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Katy No-Pocket {Before FI♥AR}

A story about a kangaroo without a pocket to carry her baby in. . . and how she gets one. 

Kangaroos, Animals of Australia and a Little Geography

Found Australia on a map.

Read about Kangaroos @ Kids' Answers: Kangaroos

Talked about how animals carry their babies. Since we have a baby coming soon, we talked about how mama's carry their babies. . . in our arms, just like monkeys! Or in a baby sling or carrier. :-)

Sang: I'm a Little Joey - (sung to "I'm a Little Teapot") ~

I'm a little joey,
Oh so small;
Deep in Mother's pouch
So I won't fall.
When I start to grow up
Big and tall,
Out I'll hop like
A bouncing ball.

And hopped like a kangaroo!

Crisp meringue outside with a soft marshmallow like center. . . topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit. 

Since kangaroos live in Australia, I thought an Australian national dessert would be a great tie-in for our special treat.
One word ~ yum!

Thanks to Christine @ The Home Truth, who lives and blogs down-under, for the suggestion!

I explained that the man Katy met in the city is a carpenter and that carpenters build with tools.

Malachi colored the tools. . . 

And Eliana matched them up. 

Building with tools. 

Animal Classification Cards

Naming all the animals in the book.

Apron {and a pocket}

I had (high) ambitions of sewing a "bunch" of pockets on the blue apron when I bought it, but the energy and motivation evaded me this week, so I flipped the bottom up and sewed it into a pocket.  Eliana's pink ruffly apron came with a pocket (phew!). 

Narration and Illustration

Illustrating his narration using Draw Write Now. 
"Katy No-Pocket doesn't have a pocket like the other mother kangaroos. She went to some animals to know how they carry their babies. But all the other animal's ideas didn't work. But the owl was the only one who was right. He told her to go to town. Then she got a pocket from a tool guy. All the animals that needed being carried, Katy let them. And Katy No-Pocket had a pocket now for her baby. The End." -Narrated by Malachi 11-28-10

After he does his narrations, I always read it back to him so he can hear what he wrote. This is the first time that he asked to edit his narration so that it made more sense. :-)

Note: Jane Lambert, author of Five in a Row, mentions that when we love a book, our children will come to love and cherish it too. I didn't love this book. Kangaroos are marsupials (non-placental mammals who have shorter gestation periods) thus the joey (baby kangaroo) requires the pocket to survive. This made the book nonsensical to me. Sigh. That or I am just tired. Only one more book to row before baby comes. . . then we are taking a break! 

Next row: The Snowy Day (Yay! We are getting lots of snow!).

Delightful Links:

1+1+1=1 (More ideas for ages 1-3)
Preschool Corner & 5K too! (More ideas for ages 4-5)
Katy B4 Archives @ FIAR
Resources at HSS
Baby Animal Songs and Fingerplays
Kids' Answers: Kangaroos
Expedition Earth: Discovering God's Animals ~ COAH

Recipes from Christine:
Anzac Biscuits

Household Traditions All Purpose Cleaner Review

I was planning on cleaning the downstairs tub when this arrived, but since I clean that one regularly I thought I would give it a try on the upstairs shower/tub ~ the one the boys clean.

I won't show you before pictures ~ I wouldn't want to embarrass anyone. But, I don't think it has been really cleaned since the last time I cleaned it.  But, Household Traditions All Purpose Cleaner would be ideal for the boys to use.

You just spray it on, leave it on for a few minutes, (cleaning the toilet while waiting would be ideal), then wipe off. It took a little more this time to remove the soap scum (a good spray and a little elbow grease), but if used regularly it would be easy for the boys to keep the tub clean. Note: I did not like the smell in such a small enclosed area, but didn't mind it in the kitchen. 

But that is not the reason I wanted to try this.

You can wash fruits and veggies with it.

Washing Parsley

With an all purpose cleaner?

Check out the ingredients:

A botanical solution comprised of:
purified water, amino acids,
minerals and other ingredients
derived from leafy green,
edible and seed-bearing plants.

Did you catch the part about leafy green, edible and seed-bearing plants?

I love that it is safe to use around food!

I went a little overboard. I used two-thirds of the bottle the first day - in the bathroom, in the kitchen, on walls, counters, and more. I wish I could blame it on the nesting instinct (only 4 weeks until I am due), but I think it was trying something new.

That, and it works great!

Want to give it a try? Check it out here. You can also leave me a comment for a chance to win a 32 ounce bottle! 

Contest has ended ~ congrats to agodlyhomemaker! Commenter #3. 

Thanks to all who entered and to TT for sponsoring this review and giveaway!

For additional entries:
  • Subscribe to Tropical Traditions Sales Newsletter. {Watch for the free shipping coupons!}
  • Follow Tropical Traditions on Twitter.
  • Tweet about this giveaway and leave me a link to your status. Use this tweet if you like: @dlhomeschool is hosting a giveaway for @Troptraditions All Purpose Cleaner. Enter here: http://goo.gl/fb/EHOQX
Note: to keep it simple, I will update this post with the winning info, tweet the winner, contact you by email and expect to hear back from you within 48 hours. U.S. shipping only. Enter until Dec. 5th, 2010.

Disclosure: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

We're Going on a Bear Hunt {Before FI♥AR}

"We're Going On A Bear Hunt," by Michael Rosen is a fun, interactive story of a family on a journey. The family will travel through the deep grass of a meadow, across a river, wade through oozy mud, journey through a dark forest, experience a snowstorm and explore a cave."

This video of the story, as told by the author, is great!

We watched it several times.

Story Sequencing Cards:

Motions to act out the story:
  • Grass in the meadow - rub hands together to create a swishing sound
  • Crossing the river - do the breast stroke with your arms
  • Going through mud - slowly pull feet (or arms) up as if stuck in mud
  • Going through the forest - climb a tree
  • While in the snowstorm - pretend to shiver (we used the sign for cold)
  • While in the cave - pretend to feel carefully in front of your face with your hands
  • When you find the bear - feel the fur on the bear's face
(I must have gotten these from the FIAR archives).

Animal Classification Cards:

I pulled these from all the B4 titles that have bears in them.

Bear Hunt Sensory Tub:


  • grass - green foam cut to look like grass and rolled to look wavy
  • water - blue paint bag
  • mud - brown paint bag
  • forest - pipe cleaner trees stuck in styrofoam
  • snowstorm - cotton balls and curled pipe cleaners (for the swirling, whirling)
  • cave - brown foam rolled up with black ends
  • bear in the cave

Much to my delight, they added the house (with stairs) and Elli's "Go Anywhere Girls" and acted out the story.

Thick Oozy Chocolate {Mud} Pudding

Bear {Cookie} Hunt

I had them each count out 20 bears and tied them in a sack. I turned the dog house from Angus Lost into a bear cave and hid them in the cave, then left clues to find them.  Then we ate the cookies with the pudding.

Real Bear Hunt?!

I asked them if they wanted "go on a real bear hunt" and make a trip to Zoo Montana to see Bruno or Ozzy ~ the resident grizzly bears, but they both said no! until I told them that we would be safe because the bears can't get out. We always have so much to do when we go to the "city" that we would have only had 30 minutes at the zoo, so we didn't go. Soon, 3 grizzly cubs will be available for viewing, so we hope to make it up again when we have more time. Zoo Montana is unique in that it only inhabits animals that normally live in our cold climate. 

Of course, after this, we discussed the concept of being “brave,” and why we should be careful but never afraid ~ "We're not scared!" because YHVH is always with us.

Lap Journal

We discussed the concepts of “over,” “under,” and “through” and did a few lapbook activities.

I love little hands and feet. . . 
. . . hard at work. 
More Sensory Play
Squelch Squerch

Splash Splosh
The chunks after soaking over night! 

These are a couple of the free samples of "Yuck" that I requested from Buckets-O-Fun after seeing several Crew reviews on it. I thought it would be a great sensory tie in for the "icky sticky mud," "deep cold river," and "swirling whirling snowstorm!"

I had several other sensory ideas that would have tied in nicely, but I think I will save those for when baby is born for some ooey gooey messy play. 

Delightful Links:

Homeschool Highlights ~ Week 12

Technically week 12 lasted 2 weeks. . .  2 fairly easy weeks, school wise. So, we are up to 48 days in school.

We rowed Homer Price the first week while Jordan was out of town and caught up on independent work and did a few projects around the house the 2nd week (a big one was raking, blowing and bagging up leaves ~ just in time ~ it is snowing.)

Working at the table. . .

Note: I plan our lessons in a blog post and will often use it as a reference and also add notes ~ that helps me remember what we do and also doubles as record keeping (which I am terrible about otherwise) and results in a detailed blog post. (Now you know why they are so detailed). I usually sit at the table with them, but get up to do other things while they work.

Biblical History:
  • 1 Kings 17-22 (Elijah)
  • Victor's Journey Through the Bible: Elijah
  • Holman Bible Atlas: Assyrians (during the time of Elijah and Elisha)
  • Who's Who in the Bible: Elijah and Elisha
  • Luke is also reading Proverbs daily to the boys
I was asked about our core History program ~ and the simple answer to that is that we use the Bible as our main curriculum for Biblical History.  Our primary resources are Grapevine's OT Overview and History Revealed: Ancient Civilizations and the Bible to tie in Ancient History. We also regularly use The Victor's Journey Through the Bible and the Holman Bible Atlas.  I also add living history books (historical fiction) to read aloud. You can see more of what we use on our curriculum page.

Basically, we are going though the Old Testament doing Biblical History using Grapevine and picking up History Revealed to tie in Ancient History once we get to that time period in the Bible. Currently, we are on Ancient Israel in HR and working through the lessons in Grapevine. Our main goal is to make it through the Old Testament and pick up other ancient civilizations as they relate to Scripture. For example, we studied Ancient Egypt when we studied Abraham through Moses.

Read Aloud:

Luke finished the books started in my last HH and started Terrestria Chronicles ~ The Quest for Seven Castles.


Jordan went elk hunting with his grandpa and got a 5 point bull elk his first day. The elk was lying down when Jordan shot it and it never moved.

They went with his grandpa's son-n-law, Jim, who is a professional guide. They hunted about an hour outside of Cody in area 64 (Yellowstone Park is in the upper left corner).

Normally a guided trip like this, with room/board/meals, costs around $3,000 ~ Jordan really had a good time, ate well, and learned a lot!

He has salted the hide and is storing it for now ~ until we pick up some borax. Then he will soak it and follow the instructions for tanning in Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills.

Elk Processing 101

Back at home, this same day (11/8), we were given an elk from the Game and Fish. When they called they said they had quartered the elk and was going to divide it between four families (since it was so big), but when we got there to pick it up they gave us the whole thing!

Luke cut the meat outside in the shop (with Dylan's help) then brought it inside on half sheet trays. Nathan and I soaked it for 30 minutes, rinsed, salted it for 1 hour with course kosher salt, rinsed (our first time "koshering" meat ~ we followed the directions on the salt container) and then cut and packaged it. It took me ALL day! (Literally) I was so tired. It is a little gamey, but better than deer.

When Jordan got home later that week, he processed his elk with his grandpa. Because the elk never moved, the meat doesn't have a wild-game taste at all. I have a feeling we will eat his before ours.

Preschool and 5K:

Mali finished lesson 4 and 5 in ETC 1, read from Bob Books Set 1, started Early Bird Book B (text book and activity book).

Eliana started Early Bird Book A and Get Ready for the Code A ~ at her repeated request and we did a few lessons in Language Lessons for Little Ones.

We rowed Corduroy and started We're Going on a Bear Hunt ~ I lost umph about half way through this week, so we haven't finished yet.

We took a road trip to see the midwife and to visit our property in Montana (a 6 hour drive in one day), shopped, remembered the anniversary of Nathan's birth day (he is 12 now), did a test run on the birthing pool and more. No wonder I lost umph! I also knit my first baby booties, but that was the relaxing part!

Delightful Links:

T.O.B.Y Homes-Cool Highlights @ Hearts in Training

Corduroy {Before FI♥AR}

What is brown, cuddly and wears green overalls?

A sweet story about a lost button . . . and friendship.
~Eliana is 3 years 10 months and Malachi is 5 years 9 months~

Our Learning and Memory Making Fun  ~

Day 1:

I sewed this little toy bear (a few weeks ago) using this Tiny Teddy to Sew and then potched some overalls for a toy Corduroy (I was in sewing mode after making the quilted rag letters!).

Then I made a mattress with buttons on it ~ like the one that Corduroy tries to get a button from, and a pillow (white on one side like in the department store and quilted on the other side like the quilt in Lisa's room).

Here we are reading the story and doing the animal classification cards for Corduroy. We looked through the book to find all the animals on the cards ~ and then they ran to find all the other toys from the story. I suggested they turn the Pet Store into a Toy Store (instead of dragging all those toys downstairs!). :-)

Some discussions we had:

Corduroy said, "I think I've always wanted to climb a mountain."
Me: Tell me about some things that you have always wanted to do or places you have wanted to go."

Malachi: "hiking, hunt for buttons, to a place Corduroy went (shopping mall) - that's all."
Eliana: "dance with each other."

Both answers made me smile. . . and I tried to get them to think bigger, but they didn't budge.

"You must be a friend," said Corduroy. " I've always wanted a friend."
Me: Tell me what being a friend means to you.

Malachi: "Playing with each other, racing with each other, exploring with each other."
Eliana: "Hug, kiss." :-)

I asked them if they knew what the Bible says about friendship and we read Proverbs 17:17 ~ and they replied with: "A friend loves at all times."

And since these have been sitting on our shelf (in plain site for a couple weeks) we could not wait another day to do this activity:

We learned how to "collect and organize data" . . . with Gummi Bears (Super Sour are my favorite!).

First, we sorted the bears by placing them on the correct color on the sheet. (I circled the words with the correct color of crayon). 

Then I had them color each bear section the color indicated on the Gummy Bear Sorting Worksheet.

Then they used the information they found out on their sorting worksheet and graphed that data on the Gummy Bear Graph worksheet.

First time using the quilted numbers.
Note: Since she has a desire to write (and will fill up the chalkboard with "letters"), I think the sensory letters will be super helpful. I don't expect her to write, but when she wants to, I will let her. I decided I will use these also with Malachi for his handwriting ~ especially since he will be working on one letter at a time. But, I want them to be able to "play" with them too. Maybe, I can surprise them from time to time and take them all down. 

Next they wrote the correct number of each color of gummy bears. 

Lastly, the part they were waiting for ~ eating them! 

They were so patient to wait so long for them! 

We finished our day by:

Exploring Feelings with Corduroy

Signing Time Volume 4: Family, Feelings & Fun

We watched the video, sang the "Can You Feel It?" song and reviewed the signs for: feelings, grumpy, surprised, happy, sad, scared, sick, and silly. (We picked up a few that we were not using regularly ~ such as surprised and scared ~ which will come in handy for our next "row!").



We explored feelings that Corduroy showed . . . 

“Corduroy watched them sadly as they walked away.”
The sign for "sad" ~ they look so sad, too! 
And connected these feelings to everyday experiences. For example:

Me: When have you felt sad?
Mali: "When someone hurts you."

Feelings Tot Book

Then I had them draw a picture of themselves using a print out from the Feelings Tot Book and one of the feelings they learned about.


"I feel scared."

"I feel loving." {So sweet!}
Day 2:

Learning about Fabric with Corduroy

We explored the visual and sensory experiences of fabric, thanks to the title of the book!

I asked them if they knew what corduroy was and gave them samples of fabric to touch, feel, and play with:

I introduced words like: soft, smooth, rough, ridges, durable, stretchy, and rigid.

After exploring with the samples, I had them try to find the sample's match in the bag:
It was really hard ~ so I had Malachi just try to find the corduroy sample.

Eliana mostly folded fabric samples and played with them with the toy bear.

 Then I had Malachi complete the My Feely Fabric Book.

After reading the story, I asked them to make up a story about their favorite stuffed animal. They each then ran to get their stuffed animal and their story was more about all the things they would do together.

Button Snake

I added another twist to the Button Snake that I first saw @ Along the Way. I followed her links and have seen several variations on this . . . and love this concept!

Teddy Bear Cookie Math & Snack

Teddy Bear Division.

I had Malachi count out 15 cookies and tell me how many each would get if he divided them between 3 people. We worked several more division problems and then he ate them. 

Eliana counted to 20.

Day 3:

Exploring with Buttons

I found this stash of colorful scrapbooking buttons from Hobby Lobby (on sale!). I used some of them for the quilted rag letters I made. They sorted some and then had free play.

Button Sewing

She has come a long way since our first button sewing!

Lap Journal Activities:
Activities from Homeschool Share.

Day 4 and 5:

Paper-Mache Piggy Bank

After Lisa's mom won't let her buy Corduroy because she has spent too much money already that day (been there!), Lisa comes back the next day because she had enough money in her piggy bank to buy him herself.

We talked about saving money and made a homemade piggy bank to start saving!

I used cardboard egg carton cups for the feet and nose.

After letting it dry, painting it, and letting it dry some more, I used pink foam for the ears, a pipe cleaner for the tail and googly eyes. 

Here is it {almost} finished! 

I let it dry one more day before cutting the slot for the money ~ and she is already starting to save. :-)

Only 3 more B4 books left to row and I am hoping to row them before baby is born so we can take a break!

Next row: We're Going on a Bear Hunt.

Delightful Links:

1+1+1=1 (More ideas for ages 1-3)
Preschool Corner & 5K too! (More ideas for ages 4-5)

Corduroy Resources @ HSS