I've been thinking about how to motivate my middle son to read more, or at least, expand upon his rather narrow realm of reading material. I have heard/read about keeping a list of books one has read (as oppose to me, who has a list of books I'd like to read). I suggested it to the kids as a fun way to see just how much they've read. My oldest, Chad, thought it a good idea and has spent days listing all the books he's read. He's at 300+ and counting. Carmen is thinking about making a bookworm, you know, cutting out circles for each book read and making a picture of it. That would be right up her 9 year-old alley. I told Alec he could start at the end of one of our many bookshelves and read his way through it. He's thinking about that, but has finally given in and decided to make a reading book list also. Who knew? I never know what will motivate my kids toward learning and it's always a happy feeling to see something spark some interest.
Saturday night (a working night for Todd) I sat the kids down to play Careers. It's a busy boardgame that involves a lot of decisions and risk-taking. We played for over two hours until Chad reached his pre-set goals. The rest of us continued until we had each finished. We had so much fun that Alec, Carmen and I played the next day, while Chad was in town, working as an usher for a local concert. Carmen asked if any learning happened while we were playing this game and I pointed out the decision-making, etc. She always wants to know if what we are doing is something to learn from. Some people would warn me not to tell her, for if she knew, she wouldn't want to do it. This way of thinking is so wrong, I think. It really makes a mockery of kids' intelligence. Anyway, it makes Carmen happy to know she's learning!
Sunday morning, I realized that Chad needed some nicer clothes for his usher job. We had less than 2 hours, of course! The store in town didn't open until noon so we rushed over to a store across the bay and, praise the Lord, we found just what we needed. Racing back home, lunch and then out the door to where the concert was, right on time. I really felt like I earned my Mom points that day! His grandpa was playing in the concert and his grandmother was in charge of the ushers so it was extra special for him to work that day. I was very proud of him. He looked so grown up in his new clothes - one of those moments you want to remember.
Found out I have to bake three pumpkin pies for Thanksgiving. Can't complain, if that's all I have to do (Todd's mom is hosting). If you've known me for more than a year, you know I hate Thanksgiving but somehow I'll get through it. I have promised myself not to wallow in sorrow this year like I have for the past few years. My dad's been gone for, what, 24 years now? I fail to understand why it seems to get harder the older I get. But since I can't ignore the holiday, for the sake of my family, I will walk through it. This is one instance in my life that age has not softened the blow.
And lastly, while the rest of the nation is either enjoying their new Republican government or lamenting "What happened?", our state has, once again, elected a governor that I did not vote for. What's worse is that he has been governor before, running two terms before the last governor (someone else I didn't vote for). That's Oregon, for you ... recycle, recycle, recycle!