The Bun came into the bedroom the other night, as the SuperHusband was trimming the insoles for his new sneakers.  In her special I’d-like-one-too voice, she announces, “Are those your swimming floppers?  I’d like some swimming floppers . . .”

Flippers.

This, by the way, is my #1 weakness as an educator — I cannot bear to correct the sayings of a four-year-old.  It was only late this summer that we reluctantly told Aria that it’s ‘mow the lawn’, not ‘lawn the mow’.  It’s true what they say about me, I hoard linguistic cuteness.

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Unschooling Pays (Not that the other methods don’t, too).  Though I am by nature an unschooler, we try to be a bit more structured the bulk of the time, especially as the kids get older.  This for purposes of marital harmony, and also because my inner accountant secretly thinks that a bit of rigor is not all bad.  Nonetheless, when we learned two Fridays ago that Mr. Boy would not be going camping All Hallow’s Eve as planned, but would instead be attending trunk-or-treat at the SuperMotherInLaw’s parish, I did decide that spending the day making his costume would be sufficiently schoolish.  I think there’s something on the curriculum about holidays and traditions and all that.  Close enough.

It was schoolish, after all — he’s been reading a book about the Spartan army (not for ‘school’ except when I say “Oops, I don’t have a history selection for you this week, what have you got?” and he pulls that one out), and for his costume he decided to make cardboard armor and go as a spartan soldier.   Went trunk-or-treating so armed, and I get a call last week from my mother-in-law that his costume won an honorable mention for creativity.  (Good thing she called the parish office to find out the winners — the secretary could describe him, but didn’t know who he was.  Grandma to the rescue to identify that unknown spartan.)   More than a mention — prize money was $5, which is decent to cash to certain third-graders who usually work for serf-like wages around this castle.

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Forgoing the teen novel yet again. After I finished my review of The Fathers I went to go pick out my next book to review for The Catholic Company, and discovered I had twenty days to wait until I was elgible for my next book.  Took a look at the choices all the same, and the top two contenders were Catholic, Reluctantly (“Great Teen Novel”) and Dark Night of the Soul.  Yes, *that* Dark Night of the Soul.  Once again, fears that this book would be too hard for me.  But, let us observe the work of Providence, you should know that last winter when I did the parish book study of Come Be My Light, one of the notes I made was that I needed to go read this one. (And Story of a Soul, which I did read.)

What with twenty more days to make a decision, I tried going to the library to preview the book.  No luck, library doesn’t have it.  And I’m never, ever, at the parish library when it’s open, so no chance of getting a copy there.  (Or, picking up my copy of the parish pictoral directory.  One of these weeks the announcements before Mass reminding us our copies are ready for pick-up is going to be whittled down to, “Yes, Mrs. Fitz, that means you.”)

–> Playdate to the rescue.  Last monday while Mr. Boy was out camping, three girls and I went to go play with the new toddler in the parish.  Turns out said toddler has a grandmother who is a third order carmelite.  Ooh, I say to her on learning this, have I got a carmelite question for you . . . And sure enough, you can count on a carmelite to have a copy of St. John’s collected works sitting around the house, ready to be lent to unwitting visitors.

Good stuff.  Lots to say about it already (and I just put in my order for my own copy tonight, though I still have the borrowed one in my hands), so I may do some pre-review excerpting and comments.  Ooh and it looks like Jim Curley at Requiem Press might be faster about getting a book for me to review than the method I had planned on (the ‘browse your local catholic bookstore and pick something out to try’ method), so we’ll see how that works out.  Dark Night is going up here (under ‘catholic topics’); depending on the title (Requiem does some history stuff, some social issues stuff, etc., but also has a children’s book out, a poetry anthology, and other homeschool-y relevant stuff), the to-be-determined RP book may end up on the other blog.

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