Well, a lot has happened in a week, if only in my mind—HA HA. I shared before that Carol is in the midst of major life changes, and Mary, whose blog is so warm and welcoming, has agreed to take over the weekly wrap-up meme. Continuing to post this meme would give me an excuse to visit her blog more frequently, but personally, I’m wondering if this isn’t an appropriate time to fall off the meme wagon. I did start another blog this week after marinating for at least one year about transferring blog hosts. Initially, the transfer was a marketing effort, then it became an effort to take advantage of more sophisticated blogging capabilities. Now, my need to be more efficient and manage my time better parallels my love of the more intimate HSB community. As much as I enjoy it here, it is relatively cumbersome to maintain a blog. As one example, I have to type the post in Word (a personal choice for checking grammar), then cut and paste it into HSB. Separately, my pictures have to be in Photobucket—not just on my computer—and then downloaded back into the text once I’ve completed my cut-and-paste in HSB. As if that weren’t enough, posting pictures in HSB has been a mini-lesson in HTML code. Since I’ve learned something, I shouldn’t complain. But, again from the standpoint of efficiency, I was sold when I typed a post in Word 2007 and could immediately upload it to my new blog, SimplyBelinda, complete with pictures. One [step] and done. So I thought, just as I began to write today, that this might be a place to journal strictly about our homeschooling journey. The other blog would be my space to share personal reflections on the number of other areas that interest me. Separating my thoughts in this way would also make some aspects of blogging easier, including the ability to moderate comments on my other blog. Of course, as KeriMae wisely told me, I need to be sure that I’m making some time for the Lord and not creating one more thing to do. I’ll have to be careful to monitor my own blogging frequency in order to make two blogs work with my current schedule. We’ll see.
Anyway, from where I sat this past week,
As an individual, I…
am happy to relax, relatively speaking, on a Monday night after a blur of a weekend. To begin with, Saturday was another food fair for our church. We continue to get better organized each time we do this (Saturday was our third). Yet, another church in our area also fed the hungry, so we did not get the same crowd as in previous efforts. We still provided for 200 car loads.
Always looking for a sensational spin, our local news did a report on people that were “robbing” the hungry and homeless by taking food from these fairs for themselves. In presenting the news with a certain slant, the report failed to mention that the churches actually buy the food from the food bank and then distribute it as they please. At our church, we’ve fed as many as 700+ cars, but there’s also been enough each time to bless the volunteers who spend a day unloading trucks, dividing food supplies and loading boxes, and praying for people as they drive by. Sometimes volunteering can also mean having to push cars as we’ve had at least one car per food fair fall dead waiting for food. Our family doesn’t volunteer in order to get food, but who couldn’t use a bit of help in these times? So I give God praise that our home was provided for as we sought to bless others.
This packed freezer is actually what was left after we shared turkeys and hams with in-laws and neighbors, and it pleases me to say that we didn’t “rob” anyone; we helped them, and in turn we were helped. Isn’t that so like God?
As a wife and homemaker, I…
finally got out to the garden for
weeding bee fighting and safari chopping (LOL). Can you see the bees?
This debris was only the front yard!
The six-year-old helped, meaning that she dug in the garden for about ½ hour, then moved on to feel the breeze in her hair.
Somewhere in there she gathered holly berries in order to feed the “pet” slug we uncovered.
As a mom and homeschooling parent, I…
continue to enjoy our homeschool happenings with an eye toward next year. Planning always excites me. It’s the implementation that wears me down! I’ll post reading and curriculum plans soon.
The youngest continues to be very principled about her work. She had a sentence that read, ‘His little sister had a __oken leg.’ She argued about having to fill in the ‘br’ blend. “It’s just too sad,” she whined. Regardless of this reluctance to complete certain parts of her work, she has begun 2nd grade phonics already, so she’s at least completed enough to have mastered her 1st grade blends.
Every now and then I get really excited about what is happening here at school. Reading a post this morning on “Why Boys Fail” triggered one of those moments. LindaFay had similar thoughts in her post on the value of studying Plutarch. With these thoughts in mind, I got reenergized about reading to the kids from a table of rich and meaty classics. Ironically enough, our studies last week in How to Read a Book covered epic poems and their value. I never thought about it, but Adler points out that no one has written works like these in 2500 years. He also states that yes, the works of Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Milton are demanding reads, but, along with the Bible, they are the foundations of any serious reading program. Most authors, and I’ll add, many modern-day books and movies, borrow from these and other classics. I had an interesting conversation with our son a few months back about “Percy Jackson” author Rick Riordan, and how Riordan based his character upon the trials of Odysseus. As we wrap up the Odyssey (yeah!!!) next week, the follow-up assignment uses “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.” In preparing for next year, I was reading through Learning Through History magazine and found a piece on Norse culture (Vikings). Apparently, J.R.R. Tolkien based a significant piece of the Lord of the Rings trilogy on this culture. I’ll save that pearl of wisdom for the oldest on next year; if I said something now, she might feel “icky” admitting that she’s loving the books. Teens, you gotta love ‘em.
I was sharing with another homeschooler how good it feels when, occasionally, homeschooling just seems to click, so to speak, and you find that “sweet spot” in the learning. For me, some part of this has been my own liberation from feeling bad about saying, “I don’t know.” Now, I sit happily at the table and learn with the older two, and I think that I’m subconsciously role modeling for them the curiosity and excitement that can co-exist, and even facilitate, learning.
I forgot to mention that Sunday was our son’s second dance competition. He spent the last month doing this…
so that he could do this.
At the risk of being the bragging mom, he won first place for his dance, and then placed second in the overall category of 9-11 year olds. The team gave their best performance yet–1st place for their dance, 1st place for their category, and then 1st place for highest score across all categories! This was a huge morale boost for them! This latter award also included a cash award for their teacher/ choreographer–a win/win all around. They left the venue pumped.
As a business owner, I…
am moving forward, though I have no concrete steps to articulate at this point. I spent much of last week instead working on the project for the church. I’ll get back into it.
May the Lord bless your week as well.