the story of diva and flea

Stuff We Like :: 5.20.16

home|school|life's Friday roundup of the best homeschool links, reads, tools, and other fun stuff has lots of ideas and resources.

Do you take a summer break? We don’t, but it’s nice that so many of our regular activities do. I’m definitely enjoying that holiday feeling as our classes and groups wind down for the summer.


around the web

Apparently my spirit vegetable is a bolero carrot. What’s yours?

I love this: a case study in how to recognize archaeology pseudonews, or that kid didn’t really discover a lost Maya city.

Like all the other over-educated-in-the-liberal-arts girls, I am sad to bid farewell to the Toast.

I guess this essay means that I’m officially sold on that Asian philosophy class Shelly wants to offer this fall.

Not in my usual wheelhouse, but I’ve been reading about the Magdalene Laundries (did you realize the last one only closed 20 years ago?), and this piece got me a little choked up.


at home | school | life

on the blog: We’re so excited to welcome our new blogger Cate—and I bet you will be, too, after you read her first post.

in the classroom: What online classes would you like to see this fall?

on instagram: At least they’re playing their video games in the sunshine!

in the magazine: Stories are starting to roll in for the summer issue, and it’s looking like another great issue. (I’m loving our homeschool summer boot camp article, designed to help prepare us to teach tough classes this fall.)

in the archives: I’m stealing this high school organization method for next year.


reading list

on my night table: To Say Nothing of the Dog (an old favorite revisited), The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts (how could anyone resist this title?), Outdoor Math: Fun Activities for Every Season

on my 14-year-old’s night table: Raymie Nightingale, Meet the Austins, Danganronpa Volume 1

on my 8-year-old’s night table: Yo-kai Watch, Vol. 1, The Story of Diva and Flea

together: Gone-Away Lake


at home

watching: The Duchess of Duke Street with Jason and Just Add Magic with the kids

knitting:  Goldwing (it’s so pretty!) and the sweetest little Wee Envelope for a baby I can’t wait to meet

planning: Our not-at-all-busy summer schedule, which looks like it’s going to involve lots of pool time, crochet lessons, and library runs

eating: horchata semifreddo

listening: Wild Belle's Dreamland

Stuff We Like :: 10.16.15

home|school|life's Friday roundup of the best homeschool links, reads, tools, and other fun stuff has lots of ideas and resources.

I love when the first story for the next issue comes in the same week the current issue goes out to subscribers. It makes me feel so productive!

around the web

This American Life presents the state of U.S. education in “The Problem We All Live With.” Definitely worth a listen.

Strunk & White: Grammar Police. This is a series that needs to happen.

Fascinating read: What happens when Amazon dies?


at home/school/life

in the magazine: Our fall issue is out!

on pinterest: Painted rocks with owls! Hello, Monday art project.

on the blog: I loved Shelli’s post on how to set—and achieve—academic goals in your homeschool.


reading list

I am a pretty vocal proponent of rereading, but every once in a while, I wonder what I’m missing out on by reading something again instead of reading something new. Then I reread something like East of Eden, and I know I am not missing anything.

Mo Willems is a sure bet in our house, so it’s no surprise my son is digging The Story of Diva and Flea. My daughter has been digging A School for Unusual Girls, which is about a spy school for rambunctious young ladies, set in the early 1800s.

I love everything Ruth Reichl writes, and My Kitchen Year is no exception. (My favorite is still Garlic and Sapphires, though.)


at home

Why yes, I have watched the Wonderfalls series twice in a row all by myself.It’s the perfect antidote to feeling sorry for myself.

I have started my December sweaters for the kids—I like to try to knit each of them a sweater every year. I’m making another Fisherman’s Pullover for my son (one of my all-time favorite knitting patterns) and a Boxy for my teenage daughter, mostly so she will quit "borrowing" mine.

I'm trying to find my way back to a workable fitness routine for the next six weeks of my recovery, and chair yoga has been a pretty good start.

9 new books to read this fall

Grab your library list—these are the new fall books we're most excited about.

Grab your library list -- this are the fall books we're most excited about
The Marvels
By Brian Selznick


A book by the author of The Invention of Hugo Cabret is an event, and Selznick’s latest—a story of an 18th century shipwreck, told mostly in pictures, twined with a seemingly unrelated tale of late 20th century London, told mostly in prose—is worth the hype.




He’s explored Greek and Egyptian mythology; now the Percy Jackson author turns his attention to Norse myths.


Leo: A Ghost Story
By Mac Barnett



Leo knows he’d make a wonderful friend, if only he could find someone who doesn’t immediately race off in terror when he bids a ghostly “hello.”




Beard’s sprawling, bawdy history of the Roman empire features the usual suspects (Caesar, Nero) as well as a host of ordinary folks that don't always show up in history, including bakers, jokers, and women.





Carry On: A Novel
By Rainbow Rowell



Following up on the success of Fangirl, Rowell returns to the world of Simon Snow, this time in a story focused on the boy wizard himself.




The Pigeon creator heads to Paris with his first chapter book about a homebody dog who meets a wandering cat and finds true friendship.



What is life like for the teenagers who aren’t the ones destined to battle evil forces? Ness’s protagonists have bigger problems than preventing the end of the world or falling in love with vampires—problems like getting a date for prom and passing biology.



A little boy makes two friends to help him cope with his fears about his new house in this delightfully illustrated picture book.


Lenny & Lucy
By Philip C. Stead



Riggs wraps up the quirky trilogy that started with Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.