30. Why Homeschooling was Awesome (Updated)

HOMEschool photo

I know what you might be thinking… “You were home schooled? How did you have a social life?”

Throughout High School, I frequently heard this question, almost to the point where I would roll my eyes in frustration. People just don’t—didn’t—and will never get it!

Homeschoolers are unfortunate victims of stereotypical prejudice. They are assumed to be nerdy, bad at sports, and robbed of life’s glorious opportunities. Although homeschooling has proven faulty for some, it has benefited thousands, including me.

This was my first post of The Lingering Lamb. In attempts to save if, I accidentally deleted it from my blog… BUT NO WORRIES, I have retrieved it from my computer, and you can now enjoy it once again!

Here are three reasons why I enjoyed HOMESCHOOLING:

1) I could wake up whenever I wanted. As my late grandfather would say, “Sleep is one of the great pleasures of life.” Now that I’m in college, I’m starting to believe that statement more and more. In High School, I probably received 8 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Now, maybe 6 or 7.

2) Our local Home School basketball team was amazing!

Not many homeschoolers can say they experienced a top-level athletic experience, but I can. Our team (the Patriots) played many of the best teams in the state, (we even beat Hargrave Military Academy my junior year) and even had a victory over the best public school team in our city. The coaching was top-notch, and the competition was real.

3) I got to see my family more. Yes, my siblings were—and still are—my closest companions. Yes, it was annoying sometimes, but the perseverance proved helpful. I now get along with almost anybody.

KEY LESSON: If you can tolerate your siblings, you can tolerate anybody (except when your brother beats you in FIFA or Call of Duty, that’s unbearable).

So what do you guys think? What are some pros and cons of homeschooling?

Comments are encouraged 🙂

 

 

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22. Donald Trump, Crippled America, and a Signature

Fantasy is my favorite genre of literature. And when I can’t read fantasy, I fall back on Young Adult novels. This past week, however, since things are heating up politically, I decided to purchase Donald Trump’s new book Crippled America.

The book is actually very interesting and well written. Trump outlines his plans for America and spends intricate detail on issues like illegal immigration, the Department of Education, and the idiocy of “political correctness.”

When I realized that the multi-billionaire presidential candidate was going to speak at my University, I quickly decided to begin reading the book.

Yesterday Trump spoke at my school, and throughout his speech, he remained consistent with the literary message in his book. That is something to give him credit for: Trump may say outrageous things off the top of his head, but at least he’s honest and consistent with his purpose.

Before leaving the auditorium, Donald Trump greeted people, took selfies, and gave signatures. I was lucky enough to receive Trump’s signature, which he scribbled on my copy of Crippled America.

Trump signature

While some “Trump Haters” may consider this signature garbage, I personally think it’s pretty cool. No matter which presidential candidate you associate with, you cannot deny the awesomeness of a famous person’s signature. A signature gives a book a dual purpose; when signed, it is no longer only a reading material, but a collectible artifact.

Crippled America may reside outside my preferred genre of literature, but books like this (and autobiographies) can actually be very interesting. I definitely recommend Trump’s new book; it’s fast-paced, motivating, and Trump fills its pages with the usual “Trump Enthusiasm.”

20. Three Tips to Enhance Your Reading

Do you ever find yourself unable to read? Maybe it’s because you’re in an uncomfortable position. Or maybe you’re stressed. Whatever it is, something is stopping you from reading… And the stopping needs to stop.

More than once, I’ve found myself in this unfortunate scenario. It’s actually quite common with many readers. I’m sure there’s a proper term for this condition, but for now, let’s just call it readers block.

Regardless of the author, genre, or length of the book, people with reader’s block can’t seem to find inspiration to keep turning pages.

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These three tips have helped me tremendously with my reading, and because of them, I have been able to comprehend faster and more efficiently.

Three tips for successful reading:

ONE: Read Alone

When I’m reading, I need to be distraction free. Nothing upsets my reading more than another person’s voice. The mixture of their words and the words on the page splits my concentration, and I’m forced to put my book down until the person is gone.

TWO: Softly Pronounce What You Read

Reading out loud combines both my visual and hearing senses. The more senses I use, the clearer I think. This doesn’t mean I shout… I just gently mumble the passage to myself.

THREE: Always Have a Pen in Your Hand

Occasionally, books will have important messages buried beneath its pages, and it’s important to remember these messages after the book is finished. More than once, I’ve forgotten to highlight key sentences in a book, and in doing so, get confused with the plot and characters later in the story.

The way I see it, taking notes is similar to taking a photo. Photography is used to capture a moment. Likewise, taking notes and highlighting is used to capture key passages within the text.

THE END

Ladies and gentlemen, I hope this was of some help to you. I hate reader’s block, and I want to get 100% out of anything I read.

So pick up that book you’ve been dying to finish. Use these tips, and see how much smoother your reading is. 🙂

 

 

 

 

19. This Blog Post is Number 19. See On The Left? NINETEEN!

A lot has happened the last three months; yet nothing has happened. Although active in books, my computer, and hours of class, my brain doesn’t feel any smarter than it did when I started school.

I have recently finished my first college semester; and I can honestly say that it was the most boring three months of my life. I didn’t make many friends, and I definitely didn’t take full advantage of the resources I had (completely my fault).

I started this blog because my youth pastor noticed I wasn’t getting enough “Logan Time.” which consists of the things I love to do (reading, video games, ets…) He knew that homework was draining every minute of my time, drawing me closer and closer to MADNESS (slightly overstated). He told me that unless I found some free time, I would explode.

But how can you only read for “a few minutes” per day? In my opinion, a book or video game can only be enjoyed when at least two hours are spent. I knew I didn’t have two hours to spare; it would have been impossible to do that PLUS get good grades.

My solution: spend an hour per week writing about what I wished I could do. Yes, it might not be as fulfilling, but it would suffice.

Fortunately, I survived my first semester with a good GPA and was able to write in this blog (usually) on a normal basis. I’m thrilled that the Lingering Lamb has almost 800 views, and it means a lot that you guys continue to read and take interest.

Now that homework is out of the way (for the next three weeks), I’m free to read and play whatever and whenever I want. …BUT… Despite having all this free time, I’ve decided to continue blogging.

Here are a few things I’m doing:

  • I’m reading 100 Cupboards.

Cupboards

It’s a pretty good book so far. It isn’t Harry Potter or Narnia, but it’s worth it…. I’ll write more on 100 Cupboards soon…

  • I’ve also been playing the Nathan Drake collection for PS4.

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I’m almost done with Among Thieves, the second game in the series, and it’s fabulous…

THE END

After I finish the Nathan Drake collection, I want to start either Tomb Raider Definitive Edition or Shadow of Mordor. Which one would you guys recommend?

 

 

16. Master Greenleaf and Two Eager Wizards

I was in the Library the other night, in the restricted section, and I came across something rather odd about a piece of rare magic… But before you get any thoughts… NO! I did not discover how to make a horcrux. My friend and I only found a stack of Magic: The Gathering novels.

I knew that the books were based on a trading card game, but I hadn’t really given the game much thought. After all, trading card games are for nerds… right?

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After seeing the stack of books, my friend, whom I will call Edmond Dantes, suggested that we purchase two Magic starter decks, and teach each other how to play.

Slightly skeptical, I agreed…

NOW I’M LITERALLY OBSESSED!

Magic: The Gathering is basically like chess, but with more strategy. Each card has a different ability, and the player can use the ability to weaken his or her opponent.

A great part about Magic: The Gathering is its focus on fantasy. The art on the cards is beautiful, and the names of the various creatures are very creative (heart-stabber mosquito, it that betrays, eldrazi drone, etc…).

Thankfully, Edmond and I had a friend who mentored us in the ways of Magic. I will refer to him as Master Greenleaf.

Before Master Greenleaf voyaged back home to South America, he graciously taught Edmond and I how to play the game. As beginner wizards, we were unfamiliar with the game’s magical terms… “Mana? Huh? How do you un-tap? And what the heck is a freakin’ UP-KEEP?!” Patient, yet persistent, Master Greenleaf continued to teach us the fantastical ways of the game.

Now, almost three weeks later, I’m beginning to understand why it’s the most popular trading card game in the world.

 

Hobbies normally come and go… The boring hobbies slip away as our brains adapt to newer and cooler things. Will Magic eventually slip past my interests and become legacy? (pun intended)

I doubt it…

 

9. Stories Need to End…

Lingering Lamb Update:
Recently, I’ve been blogging whenever I’ve had time to write. From now on, though, I will be writing articles in advance and schedule them for Tuesday and Saturday.

During vacation six years ago, I picked up a book that sparked my imagination almost as much as the Harry Potter series did. The book had compelling characters, an amazing plot, and a universe where Greek gods assisted their demigod children in legendary quests.

The book: Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.

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The Percy Jackson series consisted of five volumes, all of which made it on the New York Times best-seller list. The series did so well that Rick Riordan expanded Percy’s story into five additional books known as the Heroes of Olympus series.

All ten books were worth reading. While the first series introduced a bright, intriguing world with a great arc, the second series focused on its cast, introducing a broad range of relatable characters.

I have to say, Riordan did a great job transitioning from Percy Jackson to the Heroes of Olympus. While the Percy series weaved Greek mythology into the story, the Heroes series introduced Roman mythology in contrast with the Greek (long story sort… without spoilers, the Greek gods and the Roman gods are the same…) The books were beautiful, and I learned more about Greek and Roman mythology through them than any other books.

Something concerns me, though. The Heroes of Olympus series ended only a year ago, and a new book, Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer has come out.

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Riordan said in an interview that the protagonist, Magnus Chase, is none other than the cousin of Annabeth Chase, who is one of the main characters in both the Percy AND Heroes series.

In my opinion, story’s need to end. I don’t like it when an evil villain is stopped, then another villain appears out of thin air. For example, what if Harry Potter realized, after defeating Lord Voldemort, that Nevil Longbottom was Voldemort’s evil nephew, and that he was an even bigger threat than You Know Who?

I fear that this is about to happen with the Sword of Summer. Riordan was able to pull it off with the Heroes series, but I don’t think he can with this one.

My point is… If Riordan, in any way, ties Magnus Chase and the gods of Asgard with his previous books, it will denote the significance of the book that sparked my imagination: Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.

The Sword of Summer is on my Christmas list, so I will definitely be reading it.

What do you guys think? I know many of you are Percy fans. What are your expectations for Riordan’s new book, Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: the Sword of Summer?

7. Halloween Special

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Excluding Christmas and Thanksgiving, Halloween is my favorite holiday. As a five year old, Halloween was an opportunity to eat candy and dress up. In my teen years, it was all about the parties, games, and the impression I could make on others. Now that I’m almost twenty, I’m not sure how to celebrate it… But oh well… I still enjoy the holiday just as much as anyone…

With that, here are my Three Favorite Things about Halloween:

ONE: The Costumes

Growing up, I wasn’t allowed to dress up as anything dark (ghost, skeleton, etc…). Instead, my costume normally consisted of a cowboy hat, a bandanna, and a small cap-gun that hung loosely around my waste (yeah… I was cool).

More than anything, though, costumes gave me an opportunity to step into the shoes of another character, and to experience the life of a hero (and get cavities it the process)… Which brings me to #2.

TWO: The Candy

Halloween was the only day when my parents didn’t care how much I ate. As I think back, I’m surprised I never got sick after Halloween. I would eat at least one full bag of candy corn, and still be hungry for more.

THREE: Trigger Treating

The term trick or treat is recognized by many kids as a sacred spell. With it, they can bewitch their neighbors, and bend them to their candy-craving will.

Throughout history, children have pronounced this ancient spell differently. For me, it was pronounced trigger treat For little girls, it was pronounced twick oh tweet.

Only recently have I discovered the true pronunciation of the ancient spell: TRICK OR TREAT. When I came to this realization, I was gravely disappointed, because I realized that my magical ability was only the generosity of my neighbors.

THE END

So with that, I leave you to enjoy your Halloween. Whether you trigger treat or attend parties, remember that some kids actually do believe in magic, so play the part.

They will never be this young again… 😉