Homeschool Mother's Journal: December 15th, 2013

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In my life this week…

I'm sitting down with a cup of hot tea - Organic Echinacea Plus with honey, in hopes of finishing this post before the family wakes up. I started it several days ago and someone has needed me for one reason or another and this morning turns out to be no exception. Ah, the joys of motherhood.

I'm hearing the pendulum wall clock tick for the first time in months. I moved it to a new wall and it started working again. Once I get used to it, it becomes like the heartbeat of our home and the soft rhythmic tick is good for me. But right now, in the quiet morning, it is distracting me.

I have been rearranging, organizing and cleaning our learning areas this week. Again. I might be happy with it this time, but I know I will be making a few little changes. I've only completely rearranged everything in the last 6 months, more times that I can count, which is why I never shared our learning areas again this year - I couldn't make up my mind where I wanted everything. But, the nice thing about rearranging is that it motivates me to clean and I've needed a lot of that this year!

We made a big batch of hot cocoa mix - "the kind you have to sift." In other words, the kind with dry milk in it. I've been making a mix that you use with fresh milk, but the boys remember the kind I used to make and I bought the stuff to make it this week.

In our homeschool this week…

We started Apologia Elementary Astronomy and made a solar system mobile.

Skipped two read-alouds in Core G and started The Great and Terrible Quest -- excited about this one! Luke is still reading Flame Over Tara.

Finished up Story of the World Vol. 1 and am almost done with Mystery of History Vol. 1, so I ordered the next volumes on audio, along with the Story of the World Vol. 2 Activity book. (I ordered from Rainbow Resource).

Put my Core C binder together.

Helpful homeschooling tips or advice to share…

Audio books are a wonderful mother's helper!

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…

I braved the cold to go to a Pampered Chef party one day, and ventured out to the grocery store another. Thankfully, it was a little warmer this week (as in above zero).

My favorite thing this week was…

Hearing Bo Say His Name for the Very First Time.

There was over the moon excitement in our home this week over that! It started with him saying yo-yo for our Tot School (Letter Yy). Eliana got him to say it and he was repeating it.  So, perfect opportunity that it was, I encouraged him to say Bo-bo.  And he did! he did! Happy, happy day!

My kiddos favorite thing this week was…

Jordan - fixing his truck that broke down.
Nathan - playing Age of Empires and recording his games live while mom and the kids shopped (and the house was quiet).
Dylan - making hot cocoa.
Malachi - making a video of a game he and Elli made up.
Eliana - shopping with mom.
Bo - picking out a new toy? saying his name? watching Curious George on my phone? :)

Things I’m working on…

Putting the finishing touches on a review for the Crew.

The mobile for Astronomy turned out to be a mom project - too hard for the kids. So, we will do the kid version this coming week.

Project Life. I pulled it out to do some journaling.

I’m cooking/baking…

I want to start a new tradition with my little ones to bake cookies every Monday afternoon. This week we made peanut butter chip cookies. I set up and measured all the ingredients beforehand and then invited the children to bake cookies after our school was done for the day.

This was a fun recipe to make because you scoop the dough and roll the ball in sugar (we are using raw cane sugar) before placing it on the pan, so there are plenty of ways to help (dump, pour, mix, scoop, roll, taste the dough)

Other than that it was pinto beans, corn and flour tortillas, and chili with cheese and corn chips.

I’m grateful for…

Vitamin D - I take 10,000 daily iu in winter (5,000 iu in summer).
Vitamin C Fruit Chews
Herbal tea, namely Echinacea Plus Tea to boost my immune system.
Plenty of sleep.
That I don't have a cold... yet. But, I've felt one coming on all week.

I’m praying for…

health for family and friends. . . and myself. I've had my fair share of sickness already this year and only recently got over a 6-8 week long bronchial infection.

I rewarded my kids this week by…

I took Bo to the store to pick out a toy for saying his name and brought pizza home.  And every time Bo said his name, I gave him a chocolate coin. Repetition is important! ;-) I bought a package of organic chocolate drops and it is a great motivator to get him to talk.

I also bought Nathan a new charger and wall plug in for his phone (so he doesn't have to borrow mine). He is a great help to me around the house and always has been. He is a middle child (of the oldest three), and I don't want him to be resentful when he grows up because he is the most helpful and I have come to rely on him. I want to do better about rewarding his efforts. However, he really only wants more computer time. [Sigh]

Something I have my eye on…

play kitchen for Bo. He loves playing kitchen, and I have wanted one for him for awhile. . . and he has a birthday coming up.

an iPad for Bo for speech therapy. There are some good apps out there and Bo responds well to the technology. Maybe this coming year?

A photo, video, link, or quote to share (silly, serious or both!)…

"Don't judge me. I wasn't born to be perfect. I was born to be awesome." -- Dylan, my 13 year old, quoting something he must have seen on Pinterest. :)

Have a fabulous new week!