I recently read – er, skimmed – West From Home, the letters that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote to Almanzo while she was on a three-month trip to San Francisco to visit their daughter, Rose. It was such a fun read for me, since I just read all the Little House books to my 7-year-old and Laura has an even more special place in my heart than she did even when I was a child. (Isn’t it weird that I feel like I know Laura?)
It was so funny to read her descriptions of taking the train (from the Ozarks) through Colorado and the mountain states – she thought Colorado was quite ugly! Her skeptical, disappointed description of our forests was laughable to me, for I think our forests are lovely. (However, coming from the green trees of the Ozarks, I guess I can see why she thought the pine forests were less than amazing!) The book of letters felt very much like her children’s books, although in a different, sort of grown-up way. (I don’t think my kids would have enjoyed the book.)
Speaking of books, I’m listening to Gone with the Wind now and loving it. I am dying to get to the end, and yet I know I am going to be so disappointed (I’ve seen the movie). Now that I’m about 2/3rds of the way through it, I’m starting to want to slow down because I don’t want to get to the end (which is frankly quite lame, because it’s a 48-hour book and I still have hours left!). I’ve already looked up sequels that have been written and will definitely be listening to one of those in the hopes of Scarlett finally becoming passionate in a good way and not a selfish way!
And speaking of historical fiction, history is starting to come together for me and I am loving it! A big part of it has been all of the historical audiobooks that we have listened to in the past couple of years – I am starting to fall in love with the story of the world God created and even just in the past few months, all of the people and events are starting to come together in my head and it is super exciting.
[Here are some of the history audiobooks that we love: Story of the World, This Country of Ours, Masters of the Renaissance, and Our Island Story. The kids and I also really enjoyed An American Life (Ronald Reagan’s autobiography, read by the man himself which made it even better), and this biography of William Wilburforce was enjoyed by Jeremy and me and the kids picked up on a bit since we listened to it on a roadtrip.]
We just started doing a timeline that I am really excited about (oh yeah, and the kids like it, too). I’ve tried doing a timeline before, adding events to a notebook timeline as we went through a book, but it was (a) hard and not particularly enjoyable since we were in ancient times, and (b) slow going, not to mention difficult to update.
However, I just put up a string in the kids’ room and we have been creating and clipping up mini posters with the people and events that we’ve been reading about in anything, and it’s been so much more fun to build a timeline this way!
My son has been fascinated with ships, so we’ve printed some of the famous ships he’s studied and put them on their place in the timeline, and he was super interested in Brunelleschi (a Renaissance architect who they learned about from the above-mentioned audio book) so we put a poster of him up.
My seven-year-old has just exploded into reading and is devouring the American Girl books, so we made a little poster for those and put them on their place. For Molly, we made a poster for WW2 and clipped Molly underneath so that it would help reinforce when the Molly books were set.
We had some flashcards of the presidents that were totally not being used but they work great on our timeline (though I do need to label the names on the front).
Anyway, it’s been so fun to see how events related to each other and what happened when! And, I really like graphic design so I like creating the mini posters. We are tight on space right now, so our timeline string is tacked up close to the ceiling in the kids’ room (thus the curtain rods in the photos) but once we are finished renovating the rest of the house, we might have to find a more permanent place for it. I could really talk more about books and history but I should probably stop.
Here’s a couple of recipes I’ve tried and loved recently:
Asian Honey Sesame Dressing from The Cafe Sucre Farine – I’ve been wanting a good Asian dressing for awhile now, but nothing has ever been that great. I tried this one last night and thought it was great. It has a laundry list of ingredients, but few ingredients has not equaled good in other Asian dressings I’ve tried.
Chicken Bahn Mi Sandwiches from Cooks Country – Jeremy and I are really liking this recipe, though some of the kids aren’t huge fans. It uses a rotisserie chicken, which is great in my book, because I have come to the realization that I just don’t like cooking a whole chicken. Ironically, I’ve been making my own hoagie rolls, which means it’s totally not a quick meal like it’s supposed to be, but I like making buns/rolls and have done it enough that it’s somewhat routine.
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Welcome to Springs Bargains, a service of our real estate business, Circa Real Estate Group! I’m Carrie, and since 2008 I’ve been sharing free and discounted ways to eat, play, and enjoy life in Colorado Springs.