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Our Lady's Loom, Larder, and Laundry
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MaryM
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 12:38pm | IP Logged Quote MaryM

There has been considerable interest generated for developing a Home Economics Course (maybe a couple tiers for different ages). I'm excited about this because it can be Catholic Home Ec. something we wouldn't necessarily find elsewhere. So, we are moving the discussion of specific development of ideas here to this thread.

Please continue to join in and add your thoughts and recommendations.

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MaryM
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 12:45pm | IP Logged Quote MaryM

Mackfam wrote:
Mary - I'd love to help with this.

Here are the thoughts I had so far:

I'm planning on using Alice's Tea and Cake as a spine. I'd like to use her suggestion for helping the girls (and boys )to create a notebook. That notebook will set the pace and topic of study. Here are Alice's suggestions for topics in the homemaking notebook:
1. Recipes - We'd study cooking skills here
2. Home Keeping
3. Gardening
4. Hospitality - To include a short course on ettiquette
5. Gift Ideas
6. Projects
7. Personal Accounts - Money management skills, Savings goals

I'd add a section on...

8. Sewing, Knitting and Crocheting projects and skills
9. Basic First Aid Skills

I knew of the Mary Frances Cooking Book, but I had no idea there was a whole set. I love them! They fit so perfectly with this idea. I ordered the whole set. I found some, but not all at Amazon. I ordered all of them from Barnes and Noble. Pricey, but they were just recently brought back into print.

I think a boy's notebook would be a handy project to undertake as well. I really look to my dh to guide in manly areas, but he lacks creativity in organizing and planning . I was thinking if I planned the notebook and helped my son set up the notebook with dividers that would provide a springboard for my dh to work with. And I wouldn't feel bad about adding resources and information to that either - because the essential part of the work would be my son's. Here are my ideas for a young man's resource manual (in absolutely no order - just typing as I'm thinking here):

1. Knots and knot tying
2. Basics of fishing
3. Using and caring for a knife
4. Responsible weapon care and use
5. Vehicle maintenance
6. Chivalry is NOT dead - or - how to be a gentleman
7. Gardening/Farming/Ranching skills
8. Camping Skills
9. Hunting Skills
10. First Aid Skills
11. Personal Accounts - money management, college saving, savings goals

I'm sure there are others - and each boy's notebook could be individual and personal with dividers pertaining to that young man's interests, but the main dividers would remain the same. I plan on using The American Handy Boys Book as part of the spine. Other ideas for reference/spine?

For each notebook, the dividers/topic of study will provide the direction. As in all things we do, this learning will be literature and life based. I plan on coming up with a book list for each topic of study. Each family's book list could certainly account for ages and individual talents.

These are the thoughts I have so far. I'm really looking forward to hearing what you other talented ladies come up with!


Cay Gibson wrote:
Count me in.

Back in March I asked for any homemaking curricula for girls. While searching for it again I came across this one which you might like to reread:

Nurturing Beauty

And remember Donna Marie's
Elegant Simplicity?

Then we all discussed "A Lady's Education".

Oh, the treasures you can dig up when you go searching. What a handy-dandy little tool that "search" button is.   

What you ladies are talking about here is exactly what I want to do this summer with my girls. There will be no extra gas money for movies and putt-putt and summer activities in Lake Charles.

We will stay home and focus on home.


JennGM wrote:
Love the list, Jennifer! I definitely want my boys to have some kind. I was thinking the American Boys Handybook, (and Girls) also.

I would add to the list for both boys and girls etiquette. Was it here where we talked that good manners is simply charity to others? And learning all the above isn't helpful if you can't put it into charitable practice. Etiquette can cover all sorts of areas, like table setting, courtesy, table manners, cleanliness (germs and such ), chivalry (for boys) and ladylike behavior. And perhaps include Santorum's Book "Everyday Graces"?


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Posted: May 08 2008 at 1:07pm | IP Logged Quote MarilynW

I was wondering about the following books for my husband to read with the boys
- Raising a Modern Day Knight
-Preparing Sons to Provide for a Single Income Family

Also in our suburban setting - hunting, fishing and knives are probably not going to be a go- but I would add the following to our boys' curriculum
- woodworking
- home repairs and maintenance

For the money management - has anyone looked at Dave Ramsey's Kid University?

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Cay Gibson
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 1:14pm | IP Logged Quote Cay Gibson

I'm here because my oldest daughter is going to college this fall to major in Family and Consumer Science (ie: the old Home Economics major).

People's eyes usually glaze over and they say, "Oh." when she tells them her major. When people ask her how that's going to help her "make a living" she replies that she has her sights set on dietitics and nutritionist and leaves it at that.

Anyway, I'll be able to share a college curricula as well ( that should be interesting ) and have my college student's input in our studies. That'll be an enhancement for sure.

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Mary G
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 1:33pm | IP Logged Quote Mary G

May I suggest that the lists be of three kinds:
1. general, things all should know (cooking, cleaning, laundry, general sewing skills for buttons, mending)
2. girl-specific
3. boy-specific

There are some good things in the Dangerous Boys and Daring Girls books too that we might want to include ...

What ages are y'all thinking about?

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 1:42pm | IP Logged Quote MaryM

I was trying to think back to my home ec. course in Jr. High. I took it as an 8th grader, so when I was 13. It was one of my favorite classes ever - the teacher was great.

It was a one semester class. Half the class (so about 8 weeks) was sewing, the other half cooking. I remember the sewing section much better. We learned about fabric (selvage, bias, nap, etc.), measurement, sewing machine parts, stitches, and then made two projects (which I believe I still have ). It really did focus on machine sewing. This was wonderful and I went on to sew a lot of my own clothes in high school. Wish I still did, but not good at finding the time (I'm hoping to make an apron by next Wednesday for National Apron Wearing Day - but instead of sitting at the sewing machine I'm in front of the computer )

I don't remember so much from the cooking side. I know we did measurement, shopping/unit pricing, food selection/nutrition, and I only remember making jam and baking a cake and a pie. I think we made a family menu plan and shopping list and then had to price it all out as if we were going tomake it. Cool thing for us is we can actually do that iwth our kids, huh?

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KC in TX
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 1:51pm | IP Logged Quote KC in TX

I remember taking home ec in the 7th grade at age 12. I think even earlier some girls can learn homemaking skills. I like this idea very much and can't wait to see what else you all come up with.

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 2:21pm | IP Logged Quote websterm

I took the adult version of Dave Ramsey! WOW!
I will be using the kids version of Dave Ramsey! He is great at teaching money management.
I love the idea of the binders!
You ladies amaze me! You all are awesome!

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 5:42pm | IP Logged Quote missionfamily

Here are some thoughts:

General kitchen skills everyone should know:

Cooking eggs---hard boiled, scrambled, fried, poached
Steaming veggies
Meat handling and safety
Cuts of meat and best preparation--poultry, beef, pork
Names and proper use of set of knives, basic kitchen gadgets, and pots and pans
Taste of basic herbs and seasonings
One good bread recipe
Measure wet a dry ingredients
Eye a healthy portion size
Prepare at least one good soup and one slow cooker meal
Know how to grill something
Know how to make take-out look lovely! (even on a really bad night, we can scoop up take out, add cloth napkins and serve it nice dishes instead of cardboard!)
Lead grace

General housekeeping skills:
making a bed
folding laundry
ironing a shirt
cleaning a bathroom
sweep and mop a floor
use a lawn mower and weed eater
wash a car
bathe a pet
diaper a baby

Conversational skills:
make an introduction
shake a hand
change the subject graciously
pay an honest compliment
accept a compliment


Okay, gotta make dinner, more thoughts later.





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Posted: May 08 2008 at 5:51pm | IP Logged Quote Cay Gibson

Fantastic list, Colleen.

I wanted to add:

missionfamily wrote:
Conversational skills:



Make eye contact.

Also, though we've bought homegrown corn three other times to make sure the children knew how to "shuck corn", my 10 yr old asked me the other day what "cornsilk" was.

Florida sweet corn was on sale today at Kroger's (4 ears for $1.00) next to the $4.00 per cantaloupe.

So that's our quick home ec. lesson this week.

I also found an easy Monkey Bread that my dd made years ago. It's very simple and delicious and very child-friendly.

That's the home ec. lesson we're prepping today for our Little Flower's Mother-Daughter Old-Fashion Picnic tomorrow.

See how easy home ec can be? Nothing scary or overwhelming at all.

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 6:00pm | IP Logged Quote MarilynW

What a great list Colleen. I have been making my list too.

For etiquette I have in addition to yours
- telephone manners
- table manners
- how to behave in church

For housekeeping I also have
- how to tidy and organize a closet
- how to declutter on a weekly basis

I also have (something I did last week for my twins)
- how to clean and wash a car/van

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 6:12pm | IP Logged Quote stefoodie

there's a list that i printed out from a link suggested at CCM (or was it CCE) a few of years back? something about bringing up courteous, industrious kids -- it was broken down into age-appropriate items, so you can evaluate where you are, etc. i'm afraid i don't know where it is now, but in case this jogs someone's memory, that document may be very helpful....

i'm also in the middle of (yet again) decluttering the study, so it may turn up yet -- i'll edit my post if i find it.

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Posted: May 08 2008 at 9:16pm | IP Logged Quote guitarnan

Could I suggest, at least for older students:

How to set up a filing system
How to make a deposit, write a check and keep a check register
How to set a table (I know lots of adults who can't!)
How to write a business letter

I think boys AND girls should know basic home repair and vehicle maintenance skills. My poor m-i-l spends more than she needs to on car repair because she doesn't know how often oil needs to be changed, radiators need to be drained, etc. and she won't call us to find out. Mechanics routinely try to take advantage of female customers because they think ladies don't know about vehicle systems. You can save a lot of money (without ever fixing your own car!) if you know which parts of your car do what.

One of my high school friends and I came up with a list years ago for a course like this...we called it "Life 101." I think this is beyond brilliant, and I'm looking forward to reading everyone's ideas!

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Posted: May 09 2008 at 2:26am | IP Logged Quote Fe2h2o

I'm watching this with interest:-)

I'm just in the middle of working out what I jobs my four year old 'should' be doing, (and using it to kick myself back into regularity and rhythm with housekeeping ), so this is very timely! (You're obviously considering older children, but I find it helpful when planning to have the bigger picture in mind:-) )

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Posted: May 09 2008 at 8:38am | IP Logged Quote donnalynn

stefoodie wrote:
there's a list that i printed out from a link suggested at CCM (or was it CCE) a few of years back? something about bringing up courteous, industrious kids -- it was broken down into age-appropriate items, so you can evaluate where you are, etc. i'm afraid i don't know where it is now, but in case this jogs someone's memory, that document may be very helpful....


There is a pdf in the files section at the MA
yahoo group - look for the file labeled habits - A List for Habit Training.   Could this be it?

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Posted: May 09 2008 at 9:11am | IP Logged Quote missionfamily

Okay here's a few more ideas:

Car Maintenance:
pumping gas
changing a tire
checking the oil
putting air in a tire/measuring tire pressure
fixing a flat
putting water in the engine

Tool use:

screwdrivers, names and use
saws, names and use
socket wrench
drill
wrenches, names and use
pliers
axe
hammers and mallets

Sewing and Mending:

Sew a button
Mend a hole
Stitch a hem
Sew a broken belt loop
Wash/clean/polish shoes
treat stains in clothing

Still thinking. Tell me to stop whenver you like!





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Posted: May 09 2008 at 9:33am | IP Logged Quote mary

it seems like this course could be broken up into two sections: practical skills and good habits.
laying down the rails is a habits handbook and would be perfect for this!
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Posted: May 09 2008 at 9:36am | IP Logged Quote Mackfam

missionfamily wrote:

Still thinking. Tell me to stop whenver you like!


No! Don't stop Colleen! I'm taking notes and adding your suggestions to my reading lists. It helps to add fullness and specific direction to the course.



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Posted: May 09 2008 at 11:10am | IP Logged Quote PDyer

Mackfam wrote:
I plan on using The American Handy Boys Book as part of the spine. Other ideas for reference/spine?


How about
Boy Scout Merit Badge Requirements?

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Posted: May 09 2008 at 11:37am | IP Logged Quote guitarnan

The Personal Management merit badge is all about finance and budgeting.

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