The Giver


Last week we finished up The Giver by Lois Lowry. If you have never read this book, you should think about it. Here is Lois Lowry’s website for more information.

A novel in which a boy inhabits a seemingly ideal world: a world without conflict, poverty, unemployment, divorce, injustice, or inequality. It is a time in which family values are paramount, teenage rebellion is unheard of, and even good manners are a way of life.


Sounds like a parents dream! But it is not as sparkly with rainbows and unicorns as it sounds.

My older two children had read the book and loved it. My youngest son loved it He would talk to me each day about what he read and what he thought about the book so far. He was a little concerned with certain parts of the book and I kept having to remind him it was a book set in a different type of society.

We noticed that apple played a large part of the book. We now know that Lois Lowry used part of her life and the memories of apples and incorporated it into the book.

We decided that we would make a Giver Apple Pie!

Here is the pie crust recipes, you need two a mealy and a flaky. Mealy will do better with the juices on the bottom and the flaky is nice for the top.

Flaky Pie Dough

  • 10 oz pastry flour
  • 7 oz butter
  • 3 oz cold water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 oz sugar

Mealy Pie Dough

  • 10 oz pastry flour
  • 6.5 oz butter
  • 2.5 oz cold water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 oz sugar

Use hands and mix flour, salt, sugar

Butter needs to be cut into cubes, toss butter into flour mix. Make butter into flakes by pinching butter between thumb and finger. Make pea size for Flaky and hazelnut size for Mealy.

Add water and mix well.

It has to rest in fridge for 30 minutes, wrapped tightly in plastic.

Roll out to fit pie plate.

Apple Pie Filling

  • 2# apples
  • 1 oz butter
  • 3 oz sugar
  • 2 oz cold water
  • 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 3.5 oz sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 0.25 oz butter

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We use green apples when baking and the are a great baking apple.



We cored, peeled, and sliced the apples. We than put them in the lemon juice to help with browning.


We grated our cinnamon and nutmeg with a micro-planer.  We like doing it this way but you don’ have to.


This is out nutmeg half way through grading. Kind of cool looking!


We brought the fruit, first sugar, and water to a boil. We dissolve the starch in cold water and stir into the fruit. Return to a boil and cook until clear and thickened. Stir while cooking.


Add second sugar, salt, and spices. Stir until dissolved. Cool.


Have your pie crust ready!


Add your filling and the last dabs of butter.


Put the top on and pinch the side seams together.


Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until golden brown.


Remove and eat or let cool!

Peace, Love, and Pie



Don Quixote


Shocking as it seems …………….. we do NOT use a curriculum for our schoolwork. I know shock and horror, right? A few of you might stop reading this now and judge us for it, that is ok we don’t mind. How we do our homeschooling works for us. What we do is follow along with the book What Your Fifth Grader Needs To Know and What your Sixth Grader Needs To Know. There are plenty of  free resources out there to help us out. This works for us, it also follows closely to what our local school district teaches.

In our Reading Unit, we are trying to read some classic works. We tried to learn about Romeo & Juliet, the basics of a tragedy. That went over well, NOT.  Next we read Tom Sawyer and he loved it. We are about and hour and a half south of Hannibal and will go up there in the spring, once we read Huckleberry Finn.

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One of the works that What Your Fifth Grader Needs to Know suggest is Don Quixote. Now, I never read this book but I read the excerpt from the book and thought he might just like this. We put in a reserve at the library for an unknown copy of the book and waited for it to come in. We were pleasantly surprised to find out that not only was it the complete works but it was a graphic novel style book. Anyone who has a son that is between 9-14 years of age and is into graphic novels knows this is a huge draw!


Now the book was not light, it was a bit thick. But he powered through it and finished the whole thing in two days. In fact when we got to the end he was a bit disappointed. He didn’t want to stories to end. I asked him how he would have finished the stories, which led to a three-day storytelling adventure.


Last Friday we watched a movie I happen to find at our local library a movie about Don Quixote. It was actually a very cute and funny movie, go watch it!


Peace, Love, and Cupcakes