groundhog day

Philosophy at the Movies

Philosophy at the Movies

You can always start with the collected works of Plato, but these movies help introduce big philosophical ideas that may feel more accessible on the screen than on the page.

Monday Pep Talk No. 20

home|school|life magazine's Monday Pep Talk has lots of fun ideas for planning your homeschool week.

Can you believe we've been doing Monday pep talks for 20 weeks? Putting them together has been such fun because it really gets me energized for the week ahead (not to mention filling in some gaps in our weekly menus). I hope you guys are getting fun ideas from them, too.  

3 fun things to do this week

Monday is Pretend to Be a Time Traveler Day, and while the idea of dressing anachronistically, asking strangers for the year, and reacting dramatically actually sounds pretty fun, a time travel movie marathon is an equally legitimate way to celebrate. We recommend Time Bandits, Groundhog Day, and Back to the Future—though you could certainly make an argument for Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure or Midnight in Paris, too. (Or you could just watch Doctor Who all day.)

Celebrate Gingerbread Decorating Day (Dec. 12) by making your own gingerbread creations. (A basic house is all I can manage, but if you are crafty, you could make gingerbread Daleks or a gingerbread hobbit house this year.)

Grow your own crystal Christmas tree with salt and ammonia.


3 ideas for this week’s dinners

Slow-roasted onions take the eye-stinging out of Nigel Slater’s easy onion soup recipe but still deliver classic French onion soup flavor.

Get in the Hanukkah spirit with root vegetable latkes—which are delicious whether you are lighting a menorah or not. (Serve them with sour cream, applesauce, or—my daughter’s fave—tomato jam.)

This dijon and cognac beef stew makes a decadent weeknight dinner, especially if you serve it over a pile of horseradish-spiked mashed potatoes.


one great readaloud

By Michelle Houts

When Bettina’s family forgets the Christmas pudding for their nisse—the tiny spirit that protects their farm—trouble ensues in the charming Winterfrost, which is full of details about Danish Christmases.


one thought to ponder


in case of emergency {because sometimes you need something stronger than inspiration}

two-ingredient Nutella brownies