End-of-summer unschooling thread - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 21 Old 08-29-2013, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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What's at the forefront of your unschooling right now? Anything new? Got any big plans? Small plans? What's interesting to your kid(s) these days? How was today? What did you do? 

 

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#2 of 21 Old 08-29-2013, 07:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We're in a really good place right now. These are the salad days of dd's unschooling.



We had a flurry of big day-hikes to round out the summer just before dd19 left to go back to the city for university. That got dd10 even more stoked about learning backcountry survival skills. She did a bunch of research about survival kits, and talked me into ordering a neat modular system called GearPods. (We've been needing to upgrade and refill our old gear anyway.) We bought the BackCountry multi-pod which includes the cooking/campcraft kit and the first aid kit, plus the Saw Pod. We bought another outdoor survival skills manual (because the SAS Survival Guide has got dog-eared with over 25 years of browsing by our family, and because there are always new things that crop up). And we got a new hiking guide for our area that gives the deets on a few hikes we'd heard about but that we aren't quite close enough to to get specifics on. She's now researching water purification options: weight, palatability, safety, cost, etc. We have a good fliter, but I'm happy to let her figure out if there are better options for particular circumstances. We are currently planning a two- or three-night hiking trip for mid-September. Around home we're practicing setting up camping hammocks and packing and hefting packs. 



We took a road trip to get eldest dd out of the airport 4 hours away. We had a bit of shopping to do -- things we can't get here (believe it or not, the only place to buy clothes in the kids 6-14 size range in our area is Walmart, and I have both ethical and aesthetic aversions to that). But we decided to take our time and do a couple of overnights. This allowed us to take the long route home, by way of a northern route that took us to the home of one of North America's few remaining drive-in theatres. The experience was awesome. We saw a contemporary action / adventure / sci-fi flick, which was nothing spectacular, but it was the experience and all the trappings surrounding it that were great. The 1950's car tunes playing before the movie, the snack bar with its yellow bug lights, and the endearing welcoming animations and PSAs up on the big screen, recycled from the 50's as well. Animated chocolate bars encouraging you to visit the concession stand, etc. 



Then the next day we went to a couple of historic sites and a museum devoted to the Canadian Pacific Railway and its completion in 1885, the event that welcomed BC, our western province, into the country and a pivotal nation-building moment. There was also, fortuitously, a big featured exhibit on the Chinese railway workers, and about the injustices meted out to them, which then tied in with the feature we watched on TV that night about Martin Luther King Jr.. 



The other project dd10 really wanted to get busy on was learning to cook dinners, especially involving meat. Last week she did us a lovely pasta and from-scratch marinara sauce with Italian sausage on the side. Tonight she did Lemon-Rosemary-Garlic Roasted Chicken Breasts with rice and Caesar salad with home-made croutons and home-made dressing -- and it was fabulous! She had a little help from me deciding when the chicken was done, and in planning backwards from serving time so that the rice and chicken got started cooking at the right times, but otherwise did everything herself, including calling me at work with a grocery list of things to pick up on my way home. After supper she wrote down the two recipes that were so successful (the salad dressing and the chicken marinade) in a recipe scrapbook we had purchased for the purpose. Both recipes were modified -- one off the internet and one word-of-mouth. Oh, I forgot to mention we had brownies with espresso icing for dessert. Amazing work! It took most of the day researching and preparing and documenting, but she did so well!



We're in that little pillow of luscious time between the end of the summer craziness of music school and tourists and out-of-town visitors and the start of school and fall lessons and such. Weather is definitely cooler, but life is easy and not too full, which tends to make my kid full of creative new ideas and learning energy. 



Activity plans for fall include starting lessons with an actual paid violin teacher, the same non-competitive gymnastics class and instructor that she loved last year, some violin group classes, and Math 9 at the local school. Plus our backcountry camping trip.



Would love to hear what's up in your lives!



Miranda

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#3 of 21 Old 08-29-2013, 09:38 PM
 
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We are in a 'gap year'.  DS isnt' doing anything schooly.  Stopped JHU CTY program, 

We are thinking about a local art school for saturday classes - maybe,

Right now DS is watching lots of DVDs from the library, Seinfield is a huge hit, as is ALF.

He remains dedicated to swim team.

Summer is still in full swing here but public school has been back since the beginning of the month.

We are taking it slow, smelling the flowers so to speak and simply enjoying things as they come along.


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#4 of 21 Old 08-30-2013, 09:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by zebra15 View Post
 

We are in a 'gap year'.  DS isnt' doing anything schooly.  

 

Was he doing a lot of schooly stuff in the past? Not really sure what JHU CTY comprises in terms of structure and workload. For some reason I was assuming it was a kind of self-paced self-structured thing that could be as unschooly as one wanted, but I've never looked into it in detail as we've found much less expensive options that worked well and were very flexible.

 

I've noticed that my kids have tended to want a bit more structure each year as they've grown up, except that for about a year at the beginning of adolescence they all seemed to step back from structured learning with some considerable ambivalence. I can't remember how old your ds is now. Is he in that phase? 

 

Smelling the flowers is what it feels like we're doing right now ... just waking up in the morning and seeing what life presents, whether we feel energetic or not. Go on a hike? Cook a meal? Read a book? Watch a couple of movies? But in the past few days dd seems to have emerged from the summer with a lot of energy. The leaves are beginning to fall here, which always lends a certain urgency to things ... pretty soon we know we'll be stuck inside during cold October rains, and then snowbound. 

 

Seinfeld has been a big favourite here since the vacation-with-the-perforated-appendix two and a half years ago when we ended up stuck in a house in California with a sick kid and a lot of DVDs. We even celebrated Festivus at one point, complete with The Airing of Grievances. We haven't been through an ALF phase, though, not yet!

 

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#5 of 21 Old 08-30-2013, 09:46 AM
 
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We got rained out of our most recent camping trip.  The rain might not have been all that terrible, but the tent site got flooded and we were leaving the next morning anyhow, so we packed up and headed home.  I love the beach-- it seems to embody everything that is great about unschooling, and just family life without the trappings of toys or TV.  We didn't even bring shovels or pails, it was just us and the sand, rocks and water.  It also brings out the scientists in everybody.  DD2 noticed (or articulated) for the first time that waves crest at a certain point and not before.  We found a crab shell pliant enough to move its mandibles.  As the storm started swooping in, we watched wind patterns illuminated by blowing sand (which remained at ankle level, thankfully).  Our trip wasn't a total bust.  The day before was as brilliant as you could ask for, and the evening gorgeous.  The morning started out well enough and it was only late in the afternoon that the weather got the best of us.

 

 

1) Lovely evening  2) Lovely morning  

 

DD1 and had a good talk walking along the beach (well, I was walking, she was galloping and rolling over the driftwood and hitting all the pristine sand).  It was an amazingly deep conversation, and I couldn't help thinking how much I enjoy this new introspection and self-analysis that comes with this age.  I have two strong, amazingly adventurous girls, and I think unschooling has played a huge role in preserving that.

 

 

3) The transition  4)  Surrender.  A big "thankyouthankyouthankyou" for whoever designed tents that can be taken down *under* the rain fly!  This was actually less water than was in it at the peak of the shower.  The tent itself remained dry and tight, but the night was supposed to get worse before it got better.

 

********************************************

 

I had ordered a test for dd1 (required).  We don't have to send results in to anybody, it is for our sole benefit.  The one I ordered is the shorter version of another test (CAT).  DD and I laughed as we did the practice test.  This can't possibly be 2nd grade anymore.  I wonder if any schools still use this version of the test, but whatever.  The fact that it's easy (laughably easy) is a good introduction to what testing is and how to do them.  And I couldn't care less if she is on parr with her peers.  I would love to have her linger on the skills she is learning now because I think they are the bedrock for what comes later.

 

DD2 has been reading every day.  She even tried reading from the How to Train Your Dragon series, but that is a bit beyond her skill (for now).  As I type, she is finishing up reading poems in "I Could Pee on This", a slim little book that is a must-have for every cat lover.  Shhhhh!  Don't tell that I think her reading skills will surpass her sister's, simply because she is so persistent and she challenges herself.  Then again, I keep thinking that any day now she will finally be taller than her sister, but DD1 has managed just to edge her out.  For now.  Anyhow, I don't think it much matters that dd2's skills surpass her sister's if she is reading for pleasure and dd1 focuses on other things with equal pleasure.  

 

I am working at putting up some pickles.  The first time in more than a decade that I have done anything like this.  Only 20#, I need to just get my foot in the door to remind myself that I can do this.  I have 6 cups of blackberry juice in the freezer for jam.  Yeah, 6 cups will make jam enough to last a week, but again-- it's 6 cups more than I've done in ages.  Hoping to round out the season with some salsa.

 

Now that the summer busy season is drawing to a close and the fall busy season drawing near, I am trying to find time to swoop through the house to get it clean.  The girls have been increasingly helpful in their own ways.  Now it's I who needs to step up and keep things tidy.  I am not, unfortunately, a great example for the girls to follow.  Still learning, as always.  We will be doing drop-in gymnastics instead of weekly for a while (late fall/winter expenses exceed income) instead of dipping so deeply like we have in years past.  Girl Scouts is gearing up, as is 4-H.  I will be a leader for both.  I need to get out (right now, really) and find some holiday work to help smooth the seasonal income gap.  

 

I like this new editor.  The typeface is easier to edit than the old one.  I used to have to flit between the editor and the final post for proofreading. 


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#6 of 21 Old 08-31-2013, 05:22 PM
 
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I'm totally looking forward to Autumn! 

 

September brings a lot of festivals! The Maker Faire in New York City is one of our absolute favorites, and there's the Renaissance Fair and a few local earthy-type ones that I can't wait for. We are going to be doing a weekly "forest school" with friends, which will entail going to a new woodsy place, hiking and learning about something (for the first one I plan on doing wild edibles..) my friend is also starting up a bi-weekly Waldorf-celebraitons type art class so we are going to join that..plus horseback riding *we are leasing a pony starting September 1st!* and bi-weekly gymnastics means BUSY BUSY BUSY.  


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#7 of 21 Old 08-31-2013, 05:28 PM
 
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We had a very activity intense summer.  Kids were busy pretty much every single day.  They barely had time to themselves.  We were away from home so everything was new and exciting.  And now that we are back at home, life has slowed significantly.  They spent the last week struggling to get back into their normal life routines and it has been a bit hard.  They miss having the constant company of other children and they seem to have temporary forgotten how to entertain themselves.  This is not the first time we have traveled away for the summer so they are used to these types of transitions.  Soon enough, we will settle down and begin to have a feel for what the next few months hold for us.  

 

Son 7 seems to be set on the same path as he has been on.  He reads a lot.  He does math.  He plays and watches brainpop.  He still loves Bill Nye and audio books.  He asks tons of questions and dislikes authority even more.  Daughter 5 wants to learn to read and do some math workbooks. She loves her number workbook and she is pretty determined to sit with me for reading.  We will start the year with two outside activities: Taekowndo and art.  The oldest dabbles in keyboarding and the youngest is following suit. Son wants to get involved in the kitchen more.  He has mastered making scrambled eggs for the family.  This year he might be able to take charge of some bread duties and breakfast for himself and his sister. We will see.  

 

They both seem to have become physically more active than ever before.  They set up obstacle courses in the living room to jump over, climb on our spiral stair banister and swing from it, jump off from high places.  Daughter is always running.  Son loves soccer and runs the whole session.  Both have become pretty good at rollerblading.  

 

As for me, I am getting back into the swing of things and just keeping steady.  Thinking about meal menus, experimenting with adding millet to our bread recipe, perfecting my almond/walnut/soy/Millet milk techniques, tweaking our rice mix.  Trying to figure out how to make our food preparation process even more efficient AND delicious :)  

 

I am looking forward to a slow, long, cool fall before winter kicks in and we change again.  

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#8 of 21 Old 09-02-2013, 07:38 AM
 
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Its been an odd summer for us. Basically, our house ended up out of action for most of it. Work that was scheduled to take a week ended up taking most of the summer. Things got more and more chaotic as more and more rooms got involved, and we ended up having to squeeze our stuff into smaller and smaller spaces. We ended up with everything owned by us in probably a 10 x 5 m space, and in the hallways-and I mean everything, furniture included. We had to send the kids off the the grandparents, and stay to try to fix up the place so we could actually do something like living in it-so that the space was actually safe. So for most of the summer we were scattered over the country, the kids alternating between grandparents, us spending a lot of time driving up and down the motorway (grandparents are 200 and 400 miles away). Thank god for Skype! We've prioritised one of us being with the kids, though that hasn't all worked out, but last week was the first week for about six weeks that we were together as a family. 

 

We're all trying to see the positives. Its not quite over-only the absolute essentials were done, meaning that we have unpainted and untiled walls and so on. Because the issue was water related, we do need to fix the house to make it definitely waterproof but its a lower priority than, say, making sure the boiler is safe. We do have less stuff now, certainly, though not as much less as I'd have thought. One very small good thing has been that this was the summer of saying yes to stuff. They got to do stuff like skiing and boating as much as they wanted, mainly to give their grandparents a break. They spent a happy week camping. Only one-which would be about a sixth of a usual summer-but it was in an apple orchard, with a lot of new friends for them, and meeting up with my mother's friends who are great and very funny. Ds got to camp without adults, in a kid camp, which he loved to devotion. This week, it so happened that before all this dp's parents had booked a week of caravanning by the sea, so that's where they are. They are only 1 1/2 hours away though so we'll probably go up a few times in the evening. The rest of the time I'm desperately trying to cram in the very-nearly-overdue very hard dissertation I need to write (though I'm seriously thinking of just retaking, if the course wasn't so stupidly expensive I would) and trying to make sure that we have what we need to function in the autumn term-uniforms, music books, taekwondo belts etc.

 

The real thing for us is that the summer-usually a time to slow and pause, a really special time for us (especially given that we live somewhere where it rains a lot) has just whipped by, and now we are about to hurtle back into classes and playdates and work without really having had that regrouping time we like. Usually at the end of summer I'm looking forward to autumn, this time my head still thinks it must be July. We've all missed the allotment too, and given how much work we had all put in its really sad to not have gotten to harvest anything but hey, so it goes. According to a neighbour we have some mega pumpkins (and mega weeds).

 

So my first task when we get back home together is to regroup everyone. I've organised the electronics resources at last and I'm planning to make brushbots with them. Play lots of games. Do some fun stuff. Go to the beach if we can (our local beach has weird tide times and a full high tide which puts it out of action unexpectedly. But on the upside, its the beach you always seen in Doctor Who.). Go and harvest those pumpkins.


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#9 of 21 Old 09-04-2013, 05:44 PM
 
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We're just having a summer of sorts.  We traveled all summer and spring.  We are now swimming everyday, the girls are playing piano app and we are listening to a lot of good music together thanks to that.  There's the song Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley/Leonard Cohen, so I had the opportunity to put the song on youtube for us all to listen to. 

 

I hear Beethoven in this house now more than I ever thought I would.   We're also doing a lot of organizing, donating, etc. together.  Things are settling really well.  The girls are very self-led with crafting, writing, etc.  

 

Next we need to do a gardening project, visit some family and continue our focus on swimming.  I have grown into so much more of an unschooler through the swimming experience.  I've been so proud of my girls and how brave they have been in learning to swim on their own.  My oldest looks at what others do, then she asks me to watch her and help her do it herself.  My youngest already thinks she can do everything which kind of scares me, but she seems to be learning to be more cautious on her own as well. 

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#10 of 21 Old 09-10-2013, 07:26 AM
 
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The weather is gifting us a few more weeks of summer after some unseasonal rains, cool weather and thunder storms .  A marked contrast to last year, when summer and dry weather held on until mid-October.  The dust was unbelievable, you could practically hear the trees groaning with thirst, and as beautiful as the days were, I could not relax and enjoy it knowing we hadn't any rain all summer (88 days.  I'm not counting the three drops of rain that feel one minute in August).  So, with 3 inches or more rain in August this year, I'm ready for a bit more lovely weather, sans guilt.

 

I declared September "Clean-up Month", putting most of the girls' projects on hold.  We are still doing some girl scout badges at home, but it seems that collecting the pencils all together, finding where they stashed their new sketchbooks, plowing through the Percy Jackson series and playing Monopoly seem to fill up our days nicely when I'm not doing clean-up chores.  The girls are back on their bikes, tearing around the yard and down the road.  They are enjoying the Dragon Riders of Berk on video, new Lone Ranger episodes on Hulu, Sylvia's Awesome Maker Show: http://sylviashow.com/episodes, and we started Lon Chaneys' Hunchback the other night.  Way too much TV, but we are having fun.  I've made some pickles, hoping to collect some aronia berries from the neighboring farm for jam.  We have some projects in the chicken coop we are wrapping up.  We did a day of drop-in gymnastics.  I wish I could enroll them, but we just have to wait this one out, I'm afraid. 

 

Meanwhile, everything is deciding to break.  My vacuum cleaner needed an expensive part, so I purchased a newer trade-in model instead, our yes-very-necessary dehumidifier is acting up, and the fan in my car just crapped out while I was starting the car yesterday.  Rattle rattlerattle fwump FWMUP FWUMP [silence].  So, I drove around with no air, windows rolled down or cracked, even at 60 mph.  At least the car is running, I should be thankful for that.  Not a breakage, but we located the 2 expensive flashlights we had misplaced after camping.  A flashlight here is not just an important emergency light, it is an everyday necessity at my house, and losing $70+ worth of good lights would have been..... grrrrr..... nickeled and dimed....nickeled and dimed........

 

DD1 finished up her first assessment test.  It was mostly easy, though spelling was a bear.  It was an old test.  I imagine tests these days are heavier on math than this, but on the math she did well.  I did help her with the format probably more than they would have wanted me to, but there were prompts saying "Do you understand what you need to do?" so I took that liberally and made sure she really understood, and how to navigate a multiple choice test, and also how to use it to help arrive at an answer when you are stuck.  I was not going to let her (this time) get a wrong answer just because she accidentally filled in the wrong bubble.  She settled in quite nicely, and most stuff we had covered somehow, though there were some civics stuff that she was unfamiliar with.  I chose the mercifully shorter survey instead of the full test.  All in all, it was an interesting experience.

 

DD2 is reading voraciously, mostly nonfiction animal books (she calls them "guidebooks" even though most are not field guides) and she still keeps trying to read How to Train Your Dragon.  It's fun remembering how different the literary Toothless is from the video Toothless.  I made the girls some cards for learning place value and they liked them so much, they decorated them with Sharpies until they were all fancy (and, incidentally, completely unrecognizable and useless for their original purpose, but, oh well!)


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#11 of 21 Old 09-10-2013, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Around here math is on the front burner after three or four months of being left fallow. She rediscovered Khan Academy and its new format and she's back at it with a vengeance. She's getting caught up on a lot of the Mastery Challenges to a level more appropriate to where she's at and is really enjoying the new stuff that's being presented. She started a math course at school and so far that's going well. She goes for 2 hours a week. Just a little whiff of school, enough to keep her happy. She's thrilled with the combination, and says that she's unlikely to want to attend school any more than this for at least a couple more years, which I'm happy about, since I don't think full-time would fit her well.

 

And after having her first ever lesson-with-a-real-teacher (i.e. not mom, not grandma) her motivation for violin has picked up, which is very nice. We took a big break after the music camp in early August. I was hoping returning to it on different terms, in the context of lessons with a real teacher, a new relationship, new expectations, would help her find reasons for continuing, and that seems to be the case. She's excited to start gymnastics again in a couple of weeks, and we have a backpacking trip planned for the end of next week. We'll see how that goes: we did a bit of a trial run last weekend with partly loaded backpacks and she enjoyed it but was exhausted from the hiking. We may spend most of our time actually camping, rather that backpacking and moving long distances day to day, which is fine.

 

We've also been exploring human evolution, proto- and early-human pre-history, the human genome and such. For a while she was super stoked to save up her money and get her genome sequenced via 23andme.com to find out her genetic heritage - though of course she's too young for consent and there are all sorts of possible repercussions of that sort of testing. So she's settled into a realization that it's not such a great thing for her at this point. Still very interested in genomics and human evolution. Lots of good documentaries out there, and we're part-way through "Clan of the Cave Bear" together, having fun noticing what Auel got right and how much was pure (misguided) speculation. Not a bad book, though. 

 

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#12 of 21 Old 09-10-2013, 08:24 PM
 
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Math has been big here, too in its own way.  DD2 was expanding on the Chutes and Ladders game, writing the spins as equations.  She told me excitedly how she "mathed" her way to 36!  In the end, she had a nice page expressing the flow of the game, worthy of any university mathematician.  Sometimes I think she would be a good "loaner kid" for parents who don't get such easy feedback from their kids regarding hsing.  "Here, borrow my kid for a week-- you'll realize you are doing wonderfully!"  DD1 was adding up numbers in her head with me, checking to see if she was right.  I asked her what made her think of it (a familiar question--I thought she would say that was how many eggs they brought in each day that week or something like that) but she said, "Just because."  

 

I'm glad they like math.  I'm glad we have the luxury to linger a little, thoroughly enjoying their feelings of "mastery" over what they know instead of being forever bombarded with things they don't know yet.  A little bit at a time--small, manageable chunks instead of fat wads.  Even the most delicious chocolate cake cannot be eaten if it's crammed down your throat.  

 

Recently I wrote about dd1 amd place value and regrouping.  I enticed dd1 a little by showing her how I can add together numbers so big I don't even know what to call them.  It was, like 5 sextillion and someodd added to 7 sextillion someodd.  She was clearly interested, but she is still grappling with place value.  She's getting it, she just needs to get comfortable with it.  I also think it will help (though it might confuse her) to get her comfortable with the idea that numbers can get chopped up into manageable chunks if you need to, as long as all the chunks equal the same as the original number.  She already does this with addition and simple multiplication (like 36X2), she just needs to learn it for subtraction, which has always come last.  

 

So, lots of math, lots of useful new words, like "mathed", past tense of "to math something".  Obviously she understands something about verb tense as well.  I need to write that down......


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#13 of 21 Old 09-11-2013, 02:26 PM
 
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DS is exploring his new tablet. Apparently Windows8 works best on the windows8 tablet?  however today he is watching 'how the states got their shapes' marathon.  Counts as history in my book.

 

The weather is actually 'nice' today.  I might be able to turn off the a/c soon or maybe thats just wishful thinking.


Mom to J and never-ending , 0/2014 items decluttered, 0/52 crafts crafts completed  crochetsmilie.gif homeschool.gif  reading.gif  modifiedartist.gif

Seeking zen in 2014.  Working on journaling and finding peace this year.  Spending my free time taking J to swimteam

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#14 of 21 Old 09-18-2013, 10:46 PM
 
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We've been swimming a lot and both girls have gotten really good, compared to last summer and even this past spring.  DD6 is learning to read, on her own, inspired by things like signs in the bathroom, words on games, etc.  She's also playing her piano app on the ipad often.  

 

Both girls are learning more numbers and lots of Spanish.  They've been spending a lot of time drawing and playing with clay.  I've said the first official day of school will be her birthday in a few days.

 

We need some serious structure, but we just moved about a month ago, so it's not super surprising things are slightly chaotic at this point.  Still I've been pleasantly surprised with the creativity, words and numbers they've been learning on their own.  As well as the sense of pride they both feel with learning to swim. 

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#15 of 21 Old 09-21-2013, 09:03 AM
 
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DD2 is busy reorganizing her new library books on her "Knowledge Shelf".

 

"My second favorite thing about knowledge is that you can pass it around."

 

What's the first thing?

 

"Knowing knowledge..."  Now she's feeling self-concious because she knows I'm writing about her.  "It's good to pass knowledge around so the world knows knowledge, just like I do with chickens."

 

I could sit here for hours writing the stuff they say down.

rumi likes this.

Give me a few minutes while I caffeinate.
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#16 of 21 Old 09-21-2013, 09:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We successfully completed our backpacking trip! 

 

We only went a total of 16 km, but it was perfect. We started out in the rain, on the end of a week of thunderstorms, and down in the creek valley everything was cold and sopping wet so thhat was a challenge. Fortunately our camping hammocks kept us up off the ground, so we slept relatively warm and dry. And we did use the stove even in the wet, though it was much easier with dry wood! The rain stopped by the second morning, and the last day was warm and sunny by afternoon, which was perfect for the big grunt (230 metres of climbing) out of the creek valley the last afternoon. 

 

Packs weighed in at 11 pounds and 39 pounds respectively with water bottles. It was not a hike for the faint of heart! That's a sixth of dd's body weight and a third of mine. In the prime of my youth I handled a 45-pound pack through even more challenging terrain, but that was many many years ago.

 

We walked through a secondary succession forest two years after a massive forest fire, and through a forest that's had repeated fires over a much longer period of time and then eventually into virgin old-growth forest. We saw six kajillion kinds of mushrooms. There was tons of marble and various other weird metamorphic rock. There were huckleberries. We crossed the creek six times, using a bridge and some (heavy, heavy!) cable cars. Dd learned how to sling a bear cache, how to pack a backpack for best balance and comfort, how to cook and enjoy dehydrated meals, how to manage water filtration and dish-washing and hygiene and elimination in the woods. She got handy with her knots, and stayed cheerful and optimistic even at the coldest, dampest and most tiring of times. We had no bear troubles.

 

She had some belly cramps the last night, and having had a horrible experience with middle dd's appendicitis evolving in the midst of travel, I decided we should head back to civilization over the course of the next day just to be on the safe side (we had originally thought we might stay one more night). Her belly got better as the day went on, so no worries, but we were on-schedule to finish by dinner. The weather was gorgeous and the last day was the icing on the cake despite the fact that it was our longest trudge with a big ascent.

 

We saw two other people the first morning we were out, but otherwise not a soul. 

 

She wants to do more of this, though would prefer a warmer time of year for overnight trips. We've talked about practicing winter survival skills by doing day trips on XC skis or snowshoes. Some photos:

 

Above: Camp at Garnet "Beach."

 

Above: Signing in at the trail register in the rain.

 

Above: Through the area that suffered a fire 2 years ago.

 

Above: The first cable car, a real pig. But we rocked it!

 

Miranda


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#17 of 21 Old 09-21-2013, 10:19 AM
 
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That looks like a wonderful trip!  I hope that my girls would be into something like this when they reach your daughter's age.

 

Did you ever manage to find a sub-zero children's sleeping bag?


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#18 of 21 Old 09-21-2013, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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She's just using her dad's down bag with the foot area folded under. Works when he's not with us.

 

Did find this one, but they won't ship to Canada and I haven't found it anywhere in Canada. 

 

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#19 of 21 Old 09-22-2013, 09:41 PM
 
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Wow Miranda...that sounds amazing! 

 

Tomorrow and starting next week the girls are going to spend several days a week going to my Grandma's in the mornings and coming back at the end of the day.  My grandma has tons of encyclopedias, a great yard for gardening, lots of flowers and other plants, and great stories.  We're going to use this opportunity to put together our family tree with her help, and make it into a really nice scrapbook for her that will be done for her birthday, almost a month from now.  

 

I think this is also an opportunity to learn baking and cooking since my grandma bakes professionally(or used to). 

 

Oh and today was dd6's birthday.  We made pancakes together this morning, picked out a few movies, I showed her the kindle books I got her for her birthday and then we went to the pool.  I made vegan sushi for dinner and tried to make tortillas to make burritos too, but something didn't go right with that.   Overall it was a great day until bedtime!

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#20 of 21 Old 09-27-2013, 06:31 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post
 

DD2 is busy reorganizing her new library books on her "Knowledge Shelf".

 

"My second favorite thing about knowledge is that you can pass it around."

 

What's the first thing?

 

"Knowing knowledge..."  Now she's feeling self-concious because she knows I'm writing about her.  "It's good to pass knowledge around so the world knows knowledge, just like I do with chickens."

 

I could sit here for hours writing the stuff they say down.

 

That's just amazing!  I know what you mean.  And what your daughter means!  Except I was a bit confused about the chickens.  What does she do with chickens?

 

And my dd has become very protective of what she says - as she knows I written a lot of it down.  


no longer momsling.GIF or ecbaby2.gif orfly-by-nursing1.gif ... dd is going on 10 (!) how was I to know there was a homeschool going on?

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#21 of 21 Old 09-27-2013, 09:20 AM
 
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Originally Posted by rumi View Post
 

Except I was a bit confused about the chickens.  What does she do with chickens?

 

And my dd has become very protective of what she says - as she knows I written a lot of it down.  

:p  We are in 4-H and the girls do a lot of work in the poultry barn at the fair sharing their chickens with others and teaching them about them and the other birds.

 

I became very aware of dd2's self consciousness, and need to be more careful about it in the future.  Sneakier, I mean.


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