Friday, June 27, 2014

7 Quick Takes Friday {June 27, 2014}

1) It has been a busy week, but peaceful (except when it took me all day to organize Caleb's history for next year, ugh!) and things have gotten done. There is just two of us home and I've enjoyed the break from house work!

2) Pam @ Everyday Snapshots has a new e-book out Plan Your Year: Homeschool Planning for Purpose and Peace! I've read it a and listened to the audio and recommend you do the same! Perfect for the new homeschooler and also for the seasoned one! It gave me some inspiration to get out of a planning rut that I was stuck in. The audios gave me some ideas and answered some questions I had for Sarah @ Amongst Lovely Things.  Be sure to check it out!

3) Tyler and I visited Caleb and Scott at Boy Scout camp last night. The boys got lucky and the temperature was in the 80s instead of the 90s this year! Tyler enjoyed using the climbing wall. We got to check out a massive pioneering project, visit, and we also attended a special camp fire. (Details about that later in another post!)

4) Some new Day Lilies are blooming this week. I just had to share since they are a favorite of mine! I'm impressed with the intense colors this year and the prolific amount of blooms on some of the plants! What is blooming in your gardens?

5) I had to move my little garden elf as he was looking lonely stuck just in the rocks!

 6) Plans for the weekend include some light house cleaning and working on school planning today. I will be enjoying the rest of the weekend spending time with my tired campers! It's been a long week and I'm sure they will want to sit inside and enjoy the AC!

7) Plans for next week include enjoying probably the last "relaxing" week of summer break! Things are starting to pop up on the calendar! I'll finish up the school planning since it's not looking like I will finish it today. Time at the pool and a small trip is planned.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Friday, June 20, 2014

7 Quick Takes Friday {June 20, 2014}

1) Tyler's metal detector arrived yesterday. I can't tell you how excited the boy was! I took pictures of the exciting event so I'll just show you!

3)I  mentioned yesterday that I've been finding some wonderful planning inspiration around the web. Have you seen these yet? 
Pam's Homeschool Planning Pinterest Board

4)What's for dinner? I've struggled all week with dinner ideas. I'm not much in a cooking mood either this week. Does anyone have ideas for quick and easy on nights that no one really wants to cook? I always try to keep canned chicken in the cabinet for those evenings to make quick chicken salad sandwiches. I'm planning on going grocery shopping today and can't think of anything for meal planning!

5) I'm enjoying some blooming flowers this week! They look beautiful this year. I think it's because they got fertilizer the last year and this year. They had been mistreated prior. I just had to add in the third picture just because my little garden elf photo bombed the picture.

6) Plans for the weekend and next week? I have a date with Tyler today (I always take them out for a date after their yearly well visit)and he picked Dunn Bros. Coffee. The local Farmer's Market Saturday morning and then cleaning the house. Nothing much really planned for the weekend! Tyler will enjoy a sports day camp all week! The big boys have plans too. I need to finish all the school planning.

7) Caleb came home with a project. I'm not too excited about it. I'm not sure where they are going to store it! The boys are excited about it! Including Caleb's closest friend who is working on the same project in his garage too.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Summer Break aka School Planning Time! {planning progress}

This time of year is spent with countless hours preparing for the upcoming school year. I also do deep cleaning around the house (those projects that only get done once or twice a year)during the summer "break". Things are pretty hectic right now! I've forgotten about dinner every night this week! Today was the first time that I remembered to get something out. I'm rather looking forward to next week when I will have days to myself to work on planning and getting most of it done. I have a goal of being done by the end of next week.

This year I've ran across some many wonderful books, blog post, podcast, etc. that has has helped so much in my planning. I have linked to some of those recently and I will have links to more in my Friday blog post. I still struggle with planning even though this is our eighth year of homeschooling. My weakness is knowing how to get started and following an organized efficient planning schedule. I struggle a little with a considered book list (depending on the subject). My strength is that I usually enjoy planning since I'm typically an organized person. I like order!

So far our schedule of days for the school year is done! I have a start date, ending date, breaks schedule, etc. Of course as any homeschooler knows, this is subject to change due to whatever comes up. I feel confident in knowing we can stick to this schedule since we didn't have any major illness last year (praise the Lord!). That could always change! I did have a request to end our school year the same time as our public school friends. I need to get in an extra half week of school so I'm hoping the public school has about 3-4 days added onto their school year! LOL because that would mean a lot of snow days like this past winter! I don't have a plan B if that doesn't happen.

Our main focus will be Language Arts (mostly grammar and spelling for both and writing for just Caleb)for the upcoming year. I have yet to figure out how to go about this. I have the books needed, but I was getting a little out of hand in planning more than we can do. I'm creating anxiety with that! I'm going to need a new plan. 

I have changed plans for history with Tyler a few times already! I need to cut back Caleb's history work to accommodate the extra time we need for the LA focus. This is a little tough since I've spent a good amount of money on books for his history this year. Not a total waste as Tyler will use the books in the future. I hadn't bought any books for Tyler's history so the change was easy. I'm expecting the boys to do history independently this year and I'm curious (perhaps a bit afraid) how that will work out. 

I'm not 100% convinced for science plans for Tyler. I still need to put plans together for just about everything else, lol! Our booklist is made though. A considered schedule needs to be completed and I'm saving that for next week.

Now it's time to head to the pool and relax for a while!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Celebration of 10!

We finally were able to celebrate Tyler's 10th birthday this past weekend. He wanted a camp out at the family farm. He was a little sad when no one wanted to camp out with us, but he did enjoy family coming out for a weenie roast and fishing. 

The birthday boy with his cake. Notice his finger in a cup of ice from a burn. He is fine, but does have a small blister now.

Setting up camp!

I got the signs and tableware from Oriental Trading.

Tyler enjoyed Kayaking, swimming, and fishing in the lake.

I copied Tyler's campfire cake from Jessica @ Shower of Roses. (Be sure to add Jessica to your prayers as see has suffered a great loss.) Tyler also wanted s'mores.

Tyler with his goodies. He asked for cash to buy a metal detector. With his birthday money and some he was saving, he had enough to order one!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Late Spring Daybook {June 13, 2014}

(A daybook will take the place of my Friday 7 Quick Takes.)

Outside my window . . .
the sun! It's been rainy, cloudy, and cool a lot in the past two weeks. It was finally warm enough to go to the pool today. Too bad the water was freezing! I had no problem getting the boys out of the pool to go home though!

The garden is looking great! We my have some green peppers ready for picking any day now. Day Lilies are starting to bloom(another one of my favorite flowers).

I am thankful for . . .
a teenage boy who loves to work and get things done around the house. I no longer have to haul heavy bags of books from the car to the library or carry all the grocery bags up the steps from the basement garage. Need a pile of rocks moved? Caleb is the man boy to do it!

I'm also thankful for the many gifts God keeps providing. I was short for a bill and since then God has put the money in my hands to get it paid before it was due. It has been funny to watch the money come from places that I didn't expect or remember that someone owed me for something.  : )

Learning all the time . . . 
Uncovering the Logic of English has been a great book to read and learn from. I recommend it to anyone who has children who have yet to learn to read, anyone that thinks their children's reading or spelling skills could improve, or anyone with struggling readers or spellers. As an adult it will help with your reading and spelling too. And while we are at it, school teachers should read this too!  ; )

I am thinking . . . .
still about doing some painting this summer. I'm struggling to committing to such a big project and deciding color. 

Celebrating the liturgical year . . . 
I'm struggling with keeping our plans in place for a living liturgy. We need to work on a better routine and this is a goal for summer break. I need to get practices in order before the new school year starts. I started to read A Little Oratory and I'm loving this book. Unfortunately it is not the top book on my reading stack at the moment, but it will be very soon!  

From the kitchen . . . 
is not something I post too often but I was feeling pretty Suzie Homemaker today. I made Double Chocolate Muffins with breakfast and made Tyler's birthday campfire cake. Cooking is not my favorite unless it's easy and the two above are easy! If you use whole wheat flour in the muffins, add at least an extra tablespoon of milk; it seems dry otherwise.

I am working on . . . 
still school planning for the next year. My last packages finally arrived. It's been a good planning week in my head, but that is about it. I'm struggling with the writing it down part. I still plan to do most of my planning the last full week of this month. My schedule is cleared that week!!

I'm also working on the summer deep cleaning list. I got the living room done today; that was a last minute decision. I knew missing last week would get me out of the routine! Luckily the boys were a big help. Caleb cleaned the windows inside and out and Tyler helped me wipe down the walls. My knees thank Tyler!

I am praying . . . .
for sick family members, a few online friends and fellow bloggers, and a special intentions weighing on my heart. Please send me an email if I can pray for you too!

I am reading . . .
The Secret Garden just because I never have and it is recommended reading for all girls.
Pride and Prejudice on my Nook (when I remember!)
The Little Oratory (linked above)
Charlotte Mason's final book Towards a Philosophy of Education which I have read parts of before. I understand it much better this time around.
Uncovering the Logic of English (linked above)

I am listening to . . .
a ton of podcast lately! Too many as I keep getting them all confused. I need to slow down, but they are all wonderful! Sarah's Teaching From Rest were all excellent and so are her Read Aloud Revival

I am hearing . . . 
just distance sounds outside my house. The boys are out running. I decided to stay home and have some much needed alone time! I typically walk while they run . . . . just in case there was some confusion on that part!  ; )

Clicking Around . . .
Jen's Charlotte Mason Teaching Tuesday
Ignatius Press streaming videos, can't wait to view some of these!
Host Your Own Kids Poetry Tea Party from Pam @ Everyday Snapshots. Can't wait to have one of my own!

One of my favorite things . . .

A spoiled kitty who was let in the house three days in a row to nap all afternoon. (That habit was broken the last two days.) You would have thought this cat was dead except you could hear him purring! I'm sure he knew he would be left along if he pretending to be sleeping, but he was so content he couldn't help himself from purring!

A "new" basketball goal from a garage sale to replace the one we had that didn't go up high enough. Blessed with an awesome price!

A few plans . . .
celebrating Tyler's 10th birthday, enjoying another week of summer break, and preparing for Boy Scout camp/Mom's planning week.

Friday, June 6, 2014

7 Quick Takes {June 6, 2014}

1) I made it a goal for the summer to post a quick takes every Friday. Unlucky for you as they won't be too exciting!  ; )

2)In my last post I talked about how are days are going while on summer break. Some things have changed since then. First off, the weather! It's been cloudy and rainy the rest of this week. The temperature is nice, but it's too wet to be outside unless you put on your rubber boots! I also decided to not to a summer term. Instead we will start our new school year in July. I'll post about that later. Tyler and I are going to learn to sew this summer and the boys are participating in some summer reading programs.

3) Tyler has been attending our local nature center's day camp. He is really enjoying it! The running back and forth to town is out of my comfort zone. Today, I have to make an extra trip as they have a two hour slot for parents to attend.

4)I've been doing school planning in all my free time this week. Slowly getting through it! I have everything bought, but I'm still waiting on an order from two week ago. I'm a little disappointed in their shipping time. The book store was in Missouri, too. The weird thing is that the package was sent to Iowa when there is a USPS distribution station a half hour away from the book store. It wasn't a mistake either; the last time I ordered from them it went there too. I don't understand except that it adds a couple of days on my wait time. : (

5) I decided I needed matching bin to put next year's school books in to help with planning. I know I had a bunch of extra miscellaneous baskets and bins, but I started using them and it looked like chaos in my head. I went and got matching bins. I decided on these because they have a dry-erase label on them and the size would work for storage after their planning days were over. They are not very sturdy and it's been hard moving them around. They certainly can't handle much weight. I will most likely store Tyler's winter clothes in them afterwards, so they should be able to handle that. The baskets I had on hand would have handled the books better!  

6) Pictures from boys at play!

7) This boy turns 10 on Sunday! We are planning a party for him next weekend. Hopefully I will remember my camera and have a post of his celebration.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Carefree Break Days

Days around here have certainly been a little carefree, yet still full.

Priorities are different and this is much needed break from the ordinary school days. We are enjoying these particular days!

Out-of-door has been a big part of our days. More than typical. The weather has been pleasurable for the outdoors, which is unusualMy allergies have been allowing me to play outdoor. I'm loving this awakening of being outside. I've had to lock myself inside for the last several years because of allergies.

I've been practically in engaged in Charlotte Mason and studying, researching, learning all that is possible.  My favorite resources that I'm currently immersed in include Learning and Living: Homeschooling the Charlotte Mason Way DVD set, free e-books from Simply Charlotte Mason, and Charlotte Mason Teaching Tuesdays

Not directly Charlotte Mason, but Sarah's Teaching From Rest goes along with CM because two our her audio companions are with Charlotte Mason home educators.

The pictures in this blog post where taken last Friday. We had some read aloud time outside and the boys played afterwards.

Now, today we start out summer term. Just a half day. It went well! The boys are now free to spend the afternoon in play. Caleb is moving rocks from an old flower garden and Tyler is helping. I get to finish laundry this blog post. I'm sure Charlotte Mason would be proud!

I wonder how long these splendid out-of-door days will last? (Said from the deck under the shade of a pine tree!) I'm getting use to sitting on the deck, listening to some wonderful pod cast, and watching the tea brew. Sure wish I had a hammock.

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