Archive for the ‘homeschooling’ Category

Very Domestic Indeed

rolling pin There are some days where it seems that all I do is make sure the kids are fed, and some learning is accomplished. Where I spend my time breaking up fights and calming frustrated little ones, while balancing a fussy toddler on my hip and trying to get some laundry done. Yesterday was the complete opposite. I was able to bake three loaves of bread, make two quarts of yogurt, wash diapers and gets lots of schooling done. I felt very domestic indeed. We read about St. Alban and Hadrian’s Wall (I just love being able to tell the kids that I have been to some of these places, they get so excited). The children went outside to play, and despite being bundled up like eskimos, they came back in rosy cheeked after only twenty minutes. We had lots of snuggles and were even able get some extra reading done before supper. We are reading The Wishing Chair Collection by Enid Blyton. I loved these books as a child and now my kids do too. They are magical tales that are calmer than a lot of fairy tales, which is really good for my kiddos that have less of a tolerance for scary. Overall it was about as close to domestic bliss as we get around here. Definitely a very good day, especially when all the children were snug in their beds by seven o’clock. Check out this beauty of a rolling pin. It was another gift from Christmas, and it’s absolutely gorgeous. It was handmade in Breckenridge, Co. and I’m so glad it found it’s new home with me. Now I really need to bake a pie and try it out. What is your favourite domestic chore? Is it baking, folding laundry, or doing a big spring clean?

family, food, gifts, home, homeschooling • Thursday, January 7th, 2010 • 14 Comments »

Tell Me A Story

tell me a story Tell Me A Story is a great book/game/not quite sure what to categorize it as thing we use around here. Since we homeschool, I am always on the lookout for fun creative ways to increase their skills. These are packs of 36 very sturdy, very well illustrated cards. There are many ways to use them. Sometimes I have the kids pick out a group of cards, lay them out in the order they want and then I tell them a story based on the pictures. Other times they grab a stack of them and I have them tell me a story. They are really effective with some of the kiddos that are less confident about making up stories. It gives them pictures to base the story on while still requiring them to come up with the words. We really enjoy them and they are also a great gift. They encourage creativity, which is huge for me. We have Mystery in the Forest, and Little Robot’s Mission. They also make Fairy Tale Mix-Up and Circus Animal’s Adventure. Hope you all are having a great day, cold and dreary here today.

books, family, homeschooling • Wednesday, January 6th, 2010 • 4 Comments »

Be Still

be still necklace A new year, so full of possibilities. I must admit, after all the gearing up for Christmas, it is sometimes a bit of a relief when it is finished. I immediately think of the spring coming (though that won’t be for many months here), and new life and warmth. I look forward to celebrating a new year of birthdays starting with all of my boys in the spring. Thoughts of what to plant, where to plant it, and how much to plant. Dreaming of picnics every week in the warm summer sun, having it be warm enough to let my kids play for hours outside every day. We have serious cabin fever by this time of year. It wouldn’t be so bad if it was just cold, but the wind makes it unbearable. I’m not such a huge fan of resolutions, but a new year does make me reflective over how I would like to do things this year. Much of this past year was spent physically, mentally, and emotionally recovering from the previous two years. This year I feel a renewed vigor and enthusiasm, and I am excited for the possibilities. This necklace was a gift from Hubby. It was made by Lisa Leonard and is called Be Still. I absolutely love it, and it is a constant reminder to be still. Being still is sometimes a little difficult with four children. This year, I want to live in the moment more. Enjoy each and every hug, story, cuddle that I am blessed enough to have. I want to enjoy cooking more, so often it’s a matter of just trying to get a nutritious meal on the table while stopping a squabble, holding a fussy babe and trying to think straight and stir at the same time. I want to be outside more, and truly enjoy the beauty of the world around us. To visit family more as time goes by so quickly, and the children are growing at the speed of light. I want to lie in the grass and read stories to my children, make them picnics to have on adventures in the back yard. Then there are the more domestic things that I want to accomplish, such as being more organized, getting some sort of chore system worked out with the abilities of everyone in the family. Being really good about making a big shopping trip and then only going out when we need milk and fresh veg/fruit. I could go on forever as there are probably hundreds of things I want to do, but my overarching goal is to be still, enjoy what God has given me, and make thousands of new, fantastic memories with my family. I sincerely hope that you all have a wonderful new year and are able to accomplish all that you want. Happy New Year!

books, crochet, family, food, gardening, gifts, green, home, homeschooling, kid's art, nature, sewing, thrift store finds, travelling • Friday, January 1st, 2010 • 11 Comments »

Writing Backwards

backwards writingI love this picture from my daughter. She has really taken off with writing and I just love how when she runs out of room, she just rounds the corner and writes backwards. I’m not sure if you can tell but when she hit the end she started on the next line which says “made this for” and then turns back around and writes Grandma. I do love little one’s writing. It says so much about them, doesn’t it? I used to write backwards a lot when I was little. I hear this is pretty common with lefties, which explains me, but my daughter is a righty and does this a lot. I love it. Pretty chaotic around here still, trying to put things back into place after some demo work and lots of painting. Hope to have some pictures on Wednesday for you. Let me just say that I am loving my kitchen now, it’s no where near done and not by any means perfect, but it’s so much better than it was. Hope you all had a great weekend!

family, homeschooling, kid's art • Monday, November 9th, 2009 • 9 Comments »

A Children’s Village

children's villageThis past Friday we visited the new Children’s Village at the Botanic Gardens in town. I was absolutely amazed, and the kids had a blast. I think this is going to be our new go-to destination. They had statues, and sculptures….duck statuebird sculpture a large wooden dome with plenty of wooden chairs and a big bucket of chalk for all those budding little artists….wooden domewooden paths through the pond leading to teepees….wooden pathplenty of hands on experiments….water pumpnot to mention, a door leading to a far away land…far away landand of course a puppet theatre…puppet theatreThere were many other fun things including, sand pits, a floating bridge, plenty of picnic tables, and a grassy area for sack races. There were also plenty of beautiful plants, flowers and veggies growing around the village. We had so much fun and the kids have been asking over and over to go again, now if only it wasn’t 34 degrees and raining. Hopefully we’ll get another little patch of nice weather, when I’m sure our first stop will be this amazing children’s village.

gardening, homeschooling, nature • Monday, October 5th, 2009 • 5 Comments »

Flowers Alphabet Rummy

flowers alphabet rummyAs a homeschooling mama, I always have my eye out for different and fun ways to learn things. eeBoo Flowers alphabet rummy is a game we love. They are well designed and sturdy, the pictures are colourful and there are little faeries on each card. Since we’ve started playing this game my kids have soaked in some of the flower names without even trying. They recognize many of the flowers when they see them out and about, and I’ve learned quite a few myself. Our favourite version of the game is Pick A Posey, which is basically Go Fish. At 8, 6, and 4 all of them can manage playing it well, and we all have a great time doing it. Anything that can combine learning and fun is good in my book, and these fit the bill perfectly.

gardening, homeschooling, nature • Saturday, September 26th, 2009 • 6 Comments »

Sprinkle Pictures

sprinkle pictures 1I love that my kids love being creative. I think they would draw, cut, and paste for days on end only stopping occasionally to eat if they could. Even the baby likes to colour, though in all honesty, half of the time she tries to eat the crayons. sprinkle pictures 2This is part of my four year old daughter’s collection she calls Sprinkle Pictures. She carefully chooses the right colours for the intended recipient, and then goes to work creating a masterpiece. sprinkle pictures 3After each paper is coloured in, she meticulously cuts snippets of different papers to glue in the middle. She is so proud of her work, and very generous as she loves giving her creations to those around her. sprinkle pictures 4What a talented young girl we have, I can’t wait to see where her creativity takes her.

homeschooling, kid's art • Saturday, September 19th, 2009 • 5 Comments »

Usborne Spotter’s Guides

Usborne Spotter's Guides I’ve always loved Usborne and DK books as the way they are done works well for readers and non-readers. There are so many pictures that my kids that can’t quite read yet are happy to sit and look at them for quite a while. My oldest son, when he first started to really read, was also happy to look at them as he was not intimidated by the short little blurbs. I’ve been drooling over these Usborne Spotter’s Guides for a while now and was thrilled when my mom handed me a big stack of them when she returned from her trip to England. They were a gift from a good friend of ours. As a homeschooling mama, I love these kinds of gifts. These books are fantastic, and they are small enough to throw in a backpack for when we go to the lake or the park. They are colourful and filled with tons of information, not to mention internet links. We love them and my kids have been pouring over them since the day we got them. They are a great addition to our nature section on the bookshelf. I am thankful for such a thoughtful and generous gift.

books, homeschooling, nature • Thursday, September 10th, 2009 • 4 Comments »