Friday, October 12, 2007

This week's wrap up

Ok, so if I'm going to post weekly, I should at least do it the first week I've set up the blog huh?

Let's see . . . since this is the first wrap-up, I'll go into abit of detail about what we're doing on an on-going basis as well.

This fall I got the Read an Learn Bible to use for our devotions that are a part of circle time. So far I've been very happy with it. It's gives short summary type stories of the major Bible stories in order, with pictures. Language is simple, stories are a nice length. Definitely worth getting IMO (now that our church SS lessons aren't chronological, if they were I would probably use the lesson stories for our devotion time, adding other versions of the story some days to "mix things up").

I also am on a yahoo group where people generally post ideas for seasonal "circle time" activities, so since our curriculum doesn't give us much for circle time, I've been using those ideas. The whole month of September we did an apple theme with lots of fun apple songs and finger plays and such. This month I decided to split things up so last week and this week we did leaves and next week & the following we'll do pumpkins.

Art this week was weaving. We didn't go into as much detail as the curriculum called for, but L especially really got into it. Up until yesterday morning their "looms" (foam board with straight pins) were on the floor in a corner of the room and L would sit down several times a day to weave. A not as often, or as long, as L, but she did seem to enjoy it as well. We picked the looms up yesterday because younger friends were coming over, I need to put them back out where the girls can get to them and see if they continue working on them.

Nature, we gathered fallen leaves and tried to "laminate" them but I think I didn't understand the directions or something, the girls had great fun doing it though, and I don't think will ever even notice that we never had a "finished product" to show for it LOL. I've been wanting to do the pinecone birdfeeder that we didn't get around to doing last winter, but that meant finding pinecones, one day this week while the girls were napping, I ran through the mcdonalds drive thru (their 99cent sweet tea is a very bad thing, if it was even $1.50 I'd probably skip it based on price, and if it was "fake' tasting sweet tea I'd skip it based on that, but it's real sweet tea for less than $1, how can I resist?) and then parked in the nice shaded corner of their parking lot and as I sat there I noticed that most of the trees providing that shade were evergreens and there were pinecones all over the ground under them. So when L woke up I handed her a bag and sent her out to gather pine cones, and when A woke up, I sent her out to help. We now have PLENTY of pine cones, and the girls had a BLAST. At one point when L was out there by herself, she came back and told me "even when I go 'way in', God and Jesus are there with me." (this was a grouping of maybe 7 trees, so "way in" is relative, they were always in my sight, but the branches were low enough to make them feel more isolated, I think). And to highlight our crazy weather, Monday they were wearing swimsuits and playing in water, Thursday they were wearing sweatshirts and shivering while they collected their pine cones.

Cooking/Baking not much this week, I was going to make an apple cookie recipe from the Waldorf Kindergarten Snack Book but when I went to make it, I realized that the apple juice concentrate I had in the freezer was a bigger than normal can (I think) and since the recipe didn't specify the size I was leary of using it. So, it occurred to me that I'd gotten a banana bread mix from Frontier last month when it was on sale, so since this month's order is going in as soon as I collect payment, now was a good time to make the mix and see if it was so amazing that I wanted more. So, we made it instead (the cookies had called for mashed bananas, so I'd gotten bananas for that, so used them for this instead). Something weird happened with the baking time (oven was turned off for awhile, not sure if it wasn't turned on at all until I noticed, or if it was turned on and then when I asked a friend to turn off the stove for the beans I was soaking she turned off the oven too?) and so part of it was too doughy, but more importantly, the banana bread has NO flavor. It smells delicious, lots of yummy spices (ginger & such) but there's no taste! So, despite it not turning out like it's supposed to, it told me what I needed to know LOL.

Housework, L is SO funny, she seriously loves to clean bathrooms! "Can we clean the bathroom again today mommy?" and so very disappointed at bedtime on the day I'd told her we were going to and then we never got around to it. "Ooooooh noooooo Mommy, we forgot to clean the bathrooms today, you PROMISED!" Very strange child LOL. Seriously though, I think it's because I hand her a damp rag and turn her lose cleaning the sink/counter and as far as she knows I don't "fix" it at all, just let her do her thing, so she likes the "do it myself" aspect of it. A, especially, is doing better about picking up after herself. The scissors have been in hiding for quite awhile because I was so done with the perpetual paper mess under their table and this week A asked to use the scissors again. I told her we'd try it, but that she needed to pick up ALL the paper scraps and put them in the recycling as soon as she was done. Awhile later when she was playing in the family room I reminded her and she came and picked them up with no problem, and then cleaned it up again later in the week when asked as well.

We've been doing "site words" and the girls are starting to get them, little by little. Although they "know" them better on the specific sticky on the wall then if I write them randomly somewhere else. No hurry here, but they're wanting to learn to read so I figured this was a nice easy start.

Kindermusik - this was our second week. The "Young Child" class is much less play oriented than the 3-4 yr old class they took a couple years ago. They're doing fine with it, but a child who didn't truly enjoy music already, I think would struggle. They're back to wanting me in the room, right with them. The first class I stayed with them the whole time. Today I told them I would stay in the room but wanted to sit on the "mommy chairs" (off to the side), they weren't thrilled with it, but were ok with it until a new kid (and new mommy) came in, then they needed me right with them again, sigh . . . babysteps . . . I really think once the newness of it wears off it's going to be a non-issue, it's such a small class (5 kids total, 1 is the teacher's dd who they know from SS, and another is a little boy who is very shy (so not likely to get in their faces at all) and was in Kindermusik with them before, the other girl was new today, she may "warm up" over time, but for the moment is also very shy), it's in THEIR SS room at the church, so they know, and are comfortable in, the room, they will babble away to Miss L (the teacher) non-stop outside of the formal "class" so no fears of her.

And speaking of music, L has decided that the Ikea step stool we have (that has raised "bumps" for traction on it) is her "piano" she happily "plays" the bumps as keys for long stretches LOL.

Playdates: We finally made it to our friends' A&J's house on a warm enough day to try out the big inflatable water slide they got at the beginning of the summer. L didn't like the way the splash at the bottom gave her a wedgie, so she spent more time sitting at the top or climbing up & down the ladder, but they all seemed to have fun regardless. Can I just say that weather warm enough for water play in mid Oct is insane!

My friend Kim brought her kids by for a little while on Wed. when she came to get the milk I'd picked up for her. My girls ADORE, her dd, Hannah, and H doesn't seem to mind that they're younger than her. So, they were thrilled, as always to get to play with Hannah and Yeva. And Kim and I always enjoy some time to visit :)

Our friend, M came for her last day of "school" with us on Thursday. Her mom, K, & I had talked this summer and agreed that M would come 3 days a week to do school with us (K was considering using the same curriculum, so I suggested that it was redundant for us to both be buying all these books and such when they only live 5 minutes away). But things kept coming up that K couldn't come over, and didn't want to drop M off, so they were only coming 1-2 days a week, and this week when they came K said she just has too much else going on, so she doesn't want to have to try to fit it in any more. I need to tell the girls that M won't be joining them for school anymore, they'll be sad, they were so excited that she was having school with us, and she was really starting to understand the routine of it and enjoy it, so we'll miss her. But we had fun on Thursday, gathering leaves and drawing pictures and such. Whenever we're around someone with younger kids (Kim's got Sage who's 1, and M's little brother, J will be 2 in Jan . . . ) I'm reminded of how much my girls would enjoy a younger sibling. I'm amazed that the 2 kids who fight like crazy if I hand them one box of crayons and tell them to share it with each other, will happily "supervise" J as he "colors" with them, and have no problem in that context handing him one box of crayons while they share the other, and if he grabs from their box as well, they pleasantly explain that he has his own and they need these so they can draw . . . why then do we have the fights when it's just the 2 of them? And yes, I realize they wouldn't always share so willingly with a younger sibling either, but I do think they enjoy the "big sister" type role and would thrive if placed in that role.

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