Saturday, October 23, 2010

This Has Been A Long Time Coming

The carpet is finally here!
It took Mr F and I an amazing 3 hours to empty all four bedrooms and the living room. How many weeks do you want to guess it will take us to put it all back? 3? 4? Our bathroom, dining room, kitchen and playroom look like storage units. I feel like we just moved in again.

This is what we put in our livingroom. It is a very dark moss green with a cut & loop texture. I love it. The color choice was very difficult. We needed dark to hide dirt (sliding door to outside) and the texture to hide wear and tear (there is a major walking path from the front door to the dining room cutting through here. We took our cues based on the staining of the previous carpet. It wasn't pretty and we do not want to pay this much money any time soon!

For the bedrooms we went with a light grey... touch of taupe... short pile carpet. I wanted a neutral but am not much of a fan of beige and didn't want to go the cream route because of the kids. This tone (being more cool) is well suited to our intended bedroom palate of cool pink, grey, and Kid's light blue. This short pile is unbelievably soft. Seriously.

Both of these are SmartStrand (made by Mohawk) from Lowe's. And they were not that expensive. We had looked at a high end independent store first and we could not afford their Mohawk SmartStrand and what we could afford was terrible low quality rough stuff. This is the same carpet we couldn't afford there and the price was lower than the cheap crap. SmartStrand is more stain resistant than Stain Master but have no added chemicals to make them that way, the stain resistance is part of the strand composition (as the name implies) instead of treated carpet, so they are super soft (also less fumes). We went with the highest end pad which is a solid pad instead of the glued up bits style... less glue... less fumes and off gassing. Plus it won't break down unevenly overtime. It is also the only pad you should leave down when you re-carpet if needed. So the little bit more (under $200 extra over traditional pad for the whole house) will more than pay for itself if we need to re-do any of these rooms.

And I'd like to give Lowe's a nod for giving us 10% off our entire purchase even though we never did get that coupon in the mail. Mr F told them about it and they gave it to us anyway.

And the installers (hired by Lowe's) did a great job. This is our 3rd time getting carpet in the AA area and this is hands down the best installation (even better than Merkel).

Everything looks so clean now... what with the lack of large bodily fluid stains and all!

On the unfortunate cat front... we've decided to put him down on Monday morning. We want to be sure we don't let this go on into suffering. Right now his movement is clearly inhibited but he can still eat a little and go to the bathroom in his litter. He can still be petted, but he can't move off the floor or play... just watch his brother. With the rate this has progressed, and the emotional toll of watching your pet die, we think ending this sooner rather than later is best.

Friday, October 22, 2010

So Obviously Things Are A Bit Intense

#1 Homeschooling: When, What, Where (DisneyWorld?!... just kidding... kitchen table)

This has been a hard, hard, time in the Furious house. Not hard like the 2 years in Asheville hard... but just *important* and *important* decisions can be stressful. You want to make the best decision you can. Of course, in our house, that means 100% of the pressure is ON ME. You might not have picked up on this yet... but, well, I make all the decisions. Which sounds awesome, but, let's face it... it's a lot of pressure. Leadership can really wear on you. Trust me.

The homeschooling issue is even harder, because there is what Mr F and I think we should do (he does express his opinions... he just doesn't choose to have the responsibility of acting on decisions... lucky him), and then there is Kid. She has her own ideas and viewpoint, which I very much want to honor and respect. Yet, she is still a child and is incapable of making (nor should she) a decision of this magnitude. I'm really torn.

When school started we knew we weren't impressed with the academics by about week 2. But, we had hoped this would be a good social placement for her, and if she was happy and making friends... whatever... the academics would sort themselves out eventually. So, we said we'd wait until June to make a judgment about the academics and our future school plans for her. Then it started to become clear that she wasn't exactly making friends. Then it started to become clear that she was being teased. And then I started to think... what the Hell?!... She isn't having a good time socially, and academically she's bored and not retaining any info longer than what is needed for Friday's test.

The good news is that Kid is on board with our feelings... she's really insightful that way. She understands that the learning style is uninteresting to her, that they aren't actually learning any new information other than spelling words (which are literally forgotten by the next week), and that the kids are "meaner". But then she'll have a good-ish day. Someone will play with her, and she wants to keep trying school. And I totally get that. Of course, I can stand back and remove myself, and say one good day every ten is not good enough. But I completely get how it feels to want to be liked so badly that a little crumb feels like an entire cake and you want to hope so badly that things are changing!

We tried this week to review at the end of the day and label the day as *good* (I want to keep going), or *bad* (I want to homeschool). Out of 4 days she had one *good*. I wanted to be able to have some quantifiable evidence. To look at a calendar and see a pattern that is crystal clear.

I know (know) that she'll be happy at home. I just struggle with empathizing so much with where she is at. Putting so much in, risking rejection, and wanting to see it all pay off. As if in one more week suddenly all of the kids are going to *get it* and start really liking her. And even at 7, she can acknowledge that she doesn't think that is going to actually happen. That kids just are not as nice (to anyone) as they were at her old school (got to love the Hippies on that front!), but she doesn't want to give up hope. Oh it breaks my heart. I am so very proud of her, for trying so hard.

But, ultimately we have to step in and say enough it enough, the good doesn't out way the bad in this situation. On the weekends (and truthfully the mornings) she's always ready to homeschool... but... then there will be some event coming up (fieldtrip, Halloween parade, etc) that she doesn't want to miss... and then, that's another week. And because of that, I think this could just keep dragging on. I think what we need is a deadline, and at this point, I think Christmas break is a good one. It's a natural end, she won't feel that she is leaving in the midst of things. There is absolutely no question in my mind, that after a 2 week break she will not want to go back to school.... she won't. By then, if she has friends, we'll know about it. If she hasn't had a playdate by Christmas, I think we can write it off and walk away pretty easily. We can enroll her in the homeschool school which starts a new session in January, it gives me time to get our curriculum lined up.

This plan will also allow her the opportunity to bring a snack to school for her birthday next week (something, obviously, all kids look forward to... she also really wants me to bring something with a number 8 on it to prove to her mean desk neighbor that she is in fact older than her! Believe you me.... I will really enjoy making those cupcakes!).

Yesterday, Kid and I talked about Christmas break, and she seemed relieved. She wants closure, but more importantly she wants to do it in a way that doesn't stick out. Everyone packs up for winter break. I get it. I'm behind it. I just hope we can make it 8 more weeks, without all of us needing anti-depressants.

Of course, this could all be out the window if next week we get a 5 out of 5 *bad* day report.

I mean, Thanksgiving could be a good natural closure too ;)

#2 We told her about Dasher. Seeing as he can't play anymore and just lays in one spot all day, etc... I started to fear he might not make it another week. Honestly every time I see him I have to check that he is still breathing. Just last weekend he was still running around the house like a maniac. It is really, really, sad. More on that tomorrow. #1 was about 5 paragraphs longer than I planned, and I'm sure you have some other things to do today.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Oh Man

This is a sad, depressing situation.

No one wants to see a 5 month old kitten go from playful to restricted movement in the span of a week.

Dasher (Kid's cat, also briefly and incorrectly termed Fatty for a few days) has IFP, a rare and fatal complication of an extremely common cat virus.

He has weeks to live, although at some point his quality of life will have deteriorated to the point that we'll need to put him down.

Probably in a week.

It is heartbreaking on so many levels.

And the fact that he and his brother sleep nose to nose isn't making it easier.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Update of The Day

"Fatty" is not fat.

He's dying.

He's also Kid's cat.

She still actively grieves over Canine.

So, yeah, this is not going to go over well.

At all.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Sorry. I'm 100% consumed by this curriculum search and finalizing our next steps.

Gotta go.

Kid cried in school yesterday.

Monday, October 18, 2010

A List

#1 Mr F finally got my treadmill taken apart, put in the basement, and put back together. I can finally start working out... but... where is the damn safety stop cord?!!! I can't power it up without it!
Mr F and I have both spotted it lying around the house in the last two months, but neither of us can remember where... except that it wasn't where it should have been. Nothing is more frustrating than knowing you've seen something but not being able to remember where!

#2 One cat looks like a disgusting leper, the other has spontaneously gained a tremendous amount of weight (neutered... and male... so not pregs) and suddenly looks like a giant fur covered light bulb with a small kitten head. It's ridiculous. My theory is that while we were away last weekend he ate ALL of the food I left out for both cats for the full two days. I now call him Fatty. I call the other one Disease. I can't wait to try and wrangle them up and cover them is nasty sulphur solution this afternoon. My favorite smell! And it stains!

#3 Baby looks so freaking adorable I can't wipe my large stupid grin off my face. She could pee on the floor and I'd be like "You're so cute!"

#4 Kid went to school today. She wanted one more week to be sure she wants to homeschool. (Although Mr F reports that all the way to school she was moaning out: "Homeschool! Homeschool!") There has been a lot of explaining that homeschooling isn't the same as calling in sick. She can't homeschool one day and go to school the next, which was kind of what she had been assuming. We also spent the end of last week reviewing different curriculums and doing placement tests. I've settled on a math curriculum that I think will fit her better than any instruction she's had yet. I'm ordering that today. For homeschoolers out there (the only ones who will probably be interested in this) I've gone back and forth about getting a full boxed curriculum set (re:sonlight, etc) or piecemealing it together.. which obviously requires a lot more work. For Kid it isn't school or school structure that is the problem... it is purely social... so she might respond well to a set structured routine. The downside is that I've heard mixed reviews about some of the components and don't think they are 100% the right fit. And isn't that the whole beauty of this? That we can pick components that are all uniquely challenging, stimulating, and appropriate for one learner? I'll try to hammer this stuff out this week.

That's it. Oh and we're getting our new carpet this weekend!
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