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Wednesday Hodgepodge

I am literally sitting here at the dining room table in a dazed stupor after the busy couple of weeks we have had. I should have never sat down. So, I figured this was a great time to participate in this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge!

When was the last time you chatted with a neighbor? About what? (sharing that last bit is optional)

Oh my. My neighborhood. We live in a colorful one. I do not actually talk with very many of my neighbors unless it's to discuss the latest visit from the sheriff at the house down the street. On the 4th of July, though, while at the town's park festivities, I did talk with a sweet neighbor who lost her husband suddenly almost two years ago. She and her husband own the funeral home and are just wonderful people. She was widowed at too young an age with two teenage daughters and a young son. We discussed how she was doing, how she is coping with running the funeral home alone, how her oldest daughter has moved into the house across the street from us to help her run the business, and how she is handling solo parenting a precocious boy who misses his daddy.

River, lake, ocean, or waterfall ... which one are you most like and why?

Hmmmm .. I guess I would say a river. I just move along at a slow and winding pace, if not physically then mentally and emotionally. I took an online quiz that said I am a Lake. I am an independent thinker who enjoys their own company but am extremely welcoming when the time comes to open my home and surroundings to the people I care most about. I typically prefer to mind my own business and let others live their own lives in the way I wish to been control of my own. That's pretty accurate, actually.

July 13 is National Delaware Day. Ever been to Delaware? Delaware is called 'the first state' because it was the first to declare independence from the British. What's your state's nickname and does that moniker make sense to you? If you were in charge, what nickname would you give your state?

I have not ever been to Delaware. Missouri is the Show Me State. It comes from a speech given by William Duncan Vandiver in 1899. He said, "I come from a state that raises corn and cotton and cockleburs and Democrats, and frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I am from Missouri. You have got to show me." The phrase is now used to describe the character of Missourians as being not gullible, but conservative and unwilling to believe without adequate evidence. Yeah, I don't know about all that. We are a pretty faith-filled state and seem to be strongly Republican these days. I feel like at least in this part of Missouri we trust in the sovereignty of God for the most part. But that's only speaking for myself. I would call us the Pioneer State because that gets to the root of who we are.

What dish did you contribute to the last pot luck meal you attended? Do you have a go-to recipes for pot luck suppers?

I usually make "party potatoes" which are basically instant mashed potatoes cooked with lots of butter, sour cream, and cream cheese and then baked. The last potluck I went to was on a day I played cards with some ladies and I brought a sweet potato cornbread.

What is your number one tip for a brand new parent?

No matter how tempted, or scared you are, put that baby in his or her bedroom the first night and keep him or her there. Do not sleep with the baby! Allow yourself to get some sleep without jumping up every time you hear the baby wiggle, grunt, toot or whimper. If he or she needs you, you will know it!

Insert your own random thought here.

This past week our family attended the National Stuttering Association annual conference in Dallas for the first time. I have so much I want to share but haven't been able to assimilate it all yet. All I do know is that Eli met others who stutter for the first time in his 13 years. He and Brynne attended teen workshops for three days, learned an invaluable amount of information, and made some life-long friends. Rick and I did the same. I have never seen Eli so happy in my life. What he took away from the conference is that his goal is not fluency but to be an effective speaker. In other words, he is allowed to be okay with being a person who stutters and to concentrate on just being the person he really is inside. In his words, he was so happy because he was with his "people". We have made a decision to attend the annual conference every year from now one. It was that life-changing. Next year: Chicago!


  1. Your random thought about your son made my heart happy!! I love that he said he was with his "people" - what a wonderful experience for all of you!

  2. Hello,
    This comment is about the previous post. I'm putting it here because I don't know if you see the previous comments or not once you add another post. I wanted to ask you about Mr. D math. I'd never heard of it until you wrote about it. I have a struggling math student and am wondering if it would work for him. Does Eli struggle with math? Is he doing pre-algebra? Why does he like Mr. D math? How did you discover Mr. D math? Do you do the option with the online class or the self-paced? Thank you so much for your help!

    1. Hi Barbara! I heard about Mr. D from another blogging homeschooling mom. I researched it and decided that doing the live class option would be best for Eli. He doesn't really struggle with math, exactly, it just takes him a while to process it and work the problems. I just wanted to make sure he was being TAUGHT well (I've got the humanities covered, but math and science ... not so much). This summer he is taking he Pre-Algebra Readiness course and it has definitely been a good fit for him. He participates in a live class once per week, does practice problems all week, and then takes the quiz. There are not an over-abundance of practice problems, but definitely enough to get the concepts down. It is advised that parents NOT help. He has to do all his own grading and inputting scores into the grade book. He has told me that he thinks this program is the one for him so we are registering him for Pre-Algebra for this next year. Kind of pricey, but so worth it so far. Hope that helps!

    2. Thank you; that helps a lot!


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