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Saturday, July 25, 2009

It was meant to be figurative...

So today some girlfriends and I went to a seminar called "Homeschooling Highschool". It was done by three semi-local ladies, and it was VERY good. All three have gone under the county (as opposed to a non-traditional private a.k.a umbrella school) the whole way and had lots of great things to offer...it was reassuring and terrifying at the same time :-).

At one point the husband of one of the ladies answered a question about motivating somewhat less than motivated students and he said sometimes the father needs to "light a fire" under them. I'm certain HE meant it figuratively.

But

I came home to the words ever mother and wife loves to hear. When I asked how the day had gone without me, the hubs responded, "Well, at least the house didn't burn down." Ha Ha, that's good to know.... "No," he says, "come and look."

I should preface this with two things. We live in a really REALLY old house. Our wiring is also really old. Some is something like "knob and tube?" and some is totally current and updated. Then in the middle of that spectrum is where most of our wiring falls-hemp wrapped wires. Yep, there have been days I've been tempted to knock a hole in the wall, grab me some wire, peel a little wrapping, and chillax (JUST KIDDING). Anyway, apparently today my husband got that desperate, because I came home to THIS:




Actually, this bring us to my second preface. We've been having a weird humming electrical noise in our master bedroom wall for a few months now. We couldn't pinpoint the source, but it seemed to go away as long as the bedside light on the hubs's side of the bed and the TV in the corner weren't on at the same time. To be safe, we'd unplug the TV when we weren't watching it.

Well today, the hubs decided to clean his side of our bedroom (don't ask-MY side is full of boxes to go downstairs) and he moved his bedside table out to dust behind there. As he bent over, he braced himself with one hand on the wall-and had to pull his hand away because the wall was soooo HOT there. Not. good.

He let it cool, and then opened the wall to find THIS:
Nice-NOT!


So it appears that when the rocket scientist who wired our house put in this outlet, he didn't install it near a stud, so he ran metal strips from the outlet box (the METAL outlet box) over to the studs on either side. Not being well secured, the outlet wiggled as things were plugged in and then unplugged, and the wires moved around rubbing the ancient hemp wrapping and fraying it away from the wire. The exposed wire then heated and carried a current down the metal strip it was touching, and that resulting heat then started the wood in the wall smouldering. The walls are fairly thick and made of stucco, and that alone (along with God's prompting to the hubs to clean our room) saved us. Truly though, we literally caught it by God's grace in the nick of time.

SO now we are waiting for our favorite electrician to be available. Waiting in darkness that is. That fuse that we had to turn off to keep the house from burning down is also the fuse for our room, the girls' room, ALL of the basement, and...our microwave in the kitchen. Nope, it makes no sense to me either ;-). But it does TOTALLY derail my plans to work downstairs tomorrow and this week-at least until I have some light. It's hard to paint walls in the dark!

Never a dull moment here, but we're blessed to have a roof over our head still!
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Thursday, July 23, 2009

But wait...there's more :-)

So then, after the "We've got you surrounded" incident from Friday, Monday night proved to be just as interesting in a different way.

I wasn't feeling well Monday, so I went to bed early. Around 11:30ish I heard a LONG blast of a car horn-really it was long enough to sound like a train, but we don't live that close to any tracks that a train whistle would wake me. I drifted back to sleep and it happened again. By then Iwas frustrated because all I knew was it was dark out, and therefore NOT an appropriate time to be blaring your car horn for a minute or two at a time (is there ever an appropriate time for that in a residential area???). So I drifted back to sleep again, and I heard a loud BAM followed by some voices. Well, that got me out of bed and to the window. We've had some things permanently "borrowed" (read that as STOLEN) from our carport while we've slept so that was the first thing I thought of. But when I looked out, there was nothing to see...no people, so obvious source of the noise.
So, seeing that it was only11:30, I went to find the hubs, who was asleep on the couch with Sari. I decided not to wake him, but when I went to the kitchen to get some water, I saw an orangish glow on the side of my neighbor's truck. Thinking it might be someone in a car with their orange rear lights causing the reflection, I thought I'd go see if someone was up to no-good. (I guess there's a little Nancy Drew in anyone who red her books as a kid, LOL). I made my way through my neighbor's yard and out onto their driveway, and was greeted with a sight I never thought I'd see-the truck belonging to the neighbor across the street from the house I was standing at was engulfed in FLAMES.
Really.
It looked like something you see on TV. The front end of the truck was burning and burning massively. Small explosions kept occuring as new things caught on fire. The fire department was pulling up, and someone was trying to wake the people whose truck it was. I ran back to wake the hubs and we both headed back to watch. One very smart older neighbor kept telling the firemen to move the OTHER car which was right beside the one that was burning, so someone did that. I wish I had pictures, but 1) I'm not good at night shots yet, and 2) it seemed wrong to photograph someone else's misfortune.

I did get some pictures by the light of day though ;-).

This is the car that was NEXT to the burning one. Can you see the parts that started to melt? Luckily, the burning one was the farthest from their house, and nothing else caught on fire. God is so good!

For the record, I think they believe it was an accident. The guy who owns the truck has been working on it that day, and they did something with the fuses, so if they bypassed one, then there was nothing to "trip" to stop the fire from happening.

A house way out in the country is looking better and better.....
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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Other than the assault rifle, it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood.

So Friday afternoon around four, the kids called me out of my bedroom (where I was folding clothes) with the cry, "Mommy, the police are outside."

Turns out, they were putting it mildly. It was the police...and the sheriff...and the K-9 unit.

NICE

So I call the police. I say, "Ummm, yes, ummm, my street is surrounded by police, and there's an officer with an assault rifle in the intersection."
"Yes ma'am. They're looking for someone. I'd just stay inside and lock your doors."

You think??????

Really, that's all I was getting out of them. But here's what it looked like out my window. The pictures aren't great as I didn't want to make a spectacle of myself with a rifle 20 feet away.

This is literally outside my front window.


This is the street in front of my house. The end of the street was blocked off too.

Here's the K-9. They searched several backyards, and the woods behind the green house. And then just as suddenly they left. Without ever catching the person they were looking for. I thought they were supposed to reverse 9-1-1 us to let us know about stuff like this. What if my kis had been outside playing???? Interestingly enough, the Sheriff's log for that day shows NOTHING happening during a four hour period for that afternoon-including the time this took place. Hummmm. I wonder if I'll ever know what that was all about?
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Attempting to be interesting...

for my six followers. I was told that if I blogged more than once a month, maybe more people would care about what I have to say, LOL.

SOOOO

I still have our whole vacation to blog about, but let me try to catch you up on the past few weeks since we got home.

First, the hubs came home a week ahead of us so he could work on the floors...or not. It turns out the floors are so old the boards are not the standard width anymore, so he couldn't get replacement boards and is going to have to rip some down himself. What man doesn't love an excuse to use power tools?

So He did clean the floor real perty...

except that the beautiful and immaculately picked up living room and dining room meant the play room, just on the other side of the living room wall, now looks like THIS:

ARGH! Men! That mess will keep me busy for a while!


We've caught two library shows over the past two weeks:
This is for "Page Turner"...the other one was Katie Adams, and I thought I took a picture, but can't seem to find it ;-(.

And once again proving that homeschoolers on tight budgets will do anything to feed their families, here are a few of the many, many of us that dressed like a cow for 'Cow Appreciation Day" so we could get a FREE meal. I LOVE Chick-fil-A!!!!

And after at least FIVE scheduled launches that were scrubbed, here's the shuttle finally going up.

Okay, I have more to tell you, but I'll put that in the NEXT post. And hey, if you read this, follow my blog...please...pretty please...it makes me feel loved ;-).
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Thursday, July 9, 2009

Oh MY!

So in the car tonight, Sari says, "I. Have. a. Boyfriend." Just like that...pauses after each word for emphasis. So I say, "You mean you have a boy who is a friend" and she says, "No. I. Have. a. Boyfriend. Do you want to know who it is?"
So I bite. "Who is it?"
"Dough"
"Who???"
"Dough"
"You mean JOE?"
"Yeah, but don't tell him...it's a secret."

I think we'll be starting modesty and PURITY training early with that one.

Watch out Aunt Fanny...my girl's after your boy. Oh, and Presley and CG better keep their girls out of Sari's way...she's quite intent on this, LOL.
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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Private Pity Party

Okay, I really want to stop the not-so-positive blogs, but today the hubs came home and said that starting Aug. 1st, our health insurance deductible, which is currently MET IN FULL, will be going up by another $1200 a year. Starting then. Meaning we will have to shell out another $1200 out of pocket before it is met for the rest of this year. Oh, and then in Jan. we will start over with having to meet the full $4200. All this AND they aren't paying him a cent beyond the insurance coverage. Time to look for other solutions. I can't imagine how much it costs them a month to provide us with what is basically now catastrophic coverage, but I think I'd rather they just pay him the money.
On a side note, I guess that's a prompt from God to look at the dietary ways to relieve my pains since the meds that make me functional (and allowed for our cross-country trek) cost hundreds of dollars we don't have every month (although they currently cost us nothing since the deductible is currently met).
And just when I was getting used to living like normal people live...
Sorry, not meaning to whine. I just have to vent and then I'll get past it and see God's hand in it.
But for now I'm working my way to considering it all joy ;-).
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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Really really random thoughts

  • My root canal worked and I can chew on that side of my mouth for the first time in 5 years with NO PAIN!
  • Vacation was wonderful. We saw sooo many things and people. I WILL blog about it all, but not tonight.
  • I've been a recluse since getting back. I'm fighting an allergy/cold thing and I am just dead tired.
  • I've also been a recluse because I am feeling like God is calling me to be home. Really home. Not "running around all the time and calling myself a stay at home mom" type home, but the real "I can make homemade bread and not worry about whether I'll be home when it needs to be punched down or go in the oven" type home. I'm trying to figure out what that looks like.
  • And I've been a recluse because the thing I love most about being on vacation is the utter lack of connectedness with the frenetic pace of the outside world. In the Finger Lakes, life is just slower and I love it. It is balm to my soul. I'm trying to preserve that feeling a bit.
  • And did I mention I'd dead tired?
  • Oh, and we're poor.
  • I'm thinking God may also be calling me to a business opportunity. I know that seems to run contrary to the above statements, and I don't think it's an immediate sort of thing, but it is the sort of thing I can do with the kids helping out...I'm just terrified of the potential "lose your shirt" risk that goes with starting a business.
  • Did I mention we are already poor? So why not start a business?
  • I don't want to hear about Michael Jackson again for a very long time.
Okay, that's it for now. I have to go cut up a peach for my son.
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