Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Holly and Marty and Halloween

Marty and Holly are being characters from Zombies Ate My Neighbors, a Super Nintendo (and SEGA) game. Marty needed his hair spikey. Holly wanted him to hang his head down.

They really do get along well, and I say that and I think people might doubt it, so I sneaked a video:

They're going to hang out with friends, and here are the first peeks at their costumes:

And here's my jack-o-lantern. It's very windy, so we put a little oil torch in it, and it created an effect.

Zombies on Halo3

For Halloween (and until 3:00 on November 1, Marty has heard, but what time zone I don't know), there's a zombie game for Halo3 players. When you go to matchmaking, one of your options is zombie.

Zombies have swords, others have guns, and when you "die" you become a zombie. The game's over when time is over or when everyone's a zombie.

Marty and Holly tried to play two at a time, but there were problems. They took turns.

Neopets on Halloween

  TODAY, on Neopets, you can gamble once, anytime, to raise your pet one level. The dice are cute, or I wouldn't have mentioned it. And if you don't have a neopet, you profoundly won't care. But the dice are still cute. Dice game

And just in case you cared about that, there are Halloween gifts on Neopets.
There's a list of them here:,
scroll down just a little way.

Sometimes I go through phases of what seems to be cocooning. Lately I've played video games while I was thinking. It seems the thinking leads up to burst-of-energy phases. I used to feel guilty about it, but now I relax into it and I don't worry. The urge to go too fast and do too much will return before long, and some of the thoughts that come during the more still times are good ones!

Maybe this is another advantage to having older children. Mine are asleep right now, and later they're going out together to do Halloween things. They made costumes I hardly had to help with at all, and all I have to do is hang out and distribute candy to strangers. I guess it's candy-from-strangers day!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Halloween and other spooky things

Halloween used to be more fun when all the homeschoolers were in one discussion pool.
After shunning psychology for years, some of Halloween's detractors have adopted it (an outdated form), and plan to condition their children to think about Jesus (and other Biblical figures) when they eat certain candy and see jack-o-lanterns.
Wait... only click that link if your kids' Halloween costumes are ready, because you might be in there a while.

Scary, but amusing, about "Peaceful Parenting"

DOH! This was intended for the unschooling site news blog. I'll leave this, and put it over there too.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Unschooling news and other blogs of mine

I do realize that some blogs can be set up with all kinds of categorization of posts, but I would forget to categorize. My own blog organization has been to make another blog. Few are interested in *all* my stuff. So I have the following blogs to report:

News of the Unschooling pages (see above, and the sidebar to the left)
News of the SCA pages (to the left and Duckford dot blogspot)

Unschooling in the news, in a blog Laura Derrick started and that she's shared out since with Joyce Fetteroll, Pam Sorooshian and me: Unschooling dot blogspot

The lyrics game (the only blog I go to every day) LyricsGame dot blogspot (and that one has an adjunct blog for discussion of that blog... yeah. Really.)

And then there's the odd one, the one about love. Love: Romantic Biochemistry. It's usually very quiet, and that's fine. It should be prescribed to those who are contemplating whether they're in love, or whether the hot passion of early love can last. It, too, involves song lyrics as historical proof that rhyming philosophers have thought deeply about those questions. I've only posted there three times this year, but I really like it. I have it set so people can read from the beginning on. There are fewer than 20 posts altogether, but they're good ones!

Then there's one orphaned blog at that wasn't easy to edit, and kept getting irritating spam.

This is the full disclosure of my blogs, once I note, where I don't write much, but where I admire photos of Holly and other young friends.

Below there's a question about something in a photo. The object is here and here.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Holly and Ben

This is Holly and Ben doing a dance, kind of based on a noise/gesture combo he made up last spring to make me laugh when I was getting depressed. It still makes me laugh, even without the sound.

Holly did the gif file. And Holly took the photo of Ben below.

I like Ben a bunch, and I like Holly's photos of him. In the SCA he's Dermod.

More of Holly's artsy photo work is here:

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Marty in El Paso

I talked to Marty a bit ago, and he was in El Paso. Yesterday, he was in Austin visiting Kirby. The day before yesterday, he was home.

Marty, Brett Henry and Julie McClure went to visit Kirby. They left 10:45 or so Sunday night and will be home tonight. I hope there will be some photos.

photos added a week or so later:

Monday, October 15, 2007

Bread and that

I bought a bread machine when I had a little baby or two, in the 1980's. I didn't know until a couple of days ago that what I had bought was the first bread machine introduced to the U.S. It was from an electronics catalog called DAK. It looked like R2D2, and I really liked it.

When I wore it out I got another machine, and years later another and I'm on my fourth bread machine. All this thinking came about because a friend tasted some of the bread (onion dill, the fanciest one I ever do—ingredients too expensive to ever sell commercially) and wanted to buy a machine.

I went to my online Consumer reports account to get a comparison chart on current machines, but there wasn't one.

I brought the photo, though, because I almost always set the machine to dough and do the last rise and the baking outside the machine. Partly because of the elevation where I am (over 5,000 feet above sea level), bread cooked in the machine doesn't rise long enough. Some new machines allow for extending parts of the cycles.

But anyway, because I'm used to doing them by hand and I like it, I thought I'd bring these to show, since I was thinking about it. These were baked in small mixing bowls. They're not the prettiest shapes ever, and I took them out of the pan too soon, but it seemed a good moment, five larger-than-expected loaves of onion dill bread.

correction a few days later: I had written "almost nearly" and I meant either "nearly always" or "almost always." sorry

10/27/07 It's called "Drew's Favorite Onion Dill Bread"
"Drew" is Drew Kaplan, who sold those first bread machines and had a very chatty cookbook with it. I still have two copies of it.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Changing our back gate

Keith has wanted to put something on the gate to keep people from seeing into the yard so easily, but I wasn't thrilled with the idea.

Then he thought of this, and I love it! We've grown this bamboo (whatever giant grass is called bamboo around here), and we talked about making some kind of coyote fence with it (poles lashed into sections with baling wire, a local custom). Keith thought of lashing just a few together—four or five&mdash and working them into the ironwork.
We need more of them to finish it off. Right now they're every-other-spot, and not all the way across. When it's filled in it will be like a bamboo wall that opens with a remote control. I think at first, this month, people will assume that the bamboo is for Halloween decoration. I'm looking forward to putting Christmas lights on it in December!

This is what our gate looked like without the decorations:

Sunday, October 07, 2007

We're home with lots of photos

Holly took the one of Kelli Traaseth and me at Sir Benedict's Tavern in Duluth. There are hundreds of other photos from our happy trip north, but these are some of the good ones. I liked the bumper sticker photos with people reflections. If anyone knows where I can get one of those beautiful "Cultivate Mindfulness" stickers that Kelli has, please send me info!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Holly and Kyra were in there somewhere

This is from Sunday at the Mall of America. We're touristing in Duluth some more today. The photos aren't keeping up with the days. Later I'll bring photos of a beach on Lake Superior. It's a little like time travel! (Sorry, Marty; I know you hate time travel...)

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Photos Finally

Thanks to Holly and Kelli figuring this out, we'll have some of the photos... not all yet. Sunday was to have been the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, but mood changed and rain fell and so we went to the Mall of America where the girls rode lots of rides. Holly is just as tall as a Lego man, it seems...
There will be a link to more photos and a few little videos in a few days, but for the benefit of anyone who might have been forgetting what Holly looked like, there she is! Abbi is up top in the log ride and Kyra is with Holly in Paul Bunyan's hand and her mom's van. There will be more photos of them too, in a few days.