Thursday, June 26, 2014

Summer Reading; First Star

On Monday, I took the Lone Star Baby to the library to turn in her reading log. She had read her first "ten books" - for the older kids who are reading chapter books, fifty pages counts as a book - and got to put her name on the wall with a star sticker for the first ten books.  She also got the goodie bag of local coupons that you get after you complete ten books.  None of this star sticker incentive stuff is all that exciting to a ten-year-old, but we keep at it because I want to keep creating a strong culture of library use in our family.  The Lone Star Baby was excited to find and check out a Goddess Girls book she hadn't read yet.

I saw a very little boy getting his first star and putting his name on the wall and he was so excited.  He told me all about it and tried to show me his name on the wall.  That's the kind of thing that makes a mama happy.

Space Center Camp-In

On  Saturday, we took the Girl Scout troop to an overnight at Space Center Houston (on their cookie dime).  They got to do experiments with electricity, build their own wind turbines and use them to power electric cars and build little flash lights.  They slept on sleeping bags in the Space Center among the exhibits of rockets and stars.  We got to tour the Johnson Space Center campus and Space Center Houston as well.  They really enjoyed it. 

I think it is so important for girls to get experience in hands-on science activities where they get to try things, get it wrong, try other things, get frustrated, try other things, etc.  The wind turbine activity was set up especially well as this sort of experience.  The staff did not mention it, but I made sure to tell the girls about the Mercury 13 women who trained when the Apollo 11 astronauts were training, did better than the men, but were not allowed into space by Johnson.  I also told them the fact that all female astronauts so far have been Girl Scouts. I hope that the experience sparks a vocation for science in some of these girls. .. one possible way they can use their minds to take humanity forward.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Another College Road Trip

On Tuesday the girls and I headed down to Edinburg again and spent Tuesday and Wednesday on college appointments in attempts to get everything ready for the Lone Star Girl's upcoming move.  Road trip!  We stayed overnight at the Best Western in Edinburg, which is very nice.  The Lone Star Baby loved the motel.

Tuesday was mostly about the dreaded allergies, with appointments at the Health Center, the Disability Services Office, and with residence and dining hall people.  The dining hall guy was disappointing, having done nothing yet despite months of communication and waffling quite a bit, so we will have to keep on that.  Everyone else at the university was extremely helpful both days.

Wednesday was about the Financial Aid office, the Scholarship Office, Admissions to clear up some confusion about AP scores (she was given credit for a class she did not test in but it turns out that was not a mistake - they just gave her credit because her SAT score was so high in that area) and the Honors College office.  Very productive.

We also got to hang around campus and look around a good bit.  We went to the library in Edinburg and picked up some bus maps.  We went back to the South Texas History Museum we had loved so much on a previous visit and showed the Lone Star Baby around.  We were able to get the Lone Star Girl a student membership to the museum for just $10 so she can ride the bus there whenever she likes during the school year - that was wonderful.  We, of course, stopped at the Lone Star Girl's favorite Stripes in Riviera both coming and going.

It was a great trip.  As the Lone Star Girl said, the more we take her there, the more it starts to feel like home to her.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Road Trip Quote of The Day

The Lone Star Girl, at her  favorite Stripes:

"Where are the good people of Riviera to purchase squeeze cheese?"

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Not. One. More.

There was another school shooting today.  Another.  You do know that other developed countries do not have mass shootings on a regular basis?  That Americans are 20 times more likely to be killed by a gun than people in other countries?  That we do, actually, know how to stop this?  Common sense gun regulations like not allowing automatic and semi-automatic weapons and high capacity magazines can actually make a world of difference.

Contact your Congressmen and Congresswomen today.  

We must end this.

Happy Birthday, Lone Star Pa!

Loved you then, love you now, love you always.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Summer Reading: Summer Reading Program Kick Off

I honestly meant to post daily about children and reading and such during Children's Book Week, but things have just been too busy.  So, instead, I am aiming for a weekly post on Summer Reading for kids.  Please join me!

Today, our library (Neyland Library) had its Summer Reading Program Kick-Off and I took the Lone Star Baby and got her signed up. We met a friend of hers there and made a day of it.  She also found a Goddess Girls book that she has not read yet to check out so it was a productive trip on all counts, even though she has long outgrown storytime and library crafts (sniff).  She is still all about the Greek mythology (I need the local universities to develop Classics  and Comparative Religion programs really fast, please - she'll be in 5th grade in the fall - you have until she graduates - hurry). 

Have your kids gotten signed up with your local library's Summer Reading Program yet?  What are they reading this summer?  Please post your answers in the comments.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

My School Girl

From her first day of kindergarten to her last day of twelfth grade, my little school girl grew up in these plaid dresses.  Soon it will be scrubs and lab coats in front of different houses altogether.  How I will miss the school girl by my side...

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Parades/Banquets/Prom/Awards Girl

She has worked so hard and is such a good girl - she deserves to be fussed over:

The Pirate:

Scholarship Banquet:


Top Ten Banquet:

 Permanent Honor Roll Banquet: 

Seniors Award Ceremony:


Monday, June 02, 2014

First Day School: More Peace Testimony/Thinking About Future Lessons

Yesterday, only my little one and I were at Meeting and we continued our study of the Peace Testimony.  We are, due to our poor attendance, still reading Number the Stars, although we are almost finished and, since she is my only pupil at present, we took it home and should finish it today.  Then we will talk atom bomb, internment camps and Cold War, as she needs a little more history of these events and how they interacted with people's testimonies for peace.

Last week, after hearing her older sister sister talk about a research project she did on Jainism back in 5th grade, and my adolescent flirtations with a Jain diet, the Lone Star Baby started looking up Jainism on the internet and comparing and contrasting its belief system with her own.  It made me proud to see her seeking.  We really must complete our study of the Testimonies by the end of this next school year, so that we can begin the Neighboring Faiths curriculum I have borrowed from the Unitarians, which the Lone Star Girl got so much out of, when she is a Junior Young Friend in 6th grade.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

South Texas Represents!

San Antonio is just barely south enough to count as South Texas to me, but I have to include them because they do such good work!

What is it with San Antonio mayors and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development?  I mean - yeah - people!   Cisneros was both in his time and now we have Julian Castro going from Mayor to Secretary of HUD, just like that! 

South Texas just kind of rocks like that.  And I just kind of love those Castro brothers.