Jan 31, 2011

Best Friend

It is amazing how little it takes to give you a lift. My best friend came by yesterday and picked me up to go out for an hour or so. We went to Walmart wandered around chatting and had a snack at McDonalds. It was nice to have some grownup girl time. I do have the best friend in the world to think of me like that, Don't I?

Jan 30, 2011

Giving Thanks

I mentioned before that our neighbour was kind enough to give us a LOT of school supplies as a surprise gift not that long ago. Well, Princess Belle got busy the next day and made a thank you gift using some of the supplies that she and her husband gave us.

Jan 29, 2011

Getting it off my chest

The winter is getting to me these days. I am feeling isolated and blue. I miss my friends in St. John's. I miss my family that I haven't seen in years. I miss trudging up the hill to the center to visit with other moms. I love my girls and Prince Charming, but the last few days I have been feeling blue. I can't keep my house clean for more than a few minutes. I tell myself that it is a necessary evil of the joy of having three beautiful girls, but I don't remember my mom ever letting the house get the way that I can't seem to get it out of.

I need better storage solutions. I need more space. I need to have a place to go when I want to visit and chat. It is cold and snowy and dreary and I want to go out with my girls to a park and have a picnic or to take them to the splash park, or to have a barbecue and get to know my neighbors. I can feel it creeping into our homeschool too. I know I have less patience than I should. I am not the kind of teacher I want to be. I want to skip past this year and get to the new waldorf-inspired curriculum I have planned for next year to see if that helps us as much as I think it will. I guess I just want to get out of today and skip ahead a few months to warm weather at least. Maybe I won't feel so isolated and alone at that point.

There you go, it is a pretty depressing post, but I have been feeling that way for a few days and I just wanted to get it out there and maybe shake it off a little too.

Jan 28, 2011

Friday Five - My Girls Together

I am feeling a little tired today so I thought I would share a friday five of five pics of my girls spending time together. I just enjoy them together so much!

Jan 27, 2011

Happy Birthday Princess Belle

Well can you believe that my first baby girl is now NINE years old?!? I can't. She is such a sweet, caring, energetic, great kid. I am proud of her and I love how much she loves her baby sisters. Here are a plethora of pics of her through the years.

happy girl

Birthday Girl

Jan 26, 2011

Next Year's Curriculum

I have made a decision regarding our curriculum for next year. I am definitely going with a Waldorf-inspired curriculum. I am leaning towards Oak meadows supplementing with a few other Waldorf type things. This is a creative way of learning and I think it is what Princess Belle needs. There are days when I find myself getting frustrated with her and I know she gets frustrated too and I think that a Waldorf-inspired way of learning be much better for her. This type of learning is new to me, but I am doing lots of research and I am really excited by the possibilities.

Jan 25, 2011

A stroke of genius? . . . Maybe not

Okay so I had a bit of an klutzy day today. If I could drop it, knock it over, or fall over it, I was going to. I felt better, I wasn't tired but I was klutzy. I fell down climbing over the safety gate into the kitchen with all my weight landing on one knee and twisting one wrist trying to catch myself. And as the day progressed, I started to feel sore. And here is where my stroke of not-so-much genius came in. I began to think about all of the snow on our bridge and steps. I knew that I didn't want to be snowed in again tomorrow. So I decided to go shovel us out now before I got too sore to do it later. It never even occurred to me to wait for Prince Charming to come home to do it. After I was done, my wrist was really hurting and I couldn't bend my knee. And as I sat down to drink a nice hot cup of tea, and felt the throbbing pain from my fall, it occurred to me that since I was hurting so I decided to go out and shovel. That may not have been the smartest thing I have ever done.

So to top off my day, while the family's supper was cooking I decided try to roast a few slices of potato in the oven (an experimental recipe). It was a bit of a disaster (blame the klutz in me today) and as I was trying to take out one of the slices to test whether it was done, I dropped it into the gap between the oven and oven door. I tried to close the oven door to see if it would fall all the way through, and banged the oven rack with the remaining potato slices on it and all the rest of the potato slices fell through the bars of the oven rack with one of them landing on the element and even catching on fire.

So how was YOUR day?

Jan 24, 2011

Some Days

There are days when too little sleep, getting a late start at homeschool and too much clutter in my house makes the end of the day loom ever farther away. I am too tired to accomplish much and I feel guilty for not getting more done. Oh well, hopefully (children willing) I will get more sleep tonight and I will have more energy tomorrow. (the highlight of my day was that homeschool went really really well today and I did make some headway in getting the girls' room a little tidy)

Jan 23, 2011

At this Moment (part 4)

At this moment Princess Magpie, my 2 1/2 year old, is standing in the dining room in front her baby sister doing a full song and dance rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

At this moment Princess Snifflefritz, my 1 year old, is laughing and clapping as her big sister entertains her.

At this moment Princess Belle, my soon to be nine year old, is enjoying a quiet moment to herself.

Life is good . . . at this moment.

Gotta Love Your Neighbours!

My wonderful neighbour downstairs brought me two whole boxes of stuff for our school last night. There were grade 3 text books, story books and SOOOO many art supplies! I can't wait to get my hands into it all. Prince Charming and I sat down right away and went through all the books exclaiming over this one and that. It was a WONDERFUL gift!

Jan 22, 2011

Trick to preempt two year old tantrums

I have discovered a cute trick which helps to preempt the tantrums Princess Magpie has been having. Whenever she is doing something that I want her to stop, rather than telling her not to do it, I ask her to help me fix it. So, if she has moved the chair into the living room and is standing on it to get at things she shouldn't, I ask her to help me move it back. I pretend it is so heavy and that only her little two year old help will work. She loves it and pretends to grunt and groan moving it back. It also works when I am finished vacuuming. She loves the vacuum and hates when I put it away, but if I ask her to help me put it away, she gets excited. I am loving this trick. I get celebrations and smiles instead of temper tantrums!

Homeschool thoughts

I am already thinking ahead to next year and how I want to proceed with our curriculum. Throughout my research I have decided that for the upcoming years, I want to move to a more Waldorf-style approach to education. I was reading about Oak Meadow and I am pretty impressed with it. It is not as inexpensive as what we used this year, but with some planning I should be able to put the money aside for it. And the preschool program is really inexpensive so I will definitely be able to get that for Princess Magpie is ready.

What are your thoughts? Do you know of any other Waldorf Inspired programs? Do you like them?

Edited to add: Princess Belle just does so much better with a creative approach to learning. Right now, she is going through a book that she got for Christmas filling in the blanks to create a new story. She is coming up to me and verifying that she has the correct type of word (noun, verb, adjective, plural). She is doing language arts and has no idea). She thrives in creativity, and that type of approach to learning.

Jan 21, 2011

My New Project.

Now that my classroom is done, I have to get at the rest of my house. When we moved here in November, I didn't realize just how much smaller this house is than our last one. Don't get me wrong, I love it, but it does mean that without real organization solutions, it looks cluttered and messy fast. So my goal now is to go through the house room by room and come up with the best organization and storage solutions we can.

Jan 20, 2011

CSN Stores

I know I have mentioned it before, but I am really liking CSN stores. There are just so choices there, I get lost in the options.

I saw some TV stands for flat screens which I thought were really nice. Some were so classy looking! I am definitely going to be doing some shopping at CSN Stores. I will let you know what I decide to get.

It's here!

Our new curriculum is finally here. I am really anxious to get into it and see how Princess Belle feels about it. I really hope it goes well with her. I guess we will see.

Jan 19, 2011

I love . . .

A great way I have found to review what we covered today in homeschooling is to get her to go upstairs to Daddy after we are finished and brag to him about all the stuff she learned. He and I ask her questions and she gets excited and tells him all the stuff she remembers. This is a great way to reinforce her learning for the day!

I love the sound of my two little ones (aged 2 1/2 and 1) giggling together down the hall. I love that even at this age, they enjoy each other so much. I can just tell that they are going to be good friends. When I was pregnant with my baby girl, I remember dreaming about the days when she and Princess Magpie would be playing together, enjoying each other and I just love the sound of their baby giggles.

Jan 18, 2011

Going great

We are loving our new classroom. Princess Belle went to the Boys and Girls club yesterday afternoon and told everyone about the things she had learned in her new classroom. I was glad to see her so excited.

Today she requested to learn about the human body so I put aside the things I had planned and printed out some pages I had printed from "Homeschool Bits" . She was thrilled. (I have a sneaky suspicion that she really just wants to use the poster we have on the wall of the Human body. LOL)

Jan 17, 2011

I love the gate

I love the safety gate we have up in our house. I love that when I am working in the kitchen, my girls come to visit me through the gate, smiling and chatting at me through or over the gate. It is just too sweet.

I also can't resist the smile that greets me when I go in to rescue Princess Snifflefritz from her crib.

Jan 16, 2011

Our Classroom

So I am finally done our homeschool classroom. I am so excited with how it looks. Here are some pics . . . finally!

Here is one of the shelves. I LOVE how I have everything in containers, keeping all the clutter contained and organized!

I love that there is a big table for Princess Belle and a little desk for Princess Magpie. And all of the unicorns in the window make is a little girlly for all my girls.

I really like the posters and the map that I have. I can't wait to get a globe too.

I really am just so happy with how the final product looks. Of course, we will be getting a bigger white board but the one we have will do for now.

Jan 15, 2011

TOS Review :E-Book: The Curiosity Files™- Zombie Fire Ants

I love doing Unit studies with Princess Belle. She gets such a kick out of them and it is a fun way for her to learn. We were given the opportunity to review the E-Book: The Curiosity Files™- Zombie Fire Ants.

Princess Belle loved the idea that it was about ZOMBIE ants and she really enjoyed the unit! It was a fun way to begin our year back at homeschooling.
It really is a FUN unit study that is technically for kids ages 8 to13 but really it is applicable for students of all ages.

We had fun as we began to dig into the awe-inspiring yet peculiar (and gross) limited life of zombie fire ants. From learning about scientific research and natural habitats to animal classification, I really learned as much as Princess Belle did.

We really had fun having the chance to study stinging insects and the likes of zombie-monster creatures too!

With the Zombie Fire Ants we covered questions like:

* When out of control, how can scientists restore balance to the natural world?
* What’s so special about phorid flies, and how do they fit into the ant equation?
* Okay, so how does a fire ant morph from a hard-working colony participant into a zombie-like creature?
* If regular fire ants cause havoc, why create a zombie version?
* And a whole lot more!

The Curiosity Files really are great, they are amazing visually and the conversational-style content pulled us right in.

And as Princess Belle is always a hands on type of girl, she really enjoyed being given a chance to use her acquired knowledge by observing ants up close in a handmade ant farm. The crafts, recipes, and activities were a lot of fun for her.

Since she is Autistic I found that the way that the activities were a mix of visual regions, auditory regions, touch regions, and motor skill regions helped her to really retain what she was learning.

Explore with 88 stunning and colorful pages of Zombie Fire Ants adventure!
Each title is reasonably priced at only $9.95.
Click HERE to view a sample.

Download The Curiosity Files: Zombie Fire Ants NOW and find out!
See other products from this publisher HERE.
Just to let you know: I received the product free of charge for review purposes but my opinions are my honest thoughts on the product.