Daddy got new tires on his van, thanks to Black Friday sales they were a great price! We enjoyed Thanksgiving and Christmas and spending time with family. Both my husband and M have spoken in sacrament meeting during the past month. I put together some Christmas stories into a Christmas program outline for our church, and each group created a skit for their story. J was the ghost of Christmas present, M was the child who gets on the Polar Express, and I was Santa in ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. New Year’s Eve was a fun night as well, with spinach artichoke dip and vegetables, and pigs in a blanket made from Little Smokies. We watched National Treasure and Snowball Express, and some kids stayed up late enough to also watch Groundhog Day with Dad.
Each year my brother and sister buy my family tickets to an experience of some sort – the zoo, aquarium, etc. Last year they gave us cash and instructions to choose. We had a dinner and play picked out, then something came up and we weren’t able to go. When The Forgotten Carols tickets went on sale, I bought seats right away and we surprised the kids! Everyone had a great time, but it started so late.. we didn’t get home until 11 p.m. That was rough, but the play was memorable.
We had a tummy bug go through the house. Some were sick for about 24 hours, but some were sick for about 15 minutes. It made for a rough few days but we survived!
We had quite a situation to solve in our living room. My parents gave us my grandpa’s couch. We wanted to put it down in our school room, but because of the way the previous owners finished the stairs and hall, it wouldn’t go around the corner down there. So we gave away the broken couch that was down there, moved the recliner down, and put the second couch in the living room. My sister decided to replace her couches and offered her 3 part couch to us. We had a couple of weeks while we argued about what to do. Some of us wanted to keep the recliner but some of us wanted to get the couch from my sister. We couldn’t fit both. Eventually we decided to give away our recliner and two couches and put two parts of my sister’s couch in our living room and the chaise in our school room. We are all very happy with this arrangement now and love the new seating! The chaise in the school room is now a highly coveted reading spot.
Our chickens are old enough that they rarely lay eggs anymore, so rather than have the extra expense and care through the winter, we slaughtered them all. Well, my husband gratefully took over that chore.
M received her new brace, a Cheneau style brace. Both it and her Boston correct her spine in different ways, so it’s a little bit of a struggle deciding which to wear. But the Cheneau style brace does help with the upper curve in the way we hoped it would.
My parents and sister got the chance to visit my brother’s family out of state, so my sister’s dog stayed with us for a week. It was a lot of fun having her here, and she got so much attention she’ll either decide she’s done with us or beg to visit!
We made Zopf bread for Christmas; this year I made 10 batches, which equals 40 loaves.
- History – Lessons on Hitler and his treatment of the Jews, as well as finishing up the history lessons available to us. There are a few more that we’re hoping are published soon, but the last 15 lessons of the course are non-existent. I’ve been asked to help write them, so I’ve begun reading about the topics as I wait for further instructions on what to do!
- Literature – We’re almost finished with Little House in the Big Woods. The two youngest (2nd and 5th grade) are enjoying doing these lessons alone and always do their reading assignments without me!
- Science – We’re studying arthropods now. We did a lesson on worms and the kids remember the first time we did that lesson and dissected an earthworm. They refused to do that again. M is continuing to work through her high school biology lessons on her own.
- Geography – We’ve finished up the available lessons here too, and are waiting for more to be published. Recently we learned about the African Rift Valley and biomes in Africa. M suggested that we just move forward with our country reports while we wait for more lessons to be published, that way we don’t get behind for our end of year celebration.
- Music & Art – We’ve been using Shades of Sound: Thanksgiving for some simple music lessons. These are fun; we learn a little about a composer and piece then listen to it. We listen for specific suggestions then rate and record our thoughts. During the listening portion we color a picture that corresponds to the music and theme. We’ve had fun doing these lessons, and they don’t take much time.