Boomerangs and the Crusades

These two items do not usually go together ~ but, they have, this week, in our homeschooling.

Wednesday at Group Learning we continued with our topic of Medieval Times. The kids made mini catapults

(or trebuchets) for craft. I worked with the Seniors ( teens) on the topic of The Crusades.

We watched some of the movie The Kingdom of Heaven and discussed the historical accuracies and inaccuracies of the film. And I enjoyed looking at Liam Neeson and Orlando Bloom ( they are kinda cute. πŸ™‚ ).

We read and talked about the Crusades – a definition, the different crusades, the Albigensian heresy.

I then had the teens break into two groups – Muslims and Crusaders.We formed a Muslim-Crusader Dating Service. Each group had to think of positive attributes of their group and of ways to put a positive spin on any negative attributes. I provided books for research…

Then, they made posters – trying to get the other group to date them!

There was a lot of fun and chatter and I hope the kids had a good time, while learning about the Crusades.

And the boomerangs? They were yesterday’s activity.

Alexander is reading through a Physics textbook and I like to add in hands on stuff for everyone to do. I found the boomerang activity in the book Teaching Physics With Toys.

Students explore why a boomerang “sticks around.”

The boys made the boomerangs and added in modifications after testing their flight path.They became familiar with the lift force resulting from the flow of air over a wing and with the ability of a force to cause the rotation of an object.

The spinning boomerang behaves very much like a spinning gyroscope, and the rotation is known as gyroscopic precession. The stability of the spinning boomerang against unwanted motions caused by small forces is known as gyroscopic stability.
You learn something new every day.

My birthday

… was on Tuesday. And, no, we don’t have pics cos we really didn’t do anything special – and we forgot pics anyway! lol! But here is a pic of Gerry and I on Gerry’s birthday last Saturday….

Tuesday was a very busy day for me but we celebrated my birthday by attending our parish’s Tuesday night Mass and Novena to St Anthony of Padua. Fr. and Br. remembered my birthday and we sang Salve Regina – one of my favourites. It was very sweet of them to remember.

And we had Chinese takeaway for dinner, followed by a cheesecake brought over by two of the Youth Group leaders. Another sweet thought!

( But think of all those calories! lol!).

Gerry gave me two new Taebo workout DVDS, the younger four boys gave me a new handbag and the older three texted and phoned.

Thanks, guys…Thanks, everyone, for making me feel blessed….

Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI

It is nearly the anniversary of the death of Pope John Paul II.

I remember that week. We had recently moved to Sydney. Our parish was new to us. Everything seemed foreign – nothing was mentioned at Mass about the Pope’ s passing…We since know the priests and the parish and understand that evening, but at the time it seemed so weird to us…

I attended a Mother’s Night Out during which the Pope was discussed . I was the only Catholic, my first time meeting others in the group, yet Pope JP2 was discussed by all in a favourable light. Thus is the legacy of this Pope.

The kids and I did some talking and reading, some notes and sketching in our journals, about Pope John Paul II and about the then new Pope, Benedict XVI.

Here are samples, in remembrance of that time…

P.S. Some of these pics are not clear so you’ll have to squint and guess! lol!
P.P.S. Sarah is hosting the next Fair – all about Pope JP2. Check out her blog on April 2…

Bonds and the Theology of the Body

The Bonds Company has a new service – design your own undies!

They will take your design and send it to you, for $AUS39.95, including postage.
Sounds like fun but a tad expensive.

Still, I am addicted to Bonds underwear – they are very durable. I always buy Bonds for the kids. And I have a passion right now for their new, groovy women’s range – makes me feel feminine. Lost of bright pinks, lime greens, gorgeous purples, funky 60s style flowers, matching sets…..

What makes a woman feel feminine? Obviously pretty underwear for me. πŸ™‚

But there is more to it than that. I have been reading some of The Theology of the Body ~ Pope John Paul II. Human Love in the Divine Plan.

When the Pope spoke of of love, he did not speak only of a theology of the body, but of a theology of sex: “The theology of the body becomes also, in a sense, a theology of sex, or rather, a theology of masculinity and femininity”.

Pope John Paul II continues ~ “In fact, how indispensable is thorough knowledge of the meaning of the body, in its masculinity and femininity, along the way of this vocation [ of marriage] ! How necessary is a precise awareness of the nuptial meaning of the body, of its generative meaning – since all that which forms the content of the life of married couples must constantly find its full and personal dimension in life together, in behavior, in feelings!”

The Eucharist and Penance are the “infallible and indispensable” means, said the Pope, “for forming the Christian spirituality of married life and family life”. With these, that essential and spiritual creative β€˜power’ of love reaches human hearts and, at the same time, human bodies…. This love allows the building of the whole life of the married couple according to that β€˜truth of the sign,’ by means of which marriage is built up in its sacramental dignity”.

The sacrament of marriage emphasizes our equality but also our masculinity and femininity …


Marriage meme.

I’ve been tagged by my friend Ruth.

Would you like to be tagged? If so, consider yourself tagged!

1. Where/How did you meet? At university – I thought someone was following me one night, turns out it was Gerry, trying to catch me up to ask me out! lol! I literally was running away from him. πŸ™‚

2. How long have you known each other? We met briefly 30 years ago but didn’t get to know each other until later, and through dating…

3. How long after you met did you start dating? Over one year.
4. How long did you date before you were engaged? Do you really want to know – this is embarrassing. One month!! Psst – don’t tell my kids. πŸ™‚

5. How long was your engagement? One year.

6. How long have you been married? In April, it will be 28 years. Gosh, I am old!

7. What is your anniversary? 7 April
8. How many people came to your wedding reception? 100 + – we wanted a small-ish wedding.

9. What kind of cake did you serve? OMG, I can’t really remember – two or three tiers and brown decorations, from memory, to fit in with the autumn theme.

10. Where was your wedding? Holy Rosary Church, Perth, Western Australia

11. What did you serve for your meal? A buffet dinner, altthough the wedding party was served. A mix of traditional foods ( hams, roast, etc) and Asian dishes ( stir fry, etc).Desserts – pavlova and fruit salad, plus cake, of course!

12. How many people were in your wedding party? Best man, maid of honour, two groomsmen, two bridesmaids, three flower girls…

13. Are you still friends with them all? Well, with some, but we don’t see any of them any more – live too far away.

14. Did your spouse cry during the ceremony? As if – neither of us cried.

15. Most special moment of your wedding day? The fun at the reception – we danced the night away. I was a big Sex Pistols fan and we and our uni friends were all doing the pogo. πŸ™‚

16. Any funny moments? I told my dh off during the ceremony – he was messing around a bit and not being sensible! lol!

17. Any big disasters? We changed the venue and forgot to tell the photographer. 😦

18. Where did you go on your honeymoon? We didn’t – we were poor university students and had to be back at uni the next week. We did have one night away together, at a nice apartment near the beach..

19. How long were you gone? One night! lol!

20. If you were to do your wedding over, what would you change? I wasn’t Catholic and didn’t really see the significance of the Sacrament of Marriage – I even told my friends , when they said I was too young, that if it didn’t work out we could always divorce. 😦 So, I’d change myself. πŸ™‚

21. What side of the bed do you sleep on?:Woah – private stuff here. πŸ™‚ I always sleep on the side near the door.

22. What size is your bed? Queen sized.

23. Greatest strength as a couple? Only God knows. Our sense of fun? Although that also gets us into trouble.

24. Greatest challenge as a couple? Taking time out to talk.

25. Who literally pays the bills? We both work – me part time. I do the budget and bill paying.

26. What is your song? Well, we don’t have one, really. Dh has a Divinyls song as my ring tone on his mobile, for when I ring him.Not one I am sharing, though. πŸ™‚
27. What did you dance your first dance to? At the wedding? A waltz and then the Sex Pistols..

28. Describe your wedding dress: Very simple, no frills, etc. I am not a frills person. Cream, not white.

29. What kind of flowers did you have at your wedding? Strelitzia and carnations in the church, I carried a prayer book ( my dh’s FHC missal, white leather) , adorned with carnations and the bridesmaids/flower girls carried small bouquets of carnations.

30. Are your wedding bands engraved? No, and mine was cut off during one pregnancy, when my fingers swelled with water retention.. 😦

31.How old were you when you were married? 19. My mum wanted us to live together and not get married….!!

Activities for yesterday ~ and for today’s homeschool morning…

Here are some pics of Monday’s homeschool activities.

Alexander and Jonathon went to band practice, but had time for a few things before leaving. Jonathon worked on his university assignment and Alexander made the stone axe above. He is studying ancient history right now and to make a stone axe was an interesting excercise in problem solving…

Anthony made ginerbread men, using the cookie cutters and baking set he received for Christmas.

And Thomas and Anthony each tried to paint in the style of the Dutch painter

Mondrian . It is the anniversary of Mondrian’s birthday this month and Gerry’s dad is Dutch – thus, the rather tenuous connection, and why we read about Piet Mondrian yesterday. Mondrian is known for his compositions using geometric shapes and primary colours to depict emotions.

Today’s activities will centre around Project Compassion – a six week programme during Lent, Caritas Australia raises money through parishes and schools , with an aim of reducing world poverty.
There are resources for schools available on the net – today we will read about Farid and a fish farm, and we will work together on the primary and secondary school activities.

Karen mentions a similar programme for Lent in the U.S., with corresponding educational materials ~ Operation Ricebowl.