Monday, April 28, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Although I have been pretty consistent over the past couple of months in planning menus, I haven't posted one for awhile, so I thought I would try to start up again. Here is our menu for this week:

April 27, 2008

Sunday: Sandwiches
Monday: Eggs & Bacon
Tuesday: Soup or ??? Refrigerator Repairman coming
Wednesday: Salmon, Broccoli, Rice
Thursday: Salisbury Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans
Friday: Oven Fried Chicken, Macaroni Salad, Stir Fry Veggies
Saturday: Baked Oatmeal, Sausage, OJ (1stmustang working)

I am leaving Tuesday to be a flexible, grab whatever day - two family members have medical appointments and the refrigerator repairman is coming. Our refrigerator has been on the blink since Friday evening and the soonest the repairman could come was Tuesday morning. Luckily, we are a camping family and have many coolers and a large freezer in the garage. Also, when 1stmustang works on Saturday, he starts at a weird hour - he leaves the house at 11:15 am and returns about 9pm. This makes having a regular dinner pretty much out of the question and so I try to cook a big breakfast. Click on the image at the top to see what everyone else is cooking up this week.

Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed

Yesterday, my husband, our two oldest boys and I went to see the documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. It was well put together and exposed the censorship that goes on in the scientific community, specifically against those who are coming to the conclusion that there must have been an intelligent design in the creation of life. For a field that is supposed to encourage questioning, it is certainly being discouraged, especially if that questioning seems to go against the conclusions of darwinists. The oppression seems to be so bad that some scientists will not go public with their findings for fear of losing their research grants and even their jobs. This is a must see, no matter what your beliefs are concerning the origins of life. I would say that those in their teen years and up could learn a great deal from this documentary.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

A Glimpse of Spring

Yesterday and today the weather has been so beautiful! Yesterday it was around 60 degrees and partially sunny. I was able to work out in the yard most of the day and made a dent in the weeding of the flower beds in the front yard. My poor body is telling me that it has been a very long time since I did that. Today it was in the 70s and I want to soak up all of the sun. Our area is known as the rainy Pacific Northwest - and this year we have had an extra dose of that rain, along with colder than normal temperatures and so these past two days of warmth and sun are especially appreciated. The 10 day forcast for our area shows showers, rain, and snow - SNOW in April - come on, so much for global warming in part of the country. Hmmmm

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

What the Future Holds

We are plugging away at our schooling, making changes here and there. I am constantly tweaking our schedule and our materials, trying to find the right fit for our family. It has been a delicate balancing act for boy #1 to work a part time job along with completing his school work and he is looking forward to being completely done with high school. One item that we found last school year that has worked extremely well for us is the Notgrass history curriculum. Boy #1 is finishing up the Exploring America through history, literature and Bible and then we will start Exploring World History. I love the readability and thoroughness of this curriculum and it is laid out in a fashion that is so easy to use. At this point in our schooling, I am all about easy to use. We have also had success with Institute for Excellence in Writing materials and we started using Teaching Textbooks for Math, which has also been a blessing. Boy #1 is working through the geometry text and Boy #2 has started the Algebra I. I have been using Homeschool Tracker to keep us organized and that has also been a big help. Currently, I have been looking ahead to what we want to finish up with Boy #1 so that he can be graduated and next year looks to be mostly Life Skills and Language arts for him. Boy #2 starts high school next year and so I have been looking over what I did with our daughter and Boy #1 to see what I want to repeat with Boy #2 and what didn't work. I get a bit more organized with each child - so by the time Boy #3 hits high school, we should have everything down pat. This year Boys #2 & #3 and I were reading through This Country of Ours for American History. It was going slow and they wanted to study World War II, so I decided to jump ahead (we did a timeline from where we left off to about 1940). We are reading a text together and they are each reading a book set in the time period. We will spend the rest of this school year learning about the 1940s, the countries involved in the War and various other aspects of the war. This unit will be a bit free flowing as that is what seems to be needed at the moment. I will post more about how next year will look for us, as I pull it together.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Remodel Projects

This is the nook, this is where I keep a kitchen table that I use as a school desk and I have several small bookshelves with current school books and other resources.

Boy#2 is playing a video game on the xbox and boy#3 is on the computer. The green to the right of the photo are vertical blinds on our sliding glass door. The nook is just off of the family room and I was standing in the kitchen to take this photo.

Since the fall we have been busy doing some upgrades to our home. First, we replaced our carpet on the first floor and up the stairs and in the hallway upstairs. Then we put in laminate flooring in our diningroom, kitchen and nook. The next project was to better utilize our small family room - we had several large older pieces of furniture in there and it was not a comfortable room for our family. We gave away what could be given, and dumped what was beyond saving, of the large furniture and slowly replaced the items with smaller scale items. The goal was to have enough seating that all us could comfortably sit and enjoy a movie together. Although the walls are still empty, the project is nearing completion and I must say that I am pleased with how it is coming along.

Moving On

Today we finished moving our daughter's last few things out of our home into her new home. She has been staying with some of her friends that live about 45 minutes south of us and now they have purchased a new townhome and she will be renting from them. I must say that it is with mixed emotions that I watch her move on. I am very proud of her and excited for her to start this next stage of her life but also miss having her around just to chat with whenever. Her new home is just minutes from her work, instead of the 45 - 60 minute commute that she did have. It is also closer to church and a lot of her other activities. This move will save her time and money and also bring a bigger sense of independence. Along with this move another move will be happening soon. Boy #3 will move into Big Sister's room (after a paint job, of course) and thus Boy #2 and Boy #3 will have their own rooms for the first time ever.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Are you of the Curious Sort?

On our trip to Seattle this afternoon/evening we first went to the waterfront. I wanted to take the boys to a funky touristy spot, The Ye Olde Curiousity Shop . This shop has been open for over 100 years and sells all kinds of tourist items - but the real appeal is all of the stuff that they have on display. It is sort of like a museum of oddities. They have two mummies, one male and one female, real amazon shrunken heads, large puffer fish, many stuffed animals - not of the cute cuddly kind but the real dead kind. Two headed calves and even a supposed mermaid. Their collections are not all weird, they also have a great collection of foreign coins that you can view and then there are all of the dollar bills folded into bow ties, shirts and flowers. It is a great place to visit, especially if you have teenage boys. Their website has photos of some of the curious oddities. If you visit Seattle, be sure to take in the waterfront area. The area includes the aquarium, Maritime Museum, many shops and eateries.

The Romans Have Come!

Today we went to visit the Seattle Art Museum to appreciate the visiting Louvre exhibit of Roman art. The large exhibit contains a great variety of artifacts, including marble sculptures, mosaics, jewelry and more. It tells a story of the rulers and also the everyday life of the Roman people. As you start through the exhibit, you first come to the rulers, then the everyday citizen, women and children, the home and the foreigners, soldiers and religion. It was well thought out and very educational. What a great way to spend an evening!

The exhibit will be in Seattle through May 11th and then it will move on to the Oklahoma City Museum of Art starting in June. I don't know if it will be hosted by any other museums after that or if it will go back to the Louvre. If you look at the Seattle Art Museum website there is a moving picture on the main page that gives you a sneak peak at some of the art.