Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Year?!

Wow! Another year is passing away tonight. That always made me feel melancholy, as if I were losing something and could not quite let go. Now I feel that way on my children's birthdays, so I am free to enjoy New Years! I have many great resolutions - they are the same every year - exercise, cook more, play with the kids more, stitch more.... I am starting a new year of Motivated Moms tomorrow. I hope I will get further than last year.
I retool homeschool on a pretty regular basis (whimsy) so there will not be any major changes for 2009. Oh. Wait. What am I thinking? At some point I will be responsible for the education of two children! I started Nutmeg when she turned 5 even though she was still in pre-school. I am practicing with the Chipmunk now, but it she is a completely different child - different interests, different learning style. different motivations.
Science is still my problem area. All the other subjects, including history, seem so sequential. I am fairly confident that I can fit the Chipmunk in. But science? One problem is I want to do everything at once! We are doing the Apologia Astronomy (sans Young Earth). Yesterday, we read about earth's magnetic field. Well, we have not formally studied magnets, so I dragged out a magnet study. And how can you study anything if you don't know about chemistry? Everything ties into everything else. Now I will be throwing another child in the mix. We will probably do separate science programs. Maybe? I don't know. I want everything. I want an ant farm and an earthworm farm and a rock tumbler...
My wonderful parents gave me a fat and juicy Rainbow Resources gift certificate for Christmas. I placed a fat and juicy order of items for the coming year as well as several "nice to haves." Well, quite a few "nice to haves!" I ordered several human body models. I think I want them for me!
Unfortunately, my girls and anyone coming to my house gets a science lesson right now. Hunters field dress (?) deer and leave the undesirable bits IN the river. My lovely dogs drag the bits up and crunch them in the front yard. We have discussed the placement and purpose of the different deer teeth, the make-up of hooves, and the purpose of bone marrow. So I suppose the girls get a lot of practical science! ;)
It has been an interesting year. I learn so much from other bloggers. I find great reviews of homeschool products, what homeschool really looks like and great cross stitch patterns I cannot live without. So I want to end 2008 by thanking everyone who reads my blog and all the bloggers that I follow for your encouragement, creativity and friendship. I am looking forward to spending lots of time with ya'll in the New Year!
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Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Guadete, guadete, Christus est natus,
Ex Maria virginae, guadete!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Cross Stitch

I have been stitching these 4 ornaments for the past two weeks. The first two are by Homespun Elegance. The bottom two are from Just Cross Stitch ornament editions, Mary Garry and Scandinavian Stitches (2008). If anybody loves me, they will sew these up into ornaments. I cannot find my sewing machine....

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Friday, December 19, 2008

Weekly Report

I cannot believe we survived this week! We had 7 kids' parties scheduled this week! We ended up only going to 4. We skipped swimming and the 2 piano parties. I wish we could have attended the piano; they always sing funny versions of Christmas songs. Why does everyone and his brother schedule a "Christmas" party for this week? I started out the week grumbling that all the present-buying, reindeer cookie-making, finding party favors, driving from one sugar rush to the next really has nothing to do with Baby Jesus in the Manger. I eventually adjusted my attitude and decided that MY ATTITUDE about kids' Christmas parties should have more to do with Baby Jesus than the so-called Christmas parties exploding in number around me. Celebrating with friends, singing together and just hugging the other moms and saying "Merry Christmas" (and "this will all be over soon") is part of the Christmas Spirit. Scaling back on the number of commitments helped! My medieval heart longs for the days the whole village celebrated together on Christmas Eve at the parish church. Family, Church Family, Friends- all in the same place at the same time. I guess I have traded that for hand sanitizer and a washing machine! ;)

It is difficult for us to enter into "Christmas" when we are celebrating Advent. When the rest of the world packs away their Christmas decorations, Catholics are just getting theirs out! We celebrate the 12 Days (25 Dec - 5 January) and Epiphany (the Wisemen) on 6 January. We often keep some of the decorations up and celebrate an older period of time until 2 Feb. This gives Christmas 40 days like the first Easter in the Bible and other biblical events. But there are some benefits. We celebrate Christmas without many of the commercial aspects of the holiday. Because the stores are already ushering in St. Pat's Day! ;)

We did school this week. Nutmeg was cooking with oil (as my grandmother would say) in math and grammar. We restarted Latina Christiana 1 - again. We reviewed chapter 7 all week (including chapter 7 of Luderne Latina) and will get back on track next week - oh, wait... Well, we will get back on track...eventually. We are doing the Earth chapter in the Apologia Elementary Astronomy (sans the Young Earth theory), and will be making an edible model of Earth's layers today or tomorrow. Nutmeg is starting to put a little Feeling into her recital of Patrick Henry's most famous speech. This makes me really happy because she was very resistant. Nutmeg did Explode the Code, her geography workbook, piano practice as well as practiced Dona Nobis Pacem to sing with the children on Christmas Eve. Actually, I need to get off the computer and practice that now with Nutmeg and The Chipmunk! Hope you all had good weeks!

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I will not be the Grinch. I will not be the Grinch. I will not...

This is my current mantra: "I will not be the Grinch." I was the Grinch an hour ago. I had had it up to here with "Christmas" parties. I took The Chipmunk to preschool this morning and realized they were having a party this morning. Silly me, I thought the Christmas program and party tomorrow night would be sufficient for preschoolers. This is the third party of the week and tomorrow we have three more. Yes, THREE TOMORROW! And we are skipping the swim team party.

I sent the poor little Chipmunk off to school this morning wearing purple (It is Advent, folks) and with a bag of Nutter Butters. I have had an attitude adjustment and am heading off to the grocery store to get pretzels and mini candies to transform the cookies into reindeer. I seem to be the only mom around who is not trying to become the next M. Stewart. I don't care, but my girls seem to...


Friday, December 12, 2008

The Dish Everyone Ate.

Tonight, everyone ate the same dinner! I know that is the idea, but it rarely happens around here. We require the girls to eat a few bites of whatever Jerry and I are eating, but it is just easier on my nerves to give the girls a scrambled egg or vegetable soup. I borrowed a recipe from Tanya's,( of the Honeysuckle Tree), cooking blog. I steamed broccoli, cooked butterfly pasta, shredded parmesan, and made a reduction (doesn't that sound fancy?) of vegetable stock and white wine. I added a splash of olive oil just because. The girls ate it! Then I said, "Wow! I cannot remember the last time we all ate the same thing!" Suddenly the girls said it was "soupy" and "yucky." Too bad. No backsies!


Christmas Cross Stitch Finishes - Almost

I am feeling better this week, and I am recovering from bronchitis. Recovery takes a lot longer when you are taking care of two sick little girls! I pulled my stitching back out in hopes of having some ornaments actually on the tree this year! Unfortunately, the theme this week seems to have been "Missing One Thread From Each Design!" The above design is Sleigh Sampler by Jen Hoffman. I downloaded it at PatternMart. I actually have all the threads, but I just cannot decide on the date and initials.
Next I went on another periodic "Mary Beale Is the Greatest Designer Ever And I Am Going to Stitch Every Chart She Designed" spurt. I love the way she combines colors. The above design is from a Family Christmas chart. I actually found the missing color late, late last night, but stopped short of finishing because I thought my stitches were looking messy.
The next design came from Mary Beale's Pocketbook Needlework 2000. In that booklet, she gives a series of advent ornaments. I have been saying for years (8?) that I am going to stitch them all. Well, I finally made a start. I am missing one pale blue that I hope will come in the mail today. The design is tiny and simple and elegant all at once. I would like to do all the Old Testament stories that are in the Advent series and use them somewhere in the schoolroom year-round. I just wonder if I should leave it as is, or backstitch "Moses" underneath? Any opinions?
The last design is a Carriage House Samplings ornament from Just Cross Stitch. I seem to be missing a few JCS ornament editions. Mom? ;) I finished this last night all except for DMC 3371 which I know I have! I love this design and the color combination is my current favorite! It is really small, but I would love to make a pillow or something with it to keep in the living room year-round.

Well, that's all, but tomorrow is the Christmas Party at the Stacy Nash Primitive Cross Stitch Yahoo Group! I cannot wait!

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Motivated? Well...maybe optimistic would be truer.....

Once again I have purchased the Motivated Moms planner. I maybe did 8 non-consecutive weeks last year. Hmmm... This year I purpose to do better......Hmmmm....

I just keep looking at the blank menu planning page. Suppose I just write "spaghetti" on every square. Hmmmm...Maybe I thought free super powers came with each purchase.....


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!

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Ballet Dollies

This was the first year The Chipmunk was in a ballet recital. I was a back stage mom, and she did get a bit frustrated because she is used to watching the whole show and did not understand why she had to stay backstage. I got to watch her performance from the wings. I also got to watch Nutmeg's ballet and tap performance.

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Saturday, December 6, 2008


72 Mary Beale charts. My, my.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

I'm checking this out

Looks interesting


Tuesday, December 2, 2008


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