Category Archives: fun

Week 7: Soccer

Well, this was a crazy week! We went to my mom’s for the weekend and didn’t return until Monday, so no homeschool on Monday. And Thursday and Friday were my first days to work as a substitute teacher, so no homeschool those days either. So we really only had Tuesday and Wednesday. I tried to get at least a few things in.

Tuesday
We had speech first thing in the morning, so I found some soccer books while they were busy. I found Dinosoccer by Lisa Wheeler, Froggy Plays Soccer by Jonathan London, and Franklin Plays the Game by Paulette Bourgeois. I was actually familiar with all three of these books from my library days.

When we came home we read a few of the books before heading off to Dance class, then lunch with friends (I’m telling you, Tuesdays are busy!). When we came home we sat down to do some soccer math.

First we played a game of “I have, who has?” created by Jill Gillen. This is the first time we’ve really worked with the written numbers higher than 10 (this set went to 25). I did a quick lesson on the numbers 1-30, showing them how they looked and the pattern they make. I realized I really need to print out a chart for them that makes it easier to see the pattern. We then played the game by putting the cards face up in front of us so that I could help them “read” the cards. They caught on pretty well, and I’ve heard them trying to count higher lately. Even if they do say “Twenty-ten” (which I think is super adorable), at least I know they are catching on to the way numbers work! (N said he played this game again with them on Friday and he was surprised at how well they did, though the “teens” were definitely their weakest part.)

Next, I found a Roll and Cover Game from a math and literacy set that went with the Froggy book, created by Karen Swihart. The kids rolled two dice and counted up the dots and found the number on the soccer balls. Rather than print out the frog covers, I just had them use dot markers. Kyla got frustrated because she kept getting the same number over and over, so she started just turning the dice to get the numbers she wanted. I was actually okay with this, since she still had to figure out what numbers each die had to be on in order to make the numbers she was missing.

Roll & Cover

Roll & Cover

That was really all we had time for before I had to get dinner together and then off to soccer practice (Hey! That works for the theme, right?! πŸ˜‰ ).

Wednesday
While we were less scheduled, we didn’t seem to be any less busy on Wednesday. πŸ˜‰ I worked with the kids on word families using this

Score a Word game created by KidSparkz. I didn’t have them write down the words, we just sounded them out together. Lucas really started hearing how the individual sounds came together into a word. Kyla was completely lost. She didn’t hear the word until I had said the actual word. I know we’re still a ways off from learning to really read, so I’m not concerned in the least. Exposing them to it is my main objective.

Sounding out CVC words

Sounding out CVC words

We went to the library for story time and managed to find two Franklin DVDS that had episodes about soccer! One was even the exact same as the book we got from the school library. So while I worked on making lunch when we got home, they watched that episode. Which of course meant we had to watch all the other episodes on the DVD after lunch! Daddy let them watch the other DVD on Friday while I was at work.

Oddly enough, I’m not even sure what we did with the rest of our day, but I know we got some reading in (those kids are fiends for reading!). We had a nice quiet evening, since I knew I’d be going in to work for the first time in over 4 years the next day! Saturday they played in their 3rd Soccer game. Such cuties!

Lucas pretending he knows what he's doing while Kyla waits on the bench.

Lucas pretending he knows what he’s doing while Kyla waits on the bench.

While we weren’t able to do as much as I might have liked, I’m glad I was able to fit in a few things. Future weeks will probably be slimmed down some, depending on what days I am working. I’m seriously considering leaving sub plans for N to follow when I’m gone! Next week I’ve only got 2 days that anything will be likely to get done as well. But I certainly don’t want to give up on our homeschooling, as the kids enjoy it so much.

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Week 5/6: Instrument Families

I had this theme planned out several weeks ago and by the time we got to it I’d lost my enthusiasm for it. Thankfully, the kids found the enthusiasm and then some! This turned out much different than I’d originally expected, but I love that I was able to go with their interest and keep them excited about the theme!

Monday
As an introduction to our theme I showed them several videos of musical instrument families that I’d found on YouTube (see links below) and an interactive presentation I’d found on Teachers Pay Teachers.

When I first started this theme I wasn’t thinking of it in terms of families, but that was what the kids immediately latched onto. They loved the story of the String Family in this video I found:

They really got into the idea of the family aspect and acted out the story several times throughout the day.

We also gathered all of our musical instruments, listened to our Fresh Beat Band CD, and marched around the house. Then talked about what we use to be able to enjoy music (ears, listening, hearing, etc.). I then gave them each this checklist for a Listening Walk that I found on TeachPreschool.com. We took a walk to a park where we happened to find a group of families doing Homeschool! They thought it was really neat seeing other kids doing homeschool and were able to play with the youngest kids and pretend to build a campfire.

On the way home we looked at our list to see what we had not heard and tried our very best to be quiet and listen for those sounds. Unfortunately, they always scared the squirrels away before we could get close enough to actually hear them and (thankfully) we did not have any firetrucks come by. The clock was another tricky one, since all the clocks in our house are digital. If I had this to do over again, I probably would have made my own check list so that we would be more likely to hear all of the items on the list. Live and learn!

Tuesday
We had Speech and Dance in the morning, so when they got up from Quiet Time (Lucas actually slept, Kyla did not) they came out to find letters on all of the keys of their keyboard. I showed them music notes and told them they had letters just like the alphabet, but they only went up to g, rather than z. I then had some sheet music for them to try playing: Mary Had a Little Lamb from Homemade-Preschool. They enjoyed being able to pick out the notes, though they aren’t quite there on the rhythm yet. πŸ˜‰

Playing Mary Had a Little Lamb

Playing Mary Had a Little Lamb

I tried doing a lesson using notes and pattern making, but it just wasn’t working, so I put it aside and pulled out this Instrument Family Sorting Game. I put the family names on file folders and the kids and I worked on putting the instruments into the correct family groups.

Finding Instrument Families

Finding Instrument Families

While we were doing this activity I remembered that I had a song/story by Danny Kaye called Tubby the Tuba. I pulled it up on my computer and let the kids listen to it. At first they were distracted by the fact that there was nothing for them to watch, but eventually they started to really listen to the story and enjoyed it. I pointed out to them the instruments mentioned and the sounds they made along the way. Then I saw that on the same CD there was a track called “The Little Fiddle” and even though I didn’t remember what it was I thought it was worth a shot. Sure enough, it was another story using instruments as characters. They loved it. I then went online and found a YouTube video for each of the stories, including one that is a cartoon made in the 60s, and also an entire web site about Tubby the Tuba, which was turned into a picture book (Danny Kaye was not the original performer, apparently). I printed out a coloring page from that web site that they enjoyed coloring.

These stories really seemed to grab the kids because they took the instrument cards from the sorting game and started using them to act out the stories. So fun!

Wednesday
Wednesday tends to be “craft” day for us. So I found two instrument coloring pages that also required some cutting and gluing practice from Homemade-Preschool. One was a Violin that required gluing on the strings and the other was a Xylophone that had them cut out the keys and glue them on in size order. I think the xylophone one would have been better if they hadn’t been in size order already on the page, but the kids did a great job of cutting them out. Lucas did glue one on out of order, but only because he ran out of room. He’s not too concerned about perfection like Kyla is. πŸ˜‰ We also put together homemade kazoos using toilet paper tubes and wax paper. They didn’t last very long with Distructo Boy around, but they were fun while they lasted.

Craft Day!

Craft Day!

We also went to the library and were able to get several books about instruments and music that were fun to read.

Slight Pause thanks to a super busy schedule and distraction from my mom’s surgery. We did not get to any activities on Thursday thanks to being away from the house from 8:00 AM to 7:30 PM for speech, doctor’s appointment (mine), zoo school, and dinner out. Friday became a family day, Saturday was their first soccer game, and Sunday thru Wednesday I was out of town.

Unfortunately, we didn’t get to the lessons when I got back. Thursdays are just too busy, apparently. And Friday (once again) turned into a family day (which is great!). We did watch some Fantasia and talk about the music, but that was really it.

Starting now things are going to get trickier to plan. I’ve finally been fully approved to sub for our local school district, so I won’t be home with them every day anymore. We’ll see how this goes…

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Week 4: Pirates

With Talk Like a Pirate Day being September 19th, I thought it would be perfect to use a Pirate theme for this week. With Jake and the Neverland Pirates being their favorite TV show at the moment, it was very easy to get them excited about the theme (and to find a computer game for them to play!). There is a LOT of stuff out there that uses a pirate theme, so it was really just a matter of filtering through what I found and deciding what skills I wanted to work on and what would interest them most. Here’s what we did.

Monday

To introduce the theme we started off reading some pirate books I’d gotten from the library, watched the Veggie Tales movie The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything, and acted like pirates all day. We all wore head scarfs the whole day, even while running errands. I meant to get a picture of all three of us dressed up, but never got it. Oops! We also played the game Pirate Island. It’s a game of listening, thinking, and doing. Each card had a phrase which indicated a specific 2-3 step action that the players must perform. When I would call out the phrase, they had to think about what those steps were, then do them. I was actually quite amazed at how well they did this. Later Lucas called out the phrases (he can’t read, but apparently the pictures on the cards gave him enough clue and he remembered the correct phrases!) and Kyla did the actions. It was a super cute game. To keep it interesting I made them do everything super fast once I knew they really knew the actions. They really enjoyed it.

Pirate Island Game

Pirate Island Game

Tuesday
We started the day at speech, then dance, then played a Pirates Arrr! board game. The cards are blank, so you can use them for any skill you want to work on. I decided to use it for identifying lower case letters. They did great! Unfortunately, it didn’t hold their attention quite like I thought it would. We played once and they didn’t want to play again. But they DID want to do another pirate activity. Which I hadn’t planned for because we had several scheduled things going on that day. But taking naps away last week means we have extra time in our day that I hadn’t factored in. So I quickly pulled out an activity that was meant for Wednesday. I used a Pirate Vocab Cards set and had them “trace the room.” They had to hunt for the picture/word cards that I’d taped up all over the house, then find the matching word on their tracing sheet and trace it. They seemed to really enjoy this one and I think it really helped them to see how slightly different letters can create different words. Lucas started to trace “pirate” when he found the “parrot” but quickly noticed they were not exactly the same, even though they both started with P. He began to really pay attention to all of the letters, rather than just the beginning. I think this was a great activity and one I may use for future themes as well.

Arrrr and Hunting (and tracing) words

Arrrr and Hunting (and tracing) words

Wednesday
Since we did a Wednesday activity on Tuesday, I moved an activity from Thursday to Wednesday along with an art project I’d already planned to do that day. We made paper bag puppets from a Pirates packet by Rainy Day Learning. There were lots of good activities included in the packet, but this was the only one I used. I just didn’t have time for everything I found! I probably could do a pirate theme for a whole month and not run out of new activities!

Paper Bag Pirate Puppets

Paper Bag Pirate Puppets


The rearranged Thursday activity was Pirate Pattern activity within a larger packet of Pirate themed math. While the kids have done patterns before and are pretty good at them (thanks Umizoomi!), I had never referred to them as AB, ABC, etc. So I wasn’t sure how they would do with this one. When they finished making their puppets I talked to each of them individually about what the letters meant. I wasn’t sure if I had explained it well, but as I was talking to Kyla, Lucas started laughing and said “I colored that one purple and it supposed to be blue!” He thought it was quite funny. I told him that was okay and I was proud of him for realizing his mistake. I suggested he color blue over the purple, even though it wouldn’t look exactly right. The other patterns (ABC and ABBC) were a piece of cake for him apparently! Kyla, on the other hand, had a bit of difficulty. She didn’t do badly, just made a few mistakes. I wanted to make sure that I showed her where she’d gone wrong, but I also know that she falls apart when she’s told she has made a mistake. So I decided to approach it a bit differently. I said “Why don’t we look and see what you got right?” I then went one by one through the patterns and which colors should be the same. I had her tell me which ones were different and what color they would need to be to fit the pattern. I then had her circle the incorrect ones with the correct color. It worked well and there were no tears! As a matter of fact, Lucas was disappointed that he didn’t have any to circle! LOL

Pirate Patterns

Pirate Patterns

Thursday
Although Thursdays are another busy day for us now, we were able to work in one activity. This one we did together, since it is a new skill for them. We’re talking Pirate Addition. I did not use these exactly as they are in the packet. I printed all of the addition problems, but I only printed off the number pages in such a way that I had at least one of every number 0-10. We then worked together to put those numbers in order. Then I gave each of them a pile of gold dabloons to use for counting. I would turn over a card and talk them through putting out the right number of coins for each number in the problem and adding them all up. We then placed the problem under the appropriate answer on our “number line.” Once again, Lucas caught on quickly and Kyla struggled a bit. I think more from a fear of being wrong than actually not getting it. After I knew they understood the concept, I gave a pile of cards to Lucas and a pile to Kyla and had them work on different problems at the same time and place them under the correct answer. Lucas worked quickly, while Kyla struggled and asked for help often. Of course, because I was so focused on helping Kyla out, I didn’t discover until later that Lucas was not always getting the right answer. By the end, we had quite a graph of sorts of all the different ways to add up to each number. By no means do I think they are addition experts now, but I think they’ve definitely got the beginning knowledge in place now!

Pirate Addition

Pirate Addition

I also quickly designed a rhyming lesson the night before using the vocab cards from Tuesday. I made my own cards with pictures and words that rhymed with 8 of the pirate words. We worked together to match the rhyming words. This was where Kyla caught on faster than Lucas. I don’t like to stereotype boys and girls, but it sure is interesting to notice where my boy and girl have their biggest strengths! (I didn’t get pictures of this activity because it was really quick.)

Friday
Computer day! Of course, since we’re doing a Pirate theme, we HAD to do Jake and the Neverland Pirate games on the computer! I let them chose the games they wanted to play while I worked with the other child on ordinal numbers from the same packet as the patterns from Wednesday. I knew they had a good grasp on what first meant (how many times have I heard “Me first!” from one or both of them?), but wasn’t sure how they would do with the rest. As I suspected, they really didn’t know the others, so it took quite a bit of coaching on my part to help them through the task. I do think it was helpful for them to do this activity as an introduction, but I’m glad I chose to do it on Friday when the other child would be busy with the computer. And thankfully, N was home, so when the child on the computer was needing help he was able to step in so I could focus on what I was doing.

Ordinal Numbers

Ordinal Numbers

Overall
I think this week went well. I wasn’t as fond of the books we got for this theme, but we didn’t really need them since pirates is a known thing for them. Today (Sunday) we also played Pirates and ate on the last two pirate map paper plates from the pantry (why not?!). I know the kids enjoyed this theme and it will probably make it’s way back into homeschool, since there is so much out there with this theme.

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Week 2 of Homeschool: Family

Week 2 of homeschool went relatively well. Ha! That’s kind of a funny way of phrasing it, since this week we focused on Family. πŸ™‚ Okay, I have a weird sense of humor. Sorry.

As I was saying, things went well. I didn’t do everything I had planned, but we did manage to do something every day, so that’s a win in my book! Here’s the low down of what we did. I am sorry for not having pictures of everything, but it was difficult to work with them and snap pictures at the same time!

Monday

To introduce the theme of the week I found a video on Youtube of the song In a Family that I had originally seen on Nick Jr. a long time ago. We revisited the song several times throughout the week and they really loved to try to sing it (or ask me to sing it). After the song I pulled out the pictures I printed of our entire family (extended included). There were 36 pictures all together. We talked about who each person was (some they’ve only seen once or twice) and how they were related to us.

Then came the biggest hit of the day (perhaps even the week!). Finger puppets!

Finger Puppets!

Finger Puppets!

I found them super cheap on Amazon. There is a Mother, Father, Sister, Brother, Grandfather, and Grandmother. The three of us acted out all sorts of scenes with the puppets all over the house, even reenacting our trip to Disney. It was lots of fun. I left the puppets out the whole week and they frequently picked them up to play with them. But I also noticed them playing “Family” even more than they used to on their own. I even heard Kyla tell Lucas “You be N and ask me to marry you.” Too cute!

Tuesday

Tuesday was a VERY busy day for us. It was the first day back at Speech, Kyla had dance class, and I had a massage I had scheduled a few days earlier (trying to combat a headache I’ve had over a week). So we didn’t get to school stuff until after dinner! But we did manage to squeeze it in. I don’t have pictures, though. I printed off some handwriting practice pages with Mom, Dad, Kyla, Lucas, Grandma, Mom-Mom, Mimi, Jan, Gramps, Papa, and Grandaddy written out for them. They traced the names and talked about their grandparents and why they are special.

Wednesday

This day was the main reason I chose to do Family for this week’s theme. I wanted to make something to send to their grandparents for Grandparents’ Day. We decided to make hugs to send to them. In the morning I had them make handprints with finger paint (I spread the paint onto their hands and they placed them onto the paper. Worked beautifully!). Then they got to get into the bathtub to wash it off with a little shaving cream! Later in the day we measured their arms and made paper strips to glue the hands onto. They wrote “messages” on the arms before gluing. I had to let go of my idea of what the final product should look like. Especially when they started gluing two left (or right) hands to the same strip of paper.

Making hugs

Making hugs

Unfortunately, I’m a slacker and didn’t get them to the mail in time for them to arrive for Grandparents’ Day. I hope to get them in the mail tomorrow.

We also had the opportunity to go to story time at the library with friends. It’s so fun seeing how far they’ve come from when we first started taking them to story time. They were totally involved and loved the stories the librarian shared.

storytime

storytime

Thursday

N insisted that I go to the doctor about my headaches. So I went while N took the kids to speech. The meds my doctor prescribed knocked me out all afternoon. It was bad. 😦 So bad that we didn’t get to do all of that day’s activities. But I did somehow manage to get one done (no pictures, though). We used the pictures of our family members and placed them under their familial title (mom, dad, grandmother, grandfather, aunt, uncle, or cousin). We also counted how many of each there were. LOTS of cousins (I included cousins once removed and their kids!). It was interesting to how confused they were by the titles. But they sure knew who their first cousins are (I love that they are all so close in age and love playing together)!

Friday

We continued to use the pictures to sort into categories. We started out grouping by boy/girl and counted how many of each there were and which number was “more” or “less.”

boys vs girls

boys vs girls

Next we grouped them by household (who lives together) and counted those as well. We talked about patterns we could make, but we didn’t actually do any patterns.

Then it was computer time! I had them start with Red’s Rhyme n’ Roll on PBS Kids, simply because Red is on her way to Grandma’s house. Weak link, I know, but it was better than nothing!

While their sibling was getting some computer time, the other child got to identify some family traits. Well, sort of. I had them do a worksheet that described their physical attributes and then draw a picture of themselves. We then discussed what traits we had in common and what ones were different. I don’t think they really got this, but I tried.

Friday

Friday

Overall

Overall I’d say the week was successful. I’m going to have to figure out how to fit activities in when we have a busy schedule (that seems to be getting busier by the minute!). Next week I’m planning more activities for the days we will be home and simple things for the days I know we’ll be out and about quite a lot. Hopefully it will work out.

Oh, and to cap off our Family week, we got to spend some time with Papa and Mimi at their house swimming in their pool!

My little fishies!

My little fishies!

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Quick Summer Summary

Yes, we’ve been busy. Which might be part of the reason I haven’t posted practically all summer. Or it could be that I just was too tired to post when I did have the time. Either way, you’re going to get the quick version of our summer so that I don’t feel bad. Then tomorrow I can post about our first week of Homeschool!

June
June is always super busy because of birthdays. The first weekend of the month we went down to Houston for their cousin’s 6th birthday party (at a dinosaur museum! Coolness!). Then the following weekend the family all came here to celebrate Kyla & Lucas’ 4th birthday. I believe I did write that one up, so I won’t go into detail.

N and I actually got to go out of town for our anniversary (12th) this year. We went to Fredricksburg. We were only there 2 nights, so we didn’t have a lot of time, but enjoyed it nonetheless. Before you ask, no we did not do any wine tours. Instead we got gypped by the main street shops! LOL We bought way too much wine and the real kicker was when N found almost everything we bought there for WAY cheaper here at home. Ugh! Oh, well. Fun was had anyway, so that’s the main point.

The kids and I then went to San Antonio with my sister and her 3 kids (ages 6, 22 months, and 22 months at the time). We stayed in a cabin and did a day at Sea World, rode a train through a petting zoo, rode a glass bottom boat, went swimming, and just spent time together. Overall it was a lot of fun and I know the kids enjoyed it. My sister and I were, of course, ready for a vacation from our vacation, but we knew it would probably be like that going in. I love how close in age our kids are and that they get to see their cousins frequently. The best part, though, was that after all that time spent together, her twins and I bonded. πŸ˜‰ They used to be kind of afraid of me, but now the immediately recognize me and play our own little secret games. I love those little guys!

To cap off the month we got to celebrate my father-in-law’s birthday swimming in his new pool! The kids have become amazing swimmers now that they have Papa’s pool to play in! They are such fish!

July
July started out with a fun 4th of July celebration with N’s cousins and their families. We don’t get to see them very often, but N was close to his cousins all through growing up and feels like they are his brothers more than cousins. The kids got to see fireworks on the way home and still talk about it!

Kyla started taking a ballet/tap class at an actual dance studio and really enjoyed it. She says she really wants to be on stage. Part of me would love for her to try it, but at the same time I’m pretty sure she’d freak out when it came time to preform.

The kids had their first ever dentist appointment. Our insurance makes us use a primary dentist (who won’t see them until they are 4 unless there are problems) and if we want to take them to a pediatric dentist we have to get a referral. Thankfully, they seemed fine with the regular dentist, so unless there are problems later we’ll just stick with them. Neither of them had any cavities! Woohoo! They took them both at the same time, which was great for neither getting bored waiting on the other one, but meant that I was in the hallway between the two rooms trying to catch what was going on in both at the same time. I felt like I must have missed something, but the kids did great, so that’s the important thing.

I got to spend time with many of my pre-kid friends in July, which was great. I don’t see any of them nearly enough (maybe once a year if we’re lucky). I feel like such a bore, though, because all I have to talk about is my kids. LOL Thankfully, they all like hearing about them (or at least, they pretend they do), so it’s not too bad. πŸ˜‰

August
The first day of August was very different for me this year (compared to the last 4). I went to work. Sort of. I had substitute orientation. I’m still waiting to get the go ahead to set up my SubFinder account, but in theory I’ll be subbing for the local school district this year. I should be able to work at least 2 days a week. More if I can find a sitter on days N works. Of course, if I never get that darn email…

The kids and I all had VBS the second week of August. This year was very different for us. I was asked to do the preschool story time this year (I did the K-3 story time last year) and the kids were finally old enough to be in the actual VBS classes and not just the nursery! Of course, with me doing the preschool groups, that meant they came to me every day. I was nervous about that at first, but it worked out fine and I enjoyed seeing how they behave in that sort of setting. The other part that made it different is the fact that we now have friends at the church that we hang out with outside of church! We actually went out to lunch with a huge group of moms and kids 3 out of 5 days. I know we all loved that.

Right after the last day of VBS we got in the car and drove down to Houston for the “little twins” birthday. We got to spend Saturday with my mom, sister, and her 3 boys, then Sunday we celebrated the birthday at Chuck E. Cheese and got to see my brother, his wife, and their two girls. I’m not generally a baby holder, but I did enjoy spending time with my littlest niece (5 months old). Big sister (2 years old) had never been to CEC before and absolutely LOVED dancing with the mouse! It was adorable. And the even better part is that she’s finally warming up to other people and not clinging to her parents like she used to. She came up to me! πŸ™‚

We had to head back home right after the party because Lucas was signed up for sports camp the following day. He spent 3 hours playing games and learning various sports Monday-Thursday. He loved it. Kyla, on the other hand, was not so fond of being away from her brother for that long. I tried to come up with fun things for us to do while he was busy, but even sitting in a movie she whispered to me “Can we go get Lucas now?” And while we were at their friends’ birthday party she cried for her brother rather than going to play with the other kids at the party. The one day that she didn’t ask about him was when we went to get a mini/pedi (her first) and then had a tea party with N’s grandmother and aunt. Can we say girly-girl?!

We got to go see a children’s theatre performance of Alice in Wonderland, which both kids thoroughly enjoyed. For days afterward they pretended to put on a show (usually Alice in Wonderland) and have both said they want to be on stage. As thrilled as I am, I think they may need to wait a few years.

Things looked like they were going to wind down, but we still seemed to find ourselves with something do do almost every day. Play dates, trips to the movies, family visits, and more! Is it sad that on the few days we didn’t have anything to do my kids asked “Where are we going today?” and when my response was “nowhere” they cried? They love to be out and about. But sometimes Mommy just needs a PJ day!

Coming up
Kyla ended up deciding she didn’t want to continue in the ballet/tap class she was taking. I’m pretty sure it was because she is so shy. But I let her try out the ballet/jazz class one of her friends is in and she decided she liked it, so she’ll be doing that this year.

Lucas wanted to be in soccer with his friend (the twin of Kyla’s dance friend), but the teams were already full. So instead he’ll be playing soccer through the church.

They start speech again September 3rd (2 days/week) and are enrolled in the whole series of Zoo School this Fall which starts September 12th (I’ll have to fill you in on that in a later post).

Because we still can’t afford to put the kids into preschool I decided I should buckle down and get more serious about our homeschool efforts. I’m trying to plan literacy, math, dramatic play, art, science, and social studies activities each week around a theme. I’ll try to post at the end of each week what we did and how it went. We’ve already completed our first week (which I’ll post about tomorrow) and I’ve got weeks 2 and 3 pretty much planned as well as themes through the end of October. I’m really hoping I can stay on top of this and that the kids will stay as interested as they have been this week. They keep saying that today is the “last day” of homeschool, even though I’ve told them it’s just the last day of this theme. Hopefully they won’t be too upset when we start up again on Monday! LOL

This “quick” update has ended up really long. Sorry about that. But at least now you know I wasn’t lying about being busy! πŸ˜‰ As we fall into our school year rhythm I hope to be better about posting again. Thanks for sticking with me through the dry spells!

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Four Year Olds

Really? I have four year olds? How did that happen?

This past month has been busy busy as we’ve finished up the school year in speech and zoo school, played with visiting family, traveled to Houston for W’s 6th birthday, and prepared for K & L’s Sugar Run birthday party. Things won’t slow down for a few more weeks, but I wanted to at least post something about their birthday.

Back in March the twins decided they wanted a Wreck it Ralph birthday party. They’ve been seeing Daddy run in obstacle races, so we thought it would be fun to have a race for the kids at the party. It fit well with the theme, since Vanelope von Schweets is a racer. Granted, she has a car, but close enough. πŸ˜‰ We decided to host the party at a park. I handed the task of race planning to N and he really ran with it. I’ll admit to thinking he might be going overboard, but in the end I think he did an excellent job and the kids really had a blast.

We're gonna Wreck it!

We’re gonna Wreck it!

Candy Cane wickets

Candy Cane wickets

Kit Kat bridge

Kit Kat bridge

Candy Slolam

Candy Slolam

Jaw Breaker toss

Jaw Breaker toss

Life Saver Shake

Life Saver Shake

Gum Drop Cross

Gum Drop Cross

King Candy attack

King Candy attack

Cybug egg stomp

Cybug egg stomp

Ooh!  Water balloons!

Ooh! Water balloons!

Everyone loves an adorable winner

Everyone loves an adorable winner

You Wrecked it!

You Wrecked it!

Cupcakes by Aunt D

Cupcakes by Aunt D

After the race: ring fun

After the race: ring fun

Present time!

Present time!

Thanks for all the presents!

Thanks for all the presents!

Diet Coke and Mentos Beacon

Diet Coke and Mentos Beacon

The whole party was a success and much less stressful (for me) than previous years. This is the first year that we’ve had organized activities for the kids and they did really well. The ages ranged from 2 years to 6 years old. I think we’re going to have to set up the race in our back yard to continue the fun!

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Filed under family, friends, fun, Parenting, preschoolers, socializing

“Offline”

I’ve been “offline” for the last 6 days. It’s exhausting!

If you recall from my last post, I decided that my next habit that I needed to work on was actually to break my computer habit and stay offline from 7 AM to 8 PM. It’s been much easier than I anticipated, but that is probably because we’ve been so stinkin’ busy!

Thursday the kids had swim lessons, then attended “zoo school” for the first time (a topic for another post). We were out of the house from 10:15-4:15.

Friday I had Bible Study, then we had lunch with a friend. The afternoon was spent playing the kids.

Saturday I didn’t get on the computer at all. At 6 AM I left the house to go run, then I volunteered with my co-op, hit the grocery store, came home long enough to make some dip for a party, then the whole family attended a crawfish boil. Talk about exhausting!

Sunday we attended church and the rest of the day I was so exhausted all I wanted to do was sleep. We snuggled in the recliner and watched Take Me Out to the Ball Game with Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra (LOVE!).

Monday we went grocery shopping, then made a 5 hour visit to the museum.

Tuesday the kids had swim lessons and speech. I made and canned 6 pints of salsa and chopped tomatoes for more canning today. We fed and played with the neighbor’s dog, then visited and had dinner with N’s aunt and grandmother.

Today will be a “light” day of speech and lunch with friends. Depending on how things are going, we may go to a park for a hike.

So, does anyone want to tell me stay at home moms do nothing all day? Huh? I dare ya!

I’ve actually not been missing being online much. Yes, at first I had to make myself do other things to distract myself, but really I’ve realized that I’m not missing out on anything by waiting until 8. Though I did have a friend text me to ask if I was mad because I hadn’t replied to her email! Oops. And I have had a couple of times where I had to get on the computer long enough to get a phone number or directions, but I don’t count those as cheating because I didn’t check my email or FB or my message boards while doing it.

Another week and it should be a new habit. I just hope I don’t collapse from exhaustion in the mean time. πŸ˜‰

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Filed under family, fun, Parenting, preschoolers