This was our first “normal” week after the holidays. We managed to complete quite a bit of schoolwork (our co-op hasn’t started back yet, which means we could focus more on our own routines). We also had an ultrasound Tuesday and we found out whether our newest family member was a boy or girl. (You’ll have to check out the Living Unabridged facebook page if you want the answer!)
Then we had my nephew and niece with us on Thursday. (My nephew’s kindergarten was cancelled because of the the cold. Not snow, cold. And as much as I’d like to grumble at how “soft” kids must be these days, it really has been ridiculously cold here.)
Friday my niece was here again (I usually watch her two days a week, which is a lot of fun for my youngest daughter because they can play together while the big girls are doing school) and we had friends over Friday evening. Today we have a work day at our church and I’m hoping to get my husband’s office (somewhat) back together after a year of disruption while our building was restored.
But despite the full (and fun) week, I’ve also saved a lot of links for you, so let’s get on with it:
- Homeschool Confessions from Mary at Better Than Eden. I love all of these except for maybe #3. We love our library, our librarians, and the relationships and opportunities we have there. (But I still don’t take the youngest two very often because the iBoy – age 1 1/2 – is not a great library citizen at this point.)
- Homeschooling Without a Schoolroom: Tables by my friend Mystie at Simply Convivial. You do not have to have a schoolroom to homeschool. We have the closest thing we’ve ever had to an actual schoolroom in this house but “school” still happens all over the house.
- All You Need to Know About the ‘Learning Styles’ Myth in Two Minutes by Christian Jarrett. I suspect this will be controversial in homeschool circles. I’m rather conflicted about it myself. I do think it’s wise to teach children while using multiple methods (and appealing to different senses), particularly with younger ages, but it does seem like the research is inconclusive and the theory is mostly about selling books and special curriculum. (Pardon my cynicism)
- Six Things Every Writer Needs to Succeed by M.L. Swift at Writer Unboxed. This one was encouraging.
- 4 Ways to Write More in 2015 by Emily Wenstrom at The Write Practice. Practical advice.
- Taking Back Friendship by Gracy Olmstead in The American Conservative. I enjoyed this article but I also found myself arguing against it a few times. So much of “friendship” is relative to personality and preference. For example: I’m an introvert, so I need time to recharge away from crowds. And I prefer to express myself in writing, via blog posts, emails, social media, etc. Which means that I consider several people I’ve met (or keep in touch with) via the Internet good friends. They’ve supported me through hard times and encouraged me in the good times and those relationships don’t feel any less “real” (or any less valuable) than the people I happen to know just because they live near me. Proximity has never been my favorite standard for friendship. (Speaking as a PK who grew up with many fellow pastor kid and missionary kid friends. If you only see each other once a year or every few years with a few letters or postcards in between, but you can pick up where you left off, that’s a friend right there.) Another funny aspect of personality: I hate talking on the phone. I’ve always hated it (even as a teenager). If the standard of whether I’m a good friend or not depends on how often I call you on the phone, I’m going to lose every time. Fancy a text message instead?
- Why the Church Needs Intergenerational Friendships by Joseph Rhea. Loved this. (“Similarity in age” being another standard for friendship that I find less than ideal. I’m very thankful for the friends I have of various ages. Those older than I have qualities I admire and those younger than I bring a fresh perspective and joy that I sometimes forget.)
- 7 Reasons Not to Worry by Kevin DeYoung. There are some great reminders in this post.
- Would You Skip Church for Football? by Trevin Wax. “Survey says…”
- A Surprising Thing That Creates the Best Kind of Freedom by Tsh at The Art of Simple.
- 9 Reasons I Don’t Read Magazines Any More by Andrea Dekker. (I still read several magazines on a regular basis but I appreciated the humor and perspective in this post.)
- Did Civil War Soldiers Have PTSD? by Tony Horwitz for Smithsonian Magazine. Fascinating article.
- #YesWomenandChildren Are Safer in Intact Marriages by W. Bradford Wilcox for The Federalist. This might be the kind of thing you consider common sense, but it is unfortunately uncommon in our time. [/soapbox]
- Leelah’s Law is Bad Law and Bad Medicine by Stella Morabito. This story is tragic on so many levels. It’s strange to watch all this unfold on our local news (we live nearby). There are so many hurting people in our world. It’s a shame that things become politicized so quickly, before real solutions can be sought. [/soapbox. again.]
- When Disability Isn’t by Dorothy Littell Greco.