Commander in Chief

I found this description of a meeting with President Bush linked from another blog today. I wanted to share it.

As the article says, this is an example of servant leadership.

Thank you Jessica.

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Plans this week

I want to re-read At Home in Mitford for the 3 Moms Book Nook.

I want to read The Grand Weaver and write a review. This was a book read and reviewed by 5 Minutes for Books.

Of course, along with this I’ll finish reading Getting to Yes for Negotiation class, watch the Columbia’s Final Mission video for Leadership, think through the scenario for Negotiation, and read and do homework for Decision Analysis.

Our budget meeting for the deacons is tonight so I’ll be there for a few hours.

I have been way too lax on my weekends, actually treating them like weekends. I told Anthony last night that this has to stop. I have to use my time for homework like I did the first few semesters. (I also need to stop spending so much time reading and writing blogs.) There are only 13 weeks left and I just have to buckle down to get it done.

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Weekly Report

Time to talk about what we did this week. It was a pretty productive week, considering we spent Mon and Tues at the hospital where my Dad is.

Math: Life of Fred lessons 8 through 12. He’s doing really well with the math and confirming that he was ready for the Early Algebra book. He picked up a lot last year (I’m sure his teacher would be happy to hear that, she didn’t get much evidence of it at the time).

Grammar: Continued prepositions and touched on helping verbs and verb phrases with another 5 worksheets in Easy Grammar Plus. He’s got the prepositions down pretty well but didn’t get the verb phrases piece well. I was in class today so Anthony covered school today. He wasn’t ready for the grammar so Connor didn’t get the guidance he needed. We’ll be covering verb phrases again on Monday.

Bible reading: He made it to the Commandments in Exodus this week.

Vocabulary: He completed Lesson 3 and we discussed missed items in Lesson 2. He’s doing pretty well with this. I need to find more ways to incorporate vocabulary in other things, there aren’t enough exercises in the workbook.

Writing: He did assignment 4 in the EIW Ancient History-Based Writing Lessons. I’m not expecting the Great American Novel from him.

History: We started with the TRISMS series (it arrived Wednesday)!! For Unit 1 he has done the unit worksheet, Music (Jubal from Gen 4:21), Architecture (the ark), and started Art (cave paintings). Next week we’ll work on the map items for Geography, Science questions, and timeline, as well as discussing various flood stories for Literature. He’ll also do another Architecture worksheet on Çatal Höyük.

Free Reading: He finished another book this week! This is one his Dad got for him last weekend. He read Blood of the Heroes by Steve White. Seems to involve ancient Greek heroes so it fits in with our classical education schedule too! I plan to read it soon so I can see what he actually read.

What are we missing? Haven’t gotten into General Science yet. We also haven’t started the Logic book. That is going to be very dependent on conversations and we just haven’t had time for that yet. We also haven’t come up with a good physical activity. We have equipment for him to work in the house, but he isn’t really taking that seriously yet.

We will have another art option soon. A friend from my EMBA class is opening an art school where his wife will teach 2-14 year olds in varous art techniques. Snook Art has classes starting in October. I can take him Thursday as I head down to study group at Queens, and then Anthony can pick him up when class ends.

Concerns: Typical beginnger concerns I’d say. Is he doing enough work. Am I spending enough time with him.

Of course, while I’m writing this I’m watching video from about Hurricane Ike and I’m not sure if Galveston will be around after this weekend. Plus there was a run on gas around here today and some local gas stations are out of gas. Makes my concerns look small.

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I haven’t posted anything specifically for 9-11, although the date cannot pass unnoticed.

Tony Woodlief captured it well, so I’ll just direct you over to his blog.

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Finances shaping up…

but not because of anything I’ve done.

I followed one of those internet links to get an estimate for how much life insurance for Anthony would cost. That lead to sales calls and emails from the company to get us to sign up for something. While it was annoying, it was the push we needed. (The company is called Matrix Direct so the first time we saw it on the caller ID we joked that Neo was calling). I got on the phone and answered the questions to get a more substantial quote. Then Chris (not Neo) said he would email and mail an application for us to review and to let him know if we wanted to move forward. This is where I would have dropped it. But the nurse who had to do the physical called Anthony and set up an appointment for Wed (9/10). That meant I had to pull the application out of the envelope, review it, complete it, and get Anthony to sign it 7 or 8 places.

So, without any real initiative of our own, we have one piece of our finances fixed up already!

I wonder if the rest of the month will be this easy!

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HM Something New!

Planning your homeschool is a lot of fun, especially if you’re going to be trying something new. Just like finding a shiny new penny you’re excited to use it.

Since we just started, everything we are using is new. For today’s meme, I’ll talk about the newest item, it just arrived today! I have grammar, math, vocabulary, and even logic curriculum. For history we are doing the Ancients this year. My plan was to use Kingfisher as the history spine and have him outline, write essays, and keep a timeline based on the Kingfisher pages. I don’t have the time to monitor that and he doesn’t have the motivation to go off on his own to do research. I was really feeling like I needed to find an alternative, when I spied a blog where the 9th grader was going to be using TRISMS. Since I follow these curriculum links like it is compulsive, I found myself poking around the site, which had a banner advertising that their Ancient History package was selling for 1/2 price. It looked like it covered the right stuff but with worksheets to give him an idea what to look for in topics like art, music, architecture, geography, and more. I took the plunge and ordered it (for 1/2 off!).

I spent some time after work today reviewing the materials and making a few notes. I have divider labels so I can find the different worksheets and created a document for the Unit where I can list the things he is supposed to look up (the art, music, and architecture worksheets are blank so I need to tell him to look at cave paintings, what Jubal did (father of all who play lyre and pipe [Gen 5], and the ark). I’m looking forward to starting on this tomorrow.

Title: Discovering the Ancient World

Author: Sally Barnard, Linda Thornhill

Publisher: TRISMS, Inc.

Edition: 2001

Book summary: The package includes a User’s Manual which includes the unit study guide and assignment descriptions, the Student Pack of looseleaf worksheets, and an Answer Key.

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Wordless Wednesday – he’s so smart

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From a certain point of view…

I was struck today, while driving the two hours home from the hospital, how we can adapt so well. On Sunday, the words “no change” and “still sedated” were scary and had us all jumping at everything. Here we are on Tuesday and there is “no change” and Dad is “still sedated” and yet we have settled in for the long haul and we aren’t so jumpy now. As the doctor said today, there are 3 possiblities and 2 of them are good. Of course we want possiblity 1 – getting better, rapidly and visibly. But we have settled in with possiblity 2 and no change at least means we aren’t looking at possiblity 3 (yet).

They got the lab results back from Sunday and now know what kind of pneumonia to treat in the good lung. The air pocket over the bad lung is a little bit smaller than yesterday which is good. His oxygen level is good and the respirator isn’t at 100% today so he’s breathing some on his own.

The doctor says all of that counts as no change, but we may see some change in the right direction over the next few days. But, lest we get carried away with optimism, the doctor last night reminded us that this will be a long process.

On the positive side, “hospital” schooling has worked pretty well the past two days. Connor has kept up with math, grammar, vocabulary, and writing. We haven’t gotten science started yet and we’re about to redo how we do history. The real positive was that I took along the novel that his dad bought him this weekend and he read almost the whole thing today. He even read while we walked outside to get some sun and kept wandering off to find a quieter place to read. Then when we got in the car to drive home, instead of immediately pulling out his Nintendo DS, he kept reading for about 1/2 the drip home. I was so excited I even settled for driving in silence so the radio wouldn’t bother him. He’s reading!!!! Whoo hoo!

He also got exposure to some “socialization” talking with my cousin and aunt.

We’re staying home tomorrow so we’ll be back to a more normal schedule. I need a little pouch to keep the Nintendo DS and PS2 controller in since I’ve learned that I have to hold them hostage to protect him from himself.

Thanks for all the prayers and positive thoughts. They are much appreciated!

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Today’s update

We’re sitting at the hospital (yay for wireless). Dad is a bit worse today, still on the ventilator and sedated so he’ll rest. Looks like I’ll be here quite a lot this week.

We brought Connor and his schoolwork and he did a good job with all of it. I’ll have to come up with something else for the rest of the week.

Guess that’s it for now.

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Weekly Report (late)

Life got busy last week. But here’s my weekly report.

Math – he completed 3 lessons in Life of Fred. I can’t tell if he’s liking it or not yet

Writing – he completed Assignment 3 in the IEW Ancient History writing.

Kingfisher – he read the 2 pages and wrote a short essay on cuneiform and one on ziggurats, along with a picture. His writing is pretty good. (I ordered TRISMS this week, we’ll see if that works better)

Vocabulary A – he finished lesson 2 and did very well this time. (He wasn’t really trying with lesson 1)

Grammar – he looked over the list of prepositions and wrote some sentences using them, this week we begin the Easy Grammar Plus workbook

Literature – he says he read Gilgamesh. We’ll go over that again this week

Free reading – he read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and enjoyed it. I explained to his dad that I would like to see him read more just to get the habit of reading and understand that you can start a book with words you don’t understand (either because it’s sci-fi, fantasy, or older) and lots of characters you don’t know and if you stick with it you will start to understand the words (either check a dictionary or use context) and know the characters. His dad asked if I meant the classics. I said “I’ll take care of the classics” I just want him to get some reading under his belt. So this weekend, his dad bought him a book. Pretty cool.

That’s in for now.

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