It’s been a while since I have written a monthly rundown for you! I love putting together these posts because not only does it give me a chance to share all the little things around here, but it helps me remember all the little things around here: books we’re reading, what’s going on in our homeschool, around the house and more.
Just a few weeks ago, I was thinking about how easy this winter has been and remembering back to some winters that have not been so easy. It’s really tough to not see the sun shining for months at a time. But this winter has felt really good overall! We’ve gotten out and about, I’ve stayed active, and things have felt very steady–until the last week or so. My body is aching for spring! We had a huge plop of snow last weekend–about six inches–and I loved that, but overall, the winter has hit me all at once this week and I am so ready for some consistent sunshine. As I write, it’s snowing again! I can’t be mad about it when it’s so beautiful though!
But let’s back up from spring and talk about February–what’s been happening around here.
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Learning Well Journal: Spring Issue is Out!
Last month, we kicked off our spring issue for Learning Well Journal and it is now hitting the mailboxes of subscribers. This issue is all about discipline, and wow is this something we all need! Every one of us has an area (or three!) that we need to reign in. For me is things like: sleep routines, time on my phone, being a better steward of my time.
This season features articles on: teaching our kids character, an awesome Day in the Life feature, an Easter brunch menu, an afternoon unit study on disipline, setting up a family garden–and so much more!
Get the 6 Secrets to a Simpler Mom Life
I highly recommend checking out Learning Well Journal! We are knee-deep in the summer issue now, which feels weird while it’s snowing outside!
If you’ve missed the first and second issue, you can check for back issues in my shop.
It’s been a busy year so far for my oldest. He started going to a local technical school and started a new job in the field he’s studying. And then he had the audacity to turn 20 at the end of February! It just goes so dang fast.
Visit from friends
In February, we also got to entertain some friends for a few days. Annie has been my right hand lady for several years, taking care of tons of details for me. But we are also good friends. She and her family moved from OR to SD in 2020, so it’s nice that they’re closer to us! They packed up the family and came to Minnesota for a few days and we had so much fun in the snow, eating lots of good food, and laughing. So much laughing!
I’m really not one to jump on band wagons. But lately the band wagons seem to be more pioneer-tilting, which I can totally get behind! 2020 was the year everyone was at home and decided to start baking sourdough. I didn’t get it and it seemed way too complex, but here we are two years later and we are sourdough people now. Sophia (13) and I have baked many loaves–gosh it’s satisfying to see those beautiful air bubbles inside!–pizza dough, banana bread, and biscuits! Much more to come, I am sure.
For Valentine’s Day, Vera and I made these sweet little meringue with raspberry mousse and fresh strawberries. Yum!
Otherwise around the house, we are feeling the need to freshen some spaces up. It’s been a long winter and we are in need of getting some projects done. More to come!
We have been truckin’ right along with our Apologia Earth Science curriculum! There’s been earth models, crystals, and lots of different little projects showing how the earth functions going on in our homeschool lately. We love Apologia curriculum! Last year, we completed Flying Creatures. Not sure what we’ll do next, but for not being a science mom for so many years, I feel like a new person!
We have also been studying Church History all school year, which has been fascinating! The kids and I read through a book called Trial and Triumph earlier this year about many people from church history. Each kid chose one of the people we read about to do further research and create a project or report on that person. They are wrapping those projects up and I will share all the other resources we used at the end of our unit. We have loved this one!
Books We’ve Read Lately:
Created for Work: Practical Insights for Young Men– We loved this one! It’s written to boys, but we read with our girls too. TONS of lessons and advice for kids to learn the value of hard work–something that seems to be waining in our culture.
Christian Heroes: C.S. Lewis– We started this a while back and shelved it to make space for other books. But we pulled it back out and finished recently and we loved this one! So fun to hear the stories behind the Chronicles of Narnia and what was going on in Lewis’s life at that time.
Christian Heroes: Corrie ten Boom– We also finished this one, which goes along with our Missionary Study this year. Vera absolotely adores Corrie ten Boom!
There is no shortage of information out there, so I really choose what I share intentionally, knowing we don’t need to be weighed down by just more, but quality info. Here are a few things I found noteworthy over the last couple of months:
Sheologians podcast series on feminism. These ladies cover the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th wave of feminism and some of the main influencers in those movements. It was very interesting. Feminism is based in so many untruths and manipulations, so it was good to hear the backstories of how we got here today.
I read this article about one mom and her daughter’s “transgender fantasy” and found it really fascinating and I think we are wise to heed her warning.
Maybe you’ve noticed this too, but lately it’s been a little reminiscent of spring 2020 with the black squares on Instagram or the vaxx rollout of spring 2021. This time it’s with blue and yellow flags and if they’re not in our bio, there is something terribly wrong with us.
Here’s what I’m saying: I don’t know everything that’s happening in Russia/Ukraine. It’s sad, it’s horrible to see, it’s complicated. Our old friends and neighbors just moved back to Ukraine in September and we are praying fervently for their safety. But posting the flags, pouring out the vodka, and easing threats of violence (albeit walking it back now) on social media just seems very self-posturing to me.
For now, what I can do is what I’ve always called to do: care for my family well. I don’t need to virtue signal online to prove allegiance anyone else. I have friends in Ukraine right now. I’m incredibly worried about them and other families like theirs. I also have Russian friends here in MN and I’m worried about the backlash that they’re getting because of the government of a country they no longer live. There is much more nuance to most situations and I’m always leery of the crowd making demands online.
What I’ve Read Lately:
Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gotto: Whoa this book is good! Comprised of several different speeches made by JTG for winning awards for teaching at public schools, wherein he took the opportunity to state everything that is wrong with government schools. It’s really interesting coming from the POV of a long-time govt school teacher.
Discipline by Elisabeth Elliot: This one might feel like it’s biting your cone off, as my mother would say, but it’s good. We need much less, “Oh sis, you’re fine just the way you are.” And more EE dropping blows in areas where we are most certainly not fine the way we are. She covers discipline of the body, our time, our place, just to name a few. I loved it!
The Winemaker’s Wife: a really good captivating story about WWII, friends doing incredible things for the war effort and hiding Jews, and the modern-day consequences of their work.
Mere Christianity: Finally finished this one! I have been reading it for a while and it was pushed aside for some others for a while. I loved this book. If you love Lewis, you need to read this one!
I’ve been trying hard to actually FINISH all the books I have started lately. For a while, my “currently reading” list was like 12 books! I needed to stop starting new books and finished what I’d started. I think I just have two (maybe 3) books that I’m currently reading and after that, I am going to work on FINISHING one before I START another!
There is always, always, always something to be thankful for. Here is my current list:
- spring on its way, regardless of the snow falling
- hard work paying off: lifting weights 6x/week, meal planning, and calorie counting has lead to losing weight and feeling really good! Yay!
- a much more uneventful week, opposed to last week’s insane one.
- spring break coming up in our homeschool!