“And he shall break down the house, its stones and timber and all the plaster of the house, and he shall carry them out of the city to an unclean place.” Leviticus 14:45

I’m close. So close. Yes, influenza has broken through the city gates and wreaked havoc among the people. It has carried off the women and children to Mucusboro and Tussisland and left the city littered with snot rags, piles of laundry, and clutter. One child was seen running away and screaming with terror, “Mommy, don’t spray me with the lysol!”

OK, maybe our study of the Assyrians has warped my thinking. We are, however, down for the count. Everyone except my hubby, who is currently having a love affair with Airborne.

So, what did we get accomplished this week?  An Assyrian object lesson: You see how Mommy is having you do a little bit of math even though you’re laid out on the couch with the flu? Well, the Assyrians were much worse. Sassafras wasn’t convinced. Yes, I may need an intervention….for myself!

So it’s been a few months since our last report. The holidays are partly responsible for that and “getting out of the habit” takes the blame for the rest.

Here are the highlights:

Our Christmas tree died around Dec. 10th or so. Obviously we leave a lot to be desired in our tree selection abilities. We had to buy one of those pre-lit three foot trees and load it down with our Hallmark ornaments.

Santa came to visit at the YMCA during basketball practice. Sassafras told Santa she wanted a gun for Christmas. I can’t remember the reason now, but it had something to do with her brother.

Christmas Day was relaxing. We had homemade cinnamon rolls for breakfast (Yes, I love my friend and I love her standing mixer!). We finished up our Jesse Tree and managed to get one picture before Doodlebug knocked it over…sand and all. We had Playmobil, Legos, and more Playmobil and all that goes with assembling Playmobil. OK, maybe “relaxing” isn’t the right word.

The bottom fell out on Christmas night and left us with snow and treacherous roads all over the eastern United States. We left for Michigan around noon the day after Christmas. I thought we were going to die in West Virginia. Mountains + snow + snow-covered roads + darkness = my life flashing before my eyes.

We had a good time in Michigan. We left more snow in NC than we had up north. The kids managed to do some sledding….on a nerf gun box….that had blown out of someone else’s recycle bin. That’s either very innovative or very sad…I’m not sure which. By the time we left, the weather turned very cold and windy. I went down to the waterfront in Grand Haven to get some pics of Lake Michigan. They’re a little blurry….mainly because I was freezing and jumping up and down and screaming “I’m a idiot!” over and over.

At the end of January, we took everyone to the symphony for a Beethoven kids’ concert. Sassafras enjoyed it. The Z-man kept asking me “Is this only going to be music?” I think he was wanting the lyrics of Beethoven’s Wig to be sung to the Fifth Symphony. Beethoven’s wig!! It’s very big!!

Sassafras (1st grade):

We covered a good bit of ground in the past couple of months. In Tapestry of Grace we covered the conquest of Canaan all the way up to the exile of Judah. We covered the Philistines, Phoenicians, Assyrians and Babylonians. We have learned so much from just reading through the Bible with an atlas in hand! Daddy helped her make a salt dough map of Israel.

In science, Sassafras has almost completed the book on the human body in God’s Design science. We’ll start the study on plants in a couple of weeks. In math she completed unit 1 of Rod & Staff Math 2. She started unit 2 this week. That’s the only thing she did this week other than lie on the couch.

In language arts, we’ve been pushing through Writing With Ease and First Language Lessons. She has almost completed level 2 in All About Spelling. I think we have one step left. In read-alouds, we’ve been through Mrs. Piggle Wiggle and Henry Huggins, and now we’re reading God King, which we’re enjoying very much.

We’ve fallen a little behind in art projects. She’s starting a mini-art class next week, though, so I’m not fretting about it. I included one of her drawings that she did in December in Drawing With Children.

Sassafras finished up basketball last week. Her class performed at halftime at the Elon basketball game last weekend. Of course, she had to stay home because she was sick. Daddy and the Z-man went to the game instead.

And so I don’t leave Sassafras on such a sad note, I’ll report that she had one major accomplishment last month. She finished the Baptist Catechism!! We’re doing the happy dance! It took much grace, much practice, much review, much perseverance , and three years.

Z-man (K4):

The Z-man has been doing well in his reading lessons. He’s on the second set of Bob books and covering ending blends in The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading. I’ve been putting off the lessons in Singapore Math that deal with measuring liquids. I’m thinking about just giving him some buckets and the water hose. He seems to be fond of playing with the water hose in the winter anyways. (It hasn’t been that long ago that he asked to play in the sprinkler. Uh, that would be negative. The neighbors would report mommy to child services.) He’s also been working through Explode the Code Book 1. He even chooses to do some of the writing.

The Z-man did really well in the YMCA Family Hoops class with Daddy. Last week we all went to watch him at his last class. I made a little video and included it below.

Little Man (2 yrs):

Well, Little Man is making great strides in speech therapy. We still have to give him visual cues much of the time in order for him to articulate his words correctly. We’re working on phrases now, such as “I want _____” and “I see ______”. He doesn’t put many words together on his own, but he can slowly put together phrases that he has heard modeled. He still rarely talks in the nursery at church, although he does whisper on occasion. I took a video of him trying to say Ephesians 6:1 and included it below.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, he ran into the corner of a table in the lobby of the hotel during our Christmas vacation….and yes, he still has the scar.

Doodlebug (10 months):

Doodlebug is now brace free! She had x-rays on her hip in January and passed with flying colors. She goes back this summer for more x-rays. She started crawling a few weeks ago and is now getting into everything! Her favorite thing to do is rummage. She can stay occupied for the longest time if I just give her a big bin of Lego Duplos or Little People and let her rummage through them. Her second favorite thing to do is ride up and down the hallway in a diaper box.


This week was, of course, a total wash. The only positive thing is that I had time to write this report! I’ve spent a good bit of time thinking about Latin this week.  I think I’ve decided to go with Henle Latin in the long run. I especially like the Form Latin series from Memoria Press which breaks Henle I down into four years for younger students (and for Latin newbies like myself).  Of course, I’m fully aware that all of my Latin musings could be a symptom of the flu.

I also started reading Susan Wise Bauer’s The Well-Educated Mind, and I’m contemplating wading my way through her book lists with a notebook in hand. The first book on the novel list is Don Quixote. I wonder if I can get through all 1072 pages by sheer stubbornness alone? Hmm. I think the flu has either motivated me to aspire to noble ambitions or it has made me insane!