halloween whirlwind: more scares

I didn’t get in as much as the actual “storytelling” element of Halloween that I wanted to this season. They watched more “scary” movies than they ever have before (Claude in particular, who saw “Poltergeist” and “Sleepy Hollow”). We all enjoyed the old Disney live-action “The Watcher in the Woods” and while it’s only mildly…

eclectic learning network homeschool art show in germantown

This is the shop where we often hang out while the kids are at the TED-Ed club sponsored by ELN, which we love. And hey, look, we got to see Ed Feldman! While the kids did not create any brand new work for this show, Claudia showed her “Black Athena” print (homeschool podcaster and speaker…

more halloween prep (with uncle al)

Although he made it look like a much more foreboding experience than it actually was, Béla and Claudia went to Termini’s bakery for the infamous “dead bones” cookies. Of which I doubt they ate more than one. Claudia’s YouTube makeup tutorial searches landed us with a formidable shopping list, but we amended it to be…

pinbox 3000, greek mythology version

Purchased many months ago at a Bread and Puppet performance, this tabletop, cardboard pinball-machine kit has been hanging out, not-quite-done, for some time now. The kids knew they wanted to personalize it and had decided on a theme of — surprise! — Greek Mythology. While they had begun printing images of gods online and gluing…

halloween season begins (and it’s hot and muggy, thanks global warming).

Crank that AC and burn that pumpkin spice candle. Check out the Halloween displays before it’s even October. Order decorations online (like a “Village of the Damned” bunting.) Get a David-Bowie’s-Stages-of-Life-While-Trick-or-Treating pennant.   Beg for foods you would otherwise have no chance of getting. (Béla really impressed me by exclaiming over those “Frahnkensteen Papes”. He…

octavius catto

A few weekends ago we drove past City Hall and saw that a statue was hanging in the air from it’s armpits. Big spikes protruded from the base, ready to help anchor the piece permanently. We came home and searched around online to figure out who this statue represented — it was certainly a black…

tokusatsu tuesday: origin stories

One of our favorite venues in Philadelphia is PhilaMOCA. Our experiences there have always been special. The kids shot a dance club scene for a local punk band’s video there (throwing cakes at each other, and Claudia being doused from a ladder with a bucket of fake blood). They took part in the filming of…

béla’s homeschool birthday

I had been worried last February, that Claudia’s ninth birthday — our first homeschool birthday — would feel somehow lesser. We are not a family that does (or enjoys) parties very much. Last year, Claude had taken a cake to Brownies, and she also made Big Mama Thornton cupcakes for the Blues show rehearsals at…

first week of homeschool year 2017-18!

It could have started off on the wrong foot entirely. Having had a medication reaction and in the midst of a rather extended period of pain-induced insomnia (I woke up on Sunday morning and did not sleep again until Tuesday night), being chipper and ready to start learning on Tuesday morning did not seem a…

summer’s final exam (part one)

This has been Claude and Béla’s most independent summer ever, and I’m not second guessing when I say it has had moments in it that I am sure they will remember for their entire lives. (Or, in Béla’s case, never remember, due to his concussion.) Yes, this summer of independence did land us with two…