What is a monkeybox?
When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
So, here's the big unveiling of the living room. Ready? Here goes...Oh, yeah. Nice huh? Let's just say that I have a bit of work to do! (Holy crap, what's wrong with that cat?????) Oh, and since some of you asked about the cats and the decorations. They looooove the Christmas tree. Our little girl, Little Lady likes to sleep in her bed on her back looking up into the lights and the tree. She will be under it literally all month. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Out of the blue, the School Counselor called and left a mesage asking if we had made our DECISION yet and gone over our CHOICES yet and blabbety-blah-blah-blah. I think the Superintendent called over there and they said, "Oh, no! We didn't TELL them to homeschool." What ever. I emailed her back because I have no desire to talk to anyone at the school and told her that we left that meeting with the impression that we HAD to homeschool. "Oh, of couse not!" she emailed back. Yeah, right. They are back peddling and covering their tracks. I am over it and ready to move on and so I shall. The BIG BOX OF HOMESCHOOLING supplies arrived today and most of it looks do-able. Some of it looks scary (life Science in particular - I do not need to know how to identify the stomach contents of a camel) but luckily the Math looks easier than what they were doing (not the actual Math, but HOW they were doing it). And, I was THRILLED to see that the Teacher's (that's me) Guide is twice as thick as the Student's Book. Woo-Hoo - I do not have to be a Math Mom. ;o) We've been working on Language and Writing. I let him write silly made up sentences because I think that shows his creativity. "The cat flew to the moon on a paper plate." Not realistic, yet correct grammatically and he can identify the parts of the sentence. So, maybe his creativity will spark. He is very creative, but afraid to show it at school. His usual sentence is "The cat is fat" or something less clever.
Whoops - I promised this wouldn't be a Homeschooling blog. ;o)
P.S. Svelte - I emailed you about a litle vintage swap. ;o)
Monday, November 26, 2007
Today I did the top shelf of the wall unit, the top shelf of the bookshelf and the table by the front door. Not much, but enough to make me start to be happy to see my new old treasures again. I have been very fortunate to find a lot of fantastic vintage Christmas treasures in the past few years. Before, my decorations consisted of new items from Wal-mart. Then I discovered the clearance sales at Target and got a lot of new things there. B, now I am totally into the vintage look and have been lucky enough to find plenty of good old vintage things at good prices plus a few new pieces that appear vintage. I got two cloche (cloches doesn't sound right??)after Christmas at Wal-Mart last year. I had hoped and dreamt of finding an old one, so I was pretty darn pleased to find a new one that looked old. All year, I have changed out the cloche from season to season and I'm happy to have it back to a Christmas theme.
Here's the top of the bookshelf. I have a massive Santa collection, but I manage to squeeze it all on a four shelf bookcase. It takes hours and every one has to be in just the right spot or they won't fit. It took me over an hour to do just the top shelf today. These are my woodland Santas. I love them all, but the fat gourd guy in front really takes the cake. I have a lot of Santas made from other things - crushed can, okra pod, acorn, stick, rock, gourds, paint brush, spool, fishing bobber, etc. I'm always looking for a new one each year. This summer If ound two Santas painted on tree bark.
This is the little cabinet by the front door. After I put it all together, I realized that every single item was thrifted throughout the last year or so. (Well, the basket was a wedding gift, but that started my whole oak splint basket collection that I have thrifted over time). All the vintage Shiny Brite ornaments in the basket came from a sale this summer -five dozen for 25¢ total. The vintage Christmas postcard was from a yard sale for 10¢. (I have about a dozen of them and they are in a tree shaped Christmas Card holder that was a display in an store. I haven't gotten a photo of that yet.) The pink bottle brush tree was at the thrift last Christmas for 50¢ and the composition faced Santa was a truly remarkable find at $1.00. The little celluloid Santa and boots are old candy containers - thrifted for 25¢ each.
I bought the lamp this summer and hadn't really found a home for it yet. It was $5.00 at a yard sale on a very, very hot Saturday afternoon. It is made out of a cool old jar with a wooden handle. I have picked up all othe old miniature Shiny Brites at thrifs, yard sales and anywhere I could over the years. Since I have always had small places to live, I have collected small ornaments. Love, love, love the lamp full of ornaments. The Shiny Brite pick on the lampshade was from a yard sale this summer - 25¢ for a gallon sized ziploc bag full of new old stock Shiny Brite pics.
Last year I participated in a vintage Christmas swap - all sorts of decorations and vintage goodies. I had more fun gathering up that swap and opening the treasures I received. I looked for a similar swap this year, but never found one. So, is anyone interested in a swap????? Vintage Christmas anything. I'm just looking for one person to swap with me - not a whole swap with lots of people. Although, if others are interested, I'll see what I can do.....
PS to Ottermom - Thanks for saying I sound like my old self. I feel like my old self again. That was nice to read. Thanks! ;o)
Sunday, November 25, 2007
This is a set of two big carved wooden bowls. Those are five very big oranges win the smallest bowl. So, they are big bowls! I love hearts in unique forms - not the cutsey country hearts. The smaller one has yellow tissue paper decoupauged on the inside and blue on the bottom. I really only wanted the larger bowl, but it was $4.00 and the smaller one was $3.00 for a total of $7.00 - or the tag said, "2/$5.00". So, I spent the $5.00 and will "fix" the tissue paper thing.
I found this little handmade quilt in amongst the stinkyola bed linens at the Super Cheap Thrift Store for 75¢. I know, can you believe it? 75¢ cents! I washed it and it is no longer stinkyola.
These vintage Christmas items all came from the S.C.T.S. too. I don't know if those are Gurley Candles or not, but for 25¢ each, I took a chance. That's a little blowmold over on the side that was 25¢ too. The Santa in the middle is an Original Peter Figuren. He laughs and squirts water out of his mouth. I knew he was quite a find when I grabbed him, but he wasn't priced and they have a "No Price, No Sale" Rule. But, when I checked out, the lady said, "Oh, a quarter outta do it". (Oh, Bless you kind lady.) The tin cookie cutters were 10¢ and I needed them like a hole in the head, but I cannot leave vintage cookie cutters. And especailly at 10¢ each! ;o)
Friday afternoon, I ran to the Dollar General to get my Grandmother some things before she came over wtih my family for our Thanksgiving Dinner. (Yes, on Friday). She needed six things she told me, but she failed to tell me that she wanted 4-12 of EACH item. So, I eneded up with an overflowing cart and the carts at DG are particularly small in the first freaking place. I had six 6 packs of Pepsi balanced on the end of the cart and I chose to jump the curb instead of walking down to the thingamabob that lets you walk out into the parking lot. So, I am sure you have already figured out that the cart went head over heels over the curb and spilled out all over the parking lot. Oh, and that wasn't bad enough. Do you know what happens to cans of Pepsi when they hit the asphalt at a high rate of speed? Well, they don't explode, but they get pinpoint holes in them and they squirt at a high rate of speed in the direction of your son that is freshly washed, combed and dressed for Thanksgiving Dinner. Squirt, squirt, squirt. Lord, what a MESS. And, everything we bought was saturated in Pepsi. So, we had to rebag it all and clean it up and get it back in the cart and to the car. Meanwhile, male customers are coming and going and avoiding eye contact with the cranky gal cleaning Pepsi off her kid. "OH NO - I GOT IT! Thanks anyway." Yeah, right. Chivalry, my a$$.
By the time we got it all cleaned up and in the car we literally had about five minutes to get home before the guests arrived. So, when I spotted a YARD SALE sign by the street, of course I stopped! I made a mad dash up to the tables and there was a lot of cool old stuff just like I like. I barely had any money with me at all. I wasn't supposed to be yard saling!
I got this little souvenir ceramic shoe by McCoy dated 1949 on the bottom, the can of Carbonox Gas Lube, the plate from Storybook Land and the box pictured in the back. The box is from "Hi-Fi Long Playing Letters" whatever that is, but it is old and sweet with pink quilted lining. What was inside the box? These wonderful vintage silk pajamas from Japan. The lady said her husband bought them during WWII and sent them home to her. (How she could sell them is beyond me).
Under a table I spotted this 5 gallon Planters Peanut Oil tin. Planters items sell well and I would assume this would be a less found item. But, I haven't looked it up yet. I paid $7.00 for everything. Well, I scrapped up $6.75 and a handful of pennies and they took it.
BUTTONS. Oh, I love a good tinful of buttons. They told me it was $2.00, but I had already given them every penny I had - literally. I went to the car and let the digging begin. Between the glove box, under the seats, my emergency coin pouch, the bottom of my purse and some change The Bean had stuck in the cup holder, I managed to scrape up $1.80 and another handfull of pennies. I was desperate to JUNK and I needed those darn buttons! I got 'em! I haven't looked at them yet though. Some look like Bakelite and there are a bunch that look like little lemons. Should be fun to sort through when I have some free time. Perhaps in 2010??
I found a HomeSchool Curiculum that I am happy with and it should be here later in the week. I found some materials at Sam's too, so we are going to start with that this week. I had a difficult time finding Home School materials that weren't Religion based. I just didn't think that would be the right way to go if we want to go back to school next year. But, I finally found some that is supposed to be FUN, INFORMATIVE and (yes!) EASY ON MOM. I won't be turning this into a Homeschool blog, don't worry. Just the usual - Me and The Bean and Junkin'!
Monday, November 19, 2007
And so it goes. I decided to contact the Superintendent and let him "fix" it. I knew he would. I knew the school was srong and you can dispose of a child. I had all my emails printed out, my forms from the doctors, my "No Child Left Behind" at the ready, etc. I knew they were wrong. He would fix it.
I called to set up an appointment and the Secretary told me to call the Teachers and Principal to "fix" the situation before I contacted the Superintendent. I briefly explained my problem and she connected me to him. He was not friendly, did not seem to recognize who I was and sided with the school immediately. He confirmed what I knew all along, they were concerned that his Benchmark Test Scores might be low and affect the school's scores. I knew it was all about the Benchmarks. He said they were concerned he would fail. That's what the school said too. That's the dumbest piece of logic I ever heard. "I knew the car would run out of gas, so I didn't put any in." "I knew the groceries would get eaten, so I didn't buy any." Brainiacs, they are. I told him that he should have had the opportunity to fail, the opportunity to have poor Benchmarks. "That's not our job" he said. Seriously. "That is not our job."
He asked how long Home Bound Teaching had been established. I told him the school had not ever set that up. He said then I had failed as a parent because it was MY job to set up Home Bound Teaching. WTF, I never ever heard of Home Bound teaching until about a week or so ago when the Counselor mentioned it and said that she needed to look into it because she didn't even know exactly how it worked. How am I supposed to set up Home Bound Teaching when my kid is out of sorts, sick etc.? No one even seems to care or remember that he was going through HELL over here and not just watching TV and eating candy. It is unforgiveable. I asked for asignments, papers to be picked up, reading assignments and none of the teachers ever acknowledged me. Not once.
I have decided to HomeSchool. I will not have any person say that I failed as a parent. I did no such thing. I will have no person tell my son that he is "beyond help." I will not take any more, pardon me, shit. No. No more. Not me.
This is not to say that this is the end of it. I still know they are WRONG and I am right. Thank you to Vax Girl for suggesting the University Law Department. That sounds like a fabulous idea. Something they can research and see who is right and who is wrong. Part of me wants to do this the remainder of the year, then go back to school. But, part of me wants to Home School permanently or tranfer to another school. Most of me just wants to pack up and move to a tropical island. But, that's not logical. I have too much Junk.
So, for this week, as there is no school for Thanksgiving anyway, we are in a school free, worry free all out Holiday-Palooza around here. We are going to bake a turkey and pumpkin bread and roasted potatoes and custard pie and cupcakes (I provide the desserts at all the family functions) and eat and celebrate and decorate and par-tay. No school, no worries. (Well, not vocally anyway. Inside I am boiling.) But that will not prevent me from getting out my vintage Christmas lovelies and decking out the tree, the walls, the shelves, the house, and hell, the cats if they will stand still.....
I will be Thankful that The Bean is fine and he is actually looking forward to HomeSchool. And, so am I. It will be alright. But, I am still mad.
Thanks again everyone.
Friday, November 16, 2007
The Bean feels better. Much better. (He still has the croupy cough, but who doesn't this time of year?) That is the good news.
The Bean's school set up a meeting with The Breadman and I on Wednesday to discuss "how to get him back on track."
We talked to The Bean and explained to him that he had done nothing wrong, he had been dealt a terrible hand the past six weeks or so, but we had it under control. He knew he might need tutoring and would have to work very hard. But, keep in mind that this is an all "A" with a "B" in Math child with a perfect behavior record. So, any work he needed to be done would be done by him and I would help over Thanksgiving Week and once school started again. We knew he would need to make up a lot, but some could just be left as is.
So, we meet with six teachers, the School Nurse (never did figure out why she was there), the Counselor and the Principal. The Counselor who had told me before that she is there for the child and the parent, crossed her arms across her chest and started talking about our "sickly child and his mental state." (Excuse me, he is not sickly. He nearly went crazy due to a drug interaction.) Then she says I (me) cannot guarantee that he will come back. (Uh, yes I can.) Then she says if he were to come back he could not miss on more day the entire school year. (Well, that would be our hopes too, but kids barf and spew and have fevers occasionally.)
Then, his Language Arts teacher crosses her arms across her chest and says, "NO! He is too far behind. He cannot catch up. He has missed too much." (Say, WHAT??? In the past six weeks (which he has attended many of those days, but his attendance has been sporadic) he has missed so much in one writing class that he is beyond repair??????) Another teacher chimes in that it would be hard to catch him up, but with time and hard work, it could be done. Two teachers said he could come back, jump back in and be fine. Another teacher never said a thing.
Then the Principal says, "You need to HomeSchool him. He is too far behind. He is a bright child and we would welcome him back next year." And then, they all got up and left the room. End of discussion.
So, the entire school is soooo concerned that he is behind and cannot catch up that they are willing to set him free with no promise of an education at all? Of course, I can Homschool, and I intend to do so, but what the expletive are they doing?
I cried the first day and I cried the second day, but today? Oh, today I am one pissed off Mama. On Monday I intend to call the Arkansas Board of Education and file a complaint. They made no offer of education to my son or helping him get back on track. They threw him out like a piece of trash. I took his books to school today and hardly anyone even acknowledged us. The Secretary called me "Ma'am." I have volunteered thousands of hours for this school and worked there three years. My son is a perfect kid at school and has earned reward after reward for good behavior and grades.
I have done a bit of research and found (as I assumed) that NO SCHOOL CAN DENY A CHILD AN EDUCATION. The only way they can throw him out is if he was suspended. And, our particular school has an in house suspension - if you are suspended, you go to school and are taught individually. Hell, he'd have been better off if I would have let the mental issues go full throttle and he would have taken a knife to school.
My research also shows that any child suffering from a physical or mental condition whether it be permanent or temporary MUST be given a complete and total education. And, if they do not do this, they can lose their Federal Funding.
I intend to fight this, but will I let him return to school? That, I am still unsure of at this point. They have hurt him. He did nothing wrong. How am I to believe they will treat him well or educate him fairly?
We moved to this town before I ever got pregnant so our child could attend this particular school. Now, they have forever changed our lives. His friends, his social life, his education, his fun, his life. It's all up in the air.
I am SO PISSED.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Yesterday I did have a minute to sneak over to a yard sale at a friend's house. She said they had no one come to their sale and she was packing it up. That was nearly noon and she had only sold a few things. The city made this new rule about signs being 15 feet from the Intersections, so people are putting signs in all crazy places and you really cannot see them. I've had a hard time spotting signs and I'm looking for them. Some people just drive by, see a sign and stop. They don't live and breathe yard sales. Can you imagine? Anyway, I spotted this quilt under a table in a box and grabbed it. She said it was probably close to 100 years old and all hand sewn and I knew it would be expensive. But, she asked if $4.00 was okay. Yep!
It needs an Oxi Soak, but I still think it's great. She thought it was a cutter, but it's really in pretty good condition. The edges have wear, but that's just part of an old quilt if you ask me.
I got his nice storage basket for $1.00. I've really taken to nice sturdy baskets for storage instead of Rubbermaid totes and the like. I don't know what I will store in it.
I might keep this in it.
Or I might keep this in it.
I got this jewelry box made out of a cedar log for $1.00. It smells great and is a piece of folk art. Not sure if I will keep it or take a chance on ebay with it.
And this little set of honeycomb Thanksgiving decorations set me back a whole dime. They are from 1986, which isn't true vintage, but still sorta vintage.
The Bean and I missed an opportunity for quite an adventure yesterday. The local Taco Bell burned to the ground. It caught on fire at 2:00 in the afternoon. They got all the customers and employees out, so that is a very good thing. The News said you could see the flames from mile away. Now, that would have been something to see! The flag was still in front of Taco Bell flying high today. It was cinged on the ends. I thought it was fitting to see a battle wound flag flying on Veteran's Day. I hope they keep it and fly it in front of the new one after they rebuild.
Friday, November 09, 2007
I went to a thrift today -the first in a long while. I stopped at two yard sales on the way, but it was noon and all that was left was a bunch of junk. Not my kind of junk, but real live actual Juh-unk. I did find a purse at one that was red "leather" and had a real actual phone on it. The receiver was the handle and the dial was on the front. It had a box inside that the cord attached to and you could hook it up to the wall outlet and use it. I would have paid $1.00 or $2.00 for it for a novelty or to try on ebay, but the guy wanted $8.00 for it. Too rich for my blood. I can't find one on ebay, so I don't know if I missed out or not. I'll just tell myself it was a Dudderoo.
I did find a few treasures.
All my treasures had a red theme today.
Bromwell's Sifter with perfect red wooden handle - $1.00.
Brite Prid Sifter with perfect red wooden handle - $1.00.
Androck Red Wooden Handle Pastry Blender - $1.00.
I never find cool old kitchen stuff at thrifts - and especially not in perfect condition. And, the the icing on the cake was that all kitchen items were 50% off. - So, 1.50 for all three items. Yea!
I got this fun old vintage tablecloth for $1.00. It wasn't priced, so I asked the lady, "How much for the tablecloth?" and she told me, "Fabric is $1.00" Well, fabric is more than $1.00 and so are tablecloths normally, but I took it and ran. It is very long and rectangular. Probably just a handmade tablecloth, but I like it just the same.
The Christmas items were also out on display. They save Christmas stuff all year then display it during the holidays. They get a lot of cool old vintage Christmas items there. I found a set of two little Japan Santa head cups for 50¢, a vintage Santa head ornament for 25¢, 2 fabulous Japan Santa Bobbleheads for $1.50 and a Gourd Santa for 25¢ for my "Santa's Made out Of Things" collection. (What? You don't have that collection????)
I spotted this giraffe (no pun intended) under a tble. I really, really, REALLY hoped and thought it might be another Steiff. Greedy thinking on my part. He isn't a Steiff as far as I can tell, but he is still a cute vintagey guy. He was $1.00. Did I ever mention that I sold the little Steiff turkey for $114.00? The one I paid 25¢ for? It went back to Germany and the buyer was thrilled.
Things that make The Bean happy this time of year:
We always search for Christmas Crunch, but this was the first time we ever saw Halloween Crunch. We found it after Halloween, but he still thought it was "Cool".
I have a Santa Collection and really need this guy!
Can you imagine the house that could accomodte him? He must have been 7 feet tall. I cannot believe I didn't take note of his price tag. He was at Sam's. They have the most fun huge stuff. I love it!
We went to see "The Bee Movie" this afternoon. It was funny. We went to a brand new fancy theater that serves real food, has a coffee cafe with wi-fi and all sorts of other non-movie related fancies. It was stadium seating, which we discovered , is the BOMB. We are not movie go'ers as I am just far to cheap and I hate crowds. But, we went during the Matinee pricing for $6.00. The dadgum smell of popcorn lured us to the counter with our eyes transfixed as I pulled my money out. A mere (*cough*) $12.00 later we had a bucket o'corn and two bottles of water. ("Come back for your free refill," the guy said. As If.) You can get a big sack of popcorn and and an Icee at Target for $1.10. And Target is right beside the theater. Makes me sick. Oh well, ya gotta live every once in a while. (I did sneak in some trick or treat snacks too.....)
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
The counselor and the doctors were certain that he was being bullied or scared or something. He assured me that nothing was out of the ordinary, he just felt different. So, then I started thinking about depression and scary things and really getting scared. So, I made an appointment with a therapist. Meanwhile, last night, I start thinking about the day this all started. September 26th. He was at school and had a clogged head, runny nose red eyes and was just miserable. The teacher and the nurse said it seemed to be allergies to them. I drove him straight to Wal-Mart, paid full price for Claritin-D ("Because it's the best," I said) and made him take one in the car on the way home. And every 24 hours since that fateful day, I have given him a Claritin D to stave off any allergies or head colds. And since that day, his stomach has hurt. Tests are fine. Stomach still hurts. Nerves have started to unravel. Partly from not feeling right plus having everyone tell him his stomach doesn't hurt and that it's in his head. "It's not in my head," he said, It's in my stomach." Smart kid.
So, I Google Claritin-D side effects. *Fatigue *Nervousness *Depression * Abdominal Pain* Emotional Liability: Uh, Hell-O. That is my kid in a nutshell. Then I call the Claritin-D hotline and they confirm those are side effects and they recommend discontinuing the Claritin. (No sh*t Sherlock, I already did that). I went to see the Pharmicist and he concurred that those are very much side effects of Claritin D. Crap.
Yep, drug interaction. A Chemical Imbalance. Stop taking the Claritin D and give him a few days for his blood and head to clear and we ought to be back at Square One again. Oh, Lord. Puhleeeeeze let this be it. We cancelled the Therapist visit after the doctor concluded it must be a drug interaction. Why, Oh Why didn't someone think of this before.......
So, HOPEFULLY *knock wood* salt over my shoulder, etc. THIS IS IT.
End of Subject.
Now, who do I bill for my diagnosis?
The Bean gets a CT Scan.
I'll be back in the near future to share an adventure or some junk. Or, God willing, B-O-T-H! ;o)
*Disclaimer: I don't have anything against Claritin D, it worked great on his allergies. I just wish someone would have mentioned this or figured it out a heck of a lot sooner.
Monday, November 05, 2007
The most awesome thing about the Battlefiled Park are the fabulous old trees in the park area around the old General House's and outbuildings. The colors never photograph as brilliant as they are in real life. But, they are still pretty.
I picked up this bouquet of leaves off the ground. I saw Martha smash the ends of leaves and soak them in Glycerin to preserve them once. Every year I think I will do it, but, I have never actually done it. Maybe next year?
The high today is to be near 80 degrees, but it will fall drastically throughout the night and only be 26 degrees in the morning. Talk about your frost on the pumpkin! Brrrr.
Friday, November 02, 2007
My Sister Swap partner's Halloween package arrived earlier this week. I am late in posting, but it has been a long week. ;o)
My partner is Laura at Beelicious. She sent me lots of fun goodies.
She posted these cute crocheted cupcakes on her blog and I secretly wished for one. My wish came true! Thanks Laura!
The leaves are beginning to really get pretty. This was just a small tree in the parking lot of Chick-fil-A the other day. The Bean and I plan on taking a road trip tomorrow to see the colors. The Breadman is working/napping/attending a football game, so we are sans Daddy.
We took the metal detector out in the yard today and made a mess of the yard digging in random places. Our major "find" was a dime from 1966 - my birth year. You'd be surprised what sort of things are out in your yard just under the surface. We found a door latch, a rusty spring, several old pop tops from cans, a steel can, some fishing weights and nails and screws. I doubt we'll ever find anything of value, but it's fun to play with it. We are taking it on our roadtrip tomorrow. I want to find a creekbed or somewhere to do a little treasure hunting. I detect and The Bean digs. We are easily entertained!
Have a good weekend!