Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus

My heart goes pitter patter for stories like this. I love stories of different kids overcoming adversity.

 Aven has no arms, and as she grows up and attends school, she fluctuates between horribly made up tragic stories of how this happened and the truth that she was born that way. I can imagine that she would be tired of telling people the same story over and over and I enjoyed her sarcasm.

After a move to Arizona where her parents begin to manage a sort of Old West Theme Park, (which reminded me of Rawhide in Scottsdale) she has to start completely over at her new school knowing no one. 

While looking for a place to eat lunch she meets Connor who has Tourette’s Syndrome and also doesn’t want to eat in the lunchroom. Together with another new friend, Zion, (who has a weight problem and amazing cosplaying geeky parents), they solve a mystery and make their own way through middle school.  I loved the setting of the theme park because it gave the story just a hint of the Scooby Doo gang finding clues. 

In the end, Aven realizes that she is accepted and loved by her new community just the way she is.

I read Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling September 5, 2017, to review for this blog and passed it along to the #Book Posse (a group of teachers and reviewers)

Torpedoed!: A World War II Story of a Sinking Passenger Ship and Two Children’s Survival at Sea

 It’s not even Cybils season, and here I am reading another true story of WW2. Note to publishers and writers- please write about WW1 there is a lack of nonfiction/historical fiction.

Anyhow, back to Torpedoed! It’s 1939, and some Americans decide to vacation in Europe even while the threat of a world war hangs heavily in the air. I love the cruise ship slogan- “Great Value for Your Travel Dollar” It’s all good to save a buck until you are on a sinking ship, then you are probably kicking yourself. That would be me- by the way.

In this title, you get the stories of two American kids who were traveling on the SS Athenia. Russell Park aged eleven and Florence Kelly aged fourteen were both excited about visiting Europe and had a great time until they were on their way home. 

This account is a realistic text, not scarier for effect, which I liked. The situation is, of course, terrifying, but not over dramatized. I’m adding into our WW2 study this year.

Available Sept 1, 2017

Torpedoed!: A World War II Story of a Sinking Passenger Ship and Two Children’s Survival at Sea

Our Essential School Supplies

I know it’s still Summer and I also know you all are getting ready the same way I am. It’s planning high tide even if you don’t start until September. I’m shopping on Amazon as we get set to start school up full time in the soonish future. These are things that we are splurging on this year. I’ve got my curriculum and barring any last minute buyers remorse we’ll be good to go.

 

 After an exhaustive multi year search I ended up with this Student Academic Planner. Things I like about it: You fill in the subjects so it's completely custom and there are plenty of lines in the daily section for detailed directions. I'm back using an Erin Condren life planner after another stint with The Passion Planner. By the time school starts I could be Bullet Journal planning again. I have a polyamorous planner relationship.
After an exhaustive multi year search I ended up with this Student Academic Planner. Things I like about it: You fill in the subjects so it’s completely custom and there are plenty of lines in the daily section for detailed directions. I’m back using an Erin Condren life planner after another stint with The Passion Planner. By the time school starts I could be Bullet Journal planning again. I have a polyamorous planner relationship.

 We've been using these for over a year, and they are the best! These pens are only for Declan and me to use. I like to mark corrections in pink. He even does his math in pen. These are a lifesaver if you've got a perfectionist on your hands.
We’ve been using these for over a year, and they are the best! These pens are only for Declan and me to use. I like to mark corrections in pink. He even does his math in pen. These are a lifesaver if you’ve got a perfectionist on your hands.

 Making lunch ahead of time is a lifesaver. Having designated lunch containers is a plus as well. Everyone in the family knows that if there is food in here- it isn't up for grabs. I bought two sets. One for me and one for Declan. We usually have a four day school week so it works out perfectly.
Making lunch ahead of time is a lifesaver. Having designated lunch containers is a plus as well. Everyone in the family knows that if there is food in here- it isn’t up for grabs. I bought two sets. One for me and one for Declan. We usually have a four day school week so it works out perfectly.

 You should have heard me squeal at the sight of this beauty. I have an affinity for strange items.  Know that I love this thing almost as much as my coffee.
You should have heard me squeal at the sight of this beauty. I have an affinity for strange items.  Know that I love this thing almost as much as my coffee.

 If you give a kid a sharpener he's gonna need pencils to go with it. These last a long time and don't break when you press too hard.
If you give a kid a sharpener he’s gonna need pencils to go with it. These last a long time and don’t break when you press too hard.

 The description says two pandas and a wolf? Pretty sure that's a fox. Also, I know that the price is a bit much for three spirals- but he's my very last homeschooling weirdo. I'll never have a 12yo again who wants a panda notebook. Indulge me. We use the sections for Science and History as described in the  Well Trained Mind notebook method . Buy the  book  if you haven't already. Ignore the schedules, use the resources.
The description says two pandas and a wolf? Pretty sure that’s a fox. Also, I know that the price is a bit much for three spirals- but he’s my very last homeschooling weirdo. I’ll never have a 12yo again who wants a panda notebook. Indulge me. We use the sections for Science and History as described in the Well Trained Mind notebook method . Buy the book if you haven’t already. Ignore the schedules, use the resources.