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WashboardWe've begun Christmas preparations in earnest now.  Willow is very excited to make gifts and cards this year and I must admit, I feel so relieved.  I know that our friends and family will be pleased to receive them and it also helps us to complete the crafts portion of homeschooling.  I think it will give me more initiative to keep it up after Christmas has passed.

We made felted soaps yesterday, only my second effort at wet felting ever.  I wrapped them in wool batting and that worked well.  Trying to wet felt colored bits of wool on them didn't work at all.  It could be the fiber I have is better suited to needle felting.  No matter.  I think we'll try to felt the initial of the recipient onto the soap before we wrap them.

In other news, we'll be doing our first letter story this week.  Willow knows the whole alphabet and can write all the letters, but doesn't connect letters and sounds entirely yet.  This will be our first deliberate step toward reading, though we're just doing the letter for now.  Her first letter will be G, hidden in a picture of a goose from an Enki story about animals preparing for Winter.  We'll read the story three times and then do a drawing together.

Wet FeltingAlong with this new effort, I'm planning to being work on my own handwriting as a means of self-improvement.  I got a Vimala alphabet book last week and have been reading over it.  I've always had neat handwriting, even got extra credit in cartography, but it has slumped in the nearly ten years since college.  It's interesting to see the meaning assigned to each letter and do a little interpretation of my own writing style.  For instance, my i's are nearly always dotted a little to the right, signaling my concern over the future.  I really want to improve a basic task and see how it changes other parts of my life.

I'm learning repeatedly that I really have to be on top of things in order to feel calm and centered around here.  That's hard work, of course, as everything tends toward chaos.  I had almost four hours to myself today and go so much done.  I cleaned the back porch really thoroughly, putting crafting supplies in their own places (instead of in one giant box), assembled the rocking boat, dusted some furniture and began preparing our home for Advent.  I feel pretty ready for a new week to begin, though I should have focused some on our new circle.  Oh, well.

For now, well, Laurel needs me to get up from here and I have two children wandering around with a couple dozen candles that need to be stored away before any more break.  Good night!


( 3 trees — Plant a Forest )
Dec. 1st, 2014 02:30 am (UTC)
Wow, I can see Willow's adult face in that picture. And Laurel, again, reminds me so much of Miriam. She has that same look of concentration, round cheeks, and dark eyebrows.
Dec. 1st, 2014 10:51 am (UTC)
Six just seems so big to me now. Laurel does look like Miriam there, yes!
(Deleted comment)
( 3 trees — Plant a Forest )

A Blessed Wilderness

It was just like being in heaven, being in there. In those days there was no road. The park was all a blessed wilderness. I have often thought what a wonderful people we would have been if we had wanted to keep it that way.

~Adolph Murie, biologist, on Denali


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