Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I Can't Wait!

Opera Season starts in November . . . reservations will begin soon!

I totally heart the Opera.

Especially at Educational Discount prices. ;-)

Stay tuned.

Until next time . . .

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Torrid and Tasty or Just a Hot Mess?

Due to Mom #2's high blood pressure which has her on a special diet, coupled with the fact that we both are trying to eat more natural, healthy non-processed foods in addition to the fact that we're always broke . . . we eat at home a lot.

Actually we eat at home exclusively.

Eating at home guarantees that I know exactly what is going into the food I'm serving my family (especially if it's food from Mom #2's delicious organic garden) and best of all, it is cheap.

Seriously, have you ever tried to fill up a 16 year old boy with restaurant food? It's extremely expensive. I don't recommend it at all. If you want to fill up a 16 year old boy, and make it stick, I recommend good old fashioned home cooking from scratch. Believe me, I've tried everything else and that is the only thing that works. A biscuit on the side of anything works wonders. All hail the mighty Paula Deen.

But actually, I'm already on a tangent. I'm totally off the whole point of this post.

Baby Boy went over to my sister's house to keep my niece company while she went somewhere. I don't know where. Who cares where, really. The point is, it's the first time Baby Boy hasn't been home for dinner in . . . well . . . ever.

Mom #2 and I were lamenting about what to do for dinner. I couldn't figure out how to cook a reasonable amount of food for just the two of us without tearing up my entire kitchen and producing a city block worth of left overs. I have no idea how to cook a meal without making 3 or 4 portions for Baby Boy. Also, I exclusively do all the kitchen cleaning around here, so that often plays a part in my menu planning, LOL.

Anyway . . . another tangent.

to me, Mom #2 ordered a pizza online. A pizza! I mean a real, hot, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, black olive, deep crust pizza. Heaven! I can't remember the last time we had a pizza delivered to this house. We were giggling with anticipation, because we were doing something so naughty. We'd never have a pizza delivered to this house if Baby Boy was here. We made plans to discreetly dispose of the box where he'd never find it and dug in with a giddy heart and hungry bellies. Pizza!

But you know what? It was all right. Mom #2 and I both decided we hadn't missed anything and that my cooking is lots better. Oh well.

But . . . it only took me 5 minutes to clean up the kitchen. Small victories, People. Live and learn.

Until next time . . .

Monday, September 21, 2009

Fight Sequence

Over the past couple of years, Baby Boy has been writing and illustrating his own original comic book series about the ongoing saga of all things resident evil and the complex characters that are needed to save the world from them.

I usually don't pay too much attention to it, because I've become accustomed to seeing him with a pad of artist's paper and his various writing utensils all the time.

I did, however, think he did a really impressive job on the latest fight sequence. I thought I'd share so you could have just a tiny taste of what I get to read all day every day.

Oh, and just imagine hundreds of sheets of paper all over every horizontal space in your child's room.

Keep your eyes open, you may be seeing more in bookstores near you sometime in the future. At least that's what I tell myself when I'm picking up paper and colored pencils up off the floor, the dresser, the bed and the coffee table.

Until next time . . .

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fantastic Friday Already? Oh My!

Wow! This has been a whirlwind of a week!

I now have a totally new level of respect for you ladies (and possibly a few gentlemen . . . I’m not sure) who work and homeschool and keep a clean house and provide healthy meals and some how manage to maintain a grip on your sanity. My sanity is waning, but I think I’m managing the rest of it all ok. Of course, that’s just my personal opinion. You may have to ask Baby Boy and Mom #2 for the official decision on that, LOL.

The first couple of weeks of school have been exciting, challenging and productive. I can’t imagine a better group of adjectives to describe our learning time together, so I am completely exhausted yet satisfied.

Baby Boy is at Shakespeare rehearsal right now, or I’d ask for some more detail on his studies, but I know this blog has been a little slow lately, so I’m going to go ahead and attempt to post our weekly report without him. Wish me luck!

  • English Comp seems to be going very well. I think we both like having the DVD teacher and I’m learning a little bit of structure along with Baby Boy. Right now it’s just paragraphs and taking notes from paragraphs and rewriting them in you own words without plagiarizing, but that’s a very important skill, so I’m happy to revisit it.
  • We’re learning lots of great words in vocabulary. Baby Boy aced his first quiz!
  • We’re a little more than halfway through Frankenstein. It’s so good. I read it in high school, but that was a looooonnnnngggggg time ago and I’d forgotten what a good story it is. I’ve also picked out a version on DVD that appears to stay pretty true to the book so hopefully we’ll be finished in time to report on that in the next week or so. I don’t really do scary movies, so Baby Boy may have to report that directly to y’all.
  • Shakespeare Club is going very well. The students are doing some community outreach by performing free shows of The Two Gentlemen of Verona at the public library. Lots of practice, practice, practice which is nice, but hopefully they’ll move on to some different works in the next few weeks.
  • The Pre-Calculus has been mostly review of algebra 2 at this point. I’m sure new stuff is on the horizon, but I’m in no hurry. I’m not a Mathy Mom at all. In fact, I’m the kind of Mom who is glad that her son is good enough at math to be able to do most of it on his own and has enough sense not to ask me for any assistance when he gets stuck. Big shout out to Mom #2 on the math assistance!
  • The Chemistry appears to be going very well. I am soooooooo happy that we found this co-op! Baby Boy has someone who can really break all the stuff down to him in words he can understand, and apparently they do the coolest labs every single week. They’ve just been melting and blowing up one thing after another. It’s way more than I could have ever provided him with. It’s such an inspiration! Baby Boy comes home every week super-duper excited and that’s the way it should be!

That’s about all I have to report for this week. I apologize that it’s so general. I’m really trying to get used to having so much going on. Mom #2 had to let someone go from our little home business last week, so both Baby Boy and I have been picking up the slack there, plus I am still working the job that I recently picked up and we’re determined to keep Baby Boy doing his studies at regular intervals. So . . . needless to say we’re busy. Lots of life skills and time management lessons going on, LOL.

I know there are some of you who read this blog as a glimpse into the future for when you begin homeschooling high school teenage boys . . . so I’ll try to be more specific with the next update.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Until next time . . .

Friday, September 11, 2009

NOT your weekly report

This is normally where you'd find your weekly report, however I am in intense shock over the fact that I stayed home and prepared dinner while Baby Boy drove himself to tae kwon do practice last night.

Both his body and my vehicle made it back in their original condition. Thank goodness!

Yes. He has upgraded his learner's permit to a real live driver's license.

Please excuse me while I go sit in the closet and cry.

Until next time . . .

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Learning Low-Down

Although I'm often on a tangent of some kind, this is, of course, a homeschooling blog. So now that we've all endured a hideously hot summer (some of us are still enduring it . . . but I've complained enough about the weather in the past few months), let's get back down to the business of learning.

First of all let me say in advance, if something appears to be missing, it probably is. If it seems to be too much, it probably is. We like to utilize a lot of textbooks, living books, DVDs, CDs and good old fashioned discussions here at Two Moms' Homeschool. We aren't married to any specific style of learning or educational path. In fact, we have a "do whatever the heck works" philosophy of learning.

We also have been flirting heavily with the the idea of community college. We have confidence issues. We have transportation issues. We have issues with one of the Moms craving Higher Education when the son should be, but really isn't. We have a lot of issues. I'll have to really get them all out one day, but today can't quite be that day. I have a feeling this post may be long enough.

So . . . after three full paragraphs of disclaimers . . . on to the show. I'm describing all the stuff over there <--- in the sidebar, in case you hadn't figured that out for yourselves, but we're a smart group, so I'm sure you did.

  • Composition - We are attempting to actually use the SWI writing curriculum this year. We have a love/hate relationship with writing right now. I love to write even though I'm not very good at it. Baby Boy hates to write, even though he is pretty good at it. We're attempting to define some actual rules and parameters before I send him off to the big world of college. I've heard good things about this method from some, not so good things from others. Everything gets a 6 week trial period around here, so stay tuned.
  • Vocabulary - We literally loved Vocabulary Cartoons SAT Word Power last year, so we're going to continue with Vocabulary Cartoons II SAT Word Power this year. It's a quick fun and easy way to expand and enrich your vocabulary. We usually spend about 5 minutes going over 2 words a day in the mornings and then try to make sentences out of the words throughout the week. It's lots of fun. This is the one thing that I know works, for sure.
  • Literature - We'll be indulging in some classic sci-fi and fantasy this year in the literature department. We're starting off the year with an oldie but goodie, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.
  • Shakespeare - As many of you know, Baby Boy has been in two Shakespeare productions in the past couple of years. Both times we have found ourselves pleasantly surprised at how much we've enjoyed reading aloud, analyzing, and (him) performing Shakespeare's works. This year, we've gone ahead and full-on committed to a Shakespeare group where they will read and discuss plays and sonnets throughout the year and will undoubtedly perform a chosen play next spring.
  • Pre-Calculus - This year Baby Boy will embark on that subject that no one in this house dare say aloud, but only in hushed whispers . . . pre-calculus. No one in the Two Moms' family has ever successfully achieved higher math skills, so if any of you are good at math, please email me your exact physical location. Have graphing calculator, will travel. ;-) I'm pretty good with basic math, but as parents I think it's important to know our limitations. Pre-calculus would definitely be one of those limitations.
  • Chemistry - If you've read here for a while, you may remember my tried and failed attempts to teach chemistry to Baby Boy. Finally I am able to accept defeat in this area, not necessarily gracefully, but with a humble heart. When you are an artistic language arts soul, there are certain subject you just weren't meant to master. For me, chemistry is that subject. BUT where there's a will, there's a way. Here's our way: Baby Boy has been playing Ultimate Frisbee for going on three years now and I sit and pretend chat with a lot of the other homeschool Moms there about a little bit of this and a little bit of that and mostly a lot of nothing. Well, do you know what one of those nothing conversations turned up? The young man who Baby Boy gets along with BEST OF ALL on the whole team's Mom has a PhD in chemistry. AND she's actually excited to have Baby Boy over to teach him in a delicious (read free) co-op situation this year. She's just the nicest lady ever and I'm oh so grateful. She's using a Singapore text with supplemental DVDs from The Teaching Company. We are so there! And she is ready to jump in with a full on chemistry lab, I mean on the first day, she's already giving them a blow torch. So wise, yet so foolish. Teen boys, you know.
  • Economics and American Government - We're going to make this a year long project which will include lots of current events, newspaper reading, documentaries, Hollywood movies, with a dash of textbooks and educational DVDs. I expect a lot of lively discussion, which is what our family is known for.

If you've read this far, thanks. If not, I certainly understand. This is one of those things I have to do at least at the beginning of the learning season. This will be the bones of our structured learning, although we fully support a living and learning lifestyle around here and strive to make every moment one to remember.

Happy Learning!

Until next time . . .

Friday, September 4, 2009

Consider Me Celebrated, oh and BUSY!

Within a 30 day period we have had the following reasons to celebrate:

  • Mom #2's birthday
  • Twin Grand Baby Girls were born
  • Our Doggy's birthday (he's family, you know)
  • My sister's birthday
  • Today's my birthday
  • Next week is my Dad's birthday
Sooooooo last week we had a Big Backyard Birthday Barbecue and EVERYONE was here.

Every since my parents' divorce, my Dad has been making himself super scarce. He'll drop by and pick up Baby Boy to take him to get a haircut or to do other miscellaneous guy stuff (Does anyone actually know what guys do when they're together?) but he never sticks around.

Well he actually got here early and barbecued all the yummy ribs and chicken wings, and then stayed around and ate and visited with us. I mean this may go down in Dos Mamacitas family history. We had so much food that we had to eat, take a break, and then eat some more. ;-)

My sister brought over a friend whom I had never met before. I am really not good with strangers . . . as a general rule . . . I don't speak to strangers. I started out thoroughly irritated, but she was so down to earth and so much fun that she fit right in with my loud and crazy family. So I was actually able to make a new friend. That makes one. Score!

Anyway, I'm all celebrated out! I've made enough congratulatory phone calls and slopped enough sugar to last a lifetime. It was great fun while it lasted, but I'm all celebrated out.

Now I'm settling in for a long weekend of planning, planning, and more planning. We're going to start our school year on Tuesday . . . and I do have all my stuff . . . well most of my stuff (I'm trying to sneak in some extra stuff) . . . but I'm an anal retentive scheduler and I've still got a few loose ends to tie up. More details to follow.

Also . . I've recently scored a great work-from-home job. Although I hate that I need to work, I am so very happy that it is a gig that can be done from home in my pj's early in the morning before Baby Boy and I get started on our schoolwork. Thank goodness for small favors! ;-)

TTFN! Have a great holiday weekend!

Until next time . . .

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