Well, the theme of the week was outdoor exploration. We took full advantage of the snow that was dumped on us over the weekend and I am glad that we did. I was surprised at how much my children actually enjoy winter when it isn’t minus a billion. During the first two weeks we were here, EVERY outing involved at least one child crying from the cold by the end. This week, I had a hard time getting them to come inside. Ruadhán especially loved it, and liked to dig and play “real life minecraft”. The big kids made forts, dug tunnels and threw snowballs. They also learned that snowball fights are a sure way to get someone upset so they probably aren’t a good idea. We’ve also taken a few strolls down the highway as a family. A Mama and her little chicks. The road is all but deserted so there’s not really too much risk to it. We got to see some logging trucks pulling off on the side today so the little one was especially thrilled.

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I fell into a snowbank and got snow up my skirt trying to get this picture for you. I love that he is wearing a hat that I made that all my children have taken turns wearing over the last 7 years or so.

Liam is finally finishing up his unit on fractions in Math Mammoth. He has been working on it since early in the fall. Fractions are the first thing in math that Liam has ever had to give any thought to at all. Most often, in the the past, he taught ME tricks and patterns in math. Unfortunately, because fractions didn’t come as to him everything else, he assumed he was no longer good at math and gave up. He’s been plugging through since December so that he can get on to other subjects. If he shows interest in it, we’ll probaby start doing mental math again around the table. He used to pride himself on how easy he could get even complicated questions and it was clear, even yesterday, just playing Monopoly, that he’s lost that confidence.

Besides math, Liam has been working on developing a 2D version of Minecraft using Python. He has also spent sometime working on Game Maker on our little PC.  He’d developing quite the knowledge base when it comes to various computer programming languages. His games also involve story lines and obstacles so it is decent all around educations. Liam has been reading the Xanth novels by Piers Anthony and I believe that he is on Book 30 since starting in December. I’d read them a number of years ago so could not remember them well and I just started the series over again myself and am a little shocked at the adult themes in the books. I think they are a little over my head but now I do know where certain questions he was asking me came from…hmmm. He loves that Xanth is a very literal world and works the same way as his brain does. He’s come up with a few play on words himself. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Blank-Its: Material that makes things go blank.

A character named D. Saster: Causes disasters wherever she goes.

Punpies: Puppies who are very good at making up puns.

Liam has also helped out a lot in the kitchen this week along with his little brother. We’ve done a fair bit of baking and he also helped me prepare a few suppers in additions to the breakfast he made us yesterday.

Morgaine has chosen to spend much of her time in her room drawing. She really has talent when she takes her time and I should share some of her work soon. She’s also spent a lot of time reading. So much so that I usually  have to tell her to turn out the lights when I go to bed. She is having a harder time sleeping in now that she shares a room with her brother so she doesn’t get the time that she used to have in the evenings/night to work on her drawings and reading because she is too tired in the day with Liam being such an early bird. She has played school with Ruadhán many times this week and continues to be excellent with him. She is plugging along in her workbooks, having completed several this school year. She hasn’t shown a lot of interest in other subjects (history, geography, science). She tends to focus on the more creative subjects – art, sewing/knitting, and drama. She also spends are fair bit of the day just dancing around.

As for me, I’ve found this week really long and rather draining. The outside play has done me a world of good, but in the house, I’d rather hide in my bathtub than do hands on projects with the kids. I’ve found the cause of my tiredness so I hope that in the coming weeks I’ll get my energy back up. The warmer – I hope – days should help, too. I received my grade for my neuroscience class from Coursera – 97.3% and my first certificate of achievement.  YAHOO! I’m also continuing to work on my Think Again: How to reason and Argue course. It is EXCELLENT and I wish everyone would take it. One of the teachers is a total delight and the other, while less entertaining really knows his stuff (and captivates Liam). The course is officially done, but I’ll have to work hard to meet the extended deadline for finishing the material. I had to take several breaks over the the 3 months the course has run and I find myself only about two thirds of the way done, with 2 our of 4 exams still to go. So you’ll know where I’ll be this week!

All in all, I’m beginning to get back into normal life and I think that the children are adjusting well, too. We will see what next week brings.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend.