Sunday, June 27, 2021

{This and That} :: A Quick Summer Update

It has been too long since I have had the chance to sit down and pull a post together here! I have had a couple posts swirling around in my mind -- one on our summer routine (including handicrafts and nature study) and one on some favorite assignments from this past school year. But the time to actually type them out hasn't presented itself. I am hoping for a slower July that will allow for some blogging!

In the meantime, I thought I would at least jump in with a bit of {This and That}...

First, some news for those on the East Coast that I didn't want to miss! 

In lieu of the CMEC Summer Retreat this year, Amy and I will be attending casual afternoon gatherings in three different cities this July. I'll be speaking on Sustaining Practices for the Mother-Teacher, and there will be time for discussion, brush drawing, refreshments, and social time.

It has been a long time since I have attended any in-person events, and I'm really looking forward to these. Casual, encouraging time spent with other homeschool mothers sounds so refreshing right now! 

As with our Summer Retreat, registration is open to the public, so if you are in the area, please consider joining us. You can get all the details here.

(And speaking of the CMEC, membership for the 2021-2022 School Year is currently open but will close as fall begins. If you are interested in learning more about our offerings, head over to the website and request our Information Packet, which features a video tour of our website, sample programs, and more.)


We have stayed close to home this summer but have still enjoyed some "staycation" fun:

One of my goals this summer was for the kids to have plenty of opportunities to swim. The older five of my kids are fairly good swimmers, but my younger five have had swim lessons interrupted/delayed due to Covid and needed more time in the water. Once or twice a week, we have been going to the pool for the whole afternoon, then enjoying a picnic and some time at the park. (The kids love playing baseball!)

This sweetest little swimmer always has a blast...

Because I often get asked this: we always look for swimsuits that provide good coverage and are still comfortable for active play. I am very fair, and several of my kids have inherited my sunburn-prone skin. We also try to dress modestly as a family. Long-sleeved rash guards and swim shorts work well all around. (Gianna has this top and these bottoms, for example.) We also all wear sunhats when we will be out in the sun for a long stretch. We keep everyone's hats in one bag, swimsuits in another, and towels + sunscreen in a third, stowed in the hall closet. Floaties and toys stay in the trunk of our van. This makes getting out the door much easier for our big family!

Another fun part of our summer was my parents' visit! Grandma even taught my girls to make lasagna. My mom makes her own sauce and her own ricotta cheese, so I rarely bother cooking lasagna since hers is just. so. good. What a treat!

The older six kids also went to their annual A's game with Daddy.



I have spent lots of time pre-reading and planning for our next school year. Last summer I did so much of my prep up front and I loved how prepared I felt all year! I have been slowly working through books and subjects and am hoping to have lots of time in July to finish it off.

Right now I'm just finishing the American history spine for high school and it's so, so good. I have to keep stopping to commonplace favorite bits, like this one:

I'm using the same notebook as last year for my pre-reading notebook and logbook. They are the perfect size and very durable -- and they get a TON of use, so that's important to me! (I like the lined for my pre-reading notes and the dot grid for my logbook.)


A little Emilia update: 17 months old and such a firecracker!

Precocious, determined, observant, playful, and LOUD! We just love her.


Some special occasions have passed over the last few months too...

Drew turned seven, Xavier turned eleven, and Vincent turned FIFTEEN!

The girls helped me make Vincent a coconut cream pie, his dessert of choice. It was their first time whipping cream and making a custard, so it provided a great baking lesson too!

Last but certainly not least: Clara received her First Holy Communion this morning! It was the feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, whose icon hangs above the chapel altar, so that was special. And my two oldest sons were able to serve Mass.

We gift each child a holy water font for their First Communion, so Clara will receive this one. And the older girls are making blondies to celebrate! I am grateful for days like these.

How is your summer shaping up?

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