Monday, September 01, 2014

The Simple Woman's Daybook for September 1, 2014


Outside my window... rainy and gray. 

I am thinking... about folding laundry and cleaning the kitchen. And typing on my blog.

I am thankful... for Labor Day and a day Daddy can be home with us!
In the kitchen... I'm feeling like Old Mother Hubbard.  I need to go to the store.

I am wearing... jammies ... yes, I know it is 1 pm.

I am creating... a list of ideas for posting 31 Days in October.

I am going... to Kroger during Quiet Time, I think.

I am wondering... how I'm going to get all my stuff done while I procrastinate.

I am reading... or going to start ...  What Angels Fear by CS Harris  Highly recommended by my 52 books people.

I am hoping... to finish The Liberal Arts Tradition before next Monday.  I'm so close. I failed last week. Again. Third time's a charm? Or fourth? [sigh]

I am looking forward to... soccer games on Saturday!

I am learning ... about blogging and statistics and promotion and ...

Around the house... laundry.  Next. After lunch.

I am pondering... folding laundry.  Just pondering at the moment, though.

A favorite quote for today... 

One of my favorite things... my kids making lunch ... quesadillas!
A few plans for the rest of the week ... SOCCER!

A peek into my day...monkey bars!

This post is linked to The Simple Woman's Daybook.  We'd love to have you join us!

Weekly Report: August 25-29, 2014

Last week was interesting.  It was not the best week ever, but we got a good deal done.  It wasn't the worst week ever either.

I have one child who is trying out the procrastination and avoidance technique when it comes to doing their assignments.  I need to get on top of that. I have four dawdlers.  I need to get on top of that.  Unfortunately,
they all take after me. (Note that I'm posting this on Monday.  Oops.)

Math went relatively well.  I decided to let N-boy take two days per lesson.  That helped.  He's working on adding/subtracting multi digit numbers.  M-girl worked through subtraction of three digit numbers. They're teaching about regrouping and decomposing numbers and it is a little tricky, but she's handling it fine.  R-girl has been working on Khan Academy review and mastery of K-2 math. She is kind of ahead and was starting to struggle with MEP, so reviewing and getting the basics down is helping build her confidence.  She's really enjoying it.

Copywork: 3rd Grade BOY
For Literature, the children are doing well with The Silver Chair and written narrations.  M-girl is required to write 4 sentences, N-boy 3, and R-girl 2.  They all try to get to write less, I must be firm.  For Writing, they are also working through CAP's Writing and Rhetoric: Fable.  I assign a section or two a few days during the week.  M-girl and N-boy have both completed the C.S. Lewis copywork book and began copywork from the Westminster Shorter Catechism.

We did fit in a trip to the Library

The children read some from American History Stories about early settlers and explorers in their History studies.  They wrote narrations about that as well.  For Geography, they all did some blobbing.  R-girl worked on States and Capitals some too.

Indian Burial Mound
Bee Hive
We did no Science. Except, we did go for a hike with friends on Friday and two drew a hive in their nature journals and one looked up Jewel Weed to confirm its identity.  I wanted to do some Chemistry, though.  Boo.

M-girl continues learning about prepositional phrases and how they work by diagramming them in FLL4.  N-boy is working on adjectives in Grammar-land.  R-girl is reviewing at the end of FLL2. I love teaching Grammar.  R-girl is working on her spelling with the fourth book of Explode the Code.

We continued with Latin, reviewing in our Activity Books and on Headventure Land.  The kids are excited about the new things available come tomorrow! I'm hoping some of them will be available for mobile use.

We have continued with Piano practices (Need a new teacher! Procrastination and Avoidance, me? No.) and typing.  R-girl is flying through Dance Mat.  I think Piano helps with typing. M-girl has swapped out typing for Khan Academy Programming.

Our Gymnastic schedule is getting ready with daily Soccer practices. M-girl and Jason are gearing up for First Lego League.  It's a busy, busy time.

Embracing the Ordinary: Sundays

Sometimes I think it takes the extraordinary to help us appreciate the ordinary.

I grew up attending mainline protestant churches from the time I was young.  My family attended a Methodist Church somewhat regularly when I was small.  After some family changes, my family attended the big, local Presbyterian Church (USA) every Sunday - almost never missing.  We were that much sought-after, two-hour family: we always went for Worship and Sunday School.  I think I even wore my prom dress to church the next morning.  It was our family's way.

In college, I tried, but failed to regularly attend from my first year until my final year when I had a car (and driver's license).  Once I started attending again, it was a regular thing, I almost never missed attending.  When I had my babies and the doctors recommended waiting to attend, I listened with my first - it was six weeks! I never waited that long again to be with the people of God on the Lord's Day.

Oh, yes.  My husband and I changed churches after we were married.  We were looking for a conservative, Reformed church that espoused the Doctrines of Grace and was serious about the faith and how we are changed by Christ himself.  When we found that, in a local OPC congregation, we immediately fell in love.  But, they had this odd thing: Evening Worship.  What on earth is that about? Same service? Different? It's such a long day, going back seemed a bit excessive.  It's a little bit of culture-shock.

We tried Evening Worship now and again, but my family gathers for Sunday Dinner and the afternoon, so that is a long day already and we were tired and ready to go home. The idea, though, hung around our heads and hearts for 12 years.  We had babies and toddlers and preschoolers.

Finally, we bit the bullet. In January of 2013, we started attending Evening Worship at our church.  Twice the fellowship, twice the community, twice being greeted and blessed by God our Father, twice hymning him as the angels do above, twice the teaching of the Word.  Our congregation offers the Lord's Supper twice a month - once in the morning and once in the evening - so we are fed two times as much.

I can't say how much I love attending worship twice on the Lord's Day.  Our day is bookended by being in His presence and worshipping Him.  Is it easy? No.  Do we sometimes wish we were going home instead? Yes.  Do we ever regret going? NEVER. 

In a month with five Sundays, we don't gather on the fifth Sunday.  I missed gathering to worship last night; an extraordinary occurrence that forced me to Embrace the Ordinary.

How are you Embracing the Ordinary? Why don't you tell us and share with Gina?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Khan Academy

Wednesdays with Words: A Properly Tuned Soul

I've been "off again" reading The Liberal Arts Tradition by Kevin Clark and Ravi Scott Jain in my "on again-off again" reading.  But when my reading was "on again," I marked it heavily.  It is so very good.  I wanted to share this quote from quite a while ago because it is my goal (for the third week in a row) to finish the book this week. 

Musical education is soul-craft: carried out properly it tunes the soul, and makes one receptive to truth and goodness ... At the very source of the classical education tradition, then, we find the formative and foundational importance of a properly tuned soul.
Then, they go on to expound upon The Abolition of Man by Lewis:

Lewis's argument unfolds something like this: 1) judgements about the good (ethics) and the beautiful (aesthetics) are not merely descriptions of one's personal feelings, but objective responses to reality; 2) the ability to make these judgements is not something we learn the way we learn things such as math or science, but is a function of the intuition and imagination; 3) these judgements are nevertheless reasonable because value judgements and even reason itself are upheld by the intuition and imagination; 4) the imagination and intuition are enculturated, that is, formed throug the process Plato referred to as musical education. (pg 27, emphasis mine)
What are you reading?

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Simple Woman's Daybook for August 25, 2014


Outside my window... it's finally summer-like hot. 

I am thinking... that we need new soccer cleats for a couple of kids.

I am thankful... we had a wonderful church picnic on Saturday.
In the kitchen... we're back to strange eating and grocery schedules; soccer practices start tonight.

I am wearing... black tanktop and jeans shorts.  Comfy for at home.

I am creating... just finished assignment sheets for the week.  It will be miraculous if we finish anything if the work done this morning is any indication.

I am going... to buy more laundry detergent; I'm almost out!

I am wondering... just who N-boy's soccer coach is.  I know who is coaching the girls' teams, but don't recognize his coach's name.

I am reading... A Civil Contract by Georgette Heyer.

I am hoping... to finish The Liberal Arts Tradition before next Monday.  I'm so close. I failed last week. Again. Third time's a charm?

I am looking forward to... the long Labor Day weekend.

I am learning ... about how Khan Academy works while R-girl and I take some time to slow down and refresh.

Around the house... re-instating chores and routines is painful. Still painful.

I am pondering... folding laundry.  Just pondering at the moment, though.

A favorite quote for today... 

One of my favorite things... hearing my kids play the piano.  Unfortunately, they've been playing new metronome.  
A few plans for the rest of the week ... SOCCER!

A peek into my day... 
This post is linked to The Simple Woman's Daybook.  We'd love to have you join us!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Weekly Report: August 18-22, 2014

Our second week had its ups and downs.  We had a rough beginning and middle, but the end
was much improved.  We had the best Circle Times we've ever had, right at an hour of work.  We accomplished a lot of work, but did we accomplish the best work?

I've been thinking about Brandy's post from last year (thankful she reminded me of it) that difficulties and struggles are windows into character - mine and that of the children - and opportunities to train and disciple and teach character.  I've also been thinking about her interview with Sarah of Amongst Lovely Things that is included in the Teaching from a State of Rest bundle (it's on sale! right now through September 2, follow the link.  I've not gotten into the book yet, and have only listened to this interview, but [whew] it's fantastic!)

Onto the week. 

Circle Time has been enjoyable. We've worked on our hymns, Bible, Catechism.  We finished Poetry for Young People: William Blake. We started 'The Tempest' in Lamb's Shakespeare (not loving the editing in the edition I bought [bleah]).  We haven't added all of our Memory Work, but I hope to do that next week.

 Math this week has been tough.  M-girl is working on multi-digit addition and subtraction.  MEP teaches several different ways to do that, so coming up with the right one for her has been difficult.  But we're working through it.  N-boy is in a section of lessons that are just *long* we're taking 2 days per lesson: the teaching part and the worksheet part.  There is a lot of order of operations and working with numbers up to 200.  I'm glad I can give him some extra time to learn these lessons.  R-girl is struggling.  She knows how to do the problems, but does them in the least easy way at times.  I think we're going to take a break from MEP and have her do some review work on Khan Academy.  They've added some elementary math components.  We continued to work on Calculadder drills and it is obvious that we need to work on that!

We read one section (on Jamestown, Tobacco, and Slaves) in Story of the World they got a good understanding of Triangular Trade.  We had been to Jamestown a year ago, so they were able to connect well to it.  I wish we had accomplished more History this week though.  Geography Blobbing continues to be a favorite activity - we need to start moving from tracing soon. The children did all finish reading Mystery of the Periodic Table in Science.  I wish I had held off on this book for older readers. 

In Literature, we're reading The Silver Chair. They all finished Chapter 8 and did written narrations on it this week.  They also worked on a bit of Writing and Rhetoric, studying one of Aesop's fables about stubbornness.  Perfect timing!

M-girl is learning how to diagram prepositional phrases in Grammar. N-boy is reading Grammar-Land and completing the worksheets. R-girl is working on finishing First Language Lessons 2, and doing a lot of review.  We learned about antonyms and synonyms, reviewed sentence types, and reviewed types of verbs this week.

We watched Lesson 8 in Latin and learned about the neuter nouns.  The children made their flash cards and worked in their lesson books this week.  Next week we will do Activity book assignments as well as spend some time on Headventureland.

M-girl has been doing some programming on Khan Academy, and is joining a First Lego League team this year.  She and I determined that she doesn't need as much Nitro Type practice, so she's going to switch her focus to Khan Academy.  R-girl started Dance Mat Typing and is doing very well with it. N-boy is still practicing on Nitro Type. 

All three children have continued with some copywork; M-girl and N-boy have completed the C S Lewis Quotes copywork I found, so they're going to begin copying Westminster Shorter Catechism.  I was pleased they offered a pdf and a back to school discount.

All three children have continued practicing piano, despite having no teacher for the time being.  I really need to find someone soon!