What a wonderfully busy week.
Last year I stumbled upon a book that is a coloring book study of the town we live in. Each page profiles a different area of historic interest and gives the children a few paragraphs to read. The picture is meant to be colored in and there is a space for an actual picture of the child or family at each location. We did one page and it has been sitting collecting dust for one year. I asked my friend if she and her two girls would like to join us as we resurrected this binder, brushed off the dust and discovered that we were really energized to begin. We met at the location that was once a wooden fort off our Main Street. We were shocked to learn that one of the oak trees (we hope it is still there) is a direct descendent of the Charter Oak - from which the chair we sat in at the Capital Building this March was made! How cool is that! Now we are on the hunt for a historian who can answer if this tree is still standing and if so, which one it is. Of course I remembered the binders, the beach blanket, the markers, and even my camera but forgot the memory card which was sitting in my laptop! The girls need more time at this location so we are meeting again this week and pictures will be coming.
In History we read Chapter 31 The Mauryan Empire of India , which went into more detail of Buddha and his teachings. We watched a PBS movie (well part of a movie) about the ancient history of India. It gave them a glimpse into the beauty of this culture. My girls are asking some interesting questions about religion and God. We noticed that Siddartha path was eerily similar to Mother Teresa’s. I have to stop into the Parish Center of our church to borrow the dvd about Mother Teresa’s life. At first I thought it might be too old for my girls but now we must watch it together. Henna was incorporated into our art this week. Since ancient times people of Egypt and India have used henna for cooling purposes, as well as decorative body art. We had fun painting it on and letting the dye set.
We are beginning Chapter 6 (Leaves) in Botany and it is a long one. Last night Grace had her friend over for dinner. As they were making a salad, she asked her friend if he knew that romaine lettuce was a vegetable and a cucumber is a fruit. They had a fabulous conversation as they prepared the salad together. She was eager to pass on her newly acquired knowledge and I knew that she synthesized her learning of chapter 5. When a child teaches another child without prompting or guidance and the knowledge they pass on is correct, that is true assessment. As I am reading Green for Life, I have come to understand that Greens are really their own separate food category, but I did not get into that too much with them. However, I did point out that the carrot tops were more nutrition than the root vegetable. I explained how the plant puts the bulk of the nutrients into the greens to perpetuate the longevity of the plant and sends the sweet sugar down to the roots to attract organisms that feed on it and keep the soil naturally fertilized, thus ensuring the plants livelihood. I have plans to turn those carrot tops into a tasty (hopefully) smoothie soon!
We were out and about almost every day this week. I am feeling stressed. I have to take my calendar and cut our plans in half. I want to finish our history text and botany text by the end of June and I need to devote some additional time to it.
This week we:
- fed the ducks at the pond
- had pottery class and piano lessons
- signed up for tennis which starts Tuesday
- swam at the YMCA with our Girl Scout Friends
- had a friend over for dinner
- played at a friend’s house while I tutored
In addition to these things we also met new friends at their house. The girls had the best time. They belong to a neighborhood association which is very camp-like. It was too wet and rainy to explore the river and the playground, but they brought lots of blankets up to the clubhouse, played soccer with their puppy and put on a show for us. They played with musical instruments, discovered they like drumming, realized I am not the only Mom who loves green smoothies, and were invited to drop in to an activity their friends enjoy: rock climbing! We look forward to getting together with them again.
Now the weekend is here and I wish I could say it is a time to rest and enjoy our family. The reality is it is a very busy weekend for us filled with appointments, church, park clean ups and first communions. In between I need to spend some time in my yard cleaning up the remnants of our harsh winter and beautifying it for the warmer weather. Hopefully, maybe next week we will open up the pool. I can’t believe that this time last year we had been swimming for a few weeks. Yikes, it is still cold around these parts. Too cold to swim at least........