Saturday, November 06, 2010

Kid Funnies

At dinner someone said “Don’t scream you head off.” Seth, 3, replied, “Yeah, cause then you couldn’t see.”

Kamron, 12, wrote a formal essay for his Key of Liberty class and ended it “in Jesus’ name amen.”

Seth screams chasing other kids, “I’m going to get you. I’m the paparazzi!”

“How old are you?”
Seth replied, “I’m three and five. I’m mixed.”

Our black nameless cat brought in his 12th mouse since moving here, and laid it in front of our bedroom door. Our little Siamese cat, Surrey, then came up carrying a moth and laid it next to the mouse and then looked up proudly. Aaah… let each contribute what he can.

We quizzed the younger kids on body parts. Seth said, “You didn’t ask where is my brain.” So I asked, “Where is your brain?” “It’s in my head.” Then he ran around jumping and shouting, “Don’t shake my brain! Don’t shake my brain!” This is the real reason human babies aren’t born mobile; if they were they’d all give themselves shaken baby syndrome.

I bought Eggnog this week. Sethie opened the fridge and his eyes grew big and he says, “Look Mom, there is Christmas in here.”

Our home teacher lives not too far from us and asked us if we could hear him yelling at his kids. Kamron replied very politely, “Oh no, we can’t hear you. We are too busy yelling at each other.”

Aubrey, 10 yrs. says to Millie 8 months, “Say dada.” Millie says, “dadada.” “Say mama,” “Mamamama.” “Say la, la, la.” Millie, replies in her harshest squawk, “unch, unch, unch.” Aubrey pauses and then says, “Well, I don’t think Millie is going to be a singer.”

Brennen, 7, calls me, “Mom, look we can win America’s Funniest Home Video. There is a headless fly doing ballet on the table!” Sure enough, there was. Umm, gross.

We were trying to find a radio station where the DJ was not swearing or talking about something inappropriate. I finally gave up in frustration and said, “In Utah not all the DJ’s cuss.” Aubrey says, “Yeah, we should move to Utah for the radio stations.”

Friday, September 17, 2010


I got beeswax awhile ago and tried to use it but found it tricky so I set it aside. Then recently I needed a duck for a story and did not have one so I thought of the wax. My hands bother me sometimes so I was reluctant to try to mold the hard wax, but to my delight as I got going with it it became warm and pliable. Then as children do, my daughter wanted to make something. I think her projects turned out very well.

For a good video on creating with beeswax see .

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Montessori Work

Seth has been asking for "activities" lately. My Montessori materials are not all set up yet, but I have a few that he is able to use. Of course when he does them the other children want to also. It is interesting for me to start over again with these activites. Logan worked through them and Seth is only my second to start at the beginning. He has a hard time following them through to completion, but I get to see that focused attention peek out every once in awhile. When he spills beans for his pouring activiy he immediately stops to pick them up. I find the order within the Montessori activities is very enjoyable and calming even for me as I teach them. Now I just need to get everything organized for the rest of them.

End of Summer Adventures

We went to Fairy Tale town with my sister and mother-in-law. Then for Brennen's birthday he wanted to go to the zoo. He said it was the greatest birthday ever. It was a lot less work than having the 13 boys over to have a nerf gun war for Kamron's birthday, but they also had a blast. Kamron was so excited to have so many of his friends together at one time.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Mother's Are the Heart of the Home

I know that my position in the home is powerful-I know I am the heart of the home, and sometimes I feel like since this is so my home must be on its deathbed. We are having an unorganizational heart attack currently and I am grumpy, which makes for unhappy children and husband. I wish I could say it was a mild unhappiness, but it is not-I have seen my kids look a little insecure, which is the absolute opposite of what a home should be. But I am going to repent and get organized and learn to pick up my own stuff so that my kids can at least visualize what it is and my section, which is an awfully large part of it, will be clean.

Today I am caught up with all of my work, work and have no appointments until Wednesday. Tonight I am going to fold the mountain of laundry and clean, and tomorrow I am going to create a memory with my children with a nature walk and outside game, making yarn dolls and a mathematical puppet show, because that is the subject that needs the most spark right now. Did I mention that I just had my kids tested? The three older are all above grade level in reading and language arts, two are not doing so hot in math, so we are going to declare Tuesdays math days and pull in puppet and chalk stories, Montessori manipulatives and good old fashioned drill to see if we can get them to understand numbers more intuitively, so that when asked what 2.3 and a half are they would never choose 24, because it simply doesn't make sense.

After all that study, I am going to organize something-not sure what yet. It all needs done, except the kitchen, which was done last week. And while I am doing all of it, I am going to pray and repent and pull those rhythms in to create that structure and security that is non-negotiable for our family to function.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Philosophy of Education

I travel and work with families who homeschool. One mother asked me what philosophy I follow. Umm, well I pull a lot of my book choices-what I read to the kids, and what I offer them for their own reading-and ideas from Charlotte Mason inspired programs. At one point I was pretty close to a purist with this method. My younger children do a lot of Montessori type things, and some Waldorf. Our handwork is often very Waldorf inspired. Aubrey,10, and Brennen, 7, are going to a Waldorf school one day a week for handwork, wet-on-wet watercolor, spanish and eurythmy and Kamron, 12, is going to a TJed Lemi trained co-op one day a week for Key of Liberty and Shakespeare, very excitedly and all of his own accord I might add-just how the TJed philosophy says he should. So what philosophy do we use? We use what fulfills my goals and my children's goals. I find that many of the philosophies overlap and so I use parts of several of them. For instance, you will find that handwork is a key part of Charlotte Mason, Waldorf and even Montessori. CM and Montessori ask that this work be practical and teach real skills. Waldorf asks that this work fill the need of mastering something difficult and be beautiful and natural. All ask that the hand be trained. The ideas dovetail and work well together. All three teach the skill of attention-just in different ways. They each respect the child as an individual, in what they take from what is offered, so does TJed. Perhaps, this is the philosophy I follow-one of respecting individuality, but with very high expectations. I like to know about all philosophies and help my little ones take whichever parts will best meet their needs.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Wool Birds

Kamron went to an LDS homeschool youth conference last week. I didn't want to do any lessons in our regular schedule, so he wouldn't miss anything. I thought a poem and fairy tale might be fun for the younger ones as our group lesson. With this we made birds out of wool and then flew them outside. Then the children created a puppet show and told me the story.

Calvert Art Class

We are really enjoying Calvert's video based art class this year. I like that everything needed is included in the kit. We try to watch and then do a lesson about once a week. We have studied about contour lines and inner lines. We have drown blind self-portraits, line drawings and etchings with ink. This is a really good program for a mixed age group.

Wool Painting

I am trying a wool painting. Here is where I am so far-

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Starting Over With History

We finished modern history last year and so we are beginning the history cycle over again this year. We are using "Story of the World" and "Children's History of the World" and will pull in "Our Island Story" later for the younger set. The older children and I are reading "The First Two Thousand Years," by Cleon Skousen. These are our spines and then the studies will be fleshed out with atlases, topic specific books, Veritas Press cards, videoes, timeline and activities. One of our first activities this year was an archeology dig to answer the question what is one way we learn about ancient civilizations and what can we learn. All the kids had fun with this, even Seth who had no idea why we were scraping a clay block on our table=).

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Computer Studies

Let the dismantling begin.

When not riding horses, little Millie finds her big brothers' many cars to suck on.

Sometimes this makes her quite sad, after all she is a girl and she is sure that there must be something a little softer to play with.

So her mom uses this pattern to sew a little doll.

The next project is a little larger.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Aubrey's Recital

Aubrey took tap and ballet this last year. Loved it and hated it depending on the day, what the other kids said to her and how often she was corrected by Miss Nancy. It was a good experience for her, but I do not think we will be doing it again.

Photo of new house

I have been cutting roses twice a week since we moved in.

And here is a photo if the new house.

New Life for an Old Desk

I inherited my Mom's antique sewing desk. It is built to hold the machine in the whole so the material can be level with the desk when one works. I liked this desk mostly because it was hers. My husband was frustrated with moving it yet again knowing that I rarely sew.

As you can tell it needed work. So I decided to attempt my first furniture redo.

I emptied it and found this cute pattern stuck behind a drawer.

It was my mom's. I love that there is a story to tell there. I also found a scrap of paper in the desk with her signature on it that I will be putting back into it.

Isn't it pretty now.
I sanded, primed and painted twice. I intended to get new handles for it, because after I polished the originals they came out such a shiny brass which I really did not like. Apparently the size of these handles is very rare, none of the local stores carried them and the ones I could find online were ridiculously priced, so I got satin nickel spray paint and went to work. I like them quite well.