The Countdown

One month???

One measly month????

That’s how much time is left of summer vacation.  Makes this geeky homeschool mom want to cry into her Palm Pilot.  Now don’t get me wrong.  I love homeschooling.  It has allowed me to spend nine years of quality time with my children that non-homeschooling moms probably never even knew they missed.  It has allowed me to learn about bunches of stuff I missed the first time around.  And it has strengthened my belief in child-led learning. 

But who are we kidding here?  As much as I love homeschooling, I REALLY love summer break.  And since my oldest will technically be of “working age” next summer, who knows if this might be the last one my boys and I will share together just “hanging.”  And we’ve done lots of that so far.  We’ve hung out at the pool.  We’ve hung out at the mall.  We’ve hung out at the library, the bookstore, the parks, the ice cream parlor, and the coffee shop.  We’ve hung out pretty much every place in town that doesn’t have a ‘NO LOITERING’ placard overtly visible.

We’ve talked about lots of cool subjects together.  There just isn’t anything better than having philosophical discussions with your tween and teen over sherbet Push-Ups.  Lazy summer days seem to somehow loosen our tongues and create discourses on everything from why people get tattoos to what it will be like in the afterlife.  We’ve been known to even start a conversation in the morning, take it up again after lunch, and run it in the ground before bedtime. 

We’ve also found incredibly creative ways to avoid work.  I had at least seventeen house projects scheduled for this summer, and do you know how many we actually accomplished??  Give yourself a pat on the back if you guessed: ZIPPO! I’ve kept up with the laundry and dishes (mostly), and kept the floors from being overtaken by mutant dust bunnies and the bathroom from being overtaken by mutant mold creatures (mostly), but other than that, this has been “the little house that time forgot.” 

Our summer has been filled with plenty of Topsy-Techiness, as well. Uber has discovered he doesn’t have two left feet at his new favorite game “Step Mania.”  H-T has been the official YouTube tester of every sci-fi-related clip – – and, for the record: Yes, they are ALL working!!  I have had loads of fun with R-T’s new Windows Media Center PC, and have learned how to control the computer remote from the comfort of my king size bed.  You’d be amazed what you can find to watch on the computer when you have no satellite service.  Even R-T has become comfortable with his new ‘puter, and has been blogging away on it. 

All in all, it has been a terrific summer vacation so far. I can’t believe there is only one month left!!

Well, I could try to think positively.  You know, cup-half-full, and all that.  Maybe I could look at it as: “Cool.  We’ve got a WHOLE month of summer vacation left!!!”  Unfortunately, when they were giving out the positive-thinking genes in heaven, I was distracted by the blinking lights on St. Peter’s celestial cell phone. 

Stupid calendar.

calendar

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The Honeymoon is Over

It’s nothing new.  I’m sure we aren’t the only marriage it has happened to.  But all that doesn’t bring me much comfort, under the circumstances.  I just didn’t think it would happen this soon.  How could he tire so quickly?  It just doesn’t make sense.  

I’m referring, of course, to R-T and his new computer.  The Vista newness has worn off, and he is back to sneaking around using my laptop.  The whole purpose of getting him his own computer for his birthday, is that my laptop would finally be “all mine.”  But if I leave the house to run an errand, or – – god forbid – – go into the kitchen to fix supper, I can pretty much guarantee that my gool ole’ Toshiba will have found its way into dear hubby’s lap.

desktopI’m feeling pretty stupid, right about now.  I missed all the signs.  The unique way R-T had of lying in bed, with the  laptop propped up on his stomach, with that look of complete peace and satisfaction on his face.  The way he would always lovingly place it on the dresser, out of reach of any danger, whenever he wasn’t using it.  The careful habit he had of wrapping up the AC cord, and putting it next to the outlet.  The clues were all around me, I just chose not to see them.  R-T is a laptop man.

That got me thinking.  In the laptop vs desktop controversy, what creates our personal preference?  I definitely used to be a desktop gal.  I loved having my research books, and physical files all around me as I worked.  Oh, how things have changed.  I do almost all my research online now, and keep pretty much all my data in digital form.  So a laptop, for me, is ideal, because I can work anywhere there is a Wi-Fi connection, and an outlet (my battery isn’t what it used to be!)

What is it that makes us desktop or laptop users?  What about you?  What do you prefer, and why?  I need some input here, folks, because this one has really got me curious?  What is it about a laptop that would get my hubby bored with his state-of-the-art Vista desktop in under two months??  This is one psychological quandry that has me stumped!  So please comment below, and give me your two cents on the issue…

Oh, and if anyone wants to trade their laptop for our brand new desktop, I’m entertaining offers…..

It was good while it lasted.

Drunk With Vista Power

My dear hubby will tell you that he doesn’t get all that much say-so in his life.  At this stage of his life cycle, he is rather on the low end of the power totem-pole.  Somewhat tied into the demands of family life, church life, and running a homeless shelter, his days and hours are pretty much mapped out for him.  Get up, go to work, come home, do family things, write a blog, go to bed, and start all over again.  Even his weekend “down time” is usually filled with diaconate classes, yard work, his teaching and serving duties at our church, and often speaking at other churches.  There just isn’t a lot of wiggle room for R-T to pick and choose what he would like to do or not to do these days.

Until now.  From the first boot-up of his shiny new Windows Vista computer, R-T knew that something was afoot.  The first thing that popped up on the screen was a question – – aimed directly at the computer’s new owner….”Would you like to register your new computer?”  Wow…a choice!  Would he like to or wouldn’t he?  Being unused to such preferences, he had to think about it awhile.  Yes.  Yes he would like to register.

And the options didn’t stop there.  In a matter of only about ten minutes, R-T got to pick his screen resolution, his background, a screen saver, and even a virus protection plan. I could swear the normal slump in his posture became noticeably straighter. 

Before long, R-T realized that Vista was a system that didn’t do anything without asking first.  Every time he opened a new program, an unfamiliar website, or tried to complete a download, he would get a pop-up screen which said, “Windows needs your permission to continue.”  What???  Someone was asking him for PERMISSION before they do something??  I brought R-T a cold glass of water, noticing he looked pale and faint.

This is a man who struggles to get his rescue mission staff members to even call him before they leave work early or don’t come in at all.  A father of two adolescent know-it-alls who think it is fine to head down to the neighbor’s house without informing him of their whereabouts.  A husband of a wife who remembers to tell him she is taking her church youth group to the movies as the movie is about to begin.  R-T just doesn’t always get the respect and deference he needs or deserves.  Until now.

Microsoft is really missing their advertising boat.  You remember that guy from the Viagra commercials who was suddenly all confidence and smiles because of his new prescription?  Microsoft needs to snatch up that idea and run with it!    My hubby would make a terrific commercial…he would walk into the rescue mission, shoulders back, chest forward, a new spring in his step, and everyone from his staff to his host of volunteers would be trying to figure out what is different about him.  New haircut?  No.  Measurable weight loss?  No.  So what is it about their Operations Director that makes him look so confident…so in charge…so virile?? 

“Sir,” says the mission cook to R-T outside his office, “I think we have a mouse problem.  I’d like to set up some traps in the walk-in, and around the kitchen area.”

R-T looks at him for a moment, and rubs his chin thoughtfully.  “You have my permission to continue.”

Who needs Viagra when you have Vista?

Do All These People Have Windows Vista??? 
Think maybe all these people use Viagra Vista?