This week was so ridiculously chaotic and stressful, it was a challenge to get any school work done, but we muddled our way through. I've been extra busy with work, last minute Christmas shopping, preparing for upcoming sacraments, and getting paperwork together for D's school next year (he'll be going to an excellent Catholic high school, hooray!). I haven't even started thinking about what I'll be serving for Christmas yet (we're hosting this year), and we've done almost nothing for Advent, yikes!

This week's report will primarily focus on history, since that has been the most interesting subject these days. ;-)


The theme for history this week was colonial homes. I had hoped to order a log cabin kit from Rustic Replicas that we could create period-appropriate furnishings for, but with Christmas looming and my budget maxed out, that didn't happen. I will most likely use Christmas money to purchase this for January because I think it would be fun to use over our next year of history.
Time Travelers: Houses of Early Settlers Pop-Up Comparison

Time Travelers: What Would You Find on a Colonial Farm?

Time Travelers: Straw Tick Mattress & Rope Bed

A Colonial Christmas: This week we started a mini-unit on Christmas in colonial times. I am using bits and pieces of this unit study: Celebrate Christmas in Colonial America (though it's not very well organized, nor is it overly helpful), as well as my own material.


We had no time for science this week, but I did hear something very cool on NPR today that I plan to try in the (near) future. Here is a video that shows you how to grow your own snow crystals and here is a video on the "secrets of snowflakes." These would be perfect to go along with the book Snowflake Bentley, which is based on the life of William Bentley (his official website is here).

Personal Notes

This past week, I became the proud owner of both a NookColor and a Kindle (Christmas presents from DH, who despairs that books have taken over our house!). On my Nook, I've read Life and Death in a Venetian Convent: The Chronicle and Necrology of Corpus Domini, 1395-1436, which was interesting, though not all I'd hoped for. Also, the 1890 classic How the Other Half Lives (Studies Among the Tenements of New York) by Jacob Riis (very good!). I am currently reading Signs of Life: 40 Catholic Customs and Their Biblical Roots by Scott Hahn.

On my Kindle, I am nearly finished with the utterly fascinating, The Arsenic Century: How Victorian Britain was Poisoned at Home, Work, and Play (the chapters on the Victorian obsession with Scheele's Green were especially interesting!). Next, I hope to start on The Library at Night.   

Shades of Scheele's Green