Monday, February 25, 2013

Weeks in Review

Yep.  Weeks.  Not just one.  Who knows how many!  I promise to keep it as short as possible.  Mostly pictures.  Maybe.


We've been using Apologia Botany in science, and it's been great.  The projects are doable, fun, and have been relatively quick.  The only one that took a little more time is the light hut for growing plants.  I'm hoping we'll benefit from it!  We sowed a variety of flower and vegetable seeds.  We already have some emerging seedlings!

As we sowed the seeds, we made a chart so that we know what is what.  We placed a sticker on the left corner of the tray, and one on the bottom left corner of our chart.  This is in case our planting tray gets turned around, we know which way to look at it to compare to the chart.


Of course, there was a failed science experiment.  If I had a dime for every failed experiment...

The carrot was supposed to grow new leaves, but clearly it just shriveled up to look like Beetlejuice!

We are also working on our bean growth chart to see which bean will grow the largest: the one taped to a sunny window, the one inside a dark drawer, or the one in the cold refrigerator.  So far, the one in the dark drawer has the others beat by a long "shoot."  (haha) 

Here, the girls are experimenting with paper towels to see how non vascular plants absorb water.


I must say, I am loving the colonial/revolutionary time period!  The kids enjoy most of it, too.  Some library books that we really enjoyed reading include:  Benjamin West and his cat Grimalkin and Sybil Ludington's Midnight Ride.  There was also picture book called The Boston Tea Party that my kids loved because it had little cartoon mice on each page, doing their own thing that related to the story.  They just thought that was hilarious!  Unfortunately, I don't remember the name of the author.

We made Johnny Cakes one day.  Katie and I liked them; Emily did not.  Nothing unusual!  We put homemade chunky applesauce on top - YUM!

We completed a Daniel Boone lapbook, which I will write a detailed post with pictures on that when I get a chance.  And we have all the materials ready for an American Revolution lapbook, as you can see here!

Something I thought would be fun is to get a chest of some sort, and put various history related things into it, when appropriate.  The idea is that the girls would open up the history box and pull out a piece of history, so to speak.  After looking all over the antique mall, I ended up finding the box below at Hobby Lobby.  So, it's not really old, but it looks like it could be, and it was way cheaper than anything I found antique shopping!

So far, the girls pulled out a draft of the Declaration of Independence, Colonial money, and lapbook elements.  I may drop a book or two in there from time to time - whatever will fit that goes with our lessons on a particular day or week.  I just love this idea and hope it evolves into greater things!  I'm even thinking that some sort of large clay pot would make a great botany project pot!  And if you're learning different countries in your history lesson, why not get a suitcase to put fun things in?

We are plugging away at other subjects, too, but those aren't as much fun to show & tell!  Really, how many pictures do we need of our kiddos doing math and doing language arts?

Last Friday, we went to a production of Rosa Parks, which was well done and very educational.  The weather was a little sketchy that morning, but cleared up before we left.  I'm so glad we got to go!

And Friday night, we went to Winter Jam!  We got to hear 10 Christian music artists do their thing for God, and tell their stories!  It was truly amazing.  I wish I had gotten pictures of the girls there.  I don't know why I didn't think to take at least one of them. 

Hopefully, I'll get my act together and blog on a regular basis.  I really do enjoy writing, and reading other blogs!

Linked with Unsocialized Homeschoolers Weekly Wrap-Up

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Best Unplanned Valentine's Day

 "We love because He first loved us." (1 John 4:19)

I don't think my kids will ever know how unplanned this day was.  Somehow, I managed to pull all sorts of goodies out of the magic hat, or shall I say heart?

Last night, I scanned my Valentine board on Pinterest, and found a few ideas I knew I could pull off last minute.  One thing that was super quick and easy was a free printable that I placed in a frame on the piano before I went to bed.

This morning, before the kids got up, I made a batch of puppy chow and mixed in some Valentine M&Ms and sprinkles.  I placed it in pink mugs on plates that were hiding in a closet.  Perfect!

For breakfast, I made heart-shaped pancakes colored with red food coloring.  The kids thought they were the best ever!

In the pantry, I found a strawberry cake mix and just the right ingredients for homemade icing.  So, I made cupcakes.  The big ones went on the cake plate my mother in-law gave me.  It was a wedding gift they received many years ago, and now I get to enjoy it.

The baby cupcakes fit nicely in an old metal heart-shaped pan that I found at an antique mall a few weeks ago.


I couldn't stop there.  I made a quick trip to the store for a pack of Reece Cup Hearts (hubby's favorite), a bag of caramel hershey kisses, and some strawberries.  You might have guessed that I made chocolate covered strawberries.  Don't they look pretty on my vintage/antique (?) crystal plate?

I remembered having two Valentine tins tucked away, and paper doilies that I've had for years.  I put the doilies inside the tins and filled the tins with goodies for the kids.  Hubby's treats went into a red bowl.  I made the chocolate hearts out of the leftover chocolate from the strawberries.  For the hershey kisses, I stamped some small Valentine images, punched them out with a 3/4" circle punch and glued them to the bottom of the kisses.  I also punched some zebra striped paper.  How fun is that?


And here's the entire Valentine treat spread.  One would never know that none of it was pre-planned!

 Happy Valentine's Day!