Saturday, November 27, 2010

Belated Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving was great.  No family beyond the four of us and the critters, which was a little sad, but on the upside, we didn't finish off the pie till Saturday.  The sweet potato pudding was exceptionally good, and I made a streusel topping for it from Mark Bittman's Vegetarian Cookbook that even Travis said was Much better than marshmallows (we were out of marshmallows). 

Speaking of gratitude, Isabella Beatrice left.  Sometime over the weekend she stopped showing up on the porch, even though Travis made sure her food and water were full to overflowing.  Since we didn't see her flattened in the road, we are assuming that she went back to where she came from, or found a family willing to open their door to her.  I hope she found a good place.  But she left us with (at least one) souvenir.  A flea.  I was patting  Harry yesterday and noticed this large flea on his eyebrow.  Both cats immediately got flea baths (and they had some choice words to say during their baths about flea-ridden guests) and the large flea expired.  No more were apparent, and we've decided we'll check the animals next week and see if they really all need expensive flea drops from the vet.  Cross your fingers!

Today, because we didn't finish all our lessons during the week, the kids wrote poems.  In lesson two of Building Poems this week, we learned about the iamb, trochee, anapest, and dactyl, about spondees, feminine endings, and about various meters.  Today I had the kids write poems in iambic pentameter.  They were supposed to try to include a sprinkling of end rhyme, internal rhyme, eye rhyme, assonance, consonance, and alliteration, but I think that might have been a lot to ask. Next week, with luck, they will write one each in trochaic tetrameter, dactylic tetrameter, and anapestic pentameter. And we will try to include some of the dress-ups. Turns out that just getting the right number of syllables per foot is challenging, not to mention the right pattern of accented and unaccented syllables. But the explanations and examples in the book are excellent, and we are having fun, so we'll persevere.
Here is Katie's...

Kate came into the kitchen to see if
There were milk chocolate chips to eat.
An open bag unguarded sat alone.
She sprang, singing, to seize her yummy treat!

(you have to read "chocolate" as a two syllable word, as in "choc-lat")

and Travis's

A partner of YouTube I know I'll be,
To be a partner would give me much glee.
And when I get rich I'll go for a ski,
And everybody will admire me.

Can't say I admire the sentiment, but the syllable count is right.

I didn't accomplish most of what I'd planned today, but I did get the Christmas cards ordered!  Getting the picture and then finding a design that fits the picture is always time consuming.  Only several hours after sending in the order did I realize that I didn't use the picture I'd meant to use (the thumbnails on Shutterfly's upload screen are so very little!).  But it gives the general idea -- we still have two kids, and they are somewhat larger than they were last year.  So it will do.

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