Harrison Farm

for now, the only thing we're growing on this farm is kids - not the goat variety

Category: Inspiration (page 2 of 5)

Have You Met Ronald Jenkees?

The original, the authentic, the makin’-it-fun, the owner of many hats, talented Ronald Jenkees was discovered by Marathon when he went to YouTube looking for some pump-you-up Rocky music. He found Jenkees’ fun version and explored some of his other videos.

In an interview, I heard Jenkees say he had just a couple of months of piano lessons as a child, but the teacher gave up on him because he “just wanted to jam, and she wasn’t going to have it.” Well, he’s still jammin’ away, having a big time, selling his cds, and I hope, laughing all the way to the bank.

I don’t normally like this type of music. This highly electronic, hip-hop-ish music is not in our normal repertoire, but something about Jenkees’ style drew us in. Marathon speculates that Bach may have been the same way when he was alone at the organ. Can you see him just jammin’ away? …I can’t either. But when I think about the Organ Fugue…well, Marathon might be right.

Everyone in the family had an opinion on which of Jenkees’ songs we should feature here. “Stay Crunchy” shows his piano skills; “STS9 Collab” is fun, has a great beat, etc, but it’s long for an intro piece; the “Rocky Remix” doesn’t show enough of his musical skills…So we decided on this one. Basically, if you like this one, there’s a lot more to be discovered. See what you think and take my poll below. It’s just fun to watch this guy.

Cicero of Ancient Rome

About a month ago, I checked out Augustus Caesar’s World: 44B.C. to A.D.14 by Genevieve Foster, and we’ve been reading it as a family. This is the Augustus Caesar for whom our month of August is named; the Augustus Caesar who was the instrument used to bring Mary and Joseph from Galilee to Bethlehem for the birth of Jesus; the Augustus Caesar who appointed Herod governor of Galilee who would be visited by the magi.

Being the favorite nephew, Augustus ascended the Roman throne after the death of his uncle Julius Caesar, the Roman Consulate, who was murdered by a band of men (remember “Et tu, Brute?”) attempting to restore the Roman Republic.

For all their efforts, though, the republic was not restored. Eventually another dictator, this time Augustus, came to power, and put bounties on the heads of his opposition. One such reward was reserved for Cicero, the old philosopher, the last living voice for the now dead republic.

According to Foster, as soldiers were nearing Cicero’s litter on the day he was executed, Cicero was filled with anxiety about the inevitable, but by the time the litter was stopped by the soldiers, Cicero was calm, didn’t say a word — just bent his had to receive the blow.

He had once said,

When the time comes, I shall withdraw from life, not as one leaves home, but as from a temporary lodging place. On that brightest of all days, when I depart from the confusion of this world, I shall set out, I believe, for a far-off divine gathering of spirits…

But if I am mistaken, in that I believe men’s souls to be immortal, I am glad to be mistaken…

And all my life I shall continue to believe it…

Quotes from Helen Keller

Carman and Sudoku are going to be involved in a public speaking group that meets for the first time in a little over a week. They are supposed to come with something memorized and should speak for no more than 60 seconds. Each student will be critiqued by a couple of parents. Then each student will be given a topic for an impromptu speech. That should be fun.

In thinking about what to have them memorize, I’m leaning toward some notable quotes. For Carman, we’ll probably use the Booker T. Washington quotes we have on this site. For Sudoku, I’m thinking of some of the following Helen Keller quotes. (My thought is that I’d like them to memorize a bunch of little nuggets of wisdom this time around.) Continue reading

from Granny

I’m a gift bag saver and re-user. Today Sudoku was packaging a few gifts and came across this tag from last year. It’s a keeper. Into Rosebud’s file it goes.

Is “Education” Over-rated?

From Booker T. Washington’s chapter “The Reconstruction Period”:

“The ambition [of the freed slaves] to secure an education was most praiseworthy and encouraging. The idea, however, was too prevalent that, as soon as one secured a little education, in some unexplainable way he would be free from most of the hardships of the world, and, at any rate, could live without manual labour.”

I know that I suffered from the same sentiment in my youth. I wouldn’t have admitted it then, but it was there. Now, as a college educated woman, who has never used my degree, and who has seen many friends fall into jobs and careers that didn’t require their expensively earned degrees, I ask myself about the real value of a formal college or university education. Continue reading

Defining Dysfunctional Family

Someone gave this definition of a dysfunctional family in a Sunday school class a couple of Sundays ago. I found it interesting as a sort of litmus test for how we’re doing. “A dysfunctional family is one that doesn’t talk, doesn’t feel, doesn’t trust.”

The Infant Graveyard

There is a beautiful, old, wooded cemetery near our church where Marathon and I will sometimes stroll during the Sunday School hour. It’s a large place, and though we’ve been a few times, we still haven’t explored all of its nooks and crannies.

The last time we were there, we went to the far end of the cemetery. As we rounded a corner and headed toward the back, Marathon said, “This section must be for the poor” because it was absent of any large markers or headstones. The only markers were small and flat to the ground.

After getting closer and seeing how small the graves were, we realized this section was full of infants, mostly under the age of 2. There were graves with little matchbox cars and other toys on them. Continue reading

What Makes a Good School?

I’m reading Booker T. Washington’s autobiography Up From Slavery and took note of an interesting section where Washington contrasts 2 different schools. He notes Continue reading

Hidden Benefits of Used Vehicles

As noted in an earlier post, we recently purchased a used van. There are used vehicles, and then there are used vehicles. You know, obviously used vehicles. Our is in the obviously used class, and, especially for a family with children, the obviously used kind comes with some hidden blessings: Continue reading

Salmon Rosettes

salmon rosettes

We ate Alaskan Salmon the other night, and Sudoku said, “Look, mama! It looks like there are flowers in your fish.” Sure enough. They look like tight little roses. Just beautiful.

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