Friday, November 2, 2012

Weekly Happenings: A Week of Delights for the Senses

Happy fall Friday! The weather today is perfect here: deep blue skies, breezes, and sunshine. Which is great for us. But so many people's lives have been thrown into disorder after the hurricane -- from discomfort to complete chaos -- that my rejoicing in our glorious days is dimmed.

While I type, a dear friend of ours, a widower gentleman in his 80s, bides his time in a power-less house in New Jersey; other friends in Pennsylvania are just now back to school after being without power all week; NYC friends are just getting back to some semblance of normal life, but just a semblance; and other folks we know in the northeast are taking stock and cleaning up.

But everyone we know is safe. So we are thankful.

The girls and I had a good week, a week of delights for the five senses. On Friday night, we visited our town's planetarium and observatory with my two sisters, one of which lives here and the other who was in town for a conference. Yay! The planetarium show was fun; I hadn't been to one of those since I was a child. Afterward, we looked through telescopes to view a few celestial bodies: the Moon, Uranus, and Alberio, a double star in the constellation Cygnus. We all had a wonderful time stargazing and seeing new-to-our-eyes sights.

Other nifty things we studied this week:

  • We read about Israel's Negev Desert in Explore the Holy Land.
  • Story of the World highlighted India's partitioning in to Hindu India and Muslim Pakistan; the re-creation of the ancient country of Israel; and the Suez Canal crisis in Egypt.
  • We learned in It Couldn't Just Happen that Earth's oceans have rivers in them: the Black Current in the Pacific and the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic, which are both part of gyras.
  • Dion marches triumphantly into Syracusa against Dionysius in Plutarch's Lives.
  • We began a new book, Church's The Odyssey for Boys and Girls.
  • We read about Mooween the bear in School of the Woods.
  • The girls continued work on Queen Victoria and Ordinary Genius.
  • Tiny Girl and I enjoyed Hodgepodge's Acrylic Fall Trees Tutorial. (Thanks, Nana!)

Himself took a business trip to Savannah, a city we all love. We requested some candy from Savannah's Candy Kitchen, and he lovingly obliged: saltwater taffy, peanut butter fudge, peanut butter and chocolate fudge, and pralines! I'm going to try my hand at making these delectable goodies this Christmas season. . . .

I made homemade pizza for supper on Halloween. Himself and I indulged in pepperoni, fresh mushroom, and fresh basil with a generous grinding of fresh Parmesan; the girls had their favorite: cheese. That is just gorgeous, even if I do say so myself.

Speaking of Halloween, if you have gobs of leftover candy, I wrote a blog post of ideas for getting rid of it (or stretching it out). We're donating ours to the troops.

More culinary sensations: I made a wonderfully delicious beef stew for supper earlier this week. Click here for the recipe and then make it this weekend. You'll be so glad you did! I also made another batch of homemade yogurt. I can't imagine being without it nowadays. And I made a double batch of homemade laundry detergent. I know it's not culinary, but I did make it in the kitchen.

Tiny Girl and I are spending lots of time at the barn. In case you didn't know, we now have two ponies: Max, whom we lease; and Tuli, whom we bought. Tiny works with both of them, and this takes a lot of time. I persuaded Himself to take her to the barn this afternoon so I could have time to write this wrap-up. Here she is on Max. It was an especially gorgeous day.

We bookworms have been reading a lot, too. Miss Priss finished Jack and Jill, by Louisa May Alcott (read my post on that here) and continues Cheaper by the Dozen and Summer of My German Soldier; Tiny Girl continues The Fellowship of the Ring and finished The Upstairs Room, by Johanna Reiss; I finished Mary Stewart's The Moon-Spinners and have almost finished The Upstairs Room.

One of our Frost poem's this week was "After Apple-picking." Here are a few lines:

My long two-pointed ladder's sticking through a tree
Toward heaven still,
And there's a barrel that I didn't fill
Beside it, and there may be two or three
Apples I didn't pick upon some bough.
But I am done with apple-picking now.
Essence of winter sleep is on the night,
The scent of apples: I am drowsing off.

I enjoyed the few Frost poems I recognized for many years, but now that I've read him more widely, I wonder at his insight, his turn of a phrase, his ear for perfect words, his immense gift for poetry.

I'll leave you with a tip:

Everything goes better with chocolate -- especially fractions.

Not only am I linking up with some fantastic blog hops (see below), I'm also having a fabulous time listening to bossa nova music on Pandora internet radio. You can, too! Visit Pandora, and then type in "Astrud Gilberto" as an artist. You'll hear her and others like her. "Tall and tan and young and lovely, the girl from Ipanema goes walking, and when she passes, each one she passes goes aahhhh. . . ."

Link ups:
Mary at Collage Friday
Kris at Weekly Wrap-Up
The Homeschool Mother's Journal
Savannah at It's a Wrap
No Ordinary Blog Hop


  1. Like always, such a delightful, rich, meaningful, lovely life of yours. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Silvia, how kind! Most of the time I think I live in a whirlwind of chaos (actually, I sorta do). But when I write my wrap-ups, I think, We had a great week! Maybe that's like life. When you're in the midst of it, you can't appreciate as fully as you can when looking back. I know I feel that way about my girls' babyhood....

  3. What a wonderful sounding week. I can't wait for AO6!

  4. What an absolutely fabulous week! Of course I LOVE your acrylic fall trees - so beautiful! And isn't it wonderful fun? So much richness here - as always. Learning, fun, food, family.

  5. Your end of the week posts always flow so nicely. Thanks for linking up and I chuckled with the soap making. I was sipping my coffee and enjoying your post and when I scrolled to the pic of the cut soap it just struck a funny bone in me. Please consider taking part in my weekly feature, "Who Home Schools?" I'd love to hear your story. -Savannah

  6. THANK YOU for the post about sending candy to the troops!

  7. What a lot of wonderful things you've all been up to! Thanks for sharing - it's very interesting.

  8. Oh, yes, math is always better with chocolate! So glad your friends are safe, but it does provide quite a reality check to think about, doesn't it?

  9. What a happy and productive week this was! I love the idea that everything goes better with chocolate. My girls would agreee with you and one of them is having trouble with fractions....

    Thanks for the idea.

  10. I was looking for our next art project and it might just be the lovely Acrylic Fall Trees project you have shared here! Thank you for linking up with us over at NOBH!

  11. New follower from NOBH. I hope you come by and look around at our page. I wanted to extend and invitation to my weekly Mom's Library Link-Up. Every Wednesday we share ideas about recipes, crafts, devotions, homeschooling, and so many others! I would love for you to add some of your great posts!
    Hope to see you there!
    Julie @ Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk


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