One of the problems with completing a very late weekly wrap-up is that you forget what happened seven days or more ago! Normally, I pen small notes to myself so that when I sit to write, I can recall my thoughts. Not so this week—too busy. I began to try and think through it—total blur. Then I took a look at my pictures and I thought, ooohhhh, yeeeeaaaahh. That happened. And that happened. And we did that. As I put the pictures together to craft my story, I realized that most of my week was consumed with the kids’ events and activities. So I will stray from the standard meme format and instead just give a summary of the week.
The oldest turned 15 on Tuesday. This is a shot of our beautiful young lady wearing her “Easter dress”—a dress that I stitched and was proud that she chose to wear it on such a special day.
This is a second shot of her before she was ready to take a picture blowing out cake candles. Bathrobes are a standard clothing item around here, making the transition from the warm bed into a cool morning (indoors, that is) a bit more bearable. When my husband and I were first married and I sewed more often, one of the first items I made for us was his-and-hers bathrobes. Between growth and normal wear and tear, I am now in the process of making new, larger robes for the whole family, and this is hers. By the time I finish, we’ll be in the heat of summer—of 2011 (LOL)!
Funny thing about teenagers—they’re old enough to not want the popular themed cakes. No Hannah Montana in this house! However, they do want something. So, while trying to accommodate everybody’s likes and dislikes, the superhero and I decided on cupcakes to maximize the variety. Here’s how it turned out.
Later in the week, the older two performed with their respective dance teams for our local Relay for Life event. This performance was so late at night—a humid, yucky night—until I really needed a nap before getting to the event. They looked great, though.
Oh, right—somewhere in the midst of all of this, we had a school week. I think I can safely say that we are winding down. The kids are getting up increasingly drained and tired (or maybe that’s me), and the superhero’s been working hard and staying up late. We have four weeks of school left, but one of those will be a week to test using the Iowa Basic Skills assessment. I help our former homeschool co-op administer the tests to all interested children/ parents, and I also test our children, mainly for my own purposes, every other year. I think we are all at the point where we simply need rest, but I’m pushing myself and pulling everyone else toward that end point.
The oldest will wrap up her school year with the creation of the ideal high school based upon the perspective of Socrates presented in Plato’s Republic. It promises to be an interesting project, but as I said, staying focused to the end is a problem right now. Her mind is largely preoccupied with the upcoming dance recital. By the way, she scored a 95 on her last Biology exam, her higest score yet. It’s a shame that it came at the end, but it’s a nice bit of frosting a cake that was difficult in the making.
Our son and the youngest are hard at work, too. This is a shot of what could be rock candy if we used sugar. However, this result is based upon the use of alum.
As I mentioned previously, I took full advantage of the opportunity to grant the youngest’s request to expand her human body studies. Apologia’s new Anatomy and Physiology book was just what the doctor ordered in terms of giving me structure for elementary science. Now the question I’ll need to figure out over the summer is how much information to actually share with her; so far I’m seeing her attention wan pretty quickly as I read through all of the text. In the meantime, her first experiment, the “mummification” of the apple, was a revisit of a discussion we had in history. The preserved apple is on the right, following a week of being kept in a salt/ baking soda solution. There’s nothing like presenting a concept in more than one way to seal it in. There’s nothing like presenting a concept in more than one way to seal it in.
Speaking about sealing lessons in, I am praying/ thinking about what to do with our Bible study next year. For several years now, our Bible study has consisted of reading a passage and then asking one follow-up question: “What is the Lord saying to us today?” This has taken us down some great paths, though inconsistently, and I’ve really appreciated how the youngest has stepped up to this level of critical thinking. Yet, as I said to the kids, I wrestle with whether they are actually learning the Bible as opposed to applying the moral, so to speak. I think that my planned, structured nature is struggling with this format of “present and then see where it goes,” and I often feel very unprepared. In addition, I did nothing—for the first time—with scripture memorization. I think that after having such a smooth start to the year (after a grueling year-before-last), I didn’t want to add anything to tip that delicate balance of motivated kid to appropriate workload in the wrong direction. When questioned about our current Bible study, they say that they’re okay moving forward as we have been with the book of Psalms as we have been for the last couple of years. It is a lesson in trusting God for me. I’ve looked over various curriculums for Bible and accompanying Bible reference materials, but I still keep coming back to the fact that the Bible is its own best teacher. I chose Psalms because, like David, we needed to learn how to praise God through some difficult times; maybe this has been more effective than I thought.
There is much more to say, and so much more is going on mentally and spiritually than I can slow down to pen right now. I hope to get all my thoughts down somewhere soon. God bless you all.