water

We have no running water and so today is ‘Appreciate the Wisdom of Glam Band Cinderella Day.’ By which I mean: You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Til It’s Gone.

A water main broke sometime in the early morning hours yesterday near our house, and we haven’t had water since. The original estimate was that the water would be back on last night at midnight. I woke up this morning and it hadn’t come back on yet, so I called the city’s water department to find out the new estimated fix-it time.

“Hello,” I said. “I’m in southeast WaterMainFailuresville, and I was wondering if they had a new estimate on when the water might be back on.”

“Well, there was a massive leak in the water main,” the lady replied.

“Yes, I know. Yesterday they said it would be back on by midnight, but it’s not on yet. Is there a new estimate?”

“It’s going to be a long time,” she said. “It caused a sinkhole, and they had to replace 8 feet of pipe.”

“Wow,” I said, trying to downplay my slight feelings of panic at the word “sinkhole.” Sinkholes are the scariest. “When you say ‘a long time,’ does that mean it’ll be today or more like sometime next week?”

“It’ll be today.”

“OK. I’ll just continue to be unshowered in the meantime,” I said. I thought I said it lightly, but she didn’t take it that way.

“Look, we can not fix it and you can be without water for a long time or we can fix it and you can be inconvenienced for a little while.”

“Ummm… thanks for your help.”

So my point is: This menu plan may or may not hold up, depending on when the city gets the repair done.

Monday: Quesadillas
Probably chicken and black bean for most of the fan. Definitely just cheese for Poppy.

Tuesday: Sloppy Joes
Once upon a time I found the perfect crusty hamburger roll for these. I should’ve written down the brand, because now I can’t remember which one it was.

Wednesday: The grocery store
Kids eat free this week at one of our local groceries! And they have pretty great food, so we’re going to take advantage of the offer.

Thursday: Crispy garlic chicken
Maybe with au gratin potatoes, because there’s a box of them in the pantry.

Friday: Dinner with friends
I think we’re going to their house, but I’m not entirely sure.

Now I’m going to go over to the gym to take a shower! How’s your day going so far?

I’m linking this up with OrgJunkie.com’s weekly Menu Plan Monday thing.

I pretty much liked “The Book of Life”

Deborah Harkness' "The Book of Life"I read Deborah Harkness’ “A Discovery of Witches” way back in 2011, for the BlogHer book club. It was a pretty weird book about vampires, witches, demons (spelled “daemons,” which irrationally annoyed me) and historical documents, and I loved it.

I was excited when I learned that it was the first book in a planned trilogy, so I read the follow-up, “Shadow of Night,” as soon as it came out. I picked the final book, “The Book of Life,” up this week when I spotted it on the shelf at the library. “The Book of Life” came out in July, which is indicative of how much I enjoyed the second book. (Spoiler: Not very much.)

“The Book of Life” was a very slow-starter, but the action picked up about halfway through. Once it finally took off, I enjoyed it enough to delay making dinner and then stay up far, far too late reading it. And then today I let the kids have extra computer time so I could finish.

“The Book of Life” is a pretty weird book about vampires, witches, demons (still spelled “daemons,” which still irrationally annoys me and also there weren’t enough of them in this book), historical documents and genetics, and I mostly liked it. It was a satisfying conclusion to the trilogy, but but I found the romantic/obsessive bits wandering a little far into “Twilight” territory for my liking.

Astronomy (and “Star Wars”) activities for the homeschooled kid

In the Fall session of co-op, you may recall, I taught an astronomy / “Star Wars” class. Here’s a bit of what we did!

We started the “Astronomy and also some ‘Star Wars’ ” class at co-op by reading a Magic School Bus book called “Lost in the Solar System,” and we also read a little from “The Solar System” most weeks.

We made our own story cubes featuring “Star Wars” characters, planets and vehicles. Ours were made from card stock, but there’s a nice tutorial for wooden story cubes at RedTedArt.com.

astronomy3
We made suns to go with our solar system models. There was a sun with the solar system that I printed, of course, but the swirly painted ones we made looked so much cooler.

We made little Yoda puppets on sticks. They were painfully cute, and Pete’s been using his as a bookmark.

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We discovered new planets, which we wrote about and illustrated. This was probably my favorite activity from the class. The kids were really creative in describing their planets, and the craft activity was simple and sweet.

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We made constellation viewers. This one was also pretty successful. The kids very much enjoyed punching out the stars with the ginormous thumb tacks I bought.

In retrospect, it would’ve been better not to make it a mashup. I’m not sure I would’ve had enough activities to cover 9 weeks of “Star Wars,” though, so I suppose it’s just as well.

p.s. Heigh-ho, heigh-ho, it’s the end of NaBloPoMo!