Sunday, September 2, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up - Sept 2

What a fun, busy week we had!

We had just gotten home from my parents' house when the week began, so of course, all week included playing catch-up with laundry & such, made more complicated by threat of rain several days in a row, which gives me fits since I try to only use the dryer for towels & sheets.

Additionally, we have a LOT of review products in progress right now, and a couple of our "core" school items for this year that I'm feeling we desperately need to keep moving forward with, so this week had as much school crammed into it as possible, including:

Finally started Polished Cornerstones for Bible (we had planned to start in June, but review products bumped it back), I had mixed feelings about how this study, which focuses on Prov 31, would be received by one of my daughters who is currently struggling mightily with a belief that "nobody can tell me what to do, not even God!" PC comes from a very conservative Christian perspective, and only time will tell how she will receive it, but at least for this first week, she received it well, participated willingly and seemed to enjoy our discussions, God is good, I'm praying that this study will be just what she needs during this season!

The other "core" that I feel we canNOT drop even though we're busy, is American History, I continue to LOVE LOVE LOVE Truthquest for history, but it is SO comprehensive and I really feel we MUST keep moving with it. Sometimes that means reading fewer books on a topic than I would like, but I do feel like we need to continue with forward momentum. At the moment, part of that "push" is that we are currently at the Battle of Shiloh (in the Civil War) and I desperately want us to cover the battle of Antietam before the 150th anniversary of that battle in 2 weeks. I think we'll make it, but it's motivating me to not just drop it completely since we are currently reviewing another history study.

Review items:
A unit study on salt - this is so much fun, we're enjoying it, and it's wonderfully organized into individual ziploc-bag modules, each with a required supply list on the front (all of the modules require nothing but a "pencil" except for the one we started today, which comes with salt & ice melt in the kit and requires us to provide water, a freezer, measuring cup, ziploc bags, and a pencil), so, a very nice thing, given how busy things are, is that there is no prep work for me, whew! And the girls are enjoying it, it's very different from anything we've done, and that is always fun.
I kind of balked at this one, we had a chance to choose between a nice list of unit studies, many of which were science-based, but others were history based. I'll admit I didn't even give my kids the option of the early american history ones (from earlier than Civil War, much as I love history, I didn't want us "backtracking" right now), but I just couldn't bring myself to not at least give them the OPTION of the "Knights & Nobles" one. And guess which one they chose . . . yup, Knights & Nobles. This one is designed to be used once a week instead of "normal studies" but with independent reading & read alouds throughout the week, so that's what we're doing with it, and the girls are LOVING it, so it's all good, but between Civil War & now this, we are putting our library to very good use LOL.
This is mainly for Little Bit, a preschool music cd and accompanying song book, but I'm involving the big girls because "circle time" needs more than 2 people LOL, it's a nice change of pace for all of us a couple times a week.
This one is certainly a change of pace for me, and in some ways for the girls too. It's a pretty intense (IMO) fitness curriculum designed for homeschoolers. My goal is to do it 3 days a week (the recommendation is 5), but that didn't quite happen last week . . . somehow requiring "exercise" the same day that my children had help stack a bunch of firewood and went on a nature walk in the woods seemed . . . redundant LOL

Plus we have a book we are reviewing that we're using as a bedtime read aloud.

So, we're staying busy with school.

And THEN, I realized that it was the last week that Sesame Place was going to be open during the week, and we wanted to go at least once this year, and prefer to NOT go on weekends when it's more crowded. So my parents came up Wed evening and went with us on Thursday.

We hadn't been there in 2 years, so Little Bit, of course didn't remember it AT ALL, and hadn't been able to enjoy much other than splashing in the water when we went last. The big girls thought everything seemed much smaller LOL. They were appalled when Papa suggested they go on the "roller coaster" with him, that little thing? no way!! Though at least Sassy said she'd go if Little Bit wanted to, but Little Bit had no interest LOL. We split up for the morning, Papa took the big girls to the water rides and Mama & I took Little Bit to the "kiddie rides", she had a blast, then we met back up with the rest and all did some water stuff, and a show and ate lunch, and then more water stuff . . . it was a fun day, and Little Bit's ready to go back, though that likely won't happen till next year.

Friday my parents stayed for the morning and helped with stuff. This summer the landlord had hired some big branches taken off a tree in our yard and the tree cutter had said we could have the wood if we wanted it, so I'd stacked it on the patio but it was in huge long, unusable, pieces, so dad brought his chainsaw and cut it into lengths that we can use in our fire pit. And he also took recycling in for us. Once the logs were cut, and we all had stacked it on the porch, mom spent a good part of the morning sweeping and decluttering and patio so Little Bit can ride her bike there. Then took the girls on a nature walk.

Sabbath we had church, and friendship meal at the church afterwards, so that took up a good part of the day.

And that was our week. Oh yeah, and Thurs was also my birthday LOL. It kind of got lost in the shuffle, though I got some awesome gifts! The girls had enlisted my parents' help and ordered me a cheese grater that will work for parmesan cheese (the kind they have at Olive Garden and similar), though I'm guessing it was Sassy's idea and she has an ulterior motive, she LOVES parmesan, so I'm guessing she's hoping we'll have it more often now LOL. My parents' main gift was part of the Sesame Place passes (at my request, I wanted to take the girls AND we can use these passes when we're in FL to get into Sea World, Busch Gardens, and Aquatica (water park), so we'll get our money's worth, but still couldn't quite fit them all into our budget), but they also got me the cheese slicer I've been wanting for quite awhile (they have one and it's the only cheese slicer I've ever used that I thought was worth bothering with), and a book on Abraham Lincoln (that Sassy promptly stole from me).  And dh's gift was . . . an iPad!!!! I'm so excited! Still figuring it all out, but I'm hoping to eventually get to the point that I can take just it on trips instead of my laptop. I am already LOVING having it for using ebooks with the girls! I don't mind my phone for reading my books, but stuff for hte girls, a bigger screen is helpful AND stuff that's in .pdf format is generally cumbersome on my phone, my ipad screen is about the same size as my computer screen (since it's a netbook, I go for compact LOL), and I am loving it!!!

So, a good birthday and a good week all around!

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