The Homeschool Mother’s Journal

New Washer and Dryer


In my life this week…

It was a fairly quiet week with not too much going on.  We cooked/baked a bit, ran some errands, spent some time together as a family.

I did finally get to start on getting my house back in order now that I’m done with school.  It wasn’t necessarily dirty, but it was cluttered and needed a bit of a purge and some rearranging.  I’m taking one room at a time and it’s going rather well, and of course I’ve got less mental clutter now.

In our homeschool this week…

We’re finishing up spelling and history, working through the times tables, and doing a ton of reading.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…

We didn’t really go anywhere noteworthy this week, but next week we’ve got a full one.

We’ll be heading to the library to get some new books and sign up for the summer reading program, Babydoll has soccer try-outs, we’ve got a Girl Scout meeting, I’ve got a Girl Scout planning meeting to prepare for bridging and next year, and I’ll be delivering a wedding cake.

My favorite thing this week was…

I have a couple of favorite things this week!

New Washer and DryerMy most favorite thing was getting my new washer and dryer!!!! I’ve had my old set for about 1o years, and they weren’t the greatest when we bought them.  Not bad, just a very basic model.  The washer was starting to squeak and do other weird things, so Vince suggested I get a new set.  I’ve been waiting on these things for months {gotta love having issues with two companies…} and they finally came.  I *heart* them.  So, so, so much.

I stand in the laundry room and watch in awe; they’re magical I tell you.  They’ve got about a billion settings and so I’m having to learn how to do laundry all over again…

I also found out that I’ve made it onto The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew! I’ve wanted to be a part of this ever since I saw a crew member’s review early last year.  I think it’s a great thing for homeschoolers and hopefully it’ll be tons of fun!

Homeschool questions/thoughts I have…

I’ve begun ordering curriculum for next year.  I came across a post about The Prairie Primer, and went through some of it with Babydoll and she thought it sounded great.  That will now be the bulk of our literature next year, with a break here and there for some Evan-Moor literature pockets.

Have any of you used The Prairie Primer?  If so, what did you think?  Is there anything you would add/take away?

A photo, video, link, or quote to share…

Babydoll making breakfastBabydoll and I made ourselves breakfast today {Daddy had to work}.  The recipe came from her Rachel Ray cookbook.  We had want amounts to peanut butter sandwich French toast.  Oh man.  It was good…  And filling.

Blogger to WordPress Twitter Party!

Blogelina is hosting her first-ever Twitter Party this month – and you’re invited!  She’s got a lot of great prizes and a lot of fun lined up for Thursday, May 26th, from 9-10pm EST.

Sharon Hujik, author of How to Move From Blogger to WordPress: The Comprehensive Guide {and the supremely awesome gal who handled my WP transfer} will be Blogelina’s co-host.

Trust me, these two women have a ton of great information to share with you.  I use Blogelina’s website and resources to help me with so many aspects of my blog, and Sharon is a wealth of Blogger-to-WordPress information.

Making the Blogger to WordPress switch can be an intimidating one, which is why Sharon wrote her amazing book, outlining all the steps in the process.  She’s done a great job of taking all the guesswork out of the move – and she’s written all the steps down in an easy-to-understand way!

Plan to join us Thursday, May 26th, 9-10pm EST, and have your questions about the Blogger to WordPress Transfer answered by an expert!

Prizes They’re Giving Away

To be eligible to win, you’ll need to RSVP below and be sure to attend the party (you must be present to win)!

(1) Blogelina’s Total Blogger to WordPress Transfer Package Total Blog Transfer Package (worth $85)

If you’re wanting to take all the guesswork out of your Blogger to WordPress transfer and not even deal with the stress of moving everything over – why not have Blogelina do it for you?  An experienced transfer expert will take care in moving all your content to your new site. This transfer package even includes a year of web hosting for your blog – all you have to provide is the domain name and we’ll get you set up!  PLUS be sure to check out our FREE added bonus to the transfer package!

(1) Blog Design Makeover

Not only has Sharon created this awesome resource for blogger to wordpress transfers, but she also does blog design!  One lucky attender of the Twitter Party will win a Blog Design Makeover! Take a minute or two to browse her blog design portfolio and start dreaming about how fabulous your blog could soon be looking!

(5) Copies of Sharon’s Transfer Guide

If you are ready to make the move to WordPress, and want to do it yourself, this is the guide you need! It outlines the exact steps to rewrite your permalinks, retain your back-links for SEO, keep your blog readers, and redirect your domain name.  Get all your questions about switching to WordPress answered in this detailed guide!

How to Attend


  1. RSVP with your Twitter handle below
  2. Follow @momswithblogs and @SharonHujik on Twitter
  3. If you have a question about the Blogger to WordPress transfer, leave a comment on this post.  Sharon has agreed to choose several questions to answer during the party.
  4. Mark your calendar for May 26th, 9-10pm EST
  5. That night, log into Tweet Grid or Tweet Chat, following the hashtag #blogelina (if you’ve never joined a Twitter party before, it might be a good idea to check out those sites before the party date – also, check out How to Attend a Twitter Party)

To Enter to Win – RSVP Below and Be Sure to Attend!



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What I Learned While Cleaning My Kitchen

It wasn’t until after I finished school that I realized a) how unbelievably overextended I was, b) how badly the house needed to be cleaned {you know cleaned, not tidied}, and c) how much I’m still getting used to the idea that I don’t have to sit at the computer and write discussion question answers, papers, and Power Point presentations.

I’ve decided that instead of tackling every last fire at once {a favorite past-time of mine}, I would just take the cleaning and organization one step at a time.  After all, I have enjoyed sitting and reading, sitting and watching TV, sitting and doing nothing, sitting…

Today’s fire was the kitchen. Kitchens are wondrous places where all sorts of tasty creativity takes place.  I love my kitchen.  It’s on the smallish size, but its layout and design are conducive to some serious palate-pleasing pursuits.

When we bought the house, I decided on a very sleek and stylish black counter-depth fridge to go with the black microwave, oven, dishwasher, and toaster.  I was overjoyed; I love black appliances.

Now, while I still love my black appliances, I came to the realization today that really and truly, they are only designed for one of six people:

  1. those who have a maid to clean their appliances,
  2. those who do not have any other form of mammal in the home besides themselves,
  3. those who do not homeschool and spend every moment while their children and spouses are away obsessively cleaning their appliances,
  4. those who think their kitchen is a beautiful display piece in their home, meant only for looks and not for actual use,
  5. those who really don’t care if you can see your reflection in the opulent onyx, or
  6. those who obsessively go behind everyone and everything, throughout the day, cleaning the appliances after everyone and everything.

Can you guess which one of these people I am?

Yep.  Not a one.

So instead, I choose to love my appliances all the same, clean them several times a year, admire the purity that lasts for a few hours, then pretend like I don’t notice the fact that the grime on each one has distorted my reflection beyond all recognition the rest of the time.

Oh, of course it stresses me out, because that’s just who I am.  But, I just don’t have the time to do anything about it, and I refuse to spend all of my time keeping them super clean.

I realized a few other things while cleaning the kitchen today:

  • Every square inch of a dishwasher gets dirty and no, running the dishwasher doesn’t clean it.  How in the heck does all that grotty stuff get in all those nooks and crannies?
  • Never commence cleaning right before lunch prep begins.
  • Never commence cleaning when all you’ve had to eat for the day is one-too-many chocolate chip muffins {lovingly made by your daughter}, a glass of milk, and nothing more.  Those carbs might seem like a suitable driving force when you’ve begun, but they quickly bail on you and leave you stuffing your face with enough junk food to feed a small army while you wait for the water to boil for your fiber-rich whole grain pasta.
  • Remember that you should probably clean out the inside of the fridge while you’re doing the rest of the kitchen.  Should.  Or you can clear it of the old stuff and call it a day.
  • To do the job right, it’s going to take some time.  Time that halfway through you’ll wish you were doing something, anything, else.
  • Listening to music would probably make the whole ordeal much more enjoyable.  Or TV.  Or books on tape.
  • Determine what actually qualifies as “kitchen.” If you don’t, you’ll soon find yourself in the breakfast nook scrubbing down the island while realizing the blinds need dusting and the seldom used pots and pans stored there could probably be reorganized.

Despite all of these epiphanies, I am truly happy the kitchen had a good scrub-down.  It needed it, and I feel just a bit better inside.  Yay for small victories!

I was going to take a picture of the kitchen for you guys, but the kitchen is now dirty

Weekly Wrap-Up: The One with Septimus

Babydoll and I at Mom & Me Camp

Just a quick wrap-up, mainly so I can remember what we did last week…


We started reading the Septimus Heap series last week.  We love it.  It’s full of wizards, queens, princesses, Custodians, and all sorts of other fun things.  The first book in the series, Magyk, is a real page-turner; we find it hard to put down each night.


I continued to quiz Babydoll on her skip-counting by 9.  She has also started to recognize the relationship between multiplication and division, applying it in everyday life.

CookingStrawberry Sauce

This week Babydoll fixed a delicious dinner of cod baked in foil packets with olive oil, parsley, cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots, and green onions.  Oh man, so freaking good.  We also made tons of strawberry sauce.  Yum. Packets for baked cod

Unit Study

We did a really short unit study on Mexico. Babydoll made a paper doll clothed in traditional Mexican clothing, learned what the various colors and symbols on the Mexican flag stood for, made a colorful piñata, made an acrostic poem with the word “piñata”, all enclosed in a pocket book.  We finished the day off with delicious taquitos, pasta salad, black beans, and strawberry limeade.


Babydoll and I at Mom & Me CampBabydoll and I attended Mom & Me camp again this year.  We had so much fun.  It’s always enjoyable spending time with Babydoll just doing things together.  You know, things that don’t revolve around school or cleaning or soccer.  We got to do crafts, a hayride, outdoor cooking, songs, games, and we actually canoed.  Yes, we manned a canoe and paddled around the lake.  I was terrified but decided to try it anyway, and absolutely loved it.  I so want to canoe some more.


Awesome Linkage

A couple of weeks ago I gave you guys some Thursday linky goodness; how about some more?

  • The Thinking Girl’s Treasury of Real Princesses – This book series looks awesome.  Dawn from 5 Minutes for Books posted this the day of the royal wedding.  Now, we watched the coverage; it was a welcome distraction from the constant coverage of the devastation in the state and it was cool {a royal wedding doesn’t happen everyday}.  I do, however, want Babydoll to learn that there were real-life princesses throughout history who accomplished great things.
  • In the Kitchen:  Quick & Easy Breakfasts – There are some great ideas for kid-prepped breakfasts here courtesy of Let’s Explore.  I’m one of those parents who never really bought into the whole “I’m going to wake up everyday and make breakfast for my child” thing.  No, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it, but it doesn’t suit me at all {I’m so not a morning person}.  So, we taught Babydoll how to fend for herself.
  • Home Ed Connection – Paisley over at Home School Tweet has put together a website for homeschool children to interact with each other.  Don’t worry, she’s put all the good parameters and other stuff in place.  You can’t deny that social networking is a big thing nowadays, so how cool is it that homeschoolers have a place all their own?!
  • Super Teacher Worksheets – Yet another gem stolen from Raising Little Rhodies.  I am absolutely in love with this website.  This has to be the most organized worksheet website I’ve seen.  It’s simple, the worksheets are great, and it’s all free.