As I always say, summer has a mind of its own, and this year has been no exception. August, especially, has been full, mostly of good things.
The boys’ birthdays are both in August, so this keeps me busy most of the month, and we usually take time off around their birthdays so that I can decorate, clean the house, and bake a chocolate cake from scratch, etc. We do not do big birthday parties. We have some family over for dinner and cake on each of their birthdays, and this year we had a “birthday play date” with two of the boys’ friends too. It was just like a regular play date, but it included decorations, cake and snacks, and a game of Star Wars monopoly. Everyone seemed to have a lot of fun.
For the eleven-year-old’s birthday, however, we changed our plans at the last minute because we found out that the Yargo Trio was giving a free concert, so we all went to that instead. This was also special because it was the eight-year-old’s first time attending a live, evening performance (that wasn’t his brother’s recital), and he did great! He even said he enjoyed it. So now I’m excited that this coming year might include lots of free concerts that all four of us can go to.
I finished up all the paperwork I needed to do to wrap up our 4th & 1st grade years. I finished making a slideshow from this year’s photos. I was disappointed that I got lazy this year and used my camera phone for most of the photos, and I took less too, but it’s still a fun slideshow to watch. I also gave the boys’ a certificate of completion, which really isn’t necessary, but it kind of makes the year feel complete.
I put all these things into their portfolio binders, and one of these days, I’ll figure out where to put the binders — binders are stacking up after these past few years of homeschooling!
Although I’m not planning to officially start 5th and 2nd grade until the first week of September, I’ve continued to do lessons throughout the summer. They have been “light” lessons, mostly readalouds and some math. And my big project was to find a Spanish curriculum that I thought we’d stick with. I found it! I will be sure to write about it in the future.
This month we also took the boys one day to the Georgia Museum of Art. We loved the paintings by Martin Johnson Heade, which was a temporary exhibit. (Click the link to see some of his work.) It’s fun to go to the museum once in a while and see what they have on display.
What else have we done this month? I have been organizing the new year’s curriculum, going through stacks of random resources that I’ve been given or bought at library book sales, putting away what I don’t need and setting out what I will use.
I’m also thrilled that I finished my small project: The Everyday Homeschooler’s Guide to Teaching 1st Grade. (Although, it’s really for any child between the ages of 4-8 or thereabouts.) I have some other projects I’m thinking about, but they will get done very. very. very. sloooowly. Because my urgent to do list always takes precedence: plan daily lessons, laundry, fix breakfast, do dishes, teach lessons, fix lunch, do dishes, teach lessons, go to an appointment, laundry….you get the drift.
Random appointments and extracurricular activities have begun again. Piano lessons never stopped during the summer, except for the eight-year-old, who stopped them completely. However, he’s begun taking cello lessons, and he loves it! His teacher is great. We’re very excited about this change and can’t wait to see where it will go. So this year we’ll be looking for free cello recitals and concerts to attend as well as piano. 🙂
Although it’s always a struggle to keep a garden in this climate and on my budget, I’ve been enjoying the few flowers I’ve managed to grow and especially the butterflies I’ve attracted. I’ll write about that another time too.
What else do I want to write about on this blog? Let’s see. I have created a page for both book reviews and curriculum reviews that you can access from my right-hand margin. (The curriculum review page is not yet live.) I have a goal to write about the books we read both on here and at home/school/life, and I’ll also write more curriculum reviews for the home/school/life blog. So I wanted to give you a way to access all of those posts from this blog, but I also encourage you to follow the home/school/life blog because it’s a good blog too!
Once we’re settled into our new school year, I’ll write a post about this year’s curriculum, and later in the year I’ll write about what worked and didn’t work as I always do.
I’m also going to set up pages that is all about our history lessons. My husband let his History for Homeschoolers’ website expire, but I can still give you links to his lectures on YouTube. I’ll also write about how I’m teaching history to my boys as we go along.
But all of this takes so much time. I wish I could blog everyday, but my posts are random at best. This just means that our homeschooling life is full and busy, and that’s a good thing. I hope you’ll write to me in the comments section or by e-mail. Feel free to just chat or ask questions about what you’d like to know about homeschooling. You might inspire me to write a post. And I’d love to know how homeschooling or parenthood is going for you.
Thanks for reading.