Sunday, September 14, 2014

Pears, cheese, and activities

Monday- Sept 8
We did lessons this morning. This afternoon Christopher and I went to the gas station, the grocery store and library. The boys who were left at home had various work assignments. 

When I got home there were 5 bushels of pears sitting on the patio. We had ordered them and got the call Friday evening while we were out in town that they were ready to be picked up. Saturday was so busy we didn't get to it and so I thought I would get them while I was out and about today. Meanwhile they came by themselves. Not really. My brother-in-law brought them when he came to do some farm work. (The cattle on "our" farm belong to him.)

Tuesday- Sept 9
We skipped most lessons today to get some other needful things accomplished. We did do Math and memorized our verse for the day. 
Christopher's verse for Monday

Melvin's verses for Monday and Tuesday- the smiley face gets made as we say the verse 3 times throughout the day. The circle for once, the eyes for twice and finally the smile for the third time.

Actually, Stephen and Austin kept on going with their studies. I caught a few photos of things Austin is working on.
Reading The Illiad

Apologia Physical Science

Notebook for the same

We have an overabundance of milk right now so I made a hunk of cheese. 
I cut the solid mass into curds

Close-up

Then I stir it with my hand over a low heat cutting up the bigger chunks into curds

My improvised press- a blanching kettle, a tin and weights Oops! The slop pail and some toes got into the picture.

The finished chunk. If I allow the boys free access they will eat this in a few days. They love it fried. 

The pears needed to be sorted and the ripe ones done. We canned some and made jam out of the very soft ones. We are doing a year-long sugar fast as a family and so I made sugar free jam, using white grape juice concentrate to add a bit of sweetness to it.
Cooking jam in the crock pot

I put some cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in it.

 I also did something for the first time- posted something on eBay to sell. Check it out here and here.

Wednesday- Sept 10
Back to the books today. And more pears to can after school.

While doing Barton with Melvin I was giving him words to spell. "Camshaft" was the word. He asked whether it was a compost word. (Meaning compound) You can notice one trait of dyslexia if you look at the word "divers" in his verse above.

We have reinstated a practice we began earlier this year when I was pregnant. That is getting the boys to plan and cook meals. Stephen and Matthew made us a yummy supper of burgers and (homemade) fries.

Thomas had "men's meeting" at church this evening which is a monthly occurrence, necessary to the survival of the church.

Thursday- Sept 11
Same old same old. :) We finished the pear canning this afternoon. We still had a generous peck left that were a little too green and at the rate the boys eat them, they said they will eat those fresh. 
One day's work

We did have a bit of diversion when another homeschooling family popped in here to get some milk. The two oldest in their family are boys and have a lot in common with our two oldest. Stephen was pretty excited that they brought him a couple cans of calcium carbide which he uses in a homemade "cannon". It only shoots air but makes a BIG bang! 

The youngest boy is close to Christopher's age and they even look kind of alike. One more boy and two girls completed the group of children that came to visit. Mother and I have a lot in common with homesteading and homeschooling.

Stephen had an evening in town with the Kid's Club our church youth are doing for the young town children.

Friday- Sept 12
Our last day of school this week. In science we studied Mercury. Very interesting! Mercury's days (the amount of time it takes to rotate) are 59 earth days long and it's years (the time it takes to revolve around the sun) are 88 earth days long. Its days are 750 degrees hot and its nights are -300 degrees cold. If you stood on Mercury you would see no color because it has no atmosphere which is necessary for seeing color. Mercury is so close to the sun that you would only be able to see it in the late evening or very early morning as the sun rises and sets.
The boys are practicing a lesson we learned in Bible. If you look at your hand you can't balance an object but if you look at the top you can. Illustrating looking to ourselves or to God.

The boys had P.E. at school again today and brought home a half bushel of tomatoes from the above-mentioned friend. 

Stephen had an activity with the youth group this evening doing some work for a neighbor. Thomas & I had a date-at-home after supper. Sometimes we sit out on the deck but it was too chilly this evening so we shut ourselves up in our bedroom. 

Thomas' sister came today to help their mother with sorting her possessions in preparation for an auction next week. They both popped in for a late supper. Stephen came home for supper with them. He brought a bushel of apples (the first for this fall!) and a bushel of small late season peaches that a friend picked up for me at an orchard near her. We keep a network going here to get things for each other! :)

Saturday- Sept 13
Stephen left around 4:00 this morning for a day in PA with some of the youth group. They attended a seminar leveled at Urban Evangelism. He got home sometime around 9:30 this eve. 

Thomas spent most of the day at his desk. 

The rest of us worked on the cooking, cleaning and laundry that needed to be done. 

Austin swept the carpets in the breezeway where we have our classroom/office, dug a few potatoes and mixed & fried burgers for tomorrow's lunch while keeping clean dishes put away. We are preparing for Children's Day at church tomorrow. 

Children's Day is actually in November but we kind of celebrate it whenever, just making a special day for the children.

Matthew sliced a couple sweet onions for tomorrow's lunch and peeled & diced potatoes for a chowder for our lunch today. He also helped with some laundry and other odds & ends. 

Melvin made bread loaves and buns for the burgers, peeled and cut up carrots for the chicken chowder we ate for lunch, as well as keeping the dishwasher filled and dishes hand-washed. 

Christopher fried burger and shredded cheese for a pizza for supper. He was up early this morning and then slept a good while in the late morning/early afternoon.

My bro-in-law picked up a whole banana box full of free bananas this week. He brought us half of them! We have so many yummy fruits to enjoy right now. It helps to satisfy the boys' sweet tooth.

That's it for another week. 

How was your week? 

What fruits are you enjoying right now?

Do you celebrate Children's Day?