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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Life in the Fast Lane...

Well, it's been a busy week, so far! Aside from the kids being under the weather this week, we've been running non-stop it seems. Saturday was my neices' birthday party. Hannah turns 10 this week and Sophia turns 4. Here's a few pics from the trip down and the get together.
I declare! I'm not sure where these kids got their "cool" genes??????Chloe's too cool for big goofy sunglasses.Jack is all business...Amazing what shots you can get from the passenger window of the vehicle...Putting their big mouths to good use.This is my sis and she's what you'd call an expert when it comes to lighting birthday candles. She's lit candles for, like ,24 birthdays now. Look at the grit and determination! The fact that she has five kids and obviously still has some sense about her is sheer miracle. The technique...well, it's impeccable to say the least...even if she did run out of fuel at the last candle!Isn't this the CUTEST baby! That hair!Well, we decided on the spur of the moment to completely renovate our small guest bathroom.

This is before Jody got a hold of it. As you can see it is tiny and the walls are painted this pale lemon yellow and , well, I'm not a pastel person. I like bold, warm colors in my abode. Yeah, that's my toilet... gutsy huh? Nothing matches in this bathroom. The natural wood medicine cabinet that is magically hanging on the wall. Putty colored tub, different color toilet, white sink, fakey looking wood vanity...dated...bad.

To say this bathroom cramps my style would be an understatement...Boy what a mess!
We mudded a bit last night, hopefully will get to paint this weekend.
Monday we went to hang out with our small group of homeschoolers. Mrs. Brandi gave a good lesson to open up with. We ate some hot dogs and had a great time chatting. Moms got some much needed socialization in the mix as well. Then we had craft time. The kids did torn paper collages and they did a great job. This is a great bunch of kids, honestly and I really enjoy being around them and their moms! We have a lot of fun.

Tuesday we went to the Canon County Arts Center to see the Velveteen Rabbit with my mom and my sister and her girls. It was very good and I really enjoyed it. All the actors did a great job! Jack got a little freaked out everytime they turned down the house lights, but all the kids were in awe of the Toy Fairy, especially Lillie (probably because she was dressed like a princess and decked out in pink)
Like I said, the kids have been under the weather. Chloe ran a high temp all day yesterday and slept most of the time. She was very restless last night, as was Jack , so I didn't get more than 2 hours of sleep collectively. But, thankfully I am blessed with a coffee's a sleep deprived momma's best friend, you know! Chloe's fever broke about 5 AM and she rested soundly until about 8:30 this morning. Jack's temp is up a bit and he's just laid around on the couch all day. I don't want to sound like a grumbler, but I will be glad to see warmer , more consistent weather come.
Have a blessed day!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My Double Life as a Secret Agent...

We're a little piece into our study on Lewis and Clark. Lots of activities planned, and I emphasize the word planned, as things in my house, and more accurately our little academy never go as planned all the time. Ya'll homeschooling moms out there probably don't have that problem ...right? That is the beauty of the homeschool way, however. We can roll with the punches and make up the difference another day. Lillie completed a Before and after map of the Louisiana Purchase.She used different colors to show foreign and domestic land holdings prior to the purchase and then after. She also completed a state notebooking page for Missouri because that was the jumping off point for the expedition. Get the blank page from Jimmie.

We've started a popsicle stick fort. I let the kids put up the perimeter fence yesterday, but I had to build the buildings because they couldn't get the sticks to stay in place and soon tired of it. I will let them put all the extras in and we may even make some clothespin people to go in it. Looking at the gaps in that fence, I'm not so sure I'd feel entirely safe in that fort......... But this is why I can't trust my children with any project...They turned our fort into a graveyard!

The Lord certainly is taking homeschooling as a prime opportunity to teach me patience.....

Today, Lillie and I used the Jefferson cipher to decode a message and put her name into code. Thomas Jefferson was a secret code nut, apparently and wrote this code specifically to communicate with Meriwether Lewis during the expedition.

This is the super secret dining room table in the super secret hideout and that's Agent Chloe walkin' all over my work!

Lillie's first name would be written : Mkopnk

My name reads: Egopf

If you'd like to take a crack at it (a little secret agent humor) here's the link for it.

Education World Jefferson's Cipher Lesson Plan

It will tell you how to read the cipher and really is alot of fun. Here's a challenge for you if you want to try it. No prize other than the satisfaction of knowing that you too can be a secret agent. Then you, like I, can have an apron that allows you to be invisible when you're trying to talk on the phone before naptime or a Swiffer mop that doubles as a rocket launcher!

Decipher this using the cipher and let me know if you know what it says...

Utxwy ou aqo wxdr

Have a Great Day!!!!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Monday, February 9, 2009

Just a Bunch of Bird Brains...

I've really enjoyed our unit on birds. It's been pretty relaxed as I plan only the night before for the next day. It's literature centered, as most of our lessons are since we have no preset curriculum. Our curriculum is dictated by our interests and the books availiable to us. I really like it that way as it grants me total freedom to follow the leading of the kids.
Today, we read about the various styles of bird beaks. At snack time I gave the kids chopsticks and told them to eat their cheesecrackers using them. It was great fun to watch their gears turn. The lesson in all this was to point out how what a certain kind of bird can eat depends almost entirely on the sort of beak that's attached to it's face. It would have been easier to use their hands or a spoon to scoop up the crackers. Lillie surprised me by actually eating a few (adaptation, I suppose.)
Problem solving at work...Where there's a will, there's a way!The Brains of the Family...The kids also each made an accordion book about the different beaks they learned and their functions...

We start our unit on Lewis and Clark tommorrow and I expect it will be alot of fun.