Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September Homeschool Review

I wasn't sure what would happen in September with our trip and review and other activities. I guess overall I'm pretty happy with where we are so far. My record keeping system is going well for me, although I think I want to change our daily worklist. It is taking up too much time for me each evening.

  • KhanAcademy - kids are mostly working through this on their own
  • Calculadder - Jack is still on Level 4, Kate on Level 10
  • Life of Fred - finished Farming, started Goldfish
  • MathUSee - late getting going, Kate is through Delta Unit 3 (long division sucks!), Jack is still reviewing lessons from last year
Language Arts 
  • Scribblers online writing class (Kate) - yup
  • Tutoring (Jack) - yup
  • Increasing Fluency (Jack) - nope
  • First Language Lessons Level 4 - started just last week, through Lesson 8 already
  • SpellingUSee - I think I started both kids a little too low, so we've been working through lessons pretty quickly. Kate is on week 6 already and Jack is on week 3
  • AlphaBetter drills - Jack is on Level 4, Kate is on Level 6
  • Using Picture Books to Teach Writing With Traits - finished Chapter one
  • Reading - Kate read 8 chapter books last month (Spirit Animals #2, Summer of the Monkeys, Spirit Animals #3 Blood Ties, Wolf Stalker, Guardians of Ga'Hoole The Journey, Spirit Animals #4 Fire and Ice, Esperanza Rising and Number the Stars); Jack read 4 Magic Tree House books plus some shorter independent reads that I assigned him
  • Gratitude Journal - eh, we are doing it here and there. At least once a week.
History/Social Studies/Geography/Biography/Religion/Literature/Art
  • Story of the World Vol I - through ch 24
  • The Old Testament - through the patriarchs
  • Wild West - skipped this since we skipped visiting Cody, WY. Have thoughts of going back up there in the spring, but we'll see how that pans out...
  • EHM's Storybook Artists - Quentin Blake - didn't even start
  • Rascal audiobook- Done
  • Summer of the Monkeys Kate finished this but we never started the RA to Jack. Waiting for it to become available from the library again
  • Listen to Call of the Wild audiobook as a family on trip - started but haven't finished. Will finish on upcoming road trip
Science - I have discovered that I am mostly an unschooler when it comes to science (and even history). There is so much I don't record. So many books we read. We pretty much study whatever comes up, so that means we get off plan an awful lot...
  • Physics - finish What's Physics All About? book, continue to work through experiments in physics workbook - nope!
  • Planet Earth test worksheets from Enchanted Homeschool Mom that we started last year - nope!
  • Wolves - we now know A LOT about wolves. Especially their reintroduction to Yellowstone. 
  • Photosynthesis, geysers, bison, elk, all things Yellowstone
  • Speech therapy (Jack) - yup
  • Keyboarding Without Tears - Level 3 - going well
  • The Story of Stuff curriculum program - saving for later
  • HTML programming class online - almost done with this
  • Cursive Without Tears (Jack) - eh...
  • Latin (Kate) - through Lesson 7
  • Homeschool Enrichment Program - weekly
  • Swim Team - yup
  • Volleyball - Kate - yup
  • Lego Class - Jack - yup
  • C25K program - nope!
  • Field Trips - Grand Teton NP, Yellowstone NP, Jackson Hole WY, Cody WY, McAllister House, Trolley Museum, Elk viewing
  • CNN Student news - started this just last week. I was nervous that the subject matter might be too advanced, but the kids love it!
  • Wonderoplis.org - a website I came across that has new info and a short quiz every day. Kids really like this, so it has become part of our daily routine

Monday, September 29, 2014

DayBook 9.29.14


Outside my window... sunny, cool and the clouds look to be building over the mountains. I should check the weather forecast.

I am hearing... kitchen clock ticking and some birds tweeting outside. Other than that it is blissfully quiet. Ah!

I am feeling... a bit disappointed. But that won't last long.

I am thinking... that maybe I shouldn't think so much.
I am thankful for... my cleaning lady. She's been away, and while I am perfectly able to clean my own house, I really prefer someone else doing it!
From the kitchen... homemade chicken noodle soup, taquitos, and leftover birthday cake over the weekend. Pumpkin waffles for breakfast - yum! We've also started apples and cheese (drunken goat last week) for snacks. It's my favorite snack but somehow feels wrong other times of the year. I want/need to make muffins today for our trip. And pull some things from the freezer to come along with us.
I am wearing... my old Patagonia PJ bottoms (that are starting to get too short but I love them) with a blue tshirt that I always pair with them and my oh-s0-horribly-bad-but-so-warm-and-comfy slippers.
I am creating... I am *thinking* about creating many things. I am mostly only creating messes.
I am going... on a road trip! I love road trips! So excited! Only 2 weeks this time, but we are going to see and do a lot in that short time.
I am reading... The Sports Gene which offers a differing view of the "10,000 hours of practice" model that has been written about so much. Interesting stuff. Just finished Take Me With You which I really loved. Not sure it is for everyone. I think the reason I liked it so much is that the setting is often in national parks so I could really picture the story. Also reading book #3 in the Vampire Academy series... sorta embarrassed to admit that...
I am hoping... that all puppies from the litter are already spoken for! Jack listened to Where the Red Fern Grows (and then we listened as a family), and since then has wanted a coon dog. You know, for all the coon hunting we do... :) Matt has wanted a second dog for years but I've always resisted since Nina Sprinkles is so darn easy. Even before the subject of coon dogs came up, I've been coming around to the idea of a dog that could handle more rough and tumble with Jack. After much research I decided that I love wire haired vizslas, but they don't seem easy to find. That's fine. Until Kate searched the internet this weekend and found a litter. Still not certain I'm ready for another dog, but we are going to inquire. We'll see...

Around the house... I've been changing around some of the decor. Pulled out some fall decorations, but I'll wait to decorate for Halloween until we get back from our trip. Went to buy a couch this weekend, but the furniture store has gone out of business. Not sure what we'll do now.

In the homeschool room... I don't know if we are doing too much or if we are being too lazy about getting work done, but we've gotten back into the "checklist" routine. I'm not going to worry about that until we get back from our trip. 

How I'm exercising... I did a hike/trail run this weekend with a friend that was great and made me feel motivated to start running again. I've been playing tennis multiple times a week. I've gone for a few runs, and it feels better but not yet great. I need to stretch! Everything from my belly button to my big toe is tight right now.
Something that irks me... gnats in the mouth while running
One of my favorite things... autumn!

A few plans for the next week: I have a tennis match and a haircut. Kids have there normal stuff the next few days. Then miles and miles in the car followed by a tour of Mammoth Cave, a few ranger programs in the Smoky Mountains, some hiking, some sightseeing, and whatever else comes our way!

Here is a picture I am sharing: Obvious sibling response to Kate's chalkboard quote...

Sunday, September 28, 2014

This Makes Me Happy

New running shoes! #glowinthedark
ETA: No fewer than 3 comments about my shoes from strangers on the trail while on my first run in them!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

This Makes Me Happy

Actually this made me laugh out loud & roll my eyes!
Discovered on our blackboard wall this evening

Thursday, September 18, 2014


After our moose encounter, we started making moose antlers in photos. The biggest fun was trying to "moose" someone else without them realizing it. Made for some fun photos!
This might have been the one that started the trend
Shootin' the moose

Caught moose handed!