Earlier in the year, I was going back and forth on what to do about Little Dude and Preschool. At the time, my pickings were slim due to a lack of transportation. Since the summer began, I have been driving Chris to work, which really opens up the possibilities of what I can do with the kids. It's not the greatest drive, but at the same time it's not the worst.

Anyway, back to preschool. Before I had the car all day, I decided to homeschool Little Dude. I figure I have been working with kids for years and I have a education degree, so why not. Plus it will save us a lot of money.

I know one of the big concerns with homeschooling is interaction with other kids. I have that covered!! Firstly, Little Dude has GG. They may not be the same age, but together they (sometimes) learn how to compromise, work together, etc. Our local library is also a wonderful place to interact. There is always something going on there for any age. Storytimes, themed parties, all kinds of stuff. Just going out in public can lead to interaction with other kids his age, especially the playground!

So, for the past week or so I have been getting stuff ready. I have the alphabet on the wall. Laminated, of course, to keep it safe. I have activity books and flash cards stashed away. And I found this great web site with a ton of ideas and lessons. We started our lessons today beginning with the letter "A". He already knows the letter because it's in his name, he just didn't seem to get the correct name. "A" is not really called "up, down, line across"! Then we made ants going up a letter "A" ant hill, and we ended with a letter search. That's the same thing as a word search, but with letters and not words.

It is now 6 hours later and he is pointing out the letter "A" all over the place! I am so proud of my little man! He caught on faster than I thought (sometimes he doesn't seem to be paying attention and then he surprises you).

Verizon and stuff

So here's my beef with Verizon.....

We had a land line. Never used it, but thought it would be wise to have one just in case. Well, the electric company was working on their lines one day and snapped the phone line to our house. They claimed they reported it to Verizon, but no one came out to fix it. About 2 weeks ago I finally got around to contacting Verizon to get the line fixed and restore our phone. I did it all online and the scheduled day for them to come was July 9th. I wasn't sure if someone needed to be home so me and the kids had a day in. Well, 5 o'clock rolled around and no Verizon (I wanted to go to the pool that day, too, so I was a tad upset). I called and explained what had happened. The customer service person (once I got through all the recorded menus) was very helpful. I was told Verizon would be out hopefully Friday morning, but definitely by 5 o'clock Friday afternoon. We got home from our concert (which was awesome) and noticed that they still hadn't fixed our problem.

First thing Monday morning I called them yet again. I explained our problem, again, and this time I was transferred to a supervisor. She apologized and said someone would be out that day and we did not need to be home, which is good because I was sick of waiting for them. By 5 o'clock, NO ONE HAD SHOWN UP!!!! I called after dinner and was on the phone for darn close to an hour! I explained the problem to the 1st person who transferred me to someone who could help me. The 2nd person dealt with Fios and couldn't help me and I was transferred back to the main menu and had to start over. The 3rd person I talked to had to transfer me to someone who could "help"me. I was transferred to a West Coast office. I live in Pittsburgh so that didn't do me any good. This person transferred me to the East coast office and again, this person was Fios related and transferred me back to the main menu....again!!! I had to hang up at this point because if you scream and swear at the recording, she says "I'm sorry. I don't understand you". I called back, talked to the, um...not sure how many people it is at this point, but he was very helpful. When he said he had to transfer my call I asked if he was sending me to a Fios person because I did that already and they can't help. He said no. Instead he transferred me to this b@*ch who claimed that my service was scheduled for July 14th. Needless to say, I hung up on her. BTW, I gave all of our information to each of these people so they could look at our file. You would think if the dates were screwed up somewhere along the line, someone would have noticed a little earlier.

So yesterday, Verizon was here and they finally fixed our problem. This morning I got a phone call from this lovely company. It was a recording saying that we will be credited on our next bill for the amount of time the line was down. Chris and I would have called ourselves and asked about this, but it would have taken 27 phone calls and we weren't up for that. And to conclude this mess of a story, a Verizon representative called after dinner and asked if I would mind taking a quick survey about our service that was done on July 10th. Notice the date? It's not correct at all!!! Her 2 questions - rate our service and would I recommend Verizon to anyone. Poor and no were my answers. I also gave permission for them to contact me and ask for more information about why I feel this way. Go ahead and call! I'll tell you every word of their screw-up!

On a happy note, Paige had her 1st of 2 pool parties tonight. This one was for soccer. She got to swim with one of her best friends and one of Mike's friends was also there. They also got to swim when it was dark. How cool is that?!?

Crazy Week

Wow! It's been a very crazy week! It started last Friday with the street fair. There was lots for the kids to do and free food, which I enjoyed! There was also the Battle of the Barrel, which, again, we lost. At least the kids had fun getting wet! Saturday was the 4th of July, which means the parade, cooking out, and fireworks. Seeing these things this year reminded me that Little Dude is getting older. He had so many questions about all of the events and that leads me to believe he was too young to remember last year.

The weather has been great, which means that we can enjoy the pool. The kids are fearless - they climb and jump off of everything, love amusement park rides, but are afraid of the water! We had GG take swim lessons a few months ago. It was the hardest thing for me to watch. The first lesson that I was allowed to watch, she clung to the instructor for dear life! By the end of the 2 week course, she jumped off of the diving board! Of course, the instructors were catching the younger kids, but I was so proud of her. Yes, I cried (after the near panic attack as she walked towards the board). Now Mike....he has no fear of the pool as long as it's the baby pool. The big pool...forget it, he won't go in! I think it might be time to look into lessons for him. Anyway, getting back to taking the kids to the pool. Last week me, GG, and my brother worked on getting Little Dude in the big pool. We finally got him to go down to the 4th step, but he wouldn't go completely in. Well, on Monday, GG finally convinced him to go in. And he did!!! We were all so proud of him! Now we can't keep him out of the pool.

The rest of this week was spent running around. Tuesday, Chris and I went to a concert with friends of ours. The show was great - possibly one of the best I've been to. And it was great to see a friend we haven't seen since high school. As great as it was, come Wednesday, I have never been so tired in my life! Thursday night the kids had a Pirate party at our library. They both wore their skull shoes and Little Dude brought his pirate hook. There was a treasure hunt, face painting, and they made pirate ships. Unfortunately I do not have pictures, but I promise it was loads of fun.

Tonight, Chris and I have yet another concert. We are both very excited to have a night to ourselves, but I hope tomorrow we aren't as tired as we were Wednesday. The last thing I need is to be that tired and be in a room full of kids. Yes, my kids have another library party tomorrow. This time it's a
Webkinz party, which GG has a ton of! Now that they have come out with Webkinz Jr., Little Dude has one to and he so happy to be able to join the party and show off Brownie Biscuit, his monkey. Don't ask about the name because we have no idea where he got it from!

Well, the kids are calling me to help them set up a game, so I guess I should wrap this up. Bye for now!