Friday, August 29, 2014

Review Testing

OK, so this week we had planned to do a full five days worth of school and then allow the children to have no work (other than daily reading and Bible studies which happen every day no matter what day it is) from Sat. 8/30 - Sun. 9/7 and start back to our fall lessons on 9/8... 

Instead, we didn't do any lessons on Monday preferring to take the day off as Noni came earlier in the morning than usual to visit. She brought the rest of our text books for September! Then we went to two different stores and picked up a few essentials: Melatonin, two work shirts for me, new shoes for Peanut (who was the only one who didn't have tennis shoes that fit anymore), and then she purchased a pair each for the Cracker Jack's though they really didn't need them. After all of that we brought some lunch home and ate while chatting and talking about all of the wonderful gifts that the children won from the summer reading program... ECJ received a gift card to Best Buy, and both girls got gift certificates to McDonald's, Subway, Hungry Howies Pizza, and another local pizza place!! September just may show that we have lunch or supper out more than normal due to these gift certificates.

Tuesday we decided to give the campers one more day off of lessons. After much discussion we'd decided that three days of review testing this week and two next week would still give the campers ample time off before our fall lessons begin and would allow for less complaining to happen on 9/8 when we do start those lessons. I had to work for a few hours this day, but once I got home I was able to finish the baby outfit set that I'll be shipping off in a few days time!

Wednesday we did our lessons again. I didn't have to work until 1 PM so I was able to get to teach the children again this day! I'd forgotten how much fun it could be to teach Peanut who can make even the simplest thing into an exercise in trying not to laugh!!!

That face that Peanut is making happened while she was working on her math workbook that she started several months ago, it's first grade math and she's been doing awesome at it! ECJ has been practicing his oral reading skills while reading the test questions and multiple choice answers for YCJ before heading off to do his own lessons (the picture of him with that red binder is him working on his spelling work right before I left for work). And I managed to snap a picture of YCJ reciting her rosary in her room without her noticing! After I got home later that day we went for a walk in the cooling air and then played outside for about two hours.

Thursday I had to work again, but earlier in the day. So, Daddy did the days lessons with the campers, telling me later that Peanut finished her lessons in just 40 minutes and had informed him, "That was easy!"...

 We spent a few hours outside with the campers playing on the teeter totter or taking turns on the scooter, teaching Peanut to ride the scooter or playing basketball, running around like mad people with the neighbors playing keep away or playing battle on a planet only they know about. It was almost exhausting to watch but it was very fun and they sure enjoyed themselves! The temperature was in the high 70s when we'd headed outside and it made for all of us to be very comfortable while we were out there.

Daddy BBQ'ed some steaks for a not often had red meat supper and also made some baked potatoes on the grill. I rounded out the meal with some green beans and some refrigerator bread and butter pickles. 

So, now it's Friday and once again I need to go to work. As I'm typing this the girls are playing quietly, ECJ is working on his lessons in an attempt to get them finished before Daddy gets back from taking the neighbor to the doctor's office, and Peanut's birds are welcoming all the outside birds to our driveway through loud chirping through the bedroom window. Daddy had told me he would do the lessons with the girls once he got home so that I could put the finishing touches on this post before heading off to work. We may both end up being gone for about an hour, but ECJ is more than capable of watching the girls for that length of time and he has his cell phone and the neighbor to call upon if something were to happen since it will take about ten minutes for me to get back from work in an emergency. Depending on the weather when I get home from work I may just take the campers on a nature walk this evening to see what we can see.

I've only had 1 day off of work in the last ten and I must work tomorrow as well. We don't yet know the schedule after that point and it could very well be that I'll be working until next Wednesday which is a scheduled day off for me due to my needing to have my final check up after my surgery earlier this month! I'm fine with all of that. We've been super busy but we're all adjusting very well to it all.

I need to make a prayer request for any of y'all that are so inclined. One of the campers we don't see often is in the hospital with an obstructed bowel. She's 12 years old (almost 13) and is in great discomfort. If you could spare a moment of time to pray for her quick recovery we would greatly appreciate it. Thank you in advance.

And since some of you enjoy the random dog pictures so much I thought that I'd include this one of Moragon.

Posts you may have missed this week:    
Reordering the Schedule

Who we're linking up to this week:    
Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers
Our 4 Kiddos
Faithful Mom of 9
Great Peace Academy (when available)

And for those of you who have yet to look us up on Facebook you can find us there by following this link . As yet it is the only social media account we can be found at.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Reordering the Schedule

With recent new developments here we're in the middle of figuring out how to reorder our schedules. I just started a new job, which is starting out part time but could be full time shortly. On top of that I have several orders for crochet items that I must get finished within certain time frames. We also have our first full week worth of our Fall session beginning on September 8th, which means that our lessons will be taking longer each weekday to complete than they have all summer.

So, for this month's "Day in the life" post that will be joined up with not only be linked up to Our Busy Homeschool but also I Homeschool Network's "Not Back to School" blog hop.

I've chosen to highlight August 21st for our Day in the Life, and here's what happened:
This was Peanut at 11:45 PM the night before, we'd walked out to check on them
and we found her sleeping on the couch...

8 AM- My alarm went off, instead of hopping directly out of bed since the children were still silent (meaning they were either still sleeping or resting in their beds before getting up) I said my morning prayers, did my rosary, and quietly talked to Daddy about our plans for the day.

9 AM- We heard the first faint stirrings of our children beginning to get their breakfasts and do their chores. Out of bed I went, dressed and did all my other morning things before heading out into the main part of the house. All of us having taken our showers the night before we didn't need to worry about taking care of that. We did sneak in a few smoothies this morning so that Mommy had something in her stomach before work.

9:45 AM- I left for a quick two and a half hour session at work, where we were all spoken to about what will be expected of us during the next few weeks. While I was at work our plumbing basically broke, having most of our drains back up and a plumber to be called while I was gone. The children spent that time crocheting, coloring, or otherwise engaged since it's kind of hard to walk through lessons with them (even review lessons) while you're responding to a plumber's questions every two minutes.

12:30 PM- Saw Mommy home again from work, the plumber steadily working on the clogs in the lines, and Daddy working right along side the plumber.

1:30 PM- LUNCH TIME!!!! On today's menu we had pulled pork BBQ sandwiches, string cheese sticks, V8 Spicy Mango vegetable juice cocktail, and sliced apples.

2 PM- Afternoon chore time. This includes feeding the dogs, cleaning the bird cage and feeding the birds, cleaning the cat boxes again, straightening up loose books and toys, and lunch dishes. 

2:30 PM- We were able to do our family Bible readings and discussions during this time. Normally we do them first thing in the morning but right now Mommy is still trying to figure out how we'll get everything done with all the new things beginning.

3 PM- One hour was spent here doing lessons. We currently have one hour scheduled Mon - Fri this week and next week for our review lessons before we take a week off and then begin our Fall session. We're reviewing math, language arts, and phonics. 

4 PM- We head out to an event two towns north of us...

6 PM- A quick stop at the grocery store to pick up something for supper (Daddy and I both forgot to lay anything out last night and this morning) and we're home and cooking.

6:30 PM- SUPPER TIME!! On tonight's menu we have fresh from the garden sliced cucumbers, seasoned boneless porkchops, and sauteed peppers with squash and zuccinni as well as some maccoroni and cheese! And these campers ate every bite!!

7:00 PM- Quiet reading time. We do not skip this on any day, and if the children are at Grandma's house they're expected to read for at least half an hour each day that they're there. Most days this happens in the afternoon (to give us parents a bit of quiet time to gather ourselves) some days, like today, it happens in the evening. Peanut is also given her migraine medicine at this time.

7:30 PM- Quick cookie for desert, PJ's on, teeth and hair brushed... Quickly straighten the afternoon mess in our rooms and it's off to bed for the younger campers. Mommy or Daddy reads Peanut a Bible story, turns on her movie, and tucks her in by 8PM...

8 PM - 9 PM - ECJ spends this time reading or crocheting in his room. I caught up on my correspondences and then went into my room to get ready for Big Brother and to attempt to finish part of one of my crochet orders. Daddy is already resting and waiting for the show.

10 PM- ECJ goes to sleep, Daddy watches the news, I take a quick shower and then crochet some more.

11 PM- Night time prayers, quiet discussion about what we have planned for tomorrow and the weekend, and then I drift off to sleep aware that I start work tomorrow at 7:45 AM (GAH! I've never been much of a morning person and I'm not looking forward to being at work by that time to start unloading trucks full of merchandise.)

During the summer we're hardly ever awake before 8 AM unless it's Sunday and we're getting up for Mass. During the school year proper I usually wake up before 7 (barring those days where I turn off my alarm for more rest) and we begin earlier in the day. With this new job I know that once the 1st of next month comes I won't be required to be at work until 9 AM on any day. But, for the next two weeks while we set up the store I need to be up early and ready to go, this has never been an easy task for me and it's harder after several months of letting myself sleep in since we had less work to do and we relax over the summer. However, one finds that anything can be done when it must be and that we're more resilient than we think we are.

I'm not sure at the moment what our Fall session schedule is going to look like. I do know that Daddy will be doing the campers lessons with them while I'm at work on the days I do work. I'm still in charge of lesson plans and correcting papers along with record keeping and grading. And I'm sure that it's only a matter of time that it all becomes second nature to us. In the meantime I'm slightly stressed as I cannot begin planning out September's lessons until at least Monday evening, I'm not sure how many lessons need to be done each week to get us to where we want to be, I'm out of ink until the 3rd so I cannot begin to print off our morning binders or even our binder covers, and the list goes on and on...

*I finished this post up late Saturday evening after referring to my notes from Thursday. I'm still adjusting to working outside of the home and believe it or not muscles that I'd forgotten existed are screaming at me to take a long hot bath with some Epson salts.*

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Hectic Days

I meant to have this post done by Friday morning, but as the title suggests we've had some hectic days around here...

Sunday we spent some wonderful time at two different parks in the area. One we'd never been to before and the other we have been going to pretty regularly since we found it earlier this summer. Here are some photos from the "new to us" park...

As you can tell they completely enjoyed themselves the whole time we were there. They also enjoyed the other park but I figured we'd show these photos off since y'all have seen several of them at the other park.

Monday and Tuesday were both pretty laid back. We did our lessons in the regular hour to hour and a half for our summer review (which we do every August) and spent the rest of our days doing anything else that we felt like doing. Meaning that I was able to finish a gift for a family member who will be receiving it this Christmas!! (They don't read the blog so it's safe for me to post it here.) And that we were able to hit another park in the afternoon!!

Wednesday I went into work for a few hours and Daddy did the lessons for the day with the campers. He reported to me later that the day had gone very well and as I checked over the lessons the campers had indeed done very well on their lessons.

Thursday I again had to work, but this time only for two hours for the orientation meeting with the entire crew. While I was gone Daddy had to call in the plumber because all of our pipes began backing up. So, we did our lessons that afternoon and went to an event two towns north of us. But, I had very little work left to do to finish up part of an order I need to get out soon so I finished it up after the campers went to bed...
This newborn baby dress has three buttons to close around the back of the neck
and was purposely made to fit up to three months of age...
Friday morning Mommy was tired when the alarm went off and I almost threw the phone when the alarm went off! Yet, instead I got up to pull the first "really" full shift of my new job. We had 2 trucks worth of merchandise to unload that amounted to somewhere around 10,000 small boxes that had to be put all over the store! Needless to say by the time I got home I was hot, sweaty, exhausted, and muscles I'd forgotten I had were screaming at me. Daddy was awesome in having the campers lessons done, taking them to the park for an hour or two, he also cooked dinner, handled desert, and got them all off to bed with very little help from me. I did take about an hour and work on another part of the same order...
Matching baby bonnet before I added the ties...
And while I know I hardly ever carry things on into Saturday I simply must put in that I worked again today. My body seems to be beginning to adjust so that I'm not as tired after work and I'm taking great pride in watching the new store come together so well. It seems like we've got a handle on things so far when it comes to getting all the lessons finished, everything around the house done, and I'm still able to crochet and blog (although, I am a bit late with this week's wrap up). I'm sure as we go through the next few weeks we'll get the rhythm down rather quickly and it'll be second nature to have everything coming at us from so many different directions.

** ECJ won a prize in our library's summer reading program drawing today! We won't find out what it was until Monday since I was at work when the phone call came in (we haven't even told him yet since he'll go crazy trying to guess and the library isn't open tomorrow). **

Posts you may have missed this week:
14/15 Student Photos

Where we're linking up this week:
Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers
Faithful Mom of 9
Squishable Baby
Homegrown Learners

And for those of you who have yet to look us up on Facebook you can find us there by following this link . As yet it is the only social media account we can be found at.

Random doggy picture for your enjoyment :-)

Monday, August 18, 2014

14/15 Student Photos

Another week at I Homeschool Network's "Not back to school blog hop"!!! And this week's it's student photo week! I always try to think of different ways to showcase my children in these types of photos, I hope I did them justice this year!

ECJ was sporting one of his favorite (can you tell by all the stains?) yellow shirts and running off a bit of energy at a park we'd never been to before. He'll be starting 7th grade this fall and couldn't be more excited about it! He's already trying to push some subjects into 8th grade as "I'm sure I can do it, Mom" keeps being his favorite new refrain. His favorite subjects are English, math, and science. His goal in life is to become a preacher who does scientific work all while designing video games. In the meantime he spends his time reading, practicing his skateboarding and accrobatics, and generally annoying his little sisters.

 YCJ chose one of her more comfortable shirts for a day of play and thrilled in discovering places to be goofy all day long. She's heading on in to 4th grade this fall and is beginning to dread spelling lessons resuming, though she's somewhat excited to be trying a new curriculum for it. She loves math and science along with art, and is constantly trying a new experiment or craft. She's determined that she'll do some sort of work from "home" when she grows up, "home" being a hotel that has room service, maids, a gym, and a pool. Logically she figured that she'd only really have one bill to pay this way, her meals would be there if she wanted to eat in, her room would always be clean, and she wouldn't have to worry about going anywhere if she wanted to workout or go for a swim. I love her logic (and if I had thought of it when I was younger I might have had the same plan).

 Peanut of course had to wear pink, there's hardly a day goes by that she doesn't have her favorite color on. Having completed both pre-school and Kindergarten in the past year she's more than excited to be moving on to 1st grade (where has the time gone?). Right now her favorite subjects are art and math, because as she tells me, "I get it". Her plans for the future include lots of children and pets as well as living with us forever! Isn't it sweet that this is part of their plans at this age? Her main goal for the year is to get a drum set as the empty coffee cans are simply no longer cutting it for her.

 As you can tell these campers are enjoying the last few weeks of summer and were more than happy to pose for the camera after a few weeks of it being "shelved". With that being the case I'll leave you with just a few more shots of them...

And for those of you who have yet to look us up on Facebook you can find us there by following this link . As yet it is the only social media account we can be found at.