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Holiday Highlights, Week 2

This has been a hot, hot week.  We worked in the house and garden, read books, ate good food, and enjoyed life.  We started planning our summer learning contracts as well.

School:   The younger four children and I did nothing, not even documentation.  Miss 17 started her final year’s work because she plans to be away three of the next six months. She studied chemistry (Apologia Advanced), literature (BJUP British—Mom, I read all this already for Ambleside!), and grammar (Rod and Staff 9/10).  We also did some planning when we had a few quiet minutes in the van together. 

Gardening:  We weeded and mulched.  We mulched and weeded.  And we picked raspberries.  Mr 15 watered with a soaker hose rather than a sprinkler to conserve water.  Since we had an empty spot in the garden and some sprouting potatoes in the basement, we also planted potatoes.  They won’t have time to grow huge, but they’ll still be a yummy treat.

Books:   The older children read many, many historical fiction books by Deborah Alcock, Marjorie Bowen, Henty, and others.  Mr 15 is full of information about the Three Stooges (yuk, but my husband says they’re OK).  Miss 10 enjoyed Nancy Drew, until I forbade any more reading.  Then she held up a lovely story Bible by Anne DeVries.  “May I read this Bible, Mama?”  Of course, I won’t stop my children from reading the Bible. 

Outings:  My husband took some of the children out to a church soccer party and they had a wonderful time.  Miss 7 watched it at home on the computer (we have no TV) while I worked on a review.  Miss 17 was at work that day, but she made up for missing the game by buying a Dutch cap.

The Little Misses and I went to a park morning and they hugely enjoyed the splash park while I had a great time with the other moms.

We did go for our walk in the river, squealing about crayfish, slipping on rocks, watching minnows and larger fish, and keeping our eyes open for snapping turtles.  It was tiring, but not exhausting.  I loved seeing the different plants and bugs, and once again toyed with a project I’ve been interested in for a long time: listing all the plants and animals in our area. Right now, though, I’m too busy.

Miss 12 and Mr 15 volunteered with the local therapeutic riding program again.  This is becoming a routine part of our years, and next year Miss 10 may be able to help as well.

Kitchen:   On Friday, Miss 7 made breakfast: bacon and omelets with orange juice.  She also wanted to make hash-browns from scratch, but I figured that was too ambitious.  (Actually, I thought it was all too ambitious for her, but she did a great job without hurting herself.)

Miss 17 made lovely raspberry chocolate tofu smoothies for lunch one day, and the most delicious salmon soup for supper, using some of the soup herbs we froze last week.  Such light, simple, nourishing, yet inexpensive foods!

We also had many other delicious meals and snacks, many made by the children, especially Miss 12.

I moved the bread maker to the verandah on the hottest days so I could bake our yummy flax bread without heating up our air-conditioned house.

We froze several gallons of raspberries.  Those will be so delicious in the winter!

Reviews:  I finally finished reviewing Real Foods on a Real Budget, which was one of the most satisfying books I’ve read in a long time.  I plan to be working through it all summer.  Now I’m starting on The Art of Education by Linda Dobson, as well as Beyond Opinion by Ravi Zacharias.  This week we also got a shipment of books to review for Inheritance Publications, our family’s favorite publisher.  The kids have been reading, reading, reading—lots of quality, Christian historical fiction as well as the most amazing children’s Bible.  I can’t wait to share these with you over the next year.  Actually, I can’t wait to sit down and read them myself.

House Cleaning:  Miss 7 and Miss 10 cleaned up their bedroom, vacuumed carefully, and washed their walls, all so that they would be able to move their bunk bed to a different spot.  They were so excited to do this, and I was excited to let them.

We had a spill in the pantry, so I cleaned a bit and organized and sorted a lot.  Why is it that people never put empty canning jars back where they belong, but set them on the floor in the doorway?  (Actually, I know why.  It’s because I haven’t been able to get down there daily to check up on people’s work, but now I’m healthy enough walk the stairs regularly.)

Also we were able to give four boxes of magazines, toys, clothes, and other stuff to a thrift shop.  It is good to have the space again, and it is good to know that other people will be enjoying things that were no longer useful to us.

Excitement:  Wasps built a nest on the outside of our swimming pool.  When they had all gone to sleep one evening, my husband scraped the nest into a plastic bag with a spatula … without getting stung.  The next day we made a wasp trap for the rest of them, and because it wasn’t working quickly enough,  Mr 15 held it close to the nest.  The wasps got very angry and poured out to attack him.  I looked up from my weeding to see him racing past, with a little dot flying after him.  “What’s wrong?”  I called.  “Nothing, I hope,” he shouted without slowing down.  Fortunately, he ran quickly enough that even this most determined wasp gave up.

This has been a wonderful week, and we are grateful for it.

This post is linked to Canada Girl’s Weekly Wrap Up .


  1. Jenn 4 Him says:

    Very fun week and productive too!

  2. Stacy's Page says:

    LOL! Dh and dd are also fans of the Three Stooges. I can’t stand them.

  3. ontariomom says:

    Anything by Ravi Zacharias is amazing! we love his stuff.

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