Saturday, August 6, 2011


I LOVE my mother's meatloaf.  It is seriously one of my favorite meals of all time.  Jim, on the other hand, is not really a fan of the tasty loaf of meat.  (That doesn't sound very appetizing.  I won't use that again)  Anyway, over the years we've discussed different ways to make the meatloaf that might be more acceptable to him.  I made it in the shape of a pizza for a while and he would eat it, but he just didn't love it the way I do.  Last time I made it, he decided that maybe the reason that he didn't like it that much was that it was cooked in the grease.  So this time I made the meatloaf mixture into patties and then put them on a raised rack so that the grease would drip away.
 This was the winner!  Hooray!  Not only was Jim pleased with the result, but now the meatloaf is the perfect shape and size for a tasty meatloaf sandwich tomorrow.
Brenda's Mom's Meatloaf
2 lb hamburger
2 tblsp A1 Steak sauce
2 tsp salt
1 c. Pepridge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing (in the blue bag)
2 eggs
3/4 c. milk
1 sm. onion, minced

For sauce mix together:
1 8oz can tomato sauce
2 tblsp A1 Steak Sauce

Mix first 7 ingredients together along with 1/2 the sauce and put mixture into a loaf pan and top with remaining sauce then bake  for 1 hour at 400 degrees.  OR form the mixture into about 10 patties, place on wire rack in a roasting pan, top each patty with sauce and bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Gearing up for homeschool

     Well all the boxes have arrived and now I just have to find places to store all our new school books and start reading all the teacher's manuals.  We've been using My Father's World for the last several years and this year is no exception.  I love the books they choose and I think that their Teacher's manual and schedule and terrific.  This year I had to pick a different language arts program than then recomend.  They suggest Primary Language Lessons and Intermediate Language Lessons which are classic volumes with some updated language.  I really liked them, but the kids had a hard time doing them on their own, and since I work outside the home, I really needed something that could be more self-directed.  The LA curriculum I choose this year also includes spelling so we won't be using Spelling Power (also recommended by My Father's World).  I really really liked Spelling Power's method, but once again it was difficult for the kids to do on their own. 

     This year Treasure will be in the 6th grade, and for the most part doing 6th grade work.  Joy will be in the 4th grade, but since she's not really up to grade level in reading or math, she's starting out with 3rd grade language arts and math, but I'm really hoping that next year she'll be able to start with 5th grade work.  And the same goes for Asked who should be in 2nd grade, will be doing mostly 1st grade work.
    Alright, enough of the talky-talky, here's what we're doing.  This year we'll be studying Creation to the Greeks:
These will cover Bible and History:  Journey through the Bible, Usborne Ancient World, Streams of Civilization volume 1, The Children's Homer, Aesop's Fables for Children, Make it work Ancient Egypt, The Trojan Horse and Celebrating Biblical Feasts.
This is for vocabulary.  We'll use the Greek word this year and the Latin next year.
  I'm not sure how much we'll use this.  We'll see.  I'll try it and see how the kids respond.  Since they'll already have daily language arts, they MAY take issue with more work.  Like I said, we'll see.
Dinosaurs of Eden by Ken Ham, Genesis for Kids, Pyramids (this has projects and information about pyramids) and Archimedes and the Door of Science.
So that's what all came with the My Father's World package.  Now the other stuff.
Treasure will continue with Saxon math.  Joy and Asked will be starting Singapore math this year.  We've been mostly just supplementing worksheets the last few years, this will be the first year that they both have math books.  I'm looking forward to not having quite so much planning to do for them.
We're using Christian Light language arts this year.  I think that they're Menonite.  It covers grammer, spelling and penmanship.  It also has...
SENTENCE DIAGRAMMING!  Am I a total nerd that I actually enjoyed this in school?  I told Treasure that it was like a puzzle and she didn't totally reject it. 
Honestly, in my over all 'homeschool philophy' I'm not really big on workbooks and busy work.  I think my kids learn more from hands on and real word experiences.  But I must say I'm a little excited for the ease (I hope) that using workbooks will bring.  The kids will be able to know exactly what the assignment is, what I expect them to accomplish and see their progress.  Maybe I'm more of a fan then I thought.  As I said before, we'll see.
Here are some of the "extra" stuff we'll try to get in.  Art from Berry Stebbing (I'm not sure if anyone but Joy will use this but I got it at a good price so we'll give it a shot), I found this great Usborne Introduction to Music book (they don't seem to offer it anymore, how sad), Computer Keyboarding (I'm going to try and teach Treasure so proper typing skills) and then Handwriting Without Tears.  Even though our Language Arts covers handwriting, we've been using these books for several years and in all honesty, my kids can use all the handwriting practice they can get.
New sketch books for Nature Notebooks!
We're going to continue reading about missionaries and other heroes.