Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Works for Me Wednesday - Keeping the Carpet Clean

Those who read this blog . . . ever (LOL) know that we're moving in a few weeks (incidentally the actual move date just got bumped a week+ later due to a scheduling conflict). And while I may not have mentioned it here, those who know me IRL probably know that the landlords of the rental house we're moving into are very ummm . . . concerned that the light colored carpet they just installed in said rental house stay well, light colored, or perhaps pristine would be a better word. The landlords' focus on this concern has been on our dog (there was much debating and discussion as to whether we'd even be allowed to bring her). Which, quite frankly, I found this abit amusing (in a frustrating way) because I can tell you the majority of carpet stains in our current house are NOT the result of the dog!!! In fact, I would venture to say that my kids' FRIENDS have left more stains on my carpet than our dog has. That is in no way meant to be critical of our friends, just a statement of fact, kids make messes, IMO kids are SUPPOSED to make messes! While I freely admit that there are times, as I am cleaning up yet another mess that I long for a little frilly princess who sits quietly on a satin pillow embroidering all day, most of the time I am very thankful for kids who embrace life to the fullest.

However, one concern I *have* had about the new house is the fact that the only eating area in the house is also carpeted with light colored carpeting. I find this impractical, kids or not. If a person wants to carpet a formal dining room that's one thing, but to have the only eating area carpeted is illogical to me.

But, my kids have come up with a solution that works for me AND them LOL. We were discussing where things were going in the new house and I mentioned that the kid-sized table that currently lives in a corner of our kitchen will be on the front porch at the new house. The kids immediately decided that they are going to eat all meals out on the porch. Now, we'll see how long the novelty lasts, but I have to admit, it hadn't really occurred to me that they would eat out there other than when we grill, so the idea of them eating at least some meals out there instead of in the dining room, definitely works-for-me :)

Pop over to Rocks In My Dryer for other Works for Me Wednesday tips.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Mommy, you make the worst cakes!!!

Sometime recently the girls were beginning to discuss next year's birthday cakes & I pointed out that, with moving away, I'm not sure if Miss Angie will be able to make their cakes next year. So for whatever reason that came up today in the car. I suggested that maybe I would make their cakes next year to which L informed me "you make the WORST cakes in the world" and reminded me of the time I measured the water wrong & we ended up with chocolate pancakes instead of cake (that would be over a year ago, and yet she claims she can't remember for 5 minutes that I said not to hit the dog?). A thought for a moment & said (with a totally impish look on her face) "Mom can you make me a peapod cake next year? Because I want a frog!" (background on that, we were looking at old pictures & she saw the pictures of her first cake (which is SUPPOSED to be peapod (2 peas in a pod) and insisted that it looks like a frog. (ok, she has a point, it does kinda look like a frog doesn't it? the cupcakes were because the girls hadn't had eggs yet, so we made egg-free cupcakes for them and regular cake for the rest of us (not that we didn't like the egg-free cake, I actually like it better, it's more moist, but it wouldn't hold together for the bigger cake in a weird shape). Anyway . . . I was amused at her "humor" over it all. L, on the other hand, was getting truly upset. We finally decided that we would TRY to make a cake & if it messed up, we'd buy one LOL.

L's current choice of cake for next year is a pig, A's stuck on the frog, not sure if she's serious though, or if it's just the joke about the peapod cake, dragging on.

We shall see, obviously lots of time till their birthday, but I think it was about this time last year that A decided on an armadillo cake and she never changed her mind on that one.

Another Giveaway

My Greening is hosting a giveaway for Matchstick Garden matchbooks! These look so fun! Great for letting kids help plant stuff, or for those of us who prefer our gardening to be no mess LOL.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

I decided since I have the next few weeks figured out I'd go ahead & use a calendar that would show all weeks, although I reserve the right to "tweak" as we go. And in reality breakfast is generally whichever of the breakfast options that the kids choose, so those aren't necessarily accurate, but it at least gives you some idea of the things we eat for breakfast.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Now I Know . . .

I came across this contest and thought it sounded like fun.

Something that I know now (though I frequently forget, and have to remind myself often) that I wish I'd known much, much sooner is to always believe the best!!!

I've talked before about the book Biblical Parenting and how much I learned from it. And it is the core principal of that book that I want to share as what I wish I'd learned sooner.

I wish I'd learned sooner to give the benefit of the doubt, assume a child forgot, or didn't hear, instead of assuming they disobeyed. Remember that kids don't think through cause and effect. Remember that before age 6 (or thereabouts, I don't remember the exact age) kids don't always understand the difference between truth and fiction. When I ask "did you break the lamp" and L says "no", she's not consciously lying. In her mind, if she says she didn't, then it didn't happen.

I don't have to focus on the motivation. When they spill something, regardless of whether they "knew better" or it was an accident, I can calmly tell them how to clean up the mess, or help them if needed.

God loves us, and gives us SOOO many chances. How often have you asked God's forgiveness for the SAME thing you just promised Him you'd "never do again"? Me too! So how can I do any less for my kids? How can I hold them to a higher standard than God holds me to? Jesus tells us to forgive others 70x7 times. That applies to our kids too!

Instead of teaching my kids to be afraid of "getting caught" I can teach them that they can always come to me and we can work together to fix things.

So, in a nutshell, I wish I'd read Biblical Parenting when my girls were babies!

Where all my computer time went last week

I took a few (probably more than I should have) random moments to enjoy the Bloggy Giveaway Carnival going on last week! It was so fun to check out so many new blogs! I found some fun new ones to add to my reader. And in the process, I even won some cool things . . .

Starbucks (YAY!! A favorite indulgence of mine, that I can now indulge w/o guilt of spending money I shouldn't LOL) from Rainy Day Diamonds

A handmade purse from Up On Eagle's Wings

And MORE Starbucks from Queen of the Marginally Bright

A Target gift card (yay! I can get something for the new house!!!) from Mommy Snacks

and free yogurt coupons from Rockin Mama

Some of the giveaways haven't closed yet, but I'd say I've already done quite well LOL.

This week's wrap-up

First some learning-related things. Yesterday morning as I was helping A choose her clothes for church (or more accurately vetoing the 4th of July t-shirt she wanted to wear to church LOL) we somehow got into a discussion of words that sound the same but mean different things. She started w/ bump (which I'm not sure is technically a homophone?) because it can be a noun or a verb (not the way she described it, but that's what she said, but then as we talked about it, she came up with several more. And I came downstairs from that to hear L telling Daddy how she & A were the same in some ways (insert several examples) and different in other ways (insert several examples, including "we smell different" which just made me giggle somehow LOL).

The girls have also decided we need chickens, and a cow, and dh said they also decided we need a horse, but I didn't hear that part. We went to their friend Annicka's house on Friday & her family got some chickens this spring, so the girls decided they need chickens when WE move to a farmhouse too. Not sure if the cow was because there are cow fields around Annicka's house (though not her's) or just because. I have to admit, much as I'm not a fan of chickens (we had them when I was a kid, dirty smelly, icky creatures!!) w/ the rising price of eggs I've been considering the idea and I THINK I could convince the landlord at the new place to let us have them. But obviously want to get there & settled in before we even consider it LOL. A cow would certainly help with the grocery bill but the schedule commitment is more than I'm willing to take on, we do too many trips & such to have to be home at certain times every day for milking, so they'll be disappointed on that one, though I suspect if it comes up again that pointing out that if we have a cow we can't ever go visit Mama & Papa or go to Sesame Place or Disney World would probably sway them LOL.

This was also a week of injuries. L was playing outside and fell, scraping her knee (which was already scraped from tripping on the sidewalk at the library last week) and elbow and then the next day A was running in the kitchen and managed to fall & hit her head on a rung of the bar stool, and got herself a nice goose egg. I was amused listening to the girls recount their week (& injuries) to Daddy when he got home Thurs night, L included the library fall even though it was the week before, but each of the injuries started with "I was running and . . ." I suggested that maybe this was a sign they should slow down abit LOL.

I finished up candle sales pre-move this week, so spent a good portion of the week on that, still have several candles to make, but at least no new orders coming in so I'm hoping that this week I can get all the candle stuff packed and out of my way.

I also sat down this week (during the girls' kindermusik) and maped out a menu from now till the move, so I'm hoping this week to go through & pack up the pantry & kitchen (except for stuff we'll need) obviously as I pack if I find random things that I'd like to use up I'll adjust the menus to reflect that, but at least I know what I can go ahead & pack away. (now I just need to find time tomorrow to POST the menu for Menu Monday LOL).

Friday, April 25, 2008

Friday Feast

Did you think I fell off the face of the earth? Yeah, me too! Busy week. Packing, making candles . . . spending more time than I should have entering Bloggy Giveaways . . . we also got to spend a whole afternoon w/ friends, which is definitely a priority since we won't get to see them as often once we move.

Anyway . . . here's today's feast.


Name something you would categorize as weird.

Weather that's in the 80's one day and the 30's that night.


What color was the last piece of food you ate?

Brown (cereal)


On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how much do you enjoy being alone? 9

Main Course

Fill in the blank: I will _________ vote for ___________ in _______.

How does that all work, w/ moving to a new state this close to the election? Let's go with "I will probably vote for McCain in 2008"


Describe your sleeping habits.

I stay up way too late. I canNOT go to sleep without at least reading for a few minutes (it's hereditary, Mom's the same way LOL), I sleep on my side, and would happily sleep in until 10:00 if kids let me LOL.

Monday, April 21, 2008

It's Bloggy Giveaway Time Again

I'd hoped to be able to offer something this time around, but since we're smack dab in the midst of moving, I'm doing good to remember to feed my children, much less host a giveaway, pick a winner and send out a prize. So . . . I'll just help you out by pointing out what some people are offering (check back, I'll keep adding to this post all week):

Acai Juice

Parking Pal (this is such a great idea!)

A Tutu from this site

Target Gift Card


An adorable apron

A Tea Party Book

Starbucks (yum! Can I tell you how much I love to indulge in this little luxury that is SO not in the budget these days LOL)

Educational Books

Personalized Fruit Roll-Ups (what WILL they think of next?)

Baking Mixes

A baby tree (oh come on, you know you have to click this one to see what I mean. Yup, I mean a baby tree! LOL)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

This week's Wrap-up

Not much in the way of "school" going on around here. Last week at church the "craft" was some random items (foam sheets, pipe cleaners, and popsicle sticks)and the teacher said "use those to somehow make a boat, and then take it home and see if it floats" SERIOUSLY?!?!?! A) I'm quite certain that a foam sheet isn't going to float B) no glue was provided, so the only way to attach the stick or pipe cleaner to the foam is to punch a hole in the foam. . . so, when it was time to go to church and poor A was still trying desperately to do SOMETHING w/ these random things, I told her to just take the pieces home and we'd use glue at home to stick them together. She's been working on her "boat" all freaking week!! And it's STILL not done. Somewhere along the line I broke the news to her that foam is NOT going to float, (especially foam that is now a bunch of little pieces held together w/ washable glue), but she's still having fun making it. So that's been "art" all week, and it's still going. . .

We went to Kinder Konzert on Thursday. It was a "performance choir" (they sang show tunes & danced a bunch). The girls were marginally interested during the show, but then were absolutely enthralled when the whole choir walked into Cici's while we were there eating lunch (what better place to take 30+ teenagers for lunch than an all-you-can-eat pizza place LOL). The girls spent most of lunch just watching those kids eat & asking random questions about them.

Friday afternoon my parents were here to help w/ moving stuff & take a load home to store. The girls helped my mom clean the bathroom (I know, horrible to delegate such things, but it's hard to delegate things like "go through my closet & figure out what to pack where & what to get rid of, and what we'll need before we move) and then they were excited to finally get to use the "gardening tools" they got for easter (I meant to ask mom if the cheapy plastic toys even marginally worked) and help mom weed the flowerbeds.

The rest of our week (other than Monday when we went up to see the rental house) has been spent mostly with me packing and the girls playing on their own.

Two Weeks of Toys

Two Weeks of Toys - Giveaway Event

For those who love giveaways,5MinutesforMom is hosting 2 Weeks of Toys, where they have another toy giveaway every day. They're currently on day 11, but all contests are open until the end. Click here to check it out.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Good thing we like chaos

Because it's definitely chaotic around here LOL. On Tuesday Dad took the co-sleeper (that we've had attached to our bed since the girls were a couple months old) apart and took the pieces (& mattress) home to store/reuse (one piece of plywood off the co-sleeper turned out to be the exact size he needed for the repairs he's doing in the "barn"/shed at their house, gotta love it when things worked out well that way) and took the coffee table out of our living room to store (we have a garage at the rental house that we can store stuff in but I'm leary of how leakproof it is, for storing furniture & such in). Then yesterday Dad brought the trailer down and we loaded up our boxspring (Dad doesn't think the queen boxspring will go out the stairs at the rental house, and because of the room layout, he's going to build us a bedframe that sits over the "bench" that runs the length of one wall, so it will be a better height w/o the boxspring anyway) and the guest room mattress, boxspring, and frame. Then last minute he decided he had room for one piece of the sectional out of the family room (which is moving to my parents' family room) so we pulled the big piece out of the sectional & they took it home too. The girls, and Precious (dog), had a field day finding all the stuff that had fallen under the sofa over the last 5 years (I've found that a sectional w/ attached cushions is horribly impractical because it's impossible to get stuff that drops down into the sofa OR move it to clean under/behind it). Lots of little toys, cheerios, etc. I think the biggest "find" (which, if I'd thought about it, I knew was there) was a beanbag toss target that was behind the sofa. Both girls, but especially L, have been having a blast playing beanbag toss. When they got Daddy in on the action he was throwing abit too hard & tipping it backwards, so he told them to put it against the wall. So now we have a beanbag toss thingy sitting where the one piece of sectional originally was and then one lonely end recliner of the sectional is on the far side of it LOL. It makes for rather interesting family room decor, hee hee. And our bedroom is totally chaotic. I started piling full boxes in one corner, the mattress is now on the floor with the lamps & clock & such on the floor next to it. There are several half-packed boxes in the room, the cedar chest that was at the end of the co-sleeper is now kind of floating in the midst of the room, there's a good sized pile of stuff to freecycle (that hopefully will go this week, I need to get it listed), and 3 trashbags of shoeboxes that I told our church's Adventurer director she can come pick up next time she's over this way.

Anyway . . . chaos is everywhere and we're definitely starting to look like we're moving woo-hoo!!

In other happenings, the weather today was GORGEOUS!!! We had a picnic lunch and spent the afternoon at the playground!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Moving right along

Just in case you thought I'd fallen off the face of the earth, I'm still here, we've just been kind of busy with packing and such.

  • Monday we went up to the new house and measured out the rooms and such. We also finally got final word that we CAN have our dog in the rental house, so that's good.
  • Yesterday my parents came down for most of the day and helped pack and repair and such. They also took some of the furniture we won't be using up to store at their house. The girls did pretty well with the fact that Mama was packing books instead of playing w/ them all day. They alternated between helping Mama pack books, helping Papa with whatever he was doing, and just doing their own thing.
  • I finally took 3 trashbags full of kid clothes to my neighbor. She has a friend w/ 5 little girls and I'd told her MONTHS ago that I'd give her some of the girls' outgrown clothes, but kept forgetting to actually take them over to her. Also let her know we're moving and she said they'd help keep an eye on the house & such if need be once we move.
  • Talked to neighbor about moving, they're considering moving (locally) and had a market analysis done on their house. Their house is nicer than ours but even taking that into consideration the numbers sound better than what dh had been guesstimating, so that's encouraging. She also pointed out that our HOA might not let us rent our house out, hadn't thought about that, must look into that before we waste time deciding between selling & renting.
  • One of the things Dad did yesterday was take down the co-sleeper that's been next to our bed since the girls were babies. That cleared a lovely chunk of space in one corner of our room where I've been stacking boxes today. Similarly, getting the trashbags of clothes to my neighbor & sending the coffee table to my parents' house cleared up a nice chunk of space in the living room so I can start stacking main floor boxes there too.
  • The master bath is completely packed except for things we need between now & when we move
  • my closet is packed up, there's still some half-packed boxes and such, but I've been 100% through everything and it's DONE.
  • Both my cedar chests have been emptied (& the stuff packed)
I still go back & forth between thinking I'll be done in plenty of time and thinking we won't be packed in time, but I'm feeling better about it all. I would guess that I'll continue to be pretty quiet on the blog until I get moved (or at least until the packing is mostly done), especially since right now I have increased candle orders to handle as well (good from a packing/moving standpoint, but one more thing taking up time).

Works for me Wednesday - Moving to a Smaller House

I suppose technically I won't know if this worked for me until we get moved LOL. As many of you know, we are preparing for a move next month. We're moving from a largish house to a rather small house. While we do have access to a garage storage area at the new house, I'm not overly confident as to how weather tight it is or otherwise how secure it is. I'm fine w/ storing boxes there (& plan to utilize it for that) but I'm not comfortable storing furniture there and my parents have agreed to let us store extra furniture at their house. But that means that just moving everything up there and seeing what will fit where isn't a good option. So, this week we went up to the new house and measured all the rooms, drawing in the weird nooks and such (which I LOVE about the house, but still, makes furniture planning abit more challenging when every wall is a different length LOL) then I came home and used this site to draw in the dimensions of each room, enter the dimensions of my furniture, and thoroughly plan out what furniture will & won't fit where in the new house. Woo-hoo!!

Visit Rocks In My Dryer for more Works For Me Dryer tips.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

It's Official

On Sunday dh was officially offered, and officially accepted the job. On Tuesday, dh officially STARTED the job! And today dh scheduled the moving van. His employer has it's own moving van, so that simplifies the process LOL. Their first available date was May 13, so May 13 it is. And dh is supposed to talk to them tomorrow about the rental house to figure out the details with that, and assuming it all works out, I'm hoping to go up next week one day & measure stuff to figure out how our furniture will fit (& what of it will fit LOL).

The girls have had some rough patches this week, but I think it's more a reaction to Daddy being gone than it is to the move itself. They're chomping at the bit to pack (& the sorting/packing that I've been doing just doesn't register with them LOL) so today I pulled out the box of empty snowbabies boxes and they helped me pack them all away. They were very excited to help & told me they want to help more. It's challenging because the things they can help me pack are either things that need to wait till later (kitchen dishes, canned food, etc) &/or they're things that I can easily have my mom or somebody pack if they have time (books, out of season clothes ,etc.) so I'm needing to focus on the odds & ends that need to have decisions made as I pack & nobody else can do.

So, that's the news around here. I'm doing so much better now that I have some absolutes to deal with instead of all the unknowns of the last few months. We're continuing to pray for God's guidance in deciding whether to sell or rent this house, considering the current market, but God has led so far and we have faith that He will work this out for us as well, though, if past history is anything to go by, probably in a way that we haven't even thought of yet LOL.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Now that moving is a reality in the near future (dh DID officially get the job, he starts work tomorrow), I'm focusing on using up as much of the food we have in the house as possible so we don't have to move it. So we might have some strange combinations of foods for meals for awhile, but it's all for a good cause LOL. Also, since dh is starting work tomorrow, he won't be home during the week, so that means we can eat things he doesn't like LOL.

Monday Breakfast: Oranges, cereal
Monday Lunch: Sandwiches
Monday Dinner: Garden Supper Casserole (that we didn't end up trying last week)
Tuesday Breakfast: fruit, oatmeal
Tuesday Lunch: leftovers
Tuesday Dinner: Choplets and Squash
Wednesday Breakfast: Rye cereal, fruit, yogurt
Wednesday Lunch: I think this is the day we'll met my parents for lunch, need to confirm it with them.
Wednesday Dinner: Shepherds Pie
Thursday Breakfast: Granola and fruit
Thursday Lunch: Fried Rice
Thursday Dinner: Spaghetti
Friday Breakfast: Oatmeal & fruit
Friday Lunch: Sandwiches
Friday Dinner: Potato Soup (still trying to try this one, something always seems to come up LOL)

Sunday, April 6, 2008

My Head is Spinning

Last Sunday dh had an interview for an accounting job 2 1/2 hrs away. We really struggled with even applying for this one because it's 2 1/2 hrs away (also 2 1/2 hrs from my parents, and 2 hrs from dh's mom) and the girls were already struggling so much with the idea of moving locally, that we were afraid moving away from family & friends would really throw them for a loop. BUT . . . dh finally decided to go ahead & apply, and leave it in God's hands.

So, he had an interview last Sunday. It went really well. He left, feeling confident he could do the work and that he would enjoy working with the Treasurer. He also learned, during the interview, that an affiliated organization had a house we could probably rent. The Treasurer described it as "an old farmhouse, in the middle of nowhere" he also said it had just been rennovated & was only about 10 min. from the office. The rent was an amount we could swing too (I'd been looking online for houses to rent in that area & hadn't seen much in our price range other than apartments). So just on that description, it seemed like a big push from God to at least consider the possibilities up there (plenty of outside play room was something I've been hoping for with this move, but realized might not happen).

Tuesday evening the Treasurer called & asked dh if he could come for a 2nd interview on Thurs to meet some of the other people in the office (since the first interview was on Sunday, dh had only met the Treasurer) AND he asked dh to "bring the family along, so we can meet them" and also said that the farmhouse was, for sure, available, and that we could go see it while we were up there.

We got there Thursday to find out that something had come that the Treasurer had to take care of, so he introduced us to the President and left. The President, R, interviewed us (if you ever want to really test your multi-tasking skills, try quietly entertaining two hungry 5 yr olds who have been riding in a car for the past 2 1/2 hrs, while still paying enough attention to the adult conversation to intelligently answer the questions thrown your way), then he & his wife took us to lunch, and continued a more informal version of the interview.

After lunch he took us over to the farmhouse & left us there w/ someone who could let us in, and answer any questions & such. The farmhouse is small, which I expected, given the rent amount. But has all new flooring (though I was kind of hoping "old farmhouse" would equal old wood floors, and this is carpeted throughout), kitchen was totally redone, new windows throughout & new heating & a/c. The girls immediately fell in love with the "secret room" as they dubbed the small closet under the stairs (the door blends in w/ the wall, hence the "secret" aspect of it).

And it really is in the middle of nowhere. It sits kind of in the middle of a large piece of land, there are some other houses, also rented to employees (at least some of them), but only 1 is within sight of our house. There's a pond w/in sight (but far enough away to not be a concern for letting the kids play outside. And I THINK there's a creek farther down the hill (but we didn't walk down there). The farmhouse is literally at the "end of the road" so no traffic! The girls had a blast running around outside. I can have my clothesline. . .

So, now we're just waiting for dh to officially be offered the job. Based on the way both the Treasurer & President have talked, it seems likely that he'll get it, but it isn't official yet. If he does get it, he'll need to start asap, since the person he's replacing is retiring soon, and there needs to be some time for training. So he'll probably go ahead & start working, staying in a hotel during the week, and I'll work on getting packed and such asap.

At the moment, I'm making plans assuming he DOES have the job, though not doing anything that will be a problem if he doesn't, mostly just lots of planning going on in my head right now LOL. I'm struggling w/ what to do about my candle business (which I've known all along, that I might have to give it up if we moved to a house that didn't have room for it). This one MIGHT have room for it in the basement (I was totally kicking myself for not bringing a tape measure along on Thursday, once everything's finalized & dh is working up there I want to take the girls up for a day & take a thousand and one different measurements and really look at each room w/ measurements of my furniture in hand and figure out what will & won't fit.) but I think putting all the candle stuff down there would make the area (it's not huge, and the laundry & such is there too) feel claustrophobic. So I'm leaning toward doing a "going out of business sale", and selling down my stock that way, and then selling off the supplies, and being done with it. But giving it a couple days before I make a final decision either way (& obviously waiting to know for sure about the job).

Been working on refocusing how I'm going through room by room, but still going through & trying to do my final organizing/decluttering, but now instead of packing for "storage" and leaving stuff for "staging" and for living here indefinitely, I'm packing to move, or at least making sure things are grouped such that anyone can pack them for the move. Just leaving out stuff we'll need in the next few weeks (which, at the moment, I'm working in the 2 spare bedrooms, so not much we'll "need" in them LOL).

I'm also going to mostly stop even attempting to plan/homeschool until after the move. The girls are excited to help pack (they want to move as soon as they can, especially if Daddy's going to be starting right away, they don't like the idea of him being gone all week every week) and most of what we were doing, can be delayed a few weeks & it won't matter, so we'll go ahead & read the library books we have now, and keep doing memory verse, Bible reading, and Kindermusik practice, but that's it. If the girls really feel they need to do crafts or something, I've got plenty of craft stuff nicely sorted out now, so I can just grab something for them to do when the mood strikes.

I'm amazed that, after all the angst A has had these last few months about the mere IDEA of moving, she's now 100% on board. We've talked about how it's farther away from Mama & Papa so they might sometimes spend the night at our house when they come to visit, and when they spend the night, the girls will shave their beds with Mama & Papa and they (the girls) will sleep in their "Dora beds" (blow-up sleeping bags) on the floor. We've talked about how we'll be going to a new church. They had a brief moment of worry about not knowing anyone at a new church until I pointed out that when we go to a playground or similar they usually don't know anyone but by the time we leave they often are telling me all about the new friends they've made, so they can make new friends at a new church too. They WERE sad about not being here for VBS, even when I assured them that the new church would have one too (there are several churches in the area surely we can find a VBS LOL). But Mommy, Miss Angie's doing a COOKING VBS, will the new church do a COOKING VBS? Ummm . . . no, probably not. During the conversation, I told them that we MIGHT be able to come back and visit for the cooking VBS, but last night at skate night at the church I was helping w/ prep-work for VBS while the kids skated & A came over, asked what I was doing, and, when I said "helping get ready for VBS" she said "but we won't BE HERE for VBS!" so I'm thinking she, at least, is over the need to come back for the cooking VBS.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Home Education Week, cont.

It is also National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day! So share a recipe…figuratively, as in two parts love, one part creativity, or literally, as in a super quick, nutritious meal your kids scarf up. Think about what you do in the day, what helps keep it organized and you sane (or how you got past that need for organization and saneness!), and curriculum materials you find effective.

Fried rice is one of my kids' favorite lunches. Healthy, quick & cheap, can't get better than that LOL.

The best thing I've found for keeping us organized is to have "circle time" early in the day. It grounds us, with some Bible reading & prayer. And also gives us a good forum to talk about our day. Since my kids can't read yet, I used clipart to make small magnets (just printed them out glued magnets to the back & covered them with packaging tape) for the things we routinely do. Then we arrange those in order on a small magnetic white board. If we're doing something I don't have a magnet for I write that on the white board (and they can generally remember what it is). I like this method because our days aren't always the same. sometimes we get together w/ a friend in the morning, sometimes we meet friends (or my parents) for lunch, sometimes we get together w/ friends in the afternoon. I can work in chores and any school things we want to do wherever they fit best. But the schedule lets the kids know what to expect in their day.

Check out other people's recipes for success here.