Trailer Park Unschoolers

Because you don't need to be rich to unschool!


Leave a comment

Mom…That’s A Crazy, Gigantic Bee Thing!

We were out walking the other day when we noticed a group of these creepy giant bee or wasp looking things inside an abandoned record store downtown. It was so strange seeing these giant bugs on a faded poster of Elvis. The kids said it looked creepy.

image

The kids were glad there was glass between us. As it turns out, we had nothing to worry about. These are cicada killer wasps, very docile and pretty harmless to humans. The males don’t even have a sting!

image

These little buggers are apparently pretty friendly. They’re more likely to flee than attack. They only sting if they feel their lives are in danger, and a human can barely feel it. Their bite is so mild it can’t even break human skin.

image

As you can see against the tape and my hand, they are pretty big. The females are larger than the males, so when they kill a cicada, they lay the male eggs on one body and the females on sevaral. The adults apparently eat pollen and other plant matter, like fruit. This means, for wasps, they have no need to be dangerous. They just need enough venom to kill a cicada. They carry them back to nests dug in the ground. They’re typically born in June and July and die in September to October, which means there’s not a lot of time in the year to see them.

What these wasps were doing in that store, we may never know. The kids wonder if they’ll die in there or if they’ll find a way out. We’re pretty sure there was some killing each other going on in there as that’s how the males determine breeding rights, but beyond that, who knows. What we do know is that gave us a cool amount of creep factor for the day, which made for cool stories of giant bees, and that it turned into a pretty cool lesson…involving “killer bees!” Yeah, it’s that kind of awesome.


Leave a comment

Or Maybe Not…

It little adventure in the woods has come to an end. We tried to make it work out there,  but we couldn’t. It was just too much isolation. We were all going a little crazy.

As for our situation, we were all frustrated. It felt like nothing was ever clean. The kids were always dirty, even right after taking a bath. I was always dirty. Even the clothes never got truly clean. The wash house was set up in such a way that evening baths before bed were impossible.

There are some things we’re going to miss. The freedom was awesome. The kids loved the cats. We got to explore nature and see some cool things. The kids loved the outdoor tub. It was lush, green, and alive.

But we decided it was time to go. We got to the shelter this afternoon. We had to go through all our stuff and limit what we took. Then we found out we had a problem with lice. Thankfully Luca was the only one of the boys that seemed to have a problem. Corde wasn’t bad. Thankfully, she combed out my hair. I can’t even begin to describe how grossed out I was. My hair was the worst by far!

The rules here are going to be strict. I’m not going to talk about any of the specifics, but it’s going to be a lot of hard work. I think we’re up for it. If Corde can comb out my hair for me, cheerfully chattering away as she did, I think she’s refreshed enough from the time off to be up for it.

So, wish us luck. Once again (yes, you’re going to get sick of reading about it), if you would like to help us get out of the shelter system and into our own place, help us live our dream life and get our RV! It may be living in close quarters, but it’s a place of our own and at worst, the RV parks are a cheap place to hole up for a while.


Leave a comment

They Grow Up So Fast

It just dawned on me today. It’s been almost two years since I started this blog. I know, I know, there’s been a lot of slacking. I haven’t always updated like I should. I guess I’ve done better than the average blog. People lose interest and forget. I’ve been around for a while.

Now I think about the kids and I’m amazed at how far we’ve come. It’s been a journey. Dad one was a nightmare. Dad two had his days, but wasn’t much better. Now we’re on our own, scrambling through. My kids sadly know what it means to struggle.

image

Corde has really grown. She’s decided she wants to live in an RV and travel.  It’s either that or raise angora rabbits and sell the wool. She’d be happy with either, but she wants to do the RV first. She’s the reason we’re trying to get the RV funded. If you would like to help us live her dream, check us out at Our Family RV Page and donate to the cause! So far we don’t have much, but it’s always a slow roll to get things going. She is so excited that we already have people helping, but she’s a little depressed that we’re not further along.

 

wpid-img_20140703_161058.jpgBeekee is in heaven out here. He’s starting to get back traces of who he was before his dad got involved and we had the whole school thing. He’s been playing with bugs. He’s interested in traveling too. He wants to go to all the renn faires in the country and go hiking at every place there is to hike. Of course, to do that, we’d have to travel.

 

wpid-img_20140703_155257.jpgSander wants to raise chickens still. At the same time, Corde has talked him into wanting an adventure. He wants to go camping a lot so he can sleep under the moon. He’s convinced he would sleep on top of the RV every night. He’s taken to putting laundry out to dry and doing chores like the big kids, and is often more reliable. He’s gotten so big! It’s hard to believe when I started this blog he wasn’t talking much or clearly. He needed help to do everything. Now he’s so idependent. He was still in pull ups! He still won’t sleep in his own bed and wants his Blinket and Minket or he has nightmares, but he’s able to sleep without them.

 

wpid-img_20140703_190051.jpgThen there’s Luca, my little Bear. He’s two now. For the past two days he’s been falling asleep without nursing for naps. He doesn’t want to use the potty, but he has learned to tell me he wants to pee on a tree. He sometimes can tell me he wants to pop a squat. We’re getting there. He talks like crazy, and tries to take care of the kittens. I think he could have a lot of fun traveling, but may also like to live on a farm. I think they all would. Maybe that’s what we do when we settle down.

It seems like it wasn’t that long ago that my life was so different. I was still with Oz and we were mostly happy. Now I’m a single mom. I’m struggling to find my feet. I’m not sure how we’re going to make this work, but I have no choice. It needs to happen. I need to march on through. I need to make it, somehow.

wpid-img_20140703_185340.jpgWe’re slowly getting ourselves back together.  I hate to admit it, but stress has made me have a lot of bad parenting moments. I’ve yelled more than I should. I’ve been strict. Stress means I’ve forgotten how to have fun. It’s time I got that back, before I get old before my time, and my kids’ childhoods are gone. It’s time to get things moving the right way again.

image

I’ve started doing yoga again. It hasn’t been much. It’s been all of eight poses. I run through the cycle all of twice, taking the time to relax into each pose. It takes me maybe fifteen to twenty minutes every morning, but it’s a routine. It’s getting me in good practices. It’s an attempt to force myself to stick with something. Afterwards I feel a little better. I’m really hoping I can see some improvements in the next couple months. I hope a year will show enough improvement that I can recognize it. I took photos of a few poses, well, Corde did. I’m going to do it again in the beginning of October, then again in January, once more in April. If there’s no change by April, I’ll know I’m not getting anywhere and give it up. Somehow I don’t see that being a problem. It will hopefully teach the children that dedication will get you results. I just wish I had a DVD and something to play it on. I’m sure a real routine would do more good.

image

Things are destined to get better. Stick with us and we’ll find a way through. By the end of our official second year we’ll hopefully know if we’ll have our child support in and will know how much we can help ourselves. Wish us luck…and if you’re feeling inspired, don’t forget to donate to our cause.  We can use all the help we can get!


2 Comments

Still Not There Yet

Life is taking us on an interesting path. We’re not exactly settled out in our new path, so I’m not changing our name until I know it will apply. It seems like we’re in a state of transition still, neither here nor there. Once we figure out what path our life is taking, we’ll finally put ourselves down with a new name.

So, what are we up to? Well, we’re staying out on a friend’s land. We’re in a camper, upgraded from a tent. It’s incredibly small for us, but it works. It’s taught me that we really can make it work in a tiny home. I think Corde, at least, will want a little more privacy. We definitely would need the space in here to be cleaned out so we can store our own stuff. We might even need a little more space than we have now, just to be certain.  If we got one of the RVs we’ve been stalking online, we’d be okay. We saw a fifth wheel Arctic Fox (how appropriate) in our price range and a couple Class C RVs. They all sleep a minimum of six. They have either a queen or king size bed in the master bedroom type area, which means the little boys and I could all snuggle in the same bed without a problem. I could probably get us all into a queen sized bed with minimum discomfort. The kitchens are all small, but we could shop as frequently as need be. Having to be prepped for travel, we would want plastic dishes (in case anything fell), and each of us would have our own stuff. That would just be it. I’m sure I could find bowls, plates, cups, and possibly even flatware in five colors. Luca would get blue. Sander would get green. Beekee would want orange or purple. It depends on when you ask him. After his dad or school, it will probably be orange. Corde would go with pink or red. I would end up with some random color, purple or yellow or something. We do our tooth brushes that way too. That would save on cabinet space and dishes. It could work.

So, why am I so fixed on this RV? The big thing is we would own it. You can’t be evicted from a place you own, so even if we can’t stay on the land, we can move our home instead of moving. We can travel, if we choose. It opens up possibilities. The down side to a fifth wheel is needing a tow vehicle.  The down side to a class C is the difficulty of also needing a car. Then again, depending on where we land and what I do for work, I could travel by bike, or tow a car.

In the mean time, we’ve been trying to have fun with it. We learned about what snails and pill bugs eat. We studied scorpions. We looked at all kinds of plants. We spent some time looking at historic houses. Today I sang them a bunch of camp songs from when I used to be a scout. It’s been a lot of fun.

This experience has been a tough one for us. Two months in domestic violence shelters ate away at all of us. Thankfully, Sander’s Minket found its way home this week. That instantly put a stop to his nightmares. We’re able to better stretch our legs here, but it’s far more isolated.  Now we’re sitting around watching movies. Well, let me amend that. Corde and I are watching movies while the boys are asleep. It’s depressing. I want to have a life back. The kids want friends.

Thankfully,  things are progressing. My ex husband got the reduction in child support he wanted. However, it wasn’t a huge reduction and he still has his back child support to pay. The next step is likely enforcement,  if I choose to push it that far. The process hasn’t even started with Oz. The state can’t find him to serve him. In the meantime, I’m doing what I can to get my own income. I’m writing for Camp Nanowrimo, in hopes of publishing. I will soon be offering prints for sale on Deviant Art, some of my photography. I’m getting my knitting business started again soon. I’m going to run a funding campaign. Then there’s my page on Go Fund Me to get the RV. We’re making progress! $230 may not be much for an RV, but everyone has to start somewhere.  (The page has been removed because the Go Fund Me is no longer active.)

Now, here’s the point where I get a little shameless. If we can’t get our RV before the weather turns, we may end up back in a shelter. It really depends on if either of the deadbeat exes decide to pay what they owe. We may be able to swing housing if they start paying. We really can’t hack another round at a shelter, and that may not change. Even if we get into housing, the RV fund will remain untouched for the RV. I would rather not be in most low income housing. No contribution is too small. If you’re uncomfortable giving money, we’re also going to have a Scentsy fundraiser done in our name, so that’s another way to help. Anything will help right now.