Friday, January 27, 2012

((drip)) ((drip)) January Thaw...for a Couple of Days: January 21 - 27

In My Life This Week
Snow. And shoveling. And lingering FRIGID temperatures. Temperatures that make your face and hands hurt within moments of being outside...and freeze your water pipes and shut down your furnace in the wee morning hours leaving your house a, um, "balmy" 58 degrees. ((wink)) (Thank you  Blue Spruce and furnace guy!) But the warmer temperatures have returned. At least for now.

Whatcha Makin'!
Snickerdoodle Blondies from Lovin' From the Oven! Another Pinterest find! Want some of these too? Hop over to Lovin' From the Oven here! (Psst! We only added 1/2 the brown sugar and left out the Turbinado sugar and the bars were definitely sweet enough.) Don't over-bake these!

Homeschool Happenings
A week of working on POSITIVE school attitude and behavior! The Trees had gotten into a rut of hemming and hawing over school assignments, needing constant refocus reminders and making our mornings (and afternoons) longer. It happens this time of  year. My goal every day is to finish up our work by lunchtime so the Trees have plenty of time in the afternoons for their own pursuits, friends and extracurriculars.

The solution? Earlier bedtimes, earlier wake-ups, separating the Trees into different rooms (if needed to minimize distractions), and no "extras" until assignments have been completed. Oh, and assignments written on our handy-dandy whiteboard! THIS rut seems to be "flowing" better!

A perfect place for our daily
assignments! Wipe off when
completed! (Photo from 3/11)

We traveled back to the educational farm on Thursday for "Joy of Chickens". I know - us and chickens! LOL - but we couldn't resist seeing SOMEONE ELSE'S chickens. These were Golden Comets. And after a quick lunch (from home) and a few samples of made-on-site cheese (from the cows we visited last week), we explored a bit, finding the walking trails for the spring. (I wish I had some fantastic photos to share with you, but in our harried rush out the door I forgot my camera.)

photo credit by JC Poultry at

Oh, and White Pine finished up his History Channel's "America: The Story of Us" work! Part of his studies included watching the 12 part documentary, reading the accompanying book and completing the episode guides. He learned (or reviewed) over 100 new historical vocabulary words and organized them onto a metal binder clip...with a little help from Cat. ((wink))

Cat scratched up White Pine's vocab cards for
a bed.

Helpful Homeschool Hint
Favorite resource! New High School GRAMMAR link find! English Grammar 101 has approximately 100 hours of on-line FREE instructional lessons with assessments! Did you know that 1 Carnegie Credit (High School) = 120 instructional hours? Almost a FULL credit here! Add in some Literature and Writing and voila!

Off the Bookshelf
We borrowed LOADS of books with winter themes from the library to enjoy before bedtime, but I decided to only share our favorites below (least you be wading through MANY Amazon stock photos).

Here, There and Everywhere!
❄ Cub Scout Pinewood Derby ❄ Basketball ❄ Cub Scouts ❄ Boy Scouts ❄ Clarinet ❄ Library Lego Club ❄ Chickens at the Farm ❄ Playing with B_, C_ and C_ ❄ Hanging out with C_ ❄

One of Our Favorite Things
Our librarian! There's nothing better for a homeschooling family than a GREAT children's librarian, huh?

Although there are LOTS of wonderful nature notebooking pages out there, they never seem to QUITE meet our needs. Any suggestions for an inexpensive computer program for creating notebooking pages? Or a website for free pages that has "everything"?

A Photo, Video, Link, or Quote to Share
Visit my blogger friend Katie at Katie's French Language Cafe for a chance to win Rosetta Stone French Level I! Or just to learn some French language and culture! Pretty cool (FREE) resource!

Joining up With These AWESOME Blog Hops:
The Homeschool Mother's JournalTots and MeClassified: Mom
Hip Homeschool Hop ButtonMagical Mouse SchoolhouseChestnut Grove Academy


  1. I intended on Dawson getting through all 12 Episodes this year, but I don't believe we are going to make it. We have just gotten so into extended studies on Slavery and the Civil War. We were supposed to be done with those two weeks ago and moving on. I figure that since we are studying Current Events and American Government next year that we will just watch a couple of the last episodes at the beginning of the year.

    I can't believe our temps are still in the 50's and 60's! I am starting to think we might not get any snow this year, which is so depressing! I actually look forward to being snowed in for a few days (or weeks) at a time.

    Have a great weekend!

  2. Wow- what a full week! It's Pinecar Derby time around here too - love it!

  3. Those snickerdoodle blondies look yummy! Will have to check those out. Had to LOL at the "Joy of Chickens" ;-)

  4. Thanks SO much for sharing the link to the grammar site! I've bookmarked it for further exploration. You also inspired me to check out The Story of US again. :-)
    We try to have most of our schooling completed by lunchtime, too--well, except for my tenth-grader. He has a heavier work load than the younger ones do, and also needs more of my time.
    I enjoyed reading about the creative things you did this week!

  5. Pinterest really does help us find THE BEST recipes!!! :)

  6. Those blondies look delicious!

    We have also cut out all of the "extras" until school work is done and with the right attitude. Needless to say, the house has been pretty quiet without TV and video games.

  7. I LOVE pinterest! What did we ever do without it? :)

  8. Thanks for sharing that Grammar 101 link. I pinned it :D

  9. Those Snickerdoodles look SO yummy! :-) I really need to get on the Pinterest wagon. I was avoiding it becauase I didn't want to spend anymore time online, but it seems like it could be really worthwhile! :-)

    Great idea with the dry erase board!

    Hope you have a great weekend!
    Many blessings,

  10. So true about a good librarian!
    We worked on chore charts week. We are short on gas so have cut out activities for a week. It is amazing how well run my home has been this week... but a clean house - no activities... I think that is nice but not for me. As soon as I get gas we will get moving again. I know I live for full schedules!

  11. That dry erase board is brilliant!

  12. The snickerdoodle blondies look good!
    Thanks for sharing the Grammar 101 link with Favorite Resources. Looks like a great find for you!!

  13. You've given me two new things to look at over the weekend - Grammar 101 & Snickerdoodle Blondies. Both look very interesting!

  14. What a great week. We are really having the attitudes around here too.

  15. Thanks for the grammar site link. As an homeschooling English teacher, I'm always looking for more resources!

  16. We just watched the first two epidsodes of the Story of US the past two weeks. The kids loved them.

  17. I love Pinterest, and the snickerdoodle blondies look so good. Too bad I started eating gluten free Jan. 1, otherwise I'd be all over those! Looks like you had a great week!

  18. Great job,Jessy and children,:-).

  19. Thanks for stopping by my blog! Those blondies look yummy! And Im jealous of the snow and cold weather. Florida is TOO hot for me and I've lived here my whole life... I need to move up north. :)

  20. Thanks for the grammar link! I need the story of us workbook link.. We are almost done but this would be great for them to work on

  21. I'm sinckerdoodle drooooooling! Yuuuuum!


  22. Pinterest is making it hard for me to watch what I eat. LOL

    No snow here. Just warm, warm, warm. I would normally do a winter unit with Kayleigh but I probably won't unless it acts like winter. I'm totally happy without winter though. LOL

  23. Blog hopping. I am a follower! Please follow back!

  24. Love reading about your weeks.. and AWESOME about getting the kids into a better routine! :D i thrive on keeping my son on one :) makes SUCH A difference! :D

  25. That cracks me up, but we love our chickens just like y'all do! What a pretty chicken- ours are Golden Seabrights:)

    Love the snow- still waiting on some here! Snowflake Bentley is one of our favorites:)

    Sounds like a great week!

  26. Oh my gosh! You are so popular this week! ;) We loved our chickens too. Right now we are in tortoise mode though. I am with you on the working on our attitudes- and bedtime and get up time routines. I need to encourage my boys to keep up their work and finish early enough that they have time to pursue their own interests.

    Those snickerdoodle brownies look magical!

  27. Looks like an awesome week. Thanks for the grammar resource. I'm going to pin it for next year.

  28. A great children's librarian is a goldmine for a homeschooler! We had an awesome one at a nearby library, but she was transferred elsewhere (still nearby) and had her hours drastically cut. I miss her helpfulness terribly! I had to laugh about separating kids into different rooms. I try to do that, but they always end up back together. Definitely works better when they're apart. :)

  29. I love the whiteboard idea! I might just have to steal it! Thanks!

  30. Your Sweets always make me HUNGRY hahahah! :) looks DELISH! :D :D I love those kinda brownies! and I LOVE the snow LMAO ... u know me... haha!

  31. I am glad we didn't get much snow this week. The kids love shoveling it though (for now that is) :) I am a new follower from the Tiggerific Tuesday hop. I would love for you to hop over to Saving and Sharing It and follow back. Have a great day!


  32. Early bedtimes are a wonderful thing! ;) You have so many fabulous ideas and resources in this post--thank you so much for sharing at Teach Me Tuesday!! I hope to see you again next week!

  33. Aw, we love Snowflake Bentley, and Mountain of Mittens looks really cute, too!

    Thanks for linking up to RAT!

  34. Thanks for sharing with BTT! Looks like it was a great week!


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