Friday, 30 October 2020

School in a time of COVID – Wednesday

 Here we are, halfway through the week already. I am sleeping better, as I am working harder, I think. We woke up to snow, but just a light dusting.  It melted.

Isabelle and Josephine managed to get up, after I cajoled, poked and prodded. Josephine had breakfast, but Iz wasn't hungry. Instead, I suggested she take some snacks with her to school! She read her book until school started. She ate her apple at her desk, and I trundled down some dried cranberries. A special UberEats delivery!

Once the girls are 'in school,' I go downstairs for a workout. That works out very well! The first hour is usually calm. 

Drama queen!

Grampa went into town for supplies. He phoned at 11:00 o'clock, break time, and asked if we wanted Subway sandwiches. Josephine declined, but Isabelle and I put in our orders, once Grampa got the pencil going. Josee had her butter chicken soup. Isabelle had begun heating her soup, and said she'd leave it until afternoon snacktime.

JB arrived home at 11:30, with a COVID non-mask story. A guy two customers in front of him in Subway wasn't wearing his mask. Someone else arrived behind Grampa, and Grampa explained loudly that he was standing 12' back of him until the dude put on his mask. The covidiot pulled it up, overhearing the conversation, but not up over his nose. Everyone else were wearing masks properly.

Anyway, Isabelle inhaled her ham sandwich, with fixin's, just in time for school to resume at 11:45.


Quite a morning, TWO dead voles on the deck. 

Most of their prey are rodents, a few snakes and frogs. The green on the graph, birds, but 4 of the 15 birds they caught over the year were released.


Grampa brought these for Jos, who needs them for a science experiment due Friday.

After cleaning up the bile and gall bladder on the front deck, cats were confined to barracks. 
They fought, objecting to being in the dog house.


We had a doe visit most of the morning!


Jos began her science experiment. Gummi Bears in the bubbly drink, vinegar, sugar, salt and plain water solutions.


Isabelle did her house run, 2 x's around, 55 seconds. 

Cinnamon from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

She finished her schoolwork by 4. Jos had a video to produce, which took her until 5 p.m.! She's been multiplying fractions, as well. 

Salad and lasagna for dinner, pie and ice cream for dessert. The lasagna JB bought at Coutt's, and it was great. Another great day.

Thursday, 29 October 2020

School in a time of COVID – Tuesday

Encouraged by Monday, and the girls who went to sleep without talking for an hour, and got to sleep promptly, I anticipated the best on Tuesday. Whew! 

7:15 is wakey-wakey time – I went downstairs, nudged the girls, opened the curtain, got the fire going, and put on a light. I began singing ♩♪♫♬YMCA, to which Isabelle sang back, ♩♪♫♬"Why, oh why-o, why-o, why did I ever leave Ohio?"  I used to sing that, as JB and I went to the show and have the CD. I was surprised she'd remembered it.

ME: C'mon, girls, you're going to miss the bus!

ISABELLE: Two things, Gramma (holding up two fingers). 1) the bus will never come here and, 2) We're doing virtual school!

JOSEPHINE: Such sass from a youngster! 

We had breakfast and off they went. Everytime I walk by their rooms, Izzy is in a different position!


"Where are you going, Iz?"
"I have to show angles, and I thought the house was perfect." The poor girl had to sit there on Zoom, waiting for her turn to unmute and talk!

I took her gloves and a blanket, after awhile she came back in!



There was a storm on the way, so I suggested Iz take her run early. She agreed. At that point, the sun was out.  The blue is snow, moving northeast, and Jos added some wood to the fire. You just never know in the country!


Izzy's run around the house took 57 seconds. Yesterday, it was 33.45. She was pleased with herself. She scared Cinnamon right into the house! The cats know enough not to linger when there is a forest sound.

It's amazing how quiet they are during remote learning. Suddenly, I would hear one or the other speak, but it was few and far between.

After the debacle with the ribs Monday(they cook 2 hours), changing plans, I found out we didn't have any BBQ sauce for today. I made some from scratch, No Ketchup BBQ sauce, as I had time. We didn't have enough ketchup, so I used tomato sauce. 

The pot pie and ribs were good, cooking smells are lovely in the cold, damp afternoon. 

I used the gravy boat to pour the sauce on.
We watched a few more Border Security shows. Unfortunately, I had to explain what a pedophile is, as he wasn't admitted into Canada, and they stated this. Thankfully, Isabelle was reading downstairs. 

We banked the fire, as it is chilly in the basement. All was quiet.

Wednesday, 28 October 2020

School in a time of COVID – Monday

Day 1 of virtual school

We've the girls for the school week, but they had to arrive at least Sunday, since Monday is bright and early. Sunday, we set up the two offices, checked out the laptop connections, and the wifi for the printer. Their schedules are taped to the door. They get 5 minutes between periods. Both girls are in cohorts of about 35 kids. Isabelle has about two teachers. As does Josephine. Both are in French Immersion, as Papa is from francophone roots. Their French pronunciation is amazing. 

Grampa had to be up early. He had garbage to put out, and a physiotherapy appointment at 8 a.m. What pressure? I was awake, listening to the 7 a.m. news. The girls I woke up at 7:15. 

Schedule

09:00 - 10:00 - first period
10:00 – 11:00 – second period
11:00 – 11:45 – break for lunch and some exercise (tree climbing?!)
11:45 – 12:45 – 3rd period
12:45 –   1:30 – 4th period
  1:30 –   1:45 – asynchronous, independent work
  1:45                 –45 minute break
  2:30 –   3:30 – final asynchronous work period.

Morning routines done, they logged on. Happily, they'd done virtual school in the spring. There was a lot less pressure, and some skills, and Google Classroom strategies that we mastered. (We had them 18 weeks in the summer.) This term, they are taking attendance. There is supposed to be a report card at the end of October. I hope that changes. 

All went well. After 10 minutes, I texted Momma to tell her we had lift-off. We were all relieved.

I kept running down the hall to peek in on them, giving thumbs up from the doorway. There was one math question from Jos. It wasn't quite clear, but they were doing equations based on litres of gas, km/h and gas prices. They had to figure out the difference per litre for premium and regular gas. Whew. I taught gr. 7/8 math in 2005, so no worries! I find their questions are somewhat vague, sometimes.

They also discussed the right answers on a test the teacher had assigned. Josephine had 100% on the test. She patiently sat there while they discussed the corrections

Also, they were discussing a piece of French writing, a reflection on environment issues. Papa was the president of the Green Party, so she has lots of food for thought. The other students were working on it, and Jos had already gone to a website to correct punctuation and grammar. She sat patiently, mushing Cinnamon. It was an excellent opinion piece, Grampa and I both read it. She was ready to hand it in, which is quite different in virtual learning. We scan them, or do the work online.

Isabelle did well. There is a huge difference between gr. 5 and gr. 8. 

During their breaks, they grabbed some food, and read their books, mushed cats. Isabelle had been running around the house three times at home, timing the event. It rained ALL day Monday, so she did one lap in 33.45 seconds. We'll do more tomorrow. 

We planned meals for the week. (This was Josee's work!) I began to prepare the ribs, when I realized they had to cook for a couple of hours. Plan B, hamburgalers. Carrots, and a berry pie for dessert.

 

We watched several more Border Security episodes after dinner. Izzy got tired of it and went downstairs to read. Then, teeth and jammies!

This is where I moved Frosty. His tree stump rotted after 9 years.
Surprisingly, I still have petunias.
Poor Bear. I took off his ear moving him. You can see how he is falling apart!

BTW: OCV – Ottawa-Carleton Virtual School (Elementary)! There are six virtual campuses, which include a diverse community of 13,500 students from across the OCDSB.

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

Back to school!

 Well, school began in our grandies part of the world, OCDSB, Friday, Sept. 18th. It was pretty late in September. The kids set the girls up in their dining room. 


Our girls are doing online schooling, Gr. 5 and 8. The kids took a month to create routines and best practices. Both adult are working from home. We have the girls for a week, and we'll see how it works out. We've added to the internet tower[New antenna in rural Ontario], upped our coverage, and will hope we can manage two Zoom events at the same time. If not, back they'll have to go. 😭

Saturday morning, they all arrived for an overnighter. We planned to figure out where the girls would work. Grampa isn't using his office, except for exercises. There was also the guest room.


Saturday, the kids arrived. 



We visited, they went walkies after they helped with some heavy chores. JL made dinner, spaghetti with garlic bread. Yum. They brought all the ingredients, as well! What a treat. 
Isabelle helped me set up the Christmas tree.
Tree climbing
Cat mushies

We were watching the PVR, JB had taped the horse race, when I felt something crawling. I yelled for someone to fetch some tape. All Caitlin could find was electrical tape, but it worked. There was a tick. My SIL checked the girls, and all was well. Whew!

More outdoor play on Sunday.

Isabelle was fixing up her costume, painting blood on her zombie shirt. They will wear them on Friday during school.

It was a lovely sleepover. We watched some old Border Security shows. Momma and Papa went home in the morning. We read, played in the trees again. Jos and I played two Skip-Bo games. She won both. 

During the weekend, we watched a young buck stroll up the driveway. It went down the path to the meadow, not choosing to show off where all could see him! Instead, he made selfies down in the forest.

Monday, 26 October 2020

Mill Pond Conservation Area

Friday afternoon drive, continued! Here is part 1. A wonderful 23 C. day. Today, there is snow in central Ontario. We've just rain.

As we came to a stop sign, I told JB to hang a right. It was a dead end, along Briton-Houghton Rd., AKA CR #38, and we circled back to the Mill Pond Conservation Area.



It's labelled as a 'canoe launch,' but we navigated the slippery hill, through the sand and into the water.


Lots of cottages along the way.











We saw this hill, and contemplated it. The roots were quite evident, and gave good footholds.
The other side of the hill was too slippery with leaves. Back we went.
Isn't that lovely?





It's sad that people would hurt the tree like this.


It's a neat spot, with many little brooks sending water into Mill Pond. 
Sumac
It hopped out of the way, a good-sized leopard frog.


It's a lovely spot, and we shall return sometime. It was a good hike.