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Holiday Highlights, Weeks 9 and 10

I can hardly believe that we’ve finished our summer holidays!  After a cooler week, we had a week of hot, hot weather and spent hours in the pool.  More and more garden produce is ripening and I’m not keeping up with it very well.  But we’ve been enjoying company, having a touristy time, and drinking way too much pop, a perfect ending to the summer. 


The Little Misses and I went to the beach with friends for a morning, and that was a lovely treat for all of us.

Our oldest three children and their cousin explored the Parliament Buildings and the Supreme Court on their own.  A few years ago, I would never have imagined letting my children do such a thing!  But they are 12-17 years old, responsible, and connected by cell phone.  Besides, I’m not up to so much walking and would not have been able to take them.

We also visited the Diefenbunker, Canada’s Cold War Museum, a massive communication center where the Canadian government would have worked in the event of an atomic war.  What an eye-opener that was!  Here’s a picture of the blast tunnel, designed to withstand the incredible winds that would accompany a 5 megaton nuclear explosion nearby.


The children spent a lot of time in the river building a dam near some rapids, catching frogs, spying on crayfish, and chasing clouds of minnows.  When the older ones went to the Parliament buildings, the Little Misses and I put together a picnic and ate it on a big rock in the river.  Although it was terribly hot, we made ourselves comfortable by cooling our feet in the clear water.

And we went go-carting.  Yes, for the second time in our lives we bought bargain day tickets, stood in line, fitted helmets, and then let the children go, all on their own, whizzing around a track in little motorized vehicles.  That little go-cart track holds so much joy and excitement!

To top it all off, we visited the Museum of Civilization, an amazing place full of wonderful displays.  We learned about horses, although a significant part of that exhibit was evolution-based.  We saw a fur-trade canoe that can hold 5 tons, and learned how birch bark canoes were made.  Then we whizzed through the history of Canada, focusing on only a few exhibits. The Little Misses and I spent the afternoon in the Children’s Museum, while the older ones explored other parts of the museum in greater depth.


After reading Lori’s post , I put together most of my teens’ transcripts in 90 minutes.  I still have to look up some of the marks from previous years, but I’m almost caught up!  Once I have the transcripts made, putting the supporting documentation together will be easy.  Time consuming, certainly, but not difficult.

Because of all the fun and excitement, I have not quite finished our first term’s weekly requirement lists for each child; that’s today’s project so that we’ll be ready to go on Tuesday.

Mr 15 has been plugging away at ALEKS Geometry, putting in a lot of time.  Whatever is left of his ALEKS month will be devoted to reviewing Algebra 2.


Finishing the fence!  In fact, there’s even a cute little stone wall at the bottom of it where the ground dips.  This was a huge job for everyone involved, and I’m so proud of my husband and children for making it.  Now we will be able to let the puppies run loose without worrying about tractors or cars.  In fact, we could even let the chickens and ducks out, although I’ve been assured that is not a good idea.

Butchering 32 chickens!  Miss 17, Mr 15, and their cousin Mr A, who’s 13, did all the outside work completely on their own.  They set up all they needed, dealt with the chickens from A to Z, and cleaned everything up. I did the inside work, washing and  trimming the last little bits to make the chickens look like the ones from the store.   Afterwards, my husband took the troops out for Chinese food.  Since I was exhausted, I was more than pleased to stay at home.  After all, they do not serve gluten-free food.

A homeschooling talk!  Now that I’m feeling better, it is time to contribute to the homeschooling community again.  I was asked to give an encouraging talk at a monthly meeting, and. in the process of preparing it, I also was encouraged.  Isn’t that how it often goes?  When you do something for others, blessings so often come to you as well.


We finished pulling out the beans and drying more of the onions.  We’ve been enjoying a wide variety of vegetables, but not preserving very many because of all our running around.  Today I hope to do something about the broccoli.  We’ve had gallons of yummy broccoli soup in the last few weeks but it’s never good to overdo one food.  Next week we’ll start thinking about making sauerkraut (very easy, but it does take a bit of time). 

We did prepare and freeze huge quantities of elderberries (from our hill) and red peppers (from a good sale).

And, to signal the end of summer, we took the tops off the brussel sprout plants so that all the tiny sprouts will grow large enough to eat.  That’s always a bittersweet moment.


The nearby cornfield has a disease in which some of the corn kernels grow huge and grey and full of spores.  That means, of course, that our garden corn has some too, but what really surprised me is that the broccoli has it as well.  Broccoli with smut just turns black and grey and smelly, but this corn fungus is a delicacy in Latin America, and has been called the Mexican Truffle.  (And, no, we are not eating any!)


Due to computer issues, the photos are not my own.  Originals can be found here:   corn smutChildren’s Museum  , and Diefenbunker Blast Tunnel

To see what other families have been up to, visit Canada Girl and Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers.


  1. Stacy's Page says:

    I enjoyed reading your post. That corn looks gross! And I don’t blame you for not wanting to eat it! Snails are considered a delicacy too, but you’ll never find me eating them! LOL!

    I went outside to talk to dh. He said, “Look at your tire. What is that sticking out from the rim?” I had no idea. So he pulled on it. It was a dead frog! Yuck!

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Oh dear! I’m feeling a bit sorry for the frog. But not for the corn. LOL

      Annie Kate

  2. Mexican corn truffle….hmmmm….!! Looks like an amazing week besides that!

  3. Canadagirl says:

    Wow you are one busy family ! But it all sounds like so much fun and soooo intresting. I would have LOVED to go on those feild trips with you. We are on our 3rd year in Canadian History and geography. Yes life got too much in the way and I am determined to have us REALLY dive into this year. I had never heard of those issues with corn and broccoli. Is that something that once you have it stays in the soil ? We have a bacteria that effects garlic and we can’t grow garlic b/c of it. ((sniff sniff))

    Praying blessings on your school year !

    Blessings and ((HUGS))
    In Him<

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