Saturday, September 15, 2007

Wild Waves!

Picture-heavy blog to ensue. On Saturday, we went to Wild Waves! The kids had a BLAST! Tony finally inched his way over the minimum-height line and made it onto the big coasters. This was a HUGE adventure and it took some warming up - he spent the first half of his first ride in terror - but by the time we went (at his request) for a second ride, he was screaming happily and waving his hands in the air. There was no turning back. We rode every big ride twice :) Meanwhile, Toddlerness spent some time with Nana and Nanu riding the kiddie rides.

Toddlerness' favorite thing! The carousel! She found a pink beribboned horse-on-a-stick that used to be Girliness' and has been riding it around the house ever since.

The cars were WAY FUN too.

Boyness liked the Scrambler more than he liked the coasters! Or maybe he liked the coasters more! Or maybe the Scrambler!! OH, why were we picking again?

And this ride looked SO TAME sitting there...with little umbrella thingies...

Oh, I think somebody's Nanu was feeling spoilrific:


The waterslides looked WAY TOO COOL to resist, despite the cool weather:

Now, most of the attractions were at least a little heated (Toddlerness' favorite spot was the HOT TUB, of course), but Boyness wanted to try out the one spot that WASN'T heated. It was as cold as the Sound, I swear. At least as cold. Physically painful to enter. He (and a smattering of other children) tried anyway, because the water features there were But this is what we ended up with after about, oh, 80 seconds:

AH, much better!

Meanwhile, Girliness and Toddlerness were discovering the cruising circuit and wave pools (Toddlerness) and the big slides (Girliness). Oh the fun! We topped it off by eating out, since we were an hour from home at 6:45 when we finally left the park. Why, I do believe this will be a "remember mom and dad took us to the water park every year!" memory.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Super Soccer Girliness

On her day to be goalie (they get one half as goalie per season):

She LOVES, LOVES, LOVES soccer. I'm way happy she has an active outlet that she's reasonably good at and willing to really go for.

School Issues

I couldn't have written much better, so I'll refer you here:

In the off chance that there are millionaires, very large-hearted midwifery supporters of any income, etc. lurking somewhere amongst the few readers of my blog, I can say that there are few people more worthy of a tuition leg-up than Tiffany. She's the most awesome woman I know, seriously.

Seattle Midwifery School does a great job of covering my rear tuition-wise; my family is really pretty poor, and we qualify for the full range of government help as well as a need-based scholarship that pays the final bit of my tuition. As someone who has never earned a degree beyond high school, I qualify for all kinds of fun stuff that people who have already "accomplished" this level of education can't get. As someone with a crystal-clear income situation, my aid situation is equally crystal-clear.

Tiffany has none of these benefits. Single, a business owner, holder of an MA, out-of-state student...all of these things take separate hits on her ability both to pay for school and to qualify for financial aid. She gets a fraction of the help that I do.

It seems that in order to successfully attend Seattle Midwifery School, you either have to have nothing going for you at all or have enough going for you that you are able to pay the huge tuition on your own. The people who fall in between, which unfortunately covers a huge range of women who would like to be midwives and would make excellent midwives, are prevented from attending because of MONEY. There is something hugely wrong about that, but can we please start by taking care of this one woman, this one wonderful person who will someday make an incredible midwife?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Husband's Packrat Switch

Fran has inherited something really obnoxious from his mother's side of the family. Oh, holy packratness. Recall this post, which shows the apartment we took over from MIL *after my MIL moved out of it.* My MIL is not the biggest packrat in her family, either, although by some stroke of good fortune slovenliness does not also run in the family, so while there is an abundance of *stuff,* it is at least *clean stuff,* and even, for most of them (8 kids in that family, most but not all of them affected by the packrat genes) well-organized stuff.

So it has been horribly difficult to thow things out in our household. "We can use that" and "I have something in mind for that" and "but that's still good" and "that's still worth something" come up over and over and over again.

Did I mention I live in a TEEEEENY space? We're trying to make 525sqft work here. So for the most part it goes in the shed. And gets dusty and jumbled. Or it goes in one of his stashing-spots (a large box in the bookshelf, the area on top of the kids' clothing/toy closet), which have been overflowing lately.

This is becoming horribly frustrating because I need more space for my own textbooks and clinical supplies, and because I can use every spare inch to create spaces for my children to feel like they can do activities easily and comfortably - a really important thing when you're trying to allow them to direct their own homeschooling.

Now, from time to time he's flirted with turning off his packrat tendencies. Usually it is an itty bitty *blip* ON/OFF "just kidding" kind of flirtation. But on Friday he walked out of the house to see me with a massive "give away" pile on the grass, and said - "you know, normally I'd see that and be all - we can use those motors in those vaccuum cleaners...but I think I'm done."

Those of you who live with packrats (or have or whatever) will know how completely odd these words were, falling out of my husband's mouth. I covered the give-away pile with a large tarp, awaiting the day that I can drive them off to donate them (today or Monday, haven't decided yet), and he still hasn't rescued anything, even the perfectly good rotary fan or the really neat-looking garage door opener parts. YAY PERSONAL PROGRESS. YAY CLEANING OUT THE SHED!