spring rolls (eventually)

We hear that the the groundhog did not see his shadow today and we will have an early spring. After a week of a household cold, and incredibly cold temperatures, it was nice to have an upturn for my birthday — which we began early last night just as an insurance policy, with a lot…

reviving the art of the christmas eve ghost story

This was the second year that Claudia participated in “The Dark is Rising” readalong beginning on Midwinter’s Eve. Both kids also caught (out of the corner of one eye) a few episodes from my BBC “Ghost Stories for Christmas Eve” DVD box set. A lot of steps to string together, but each of the kids…

io, saturnalia!

Like the one-hit wonder band of my early teen years, here’s a little Roman holiday for you. At the root of all midwinter revelry is Saturnalia — an opportunity to learn some Roman culture, a little astronomy, a chance to make a big Saturnian lantern, and to make some delicious — REALLY delicious — honey-sweetened…

a lot of things happened easter weekend

The night before Easter, we went to the premiere of the documentary “The Sigma Kids” and learned a lot about the making of David Bowie’s “Young Americans” album, which was recorded here in Philadelphia. And the kids met guitarist Carlos Alomar — who is certainly the best thing about “The Sigma Kids”. They also sat…

martenitsi 2018

One more thing that, like Parade of Spirits, we’ve been doing since 2011. This year we just made them for each other and for one other family of friends — but we had found three new tutorials we really liked and so it was no chore at all, in fact it was more fun than…

claudia’s tenth birthday

Last year was Claude’s first homeschool birthday and it was really nice. This September was Béla’s first, and IT was really nice. This was Claudia’s tenth birthday, her second homeschooling birthday, and because it fell on a day when we had a lot of activities with other homeschoolers — well, it was just particularly great….

valentines, grey belts, and lupercalia cake

Oh, the whirlwind of the completely unconnected!!! First, Valentine’s Day. We don’t make much of it, but, why, Mom, why. As you can hear, Béla was a bit under the weather. This love-filled treat did not help. He was happier with the David Byrne valentine card he had snagged for himself — he and Claudia…