Wednesday, May 27, 2015

ABC's of homeschooling littles

As a homeschooling parent of young children, I'm often second guessing myself, wondering if I am doing enough. It seems like such a daunting task, shaping these little people into well adjusted adults that are fun to be around and are contributors to their families and communities. Am I doing it right? Am I doing enough? Am I pushing them more than I should be? Am I too relaxed with my parenting style? Are my kids happy? The questions are never ending. My husband and I are going to try homeschooling until our last child is old enough for school, after that, we will re evaluate and see if we would like to continue, or if we feel like it isn't a good fit for our family. Since our kids are so young right now, we don't follow a curriculum, nor are we sure we are going to. Our unschooling approach not only raises questions from us, but from other as well. The hardest question to answer is simply, what do you do all day? Today I've decided to answer that with 26 things we may do during the week.

ABC's of Homeschooling Little Ones
B-Bike rides
F-Finger paint
M-Modelling Clay
P-Puppet theater
Q-Quiet time
X-mail boX

Some days I feel like all we do is eat and do laundry, but really our days are full of outdoor activities, art and a lot of reading and free play. Hopefully you are now inspired to not be so hard on yourself, even on a bad day, your kids are still learning and growing wonderfully.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Bunny Bread!

Because everything is better cute.

I got the recipe from here and have probably made it four times now. I've had great results and everyone loves it! It also only needs simple pantry ingredients. (I am the queen of wanting to make things RIGHT NOW that I'm missing one ingredient for.) I like to make six smallish loaves with this recipe and freezing all but one or two. They end up being about a day or two's worth of bread for our family and it keeps it tasting fresh.

This time I snipped some bunny ears and tails into our loaves and then let Sophie colour them with out food colouring markers. I'm super in love with how detailed she made the little faces :)

P.s. Like the Siamese bunny triplets in the first photo?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Glimpses of Spring

We FINALLY got our seeds started last week! Three days in we already had little shoots from the sunflower seeds. Sophie is so excited!

We're trying the eggshell method (go free!). The windowsills in our basement apartment are just wide enough to hold an egg carton, and long enough to put three side by side. We may expand operations next year, as we have one more window in the living room. I could double our started seeds if I can convince my husband that a row of soil and water above his computer isn't really that bad of an idea. ;)

P.s. We started sunflowers, pumpkins, tomatoes and cucumbers. I also have some potatoes sprouting under the sink. Everything else I'll direct seed. What do you start early? (I will confess to having plans to sprout sweet potatoes as well, but they went bad on the counter before I got around to it!)

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

the no facebook experiment

A Funny little thing happened about a week and a half ago. I deactivated my Facebook account. I knew that I spent too much time on it, especially in the morning, but I didn't truly realise how much until I was no longer on it. now don't get me wrong, it is a wonderful tool to keep up with friends and family and connect with your community, but I was addicted. Also, trying to keep up with everyone from every walk of your life is exhausting. Yes, many of them are wonderful and have much to share from  their life experiences, but what are the chances that I will ever see them again? And if I am fortunate enough to see them again, we will have plenty to talk about with me not following their every move online. After I deactivated my account, another funny thing happened, something that I had experienced once before, when we took text messaging off of my phone plan, people started to call, and we had real conversations. I had to call people if I wanted information on something or to say hello. We have since made a new family account and are slowly adding family members and a few close friends, and I will reactivate my account briefly from time to time to see picture of new babies and the like, but I am thoroughly enjoying not being connected all day everyday to everyone. Why not give it a try? Even for a week. It feels great and who knows, it might just lead to more time spent together with your family, and maybe some more outdoor time!

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Unicorn Awareness Campaign

So I had something happen recently.
Something kind and reassuring and therefore (unfortunately) unusual in the world of parenting.
(I know I promised unicorns, but you'll have to wait until the end for them.)

One of my Littles has a hard time with loud noises when stressed, as well as having trouble keeping it together while hungry or tired. These two combined during the singing at church and this little person couldn't handle being in there until it was time for nursery. I ended up in the lobby with a kid who was stressed out and barely keeping it together.

Awhile later another Mama came and sat down and talked with me about how we sometimes expect little ones to change their attitudes on the spot, without considering how hard that is even for us adults, or thinking of how long it can take us to let God change how we feel about something.

Now this isn't a "my church is the nicest place to be" post but I will say that it's probably one of the only places that that was likely to happen. Even as other parents we live with these invisible blinders on that make us look straight past the parents who are struggling. When most of the time that "bad" behavior is actually the result of good parenting. That kid you hear screaming in the grocery store could probably be silenced with a trip down the candy aisle, but is that going to make the kind of adult that you'll want to deal with some day?

One of the strange things about parenting is that the superficial interactions just explode when you have a baby, but you disappear during the dirty work (or worse, face the disapproving stare or comment). So much so that one person cutting us some slack and saying that they've been there is a memorable event. So maybe I'm just saying that you could be that person too. It's so easy. Just an understanding smile and an "I remember that age!" or "Good for you for not giving in!".  Because it's hard to keep your patience  and resolve when people are acting like you've brought a unicorn out in public (either their eyes skip over you like their minds can't process what they see, or they look down their noses as if to say that respectable people wouldn't be seen in public with mythical creatures).

So please, don't hate the unicorns. Say nice things instead. ;)

(Maybe I should start a unicorn awareness campaign. Would you join? Lol)

Friday, May 1, 2015

Cupcake Skirt

Can we start with how happy I am that my yard doesn't look like this anymore? Oh Winter, how I don't miss you...
Anyways... ;)

On to the sewing! I actually made this for myself during my birthday-presents-for-me sewing spree. That plus the shape have given it the name of "the cupcake skirt".

This was a super cheap thrift store project. Can you guess what it's made from?

This my friends is actually a bed skirt. Yep. You read that right! It's made like must tiered ruffle skirts, basically just sewing the tiers onto a simple elastic waist skirt. I used a heavier weight material for the base skirt so that it would keep it's shape.

 It's probably one of my favorite clothing pieces right now. Cupcakes make me happy, in any form!