A little about the how of it, or “We don’t need no stinking spelling curriculum”

Well, another day has come and gone, and our ginormous box o’ fun from Rainbow Resource has still not arrived. Also, our homeschool area (a couple of bookshelves and a Gorilla Rack of art supplies) is in sad disarray and in fact mostly hidden behind a mountain of boxes which formerly contained my new computer. (Oh yes. Did I mention that? The little green laptop has been retired to travel duty only; I now have a "slimline" desktop chassis and this enormous freakin’ 22" widescreen LCD monitor taking up lots and lots of room on my desk. Photoshop no longer crashes. Life is good.)

So, no homeschool this week.

(Lots of photos below the fold… you’ve been warned.)

We did go to Powell’s, though. The boys’ favorite area is the
kid/teen manga/Tintin/Asterix zone, but they’ll still let me yank them
onto my lap and read to them every once in a while.

Fisher ended up taking home the third volume of "+Anima," his
current favorite manga. It’s about kids who have animal spirits or
powers or something… anyway, they can do things like fly or swim or
whatever. Fisher has decided he is a cheetah +Anima and made himself a
couple of fairly clever paw/gloves. He also made his baby doll Franklin
a lovely pair of wings; she’s a bluejay +Anima, of course. (Must get

We also went to First Thursday, downtown in the Pearl, where we watched a freestyle dance troupe.
boys (especially Fisher) have been very interested in dance lately, and
this freestyle show seemed to multiply that interest. Day before
yesterday, they put on a concert for Papa and me in the living room…
we’re hoping that when Trevor comes to visit next week, he’ll show them
some swell new moves. (Fisher’s favorite move: running across the room
and bouncing himself off the door. Rhys’ favorite move: running across
the room, jumping onto the couch and flinging himself back to the

We went up and toured the gardens of the Pittock Mansion, built by the founder of the Oregonian.
Unlike many public gardens, this one actually had the plants
labeled–yay! So we got to answer lots of questions about plant names
(no, I don’t know why maples are called Acer) and we all had a giggle over the "weeping birches" sign that had been altered to read "weeping bitches."

Red Bull ("…gives you wiiiiiiiings!") is sponsoring this fairly awesome exhibit called illume,
which is set up in downtown Portland through tomorrow. It’s a whole
bunch of "extreme sports" photography–pretty much universally
beautifully done–which is displayed as flat panels on black cubes, lit
up from inside so that the pictures glow. The exhibit doesn’t open
until dark, for obvious reasons. We went down night before last and
checked it out.

Then yesterday, we went up to Sherrard Point at the top of Larch
Mountain. From the viewing area at the top, you can see five of the
Cascades peaks: St. Helens, Rainier, Adams, Hood and Jefferson.
Unfortunately, it was a little cloudy yesterday, so St. Helens and
Rainier weren’t really visible at all, and Mt. Hood’s peak was shrouded
in mist.

We talked about how while the Cascades are a volcanic range, that
doesn’t mean that every one of the peaks has–or will–erupt. Mt. Hood
could erupt, though, posing serious problems for those of us who live
where we can see it on any (sunny) day. Fortunately, scientists have
figured out clever things like seismographs and suchlike so we’ll all
be well warned in the event of an eruption and will have ample
opportunity to get out of the way. (We spent rather a long time
belaboring this point; Fisher is a tad bit obsessed with volcanoes.)

The viewing area has a plaque bearing each theoretically-visible
mountain’s name and elevation. Rhys astonished us all by reading the
elevations to us… "Eleven thousand, two hundred and thirty five."
Fisher apparently didn’t cover thousands in his place-value unit last
year; we’ll have to work on that. (I had no idea Rhys could read
numbers over four digits long.)

Here we are (well, three of us) with the lovely vista spread out before us.

Look! Simpsons clouds! (Oh yeah, we also saw the Simpsons
movie. Fine family entertainment. We are all now singing "Spider-Pig"
more or less continuously; I even downloaded it from iTunes.)

So, there we go: another week where we had no homeschool and no one learned anything.


About Molly Newman

Writer, cook and trivia/spelling bee hostess, living it up in North Portland.
This entry was posted in Homeschool. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A little about the how of it, or “We don’t need no stinking spelling curriculum”

  1. Helena says:

    Doug has an Asterix t-shirt that I bought in Korea (actually I got it for my sister, but Doug ended up with it). It’s amazing how many comments he gets on it.

  2. Jen Adams Donnelly says:

    “no one learned anything?” surely… I beg to differ. Besides, it’s still summer vacation no matter how you slice it.

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