Monday, August 31, 2009

Where has the time gone?

I have officially homeschooled for twenty one days! I had my doubts that I would manage twenty one minutes, let alone twenty one days. There have been great days, not so great days and even worse days. I like to think that I am building memories that my girls will cherish for a lifetime.

The other day, as I was folding laundry, Annie came running into my room full of excitement. There was something on the kitchen window that I just HAD to come and see.

She was right! It was beautiful. I sat on the kitchen floor with my daughters and we watched this butterfly lick up the sugar from someone's sticky popsicle fingerprints. Yes, I noticed that my windows were dirty, but I was more focused on the wonder on my daughters' faces as we watched this butterfly. I wouldn't have this memory to tuck away if I had not made the decision to homeschool.

This morning we woke up to an unusually chilly day. I believe the thermometer read 53 degrees, which is pretty darn cold for August 31st! It was the kind of morning that made you anxious for Fall and long for pumpkins and Halloween decorations. Did my girls have to stay cooped up in the classroom? Nope! We bundled up and headed out for a little walk.

The girls raced their scooters down the street while I pushed Noah in the stroller and had a charming conversation with Lily. I can't think of a more perfect way to start the day.

I realize that homeschooling isn't the right choice for everyone. I never thought it would be the right choice for me. To be honest, I am still not sure how long I will homeschool my children or if I will homeschool all of them. For now, I am enjoying the everyday things I get to do with my kids.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Life has kept us busy

I certainly didn't mean to take such a long break from blogging. Life has just kept us very busy and before I knew it, so much time had passed. We have been plugging away with our homeschool studies. I ran into some issues with Annie and Math but I think I have them resolved. I am sure it won't be the first time over the course of the coming year that I need to change direction and try something new. It's all part of the adventure!

Speaking of adventure....Annie and Megan started a new one last week! They are going to be attending the Homeschool Extension Program at Cornerstone Christian Academy. They will go every Friday from 10:30am until 3pm. It's a chance for them to socialize with other homeschool kids and a chance for me to take a day off from being teacher. Their first day was last Friday and they both seemed to enjoy the day. Megan was a little nervous since she had never done a full day of school, but by the end of the day she was won over. I think their biggest thrill was eating lunch out of their lunchboxes!

We had a family adventure last night! We took the kids to the Kentucky State Fair! Do you know that we have lived in Kentucky for four years and never attended the State Fair? That just seems wrong, doesn't it? So, yesterday afternoon I loaded the kids up in the van, picked Carlos up at work and we headed to the fair. We really had no idea what to expect. We lucked out! The weather was perfect and the crowds were small! The kids had a blast! They had never been to any type of fair or ridden any type of ride, so this was a huge adventure for them.

Do you think they had fun?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Fun in the Sun

I have nothing groundbreaking to blog about. We spent our weekend outside, for the most part. We took the girls to E.P. Tom Sawyer Park on Friday night to burn off a bit of energy. I was a bit sad to see that the park has become somewhat run down. I suppose that's what happens when there are budget cuts left and right. The girls still had a marvelous time though.

We went to a pool party on Sunday afternoon. Let me tell you that taking five children to a pool party is a bit stressful. We had an extra two year old with us for the day because one of my friends was having a baby so we were watching their daughter, Ava. So, we had to keep an eye on Annie and Megan, who think that they know how to swim. In reality, they know how to stay afloat with a swim jacket on. I think we were there about two minutes before Meg simply stepped off the edge of the pool and calmly sunk. Thank goodness Carlos was there to drag her out! We paired off with the two year olds because they were too much for one adult to handle. Lily wanted nothing to do with being held so I let Carlos wrestle with her. I took care of Ava, who weighs all of about five pounds soaking wet. She wasn't hard to tote around but she was fearless, which is frightening in a two year old near a deep pool. I had to watch her like a hawk! She was out of the pool and jumping back in about a zillion and one times. We were also keeping an ear out for Noah, who was snoozing calmly inside the house.

The good news is, that after an hour or so, we were doing much better. Annie and Megan were getting better at staying afloat and swimming a bit. We found a stellar combo for Lily...swim vest and water wings. This allowed her a bit more freedom in the water. Ava was tuckered out and had no interest in getting back in the pool. She was content to sit on my lap while I nursed Noah. By the time we got everyone home, fed and showered we were exhausted. The upside is that all the kids passed out and slept like rocks!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

So it begins....

It's official....we are a homeschooling family! Our first day of homeschooling was Monday, which I know is a bit early, but we wanted to get a jump on things. The girls were quite excited to sit down at the kitchen table and fill their little heads with new knowledge. At least that is what I am telling myself. I think they were more excited to "go to school" with bed head and wearing play clothes.

We are starting back to school slowly. Since this is our first year of homeschooling I didn't want to overwhelm the kids or myself. So, we kept it simple this week. We only covered Bible, Science/Health and History/Geography each day. We will be adding in Math next week and then Reading/Phonics/Spelling the week after that. Kind of a slow and steady approach.

I have surprised myself and I find that I am actually enjoying the whole process. I love knowing exactly what they are learning because I have so many opportunities to discuss it throughout the day. For instance, Annie is learning about the importance of balanced nutrition and staying hydrated, so it's neat to be able to talk about that while preparing lunch or dinner. We are also keeping a chart to note whether or not she is drinking enough each day. We found out yesterday that she is a bit dry so today we will try harder to stay hydrated.

I have also gotten the chance to learn some new things! I am now an expert on the state of Kentucky! Well, maybe not an expert, but I certainly know enough facts to win the category on Jeopardy! Did you know that we have a state wild animal? It's the gray squirrel! Who knew? Well, I do now! I also learned that the word "Kentucky" comes from an Iroquois word that means "meadowland"...makes sense to me. The funny thing is that the Iroquois Indians never lived in Kentucky. They simply passed through on hunting trips, yet somehow our state name is linked to them. Odd, huh? See what I mean? I am learning too! It's so neat!

I have also been keeping busy with cooking. I bought some zucchinis that are as big as my arm so I have been making zucchini bread to freeze for the winter. Lily has been my little helper. If I could just figure out a way to keep her fingers out of the batter......

I have also been making chili! I LOVE my homemade chili and nothing tastes better on a cold winter day than a bowl of hot chili and a piece of buttered bread. Yummy!

So, the week is flying by. We are learning and cooking, which happen to be two of my favorite things to do. Lucky me!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Be sure to check out My Charming Kids for an update on Stellan. The short version is that he is home and enjoying being loved on by his brothers and sister. The power of prayer is amazing!