Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tuesday - Craft Day

Circle was really rough today. I carried it, but barely. After that, we all went outside to play. It was pretty sunny and warm. We spent quite a bit of time in the garden clearing the black berries. 

For story we read the story from our Enki book - The Singing Snake. Brother laughed the whole time through! It was neat to hear him think something was funny and really laugh about it. I don't think he laughs a lot other than during wrestling time and night. It's not that he is not a happy kid, but in some ways, he is really quiet and deep.

Brother's butterfly is the one closest to the window.

Today's craft came from our Enki craft book. It uses the wet on wet paintings from 2 weeks ago as wings and a stick as the body. Brother loved making it and is very proud of his. It was really interesting watching him trace around the wing template. I could see where it became more difficult as he crossed his midlines. The paper was really thick for cutting, and his hands lacked some strength. Although, he is much more accurate with scissors than last year. He was able to punch 3 of the hole punches, which was a hand strength issue again. But, he had no problem with the sewing. A couple times when he was cutting, I gave him a little push to not give up. I am trying to strike a balance, to teach him that when things are tough, he shouldn't just give up. But again, remembering "Process Not Product".

Monday, March 30, 2009

Monday - Process Not Product!

Today was Co-Op day, and the last day of our turn to host for a while. The kids were very relaxed and the play went smoothly. It was very peaceful for me. 

This afternoon we baked gluten free blueberry muffins with brown rice and buckwheat flour. The kids love them! I have a hard time with baking because I am a perfectionist. I practically have to say "Process Not Product" over and over in my head to stay calm. But the kids had a lot of fun making them, and I was a little more relaxed when flour was spilled on the counter. I am always afraid that if you don't get exactly the right amount of flour in the dough, then the muffins won't turn out.  Fortunately, this is a very forgiving recipe. It also helps if I can get the ingredients out on the counter, in the order they need to be put in, before calling the kids in to bake.  Hopefully as we bake more, I'll loosen up a bit.

I should do some Tonglen practice focusing on flour spilling before next Monday!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Spring Break

We're having Spring Break this week.

Meanwhile, baby, who is almost two years old is really enjoying bodily functions right now, including spitting! So the boys are doing a lot of it! Baby spits and Brother just eggs him on.

Brother loves egging him on so much, that he even created his own spit art. Here is the first stick figure he has ever drawn, and it is with the sole purpose of illustrating the act of spitting. He put them all over the pavers in the back yard.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday 1st day of Spring!

Today we went to the Washington Park Arboretum to celebrate the first day of Spring. 

Here is the link   http://depts.washington.edu/wpa/index.html

Last year we were there as well. It was really interesting to see which trees were in bloom this year compared to last year. This Spring has been much colder and there are not nearly as many blooms. 

The baby walked the whole way by himself! 

We wet on wet painted in the afternoon using yellow and blue. Brother really, really wants to draw forms, so he did one that was for the "lesson" and then I gave him a second piece of paper that he could do what he wanted with. I didn't get pictures and we have already used them for our art project. 

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Spring Table

I put the Spring Table on Thursday night after the kids were in bed. I wet felted the little nest of roving and put little branches in it along with two little blue eggs. We made the caterpillar for an earlier craft, and I found a leaf I had knit last year. Brother found the rocks out in his digging spot to contribute to the table. I found some duck feathers on our Spring walk and added washed and added those later. Brother made the lady bug last year as a wet felting project. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


We met our goals again today! 

We had circle. It was "very windy". I made the boys snowman dolls from the Living Crafts magazine (http://www.liingcrafts.com), Apparently both snowmen wanted to participate in circle. However, their hats kept falling off in the wind! For me it was very frustrating, but the kids totally loved it. After circle I talked to the snowmen and they decided to watch on Thursday instead of participating. Phew! I don't know if I could have handled another day of that. It was too distracting. 

We went over to a friends house in the afternoon for some creative play and socialization. My son learned the new "game" playing "Baby in Mama" where the boys would crawl into a box and pretend to be in mama. They talked about being warm and comfy and then after a while they were born. They went through their ages, turning 1, then 2.... until finally they were adults, at which time my son became an electrician. Just like Grandpa!

Unfortunately, Brother is really interested in guns. I am creating form around the play and  am trying to meet his needs for "items moving through space in other ways". Before Children, my plan was to never have guns in our lives, but after reading Raising Caine, Playful Parenting and an article in Mothering, I am compromising. I personally am fine with it, I grew up with two brothers who are both fine adults. They both played guns a lot. But, it causes issues socially, so I am trying to be respectful of other's feelings too. One rule is that we have to make them. No store bought guns.

Meanwhile, one solution for "items moving through space" was to build a catapult. This is the one we built (http://hubpages.com/hub/thejockspot_how_to_build_a_catapult). Brother really likes the catapult a lot and it is even more meaningful to him because we built it together.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tuesday - We did Circle!

We did Circle! 

On Saturday, Brother informed me that he wasn't going to do circle for a while. I just said "Oh". Our spring circle is fun, full of energy and joy. He did balk at first, but the baby ran into the middle of the room when I started singing "Come Follow" and Brother just couldn't resist. Ha! Tomorrow is another day though.

Here is our circle - taken from the Enki book:

Windy Weather
King Winter
Mother Earth's Secrets
Spring is Coming 
Little Nest

I want to add something about a snake, he was slithering around at his friend's house today. I think he might like it and it might be grounding after Winds.

For story we are reading Princess Spring. And for craft we are working on a catapult. We are trying it out tomorrow!  We also had social time today. So far we are meeting our goals. 


This morning we hosted Kindergarten Co-Op. The kids had a lot of fun digging and running in the trees. Of course building trains is always a hit!
In the afternoon Brother and I started baking, but I had no eggs! Oops, so when Grandma came I ran out to the store and finished up the Zucchini cake myself. Then Grandpa joined us for dinner and we celebrated St. Patrick's Day a day early. 

I guess this week I get to count 1/2 of a baking day. We just started adding in the baking, so I need to cut myself some slack. Until now, I really hadn't been doing much of it. We're gluten free, so it is a bit of a challenge. Actually, I'm gluten free. Everyone else just gets stuck with my GF food. No one is complaining though. 

My favorite cookbook is Bette Hagman's  The Gluten Free Gourmet. It's an oldie, but a goodie. I tend to substitute brown rice flour for white rice flour though. So my baked goods do come out heavier. 

Sunday - Snow Day!

My goal of baking did not happen today. 

The weather was absolutely amazing. We had the biggest, fattest snow flakes I have ever seen in my life. I took pictures but haven't downloaded them yet. If any turn out, I'll post it. We live in trees and down a hill, so the wind was blowing really, really hard in the front yard. The snow flakes were whirling and twirling all around, tossed by the wind, flying up so high, spinning white snowflakes, up in the sky! In the back yard, there was no wind, so they were floating gently down to the ground. Brother was singing snow songs from our winter circle. He never sings during circle, but I hear him later. 
It was so beautiful, we ended up spending the morning experiencing it. Then we took our family walk, and it turned to wind blown sleet about halfway through. It wasn't really comfortable for the baby, so there was a bit of complaining there. 
In a while, the sun broke out and melted the snow. We had huge drips of water hanging from the wisteria vines in the back yard. When the sun would hit them just right, they would glow and sometimes even make rainbows. I'm sure it seemed magic to the children. .
In the afternoon we finally made it to the store, and then I had to clean for Kindergarten Co-Op on Monday morning. It's our turn to host.
Brother had a ton of questions about rainbows and why is light clear or white. Daddy explained it to him in his way. I am trying to learn how to use pictorial language better and how to create stories. When we were drifting off to sleep, a story about Father Sun and the colors came to me, so I was able to explain the same science to Brother, but in a more pictorial way. I felt like it was a breakthrough for me, but I don't feel confident enough to share. Sorry!
We did finally make it to the store in the afternoon - but too late for baking!

This weekend we went bowling for our cousin's 3rd birthday party. It was really cute and Brother loved it. He has been building a bowling alley in the living room for he and his little brother every day since. I love it when he experiences something and I can see it come out in his play!

Since we all together and a photographer was available, we took advantage of the situation to get a family photo taken. I made Brother's sweater, so don't laugh at it too hard. He loves it when I make him things. It makes him really happy.

It was great being with family and seeing how everyone has grown.

Weekly Rhythm - Goals

This blog is mainly to notify family and friends of our homeschooling endeavors. I was an Accountant in my previous life and will try not to be too dry. 

But it is time for some housekeeping - 

We are in our first real year of kindergarten, so our goals mainly revolve around our home life.

Sunday - menu planning, grocery shopping and baking
Monday - Kindergarten co-op and baking if we didn't get to it Sunday
Tuesday - circle, story, clean one floor, craft, and social event
Wednesday - circle, story, and social event
Thursday -  park with friend, story,  and social event
Friday - circle, story and errands
Saturday - family day, yard work

We are using Enki curriculum, which I really love. I've been doing a lot of research for first grade, and it is leaving me feeling really good about what we are already doing. Here is a link for Enki.   http://www.enkieducation.org/  We also have a strong support group of other Enki homeschooling families and Waldorf inspired homeschoolers in our area. It is very exciting!