Yeah, I'm not a lone woman in the internet universe. Thanks for your thoughts.
Music: Kelly, I'm glad someone else had the same experience as my family. If Mom doesn't make you, instruments don't generally happen. I'm sure there are TJEders out there who would argue with me, but I come from a family of strong-willed people and my children are the same way (except Cowen so far . . . we'll see). I don't expect the instrument thing to be easy. I think it will help that Timothy picks up instruments quickly and is constantly trying new ones. He plays the piano, the harmonica, the Irish tin whistle, and anything else he can get his hands on. His sheer love for music will help.
After much, much, much thought I decided Miriam was ready for basic music training. She's been begging for piano lessons because she knows she has to know piano before she gets to play the harp. For this coming year I bought some basic beginner piano books and I'm going to do a weekly music lesson where learn how to count. Since she sings along with me at church I thought that would be the logical and easiest place to start. Then every day we'll spend ten minutes clapping out songs. I'm hoping that will mutate after a few months into learning basic notes. Then, showing her (much like reading where I let her think she was figuring out on her own) how the notes match the keys and then just leave the piano books on the piano and see what happens.
Good plan? Bad plan? Any thoughts?
Character Education: I loved hearing about Julia's "core values." (Part of me hates using TJEd terms because I feel like a disciple--I only buy into it so far and it isn't nearly as far as all my TJEd buddies. However, it appears I'm on that path no matter how reluctantly so I might as well use the terminology.) I am really good at temporal values (you will know how to make breakfast by the time you are 8) but I haven't invested as much time into spiritual values. Except service; my homeschool plan for the summer is called Service Summer 2009. As yet another sidenote, Miriam has been reading to our elderly neighbor who just got out of the hospital. That is one beautiful thing about Miriam--she is very, very loving and affectionate so whenever she sees this neighbor at church she races up to her and gives her a big hug. It make Sister Riggs so happy.
I just read that and it made me sound like a terrible person. Don't judge me. My point in bringing this up is that reading Julia's core values was thought provoking. I'd love to hear all the rest of you people's core values (even you Kami, although you're only a homeschooler at heart as this point) and any more that you have Julia. And since love of the scriptures is one, how in the heck are you teaching that one? We have devotional in the morning, which the kids love as long as I only read stories in the Friend and not the presidency message or get to know you articles.
Phases: When does Core and Love of Learning end? What age about?
And my last burning question: How in the heck do you homeschool with a two year old lurking about and shrieking??? :)
Again, thanks for your thoughts. This coming year is my year to prove to Timothy that I can really do it as this past year was . . . stress-laden.