Monday, October 22, 2012

Oh yeah.... I forgot I had a homeschool blog!

 1st Grade!
 5th Grade!
 8th Grade!
Chillaxin after a hard day with cucumbers on their eyes... "spa day" is what they called it. Evan did his spelling words like this!

 "teacher's institute" at the forest preserve...
 Civil War Days
 Civil War Days at pumpkin farm
 Evan's Special Birthday trip to New York City with Grandma

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Zombie Apocalypse

"Good morning, Evan! Happy Leap Day!"


"You know, Leap Day. It's the extra day we get every 4 years because it takes 365 and 1/4 days to go around the Sun so our calendar makers decided to save that 1/4 day and put it all together on an EXTRA day, every 4 years. So we have 366 days this year!"

blank stare

"Don't you remember the field trip to the planetarium? The discussions we've had? HELLO?!?"

"Well, what would happen if we didn't use the extra 1/4 day?"

"We'd have snow in June and a really hot Christmas because the seasons would keep inching away from where we want them."

even blanker stare

"...And zombies would take over the Earth." (I am not above using sarcasm in educating my children)


"Why would zombies take over the Earth? How would that happen?"

Holy cow. I think he needs some coffee this morning.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

You homeschool? I don't know HOW you DO it!!

The real question should be: HOW do you traditional school families do it? I have been shuttling the kids all morning and we are still not done and I am EXHAUSTED. We had Evan's karate graduation and then Justin's soccer game and now we're changing clothes to take the younger two to a birthday party and Patrick is out of town and the dog has diarrhea and, and, and... Whew!

On Tuesdays, we have our homeschool co-op followed by karate and gymnastics. That day requires a ton of planning and prep work to make sure that everyone has what they need when they need it and that we all arrive everywhere on time and with our gear. Add that to 3 other weekly activities and I am usually pretty darn tired come Friday. And that is with the ability to sleep when we are tired and do school on a relaxed pace! If we were having to fit all of our activities into 5 hours every night INCLUDING homework and "quality" time? I do believe that I would be having a nervous break down right about now.

My hat's off to you families with two working parents/single parents/kids in public school; I honestly don't know how YOU do it!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Busy Busy Busy

Shockingly enough, Penny takes up a lot of our time. I KNOW! Can you believe such a tiny puppy could do that??? That said, she cuddles on our laps while we read through Narnia, sleeps in the sunshine during math, and gnaws on her bone during the rest of our school work. She's a damn fine dog. Now if we could just get her to consistently poop and pee outside...
Believe it or not, that box caused a ton of strife. "I want to read in it!" "It's my turn!" Waah waah waah. Still, it's pretty nice to see such a clean family room...

Go Kenmore! Thanks for the free vacuum. So far, my floors are cleaner. Especially when I remember to use the vacuum. That helps a lot.... (Corinne reading Harold and the Purple Crayon).
"Take a picture of us, Mama! You can call it 'A boy and his dog'!"
The elusive 12 year old on the cusp of turning 13. He still loves Life of Fred (Pre Algebra right now) but has been asking for books that are more challenging. Be still, my heart.
Snow day! We haven't had many of them, this year. And, when we do get snow? It melts in about a day. What the hell? This is Corinne's serious face for a serious dress creation on her doll mannequin. She wanted a full size mannequin but Nana found this one and I am SO GLAD because a life sized one would be HUGE.
Still loving for math facts and vocabulary. We've also discovered some cool free typing games online for Evan and Corinne. I hope it helps their spelling and keyboard skills...

And that's it, folks. I haven't been too camera happy lately. Must be the dreary weather. I NEED SUNSHINE.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Chronic

Evan and I have been reading the Chronicles of Narnia these past few months. It's pretty impressive for him considering how many freaking RUN ON SENTENCES C.S. Lewis likes to use in every single paragraph. It can be a lot to digest for a 9 year old. That said, I have been reduced to singing this song Every. Single. Day. for the past 2 months...

Thursday, January 5, 2012


This is not my main blog.

Just thought I'd clarify.

Especially since I can't figure out how to rearrange the order of appearance on my profile page and this one comes up first and I realized that THIS must be why I don't get very many comments anymore! People come to my homeschool blog because it's first on the list and see that it's rarely updated and then they click away before they realize that all of the REAL GOODS are on my REAL BLOG. You know, the one where I talk about puppy obsession and harassing my pre-teen on Facebook.

I am freaking hyper this morning and I haven't had any coffee AT ALL. Maybe my body is weird (duh) and reacts opposite to caffeine?!? THIS COULD EXPLAIN EVERYTHING.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A report card to myself

I hesitate to write this, but...

The year is going excellently!

SHHHH!!!! Don't tempt the Gods and read that out loud! Knocking on wood and throwing salt over my shoulder and looking for a spot to spit as I type this...

But seriously, I'm happy. We're not perfectly timed like a digital clock; checking in and out, ticking this off and filing that. We run loosely and freely. There are issues to cover and details to complete for sure; but those details are most definitely not dictating the flow of our lives.

Justin is slowly wading into algebra this year. Don't tell him, but he's actually doing well with it. He doesn't like to admit that he's able to retain information (one of his favorite phrases) but that kid, on a good and happy day, can learn anything. He just needs to give himself more credit. I keep hoping that the "drive to learn for learning's sake" will kick in. Sometimes, I can see it taking hold, only to slip back again and be hidden behind the "I hate school" mantra. He's a tough cookie to figure out, but he always insists that he never wants to go to public school again. This is a question I pose to him whenever he claims that I am asking too much of him or presenting him with too much work. I remind him of the homework that would take us all into the late evening hours, should he be in public school. I remind him of the earlier bedtime and early alarm clock wake ups that we would all be enjoying, should he go to school. And then he usually grumbles and plods through whatever I've laid out for the day. :)

Evan is still Mr. Active. He likes to stand up to do his schoolwork and sometimes does his best stories while he dictates as he walks in circles. No joke. His mind works way faster than his hand can keep up, so I have him dictate to me, and then have him copy the work afterwards. His spelling and writing abilities are slowly catching up to his grade level and he continues to do well at his math and reading comprehension. I keep meaning to look for a good health/human body curriculum but haven't found something as of yet...

Corinne reads well above her age level. What level does she read at? I don't know. Don't really care. I just know that she is ABLE to read. And that everything we're doing with her seems to be working. I don't set any age restrictions to the math or reading or science that she receives. If the boys are doing it, and she's interested? I pull her onto my lap and she learns alongside them. And she RETAINS it. Not all of it and not perfectly, but WOW. She remembers! It's interesting to think of what she'll be doing when she is Evan or Justin's ages...

And, with that, I have to jet so that I can take them all to our homeschool co-op where they will do a writing class, 2 different history classes, P.E. (run by me!) and a reading/art class. The group has gotten larger lately and there are tons of kids that my children are becoming good friends with. Basically? Our school year (and family year) is off to a fabulous start!