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Archive for August, 2009

Not much time… the girl tween tells me today is her morning on the computer… school work… *sigh*.  The thigns we have to do…

Updated my “what I’ve read” list on Library Thing.  You can find a link to that on my books are bliss page.  Cataracts make reading hard.  And I woke up this morning with a thorough crust of gunk caking my eyes shut… thank you allergies… don’t know if I’ll be able to read or write much of anything today or for the next couple of weeks.  Somehow, my typing has become dyslexic with the worsening eyesight.  Go figure.  Must enjoy other things… which leaves me with what I hear and what I feel…that’s ok.  This too shall pass.

The children have all gotten back into a school day routine.  M loves what she’s doing in her FIAR stuff… it’s still a lot of fun when they don’t know to relate learning something with imposed school work.  She harumphed a bit to me yesterday… said she didn’t know how to tie her shoes.  You’ve gotta laugh about that.  A 4 year old driven to learn how to tie her shoes.  I love it.  I nudged her with my shoulder this morning in bed (I think she made it into my room about 5-ish).  Kind of a “hey you” kind of thing.  She nudges me back with a little giggle and starts singing John Kanakanaka.  *sigh*  Yes, I know a lot of you are laughing.  Just wait until next season!  She’ll have you in stitches, I’m sure.

Meanwhile, P and I are watching some tv last night and she’s up doing something at the same time.  She hears a commercial for a golf scramble with tee time at (insert ungodly hour here).  She whips her head around… “They have tea?”  We laughed for a good five minutes about that one!  Only Sely’s daughter…

Writing Workshop at the library has been postponed until the spring semester… argh.  The other leader had to go back to work.  when they meet again, they’ll have a leader who teaches college classes here at Kentucky State.  How cool is that?  Which reminds me… I need to get over to their library and check on what kind of materials they are giving away.  Curriculum stuff that they are just going to throw away!  Can you believe it?

Another postponement… our Scotalnd culture lunch.  Half of our families were not going to be there… all came through in about an hour yesterday morning.  And if 1/2 of 5 or 6 families don’t come, then you try to reschedule!  Cause that’s just not a very auspicious start for a school year.  Next Friday!  Hopefully it will go well and we will have a few new families.  Several families asked if we were still going to be able to get the piper… your acclaim stretches far and wide Caro!  So, a little greedily, I’m hoping her music rehearsals don’t start until a later date.  But… oh well.  You do what you gotta do. 

And I gotta do some other things before lunch.  Have a great day all!

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I don’t know if I like planning or not.  Often times I’m better at planning than I am the actual beginning of the project.  Sometimes it’s the finishing up of the project that only slowly materializes.  Planning though… mostly I get excited when I’m planning things, but sometimes it makes me anxious because I’m putting other things aside in order to do it effectively.

Like the school year stuff.  In all actuality, the school year kind of forms in my brain during the winter and spring of the previous school year.  We have traditionally accessed what we are doing midyear, make usually smaller adjustments to just keep us going for the spring semester, but are really looking ahead to how it’s going to pan out for the following school year.  Yeah, it’s a never-ending cycle.  Which is ok… I’ve almost gotten use to the party-line I’ve been talking for the past several years: : “learning is an ongoing process and to think of it in terms of grade levels, school semesters and when the next break will come is defeating”.  Doesn’t keep the “am I doing right by my children” thought at bay, but my mindset is actually starting to materialize and look like who we are.  Or rather, who we are is coming into line with what my goal has been since we started this whole thing.  And it only took me until their high school years to get us there.  WOW!  🙂

So all 3 children will be with their Grandparents in a couple of weeks and I’ll have the focus time to actually pull out my brain-waves and put them down in an organized manner on homeschool tracker.  Yes, we used it a little more than half of last year and liked it.  Lessons learned:  note as much as possible in the notes sections, and download it onto a disk at least once every couple of weeks or so.  We got to February and were using the new computer for most everything and the laptop, which had all of the tracker forms and notes on it, was pretty much unusable.

So, on our plate for 2009-2010?  Mathematics online through ALEKS… and possibly Chemistry too, if we have it in the budget to do.  If no on the chemistry, kitchen science… for the tweens they’ll be able to dig deep into the nutritional and chemical (not to mention purely yummy) stuff of science (we call that real-life applications) and the preschooler gets to help measure and mix and learn that pizza, or a form of it, was actually around BC and hopefully that we have to exercise to balance all of this stuff out.

Poetry from Prodigy Press.  We like their lit reviews… they’re pretty in-depth and give us some basic stuff from scripture to chew on too.   Unlike in science, I appreciate scripture references in our literature reviews – that’s where the ideas that we translate into everything we do get formed.  Science… well, duh!  For us, everything in creation speaks of His handywork.  We don’t see any problems between the majority of scientific theories and our faith.  We are quite comfortable in the idea that science can and will be used to explain what we see, what we think we see, and what we can only guess at.  But God is not explainable.  So we don’t try to force either into the other’s box.  We think outside of the box.  At least, I hope that’s what all of our reading is encouraging us to do.  But I do take heart that what we read, we can cross reference to scripture.  So, Prodigy Press lit reviews… no Apologia Science.

The tweens will also be participating in a writing group for teens at the public library.  Yee-haw!  So, while they are there, Moira and I get time to do something else.  Who knows… maybe we’ll walk around the block a few times… maybe we’ll take a study room and practice drawing letters… maybe we’ll curl up in a library chair and read a few dozen books… maybe we’ll walk down the street to Liberty Hall and talk about the gardens or the river.  I really do love preschool years!

History in Art for all of us… The National Endowment for the Humanities gave away sets of historical reproductions for cross curricular study in school groups.  I applied for a set for MIND and we got it.  So each parent that wants to participate has taken a print to teach (a lot of compare/contrast kind of stuff and what was the artist trying to tell us about this period in time) and will then get to keep that print to display in their homes.  The prints we have left over will be donated to a library or my church’s art gallery for everybody to enjoy.  The group consists of about 7 families teaching and maybe a few more coming to the classes, but not taking a print.  That’s a group of about 25-30 children covering the whole age-range exploring art in history.  Cool!

All of the children will be Junior Historical Society members as well, so we look forward to taking some historical fieldtrips in Kentucky.  And of course, letterboxing for us tends to be mini-history lessons too.  I have an American History curriculum that I got online and a curriculum that uses debate and logical thinking practices with first person accounts to look at American History for the tweens as well.  We also do a culture lunch once a month with our MIND group, focusing on a country a month.  First one is Scotland at the end of August!!! :O)

M will do Five In A Row stuff to match up with the Art In History and Culture Lunch groups… so, “Wee Gillis” is her book for Scotland and I’ll have to poke through the curriculum info for “Paul Revere’s Ride” to match something up with that.  She will also be doing Daisy Girl Scout stuff… so we’ll have lots of fun stuff to start exploring.

Let’s see… what haven’t I hit?  YMCA once a week with their homeschooler’s program, HYPE.  Piano for P and hopefully guitar again for S (I have to find a teacher for him… AGAIN!).  Sword dancing for P and me (I’m going to start learning one of the Morris hanky dances) and folkdnace on Friday nights for all of us.  P will start an online Spanish class “Coffeebreak Spanish” and S will be starting Latin online. 

Whew!  Now to break all of that down even further into the Tracker.  In two weeks…

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I have thunder outside.  No rain yet, so I hesitate to call it a storm.  Just a lot of hot air.

I have a 4 year old in my ear constantly informing me that she wants to play Polly Pockets.

I have fans buzzing all around me (no air conditioning, remember?).  So lots of white noise and a breeze.

I have a house begging to be cleaned.  A yard that needs more work on it (tomorrow… thank God for bad weather).  A school year that needs to come out of my brain and be put down on official looking paper.  A stack of books to be read ( glad I squoze that library trip into the 15 minutes before P’s sword dance practice yesterday evening.  Squoze… hehehe – that’s a new word for me… I saw it twice the other day.  If it was in print, it must be right… right?  At any rate, it makes me smile.  Shouldn’t the language you use make you smile? )

I have all of these things + the zillions of little bits and pieces that fly into my head and make me think “gee, I should blog”.  So here I am.  But do I really need to have a title?  Seems like a little extra work that’s not really necessary.  I mean, a title informs the reader what they are going to read and gives them the option to choose not to, before spending 10 minutes that they’ll never get back.  And most anybody who is going to read my blog (hi Mom!) doesn’t really care what I write… just so long as they can share something of me for a few minutes today because they most likely won’t see me.  You know… they won’t get to enjoy this excitement that is me and my life in person- live and in technicolor.  So they read whatever I write, nod their head, smile, scratch their head or pull out their hair and think to themselves “I can hear her now”.

So it’s really just a big, written hug.  Whether you want it or not in the end.  And does a hug really need to be announced?

That’s all for the Tammy show today.  Tune in tomorrow when we’ll discuss how much of my housework I still have not accomplished because I’m too busy sending hearts to friends on facebook and playing Polly Pockets with the 4 year old.  Bright side?  The weather should be relatively good tomorrow so that I can not do all of that yard work that’s calling to me.

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