Monthly Archives: August 2010

Back from Camping

Well, actually we got back Friday evening, but it’s been catch-up time ever since. I think I just have one load of laundry from the campout left, and there’s still a stray sleeping bag that didn’t get put away in the garage with the others, but we’ll get it stowed away today and then camping is over for the year.

We did some schoolwork yesterday, just Bible reading and listening to the first Gileskirk Antiquities lecture for this year’s studies in moral philosophy (a thumbnail description might be history-literature-worldview; if Middlest were here she could give me the definition to give you, but she’s in the kitchen feeding the poor, starving dog at the moment).

Eldest was shaking her head at the end of the lecture, discouraged that she didn’t have any notes to speak of, worrying about the 200-word summary she was supposed to write. He talked so fast, she complained. I couldn’t get a thing.

We talked a little. I mentioned a couple of key phrases I’d heard, and asked her if she remembered them. She started discussing the matter with her dad (who hadn’t heard the lecture, so all the input was from her side), and somehow the juices started flowing. She went from not recalling any of the lecture, to writing down some good highlights for her summary.


Oh, yes, and in the evening we had a few chapters of The Golden Goblet, read aloud by a master reader.

As they say at the races, And… we’re… off!

Edited reading list

In the right sidebar (you can’t see it if you click directly on a post, but it’s visible when looking at the blog as a whole, I’ve no idea why), I’ve begun to list the books we’re reading together, or that I’m reading myself.

Just finished previewing Song of Abraham by Ellen Gunderson Traylor, which is on our Gileskirk reading list. In some ways it’s a great read, filled with word-pictures of the Middle Eastern landscape as it would have been seen by one walking the long miles, and sprinkled with snippets about ancient cultures that put the reader into the picture.

Actually, that’s one of the problems with the book. Though carefully and sensitively written, it brings the depravities of the cultures too much to life for those who have not become seared, hardened, and calloused by watching much of modern television and movies. Yes, our students have an intellectual understanding of the evils of men — sometimes a little more than intellectual, hearing details on the news, but they haven’t seen a lot of graphic violence played out in front of their eyes, and so they still have the capacity to be disturbed by it.

I also have a problem with novelizations of Biblical events. Of necessity, the author is putting words in the mouths of historical figures, thoughts in their heads that they might or might not have entertained. Sometimes, as in this book, it seems a bit of a stretch to me. Yes, it might make for a more entertaining story, or a way to ratchet up the conflict and tension, but… not sure “the Bible as entertainment” is quite the way I want to go. If it helps me get a clearer picture of the times and culture, yes, but if it puts words and thoughts in the mouths of people of the Bible that aren’t in the Original, that are only speculations, and debatable speculations at that, it gives me pause.

Anyhow, Song of Abraham was a riveting read, seemed to be plausible for the most part, but it won’t be something I’ll recommend to our girls until they’re older.

What is it about grilled cheese?

The menu plan calls for grilled cheese sandwiches, but it’s too hot to cook anything, so while at the natural food store, getting arnica for Middlest (broken finger, bruised, swollen and sore — and we’ve been out of arnica some months now, and I kept forgetting to re-stock the medicine cabinet), I picked up some nitrate-free deli meat for cold sandwiches tonight.

Looking back, it appears that the last time grilled cheese was on the menu, something else happened.

Ah, variety. The spice of life. (or is it flexibility I’m thinking of?)

Tackling the house… (again)

Ran across a new site (new to me) this morning when I was actually supposed to be doing something else (umm…)

…but my morning cup of tea is on its last sip so I’ll make this quick and then hit the day.

Anyhow, there seem to be lots of practical tips here on homekeeping, from establishing good routines (with suggestions on things to include in your routines, very helpful for clueless people, self included) to kids and chores and more.

But now I’ve taken my last sip of that morning cup, so I won’t go on, I’ll just give you the link, here: Totally Together Journal.

(Sheesh, that title is enough to either draw you in or put you off. I don’t think the author is claiming to have it totally together, it’s just a goal to aim at. After all, if you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time. Insert smiley here–don’t know how to do that but you get the picture.)

Summer cold…

As a famous beagle was known to say,


Hope this finds you well. I’m hoping that this cold will be just about gone by tomorrow. Most of my colds last about a day, but once in awhile they hang on for a week or more.

We’ll see.

Pushing vitamin C, garlic, and Berry Well from Beeyoutiful. That usually does the trick.