Tuesday, August 31, 2010

This Season

I just so happen to be in a very busy season of life.  I keep telling myself that.  Waiting for it to comfort me when I start freaking out about all the stuff I have to get done.  It does comfort me.  I know that I will not be this busy forever.  Really, just for a month or two.  (Then I will get a few weeks break before basketball season, and then no break at all before spring ball season starts, and on and on and on, but I digress.)  Anyway, I have three kids playing on three different teams but they all have just about the same schedule.  My twins have always played the same sport until this season.  One is playing football and one is playing baseball.  Literally, three days this week I have found myself needing (and wanting) to be in three different places at the same time.  It's hard.  I feel bad that I can't be at everyone's everything.  My mom (and husband - duh) has been a huge help and I realize how lucky I am to have family around, but that doesn't stop me from wanting to be everywhere with everybody. 

Here is my calendar for September as of yesterday.  Already two more practices have been added to the schedule for Thursday (the 2nd).  Also, an eye dr.'s appt. (finally) and I'm sure more will be added before this week ends.

I am a control freak.  I want to do everything my way (because um, clearly my way is the best way).  I have to learn during these busy days to let go.  But I truly hate letting go of family dinner time.  I love it.  I look forward to it, but that is nearly impossible with everyone leaving the house around 4:30 and arriving back at home somewhere around 7:30.  This week, I have cooked supper at um, 3:30 or so, put it in the refrigerator and everyone is nuking their dinner whenever they get home.  It works.  At least we are not eating a bunch of junk, but we are not all together.  I hate having to let that go. 

What's that? 

I don't? 

My sweet friend/mentor Lori jokingly told me that her son, Dawson, doesn't really think family dinner time is all that important.  He thinks it would be great to have family BREAKFAST time.  Well, guess what?!  We homeschool and dh works for himself so no one is rushing out the door in the mornings.  Why haven't I been doing this?  Usually, the kids eat something while I clean the kitchen/get ready for school/etc. and honestly, my poor husband eats whatever he fixes for himself.  Bless him.  Anyway, so during this season of life (or at least the next month or so) we might not be having family dinners but we will be having family breakfast time.

When I made pancakes on Monday morning, I doubled the recipe and wrapped the leftovers up and put them in the freezer.  Next time we are having pancakes during family breakfast it will be super easy because they are already made!

Got any great tips that your family uses during your busy seasons?  If so, I would love to hear them!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Weekly Wrap Up

Well, it's back to school for us . . . again.  We did about three or four weeks of school (does 2 days count as a week of school?) before heading out for a vacation, and it was great - the vacation - but we are now back in the swing of things!

It wasn't a very eventful week for us.  I guess because I was still busy getting resettled from vacation, I just didn't really plan a bunch of fun extras.  Anyway, we did start our Trail Guide to US Geography notebooks this week and the older boys really seemed to enjoy them.  We are taking it slow because we will be doing two years of American History and I want our geography to kinda match up with what we are studying.  They really enjoy geography so this was a "plus" to them.  We just completed week 1:

Let's see . . . Really, nothing else was new and/or special.  Hopefully next week I will have some super duper exciting activities to tell you about.  

On a different note, the weather here has finally cooled down to a nice low 90's.  Ah, rejoice.  The mornings are really quite nice and we did our morning stuff (History and Bible) outside on the porch today.  I love when the weather cooperates and we can do school outside!

We ended our week with a, um, "field trip" to the bowling alley.  I assure you that this impromptu trip had absolutely nothing to do with my desire to socialize with my sweet friend.  Really it didn't.  Okay, maybe it did a little bit.  (and I don't think my boys minded bowling with her adorable daughter!!!)

As always, don't forget to head over to Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers to see what everybody else has been up to this week!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

I'm back!!!!!

Did you miss me?  I missed all my blogger friends!!  Anyway, just a quick post about our trip and then hopefully I will be back to blogging fairly regularly because, um, hopefully, I will be on some sort of schedule and routine.

We had a ton of fun on our trip to West Palm Beach to visit my husband's grandparents.  While we were there I got to celebrate my 32nd birthday!  We ate at a super yummy Italian restaurant and then came home for not one, but two, count 'em, two cakes!  I mean seriously, why have one measly little cake when you can have two?!?!  (Did I mention that I gained 5 - count 'em - 5 pounds on this little trip?)

We spent a few days on the beach.  The boys loved practicing their snorkeling skills and finding all sorts of sea shells.  There were tons of places marked off all over the beach for sea turtle eggs so we discussed that.  What we didn't discuss, however, were rip tides.  Probably should have done that because Dalton got caught in one.  I was watching him and Drew practice their snorkeling while sweet hubby was getting wild man ready to snorkel out by the rocks with him.  I noticed that Dalton was swimming and swimming and not going anywhere.  He wasn't freaking out and so I watched.  He started to get a little frantic and so daddy ran down and pulled him out.  He was surprisingly calm.  It hadn't pulled him under the water yet and he was using his snorkel to help him keep his face in the water and still breathe.  When I was talking to him he said, "It was like I was trapped.  I couldn't go anywhere!"  So, needless to say, we talked about what you are supposed to do in case that ever happens!  Okay, so that is not funny, but the next day we were visiting the estuary on the island and came across this sign:

I had to make him stand by it for a picture.  Can't you see how amused he thought this was?!  The teacher in me just kept saying . . . I bet he learned more about rip currents with his experience yesterday than he ever could by reading this sign!

The last two days we spent out on the boat.  Man, the Atlantic Ocean is absolutely gorgeous!  The boys each went snorkeling with daddy around this reef behind The Breakers Hotel.  Wow!  They saw a sea turtle, spiny sea urchin, parrot fish, angel fish, and tons more!  I didn't count it as school, but I'm pretty sure I could.  (I figure schools count trips to an aquarium as a school day - my kids were snorkeling in THE aquarium!  But, I am not one to push the envelope so I didn't count it as a school day!)


Monday, August 16, 2010

Ten Commandments for little ones

I am supposed to be upstairs packing for our vacation that starts tomorrow, but instead I thought that I would run to the computer and write this quick little post!  Sh!!!!!! Don't tell my husband - He thinks this whole blogging thing is absolutely asinine!  Anywho . . .

We've been working on memorizing The Ten Commandments this year in Bible.  I noticed that my youngest was having a hard time (okay so were the bigger boys), so I pulled out the Sunday School curriculum that I used to teach preschoolers.  It had this really cute song that they all loved and so we have been singing it at our house every morning.  Um, don't tell the older boys that you know - they would just die if they thought people knew they were singing "little kid" songs!

It is from Hands On Bible Curriculum and you sing it to the tune of "Ten Little Indians"

I'm your only God - it's true.
Don't worship idols - ooooh!
Respect my name and don't be rude.
Keep the Sabbath holy.
Please obey your mom and dad.
Don't kill people - oh! how bad!
Please stay married - you'll be glad.
Don't steal things from others.
Never, ever tell a lie.
Don't wish for things your neighbor's buy.
Follow God's rules, and you'll be
Safe and very happy!

I hope that your little ones enjoy it as much as mine do!  I'll check back in with everyone when we get back from the beach!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Weekly Wrap Up - The one with a birthday

Oh my! Oh my! Oh my!  What a week we have had!!!!

On Monday, we wrapped up our study about mosaic art by making our own mosaic.  However, we just used little pieces of construction paper.  What is so funny about this is that my older two boys HATE and I do mean all capital letters HATE doing arts and crafts.  So, although, this was supposed to be a fun - not normal old school - activity, my older ones were acting like it was pure torture.

 Let's see . . . On Tuesday, I had a meeting for our cover school (In Alabama, you can only legally homeschool if you are under a cover school or have a private tutor) in which I had to stand in front of everyone and talk briefly (but it seemed like FOREVER) about how I plan for our week, make lesson plans, etc.  Apparently, there is some crazy rumor going around that I am super organized - okay maybe I am pretty organized, but still . . . speak in front of people!  Ugh!

Right after that, we had our meeting with our co-op!  There are like 50 something families and around 150 kids in our co-op.  If we had more space, we could definitely have more kids.  There are already 40 on the waiting list!  Wow . . . homeschooling is growing, growing, growing!!!!

After these meetings, a group of us went and had some coffee and some grown up conversation.  Ah, so fantastic!

Wednesday was little man's birthday!  A birthday is a school holiday at this school, so all we did was Bible and history.  If you know anything about Sonlight, you know why we had to do history.  You will get behind so quickly!!!  Anyway, we then headed over to the always famous Chuck E Cheese - which is a much better place in the middle of a school day when all the other kiddos are in school and you can have the place basically to yourself!  After that, off to Yogurt Mountain.  Oh my, heaven on earth!  Love, love, love that place!!!!

Thursday was school as usual.  We didn't do anything crazy fun just the same ole same ole.  However, I have started letting my older two do their reading silently. This is new for us, I have always had them read aloud.  I am super nervous about this.  I'm not really sure why?!?!?!  I ask them tons of comprehension questions afterwards, or have them narrate what they just read, but I am still a nervous wreck about them only doing reading silently.  I think I am going to have to have them read aloud to me occasionally.  I don't know . . . any thoughts?

Friday was our first day of co-op!  It was so much fun!  The boys all really enjoyed their classes and I really enjoyed getting see everybody again!  Friday night was little man's birthday party.  Future post to come about that!

What a great week it has been!  Don't forget to head over to Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers to see what everybody else has been up to!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The joys of being a mom of boys!

Boys!  Can't live with them . . . Can't live without them!  Just imagine this with me, would ya? 

I go over and open my refrigerator, I reach inside and take out my Milos (zero calorie) sweet tea.  Then I drop the gallon of tea on my foot (luckily it didn't spill everywhere)!  Why on earth did you drop a gallon of tea on your foot?  Well, here's why . . .  This is what I found tucked behind the tea -

I mean, seriously, a dead frog in one of my rubbermaid containers.  YUCK!  Apparently, the boys caught this frog and wanted to keep it fresh, so they put it in the refrigerator.  Oh, the joys of having sons!

P.S. The top of this container had two huge cracks in it.  I guess in their attempt to poke holes in the top so it could breathe, they completely cracked the top.  (They were using a butter knife so it is no wonder)

Monday, August 9, 2010

Weekly Wrap Up - The one from last week

Um, as you can tell by the title, I am a little bit late getting my weekly wrap up posted.  I have no idea where the time went, but apparently it went.  So here goes . . .

We had a good week.  Only did 4 days of school, but it was a good and productive 4 days! (And it's 4 more days that I don't have to do when the weather gets cooler!!!!) 

We are really enjoying our history so far and the History Pockets have been a big hit.  Here are some pictures of the older boys working on their Native American picture dictionary.

You might be asking yourself, "What's up with his glasses?"  Well, I will tell you.  He lost them.  We are pretty sure he left them at the pool (ahem, when they went with dad and not mom because everyone knows that I would absolutely never let my child forget something as important as his glasses - insert sarcastic tone).  So, we are just going to wear these until we visit our eye doctor and get a new prescription.  Won't be much longer!  Anyway, here is our finished project.  There were a total of 24 picture cards. 
We also did an activity about buffalo and how they were such an important resource for Native Americans.
Here it is behind our picture dictionary.  The kids had to decide what part of the buffalo was used to make all these different things made/utilized by Native Americans.

Little man has been working hard on his handwriting!  I love how focused he can be . . . I just wish I could get him to focus that hard on reading. 

The bigger boys had a fun time in math using monopoly money!  How easy is it to grasp the hundreds, tens, and ones place concept when you're using some money?!

So, it was a fun week.  Next week (this week because I am posting so incredibly late) is going to be super busy!  We've got a birthday, a birthday party, and our first day of co-op!  It's gonna be so much fun.  Also, be on the look out for a post about our unexpected science project!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

What's a mom to do?!

What's a mom to do when her kids want to keep rough housing all day long?  When it seems that they have so much energy they simply can not contain themselves?  Well, this mom . . . I made them all chill out, wash hands, and tenderize the chicken for dinner.

I needed the chicken to be thin anyway because I was making chicken cordon bleu and so this was a win/win situation for me!  The kids loved it and I didn't have to deal with the raw meat!  (Of course we washed our hands very carefully after we were finished!)


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