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Friday, February 26, 2010

Got Rice??

Years ago I got the idea from somewhere of filling a sock with rice and using it as a heating pad for whenever I needed one. It works great.. I stick it in the microwave for about a minute and it stays warm for quite awhile... and it is safer than falling asleep with the electric heating pad on. Last Saturday we took the boys to the track to practice for a race they will be competing in (more to come on that topic) and a couple days later LiLi woke in the middle of the night complaining that his stomach was hurting... we soon realized it was muscle pain (he's never run so much in his life!!) I pulled out my trusty rice sock and it did the trick... he was soon back to sleep. He wanted it the next night as well and I could see where this was heading... I was sure that soon the other two would start coming up with ailments so they could take mommy's rice sock to bed with them. I must say it is quite soothing so I figured I would make them each one of their own. I found some unmatched socks (we seem to have quite a few of these floating around... if anyone can tell me where socks end up I'd love to know:) filled them with rice, stitched them shut and then took some felt and made a little cover for each. I let the kids choose the colours they wanted and appliqued a little motif on each which I created in Photoshop. It was a fun, quick project. Don't look too closely at the stitching though... I was watching The Mentalist while sewing and I think the TV was getting more attention! The kids were pleased with how they turned out and hopefully they will provide much comfort in the weeks, months and years to come. (and now I get my rice sock back all to myself!)

If you want to see other creations made by, for, or with kiddos using everyday items from around the home check out the Kiddos Create challenge hosted each week by Mama Jenn.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Fruit Break

We had one of THOSE days today. The kids were whiny and not listening, argumentative and complaining and all this before 9am! My patience was thin and my voice was raising several decibel levels a second. I had to take a 30 second time out with God and make a decision about what was going to get done today. We (God and I) decided that we (the kids AND I) all needed a Galatians 5:22-23 reminder. I scrapped the lesson plans I had for the morning, got the Bible, sat the kids down and we talked about the fruit of the Spirit.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, gentleness and self-control"

We talked through each one and what it would look like if we were putting them into practice. By the end of the lesson, attitudes had changed and peace had returned to the house! I printed off some apple shapes and let the kids colour them. We wrote one fruit of the spirit on each one, making one complete set for each child. Then we made a huge tree to hang on the wall... the kids used green paint to make hand print leaves and I painted the trunk. For the rest of the week I will give the kids the opportunity to stick a fruit on the tree as I observe them practicing one of the fruit of the spirit. Hopefully we will soon have a tree laden with fruit! (Pictures to follow.)

Tomorrow we return to regularly scheduled programming... :)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Yummy Valentine's Day Dessert

I was in the grocery store at 4:45 today (store closes at 5pm) to get stuff for dinner (because I still can't get myself back on track with meal planning thus I am in the grocery store EVERY day ugh!) This week I vow to get back to being ORGANIZED!!! Anyway, I decided that since I hadn't really done anything for Valentine's Day (not a holiday we really celebrate although JDF and I did go out for dinner with another couple last night) I would make a special dessert for dinner. I have this perfect recipe for biscuits that my friend Amie shared on her Facebook wall about a month ago. I have made them about 3 or 4 times since then and the recipe truly is EASY, NO FAIL and DELISH!! Today I increased the sugar to 2 TBS, used a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut the biscuits, sprinkled sugar on top and baked them. I let them cool then served them with sliced strawberries and pink whipped cream. It was a hit! Fast, easy, simple... Happy Valentine's Day!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

We have had an interesting 3 weeks to say the least. JDF had a successful mission to Haiti with a group from our church. Many people asked how I felt about him going... homeschooling 3, pregnant with the fourth... I can understand the concern, but when I thought about how blessed I am and how much we have, I could not imagine him not going to help people who have little to no hope, who don't know where their next meal was coming from, who had seen loss beyond measure, and most of all who need to know the love of Christ. I was tremendously blessed by my parents and inlaws, and many friends that helped me out over the 9 days he was away. I missed him like crazy as did the kids but the experience is one I would not trade.

Our schedule for the week JDF left, the week he was away and this week following his return has been all over the place. That coupled with me being sick for a few days this week has made for a sporadic school experience for the kids. We are all looking to get back to some sense of normal on Monday morning. Having said that, though formal "school" hours were limited, life learning was taking place and that I am pleased about! Daddy being in Haiti brought the urgency of the tragedy to light for them... they prayed constantly for his safety as well as the wellbeing of the Haitian people. It warmed my heart to hear their prayers, knowing that God was hearing every word as well.

I was considering posting our activities from the last month is separate posts but I'm not :) Sorry you have to put up with one long post of some of the things we did... my brain is too cluttered to try and organize my thoughts that well!!

Letter Q
We made snowflakes out of Q-tips.
For art I was teaching the kids about lines.. straight lines, squiggly lines, diagonal lines, curved lines etc. So we used a wax resist technique (draw with crayon and then paint over in watercolour) to make "quilts". Each patch displayed different types of lines. They turned out great and the kids had fun!

Letter R

Rainbows were our theme for the letter R.we had rainbow pancakes...

made rainbows using this tutorial ...

made rainbow rice (we talked about mixing colours to make new colours)...

Letter Sfor the letter s we sponge painted...

and had a letter S muffin tin lunch (sandwiches, strawberries, sausages, spinach salad, Sun chips & snowmen (made with marshmallows)

Tot School (Princess Buttercup)

sorting snowmen.. largest to smallest using these printables from Confessions of a Homeschooler
more sorting...Buttercup has taken an interest in the tangram set...

fine motor... putting spagetti in a shredded cheese container.

Preschool Corner (LiLi)
using the geoboard to make rectangles

"writing" in rice

making patterns (and eating some:)

marshmallow and toothpick construction...

It's All Elementary (KaiKai)
I used this awesome tutorial from Mama Jenn to reinforce the colour wheel.

t-shirt grafitti...

learning about magnetism...

Life School

The kids spent sometime with Grandpa working in his garden. The harvested carrots, beets and bananas, and planted corn (can't wait till that's ready:)

Thanks for visiting! Tune in again soon for some more of our adventures!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

One More Sleep

School for the past week has been haphazard to say the least. JDF joined a team from our church on a Haiti Relief mission. They went to deliver food, water and medical supplies and to set up field hospitals in a couple locations.

The kids have been praying fervently for Daddy, and they talk about him often during the day, but the hardest time has been the nights... the miss him doing family devotions with them, giving them kisses and tucking them in. I helped them make a paper chain to count down the number of sleeps until he comes home (an idea I got from my dear friend Marielle). They have taken turns tearing off the rings at bedtime and holding the slip of paper while they say a prayer for Daddy. It seemed to help calm and settle them a bit and definitely created a visual that this trip will come to an end!

Tonight we are down to our last sleep till Daddy comes home! It will be good to have him back with us tomorrow night!!