Friday, February 27, 2009

A break in the weather

It was 64 degrees in our little corner of the Garden State
today. 64 degrees! It did not feel as warm as it sounds,
there was little or no sun, and very breezy. We did get
outside though, and I used this cool book my friend Nina sent me to do a little planning for March. Princess drew a bit,colored a bit, watched the birds,

made some fairy houses, ran around, played on the swings.
It was nice to get outside. I also opened the vents on the windows
for some fresh air inside. Hopefully all my germs went out. :-D
Back inside we played with Princess's doll houses while listening

to bird songs on CD. It was interesting to hear many of the birds we
had been hearing outside.Dinner called for something comforting.
Grilled cheese sandwiches and home made tomato soup.

I took a solo trip to the library to pick up my huge stack of holds.
Princess worked on figuring out how to tell time.
I still have a lingering cough, but it is not nearly as bad. I feel good that we
got outside, because right after we came inside, it started to rain, and I hear it may snow
this weekend. Oh well. I have a big stack of library books, and the house is reasonably clean.
I did a quick dust and vacuum today and stripped all the beds and washed the sheets and
put fresh towels out in the bathroom. I will clean the bathroom in the morning and call it
clean enough. I'm still recovering don't you know. ;-)

Venus if you will

According to my buddies at NASA,on Friday evening, Feb. 27Th, the 10% crescent Moon will glide by Venus, forming a gorgeous and mesmerizing pair of lights in the sunset sky.
Yes, we know that Moon-Venus conjunctions are not unusual, but this conjunction
will have some special qualities:
(1) Venus is at maximum brightness: magnitude -4.6. The planet is twenty times brighter than Sirius, the brightest star in the sky. It is so luminous that it can actually shine through thin clouds and cast subtle shadows on the ground.
(2) As seen from North America, the Moon-Venus separation is only a little more than 1o. Stick up your thumb and hold it out at arm's length. Venus and the Moon will fit comfortably behind the thumb-tip. Tight conjunctions like this are the most beautiful of all.
(3) Not only is the Moon a crescent, but so is Venus. A small telescope pointed at the glittering planet will reveal a slender 20%-illuminated disk.
We'll be taking out this book

and looking up more information about what else is "up there".
Sorry, I am aware that many of you will now have Frankie Avalonsinging in your head all day, but I just could not help myself!
Thank you all for all your kind "get well" wishes of late, I am on the mend,
and looking forward to getting back into the swing of things.
We have germination on our heat mats mostly the mustard),

and this is flowering in the kitchen...

I think Pumpkin must be correct.
It is time to take down the winter snowflakes,
and prepare to sing a song of spring!

A close up, because these plum blossoms are too pretty to miss.

Have a lovely weekend.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Laissez les bon temps rouler!

Woo Hoo! OK, there was no parade, no floats, no "throws",
but Princess did make a mask

and we made a King Cake

We even had an evening visitor....

Princess enjoyed sharing one of her favorite books with Farmer Dad and his
buddy, D. We stayed up a little late so we could sleep in today, Farmer Dad is on a
second shift type schedule for today. After breakfast, we all got to work starting
some seeds for this years garden.
Princess wrote out all the "tags" for the six packs. Lettuce, mustard and collard
greens and such.

Farmer Dad filled all the six packs with starter mix, and then we took turns
sprinkling the seeds.

Normally she does most of them, but after writing all the tags, she got
over the excitement of "seed starting" pretty quickly. She is now old enough
to remember that gardening is a lot of work..not just A walk outside in the sunshine
with Farmer Dad to check which bulbs were popping up and then we played a bit.
Now we'll get to some more school work. Lunch break is over, and Farmer Dad has left
for work. I'm off to take something for my headache...have I whined today about how
very,very tired I am of being sick?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Book Post Tuesday

Here we go..some of what we are reading
In honor of Mardis Gras...
A creaky old mule decides to toss off his reins and head for
Bourbon Street when the farmer tells him "Come first cockcrow tomorrow, we boil your hooves for backfat and for soap!"
His dream has been to go play trumpet down in New Orleans.
BIG WARNING to all the Momma's of sensitive souls..
each animal they come across is about to be killed in a violent sounding
fashion because they have become too old to be useful to the humans.
If you can get passed that, it is a nice story about animals making a
good way for themselves with interesting dialect and the flavor
of New Orleans. Sho'Nuff. ;-)
There is a glossary at the back as well, Princess liked that.

Princess enjoyed this version of the classic fairy tale.
She has a fascination with Gators that I can't explain.
The book also has a brief history of the Cajun people,
and a glossary..we do like a glossary.;-)
More importantly, it is filled with the flavor of
Louisiana...Mm Mm..maybe instead of more soup
I should be cookin' us up some gumbo! ;-)

Bird Feeding Month...
We loved this true story of a bird found on the corner
of 3rd Avenue and 46Th Street in Manhattan, and taken
home to live with the future wife of the author in her NY apartment
for 8 years.Very sweet.

Yes, it's that time of year again. We are in seed starting mode
in our little corner of the Garden State.
This book is a great help in answering some of Princess's
questions about the hows and whys of seed starting.
It is hard to go wrong with a book by Gail Gibbons.
Well, I have a stack of books to write about, but someone needs to get lunch ready,
and the pile has drawn the attention of the Princess who loves to be read to,
so I will be reading in between bouts of coughing and trying to enjoy a hot cup of tea.
I hope your day is also filled with good books and someone to share them with.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Overdue Update

I am still sick. Sick and tired. Tired of being sick and tired.
I am possibly getting better, but I am too tired to know
for sure. Princess is also sick.How could she resist? I make
it look so glamorous! ;-) We have run out of tissues, and
over the counter meds. Yes, I took some.Unusual for me,
but I am SICK. Princess is "not really sick, just a bit."
This is what she tells me. She is a glass is half full kind of gal.
We did do some reading, some writing, and some "maths" this week.
We even pulled out all the stops and painted.She had to use the old left
over paint that was was not great, but she did not complain.
She made the best of it, when it was gloppy, she blotted with a blank page of
paper and made another kind of art. We are going to use these to make some collages
ala Eric Carle later this week. If she is into it. I have not put anything together for this week,
but we will get some stuff done anyway. She is much more motivated than I am right now.
I'm off to make some tea, and put some stuff together for her.
I'll do my best to get a book post posted this week.
Last week's is still sitting in my draft folder, but I just didn't have the energy to
set up all the links. :-(

Friday, February 20, 2009

Sixth Photo Meme

My Homeschooling Gal Pal, Heather,
tagged me for this Meme of sorts..
The rules as I understand them are simple.
1. Go to your pictures folder and open the sixth one
2.Post the sixth picture.

3.Tag 6 people.
I will tag.....
I hope you will all play along ....
This is not an "old" photo, because this is our "new" computer
and I have only a few photos saved here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Valentines parties,play dates and car trouble

Well, it has been a few days since I have updated my blog,
and they have been busy days.I have had truck trouble, mine (minor)
which became truck trouble,Farmer Dad (MAJOR) and a home school group

Valentines Party (Thanks to M for picking us up AND bringing us home!)and
a Play Group Valentines Party (Thanks to R for doing the same!) and Love Day donuts with Farmer Dad shoe shopping
for Farmer Dad (P is still asking where her new shoes are), lunch out at a favorite Mexican restaurant,my Grandmother is back in the hospital,yard work, and play,the ever-present-laundry,a big stack of library books, spring cleaning to be done,
surprises in the mail,garden plans and homeschooling, including some backyard lessons,

Birds to count, and bread to bake. You all know how it is.
I forgot to finish my book post and, well, post it. I will get it up later today
or tomorrow. I hope everyone is hearing the sounds of the birds returning
and getting outside for a bit every day to see Winter packing up and making way
for Spring. Can you feel it? We sure can. Princess and I had friends over yesterday,
and the girls were outside even after the sun was gone.We could hear them giggling
and squealing through the windows as they ran around and dug in the compost pile,
took turns with the binoculars to look for birds, and Princess gave a lesson in
planting sunflower seeds (they were in a seed head on our nature table), and a craft.
Like Mother,Like Daughter?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Green Up Saturdays & Backyard Bird Count

First, I keep forgetting to post a picture of Farmer Dad's Birthday gift We got him a Wrap-N-Mat and a stainless steel water bottle.
The water bottle was too big for his lunch bag, so he has been using the smaller
one I ordered for Princess.
Heads up ...EARTH HOUR IS COMING!!!!

On March 28, 2009 at 8:30 p.m., local time, World Wildlife Fund is asking individuals, businesses, governments and organizations around the world to turn off their lights for one hour -- Earth Hour -- to make a global statement of concern about climate change and to demonstrate their commitment to finding solutions. Turn out. Take action.
Be part of this historic event.
Get the kids excited...

Are you participating in the Backyard Bird Count?
We are.
Count For Fun, Count For the Future: The 12th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count is Feb 13-16th!
Need to figure out what type of bird your seeing?
Try this...
Looking for a fun "bird craft"? try this
Get going, get green, and get outside...don't forget to have some fun!

Friday, February 13, 2009

A refreshing blog about homeschooling

I have been given an award...see here.


It's an award for blogs that make you feel like you've just sipped an ice cold lemonade on a nice, warm day. A Refreshing Blog with lots of upbeat attitude and at times, just plain attitude !

Here are the rules:
Put the logo on your blog or post.
Nominate at least 5 blogs that show attitude and/or gratitude.
Be sure to link to your nominees within your post.

Let them know they have received this award by commenting on a post.
Nominate your favorites and link to this blog.

Now, I'm not saying which ones show more gratitude and which more attitude,


I nominate...


Mrs W


and my other friend




now it said at least, so Heather, Cher,Nina,Mariposa,Frankie,Patrice

you get one too! You all make me feel refreshed in so many ways!

Now go, share the love and lemonaid. ;-)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Celebrating the Darwin & Lincoln Bicentennial

Big day today ...Gabe turns 6!!!!!

Stop by and wish him a Happy Birthday!! is the Bicentennial of both

Charles Darwin, and Abraham Lincoln.

Here are some lovely links for you all....

Tara has even more links at her blog today

We will be finishing up our valentines and going to play

is just too short to miss out on cupcakes! We'll learn more about these guys

when we get home or tomorrow...isn't that why we all homeschool?


The wind is blowing in gusts of up to 50 miles an hour here, and I have seen a couple of our trees

looking almost sideways. Unlike many in the region we still have power, and I hope you all

do as well.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Holidays to Celebrate

Here is some of what we have covered, or are planning to cover this week
in our homeschool.
Hershey's Chocolate Founded/National Bagel and Lox Day/William Henry Harrison b-day
Need a link for W.H.H.? try this one
I forgot to have Farmer Dad buy bagels or lox, so we had some Hershey's chocolate kisses
and talked a bit about W.H.H.(#9. William Henry Harrison Born: February 9, 1773, Berkeley, Virginia.Died: April 4, 1841.Party: Whig.Age when inaugurated: 68.Term: 1841. Harrison delivered a marathon inaugural speech during which he caught a cold. He died a month later. Famous Fact: Harrison was the first President to die in office and he served the briefest term.), we also played some board games, baked some bread,
and read a stack or two of books. Princess played some totally noneducational games
on the computer (unless learning to accessorize counts) and colored some pictures.
She also helped me make a roast for dinner. Her mashed potato skills are wonderful!
Umbrella Day/School Day
More reading, Princess brought her matchbox type cars
out to the kitchen and created extensive parking lots and roads for them.
We talked about how we wanted our "school" to be and the book
Hooray for Diffendoofer Day!
Princess fell and hurt her knee, but was fine within half an hour.
Thomas Edison's B-Day/National Inventor's Day/Don't Cry Over Spilled Milk Day
We will talk about Edison and inventing in general, but we have bird feeders to clean,
and so that just might take precedence here today. We will not stress over it because it is "Don't cry over spilled milk day"! ;-)Princess requested painting, so I will bring in her easel this morning.We need to work on valentines for the next two days events.
Abraham Lincoln's B-Day /Darwin Day
Thursday is both a homeschool day at our library,
and the homeschool play group day for us, but if Farmer Dad doesn't
stop off to get me a new battery for my truck on the way home from work,
we will not be able to do either.
Friday the 13Th
We will cover whatever we didn't the rest of the week, that we still want to,
and we have a play date/dinner at a friends house. (see above note on truck)
Valentine's Day/READ To Your Child Day
Princess has big goals for Saturday..they revolve around
getting donuts with Farmer Dad. It is always "Read to your child Day"
around here, but if for some reason you don't,
Just Do It! Tell them you have to..because of the holiday.;-)
I'll try to post pictures later..Blogger won't let me right this minute.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

This Week's Book Post on a Tuesday

Hello Dear Friends,
I am not feeling like blogging right now.
Most of my computer time has been used
up reading my e-mails today.
I have some exciting things coming to you
in the next week or so book wise, so stay tuned.
For now, I will leave you with the top of our library stack
this week....

I thought this book might be a bit above Princess's head,
but as we've been reading it, she is quite interested.
Weather has a very obvious impact on us all, so
learning about it is necessary, in my opinion.
We have a lot of project ideas floating around
in our heads for the upcoming weeks.
We'll be sure to keep you all posted.

A lovely book filled with poetry and quotes by the likes of
John Donne and Ralph Waldo Emerson
who wrote the following:
'Tis the good reader that makes the good book;
in every book he finds passages which seem
confidences or asides hidden from all else and
unmistakably meant for his ear
The only thing more lovely are Tasha Tudor's

This is a sweet book about the power of a hug.
Princess loves to hug, so she really liked
this book.Visit the author here. Feel free
to give her a virtual hug.
Like this ((BIG HUGS))
Be sure to visit some of my Gal Pals,
Nina, and Mrs W, both have nice book posts up today.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Friday wrap up

Well, this week had very little school and a whole lot of learning.
I was feeling terrible most of the week, so Princess had a lot of
time to just "be".She wrote songs, two books, we made stuffed mushrooms pizza,bread,

cupcakes, soup,hand washed a huge box of vintage linens..I may get around
to posting some of that next week...some really cool aprons and tablecloths.
We have been researching the best way to clean them and get stains out of them.
She improved her vocabulary and made a list of movies she needs to see,
and places we must go, and things she wants to learn. We were going to make bird feeders

and suet "cakes" for the birds, but I just couldn't make it happen.
We played in the snow,snuggled and read, she made up stories for me and poured my tea.

She rubbed my back and fetched blankets and sweaters.We went to help Great Grandma
up off the floor (she broke her ankle, but forgets she can't walk),we watched traffic drive by and snow swirl.

We also watched plenty of television. Now, she is at a birthday party with Farmer Dad,
and I am at home..alone. :-D
Doesn't happen very often. I listened to loud music, vacuumed,did more laundry,
all very exciting. I was going to go to the library, but it is cold out and dark, and my books
are not due until tomorrow, so it will wait. Tomorrow is Farmer Dad's 43rd Birthday.
we will give him his gifts with breakfast, and hang out, and then we will vacate the premises
so the "guys" can come over and "jam". It will be way too loud for us.
Hopefully they don't shake anything off the walls. I will post his very "green" gift
after we give it to him..just in case he's up before me tomorrow and reads this.
Have a lovely weekend!

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My homeschool buddies and I are all posting pics of our "home schools" as part of our idea sharing.

Plato said...

Knowledge which is acquired under compulsion has no hold on the mind. Therefore do not use compulsion, but let early education be a sort of amusement; you will then be better able to discover the child's natural bent .