"The real winners in life are people who look at every situation with an expectation that they can make it work or make it better." - Barbara Pletcher

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Irons on the fire.

The JDRF garage sale is this Saturday, and it feels weird to me that it hasn't completely consumed my life the last few weeks.  Mitch's sister-in-law generously agreed to host it, and I think she's probably stressed (which is why I'm not!).  I have too many irons on the fire this week, and really feel great about not worrying over what we have donated, who will show up to shop, and how much money we'll end up raising.  Don't get me wrong, I hope we raise a lot. :)

After some inspiration, lots of tips from my friend Robyn, and a late-night stop at the grocery store last night for pectin, we made strawberry jam this morning.  Ryleigh loved mashing the fruit.  The same girl who said "why don't you just send me to school" yesterday, in a fit of frustration.  She leisurely rolled out of bed at 8:45am, had some breakfast, got herself dressed (self-painted shirt, grey skirt, cowgirl boots), and was delighted to do some work in the kitchen.  She measured out strawberries and sugar, and I casually said, "soooo, do you really want me to enroll you in school this fall?"  She looked semi-horrified, and acted like she had no idea why I'd even suggest such a thing.

I feel like such a pioneer boiling stuff to sterilize it, and waiting to see if my lids sealed.  Mitch's mom tried to sell her canner at the JDRF garage sale last year, but it didn't go.  I kept it, thinking there was a really slight chance I'd want to preserve something :)  So glad I did!

The kids lost interest after a few batches, which was really fine with me.  However, at one point I turned around and an entire bowl of strawberries had disappeared.  Found it, empty, in the fort.   Mid-morning snack, anyone?

It's really hard for me to leave them alone, I just want to open one to see if it's any good!  I did have a jar 1/2 full I put in the fridge, can't wait to see if it jelled.  Thank the Lord for good friends with unlimited texting.  Any time I try something new, my phone keyboard gets abused by my frantic sent messages.

Rugger has been interested in robots for a few months now, ever since we saw a really awesome one at our homeschool co-op.  I decided that after this long, he probably really was interested enough to do something about it, so we went to the library and checked out "Robot Building for Dummies".  The first thing we read when we opened it was something about a "mother board" and there was a whole section on soldering safety.  ALERT...not designed for the 6 yr old or his really technologically un-savvy parents.  We found a nice little kit at Hobby Town USA, for 8+ which required no soldering (PTL).  It took us two days' naptimes, but it's done!

Turns out all those afternoons of building Legos were great for preparing us for this day.  Rugger is amazing at fitting pieces together, even itty bitty pieces.  He had to pop every single tiny piece out of the plastic molding, and follow the instructions.   It was a blast, and he's so proud of himself.

It's solar powered, which is great because we won't have to replace batteries all the time.  Not so great because it won't run on a cloudy day (like today).  It's a great lesson in patience and delayed gratification :)  We do know that it works though, we put it under the light bulb in the bathroom and it ran.  Success!  Pretty impressive to me!

Ryleigh's been interested in the solar system all year.  We've checked out books, played games online, and we have plans to visit the planetarium this summer.  We found a cool mobile at Hobby Lobby, which she painted and is putting together this week.  She thinks she'll hang it above her bed.

The weather was glorious the first two days this week.  Like, make you giddy about life, glorious.  We met some friends at a beautiful park (Stransky, the one we couldn't get into a few weeks ago), to play and eat lunch.

 Titus, still eating.  He'll sit for an hour, munching the whole time.  

So very thankful for my village of good friends and great family this week, don't know what I'd do without them.  Thankful for our flexible homeschool schedule that allows for extra kitchen work, and play dates.  Looking forward to a very fun and busy weekend!  Ryleigh will be selling treats and pop at the sale, come see us :)  Here's a link to our craigslist ad, for more info!

Choosing to love,