I'm not so new anymore but back when I was new here's what happened: after three days of "teaching" my sixth grade son at home, I realized our relationship would never recover from an entire year of math worksheets, English lessons, and the feelings of frustration which marked the end of our, admittedly few, days. So this blog documents our first year of unschooling--the good, the bad, and the better--and then it just keeps on going...
July 15, 2008
What I Learned Yesterday
Yesterday I mopped the living room floor. I'm telling you this because I have wood floors and I usually (okay, occasionally) sweep or vacuum them, but rarely do I mop. I kind of figured sweeping or vacuuming was enough. I'm here to tell you it is not enough. I am not exaggerating when I say that the water coming off my mop was still muddy brown on the fifth, sixth, sometimes seventh rinse. I would have cried if it hadn't been so, well, amazing. I mean, who knew? You couldn't see the dirt at all--it just blended right in with our well-worn/rustic/shabby chic/shabby/dilapidated (choose your own adjective) floor. I actually had to stop mopping before the water ran clean because my mop-ringing hand just couldn't take it anymore. So that was one thing I learned yesterday: wood floors must be mopped--frequently. I just thought you might like to know....
The other thing I learned is this: a feijoa in New Zealand is a guava in America. When we were in New Zealand I discovered the feijoa.It's a little green, yummy fruit that tastes fabulous in smoothies. I thought I had never seen one in America. But I was at the grocery store yesterday and there they were, staring up at me from a little basket in the fruit and vegie section. I picked one up and sure enough there was a sticker on the side that read "feijoa" but I couldn't find the price. So I asked the grocer, "How much are the feojoas?" "You mean the guava?" he said. It was a guava! Which tells me that prior to my visit to the grocery store yesterday I wouldn't have known a guava if it hit me in the face. But I thought I knew. I mean, I would have guessed it was like a mango or a papaya or something. Anyway, my point is, I think there are probably a lot of guavas in my life. Not guavas as in fruit, but guavas as in something I think I know but don't. So from here on out I plan to look for the guavas in my life and find out exactly what they are, how they operate, and where they came from.
I'm going to start with wind. What exactly is it? What are we feeling when the wind sweeps across our skin? Atoms? And where does the wind come from? I've always assumed it came from the ocean but is that true? And if it is true how does the ocean manufacture it? We think we know wind, right? But I can't answer any of these questions. So as soon as I finish writing my monthly newspaper column (which is due today and which I am currently avoiding by writing on my blog) I'm going to look for answers. Does anyone know where I should start?
And what has Jerry learned? In addition to learning about what makes up the insides of a computer, that the chupacabra is probably a dog--not an alien, how to do a nose grind on line rider, and probably a few other things, Jerry has learned how to sleep though the sound of a jackhammer pounding away just outside his bedroom window. Yes, the building of our deck has brought jackhammers into our lives. It has also brought the root of our pine tree into the light of day. It took four days to get the behemoth above ground.It's pretty cool, though. We've decided to keep it as a garden sculpture.
Here's a picture of Charlie (top) and Ravenpaw surveying the destruction--I mean construction-- from the branches of our fig tree. And here's Charlie looking very photogenic. That's about it. Now on to writing that column!