Enjoying Our Journey

Living, Loving and Learning Together

New Science Curriculum!

Ah, the thrill of new books! Next week we will start Biology for the Logic Stage from Elemental Science. I don’t know who is more excited, me or the children. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Over the past few years, we have grown into a classical homeschooling style using The Well-Trained Mindย as a guide. This program from Elemental Science appears to line up well with our approach. I have been looking for something “more” for our study of science and I have high hopes that this will fit the bill. My children love anything and everything to do with science, so I think they will enjoy it.

I will use this program with my 6th and 3rd graders. I plan to adapt the writing assignments for the 3rd grader, but I should be able to keep the reading the same as my boys are strong readers. I look forward to implementing this program and discovering how it will meet our needs. If all goes well, we will continue the series with Earth Science and Astronomy next year.

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20 Chore Tuesday

I am seeking a better balance between home, school and personal needs. Let’s see if I can make my daily plans support my goals.ย 

  • Exercise
  • Shower and take some time to primp
  • Scripture Study
  • Make spaghetti sauce for dinner
  • Swish and swipe (FlyLady)
  • Shine sink at least once
  • 2 loads of laundry
  • School
  • Change ink cartridges in printer
  • Print next Pre-K unit
  • Laminate as needed
  • FlyLady mission for today
  • Hole-punch and file school papers
  • 15 minutes of organizing and moving school supplies to new cabinet
  • Sweep
  • Clean out fridge
  • Reframe and hang picture
  • Knit on something, anything ๐Ÿ˜›
  • Pay bills
  • Plan Family Night

Wish me luck!ย 

As always, link up at Joyful Abode to join in the fun!

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WIP Wednesday

I have a lot on the needles since it is Christmas time and gifts are in various stages of being completed.

First, is a pair of convertible mittens. The first mitten still needs a thumb and the second one is almost ready to put the thumb stitches on holders. I am making 2 more pairs after this. Hopefully by Christmas.

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Next, is my first fair-isle project, a hat for my husband.

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Finally, I am working on a sweater for my youngest. The pattern is the Toasty Waffle Henley from Tot Toppers. I love her patterns. The sweater is knit from the bottom up and I have finished up to the armholes. I will start the first sleeve later tonight.

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20 Chore Tuesday

6 loads of laundry

4 loads of dishes

3 boys schooled

3 meals served

2 floors swept

1 stove cleaned

1 sweater knit on

Equals 20 Chore Tuesday for this week. ๐Ÿ˜›

Link up with Joyful Abode each week. ๐Ÿ™‚

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20 Chore Tuesday

Today my focus will be on knitting and the kitchen. My knitting to-do list seems to grow longer every day, especially at this time of the year. And my dear husband made a trip to the grocery store for the essentials, so I am now equipped to prepare some meals ahead for the week.

Knitting:

  • Knit 10 stripes on my Rockefeller shawl (this is going to be a daily goal until it is completed.)
  • Cast-on and knit until the thumb increases on a mitt for a friend
  • Cast-on and knit ribbing and a few rows of the chart on my husband’s hat
  • Swatch for Christmas sweater for my youngest

Kitchen

  • Bake 2 loaves of quick bread, one to have for breakfast this week and one to freeze
  • Bake at least one other breakfast for the week
  • Change over calendars
  • Write all sports events and appointments on calendar
  • Wash towels
  • Wash Christmas kitchen potholders and towels and put them out
  • Declutter for 15 minutes packing away everyday items to make room for Christmas items
  • Write up a meal plan for the rest of the week
  • Write up an inventory of pantry items
  • Start a list of items needed to restock the pantry
  • Make body wash
  • Run dishwasher
  • Wash rest of dishes

Misc.

  • Pay bills
  • Order contacts
  • Order wooden pegs for gift-making

Getting this list done will be contingent on the health of the children in my household. Everyone has been in one stage or another of a nasty cold for over a week now. They are still sleeping and I hope the rest will do them good.

To join in, link up at Joyful Abode. Wishing you a happy and productive Tuesday. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Frozen Lemonade

Anyone who knows me is familiar with how much I like the snow. Not at all. But I do have to admit that it can lend itself ย to some pretty photos. So this is me making lemonade at home on this chilly, wintryย day.

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Hot off the Needles

Yesterday, or rather this morning at around 2 am, I finally finished two Gryffindor House Sweaters for my oldest two boys. Why on earth did I stay up so late? Because it was the last day of term and if I completed them and posted them by 3 am EST, I would earn 100 points for Gryffindor and also earn my Muggle Studies OWL. ๐Ÿ˜› I am so glad that I dug deep and got them done. I almost gave up a few times, but then I remembered that Gryffindors do not give up. I couldn’t let my House down. The deep sense of satisfaction I feel from rising to this challenge is motivating me to consider sitting for an Herbology OWL next term. Which would mean knitting a cabled cardigan for myself. Bring it on! And Roar Gryffindor!

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Old Mother Hubbard Learns Her ABCs

It is one of those nights. It has been too long between grocery shopping trips. Fridge and cupboards are nearly bare. Dinnertime is fast approaching. Boys will be hungry. What is a mom to do?

Hmm. Ground beef already browned. Check. I think I have some beef broth, maybe a beef and vegetable soup? But I used up the frozen veggies the other night when I was making corn chowder and realized that I only had a tiny bit of corn left and improvised. Well, there are carrots in the fridge at least. I can still make this work.

Drat. There are only 2 cans of beef broth. I could have sworn there were more. Digging deep in the cupboards now I find some diced tomatoes hiding behind the peas. Someone must have exchanged the beef broth for the diced tomatoes that were not here the other day. Ooh, a quart of home-canned tomatoes. Now we are getting somewhere.

Into the pot goes the quart of home-canned tomatoes after a momentary panic that they looked different. My dear friend on the phone reminded me that we canned some heirloom tomatoes and that a batch was yellow and orange. Phew! I add to that the 2 measly cans of beef broth and the ground beef. Good base, but there is no way that is going to feed everyone. Maybe adding the veggies will help it look like more. Sliced baby carrots, diced bell pepper and onion are a nice addition, but it still does not look like enough. Back to the almost empty cupboards.

My first intention was to grab those cans of diced tomatoes that had appeared in place of the beef broth. But then I saw something better. 2 small cans of condensed tomato soup. I added them to the pot without diluting them hoping this experiment would end well. Time will tell.

Now for my favorite part of cooking, adding the seasonings. My inner child delights in acting like a mad scientist for a few minutes adding a bit of this and that without measuring *gasp*. I add my usual standbys, sea salt, cracked pepper, and a bay leaf. It is not soup without bay leaves. Ask my kids. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Italian seasoning goes well with anything so I add that too. And since we are all suffering with sinus illnesses, I decide some chili powder is the way to go. Some minced garlic gets added in and the simmering begins. Now what to dip in the soup?

My helpful friend who has been on this journey with me via the phone suggests some garlic cheddar biscuits. Using her mad computer skills, she finds this recipe which is close to the one she uses. A quick scan over the ingredient list brings a sigh. I don’t have milk. The recipe actually calls for buttermilk, but I typically substitute regular milk with a splash of vinegar or lemon juice for the buttermilk without incident. But it doesn’t work without milk. Always quick-thinking, my friend asks if I have evaporated milk. I do! I always buy a can of evaporated milk every time I buy pumpkin in anticipation of pumpkin pie. When the pumpkin gets used for pumpkin bread or something else, the cans of evaporated milk hang out in the back of the cupboard. Or that is my theory anyway.

Back to the biscuits. My friend gets another call and I start the biscuits while smelling the delicious smell from the soup.ย I am hoping that it tastes as good as it smells.ย The biscuits include cheese and garlic and are brushed with melted butter. I am confident that we will at least enjoy the biscuits.

When the biscuits go in the oven, I add some alphabet noodles to the soup for a little fun. In just a few minutes it is dinnertime. I brush the biscuits with the butter, dish out the bowls and call the troops to wash up for dinner. The verdict is: success! We all love the soup and of course the biscuits.

I am grateful for a yummy meal despite initial grim prospects. But I am also looking forward to a thorough, stocking up grocery shop in the very near future. Now that I have a more accurate idea of what is actually in the cabinets. ๐Ÿ˜›

The improvised Alphabet soup:

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And the garlic and cheese biscuits:

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Quiet Time Bliss

The kids are quietly reading in their beds. The house is still. I can hear myself think. It is blissful. The best part is the cup of hot chocolate cooled with a half-scoop of Heath Bar ice cream. Now this is bliss. : )ย 

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How do you spend quiet time at your house? What do your kids do? What do you do to recharge yourself?ย 

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20 Chore Tuesday

I knew I blew it this morning when I actually thought to myself, “Hey! I am making good progress on my chores and it is not even 9 AM!” I think you can guess what happened next. Things did come to a screeching halt for a while, but I am now back on track. And am finally putting the list down in writing.

  • 2 mile workout
  • unload dishwasher
  • 2 loads of laundry
  • school
  • dishes
  • declutter a shelf in bathroom cabinet
  • fold and put away laundry done yesterday and today
  • make dinner
  • print more school items
  • laminate school items (they are in pouches ready to go)
  • package up, label and freeze red sauce that I made yesterday
  • roast pumpkin
  • package, label and freeze pumpkin puree
  • mandatory 1 hr. quiet time
  • write 1-2 blog posts
  • gather library books to return
  • wash sink and toilet
  • knit on House Sweater

I know it is not quite 20 things. We shall see what else I am in the mood to do later. Long day. Quiet time helped though.

20 Chore Tuesday can be found on Joyful Abode. Link up to join in!

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