new beginnings

A weekend of togetherness, feasting, celebrating 

Slow, warm, lazy days,
an awesome feast of ribs, corn, french fries, coleslaw and brownies
walk by the beach

Eric starts a new job tomorrow- we are all very excited about this new adventure as it means he will only commute 20 min from home. After 3 long years of riding 2 hours on a train to the city. This is huge. We all have high hopes that daddy won't be so tired all the time. The sun will be up before he will for once. Yeah!

I start a new promise to myself. To relax more about homeschooling curriculum's. It seems that I am a bit obsessed with always reading about one more neat idea or book. I have tons of books and plenty of ideas and we learn so much from just living. The boys are still young and I had told myself that I didn't need to follow a specific way.   There are resources that I do use and I do guide plenty of their learning. But I can spend days and nights reading and driving myself crazy, thinking I need to do more. I want  to follow their lead and play and create and live and learn. This is my new beginning and hopefully it will lead to many more......

Fort Macon

We went to visit Fort Macon in Atlantic Beach, NC last week. We had an amazing time and learned so much history in the two hours that we were there. I was surprised at how much the boys were so into it and how much they retained. They told Eric all about it, three days later, and remembered little details. 
This is the true beauty of homeschooling. They were excited about learning and were not forced to learn about it. We discussed if it was something they would be interested in going to check out.  They loved touching the building, cannons, and going into the parts that were a museum to see what it was like way back then.

It was an awesome afternoon spent with very adventurous boys. It made me more excited about history and wanting to learn more along side of them (I didn't always pay too close attention in my history classes as I really didn't care for my teacher)

When we got home they began building their own forts with pattern blocks and lincoln logs. :)

Bear Hunting

While in NC last week we went around town searching for all their funny bears. These two were the ones we passed the most and their favorites. A pirate and a soldier.

We seem to be seeing more and more towns with a silly mascot.  There are turkeys and at one time, cows on parade near us.

day outside

We spent another day at the Audubon center searching the pond and stream for little creatures. This time we found tadpoles, big frogs and some new salamanders we hadn't seen before. The boys had a great time. When they caught the tadpoles they came running and screaming - they were just so excited.
It is great fun to see them experience nature in such a magical way. 

Sunday Smiles

Visiting with family this past week.

Sunday Smiles

A bed full of friends makes for restful sleep.

this week's baking

We made carrot bars this week.  Very delicious!
They are a mix of carrots, almonds and hazelnuts.

me learn too

William has several of these notebooks. We use them for his learning activities.

For example we have this great book of riddles (great for critical thinking) but instead of reading them right from the book I copy them into a notebook and he tries his best to read the riddles and then answer the question and draw a picture . For more ideas see here.

While I work with William, Landon is happily playing near us.  However he has not been oblivious to all the learning that has been going on.  The other night he was retelling me all about the animal lesson that Will and I had done that morning. I do have a few special games and manipulatives that I keep for "Landon's Lesson Work" but he wanted a book like Will.  
"I want to learn too". He tells me.  
He is  learning  every day through all his play and the books that we read, but he wants to be like William.

I wish I had gotten a picture of the smile on his face when I showed him his own book yesterday. He was so excited. "My very own book!", he exclaims.

I make up my own little riddles or problems for him.   
"Me learning too!", says a sweet little boy of 4.

moving up

William received his Tiger badge tonight.
It was a fun first year of cub scouts. Some ups and downs along the way but he is learning different aspects of being part of a group. He is very excited to be a Wolf next year.
We will break for the summer with possibly a few hikes spread throughout.
In July, there will be cub scout camp, which he is very excited about.
"Lots to learn", he says.

I can not believe it has been 9 months already since we started. Time is slipping by a little too fast these days. I am seeing some pretty remarkable changes in my "Sweet William".
I am thankful each day that I get to spend with him.

into the woods

Today we met up with a home school group and headed into the woods for a little exploring.
All the kids were given nets and were able to wade through the stream to see what they could catch.

Not until we started looking in the woods, under logs did we make some discoveries.

Landon found a woodland snail.
William found some salamanders.
We came home later in the day and made our first entries into our new nature notebooks.
And with the help of this new book we were able to identify the salamanders.

It was a great way to start our week.

We went for a hike after the class- just the three of us.
I stopped and told them how this moment was mine.
Just us holding hands hiking- it couldn't get any better than this.


Today we became butterfly hunters.

Well, we were actually at a butterfly pavilion with monarchs and painted ladies.

The boys had such a great time letting the butterflies land on them.

It wasn't a very big place but it kept their interest for over an hour. At times they would just sit on a bench with the butterflies on their fingers.
"I made new friends," says Landon.

It was a great day and our observation skills were hard at work. Looking at them up close was wonderful.

"Backyard Lions"

The past few weeks as we take our daily walk we have been having lots of fun with dandelions. Picking them just for fun and of course blowing the gray hairs off.

Our story last week was about the the girl with golden hair-which of course was a dandelion.

I recently bought this book and am following the Outdoor Hour challenges just to give us a little more direction with our nature time. So we looked up facts about the dandelion in the enormous book and learn some pretty neat things.

I have always been fascinated with these little flowers (or weeds if you would like). So much so that I did my own research several years ago and wrote a cute little story about them.

Therefore I knew you could eat them but never really thought about it much. Then I read this post and it inspired me to try it out. So today was cooking fried dandelions.

First we took our walk and collected tons of dandelions. We had three cups full.
Then we gave them a good washing.
Made the batter:
1C flour
1 C milk
1 egg
a bit of maple syrup
Dipped and friend in olive oil.
Looking good.
Ready to eat.
Now the big test......

We dipped them in maple syrup.

And the results.........

Landon wasn't sure but ended up eating quite a few.
William was not into them at all. Oh well.

It was fun though and they still couldn't get over that we could eat them. There was much chatter to daddy about it tonight.


Drops of sunshine

Soon to be mine

I’m in luck

So many to pluck

POP! What a sound

OH- Glue all around

Gather a bunch

Before rabbits munch

Hope they stay

For another day

What fun it will be

To set the seeds free

written by Rosemarie

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