Friday, October 29, 2010

:: this moment ::

:: this moment :: - For Fridays. A photo from the week. Not too many words. A simple moment, extraordinary, special. Something I want to remember, cherish, to pause over. If you have a "moment" leave a link in the comments I would love to come and share.

inspired by soulemama.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pumpkin "patch"

The farm near us had already picked all their pumpkins so there really was no "patch", just boxes full of pumpkins to choose from. A blessing really when you consider the mud pit we would have been dealing with otherwise.

I'm all about tradition in case you hadn't noticed. Fall is full of traditions and I love the change of the season that calls for soup and candles and getting the quilts back out!

The pumpkin patch is one of those traditions. But, oh my! The week is getting away from me.

So I put in my lesson plans to go to the pumpkin patch on Monday. That would give us the other days to do Cub Scouts, basketball, and Girl Scouts before we carve them up on Friday, before we leave to spend the weekend at Grammie N's for the trick-o-treating.

Did anyone see the weather report yesterday? Or look out the window? Raining. Pouring. Down. Raining.

But what's a little rain? right?

So glad the laundry was caught up...we were soaked through! But I think everyone enjoyed themselves.

Friday, October 22, 2010

:: this moment ::

:: this moment :: - For Fridays. A photo from the week. Not too many words. A simple moment, extraordinary, special. Something I want to remember, cherish, to pause over. If you have a "moment" leave a link in the comments for others to find and see.

inspired by soulemama

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Did you know we do preschool too!

It seems like so much of my school day and my blogging is about the big kids. The history and science especially is real fun for the older guys. I read over at raisingarrows that she does her work with her littles first since it's so easy to get caught up with the big kids. I find it is hard to balance the two different sets. I'm either trying to finish up with the big kids so I can get to the little guys' work or the other way around. Plus keeping the big kids out of the preschool work is a tad difficult, it's all so fun and bright and so much easier than their work!

But we do have a couple preschoolers here too! I've been using the teacher's planner Office Max gave me on Star Teacher Appreciation Day (who knew, we were just doing our school prep shopping and got all sorts of great service) and each of the little guys have their own column that I plan what I want to get to with them each week. Having it written out is good for me and as I'm making sure we got to everything each day I can gage where I'm at with them.

I tried to remember to take some pictures of what #3 and #4 and I were doing these past couple of weeks.

Just as a place to write it down... goals for #3 (4 and 1/2 years old) this year are letter recognition and to learn to read. He's already wanting to copy words and is amazing me with his ability to write some letters, we've only ever worked on writing his name. Counting and early math are really just part of our day. He works on the memory work we do at Circle Time. And I'd really love to get him to sit still for a little while and pay attention. goals for #4 (3 years old) this year to keep him out of as much trouble as I can. I'd really like there to be minimal trips to the ER and my laundry soap to stay in the tub like it belongs would be great (instead of in piles inside other cupboards like he likes to transfer it). We do work on colors with him. He loves to cut up paper and draw with markers/crayons/colored pencils/paint. He loves do "school" with the big kids, particularly grammar, I have to work hard at keeping my patience with the big kids with their grammar lessons while #4 is asking all day long to "do grammar". (#3 and #4 are using "The Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading" by Jessie Wise and Sarah Buffington as their "grammar" which is really letter recognition and a phonics reading program)

:: painting - trust me, I question my sanity too - with red, yellow and blue paint. I'm working through colors, introducing a few at at time, using homeschoolcreations printables - LOVE these!

:: double crown of Egypt. #3 and #4 join us for history as much as they'd like to. History used to be during nap time but #4 has completely wiggled himself out of naps so they're around. Here #3 joined #1 and #2 on a project to make the white crown and red crown of Eygpt which were united when King Narmer defeated the Red Crown King and took the crown away putting it over his own white crown.

:: Alphabet books. I'm trying to work through the alphabet with these little books from first-school. They color the worksheet at the beginning of the week, cutting out the "stickers" to place in the book at the end of the week.

:: a brown boat with a blue sail - another homeschoolcreations printable (just click abc's in top menu bar and pick the letter you're working on). The plan is to save each of these CUTE alphabet pages and bind into a book!

:: the big kids joined us for this project - scissors, glue sticks and a cute page...they couldn't resist. I told them they were welcome as long as they write a story to go with their picture. We also do these cute pages on Fridays which are our easy days...just the right kind of day for glue sticks!

I'm linking up at Homeschool Creations Preschooler Corner. I've gotten lots of inspiration from her site and wanted to join up!
preschool corner

Monday, October 18, 2010

History is Alive :: Cuniform Tablets

When I asked #4 to pose to take his picture he wanted to take one of me too...
feeling like this was a messier, bigger, more involved project than I was expecting
made me want to hide my face too!

Our craft project for history last week was making cuneiform tablets. I thought this would be a relatively easy project. I had modeling clay from another project left over in my "craft supplies" tub. I figured I could hand out a blob of clay, the kids could all mash it and get it to a tablet form then I could help the little boys with the actual cuneiform writing.


The clay was much more difficult to work with than I imagined! #1 was the only one who had patience and strength enough to roll hers out to a tablet. The table, #4 and any tool we used was covered in clay. Miraculously the bathroom sink made it through just fine!

But we got really great looking names written in cuneiform on our tablets.

Now that they're dry we've strung ribbon through the holes and hung them in every one's room. Hey history!

Friday, October 15, 2010

:: this moment ::

:: this moment :: - For Fridays. A photo from the week. Not too many words. A simple moment, extraordinary, special. Something I want to remember, cherish, to pause over. If you have a "moment" leave a link in the comments for others to find and see.

inspired by soulemama
she really wanted to try. it was just too sweet to resist.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I forgot to tell you...

I mentioned we had birthdays here a couple of weeks ago. Today as I was downloading photos I found some from those birthdays and our celebrating.

I have seen birthday crowns on the web for many years. This year I figured would be perfect since I was trying to make our school days special for the birthday boy.

#2 wanted a Mario cake and more specifically wanted a Bowser-shaped cake. I told him Bowser was more than I was willing to tackle but I'd try for a Mario theme. He was thrilled! #4 wanted a Spiderman cake. Additionally, he is WAY into motorcycles so when I found Spidey on a motorcycle the whole thing came together perfectly!

This is one of my favorite photo from that day...#1 helping her little brother get the ball down the lane.

We invited a few family and #2's friends (with their families) to go bowling Sunday afternoon. We all had so much fun! Mr. K beat me (darn it) and the kids thought it was great when any of their scores were bigger than the grown-ups...happened more than the grown-ups would like to admit!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Enter to win...

Not from me, silly.

But Jessica at is giving away this really fun calendar. You can click over and enter to win yourself!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Let's Memorize!!!!!

When I was reading up on classical education I came across quite a bit about how memorizing comes into the educational day. I already loved the idea of memory work so this was an easy thing to plan into our day.

Our school day starts with our Bible Time. A part of our day I'm loving. There's still some work to do with it but it is great! A whole post or two will be devoted to this a some point, I think.

After Bible Time we have Circle Time. This is the part of the day where I put things I want us all to work on together. Since we have little guys/preschool here too we do a little calendar and talk about the days, weather, and how to write the date. Since we've got a 1st grader we do place value by counting the days in school on a place value chart.

Then we work on our memory work. We started the year with Mr. Wiedz's and my "family verse". 2 Corinthians 4:18 "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary but what is unseen is eternal."

After that we memorized a fall poem by Robert Louis Stevenson.

"Autumn Fires"

Sing a song of seasons
Something bright in all
Flowers in the summer
Fires in the fall

And now we're onto the books of the Bible. A couple of Sundays ago I wrote the list out on our board that we see each day. Daunting. And I just went with the Old Testament first. But I did remember our Wee Sing Bible Songs CD having an Old Testament song and figured we'd use that. I couldn't find it! So I went to YouTube. YouTube is not a source I've ever used but I thought I'd try.

The first day we looked at the list written on the board. I said the list then they tried following along with me. Then I looked up the video I'd found. Each day since we've sang this little song and let me tell you....we're getting it. We're memorizing the books of the Bible!

I thought I'd share the video we're using. The kids are loving it!

The kids also have memory work as part of their grammar lessons through the weeks. I'm finding a lot of benefits of our memory work. #2 had a lot of things to memorize at the beginning of Cub Scouts and I really think the training of his brain helped.

Saturday, October 2, 2010


#4's birth story is already documented on this here blog...I read through it, seeing what I'd written. I am a little entertained by the last paragraph. How at one #4 was, "the easiest baby I've ever had. He does his own little thing and only comes around if he's hungry or tired. He even lets the other kids "play" with him." I really did feel that way at the time. How easy he was. He is the opposite of easy now.

Into EVERYTHING! Spirited. Strong-willed.

Grandma D was here last week, she asked what #4's personality is like...I've been trying to figure that out since she asked. Definitely the list above is a start. But he is also so funny. And more mature than his age suggests...I don't feel like a normally do about this birthday, it feels like he's been 3 for many months. His heart is big. He loves his brothers and sister, though he shows it mostly through torture right now.

Some pictures to give you a good idea of the treasure we get to be with everyday!

:: helpful. if you look at dumping out a whole basket of cars
so he can clean the basket helpful.
:: has had more trips to the ER than anyone else. this trip for stitches
to his lip which he split on our foot board.
:: oh man, isn't he cute!
:: willing to learn from his brother. the lesson? folding towels.
:: loves any chance to use tools.
:: oh man, does he LOVE his little brother!
:: independent. many of our outfits are backwards.
:: a good snuggler.
:: loves his grandpa d!
:: oh man, i just smile when i see this one!
:: hates getting his hair cut. so much so that hairdresser, aunt a,
was thrilled when mr. wiedz started taking this job.
:: wants to play games just like his big brothers.
:: likes to check out bugs.
:: and get totally wet going on a shark ride.
:: thought he wouldn't like swimming lessons until he was in the water, each day.
:: loves crabbing and salmon fishing. really just loves being on the boat.
:: always running to catch up with his brothers.
:: spent many days wearing these vampire teeth from the dentist.
between the ears and the teeth, i'm dying!
:: too little to keep up with everyone on a bike ride.
taking his own trike ride time later.
:: loves the support and love from mr. wiedz.
:: surprises me sometimes with how loving and thoughtful and careful he can be.
:: loves peaches, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries...anything you can pick.
I love you #4!

Happy Birthday!