Thursday, April 26, 2007

Our Cute Girls (Oh, a Train Ride Too)

This is mostly just an excuse to show off our cute girls! We visited Knott's Berry Farm, and everyone was excited to ride the train.

Since we've been reading the Little House books we decided to create a scavenger hunt including things that we read about. We looked for log cabins, calico dresses, sun bonnets, covered wagons, animal skins, and a host of other items. Sam was especially excited to attach real objects to the words.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

A Very Proud Beginning Reader!

Five-year-old Sam is officially a beginning reader! It is thrilling to see him so excited about reading. He is reading (real decoding!) the Bob Books. He completed Set 1 and is one book shy of half-way through Set 2. I'm so excited for him--reading is such a joy!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Thar Be Sickies Afoot!

We are all sick!!! The kids are whiny, and the parents are cranky. Four of us had doctor appoint-
ments yesterday, and one saw the doctor today. Everyone has a really awful virus that has become some kind of infection. Mom and Dad are suffering from sinus infections (imagine how well that goes with whining!). Sam has an ear infection. Abby's eye is threatening to become infected--we are prepared with antibiotic ointment just in case.

Grace doesn't have an infection, but she woke up last night screaming and was inconsolable. She looked at us in terror, as if she didn't know we were Mom and Dad. When we finally calmed her down (with a bubble bath and hot tea at 1:30 in the morning) she said she had a bad dream. Apparently she was attacked by a wolf that scratched her, and she couldn't find us. She also said that the "scratchy wolf stinked at her." Who knows what that means? We didn't ask--we were just glad she wasn't kicking us anymore. I pity the wolf that ever tries to attack her!

This afternoon we saw this rainbow outside our back door. I hope this is a sign of things to come. I need to sleep!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

The Celery Wars

Sam and I had a heartening conversation today. All learning was not lost in the tumultuous Celery Wars. I found Sam studying the celery thoughtfully. "I guess plants need some sunlight to live."
Of course, Gracie is gleeful none-the-less. This is her laughing in pure ecstasy over winning! I guess she loves finally winning. It's tough when your big brother is faster, stronger and can do so many things well. It's also good for Sam to learn to handle not being the first or best. This is an area that Richard and I are often working on with him. We often need to remind him that he doesn't have to do things perfectly--sometimes it is just time to practice.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Celery, Sunlight and Colored Water

This past week we discussed how plants make food using sunlight. We mixed food coloring into two jars of water. We placed celery into the jars and put one into a dark corner with a fan blowing on it for about 48 hours. The other we put into the sunshine for the same amount of time. Little did I know that it was a competition! That thought didn't even cross my mind, but apparently my children had noted which had mixed each color and placed celery into "their" jars. When we brought out the celery to be observed, Sam began whimpering that Gracie won. I was puzzled! I didn't know what he was talking about. I finally figured out that they each thought the blue was Gracie's because she mixed it and the red was Sam's because he mixed that color. The blue celery was thriving--it had been placed in the sunshine. The red celery was bedraggled and withered with barely any color to the leaves. Of course, it had been exposed to drying conditions and no light. The science of the whole thing was lost. Except for Gracie's delight in experimenting with using a magnifying glass--while she reveled in her victory over her big brother!