1. Regena McConnell

    We saw a picture in our Marrin book about Lincoln this week that showed a flag draped as a tablecloth over the table, with Lincoln’s stove pipe hat sitting on it. There was a notation about the photo stating that the “rules” we now have for the flag were not in force and effect at the time of the Civil War and our flag was treated very differently at that time period….


    • Amy

      My girls would definitely have fit in then, if that’s the case! The flag has been a part of my youngest daughter’s costume (which changes daily, sometimes hourly) this week! 🙂

  2. I know these posts take you a lot of time, but I’m so glad that you do them. They are always helpful and inspiring.

    Congratulations on the new job! I’ve been working a (thankfully flexible and partially from home) 40 hour a week job in consulting and also homeschooling and it definitely is a juggle to fit things in. I recently read a tremendously helpful book called “168 Hours” that really helped me in this regard and I highly recommend it if your library has it. It’s by Laura Vanderkam.

    On history: I went ahead and got the audio books of Story of the World and I’m really glad I did. The kids listen to them during quiet time (the time formerly known as nap time) and retain a ton of information. Then we are using Classical Conversations as our history spine (the whole Veritas timeline every year, plus a three year cycle of key points) and supplementing with picture books and chapter books on the eras we’re covering. I’ve been surprised at how many connections Hannah and Jack (5 and 4) make just from that. I haven’t asked for formal narrations but they do give them to me anyway.

    On Latin: we’re using Prima Latina this year, have you tried it? It’s quite manageable and yet classical/rigorous enough for me. I think you could do Prima with your girls in maybe 20 minutes three times a week. Just a thought.

    If you find something on science let us know. We are trying Lyrical Life Science and it’s not that great for my kids’ ages. I might try to skate through this year with our science related living books and the once a week classical conversations science project but I know that’s not sufficient for next year…

    Sorry for the long comment. 🙂

  3. Amy

    Thanks for all the recommendations. I could definitely use help in the time management department, so I will look for the book you recommend.

    We actually own Song School Latin already, I just have to implement it. I will keep Prima Latina in mind, though. I never took Latin, so I’ll be learning alongside my girls. . .

    We’ve used Elemental Science in the past and liked it. I have purchased Building Foundations for (?) Scientific Understanding but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. I have to get on the ball with our science plans!

    Thanks for the comment! 🙂

  4. I’ll be honest, I don’t know what books you’ve done for read alouds (I’m pretty new to your blog) but wanted to offer a few ideas from reading aloud to my children (ages 10, 6, 5, 3, 2, and 9mos currently).

    – Little Men ~ we just finished this last week and it was a hit all around. I’m reading Jo’s Boys on my own now, because we’ve moved on to :
    – Pollyanna ~ So far we’re all enjoying this one too.
    – Heidi
    – Charlotte’s Web
    – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and sequals
    – What about doing a Beatrix Potter month, where you read several titles she’s written?

    Oh, and my 10yo is reading The Door in the Wall right now too! She’s enjoying it so far, but kids can be so different!

    Have a great break week and enjoy every minute!

  5. Congrats on the new job. I totally understand the complications that makes in your life, but for me it’s been worth it too.

    And what is this thing that you call exercise? 🙂 For us, we go on a lot of bike rides as a family after dinner. That will change in the winter, so we’ll have to look for some other outlets. I still haven’t figured out how to get in regular exercise for me. I have been doing a lot more yard work lately and I’m realizing that sometimes that kind of activity can be just as physical as more traditional formal exercise.

  6. Amy

    Thanks so much for the suggestions! We’ve enjoyed all of the books and stories you mentioned either as read-alouds or audiobooks except for Little Men and the sequels to The Wizard of Oz. I still haven’t read Little Women to my girls; I think I need to save some books for them to discover on their own. 🙂

    I think it might be time to revisit some of the titles I read to them (like The Wind in the Willows) when they were very, very young.

  7. Mary

    Amy ~ have you read “Ballet Shoes” to the girls? This one sticks out from when my daughter was younger. I am in awe of how much you pack into a week! We are doing a lot of the same things: FLL, WWE and Story of the World. as always, I enjoy your book recommendations and now I want to read Hans Brinker with my children!

    I am glad you like your new job! It sounds perfect for you. 🙂

  8. We take off from our normal curriculum from Thanksgiving week until the first week after Christmas and do Thanksgiving and then fun Christmas Activities. It is a great break for us from our normal “stuff” and we look forward to this every year.

  9. Good luck to you finding balance with your new schedule. I love the 6 weeks on and 1 week off. I tried it this summer and it was very helpful. I just let the kids be free for one week while I worked on other projects. Its a great alternative for scheduling.

  10. Balancing it all is tough! If it makes you feel better my “to do” list never gets completely done. I just prioritize and ask for grace for those things that don’t get done.

    For what it’s worth, if you find that library books and activities are more interesting for history for this go around, I would do just that. You can use the SOTW activity guide to help you decide the books and activities and save the actual SOTW book for the next go around.

    And I wouldn’t worry about Latin until you hit 3rd grade, I’m really glad that we waited. We used Prima Latina in 3rd and it went over very well :).

  11. Just wanted to introduce you to Trixie Belden, if you haven’t met her yet! My daughter read a couple Nancy Drew books, was interested in the mystery part so we looked for more detective books and came across Trixie. It was love at first read! Lol! Nancy seemed too ‘perfect’ to my daughter.. Pretty, wealthy..the works. Plus one of he books she chose was written around #120 or so in the series.. And Nancy’s neighbor Ned had become her boyfriend (a big yuck to an 8 year old)… Plus, Nancy continued to sleuth against her Daddy’s request agains it. (we still adore the old Nancy Drew movies! And if she hadn’t discovered Trixie, she probably would have re-visited the books at an older age. Anyway, Trixie was ‘more relatable’ in character and situation in my daughters opinion. Trixie is a cute ‘Chub Deb’, not gorgeous.. She has chores and cares about pleasing and obeying her parents because it’s right… Her brothers tease her, yet love her.. She is inquisitive and ‘happens’ upon mysteries.. She has to babysit her little brother… She likes horses (every girl goes through a horse phase, my daughter was in the peak of hers when she met Trixie).. The characters are well developed..I have enjoyed a few Trixie books myself (I just had to see what was compelling my daughter so much! And I liked it!) at age 15, my daughter still collects and reads Trixie books.. They are her childhood favorite. Her young adult favorite is an author not a series.. Jane Austin. My childhood favorite was L.M. Montgomery and my grown up favorite is George MacDonald. I hope your girls can find a favorite to enjoy the rest of their life!

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