Wednesday, August 31, 2011

It's Wednesday

Today i am tired. been a busy week. schoolwork, dance classes, karate class, monthly Sam's club stock up day, registration for HS things, flooring installs, furniture moving, MIL hospitalization, some phone ready for saturday and a nap....
just thought i'd say how sleepy i am. that is all.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

week two--success!

School has been in session for two weeks and it is going exceedingly well. I always worry that it will be a nightmare, but you know, as the kids get older (sad as that is to me) life gets a bit easier to manage and they grow and change into more responsible, interesing people and life is fun.
This year we have a ton of activity, but none too early, so school gets a great amount of dedication, and the older ones are motivated to complete work well so they can enjoy the extracurriculars. I love that! The younger are frequently playing together and learning together and that is so fun to watch. The learning diability is becoming easier to work with as the kid becomes more emotionally stable and more learned in subjects.
We have enjoyed learning about Julius and Augustus Caesar and the birth of Christ, and the reading has been interesting. Writing is coming along nicely. Math has been much more joyous this year for everyone.
The most fun has been co-op registration and dance classes. We are gearing up for another Nutcracker Revisited production, and have added jazz, theater and irish to our stuff. We also are going to add piano. One can teach the others. AND art has been put on hold while the kids have pursued their own artistic interests of movie making, stop motion, crochet, painting, and scrapbooking. I figure that is also art and should be pursued with vigor while the interest is alive. Dance is art, too ya know..
So other than a nasty sinus infection I contracted this week, all has gone well.
Next week should be interesting though, as we are havng a large flooring install in the middle of the week. Can't complain. Life is blessed and the Lord always meets our needs and uses us to work His will. God is good.

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Better Start to the Week

Now that I have made some more appropriate learning activities for Kimberly, the week is much better. I started out early with a trip to the discount vet for the new dog, to get him fixed. Then got everyhting set out and here it is lunchtime and we all finished 10 minutes early! The younger ones are all done for the day except for some music and reading time, and dance classes, and the older just has some reading and science (since we didn't have enough science supplies--that's what happens when you eat the tums from your science kit!). We also learned that our carpet and vinyl install for the master bed and bath has been delayed due to backordered adhesive, so that is one more thing I don't have to deal with this week. SO GLAD! Now if these sinus issues we are all having would just go away....and we could order up some good old rainstorms.....wishful thinking I guess!
Hope you are having a good week!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

First Week Back to Normal

chutes and ladders for school...why not?
artistic creations with jenga blocks for dead pocket
rocket and sandy checking each other out
Eliz working on spelling
jordan working on handwriting
the big kids working on language arts
and kim working on file games with letter sounds

Well, alot has happened this week. After lots of planning for the "school year" I started off with a big ole flop. I guess I figured that since Kim had gone through 2 sets of preschool curric and one set of K curric that she would be fine taking first grade really slowly. WRONG! The kid is just barely five and very bright, but still in no way ready for the workload of first grade. It was glaringly obvious, as was my oversight that I have a kid with noverbal learning differences who needs tons of one on one and reinforcement, and the day started kinda roughly. By lunch on day one I had redone our schedule about 4 times until I found something workable, then I had researched K curric for Kim. Teaching and helping to organize an 8th, 6th, 3rd/4th, 2nd grader, and kindergartener is a bit of a challenge at times.

This week we also started back to dance classes. Added more... We have 2 in theater dance, 2 in balllet, one in jazz, one in hip hop, and one in irish. Three nights a week they dance, and they LOVE it. Works for me. It is a great Christian studio. Just one kid not dancing yet.

Another kink in the system was the addition of a new dog. (i dreamed we had a dacshund last week.) Our neighbor comes over Tuesday with a stray dacshund and asks if we want it. Of course the kids want it! But he has to be neutered and get used to our dog. Well, he is used to our dog, but his surgery is Monday. And so Rocket enters the family. He is very submissive and quiet. I like that.

So back to the schooling stuff. Jacob is doing well on his independent work and so is Em. They are fine. Elizabeth is learning and feeling more confident every day, and I am learning how to modify for her needs. It is good. Jordan is learning quite a lot with less resistance than last year. I feel he will be an independent learner at a fairly early age. As long as he can earn my trust to complete the work well. And as for Kim, she got to get some new stuff from Mardel for school. We bought another Saxon K kit. I really liked it better than the others. Most were too advanced for five year olds, and had almost no hands on work, in my opinion. I am an advocate of Better Late Than Early. And for reading I just read to her daily, sing with her, and we are doing a developmental alphabet approach with cut and paste, searches, tracing, and coloring, mostly with free internet printouts. We are all learning history and are at the point in the Roman Empire where Christ is about to be born. Jacob loves his book so much (Genevieve Foster series) that he has been reading ahead.

Creativity has been the order of most days, too. Jacob has been creating art and figures and conversing w/ Mr. Wood. I think they are having too much fun! Not really. Jordan has been drawing like his brother (and he is really good). Emily and I have been sewing. The younger girls have sculpted and painted and done pastel work, and of course there has been a ton of dancing in the house...and they still daily perform something from Fiddler.

Such a blessing to homeschool. Oh, the family relationships that are being built, and the people they can surround themselves with through homeschool, dance, and church. The artistic ones seem to be the faves here. Soon I suppose scouts will start for one of them, but he is rumored to be asking for some dance classes in the spring if he doesn't choose baseball......I better hold on tight. It promises to be an adventurous ride!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

coming in a few days....

So the new school year has started for us and I think this blog will keep a format of weekly posts unless something highly unusual occurs. Look for a sort of weekly diary at the end of each week--but give me until sunday to get it typed...i tend to be a little fried by the end of the week...oh, new furry family member with pics coming soon! Name is Rocket.
That is all.
mom signing off.
good night

Monday, August 8, 2011

Summer is Ending....

Well, we survived Fiddler on the Roof, with rave reviews and over 1400 in attendance! It was FABULOUS! and we look forward to what next summer holds....But for now we relax a bit. This week there will be no schooling. Just swimming, playing, chore training (yep, gotta do that), finish painting the bathroom, and with a little luck, the 14 year old carpet in the bedroom will get replaced. And for that we will take a day off.
Next week we begin dance lessons back at Timbrel, start full-on homeschooling, and in two weeks we plan for co-op classes. It is still terribly hot, but on the bright side, we are only at 104 today...the lowest temp so far in August! Sounds crazy, no? YES! It is, and from the looks of things we are going to break the 1980 record for consecutive days over 100 degrees. I recall t-shirts saying "I survived the Texas heat wave".
Oh well. It has been a great summer blessed with tons of fun and a bit of learning and growing. Life is good. Life is blessed. God is great. Talk to you soon!

Friday, August 5, 2011

August is HOT HOT HOT!!!!!

So, this summer has been a time of change at our house. Big bro is growing up and therefore not playing nearly as much. But now and then he gets in the floor to play with the younger kids and it is so sweet. He swims and rides bikes and plays lego and plays in the yard and films with them. The dynamic is changing but it is still all good. He has also been gone almost every evening for FOTR theater rehearsals but often we all tag along.
One night he went to a Ranger game with his dad and the two youngest, so us older girls had a tea party and ate at Braum's and went shopping. Em is such a party planner! We had so much fun...but so did they!
Then, wonder of baby turned five! I miss little ones, but at 41 i have to say, pushing a stroller and changing diapers and potty training and all that just doesn't appeal the way it used to. Still, i miss little ones, and mourn their childhood ending. This year all five will be homeschooling. It is good, and yet bittersweet. Life is fleeting and I try to savor every minute. Her party was HOT but fun.
She asked for a butterfly party and she got it. Yummy! She was so cute and had such a good time! She also got signed up for her favorite activity--ballet! She is so ready to start. They all are...well, except Jordan. He is in scouts and wants to try baseball in spring. He is a darling, too.
Here are the older girls bike riding. The night we shopped we bought Emily an adult sized bike. She loves it. And yes, she is that big now! We ride bikes a lot here.
And I wish i could post photos of Fiddler, but that is against copyright so I can just post this shot of Jacob in his Anatevka costume for the show. Opening night was last night and the cast and musicians blew people away. It was a wonderful show! So proud of them all! Now I think we will have more kids acting next year (from this house). IF the show is appropriate in our minds. We didn't really know much at all about FOTR when we started this show, and there are a few reservations, still, but it is a fun show to be part of. He is having a blast!

Now if we can just survive this heat. it has been well over 102 for days and days. Last night we almost had rolling blackouts due to energy demand. And we are in severe drought. But in perspective, we also had one of our coldest winters on record, so I suppose it all evens out. Still, you can always put on more stuff for warmth, but there is little you can do to cool down in 112 degree heat.

Stay cool and thank God in all things!