Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Preschool and Colds

The last couple of weeks have been filled with tissues, cold medicine, and runny noses. Everyone has had something. At this point, my youngest and I are the only ones left still sniffling or coughing. Not a whole bunch of school work has been accomplished. Hard to "teach" when you can only whisper!

My youngest did finish up her All About Me book. Its incredibly cute.

Here is the finished product. :)

Son's school is moving along nicely. He's more of an independent learner.
I make a lesson plan up the night before and he does his own thing. I will go
over the reading work or help with questions. Some math lessons I explain but
generally he knows to read it and do the work. We use Saxon.
Fall break starts next week for my oldest daughter's preschool. So I have been
hunting down, printing out, and collecting Halloween crafts and work.
Its time to start my Broccoli and Cheese soup for supper.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Doubting Homeschooler

Sometimes as a homeschool parent, I doubt myself and I know that many others feel the same at some point. Sometimes I doubt that we do enough school work or they are not learning everything they need to know. Lately I worry about him being around other kids. Its a hard debate. I want him to have friends. Neurologist says he has elements of Asperger's Syndrome making it even more difficult for him to relate to kids his age. His reactions are extreme. If neighbor boy can't play because he has football practice, my son takes it personal. Then after the crying jag about how no one wants to play with him, it starts into an anger at me for not letting him play football. Uhm yeah no interest before neighbor boy started playing. Soon we will put him back into karate so hopefully that will slow that down a bit. Anyway, on those days I wonder if I shouldn't put him back into school. Then I hear something on the news about a shooting or budget cuts and how the kids are affected. With children that need that extra time or effort, these "budget cuts" mean less time and less material or help. Thoughts of this and that roam through my head. What is best for my kids though is the only really important thing. So I will try to get out more and let him go to the park to play. I will try harder to find a place for him to practice karate. (This town is SMALL.)

All week all I've heard is how I'm a mean mom for making him do all of those 25 problems in math. But today he got up and found that since I've been sick all week, I only gave him math correction work (that was over 25 problems!!) and reading for an hour, I got a different reaction. He sat straight down and started work. Not one complaint or arguing.
We talked over the problems he missed on one sheet since he missed 12 of 25 (mom was slacking that day being sick and all). He told me he's glad he is homeschooled and wants to continue doing so. It was a very nice thing to hear after dealing with so many doubts lately.

I'm sure my post is a bit choppy and I apologize. Its been a rough week and I'm still on the meds. I think it may be time for the next dose.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

September? Really? When did that happen!

So my calendar has again tricked me.
I'm looking at August and thinking what the heck!

I can't believe it is already Septemper. Wanna know what tipped me off??? A letter
from my daughter's school informing me to pick her up early because its the 1st
Wednesday of the month. Yeah I know that was yesterday. And yes I did pick her up on
time. Actually I sent my other half but who's checking anyway. So this month is Emergency Preparedness month. I'm sure its a few other things too but this is one I take note of.
Oh and my other half's birthday and my mom's birthday are this month.

So for Emergency Preparedness, I'm doing two things. Well at the moment only too but I'm sure I will add to that. I went to Shelf Reliance and used on of their online free tools to let you know what you need to have in your preparedness bag. You seen the commercials on tv about when a disaster strikes.. the couple floating in what looks like their living room in outerspace?? Yeah weird, I know but in the end they grab a bag and go. Well part of Emergency Preparedness is having that bag in case of a flat-out gotta get out emergency. So anyway, Shelf Reliance has a tool here that lets you input how many of you there are with ages and sex. It tells you what you might need. Of course you don't have to buy from them though it seems a little more convenient. I'm using it as a reference to get ideas. I'm also following the blog at Food Storage Made Easy with its Baby Steps to getting into food storage. They are also doing a 7-day Challenge to see just how prepared you are. Hmmm I'm going to follow that even though I know I'm not prepared at the moment. Okay onward.

New problems this week. Car is out of commission. We sent it in to the dealership a month or so ago because the windshield wipers were alot like my 10 year old.. only working when they felt like it. Charged us over $300 and sent it home. I took it back the next week. Not working again. They kept it three days and sent it back. I bet the car felt unwanted at this point. Said they couldn't find anything wrong with it. HA! Stopped working again this week. Sent it back. This time they say the Body Control Module is out and it will cost me.... dun dun dun... $1001.21 to fix it. So its parked. Not happy at all about this development! Glad we have another one that is still running!

We did a fun, informative lesson in science today that I thought I would share since my son said, "Mom, why are you taking pictures??? Are you going to go post them on your blog??" Well yes, dear that is my goal!

So here was the lesson. We were learning about the spine. Activity was "Building a Model Backbone". Here it is in pictures.

Materials! Don't you love when they are edible.

First you put on the Wagon wheels by themself. Tie and try to flex the stem. If you do it too hard, you will break the pasta. That's what your back would be like without the soft discs. Not very flexible.

Then you put Gummy Lifesavers on after each Wagon wheel to show how the soft cushions the vertebrae. I'm sure I'm not using technical terms here but the lesson was this morning so I'm allowed it ad-lib here. :P

End result. Lesson the the backbone, new flexible toy to play with, and a snack all in one! Not the ones on the chenelle stem either. The bag from the picture which is now empty and in the trash can....

So there was Science for the day. Hope you all had a fun, informative day too.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Early Mornings

Late nights and early mornings make for a very tired mommy. At least the kids are getting in bed earlier! School is in full swing now. Going on week 4 so far and doing pretty good. Trying to get everyone on their routine. Big sister and big brother I think have their routine down. Now its time to figure out one for little sister. Thinking that some preschool fun time should begin!
We've covered just about every aspect of art you can imagine for a 4 and 3 year old. We read all the time, do puzzles. She went from board puzzles to 24 piece puzzles. Doing great there! I think we may play a little lapbook of shapes. Yeah, that sounds fun.

My son is working on the human body in science. Last week we covered the systems. Circulatory, respitory, muscles.. you get the idea. Still working on that. We have a large floor puzzle that will be a nice addition to our lessons. The human body is such a fun thing to get into. Of course, when you are 10 and all you want to do is go see what that little human body next door you call friend is doing.. its not so fun! haha
I'm doing a little looking online for some things to make it interesting. Came across this site with Powerpoints.

My son and I have found a series that we are reading together! The Hatchet by Gary Paulsen.
Its a survival story for boys. I love anything survival personally and to have him enjoy it too. YEAH! lol A very nice lady in one of my online groups told me it was part of a series so I will be buying them up to read next. I also plan to use parts of the literature unit here as we go along.
Here is the books and the order:

The Hatchet
The River
Brian's Winter
Brian's Return

I think it is a great way to get young boys back outside and into nature. My son is addicted to the DSI, xbox, Wii and computer. I realize that by providing these things that I am basically an enabler (though I do share blame with well meaning family members). Technology is great and awesome but so is knowing the basics. In our area, we have been unable to find a good boy scouting or spiral scouts program so I feel obligated (grin) to do a little teaching on my own. I do wish that the male here were more outdoorsy and sportsy but I do love him anyway.

I just realized that it is getting late here and I need to get up a little early in the morning. My oldest daughter (4) has her first school pictures tomorrow. We spent an hour shopping at three different stores to find an outfit she likes! She would rather wear shorts and a tshirt but I managed to talk her into a dress with shorts underneath! Will have proud mama pictures tomorrow.
Have a good night.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Summer Break

We are on summer break but it is getting close to time to start school back up. This year we will be learning at 5th and 6th grade level for my son and pre-k for my oldest daughter.

We have a better diagnosis instead of just ADHD for my son. A couple different things were added. He's began taking medications to help. Medicine #3 is what we are on now. Hoping it will help! We have also discovered that my son (10 years old) has high blood pressure and my fiancee has very high triglycerides. I honestly have no idea what triglycerides are but I am determined to learn all about it and how to help lower it. Science lesson anyone?

Our garden yielded alot of tomatoes this year. I think we tend to overdo it on the tomatoes. We had broccoli at the beginning of the summer but it grew really tall and seems to be blossoming so I don't think we will be getting anymore. The bell peppers are coming in now. We enjoyed a couple apples from our tree but the peaches are small and spotted. We sprayed them with fruit tree spray but it doesn't seem to do anything. Maybe it is still too young to really be producing. Also found out one of the trees that came with our property is a plum tree! None of the fruit made it but know we now its there! We had tons of blackberries and a few raspberries. Its been a good summer but HOT. The temperature has been in the high 90s and low 100s since spring. Ready for it to cool off!

Back to cleaning, sorting, and doing some prep work. We are starting to work on our three month supply food challenge. So lots of organization and prepping to do.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Into the Swing of It

So we are slowing getting back into the swing of it. Actually we've had it a bit easier than I expected. We began our journey into medicine for ADHD. I'm not sure what to expect but its actually slowed down his outbursts and need to move/make noise. He's still talkative and hyper and moody but I realize that is his personality. Its a slow process in which mistakes are made and notes are taken. Things can and usually are changed to make adjustments. Whatever it takes to make him feel better and to make life a little easier for us all.

That said we are completely STUCK on division. He is soooo frustrated with division. If he could curse, he would and that word would pop up somewhere in that sentence. So I skipped... oh about 20 pages.. of our math-u-see book to move on to Volume. Much much better. I could hear the sigh of relief. Not just from him or me but everyone else in the house!

We are doing good on our book challenge. He's ready 15 books this month!!!! I'm a little behind. More like 7... maybe 8. Cross my fingers. If I were counting kids books, I would hit 100 by next week. We are potty training the little girls! I should say I am. I sit next to them and read. We are making our way through my four shelves of kids books and quite a few of the libraries shelves as well. Hope that they are potty trained soon or I may start permanently rhyming!

I've found another place to check into for karate for my son. We started a while back with another place here in town. Soooo disappointed in that place. He would love to have the physical outlet karate provides and I would love to see him learn some obedience and training that it offers. If all goes well and this place is good enough, my daughter will join also since she will be turning 4 this February!!! Both the girls turn a year older this February!

I think I will finish with my current reading.

Swimsuit by James Patterson

Very good book as all of his books are. A light read for me. A killer who films his killing for the
viewing of a select bunch of wealthy individuals is having his story written by someone he has basically kidnapped. Very twisted and keeps you saying, "WHAT!".

My past reads for the month have been paranormal romance and urban fantasy reads so this
was a nice change from that. But don't think my next book won't be by Patricia Briggs or some other wonderful paranormal author!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Winter break is over.. boo!

So our winter break is over. The kids say boo. The weather says boo too. It insists on the cold and the snow! Sigh. Its card to concentrate on botany and division when your toes are freezing through your socks. We homeschool in our finished basement large room. Its nice and comfy and all of our homeschool things are there (aka hundreds of books and a pantry full of crafty stuff). But I'm thinking we may be taking the school stuff that we need and heading upstairs until this weather decides to warm up. Why is it that a whole upstairs can be warm and toasty and the downstairs is always at least 5 degrees colder??!! And just for the record I did call and let the company who installed our wonderful central heat and air know about that last winter! This year I'm better prepared and have been driving everyone nuts with random rugs here or there! So today was a recover and prep day. We had to recover all the things we stopped on before break and prep for what will come this week. I made a few changes in our schedule/curriculum that we needed to talk about. I use Math u See and I'm thinking next year I may try something else. Its very repetitive! We like it to a degree but he gets aggravated doing the same thing for 10 pages. I can't blame him. It would annoy me too. So it went okay today. Got things straightened out and everything pretty much lined up as to what he needs to do each day.

Besides school we are starting on our resolutions this year.
We are joining an Olympic Book Challenge.
It can be found here:

I haven't decided if I will just blog about it here or make a new blog just for reading and books.
As a book collector and reading addicted person, I might NEED a whole blog just for it!

I also resolve to catalog all of our personal library! If you've seen my library you know what a
big job that can be! I've already started that one! Fun Fun.

Our (my) last resolution is to exercise more and limit my caffeine. So I sit here with water bottle in hand and Ab lounger behind me, I wonder if I've lost my mind. Probably but if I can lose some of my weight with it, I might let it go.