In my life this week…
We went from hot, hot, hot weather to cold, rainy days when we even considered lighting the fire. Somehow, the weather really defines what we do: gardening or not, warm clothes or not, warm food or not, laundry or not, schoolwork or not….
With the intense gardening and extra schoolwork, I’ve fallen behind on my housekeeping this week. I even forgot to put pillowcases on our pillows. While I stayed awake just long enough to register the fact that I had no pillowcase, my tired husband put a t-shirt on his! LOL
In our homeschool …
Mr. 18 finally received his acceptance to university. Despite the fact that mommy marks and SAT scores are not considered official and that he was therefore not eligible for any scholarships, the university offered him a large one. I suppose Lee Binz is right when she says just to focus on the best learning possible during the high school years and not on admissions and scholarships.
The only caveat: it’s all dependent on successfully completing his English course…which we recently dropped to focus on the required advanced sciences and math. Literally overnight, his schooling has changed focus radically, and so have some of my plans for June.
On a more positive note, today Mr. 18 has just completed a massive 4-year project: writing an essay on every Bible book. He will likely finish his French course today as well.
Miss 15 is organizing her extensive reading into a high school literature course based on Tolkien, Lewis, Chesterton, Sayers, and T.S. Eliot. We decided that about 100 hours of reading and about 75 hours of writing would make a solid course. I’m thankful that most of these are authors I trust, because I do not have the time to read each of these works along with her. And the one exception, the early T.S. Eliot work written before he became a Christian, is discussed in Omnibus VI and is familiar to me from my own student days. As a bonus, Mr. 18 will be studying it too.
Maybe, just maybe, the Little Misses will finish their school year today! Because of the huge amount of gardening we’ve been doing, I dropped some of their ongoing requirements for this week (math drill, typing practice, music practice, etc). They only needed to do the work that involved finishing a book or meeting a goal.
Yesterday the three girls and I went on a bird banding field trip. Although only two birds were caught before the nets were taken down because of the rain, we learned a lot about birds and banding anyhow. Also, it was an exciting adventure in a completely unexpected way: the bird banding was in a military exercise zone, and the troops were practicing with live ammunition! First we were stopped by the military police, and later we were kept carefully to safe areas by the bird banders.
In our garden… We are still eating asparagus, chives, and wild and cultivated greens. We seeded the broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and cabbage, thinned out the spinach, and replanted some of the carrots and beets. Something’s nibbling on the feathery tops of our carrots, so we sprayed them with our homemade pesticide.
And we finished ripping up the roots of a raspberry patch, which is exhausting work. We planted almost 100 tomato plants as well as three varieties of peppers just before the rains started. It’s a bit early, but with the forecasted cloud blanket, very cold weather will hopefully stay away. Our weeping caragana tree is half dead, so I planted morning glories around it to turn it into a glorious blue and green ball. Next year we will likely remove/replace it.
In the kitchen… We enjoyed the pizza from the Gluten Free Baking Mix Cookbook two more times. Miss 15 used the baking mix to adapt a banana sticky bun recipe from the Celebrations cookbook, and it was delicious. I made chicken-nettle-chili soup, and my husband said it was one of the best soups ever. On the other hand, when the homemade yoghurt unexpectedly turned out to be cottage cheese, the children were not impressed.
Some of my favorite things were…
- Mr. 18’s university acceptance and scholarship.
- Opening our pool for the season.
- The second-hand book my son bought, which had, years ago, been Daddy’s! Both of them were thrilled.
- Listening to our birds and learning more about birds at the bird banding station. I think we had a canary in our lilac bushes for a few days, and one day we had a bird that sounded like a school bell. It could have been a blue jay trying out a new noise (one year we had one that liked to croak like a frog!), or it could have been a migrant bird we’ve never heard before.
- Time with family and friends.
Questions/thoughts I have… Both Mr. 18 and I are feeling overwhelmed with the amount of schoolwork he needs to do in the next three weeks. “The only easy day was yesterday.”
Fitness… We’ve all been tired, whether due to a virus or the heavy garden work, we don’t know. I walked fewer steps than usual, averaging only 7000 steps per day, but did an enormous amount of upper body exercise while digging up all those roots. In the past, such effort would make me lose muscle strength for days, but this year I ached instead. That’s such a wonderful change back to normal! Of course, I was very tired too, but much of the time it was a good kind of tired. We ate well, and I really enjoyed relaxing.
Things I’ve been working on…
- Gardening and yard work.
- Feeding my family.
- Learning more about Pinterest.
- Les Merveilles de la Planete with Mr. 18. I love Pierre Brouwer films even though I can never understand all the French.
- The old Cheaper by the Dozen.
- My husband and I watched the play Freud’s Last Session, which is both fascinating and disturbing. Recommended, but not for young ones.
I’m reading… Psalms. I’m also reading Pinterest Power, The Autobiography of Charles G. Finney (for Mr. 18’s Omnibus), Cooked, and Mathematics: Is God Silent? I really need to find a quiet corner to finish Les Miserables, an audio drama; obviously audiobooks don’t work very well for me. This afternoon I felt ill, so I took a few hours to read Pennsylvania Patchwork in bed.
Reading Aloud… We’re reading 1 Chronicles and still working on Madame Curie, written by her daughter Eve, as well as various books for school. Miss 10 and I finished Botany by Jeannie Fulbright.
When my husband is home for meals we read Matthew.
I’m grateful for …. My son’s university acceptance. Rainy weather and a break from gardening.
Quote or link to share…. From the book Postmodern Times by Gene Edward Veith Jr: “When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” Psalm 11:3 My answer to this question in this context: teach our children to the best of our ability so they will be equipped to live wisely in a foundationless society and, perhaps, help to rebuild the foundations.