Friday, July 31, 2009

Last Day of 4-H Fair

It was the last "show" day of 4-H Fair and I can honestly say, even though we weren't there nearly as much as some people, we are totally exhausted. I am so, so, so glad we opted not to bring Stanley the horse. All the horses there looked so exhausted today - and today was games - meaning speed. I doubt any of them could move as fast as they could have on Monday.

Horses: Tomorrow after we do our cleaning up duty at fair we will spend the late afternoon bathing Stanley and banding his mane for the show on Sunday. We already clipped him today so other than maybe a touch up on the whiskers, he should be good to go!

Motocross: The boys leave tomorrow for MPX. Motocross Boy has practice tomorrow and then racing on Sunday. I hate it when we have one kid in one place and the other in another. But for August, that's what happens 2 out of 4 of our "show/race" dates.

School: I've been thinking about lists a lot. I even printed out a list of lists I should be keeping. I'm kind of scaring myself. I'm also thinking about spending a good chunk of my free time next week making lesson plans. That's scary too.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Day 3 of 4-H Fair

Horses: Sunday was the first day but was mostly just hauling in horses and some last minute decorating. We watched as one horse refused to load to go home after getting injured on the way there. Not sure why they ever off-loaded him in the first place...

Monday was showmanship. Showmanship is not a riding class - it's a leading your horse on the ground in a pattern class. For the first time ever I saw a horse rear up and flip over in Several other horses did other rearing demonstrations with at least 2 or 3 getting hurt bad enough to need to leave but no others were in the show ring.

Today was jumping and dressage. I heard one girl fell off in dressage and dislocated her shoulder but I don't know if it was the horse or the kid at fault. Jumping was oddly uneventful. The worst thing I saw (and I watched almost all of the jumping) was a girl who got entered into a beginner jumper class when she was supposed to be entered in the walk/trot over poles class - and even MORE beginner class. The judge agreed to let her walk it. She did the first 5 little jumps just fine at a walk. The sixth jump her horse actually did a little half jump over. Seventh and eighth jumps were actually real jumps and she ended that last one with the biggest smile on her face!! She did her cool down circle grinning ear to ear and then pulled her horse to a stop. And then her saddle slipped to one side and down she fell to the ground!! Poor kid had just had the ride of her life and everyone was clapping like mad - she probably felt like she was in the Olympics - and then she hits the ground right in front of everyone for something so stupid as a loose girth...

Motocross: Motocross Boy had his first golf lesson today thanks to a Christmas gift from Grandma and Grandpa. Supposedly the Pro really liked him because my boy is NOT afraid to ask questions or let them know what he's thinking. Most kids his age tend to be pretty quiet around adults. Not my kid. Adults are people too!

Homeschooling: I like to think this is because of homeschooling but I saw Equestrian Girl do something today that I couldn't imagine her doing 2 years ago and couldn't imagine any of her public school friends doing even now. She was done assisting the horse show judge today (she was fixing poles if they went down during the jumping) and took her replacement up to the judge and introduced her!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Monday Morning

Motocross: This was the look on Motocross Boy's face when he got his first dirt bike a few years ago. Daddy had picked it up from a place not too far from our cottage, sneaking out early one morning while we were all lazing around watching old movies or doing puzzles. He backed in the driveway so the bike was facing the house then came in and told the then Hockey Boy to look out the window. Luckily I knew what was happening and had the camera ready!

Racing on the big, big track was a little intimidating yesterday and he didn't do his best but he had a lot of fun - and that's the most important thing!

Horses: We were at the 4-H fair until about 7 last night. With tiny little showers off and on all day between clear blue skies, it opened up and poured during the opening ceremony. Figures. The one point in the day that almost everyone is OUTSIDE and not in one barn or another the rain really comes down. It didn't last long though and blew over fast.

I wore my Ipod with the Treadmill/pedometer gadget and even though we didn't do a whole lot of anything but help out here and there and watch, I walked almost 2 miles. Fun gadget! I'll wear it all week and see how many miles add up. I also plan to get pictures of fair. The kids did a great job setting up all the stalls and the exhibits look great. Equestrian Girl will exhibit her barn style bird house tomorrow (that she finished last night) and a couple of photography exhibits.

Homeschooling: I almost cracked up last night when Motocross Boy volunteered to help at fair today so he didn't have to do school work. Considering I didn't have any specific school work prepared for today, I took his deal!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

4-H Fair Week

Horses: We'll be seeing a lot of horsey eyes this week and I doubt many of them will look this happy or alert (this is Stanley). This week is 4-H Fair and while we are not taking Stanley to fair for Equestrian Girl to show, lots of other kids will have their horses there. Any week long horse show is hard on a horse and especially for the ones that get pulled out of semi-retirement to "show" one week out of the year or ones that are normally kept on pasture all week long and rarely see the inside of a stall. Depending on the kid the horse may get his legs ridden off all week long or spend many hours stuck in a stall. But the one thing they won't be doing is spending time grazing with their friends in a field and being able to romp around like a horse likes to do.
Stanley is stalled 8-10 hours every night and has been shown extensively by both us and his previous owners. He would probably handle it much better than many horses but I still think it would be very hard on him. A horse that is on pasture 24-7 and then kept in a stall all week? Brrrr. That would be tough. I would be interested to see a study done on how many horses develop ulcers during week long 4-H shows like this... And just to clarify - I think 4-H is a wonderful program and both of my kids have enjoyed it very much. I just think a week-long horse show for 4-H is too long. I think it would make more sense and be easier on the horses to run 2 two day shows back to back and split them by age groups. All the 13 and under kids ride ALL their classes on Monday/Tuesday and then the 14-18 group rides ALL their classes on Wednesday Thursday. This way horses would only need to stay on their fair grounds for 2-3 days tops. Much better in MY opinion.

Motocross: No reports from the boys yet but practice is probably just getting started.

Homeschooling: Huh?

Saturday, July 25, 2009 show

Horses: We were scheduled to go to a horse show. An APHA show to be exact but the weather forecast for last night and today was dismal at best and really, really bad at worst. Along with a couple of other horse show moms we made the call about noon yesterday not to go. It's 2.5 hours away and none of us wanted to drive that far to sit in the rain all evening, try to sleep through it all night, and then show in it all day. And of course, the rain went south and it never got wet there...

Motocross: But this gave Motocross Boy a big opportunity. Since we weren't due back from the show until late Saturday night and ended up not going, Dad got talked into loading up the motocross trailer and heading to Baja MX tonight for racing tomorrow! I have never posted any pictures from racing at Baja. Mostly that's because it's really hard to take pictures there - the track is over 2 miles long and winds over and behind huge hills and trees. This is one of the most challenging courses in the region...and the one that scares me the most. They have a helicopter pad for the MediVac copter.
I designed a new t-shirt for Scott to make me: "My Son Races Motocross: Only the Toughest Moms Survive!"

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Inside Motocross

Motocross: Before we got into motocross I'd see the "toy hauler" trailers on the road and wondered what they were all about and what was IN them. Some haul 4-wheelers or even race cars but ours of course hauls dirt bikes. It's kind of hard to see but there are three of them in the "garage" there. Two on the left and one on the right. There's also a power washer in the middle. The generator is usually in there near the back and sometimes we manage to fit the golf cart in there too. The door in the middle of the garage goes into the living quarters (I'm not sure that's what it's called in this type of trailer but that's what we call it for horse trailers so I'm stealing the terminology!!). We have a tiny refrigerator, a tiny 2 spot stove, a tiny sink, and a tiny bathroom where you sort of have to either straddle or sit on the toilet to shower! The booth-table folds down into a bed as does the adjacent sofa. When all folded out it's one big bed. We sleep 4 in a row like hot dogs!

Most motocross tracks are not "real" campgrounds. No water or electric hook ups and no rhyme or reason how anyone is supposed to park though at busier times they might direct rigs to line up a certain way or closer than usual. For this reason we have to haul in our own water and run the generator to make coffee. Since the tracks are notoriously noisy, the generator just adds to the atmosphere!

Horses: We are off to an APHA (Paint) show this Saturday. We think. Keep watching the weather forecast and it's getting worse and worse by the hour. I really don't want to drive over 2 hours on Friday afternoon just to get rained out. Not fun and a rather expensive trip. With such a poor forecast there's bound to be a low turnout too which means little competition and no points...and Equestrian Girl is all about the points. We just found out she got her ROM (Register of Merit) in English Equitation for APHA and is one point away for English Pleasure. If she doesn't have any competition she could win the class Saturday and still not get the needed point...

Homeschooling: Next week is our 4-H County Fair. 4-H is loaded with learning activities and what we've spent a lot of the past couple weeks on. And it's not just about animals for those not familiar with 4-H - as a matter of fact, my kids won't exhibit a single animal. All of what they will be showing is stuff they have created or made themselves. I hope to have lots of pictures.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009


Just read the article at the link above including the comments section. In a nutshell, the gurus are questioning whether it's really financially smart to pay teachers to get advanced degrees. Some studies indicate that it doesn't help with their teaching and the students they teach do no better than those with teachers that do not have advanced degrees.

One of the wrote this: commenters: So what does correlate to student achievement? A Bachelor's degree? Why have any degree at all?

Well isn't that interesting. Considering this has been the mantra of homeschoolers for years, I'm amused to see that someone in an education arena is pointing this out! A degree does NOT make a good teacher. A person passionate about the subject and his/her students makes a good teacher. It's pretty easy to think back to the teachers you had in public or private school and remember which ones kept you engaged and which ones put you to sleep. It's also easy to remember the ones that spent the entire class trying to keep the order amongst an unruly mass of teens and never taught much of anything.

If homeschoolers have anything we are most certainly passionate about our students. I love history but my kids don't show all that much interest in the topic (doesn't stop me from trying to trick them into it with historical fiction and such!). My daughter loves math - a subject that pretty much gave up on me in high school. It amazes me that I am able to encourage her and push her ahead in math when I can barely remember most of what she's doing now. I'm not much of a gambler but I'd bet 80% of the kids in her "grade" in public school couldn't do the math she's doing now. My son doesn't need someone with a degree to teach him. He needs someone to spend one on one time with him and to provide him with aural, visual and kinetic teaching while providing a distraction free environment.

I'd love to get an audience with a group of parents next month as they get ready to send their little ones off to kindergarten in September and ask them what they really think the teacher can accomplish that they couldn't do themselves. And working is not an excuse. I work full time too.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Motocross: It was motocross madness on Sunday with Motocross Boy getting his groove back and hitting the course with a seriousness we haven't seen in a long time! He was racing like he meant it and did really well - beating out kids that have been leaving him in the dust all season long. Maybe all the talk about becoming Golf Boy instead of Motocross Boy got to him and he decided he better show some effort. Whatever it was - somebody gave that kid some serious Wheaties Sunday morning! The first picture is Motocross Boy leading the pack. Just the lap before both of those riders had been in front of him. The second picture is one of his "big air" moments on his Suzuki 85. Tell me you wouldn't have a heart attack every time you saw your kid doing this. Gulp.

Horses: Stanley got the weekend off since we had Christmas on Saturday and racing on Sunday. Yesterday he went back to "work", work being used very lightly since Equestrian Girl rode bareback and mostly just played with him, lots of walking and trotting and then later, when they were supposed to be cooling off, taking him over some ground poles. The poor horse is NOT a jumper that's for sure!

Homeschooling: We've been slacking this month. I admit it. Last night I did trick Motocross Boy into practicing some cursive - something he HATES. I really don't care all that much if he can write in cursive, many men don't use it, but he needs to be able to read it and at least sign his name. He had a HUGE dry erase board in his room at bedtime last night and was setting up something for his "business". I asked if I could write something and wrote it in cursive and asked him to read it. We started out with easy stuff and then got harder. He has a difficult time with lower case cursive S and R so I quickly focused in on those words. Then I had him write his name. About the 3rd try he did it perfect but then tried to get "fancy" and it messed him up. The lower case cursive n is difficult for him to write so we practiced that too. Before he even knew what hit him we had been doing this for 15 minutes and I called it quits. Teehee!! He got educated a bit and didn't even notice!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Saturday, July 19, 2009 - Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!!! Huh? Well, for quite a long time now our family has celebrated a second Christmas in July. My parents now live in Florida and only come up for part of the summer so they started this tradition of celebrating Christmas while they were here so they could see the kids opening their presents.

At first they bought the presents and had them all wrapped up for them on "Christmas" day. Then they decided it was more fun to take them shopping for their Christmas presents but then to KEEP those gifts until the right day. That tradition has continued though it doesn't always involve much shopping any more. For example, Motocross Boy wanted golf lessons which he will get. His only shopping involved looking for a pair of golf shoes. Equestrian Girl, on the other hand, LOVES to shop and especially when it's stuff for her. She had my mom and me all over the mall and back six times and still hadn't spent any money. My sister's daughter is in this old picture and gets to join in this fun tradition too.

This picture was taken at our local library with one of the best visiting Santa's ever. This one seems to be a bit blurry but I love how the pictures here turn out with the tree and books in the background. Our library is a hidden gem and one of the best places around. I grew up in a town that was growing like crazy and had money to build a fancy new modern library when I was a kid. I think back on it now and it was actually a very intimidating building with something akin to a mote around it. Sort of a modern concrete castle. Many years later I move to this small lakeside village and being an avid reader, look for the library. I was stunned to find it was simply an old house. The entire place could have fit in the lobby of the one I grew up with! I was sure it would be totally inadequate for my needs...and then I spent some time there. Wow. They pretty much had everything I could possible need or want and the people - oh the people!! You could TALK in this library and conversations were encouraged between patrons. Everyone was greeted by name as they walked in and get this, no overdue fines!! Weren't overdue fines like a state law or something? Years went by and when my kids were barely old enough to walk, they started going to the library too where they had fabulous programs for children all year long.

The first time I met the librarian at our tiny little library I thought I was being duped. This guy had a big round belly, long blond hair in a braid down his back, rudy red face and was wearing jeans with rainbow suspenders and a t-shirt with a logo of some sort on it. It didn't take me all that long though to figure out he was one of the smartest people I'd ever met. Even if he did moonlight as a clown and Santa.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday, July 17, 2009

Horses: It's been a very horsey week with 2 friends having horse crisis and getting in riding time too. I'm always glad to help and glad I have enough horse sense to do so. It did give me a chance to ride myself too - Equestrian Girl went to stay at a friend's last night and ride her horses so Stanley and I got to commune a bit last night while the boys went to play golf.

The pic is Equestrian Girl and Daddy hanging out between classes at the show last weekend.

Homeschooling: Our Spanish curriculum came yesterday! I'm hoping both the kids remember enough of it from public school that they can jump in fairly quick. I haven't decided yet if we are going to start this summer or wait until fall... I'm afraid we might be too hit or miss right now to make it worth while.

Motocross: This weekend is a make-up race at MPX from spring and rain is in the forecast again. We will be a bit crunched on time too - we celebrate Christmas in July with my family on Saturday and then will go straight from there up to MPX to camp to be there early for Sunday. Sprinkles are okay but any significant amount of rain and they won't race there so if it's going to do it, I hope it's before we leave town on Saturday so we don't waste a bunch of driving!

Off topic: I bought an IPod Touch. Teehee!! I'm having so much fun with the little gizmo! My main goal was to be able to listen to my audio books again and unfortunately, my little Rio didn't like my iMac much. It was also having trouble staying charged so I bought an IPod Nano a couple weeks ago. Got it all loaded up and even started to use it some and...then I read about the Touch. Wow. It's more like a handheld computer than an MP3 Player since you can get internet and some of the gadgets you can load are incredible - it can be used as a carpenters level! I mentioned in my 10 things that I'm a Mac convert and I guess this brings me one step closer. I might even put a little apple sticker on my truck....

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Since I think there are only about 6 people that actually read my blog, I was pretty surprised to find that ONTHEBIT gave me this blog award. Honest Scrap. Not sure what that means but the thing is that I'm supposed to reveal 10 things about myself that most people don't know and pass it on to 10 more blogs.

So here it goes:

1. I have this odd fear of having a horse step on my foot. I almost never go around horses not wearing boots. Even wearing tennies makes me nervous. I freak out when Equestrian Girl loads Stanley wearing sandals.
2. I have a lot more grey in my hair than just about anyone would imagine.
3. The first horse I cantered on had this HUGE take off that was almost like a rear (to me anyways). I had to sing the alphabet song out loud to remember to breath.
4. When my at the time 10 year old son was being expelled from public school I had to go to the doctor for stress. The deep breathing was becoming obsessive and not quite working enough.
5. Our first full week of homeschooling both kids I had a 5 hour day scheduled in 30-45 minute blocks for each subject. It was a total disaster. I even had them scheduled to "exercise" for 30 minutes.
6. Our second full week of homeschooling both kids I got rid of the time blocks but still had every single conceivable subject on the to-do list for each day. That was a disaster too.
7. I'm a Mac convert. Will never allow another PC be purchased by my immediate family even though my work laptop is a PC and sits right next to my Mac. I shun it.
8. I shop for all my bras at - all sports bras. Haven't bought a normal bra at a department store in years. You get addicted to that sport bra support. But they are ugly.
9. I can't breath when I can't see Motocross Boy on the track racing. At one track he "disappears" for up to 45 seconds. I count those seconds while holding my breath. If he doesn't appear in the usual amount of time a thousand more hairs turn grey and my face turns blue from holding my breath.
10. I wrote an e-book about horse showing. I've sold 4 copies to parents on Equestrian Girl's Junior Equestrian Team.

I'll be sending this to 10 of the blogs listed as my favorites to the right here. Still thinking about which ones....

Monday, July 13, 2009

Monday, July 13, 2009

Horses: Stanley is so embarrassed when he has to wear his sleazy at shows...he just knows that all the other horses laugh at him. It's bad enough that his friends call his color "pink" but now this...he was sure Equestrian Girl loved him and then she trades in his very manly navy blue sleazy for pink flowers.

We spent the weekend at a 2 day open show - same club we've shown with a couple other times this summer and this one was the best so far. Well except for the monsoon that blew through Saturday morning. The whole family went to this show and though it was only 30 minutes from home, we hauled in on Friday evening and the kids and I camped there for the weekend. Scott went home to sleep in our big, soft, really, really comfy king size bed. And take care of the dog and guinea pig of course!

The show was a great success for Equestrian Girl and Stanley - they got reserve high point both days for 14 and under age group and the classes were pretty big - at least 12 riders. But the best part of it was that Equestrian Girl got to know some of the other girls in her age group much better and they all hung out Saturday night and then throughout the show on Sunday! It will be nice to see these kids again at 4-H fair and the last 2 shows too. Everyone had fun and the weather, as shown in the line up photo, was gorgeous on Sunday.

Here's a rare picture of me with Equestrian Girl and Stanley. We put Dad in charge of the camera on Sunday!

Friday, July 10, 2009


I think I get more excited and nervous for horse shows than Equestrian Girl does! Stanley is bathed and waiting in his stall wearing his jammies. The trailer is loaded. The hot water heater is working (yipee!!!). Show clothes are ironed and hanging. Tack is clean and loaded. In 30 minutes we should pull out of here to go pick up the ol' boy and get HIM loaded. I have a whole bag of apples and carrots to use as bribes just in case he's not in the mood to load as has been the case lately. It's hot and muggy. I really don't feel like luring a horse into a trailer all night.

If I had a Twitter account I'd tweet the class results this weekend. But I don't. I do have a Facebook account that I don't use. And I'm seriously considering an IPod Touch...can that be considered a homeschooling expense?

Wish Equestrian Girl luck this weekend!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I'm sure most of us have some sort of "bag" that we tote around in the car or truck. Some may call it a purse or hand bag, for some it's just a bag. I have what was meant to be a scrapbooking tote that goes in every vehicle with me and back and forth to the house most of the time too. I like it because it's flat on the bottom so it doesn't tip over and it has lots of pockets and compartments but it wide open to the world. I was reorganizing my bag tonight and that always makes me smile...there's such an odd collection of stuff in there. If I were to disappear tomorrow and my family found my bag, they'd probably stand there shaking their heads wondering why I was toting around such odd stuff. So what's in YOUR bag?

Here are the top 10 oddest things in my bag:

1. A leather punch (why do I need this in the truck?)
2. Flat head screw driver (do they even make that kind of screw any more?)
3. Advil PM (like I'm going to need those driving!)
4. A bucket hanging strap (maybe there's another use?)
5. Six black Sharpies (don't all homeschoolers love Sharpies?)
6. An Argentine Snaffle Bit (that was Junior's)
7. Raspberry Body Spray (sorta covers up horse poop smell if you are desperate)
8. Two packs of fruit snacks (in case I'm stranded for a long time and think I'm going to starve to death)
9. Two cameras and a video recorder
10. Two spray bottles of hair spray (I just don't know)

Anyone else wonder why they carry around such odd-ball stuff with them?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

Blogging: I was really ho-hum about the background I picked for my blog and had briefly hunted around for another one but couldn't find anything I liked. Recently stumbled across Blogger Buster and her cool website and e-book. After really only scanning the e-book I was able to download a new, free background format. Very easy and very cool. Then a friend told me today that my dates are shows the time I post but not the date. I have no idea how to fix I'll use the date as the title for now.

Homeschooling: Well, really more "Home Business". This is a logo I created for our trainer. I created several and I'm not sure this is the one she will actually like best but I think it looks pretty cool!

More on topic - I got the Standard Deviants Math Mania DVD today for Motocross Boy. The 4 disk pre- Algebra and Algebra DVD's came the other day too. I'm hoping to find some time this weekend during the horse show (or more likely AFTER the show) to watch some to see how I want to use these. I'm so excited!

Horses: We went to the barn early today - almost got Stanley out of bed. No, really he was still just munching hay in his stall but all his buddies had gone out to the paddock. Equestrian Girl didn't work him too hard but he looked good. Tomorrow he will get a BIG work out and then just a light one on Friday night at the show grounds. I love when we can see the arena the night before a show for some practice time. This was a lot more important when we had a young horse than it is now but I still think its good for them to see all the sites and get a feel for the footing. I had planned on bathing at the show grounds but I found out today we can't check in until after 6:00 p.m. Since I REALLY hate banding in the dark which is inevitably what would happen if we didn't start with the bathing and riding and banding and all until after 6:30 or later, I guess we will at least bath at the barn before we leave and possibly even band depending on how hot it is. I don't want to put the head/neck sleazy on the old guy if it's really hot out...besides, he might be embarrassed trailering in his pink and white jammies! I HAVE to get a picture of it...

Motocross: Motocross Boy got to spend some time alone with this grandparents today. They took him shopping for golf shoes. HA! Bet you thought it was going to be something for motocross!! But no, for Christmas in July they got him golf lessons and golf shoes. He's really excited about it and so are we. Especially me. Very much so. Honestly, who gets hurt bad playing golf? Sure, Tiger Woods had to have knee surgery but that could have been an old soccer injury from when he was six or seven years old! And he can still play just as good as before. Golfers never fall from 30 feet in the air and you seldom see golf carts crash into each other with all that much force...

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Momma Bear

Homeschooling: I love this picture. While my kids aren't twins, 4.5 months apart is close enough.

Homeschooling Motocross Boy has been a joy and a struggle. It's a struggle when I think he needs to be learning something he has no interest in learning so we end up in a power struggle. Anyone with an 11 year old ADHD boy knows that power struggles are basically fruitless. Nobody wins. Everybody is miserable. Luckily, learning comes in many different forms to meet all those many styles of it. A website that we like a lot is Motocross Boy especially likes this site and can spend hours on it! When grandpa had knee surgery last year, we spent some time on the sight doing a Virtual Knee Surgery! Last month we printed out the work sheets for the Crash Scene Investigation and Motocross Boy spent hours analyzing that crash then recreating it on his bedroom floor with Matchbox cars. The whole family learned about Deep Brain Stimulation Surgery (eek!) and today MC Boy was excited to log on to find out they have a new activity on designing a cell phone!

What a fun way to learn! He does tons of reading without even realizing it, learns math and science throughout almost all the activities, and it all happens effortlessly because he is INTERESTED. Amazing concept, isn't it?

Horses: This weekend we have a 2 day Spur of the Moment Horse Show. This is the local horse club we joined that normally just has one day shows but twice a summer they have 2 days shows at a different fair grounds. Smart me just remembered to call the fair grounds about a camping spot. We have lot #90...and she commented that was as close as she could get me. Hmmm. Since I can't find a site map on their website, I have no idea what that means. I have a feeling it might mean a LOT of walking. That's not so unusual at a horse show. I always mean to buy a pedometer to wear at these shows and always forget. I swear I walk about 20 miles at the bigger shows.

Motocross: Looks like it's going to be a non-motocross weekend. Dad says he wants to come to the horse show... Which means maybe I'll have some pictures for next week.

Monday, July 6, 2009

51YYGP3HYJL._SS500_.jpgHomeschooling: I just ordered this 4 pack from Standard Deviants. Equestrian Girl loves her math and has always done well with it but I'm thinking Algebra might be a different story here soon. Maybe I'm channeling my own problems with it to her...either way, I KNOW it will be trouble for Motocross Boy for sure. It will be a while yet until he really gets going on Algebra but if these DVD's prove to be as "fun" as what I've been told, he might just get into it more than I could hope. He does good with fun. I also ordered the DVD's on American Government. Another subject that I found incredibly dry and I actually LIKE history. Maybe it was the teacher. Surely I'm not that bad! (Any old teachers from NFHS reading this? You were fantastic!) Ahem.

One of the best things about homeschooling is being able to change and flex as you go. Public school teachers are generally stuck with the curriculum they are given no matter how badly it's working for the majority of their class. Sometimes they are stuck with it for YEARS on end. I love being able to chuck a curriculum that isn't working and try something new or add something even better to one that's already working great. I'm hoping the Standard Deviants algebra does that for Equestrian Girl...a bonus curriculum.

Motocross: Hubby came up with a very cool hoody design...can't wait to post a picture! He's hoping to get a big t-shirt order from a local track. That would be soooo huge!

Horses: We finally made it over to see Stanley and give him a good workout after his 3 days off. And he was such a good boy! Equestrian Girl worked him hard so he was very happy to get turned back out when she was done. No lesson this week so he'll probably just get one day off since they have a 2 day show this weekend. We are excited for this show - each day has high point winners and then there is an overall weekend high point as well. Equestrian Girl and Stanley should at least be in the top 3 or 4...

Light Bulbs: Totally off topic. I was just talking this weekend about the compact florescent bulbs with some neighbors. One loved them one hated them. I've been on the love side of that equation for quite some time but tonight I have to rethink that. When I came downstairs after tucking the kids to bed I walking into the dining room to find one of the compact florescents had exploded all over the table and floor. I have no idea how or why but am very glad it wasn't a few hours ago when we were all sitting at the table eating dinner!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Happy Independence Day - a day late

Motocross: If you squint really hard at the picture you should be able to see Motocross Boy. Or maybe not. Sometimes I take pictures of the track thinking he's in it but he's not. Sometimes the picture is of a kid I don't even know! But this is all part of being a moto-mom...scanning the track looking for your kid and hoping you are watching the right one.

Motocross is a really colorful sport. The bikes are bright yellow, bright orange, apple green, red, etc. Then they use colorful graphics on those colors and wear pants and jerseys that may or may not match the colors of their bikes. And they also wear helmets...more colors and may or may not match the bike OR the clothes. It's a virtual rainbow when all those bikes fly out of the starting gates! It also makes it really hard to identify your kid from all the other rainbows.

First you narrow it down to his color bike (is he riding the orange bike in this class???). Then I look for the pants color since they are closest to the I think. Or did he wear the blue ones? Motocross Boy used to have this flat black helmet that really stood out since he didn't have many graphics on it and nobody else had one like it. I loved that helmet - it stood out. Now he has one that looks white if he's coming towards me and looks black from the back. Ya - that's helpful.

Right now he's racing two bikes. The 65cc bike has gold rims on the tires. Not many have rims like that so once he's close enough for me to see the rims - I have him on my radar. His 85cc bike does not have gold rim and looks like pretty much every other kid's yellow Suzuki...I have to sneak some reflectors on his spokes or something!

This picture is a little closer up - sure, there's the number that's almost legible that clearly identifies this as being my kid but they are usually going FAST!! It blurs. It's only because my camera has a fast shutter that I can even freeze frame scenes like this - my eyes can't do it on their own. And this is how I spent my day after Independence Day - watching little rainbows fly around in a sea of brown dirt!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Proud Momma

Horses: Hmmmm. I have no idea why this posted sideways nor do I know how to fix it. Ah well. This is from that first big Paint show we did Memorial Day weekend. The one where I cried when Equestrian Girl got her first 1st place in a of course we had to do the professional photo thing.

We went over to ride Stanley today after letting him have 2 days off. He was full of himself with the cooler weather today but Equestrian Girl was intent on working his lope so he was still pretty warm and tired by the time he got done. He was very happy to join his pals in the big pasture!

Homeschooling: Now I'm annoyed - this picture is sideways too... Well this is a couple of examples from the new family business. These horse names will end up on T-shirts or sweats or something. This is a horse that our trainer is working with right now - he's a very handsome boy. The kids have been learning Photoshop and I am re-installing Quickbooks on the computers so they can help with the bookkeeping..