Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Stream of

It is Wednesday. This means we are halfway through the week and about 1/8 of the way through my "to do" list. Blogging is not on my list of things to do this week, but hey, one of the things I love about blogging is that it affords me endless opportunities for creative procrastination.

So how about a little stream of consciousness blogging? Let's see...

Monday was Odyssey of the Mind Day again. They are making progress (and other things). The things they're making involve red plastic cups and dried split peas, 1,000's of cotton balls and cardboard boxes....Lots of hot glue-gunning and cutting things.

Speaking of cutting things, John came to pick up his little sister and his arrival caused some excitement because John used to look like this (Ellie using my flat iron to straighten his hair AGAIN):

And now he looks like this! One less person will be using my flat iron. And yes, he plays guitar. Very well. His mom plays, too. Even better. (I am all about the mommy power)

So speaking of haircuts - Joel (below) did not get a haircut. It is on my list of things to do this week, though. He says he is willing to go through with the operation because his tae kwon do sparring helmet is getting tight.
Speaking of Tae Kwon Do, Joel tested for his blue belt last night. Here he is being presented his belt by his instructor.

And speaking of instructor, here he is being silly with her. I'm not sure if the Vulcan salute is intentional or not. You never know with Joel. Anyway, he is bigger than she is but she can totally take him. Of this I have no doubt. And not because she is a trained and lethal black belt (she is) but because she is a mom. Of seven. So she can take anybody. Major mommy power.
Speaking of moms of 7, I used to know another mom of 7. But now she has 8. If she had 7, that would have been really perfect for my steam of consciousness blogging. It would have been a really smooth transition. But if she had stopped at 7 I don't know who would be dusting my floors every Monday and Thursday during Odyssey of the Mind. Because that is what #8 does; he crawls around my floor collecting dust, food, and the occasional chokable item...His mom is coaching the other Odyssey team that meets at my house. There are two coaches for that particular team, and the other coach brought me the world's largest honking chunk of cauliflower from her garden (truly. i wish i had sat it next to the empire state building so you could see how big it is)
Speaking of gardens, we have a lame garden. I have one spinach plant growing.
My one spinach plant hardly feeds our family of 7. That is ok. Because I have something of value to trade for things like gargantuan heads of cauliflower.

We trade our eggs....which are gathered by Camille

...who is pecked by the hens...

...who are guarded by Freddie Mercury...

....who is one fine looking rooster.

I am done. Because any time you can end a blog post with the words "fine looking rooster", you should do it. It would be a crying shame not to. My stream of consciousness has run out, anyway.
An Unconsious Sardine Mama

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Lost in a Crowd

At about 5:00 this morning I was clinging to the edge - both literally and figuratively. Figuratively, because I have had an absolutely insane week where I have been surrounded by tens of thousands of people, following a week where I was blissfully out in the middle of nowhere with very little to do.

And I was clinging literally, because there were three humans (and one big dog who thinks he's a little dog) sharing one bed. There was a foot in my back that belonged to my horizontal son, pushing me to within 1 millimeter or so of actually falling onto the floor, and my knees were pulled up under my chin (yes, we're talking fetal position) because the dog had taken up the lower half of the bed. Since sleep was not really possible at this point, I had time to ponder the past week and all of its goings-ons.

On Monday we participated in the nation's largest Martin Luther King March. I LOVE doing this. There were an estimated 85,000 people taking this 3-mile stroll with us.This year, obviously, there was a lot of excitement and energy infused in the crowd. People were crying and shouting in celebration of a REALLY BIG PART of the realization of THE DREAM. The next day would be Obama's historic inauguration.

I say "part" of The Dream is realized, because I don't think it has been fully realized, even with the inauguration of the first African American president. Dr. King's dream was for all of God's children. And all of God's children are not walking in the light of justice and equality. Not yet. Our family marched with the San Antonio Interfaith Darfur Coalition. My kids carried the banner with their STAND chapter. STAND is the student-led division of the Genocide Intervention Network. Ellie and Joel are core members and co-founders of the first homeschooling chapter in the nation. We hoped to raise awareness about the ongoing genocide in Darfur, Sudan and many of our fellow marchers signed postcards to be sent to President Obama. Of course, you do not have to go all the way to Africa to find people fighting for justice and equality. Some of our very good friends marched for Gay/Lesbian rights, and various other causes.

Mostly, I believe, people participate in this march for the opportunity to reenact some of our nation's history. San Antonio's MLK March begins beautifully and symbolically. It is kicked off as a trash truck, followed by the "Rosa Parks Bus", drives silently down the street. (This is not the "real" Rosa Parks bus, by the way.) The marchers line the street, waiting for the vehicles to pass so that they can jump in behind the first line of arm-linked marchers (usually a line of VIP's that includes the mayor).

It is a beautiful feeling to march along singing "We Shall Overcome" with 80,000 of your nearest and dearest friends, most of whom you've never met, before. And even though you're marching in joy and celebration, or at the very least, without an ounce of fear, it is very easy to imagine what it must have felt like to have marched during the Civil Rights Movement. You can almost feel those brave souls walking along beside you, almost hear their voices raised in song...the crowds lining the sidewalks and streets, however, are not yelling angrily at you - or throwing things at you - or spitting on you. They are smiling and cheering and the horns on the big trucks on the overpasses are honking in support...and you're so glad to have these ghosts marching along with is nice to think that they know what has come to pass...

At the end of the march the crowd gathers in a large park to listen to speakers and enjoy entertainment, food, etc.
The march is a beautiful way for me to show my kids the past, present, and future all marching side by side. They are able to see with their own eyes that struggles for human and civil rights are not to be undertaken, overcome, and cast aside. They are ongoing struggles to be dealt with on a daily basis, both at home and abroad. Luckily, we have people like Gandhi and King, who paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we might know how to achieve our goals peacefully, through non-violent means. If you're of the Christian persuasion, you can add Jesus to that company, as well.

The rest of my week was not nearly as exciting, but just as exhausting (and crowded). This is what's known as "the Odyssey time of year" around here. So I have two separate Odyssey of the Mind teams meeting at my house twice a week. This means there are up to 19 and 20 children spending several hours at my house, armed with paint, hoola hoops, bubble wrap, and glue guns.
The younger siblings add to the mix by being armed with NERF you can see from the pic below:
Yes, this is what is known around here as the "Madonna and Child Portrait". What can I say? She was the first baby. Jasper has never had his portrait taken.

I would tell you what the Odyssey teams are working on, but then I'd have to kill you. They go to competition in February.

In addition to Odyssey of the Mind meetings at my house, I also host our homeschool co-op. This involves four families. It is not too bad - just a mere 11 children and 5 adults.

I enjoy co-op immensely. I love being with the kids because, with the exception of Jasper, they are all enthusiastic learners and it is just flat out a ton of fun. I also enjoy the hectic "lunch hour" where we run around like ants in my kitchen between the microwave and the table - talking and laughing and occasionally solving the world's problems and learning a little bit of Latin or Greek.

I guess what I truly love about homeschooling (besides being with my kids and being active in their educations) is the fact that I am constantly learning, too. It seems that my intellect is always engaged in one issue or another - thinking about how to answer any one of a multitude of questions on a daily basis.

The teens and I discussed Alexis de Tocqueville - the middle kids and I finally advanced to the fall of Rome (which left me teary-eyed, I swear!) in World History and are thrilled to be moving on to the Middle Ages. The little guys and I tried yet another unsuccessful science experiment but it required cutting gluing so they were happy.

My dear friends spent their time teaching my children computer programming, art, and Spanish, while my dad spent his day off (as he will be doing every Friday) teaching the high-schoolers biology. Even though it is a tad bit exhausting, co-op is the perfect way to start my weekend because it tends to wash away all of the doubts and frustrations experienced throughout the week. In short, it reminds me why I love homeschooling my kids. (Yes, sometimes I need to be reminded that I love it).

Look at that! One little blog post and I'm feeling less crowded. My week was busy. But it was good. I was surrounded by friends, family, and hopeful people. I'm going to uncurl from the fetal position now...get a cup of coffee and let my life engulf me.

Thanks for looking and listening! And let me hear how you've spent your week. And if you want to read more about our Odyssey teams and see some cute pics - go to 9 Texans and check it out. For more pics and purdy words about the MLK March (and probably some Odyssey stuff, too) visit my friend and her "Shaggy Boys".
Sardine Mama

Friday, January 16, 2009

Peace, Rocks, and Tequila

I have great news! I found my Van Halen t-shirt! It was in our travel trailer where it (along with many other items) has been since our last vacation. That was just the cherry on the sundae for what was a totally fabulous trip. OK - so this is going to be a day-by-day journal type of a thing.

We went to Big Bend National Park.

It is a full 10-hour drive from where we live in Texas (near San Antonio) to the park, which is also DUH still in Texas. This is a hard concept to grasp for some of you folks who live in little states (not that there's anything wrong with that). Texas really is big. And Big Bend National Park is big. It is over 800,000 acres. It is one of the largest, most remote, and least visited national parks in the Lower 48. It is also my spiritual "home". Because my mother's family established a homestead within the park in 1912, it is also somewhat of a physical home for me. My grandmother grew up out there, on a ranch in the desert where you could go weeks without seeing another soul. They had a large family and she used to brag that all of the children lived to adulthood. This was an accomplishment in that wild country where, if you fell ill, you were pretty much on your own, and raids from Mexican bandits were not uncommon. In fact, my grandmother told us that they kept a stocked cave in nearby Nugent Mountain, and they had to use it one evening when a neighboring rancher rode up on horseback to tell them that raiders were coming. They left dinner on the table and went by horseback to the cave, where the family spent the night. My grandmother's older brother was not home when they fled and she was terrified he was going to come home in the middle of the raid. But he came arrived shortly after they left, saw dinner on the table, and knew exactly what to do. So he met them at the cave and all was fine.

My grandmother's parents remained on the ranch until they were forced off by the government during the establishment of the national park. They were one of the last families to sell in 1942. I understand that the land was "sold" to the state for less than $2 an acre. They then relocated to Marathon, Texas, where they already maintained a home, and which is the gateway town to Big Bend National Park. But before the the exodus of the ranchers, my own mother spent her childhood summers visiting her grandparents out in the middle of that beautifully barren desert, and it was one of her favorite places to be (and still is, I like to think).

In the long run I believe that establishing the national park to preserve this beautiful area of the state was a great thing to do. I am thrilled to be able to take my children out there and find it just as it is. And the ranchers (including my family) did irreparable damage to the land through over-grazing.

We used to be tent campers/backpackers, then we moved to a small pop-up camper when we had our first child, then we moved on to adding a tent to the pop-up camper as we continued to have kids, and then we became total sell-outs and bought a travel trailer. And travel trailers come with, um....heaters. I know. I said we were sell-outs. Where we camp there is no electricity or water hookups. But we manage with these, our lovely solar panels.

There are several campgrounds within the park. The most popular with the non-sell-outs is The Basin. It is in the mountain area of the park and it is GORGEOUS. Here is a picture I took of "the window" with a storm moving in.

But our trailer is too long to pull up to the Basin. So we stay in Rio Grande Village which is close to my family's homestead of Dugout Wells. It is my favorite place and maybe that is because it is so close to "home".

This year Ellie slept in a tent because well...she really doesn't like being in the trailer with all of us. Go figure.

On our first day my dad whipped out a Herb Alpert CD. The kids had never heard of Herb Alpert. After the initial groaning, they took to him very well...almost too well. "The Lonely Bull" was definitely the theme song for this trip.

Our first day out was spent going on an off-road excursion. The van/bus we currently drive is not a 4-wheel-drive vehicle. But we mostly ignore that. It has high clearance. So we headed to Glenn Springs and made it just fine, although we had a few rough spots to conquer. Glenn Springs was a settlement with a post office and there was a cavalry stationed there to protect the settlers from the Mexican raiders. During a shoot-out between said bandits and cavalry soldiers, one of my distant cousins was killed in the crossfire. He was an 8-year-old deaf child who had wandered out during all of the excitement. There is a small cemetery on top of a hill and one of the graves is supposedly his. We can't be sure which one, but there is a small grave and we treat it as if it is his.

From the graveyard we could have hooked up with a road called Black Gap. We did it the last 3 years, but Jeff felt that we had used up all of our luck in that regard. It is a truly treacherous and wonderfully fun road - but it is really stupid for us to take it in the van. Stupid stupid stupid. Here is a pic of last year - you know, of reattaching our cargo carrier after going through a particularly rough spot.
So we took the River Road instead and drove on over to Mariscal Mine, which is set into the side of Mariscal Mountain. A ghost town lies scattered about its base. Mariscal Mine is haunted. Because I say so.

Back at camp we had a perfectly lovely and terribly cold, night. You have not seen stars until you have been out in the desert with absolutely no light pollution. It is so beautiful it hurts. And it really hurts to know that the same stars are shining, totally hidden, over our house every single night. It is nice to go out in the desert once a year to be reminded of what our sky "really" looks like.

The next day was a hiking day. We went to the kids' favorite spot of Cattail Falls. This is a awesome hike that takes you through hard desert until you come to a crack in the mountainside that holds a totally different little world. As soon as you enter the temperature drops at least 10 degrees, there are pools of water and fern and trees growing everywhere....and occasionally....a gigantic waterfall. This year we enjoyed but a trickle. But a couple of years ago we were able to see the real is a photo of what we saw that day.

My dad will be 80 years old this year. He hiked most of the way; but decided to stop at the gigantic boulders rather than attempt to climb over them. We were all fine with this until a dude showed up who was 85! He was a great guy. I wish I had gotten to talk to him longer - he was truly amazing and inspiring. So speaking of amazing and inspiring, old Eugene (my dad) is stuck back at the rocks, right? Well, we're nothing at all if not a little competitive so I said to Jeff, "Go get the old man. For God's sake he's being outdone by an 85-year-old!" So Jeff went and got Eugene and helped him over the boulders and our family pride was spared.

A couple of years ago when we were walking back to the van on this trail, we heard a mountain lion roar. How do I know it was a mountain lion, you ask? Because every little bit of my DNA knew. My cells were shouting, "Predator! THAT is a predator. And you are FOOD. Run! No, freeze! No, run! No, wait, don't move an inch..." etc etc. It was an awesome sound in the way the word awesome is meant to be used. It echoed off the canyon walls (you know, just like on TV). We had seen big tracks and little tracks together. So we knew this was a mama. And she had most likely been watching us the entire time. We hiked back in the best way a blob of terrified people clinging to each other (there were 10 of us) can move down a trail that is meant to be taken single-file....

Back to current trip: The following day was another off-road day. We took the Old Ore Road, stopping at the graveside of Juan DeLeon....a man who was murdered by in a long-standing feud between two families. As is the custom, we left pennies on his marker. We continued on until we came to the Ernst Tenaja, where we enjoyed a short hike to the "hole" (or tenaja).

We are very small on top of a ridge leading down to the tenaja, which is full of water and very deep. You don't want to slip and start that slide...And here is some camera-schmoozing among the amazing rock formations.

I know. He's cute. But he's about to throw that rock he's holding....
Later on, we drive along a plateau with a steep drop-off on either side. Here is Joel, using his little video cam. I'm yelling, "Don't step back! I mean it! Stop! NOW."
We spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the drive back to a paved road, and we made a stop off at Dugout Wells (our family homestead) to enjoy dinner. This is a great night for us, and has become a family tradition since my mom's death. Dugout Wells is considered a desert oasis, and there are large trees growing there (planted by settlers - probably my great-grandparents) and a picnic table, windmill, nature trail etc. But the best part about Dugout is the view. In the distance rise the majestic Sierra del Carmen mountains, in Mexico. As the sun sets, they turn brilliant shades of pink and orange. My mother used to sit on her grandparents porch and watch this nightly entertainment the way my kids might watch a TV show. Later, it was the spot where she and my dad would enjoy a glass of wine while watching the sunset. My dad still loves to quietly watch the mountains turn. We can't see her, but I know my mom is by his side. These mountains are etched by laser into my mom's tombstone. And turning the other way, as the sun sets, we see lovely silhouette of the windmill (I love windmills, don't you? When I see this windmill from miles away, it says, "You're home!") with Nugent Mountain in the background.

We built a charcoal fire (no wood - fire hazard) and heated up "footballs" (my mom's recipe of pastries stuffed with cabbage/meat/mushrooms),...and sat around trying to stay warm and listen to the night and watch the stars....We also toasted with some tequila and even summoned the spirits of the ancestors by name...We believe they joined us. They were a quiet bunch even in life - so it was hard to tell.

When we were leaving, the moon was just starting to rise. Fabulous. After it was up we all broke out into applause...for which my dad called us "lunatics". Get it?

Back in the van, we popped Herb Alpert back in, just in time for "Rise", where we sporadically clapped like white people to the approximate fourth beat of every measure...all the way back to our campsite.

The next day (are you still with me?) started with a gourmet breakfast made by Jeff, which included homemade camp bread cooked in a dutch over over the coals (in my grandfather's dutch oven that used to be used on trail drives and hunting excursions).

Camille got a little sketching time in before we headed out.
And then we were off for another hiking day. And this was MY favorite trail. This is my favorite trail not because of what rests at the end of it (I don't always even go all the way to the end) but because of what rests about 3/4 of the way down. My rock. It is totally My Rock. It is a big, flat rock that juts out over a valley. If I were a Native American, this is where I would sit to receive visions. This is the rock I go to in my mind's eye when I meditate. It is what I think about when I need a sense of peace. So you can imagine how it feels to actually physically sit on it once a year. Beautiful. Here is the path leading down to my rock. You can hardly see it - it is pretty rugged. You have to WANT to get to that rock.

And here is the view from my rock. I like to close my eyes, meditate awhile, and then open them to be stunned by the view, which I can never quite recreate in my mind's eye.

Jeff understands my need to commune with this rock and he took the kids way up ahead of me on this trail, so I got a solo hike, for the most part. I thought about so much on this hike. As with most moms, the passage of time is so painstakingly present for me from year to year. All I have to do is look at the faces of my children. They change so much and so quickly.

I walked this path as a teen. I walked it as a childless woman. I walked it as a pregnant woman (more than once). I walked it with a nursling or two strapped to my chest, struggling along behind the love of my life and whoever he was currently carrying on his back. And this year I walked it as a mom of five, one of whom is growing steadfastly into an adult, one of whom I barely recognize because he has changed so much in the past 2 months....there was no baby in my womb and no more babies on the way; there was nobody to nurse, no warm bundle strapped to my back or chest. Before me lay an empty trail and I found myself utterly alone for the first time in a long time....on this trail of mine. Every now and then I glimpsed a sight of Jeff up ahead, wearing a backpack baby carrier....and it was empty. The "baby" walked beside his dad. The last baby. The carrier was symbolically and physically empty.

My soul felt trapped and freed at the same time in taking in this sight. My head spun with the speed of time and its relentless passing. But then I looked up. And the scene before me - the mountains, the rocks, the blue sky, the cliffs - it was all the same as it had always been. Stable. Locked down. I had to touch it and smell it to remind me where I was in all of this. And then I was able to walk along quite peacefully with all of the ghosts of "me", reminded that change is but an illusion created by the things that flow erratically across the earth - and the physical part of our existance is merely one of the "things". The real part of us is the bigger part. The part that is as big and unchanging as the mountains, rocks, and sky. My children and I are not changing. Not really. In some part of me I have known them forever, and forever reaches behind and ahead, simultaneously. We just are. And always will be.

I know. Pretty deep. See why I like my rock? It makes me smart and stuff.

Finally, we arrive at our last day. (Thanks for making it this far - the best part is coming). After a leisurely day spent driving around the park, taking a really short hike, and picnicing in the Basin - which is totally NOT desert and has a high elevation with junipers and pines and all of that stuff (this contrast is one of the things Big Bend is known for)...we ended up at The Best Place On Earth. It is also called the Hot Springs.

The Hot Springs are just that. Hot Springs. In 1909, J.O. Langford travelled out to the Big Bend Country because he was in poor health from bouts with malaria and had heard about the hot springs and their curative powers. After 21 days of taking daily soaks in the springs, he found himself cured. He decided to open up a "spa", if you will. He and his wife and their daughter, (named Lovey) built a motel and bath house. And people came! It became quite the spot for awhile. You could pay 10 cents/day or $2 for the 21 day plan. The store and post office and motel still stand, as do remains of Langford's home. To get to the springs you walk down a path that follows the Rio Grande. Along the path are petroglyphs, reminders that the springs were used way before JO Langford ever set foot there.

Some years, the river is too high and it overflows the springs (all that is left of the "bath house" are some tubs and the ruins of the walls - so if the river is high it simply overtakes it). You can't get into the springs when that happens, and you wouldn't want to soak in the unfortunately polluted Rio Grande, anyway. Sometimes the path itself is too water-logged to make it down to the springs. So you never know what you are going to find and when you are able to walk down there and actually soak in the springs it is quite a treat. Last year the Rio Grande's level was just a few inches below the remains of the wall. In the picture of the springs from my previous post, it looks as if the river is right to the top, but it isn't. This is a picture from last year, I didn't take my camera down to the springs this year.

This year, the water was probably 3 feet below the walls. You can see a small portion of the Sierra del Carmen mountains from here, while soaking next to a small section of rapids, a mere stone's throw from Mexico. You also never know who you are going to find soaking in the springs. During Spring Break we are told the springs are often full of drunk college kids. We avoid all spring break dates (another great thing about homeschooling) so have never had to suffer through this. One time we witnessed a Mexican family carry an ailing elderly man to set him gently into the springs while praying....we prayed, too. Another year I had a lovely conversation with an old-timer who finally said his goodbyes and then stood up to reveal he was totally nude, of course. Last year we're pretty sure we soaked with a fugitive who had come across the river. He was American but looked pretty rough and definitely was not a tourist. Was not chatty. He was there for an honest-to-god bath, which he enjoyed and then quietly went back across the river. This year we met a lovely couple from Sweden, who left shortly after our arrival (we tend to scare people off). They did tell us that the genetleman they had been soaking with previously had been nude. This was not alarming news for us. If there is any place on earth where a man should be able to take his clothes off and soak as God intended, it is here at The Hot Springs on the Rio Grande in the company of fugitives, Mexicans, Swedes, timeless spirits of those who have gone before, and the occasional large homeschooling family.

We soaked for an unbeleivable 1 1/2 hours. The water temperature is 105 degrees. My dad, who sat outside the springs in a chair, was wearing a coat and hat and was mildly chilled. So we're talking a nice, steamy soak. Due to the recent flood, the silt levels were high, so I had to repeatedly remind the little guys to sit quietly and not stir it up. They kept having to sit out on the sides when they became too red in the face, and their skin would steam. The sun set on us, the darkness came up fast, and we found ourselves struggling back up the path (still steaming) with a little flashlight. This is my other spot I go to in my mind, so to soak for an hour and a half in the real thing was a dream come true.

Back at camp it was downright cold, although I was so heated up that it took awhile for me to feel it. Once I did, I was quickly inside my favorite wool poncho. The wool poncho was bought about 30 years ago in the town of Ojenaga, Mexico. Ojenaga is not a tourist destination, it was a place we just ended up, once. And bought this poncho. It is like wearing a wool rug - it is actually thicker than a blanket. It is soft and WARM. It is one of my favorite things :). We had a few more tequila shots and built a charcoal fire to roast marshmallows. The problem was that the little kids were so pooped they missed the marshmallow roasting, entirely. Sitting in that hot water can zap the energy right out of you. For the little guys, it was basically their life force energy. For me - it was strictly negative energy. All the yucky stuff just washed right out, leaving me almost high. Ahhhh....I'm missing it, already.
Anyway - so that was our last night and it was a cold one. It got down to 21 degrees. The next morning we packed up uneventfully and headed home. As soon as we left the park boundaries, the electrical gadgets came back on. We stopped for dinner in Uvalde, Texas, where my mom went to high school and where we were only 2 and a half hours or so from home. I had on my bandana and couldn't really take it off since it had been on my head all week. Ellie had one on because she was covering up dirty teenager hair, and Camille had one on because Ellie and I had one on. Jules and Jasper were wearing pants at least 5 inches too short - Joel had terrifying hair. Nobody knew we had been camping in the wilderness for a week. We drew stares. My bandana-clad teenager was mortified. She looked at me, her bandana-clad mother, and her bandana-clad sister and filthy brothers and said, "The Homeschoolers Go Out For Dinner". Yeah, we were a sight, that's for sure.

OK - well if you read this entire thing - that is really something. If you didn't, it was great to write it, anyway. Oh! And if you read the whole thing, you might as well go over to Social Skills - Who Needs 'Em? and read my blog there, which has nothing to do with Big Bend National Park and everything to do with lessons learned from Sex and the City. I have, so far, received two scathing comments from angry women who said I couldn't write worth a hoot. I'm not sure why they were angry about it :). So don't leave me hangin' with those!

Signing off from home is a More Relaxed Sardine Mama

Friday, January 9, 2009

Off to the Middle of Nowhere - Thank God!!

Sometime this week I will be at my favorite place on earth...soaking in the hot springs along side the Rio Grande in Big Bend National Park.

Yes! I am heading off on vacation!! Like now. Everyone is yelling at me to hurry up. Don't be jealous, though. The kids are coming. And we're camping.

I have had a horribly hectic and insane week. I blogged at Cruise down to my blog - "Social Skills - Who Needs 'Em?" You must read it. It has the word "sex" in it like 6 times. I know, right? Exciting. Leave me massive comments.

I have asked the housesitter to blog for me but she is unlikely to do so as we have added 1 dog and 25 chickens since she last did this. I think she's going to be busy.

I wll try to blog from Study Butte, which is officially out in the middle of nowhere but they do have "access".


Sardine Mama