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Homeschooling field trip- How Cheese is Made

We went on a cool field trip on Friday, June 6th to see how cheese is made! We went to the Winchester Cheese Company and Dairy. All the cheese is Gouda cheese and was very yummy!

It was not close, took over 2 hours each way but we did have fun. We spent about 4 hours there so that with driving home took up almost the whole day.

We had a video to watch of the cheese being made. A tour of the building that makes the cheese (they were not making cheese that day), a tour of where the cheese is left to age, we visited all the cows and the place they are taken to be milked. AND we even got to see a barn owl very high up on the top of the hay building. I took some photos but it owl was so far away and in a dark spot so it was hard to see.

The kids loved the cheese tasting the best. They got to try 4 different kinds with some cinnamon pretzel sticks and apple slices.

Little D did not like the fact that all the cows had their horns surgecially removed. According to our tour guide ‘they had a little surgery when they were very young’. Little D thought that the bulls shouldn’t have to go through pain like that. I explained the pros and cons to it and he thinks the people should have had to watch being gourged rather then the cattle suffer from the surgery.

Another down side is the price of $6 per person. Seeing how much money they made in sales when the tour was done (guessing about $1000 or more) I think the tours should have been free or cheaper or credited back when someone made a min. purchase. BUT I bought 4 different types of cheese, garden, mild, sharp aged and smoked. I also bought a cheese making kit to make ricotta or mozzarella cheese. The kit was $22 but it makes 30 batches of cheese and looks easy and like lots of fun.

I had other things that I had wanted to do this day. There was a storage unit auction in Simi that I wanted to go to to see if there was any good things for eBay but I decided that sometimes I have to skip the things I need to do and let the kids have a day too!

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Yikes! Gas prices

Okay, everyone has been complaining about the gas prices. I too know that they are high. Right now it takes over $100.00 to fill up my van (Chevy Astro). I bought my van in July of 2000 and back then it cost about $47-49 to fill up. I know my van does not get the same fuel economy as it used to but this is still aprox. double the price of gas in 8 years!

BUT, is it REALLY that expensive? My friend, Janine, was telling me about canceling her travel plans when visiting her family due to high gas prices. Well, I saw this great article and it put it into perspective in a different way. This is from Carschooling Ezine June 2008, Vol. 2, Issue 4. It is a free email list with YahooGroups and also she has her own book and website. Anyways, read below. Please post and tell me what you think!

Don’t Be “Fuelish” By Letting Gas Prices
Spoil Your Family Fun!
Yes, gas prices are high, but don’t let them cancel your family’s summer vacation plans.

According to the California Energy Commission retail gasoline prices have increased an average of $0.87 a gallon since this time last year. Here’s a word problem for your carschooler:

Question: If your summer road trip is 800 miles long and your car gets an average of 22 miles per gallon, and the cost of gas is $4.24 per gallon, how much will the gas for your road trip cost?

Answer: $154.18.

You’ll pay $31.64 more for this year’s summer road trip than last year’s. Are you going to tell me you’d cancel a family vacation for thirty-two bucks? Feast on Ramen for one family meal instead of KFC and you’ll have the extra cash you need.

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I think tomorrow we will have an ART DAY. I am reading Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Inglas Wilder with Little D right now and he stopped me to ask questions when the book says how Ma has set things for each day. Monday-wash. Tuesday-iron. Wednesday- churn. Thursday-bake. Friday-clean. Saturday- I can’t remember. and Sunday- rest.

So, I thought this would be fun to do something like this with homeschooling.

Maybe something like this, in no particular order;

1- art.
2- science experiments.
3- gardening.
4- museum field trip day.

We would still our regular stuff but maybe make extra time after we do our bookwork to do something extra each day that is a certain day of the week so they can look forward to it.

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Homeschooling-neat book

I finished a neat book tonight at bed time. I was reading it to Baby K but Little D was listening in too (he likes to do that) and pretend he wasn’t.

It was called What is Rot. Baby K picked it out from the library yesterday. The book/pages are a little yellow. The book looks like it is from the 70’s by the pictures but Baby K didn’t notice.

It is a neat book talking about mold, bacteria, decomposing items and what makes things biodegradable.

There are science experiments that the kids can do on every few pages too. We will have to try some. One was to get a sock with no match. Wear it all day. Step in some water or mud in it then put it in a plastic bag and seal it and put it in the dark and see what starts to grow on it!

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