Saturday, September 28, 2013

Homeschool Preschool

We started preschool at home this fall.  Since I stay home, I wanted to be sure I was keeping her caught up with other kids her age.  She is smart (of course, I think so), but I wanted to make sure I was teaching her all the skills necessary for 2 year olds.  

Working the alphabet puzzle

We are using a free online curriculum called Jesus Loves Me ABC 123.  The basic colors, numbers, letters, etc were obvious.  But the fine and gross motor skills are things I wouldn't have thought of.  In general, this curriculum is just a great reminder of things that I can do throughout the week to keep her learning.  

I sent this picture to my friend Jessica who was my other half at school.  
She seemed proud that I was doing lesson plans!

Our white board.  My sister Taylor wrote the categories in permanent marker so I don't have to rewrite them each week.  Then, we just add the weeks lessons and have a great visual of what to do every day. 

We don't do a ton of sit down schoolwork.  It's mostly conversations in the car, reading specific books from the library, picking out letters at the store, etc.  We do 1 color, number, letter, and shape each week, plus 1 fine and 1 gross motor skill.  And, it does 1 bible story and memory verse a week.  We have spent 3 weeks on Creation and learning Genesis 1:1.  It's been fabulous because it has really opened up the conversation of who God is.  Each night when we read her books before bed, we pray and say "Dear God, Thank you for..."  So now she calls Him "Dear God" and tells us that God lives "high in the sky" and He "loves us".  And now every time we finish a book, any book, she says "AAAA-men."

Loves drawing on the dry erase side.  However, after 3 uncapped markers went dead, 
it's not as much fun.  

Painting a wooden birdhouse

She really likes the idea of "school" because it usually means she gets to do fun activities.  She loves painting the most.  She also likes coloring a lot, and is really figuring out that the page is supposed to be a picture to be colored specifically (it's funny to see her try to color in the lines!).  She also loves reading (always has) so she loves the huge assortment of books we get at the library.  They usually coincide with the color or shape or alphabet for the week.  She has found a lot of new favorite books lately.  

Painting coloring pages

Her new favorite series, Llama Llama.  She calls the mom, "Mommy Llamy"
and loves to exclaim, "She came back!"  

Friday, September 27, 2013

August Photo Dump

August was all about getting the house completely livable before school started.  We also tried to make it down to see some friends and family a few times.  It was good to visit, but driving 3 hours each time with a 2 year old who doesn't really ride well, plus being gone all day, made for a learning curve.  

Our boy-friend, Breken, at his 3rd birthday party

It's been ok, moving up here, away from my side of the family.  It's taken some time, but we have a pretty good routine.  We love the Cody just got the job at B. MacDaniel so he won't have to drive so far to work each day.  We love hanging out with Kelly, Julianne, and Tessa.  They keep us sane.  We also have dinner with the Hempkins' every now and then.  Plus, we are still searching for a new church, so we are meeting lots of new people.  

One last playtime with Julianne before she starts school as a big kindergartener

Love Stickers

Cody does tons of work outside on the land.  He burns trees, cleans out the barns, mows the yard, and takes care of everything outside.  It's A LOT.  It will take years for it to all be done, but it's slowly getting better.  

This old tree (probably 30 feet tall) took over a week to fully burn down.
It went up in enough flames that his parents saw from their house and rushed over
because they were afraid the barn was on fire. 

Replacing the septic tank lid was HORRIBLE.  We had to dig a ton, pull up huge chunks of concrete, and put a new one down.  Buddy even jumped in to get the concrete out of the bottom - what a good FIL!  We were all wondering who was gonna take the plunge.  

Harper and I have had lots of fun together lately.  We play, do chores, bake, play outside, run errands, etc.  She is getting so big and loves to help with everything.  She has loved baking lately and always insists on pulling her stool up to the counter.  She is talking nonstop these days.  She loves to repeat things and is saying 4 and 5 word sentences.  She has also just learned that Harper, Me, and You (when I say it to her) all mean the same thing.  So she sometimes gets a little confused when she says, "Toy back to You-Harper-Me".    

Sometimes she won't go to the bathroom on her own, but if we take her pullup off, she has no choice but to go eventually.  So we spend a lot of time naked, which she likes. 

Harper had a big growth spurt this summer.  She just looks like a kid now instead of a baby.  She is still in 18-24 month clothes, but she'll be wearing 2T this fall.  Oddly enough, her feet didn't grow hardly any in length, but got even chubbier!  So now are down to 1 pair of shoes again.  No cute Toms, none of the 5 pairs of shoes I bought at the beginning of summer.  I'm sure CPS will love my kid playing all winter without shoes.  

So here's to school starting, life changing again, and the sweet days of fall that should be coming soon!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Happy 1st Birthday, Reesey!

Sweet Reese turned 1 this August.  She is such a sweet baby and it was a great day celebrating her first year.  She is one of the best babies, usually smiling and happy, eats like crazy, loves her mom and dad and Grayson is her best buddy.  She had a sunshine and lemonade swim party and she had a fabulous time!

We went over around lunchtime so that Harper could nap at Kristen's house and we could be on time for the party.  Plus, we were able to help her get last minute things together.  Even though Kristen had worked for weeks on this party it always ends up being crazy at the end.  So we also got to give Reese her birthday present a little early.  Reese loved her first baby doll and stroller.  Harper was a little confused why the baby she bought was being given away, but she figured it out.  She has been singing "Happy Birthday to Reesey" for 3 weeks now, so she remembers that it was all for Reese. 

Since we got to spend a full week with Reese in June but don't see her as much now that we have moved, I miss her like crazy.  And she is suddenly getting bigger and learning so many things!  So I was super glad to get to spend some time with her and love on her a little extra.  

Kristen threw a great party.  She decorated in Sunshine and Lemonade with yellow and pinks.  She made banners and a lemonade stand and had tons of cute decorations.  

Reese is such a good baby, she is happy doing anything with anybody.  She loves other kids but also loves getting attention from people in general. 

We busted out the suits and Harper had a blast swimming.  She absolutely loves swimming and was super excited that Taylor and Pop were going to swim with her too.  

Having cake, singing happy birthday, and blowing out candles.  Twice.  A few tears.  Lots of clapping.  Cupcakes for all the kiddos.  Happiness.  

This party was a good celebration of Reese's 1st birthday and also their survival of the first year with two kids.  We had a great time getting to see their friends and hang with family.  

Reese had a fabulous day.  She is such a sweetie!  Can't wait to see her grow up!