Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Puerto Rican Discovery Day

A Commonwealth of Puerto Rico official holiday. Christopher Columbus (Don Cristóbal Colón) landed on the northwest coast of Puerto Rico near Aguada on his second voyage to the New World in 1493. Puerto Rico is the only territory associated with the United States that Columbus saw with his own eyes.

Here is a printable pdf for kids grades 3-5. Short description of holiday followed by questions and color sheet of Puerto Rico's flag.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I took some of the extra bread dough, rolled it out and made chewy, gooey, sticky, lick your fingers wonderful, perfect when it is snowing outside cinnamon rolls. Envious? You should be:)

Old Fashioned Bread Making


6 cups of warm water - if you have boiled potatoes potato water works the BEST for bread.
2 TBS. dry yeast
6 TBS. sugar or honey
3 TBS. salt
16 cups various flours
(My favorite combination is 10 cups Whole Wheat, 2 cups oatmeal, 1 cup bran and 3 cups white)

1. In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in 2 cups of warm water. Add the sugar and salt. Let it stand 5 minutes.
2. Stir in 4 cups of water and 6 cups of flour. Beat well. Let stand for 30 minutes (this resting
period is important to give extra rising to the bread)
3. Add the remaining flour and knead 8 minutes or until dough is flexible but not sticky.
4. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise (in a bowl) until it is tripled in size (6 hours?)
5. Punch down, Make into loaves and put in loaf pans, let sit for 30 more minutes and then bake
at 375 for 30-40 minutes
6. Roll out and spread with any filling like a jelly roll and roll up. Cut into rolls and put on a pan
and bake for 20-30 minutes at 400 degrees.

This recipe comes from 'August Lesson Plans' by Kristie Burns

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy Birthday Gracie!

Unschooling with Hot Chocolate

After a morning of looking at snowflakes through a magnifying glass (science), my girls were in desperate need of some hot chocolaty goodness. This recipe that I had serves 10 so they halved the recipe and boom, we've done math!
We even learned the history of hot chocolate (social studies) !!
After they are all warmed up, they are going to write the word chocolate in five different languages:)


Homemade Hot Cocoa
1 cup of sugar
2/3 cup of cocoa
1/4 teaspoon of salt
8 cups of milk
2/3 cups of water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Combine the sugar, cocoa and salt in a large pan. Stir in milk and water. Cook and stir over medium heat until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat and stir in extract. Serve in your favorite mugs with a few little marshmallows on top to finish it off.
Yields: 10 servings

Friday, November 14, 2008

Happy America Recycles Day!


Get youth involved - This ARD kids activity (pdf) is designed to encourage children to be more involved in recycling and to care for the environment. By completing certain activities, a child can receive an America Recycles Day prize.

For more info on America Recycles Day visit my Zen Fem blog at

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Earth Prayer

This great prayer was sent my way by my friend Shanda King. She did some research and found out that it was translated in 1887 by Lakota Sioux Chief Yellow Lark.

**Lydia will begin memorizing this great work for her November recitation**

Oh, Great Spirit
Whose voice I hear in the winds,
And whose breath gives life to all the world,
hear me, I am small and weak,
I need your strength and wisdom.
Let me walk in beauty and make my eyes
ever behold the red and purple sunset.
Make my hands respect the things you have made
and my ears sharp to hear your voice.
Make me wise so that I may understand
the things you have taught my people.
Let me learn the lessons you have hidden
in every leaf and rock.
I seek strength, not to be greater than my brother,
but to fight my greatest enemy - myself.
Make me always ready to come to you
with clean hands and straight eyes.
So when life fades, as the fading sunset,
my Spirit may come to you without shame.

Thank you Shanda!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Gracie Reads! Video

My baby can READ!!! What a bitter sweet moment:):( I am so proud of her.

From port nov

Friday, November 7, 2008

Rainbow Co-op

The leader of our co-op class couldn't make it yesterday so the children improvised and led themselves in a colorful rainbow-themed class!
They took turns running down the hill with a rainbow "parachute"

Lydia taught everybody the art of hand knitting (with rainbow yarn of course)

And Grace made this beautiful chalk drawing to tie it all together.

Thank You SHINE kids!!!