Thursday, October 30, 2008

No School Apple Project Day

The greatest thing about homeschooling is the ability to set your schedule. We typically do some 'school' all year, allowing Mom to say "No Book-Work Day!" And that's exactly what I did today. Instead: Apple Projects. Please use common sense and extreme caution and assist small children when making this project- sharp objects can hurt little fingers....

First- remove the skin from your apples-

Next: Carve faces into the apples~ if it's a soft apple, little fingers can pick out eyes just fine, or use a dull butter knife or spoon. My #1 son's choice tool was a pocket knife - he's used one just fine for years, so his carving skills were up to par.

Did you notice that he's really excited for Christmas to come? And do you see the apple temptation on Jacob's face? Hmmm.... sure looks good.... Yep~ it IS quite tasty-- needless to say, Mom carved his apple face for him-- on another apple.And this is what you'll end up with: Now the fun part comes-- waiting for them to dry out. Over the next few days/weeks, they'll transform into little old faces, which you can decorate with fabric. Stay tuned as ours 'age.' Or, for my impatient followers, you can stick them in the over on very low heat for a few hours. To be continued...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

birthdays and snowflakes and no new computer

No birthday 'parties' here-- instead, we have birthday 'breakfast.' Daddy's creation this year-- dino french toast for Jacob. He made a castle for Elizabeth too, but the dinosaur was much more creative- E for effort on the castle Daddy :)
Elizabeth doesn't like birthday cake so she wanted pie. Mom made an 'nontraditional' 'raw' pumpkin cheesecake-- and it tasted yummy. -much better than it looks. Note: if you try this- don't put the cinnamon on top-- not pretty. And yes, this recipe actually tasted pretty much like a pumpkin pie. Mark doesn't like pumpkin pie, but the liked this. If you're curious- check it out here.

Note #2: In the recipe, I didn't use the Irish Moss (try living around here and finding an ingredient like that-- are you crazy?!?) and I didn't have any young coconuts (next co-op trip) but I bet that would be really yummy in it.On with the birthday... Elizabeth wasn't too happy to find paper dolls in her box, but was very excited when she found they represented a trip to the mall for Build A Bear. (oh goody) Seriously-- it's a fun store, but they've truly found the art of entrepreneurship-- if you could call it that. As usual, Jacob was much happier with the box his gift came in--- aye- aye captain!

And I leave you with a parting picture of color. Probably the last in a while-- it snowed today. Just a few flurries, but snow flakes none the less. Which also means outdoor projects are put on hold. Like-- roofing projects-- which have to be done before any other work can be completed... which pushes all of the work until spring... :(

And a final note: my computer should be back tomorrow, and I didn't lose everything-- phew! Guess I'll have to wait until the next cool computer comes out next year... or the year after.... :)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Bad News, Good News.

Bad news: Computer crashed- again, big-time. I'm borrowing my son's--

Good news: It's a birthday celebration day and I have lots of pictures-- when I can figure out how to download my photo-program on this computer, they'll be posted :)

Until next time, please say a prayer for my computer-- however, it just may be time to go shopping... check out this really cool HP TouchSmart-- or maybe a MacBook... MacBook Air....

or when I wake up, maybe the computer Gods will put all my old computer parts back together in a way that works...

Saturday, October 18, 2008

fall tradition on a chilly day

Although a bit early, a local radio station played Christmas music today, and is continuing to do so all weekend. Perfect for our annual pilgrimage to Christmas in the Woods . It was a fun-filled day for the children~ their day started with wood-burning artist Mallon J. Moye, taking the time to show them how he does his work, and making them their own special toys~ each child is sleeping with a new wooden yo-yo and personalized box tonight :)

Sometimes family tradition can come with lessons for Mom-- like be prepared for REALLY cold weather~ the 50's sounds so much warmer when sitting at your desk at home! But there is nothing that a good cup of hot cocoa (or two... ok- maybe three) can't cure~

this little guy was the warmest of all-
The day ended extra special when the children's favorite group had them sing a bit on stage~ just a few lines can make life-long memories~

And today unofficially starts the season-

"Merry Christmas Everyone... Merry Christmas yeah....."

Friday, October 17, 2008

Lions and bears and sharks and...

Gotta love homeschool days at the zoo-- no crowds, quiet walks, special time with little 3-year olds who aren't old enough to 'do' zoo school, and... super Monty statues!

Of course you have to have some lions...and a really neat underwater tunnel for polar bear viewing~ or should I say Jacob-viewing? We were lucky to have about 20 minutes of rare polar-bear-play above us~

Shark tales up close~
And time for new creatures of your own~
This fuzzy little guy was carried around 1st-class-style by a little boy all morning. Although I'm not sure if the wooly bear would see it that way :)
Until next week- have a fantastic, fun, fall weekend!

Friday, October 10, 2008

What's Going On?

Still diggin' away.

Not sure what it is about dirt, but the children 'up and left' their paints-

to play with the tools- they decided they were farmers today.
I told Mark he looks like he's driving off into never-never land. My photography skills don't show the drop-off into the woods-- that's why Mark is working on a road back there.

Some day I'll be able to post a finished-project picture. :)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Simple Minded Mom

I'm definitely not a politically or business oriented person, and attempt to steer clear from most of the media. But with all of the financial talk, how can you not be aware of what's going on?

For many years we were in a social establishment that was trying to raise money for everything under the sun. The primary way being bake sales and yard sales. So I had a thought-- with all of the financial distress and government bailouts- why not just have a HUGE bake sale and consignment/yard sale on the Mall in Washington, D.C.? The politicians and business people could donate their used things to the cause. With 2 miles to work with, just think of the treats and goodies and bargains to find?!? It could even be a monthly event. The people would come in droves and bring in tons of extra money to the city. No, I don't have anything better to do right now. ;)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Color Red

You can find it everywhere- messy faces of red from red Popsicles, enjoyed in red Radio Flyer Wagons-
A primary red water color paint- The first color of red in a spectacular rainbow- Amusement park rides in red airplanes- And now you can find it on our karate uniforms-- new red belts for ma and pa! Woo Hoo! Two more stripes to go...

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Finger Paint

It's been a week of fall flurry. Doesn't happen often, but when I get in the cleaning/organizing mode- watch out. Needless to say it's been a light homeschooling week. But, the Taj Mahal is spotless-until the backhoe starts running once again... and the greasy fingers make pictures on the windows... and....

One activity we did fit in and one that's best done outdoors- finger paints! 4 pairs of little fingers made quite the mess- uh, I mean masterpieces.

Very fitting for my little Elizabeth~

and Jacob :)

What is it about getting your hands all gooey?

Let's forget that finger paints were done in shorts and t-shirts just a few days ago, and this is Elisha and Jacob playing outside today :(

Back to some finishing touches on the house~ and some school-work prep for the little ones~