Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Paper Making!

Tear paper in small pieces. Soak in warm water for 2 hours, at least.

Scoop out a handful of wet paper and put in a mixer.

Mix until it's the consistency of thick soup.

Pour water into a shallow pan. How much is anybody's guess.

Scoop out a few handfuls of paper pulp and swish it around in the pan of water.

Evil screen. Take your evil screen and put a frame on it.

Scoop out some pulp and put it on your frame. We used a star shaped frame to make star shaped paper.

The next few steps involved way too much water and wetness for me to take pictures. After you put pulp on the screen, you put the whole frame into water and wiggle around gently to make sure the pulp is spread out evenly. GENTLY, mind you! Then, you CAREFULLY, (not fiercely)remove the frame from the evil screen. Cover your paper, still on the evil screen, carefully turn it over. Then (this is my favorite part) carefully lift the screen off your paper. HA! Good luck with THAT step. If you ever do get your paper off the screen, place it on the press.We started with a star, now we have a circle!

Cover your paper with another piece of dry cloth. Put the lid on your press, tighten the screws and press the excess water out. You should know however, if you have a plastic press and you twist the screws enough to get all the excess water out of the paper, the screws will break. Just so you know.

Anyway, after you've pressed the water out of the paper and broken your screw, remove the broken pieces of your press and the top cloth carefully from your paper. Carefully move the bottom cloth (with your paper on it)off the press and let it sit undisturbed for 24 hours. And then BAM!

There's your paper!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

And today, class...

OK, so rather than freak out that facebook is temporarily unavailable, I've decided to post here at Just a Thought!

Today, at Roberts Academy we will continue our unit study on The Great Depression. I'm reading aloud to the kids from Christmas After All: The Great Depression Diary of Minnie Swift...a book from the Dear America Series It's historical fiction which means it's fun and factual. The kids are loving it. If you have young kids (8-12) you should check out this book and other books in the series. They are written in diary format by a collection of authors, and each book is about a different signifcant event or time period of American history. If you want to learn more, check them out here.

We also will be making paper, potholders and bead thingies. Yes, paper. We're making paper. Yes, I will take pictures of this fiasco and blog more later.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Green Light

Well, it's been almost forever since I last posted. I blame it all on Facebook, my latest addiction. If you haven't tried facebook yet, you should. It's big fun and a great way to keep in touch.
Okay, enough of that. I just finished reading the The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I hadn't read it since high school, well...honestly I probably didn't really read it then. I more than likely read the first 10 pages or so and then asked my friends about it and fudged my way through any tests or quizes because I was a horrible, repeat HORRIBLE, student.
So, as I was saying, I just finshed reading The Great Gatsby, and I must say, what a depressing book! I'm sure ol' Nick thought to himself, on more than one occasion, "I am completely surrounded by idiots." Not that I didn't enjoy the book. I LOVED the book....the prose is absolutely lyrical. (Yes, I realize that is an oxymoron of sorts...that's why I wrote it.) The facade of fabulous reminds me alot of today's culture. I'm sure there are volumes one could write about this novel, but for me, it's all summed up in the green light. I'm a bit embarrassed to talk about the green light because when I first read it, I found it to be very poignant, and the poignancy came so unexpectantly, I could almost hear Gatsby suck in his breath as he realized what he has done in telling Daisy about the light. I read the sentences over and over again...
"...His count of enchanted objects had diminshed by one...."

It's comparable to when a magician reveals a secret. The wonder of it all is gone and you immediately regret asking how he did it, because while you have this new knowledge, you can never go back to the wonder of not knowing. And so, should you have left well enough alone?
Anyway.... so here I am, pondering Gatsby's thoughts, along with Nick...did he realize what he just did? Did he loose something or gain something? Shouldn't he feel victorious since he has Daisy with him? Did he realize his illusion was dissolving? On and on and on I thought about that dumb green light. And I kept thinking about it as things progressed unfortunately along..."Green light...he lost the green light!" I tried to forget the green light because I was beginning to feel a bit neurotic about it (and stupid) since the author didn't mention it whenever I thought "green light!" So, as you can imagine, when it was mentioned on the last page, I felt just a little giddy! Told light.

Read it.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Mother's Day

As you probably know, we school our children at home. Last year, however, we decided to give the Lower Elementary School a try, and Wyatt Henry spent 2nd grade in public school. I recently stumbled across one of his old school papers. It was a fill-in-the-blank mother's day letter. Gosh~ I LOVE THIS KID!

My mom is the most wonderful mom in the world! Her name is Rhonda. She's pretty as a flower. She is 26 years old. She has green eyes and brown hair. She weighs 27 pounds and is 5 ft tall. Her favorite food is sweet potatoes. In the good old days when she was little, she used to play and go to school. I think my mom is funny when she tickles me. But, I know she's really angry when I disobey. I wouldn't trade my mom for anything. I love my mom because she loves me.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Meet Scotty

I would like you to meet another one of my very favorite characters. Her name is Scotty, and you can meet her by reading the "Hollywood Nobody" series by Lisa Samson. Scotty lives in an RV with her hippy mom. She meets glamorous (and not so glamorous) hollywood stars and writes all about it annonymously on her blog.

She's funny and smart and has just enough attitude to be sassy but not obnoxious. Scotty is the best parts of all the teens you know...but she's not perfect y'all! We all know how emotional those teenage years are!!

Anyway, as I said, these books are written by Lisa Samson, one of my favorite favs. I've mentioned her books in the past here at Just a Thought. I've loved everything I've read by Ms. Samson but I think the "Hollywood Nobody" books are the most fun. Why? Because they're about a quirky teen-ager, and haven't we all been quirky teen-agers? I wish I had known a Scotty when I was a teen!

So, you can find out more about these groovy books by checking out this interview with Lisa Samson my BFF Elysa posted awhile back on her blog.

Don't miss out on these books. They're brilliant.

I'm just sayin'.

P.S. Which one of you has my copy of "Embrace Me."??

Monday, December 1, 2008

Merry Christmas From Sam

For more Christmas cheer, check my christmas blog: