So. That title. It's not exactly New Year's anymore! Ha. But I titled and started writing this post the week of New Year's and I'm going to just finish it off and get it up.
It has been a quiet few months on the blog, and if you know me in person, you know why...
The nausea and fatigue that come with the first trimester weren't all that have kept me away from this space -- we had a solid month of illness here at our house, plus Advent preparations and Christmas celebrations that required what little energy I had to be focused on our family.
BUT our happy news has certainly been the major reason I have been absent, and I'm hoping that now that I'm almost at the halfway point in this pregnancy, I'll be back to my normal blogging self soon. I've never been a high-volume blogger, but I do have so many topics I'd like to write about that it would be nice to be able to be in this space more often.
Baby is due at the very beginning of July, God willing. Your prayers are much appreciated!
And the story behind the photo above: when we made the announcement to the kids around Thanksgiving, they were ecstatic -- especially the Middles. Xavier and Bridget immediately ran to the table and started drawing pictures and writing little announcements, grabbed some tape, and hung them up all over the house. And they haven't let me take them down! So amidst our Christmas decorations are little pictures and signs. It was the funniest reaction to a baby announcement we have ever had.
Another thing that has been keeping me busy is CM West :: Conference in the Redwoods! It has been an exciting few weeks as Amber and I finish up what needs to be done before the event. I've got a few requests for you:
:: First, if you're in the Western part of the country and want to keep abreast of future conference and retreat opportunities, head over to CM West to sign up for the mailing list and follow our Facebook page. We're planning for the Bay Area and Seattle events to be annual, and other regional opportunities may pop up as well -- subscribing to CM West ensures you will get the registration announcements.
:: And second: I'll be giving a workshop on foreign language at this year's conference, and I'd like to crowdsource a bit. What most keeps you from studying a foreign language with your children? What do you find most challenging? What do you feel you least understand about the method? I am in the "paring down to one hour" stage of my prep work and I'm hoping that your answers will help me focus my presentation.
For your reading/listening pleasure...
I enjoyed Sally's interview with Cindy Rollins on The Mason Jar a couple weeks ago. If you haven't had a chance to listen, it's a good one! Sally mentioned Dana Goioa's "Poetry as Enchantment," which thoughtfully considers of the musicality of poetry and how it appeals to human nature's best side. Worth a listen and a read!
CMI published Karen Glass' rebuttal to some criticisms Consider This received from other Charlotte Mason educators. I have been anticipating her response ever since I first read the blog posts countering Glass' book, which I felt misrepresented her arguments. I am not invested in the CM-classical argument personally (I find it interesting philosophically but have no "dog in the fight") but I do not like to see statements get taken out of context to such an extent that good will is lost among the Charlotte Mason community. If you're interested in reading more, please do click over and "consider this." :)
Keeping Company is now in its third year! If you missed this month's round-up, head over and read and join. I've been excited to see some new-to-me accounts pop up on Instagram, and I have really enjoyed the blog posts included so far too.
I just wanted to share a few snapshots from our Christmas festivities, a month late. ;)
We still have a week of Christmas left -- Candlemas is February 2nd and officially closes the Christmas season around here -- so I'll soon be sharing our Christmas crafting and the Christmas books gifted in our home, as usual!
It's exam week here, and I'm prepping for Term 3. I picked up my prints at Kinkos last night (we're doing Winslow Homer) and downloaded The Story of Dvorak to load to my phone (thanks to a tip from my friend, Dawn). That's two things down! Here's what's left on my list:
:: select and print dictation passages (for Year 5 kids) and copywork (for Form I)
:: select and print memory work
:: plan Morning Basket
:: decide on mapwork for all grades
:: order my son's geometry book
:: prep our Italian materials for the term
:: refresh our bookshelves, binders, pencil boxes
Whew! I'm hoping I'll get a couple hours on Saturday (in addition to the couple hours I need for pre-reading!) to finish that all off so we can start with a clean slate and prepared home on Monday.
Last night our local CM study group had a "resource share" and I brought a bag of random favorites to show the group. Here's what I included:
Sloane's The Diary of an Early American Boy (his books are great to use for line drawings in Books of Centuries!)
foldable book stand (we have three and I probably need to get another)
two-pack of timers
Winston Grammar, basic level
The Backard Birdsong Guide (would make a great gift!)
Frixion pens (the kids use these for almost everything now)
and our new nature journaling sets, which I'll be sharing here soon in more detail!
A rather odd combination of items that I've mostly mentioned here on the blog at one point or another, but that's what popped into my bag while I was walking about my house right before the meeting! :)
Have a lovely week, friends! I'll finally have my post about pre-reading up next. See you then!