Monday, May 25, 2015

Lydia's Grade Eight: Week 34

Three weeks of "classes" to go, then exams. Who'd have thought.

We are a bit off schedule, but Lydia has been working hard this week to catch up on some of the readings. So these are some of the places we're supposed to be this week:

Finish Book 2 of Mere Christianity. (That's as far as I assigned for this year.) Continue The Holy War.

Continue our study (together) of Ecclesiastes

Up to James II in The New World.

Continue King Lear. Continue Plutarch's "Life of Timoleon."

Read a few more poems by John Donne.

Read the second-last chapter in Journey to the Source of the Nile.

Finish reading about earthquakes (together) in Why Geology Matters. Read "Factors That Affect Earth's Weather" in Physical Science, and some of Eric Sloane's Weather Book.

Do some Latin (we've been skipping).

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Saturday, May 23, 2015

What's for supper? Chowder and burgers

Tonigh's dinner menu:

Red and Yellow Chowder, from Saving Dinner

Hamburgers on the barbecue.

Saturday Yardsaling

It was a perfect day for yardsaling.
Stack of baskets, fifty cents apiece
Pretty box, fifty cents
Something for Lydia (who wouldn't like a Hello Kitty gluestick?)
Folding and stacking cooling racks. A dollar for the set.
But the best score was Mr. Fixit's. Besides a couple of record albums, he found a recent-vintage phone, the kind with the little tiny keyboard. They were asking a dollar.

What that says about the state of the world, I'm not sure.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

What's up around here?

In Treehouse news:

If you hadn't gathered this already, I have been working on a book, both the writing and the rest of it. It's the rest of it that feels like I've taken on a full-time job, but I think the worst is over. I promise to let you know more about it soon.

Mr. Fixit expanded the local side of his antiques business, so it's been interesting seeing how that's working out. We have been watching DVDs of Ironside (the original series) and The Number One Ladies' Detective Agency.

The Apprentice has had a successful financial internship, except for breaking her foot last week. She's the only Squirreling so far to actually break a bone. Anyway, it looks like she will be staying on there for awhile.

Ponytails is almost done high school, and she just got hired for a food-related job that she is happy about. Tonight is her last school choir concert.

Lydia is battling dandelion allergies, catching up on Churchill, and planning a belated birthday party. She is hoping to do some volunteering over the summer.

What's for supper? Silly Pasta

Tonight's dinner menu:

Pasta with meat sauce. The pasta is a combination of broken spaghetti, penne, and ditali (mini rings).  Because I didn't have enough of any one thing except for elbows, and elbows are kind of boring.

Raw veggies.

Chocolate chip cookies.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Book Binge: The Indie Author Guide, The Winds of War

Currently reading and almost done: The Indie Author Guide, by April L. Hamilton. Very practical and hands-on.

Also reading: The Winds of War, by Herman Wouk. Big fat bestsellers are not my "usual," but Wouk talked a lot about his War books in The Language God Talks, so I checked this one out of the library.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Book binge: Leisure, the Basis of Culture

I let Cindy and other people read Leisure, the Basis of Culture for me for too long. This one made Francis Schaeffer's books seem like a walk in the dandelions. But now at least I can say I've read it.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Quote for Sunday:Josef Pieper

"...the one who experiences wonder is one who, astounded by the deeper aspect of the world, cannot hear the immediate demands of life--if even for a moment, that moment when he gazes on the astounding vision of the world." ~~ Josef Pieper, Leisure: The Basis of Culture

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Book binge: Francis Schaeffer

Finished: No Little People, by Francis Schaeffer, which is a collection of his sermons, loosely tied together but readable individually as well (which is why I didn't finish it the first time through, I was just going one by one).

One chapter, "David: Lawful and Unlawful Vindication," was such a clear presentation of the effects of living outside of God's laws that I am planning on using it sometime soon for Lydia's Citizenship class.

This one's a boy

Congratulations to Heather and Chris (at To Sow a Seed).

Monday, May 04, 2015

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Yard-sale find

What is it? A little alien ship?
No, it's a yogurt strainer. Like a coffee filter, for turning yogurt into spready cheese without the messy cheesecloth. Includes a recipe booklet by Graham Kerr. I thought they looked useful.

Time for another book binge?

I go through times when I read a lot in a short time. Then I do something else for awhile. Make Christmas presents. Write things. Then I need to fuel up again.

Right now it's time for some reading. We went yardsaling yesterday and I found a copy of Frederick Buechner's The Alphabet of Grace. I've already finished it (it was that good). (Review coming.) There are a few books sitting on my shelf that got halfway done, so I guess those are next.

Read that one again?

Lydia was reading a news headline that said the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge would probably be naming their new baby Sunday.

Her comment: "Why would they name her that??"

Six weeks of school left (Lydia's Grade Eight)

You've heard of life interrupting school? Sometimes school interrupts school. In this case, it was an essay assignment for Citizenship class, and I gave Lydia permission to focus on that last week instead of the regular work.

Because at this point, whether we get to 1688 in history or not doesn't seem as critical as just finishing out the year the best that we can.

Plans for this week:

Finishing off Paul Klee, because Lydia asked if we could do M.C. Escher as a second artist this term.

Doing one week on Dryden's poetry ("The New Poetry"), in between Milton and Donne.

Reading a chapter together on plate tectonics, from Why Geology Matters. We will also be picking up that section in Apologia Exploring Creation Through Physical Science.

Continuing Latin lessons, geography (we are following the Bakers along the Nile), and mathematics.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Big book sale, small haul

This weekend was the annual book sale, but since I've been in more of a clearing-out mood, I limited the takings to five:

1. Sir Nigel, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

2. Northanger Abbey--a replacement copy

3. The Cost of Discipleship, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

3. The Man Who Would Be King, by Dorothy L. Sayers (the bright blue hardcover)

5. Robert Louis Stevenson's Essays, good comfort food reading. Some thoughts on Stevenson's writing, here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Supper on Earth Day: Climate Change Soup

Tonight's dinner menu:

Climate Change Soup. Recipe: Remove several small containers of soup, beans, and tomatoes from freezer. Melt in pot on stove, adding water as needed. Simmer until supper time. Serve with toast or sandwiches.

Lucky Lydia

Found at the thrift store: Louis Vuitton handbag. It appears to be the real thing. I vow that girl has a Muse of Shopping following her around.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A bar cookie recipe I made up

I made these last night for a meeting here. It's an adaptation of a Dad's Cookie recipe, but I changed some things to suit what I had, and baked them in a 15-inch pan to save time.

Coconut-Fruit-Oatmeal Bars

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla (the recipe did not call for any, but I put in what was in the bottom of the bottle)
1 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. salt (the original recipe did not call for salt, but I added a little)
1 cup Rice Krispies
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup mixed dried fruit (I used a mixture of berries from the baking aisle at Wal-Mart)
1 cup or more shredded coconut (a leftover from Christmas)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cream the butter and sugars, then add the egg and vanilla.  Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, combine well. Add in the remaining ingredients. Spread in a large baking pan; you shouldn't need to grease it with all the butter in the dough.  Bake approximately 20 minutes, until golden and fairly firm but not overbaked. Cut into squares while still warm.

Friday, April 17, 2015

What's for supper? Crazy Crust Pizza

The recipe's been around forever, I've just never tried it before. Topped with ground chicken, onion, mushrooms, a bit of cooked bacon, sauce, and pizza-blend cheese. Good way to end the week.