Now that the holiday hustle and bustle is over, the decorations are down combined with lots of mopey faces as I removed and boxed them up. The new year has begun, it's time to get back into our homeschool routines and begin to plan for our projects that need to get done. The girls are at the table now as I type this, working on math and geography. Cameron and Kevin are over helping Grandma fix her printer, and I have laundry going as I help the girls. Woohoo, sounds exciting huh?
Christmas was fun and busy, and it is actually nice to settle into familiar routines without all the extra activities pending. I kept telling all the sad faces that watched the decorations come down, "this is what makes them special, the fact they aren't up ALL the time". And it is, if these were part of our regular decorating they just become clutter and dust collectors, not celebratory or special. I love the holidays, but I also love my routines. They are comfortable.
|Back to homeschool routines and scheduling 4H, ballet and more ECHO Ranger fieldtrips.|
Kevin, began the new year with an unforeseen project, having to move the dryer to the garage and vent it out of doors by creating an opening in the wall. We found our dryer taking 2 to 2 1/2 hours to dry a load, so he opened the vent to see if it was clogged and there was water in the vent hose. He then went up in the attic to try and find if the vent was clogged up there and found they hadn't properly vented the dryer and condensation was building up in the attic as well and draining back down the vent pipe - GREAT!! The up side of this is we've decided to move both the washer and dryer to the area in the garage, where his work bench had been. That frees up the area in the hall where both appliances were, and we can use this space to put the freezer and build shelving for a good size pantry. Then the area that the freezer is currently taking in the kitchen can be converted to storage space. I'll take pictures and post this when we get ready to make these changes. It will actually make everything far more functional, so his extra work will not be in vain.
Part of our normal now, has been regular visits from this group:
|The two pairs of Sandhill Cranes viewed through our pool screen|
|The females in among the trees|
They have been in the shallow water just behind our home, foraging for bugs and lizards in the grass and trees close by our house. They are fascinating to watch, enjoyable to hear even if they are a tad loud and it's really interesting to see these social birds call out to others as they fly by, or do "fly bys" themselves with others standing in the taller reeds towards the island in the back of our property. Despite the fact that they show up pretty regularly now, we still find ourselves stopping to stare at these large stately birds.
|The males were on the lawn nearer the water and boat|
|One of the males near the fenced area for the dogs|
|Taking off at the end of their visit|
So, life continues in this new year as we return to our "normal". Hope you'll check in and follow us as we move through life in this new year continuing to explore our home state of Florida and completing projects at home, both inside and out .