Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
Teens spend so much of their time pushing you away, it can seem like the demons have stolen them, and replaced them with eye-rolling, snide-remark cracking, skinny-jean-clad creatures just brimming with disdain for everything you are, everything you stand for. Though you'd give anything to have them connect with you just for a moment, you find yourself stressed-out from their briefest interaction.
Driving home last evening, Paige was riding shotgun, Tess and Arden in back. Up on the bank, Paige spotted a deer running parallel to the road. She watched as it cut down over the bank and directly into the path of the car in front of us. "Oh no, oh no, oh no!" Paige groaned.
There wasn't even time for that car to brake.
The car hit the deer square on with the crunch of an axe splitting seasoned firewood. The deer was spun around, and I could see the life was already gone from its eyes. As the impact sent the deer's body sliding across the other lane and into the ditch, Paige had a front row seat to the carnage.
Her hands clapped over her mouth, to muffle the moans of horror at the scene that was over before the driver could even react.
As I continued up the hill, I reached out and wrapped her hand in mine. Her moans grew louder, longer, and turned into sobs.
"Paige, what's wrong?" the girls in the back asked, as they had missed the whole thing.
"She just saw a deer get hit by a car." I told them.
I eased the van off the road into the car lot by the traffic light, got out and came around. I opened her door, reached in, and pulled her out into the drizzle of the gray Fall day.
She allowed me to hold her close, and she wailed and grieved and wept into my shoulder. I smoothed her hair, rubbed her back and murmured about how nobody ever wants that to happen. I spoke of the sadness and how she would never forget what she just witnessed. I spoke of releasing a soul, enabling it to 'become', and how this was a quick release for the deer.
Tess and Arden remained silent in the van for the half hour that we stood in the rain, swaying, sobbing, soothing.
When I thought we were able to continue home, I helped Paige back into the van and drove the remaining two miles to the house.
After dinner, Paige remarked that she was running out of time to do her homework. Arden commented that if she hadn't spent a long time next to the road crying over a deer, she'd have her homework done.
"Hey, now. Paige needed that," I reminded Arden. "And you guys were very respectful to sit there while she was experiencing those emotions."
Arden thought for a moment and said,
"Yeah, but... it was a long time. And I really had to pee. But there just didn't seem to be a good way to lean out the window and mention that."
Monday, September 13, 2010
A couple weeks ago, we visited the Renaissance Fair.
As homeschoolers who are also white and nerdy, this is a required event of the Fall.
Paige made her Renaissance c. 18th century dress last year, and was excited to wear it this year. To her dismay, when she tried it on the morning of the Ren Faire, it was too big (don't you hate when that happens?!), so she pinned herself into it. (I was not told of the pinning part at that time, but it's important for you to remember that, for later.)
These two pics show Paige in the dress last year.
While Paige was dressing '18th century court', I was going for 'wench'- a little more fun, though a little harder to breathe.
I wore a white peasant top, white petticoat, long purple skirt, black leather corset and tall black suede boots.
My sister referred to it as "Renaissance Trampy", to which I replied, "Go big, or go home, right?"
Arden borrowed one of my Ren tops, and paired it with shorts.
Tess wore an earth-toned tie-dyed summer dress, and
Harris skipped the kilt this year in favor of clothes that allowed underwear.
I told the kids to loosely lace me into my corset, so I'd still be able to drive, and not have my boobs as a chin rest.
I got into the van, well, I tried to get into the van, but could not flex enough. I loosened the corset some more, until it allowed me to climb up into the van seat. Even so, all the little things one takes for granted, like turning to see if a car is coming, is much more difficult in a corset.
Finally, with the directions printed out, and the GPS programmed, we were on our way!
We arrived at the Ren Faire, found a good parking spot, then Paige and Arden were kind enough to lace me up, while I held on to the door frame of the van for dear life. The effect was two-fold; my waist was reduced several inches, and my ta-tas were now completely "upstairs".
The girls gave me nervous glances as we crossed the field toward the castle entrance, because they are not accustomed to seeing so much of... me... outside the house, when I'm not feeding a small person.
Their nervousness vanished when we approached the admission booth near the entrance and the woman selling tickets had her ta-tas not only "upstairs", but "out-the-window".
Her half-visible areolas were sunrises on the horizon of her corset.
The woman was 50 if she was a day, and looked absolutely stunning. So perhaps they were sunsets...? I digress. Another woman standing near the ticket booth was similarly supported, and I was thinking that she should be certain not to sneeze.
Emerging through the main gate, we had definitely entered Ta-Ta Territory, as well as Tattoo Territory. I'm not sure why Ren Faires attract the heavily-tattooed crowd, but once inside, with so much to look at, my kids did not give my boobs another thought.
Paige has the longest reach, so she's our group photographer.
No point in buying one kid a sword. An armed society is a polite society.
I stood there for hours. No offers.
Lots of frogs, though.
I am aware this is a crappy picture of Arden in her horns.
Both she and Paige were hard to document.
Kilt done right...
Kilt done wrong... just... wrong.
This guy was amazing. However, no matter how assiduous you are about your craft, this art is full of innuendo, and the adults' ribs were positively creaking as we tried not to laugh while he seriously described the steps to glass blowing: "hot enough to be blown... gradually hardens... increase the stiffness... free-blowing... glory hole... paddles... insert your pipe..."
I obviously have no plans to ever get out of 5th grade.
I've since decided that I, too, would like a Henna Studio in the middle of my woods.
These Baby Mandrakes would just not shut up.
Though their crying should have killed me within seconds of hearing it, I've spent the last few years building up an immunity to
Iocaine Powder deadly screaming. Baby Mandrakes are no match for Tess when someone has messed with her barbies.
Paige visiting with Royalty.
Cute picture of Harris with his sword, and a stick-unicorn guy. Earlier, stick-unicorn guy had coconut guy running behind him clapping coconut shells together. That was pretty funny.
At the end of the day, Paige was happy to get out of my vintage 80's granny boots. She'd brought regular clothes to wear home, and I decided to help her out of the dress by tugging part of it over her head. That was when she heard and felt the popping of stressed safety pins, from inside the dress. Paige, knowing the pins were open and aimed at her flesh, began trying to squirm away. I assumed she was trying to squirm out of the dress, so I pulled harder, popping even more pins. Without realizing it, I had turned her beautiful dress into a an iron maiden!
Talk about an authentic Medieval experience!
She has plans to make a new and improved version of the dress before next year, and it is to be hoped that it will not have any built-in torture features.
After all, a corset would be plenty.
I have a couple.
The picture they show to advertise their work is an unpainted brick house.
"That's right- you'd be better off leaving it alone, than hiring us."
If I am blind, I won't be able to read your lovely sign...
Competition is fierce. Churches are getting more and more progressive.
Perhaps this is part of their "Waiting and Dating" campaign,
in hopes that sexting will help our young ones remain chaste until marriage?
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
I didn't buy them, but you know it's only a matter of time.
This is the outfit Paige wore to school that violated the dress code, resulting in a teacher forcing her to wear an oversized t-shirt to hide her near-nudity.
Clearly, such skank-wear cannot be tolerated in public schools where children are trying to get an education.
Someone tell this child to cover herself up!
(The crime? Exposed shoulders. No, I'm not kidding. Butts, boobs, and bellies are allowed. Shoulders? For shame!)
Harris... looks like...
We raced to the stadium to make the 2:30 kick-off, but noticed even up to 2pm, it was less than a sold-out game...
To find out it was a 3:30 kick-off!
They can sense who the future crazy cat ladies are.
This is proof that men wear their underwear until it turns into dandelion spores.
How did that happen?
When did Summer end?
Did I miss a memo?
Mmmmm... can't you just taste the greeny goodness!
Speaking of ice cream, before you assume he's compensating for something, this is Josh's first time at Dairy Creme Corner. "Go big, or go home!"
Until recently, this wooden artist's mannequin sat alone on Paige's art desk out in the "Art Studio". He has been recently adopted into the tribe of Ken and Barbie.
Ken loaned him a shirt, which was just his style.
Since then, he has been part of every day play and adventures. Paige misses him on her desk, but by the looks of it, he's thriving quite well in the wild.