Friday, February 10, 2012

A View From the Top: February 4 - 10

In My Life This Week
Back to nature! Even for us nature lovers it's sometimes hard to get outside when temperatures have plummeted and the trails are covered with snow and ice. But we were in need of some "wood therapy" this week and trudged up our mountain. No easy task this time of year, but we did it! ((huff huff)) The view was beautiful though! Click here to see photos from our hike, but how about a "summit shot"?

A clear view to New Hampshire of Mt. Washington, the
highest summit in New England

But the BIG thing this week...((drum roll))...We dropped cable TV!!!

I am NOT going to miss "Phineas and Ferb", "Goodluck, Charlie", "Jessie", or that dance show with the two girls! (Shhh! I think I WILL miss "Survivor" though.) So, Netflix or Blockbuster?

Whatcha Makin'!
Have you tried Nutella? It's a Hazel nut and cocoa "spread" that we find SUPER yummy around our "neck of the woods". So when I saw a No Bake Nutella Cheesecake recipe floating around my Pinterest pal's board I knew what we were making this week. You can't go wrong with Nutella, cream cheese, whipped topping, and Oreos! LOL

Oh, and I had to share my perfectly round loaf of country honey white bread. I shaped the dough into a ball and let it rise and bake in a greased PIE PAN. Doesn't this look good?

Country honey white

Homeschool Happenings
Sugar Maple started tying her fleece "quilt-style" blanket together this week. It'll be cute...if she finishes it. She's a lot like me - we start projects with enthusiasm, but don't always finish them. ((wink))

Sugar Maple and Balsam Fir ALMOST completed a Winter lapbook from New Beginnings. (Another Pinterest find! Whoop!) And continued to work on Language Arts and Math with a little Spelling, Writing, Drawing, and Astronomy thrown in.

Balsam Fir using spruce needles dipped in white paint to
make snowflakes on his lapbook folder

Sugar Maple concentrating how on making spruce needle

Sugar Maple's snowflakes

White Pine wasn't interested in completing a lapbook - he's never been one for crafty things and I guess he considers himself TOO OLD for such things now - so he continued on with his usual and he's perfectly happy with that.

Oh, and we took Wednesday off from regular school assignment to get in some hands-on stuff. We did a lesson on value in How to Teach Art to Children then made black-and-white paper artwork. We've learned about lines, shapes, colors, and now value. 3 more elements to learn! And then we practiced value by creating CHUNKY crayons from oven-melting broken crayons in silicone muffin cups. (This was also the day that we did most of our Winter Lapbook and made those Nutella cheesecakes.)

Their artwork displayed with clip from a metal curtain rod
in the diningroom/school school

Muffin cups filled with broken crayons

Aren't our chunky crayons beautiful?

Here, There and Everywhere!
♥ Basketball ♥ Cub Scout Breakfast Fundraiser ♥ Cub Scouts ♥ Boy Scouts ♥ Clarinet ♥ Girl Scout Valentine Caroling at Residence Center ♥ Boy Scout Camping ♥ Hung Out With B_ and C_ at Their House ♥

Off the Bookshelf
White Pine continues to ABSORB the David Weber Honor Harrington Sci Fi series. It seems to be the series that NEVER ends! He's enjoying them though. Sugar Maple is reading her way through Nancy Drew. And Balsam Fir has gone back to reading with Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons with breaks for Bob Books and Hooked on Phonics readers.

Our favorite read aloud books this week:

Helpful Homeschool Hint and Favorite Resource
((cluck)) My Lil' Chicken Yard on Facebook posted a link for this ADORABLE paper coop and chicken set from Go Scout Creative. The "saplings" LOVED folding this set together!

Look at those little yellow chicks! 

One of Our Favorite Things
Isn't it ironic that our favorite thing is our new flat screen TV? Ha! Our old TV was, well, OLD. Ancient. Furniture-like. But it did work even if the picture quality was poor and it was hardly energy-efficient. Movies will look SO much better now!

Have you started to think about the END of the school year? We have 64 days left to meet our legal requirements. And yes, I plan on having our work completed by then (or very close) as we like to have a nice, long summer vacation. But before our year is up, we have several goals to meet, including a Health unit with the "saplings" that I still need to plan, print-out and prepare. If only I had computer ink! Doesn't it ALWAYS run out when you have a bunch of stuff to print out? Or is it just me?

Photo, Video, Quote, or Link to Share

Linky Love
Favorite Resource This WeekThe Homeschool Mother's JournalTots and Me
Classified: MomHip Homeschool Hop ButtonMagical Mouse SchoolhouseTeach Me Tuesday at Preschool Powol PacketsChestnut Grove Academy
3Boys&aDog DEALS!Photobucket


  1. Your bread looks awesome! I have a hard time getting on Pinterest at night to see all the food pins! I purposely don't follow all the food boards :) The dessert looks just delicious. Glad you were able to get some "wood therapy" this week. We have had a very mild winter this year, I love it!

  2. Love the round bread idea. Will definately give that a try.

    Please share the Pinterist link I would love to add that to my board :)

    Have you heard of Pinning it DOWN tuesdays ? Pam and Sarah have started a challenge where once a week you do a Pin and blog about it. Check it out.


  3. That chicken coop is absolutely wonderful. I love it.

    I had seen the muffin tin crayons on Pinterest and I've been wanting to try it. We seem to have broken crayons EVERYWHERE these days.

  4. Wow! I love your entire week, lol! The chunky crayons are really cute, the painted snowflakes look like so much fun and I just LOVE Nutella! It should be a food group all to itself, lol! :-) And the bread came out beautifully. Way to go! :-) Thanks for visiting my blog! The zigzag blanket my grandmother made many years ago. She taught me to crochet. I don't think the one I did is in the photo. I am so glad that she taught me to bake and crochet. She is has gone 12 years now and I am the only one in the family who makes some of her baked specialities and crochets. I'm glad to continue special traditions. :-) Many blessings! :-)

  5. Love the view from the summit!! How do you get so much done every week? It never fails to amaze me. I am a complete slug in comparison, but I guess we're not supposed to compare, are we? The cheesecakes look yummy, the bread looks delicious, and the crayons are beautiful.

  6. I love the chunky crayons. What a great idea! I'll have to do that with some from our "giant collection of crayons". And I wish we'd get rid of television around her! I'm with you on Survivor though. That's our FAVORITE! If you go to the CBS website you can watch the episodes online as early as the day after it has aired FOR FREE! We always watch it online because our schedule never lets us watch it when it's actually on! We're wrapping up the last season right now. My hubby and I like to take the laptop out to the fire pit in the backyard and cozy up in our comfy chairs and sleeping bags and watch Survivor that way. Spoiler warning though... don't watch CBS the morning after an episode or it will be spoiled!

  7. What a FABULOUS idea with the crayons girl! :D :D ... Could you please email again! Was cleaning out the emails and forgot I didnt save it! Oops... I have that amount for you! :D :D hugs.. love seeing what your cooking up each week! :)

  8. That chicken coop is so cute. I love the nature picture too! We are nature people too and love being outside I hatecwhen the whether prevents us from doing so. Sounds like a great fun week.

  9. It looks like you had a terrific week -- your family's learning seems so richly eclectic and fun.

  10. Dropping cable - I couldn't do it. Nevermind the kids getting through without;) AND with a new TV?? That would be a challenge for sure.
    Love how your crayons turned out. Mine always turn out too gray.

    Nature study keeps me sane. My son enjoys it too.

    Love Nutella! Made fudge with it a month ago. YUMM!!

    Thanks for your comments on my blog. For the most part he gets it done. When he doesn't though I start to remind and my husband bristles (he has bad childhood experiences)... I feel put in the middle.

  11. We "made" crayons, too. Our silicon containers were much smaller so the pieces of crayon were tiny. After seeing your pictures my girls want to try your bigger size with bigger chunks of crayon.

  12. We have not had cable for, hmmm, three years now. I LOVE it. Although, I do have to say I do love Phineas and Ferb :D I LOVE your view, wow I wish we had a mountain like that to climb! I saw the Nutella Cheesecake too, your looks yummy.

  13. very interesting post....I like your idea of bread..Also love those snowflakes....I am your new follower....

  14. I love the crayons and that ice cream looks so good.

  15. Looks like an awesome week. Do you have a link for the chicken coop?

    1. Here's the link for the chicken coop: Enjoy!

  16. Great week! My daughter Jenna and I both really like Nutella, and I did see that dessert on Pinterest...I *think* I repinned it...hmmm

    The bread looks super! I love homemade bread!

    Thanks for linking to Favorite Resources. The paper chicken coop is so cute!

    We don't have cable and do just fine without it. We do get some channels using the standard antenna on the top of our house. Otherwise, we use Netflix and library DVDs.

  17. What a bunch of fun activities! Your chunky crayons look very fun, and I love the paper Chicken coop, so cute! Visiting from TGIF. :)

  18. Yeah for dropping cable tv! We've cut the extra channels but have not dropped it entirely. It's on the list though.
    Found your wonderful blog from Lovin' the Weekend blog hop. Am following via GFC.

  19. great blog! love all the activities in your post here. found you on the lovin' the weekend blog hop and now a happy follower!


    1. Hi Jennifer! I tried following but it doesn't seem to be working for me! I'll try again sometime!

  20. love your hiking pics! right up our alley! I've spent some time in North Conway - beautiful area! We are wayyyy down south of you in SW FL doing our own Nature walks ;)

  21. Your bread looks amazing! I always watch Survivor on the website the day after it airs since we don't get home in time from church to see the beginning. (We actually don't make it home until about the last 10-15 minutes of the show.) I really want to drop cable and go to Netflix. I have met so many homeschoolers who have done that and told me the love it. I tried to talk my hubby into it many months ago, but he wouldn't go for it. Now I'm waiting for season 4 of Merlin to finish up (it's my absolute fave show), and I'm going to start seeing if I can talk him into telling cable goodbye and Netflix hello.

  22. We love that art book! We haven't really done it much this year because she's been taking an art class at the co-op where she takes piano.

    The snowflakes look awesome!!

  23. Your week looks so fun!! The summit picture ...beautiful!

  24. Great week, neat snowflakes, we dropped cable last summer, have not missed it. More has been accomplished around here since.

  25. Well, gosh! I've not been hopping around the blog world as much lately after being busy with moving...but I made time to do it tonight and I am sure glad I did! What great ideas you've been putting into play this past week...and it looks like you're having a great time! Sure like that little cute!

  26. Love the chunky crayons and the cutest mini chicken coop ever!

    Hate TV! We've been tv free for a little over a year now:) We have so much more time to enjoy things that matter! If we want to watch a movie or How It's Made, then we have streaming Netflix. It's a great option for the times we want to watch something together while ensuring that TV doesn't take away too much of our family time:)

  27. I am just hopping over from my Enchanted Thursdays Blog Hop to thank you for linking up this week! Your bread looks delicious! I bake bread all the time and for some silly reason I could never figure out to make my loaves of bread round (so thank you!). Your chunky crayons are beautiful. I love that your daughter is reading the Nancy Drew series, that brings back memories for me as a child. Thank you again for linking up this week!

  28. We live in Germany and Nutella is super-popular here. It is always available at hotels for breakfast, and often served at fairs on waffles and crepes.

  29. So many good things in this post to link up with "Look What We Did!" We had some of our own "wood therapy" today :)

  30. Each week I am amazed at your week! Your baking looks super tasty - love the nutella cheesecake! And do you have your bread recipe posted anywhere? It looks wonderful and we'd love to try it out! Thanks for sharing at Happy lil ❤'s are baking!

  31. So many great things! Thank you for linking with Look! What We Did!

  32. Oh, I love me some good "wood therapy!" And the spruce painting snowflakes look like SO much fun! I really enjoy homemade bread too, but have never tried a pie-pan--I can't wait to give it a shot! And, I have to tell you...we're big fans of Netflix. I was really upset when they separated the streaming and mail options, but it's still too good to give up! We've been without cable for about five years, and I can't imagine ever going back! Occasionally, we'll watch new episodes of some TV shows online too--the network websites usually show them with half the commercials for a couple weeks. ;) Also, we just discovered that since we're on Amazon Prime, we can watch their streaming shows too...but this was such a recent discovery that I have no idea what the selection is like!

    Thanks for linking up at Teach Me Tuesday!!


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