Three Things Thursday ~ Jan 30th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 9.47.34 AMI cannot believe that it is Thursday AGAIN! Because it is Thursday, I’m sharing three more things with you this week that you may not know about me. If you are interested in sharing three random tidbits about yourself I invite you to visit Heidi’s Head and check out Three Things Thursday.

1) I have been keeping myself busy this winter by crocheting (though I guess I mentioned that before). I am making a mood blanket, which is a year long project as I add a part each day for 365 days. I’ve completed 3 scarves, a pair of slippers and am working on a stuffed love puppy for Morgaine. I’m also making Morgaine a blanket of her own. I’m finding crocheting quite satisfying for the most part as projects do whip up rather quickly. There are only so many scarves and hats that one needs, though, so I may end up donating some or something. There’s certainly a need for warm clothes this winter.

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Morgaine’s blanket. I am pretty sure that I hate it, but we’ll see what happens as I start piecing it together. Would have liked it if there was some harmony between the colours, but this is a stash busting project so yeah. 

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Completed scarf. So nice and warm. A matching hat will soon follow. 

2) I would love to learn to play the guitar. I’ve had one sitting around for a number of years now, but the kids have gotten to it so it is no longer in tune. Every so often I think I should pick it up, but I haven’t the faintest clue how to get it back in tune (I have a really bad ear, so telling me to stop when it sounds right is rather pointless. It will be something that I will absolutely do eventually, though!

3) I am a hypochondriac. I was convinced that I caused myself liver damage by using acetaminophen for 3 days in a row (at fairly high dosages) for facial pain. I spent most of last week looking at my eyes in the mirror to see if they were turning yellow. I may have drove my husband a little crazy. It’s only been in the last few days that I’ve felt truly certain that I was fine! I really shouldn’t turn to Dr. Google too much! Along with hypochondria comes germ-o-phobia (especially of the tummy bug) variety. I tend to breath a sigh of relief after 3 or 4 days of being homebound because I figure that any bugs we may have picked up while out and about would have shown up by then! I’m probably getting much better with both of these things, but there are still times when they can be a little challenging.


Our Introduction to Further Up, Further In

Back in the day, many moons ago, when the whole family found homeschooling fun and inspiring we were using a literature base complete curriculum. At the time, we choose Sonlight, but we currently are unable to buy a nearly thousand dollar curriculum (or two) to meet the needs of all our children. So, at the beginning of the year, I went in search of a less expensive option. I knew that my friend had just started using Further Up, Further In based on the Chronicles of Narnia and after considering it and researching for a couple days, I decided to take the plunge. The children and I took some time to look at the topics covered and decided that it would be a pretty good fit for us.

When the book arrived, I was shocked at the amount of material given to cover in a day. I did not feel that there was any way that my children would enjoy or absorb the material at such a pace, so this week we used the Day 1 template for three days. It’s suggested that you pick and choose what you wanted to do, but I felt most things had value and I assume that I will feel that way about most of the curriculum.

This time only, I will be sharing what we did for our work, but I will not cover it in detail like this in the future because well, the activities are pretty much the course and I don’t think it would be fair to the author/publishers to share online in this much detail.

The course is divided into 7 units (one for each book) and each book should take about a month (or two, or three in our case *lol*). This week we focused on Chapter 1 of the Magician’s Nephew. Tuesday found us looking up our vocabulary in the diction, each child taking a turn dictating to me while I copied the definition into their workbook. We then gave examples of the words and then went ahead and read the chapter, which thankfully all three kids enjoyed (Liam had read the series, but Morgaine had only heard The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and she was much longer). After lunch we watched a couple mime acts on youtube, as pantomime was one of the vocabulary words.

The best pantomine it the world, apparently. It was pretty neat.

The older two kids then did a mime act from one of the scenes in the chapter. It was really too cute and I wish I’d taken a video. I am surprised at how silent they were! Of course, Ruadhan wanted in on the action so he and Morgaine acted out Little Red Riding Hood.

We then did our bible studies which was on the subject of temptation. I had to bite my old school Catholic upbringing tongue when both my children took a comical approach to creating bookmarks imploring them to avoid temptation.

On Wednesday we focused on literature and read Sherlock Holmes’ The Hound of the Baskervilles and the first chapter of Treasure Island. Liam wrote a short biography of C.S. Lewis and then in the afternoon we cuddled up with blankets and watched 1939 film of The Hounds of the Baskervilles starting Basil Rathbone.

On Thursday Liam researched the vacuum cleaner and shared his finding with us, including an outline of the various different types of vacuums out there. We then watched a few vacuum (hoover) youtube videos and the children had a blast naming the different types.

Morgaine and I learned about fountain pens and she had a chance to use one (including installing the ink reservoir). We also looked briefly at wax stamps and then the family got together and made pretend quill pens.

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Liam, Morgaine and Mommy made pretend quills. 

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Ruadhan made a ghost! 

(I’m sure we did more this day, but my mind is fuzzy right now….both children did their math and science, but I think there was one more Further Up, Further In topic covered.)

We look forward to continuing on with this course over the next several months. For more information please visit Cadron Creek  (however, if you are Canadian I suggest researching and purchases from a different supplier as they tried to charge me 75 dollars (more that the curriculum) for SHIPPING).

Three Things Thursday ~ January 16th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 9.47.34 AM Thursday again, surprising how quick a week  goes isn’t it? I cannot believe it and I haven’t even posted since last week. Nonetheless, I am back to take part in Three Things Thursday again hosted by the lovely Heidi over at Heidi’s Head. Last week I talked a little bit about homeschooling, but I fear that it is the end of the day so I am going rather random with my three things this week!

  1.  My children are watching Backyardigans and it is a show that I totally find myself watching even when they are not in the room. There are not too many children’s shows that I can stand for more that 15 minutes, but I could probably leave The Backyardigans on all day. I like the music and the stories are pretty catchy, too. The only other children’s show that is currently on that I really enjoy is Martha Speaks.
  2. I have the habit of taking a razor to my head every so often and chopping my hair really, really short. It is so freeing. Last time I had my daughter do it and she was thrilled to be my hairdresser. It’s been a little over a month now and it has grown to the annoying stage of no longer staying neat and I am tempted to shave it off. I kind of want to see what my hair would look like longer and salt and pepper, though, so I am contemplating letting it grow out. If anyone has any tips on managing a wavy short style as it grows out, let me know!
  3. I’m taking part in a 365 Feminist Selfie challenge for the year. I am quite uncomfortable with my image and I think it will be interesting to see how my confidence develops over the course of the year. I’m usually always the one behind the camera. My goal is  to be able to take a selfie of myself smiling by the end of the year. I’ve tried, but I’ve been far too uncomfortable to share them or even leave them on my device. They aren’t whole face smiles, yet, and I want to get there. I’ve been pretty good at keeping up and sharing so far this year, only missing a couple days. I’ve loved seeing the pictures that my other friends and women from all around have been sharing. It is an experience.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 12.58.24 PMHere’s a selfie for you. It is’t one of my #365feministselfie (s) as it was taken before the beginning of the challenges, but it shows my hair freshly shaved so I figuredI’d kill two birds with one stone. 

Three Things Thursday – January 9th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 9.47.34 AMI’m linking up with Heidi’s Head to share three more things about myself this week. If you would like to share three little random tidbits about yourself on your blog, be sure to link up as well. I always love meeting new people and/or finding out new things about old friends!

  1.  I am never, ever satisfied with our homeschooling plans (or lack of plans). I will probably doubt myself until the day they graduate from high school. All three of my children are very bright and talented and I get to learn all about many different types of homeschooling methods and curriculum because of my uncertainty.
  2. I never really intended to homeschool, but one day my husband was walking though a bookstore and noticed all the workbooks and schooling materials and told me that he thought I would make an excellent teacher. I’d just meet a couple homeschoolers via the internet and that started my journey. Despite all of the resources at that bookstore, I have never ever purchased anything for homeschooling there.
  3. My favourite part of homeschooling is reading and working outside in the sunshine (and of course, letting them play and explore,  getting insanely dirty). For this reason, we tend to take more time “off” over the winter months and tend to do more in the summer. I have to say that the mosquitoes were very much a hinderance to that plan this last summer, though, so we are taking less breaks over the winter as my plans to enjoy books under the trees on picnic blankets doesn’t work as well here as it did in town. Maybe in time we’ll build a gazebo or something so that we can work outside without being eaten alive!

Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 10.16.49 AMMy homeschooling theory is always, always let them get messy (so long as I can hose them off before they come in….I still have hang ups on messes in the house…..uh, glitter *shudders*) 

A Blanket of Emotion

Oh boy! A new year is upon as and this year I am taking it upon myself to start (and finish!) a new year long project. I’ve been knitting and crocheting for many years now and when a homeschooling acquaintance posting a link to a year long Instagram challenge I decided to jump on board. The goal is to crochet a square or row of a blanket each day for 365 days, selecting a colour to correspond with how you were feeling throughout the day. At the end of the year you end up with a completed blanket that you can wrap yourself in as well as a keepsake that reflects your year in emotions. Many people are also choosing to keep a journal as they go along which makes the project all the more special.

As I get rather bored with granny squares (no, not really, I just hate joining them), I decided that I would create a zigzag blanket as my project and today, after an excursion to the craft store, I was finally able to begin. My goal is to have each coloured row (will likely make it two or three rows, though) represent a week, with each day taking about 29-30 stitches. Each week will have a cream coloured division row between it.

Screen Shot 2014-01-06 at 8.46.20 PMWeek one is almost completed.

The colours and emotions that I’ve chosen to highlight in this project are:

  • Happy/Content (things are going along pretty smooth in my life) – Pink
  • Accomplished (man, I did good today) – Purple
  • Hopeful (I feel like good things could happen) – Yellow (I may need another similar emotion to pair with this one, hopeful is not a very frequent emotion on it’s own)
  • Playful/Silly (for those days were I dance around and sing in my living room) -Magenta
  • Angry/Frustrated (ugh, especially if I’m letting the rage out and projecting on others – Red
  • Tired/Discouraged (the times when the rage and blah gets all held in and I just feel like nothing is ever going to change – Grey
  • Sad/Lonely (oh, I really wish I had people to give me a big ol’ hug or to have a cup of tea) – Turquoise

I tend to be a little bit of a yeller so my goal for the year (as you know, a resolution or something) is to get the point that the red patches are few and far between. May my blanket be filled with pink, purple, magenta, and yellow!

If you would like to join up please follow mummy_stacey on Instagram or choose some colours and get crocheting. You can share using #crochetmoodblanket2014 on both instagram and Facebook. There is also a Facebook group which you can find here.

It is AMAZING to be Back

I know that this little corner of the blogging world is basically unknown, but I’ve missed it. For a recap, I’be been blogging for quite a while now and I started this particular blog to just be myself and not worry about being perfect or gaining a following. I did, however, take a reviewing position that required me to keep track of stats (or it was supposed to) so I moved back to my old Mama Manuscripts home. However, things are changing again and I will no longer be reviewing. As my domain is expiring this month and I am no longer feeling my Mama Manuscripts identity, I’ve found my way back to Real Life: Unscripted.

I don’t have any real intention for this blog at the moment and I think that I like it that way. I can tell you that I will no longer be reviewing unless it is something that I choose to write about on my own. I’ll likely be pretty open with my thoughts, because this is my own space, so if you don’t like them, then that’s okay, you can choose not to read. Things are sometimes challenging and occasionally I feel like running away screaming and I might even say that here. My life certainly isn’t perfect, but it is always interesting. I probably have things to say, and when I know what they are I’ll have a place to write them!

I look forward to seeing where this journey leads. Wishing you and yours all the best in 2014!