Our Homeschool Day: Mid Year

Much has changed since we began last August.  Much has not.  I thought I would touch base with how we are handling homeschooling, public school and babies now.

Last October we said good-bye to our sweet Squeakers and hello to our dear Lulu.  Lulu is in 2nd grade and attends our local public school.  She has an amazing teacher and is doing well there this year.  But these changes did bring about changes to our schedule.  We also started caring for a sweet Gerber Cutie baby boy at the beginning of the year.  We are a full house of 5 at home plus grand baby Haddie who comes most days.

So here is a semi typical day in our house:

6-6:15a.m. I get up and get myself ready (This has been my biggest change since Lulu has come.)

6:30-7:10 a.m. I get Lulu up and ready for school.  I walk her to the bus stop and by 7:15 I am back in the house.

7:15a.m. Haddie Arrives

8:00a.m. Breakfast

9-11:30a.m. Schooling (babies have play time and one has nap time): My kids are so hands on right now that I have to sit with each one.  So I am rotation who I am working with.  Sometime I can get two working at the same time, but till we hit an independent stage again, this is hard.  Exhausting.

11:30a.m. Free Time

12:00p.m Lunch

1:00p.m. Quiet Time (mom’s time)

2:00p.m. Rotate Reading Computer & iPads (30 minutes)  (Will also continue another schooling work that needs to be done.)

3:00p.m. Outside/free time (Lulu comes home)

4:00p.m. planned activities

Dinner and Bedtime (Robby and AnnieQ will also do some of their schooling at night-time.  It works out better for us and them)

We also do weekly dance, music lessons, confirmation, church activities, and visits with DHR in our schedule.  With in all this time, I weave in a lot of time for me to read and do some extra work.  We have about 6 weeks left in most of our school work because we have not taken any major breaks this year.  So after the kids scale down I will focus on key elements they need to work on and give them more time for freedom to explore and grow on their own.

As far as a school area this year, it just didn’t happen.  And you know what, it is working without one.  I really stressed about it at the beginning of the year.  And while yes, I could be more organized with the schooling stuff (I have a missing math book right now!!).  But we are working through everything we need and every where is our learning area! Doing what fits our family is the key.  Next year that may look totally different!

Click to see our Spring Schedule.  Remember this is only a guild line for our day.


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When Notice Comes Due: Grief and Loss with Foster Care

baby_FotorOctober 1st of last year, we took in a 4lb 2oz foster baby girl. She was the tiniest little thing. She was a preemie -about 6 weeks early. She grabbed our hearts and off we went to be her foster parents. Length of time unknown. Or as my daughter would say: till further notice.

For months we grew this baby girl. Night time we got up and feed her every 2 hours-then 3. Slowly she grew. Her plan for her future went in many different ways. That’s her story. But if nothing worked out in the end: we were prepared to adopted her-giving her the continued stability she already had with us. This sat in the back of our minds as everyone fell more in love with her.

Foster to adopt. The children we foster-if they come up for adoption we have the first choice of adopting if we we feel this is what is best for all in our family. This concept helps keep children in stable loving homes longer if possible. We have our three beautiful children through this way. While we don’t set out looking to adopt-God places them in our lives.

We have had foster children come into our home that didn’t stay. We have said goodbye to many. It doesn’t get easier.

This one was the hardest goodbye. The abruptness of it threw us. Yet we know in foster care, children can be moved just like that. We had little time to prepare ourselves. We found out at 2pm in court that the next morning our sweet foster baby was moving home, just about a year after moving in with us.

And just like that our family was broken. The kids cried. We cried. We held her, loved her, spoiled her, kissed her. We treasured every moment with her.

‘Till she was no longer ours.

My heart ached.

I was just sad.

I became numb.

It was like our world stopped.

Then I saw the words “God is Good all the time” and thought -yes. He is. Even in my sorrow I have to find goodness. I have to my strength in Him.

So we stayed busy. I read scripture and sang. I prayed-even when I had no words. God has a plan- I just have to wait and see. I called on trusted friends to help in my sadness.

Soon there was laughter. My kids were looking at pictures -smiling. We found that we had to trust that God was looking out for our sweet Squeakers, and that there were other children who needed us to help them along their way.

Foster Care comes with sorrow not only for the foster children, but for the foster families also.  When I teach perspective families, we teach them to treat the foster child like their own.  So many of us do.  And when they leave it is almost like a death.  We grieve.  Yet knowing these children are still out there.  Sometimes some foster families have the benefit to build relationship with the birth families-we did not have that benefit in terms of reunification. Grief and loss with foster care comes in many different forms and knowing that they are there will help foster families understand what it going on after the loss of a foster child.

God is Good all the time.  Two weeks later we had a vacation planned.   A Disney Cruise.  We as a family needed that time to be away to heal, to relax, to unwind.  It was just the timing.  And as a family we would every now and then bring up our Squeakers, and a tear would flow.  It is part of the healing process.

Do I wish she would just come back.  Of course.  Do I pray that her family situation will be stable and healthy for her.  Yes.  Do we continue on the road with foster care? Absolutely.  Our journey is already continuing.


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10 Things We Learned The First Week of Whole30

Whole30week1 for a family of 5

I had read about Whole30 a while ago from Once a Month Cooking.  Last month I stumbled upon on it again, did some research on it and sorta told my husband about it, and then announced at dinner we as a family were going to do Whole30 for 30 days starting August 2.  (August 1st was my birthday.) We as a family had one week to get ready . So here are 10 things we have learned about our family just the first week of Whole30.

1.  I had to cooked 3 meals a day for 7 days.  The kids LOVE this.  Most days breakfast was just cereal or Nutella on toast.  And lunch was a frozen meal or a can meal.  Yes I went all out.  But on Whole30, I have to actually cook.  And plan, which worked mostly ok.

2. With all that cooking came a LOAD of dirty dishes!  I felt overwhelmed with the dishes this week.  Just when I think we are finally getting caught up -I cook again!!

3.  We got new white dishes.  I bought white square dishes at Target.  Mainly cause they were a little bit deeper,and held salads well.  But we soon realized our food looks great on white!

4. We have shopped ALOT this week!  We needed to get our meat.  We did that mostly at Costco.  We are not a 100% organic or grass feed-but close enough.  This is a huge transition and it is not easy.  I have been to the store 4 other times for other items-mostly veggies and fruits.

5. Our kids are on board for the most part. The biggest thing for them at first was no sugar and wheat.  The second day there was cake at church and   two of my three kids did well with no cake.  Isaiah was sad and mad he could not have no cake.  But he didn’t eat one.  They drink water and eat what we give them.  Isaiah has cheated….but we kinda expected that!

6.  Eggs are our friend! You eat a lot of eggs.  Good thing my kids LOVED eggs already!  Boiled eggs are a great on the go food.  It seems we have been through 9 dozen eggs the first week!!!

7. Fruit Salad-Yummy Yummy! Robby grew up with the Wiggles and we have been eating a LOT of fruit!  Well not too much-but more than normal and I bought a far share of fruit.  But now the kids like to make fruit salad-cause they like being involved in the cooking process!  Which is a little hard for me cause I like to sometimes be alone in the kitchen.

8.  We are eating at the dinning room table! – For a long time we ate at the kitchen table. Then only kids and the adults in the living room.  Then I don’t know what happened when Whole30 started.   We starting this week eating at the dinning room table.  And the one day we were not, the kids were disappointed-so we did.

9.  We are not eating out and no Starbucks! This is big for our family.  Cause remember #1, one of the reasons why I didn’t cook all the time was cause we also ate out a lot!  And I drank Starbucks a LOT.  I am good with coffee black!

10.  I am feeling better. First week was a rocky road.  It was hard.  Some days I felt like crap.  I felt much better by day 7. I am seeing a difference in the kids and my husband! So we will pushed through the next three weeks and decided where we are going from there!

We can do this!!

Here are some of the dishes I cooked for my family!

Whole30 for family of 5

First Shopping Trip of Many for Whole30

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Roasted sweet potato, bacon, sweet onion and spinach -For breakfast

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Simple Breakfast

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Kid’s Favorite Lunch-Taco Salad

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Our Anniversary Dinner -Coconut crusted fish, mango and pineapple and grilled squash

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Cherry’s while they were on sale!!!

 

 

 

 


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100 Things to do This Summer: 2014

For the past few years, my kids now look forward to our 100 Things to do This Summer!  This year I worked to put a few new things in that I knew everyone would love! Hope you love our new list! I made the one I am sharing with you a bit more generic.  We plan to visit the Space and Rocket center and SciQuest.  I just put in those spots visit a museum of some kind!  See what is around your area!  We have membership to many of the area attractions so we can go often.  Also I made sure that some of the things on our list could “just be done.”  Like #70-blowing bubbles.  (make sure you keep bubbles on hand!)  Tomorrow I am going to post my 25 Things Mom need to do this Summer!

  1. Visit a children’s  museum
  2. Go swimming
  3. Explore a National Park
  4. Explore a cave
  5. Go fishing
  6. Go camping
  7. Make Rainbow Bubble Snakes
  8. Volunteer
  9. Play and learn at science museum
  10. Visit the Amish
  11. Explore something old
  12. Sing and dance
  13. Go canoeing
  14. Do nothing
  15. Make a kite
  16. Run through the sprinklers
  17. Catch lighting bugs
  18. Grow a salsa garden
  19. Grow flowers
  20. Goto the movies
  21. Read a lot
  22. Play catch
  23. Kick a soccer ball
  24. Go for evening walks
  25. Have a game night with friends
  26. Play video games
  27. Go visit a Botanical Gardens
  28. Water Paint
  29. Play miniature golf
  30. Create Lip Gloss
  31. See a water fall
  32. Have a tea party
  33. Swing High
  34. Look at the clouds
  35. Go on a picnic with friends
  36. Make a sand castle
  37. Go for ice cream in PJ’s
  38. Make magic Mud
  39. Make a Summer bag
  40. Start a summer  journal
  41. Skip count
  42. Go hiking
  43. Feed the birds
  44. Sing a song in church
  45. Go visit an Aquarium
  46. Learn to juggle
  47. Go to a farmers market
  48. Go on bike rides
  49. Play Go Fish
  50. Explode a 2 liter of coke with Mento’s
  51. Play hopscotch
  52. Build a house of cards
  53. Write a song
  54. Send Post Cards
  55. Cook dinner
  56. Tie die shirts
  57. Draw
  58. Goto the zoo
  59. Wonder about stuff
  60. Plan a BBQ picnic
  61. Make banana splits
  62. Sew
  63. Make popsicles
  64. Draw with sidewalk chalk
  65. Put together a puzzle
  66. Make play dough
  67. Each kid cooks dinner
  68. Make a self portrait
  69. Go Bowling
  70. Blow bubbles
  71. Have a water balloon fight
  72. Wash the car
  73. Set off fireworks
  74. Paint a rock
  75. Huge Slip n’ Slide
  76. Goto a county fair
  77. Attend a concert outside
  78. Make fresh OJ
  79. Find a fossil
  80. Send a care package
  81. Create a bird journal
  82. Make Jello Silly Putty
  83. Try something new
  84. Make a large checker board
  85. Jump on a trampoline
  86. Make something new
  87. Goto a water park
  88. Go out with daddy and mommy
  89. Build a fort
  90. Goto a VBS
  91. Make jewelry
  92. Have a marshmallow war
  93. Plan a party
  94. Write a book
  95. Call Grandparent
  96. Walk in grass barefoot
  97. Play on a playground
  98. Make homemade ice cream
  99. Take Sunday Drives
  100. Sleep in

Summer14-100

Click here to print out a list!  100 Things to do This Summer 2014 


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10 Things to do with Boiled Easter Eggs

So we made 5 dozen Easter eggs this year.  Why?  Cause my kids eat eggs like they are going out of style.  But it is a lot of eggs.  So I wondered what else can you do with boiled eggs.  Beside peel and eat!

  1. Egg Salad
  2. Deviled Eggs
  3. Picked Eggs
  4. Put them in a Cobb Salad
  5. Put them in Potato Salad
  6. Add an egg to a bowl Ramen
  7. Strawberry Shortcake (put yoke in dough)
  8. Seriously-by now I have looked through 20 web pages and these recipes look not like ones my family would eat.
  9. So play Egg Roll game
  10. And Play Egg Spoon Relay

Really, my kids like to just peel and eat them. Oh and they still hide and hunt them!

What some interesting ideas for the Egg Shells?  The Prairie Homestead has over 30 plus ideas!

 

What do you do with boiled eggs?

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Eating Candy for Breakfast and Oh I Believe

Well, like all other parents on Easter, we are exhausted.  I awoke 4am to use the bathroom and when I went back to bed I noticed the lights on in the kitchen.   In there was a very awake 12 year boy-ready for Easter.  Ready for his basket.  Ready to goto church.  He was ready for the day.  I was ready for bed.  But I made a cup of coffee and started my morning.

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Soon Dan and Robby were out the door and I had some down time to get my self ready for church. About an hour later the kids got up and after a few melt downs, they were dressed- ready to go.  After Squeakers was fed her bottle and dressed in her Easter dress we were ready to go. (Note-there are no pictures of our foster baby-the baby is Haddie our grand baby.) The kids basically dumped their candy (BIG MISTAKE) in a bag and off we went.

So began the candy for breakfast.  The sugar fest.  The surge of extra energy.  The “Easter Baskets are not going to have candy in them next year threat” from mommy.

What was I thinking?

So candy was eaten all morning.  ALL MORNING LONG!!

It does make for happy kids for picture taking.  You know where you pray in the 100 you take you get at least 1 that can work!

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I knew it would wear off. Soon, I am hoping.  But my favorite moment of the morning- and I do have many-was went we were in church.  Our pastor was preaching on people believing in things of the world.  And then our pastor talked about believe in Jesus and the message of the cross.  And Isaiah, sitting on the floor, eating candy, says fairly loudly “Oh I believe!”

Dan and I could not help but laugh.  Here is our most difficult child most days, but he has the most important thing figured out in his life.  And he is not afraid to share it!

I thought we should have all said “Oh I believe!” at that moment.  How we sit so quietly and listen.  But maybe we need to eat candy for breakfast and shout to the world “Oh I believe!”

 


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Lunch time is really cooking lessons in our house

And then comes lunch time.  I hate lunch time.  I dream of all these healthy homemade cooked lunches for my children-but more than normal I end up buying process foods.

It seems that when I mention I educate my children at home, I get a “oh that’s great, but I could never do that” or this look with “that’s nice.”  And it’s then that I find myself justifying our family’s education choices. Something I should not have to do but do.

Today is a half sick day.  My two little ones are under the weather, and didn’t sleep well last night.  Robby is fine and has been doing his assigned school work.  Our morning has been off and on with tired cranky children-with a tired more than normal sleep deprived mother.

And then comes lunch time.  I hate lunch time.  I dream of all these healthy homemade cooked lunches for my children-but more than normal I end up buying process foods.  Last week I for the first time followed the whole week of E-meals- breakfast, lunch and dinner.  It was great to have some ideas on hand.  This week I plan to follow it again-but have not been shopping yet for the week (something I avoid like the plagues with the children.)  But I had a breakfast still left over from last week of eggs.

So-I think -Robby needs to expand his egg cooking abilities.  He has the basic eggs down.  Today, here is what we did.

  • I got out of the fridge
    • three cloves of garlic
    • a head of broccoli
    • some green onion
    • tomatoes
    • fresh parsley
    • a pack of honey baked ham that I can eat (no sodium nitrates)
    • shredded cheese
    • eggs
  • I had Robby chop up all but the cheese and eggs
  • While he was scrambling the eggs I showed him how to start sautéing the veggies.
  • After they were done he heated up the ham.
  • Then cooked the eggs
  • After the eggs where almost done, he added in the veggies (minus tomatoes) and ham.
  • Those that wanted cheese and tomatoes could put them on after.

He was so proud of himself.  He said this was the biggest dish he has cooked so far. (I think he has cooked bigger but maybe because of the cutting it seemed bigger.)  Isaiah was his sous chief.  Helped with cleaning up.

I think now once a week we will have “cooking lessons” for lunch time.  And also plan to follow some Emeals for other lunch ideas along with Cooking for a Month.  And for a great monthly schedule from Confession of a Homeschooler– she has it all laid out for the month!  I have done that before, it does make life easier!

p.s we cooked with the green frying pan.  Love this pan.  Just saying.

And then comes lunch time.  I hate lunch time.  I dream of all these healthy homemade cooked lunches for my children-but more than normal I end up buying process foods.


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How I Teach Upside Down Children Math

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Oh the screaming!  I am sure if you were on the other side of our door on any given morning there would be some sort of screaming going on in my house.  And while I am working hard to curb my end of the screaming-most of it comes from my children.  For many reasons. (Remember I said my house is never quiet-one of the many reasons) But a lot has to do with not wanting to do math lately.  Expect AnnieQ.  Last year she was the one screaming and the boys were all good.

Last year I started math with AnnieQ and made it through 12 weeks of horrible screaming.  I requested help.  I got suggestions from other Math U See mom’s.  Finally at my wit’s end I put the book away and let her “unschool” herself in math the rest of the year.  I never mentioned a math lesson with her at all.  More for my sanity.

Any guess what?  We started the whole book again this year and she is flying through it with little screaming.  Only on math drills on the computer- when I add new numbers does she have issues.  It was worth stopping.

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So how do I do math?  I don’t Steve does!  That’s really what I tell people!  See we use Math U See.  I love it. My kids mostly love it.  Here is how a week looks like for us.  Normally.

Monday:  We watch the lesson on the DVD-two or three times.  And do one work sheet to make sure we understand the lesson.

Tuesday-Friday: kids do the 1-3 worksheets a day.  Isaiah only barely gets through 1 a day.  AnnieQ can fly through 2-3 now that she understands it!  Robby various.  Plus they do math drills on the computer or iPad.  Isaiah does 50 a day and the two older ones do a 100.  We use Math Boards.  LOVE that program!

I don’t do test.  I know I should BUT the test are the same at the worksheets, and by Friday I know if they know it or not.  Plus I do use the “test” as a worksheet.  The math drills are helping them learn how to do math problems for any standardize test for the future.

Now these are not the only things-I also do these things.

  • Isaiah has a hard time looking at the math problems from horizontal to vertical.  So I am have to teach him to read and say  each problem to show him it is the same.  Isaiah does not do well with transition and quick change.  I guess the change in the problems throws him.
  • If the problem says 4+5-Isaiah doesn’t get it.  If I say you have 4 dollars and I gave you 5 how much do you have. He says 9 right a way!  I don’t get this, and have to figure out how to merge this thinking to the blocks and number with him.
  • I would stop with Isaiah-like AnnieQ-but he wants to do as AnnieQ.  So that is why we only do one sheet-and next year may be repeating again.  I don’t know.
  • Counting-my kids count everything.  We encourage counting things.  Like how many cars are there.  How many books on the selves.  How many eggs are left.  They  are always counting.
  • AnnieQ writes her numbers backwards.  I correct her as fast as I can.  Signs of Dyslexia.  Isaiah just doesn’t want to write them unless perfect, and he can’t do perfect yet.  So I try to get them to write numbers when ever I can.  Isaiah I find sheets that have traceable number, which also I encourage AnnieQ to use.  But she things that too baby for her.
  • We do use some flash card- not many
  • There are some great Math Apps for our iPads. From younger to older ones.  One of Isaiah’s favorite from the last two years was Monkey Math.  Math Blaster HyperBlast is fun to play
  • We estimate how we spend when we goto the store.  It is a great way for them to know how much groceries cost plus other items.
  • We give them some money to spend.  And budget money with them.  I don’t do allowances.  It is too hard.  But they earn money different ways plus they get money as gifts.  At Christmas this year I gave them budgets for each one.  So when I took out Isaiah he had a $5 per person.  I did not include tax for him cause that was too much.  The item had to be under $5.  That was a challenge as he has an expensive taste and will need a well paying job in the future.
  • Tell time.  Ok I never taught my children how to tell time.  They taught them selves.  Our biggest problem is our clock is a roman numeral clock-so I have just bought a number clock too.  But they understand the concept.  All by them selves.  But Steve will teach them too!
  • Showing your work.  In upper math showing your work becomes important.  I have a child who loves mental math.  But my husband says he needs to show his work- it does make it easier for us to know where he went wrong.  So that has been a big change this year.
  • No counting on fingers.  I know-but I am trying to teach them to use the Math U See blocks and not count on their fingers.  I have noticed that my public school foster kids count of their fingers on the time.  I tell them good-what happens at 21?
  • Skip Counting.  I even encouraged my high schooler last year to learn skip counting.  He missed the first 6 years of math-so he missed many building blocks.  Learning skip counting helped.
  • LOVE Legos.
  • Beginning to love Mind Craft
  • Check out my Pinterest board on Homeshcooling for Math ideas and the iHomeschool Networks for some great ideas!

If you are new to my blog, three of my four are adopted.  I will not tell you who:) But I have learned that my kids in some areas are not at their right age levels among other things.  This showed up in math.  Holding AnnieQ back has helped in many ways, and like a preemie, my hope is she will catch up when she is ready.

I am starting to read a book call the “Whole Brain Child” recommended from a conference I went to this last summer.  It is on my list of books I am reading.  12 steps to nurture the brain.  I am looking forward to learning about step 7 remember to remember.  My kids-especially AnnieQ has a hard time remember things she has learned.

 

I am in day 2 of a 5 day series. Yesterday I blogged about how I homeschool my upside down kids Language Arts.

Check out these other homeschooling families and how they teach Language Arts.

Hopscotch with us January 13-17 as we share a round of posts detailing how exactly we teach within our specific niches.

Day 1: how I teach language arts
Day 2: how I teach math
Day 3: how I teach science
Day 4: how I teach history
Day 5: how I teach fine arts

Hopscotch-iHN-January-2013


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Homeschooling with a Preemie Baby and Grand Baby

As some have pointed out-I have not blogged much lately.  It is not cause I don’t want to-or don’t have any grand ideas or cleaver post titles.  Those are coming to me at 1 or 2 am in the morning while I am feeding our now 10 week old sweet foster baby girl.

Life in our house changes all the time.  With one call we can have a little 4lb 3oz baby girl enter into our lives like that.  We can go from having 6 kids living here to 3 in one day cause my oldest son and his new little family are having major life changing issues.  God has shown us to be flexible and trust Him-He will take care of us.

For the past 10 weeks it has been 4 kids in the house with our new littlest sweet preemie baby.   She turned everything upside down, and her case continues to surprise us.  She is ours for now-all her cuteness and squeaks.  And we are learning to adjust and homeschool with a baby in the house.  The first two weeks she came we did not do a full homeschooling schedule.  Robby our oldest, he continued with what I assigned him, but the younger ones, they did various things but not a full schedule.  Thankful for computers, iPads and movies.  I had to get adjusted to having the new baby, and she was eating about every 2-3 hours.

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We just went through adjusting to homeschooling when my daughter in law moved in and we had a new baby in the house last spring when my sweet perfect grand-daughter Haddie was born!  She now spends at least 2-3 days with us and is just one of my kids when here.  But since she holds the title of grand baby she gets spoiled.  Yep- started the grand ma lollipop of the month club!  (note lollipop did not last long in her mouth-she didn’t know what to do with it)

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Little Squeakers (our baby’s nickname) is on about a 4 hour schedule.  So we can get most of our school work done in the morning now.  By the time we are done Autumn  will show up with Haddie for the day.  My kids are very much baby kids and want to hold and play with the babies!

Little Squeakers we did not let them hold her till about 4 weeks ago.  She was 6 weeks or so early and we wanted her to get a little bigger first.  She really spent the first 3-4 weeks in our room. We are blessed that Robby who is 12 now, took the Red Cross Babysitting training class this last summer and is a trained babysitter now.  He does well with all the kids!

So as we get ready for Thanksgiving, Advent and Christmas, our homeschooling book learning will come to a rest for a while.  But life learning continues and that is the greatest learning of all.

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Robby said to me the other day, holding Haddie- “Mom, I am going to be a great dad cause I have a great dad and I know how to take care of babies from him.”  And that melted my heart because no book learning is going to teach my boys how to be a great dad but the example of a great dad.  And learning how to change diapers.

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Household Habits: Kid’s Chores

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Every mother struggles with what chores should my child do.  Every child dreads having to do chores. Heck I hate having to “do chores”  But chores are needed.  Chores are what teach kids time management, cleaning skills, and good old fashion cleanliness.

Yeah we are not there yet.  I am trying.  Believe me we are trying.  I have tried every different trick with chores.  Paid, list, stars.  I started Morning Chores and Afternoon chores last December, and those kinda, kinda stuck.  So I decided to stop focusing on the word “chore” and more on the word “habit.”

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What on the chore list needed to be a habit and not a chore.  Like I have make your bed, get dressed, eat breakfast and brush your teeth as some of the morning chores.  Those really are not chores, but more of personally ha  Every morning this is what I expect my kids to do.  So this school year, those types of items are not on the chore list.  Our chore list are actual cleaning chores to help keep the main living area clean.  They each picked three for morning time and four for afternoon time.  They include things like picking up, sweeping, washing windows, wiping down sinks, emptying out the dish washer.  The kids picked out their morning and afternoon chores.  Then I add other habits they need for life, like learning laundry.

As for paid chores, I give them a few every now and then.  I paid the boys to clean out the van-big cleaning.  As Christmas gets closer I will make a list for them.  I also use chores as punishments.  Mostly weed picking. Since they grow a lot in my yard.

Our Chore System  isn’t perfect. I would like to think I am creating more household and life habits than them just doing chores.   It is still work in progress.  But certain areas are staying a little cleaner.  They ask me how to earn money instead of saying “I will pick up my bedroom if you pay me.”  We will keep working on ironing out the wrinkles….


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