Saturday, June 27, 2009

Just like Dad

A picture we though Papa would like to see. :)Kaden loves this hat. Nathan bought one so Kaden wanted one. We tried to get a hat his size but he had to have this one. He's so funny but it's really cute too. The other one is a tomato plant with our first ripened tomato.

Crafts and activities...

One of my favorite blogs Skip To My Lou has listed a bunch of literature based crafts and activities. These are so fun. Literature based unit studies is what we use for the bulk of our homeschooling so I love these ideas. Check it out!

Giveaway at Sweet as Punkin Pie

My friend Julia has a giveaway right now to Hoohobbers for a $25 gift certificate. This is the first time I have seen this site but they have so many fun things. I love the directors chair because it is also a booster seat! The lunch boxes are super cute too. So check out Sweet as Punkin Pie and enter to win! Let her know I sent you too!

Some Thanks!

Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Give thanks no matter what happens.
God wants you to thank Him because you believe in Christ Jesus. 1 Thess. 5:16-18.

Things I am thankful for today...

- My kids, who always need me.

- My husband, a great dad

- Wonderful grandparents for my kids

- The abilty to work hard.

- The Freedom to homeschool my kids.

- A growing and producing garden.

- The unconditonal love of our God.

Monday, June 22, 2009


OK so I said before I would elaborate more on this. This is a big deal in the homeschooling community right now. Sue Patrick came up with this system and sells the book and other supplies on her website. I have not gotten the book yet but I do plan to sometime. I believe there will be a lot of tips and tricks in it. For now we are kind of winging it and seeing how it works for us. We have used it a few weeks now and Meghan seems to love it. She gets excited to go through and see whats coming up. The basic idea is to use plastic shoe boxes to put their activities in. Sue uses 12 boxes but you can use less if that works for you. We are using the 12. They are numbered and the kids go through the boxes in order. They go through all 12 boxes each day, when they are done with the boxes they are done with school for the day. Some people use it only for school type work and others use it for that and fun learning activities. That is how we are using it. By using this system it keeps you more organized, which I love, and also gets you using all those cool supplies you buy and never get a chance to use.

In the original idea you use the shoe boxes but we are using a hanging file folder. For us it is because of space issues. I want to use the shoe boxes but I am not sure I have a place for them right now. The shoe boxes are nice because they can see everything and know what's coming up next. In the hanging file folders Meghan can't see everything so I let her go through and see what's in the folders. Usually things are mixed up a little so that all school work is not together. There are fun activities or games mixed in. I usually try to have maybe math first then have a game or craft, for example.

This week we are finishing our unit study on the book Apples to Oregon. It is about the settlers going out west so there are lots of fun things to learn about. Meghan is making a lapbook to go along with this book. So this goes into her workboxes along with her math which is about money right now, her phonics pages and anything else she needs practice on. For fun things I am adding any the games Memory, and Uno, writing to her penpal, crafts, and cooking with mom activities.

Some things are workbooks or worksheets I print out. Other things are everything she needs to complete a project. For example, I plan to put card making supplies into a workbox every so often... Maybe once a week. So that workbox will have precut and folded cardstock for the card base and then maybe paper scraps, punches, stamps, pens, glitter or anything else I think she would like. She loves to make greeting cards at Christmas and other times so she will love this. That is pretty much how all the boxes are though. You put everything needed for the school work, activity or craft into a box. That is why it helps us mommies out too, because we can plan ahead and have everything in one spot ready to use. I have even added in computer time, outside time and snacks to keep up with that. For those things I print on cardstock what it is for and how much time she has. So it might say "computer time 15 minutes- Starfall (". Once she is done with that one I can save the card to use again.
Like I said she is really enjoying it and I think we will keep it up. After this week we will be taking a couple weeks off to visit with Grandparents and enjoy the holiday. I will be using that time to plan out our next year too. Kaden will be starting some small things as well. He wants to be involved with everything Meghan does so that will be a new thing to try and balance too.
I think we are all excited for the new school year!~ I will try to take pictures of our system soon.

The Arch

Here are someof my favorites from The Arch.

More from St Louis

Here are some more pictures of our trip to St Louis. Here are just a few shots of the kids. One in the car on the way...

Here are a couple in the hotel room. Kaden loves to name all of Ellie's body parts, so that is what he wanted to do instead of look up for a picture. :)

On the day it rained all day we went to a Japanese Grill restaurant for dinner. Nate has been wanting to take us. It is one of the places where they cook the food right in front of you. It was a lot of fun. Meghan love it and she even had sauce on her chicken! Kaden was concerned with the fire but liked the rest. Ellie slept through most of it which is funny because it is so loud.

On Tuesday we went to The Magic House with my friend Brandi and her son Nate. The Magic House is this huge house full of all kinds of interactive things for the kids to do. They have a bubble room where the kids use different things to blow bubbles, there is a huge water table and a sand box. Here Kaden is playing with a big peg board where they can make shapes and designs and see it on the other side.

Here is Meghan and Nate pulling themselves up on the pully's.

We weighed Ellie in the baby area. haha She is 15 lbs now.

I think my favorite area was where they had all the little shops and things. There was a house, a restaurant, a grocery store, an ice cream cart... so cute. The kids could take orders and serve, play a piano in the house... it was cute!

There are a lot more of course. I could take up some room with all the pictures. :)

Monday, June 15, 2009

St Louis Monday!

We left for St Louis last Thursday and will be here until this Thursday. Today it is really raining and suppose to be rainy all day. We were going to see the Arch but since we won't have great pictures in the rain we are going to wait. :) This weekend was spent scrapping and visiting and hotel sitting. I had Ellie with me part of the time while I scrapped with my friends at the retreat. The other part of the time Nathan had her and the other two also. They stayed in the hotel, went to eat and played at my friend Brandi's house with her two boys and husband. Last night we all went to her house again and let the kids all play and they fed us dinner. It was a really nice time! I thought I would post some of the pages I made this weekend. I am sure there will be lots of pictures of us soon too. ;)

Monday, June 8, 2009

Monday's Frugal Finds

I thought I would post a few freebies I found. Start your week off right! These are found with a few more at Econobusters. I love her blog! She always has lots of great ideas for everyday and homeschooling too. check it out!

-Free homemade soap

-Free Glade scented oil tin

-Free Cookbook from Jiffy cornmeal mix

-Free reusable shopping bag

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Chicken Turtle

While Nathan and my brother Josh were out cutting the hay, Josh found a turtle and gave it to us. We were looking at him and watching him eat. Meghan wanted to know what kind of turtle he was. We assumed he was a box turtle because we know they are in this area a lot. A couple days after they were done with the hay Nate looked up turtles to see if he could figure out what kind he is. We believe he is a chicken turtle. He looks very similar to the pictures we saw for them and also acts like them. They are called a chicken turtle because they are very timid around people but the information also said they will bite easily. They stuck some grass in at him and he did bite it hard. You wouldn't want to stick your finger in there for sure. Meghan took these pictures of him before we let him go.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Our Madeline Unit Study

I said that I was going to start sharing more about what we are doing with school so here goes. :)
We did a unit study from Five in a Row on the book Madeline. We used information from Home School Share to create a lapbook also. Meghan learned where France is and why the city of Paris was built on a river. She learned about character traits, about the landmarks in Paris, and we talked about the author of the book and the illustrations. For math she learned about grouping and dividing, sizing and symmetry. We also talked about health and how to take care of your body. She learned some organs and body parts as well. She had a few foods that are served in France too. Nathan said they eat Nutella on sliced baguette so we had that. He's been to Paris twice so we take his word for it. He studied French in high school and went to Europe for his senior trip and then we went to Paris for our honeymoon. She also had croissants one day as well. Nutella is a chocolate and hazelnut spread. I had never had it myself. It's really good.

I plan to try and be better about sharing this stuff. Right now we are working on a unit study with the book Apples to Oregon. It is about a family and their trip on the Oregon trail. We are going to St Louis so thought this would be great to do right before going. It's a lot of fun. I will share more on that when we are done with it.

Here are a few pictures of Meghan's lapbook and her and Kaden enjoying the Nutella. :)

Kids grow so fast.

Nate and I were talking about how it seems like kids grow faster all the time. (I guess that means we are getting old. I don't feel old but he does. haha) Each time you have a new one they grow faster than the last. Ellie is going on three months now and she loves to sit up (on our laps) and see everything going on. She coos constantly and smiles at everyone. She knows her name well, probably because Meghan plays with her saying her name over and over. It is so fun to see her interact with everyone. She will be out of her 0-3 clothes in no time I bet and I will probably be buying size 2 diapers next time we need some.

Kaden is still my peanut but he is doing so much too. He talks a lot. He loves to play with "Ewwie" (Ellie). His newest phrase is "hurt me", which if you are around us much you know he does hurt himself plenty. He is such a boy. He just "goes for it", whatever that may be. He climbs on everything, jumps off of things, and just loves to run. He wants his shoes off anytime he is inside but thinks he can put on any ones shoes and get to go outside. He loves to be outside, I think he would stay out all the time if I let him. He recently learned to sit on the swing right and get pushed.
Then there is Meghan. She is so much help to me, when she wants to be of course. She is getting that thought kids get when they are a little older, that they don't always want to be bugged by the little kids. She plays really good with Kaden most of the time but she has those times when he just bugs her too much too. I remember feeling like that with my younger brother too as a kid. She amazes me with the things she retains. She asks a lot of questions too which lead us to subjects to cover in school. She will be going into 2nd grade this coming year. Well, we school year round so sometime within the next month or so we will have an end of first grade thing of some sort. Then we'll kick off the new 2nd grade school year shortly after. We recently started using the work box system for her school work and she loves it. I will have to go into more detail on that later. If you can't wait then just google it and you will find a ton of info.

Friday Fun Day

Yes it's been another little lapse in my posting.. OOPS I just get lost in the busy-ness sometimes. Since my last post my parents-in-law, Lynn and Claudia came to visit. We loved having them visit again so soon. Meghan gets so upset when it is over and is counting down the time until they are here again. That is only a couple weeks away too. We had a great time hanging out with them! I have a few pictures but maybe you can send me some more Claudia? (Please :)) Some are from Nathan's birthday dinner at Red Lobster and Meghan took those.

After they left Nathan started helping to get the hay in with my brother Josh. They worked on that for about a week and have a little more to bring in yet. I have a few pictures that Meghan and I took one morning when we drove the truck out to help pick some up. (I am thinking she may need her own camera soon) Well we didn't do any picking up, I drove with the kids in the truck. Ellie didn't care for it though and started getting upset so we would have only made one run anyways even if the truck hadn't overheated. haha

Here are some more pictures...

Kaden getting into some tight places.

Meghan wanted some pictures of her hair after we french braided it.

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