December was the month I decided to put my kids in writing boot camp. They were sending Christmas wish list emails to their grandma, and I said, “make sure to write an actual letter not just, ‘I want this for Christmas, and include me in the email so I can know what you’ve asked for.’” Then I read their emails and they were full of a ridiculous amount of spelling and grammar errors. So homeschooling was primarily focused on that aspect.
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Week 1 of December
Our first week of December we got back from our whirlwind trip up to Iowa and Wisconsin (see November homeschool happenings) and proceeded to decorate our Christmas tree. Because we were going to be replacing the back door we opted to put up our artificial tree upstairs. I’m glad we won’t have to do that again next year because it didn’t feel as Christmasey to have the tree upstairs. We also kicked off our annual Wandering Wisemen.
We played a fun round of Smash Up. I played the Greeks and Robots (from the original Smash Up and the It’s Your Fault Expansion). They don’t quite work together, but I really like both of them individually.
Princess took a friend out for her birthday, and they happily sat and painted pottery together. I still need to deliver the cup to her friend. I really love that place, it’s a lot of fun.
We all went to the church to participate in the dedication. We spent 30 minutes reading from the Old Testament. I swear I was jinxed the kids would read these great verses and it would get to me, and I would get, “Better to live on the roof of your house than with a nagging wife,” or some similar verse. We were just about to get to Proverbs 31, and our turn was up. We went upstairs to pray over the church for the next 30 minutes. It was quite a cool experience.
We went to the Bob Bullock to see the Muppet Christmas Carol in 4D, a total disappointment in the experience, but it’s still my favorite Christmas movie.
And somewhere in the week, Batman made challah bread from scratch. This week is suddenly so much busier than I remembered it as I’m writing this up.
We got a surprise snow day. The kids especially loved it because our entire trip up to the frozen North we never saw a speck of snow. They felt vindicated.
We finished up the week with Princess’ birthday party. She planned the entire thing, and all I had to do was provide food and large amounts of sugar. It quite amused me because she wanted smoked chicken for the dinner, so Batman undertook the job of smoking the chickens. It was delicious.
Week 2 of December
We continued the fun with our wandering wise men, and decorated our traditional Santa cookies together. It makes me so happy to cook these cookies each year continuing the family tradition for the fourth generation.
We watched the Nancy Drew movie after the kids each read a book. I had a blast making the signs from book covers I took off the internet.
That Saturday we went down to the Texas State Cemetary and laid wreaths on the graves of veterans. The girls all stood respectfully for the entire hour-long speech, and afterward, they got to take a picture with the governor where he thanked them for their hard work. Our troop was responsible for raising the funds for about 1/4 of the wreaths placed that day. It was so amazingly cold though, it was one of our rare cold days.
Week 3 of December
After almost 13 years of faithful service and several trips coast to coast and north to south, our van gave up the ghost. It took a lot of searching but we found a new car that we’re all quite enjoying. It’s a bit bigger which is a very weird feeling for me to drive, but the kids are loving the extra foot space.
I didn’t take many pictures that week, I actually don’t remember much of what we did (part of why I take so many pictures to help me remember). The main thing I remember is lots of cuddling and watching movies. Batman did make a gingerbread house from scratch, and Princess got to make one from a kit she got for her birthday.
I think the week was mainly taken up with lots of making Christmas presents from all of the kids. This year we encouraged them to make presents for each other, and that led to some interesting ideas. Superman wanted a staff like Anduin Wrynn has in World of Warcraft, so Batman came up with the idea to take an old shower curtain pole and use that for the basis of the staff. I envisioned all sorts of amazing head wounds from that idea, so I got him together with Jeff and they ended up creating a pretty cool staff using an old rake handle and wood-burning it.
Final week of December
Christmas was our usual multi-day affair with all of our family here in Texas. The kids negotiated a 7:30 am open presents time provided they brought Jeff and me coffee and tea respectively. I was quite amused because they taped a label over my “Tea makes everything better” cup to say “Tea makes waking up early in the morning better.” Well-played children.
Favorite presents that I’m remembering: Small World (and Small World Underground), World of Warcraft cookbook (Batman has already made several recipes from it), Ex Libris, Shadows of Brimstone Minecart (we kickstarted the next expansion and the level we did got us all of the old materails we didn’t have, the boxes were a combined weight of 66 pounds), The Storm Before the Storm (Superman has been dropping not so subtle hints for months), and a crafting book (Princess’ current obsession is craft kit books)
All of 2017 homeschooling at a glance
I thought I’d tagged all of the pictures of the months with 2017, but I didn’t so here’s all the posts I can find, I guess that’s something to remember for this year:
I would write a goals post, but I’m realizing I’m terrible at those.