Weekly Wrap-Up: The One with all the Birds

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A gloomy, rainy-looking Friday is still a happy Friday, right? I think so. It’s funny to me that, as blessed as we are to live and school in a much more relaxed manner than if we’d gone the traditional school route, I still look forward to the freedom of the weekend.

Petticoat Junction Retreat House

Doesn’t that look heavenly? It was.

Last weekend, I was blessed to spend some time with some of my favorite blogging buddies at Petticoat Junction Retreat House. We laughed, we cried, we learned…and we ate. The food was catered by the sweetest little couple who served us some of the tastiest food ever while we relaxed and enjoyed being pampered for a bit.

I was the last to leave on Sunday, so I settled myself on the gorgeous sun porch with my laptop, my to-do list, the last of my Chick-Fil-A sweet tea and the leftover blueberry crisp. Yes, it was absolutely as wonderful as it sounds.

03.18.13 Collage

Thanks to Trail Guide to Learning, I was able to come home and enjoy my Sunday evening relaxing with my family (and running out for a few groceries so we could have lunch on Monday). There were no lesson plans to worry about. I just printed off the student pages on Monday morning and we were good to go. Is it any wonder that I love that curriculum?

Clearly, based on the photo of Lily, the calico, I’m not the only one who wasn’t stressing about lesson plans.

I was finally able to snag a picture of my house finch on Monday. I would have sworn he was a purple finch, but after getting a good look at him and the white bands on his wings, I’m going with house. Either way, he’s just beautiful and it makes me smile every time he shows up at the feeder.

Monday evening, Brian and the girls went to see a movie, so Josh and I enjoyed the original “Words with Friends.” (Also known as Scrabble.)

03.20.13 Collage

Seriously, those cats think they own my chair. There is almost always at least one of them on the back of it. They waste no time jumping in the seat if I dare to get up for any reason, too. Oh, and they like bird-watching as much as I do. For entirely different reasons, I’m guessing.

Wednesday was Megan’s first day of Teaching Textbooks Math 7. Josh will be starting pre-algebra soon. I think he’s a little disappointed that he reminded me that he was almost finished with Math 7. I had forgotten to order pre-algebra, but thanks to his reminder, it will be here next week. Yeah, he’s wishing he’d kept his mouth shut.

03.22.13 Collage

This morning, I was able to get a few decent shots of my birds through the window. Of course, I didn’t have my camera ready when the cardinal, the house finch, and the goldfinch were all on the feeder at the same time. I also spotted an Eastern Towhee in the bushes yesterday and today, but I haven’t gotten a photo of him yet…or the titmouse.

It was a very brave sparrow that had the cats fascinated. It’s a good thing there is a window between them and the birds. I agree with Brianna, though – we’re just waiting for one of them to forget about the window and smack themselves silly on the glass one of these days. Yes, we will laugh hysterically when that happens. We’re very sympathetic like that.

With all this bird-watching we’ve been doing, I was so excited to download the Beautiful Birds e-Book from Shining Dawn Books. No self-respecting homeschooling mom would let such an interest pass without learning as much as possible, right? The boy isn’t terrible interested in bird-watching, but the girls and I have really been enjoying it.

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Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.

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  1. Wow, I’m the first one to link up this week! 🙂 Thanks for hosting. I always enjoy being a part of your linkup. It sounds like you had a wonderful retreat experience. We haven’t seen a whole lot of birds yet here in our part of PA, unfortunately. It’s still a bit cold, but I know my children (and my cats!) are looking forward to some bird watching. 🙂 Have a great weekend. Many blessings, Lisa

  2. Our cats do the very same thing! They sit at the window hour after hour and watch birds.

    Looks like you had fun in TN…I wasn’t able to come….CA is a long way from TN. 🙂

    Have a great week!

    1. I’m not sure who’s more fun to watch, the birds or the cats watching the birds.

      We did have a wonderful time. I understand why you weren’t able to make the trip, but I sure hope to get to sit and chat with you in person some day.

  3. How wonderful to go on a retreat. Could you pack ‘lil ol’ me in your suit case next time? I’d be very good- you wouldn’t even know I was there. To be cooked for, and pampered, with friends…I’m dreaming of the possibilities!
    Back to reality, thanks for the link up and a peak into your week. Have a lovely weekend Kris.
    PS I’m still a tinsy bit jealous!

  4. Miss 12 and I are both keen birdwatchers. We enjoy seeing which species visit our backyard (not a great variety sadly) and also enjoy visiting other spots to go birdwatching. We’ve been especially pleased lately to spot a few rare species which is satisfying.

  5. Bethany and I love to bird watch too. Her current favorite is the cardinal, but sadly none have come to our feeder yet this year. We put ours up a bit late, then it took a few weeks before the chick-a-dees told the other birds about the new food source!! If you put window clings on your window you might have less casualties. Hitting the window can knock them out and actually kill them!

    1. It’s not the birds I’m worried about hitting the windows — it’s the inside cats trying to get to the birds. 😉

  6. We are big-time backyard birders and have been for several years. This week, in fact, we started participating in Project FeederWatch. It’s really the only nature study we do. Congrats on your photos; I’m never able to get any good photos of our many customers. We have a house finch pair that come by several times a day. Usually, the male and female are together, but lately we’ve seen the male alone. Either it’s a new guy or the little lady’s busy with the nest.

    1. That’s cool that you’ve got a finch pair. I’ve only seen the male so far. I can’t wait to start learning what all our birds are. I’m so new at this! We had a new one a day or so ago, but it flew away too quickly for me to get enough details to try to ID it.

  7. I loved PETTICOAT JUNCTION when I was little.
    Do you remember that show? Man that retreat sounds fantastic!

    Love that the kitties so enjoyed themselves this week too. We moved our ottoman to a window so the Labradoodle and kitty could watch the birds outside. The noises our Fred (cat) makes are funny. I’ll snap a pic this week.

    Hugs & Blessings!

    1. I remember the show, but I never watched it. Loved the retreat, though. 🙂 Our last cat, Gus, make hilarious noises when we’d play with him with the laser light.

  8. Just a quick question about Trailguide, would you know when they plan to release their World History series? I am very interested trying that with my son next year. I would have went with Trailguide this year but didn’t know about it until I found your blog. I had already purchased Sonlight. Thank you!

    1. The digital version, starting with Ancients, is supposed to be ready this fall with the print version to follow next fall.

  9. I love playing scrabble with my wife and we got a chance when we were up at the cabin for skiing. 14 years of marriage and I still have not managed to beat her. This latest game was the closest with a final score of 297 to 296. She caught me with 5 points still on my rack and that put her in the lead.

    1. How fun! I can’t get my husband to play Scrabble with me. He knows I’d beat him! 🙂 That’s a close game.

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