Monday, August 29, 2011

second glances ideas is to use
embroidered words to look like lace or floral detail, but they are secretly quotes and references.

"..just once, just once ever in my life."

Saturday, August 20, 2011

"Resignation" song

I wrote this song yesterday and then attempted to play it at open mic.  But after playing two other songs, I completely forgot the tune, and proceeded to invent a song on the spot.  It was not my best effort, but I must say, Emma's cello playing went a long way to forestall complete embarrassment.  (laughing)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Bon Iver in Stitches

So.  Bon Iver.  Front row seat.  Mind blown.  Beautiful, mesmerizing, tight as a drum.  The show was completely brilliant.  The melodic orchestration was unbelievably flawless.  My heart soared.

They had great sweatshirts for sale.  I wanted one.  But Emma and I decided to make our own...

This is my velveteen home made 'bon iver' jacket.  Size 18 needle, off white embroidery thread, pink crayon on black fabric for a guide, a few hours, lots of chocolate, a youtube video explaining the "vine stitch" and the "back stitch," lengthy philosophizing with Emma, and Presto.  

Originally, I included the line 'Well I met you at the blood bank,' down the
front lapels, but thought it looked too busy.  I ripped out all but 'well.' 

ahhhh, Justin Vernon.  So inexplicably ordinary, so awesomely extraordinary.


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Killing Zombies is so Last Year.

Two words: Rosetta & Stone.

What are you waiting for?!  They've just lowered prices into the $150 zone, and it's more fun than any video game I've played recently.  With the added benefit of making you smarter, hipper, more European. And if you purchase the homeschool edition (and possibly any edition), you could, for example, make accounts for all three of  your daughters, who can then all learn French at their own pace.  The girls, age 8, 6, and 4, all LOVE this software.  You can select emphases, too.  In Music, age four's case, I've selected speaking and hearing comprehension only, since she can't read yet, but she can yell: "l'homme boit du lait!" just fine into the speakers. 

You OWE it to yourself to go and do a little demo online.  This is way too fun and groovy to miss.  Seriously.

Regrouping to Thousands: Game

Singapore Math helped me crate this fun game for adding and regrouping to thousands.

1.  Crate game board.
2.  Label discs or any item into 10's, 1's, 100's, 1000's.  I chose to sticker label the colored square chips I had on hand.

3.  Remove face cards from a deck of playing cards.
4.  Place one 1 in the One's column.
5.  Each player must draw 4 cards per turn, and add the card's value to the One's column, then (second card) the Ten's column, then (third card) Hundreds, then Thousands.
6.  Whenever more than nine chips land in any given column, player must "trade in" ten chips in exchange for the next highest columns one chip.  

ex:  9 "tens" are in the Tens column.  The card drawn is a 4 of hearts.  Player must add 4 more "tens," bringing the total up to 13 "tens."  Player must then trade ten "tens" in for one "hundred" chip, leaving 3 "tens" in the Tens column, and adding one to the Hundreds column.

This has been very helpful for Levity to understand the "Why" of regrouping.


"Mom, mom, come quick!  Come right NOW.  There are two bugs doing SEX!!!!!.  You KNOW you have always wanted to see that!  You're into Science!  You have to come NOW."

Well.  Yes.  I am into Science.  I'm also a voyeur, I think, since I brought my camera. 

It turned out we've got a double homicide on our hands, maybe even a love triangle.  This crazy moth thing is apparently feeding on the piggy backed carcasses of two unknown creatures: perhaps bees, in their past lives?  

The floor is now Open for your interpretations.  

(Levity has claimed the bodies for "Research.")

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Book of Time

Before I knew that [sonlight homeschool] curriculum existed, I imagined teaching all of world history, geography, religion, economics, art and sociology in the context of a Time Line.  I just thought I had to invent it myself. 

A substantial part of Sonlight curriculum involves plugging each discipline, especially history and geography, into the context of a World History Timeline, via their "Book of Time."

I'm preparing the sticker images for this year's Part II of Survey of World History, and I am shocked.  I knew my education was deficient, and compartmentalized, I just didn't realize how spectacularly.  For instance, I had zero clue that Pythagoras predicting the Earth's roundness (566 B.C.) happened contemporaneously with Buddha founding his religion (563-483 B.C.), Cyrus the Great conquering Babylon/Fall of Babylon/founding of the Persian Empire (539-500 B.C.), all at the same time that Confucius was alive (551-479 B.C.), as Rome becoming a Republic (509 B.C.), and Athens becoming a Democracy (514 B.C.)

As far as my brain was concerned, these were all Science Fiction: Different Movies.  (That's not to say I don't consider the Bible a work of historical significance, by and large.  It's just that I find I accidentally tend to categorize some of the 'ancient' stories from the Old Testament as a time period completely independent of other human history.  Much like my unconscious, abstract placement of the history of Chine and Japan, for instance.) 

My hope is that as I teach our children world history etc. etc, that all of these people and inventions and developments will be sorted in their heads along with their contemporaries, and they will have a stronger understanding of how the world of Art relates to the world's corresponding Wars, or World Religions relate to Trade Route development and the Map Making efforts of their time, and so on.  

I am so glad I get to spend my time and effort on something like this, rather than racing to car line, or selling Yankee Candles for some nebulous fundraiser, or even sorting through miles and miles of photocopied notices on various pastel colored paper stuffed into sweaty backpacks.  Woo hoo!