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Weekly Wrap-up ~ The Start to 2013

In our regular life this week…

Not only did school start back for us this week, but our regular activities resumed, as well. Eli had Cub Scouts on Monday night. He has a minimal number of activities he needs to complete to finish all of his achievements for a rank advancement at the Blue and Gold Banquet in February. This is extraordinary because the rest of his Pack started on their achievements in February of last year. He didn't start Scouts until this past October, so he has been in hyperspeed. Of course, we have the flexibility to work on some of the achievements during our school day which makes it much easier.

Wednesday we were back to church services, having potluck dinner and then handbell choir practice. On Thursday night I held an organizational meeting to re-start a former United Methodist Women Circle (that my mom was a member of when she was a young woman). I am feeling the call of Titus 2. It's kind of hard to admit that I am an "older woman", but it is what it is.

Basketball season resumed at our public school, so Dawson is back to attending games in the evenings. However, after last night's game he came home and started vomiting and has been doing so ever since. He has a serious case of the flu! I am spraying Lysol like it is going out of style.

In our homeschool this week…

We are waiting on some products that we will be reviewing for The Schoolhouse Review Crew in the subjects of math, Spanish, and science. So, this week we worked on some reinforcement in several areas. We continued on with Bible by beginning our study of Moses. We got back to daily reading (even mom) and Peter Pan is our read-a-long. It was a Christmas gift to Brynne from her great grandmother. Our math focused on measurements. Our science came in the form of some studies about polar bears. And for writing this week we reviewed parts of a letter, wrote two letters to friends, and wrote a letter to the businesses of the kids' choice. Eli chose WWE Headquarters and Brynne chose Mattel, Inc. (to inquire about Barbie). This prompted a trip to the Post Office to mail our letters.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…

While writing letters to their friends in Oklahoma (brothers, who go to our former church), we noticed that their address was a Post Office Box. We discussed how this works. While at the post office to mail our letters, we ran into my Uncle, their Great Uncle, Jon. He was actually checking the contents of his PO Box, so he showed the kids how it works. That was great!

My Favorite Resource this week was…
I used several great ideas on websites this week. But, my favorite was probably the Gingerbread Geometry assignment we did. I had saved our gingerbread house for this particular lesson. (I was disappointed to see that Susan at Learning All the Time is no longer hosting the Favorite Resources Linky. Darn!!)

My kiddos' favorite thing this week was…

writing letters to the companies of their choice. As I said, Eli chose the WWE Headquarters. He had some questions. Typically he is a VERY reluctant writer, but he was so excited that he couldn't hardly concentrate on what he wanted to write because his mind was reeling with questions he wanted to ask. Brynne had some questions for the makers of Barbie at Mattel, Inc. I really do hope they get written responses from these companies. They will just flip!

Helpful homeschooling tips or advice to share ...

When you have a child that is reluctant to do something (i.e. Eli writing letters, or writing anything for that matter), incorporate a topic they enjoy (i.e. writing a letter to the maker of their favorite product)! Delight-directed learning!!!

Things I’m working on…

This coming week's Polar Animals lessons. Join The Usual Mayhem, No Doubt Learning, Montessori Tidbits and Childhood Beckons in our collaborative project.

I’m grateful for…

Homeschooling. When walking through town on Thursday, a woman standing outside a store stopped me and asked me if the kids were already out of school. I told her we homeschool, and she was very kind in her response to it. She mentioned how she feels that as a society we should make more of a move back to the simple way of living, back to the basics. I agreed with her. We went on to the library and while there, my husband called me to tell me about the school shooting in California. He simply said, "Thank you, again, for homeschooling our children."

I rewarded my kids this week by…

taking them for some ice cream at McDonald's. We had to go to a nearby town to get the title and tag work done on our car. They took their books and read while we were at the assessor's office and while we were at the tag agency. As we were leaving the tag agency, one of the employees said, "Go and reward them. They were so good!" Eli even finished his VERY FIRST CHAPTER BOOK EVER! So ice cream was definitely in order! And, Yes, I was there too!

Things you might have missed this week at Journey to Excellence ...
  • We studied the country of Denmark and polar bears as part of our Polar Animals unit.

A photo, video, link, or quote to share (silly, serious or both!)…

When I went to find Eli the other day, he was hiding in the laundry basket in the bathroom. I looked behind the door and behind the shower curtain. Then he jumped out of the laundry basket. He was down completely in it. The kids just cackled that they had tricked me!

We are happily linking up this week at the following sites:


  1. Nolan is wrapping up his Bear activities too. Pine Wood Derby is this month and our Blue and Gold is next month too. Fun stuff!

    Yay to Eli for finishing his first chapter book!! I love the letter writing. Nolan wrote to Hershey's last year and never hear back :( I hope your kids get responses, that will be so fun!

  2. What a fun week (vomiting aside)! I love the idea of having them write to companies. I'm certain that M would be writing to somebody Sims-related, lol

  3. Oh, gosh, poor Dawson! I hope the rest of you don't come down with it. Every night on the news we're hearing about flu everywhere...but they think it's hit its peak. We're not flu-vaxers so we're doing a lot of hand-washing and staying away from anyone that's been sick or is coughing and sneezing a lot.

    Are you still using MEP for math? We moved on from it. ::sigh:: Math is a struggle. I am considering Math-U-See with the blocks. He'll like the blocks! LOL I printed out workbooks for his math now. He did learn to borrow!

    Congratulations on Eli's first chapter book! Awesome! I just pulled out "Flat Stanley" for Sam. (We're going to a BALLET production of Flat Stanley in March...) It will be his first if we can get through it! LOL

    Does Eli want a pen pal? Maybe Sam and Eli could encourage each other to write more! LOL

  4. Oh, I send my prayers for Dawson, and that the rest of you don't get it. Vomiting bugs are the worst, and I almost always join in with the kids.

    I very much admire your delight-directed approach with your kids: the focus on geography, writing a letter to a company Eli is interested put a lot of effort into it and I am sure it pays off in happy, learning-a-lot kids.

  5. Go Eli! I'm so happy he finished his first official "chapter book".

    I always admire your delight directed approach -- I think, in the end, this is what has always worked the best for my kids, too.

    Happy Sunday!

  6. What a great weekly wrap up! I love it! Thanks for including me in it too ;)
    I am LOVING the idea of writing a company. I'm going to steal that to get mine to write more. Genius!! I hope Dawson is better and you all have a wonderful week!

  7. I love so much reading what you guys do during the week. I miss having young ones to do a lot of the fun hands on stuff. Still waiting on our science book here to get started with that review. Have a great week. Hope no one else gets sick.

  8. Snail mail!! Very cool and a good thing to practice. So much more enjoyable than email. Love that smile on Eli's face!


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