Jokes by Levi

What did the ice cream say when the banana asked when it could come over?
Only on a sundae!

What does a drama king wear to bed?

What do you call a swashbuckling rat?
A pi-rat!

What do you call a shoe that has a problem?
An is-shoe! (An issue)

What do you call a video game that you play with more than one person?
A "we!"

What do you call it when someone listens in on Christmas Eve?

And one contributed by a friend:
What's brown and sticky?
A stick!

Levi called me into his room saying, "Oliver's a quarterback." Oliver was on the bed on his tummy with 4 quarters on his back.

What does a crocodile say when it wants to be a rooster?

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Wacky and Weird

I think "Wacky and Weird" will become a regular part of my blog posts because there seems to be so much of it here. I get my daily dose of entertainment just by reading Boulder's paper, The Daily Camera.

Okay, Boulder's 5th Annual Naked Bike Ride, happened a few Saturdays ago. No, I did not participate or spectate. This year the group was protesting against oil dependency. Exactly who "they" are and who organizes this, I don't know.

Here's an interview that I thought was hysterical: "I'm just gonna follow the glare of the glowing white asses," said Juanita Gable, 39, of Denver, who participated in the naked ride for the first time. "It seemed like a fun time," Gable said. "And I believe in the cause." . . . . Gable, who wore a bra and underwear, said she opted not to go fully nude because, " It's my first time. I'm nervous. What if I get a flat?" she said. "I might end up in the middle of nowhere looking for someone to help me fix my tire--naked." OOOOkkkkayy. Like it would be that much better to be in your bra and underwear in the middle of nowhere with a flat. But whatever. I get my daily dose of the wacky and weird just by reading my morning paper and it makes me happy! In case you are looking for one to participate in, Denver's version of the Naked Bike Ride is planned for July 12. And, on the same day as Boulder's, a massive Naked Bike Ride was planned to start in Hyde Park in London. So apparently it's a trend. There have been Naked Bike rides in as many as 70 cities and 20 countries. You can "see more photos and video of Saturday's Naked Bike Ride through Boulder at"

Now, going nude in Boulder is not legal but the police tend to turn their heads the other way for this event. Seems kinda unfair if you are the priest who got arrested near here last August for indecent exposure. He apparently saw fit to leave his house at 4 am one morning, completely naked, walk to the local high school track, take a jog around it, and then walk home. When asked why he went jogging without any clothes, he told police something to the effect that jogging clothes made him too hot and sweaty.


Being new here, I find myself getting lost--a lot. It was only about a year ago that I stopped getting lost frequently in Maryland! So to be getting lost again on a regular basis is at times maddening, frustrating and tiresome. Especially when losing my way makes us late.

But, there's a funny thing about getting lost--I've learned it before and I'm being reminded again. I may not get where I am going quickly or efficiently but every time I get lost, I learn something. Connections get made in my brain--Oh, this is how those streets connect. Wow, I've never been here before. I get small glimpses of how it all fits together. Slowly it becomes a comprehensive mind map of where I live.

I get some general ideas from my printed road map but, really, I'm not all that great at reading a map. At least not until I have some real life experience to apply to what I'm seeing on paper. It all starts to come together for me once I've "been there."

Getting lost would seem to be a "mistake." But I think we need another word for these kinds of experiences that lead us to new connections and learning. The way I've learned it, a mistake is something bad. But it's these twists and turns of life that are our best teachers.

I see this so clearly with the kids. The way they go about things may sometimes look like they are "lost" or mistaken. But we miss the point when we interpret it this way. Kids are so much better at trial and error than most adults because, until a certain point, kids aren't afraid of doing the wrong thing. Their minds are still free from concepts like mistakes and the "wrong way to do things." They do, they try, they experiment and see what happens. Just like my wrong turns in driving ultimately give me a better mental map of where I'm going, so their "wrong" turns help them see how things in their world are connected.

We do our kids better if we, metaphorically, let them drive, get lost, and find their way. We are, of course, always available to give directions. But directions are only helpful when someone actually wants them. Every try to force a lost driver to ask for directions? How well does that work? It doesn't work any better with our kids and their learning!

So, let's go for a drive.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Learning All The Time

The past 6 months have been particulary interesting with Oliver. Levi went to kindergarten but Oliver is my non-schooled child. I have been in wonder and awe as he learns how to read and explores the beginnings of math. He seemed on the brink of "getting" reading a while back and I thought it would be a good time to try some phonics. Not. He HATED every second of it and had no hesitations in letting me know. After a bit of hand-wringing, I came to my senses, reminded myself that he was only 5, and backed off--totally. Since then he's gone thru the progression of pointing out "sight" words, asking what combinations of letters spelled, asking how to spell words, asking to have words written on his back at bedtime to see if he could figure them out. Slowly but surely, he's learning to read--in his own time, in his own way, by his own methods. He's also been going thru the same process with understanding adding. First, he asked nonsense questions--does 1 + 1 = 5? And even if I held up one finger on one hand and one on the other, he still didn't get it. Then some developmental switch flipped and the concept of addition made sense. Now he can add simple numbers and is curious about the addition of larger numbers. Now he says, 2 + 2 = 4, 4 + 4 = 8. That's as far as he can go alone but he then asks about 8 + 8, 16 + 16, . . . .

And so it goes, one thing leading to another to another.

Friday, June 13, 2008

We're Not In Kansas Anymore, Toto!

One of the things I missed about the west was being around people who were clearly living an alternative lifestyle. So . . . I needed a haircut and posted on my local Yahoo home schooling group asking for recommendations for a hairdresser. I got several and picked one--a stylist at a salon in Boulder called Urban Boulder. I made the appointment a few days ago and gleefully went off yesterday for the much needed haircut.

Now, salons aren't the most mainstream of places usually. I find that stylists often do funky things with their hair and clothes. Fine. But . . . I was more than a little surprised at what I found when I walked into this salon. The first thing I noticed was the scarlet settee under the huge plate-glass window--with the largest great dane on it I have ever seen in my life. Otis was stretched out full length with his chin resting on the back of the settee, gazing lazily out of the window. It was clearly Otis' couch, not for clients! If you choose to sit on it, you choose to be covered with Otis.

After meeting Otis, I took my first real look around the salon itself. The owner and woman sitting at the reception desk had, predictably, a spiky peroxided hairdo. It took me a moment to notice her extensive tattoos. Slowly I noticed that having your body at least 1/4 covered with tattoos was a definite prerequisite to working there. Imagine, a room full of 10 women, all cutting hair, all hugely tattooed.

Oh, and did I mention the resident pit bull? Very friendly but she made me a little nervous.

So, I got my evidence of alternative lifestyles.