Some good stuff in school

It was slow going last week trying to get back into the mental mode of school, but we did it.  Both SweetPea and I are glad to be back at it--we just seem to do better with a schedule.

We finished a very interesting book last week, Dr. Jenner and the Speckled Monster.  It's the story of smallpox, the ghastly impact on our world over the centuries, and the discovery of the vaccine that literally conquered this "monster" and changed the world.  I highly recommend the book even as an adjunct to a science program.  In fact, it's a fascinating read for anyone, and certainly throws a different slant on history.

I've said it here before, but I'm really delighted with our math curriculum, Teaching Textbooks.  I hear comments regularly from SweetPea of how much she likes the pace of it, the clear instruction, and how well she is understanding the foundational concepts of each topic.  Thank You, Lord!  This is music to my ears after a couple of years of curriculum-hopping to find what would work for her after we finished elementary Singapore.  I think we can just stick with it now through high school and expect good results.

And this week we will begin Great Expectations by Dickens as a read-aloud.  From the looks of the study notes, we'll be awash with new vocabulary.  A decidedly wonderful way to learn words! 

I'm using Writer's INC this semester as the basis of essay writing study, reading and discussing each of us with our own copy.  I love this resource and have been trying to use it more as a study text for some time, so this is a great chance to do that.

So we're off to a good start for 2010, and I'm so thankful for this amazing privilege of homeschooling! 


Ring in the new

Happy 2010!  My prayer for you is that you will know the "blessing of the Lord which maketh rich and adds no sorrow to it"!

We're already enjoying the sense of new beginnings around here...

...A new patio roof is about halfway done, with our Christian builders diligently working whenever it's not too cold to do so.  I think they're taking off Thursday; do ya think 13 degrees for a high is too cold to work outside?!

...Back to school today (yay! three cheers for Routine!), with some new directions before us.

...Some new and improved kitchen organization is making things better and more enjoyable in the cook's department, and I'm loving my new over-the-sink cutting board with hole/strainer basket.  How did I ever live without it??

...And of course the excitement that comes with new goals.  I love that about the Lord, how He is ever able to make all things new.  I don't know about you, but I'm really ready for His renewing touch on a lot of things.

I like the bracing effect of goal-setting each January.  Gives me a chance to closely examine things, decide what has not been working, what priorities and processes have changed, and what can be improved.  This past year some health issues really dragged me down, so it's safe to say that nearly every area of my life needs improvement.  Praise God, He is the "glory and lifter of my head"!  I'm depending on Him day by day to truly be my New and Re-Newed life this year.