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    Seven Quick Takes on Choosing a Sunscreen, New Podcast Episode, Missing Kidding Season, and MORE!

    February 26, 2016 by Brandy Vencel

    Seven Quick Takes

    :: 1 ::

    The latest Scholé Sisters podcast episode was released this morning! Do you remember Pam’s guest post called The Wonder-Based Classical Co-op? Well, this is an in depth conversation on the same topic {hence the name}. It went swimmingly, except I was still a tad under the weather when we recorded it, meaning my voice is a bit scratchy. But still – content is king, amIright? So here’s your pick-me-up for this fine Friday:



    :: 2 ::

    The sun is strengthening, which means it’s time for me to figure out our sunscreen situation. For the most part, we don’t wear any. But poor A-Age-11 has a sun damaged nose. I kick myself all the time for a bad burn she got when the sun peeked in on her when she was asleep at the beach as an infant. I thought she was fully covered, but I was wrong. So sad!

    As a result, part of her daily routine is to put sunscreen on it. This is necessary. While coconut oil works well for most things, it isn’t sufficient for her poor, tender nose. Anyhow, after consulting with the Environmental Working Group’s sunscreen report, I decided to go with Badger this time around. I love that it’s a stick. Last time, I bought a liquid and she hated having zinc on her hands each morning.


    :: 3 ::

    This week’s links collection:


    :: 4 ::

    This month in 2013:

    An Antidote for Theological Naivete 2

    I was pondering how Charlotte Mason taught me that good books can be fortifying — that we can use them to protect against both error as well as pride.


    :: 5 ::

    Triplets+2+Weeks.pngThis is the last week of February, and I’ve been a bit sad about the lack of babies. You see, for many years, I kept a small herd of goats, and our February break week coincided with the first kidding of the season. February was always a delight and full of excitement, what with the drama of pregnancy and birth and such.

    These triplets on the right were my favorite batch ever. Born in 2014, I ended up keeping the black one on the right {her name was Pepper} and raising her up as a milking doe. The two bucks were named Peter and Edmund.

    It’s been nice not to have the work involved in keeping a flock, but I do miss the fun of babies jumping around and getting to know the new world.


    :: 6 ::

    Ya’ll saw that registration is now live for the AO conference in Dallas, right? Go sign up!

    Simple Flyer small


    :: 7 ::

    Answering Your Questions:

    • Question: Do you recommend owning Charlotte Mason’s original work? I’m really just learning about CM and love it. We are several years away from starting formal schooling so I have plenty of time to learn. I’m finding many resources that quote Charlotte Mason, which is good, but I’d like to read it for myself. I know you can access her work from AmblesideOnline for free but it’s really hard for me to read on a screen.
      • Answer: Yes yes yes yes yes. And also: yes. 🙂 I own the red and white set, and it has been wonderfully faithful to me, though admittedly a couple of them are falling apart from use. But I can’t read well on a screen, either, and I completely understand. My study guide, Start Here, is a good way to get an overview of Charlotte Mason’s whole philosophy using her 20 principles as a guide. It walks through her sixth volume alongside For the Children’s Sake, with lots of optional readings in Miss Mason’s volumes, blog posts, and even old articles from Miss Mason’s magazine. You are so blessed to have heard about these topics before your children are school age. If you have a friend that is equally interested, forming a group is something I highly recommend.

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  • Reply Sherry J February 26, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    Astaxanthin is excellent for reversing and preventing sun damage. Adult dosage is 8 mg per day. We’ve had great results with this.

    • Reply Brandy Vencel February 26, 2016 at 4:24 pm

      I love astaxanthin. ♥ We used to buy a sunscreen that actually had it as an ingredient and that was pretty awesome. 🙂

  • Reply Melissa February 26, 2016 at 9:24 am

    Hey Brandy,

    I don’t see links on the articles mentioned in number three.


    • Reply Brandy Vencel February 26, 2016 at 4:23 pm

      No links? Hmmm…I see them on my screen. What browser are you using? That is a new one, but I’ve had a number of problems this week, so it doesn’t surprise me there is another one. 🙂

      • Reply Melissa February 26, 2016 at 7:45 pm

        They have magically appeared…thanks 🙂

  • Reply Diana February 26, 2016 at 7:23 am

    Oh, the sunscreen battle! Chemical sunscreens break me out (and some of my kids), so we are down to the zinc oxide. What a pain! I may try the Badger face stick this summer. I’m in Missouri, though, so I won’t really have to mess with it until late May or early June.

    • Reply Brandy Vencel February 26, 2016 at 8:12 am

      Diana, you *might* like the coconut oil that I suggested to Ivy Mae, but either way, you might find the Environmental Working Group’s report helpful in a pinch. I have a friend who looks it up on her phone if she’s buying emergency sunscreen on a trip or something. 🙂

  • Reply Ivy Mae February 26, 2016 at 3:38 am

    We are having sunscreen issues too. I don’t want to use a chemical one, but the barrier sunscreens all leave my dark-skinned boys looking like gray ghosts. They definitely still need sunscreen though–their noses burn! I would love suggestions if you have any!

    • Reply Brandy Vencel February 26, 2016 at 8:06 am

      Ivy Mae, for your boys — have you ever tried just coconut oil? This is what we use on all the other children when they need it, with the exception of days when we’re at the beach and they are spending far too much time in the sun. But for normal days, coconut oil offers great protection, I find. And it isn’t a special type of the oil — I buy a refined gallon of it from Costco and cook with it and that is what they put on their skin. 🙂

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