Sunday, October 30, 2016

old dogs

 I know everyone seeing these photos focuses on the puppies. Everyone except me. I see BC staring at the decision before him. Not which puppy to love but when to put down old Moses.  

I've been saying all summer we are at the end.  
In the last few months death has become unavoidably attached to the dog like a smell. When you see him it is all you can think about.

 Moses is lost inside age. His body and his mind failing him at every turn. 
The choice of when will BC will finally give way follows Moses through his long silent last days. I can only hope the dog is not in too pain. 

Although at times BC acts as if the edge is not as close as it is- we all know.  
Even Little Dog knows. I can't keep her in the yard.  
She slips the fence any chance she gets to go find life that is still living.

When Moses is not wandering in circles confused I find him in the grass laying in the last of the summer sun.  This was something as a younger dog he was never able to do.  It seemed as soon as he was let out he would want back in..  Now he slumbers long with shallow breathes that make you wonder...  

 BC has promised not to make him go through another winter.  
And yet I see no signs of readiness from him to let the old dog go.  

Like I said before these days are a tribute from a man to his dog.  

BC denies that he is picking one of these puppies for himself but from the moment his client's dog pending litter was announce he has been talking about them.  As soon as they were born he began visiting.  

Still, he says we are not getting another dog. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

types of fractures, human anatomy

Welcome to fracture clinic. 

We took a small "break" from the anatomy text book to learn a few of the different types of fractures. 

The compound fracture is my favorite- to see not to have. 

the great pumpkin, Beach Ries

I met him in the driveway, "Guess who is here?" 
I paused letting BC roll the question over before telling him, 
"Beach. She stayed home from Gym." I announced her presence like royalty.

"What?! But how did that happen?!" BC asked.  He turned to the man who was there answering an ad about cedar for sale.  He had paused his digging through the lumber pile on BC's trailer to watch us. "My kid is a gymnast," BC told him, "she is never [sic] not at Gym."

"She had a headache and a sore neck today. So after lunch, I gave her some ibuprofen and she fell asleep upstairs listening to stories. I decided not to wake her and I called her in sick.  She's already forgiven me... if we can go get pumpkins."

Beach popped out the door a few minutes later still looking sleepy, thin, and a bit on the droopy side. The man looked up.  He watched her make her way around the piles of stacked boards to scoop up a delicate napping cat. 

"She's just little," he muttered sounding a bit surprised.  I could almost hear the harshness of what his original picture of her had been.  

 "Yeah, she is...." her parents answered in tandem.   
 She is still very little.

But the days are growing shorter. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

History, putting it all together

This is the first year I have been able to do 2 different studies of History with Beach at one time. Our World History is all by the book, the Usborne Encyclopedia of World History.  The book includes great internet links and we have found some really fantastic documentaries to go along with our studies.  

Our American History is "all" by the book too but a totally different kind- NOVELS.  

Now like any other school kid, Beach has been through early American history a dozen times.  In fact, I believe our first ever history lesson was in a Jamestown build by wooden blocks and populated by Playmobile. 

Each go-around (hopefully) adds in new, more complex information.  Which is great, I suppose... but with Beach, because she claims to not like history our studies tend to end before gaining any ground. The furthest we have ever gotten is Westward Expansion. And somehow we did that without going through the Revolutionary and the Civil War.  

So obviously there were a few holes in our system.  Then we found historical fiction and historical novels. Each book gives a picture window into a specific time and place. Often we find ourselves outside the book talking about events and people creating a broader understanding of the history involved. Yes, there are still holes but as we read more and more the holes are getting filled in.

Last week we finished reading The Witch of Blackbird Pond (Colonial America/historical fiction).

Beach only had one criticism of the book; she wanted to know more about day to day life in early Colonial America.  So I found this little book put out by Scholastic.  

It was a little bit below her level of curiosity but there was some interesting information that helped finish off our Colonial Times reading. We might spend some time watching Colonial House (PBS), which also has a great interactive web page. 

We have already had some good luck with what I would call bonus points- finding history links to our reading in other places like the poison exhibit at the Natural History Museum and the History Channel's documentary of The Real Story of Halloween. 

We started our next book after rejecting 2 very well loved (to other people) award-winning books;  Sarah Plain and Tall just couldn't hold either of our attention and I couldn't stand reading The Gathering of Days... I know, boo if you want but there is so much out there to learn! Why waste time on something you don't love? So we picked up the next one in line Lily's Crossing and guess what?! We already love it.

Lily's Crossing is a voice from the American side of World War II, contrasting the experiences of a young *Polish girl during the same time period in The Endless Steppe (historical autobiographical novel).  

*I still view this as American History. It is always important to gain global context.     

After we finish, if Beach is still interested I am considering reading Snow Falling On Cedars and/or *The Diary of Anne Frank.