spinning would make yarn for knitting (my newest hobby). Look at their entranced faces! (insert sarcasm font here)

Candle making was the next table. It was interesting to see that not much has changed in the process. Upon seeing that they were the only boys at this table, the boys whispered to me that they thought we should move to a table that was more for boys. It was a good moment to teach them that back in the 1700's, there were very defined gender roles. "Boys did this, girls did that". They were amazed at how many of the activities they enjoy would not have been available to them because it used to be considered "woman's work".

Next was learning about food preparation. It was very funny when the woman asked the boys if they knew why the colonists had to dry and preserve their meat and food. My youngest piped up with "Because Little Debbie snack cakes hadn't been invented yet." I must say, the lady handled it well. Her reply was..."yeeeees, AND because refrigerators hadn't been invented either!"

Then there was a whole table of period toys. It was comical to see the boys look at all of the toys and think, "That's it??????" You could see how they were under the impression that colonial boys spent a lot of time being bored. The woman explained how even in colonial times, boys had lots of chores to do.

Next came learning about plants that were used in similar ways then and now. They got to pick out a modern substance (bug repellent, mouthwash) from a basket and she explained to them what plant they used for similar uses (citronella, mint).

We went into the plantation house from here where the boys immediately made me fear for the structural integrity of the building. They went through the displays with their typical monkeys on a rampage level of enthusiasm, so we didn't stop to read any of the history. We did take the time to have the boys sign their names on a piece of parchment like the founding fathers did.

Next we saw the blacksmith! Shazam! Instant entrancement for boys!!! I must confess I was pretty entranced myself. I didn't remember to take any pictures because we were so busy asking questions and I was buys asking Zack to back away from the hot coals.
After the blacksmith, we went to a brick making table. We learned about the types of bricks used to make Fort Sumter. We also got to see one made!

Then.... drumroll please.... oh no pun intended... maybe a little one....we learned about slave music, mainly drums! They taught the boys a kind of rhythm, Kuku, that came from West Guinea, Africa. We spent some considerable time there because they were having such a good time.

Then.... they spotted the Revolutionary soldier with the musket. Suddenly it was "MUSIC SHMUSIC! We want to see the gun" So this young man was very friendly and informative. He did a whole lesson on the musket, soldier's life in the 1700's, battle strategy and a field of battle descriptions. All while kids are talking, interrupting, not listening, etc. He handled the crowd very well.

Lastly the boys learned about how second to cotton, rice was a huge product in the south. They learned how to winnow the rice and to grind the hulls off of the rice.

By this time, we are all pretty tired, so we went to the gift shop and then went home. Yet another long drive, but it was a great day.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

2 steps forward....

1 mile backwards!

Went walking with hubby... faster than last night's walk....still okay.
On the suck-o-meter only a 2 out of 10 (cuz I am NOT a morning person).
BUT then went to Waffle House for breakfast

Thus the one mile backwards!

Waffle House

How I love thee!


Saturday, October 9, 2010

It's a start!

Well, I didn't start as gung-ho as Bendoeslife did it, but I went walking with the husband! And the dog! I got off of the couch.... that counts right?

Oh and thinking of the comments my son has made this week to me not in a hateful way, but still hurtful, helps give me a little gung-ho-edness....

First he compared me to Garfield the fat, lazy cat.
Then he showed the Wii fit board to a friend and said "that's my mom's....she really needs it as you can tell..."


Okay, God, I get it. I'm picking up what you are puttin' down. I'm hearing you!

It begins......

Well, my friend Laurie posted on FB a video of a YOUNG man (24 years old) who by just starting to run one day, has lost over 120 pounds. I have been looking and looking for inspiration and energy and ..... well.... this video was really inspiring.... now all I need is the energy! I mean this kid (did I mention he's YOUNG....and 24 ?) weighed way more than I do and did it just to make his Memaw happy. That is so sweet..... I, on the other hand, am thirty *COUGH* *mumble* something years old. I homeschool 3 boys all day and then my fourth (the hubby) comes home to be taken care of as well. I won't post my measurements (because even I don't want to know) but I will confess that I have gained weight since leaving TX and I'm back up to .....sigh...... 203 pounds...*cringe*! Still WAAAAAAYY under what I was when my hubby left for the Middle East in the summer of 2006. The highest I have gotten is 274 lbs. Sooooooo not going back there. ever.... My goal? I'd be happy being in the size 8 to 10 sizes. I don't need to be super skinny or to look like Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2 (no matter how much my husband liked her arms). I want to be healthy and to enjoy long life! The problem is, when you are as unhealthy as I am, it's a viscious cycle. Your back hurts, sometimes due to weight, sometimes to injury (I'm the latter) so it hurts to workout. But working out may help the pain. It's hard to work through the pain so you stay overweight and unhealthy and with back pain. Unless you go on the workout plan that my husband did....
1) get deployed by the Army
2) get sent to the desert.
3) have nothing better to do to entertain yourself other than workout
4) have only yuck army food to eat
5) come home 67 lbs. lighter.

I don't have that option, so I guess I am stuck doing it the hard way. I'm going to have to push through the pain, the plateaus and the general suck-titude of working out. Because unlike my husband and sister-in-law, I don't have the addicted to working out mental illness (see previous blog so that makes it even more difficult. The thing that caught my attention the most about the video Laurie had on her FB page was it mentioned that this young man suffered from depression. In his he talks about it. Yet he fought through it to reach his goals and beyond! I can only hope to do the same.