Hacking Socialization – Facebook Live

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Today I discussed hacking socialization. How do you socialize homeschoolers in a pandemic? I tell the story of what happened to us last Thursday.

Table covered with snow

We got a dusting of snow.

The night before, I had experienced a lot of stress, unrelated to homeschooling. By Thursday morning, I was feeling drained emotionally, but I was going to push through it. Luckily, I did not have to. A friend texted me to invite us to the Community Center for a pool play date. Continue reading »


Goals, Productivity – Facebook Live Event

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We started a new year, you say? Huh! What do you know? 2021 has arrived. Just kidding. To wake up those who have been living under a rock, we kicked off the new year with a Facebook Live Event on goal setting, productivity, and motivation.

Woman sitting in front of bookshelves

Wishing you a happy new year

I presented five books which have impacted my level of productivity. You can find so many books to get in the groove. I just grabbed five titles from my shelf because they have helped me. Continue reading »


Our Weekly Bread: 16 of 36

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Last week, I made cinnamon rolls from scratch. My KitchenAid stand-up mixer comes in handy for this particular recipe. Be forewarned, there are typos and grammatical errors in this recipe. However, they will not mess you up. It’s just a warning for people like me, who are sensitive to such things.

Cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon rolls

My family loved these rolls so much, they asked me why I do not make them more often. Not sure what the answer should be. Not even sure what the answer is. I suppose I will put cinnamon rolls on the imaginary cooking schedule in my head – about once a week, like pancakes. Continue reading »


Planning for 2021

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I hope you had a happy Christmas. We did. It snowed the night before, so we had a white Christmas for a change. The children do not remember another white Christmas in their lifetime. Many of my friends in Tennessee said similar things.

Siblings playing in the snow

They were so happy to play in the snow on Christmas Day.

This year, 2020, cannot finish fast enough. But the artificial line between two years does not change the status quo. The political situation in the USA is still up in the air, no matter what the mainstream media tells you. COVID-19 seems to be growing – though many people think the statistics are inflated and erroneous (on purpose, to frighten and control the population). Last but not least, winter will send us some cold fronts for the next three months, for sure. This will lead to disruption in traffic, power outages, cancellations of different programs etc. Continue reading »


Our Weekly Bread: 15 of 36

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This week, we made dinner rolls. Just like that, I got tired of buying dinner rolls from the frozen section. We do not usually get them anyway. But for a big celebration like Thanksgiving or Christmas, we like to have dinner rolls on the table. We buy wheat rolls, which makes us feel like we make an effort towards health. However, I feel like we should step it up a notch.

Dinner Rolls

Dinner rolls, fresh out of the oven

Enter this recipe for dinner rolls I shall tell you about. I have had this recipe in a cookbook somebody gave me when I graduated from college. Ah, the good old days when people gave me cookbooks for a graduation gift. Continue reading »


Our Weekly Bread: 14 of 36

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For this baking project, I went back to gluten free baking. I have to stay away from gluten as much as possible, you see. And I found this amazing website with great recipes that are both vegan and gluten free. It belongs to a friend of a friend.

Gluten free bread

Gluten free bread

Check out this gluten free bread recipe. Mine did not look exactly like it when cut, but it looked and tasted great. Of course, there could be many reasons why you don’t get something to look exactly like the picture in the recipe. For one, I replaced guar gum with xanthan gum.

Bread Pans

One large bread pan, one medium

Not sure if that had anything to do with it. Then, oven temperatures vary. Gluten free baking is very fiddly. You keep something in the oven five minutes too long and the result can be disastrous. Continue reading »


Our Weekly Bread: 13 of 36

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The garlic knots were a success. The kids wanted to make them again the following week. This time, my daughter insisted we make them into “croissants.” What you do is you get the dough split into several pieces. Then, you rub them into long “snakes.” As you twist the long, thin pieces, you bring them together into a circle. They look really good.

Dough

Our daughter shaping the dough into “croissants”

I wanted to at least provide a variation on the same theme. Therefore, I proposed we use bread flour instead of all-purpose flour. They came out delicious.

The crust got a bit more crunchy, but the inside was still fluffy. That’s a nice contrast to have in a pastry, of course.

Croissants

Our garlic “croissants”

This time, I chopped the garlic instead of crushing it. It made it easier to spread over the croissants.

I read that you can freeze the dough or the finished product. Here’s the thing: we eat this whole recipe in one sitting. What has leftovers to freeze? Maybe I should triple the recipe and then just freeze the dough. But we are not that kind of family. We make it, we eat it, no leftovers.


Our Weekly Bread: 12 of 36

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We made garlic knots today. It reminded me that I have completely neglected this baking project for the last few weeks. You see, our November was super busy. It was one of those months that goes by in a flash.

Garlic Knots

Garlic knots

These garlic knots are super easy to make. I got the recipe from Chef Ani. She is quickly becoming my favorite online chef. Continue reading »


Thankful for Family? – Facebook Live

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As we close November and the Thanksgiving week, I reflect on the whole concept of “being thankful for family.” Homeschooling tests family relations. Many of us face opposition from our extended families.

Mom and tween children

After voting in the 2020 presidential election, we took this picture in front of the American Legion in Gatlinburg. Avoid politics with your extended family.

Ideally, you and your husband are on the same page. If you have that foundation, you can face your extended family. You can avoid them, too, until they calm down and respect your family’s values.

Your parents or siblings or aunts and uncles may look down on your children for being homeschooled. However, you know what is best for them. Therefore, you arm yourself with courage and strength in the Lord and homeschool. Come what may. Continue reading »


Present Buying Throughout the Year

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We all need to buy presents throughout the year. If you do not plan ahead, plan to spend a lot. By staggering when you buy things, as well as ensuring you keep a record of when you need to buy things, you can make your life easier and less of an impact on your wallet.

Birthday Presents

Presents for our son’s birthday

Using a calendar can help you to keep track of birthdays, anniversaries, and other important events such as Christmas, Thanksgiving, or Easter. In addition to this, making a note of when sales tend to occur at different retailers can also keep you informed.

 

Christmas Presents

Buying Christmas presents during the sales can be useful. You could also choose to stagger your purchases throughout the year. Some websites have set, lower prices year round, meaning you can buy a few presents each month without missing out. Others have sales on at different times of the year, which you may want to take advantage of. Websites such as wickeduncle.com allow you to search for presents by gender and age. You could buy things in advance that will suit the recipient when the occasion comes, even though it may not be suitable for them right now. Continue reading »