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Issue #18 - St. Kateri is Coming Soon
In this Issue:
From Laura's Desk: The Newness of Fall
Homeschooling Tips and Ideas: Homeschool Support
Book Recommendations: To Finish a Book
New Product Announcements: St. Kateri Unit Study
Our Favorite Recipes: Baked Oatmeal Casserole
From Laura's Desk
A new Fall season is upon us...a new school year, too. With that comes a change in routine. Sometimes it means going to back to what we left a few months ago; other times it means shaking things up a bit and trying something new.
Each Fall I try to evaluate what needs to be changed from the past school year and how I should go about doing that. This time around it was one of the kids who suggested something. We had been discussing patriotism, our country and the Pledge of Allegiance. She suggested that we begin each day with the Pledge since some of them didn't really know all the words.
I decided to add a Memorare to that for our upcoming school day. I had been dreading math again this year, so I pray each day that I can keep my cool when the math attitude starts to rear its ugly head! I've only had one day in the past three weeks that I've overridden the grace, so that's not too bad!
My eldest daughter visited the Divine Mercy Shrine in Stockbridge, MA this summer and brought us back a Divine Mercy candle. This now graces our school table and stays lit while we work.
I did go back to a formal schedule this year, too. If you missed my blog post about this, you can read that here.
This is the link to my formal schedule on my "A Plan for Joy" website if you would like to take a look at that.
I hope that your Fall is shaping up to be a good one. With the weather finally cooling down and a lighter extra-curricular load than usual, I think ours might turn out to be pretty good.
If you'd like to keep up with all the latest info, you can always follow me on facebook!
Homeschooling Tips and Ideas
If you are new to homeschooling, you might be wondering how us veterans do what we do, and for so long, too! If you're a veteran homeschooler, than you know that a good support system makes this homeschooling journey a lot easier.
There are a couple of different ways that you can get the support you need. Hopefully it can start close to home. The support of your husband and at least one other family member can make a huge difference in how your homeschooling experience goes. If you don't have support from either of those two places, then you will definitely need to look farther away.
A local support group would be my next suggestion. Now-a-days you can usually do a Google search for Catholic homeschool support groups for your area and come up with at least some contact. From there it might be a matter of a few phone calls or emails to get connected with one.
You could also ask around your parish to find out if there is something already established or if there are any other homeschoolers that might like to get together and start a group.
I think that an online group is a nice complement to the other types of support listed here. There are all kinds of Catholic homeschool forums, email groups and Facebook groups. I just hooked up with a great Facebook group called Catholic Homeschool Moms. It's a great place to connect, ask questions and get prayers and support.
I hope that you seek out means of face-to-face interaction as your main means of support and then utilize the online interaction as a supplement. The online groups are great, but nothing beats getting out there and being with people.
If you would like to see some of the activities that our homeschool group has planned over the years, you can check it out here.
I don't know if you are like me, but I often find many books lying around my house with book marks in them somewhere CLOSE to the end of the book! Why I didn't finish them, I don't know, but it drives me crazy when I find them.
Recently I ran across a few books that I never finished and now I am on a mission to finally do that. The first is "The Priesthood of the Heart. A Woman's Unique Vocation" by Jo Croissant. I have one more chapter left and then I am DONE!
Another book that I came across is "I Believe in Love" by Father Jean CJ d'Elbee. This is a series of retreat talks based on the teachings of St. Therese of Lisieux. I didn't even get through half the book before, but somehow I think now is the right time to read it.
I've also begun a Scripture study based on the word TRUST. It is an awesome experience, which I've detailed here.
I think that should keep me busy for awhile! How about you? What are you reading right now? You can always drop me a note on my Facebook page. I'd love some new reading ideas!
New Product Announcements
I am so excited that Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha is going to be canonized on October 21, 2012. I've been reading up on her and she was an amazing young lady; definitely graced by God with wonderful spiritual gifts. While she had many graces bestowed on her, she did suffer tremendously in her short life.
In honor of her upcoming canonization, I am writing a new unit study to celebrate her life, her holiness and her heritage. The unit study will cover topics in religion, history, science, vocabulary, reading comprehension and more! You can use this study to delve more deeply into the American Indians and what their life was like in the 17th century.
I hope you'll join me in celebrating the life of a wonderful, young, American saint as I introduce you to Saint Kateri. This will be another installment in my "Saints Through the Centuries" unit studies.
To see what is available now, you can go here.
Our Favorite Recipes
With all the "newness" in the air, I thought I'd try to find some new recipes to spice up our meals. Breakfast around here really needs some shaking up. It is hard to keep them healthy, easy to fix AND inexpensive. We found this recipe online and tried it last week and it was wonderful. It might not be a weekly event, but it is nice for special occasions.
Baked Oatmeal Casserole
3 C Oats
1/2 C brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 C walnut pieces
2 C raspberries or any other berries
1/2 C chocolate chips
3 C milk or almond milk
4 Tbl butter melted
1 Tbl vanilla extract
1 ripe banana, peeled and cut into 1/2 in slices
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray the inside of a 9 x 13 baking dish.
In a large bowl, mix together oats, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, half the walnuts, half the berries and half the chocolate chips. Save the other half of those last three for the top of the oatmeal.
In another large bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, butter and vanilla.
Add the oat mixture to the baking dish. Arrange the remaining berries, walnuts and chocolate chips on top. Add the banana slices on top of that and pour the milk mixture over everything. Gently shake the baking dish to help the milk mixture go throughout the oats.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the top is nicely golden brown and the milk mixture has set.
This served 8 of us!
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Until next time, may God Bless you abundantly!