We love the movie The Sound of Music:)
I think the girls have watched it no less than a half dozen times
in the last two weeks...
which might be why I can't get the song
My Favorite Things out of my head:/
So, rather than fight it-
here are a few of my favorite things
from this week;)
Eating M.'s homemade brownies (she used my Memaw's recipe)
Watching the girls play hide-and-seek with friends (for hours!)
Interest led learning and the freedom to find joy in every "school" day
Watching A. play volleyball
Lots of laughter
Inspiration notebooks- where we file all the great
Friends who make GF banana bread just for us:)
Our neighbor's horses
A nature walk, fall planting, and rain
Art...lots of fall art this week:)
Date night;) and sweet friends who offered to keep the girls while we went out
Fairy tales- we've been reading Half Upon A Time, which has led to us researching the history of fairy tales, creative writing, tales from other cultures, fairy tale spoofs, and movies like Enchanted and Ella Enchanted. I love chasing rabbit trails and letting one thing lead to another while we learn!
Blueberry banana oat muffins- we experimented with a new recipe (GF of course), and we were not disappointed!
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Combine the following five things in a large bowl:
2 mashed ripe bananas
3/4 c. vanilla yogurt
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. melted, unsalted sweet cream butter
Add 1 1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats (we used Bob's Red Mill- gluten free) to the above
and allow to stand for at least five minutes.
In another smaller bowl, combine:
1 1/2 c. flour (we used Bob's Red Mill gluten free baking flour)
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until just combined.
Fold in 1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries.
Our batter was just a little too dry, in my opinion
so we added approximately 1/4 c. milk.
Fill each cup of a muffin tin 3/4 of the way full. Makes about 18 regular size muffins.
Bake until tops are firm and just begin to brown.
Gluten free blueberry banana oat muffins
She loves volleyball!
1.-4. We repainted the stairway and hung a new light so that we could display the girls' artwork and photography. I think it turned out nicely and breaks up the fact that our old farmhouse has such a steep, narrow staircase.
5. The girls wrote their names in Chinese, Korean, and Japanese one morning...just for fun:)
6. Pumpkins at night...idea from Deep Space Sparkle (my fave)
7.-8. The girls spruced up my $2 flower pots with a new paint job and decorated the front porch for fall:) Can you see the giant pine cone that's bigger than the pumpkin? Our neighbors brought it to us all the way from California.
9. Rainy afternoons are perfect for drawing!
The girls made cards for a friend whose kitten injured her leg.
The creek that runs behind the house is one of our favorite places:) This is M. with my friend's precious little girl!
All right, so here's my
super relaxed record keeping for the last week and a half
followed by our plans for high school recordkeeping-
In the Face of Danger (A.)
The City of Ember (A. and mom, M. recommended it so we are reading it now. Good read!)
The People of Sparks (M.)
White Water trip with friends on one of the few days it didn't rain...strange weather for us for August! Usually, it's 100 plus degrees and bone dry.
Library (about half a dozen trips over the last two weeks)
Cupcake order (M.)
Card and present making
A Wrinkle in Time
Old Town in the Green Groves (a story of the lost Little House years...based on Laura Ingalls Wilder's journal entries about the two years the family lived in Iowa)
Business and Finance
Word games- One Word, Campfire Clues
Root Words and Mary Kay apps
Creative Writing- booth girls are writing plays:)
Anne of Green Gables (A. is re-reading this favorite)
First Aid- We are taking American Red Cross First Aid as a family:)
White Fur Flying- such a cute and sweet book:)
Cooking dinner and working on new gluten free recipes for baking
Bible Almanac for Kids (A.)
Floor plans and measuring, calculating square feet (we have to draw a floor plan for our foster/adoption paperwork...the girls inherited my love of house and floor plans;)
Maps- tracing and drawing (A.)
Flags of the World (M.)
Braving the weather and enjoying a great day at Whitewater...the crowds stayed home!
1. M. is writing a play based on The City of Ember
2.-6. Rainy weather most of the week meant plenty of time for baking, reading, lettering, arts and crafts (cards and mini-scrapbooks), and creative writing.
7. A. is proofing my syllabi for the college classes that I will be teaching this fall. How's that for grammar made meaningful? She likes trying to find my mistakes!
8. The cat...every day. He has such a rough life;)
9. M. made tiny treats for her AG dolls.
M.'s chocolate mint cupcakes. Yum!
I have out done myself by working ahead
on a transcript
since she'll officially be in eighth grade
in a couple of weeks (I am a such a procrastinator...this is a big deal;)
This is what I'm thinking, as far as record keeping for high school goes
I found a template here and filled in the basic info. I want her to have a transcript for seventh through twelve grades
. Though grade levels mean very little to me, if we must use them, then A. is already working at the high school level in many areas and should be recognized as such. Using this as a guide, we will be looking at A.'s hours for the major subject areas. 120-180 hours of work for one credit sounds like a lot, but we will be counting all the hours that she spends on a subject (reading, playing games, writing, unit studies, notebooking/lap booking
researching, discussing/sharing, classes with our homeschool group, etc.) And since we learn every day, all day long, this will be ongoing throughout the year. We're keeping it low tech too... a notebook by her bed will suffice as our log book. We'll reflect on and jot down her hours each night... it should take just a couple of minutes a day if we stay on top of it:)
So, that's it. Relaxed recordkeeping for high school!
August on our little homestead,
in words and pictures
Baked french toast with local blueberries. Yum!
1. We've made Baked French Toast, not once, but twice in the last week. It's that yummy! I shared the recipe
last week and Lisa featured it on her blog for Try a New Recipe Tuesday
. Thanks, Lisa:)
2.-3. The tomatoes are thriving in this weather we are having. Usually August is 100 plus degrees and dry, but check out our weather this week. Some sun would be nice, but we won't complain;) It reminds me of the picture book Thunder Cake, by Patricia Polacco
...maybe we should try baking one this week:) 4. Look at how big the chicks are now! They are all laying now, so we are getting about a dozen and a half eggs every day. The girls have been busy selling and delivering eggs:)
They sell their free range eggs for $3/dozen and put one dollar from each dozen into their college fund, one to go back toward the hens and their care, and one dollar to keep. It's adding up pretty quickly...they've delivered nine dozen eggs in the last three days! Now that's some meaningful math;) 5. We had our last archery class this week, just as I've finally gotten the hang of it! I took a picture of my bulls eye for proof:) It's been a great sport for the whole family, and I'm pretty sure that we'll keep practicing on our own. 6. My dear friend Cindy sent me a sweet note of encouragement and a bracelet for each of us girls. 1 forever family for every 1 child available for adoption through foster care equals 0 waiting children. What a blessing! 7. M. had another order this week- chocolate mint cupcakes...another meaningful math lesson. This was her first time to bake this particular flavor, and she did a fantastic job. Yum!
Seriously, this kid better publish a cookbook some day:)
They were as good as they look!
Linking up here today, join me!
What does a homeschool day look like here?
Honestly, I couldn't tell you exactly
since each day is so different
in this interest led life of ours.
We are pretty relaxed, joyful learners.
Here's an example of what our days look like.
The girls woke up on their own and we had a quiet morning- reading, watching a video, and/or working on the computer. Breakfast was fend for yourself;) We ate leftover crustless quiche from the night before and yogurt. Somewhere early on in our morning routine, we all go out and take care of the animals every day. This morning the girls fed and watered the rabbits then checked on the new baby chicks.
Back inside to more reading, playing the piano, art, and movie editing for this week's 7CoolHomeschoolers video. A. is working really hard to learn Carol of the Bells on the piano by watching videos on YouTube...she practices every day. M. read Nancy Drew.
Since it was Thursday, we headed to town to run a few errands (we try to stay home all day on M, W, F). We have our priorities (today's are shop local-eat cupcakes;) so we headed first to our favorite tiny cupcake shop downtown. We walked across the street to the Farmer's Market in the downtown square and ran into friends there. Then we made a quick trip to the natural foods store to get a few groceries. The girls are pretty savvy shoppers...in our small store, I can send them to get certain items and know that they can not only find them but be on the look out for any good deals. Plus every time we go shopping, it's a lesson...trying to feed only local, organic, and natural food to a family on a budget while avoiding processed foods brings up a ton of things to discuss with the girls.
On the way home, we delivered some eggs that the girls had sold and checked in on a friend who had a spider bite. Her mom was treating the bite naturally, so we had lots to talk about there:)
We were back home for a quick lunch and to gather library books. We needed to get to the library and back before the storms hit our area. We are reading The Swiss Family Robinson together, so that generates a lot of discussion and has sparked a great deal of creativity around here so we talked about the book on the way to the library. The girls are all about learning survival skills;) We visited with the librarian, shot a little video of our town (for next week's 7CoolHomeschoolers), and barely made it home before the storms started. M. and I just had time to set up buckets to catch rainwater before the rain started. It's a good thing too...we checked later and ended up collected more than 45 gallons of rainwater for the garden!
The afternoon was spent reading library books (the 2013 World Records book, a book about presidents and their children, a Far Side collection book, Math Mysteries book, an animal heroes story collection, and more Nancy Drew). Later, we watched Nim's Island on dvd. We read the book a couple of years ago and the movie is a favorite of ours. We watched the special features to see how they filmed the animal and underwater scenes, which was really pretty fascinating:)
Later, the girls made mini crossbows out of pencils, rubber bands, thumbtacks, and a binder clip. They had no directions or photos to work with, so it took a while to get a working model. By that time, Daddy was home and he helped them tweak their designs so that the little crossbows could actually shoot a pencil about 12-15 feet across a room!
We made homemade pizza together for dinner and talked about a couple of current events. Then we cleaned up and took turns working on Rosetta Stone Spanish on the computer...we've got a little friendly competition going, but Daddy is starting to take the lead and leave us behind:/
A break in the rain meant that we all went outside to check on the garden and animals. The girls jumped on the trampoline, worked on cartwheels, and played on the rope swing.
Back inside, we read more of The Swiss Family Robinson then checked the weather before bedtime. After looking at maps on the Weather Channel and NOAA sites, we decided to let the girls camp out in the living room...we had a thunderstorm warning, a tornado warning and a flood warning. Plus a friend posted a pic of a funnel cloud nearby- that was enough to convince us.
And that, in a nutshell was our "school" day
and why I love the way we learn:)
1.-3. Our banty hen with her chicks...so cute, so tiny!
4.-6. The rabbits- Thumper and Clover
7. Big Baby tries to act like she's guarding the hens. Secretly, she want to eat them.
8. Our old farmhouse. She's 113 years old this year.
9. Measuring the wood for the seat of the rope swing and finding the center of the rectangle to cut the hole for the rope.
10. -14. Enjoying the fruits of their labor!
15.-16. Who needs a treadmill when you've got kids and a trampoline?!
17.-18. Ladderball with friends:)
Other "schoolish" things we did this week:
Helen Keller bio and Wishing for Tomorrow (M.)
Times Squared and also The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate (A.)
Book sale with my mom- calculating sale prices and working with a budget
Reading some bookstore finds- The Illustrated Atlas of Wildlife (very cool book), Weather (totally appropriate for this week), and Barns (just because we really need one!)
Reading about the Presidents and their families
A visit to Hutch's brother and sister-in-law's farm:)
Mini pompoms- A. made a tutorial on how to make them
Buiding a rope swing with Daddy
Episodes of "How Things Work"
Pet Shop Math
Ladderball and Bag-o with friends
How was your week? I hope it was joyful:)
Linking up here with some of my favorite blogs-
This week, I was reminded
to enjoy every moment
of every day...
because it can all change in a blink.
We took a little road trip to south Missouri this week. We got in a trip to Silver Dollar City, a cave tour, some time at the indoor pool at the hotel, dinner at Lambert's (the "throwed roll" place), and a trip to the old five and dime store downtown before the stormy weather arrived. A. loved the cave and the five and dime store. M.'s favorite part of the trip was the hotel and the five and dime.
I gave the girls a quarter so they could see how the jukebox worked:) I loved the reminder from I Thessalonians 5:18 that was printed on our menus at lunch...such an appropriate verse for the week and one I need to take to heart.
Back home, we weathered the storms and prayed for our Oklahoma neighbors. After several stormy days, the weather improved and we were able to finish up our first archery course. The girls and I passed the test to move on to Archery II...yay! Then we hit the road again to visit my family and celebrate my nephew's birthday. We got in a little cousin time and took turns holding my precious little niece:)
All the cousins together!
All of our learning was interest led this week-
Rosetta Stone Spanish- after a year of inactivity, interest has perked up again and the whole family is working through Spanish again
Building- Daddy and M. build a little picket fence for our animals
Setting fence posts- Daddy and A. set fence posts for more farm fence
Making a rain barrel to collect rain water
Graduation- A. attended the college graduation with me and had the opportunity to hear some gifted speakers
Planning, packing for trip, map reading
Movie making- 7CoolHomeschoolers rock!
Cave Tour- loved that the girls were not hesitant to ask and answer questions or interact with the guide on our tour:)
Food Network- one perk of staying in a hotel as opposed to camping...we had TV (something we don't have at home either). It is funny that this is all the girls wanted to watch though;)
Weather Channel app- so thankful for this one this week...our travel plans relied on it
Helen Keller bio, Braille, Perkins School for the Blind, therapy dogs (M.)
Presidents- flash cards
Genetics- A. got a DNA and genetics kit that was the perfect diversion for rainy days at home Doodle Art Alley
- definitely a favorite resource this week. Quotes + coloring pages are a hit with my girls!!
Photography and blog design (A. created a private blog for sharing her artwork and photos:)
Baking- M. had a cupcake order and surprised me with a gluten free cake!
Baseball with the cousins
Harry Houdini bio (A.) The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate
(A.) Life with Lilly
(M.) Please continue to pray for those in Oklahoma.
If you want to be keep up to date on what's happening,
here's an Oklahoma news link
dedicated to the tornadoes.
If you want to help in the
relief efforts, then visit here to see how
you can help. Hope you have a beautiful week and find the joy in every moment.
Please pray for our neighbors in Oklahoma and other areas that have been blasted by severe weather. This is what it looked like from our front porch yesterday (late afternoon, though the dark clouds make it seem like night out there).
We are safe and have much to be thankful for today. However, our hearts and prayers are with those who are hurting this morning.
Just a few shots of our clouds...the last photo I took yesterday gives me hope that there are brighter days ahead.
Fall was a little slow in getting here, but it made its appearance this week. We had our first fire of the season, snuggled under blankets, and enjoyed apple crisp (twice!). Yum! The cold and damp weather had A. feeling a little under the weather though. We amused ourselves indoors for the most part. Overall, we still had a pretty good week...lots of interest led learning going on.
The last of The Bronze Bow
Math journals- my favorite resource this week:)
Egg business (both girls, but A. is the bookkeeper)
Cupcake business (M.)
Kids' Almanac (A.)
Caroline's Battle (an American Girl book about the War of 1812- M.'s choice)
This Book Made Me Do It
Question and Answer Encyclopedia of the USA
Trip to the Library
Photography practice and A. read a book Photography for Scrapbooking
Making movies with Windows Moviemaker
Quizzing mom and dad- the girls love to make tests and quizzes for us, which is funny since we never test them!
Episodes of Fetch
1. The girls spent as much time as possible on the newly finished screnned-in porch:)
2. M. filled another cupcake order. She made extra for us too...chocolate with cream cheese icing. Yum!
3. A. journaled about why she mostly hates math but loves math journals;)
4. Beans and cornbread...perfect fall food!
5. My favorite part of fall and winter is snuggling by the fire.
6. M.'s fall centerpiece, well until the cat knocked it over anyway.
7-9 After the storm
10-12 I love to see what they choose to read:)
Linking up here. Join me!
So, this is the new favorite thing at our house this week...
American Girl Doll craft tutorials!
This was the girls' first attempt, and they aren't thrilled with the results.
I thought it was cute though.
M.'s talking and doing the demo while A. is directing and filming:)
Other than AG crafts, our rather rainy week looked like this:
The School Story, by Andrew Clements (A.)
DK Eyewitness book- Civil War (M.)
The Bronze Bow (our read aloud)
Video Star app
Movie making with friends
Mountains and Volcanoes- The girls read a book about this and then made mini science project boards (out of index cards:) to display the information for their American Girls...too cute!
Schoolhouse Rock- easily my favorite resource this week! We've had the dvd for a year or more but never watched it. We watched it one night this week, and now they are hooked! It definitely takes me back to my childhood:)
Magic Squares (math)
Theater and choir classes
The History of Medicine (A.)
Jumping on the Trampoline
Egg business (they got several new orders this week:)
Word/logic problems/brain teasers
Math for Smarty Pants
Just a lot of joyful learning...except for some of the word problems;)
I always liked them growing up, but I'm pretty certain A. doesn't share the love. She definitely prefers puzzles to word problems!
Most of the pics I took this week are on Instagram (love!), but we took a few with our camera too.
The last pic is of my new screened porch:) Yay! Hutch is almost finished with it!
Linking up here today...join me!
I don't mind a little rain, but heavy rain for the next two or three days straight?!
It's not just us either- it looks like most of the central and southern states are going to get a little rain.
Now our original plans today were to visit dad at the hospital, go by the bank, and visit the presidential museum in Little Rock but things didn't work out that way.
I rolled my window down at the bank's drive-through. No problem. A few minutes later when I tried to roll it up, it wouldn't budge. Big problem with the threat of heavy rain looming overhead. So, we hightailed it home- well, really to my parent's house.
When I say we are stuck indoors for the next few days, I mean it!
We don't really like to be cooped up either, and...
we're not even at home right now
which makes it even more of a challenge.
So, any ideas for keeping these girls from getting stir crazy?
Here's what we've got going on so far...
cooking (M. made dinner with a little help from her big sister)
looking at old photos
organizing (A. is helping my mom organize her bills into folders)
catching up on Food Network and Waltons reruns (we don't have any television channels at home, so this is a treat)
eating ice cream (probably not the best idea, but it's working for us at the moment:)
Thanks for your suggestions, and stay dry!
Yeah, I know it's Tuesday.
But since I'm a day behind, this post is actually about Monday.
And it's a little bit random.
I did just find Miscellany Monday at lowercase letters though...love it!!
Linking up there today:)
A's been taking more pictures. I think- no, I know her photos are better than mine! So proud of that girl!
We watched the clouds roll in the evening which meant lots of wind and rain (and two girls sleeping on the couch downstairs:)
M was sick, so we wore our jammies all day. This was math...curled together under a blanket reading Penrose:)
We made paper flowers and a get well card for M. for our craft Monday.
So weird, but so cool!! We've been talking about the human body and the brain. In the light of the window, A traced the outline of a brain on to paper. She outlined it in marker (rainbow colors, of course:) Then she added a caption, "What's on Your Mind?" and words that are meaningful to her (like books, technology, friends, God, writing, love...)
We made the easiest peanut butter treats ever!!
Here's the recipe:
1 egg, beaten
1 c. peanut butter (we use crunchy/chunky)
Mini chocolate-peanut butter cups (cut in half)
Mix the first four ingredients together until well blended. Form walnut sized balls of dough and roll lightly in a little extra sugar. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet (makes approx. 18 cookies).
Bake for 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees until the cookies begin to crack and crinkle. Remove immediately and gently press half of a mini chocolate-peanut butter cup into the center of each cookie. Allow it to set for just a minute before transferring the cookies to a cooling rack.
For regular PB cookies, omit the above step and flatten with a fork in a criss cross pattern before baking:)
Hope you have a great day!!
Linking up with lowercase letters for Miscellany Monday, Kelli's blog for Adventurez With Kids in the Kitchen, and Home to 4 Kiddos for Try A New Recipe Tuesday, today:) Why don't you join me?!