Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Crazy Thursday : Early Morning, Science Center & Spaying Males

We've had the kitties for a month or two now, we wanted to be responsible pet owners by having our females outdoor cats spayed and getting their "shots"! Thankfully our area has a low-cost spay clinic, so in late February we made our appointment for last Thursday.

It was going to be a busy day for us. We had to drop the kitties off early which meant leaving early for us:/

We didn't leave as early as we were hoping to. I had set my alarm to go off at 5:40am, but I'm not very used to setting the alarm and I didn't complete the process by turning it on:/ We were hoping to leave the house by 6:45am but Brian woke me up at 6:30!!! Yikes!!

Thankfully we left at 7-ish (which was a miracle... having the kids sleep in their clothes for the next day helped A LOT... it was their idea and I'm glad we "ok"ed it!!) packed with kitties, breakfast and all the stuff we'd need for our day away. (Since the kittens had to be picked up at 4:30 and it's almost an hour drive from the house, we thought it would be the best use of time and gas to stay in the area.)

And we made it plenty of time:)

After the "drop off" we got back into the van and I handed out breakfast. Then we made a "potty stop" and got gas since we were running on fumes. (I hadn't stopped earlier because I wanted to drop off the kittens in time :/) And cLeaned up Nate... yes, sticking your finger down your throat after eating does result in a mess!

Finally we made it to a science and nature center that we had been wanting to visit.





One part of the science center had one of those old bank canisters with piping that went through the ceiling to the 2nd floor and then back on the other side of the room. Those things are soo cool and the pipes it followed were clear so the kids could watch it go from side to side.

The staff provided slips of paper to write messages to send to friend on the other side:) When we go their the messages from other students said "You are ugly!" or something "stupid". I chuckled a little bit after my kids and two other home school families had finished with the activity:

My kids say plenty of "not very nice" things to one another enough. But I was glad to see the messages that they had sent each other this day:)

We ate a quick lunch and attempted to watch the Planetarium show... of course Nate started screaming as soon as they shut the door and dimmed the lights. I tried to quiet him down during a video of a space shuttle launch, but he was NOT having it :/

On the way home we picked up some summer cloths for Anna at Once Upon a Child and drove through a Sonic before 4:) And then headed back to pick-up the kittens!!

After the craziness of the day, I still think what we found out at the clinic was the craziest and was the perfect fit for our day! LOL!!

Our kitties .... Daisy and Collar... the females we brought to be spayed...

were males!!!

LOL, yes males! Yes, I didn't check the sex of the kittens I just took it for granted that the two "reliable" sources were right... LOL!!

The post-op directions said to keep the kittens (who would probably be drowsy) in a quiet and safe place. So we made a blanket bed in our washroom (which leads directly outside) for the kittens and then let them out of the carriers. The kittens RAN for the door.... LOL... they were ready to be back outside! To run and play and try to catch birds :)

SOOC Saturday

Thursday, March 29, 2012

When We Finish School Early...

we venture outside:)

On Monday, after being in the house most of Saturday and Sunday (due to rain!), we needed the outdoor retreat! So we went looking for spring...


and found puddles;)




I love spring blossoms;)






The kids found a pecan to play "soccer'' with in the puddle;)


Lydia was obviously the child that enjoyed the water the MOST!

It's still only Spring;) Nate was freezing when he came out of the water... he was a walking goose bump! The poor little thing curled up in the wagon to try to stay warm :(

Since we were walking distance from home and in a semi-secluded spot, I did some quick thinking! I took off my tank top under my t-shirt and put it on Nate! He warmed up pretty quickly:)


When the older kids saw how Nate was immediately warmer decided that I need to wear 4 tank tops next time;) LOL!!

We did much more splash than hunting... but we did it all together (except for Momma not getting into the puddle... someone has to clean everyone up) ! Definitely a memory making event and it was very nice get out to enjoy the beautiful morning.

I love the flexibility of home schooling!

round button chicken

Pretty Kitties

I've never been a cat person.... NEVER!!

Who wants a pet that runs under the car or the bed when you approach them?

Or spend hours congested after petting them?

Not me!!

But here we are... cat owners;) And loving our pretty kitties!!

Collar's long hair and white markings are so beautiful to me:)

And when she washes those bright white paws... the camera is ready to catch the sweetness!

And yes, she is as soft as she looks;)


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

1st Quarters Favorite Pics

In January, we celebrated Lydia's 5th Birthday:)I loved this picture of my beautiful, thoughtful and sweet little girl!

Too precious when a game of "simon says" turned into an explosion of giggling... I love having the kids all of working together all day... some days are more challenging, but there are plenty more "worth it" moments!

We welcomed two furry members to our family:) We've loved these two stray kittens (Daisy and Collar) and all of their antics!

The weather this March has been AMAZING:) I love that we've already enjoyed some popsicles and plenty of afternoons in the yard!

I hadn't found the opportunity to share this picture of Nate enjoying breakfast on the tractor Saturday morning! The weather was so gorgeous (and the kitties needed to be fed) that we were outside before 8:30am... some of us still in our PJs:) By 9ish though I was thankful we had gotten out so early because the storm clouds came in and it rained until Monday:) I love this picture because of the bright colors of his Pjs, his tractor and banana:)

WW: Big Boy Tools with Daddy

Chris was helping me sweep up our car port. Brian came home in the midst of Chris explaining his good idea of taking out our shop vac to blow to clean it up faster.

So Brian suggested the "Big Boy Tool"!!
Chris was in awe and kiddo heaven.... Daddy time AND a real Man TOOL!


Later that night, Chris took out the markers and made Daddy a picture that reminded them of their time together!! Precious! I love that from the picture you can see how much Chris enjoyed that event:)


Reminds me of a quote from Things We Wished We'd Known about Abundant Homeschooling:
Children need quality time- quantities and quantities of it.
The kind of time children need is the kind only parents can provide.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tiny Talk Tuesday : God's Creations

For Awana Chris has been working on verses about creation! It has affected our conversations;)

Chris and Lydia found a slug, or something. And this is what I heard...
Chris : Lydia, don't squish it!
Lydia leaning over to get a closer look : But it only has one eye.
Chris: Don't squish it, it's one of God's creation! But it only has one eye, so maybe it's an alien.

One of our church members has a pond and some ducks at his house. One duck is the ugliest thing, in my opinion! But I made my opinion public and was quickly corrected.

Chris: Oh Mom, that is rude. Everything that God made was good.

On a walk this week, Chris shared.
Chris: I love the Spring. This weather is so beautiful, God made our world so amazing! It's nice that we get to enjoy it!!

Join us as we share the sweet, loving, funny and crazy things our kids are talking about each week!!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up: Simple Activities

I nice quiet week, lots of schooling and playing outdoors in the beautiful warm spring air. Not good for Momma's allergies, though :(

Again reading each day through the New Testament stories. I need to look ahead, but we might be at the Resurrection story by Easter;) That would be awesome. And I mention this each week... but I love that we spend the time to talk about the stories too and try to apply them! THAT is the best part of our time together!

Last week we read one story about the woman accused of adultery and those trying to see if  Jesus would uphold the punishment of Moses to stone the woman. We went from how stoning was how they punished someone in the OT, how God requires purity, how Jesus can forgive sins to how we should show grace since we also are guilty without Christ.

And it seems like each story has something we learn about Christ, ourselves and our need for Him. I really want to have this fabulous and fancy curriculum for everything, including our devotion times... but it's soo sweet to keep it simple and make the conversations count... not filling in blanks or having something profound to share each week:) I'm learning;)

Language Arts
They all completed 3 Grammar lessons, but we did a few detours this week... isn't it great:)

The first "detour" was to use our Grammar time to write letters to thank the gentleman who lead our field trip the previous week. They worried a bit about what to write but once they got started it was great. They dictated their letters to me, I wrote their dictation on the wipe boards. We made corrections were needed and then they copied their letters;)

Chris' letter was  cute... you can see the note here
IMG_0416The second "detour" was when Chris and Lydia's Grammar lesson was to write their address. We took the time to make "licenses" with our new address using extra prints from Christmas to put their pictures on them.

Since we were practicing the new address, Anna also joined in;)

The kids weren't satisfied with just their picture, address and name. So we also included their height (measured), weight, birthday :)

I think we make these at least once a year!! But the kids love to make them and I think it's great they get the address practice as well as how to measure these components and the units of measuring terms (pounds, feet, inches,etc).

Oh, mine are never elaborate... very simple! But no pictures since they contain a LOT of information:)

Finally, Lydia and reading;) ALmost daily Lydia has been reading from Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading...!! But I really wanted her to have "spelling" too! My solution was to start using 1+1+1=1's You Can Read! It's sight word based early reading units. Lydia has just thrived with these units. She will be on her LAST unit this week and it's been very useful to us. I love using phonics to teach them to read, but sight words exist too and learning them makes it a LOT easier to read when you are just starting out!! And they are super cute, too!!

IMG_0436Since we had 5 days straight of school, each child completed at least 4 days (I stretch out assessment days, letting them take the test one day and the lesson and fact sheets the following day.... no rush!).

One of our  "need to work on" is math facts!! It seems like they are eager to learn them and they pick them up so quickly that it bores them to practice....

and then they forget. Or loose the ability to do it mentally. I'm hoping that once we finish our math books we can work diligently on math facts for the summer!! Having a background in high school math, I KNOW the importance of having those basic facts KNOWN!!

Anna learned her multiplying 9 facts this week;) I know I'm nerdy.... but it was soo fun teaching her the "9 Trick"!!

A fun activity this week was Chris having to measure the weight of common objects using marbles. The directions said inch tiles, but we don't have any of those so we improvised:)


IMG_0423During the beginning of the week we read about the making of the US Constitution and the organization of the government into three branches. Besides reading our history book we also started the book Shh!! We're Writing the COnstitution by Jean Fritz .

Our activity book included making a diagram with the three branches and their job and names. The kids glued and put them together:) But after quizzing them with Daddy, we realized we have to do a little more reviewing :)

We also colored in the 13 Colonies! I love including some map work (geography) into our history lessons!

This week the kids and I spent time learning more about Benjamin Franklin. We spent two afternoons reading and they spent some time drawing pictures of things Benjamin Franklin was known for.

The bottom right picture is from Ben and Me, a story we read. Benjamin Franklin keeps his mouse in his hat!


At naps and an evening or two, we read Ben and Me by Robert Lawson. It's a humorous view (and not so realistic) of Benjamin Franklin supposedly told by his wise mouse. Again, with most longer books, I didn't think the kids were enjoyed it. After a few nights reading it I told them it was our last night reading it... LOL... the kids begged to read more and more until we finished!

We've been working on our Science projects this week. One afternoon we planned the layout of our projects. The Science Fair is the Thursday before Easter.

We also read through a teeth book or two as part of Anna's project. The kids all listened and participated. The favorite book was I Know Why I Brush My Teeth by Kate Rowan. It was very informative... but a little silly in my opinion;)

Tot In the School Room

We're linking up to Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers and 
Hip Homeschool Hop Button