Life During the Third Week of October

October 24, 2010

Here are some miscellanies from the week:

Monday was a gray day.  Our friends are visiting from Seattle and brought their weather with them.  We spent the day learning about bugs & working on our Little House lapbooks.  The kids also watched Little House on the Prairie and we disected it to the point of annoyance.  Hint: Never watch a movie based on a book with us. :-)

Here are the spiders the kids had made & I melted for them on Monday:

We bought a cheap inexpensive craft at Michael’s last week. On Monday we finally found the iron (needed to heat the pegs & melt them…we don’t use it for much else) and permanently attached all the melty beads.  DB1’s spider is the top left.  He was incensed that the spider in the craft had only two eyes, and they were white.  DB2 is on the top right.  He went by the book.  DB3 thought it needed something more creative so he made his to be weaving a web.  DB4 was upset that the project was a spider, not a butterfly.  He proceeded to create his own butterfly pattern.  There, in a nutshell, you have, not only my four oldest children’s crafts but perfect descriptions of their individual personalities. :-)

As indicated above, we also watched Little House on the Prairie: The Pilot…3x–once during the day, for school, 1.5x while I was at ballet with DB2 & 3, the rest was still playing when we arrived home.  Yep, the kids, even DB5, absolutely love this movie.  To see one of their favorite books come to life before them, in not too terribly a ruinous way (ie. it was somewhat close to the book), made them very happy.  Louis wants them to make Little House in the Big Woods into a movie now.  After seeing what Hollywood did with Narnia, I hope they never do.

Tuesday’s are our weirdest days.  I take DB1 & 3 to ballet.  Take DB3 home after class, leave DB1 for his classes (he has two). Drop DB3 at home, take DB2 to ballet. Pick up DB2, kill time, pick up DB1. ( I swear I’m gonna forget someone, somewhere. lol)

Last Tuesday this big fella was “waiting” for us in the parking lot when DB2 & I arrived.  I was never so close to a hawk before, not even in Montana.  City hawks don’t seem to be as nervous of people as country hawks.  They’ve probably read the “no-shooting-inside-city-limits” ordinance.

During DB2’s class, and I suppose DB1’s if you think about it, I nipped over to Sprout’s to get some snacks & bread for our trip to The Cube.  I was met by this happy sign.  Needless to say I bought a bit more than planned, including two Amy’s Pizzas, 2 boxes of Kinnikinnick donuts, myriad cookies, and a few extra loaves of bread.  Or is it “loafs” now?  It’s so hard to keep up with spelling and grammar changes when you get to be my age.

On Thursday we studied some more about bugs, and made this nifty craft.  Again, DB4 was not satisfied that the craft was a bug with wings.  He wanted a spider.  Um, yeah.  So, we worked on that attitude lightly.  But once I stuck wings on his bug he was most displeased.  I’m not sure what this is.  Maybe his idea of what things would really look like if Evolution was true?

On Friday, after the All Saint’s Day party, we said “Good-bye” to our favorite rental van and picked up our Monster Van from the shop.  The 2010 Chrysler Town & Country will long live in our memories as a sweet family ride.

That’s all there is, there isn’t anymore…except this: May you have a blessed Lord’s Day & worship our God & Creator in Spririt & Truth.


Life (and God’s Providence) with Ambleside Online

September 23, 2010

Let me tell you a really weird tale.  Well, weird if you don’t see Providence everywhere you look. ;-)

For years, and I really do mean years, people told me about Ambleside Online.  For years, I can’t really explain why, I resisted.  Finally, while waiting for #5 to arrive, I did some serious research into it (you can only play Facebook games so long before insomnia becomes boring).  I decided we’d give it a try last year and, well, to say weird stuff’s been happening would be the truth.

First, there were the peculiar incidences involving all the Shakespeare plays we were supposed to read for the year~~DB1 had performed in one of the plays, the kids’ ballet academy was to perform one, and the other just happened to be performed by the Met and broadcast in HD here to Ontario, so I took DB1 to see his first opera.  Then, this year, it has started again.  Julius Caesar was to be our first play.  In July, while we were at the CHEA Conference in Pasadena, we happened upon Shakespeare by the Sea.  We couldn’t stay for that performance, but they were performing…you guessed it…Julius Caesar the following month, so we attended.

There have been so many little things like this throughout the year, as if God was really trying to show me, “Yes, this is what I want you to do.”  So, it shouldn’t have been a surprise when, the night we started reading Pilgrim’s Progress (on this terms reading list at AO) I should be sent this on Facebook.

As for the kids: DB1, and really, all the kids, have responded so well to this schooling.  So well, in fact, that this is the first year I didn’t ask myself at the beginning of the year, “Why do I do this? And is it really worth it?”  DB1, who hates to read, was reading Shakespeare.  DB2, who struggles along–due to perfectionistic tendencies–is now reading the KJV (recommended by AO for language acquisition).  DB3, well, he just loves it, I think, because there’s so much reading involved, and that, of course, means so much snuggling on the couch. :-)

Life on 9-15-10

September 15, 2010

Well, not so much life, as links.  I found many interesting and useful links today, but instead of inundating my avid Facebook readers I shall post them here.  (OK, so it’s actually cuz they’re far more interesting to me than to anyone I know.)

First, and this is actually from a few days ago: Storm the Castle. This fellow has Reality Factory to download and DB1 is using it to make his own video game.  Which leads us to our next link: Learn Perl. That’s what DB1 is off to do next.  If he can stay focussed, and continue working on new languages, we’ll call it his “apprenticeship,” and go with it.

I was reading the May copy of Dance Magazine at ballet today (yeah, I was there, shocking) and there was an article about Chicago Human Rhythm Project.  Of course, I had to see if they had anything on YouTube and found they have a page set up. They have a lot of school stuff recently loaded, but if you scroll down to the bottom, there are some good videos of actual performances.

The most awesome site I found was, surprise, a bookstore.  Chartwell Booksellers in Manhattan (I live in LA cuz I hate humidity. I live LA cuz I hate humidity. end mantra) popped up when I searched for DB1’s new text The Island Race by Winston Churchill. If I ever get to NY, I think I’ll just camp outside and live inside while they are open.

As for the life part: violin, boys’ class, ballet, musical theater.  DB1 was so excited to see his favorite teacher in musical theater tonight.  He rarely sees him, and is always bugging me about, “When is Daniel going to come back & teach?”  Unfortunately, he’s only subbing, but I guess we’ll take what we can get.

And, since we’re on the subject of my upcoming birthday…;-)

My dh asked me tonight if there were any movies I wanted for my birthday.  Well, I haven’t seen a movie at all since I took DB1 to see HP last Fall, so, no.  (Though, I do have Amazing Grace sitting on top of the TV, waiting for me to have two child-less hours…)  Then he asked a really stupid question: “How about any books?”  Now, this isn’t really so much stupid as it is dangerous.  Asking a convert to Calvinism from Evangelicalism if there is a book they want is kind of like taking a starving man to Cheesecake Factory and telling him he can have anything on the menu.  His head will probably explode by the time he reaches page five. So, yeah, I can think of a couple (hundred) books I want.  Maybe I’ll just send him a link to Mongergism Books and tell him to make sure he cross-references with my Library Thing before ordering. :-D

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