We have done a lot of canning this year. Mostly tomatoes and various sauces, because we ridiculously-over-planted tomatoes, by about 40 plants. Yes. We have 48 tomato plants, and I wouldn’t be surprised if our skin tone took on a slight ruddiness after winter and all our put away tomato products! We also did Blackberry Jam, which is easy. You can just turn the jar … Continue reading Jam Jar Half-Full or Half-Empty and Computer Malfunctions
These topics come up because of something Ben is learning in school. Part of me wishes they would give us some warning. But then I realize that if they left it up to group rule, our poor kids wouldn’t learn anything, because adults would argue over when it’s appropriate to bring up certain topics. Ben, in 3rd grade, was learning the story of Harriet Tubman, … Continue reading And just like that, we are talking about Slavery around the dinner table.
I am allowed Scotch Tape, and that is all. This is as a safety precaution, to protect me, so says my husband, my 4-year old and my 8-year old. They decided this amid howls of laughter, as my husband described what could happen if I were allowed access to Duct tape. They would come home to find me stuffed into the middle of a giant … Continue reading It turns out, I am not Cool Enough to Duct Tape my Glasses
Last night I had a mini-meltdown over the topic of discussing war with my kids. Some great ideas came from visitors to the blog while I slept. This morning, I want to look at the whole idea from a completely different perspective. Last night, and even over the weekend, I was melancholy over the sad and tragic parts of war. I have to remember that … Continue reading Operation: Get to Know our Military
Is it ever too early to broach the subject of peace? After watching a WWI Flying Ace movie over the weekend, dinner conversation tonight drifted into the idea of immortality. We have talked about Legends, and Icons and the idea that Heroes are Remembered Forever, but Legends Never Die. We have talked about artists and musicians and great people throughout history who are considered legends. … Continue reading The Many Shades between Right and Wrong, and How do we Talk about War?
Saturday Night we watched a movie with the boys called Flyboys, about American pilots flying for the French in WWI. It mostly focused on the flying, but there were moments that showed the devastation of war, the displaced families, the star-crossed lovers and the heartbreak of it. The boys missed most of that, but it clung to me as I was picking tomatoes on Sunday … Continue reading Canning Tomatoes, while being Lost in Paris most of the Day
We are in the middle of a very busy season of our lives. Yesterday morning, I was canning before work, making cucumber relish. (I’ll share pictures at another time) We are canning or harvesting every weekend. We have animals, and we are preparing fencing and animal shelters to bring in more. We just got finished with the Fall Home Show where my husband and I … Continue reading This Better Be a Real Emergency, Or So Help Me!
Bean is our little Philosopher. He thinks deep thoughts, and says the most amazing things under his breath while speaking to himself. He also talks non-stop, out-loud. If you try to listen in or ask what he’s talking about, he’ll sometimes snap that “I was talking to myself.” What gets me is when we are listening to music in the car, he’s sitting in the … Continue reading Asphalt, Butter, Helicopter – or Cussing for a 4-year Old
Last night at dinner, we got into a very complicated discussion about a design/build issue with the down-hill go-cart that Ben, our 8-years old is currently planning. I say we, but it was actually my husband and Ben working out the kinks in the design. At one point, my husband took his dinner plate and a knife to make a visual of a larger … Continue reading Thank Goodness my Husband Reads Blueprints!
We live in the country, we let our egg laying chickens free range, we grow our own food, and this year we are learning about canning, putting away all sorts of things for eating later this winter. My boys are creative to the nth degree. Their little minds are like sponges gobbling up everything we feed them. So, I try to feed their minds with … Continue reading The Awkward Downside of a Classical Education
Ben’s painting We were so excited about the start of school this year. Ben has said he hates school since first grade. This year, his teacher seems to be into Art, and we were incredibly hopeful. Yet, when Ben got off the bus, he was morose and discouraged. It was only the first day, so that’s a lot of just going over expectations, and showing … Continue reading Art & Music – First Day of School
Circle time at dinner is our chance to go around the table and talk about something together as a family, each taking turns. It’s amazing how random the conversations get at times, but if we have a topic, we can stay on track and everyone gets the spotlight for a minute. Last night, the discussion was about our favorite foods. We went meal by meal. … Continue reading Dinner Dreams and Gibberish
After I have read stories, sung songs, and tucked into bed my two little guys, my seven-year old says, “You know what’s wierd?” We are hugging goodnight, and once again, he has made up another ritual for bedtime, prolonging the inevitable of sleep. He reminds me of his older brother, who, when he was 10 or 11 years old, would start every single sentence with one of three … Continue reading Looks like a Tomato
This is a new phase for us – where Benny does art to explain himself when he’s in trouble for something, or when he needs a reminder of the rules – if he does an art piece, it seems to help us communicate better about what is going on. This piece of art was difficult for me because Benny absolutely couldn’t listen to me when … Continue reading Art Helps Us Say Difficult Things
“I love you as big as a house,” we say. He loves us “as big as a building that Spiderman would stand on top of and swing from rope to rope to rope,” and he’s off – demonstrating the rope swing across the room and down the hall, and somehow he’s forgotten what he started saying. He loves us so much that he forgets all … Continue reading As Loud as my Fingers Can Snap!