Monday, May 20, 2013

Curricular Pursuits

Ready or not, here it comes!  The annual FPEA convention begins on Thursday, and for the first time ever, I am not nearly ready enough.  I still have so much planning to do!  Let's begin with what I know we will be working on, and then go from there:

  • Math U See for math.  This year, I'll have one in Algebra II, one in Algebra I, and one in Zeta.
  • History will be Biblioplan (Ancients) for at least the two youngest.  I'm still not certain what to do with my oldest.  He wants to remain with Biblioplan right now, so that is probably what I'll do.
  • Literature will follow off of Biblioplan, although I do want to study Shakespeare a bit.  
  • Bible will also dovetail with Biblioplan.
  • Writing will be IEW.  At this point, I think I'll combine the boys (8th and 10th grade) to do The Elegant Essay along with Windows to the World, but I'm not certain yet.  My youngest will also be IEW in a B level writing class, but I have no earthly idea which one.
  • Science will be Apologia.  The 10th grader will be doing Chemistry, while my 8th grader will be in Physical Science.  My 6th grader will be studying the stars with Jeannie Fulbright's Astronomy.  She loves to use the journals, so I'll pick one of those up as well.
  • Grammar will be Analytical Grammar review units for the boys.  For my daughter, I will likely pick up Fix It by IEW.
  • Foreign Language:  for my oldest, it will be German for both!  Yay! To that end, we are using Rosetta Stone, along with German Demystified.   No extra purchases in that regard!  My youngest will continue her study of sign language.
  • Language Arts for my daughter will continue to be Barton.  She's up to Level 5, and doing so well with it!
  • My 8th grader is not the best speller in the world, so I'll probably continue with All About Spelling, Level 7, and hope to finish with spelling for him this year.
  • As my oldest has already completed Government, I will also be adding Economics via Notgrass this semester for 1/2 credit.
I'm sure I'm missing something.  I must be, but I will have to continue to look at things and pray.  Now that I've got one in high school, things have definitely kicked up a notch.  So far, though, I feel like we have done a very good job of preparing for the rigors of high school and beyond.

I'm looking forward to hopefully having less interruption and stress.  The last academic year has been a doozy for sure, but through grace we have managed to pull through.  I expect to have our school work for the year completed only slightly later than I was expecting, and am glad to be facing a "tabla rasa" for the next year!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Exploring the Medium

So many thoughts and ideas have been crowding my brain recently, that I decided to take a rest from writing and see which thought would win the day.  I'm still waiting, in fact.  It's as if my mind is stormy, and while I am waiting for things to settle down in there, I thought I'd write about things that relax me.  Today's focus is yarn.
Carson Shawl, nearly complete
Above is my nearly completed Carson Shawl, by Romi Hill.  I say nearly completed, as I am six rows from the end, and have just run out of the brown.  By the way, isn't the edging lovely?
Edging, almost done!
I'm trying to decide if I switch over to the green yarn to finish it off (I've got enough of that) or bite the bullet and buy more brown to keep it consistent.  At $22.00 per skein, I think I will think about it some more...

In the meantime, I cast on another project, this one a gift (not saying for who yet!).
It starts in the center with a unique cast on.  It's mostly known as the Disappearing Loop Cast-On Method, and I found an excellent video on it by Laura Nelkin.  I like it better than the other method I was using. The center motif is supposed to be a lotus blossom.  I love that I was able to pull from my stash for this project!

In contrast to these projects, I also started something a little different.  I found this stuff at Walmart in the clearance bin, and just had to try it out:
 Currently, I'm turning it into a little crocheted basket...
It's early, but trust me, it will work out!
I don't have a pattern for the basket, I'm just trying to work it in however.  It will be a nearly indestructible thing by the time it's completed, and will hose off quite nicely!

But, knitting and crochet aren't the only things I'm doing these days.  I'm also teaching...
Here's the boy with his first completed skein!
My middle guy has been showing interest in spinning, so we took some time to work on his spinning skills.  I thought he acquitted himself nicely.  Using only a basic CD spindle, he turned out a nice little single, which he then plied using a plying bracelet.  Next stop, dyeing, but first we'll build a little on his length.

And now I will leave you with some prettiness...
This is just one of the profusion of roses we are enjoying in our front yard.  Between the roses, the magnolias, the agapanthus and the jasmine, we are absolutely filled with fragrance and color.  Now, off to enjoy some more of the outdoor loveliness!  Blessings!