Thursday, April 2, 2015

Pre-College, Art & Life Stuff


Over the years the girls have taken a lot of formal art classes, but right now they prefer to create on their own, in their own time and what they feel like creating.  They use Pinterest for inspiration and youtube when they are hung-up on a technique.  I have begun to count this time toward high school credit.  

Allie is all about shabby chic right now.  She wanted some lace and asked my mom, who is an expert seamstress and has a room with wall to wall shelves lined with bins of fabric; my mom let Allie bring home a HUGE bin of lace.  Allie rushed home and created this "chandelier" for over her bed and a scarf for her dresser.  Then, she got up in the middle of the night, because she couldn't wait until morning once the idea came to create valances for her windows.  She has also made frames to hang earrings on and she is currently working on lace and beaded bracelets to give friends.


I have been reading Heather Bruggeman's blog for years, but recently started reading through the archives.  It is rare for me to find another secular homeschooler with which I have so much in common.  I loved these posts:

Pre College - I love the sound of it and the idea of taking the time to prepare oneself for the future.  Getting to know oneself and explore things. Learning how to take care of yourself physically, emotionally and mentally is so important.

High School Homeschool Resources - I so appreciate this list.  As a secular homeschooler, it is rare to find other secular homeschoolers in the blog world that are not unschoolers and that will recommend curriculum.  I have been searching for secular homeschool science curriculum...there is not much out there.  The Chemistry program we used this year was an OK fit, but since it is created by the American Chemical Society, there is not a program for other areas of science.  I was considering using a textbook or online classes or just having Allie take a class at the community college...and now Apologia is in the running.

My Super Talented Family

My dad has been retired for a few years.  He loves to fish and he and my mom have a summer home on a lake in upstate New York.  He was looking for a winter hobby and came across wood-burning.  He has been making absolutely beautiful things!  

Jason is on the Board of Directors for an organization that ran a Silent Auction fundraiser and he asked my dad to make something, which fetched a nice price (donation to the fund)!

My dad recently began wood burning on furniture.  I love it.  I love novelty pieces and this is an awesome one.  I am so proud of him!!!


Allie has been spending hours upon hours writing a novel.  She has not shared it with me yet, but based on the amount of time she is spending and the thought she putting into it, I have decided to consider some of this creative writing as part of her Language Arts time.  I realize that if she were in school this would be a project she did at home, separate from any school credit.  However, because I want to give her the time and space to do this, I am counting 5 of the probably 60+ hours she has spent on this toward her freshman language arts credit hours.

Book Club

Both Allie and Piper are part of e-cubed, which is a teen-led group that meets every Wednesday for three hours.  They have a rotating schedule of classes that they democratically vote on at the end of the previous year, but Book Club and Country Day are two constants year after year.  Allie is passionate about books and reading and writing.  She and a friend would like to lead the Book Club portion of the group next year.  I have recommended a few books to her that I think might be good for the Book Club and we have decided that if she reads them, comes up with discussion questions and answers the questions (or makes notes on answers/ideas) we would count those books toward the Contemporary Literature portion of her Freshman Reading List.  She is currently reading:


We were able to do our Writing Club on the deck this week!!!  It was so nice.  After we were done writing, the girls ran around and did cartwheels and back hand springs.  It was great!  Lately I have been feeling like my two are growing up so fast--so it was nice to see them just all play like kids again!


Several years ago, when we adopted a puppy and had to return it because my allergies were so bad, a friend recommended NAET, she said it worked for her child's food allergies.  I looked into it and being someone who has seen the effects of yoga and Che Gong on my own health and my husband's health, I was intrigued.  I have been afraid of the cost and the girls also exhibit mild allergic symptoms to dogs...but I feel so compelled and drawn to having a dog, to rescuing a dog or dogs, it is something that I just can not let go of, I can not forget.  Interestingly, I was thinking about NAET after someone had posted a dog rescue picture on Facebook and a couple of seconds later a little message flashed in the upper right of my computer that our library was having a seminar on NAET.  I took that as a sign.  I am going to go for it!


I was reading Heather Bruggeman's post about resources she used homeschooling her daughter through high school.  The one that stood out is the Dave Ramsey Foundations in Personal Finance.  I am a saver, an investor.  I believe strongly in saving for a rainy day and living within - or below - our means.  It is important to me that my girls be savvy with money.  We are doing that a little here and there by having them put half the money the earn babysitting and dog walking in their savings accounts at the bank and encouraging them to really think about their purchases and not impulse buy. I am especially interested in the Cash Flow College component of Dave Ramsey's program for teens. I have read through some of his books and I like him, I like what he says and a lot of it is stuff my dad taught me growing up.  This got me to thinking about investing.  Not that we are wealthy by any means, but we have a professional managing some of our money and I enjoy playing around with stocks and investments - it's like a hobby - but really, I have no training and I think it would be neat to take a class and learn more about it.  Oddly enough, the VERY day that I started thinking about this...a flyer came in the mail from our local community college advertising non-credit summer classes.  I think I am going to sign up for one--anything I learn I can pass on to the girls!