fiance, student, homeschool retiree, preschool teacher wannabe, Senior Living Coordinator, writer of many things unsaid, blogger, lover of the creative, most cheerful depressed person, devourer of books, crafty wanna be, amateur tech support, internet junkie, facebook stalker, tweeter of tweets, Pagan, friend, sister, daughter, aunt, karaoke super-star

Even More Arizona Trip Photos

We added more photos to the album today. We went up to Oatman, AZ with Aunt Mary (My Grandmothers sister) and cousin Cory (My cousin Trishas son). It was a nice drive up Winding Route 66. You can read more about the Old Wild West Mining Town, Oatman, AZ that we visited here: http://www.ghosttowns.com/states/az/oatman.html
May 2009: Trip to AZ

More New Photos

Here are some more new photos from our trip, the boys are having fun!
May 2009: Trip to AZ

More Photos from Trip

I've added some more photos to the Arizona Trip Album, just click on the photo below to view the album:
May 2009: Trip to AZ

Arizona Trip Day 1 and 2

May 2009: Trip to AZ

CLick to see an album of photos from Day 1 and 2 of our trip to Arizona to visit Grandma Teeples and Great Grandma Prouty in Lake Havasu City

Moving On




"Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense."
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

Love




Love
by April Mitchell Copy Right 1996

I wonder...
Do I love you?
Or merely the idea-
The idea that If I love you,
I am assured a love in return.
Then the pain of loving you
Is somehow softend by that knowledge.
And it proves that I must
Truely
Love you

Life


Life
by April Mitchell~Copy Right 2002

A Journey into NOW
Embracing rare moments of joy
Learning from survival
Seeing the forever in it
The familiararity of the old
The fearful certainty of the new
Nothing permanent
But the CHANGE

The Joy of Discovery

The children found an old rope swing in one of the ancient trees hanging above the river. They began to swing acrss and jump into the cool water. As the excitement built and the laughter rose, a silent knowledge passed through their hearts. They discovered that no adult would ever understand the way they felt in that moment. The freedom of childhood, is so carelessly used up and quickly fleeting.

STOP TRYING TO BE PERFECT AND START BEING REMARKABLE





STOP TRYING TO BE PERFECT AND START BEING REMARKABLE
From The Big Moo by Seth Godin

Remarkable is being unafraid to stand out.
Remarkable is having a fire in your belly and an idea that won’t quit.
Remarkable is telling the truth, always…even about yourself.
Remarkable is failing often and then trying again.
Remarkable is more doing and less planning. More testing out and less waiting, More dreaming and less sleeping.
Remarkable is when you stand for something and make it happen and change the world along the way. Stand for something or stand for nothing.
Remarkable is following your heart when everyone else is going the other way.
Remarkable is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. You can’t shirk your way to greatness.
Remarkable is not waiting for the world to change, but starting the change with yourself.
Remarkable is thinking and being in the present “ Giving up the illusion that you can predict the future is a very liberating moment. “All you can do is give yourself the capacity to respond…the creation of that capacity is the purpose of statedgy” Lord John Browne
Remarkable is getting up and getting out
Remarkable is being yourself. No carbon copies allowed…stop being ordinary.
Remarkable is having fun and enjoying the journey.
Remarkable is knowing there are no truly original ideas…just new ways to use them. Look for inspiration everywhere.
Remarkable is what happen when you stop trying to be perfect and just be REMARKABLE you!

Ode to Laundry





Ode to Laundry
By April Mitchell © 2006

Laundry, Laundry, Laundry
The never ending chore
When you think you’ve washed the last load
You find another pile on the floor.

An Essay by Josef Age 11




The Formation of the United States Government
By Josef Mitchell age 11

After America fought Britain for its independence, they needed a new government. Many people wanted different things for the new country. Planning a government that would make everyone happy in all thirteen states was very hard. The result of all the planning, talks and meetings was a government that still works today.

The country’s most important leaders met in Philadelphia in 1787, to plan the new United States government. Two plans were proposed, The Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan. The Virginia plan said that the states would have representatives according to their population, larger states having more and smaller states having less. The New Jersey plan said no matter what the population, all the states would have the same number of representatives. They picked the Virginia Plan, so that each state is represented based on its population.

The leaders in the Constitutional Convention planned the new government and wrote the Constitution. A constitution is a written set of principles by which a nation is governed. The Preamble is the introduction to the Constitution and tells us its main goals. One of the goals was to form a more perfect Union for the states, so they could be united as one country. Another goal was to establish justice for the people so they could be safe.

The writers of the Constitution set up three branches of government. They are the Executive Branch, the Judicial Branch and the Legislative Branch. The Executive branch makes sure laws are carried out and commands the armed forces. The Judicial Branch interprets, or decides what the laws mean and decides if the laws follow the Constitution. The Legislative Branch makes laws and establishes taxes. They made the Government branches separate so no one branch is more powerful than another.

The Bill of Rights was made in 1790; it is an addition to the Constitution. They added these so that people would have more rights. The First amendment protects freedom of religion, speech, press, the right to assemble and the right to voice complaints about the government. Adding these to the Constitution was good, because it protects people’s rights and gives them more freedom.

It wasn’t easy for our founding fathers to plan our government. They might have argued a lot. They came up with the threes branches of government, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Their plan was successful and still works today.

labyrinth

We love this game, You have stationary and moving tiles that change the maze each turn. Everyone is on a mission to get to all their treasures. The first to get through the maze to all their treasures wins.
 

 
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Road Hazard

Road Hazard

Reaching out
For comfort, for warmth
Chest bared, heart wide-open
I lay before you
Waiting
Vulnerable
You casually step over me
So not to trip

~April Mitchell
©July 1, 2008

Unraveling

Friday, July 18, 2008

Unraveling
by April Mitchell


I don’t unravel
I am the helper- the friend-the one who rescues
Others unraveling around me
They gush threads of hurt, and lost hope, and misunderstanding before me
I wind their strings up and tuck them in neatly
“There that’s better.”
I help them mend the broken threads and hem the tears
“See, everything will be ok, your alright, I am here for you.”
Then in the middle of this room
In front of everyone
I am unraveling
They do not notice
As bits of me fall away
And I am frantically trying to keep myself together
It is taking so much of me, so very much of me, to not let them see
I can’t let them see the ME- that is unraveling
Just pick up the pieces- I tell myself
Stuff them anywhere
As long as no ones knows
Everything will be fine…
Right?

Idaho Distance Education Academy


The boys are enrolled in a Public Charter School for homeschooling families. Idaho Distance Education Academy www.idahoidea.org.

They have a catalog that I can order curriculum and school supplies from. I get about $3500 for all the boys for the school year to spend on the catalog items or for outside lessons (like music or gymnastics) or for field-trips, museums passes, etc. We have a nice teacher names Kendal Fleshman that helps us if we need it. I am in charge of coming up with my own lesson plans. I can use what ever I want to teach the boys, even if I did not buy it from the catalog. As long as I am meeting State Standards. So there is a great deal of flexibility for me as a homeschooling parent.

I submit a Progress Update once a month, outlining briefly what we have learned and give the boys a number grade to show how they are doing. Two times a year we have Portfolio Conferences with our teacher Kendal. We have to show to show between 5 and 6 work samples for each subject they are taking that year. These samples must match up to State Standards. The boys also take all the same testing a public schooled child in Idaho would take. These include the ISAT's, DMA (Direct Math Assessment), DWA (Direct Writing Assessment), and IRI's (Idaho Reading Indicator). We have enjoyed using the school to help with our homeschooling.

My least favorite thing about the school is having to do the Monthly Progress Updates. I just hate paperwork and having to type out what we have done into a form, after I have already done lesson plans, is just a pain to me.

My favorite thing is all the resources we have available to us. They offer us many free services that we would not be able to afford otherwise. Like subscriptions to Discovery Education Streaming and Science and Brain Pop. They have a library were I can borrow various books and homeschooling resources, things the Public Library does not have.

Also having Kendal there to consult with if I ever got stuck or need advice is a real stress reliever. She is just as invested in our children's education as we are. She is sweet and does not hound or invade our personal lives, but lets me homeschool and is there for us if needed. She does send out reminders and things but they are not invasive at all.

We considered leaving the school next year and doing our own thing, just for a change of pace. The boys were sad and said they would "miss Kendal". They really look forward to showing her their Portfolio's and seeing her during testing and our visits to the IDEA Center in Boise. So we are staying in to continue to take advantage of this great opportunity that is IDEA.

Here is a photo of Kendal and the boys after IRI's and our Portfolio Conference.
 
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Use Me Lord



I love this song. Sometimes I feel like I don't serve others enough; between homeschooling and regular family activities-where do I find the time? When the boys were younger I started to pray, everyday, that God would use me to serve others. I began to look for small ways to serve others around me; Brownies to a neighbor, letting someone cut in line or just smiling. Service does not always have to be some huge life altering task you have performed, it is often just simple day to day blessings that you give to those around you. I still pray that prayer and God has truly opened up opportunities for me to serve that fit into my life.

Along with serving others, God has taught me how to let others serve me. I am so bad at accepting help, but getting better at receiving it graciously. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness; it is a sign of humility. It allows others the chance to love you more greatly and in profound and meaningful ways.

I can honestly say the people I love the most are those I have served. Sometimes I did not love them right away, but I learned to love them through the service I gave them.

"And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God." Mosiah 2:17

ART: Chalk on Black Paper

Oliver age 4-Spiders
 

Kaleb age 5- Tiger
 

Ian age 8-Dog and fireworks
 
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