Sparkles sweeping with her light-up kitty headphones


My day started at three in the morning. By three thirty I was prepping my protein smoothie and left for work ten minutes later. Usually my workday begins at five which isn’t too bad. But for some reason going in an hour earlier is monumentally hard. This coming Saturday is my last four am shift. The new manager decided the early weekend shift was unnecessary. Our new manager’s name is Bruce Wayne. I like to say I work for Batman.

Today my husband set up the new to us computer desk in the never used dining room…maybe we’ve used it twice. I plan to take out the dining room table and just use the room solely for an office and music practice space. Later this year we plan to build (we should be defined as my husband here) a buffet counter along the only solid wall. I then spent a good

the crew with their Japanese snacks

portion of the afternoon prepping for school. This is Littlest’s last week of first grade! Since my crew have started wrapping up some of their curriculum I’ve spent spare time researching. Middle Boy wants to learn about physics so he will be working through Joy Hakim’s third volume of The Story of Science series. I’ve never found a home education science program that I really liked so I am hoping this will at least be interesting. Our favorite science was from Beautiful Feet Books but they only have once course. Littlest will be using the One Small Square series and I’ll come up with his projects and notebooking/poetry/art tie-ins. These books should keep him busy on through the beginning of third grade. I’m not sure whether to start

Lent meditation

Sparkles on the Dr. Jay Wile series or hold off another year.

Sometimes my head just hurts trying to make all of these decisions. Probably why I’ve had a headache most of the week.


Today was an ordinary day. I went to work, started the department rolling then left to arrive home and get the kids going. Oldest and Sparkles were already nearly finished with their math lessons. Oldest is working through his second Algebra I exam. We did the definition section orally and I was surprised to learn that I remembered the

Oldest finished Jaws this week and moved on to a biography of Ronald Reagan

difference between communicative and associative properties. Unfortunately I do not have the solutions for the tests in his book; meaning that I have to work through all of the problems too. The solutions manual is seventy-seven dollars…ugh…I may be purchasing it soon. Tomorrow he’ll finish the rest of his exam…maybe I will too. (I did end up purchasing the manual.)

After working through the lessons for the day I spent a bit of time adding up our curriculum costs for the next set of grades. I really cannot say academic year since they are finishing up with several subjects within the next six weeks or so. This time next week Littlest will officially be in second grade. If I go ahead and start them on their next set of course work then our academic year is just plain messed up. Not sure that I really care about maintaining a course load that lines up with the public school system. But if I allow them to move on now then we’ll no longer line up with the norm. I’m not sure it matters really.

practicing for recital

I’m off work the next couple of days. It will be nice to be home. Tomorrow is Adventure School and on Wednesday we have dental appointments. I wish we could just stay home these two days. I’m at the age where I’d rather just stay home than go anywhere. I do enjoy going to Adventure School. Last week I enjoyed watching them play kick ball. Oldest and Middle Boy made home-runs and Oldest caught the ball that ended the game. Sparkles felt bad and sat with me. She did cheer on her brothers. I hope she feels well enough tomorrow to play. Littlest hung out with me most of the time. I think they are going to learn some type of hockey game tomorrow. However the weather is supposed to be in the seventies tomorrow so they may go for a hike instead. Guess I’ll find out in the morning.


Today was so nice outside we ended up ditching school after lunch time. Since the kids had Adventure School this morning we only did our math; still have two exams to grade. They went

Last day of first grade

hiking around Fort Hill with their group. Fort Hill is an old fortification that over looks downtown Frankfort. It was built during the Civil War to primarily protect the pro-Union state government. The counselors taught the kids a bit about the location and natural wildlife. Anyway, it is a nice area to hike and I learned today that there is a trail that leads to the park from the soon-to-be-demolished Capitol Plaza Tower.

Sparkles did not feel very good today. She was a trooper and went on the hike but retreated to her room this evening. One of the boys that attends the program started harassing her when she refused to be his girlfriend. Even though the boy has caused her some distress I think she is consoled by oldest’s protection. All three of her brothers stuck around her and let the fella know he was not going to get away with bothering her. Good brothers!  Tomorrow will be another half day of school since we have dental appointments and hopefully squeeze in a haircut for one or two of the boys.

Boots wishing the rain would stop so she could terrorize the neighborhood

Today I was in touch with our counselor from Hewitt. Oldest will begin their high-school program sometime soon. Hewitt is a non-profit homeschooling resource that provides a wide range of services to the home education community. We have a bit of paperwork to fill out and work samples to collect. I hope to get most of that taken care of over the next week. Even though I haven’t paid for any services yet the counselor let me know that he would help me set up Oldest’s course load for high-school…not how business usually goes these days.


Well, today was something of a wash too.The oldest two had dental cleaning today and then we had to run Sparkles to the orthodontist to get her wire back on. The kids had a good dental report. My appointment is in a couple of weeks. Just being there today upset my nerves and there was a poor young lady in there that just screamed like she was dying. I felt just awful for her. Afterward her mother

this week’s read aloud selections

scolded her and called her an “embarrassment to humanity”. Maybe I am wrong but I’m not sure the tough-love treatment works with someone who is terrified. We were all glad to get out of there anyway.

After lunch the kids worked on their recital pieces. Some of the keys on our piano have problems that my untrained ear cannot detect. The defect is driving Middle Boy crazy. I may have to call his teacher in to have a look and see if anything can be done. Sparkles practiced as much as she could but then went to bed because she felt terrible. While Sparkles rested the boys worked on some game they invented. Littlest hung out with me for a while then played Minecraft.

I felt awful most of the day. The cramps were so bad this morning I nearly cried following my husband to the vehicle repair shop. I am going to try the mostly liquid diet that the nutritionist

Little reader

put Sparkles on to help her digestive system heal. I’m hoping it will help me. The whey protein I ordered arrived today so I guess tomorrow is a fine day to start. I’m not really excited about it but I am willing to try anything to help with the pain. I have started drinking peppermint tea in the afternoon that is supposed to help with digestive pains. The tea seems to work and I hope to get Sparkles to try some too. Last night I took a nice hot bath and added a little bit of peppermint oil to the water. By the time I went to bed I felt relieved. No cramps or pains. Probably the fastest I have fallen asleep in ages too.

I return to work in the morning. The past two days off have been really nice. I like my job well enough but it has been a little stressful since the new manager took over. He seems nice and everyone likes him. But change is always hard and some people just have to make mountains out of molehills.


Billy Graham went to meet Jesus today. I feel a little sad about his passing but mostly because I thought about my grandmother and remembering her listening to him on the radio.


Today was my first day with only one proper meal. I did have one small snack along with my two protein shakes. The day wasn’t as hard to get through as I thought it might be. My stomach does still hurt but I am going to give this strategy a week or two before trying something else.

Littlest finished up his last first grade lesson today. I told him he could have tomorrow off from school work. I’ll have to get a first day of second grade picture of him on Monday. His language arts arrived this week. Hopefully I’ll have time to look over it


this weekend. I also ordered several of the One Small Square habitat books for his science curriculum. He flipped through one of them today and was able to identify a few creatures just from watching Octonauts.

We watched a program about the Red-crowned Crane of Japan. Watching them dance was really interesting though we thought their call sounded a bit sad. The older kids worked on a literary analysis of Allen Says’s Grandfather’s Journey as part of their Japan studies. We spent a good portion of the morning discussing the various themes the story evoked for their papers. While I read aloud Botchan they sampled a few of the Japanese treats. So far Littlest hasn’t sampled anything he would eat again. Botchan has turned out to be a delightful book and we have laughed nearly all through the book.


Today was a quiet day. Despite the two afternoons we dropped school the kids managed to get

Adventure School time

everything done for the week anyway…and I got everything graded. Curriculum and books have poured in the past couple of days and more deliveries are expected over the weekend. So I will be busy trying to plan and evaluate lessons between work shifts over the weekend. It almost feels like the beginning of a new school year. The kids have wrapped up several courses and I am trying to get new subjects lined up. Feels a little strange to be doing this in February but that is where we are.

My book shelves are full and I am actually considering selling. I thought I’d hold on to some of this forever but…maybe not. There is a homeschool consignment shop I could consider outside

Lent art meditation

Louisville. Or maybe there will be some local sales in a few months. Either way I need to make some room…for more books.


Getting up at three this morning to go to work was brutal. When I got home from work I was supposed to get the lesson planning done for the week. Didn’t happen. Instead I cleaned a bathroom with my little shadow (Littlest) and then went to Wal-Mart. Not my favorite place to spend money but sometimes necessary.

I”ll have to buckle down tomorrow and get the planning finished. Monday will be Littlest’s first day of second grade so I’ll need to make the day a bit special and take pictures. His language

peppermint tea in cup from Camie

arts curriculum occasionally has a page of editing for him to do. He enjoys the activity so much he asked me to find a workbook on the subject. My other kids groan and complain about editing. I got Editor in Chief for him from The Critical Thinking Company. It came in the mail today and when I showed it to him he reacted like I had brought him some longed-for toy. He also zipped through several of the readers I pulled off the shelf for him so I’ll need to get a few more for him. I think he is ready for proper chapter books. His science won’t be ready to start this week. I need a little time to get some lesson ideas on paper.

This week we are going to try our art skills with acrylic painting for the first time. I found a trial lesson for us to use from Masterpiece Society. I plan to paint along with the kids too. This I am looking forward to.

I knit while the kids are with their Adventure School friends

Earlier in the week I was reading Habits for Our Holiness by Phillip Nation but abandoned it. I’m sure it is a decent book but I really dislike when an author starts bashing other Christian denominations practices…off to the donation pile. So now I am reading True North from Gavin Francis. He has a new book coming out this summer so I want to make sure I’ve read everything by him before it is published. Though not intentionally I read his books from last to first published. His travel books are so interesting and beautifully written. He also explains word origins which is something I’ve always found fascinating.