Friday, August 31, 2012

Art Room/School Room Redo

So I have had one BIG table for our art/school room.  Hasn't been working well.  It takes up the entire middle of the floor, its difficult to walk from one side of the room to the other when everyone is working, the kids distract each other, etc.  So I decided to make 3 small desks instead of the large table.  I didn't want to cut the large table top we had in case we wanted it for another project or my FIL wanted it back.  So I found the perfect size at Lowe's AND it was already cut!! yeah I probably paid a bit more for it precut, but it was the perfect size and easy.  I was in/out in about ten minutes!!

So as soon as I got home I started moving stuff around.  I am a bit of a hoarder! Yes I do admit it.  I have TONS of scrapbooking supplies but haven't scrapbooked much since we moved to this house 4 years ago.  I also love crafting, so I have a rubbermaid bin OVERFLOWING with stuff I WANT to make.  Yeah it's sitting right under my table.  Will have to weed through that fast as it is obstructing Jacob's desk at the moment.

Anyway, here are a few before...

I am so not organized-its a work in progress!

The massive table which I thought would be perfect-it was a mess, I just cleaned it off.

To the left is MY work table. To the right is a dresser FULL of stuff.

So as you can see it pretty much takes up the entire room.  Actually this isn't how I had it originally, this set up actually gave us a little more moving room.  But it left one side of the table and one book shelf unreachable.  So after much planning and still no organizing...

Here is Jacob and JoAnna's desk with my work table in the middle of them.

 Here is the opposite wall.  Actually on the other side of this wall is a coat closet, which I would LOVE to  open up to this room and put all this stuff in the closet and relocate the shelf and armoire.  I still have a lot of organizing to do.  But I hope with the new set up I can get that done quickly.  Maybe this next week I will work on the shelving in the closet AND then maybe knocking a hole in the wall!!!!

Here is Jace's lonely shelf.  He is only 2-soon to be 3 and isn't doing much school.  But I will have to pull our little table out of the garage for him.  He will probably be upset with me when he wakes up in t he morning.  He will feel a little left out I am sure.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Weekend Art Class

Since I was working on some items for our upcoming fundraiser.the kids wanted to get in on the fun.  So I pulled out their paints and let them at it. Here is JoAnna painting a cross.  She did well with the painting but got a little carried away adding layer after layer of paint.

Jacob also painted but I must have taken those photos with my phone-which tends to be a challenge to get them on the computer.  Those will have to wait until tomorrow.

After dinner I tried to finish up a few paintings I had started during Jace's nap time.  Of course he then wanted in on the painting.  So there are a few shots of him painting.

Three of the canvases I finished today

An Evening to MYSELF!!

So my parents are in town for the weekend for my kids' birthday party.  The kids wanted to stay with my parents at my sister's house and my parents agreed!!  My husband is working the night shift tonight.  So... I am home...ALONE!  This doesn't happen very often.

So tonight I got out all my craft stuff.  I finished a few projects that I have started over the last year and started a few more.  I am working on  a few things for a craft fair we will be doing in October.  Also I am trying to make a few "door prizes" for a Zumba fundraiser we are doing in September.

So I have been busy busy.  Here are a few of the things I have been working on...

This is what happens when mom is left alone for the evening with NO kids and NO husband!!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Week 2

We have started our second full week of school.  I am still trying to figure out a routine that works well with three kids.  It's a challenge.  Seems everyone needs me at the same time!  Plus the time crunch of having to get the 3 year old to daycare before his class goes down for a nap really limits our schedule.

JoAnna is in kindergarten so we are doing letters, sounds and numbers.  She knows her uppercase letters, most of her lowercase letters and most numbers 1-10.  We are taking a letter a day and flying thru the alphabet.  Then we will come back and reinforce phonics.  We are touching on phonics but mostly working on recognizing letters, numbers and writing.  JoAnna also started Upward Cheer this week-that was interesting.  She didn't want me to leave her side.  Hopefully she will get over that before practice tonight!

Jace, well it is a challenge to get him to do much of any work.  He LOVES cutting with his scissors and leaves a trail of tiny pieces of paper EVERYWHERE!  I am working with letter and number recognition with him.  However, he is only 2, will be 3 in two weeks, so he is still young.  So this year I am focusing on letter and number recognition.  So far he has done well with his letters, of course we are only on C.

 Jacob is flying thru his work as we are doing a good bit of review.  I am using Explode the Code to reinforce some of the "rules" we learned last year in language.  Not sure where we will go from there, not wanting to use the language program we used last year-so we will see.  He is doing a lot of reading.  I read to him, he reads aloud, he reads to himself.  Yes, lots of reading.  We had a field trip to the library yesterday with our homeschool group.  He learned how to look up books by subject, author and title. He was very excited to get a book about snakes, he read 3 pages before we were able to cross the street to meet the group at the park.  Fun times. Jacob started Upward Flag football this week.  I didn't get to watch much because I had to stay with JoAnna, but the few minutes I did see he did very well!

Here are a few pictures from our week so far.....

Gold Fish Color Sort

Some math fun!!
Field trip to the library

Upward Cheer

Upward Flag Football

Don't know why this picture is turned, I even rotated it and uploaded it again. Weird.  So after three tries, I give up. Just tilt your head!
Jace LOVES to cut with his scissors. He spent most of the morning cutting and leaving tiny pieces of paper all over the house.

Here is JoAnna, she did not want her picture taken. Too bad. LOL

More cutting....

...and still more cutting.

Here is JoAnna making her "glitter g".

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Some of my school finds this week

We had a great first week of school at home.  I did send Jace (almost 3 year old) to preschool Thursday and Friday.  This seemed to make our day go faster, but I felt terribly guilty.  I want him home with me.  Maybe I will send him for a few weeks until JoAnna gets into the school routine.  Then I can work on him.  Even though today is Saturday my 5 year old wanted to do some school work.  She only did one of her work boxes but the fact she "wanted" to do school work was great.  

 I had taken pictures of lacing blocks so that my 5 year old could practice copying the patterns I created.  She did great with it and my 2 year old wanted to try it out today.  He also did a great job.  

My 2 year old also found a Disney sticker book I brought home for him.  He loves stickers and I loved that the book gave him a place to put his stickers, besides the windows on my back door and my kitchen cabinets.  My 5 and 7 year old were very jealous and wanted their own sticker books.  So I pulled out some sticker books I found at the dollar tree a few weeks ago.  I had purchased these for my 2 year old, never dreamed my 5 and 7 year olds would enjoy them so much.  They spent at least an hour with these books.  

Also this week I bought a laminator today.  

 Scotch Thermal Laminator, 2 Roller

I have been wanting one and have done some research.  I found a great one on and then found that my local Wal-mart carried the same model.  So I went today to check their price, since the price was not listed online.  Luckily it was the same price as Amazon.  So I have been laminating like crazy today.  I have tons of stuff in sheet protectors but ran out of those long ago.  I am very excited about adding this to my array of tools. 

We also made a trip to Target this week.  I had a much better trip than the one I took last week at my local Target.  This store had these little pocket charts for $1.  I have been looking into pocket charts but didn't want to spend $20-+ on a pocket chart that I might not use that often.  I couldn't pass this one up though.  As you can see my 5 year old lost one of the letters today. Oh well.  

I also found these great workbooks in the $1 bin at Target.  I am such a sucker for these educational books.  I have bought several at Target and Dollar Tree.  These are mostly for my second grader. 

Well that is all for now.  I had better get back to laminating!!  

Friday, August 17, 2012

Komen 3day

I have been training for the Susan G. Komen 3day.  It's an event to raise money for breast cancer.  We walk 60 miles in 3 days and camp out in pink tents for two nights.  It's going to be AMAZING!

However, my training hasn't been so great.  I had been walking with my mom, sister and a friend.  I took the last month off.  Not on purpose, I was just too tired to walk in this crazy heat.

Two days ago I was awake at 5a.m., so I decided to get up and walk.  I walked 4 miles in an hour and five minutes!   Best timing ever for me.  I felt it later for sure.  That afternoon my knees were sore, next morning my ankles, back and quads were sore.  This morning I wake up and my left foot hurts.  I am OLD.  I am only 34 and I feel 80. Everything hurts. I can't bend my knee, can't squat, or get up from the floor easily.  It sucks!

Anyway, I tried walking this morning, to walk THRU the pain.  As soon as I left the driveway it started lightning.  I thought maybe its heat lightning, or it'll pass.  No.  The more I walked the worse it got.  I don't play with lightning.  So I came home.  I walked a half a mile.  Not impressive, but maybe it was enough to work out some of the soreness.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Our Week in Pictures

Science experiment about water currents

Jace and his tinker toy drum

Gummy bear math

She was suppose to be making a playdough "D"-she made a nest and eggs-this was after Jacob and I had a discussion about the difference between egg laying animals and live birth animals :)

More gummy bear math

First Week of School

We have had our share of bumps this week.  I am so torn between taking my soon to be 3 year old to preschool (which is free for me since I work in the afterschool program) or keeping him at home with us.

Pro Stay at Home:
  1. I want him home with me
  2. I want to be the one to take care of him
  3. I want to be the one to teach him (although our teachers are excellent)
  4. I want to be able to love on him all day
  5. I don't want him at daycare 8-+ hours a day. (I would have to take him before 9am so that he doesn't miss class time and so that it doesn't interrupt the middle of our day. Its a 15 min. drive one way to daycare-so it'll take @45 min. out of our day)
  6. He won't be this age forever and I don't want to miss this age-it's my favorite age
Cons to Staying Home:
  1. He is at the clingy stage and likes to be with me constantly
  2. He tends to be a little fussy when I am giving my attention to the other two
  3. I have to be at work at 1pm which is in the middle of naptime-so if I keep him home he has to get to daycare before his class goes down for nap at 11:45-which puts a time crunch on our day. 
So I am torn and undecided.  We have tried it both ways this week.  I took him to school by 9am this morning and I got so much done with the two older ones, but I felt guilty taking him.  He also fussed all the way to school saying he wanted to stay home.  Broke my heart.  The other three days this week I have kept him home and he has done well.  He plays mostly but I have been able to get him to do a little school work with us.  

WinShape Camps for Communities at Ridgecrest Baptist Church

This past week my 7 year old attended a WinShape camp at our church.  This was the first I have ever heard of this camp and the first time it's been to this area.  Camp started at 7:45 in the morning, much too early for us.  It ended at 5pm each evening. LONG day full of FUN!!! He has such a great time and learned so much.  They had 19 skills to choose from, 3 of which they were given to do each day.

Monday, August 13, 2012

First day of school 2012

This is my second year of homeschooling.  This year I have a second grader, kindergartner and 3 year old preschooler.  We will see how that goes.

I am still trying to decide if I want to keep the soon to be three year old at home while we homeschool.  Since I work at the afterschool program I get daycare for free, and I could take him in the mornings.  However, he is almost 3, and he is growing up so fast! He is my last "baby". So I really want him home with me.  I guess I can send him if there are days we are doing activities that would be easier without him, but again, he won't be three forever. This is my favorite age....yes I am babbling!

Ok, so back to our "first day of school".  I have been planning in my head and on Pinterest all summer. I still don't have our school room the way I want, but I was able to organize it this weekend.  I got everything ready for the first day.  I was so excited about JoAnna starting Kindergarten, if I had to be a teacher it would definitely be kindergarten!!!  I had so many fun things planned I wasn't sure if we would be able to fit them in one day.  Again another advantage of homeschooling, if we don't finish it in one day we can always pick up where we left off. 

Jacob's planning was much easier.  He is in second grade and for the most part its all business.  Not sure how I feel about that.  I feel I don't make his schooling fun enough.  I see teachers blog about the stuff they do in their classrooms and it's so creative and fun.  I want to try to do more fun things with him this year and less "work".  Does that make sense??

So here is our first day of school in pictures, hope you enjoy. Most of these ideas came from Pinterest, and I WILL post links to them once I find them all again!

JoAnna's first day of Kindergarten
This will be JoAnna's first year to homeschool.  Last year I sent her to preschool at the daycare.  It was my first year to homeschool and thought it would give me time to get into a routine.  Since I work at the afterschool program I get daycare for free, so I chose to send her to preschool.  Although she never arrived until her class was done with seat work, so poor thing didn't get much schooling at all last year. 

Jacob's first day of second grade
Jacob did great in first grade.  He is very easy to teach, although at times he can be very wiggly and talkative.  He learns fast and was easy to teach.

Jace's first day of 3 year old preschool at home
 Jace had his first day of 3 year old preschool last week at the daycare-but I didn't get a picture of that-shame on me.  I haven't decided for sure if I will keep him home everyday to homeschool with us.  I get daycare free so I could send him to preschool but I just miss him so much.  He is almost three and growing up so fast.

JoAnna mathing her uppercase letters to her lowercase letters.  She did very well at this.  We only have a few letters to work on.

Still working on the uppercase and lowercase letters.  These are only A-D.  Again she did well but she did have a little help since the pictures match as well.

Jacob working on his spelling words. 

JoAnna writting her letters A-E.

Jacob working on his Wordly Wise.  He was not thrilled.  This is new to us this year and I think it'll be great for him. 

JoAnna writting her numbers.  She was to roll the dice and then trace the number she rolled.  It's actually a game for multiple players but it worked well for her.  She counted the dots and then traced the correct number. 

Still working on the Wordly Wise

Jace playing with the tinker toys.  He stayed busy today, not so much on the school stuff as much as just getting into everything he could.

JoAnna starting on her tear paper apple. This took much longer than I had anticipated.  She wasn't happy that she could only use red on her "a". 

I was able to pull his tooth in between lessons.  this tooth has been hiding behind his front grown up tooth for a while.  I finally was able to pull it today!!! Guess we will get a visit from the tooth fairy tonight.

Jace working on his tear paper apple.  This is the most he worked on it, I ended up doing most of it.

Here is Jace putting on his one and only paper.

JoAnna still working on her tear paper apple.  She enjoyed this activity but again it seemed to take forever.

Jace working on writting his letters...yeah right.

Here is what he was really doing.  It's a start.

Almost done with that tear paper apple!!

Here is Jace's picture he drew on the dry erase board.  He wanted to take it to CC to show her. 

Here is JoAnna working on her playdough numbers and letters.  She was very excited to play with playdough and she did a great job. 

Jace playing with playdough.

Jacob working on his second grade math.  We actually started on second grade math at the end of last year.  He seems to be ahead of the book but I know there are some key things in the lessons that he needs to know and learn so we continue with this curriculum.

Jace and JoAnna playing with the sensory box.  It is filled with rice and objects staring with the letters A-E, the letters we are working on this week.  JoAnna knows all her upper case letters so we are reviewing them one a day.  Jace will need more work on his letters.

Close up of our sensory box.

Our story today was a  biography.  We discussed the difference between biography and autobiography.  Jacob was to pick five items that represented himself.  From left to right: 1.  a "good job" ribbon he made me this morning. He chose this because it has green on it-green is his favorite color.  2: a drawing pad, because he loves to draw.  3. A dice because he loves to play board games.  4. A golf ball because he loves to play sports.  5. Wii remote because he loves to play the Wii

Matching numbers to groups of objects.  She did this quick.

Jacob playing an Even-Odd dice game.  We had to choose if we were even or odd.  I was odd, he was even.  Then we took turns rolling the dice.  If you were odd and rolled an odd number you wrote it on the bottom rung of your ladder.  The first person to reach the treehouse was the winner.

JoAnna working on patters.  She really liked this box.  I took pictures this weekend and printed them out.  She had to pick a card and then match the patter. Found this on Pinterest with Mr. Potato Head

"Star Friends" Jacob had to roll three dice, add the sums and mark off the correct sum on the star.  It also has Star Wars people at the bottom. Another cute idea from Pinterest!!

Jace playing with his flashlight.  He was tired and cranky at this point.

A little bubble fun after school.  We put a blanket on the floor so it would not get slippery.  They had a great time playing in the bubbles, which gave me a few minutes to get lunch ready.