Monday, August 26, 2013

Late August Evening Daybook

Outside my window
is hot sunny weather, but the sun is going down. It wasn't here a month ago, when it should have been, so we get it now when fall is close and cooler weather is on our minds.

I’m thankful for
a husband who volunteers more than he should for the boys scouting.

I’m thinking about
this never ending to-do list! You know the one that when you cross something off you end up adding 2-4 things to it. But, I'm organized and ready! Bring on the busy fall season.

In the schoolroom
things are moving along at a nice steady pace. I placed some orders over the weekend to get the very last of our supplies for the year. Ok, I still have a couple books on my amazon wishlist! I'm excited to teach Latin and hopefully that will be next week. Some changes to history, but I'll post about that in the future. I also decided to get Student Writing Intensive from IEW for Caleb. This kind of goes against my Charlotte Mason and Brave Writer theory of teaching writing, but it really is what he needs at the moment. Our local library had this and we were able to give it a try. The lessons are way too long for him but that will be an easy fix.

From the kitchen
. . . . . well I did plan out plenty of meals for this week and did the grocery shopping.  ; )

I am creating
a "morning basket" schedule and some new planning sheets. This is needed to help our school days run smoother. It may get put on the back burner until next week due to below . . . .

I am working on
scout stuff and our church fall festival stuff. I've got deadlines for this Thursday evening. Updating parent handbooks, making a plan for popcorn, attending popcorn meeting, helping Scott plan all the meeting for the upcoming year. This is going to be tough. The fall festival stuff has a couple of weeks but I have work that must get done soon. Must stay on top of it!

I am reading
I really don't have the time, but I can't resist! Ten Ways to Destory the Imagination of Your Child-so awesome! Ok, I just read the introduction while fixing dinner tonight but I love it so far! Call the Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Time -another awesome book! I am three chapter in on this one. I've had this on my wishlist for a while, but our library just got it! I'm loving Jennifer Worth's writing style and it's hard to put down. So far it is much like the show, but she tells it much better.

I am hearing
Tyler . . .  he is the only one home and the AC consistently running!

Praying for
a local homeschool family that the husband is out west on fire duty. Online homeschooling friends who needs prayers. And for you, let me know!

Around the house
We deep cleaned Caleb's closet over the weekend. It wasn't too bad. He is good about keeping it picked up and he is getting older and has much less toys than Tyler. I did find about 10+ Lego boxes that have been in there since Christmas that I hadn't noticed. We did some rearranging and I did a total redo of Lego storage. It worked out! Cost: $17.99 for a new shelving unit, but I'm selling the one that was in there for $10. I also need one more thing for the Legos and I think they run $10-15. I love it when things work out. I also had to rearrange the hall closet to make room for scout stuff.

One of my favorite things
a new printer! I am loving this wireless color printer!! Life is good! Oh, it prints beautiful, it's fast, and just what we needed.

A few plans for next this week
is just to survive! Three scout meetings this week. A few appointments during the days too. Next week will be much better. Scouts stuff we be more spread out after this week.

A picture
or two from last week at our farm visit.
"No pictures, please!"

"Look at this stick I found, Mom!"

Friday, August 23, 2013

7 Quick Takes-August 23, 2013

1. I'm writing this during our lunch break. I really need a good break! We got a little behind this week and we have a lot to make up. Surprisingly the boys have worked well this morning and I think we will get it all done.

2. Reason for getting a little behind was a trip out to the family farm for play yesterday. The weather has been cool (but lots of rain) the past month. It was cool and no rain all of last week. But, no we wait until it is 90 and the humidity is high to make a trip. We hadn't sweated in a month so it was a good feeling.  ; )

Read aloud time at the farm with the Bush Boys seemed appropriate.
5. Swimming for PE yesterday. I believe they are looking for stuff in the lake, but I'm not sure. It was funny to watch though!
6. The boys had an awesome time in the lake. They were quite imaginative in their adventure (I heard a lot of talk of gators and snapping turtles). Tyler was a little nervous and wore a life jacket. He is an excellent swimmer and is strong and didn't need it. I joked with him that I used the life jacket when I was his age and it most likely would fall apart in the water . . . . and it did.
We normally sit on the boardwalk across the lake, but it was in the sun and the shade was a much better pick for the day. After we were there was five minutes I knew that a nature hike would not be happening on this visit. We really wanted to make weekly trips out to this place, but the weather didn't work with us. It was either too hot or raining. Then I start thinking of all the bugs (ticks and chiggers) and I talk myself out of it! Looking forward to fall! It seems like fall and spring work best for nature study anyway.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

What's Working Right Now

"Balance"- Picture taken on a nature walk earlier this year.

We are four weeks into our school year and for the most part it is going well. Work is getting done in a timely matter and we are staying on schedule. Our days are not smooth though. This is a matter of reorganizing the schedule a little bit and working on developing better habits. Here is what is working at this moment. And as usual, it is subject to change!

1) Our chore schedule-we have assigned chores in the morning before school, kitchen cleaned after lunch, and assigned chores after school is done (before screen time is allowed).

2) Being home during school hours-I have cut back the amount of time we are out of the house during school hours. We are now running errands during the evening and weekends. I am working one day a week, but not until after I get the school work done with the boys first. Which isn't much because I schedule mostly independent stuff on this day. I also try to run errands that must be done during day hours on this day. When an appointment comes up during school hours I don't schedule other stops and get back home as quickly as possible. This is hard for me because to save money I want to get as much done as possible to cut back on our trips to town. Surprisingly it is working well!

3) A weekly trip to Target. Honestly, I'm not pleased with this but it is helping the budget. I'm trying to stock up while items are on sale instead of buying when out and paying more. If only our Target had full groceries I would be in  heaven. I got toilet paper for forty cents a roll this week. Of course, I had to buy two big packages and it was a little embarrassing walking through the store and parking lot with a cart full of tp!

4) My Catholic Daily Planner! I used it last year off and on, but I have been faithful to it the last few months and it is a gem! I do need to work on keep a running list of project that need to be completed. I have a two page spread of the whole week and I plan it out every Sunday. Write down all appointments and meetings, write in school days, write down chores that need to get done, and I add to it all day/every day of notes of things I need to remember to do. I also grab it in the mornings during our prayer and bible time for reference. Love it!

5) Copying everyone else's blog ideas. I'm sorry but I get most of my blog post ideas from my favorite blogs. If the post seem similar I'm sure you have seen the concept on another blog. I have some goals with this blog, but at the this moment it is not possible with other commitments. Getting ideas from others is helping me to keep blogging. Hopefully I will achieve my blog goals later on.

What is working for you right now? Please share!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Lazy Day

It's suppose to be a down day in our week off from school this week. Yet, I have this bookshelf cleaning project that I've been putting off for almost two months now. Today's the day!


Shelves emptied and books piled everywhere. I was about halfway through with this phase when I realized that they needed a good sort which means a lot more work than I had planned. My emotions are pretty mixed when I do this. I keep finding wonderful books unread and I ask myself why (see first picture in post). I find wonderful books outgrown and I wonder if they should be kept or passed on. More reason to organize and sort the books to encourage more reading and less withering on the shelf. It's time to go and rearrange, but as usual I'm putting it off.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Daybook-Saturday Morning in August

Outside my window
Is that the sun I see? We may actually have more sun than clouds today which will be a first in a long time.
And a picture taken outside my living room window . . . .

I’m thankful for
sun, a quiet house, and no where I need to be today.

I’m thinking about
if I should dust the bookshelves in Tyler's room. That would be a big job, but it needs to be done and I have the time today. But, I would need to get the sweeper out and "sweep" the books because some of the tops were pretty dusty when I was gathering books for school. I need to talk myself into it and not out!  ; ) No deep thinking today!!

In the schoolroom
we finished up our third week of school for the new school year and it is going well. We are taking next week off to get together with friends before they start back to school. Also, we will run some extra errands and have some summer fun.

From the kitchen and garden
 In a book I'm reading it talks about how they eat in France and it just feels right. Yet, there is no way I could pull that off. I did go to a local organic farm and picked up some potatoes, cucumbers, and peppers and I'm looking forward to this fresh feast in the coming days. Our cucumber plants in the garden aren't producing much and neither are the peppers. There are lots of tomatoes though! Scott made salsa and we froze several bags of tomatoes for chili and soup this fall and winter.

I am creating
lesson plans for the next two weeks after our week off. I do need to finish this before dinner because I have books everywhere on the kitchen table. This doesn't take long, but I have a really hard time sitting still for too long.

I am reading
still a variety of books. Nothing is too interesting to talk about. I'm still loving Bringing Up Bebe.

I am hearing
the washing machine and dryer and nothing else!

Around the house
I can't tell you have much less stuff there is to do around the house when you are down two people! So much that it kind of takes away the missing pains.  ; )

A few plans for next week
is just some summer fun! I have some meetings with our local homeschool group. Including a conference that I'm really looking forward to attending!

Praying for
the health of friends and family and your intentions! Let me know if I can pray for you.
A picture
I didn't take any pictures this week, but here is one from our getaway last weekend.

Friday, August 9, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday-August 9, 2013

1. Scott and I had a little getaway last weekend at our favorite getaway spot, Bass & Baskets. Much needed relaxation was achieved!

2. We are taking next week off from school. We just need an extra week of summer and next week looks to be a good week for that.

3. The start of our school year is going really well. The tweaks have been small and workable. We haven't started Latin yet, but I think I'm going to use a different program and I'm just waiting to order that. I do need to sit down and put some time towards some small changes.

4. We are kid free again this weekend because the boys are going on a fishing trip with the grandparents. What will I do? (Said jokingly!) I've got some project I would like to work on. They will be out the door by the time this post is published.

5. The weather has just been weird! It has been cold (well cooler anyway) and rainy the past month. There are some hot and humid days in between, but it just feels all weird. We haven't been to the pool very much and it has been hard planning outdoor activities because the rain is very spotty and when it does hit it's a down pour. I can't remember the last time the sun has been out all day. I usually hate Missouri weather (but I tolerate it) and I'm not sure what to think about this. (It's raining at the moment!)

6. This week I did the dreaded task of going through clothes for the upcoming fall/winter season. It went good and we are well-stocked. I don't expect to have to get this stuff out for a long time (although see #5 above), but I do plan to do some shopping next week to take advantage of some good coupons I have to get a few items we need.

7. I miss this!
Last weekend I had a cup of coffee every morning we were staying at the B&B. I really enjoyed it! Reality is we don't even have a coffee maker at home and I require a lot of unhealthy added stuff to enjoy it. Bass and Baskets had a wonderful supply of creamer. I actually was mixing them together to make my own flavors and it was all good. I'm seriously debating again if we need to invest in a coffee maker. I bought one earlier this year but I took it back because it wasn't working correctly. I thought maybe it was a sign. I learned I'm going to have to get one of those expensive name brand one-cup makers to be happy. The cheap one was just junk!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Nature Study-End of July

I meant to post this before July was finished! Just three days late.

We had an unseasonable cold few days/nights here in Missouri. It is nice to actually be able to leave the house in July and not get overheated.

We spent an evening at a local Conservation area and explored the creek and the trail to the creek. Scott came along and pointed out all his nature know how along the way. He knows much more than I ever could teach the boys about the outdoors so the boys enjoy it when Dad comes along for nature study.

Tyler's find!

The view from my chair (I didn't go in but watched from the bank).
Lessons in skipping rocks.

Swimming and playing around.
Always fun to see what you can find in a creek.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

2013-2014 Curriculum Plans: Seventh Grade

Wow! Two years away from high school is a scary idea for a mom! It's an exciting time for the child though. I feel like it's the race to the end and there is still much to do before being ready for high school.

Our goal this year is to make leaps and bounds in math. We also want to encourage Caleb's new love for writing.

Here is a quick overview of what we are using for Caleb's 7th grade year!

Math-U-See Epsilon and Zeta
Evan Moor Daily Math Word Problems
Life of Fred-getting as far as we can and then starting Fraction sometime in January.

Behold & See 6 will be studying matter and energy, biomes, and astronomy. I think this will only take three terms to finish and I haven't made a decision about our fourth term. It will be interest led which means we are thinking about weather at the moment.

Language Arts:
Lighted Lanterns B
Writer's Jungle 
Keyboarding Skills.
Little Latin Reader from CHC

Caleb is studying the Middle Ages time period and I'm hoping to get into the Renaissance time period too. Here are some of the books he will be reading.
The Middle Ages by Dorothy Mills -spine for the year
The Art of Catapult
Augustine Came to Kent
Saint Dominic
Francis and Clare: Saints of Assisi
Saint Catherine of Siena
The Blue Gonfalon at the First Crusade
Crossbows and Crucifixes

Reading through the Old Testament using Golden Children's Bible
New St. Joseph's Baltimore Catechism #2
An Introduction to the Liturgical Year

Classical Catholic Memory

Link to Tyler's fourth grade curriculum is here!
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