Next 6 Books On Reading List

I am forever in the middle of at least a handful of books.  Books for schooling, books for Bible studies, non-fiction, fiction (heavy reads), fiction (light reads).   Throw in one, perhaps two, audiobooks and you get quite the mash up of books.  As the saying goes, a jack of all trades, master of none, er…a reader of many books, a finisher of none.

Last night I finished Fault in Our Stars.  And I cried.  I laughed.  I nodded in agreement.  I laughed and cried some more.

Mama’s Losin’ It



I rarely participate in Mama Kat’s Writing Prompts but I’ve been a long-time reader.  Her prompts encourage writing for the love of writing, something I haven’t done much in years.  So.

This week’s chosen prompt is List the the top 6 books on your list to read next.

1) Bread & Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table with Recipes--A dear friend has recommended me this book to me several times, so I finally gave in for it when I found it on sale for my Kindle.  I started it a week ago but I put it aside for Fault in Our Stars.

2) Faith Unraveled: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask the Questions–I actually have the older version, Evolving in Monkey Town.  Rachel Held Evans is one of my favorite bloggers.  I  struggle to reconcile my faith, my social stances and what the church has taught me growing up.  Through her posts and books, they all make sense and I don’t have to put aside any of that.  I’m about halfway through this book, having started in months ago, and I’m determined to finish it this month.

3) Beautiful Ruins–This book came up several times as recommended reading on Overdrive.  The cover caught my eye but I passed it by.  Then I saw in on Modern Mrs. Darcy’s On the Big Screen Summer Reading Guide.  I love almost every recommendation I find on her site, so I put it in my queue.  I hope to start this over the weekend.

4) A Homemade Life: Stories & Recipes from My Kitchen Table

5) Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet–The recommendation friend from Bread & Wine also recommended this one to me.  I started it twice but didn’t make it past chapter one but I’m going to give it another shot.

6) Death by suburb : how to keep the suburbs from killing your soul


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Week in Review #3


And, speaking of failures, MUST PRINT OUT HISTORY!!  Kinda’ hard to do it without the papers we need!!

I feel like we’re finally hitting a groove.

We finished Charlotte’s Web and watched the live-action version of it.  It wasn’t until college Literature for Educators class that I actually read Charlotte’s Web.  It is so much better than the movie and I love it a little more each time we read it.

First full week of soccer practices

Ben is getting closer to reading.  Not quite to putting sounds together easily but we’re getting closer!

Week in Review #2

We continued with half-days this week but we also added in Latin.  Latin is new for us this year and I am a bit intimdated.  This will be the first topic we do where I have, essentially, no working knowledge prior to beginning.

Elizabeth began keyboarding class at the library.

We added logic software to our afternoon school rotation.

Soccer started!

I need to rethink dinners!  School + soccer + TKD…this week’s meals did not go as planned!!


2014-2015 Curriculum

I didn’t change too many of our choices from last year.  I may need to tweak a few things but, so far, I’m happy with how our choices are working this year.

2014-2015 Curriculum

Subjects we do together, Morning School
Story of the World, Volume 3 Early Modern Times
America the Beautiful (supplement to SOTW)
Biology 2
Telling God’s Story, Year 2 The Kingdom of Heaven
Grapevine Timelines, Old Testament Parts 1-3

Afternoon School
Yo, Sacramento & Yo, Mildred Filmore
Various poetry, tall tale & other Americana books
Monthly topical studies to include Indiana’s Main Street, Explorers, Weather lore & extreme weather, History of winter holidays & traditions, the Oregon Trail, and spring holidays around the world (others are yet to be determined)

Elizabeth (10 this fall)
Math Mammoth 5
Latin for Children, Primer A (new)
Daily Paragraph Editing, 4
Assorted logic books, mostly from Critical Thinking Co.
Growing with Grammar, 5
Brave Writer (new)
All About Spelling

Benjamin (6.5)
Math Mammoth 1
First Language Lessons 1
Handwriting Without Tears, 1
Assorted logic books, mostly from Critical Thinking Co.
All About Spelling

Week in Review, #1

At the end of last year, I wished that I had kept a better record of things that happened throughout the year.  Funny things, milestones, field trips–all the sorts of things that build memories but aren’t necessarily our curriculum.  This year, I hope to do a better job of recording those events.  And I’m hoping it won’t be one of those things I start but never complete!

First week complete!  And a smooth week, at that.  We are starting with half-days, so we were finished each day by lunch.  And nearly everything was completed!

One new thing I am doing this year is reading a chapter book each month that has a movie to go with it.  We are half-way through Charlotte’s Web and then we’ll watch both the newer movie release as well as the animated version from the late 70s, the one SoldierBoy and I both saw as children.

2.5 days down, 177.5 to go!

Four things I learned this year

Another school year done.  Another school year planning in the works.  It was a good year.  Really, probably the best one.  Not bad considering we had SoldierBoy returning from deployment, quickly followed by a cross-country move, quickly followed by the holidays.   Come fall, I will have an almost-10 year old and a 6 1/2 year old, plus the 4yo.  So I think that moves me into the seasoned homeschooler category.  (How did that happen?!)  So…in light of that, here are four things that really hit home for me this year.

I determine the day.  Mama being on task in the morning sets the tone for our day.  Why do I forget this so often?!  Limiting my computer time, getting my morning list done quickly.  These things help our day start on time and go well.  That isn’t to say, of course, that if I start the day well, we are guaranteed to have a good one or starting the day poorly guarantees a bad day.  But, at the very least, my frame of mind starting well helps!

Preserve the relationship and shelve it!  That math topic that reduces you and your child to tears?  Set it aside for two months.  Or three.  Really.  Time really does well.  Maybe your child just needs more time for it to click.  And maybe you need that time for the topic to not be a trigger anymore.  So many times I’ve tried to force something that my kiddo just wasn’t grasping and we’d end up in tears.  Sometimes we’d push through it and she’d never really get it but I could mark it off my to do list.  (Go ahead and roll your eyes, I am at myself!)   The times I was feeling less stubborn, we’d set it aside and pick it up again later.   And, like magic, we’d breeze through it!  Its the very rare topic that your child MUST get through RIGHT NOW.  Really.  Being able to shelve something is one of the beauties of homeschooling.  (This really goes for any subject/topic…math just seems to be the one that triggers me!)

History is amazing!  I learned history the way many of us did–world history one year, US history another and so on.  I decided to go with a cyclical study for my kiddos.  I can’t believe how much I’ve learned!  And how many things I’ve pieced together!  And realizing what was happening in one part of the world while something else was going on at the same time?  Who knew?!

Schedule your breaks!!  We started early last year (mid-July) because I knew we would take most of the fall off with SoldierBoy coming home from deployment, preparing for a move, making the actual move and then the holidays.  The early start was great.  I didn’t plan, however, any breaks in the spring.  We went from January until almost the end of May without any breaks, save the occasional Friday when SoldierBoy had a long weekend.  In mid-April, I realized my mistake.  Next year I am planning (roughly) to do a six-week on/one-week off plan.  Some on times will be shorter/longer than six weeks but it will be close.  I am also going to schedule in the occasional Friday off.

Linking up with Hip Homeschool Hop