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    Thoughtworthy (New Cookbook Recommendation, CM in Español, and MORE!)

    August 11, 2017 by Brandy Vencel


    :: 1 ::

    I have to tell you about my new favorite cookbook! Necessary Food has been such a wonderful addition to my shelf!

    I suppose “cookbook” is a misnomer because I don’t recall cooking anything yet. I’ve mainly made ice cream and smoothies — every single one has been a five-star success around here. I look forward to attempting some of the baked goods someday soon.

    As you know, I’ve got a gluten-free girl and a sugar-free boy. This means that fun food is hard to come by around here. I had hoped this cookbook would change that, and it really has! Tonight, we’re watching The Incredibles and I’m serving chocolate peanut butter smoothies!


    :: 2 ::

    Our summer is officially OVER! That’s right: lessons begin bright and early Monday morning. Of course, I use the term “lessons” loosely. Our first day of school tradition is to go through everything — books and spreadsheets, etc. I explain the schedule and how all of it is supposed to work and then we head out to buy treats and go to the park for some photos and fun.

    What do you do on your first day of school?


    :: 3 ::

    Wish you could share Charlotte Mason with native Spanish speakers? Now you can! Karen Glass’ Mind to Mind (an abridgment of Volume 6) is now available in Spanish as Da Mente a Mente.

    The translation was overseen by the one and only Silvia Cachia and you can hear all about it (in Spanish, of course):



    :: 4 ::

    I was reminded this week that we need to teach our older children about masterly inactivity, too. My oldest was watching my two youngest children out the window. I had asked them to move an old, beat-up desk to the curbside because the garbage company was going to pick it up. By the time he saw them out the window, they had the desk awkwardly loaded on a dolly upside down and were trying to figure out what to do.

    “Should I just go out there and do it for them?” he asked.

    Can you say hashtag teachable moment?

    I watched them for a while, too, and then said I thought they were going to be okay, and besides the desk was trash so if they dropped it, there weren’t really any consequences to that. I went an additional step and told him that children often learn by having to figure things out for themselves, and I could see the wheels of understanding turning in his own mind.

    Older children can be like us: bossy and doing things for the younger ones because it’s more efficient. To have masterly inactivity happening in our homes, it has helped to teach more than just myself about the concept. 🙂


    :: 5 ::

    This month in 2016:


    Still a very intense planner, and still find it worth it every single time!


    :: 6 ::

    This week’s links collection:


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  • Reply Andrea C August 14, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    Speaking of readalouds — where is a good place in the day to fit in family readalouds that aren’t narrated/aren’t part of school? And where in your day did you do this when your kids were younger and the youngest were only marginally interested in certain readalouds, or not interested at all? I’d really love to know. I’m trying to plan my year in a way where the kids have lots of uninterrupted free time, especially outside, but I also really want us to get in some good readaloud time.

    • Reply Brandy Vencel August 15, 2017 at 3:53 pm

      I always pin reading aloud to something else we already do: meal times. In the summers, we read a bit after all three meals (we don’t travel much). During the school year, we start school lessons right after breakfast, but we still read aloud after lunch and dinner. We usually have two books going: one with my husband and one without. This doesn’t necessarily mean we’re at the table — we often move to the couch (we have a great room setup).

      The other time I read aloud is when we’re in the car and my husband is driving. This happens less often, but it’s tradition on trips and such.

      We’ve pretty much always done it this way; what has changed a my children have gotten older is (1) how long we read and (2) what books we read. 🙂

  • Reply Carol August 12, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    Great work by Silvia! Good point about masterly inactivity & older children, Brandy.

  • Reply Kansas Mom August 12, 2017 at 7:28 pm

    I thought this response to the Google firing was helpful:

    • Reply Brandy Vencel August 15, 2017 at 3:54 pm

      Thanks for that link, KM! I never thought I’d enjoy something written by Peter Singer, but apparently some of his ethics are more reasonable than other since I pretty much agreed with him.

      It is scary to me that Thoughtcrime seems to be becoming a real thing. 🙁

  • Reply Abby August 12, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Google article was fascinating and I read his original memo, thanks for the sources!

    • Reply Brandy Vencel August 15, 2017 at 3:55 pm

      You’re welcome!

      And I love that I now see your face in my mind when I read comments from you, Abby. 🙂

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