Monday, April 13, 2015

{This and That}

Happy Easter, friends!  I know I'm late in sharing these, but I can't resist.  And after all, Easter is a season. ;)  Did you have a blessed octave?

We took Holy Week and Easter Week off of school completely, but this morning we're back with a modified and very light summer schedule.  I'll share more about that soon!


I mentioned the kids' Easter baskets were full of books, but we did have some other goodies too: frisbees, socks, a wee bit of candy, Schleich animals, and these pencil boxes for my school-aged kids:

I'm not sure why I never thought of this before, but instead of having to grab a pencil, eraser, pen, and their shared colored pencil box before binder work each morning (and arguing discussing whose is whose instead of getting right down to work), each child now has a personal box with a complete set.  We keep them by the dining table (where they do their schoolwork) rather than in by the kitchen table (where we keep the rest of the art supplies), so they're easy to grab and get started.  It's the little things, right?

Here's what's inside:
a set of tristables (we have the 18-count sets, but they also have a 30-count)
a mechanical pencil
frixion erasable pens in blue and black
a waterproof drawing marker
two drawing pencils, 2H and 2B
an eraser
gray and peach crayons (two colors missing from the twistables set)

I've also since added a waterbrush, and they keep a watercolor paint set nearby.


A couple weekends ago I did the seasonal clothing switch-out, one of my most dreaded chores.  Our standard uniform for girls around the house is long-sleeved knit dress with leggings for winter and short-sleeved knit dress with capri leggings for the summer.  For little ones, knit dresses are so easy to find, but for my 8yo daughter, it is now a challenge.  But after lots of looking, I found my perfect play dress for the right price: these from LL Bean.  I bought three to get us through the summer.  I want to wait and see how much fading/pilling there ends up being by fall, but so far, so good!


Looking for a boost in education reading to get you through the rest of the school year?  Some of my favorites from the past few weeks:

A Manifesto for Liberal Education
What the English of Shakespeare, Beowulf, and King Arthur Actually Sounded Like
On the Strange Squid Near at Hand
Why America's Obsession with STEM Education is Dangerous
Chesterton and the Meaning of Education


Last weekend, our local library had its annual chamber music performance.  Afterward, they allow the children to come up and try half- or quarter-sized versions of the string instruments.  Now Gianna is dying to take cello and Vincent violin.  Even Xavier made himself a paper violin and has been madly playing around the house.  I told them we'll see after a few more years of piano.


From my early-morning hill run this past weekend:

I see more wildflowers on our running group's various hill routes than I do on our nature study outings!  It's too bad I'm, you know, running and can't exactly stop to take photo after photo, but we saw 25-30 different varieties last week, if I had to guess.  It's prime time for flowers here and the elevation plus the remoteness of our usual trails means lots of diversity and color.

I did come home with a snip of Indian paintbrush, a new favorite.  Into the nature journal and then into the flower press!


I'll be back tomorrow to post the April Keeping Company link-up.  See you then!


  1. Oh my word your children are so stinking cute, Celeste. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I love the Easter pictures! Your children are adorable.

    We attended a concert where the children were able to touch and try the instruments (they called it an instrument petting zoo, which I thought was a great name for it!) and it was such a great experience. I had hoped to go again this season, but the dates didn't work for us. I'm hoping that I can make it happen next school year though.

    I'm looking forward to checking out some of those links, too! The one about language really caught my eye. My daughter and I have been reading Chaucer and we're having fun with the language and the cadence. I also just bought a recording of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight where there is a modern translation of the poem followed by the the poem read in the original language. I haven't listened to it yet, but I'm looking forward to it!

    1. Yes, ours was called a petting zoo too. :) The young people that put it on always do a great job and are very good with the kids but also excellent musicians. So happy to have a program like this in our area, even if it's only annually.

      I love reading about linguistics, and particularly the development of English. I can't tell you how many college students I taught that would complain about Shakespeare's "Old English"...until I showed them actual Old English. Suddenly Shakespeare didn't seem so remote. ;) And when I was in grad school, I had to read Chaucer in the original. I totally cheated and used a side-by-side translation because I found it *so* slow-going and I was pressed for time. But that's the kind of thing I would get a real kick out of doing now, and will do I'm sure sometime in the future with the kids.