Monday, September 30, 2013

It's Here!

The free on-line issue of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine has arrived! Click below to take a look!

Menu Monday for 9/30/13


Here are this week's dinner plans.

SUNDAY:  To start off the week, I am using leftover chicken to make chicken pot pie. I deviate from the linked recipe, making my gravy from broth and flour/water and store-bought refrigerated pie crusts.

Chicken pot pie, rolls

Cheeseburgers, rolls, salad

Aloha steaks; brown rice; broccoli

Pork chops, butternut squash, Brussels sprouts

Garlic baked chicken; zesty cole slaw, green beans

Corn chowder, pumpkin muffins, salad

Blackened salmon, yams, spinach

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Friday wrap-up for 9/27/13

  • In my life this week…
My daughter, heart-heavy and missing her Milly, got herself a puppy! Her new puppy is named Bella, and she is ten weeks old! We get to babysit sometimes. She's a doll!

  • In our homeschool this week…
JD trying to work independently this week. Left me feeling out of touch with where he is in his studies, and unsure if he is actually doing what I want him to do. Need to get this better figured out this week.
  • Helpful homeschooling tips or advice to share…
A bad day of home schooling is better than a good day of public school any day!
  • Things I’m working on…
Lots of products for review, and things previously reviewed:
- VideoText Interactive Algebra;
- Bridgeway English (Grammar and Writing);
- Flip Flop Spanish;
- America the Beautiful for History, Bible, Literature, Timeline, Mapwork, Creative Writing;
- Logic of English Cursive;
- Apologia Physical Science;
- WYAM Biography of Jim Elliot;
- Vocabulary/Spelling City
  • I’m cooking…
Watch for my menu mailer every Monday.
  • I’m grateful for…
The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Review Crew!
  • I’m praying for…
Oh... so many people!
  • I rewarded my kids this week by…
A surprise trip to Krisy Kreme Donuts for a doughnut and to watch the doughnut making machines.
So... I don't know which format I like better, this one or my normal subject-by-subject one, but I figured I'd give this one a try. Next week I'll probably do the other format as it gives me a better record of what we have done during the week.

Have a great week this week!

Think Back Thursday - Milly

This is a difficult post for me to write, but I wanted to put together a photo montage to remember my sweet dog Milly by.

To begin with, though, I must mention that our home had just welcomed another new arrival one month before Milly:
Then, 13-1/2 years ago, on 1/1/00, our little ball of fluff entered our lives. Received on the millenium, we named her "Millenium", "Milly" for short.
B-girl (on the right) decided her name was "Milly Belle". Milly grew quickly, and with attitude. 

Milly actually decided it was in question as to whether she or B-girl was "Alpha". Training became necessary. First Milly trained with daddy at Dog Sense, and then she trained with B-girl through 4-H. B-girl and Milly became best friends, and Milly came to love training and showing. She became a Grand Champion many times over in both showing and agility.

When Milly arrived, B-girl was 10. The years went by. They were in the 4-H Dog Club until B-girl graduated and "aged out" of 4-H. Then B-girl went to college - for five years! And still Milly was there for her, giving her constant love and unimaginable joy! 

B-girl graduated and began her working years. The years had aged Milly, but she was still just a 2-year old puppy in her head, ready to jump and dance whenever B-girl wanted to play.  Bailey had joined us when Milly was 2 years old. She was here when he arrived, and she was here when he crossed over Rainbow Bridge. She seemed pleased to be the only puppy in our lives again, but our hearts ached over the loss of Bailey.
 So we searched, and one day we brought home Cody.
 She welcomed him grudgingly, but was willing to share her floor.
 Photos of B-girl still usually had Milly close by (like this messy Christmas morning photo).
 I loved our Milly, too.
 But time was ticking, and bad things were growining inside her that we did not know about.

B-Girl got married! And while she was away on her honeymoon trip, Milly's end came. We wanted to postpone it so B could say, "Good bye! I love you! I'll always love you!" But Rainbow Bridge wouldn't wait, and we had to convey the message for her. We love you, Milly. Play nicely with Bailey, and we'll see you when we cross over later on. We'll never forget you.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

George Washington Rule #16

This week's excerpt from George Washington's Rules is Rule #16:

16thDo not Puff up the Cheeks, Loll not out the tongue, rub the Hands, or beard, thrust out the lips, or bite them or keep the Lips too open or too Close.

 In creating my translation I am going to remember that initially, when George Washington created his rules, he was just ten years old. He continued using the rules, revising them a bit as he aged.

Do not puff your cheeks up with air, or stick out your tongue, or rub your hands or beard. Do not purse out your lips, or bite them, or keep them too wide open or too closed.
What's "too closed"? I have no clue!


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Flip Flop Spanish - A TOS Crew Review

In August I was pleased to learn that I would be blessed to receive a copy of See It and Say It Flip Flop Spanish (by Flip Flop Learning) for purposes of review. [While my son isn't sure whether it matters if he learns Spanish, I am convinced that it would be most beneficial to him not only to be bi-lingual, but for Spanish to be his 2nd language

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Presidential Game - A TOS Homeschool Crew Review

In August I was delighted when I learned I would have the opportunity to receive The Presidential Game to review for The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew. The folks at The Presidential Game were so kind to send me a free copy for purposes of this review!

I have been eternally fuzzy as to how Presidential elections work, and how the Electoral College works. After playing this game with my son, we both understand things a little bit better.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Menu Monday for 9/23/13

Here are my menu plans for the week of 9/23/13, but my plans got bumped by a day last week. On Friday I had not thawed the meat, so we got pizza and bumped everything by a day. I decided to use the 2# of ground beef slated for meatloaf and make chili Sunday instead.

Sunday: Grandma's Chili, corn bread, salad

Monday:  Italian Zucchini Bake

Tuesday:  Man-pleasing Chicken, mashed potatoes (mashed cauliflower), broccoli
Wednesday:  cheeseburgers, veggies (rolls/flats), squash

Thursday:  Crock beef brisket, cabbage, carrots

Friday:  blackened salmon, Brussels sprouts, yams (noodles)

Saturday: Baked chicken, green beans, brown rice (leftover squash)


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Friday Wrap-up - 9/20/13

Homeschool Mother's Journal Link Up
This week was another fairly good week. I was pleased with the way my son is beginning to (most days) tackle his assignments as a matter of course. There were, however, many times of grumbling, complaining, groaning, begging for things I'd already said "No" to, etc. I took comfort in reading comments of some other 13-14 -year-olds, and apparently this is not unique, although I wish I did not have to suffer through it.

Anyway, here's the week's summary:

Assignments done in conjunction with other subjects; verses from America the Beautiful assignments and from Apologia Physical Science assignments.

I'd like this next week to also incorporate memorizing verses from the unit study we are currently doing on Jim Elliot, by YWAM, which (even though a biography) I guess would also fall under "Bible", so we've worked on that this week.

I need to ramp up to include "Hymn Study" in our "Bible" next week as well.

Have been working on Videotext Online Algebra. We are in unit 1. I don't know whether to decide that he still "doesn't get it", or if he is being lazy and not working hard enough to memorize terms and what they mean. Regardless, Math is a subject where I get a lot of resistance always and still. He tries to do the worksheets without watching the video, then he tries to watch the video and take the quiz without doing the worksheets. Net effect is that we are progressing very slowly. I am trying to get him to do this independently, so he tells me he did his work for the day, and he moves on to another subject. I try to quickly get to his work to review it, only to find he has lots of incorrect answers. I ask him if he watched the video, reviewed the class notes, before he did the worksheet, or did he do the worksheet before he took the quiz, and inevitably he has intentionally skipped a step because he just wants "to get on with it", which really isn't getting on with it at all. Because when answers are wrong we have to slow down, do it over, do it together, etc. So, worked on math a lot this week. Did not get very far.

Working on Chapter 1 of Apologia Physical Science. He was really dragging his feet at the beginning (probably this happened last week) and would not round up the materials and do the first experiment. My schedule (and my attitude, and my recovery from the loss of our dog) did not contribute to getting this experiment done, so I pulled up a YouTube video of it and we just watched it. Not ideal, but it got us to a point of moving forward in our Science.

So this week I really was very, very pleased when he tackled experiment #2 on his own. That went well. He wrote things up in the Journal and everything, too!

But then we got to some math, right there in the Science. "If you have 2.853 ml, how many liters is that equal to?" He balked. He didn't want to read, read, and reread the chapter to find out how to do it. And I, unfortunately, really don't remember the answer either, and I don't have a teacher's key to the book. So it took us a long time, but we got through that section. I don't know if we got through it well, or correctly, but we got through it.

So we didn't get as much done as I had hoped, but we did do Science. My son actually got to a point where, when I told him that a lower level Chemistry was coming up for review with the TOS Crew and did he want me to ask for it, he actually said, "Yes!" He NEVER asks for review items, and there were two this week that he wants, so it was quite surprising to me.

Social Studies:
We are working on America the Beautiful by Notgrass. Again, not making quite the progress I had hoped, but I think he got three or four lessons done this week.  Similar to Math, he is to do this independently and I am to go back over his work to check it for "done"ness, accuracy and correctness, etc. Like Math, he will sometimes just decide to not do something, and I have to call him on it. "Hey, you need to do the mapwork for the day." Etc. But we're making progress.

So "Social Studies" includes history, geography, mapwork, and timeline work. The curriculum also includes some Bible and some Creative Writing, which I won't also list under Language Arts, but I'm pleased with what he did this week!

Language Arts:
We are currently working on Bridgeway English (a remedial program that will count as 1 year high school credit when we finish). So far I have been really, really pleased with his work in this program and with the program itself! I need to spend some more time looking at it, but I remember that Book 1 is primarily Grammar and Book 2 is primarily Writing. He is working out of both books right now. This is a review item, so for the review I have to have him work out of both books, but after the review I will just focus on Book 1, finish it and move to Book 2 and finish it in that order.

We have not been working on Spelling or Vocabulary, but I am working to ramp this up in his schedule. I have a membership to VocabularySpellingCity - another review item - and I am going to create vocabulary and spelling lists to correspond to College SAT preparation. Next week I'll have him working on the first list, and I'll be working to get more lists ready for future weeks.

We are also working on Spanish. We are reviewing Flip Flop Spanish, and it is going really well. This seems to be a gentle, fun, mostly painless way to absorb, learn and play with Spanish, and we're both learning! I love it!

This week in J-boy's life a palatal expander was inserted in the roof of his mouth. His top palate needs to be wider than his lower jaw. We're also hoping it will widen his nasal canals and make nose-breathing easier.

We're also working on healthier eating. For this boy with the voracious hunger and the corresponding wasteline, we need to purge the house of things we don't want him to eat, because at night he goes on the prowl and eats and eats and eats. So away are going the white flour, white sugar, chocolate chips, crackers, etc., etc., etc. It has been helping. I am hoping it can eventually become a more painless process as well.

The palatal expander might also decrease the amount he eats. We'll see. Hopefully he will also work on healthy lifestyle in Boy Scouts soon too.

Phys Ed:
Have not been keeping this written down yet, but he has gone down and worked on the treadmill two or three times this week. I think I should put a chart by the treadmill where he can check off a box each day that he walks or runs a mile.

I came so close... so close to opening the Artistic Pursuits this week, but didn't. Hopefully I'll get it started next week. I'd also like to be doing the Ambleside Artist Studies simultaneously, but we'll see. This is feeling like a lot.

Have not done any music this week. Goal for next week: to include Hymn and some classical music into our week.

So that's it for my week. How did your week go?

George Washington's Rules - Rule #15

Today's rule relates to personal grooming.

15thKeep your Nails clean and Short, also your Hands and Teeth Clean yet without Showing any great Concern for them.

The translation is barely a change from the original. Our first President, as a boy, believed that a person's nails should be kept short and clean, that hands and teeth should be kept clean, but that a person should not obsess about them or become vain about them.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Menu Monday for 9/16/13

Yeah... running late... Sorry...

 Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, omelet, whatever...

 Lemon chicken, brown rice, and broccoli

 Primal Beef Burgundy

 Boy Scout Fund Raiser at Buffalo Wild Wings

 Ham steak, potatoes, Brussels sprouts

Meat loaf; mashed potatoes; salad; baked squash

Turkey thighs; green beans; noodles/yams

Guess What Today is!

Avast!  Ahoy, me maties! It's "Talk Like a Pirate Day!" in its 12th year. Who knew?

So leave your bung hole. Grab your grog, and look for unsuspecting land lubbers to spread the word. If ye must home school, warn yer little ones t'be good or  you'll feed 'em to the fishes.

So get on with your day if you must, but remember t' talk like a pirate today! 


English to Pirate Translator

Talk Like a Pirate Song

For one day a year we talk like buckaneers, so shout "Ahoy! Heave to!" and join our Pirate Crew!

Okay, and this is totally unrelated to TLAP Day, but I was looking for links and things and came across this music video by Ylvis called "What's the Meaning of Stonehenge" -- warning, some adult content, some F-bombs thrown in near the end, but really hysterical...

Monday, September 16, 2013

PeopleKeys: A TOS Homeschool Crew Review

In August I learned that I would have the opportunity to review The Cognitive Thinking Style Workbook by PeopleKeys. I was happy to review this because I knew it would enable me to be more thoughtful about my son's learning, once I understood his learning style.
People Keys Logo photo peoplekeys-logo_zpse1faa0a6.jpg
PeopleKeys is a company that has developed various behavioral assessment tools to help companies, individuals, and students learn and recognize their strengths, weaknesses and styles.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Friday Wrap Up - 9/13/13

This seemed like a pretty good week. We are still ramping up for the new school year. With Milly's illness last week, last week was shot as a good "first week". We have all been emotional wrecks this week, so considering that, I figure what we got done was very good.

Not done every day, but assignments completed as they came up in America the Beautiful.

We're working our way through Videotext Online - Algebra, a Complete Course. I will be writing a review of the product in a few weeks. What I am really liking right now is the way the course is set up so that if the student understands, you move forward, but if the students isn't "getting it", you bump back, review, rework and retest. Perfect. The main struggle for me is in the daily checking of quizzes and worketext pages.

We have started Physical Science this week, not perfectly, but still I am pleased. A lot of the Physical Science experiments are available online (Youtube), which is great. We really couldn't round up the materials for the first experiment and would have stayed stuck there if not for the online video. We watched it and moved on. Still trying to help on be more indepently-minded, but I keep having to "spoon feed" certain subjects to him.

Social Studies
Working our way through America the Beautiful, he covered four lessons (more or less) this week, with which I was relatively satisfied. We're trying to increase his independence, but I'm trying to figure out how to balance that with checking his work and holding him accountable for completing assignments (vs. saying he's done when he has actually skipped stuff).

Began work on a biography of Jim Elliot, and was kind of amused/dismayed when my son insisted Equador is in Mexico... He was being difficult at the time(s) we were working on this this week.

PHYS ED: Did some walking; nothing major. Not keeping track yet. Possible starting 90-Day Physical Fitness Challenge shortly..

HEALTH, Art, Music: No work done this week.

So that's it so far. Still recovering from the loss of our sweet Milly girl (our dog that we adopted when my son was a month old, Milly was a month old). Milly, we look forward to loving on you again when we get to heaven... 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

George Washington's Rules - Rule #14

George Washington's Rules for Decency and Civil Behavior -- sometimes they don't make sense to us in today's society, but today's rule seems pretty relevant:

14thTurn not your Back to others especially in Speaking, Jog not the Table or Desk on which Another reads or writes, lean not upon any one.

So my translation for today would be:
Don't turn your back toward someone you are with, even if you are angry [this seems to me to be when we would turn our back to someone], and especially when you are speaking (as it becomes difficult for them to hear you). Never bump the table where someone is reading or writing, and do not lean on someone. [That does not apply to soldiers who are injured, but rather think about sitting next to someone on an airplane or in church, and suddenly they are leaning on you...]

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Logic of English - Cursive (A TOS CREW Review)


Many weeks ago, I was blessed to receive a copy of The Rhythm of Handwriting - Cursive  from Logic of English to review as a part of the Review Crew for TOS. With The Rhythm of Handwriting - Cursive I also received a Rhythm of Writing Quick-Reference Cursive Chart.

 photo LOE_logo_wide_inv_3d_70_zpsc2eceeb2.png
I was very pleased to be chosen for this review because I consider cursive to be a very important skill

Monday, September 9, 2013

Menu Monday for 9/9/13


Sorry I didn't post last week. I'll include two weeks this week. Rough week; I did not eat vegan because of it. Just couldn't handle the double preparations. Still can't. Just a menu plan this week, no links, bells or whistles:

Sunday, 9/1/13: Daughter's wedding. Ate food provided by the caterer

Monday: Rib eye steak, salad, corn on the cob

Tuesday: Baked bean/hamburger casserole; fresh garden veggies;

Wednesday: Skinless chicken fried in scant olive oil; brown and white rice; green beans;

ThursdayRavioli with sauce; salad

Friday: Grilled cheese sandwiches; tomato soup; garden fresh veggies.

SaturdayFish sticks, French Fries, cole slaw 

Week beginning 9/8/13:

Sunday: Lasagna, salad, Texas Toast or garlic knots

Monday: Chicken tortilla soup, tortilla chips, salad

Tuesday: hamburgers on rolls; garden vegetables

Wednesday: herbed or lemon turkey thighs, stuffing, broccoli

Thursday: Pork chops, steamed potatoes, green beans

Friday: Salmon, yams, salad

Saturday: pizza (ordering out)

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Update on Life

Well, my blog was pretty quiet this week. I never got my menu plan posted, so I'll post two weeks tomorrow. Here's how things went:

Sunday: My dear #2 child got married. It was a wonderful day. I have no photos to post of my own, so I'll borrow one from another source:
Barn wedding. She's dancing with her dad, and she's absolutely gorgeous!

Monday: My sister that lives with us had a medical emergency. We had to have her transported by ambulance. She's okay now; came home Tuesday.

Tuesday: We could see that our sweet Milly was not doing well. Made a vet appointment for first thing in the morning.

Wednesday: Milly was unable to void. Her history suggested UTI, but there was none today. Examination revealed an (for her age) inoperable internal tumor. They voided her by needle aspiration. We were perscribed medications to see if it would enable her to continue her life peacefully at home until there would be a quiet end.

Thursday: By bedtime it was clear that Milly still could not void, and she was absolutely miserable. We took her to the vet ER and they voided her by needle aspiration. We went home planning to attempt a catheter to enable her to void until she could end a quiet, natural death at home. 

Friday: Milly was anesthetized and for three hours two different vets and all their techs tried to get a catheter in, but the blockage was too great. Reluctantly they brought us the news. They voided her by needle aspiration and permitted us to take Milly home to say good bye to the family. Unfortunately bride daughter could not say good bye. What sad news to receive while on your honeymoon. Milly was HER dog. She's been with us since 1/1/00. ::sigh::

Saturday: We returned to the vet and had to say our final good bye to our sweet girl. A sad week. Thank you for prayers for my kids, especially the sweet bride.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

George Washington's Rules, #13

George Washington's Rules

Rule #13 and its translation:

13thKill no Vermin as Fleas, lice, ticks etc. in the Sight of Others, if you See any filth or thick Spittle put your foot Dexterously upon it if it be upon the Cloths of your Companions, Put it off privately, and if it be upon your own Cloths return Thanks to him who puts it off.

Now, frankly, this rule is not as necessary now as it once must have been, and I'm going to comment below. But here is my translation:

If you detect a bug crawling on you, leave the room to attend to it (go to the bathroom to remove the tick, etc.). If you see something nasty on your shoe, inconspicuously cover it with your other foot. If you see food on your companion's clothes, privately draw him aside and remove it. If someone else does the same for you, thank him.

Now, this is a lot. I wonder why George W. put it all in one rule. But anyway, the "Kill no Vermin in the sight of others" rule I certainly do not agree with. Can you imagine mosquitoes biting you and just watching without a twitch? I'd even swat a mosquito that was biting the friend I was with. And so often one needs help removing a tick, and you need to go wherever the light is good. I guess I am not cut out to be a politician!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Homeschool Spanish Academy: A TOS Homeschool CREW Review

This summer I was delighted to be selected by the Schoolhouse Review Crew to review Homeschool Spanish Academy (HSA)! Last summer I tried to get my son to use the product. Last year's efforts to get my son to work with HSA were not real successful (because of my son's learning issues, his attitude, and his refusal to complete the classes), so I was very happy when I was given permission this year to review the Adult Program myself!