In my life this week… I did hear back from my nephrologist. She said that it appears that I have a rheumatological disease that has damaged the tubes in my kidneys. She wants me to see a rheumatologist before she does anything more than continue to supplement my potassium, which may be all that she ever does, besides monitor my kidneys, anyway. She said that it is highly unlikely that my kidneys will get better, even if the rheumatologist gets my immune system under control. The rheumatologist is booked until the end of February and this doesn’t bother me at all, as I am in no hurry to start taking the medicines that are used to treat rheumatological disorders, which really seem rather unhealthy to be taking. I do know that the meds will help to prevent my body from attacking any of my other organs, which is good, but I am unclear as to whether or not I will have more energy once I am on these meds.
In our homeschool this week… Gohan started Algebra 1. Mathematically, he is capable of doing the work, but the vocabulary is tripping him up (dyslexia rears its ugly head even in math). So he is needing much more help than usual. He is learning a lot about using an index and being more careful to be sure which word is being used (today he looked up the definition for “constant”, when the word he needed to know was “coefficient” – needless to say, this made him quite confused and led to a very confusing conversation between me and him, before I figured out what the heck he was talking about).
Places we’re going and people we’re seeing… Last week, we did end going to the The Seattle Great Wheel. While it had been overcast at our house, it was clear and sunny, albeit cold, in Seattle. So we enjoyed a spectacular view. The top photo in this post was taken from the ground and is of the Olympic Mountains as seen across the Puget Sound. The second photo in this post is of the Space Needle, which I took from the Ferris Wheel. You can see the Seahawks’ flag was flying on top of the Space Needle, as this was two days before their intensely emotional defeat by the Falcons (I don’t follow sports at all, but even I can’t avoid, but to hear some sports news on occasion). The cars of the Ferris wheel are all enclosed, with heat/AC, kind of like mini-airplanes. Dora, Secunda, and I were the only three to go and none of us minded the height, but if you are at all prone to a fear of heights, it does go up 200 feet high. After the Ferris Wheel, we went for a short stroll on the Seattle Waterfront and Dora enjoyed some cotton candy and a ride on the merry-go-round.
Finally, we walked over to the aquarium for about an hour. We were all a bit pooped out and I wanted to leave early enough to beat Seattle’s Friday afternoon rush-hour traffic, so we didn’t get to enjoy the aquarium as much as we usually would have. Still, we saw many exhibits, including these sea horses…
…and this very active octopus, which I had never seen before and which scared Dora. They had released an octopus last year, so I thought there would no longer be an octopus exhibit, but it sounds like they bring a new one in every year or so and then release it after having it mate on a blind date on Valentine’s Day (I really did not make this stuff up). Anyhoo… whenever I have tried to see the octopus, it always hides in the corner and looks very small and muted to me. This octopus was huge and a brightly colored. It was also moving around a lot. I didn’t get the best photo of the it, as I did not want to use my flash when it was so close to me, since I felt it would hurt its eyes.
My favorite thing this week was… Watching Kiki’s Delivery Service with Dora. One of the older kids started watching it and Dora got really caught up in it. I was quite surprised, but excited, as I am a real fan of Hayao Miyazaki’s films. Unfortunately, most of his movies are a bit too scary for me to allow Dora to watch them, but Kiki’s Delivery Service is a good movie, whose main character is a strong, grounded, and genuinely-kind female role model. Dora watched it a couple of times this week and it was lots of fun to sit with her watching one of my favorite movies and trying to answer all of her questions.
A photo, video, link, or quote to share… This is the short poem that I read with Dora this week. We have been trying to read poems and sing songs about snow, in hopes of encouraging some snow to appear, but no such luck. This poem comes from an anthology from Wynstones Press, entitled, Winter: A Collection of Poems, Songs and Stories for Young Children.
Whenever a snowflake leaves the sky,
It turns and turns to say goodbye.
"Goodbye, dear cloud, cool and grey."
Then lightly travels on its way.
And when a snowflake finds a tree
"Good day," it says, "good day to thee."
Thou art so bare and lonely here
I'll call my friends to settle near."
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