Saturday, May 9, 2020

Week 8 of Quarantine...The Great Outdoors

The 2019-2020 school year is wrapping up. I am very pleased with how well the end is going. We are full steam ahead and no one is complaining. That is a refreshing change from some years. Since my teens are not overwhelmed by out of the home distractions, they are cheerfully finishing the school year. Anne has even proclaimed that she wants to keep going and start her senior year immediately. We spent a bit of time deciding what she wanted to do for her last undecided credit. She decided that she wanted to do a year of piano lessons using the app Flowkey, my limited skills from three years of lessons in high school, and the array of piano books in our home. I think that will be a lovely addition to her high school credits and will leave her graduating with 28 credits. I will talk more about her senior year in a few weeks, but I don't want to get ahead of ourselves.

Resources that We Love

The past few weeks we have really enjoyed Physics Girl on YouTube. I have tried to introduce her before and the teens balked at watching her videos. However, they love her now. I guess they needed a stronger understanding of physics before they could really understand and enjoy her videos. She is fun, lively and very smart. Her experiments are fun and she travels the world to amazing places such as CERN. She brings our least favorite subject alive.

We are in the final stretch of our unit study of The Hobbit. We should finish it on Monday or Tuesday. We really enjoyed it, too, and the discussion questions from Memoria Press added to our understanding and the richness of the text.

We are also learning so much from the book, Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fighters and The Flaws, by Cynthia and Sanford Levinson. What a fascinating book; it really gives understanding to all of the red tape and stalemates that we experience in government today.

Anne is really enjoying the free Rockettes class that is posted each week on the Internet. It is a great addition to her quarantine dance life.

Getting Outdoors

When we aren't busy with our academics, we are trying to enjoy the outdoors more and more. Yes, staying home is getting really old. Even though our state along with most of the others is slowly starting to reopen, it doesn't mean we as a family are planning on running back out there too soon. We will wait and see for awhile what will happen. I suspect that we are going to have a huge spike in illness. Everyone must decide for themselves what risks they are willing to take. We are enjoying our yard and going to hiking trails on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

We have had a few bonfires in the last week or so. We are putting the Ash tree we chopped down to good use, and it is giving us lots of enjoyment. We sometimes tell ghost stories, make roasted marshmallows, whittle sticks and generally enjoy a calm, media-free hour by the fire. Anne is holding a phone in one of the pictures because she was trying to capture a picture on it. 

We also had a marvelous photo shoot in the woods one day. The whole family went, but only Anne wanted her photo taken. Anne is always eager to do dance shots in different environments. She got lots of attention from people we passed on the trail. (Most people don't go hiking in a leotard and broken pointe shoes. lol) She did wear boots during much of the three mile hike.

The Stores

So I ventured out into the world to get more groceries. The shelves were bare in the cleaning, toilet paper, baking and meat aisles. There was a scattering of other products on the rest of the aisles. One could get everything else, but not of the same brands or sizes I usually choose. I hear that the local chain grocery store still has some of the items that others don't have, but I also am hearing so many stories of how rude the customers are being and that they aren't practicing social distancing. Also, the workers are barely being protected. I am just not desperate enough for toilet paper or cleaning supplies to venture in there yet.

I hope all of you are safe and sound.

Blessings, Dawn


  1. I find the differences is different parts of the country very interesting. Here, the shelves are basically normal, though I do have to go through the lines a couple of times in order to buy the quantities we need as there are limits on meat and canned goods. :) I'm appalled that the shelves in your area are so empty. Anne, as always, is so, so lovely. I can totally imagine the audience she would attract on a trail. We haven't had a fire in over a week. I'm inspired by your post to have one tonight. I wish you all good health and joy!!!!

  2. Those are great photos of Anne on the trail. Spectacular shot of her leg muscle definition in the one photo!

    Our stores are still sparse too. Meat is the biggest issue now. The chain stores have sold out, so everyone is going to our local butcher...which means they are out now too.

  3. YOur daughter photos are excellent. What a great idea! Loved the one of her in the round opening. I will check out your government book as we are doing that next year. I go out only once a week and am still shocked by people not behaving appropriately. so sad Glad you are all staying safe and sound and things are going smoothly'

  4. Those dance photos are fantastic and I can definitely imagine the looks she would have gotten hiking in that. LOL.