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A Blessed Advent to you all!

Welcome to the first issue of News from Catholic Homeschooling Resources. About every six weeks I plan on delivering to you Catholic Homeschooling tips and ideas, product and website updates and maybe even a few good bargains.

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Issue #1, December 8, 2009

In this Issue:

  • From Laura's Desk: Welcome!
  • Homeschooling Tips and Ideas: Mom's Cookie Exchange
  • Read Aloud Review: "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" by C.S. Lewis
  • The Saintly Corner: St. Lucy
  • New Product Announcements: "A Plan for Joy" update
  • Our Favorite Recipes: Monkey Bread
  • Used Curriculum Corner: Math, Grammar and Spanish books!
  • From Laura's Desk

    Welcome to the first issue of my newsletter. Not only do I wish you a Blessed Advent season, but also a very blessed Feast of the Immaculate Conception. I pray that our Mother Mary is helping you to have a holy Advent season as we all try not to get too sucked into the worldliness of preparing for Christmas.

    I am looking forward to keeping in touch with you on a regular basis. I hope that you find this and every issue packed with information you can use and enjoy. I hope to hear from you about things you might like to see in future issues, as well as ideas for pages that you would like to see on my website. You can contact me here any time and I will do my best to get back to you in a timely fashion. At the end of each newsletter I will also provide the link to my contact form so that you can provide me with comments and feedback.

    So get comfortable and enjoy!

    Homeschooling Tips and Ideas

    In keeping with this month's theme of Christmas, I'd like to highlight a very nice event that one of the mom's hosts every year right before Christmas: The Mom's Cookie Exchange. It is always a wonderful and peaceful time. She knows just how to set the right mood - comforting scents in the air, warm drinks, soft lights and a lovely tree. If you're looking for a way to get together with other homeschooling mom's and "chill out" before Christmas, consider hosting a Mom's Cookie Exchange!

    Read Aloud Review

    This month's Read Aloud review is written by my eldest daughter who chose the book "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" by C.S. Lewis because it is full of wonderful, winter scenes; that and the fact that it was a book (and movie) we really enjoyed a lot. I'll let her tell you more!

    "The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe"

    A review by Amanda Dominick

    "The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe" by C.S. Lewis was the first book my family and I read aloud together. Though our ages ranged from 13 to 2 years old, we were all held captive by this enchanting tale of discovery and adventure.

    From the very beginning, Lewis takes you on a magical journey through the wondrous land of Narnia. You will meet fauns, talking beavers, an evil witch and a majestic lion. You will discover new lands and fight battles alongside four of literature's most memorable heroes. Filled with excitement, drama and assisted by often humorous narrative along the way, this is a tale your entire family will enjoy.

    And the adventure doesn't stop there! If the world of Narnia has captured your imagination, then there is a whole series of Narnian adventures for you to partake in. In addition to "The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe", C.S. Lewis penned six other novels of this fascinating world. My siblings have journeyed through all of them and loved every minute of it. I think that you will, too.

    You can go here if you're interested in more information about this book, or to purchase it from my Amazon e-store. Help me keep this site going by purchasing items through my store. Thanks :)

    The Saintly Corner

    This issue of The Saintly Corner takes us to December 13th and the celebration of the Feast of Saint Lucy.

    The Story of St. Lucy By Megan Dominick

    Saint Lucy or Lucia was born in the year 283. Her father died when she was still a young girl. Her mother, Eutychia, had suffered for four years with a "bloody flux." Lucy had heard of Saint Agatha and then convinced her mother to go with her so that they could pray together at Saint Agatha's tomb. They prayed at her tomb all night, but eventually they both fell asleep. While she slept, Saint Agatha had appeared in a vision to Lucy and told her that, "Soon you shall be the glory of Syracuse, as I am of Catania." It was at that moment that Eutychia was cured of her bloody flux.

    Eutychia had arranged a marriage for Lucy with a pagan bridegroom. Lucy urged her mother to spend the dowry on alms so that she might retain her virginity. When Eutychia suggested that the sums be used to make a good banquet, Lucy countered her by saying "...whatever you give away at death for the Lord's sake you give because you cannot take it with you. Give now to the true Savior, while you are healthy, whatever you intended to give away at your death." The rejected bridegroom when he had heard about the jewels and patrimony being distributed went and denounced Lucy as a Christian to the magistrate Paschasius.

    The magistrate then ordered her to burn a sacrifice to the emperor’s image, but Lucy refused. When the guards came to take her away they found her so filled with the Holy Spirit that she was stiff and heavy as a mountain. Even when they had hitched Lucy to a team of oxen, they could not move her. After they were done torturing her, they gouged out her eyes. Lucy was miraculously still able to see without her eyes. That is why she is always depicted in statues and painting with her eyes on a dish. She was martyred in the year 304. St. Lucy’s feast day is on December 13th.

    St. Lucy, pray for us!

    New Product Announcements

    I was hoping to be able to announce the arrival of the workbook edition of my workshop "A Plan for Joy in the Home". Unfortunately, life has once again gotten in the way. Within the last month, when I was supposed to be working on this project, we ended up packing up our house and moving. Now, as I feverishly type up this newsletter, we are in the middle of unpacking and trying to get ready for Christmas.

    Hopefully by the next issue I'll be able to give you a better idea of when this great, new product will be available. If you haven't ever attended a workshop, check this page out to get a better idea of the kind of topics you'll encounter once you get your copy of my upcoming workbook.

    Our Favorite Recipes

    One of our favorite Christmas traditions is to get up on Christmas morning, put on a good cup of coffee (decaf for the kids, of course :) and make Monkey Bread. It takes a little bit of time, but with a lot of helping hands, the work is a lot easier.

    Cinnamon Monkey Bread By Teresa Dominick

    Everyone in my family loves this bread; we have it for breakfast every Christmas morning. It's easy to make and has a delicious outcome.

    4 tubes (1-1/2 ounces each)refrigerated buttermilk biscuits 1/2 cup sugar 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

    Cut each biscuit into four pieces; shape into balls. In a small bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon. Roll each ball in cinnamon-sugar. Arrange evenly in a greased 10-in. fluted tube pan. Sprinkle with remaining cinnamon-sugar. Combine butter and brown sugar; pour over the top. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes before inverting bread onto a serving platter. Yield: 1 loaf.

    Used Curriculum Corner

    I've struggled with how best to offer used curriculum that I come across. To keep an updated page on my website would take a lot of work. I've decided to try offering items through my newsletter and see how it goes. This part will definitely take some tweaking, so please be patient with me as I work all of the bugs out.

    For now, I will list items that I have in my own home that are used but still in good shape. If you are interested in purchasing them, you can contact me and we can arrange the shipping. The price I have listed is what they will sell for PLUS shipping charges. Of course, shipping will depend on how fast you want the items and where you live in relation to me. We can work all the details out through email. Hopefully this will be a win-win situation for both of us!

    If this goes well, I might consider listing curriculum that other people would like to sell. I'm not sure what the details will be yet, so stay tuned. For now, here are the items I currently have for sale:

  • Life of Fred Fractions - Used price $10 plus shipping. This book is in excellent condition, just a small whited out section on the inside front cover.
  • Life of Fred Decimals and Percents - Used price $10 plus shipping. This book is also in excellent condition.
  • Easy Grammar: Grades 4 and 5 copyright 1996 - Used price $12 plus shipping. Other than a bit of a bent cover, this book is in very good condition. No writing inside.
  • Easy Grammar Plus Copyright 1995 - Used price $12 plus shipping. Same as above, very good condition.
  • Power Glide - Spanish Junior Adventure Pack: 4 books plus 9 audio CDs - Used price: $30 plus shipping
  • If you are interested in any of the above titles, just contact me with your name, email address and which book(s) you are interested in and we will arrange for shipping.

    Remember, you are purchasing used materials. To the best of my ability, I have fairly represented the above mentioned products. All sales are final.

    Comments, Feedback, Questions?

    Here's your chance to send them to me. Just click here and type away! I appreciate your taking the time to read this newsletter and provide me with charitable feedback!

    If you would like to see something in an upcoming issue, please feel free to let me know.

    Until next time, may God Bless you abundantly!