Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hugel Update (Wow)

So, uh, our hugel has turned into what I now call The Food Jungle. Don't believe me? Check this out:

Every single day I come back to the house with armfuls of yellow squashes, zucchini, and cucumbers. Some days I have a butternut squash and some tomatoes. It's crazy. 

So basically this means we've been eating a lot of squash and cukes. Nbd here, though. We've found some great recipes and since we're vegetarians, this is saving us a lot on groceries! 

Last week I made some kosher dill pickles from some of our cucumbers. I've made cucumber sandwiches and Benedictine for crackers and bread. Husband has made some amazing meals that are squash-heavy (Classic Calabacitas being one of our favorites!). 

All in all, we are very grateful to our mighty hugel for providing us with so much food. We've never gotten this much food out of a garden before and we've tried for years! Even when I am picking armloads of vegetables, I can see all of the things that will be pickable the next day. 

Long live the hugel! 

Monday, July 28, 2014


I mentioned a while back that there was some news from our family. You might have guessed it from the title: we have decided to try homeschooling our older daughter for the coming year. If it goes well, we will continue. If it doesn't, we gave it our best shot and hopefully helped her out a bit. Our younger daughter is going to be attending a special STEM school, which we are thrilled about, so she is not going to be homeschooled at this time.

I have been preparing by researching curriculum online, talking to friends who currently homeschool and finding out what has worked for them, and gathering some great resources on my Pinterest board, "Schooling at Home". Since our reasons for homeschooling are not religious, it is a little hard to filter through the multitude of religious homeschooling sites which initially look promising. However, I feel like I'm getting a little more comfortable with putting together lessons and such, and we will start full-on homeschooling when Sister goes back to school in a few weeks! There are some really helpful internet resources out there.

We are already doing a few lessons and getting caught up on math. For this I used (at Eryn's amazing recommendation! Thanks, Eryn!) Singapore Math's placement tests to find Miss S' actual math level. I ordered books off of Amazon (some were used and very cheap, so we got a great deal!) and we started in right away. I really like the way Singapore Math goes about teaching concepts. It seems to keep Miss S interested for a longer period of time than the math lessons she would bring home from school.

I also found some great apps, one of which sparked an entire unit we are going to do that is based around an Edgar Allan Poe poem! It encompasses (so far): art, reading, writing, public speaking/recitation, history, math, Spanish, and cooking/life skills. I'll share more info about this soon, as I'm still working through making the unit cohesive instead of just stuff I'm jotting down every time an idea hits me.

Although it's sort of daunting, I'm really looking forward to this challenge. Any advice would be much appreciated from those of you who are currently homeschooling a middle-schooler (or who have in the past).

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Felix's Travels

Hi! It's been a while. I thought I would share some pictures that were sent to me from Felix the Fox's new home in Australia! So exciting!

I'm so happy that Felix has such a great new home. What a lucky fox! ^_^