Saturday, November 2, 2019

Hello, November!

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We had some wild rain followed by crazy wind over Halloween night. The result is that we woke up this morning to a neighbor's tree that fell through our yard and hit our back building (which we refer to as the back house). There is structural damage. We will see if insurance covers it. Never a dull moment!
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We had a very rainy Halloween. We dressed up and walked around the mall so we could watch all the little kids trick or treat and see their cute costumes. Dean didn't want to dress up at all this year. Then we went out to dinner at our favorite burger place. Lastly, it was home for a fun Tim Burton move, The Corpse Bride.
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Anne was a Steam Punk lady.
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Timothy was a knight.
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Dear husband was Dustin from Stranger Things.
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I was a Steam Punk lady.

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Earlier this week, Anne was helping me move bookcases around the library. She was crawling along on her knees and managed to get a small, thick shard of porcelain in her knee. We couldn't get it out and had to take her to Urgent Care. They had a hard time getting it out as well and had to take x-rays to see the exact location and size so they would not have to cut into her skin too much. It was an adventure. She is feeling better now.
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We also had a blast at the local high school's haunted house. They do a nice job each year and all of the proceeds go to the band. My kids know lots of teens in the band, so it is a fun way to support them while seeing their spooky performing skills.

In between all the crazy we had a good school week. With the weather being cold and rainy, spending time with our family read-aloud basket has been very popular this week. We haven't put the heat on yet, but we will have to do so soon. The house fell to 62 degrees briefly one morning. I read from several books over the course of an hour. We enjoyed learning more about Nikola Tesla and are having fun with our unit study on electricity.

We also enjoyed our latest Mel Science Kit. I find it a bit underwhelming for my teens, and I wish they did a bit more teaching for the price of the kit. However, it could be that I would be more impressed if I could get the app to work on my phone. I need to put more effort into that before next month's kit arrives. This month they did the tin hedgehog and the tin dendrite. To make the tin hedgehog, a salt (tin chloride) is mixed and added to a drop of zinc, which lies in the bottom of the tube. As a result of a substitution reaction, some zinc will dissolve into the tin chloride solution, while tin precipitates on the surface of the zinc pellet form needles, thus making the pellet look a little like a tiny hedgehog (look closely at the bottom of the test tube that Anne is holding). However, they preferred making the tin dendrite tree with electricity (shown in the video clip).

Tin hedgehog at the bottom of the test tube

Making the tin dendrite

Both teens did fairly well completing a week's worth of independent lessons. Anne is really enjoying geometry. She cracks me up. I think that is my most dreaded math. Dean is moving along slowly and steadily. He should have two or three workbooks done before Thanksgiving and be ready to move on to new ones. This week he was most interested in his Draw and Write Through History workbook and doing picture studies of some of Edgar Degas's work.

In our house the close of Halloween is the close of Spooky Season and the true beginning of Nutcracker Season. Rehearsals are already intensifying, and Anne will be at the studio every day this week (except Halloween), including six hours on Saturday. Nutcracker season takes over our lives, and it is always hard to maintain a balance. However, I have got lots of plans and experience on how to create balance after nine previous years of Nutcrackers.

Blessings, Dawn


  1. Oh dear, I hope the insurance covers the damage to the back house! Love the costumes! Thanks for linking up at Homeschool Highlights!

  2. Oh! I echo Kym in my hopes for your back house! You are all good celebraters! I admire that. Those tin projects look fun! What an adventure with your Anne! You're not kidding about it never being dull. :) I'm glad to read good things for you all. I hope that Dean is doing ok; I have you ever in my prayers.

  3. That wind and rain was crazy on Halloween, wasn't it? I hope insurance covers the damage, very glad it missed the house though. Great costumes!