Monday, January 6, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

It's going to be a cold, busy week. Time to break out the slow cooker.

Monday (1/6): Chili and corn bread (slow cooker meal)
Tuesday (1/7): Beef stroganoff
Wednesday (1/8): Leftovers
Thursday (1/9): Tilapia Puttanesca (eMeals)
Friday (1/10): Chicken Curry (slow cooker meal)
Saturday (1/11): Cheeseburger Soup
Sunday (1/12): Pulled pork (slow cooker meal)

Go to Menu Plan Monday for more ideas.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Menu Plan Monday

I have another week off from work, so I hope to get some organizing done. The Christmas turkey is almost gone. I have 3 quarts of broth in the freezer. The Historian will finally get a break on January 1. He's been working almost every day this month except for Christmas Day. Fortunately we have no required activities this week.

Monday: Mexican rice chicken casserole thing made with leftover turkey, sliced apples

Tuesday:  Mac and Cheese with hamburger and spinach

Wednesday: Hoppin' John Soup, collards, cornbread

Thursday: Loaded baked potatoes, leftover soup, salad

Friday: Buffalo or plain chicken wraps, broccoli, oranges

Saturday: Leftovers

Sunday: Lasagna, salad, garlic bread

More ideas can be found at Menu Plan Monday.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Menu Plan Monday

Here is my second edition of Menu Plan Monday hosted by I'm an Organizing Junkie.

This weeks is a bear. It's finals week at the college, and I have to get grades turned around very quickly. To make matters worse, almost every activity we have is having a Christmas party this week and of course we have to take food. I'm trying to keep our suppers simple.

Monday: (Didn't get to this one last week) Olive Garden Sausage Soup

Tuesday: Bean and cheese quesadillas 

Wednesday: Garlic Lime Chicken and mashed potatoes

Thursday: Crock Pot Roast Beef

Friday: Leftovers

Other cooking: Bake a bunch of potatoes to have for quick lunches, make batch of crock pot granola, make ginger snaps

Monday, December 2, 2013

Menu Plan Monday--First Entry

Why haven't I been blogging? No real reason. We've been busy, but that's our normal these days. I guess I just got used to not blogging.  I'm going to try to make more of an effort by linking up with some weekly themes.

Menu Plan Monday is hosted by I'm an Organizing Junkie. Menu planning is trouble area for me, so I hope this helps me to be more organized.

Here's my first menu:

Monday: Moroccan Spiced Stew with chicken. It's a Campbell's Slow Cooked Sauce packet. The Historian bought it. I try to stay away from processed stuff, but it needs to be used.

Tuesday: Ham Casserole  

Wednesday: Salmon Patties and leftovers

Friday: Homemade Pizza--probably ham and pineapple

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

What? High School? Already? NOOOOOO!!!!!

So here I am in the trenches of planning 9th grade for the Crafter. That's high school. How did this happen? Seems like yesterday when she sat in my lap sounding out Mat and Sam in the Bob Books while Wild Thing napped in his bouncy seat. Now she's almost grown up.

When it comes to homeschooling high school it's do or do not. Going to regular school midstream is a frustrating proposition at best. And I'm scared. Terrified. I've always worried about doing enough, but there was always time to catch up. Until now. Now everything counts. Now the subjects have to be done. There's more record keeping and more pressure and more demands on time. The Crafter and I are butting heads over her leisurely work pace frequently. Sigh.

So far we've thrashed out a few subjects.

  • Algebra I using Jacobs Elementary Algebra and Life of Fred. She started algebra in the winter, so I hope she's ready to start geometry after Christmas.
  • English I:  Analytical Grammar, Vocabulary from Classical Roots, Literature from Tapestry of Grace Year 1, IEW Elegant Essay at co-op
  • Health/PE using BJU's Health for Christian Schools, Red Cross first aid class, yoga and pilates DVDs, clogging class, 5K training
  • Fine Arts I: Music appreciation at co-op, Introduction to Art MOOC from Coursera (half credit)
  • Theater I: Christian Youth Theater Class (half credit)
  • Biology: work in progress. I plan to follow the Campbell aligned AP syllabus on Hippocampus, but we're having trouble affording the book. I hope to snag a copy from one of the biology instructors at the community college where I work part time.
  • World History prehistory-fall of Rome: TOG Year 1
So there it is. A tentative beginning for high school.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

What's a MOOC?

MOOC stands for massive open online course.

I started exploring these for my personal continuing education. I hope to get my Master's in something after homeschooling. I will probably have to do much of the work online. MOOCs are a way to dip your toe into online education without shelling out hundreds of dollars in tuition. I started out easy with something I already knew, physics.

I enrolled in How Things Work I from the University of Virginia offered through Coursera. The class "met" for 6 weeks. What happens is that you watch a series of video lectures. Some courses have reading assignments. This one did not. Then you complete the assignments. In my case it was a 10 question quiz each week. Boy were those quizzes hard. Anyone who says that you don't need grammar for science is mistaken. I diagrammed some of the questions to figure out exactly what was happening.

After the course is over, you get a certificate of completion if you meet the minimum requirements. Does it mean anything? Probably not to anyone except me. There are a few courses that a few colleges will accept for credit, but those are not free.

Pros: free, lots of choices, easy unenroll if the course doesn't suit you
Cons: credit not recognized, forums can be nasty places with mean people, very little or no instructor interaction

Some other MOOC sites are Udemy, ItunesU, and EdX. I haven't explored them.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Harry Potter Party

The Crafter is 13. She has been for a while. She's actually closer to 14 now. I'm a bad blogger. Anyway, here is her very elaborate Harry Potter Party. It should be noted that the Crafter wants to have a bake shop and party planning service when she grows up. She did much of the food prep work herself. I was in charge of decorations and beverages.

First, the guests picked up a wand before they entered the house. I missed getting pictures of the wands. Then, everyone needed to be sorted. I found and printed a house quiz for this. The guests took the quiz. I checked them and announced their houses. The hat is a regular black witch's hat from Target. The Crafter used brown craft paper to cover it.

Not Slytherin...Not Slytherin....


Another Hufflepuff!


After the Sorting Ceremony, it was time for the feast. We couldn't pull off the great hall, so we turned the kitchen into Three Broomsticks.

The feast consisted of Golden Snitches, chocolate frogs, acid pops, licorice wands, pumpkin pasties, cake, chilled pumpkin juice, and hot butter beer. We found most of our ideas and recipes on Pinterest.

 The Golden Snitch

 Chocolate Frog

 Pumpkin Juice

 Deathly Hallows Mugs for Butterbeer

 Side view of Cake--Note: Next time use cardboard when stacking asymetrically.

 Top View of Cake

We couldn't leave the bathroom out. Fortunately, no one attempted to flush themselves in.

Everyone had a great time. The Crafter promised to have an easier party next year.

Monday, May 13, 2013

All Hail the Queen

The Crafter to Wild Thing: I'm a nerd because I like to read a lot, and I like fantasy and costumes. You are more of a geek since you like science and taking things apart.

The Chemist: What does that make me?

Wild Thing and the Crafter exchange puzzled looks.

Wild Thing:  Queen?

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Pinterest Project: Iced Coffee

I've been on Pinterest for a while. It has been the source of many wasted hours and some really good ideas. I thought I would post some of my successes and failures.

Here's the pin:  

The Pioneer Woman has a great idea, but I don't trust myself with that much potential iced coffee at my disposal. I created a scaled down version. At night I put 2 TB of coffee and 2 cups of water into an old jar. Then it goes in the fridge overnight.

The next day I filter it.

Add some half and half and ice, and there it is--premium iced coffee.