Friday, August 30, 2013

Week 5 ~ Blueberries, Thomas Edison and Appointments

In My Life ~ This week was a little more stressful than recent weeks. I can't even put my thumb on why, exactly. For one thing, we had lots of appointments. Some of the appointments dealt with doing tests to eliminate some scary possibilities because Tom Sawyer's lymph nodes are still enlarged. Thankfully, the tests revealed nothing seriously wrong, and we just need to wait for his very reactive immune system to allow the swelling to go down. Secondly, the dentist announced that the time had come for Tom Sawyer to have a referral to the orthodontist. Two kids in braces at the same time stuns me. Especially so because I suspect that braces are going to be tough on my sensory boy. He, however, is very excited about having them (go figure). Lastly, we have been running around gathering Little Red Riding Hood's ballet gear for Tween Company. She finally made it into shoe size 1. She is almost 10 yet has such little feet. I can't believe my little girl has been dancing for six years. She still truly loves to do it.

Blueberry Picking ~ We went blueberry picking on a mountain top this week. The weather was almost perfect. The wild blueberries were tiny but very sweet. We put them into delicious muffins and a buckwheat-blueberry crisp during the week. The kids loved going into a very cold mountain stream after picking.

Learning Time ~ Despite all the appointments, we did get lots of learning in. Goldilocks is working her way through Prince Caspian  this week. Her book reports are showing slight improvement as the weeks go by. She is still using the word and way too much. She is also struggling with putting the sentences together so they make sense. We are hoping she will be starting reading/writing tutoring in a few weeks. She sure needs more help. Goldilocks began being tutored at her math tutor's school building rather than her home this week. She found the tutor's classroom in the middle school overwhelming even with no students present (tutoring is after school hours). I am glad we did not send her to school this year.

Tom Sawyer and Little Red Riding Hood ~ We had another great week for these two. They did lots of math including Life of Fred,, and Teaching Textbooks. We are almost done with our Thomas Edison unit study. The kids conducted experiments with snap circuits, learned about rubber bands and their stretching properties, and used a chemical reaction to make moth balls bounce. The kids were very busy in art this week. They worked with Grandma making pastel drawings, visited our latest building in our architecture study and made flower chains at the hospital art table. History was filled with CNN Student News and part one of The Century by Peter Jennings. We also watched a DVD on the Endurance Expedition to the South Pole.
Bouncing moth balls
Field Trip ~ We visited All Souls Episcopal Cathedral this week for our architecture study. George Vanderbilt commissioned this church and the building was completed in 1896. It was and still is the crown jewel of Biltmore Village which housed many of the workers of Biltmore Estate. The church style is from the Norman period and is Romanesque with Gothic influences. The floor plan is a basic Greek Cross. We were happy to find it open and empty. The kids enjoyed exploring the layout. They were interested in the large baptistery and enjoyed looking at all of the needlepoint kneeling cushions which have been made by many former parishioners. Tom Sawyer pointed out that the building material, pebble and dash, was used on the outside of the church. He thought it looked dirty and needed a power wash!

Blessings, Dawn


  1. I'm sorry you've been feeling a bit stressed this week. I don't enjoy it when we have lots of appointments to go to either.
    I love the picture of your three children in the stream, completely unconcerned that they are getting wet! Oh, to be a child again!
    I hope this week is a more peaceful week for you.

  2. I'm glad to hear that Tom Sawyer's swollen lymph nodes are nothing serious. You certainly sis get a lot of learning in despite being frazzled with appointments. I know exactly what that's like! Thanks for lining up to Friendship Friday at Living and Learning with our new normal-

  3. I love the architecture. What a great week of school... a great mixture of all sorts of fun things.

  4. I wish I had been in your homeschool this week! Blueberry picking in the mountains, all that hands-on learning and experiments, and the trip to the cathedral! I love old homes and buildings...the architecture of the cathedral is amazing.

    My oldest had a serious infection as a baby and then mono at age ten. We have quite a few issues with her lymph nodes getting very swollen, but it's never been anything serious. Her immune system has to work in overdrive to keep her well. I hope Tom Sawyer is fine. We will pray for him!

    Where did you find a Thomas Edison unit study or did you make it up?

  5. Another great week Dawn!! I LOVE the blueberry pics!! How gorgeous. The Cathedral is amazing too! I hope you have a wonderful upcoming week! Thank you for always be so supportive and sweet on my blog. :)