Monthly Archives: September 2008

Pain Management, Materialism and Angels.

We live in an increasingly materialist culture. Strangely, although psychics, mediums and “true” ghost stories litter the TV and radio airwaves, there is a huge cult of ‘If I can’t see it, it aint there” among those who consider themselves the elite. It is nothing new of course. We remember the story of how Emile Zola was a witness to a miracle cure at Lourdes but far from being open minded about it and exploring the possibility of God, he wrote a novel in which he tried to insinuate there was some forgery.

Medicine has gone the same way. While Hippocrates and Galen saw the wholeness of a person, modern medicine only sees parts and only the parts that can be seen by eye or machine. If it can’t be seen, it is either not there or treated with suspicion.

Pain, of course, does not show up on any machine. It can’t be measured, other than by the patient and is therefore subjective. I am sure I am not the only one who finds the whole business of trying to explain chronic pain to a doctor a laborious and fruitless excercise. It is depilitating, exhausting and quite frankly, at times, depressing.

The last few days have been difficult, and so I have been taking the Tramadol, but that is not my usual way of dealing with pain. I thought I would write up my ideas for pain management-just in case it is of any use:

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Me and My First Baby Meme

Curtesy of Therese, Deb and Esther.

1. Were you married at the time?
yes-been married 4 months.

2. What were your reactions when you found out you were pregnant/approved?
A bit shocked and over the moon.

3. How old were you?
23

4. How did you find out you were pregnant/on the waiting list?
I did a HPT. It was a weird one with two little test tubes. Surely there were POAS tests back then! Why did I do such a complicated one?

5. Who did you tell first?
Al and then our friend Ann who lived with us at the time.

6. Did you want to find out the sex?
I can’t remember if we wanted to, but we didn’t. I think the hospitals did not like to say.

7. Due date/Expected arrival date:
He was due 4th April 1989

8. Did you deliver/meet your child early or late?
Late. He arrived 15th April just a couple of days before they had me booked for induction. So I wasn’t induced; good lad.

9. Did you have morning sickness/anxiety?
Some anxiety at the beginning because I wasn’t sure how pregnancy was supposed to feel and I felt AWFUL. Sick as a dog for the whole 9 months.

10. What did you crave?
Satsumas. By the crate load. Al used to go down to the local grocer who actually ordered in an extra crate a week just for me. I have piles of crates stacking up at the back of the house. LOL.

11. Who irritated you the most?
Old ladies who kept asking “You still here then?” from about 8mths to birth!

12. What was your first child’s sex?
male

13. How many pounds did you gain throughout the pregnancy/while munching Fritos as you waited for The Call?
I don’t remember but I am guessing it was a few…or more.

14. Did you have any complications during your pregnancy/complications with Red Tape?
Not that I remember. Got very anaemic so they threatened to admit me for a transfusion, but I look loads of Ferrus Sulphate (yuk) along with all those satsumas and managed to get away with it.

15. Where did you give birth/meet your child?
Sorento Maternity Unit-a little cottage hospital now closed. It was lovely there.

16. How many hours were you in labor/between The Call and holding your new child?
Labour was 29hrs. Slow lead up all day and then heavy contractions while trying to watch “A Room with a View”. He finally put in an appearance a day and bit later!

17. Who drove you to the hospital/airport/office?
Al

18. Who watched/went with you?
Al and Ann came too.

19. Was it vaginal or c-section (no adoption alternative here. Sorry)
Vaginal

20. Did you take medicine to ease the pain/self medicate to calm your nerves?
They gave me Pethidin but it made me doo lally tap and hardly helped the pain at all. I had an oxygen tube in and they tried to give me ventolin! Can you imagine that? ROFL!

21. How much did your child weigh?
7lbs 13oz

22. What did you name him/her?
Joshua Ewan, but he was called The Baked Bean for a long time because he was orange.

23. How old is your first child today?
19.

Ah those memories.

Charlotte Mason; The Tyranny of Exams

I’m nearly at the end of “Parents and Children” Volume 2 of the Charlotte Mason homeschooling series.

As I was reading her views on the “tyranny of competitive examination supported by parents.” ~I also happened to be listening to Dr Ray talking about a controversial (and to my mind daft) scheme to pay students for grades. Following that my friend, a teacher in a secondary school came over for dinner and talked about the huge problems the exam system is causing to her students.

Charlotte saw quite clearly that exams did not help, but rather hindered learning. Students would simply be taught to pass the exams. What I call ‘jumping through hoops’. That is they perform and are given a grade on that narrow performance-but it matters not at all whether the student has learned anything.

Parents tend to support the system because they get something for their own egos from it. Tommy gets an ‘A’ and daddy can show off. Charlotte is unimpressed with this.

Meanwhile on Dr Ray’s programme teachers and a librarian phoned in to explain how the system encourages cheating. Students who work very hard and overcome great obstacles to get their ‘D’ are passed over in favour of students who cheat and have their parents do half the work for them so they get their ‘A’.

The librarian who called Dr Ray pointed out that the kids were not even there while their parents were doing the coursework FOR THEM.

Charlotte wrote:

We absolutely must get rid of the competitive examination system if we would not be reduced to the appalling mediocrity which we see, in China, for example, to have befallen an examination-ridden empire.

Meanwhile my teacher friend explained how the head of her school simply wants the children to be taught how to pass the exams-even if this means utterly limiting what they get to learn. League tables and status are at stake. Get rid of literature because it takes time away from jumping through hoops.

Surely it’s time to let children LEARN. Charlotte realised that discipline and habits helped to form a person so that they wanted to learn and could learn. She realised that learning was about becoming the best person one could be-nothing whatsoever to do with passing exams or getting some kind of status.

Homeschooling: Two great days!

Sometimes it all just works! (And of course sometimes it doesn’t lol). The last two days have gone really well. On Thursday we had a real Charlotte Mason day. We did some book and maths work in the morning and then set off for Mass. On the way to Mass we spotted oak and sycamore and ash trees as well as crunching through the autumn leaves.

Mass was lovely and then on the way back the children found a couple of sycamore helicopters and some acorns. We stopped off along the way to gather a load of elderberries and some blackberries. The blackberry crop isn’t that good this year but it was fun to gather them anyway.

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Life, Books and the meaning of the Universe.

Homeschool group was pretty quiet today with so many families away. It was a craft session and the children did glass painting on acetate sheets. Some of the them got some really good results.

My starter kit-a big box of books-arrived from Usborne yesterday and I have been introducing the homeschoolers to the idea of buying books from me. There is some interest. I hope it goes well. I am not a natural sales person and yet I have to say I buy a lot of Usborne books because they are so good and so I thought this might be something genuinely useful for the groups and other friends and family with children.

There are some really lovely books in the pack. My favourite is a really lovely book introducing children to the history of art called “The Story of Painting”.

There is no Sign Language this afternoon because of so few families being around this morning so I have a few minutes to blog and chill a bit. Ronan and Avila are sitting at the table with their acetates and some glasspaint pens we borrowed so they can finish their art work.

The biggies have Scouts tonight and their leader is taking them to see “The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas“. It’s supposed to be very good-and I think very sad. I’m hoping to go and see it myself sometime.

My New Slow Cooker Has Arrived!

I loved my slow cooker and then a couple of weeks ago it died. Crying 

Well I just need a slow cooker, so I asked Al if I could have one for my birthday. Well, I’m sorry folk but my birthday isn’t for another couple of weeks and I REALLY need a slow cooker. So I ordered one and it arrived today.

I use it a lot in the Autumn and winter for a number of things. It makes a lot of chutney and mince meat for the Christmas jars.

It is my Wednesday Saver. We have homeschool group on a Wednesday morning and then everyone comes back here for lunch and then I teach Sign Language after that. By the time that day is over I am shattered and certainly wouldn’t be up to cooking dinner for everyone. By having the slow cooker set up in the morning before we go out there is a lovely meal ready for everyone and as Wednesday night is Scout night the older ones can grab a plateful before they have to leave the house.

I use the slow cooker for big family gatherings and borrow a couple of others so a large gathering can have a hot meal.

I don’t know who invented the thing but GOD BLESS HIM!

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A little pre-homeschool group.

Yesterday a couple of mums came over with their pre-homeschool children. They have a two children each and the oldest is a little boy aged 4 who has started some homeschool activities. He and Ronan got on really well and we think they would work well together so we will arrange some sessions.

One of the other homeschool mums comes over every other Friday for the children to work together. The new mums would like to come and see that in action.

Then I’ll probably sort out meeing regularly with them for a sort of toddler and baby group.

I might even start teaching a bit of Baby Sign.

 

Becoming a working mum

Perhaps I’ve been inspired by Sarah Palin- but I am going to be doing some work from home. I’m going to start selling Usborne books. Josh will help me by doing some of the leg work that I can’t do.

I’m hoping it will help with paying for Christmas and some kitchen equipment I could really do with.

Now you all know what I’ll be giving everyone’s children for Christmas LOL!

New sites and sidebar links

I’ve been using SPARKLE BOX for quite a while. They offer an excellent range of resources and they’re all free. Yesterday we printed up the story of Creation and took it up to the landing where Ronan and Avila set it out in order as we told the story.

The website Kids Know It is an excellent resource which we have been using especially for Astronomy. They have a great song section, including this one about the SUN and this one about the PLANETS. Even Heleyna enjoys these songs and dances to them.

For the older children and grown ups in the family I have added the website of the wonderful Immaculee Ilibagiza. I haven’t bought any on her books yet, but I intend to.

You can hear her interviewed on THE WORLD OVER about her latest book and her survival in Rwanda. She was interview by CATHOLIC ANSWERS and will be again on 3rd Oct.

Her depth of peace and ability to forgive is truly inspiring.

Ronan’s First Lapbook: Egyptian Hieroglyphics

 We’ve been reading The Story of the World Book 1 and Ronan has made his first lapbook on Hieroglyphics.

   He loved sticking the different things in and making the different pages. He was even willing to do a bit of writing-and I have to say Ronan does not particularly enjoy writing.

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Homeschool -just doing it, thinking it, living it!

Here I am cooking a big pan of chicken tikka masala and another big pan of rice while listening to Dr Ray and grabbing a between the stirring moment to blog.

As homeschool group started yesterday I feel we are really back into term now. Then tomorrow I have a couple of pre-homeschool mums and their little ones coming over. One of the mums already comes to Teamworks, the homeschool group. The pre-school meetings will probably be like a playgroup with homeschool elements and planning.

Iona is going to do some things with the toddlers and babies and then write up her session later. it will form a ‘work experience’ related folder and hopefully stand her in good stead when she looks for work experience placements over the next couple of years.

Having gone back to my Charlotte Mason books I am feeling a bit more focused and as the weather is pretty good at the moment we are getting out of the house and spending more time allowing the children to see things and comment on things for themselves. Ronan asked about a huge pine tree at the end of the road and we spend time commenting on the hawthorn and white lavender along the road.

Hopefully the weather will hold out so we can spend time in the parks around here. There are some lovely ones, full of trees, streams, ducks and all the things Charlotte would love children to spend time with.

Spent quite a bit of time in conversation with Iona today. No books, just talking about things, including what we hear on Catholic radio when we are working together.

There’s a whole lot more to education than ‘curriculum’.

Method rather than system

I’ve tried to fit personal reading time into the day so that I don’t lose sight of what I am doing. I’ve gone back to the Charlotte Mason books and I’m reading ‘Parent’s and Children’ which is Vol 2 of her Original Homeschooling Series. 

You can read the entire series online HERE at AMBULSIDE ONLINE.

In this book Charlotte talks about how she sees education as a ‘method’ rather than a ‘system’ and she shows how they are quite different and how important that difference is to how children learn. She wrote:

We have a methodof education, it is true but method is no more than a way to an end, and is free, yielding, adaptive as nature herself. Method has a few comprehensive laws according to which details shape themselves, as one naturally shapes one’s behaviour to the acknowledged law that fire burns. System, on the contrary, has an infinity of rules and instructions as to what you are to do and how you are to do it. Method in education follows Nature humbly; stands aside and gives her fair play.

She writes this under her chapter on ‘Discipline’ because her method is an holistic one. The children grow within what Charlotte refers to as an “Atmosphere” where they are loved, and trained in good habits in a way that, as G.K Chesterton observed “Grace builds on nature”.

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Exultation of the Holy Cross

The Sign of the Cross is THE symbol of our Faith. The cross is the centre of the universe, of time-the moment of redemption.

The Old Testament reading is the story of how Moses had to made a bronze serpant on a staff for the people to look upon so they would be saved from the poison of the snakes that had infested their camp. They recognised they had sinned and looked up at the serpent-a symbol of sin-and were saved.

Jesus being crucified became like sin and suffered for all those sins we have committed and so we look upon Him on the cross and we can be saved too.

Somewhere else in the OT- Ezk 9:4 God tells the prophet to mark the foreheads of those who long for justice with ‘a mark’ which literally was ‘Tau’ (Hebrew letter) the T cross shaped letter.

For many years after the crucifixion the cross was apparently lost. Then St Helena in her old age, set off in search of it. She found it hidden under the ruins of a pagan temple that the tyrant Hadrian had built. Hadrian had persecuted Christians to death.

The cross was restored to the Church. Pieces of it have been distributed to various places. There is a myth that there are enough ‘true’ pieces to make a cart load of crosses, but apparently someone actually looked into this and found there are barely enough claims for a piece of the true cross to make one.

On a side note I remember someone asking whether it mattered which side Jesus’ wound was, left or right. It does tend to vary in crucifixes. I think the answer given was that it did not matter as we are not told in the Gospel which side was pierced.

I’m going to disagree. I believe Jesus was pierced on His RIGHT side as most old art tends to show.  Ezekiel had a vision of water coming from the right side of the Temple (Ezk 47.1). Jesus referred to Himself as the Temple and water flowed from that wound (as well as blood). So I tend to think it is important to show the wound on Jesus’ right.

I just love the way Scripture fits together so neatly.

Pro-Life Witness

Saturday, 27th September

Oxford Pro-life Witness, prayers in reparation for abortion, and for all unborn babies and their Mothers & Fathers.

At the entrance of the JOHN RADCLIFFE Hospital, Headley Way, Oxford.

We meet outside the Church of St Anthony of Padua (Headley Way) which is just behind where we witness.

3pm – 4pm

Exposition throughout the hour inside the Church and the Rosary/prayers are led by Fr John Saward.

God Bless ~ please keep praying for the witnesses, especially for all the Drs and nurses at the JR involved in anti-life exploits.

Please may I also ask fro prayers for my friend-and fellow homeschool mum, Amanda, as she helps organise and take part in these events.

I found the lovely photo HERE at Illinois Right To Life The baby is a model made from marzipan!

 

Getting Josh to FUS….

Before I give the latest on the long-haul mission of getting Josh to FUS I just thought I would say thank you for the support and prayers offered.

KIT- thanks, and anything you discover that you think might help. Please do let us know. I hope your daughter gets a place and it would be lovely for her and Josh to be there at the same time  Happy 

This morning he went to find out about a job in the local chemist-but no luck. However we reckon that pretty soon the Christmas jobs should be coming up so next week he’ll be back on his bike and going around asking at all the local shops in the various ‘villages’ around here. Let’s hope SOMEONE has something to offer. He will also be going back to the elderly home one more time to see what the story is over the CRB. It’s a real shame about that place. The staff like him and when he left before -to go and visit FUS- some of the residents cried. He is well loved there. However the manager is hopeless! *sigh*.

Meanwhile he has been writing letters asking for advice. This morning he received a reply from Birmingham Archdiocese office. I have to say I was very surprised and very pleased. He has been given the name of someone at Oscott to contact who has a huge book with sponsorship information. On Monday morning Josh will make an appointment.

He got a lovely email from FUS yesterday. They are very encouraging and have said he needs to raise 96% of the funds-but they would find the 5% if he could do that. He has asked about doing his foundation year here and transferring points. That would be cheaper.

He’s gone back to his fencing class and the theatre group. He’ll be doing front of house for their next performance. He’s hoping to take his driving test soon (he’s already passed the theory) and he has got my ‘cello and is learning to play!

Keep praying. I thought I saw God might sell a cow on ebay Winky 

 

Walked a crooked mile

‘Straight forward’ is an unknown situation in my family I reckon.

We went to the hospital this morning with Avila and were told all her blood results were normal-even the HB results. I was surprised and so was the doc. It’s good news she doesn’t have coeliacs or even a wheat allergy. I was expecting that to be positive and we would have the difficulties of changing her diet again.

But obviously she is still not well. So he will see her again in 6 weeks. He thinks that as the bloods have come back normal that she will very likely grow out of this and have a normal life in the future. Good news indeed.

I am also pleased he is willing to keep a close eye on her until that happens.

 Flowers 

I have put in the formal complaint to the hospital asking where my MRI has vanished to. I have now received the forms to release the MRI to me-which I have to pay for. I need a witness to sign with me and then i can send them off.

Once that has been done I hope to make an appt with a rhuematologist for an assessment for fibromyalgia. I will go private. I can’t face another debacle in the NHS.

 Flowers 

JOSH is having a right old time of it at the moment. Since getting back from America he has not had much work, but we were not concerned because he had his old job back. Despite asking them to keep him on the books, they hadn’t so he had to refill forms and send off for yet another CRB check.

CRBs can take anything up to 12 weeks to come through. Not good news if you need to be working as he does. He has waited 6weeks and then phoned last week to be told not to worry it would come to him in the post. When nothing happened he decided to pop into work and check out what the delay might be.

It turns out the manager of the home NEVER sent the forms. Head office have no record of him!

This is a huge blow as he so desperately wants to get back to America to go to Franciscan University.

He is applying for another job that has come up-but work is very, very scarce at the moment here. He is at the point of just doing voluntary work-but that will not help him get to FUS.

Pray hard people. God is not seeming to be selling any cows.

Avila’s hospital appt.

Just a quick blog- Avila has her hospital Appt tomorrow morning. We hope the blood results will give us some answers. She is struggling again at the moment.

Please say a quick prayer.

Thanks and God bless all of you.

Teachers union conference with scary speaker!

Yesterday I was faffing around with the TV and BBC Parliament came on. It was some teacher union conference; NUT I think but I am not sure as I only watched a couple of minutes. In that couple of minutes I saw a rather scary looking woman talking about how “anti-choice” and “homophobic” people should not be allowed to dictate what teacher could teach our children. She went on to talk about how children should have access to sex education…blah, blah, blah. So by “ant-choice” she did not mean teachers who would not offer a family the choice of being indoctrinated with the sex education that has been such a miserable failure for our children; no- she meant pro-life and pro-family people who believe in a child’s right to innocence and a real choice in what information is inflicted on them. By “homophobic” she did not really mean people who hate people who are homosexual-no, she meant people who believe in the sanctity of marriage.

Josef Pieper wrote a good little book called “Abuse of Language, Abuse of Power” that some teachers might like to read.

The Catholic Herald has been saying for some time that the Government is out to wreck religious-mainly Catholic-schools. Looks like the unions are on the band wagon.

I’m glad I homeschool. But I know the elites have us in their sights and we are going to have to face this stuff soon enough.

The Inspector Calls

We’re easing nicely into the routine of term. Ronan is enthusiastic and has got a lot of enjoyment from the Catholic customs book. A big load of A3 sugar paper arrived today and I intend to use that to start some lapbooks with him; one on the Egyptians and Hieroglyphics from Story of the World and one about the moon. He is also making a huge solar system poster. Space seems to be the subject he loves most and that works well because there’s a lot to learn.

In nature study we are looking at garden birds; blackbird, blue tit, black cap, great tit. THIS BBC SITE has bird song he can listen to and then as he gets used to recognising them he will know who is shouting in the garden.

Iona is steadily working away on her English Lit, reading, magazine, sweet shop and so on.

Today the homeschool inspector (he’s not called that-but I think that’s what he is basically) came to see us. He’s a nice man and I think he is pretty supportive of homeschoolers. He is willing to help and write references and has ideas for website resources.

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On Truth and Beauty

Chesterton wrote (in The Everlasting Man) that “Art is the signature of man”. Deitrich von Hildebrand and other philosophers noted that truth and beauty go together. The goodness of God is by nature beautiful. It was von Hildebrand who noted that when truth and beauty become somehow separated that culture is adversely effected.

Fr Ray has written a post about the ugly Stations of the Cross that show Christ naked.  Apart from the rather childish insistence on being ‘contraversial’ the stations eschew tradition and even get it wrong on Station XIII as it was St Joseph of Aramithea and Nicodemus who took Jesus down from the cross-not the women!

We have Stations of the Cross along with other religious art in our churches as aids to prayer. They need to be beautiful and to tell a truthful story about Christ and the events of the Gospels and life of the Church. I can’t understand why church leaders, pastors or whoever it is who does this, commissions work that so obviously will be unhelpful in anyone prayer life. It’s iconoclastic and a an expression of nothing.

The artists who paint icons have always done so as part of their prayer life. All genuine icons are painted in prayer and tell a story. They expound on Scripture and Tradition and are packed with symbols down to the rich colours used which symbolise the role of the person painted.

The Stations of the Cross were made by someone who had not even bothered to read the Passion in the Gospels-hence the mistake of having the women take Christ from the cross. But a true Icon painter or religious sculptor would have known the tradition that Christ did not go naked to the cross-that he was veiled by the veil of His mother; or in some traditions by the veil of St Mary Magdalen.

 Religious art dates back to the cave paintings of the hunter gather people. Ugly religious art more often than not illustrated an ugly religion.

Homeschoolers tend to spend more time with the old Masters because their work is (mostly) beautiful. I will teach my children about the great artists and also about Icon painters and those men and possibly women who left the stunning art work deep in the caves of France and elsewhere.

The slightly miserable faces on the work of the pre-Raphs seems to express the somewhat miserable view they held of life. Botticelli angels give us a view of a rather cheeky artist-I think. And poor old Edvard Munch. Oh dear! What can I say? He was not a well man and his art shows us that.

Art is a way for us to share with the artisitc expression of God. I don’t get why so much so called ‘modern’ art shows so little expression and so much non-expression.

Religious art should point to God. When it gets in the way of finding Him, it has failed in it’s purpose. Those Stations fail. I am grateful that the art work in my own parish church points always to God and His saints. We can go there every week or even every day and never grow tired of seeing the same things over and over-because they tell the story and they tell it well.

Award time

Marie and Ginny of View From the Pews have cottoned on to the fact that I talk too much. LOL. They have kindly offered me this award.

I pass it on to

Swiss Miss at St Monica’s kneeler,

Philip as he crosses the Ponte Sisto-AND HE’s NOT in my blogroll! Blushy I will put that right ASAP! 

Kit at BrookSide

Stuart- Tears of a Clown - a great Hibs fan-which will go down well with some of our kith’n’kin.

Esther Catholic Mom in Hawaii - whose fine art Fridays are part of our homeschool.

Antonia – and her wonderful world

And Shana-who might not have a blog but she is a great commentator  Smile 

Links, news and resources

I just wanted to share the links SwissMiss kindly gave me t’other day.

Lit to Go It has a huge amount of literature. Choose what you want and it is offered in PDF and MP3 format. Quite a resource!

She also sent “Protect Our Kids From Preschool” an article in the Wall Street Journal. The article points out there is a lot of research and the schools in Europe than do not start until a child is aged 6 to 7 do better than those that start with little ones. I could add there is research showing that children need to be with their parents-especially the mother before the age of 5-6 for attachement. 

I have started Ronan back with the Linney Latin which I do recommend. I also note he has added more MP3s for the book. Thank you Mr. Linney! I notice that he is working on a Getting Started in Spanish programme as well with the book due out in 2009. I can’r wait.

Ronan enjoys the Dorling Kindersley Spanish Language Learner- but we both prefer the approach Linney takes to teaching Latin.

Term Begins with Iona in yr10 and Ronan in yr 1

Some proper homeschooling parents like SWISS MISS are ready to roll as term looms- despite the fact that GOD HAS A WICKED SENSE OF HUMOUR . Ah yes SwissMiss, that sense of humour so many of us have come to know and….put up with! LOL!

Meanwhile, having done hardly any planning over the summer I had Monday (yesterday) pegged for planning the term with Iona and timetabling both her and Ronan so that I ensure I am teaching them both at different times in the day. I would also like to (haven’t worked that out yet) find a slot in the week where I read and another slot for writing if possible.

So as Tuesday arrived I was ready to go. Ronan was very excited about starting the term-his first day as an official Year 1 pupil. We did some Math; 2X table and a finished off his old science workbook.

Then we started some work with ‘The Big Book of Catholic Customs and Traditions’. I managed to get a second hand copy from Amazon.

It’s a great book aimed at children aged 4-8 and has plenty of activities and ideas for children to do. There’s an introductory chapter and then the book works through the academic and liturgical year from Sept to Aug so a child can learn the faith in a practical context.

This was followed by a bit of time with Story of the World Bk 1. We are looking at the Egyptians and Sumerians. Today we looked at their writing and we are going to start a lapbook to go with what Ronan is learning. I helped him write out his name in hieroglyphs and he coloured that in.

He has started learning the recorder so I can teach him a bit of music.

Meanwhile Iona who has begun her Year 10 work did some more of her science this morning. She is using the Apologia modules. I think it’s pretty thorough and she enjoys it. The modules are easy to follow and well written.

Then she did some research for her magazine ‘Common Sense’. Her first article for the next issue will be about the merits and otherwise of drinking tea.

This afternoon we worked on her essay on morality in books from a quote by Oscar Wilde and after that we worked on some bits and pieces for her sweet shop business which I hope we can launch properly in a week or two.

And that is the end of day one of the new homeschool term. I need a cuppa and a sit down.

I have a laptop!

 Laptop My poor old Samsung died just after we got back from holiday. It went with a puff of smoke and a few sparks and I was rather sad.

I decided that as laptops don’t seem to live too long-rather like hamsters-I would buy a reconditioned one this time around and see if it was as good as a new one. Anyway, I wanted something cheap and cheerful that would do for homeschooling, writing and blogging. Oh and a bit of homeschool media stuff.

I received a Toshiba and spent an afternoon trying to set the thing up-but it simply wouldn’t work and I ended up having to send it back the following day. Finally I have the replacement and it works fine. So here I am back on line and hopefully it will last a little while.
I will back to blogging and I’ll be around to say Hi to you all.

God bless