Friday, February 29, 2008

What I told Mark this afternoon at 2:00. "Hurray up and finish your page of phonics, I have to put Kim down for her nap."

What I found at 2:05!

A last resort...

What do you do when a snowplow knocks down your mailbox for the third time this winter?
Do what Grandpa did...hang a bucket from a stick...and wish your mailman good luck!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Dr. Seuss-part 4

Today we have been enjoying Dr. Seuss' The Lorax and McElligot's Pool. The kids were not familiar with either of these books, so it was very interesting after the first read through, to hear what they thought about these.

In the book, McElligot's Pool, a boy is told "You're sort of a fool! You'll never catch a fish in McElligot's Pool! The pool is too small. And, you might as well know it, when people have junk here's the place that they throw it."

But the boy can not be deterred, and he tells the man, "you never can tell what goes on down below! This pool might be bigger than you or I know!"

The story goes on with the boy describing the amazing fish that might be in McEllligot's Pool.

After reading, the kids drew pictures of the kind of fish they would like to find in an amazing pool. Mark's is above, it is a meat eating, two headed fish that can bite through steel.

Gracie's fish are a queen, a princess, and a very friendly octopus, that live together and care about the ocean. (There is most certainly a difference between the imagination's of boys and girls.)
They have continued with their pictures and are now stapling alot of paper together so that they can make their own books about the sea creatures they imagined.

The next book is The Lorax. This book goes along nicely with McElligot's Pool because of the eniviromental message that they both have, with The Lorax having a much bigger message.

Greed leads to the end of the Truffula Trees in this story, and we learn the far reaching consequences of they loss of the trees. The animals have to leave, the birds fly away, the fishes future are dreary, and finally, the Lorax ....."gives a sad backward he lifts himself by the seat of his pants.....and he took leave of this place, through a hole in the smog, without leaving a trace."

The only chance for the future is with a little boy, who finds out, "UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."

This led to a very nice lesson on how we can take care of our planet, and we discussed recycling, and conservation, and how even children can help our world.

We then made a wreath for our "learning wall" with an idea I found at DLTK Kids crafts.

Here is a picture of out "learning wall" so far. We have been having a great time with Dr. Seuss.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Dr. Seuss- Part 3

Our Dr. Seuss unit is still going strong. Today brought a look into the book Horton Hatches the Egg.
Again we discussed the morals that we learned from this book, and I was very pleased with what the kids came up with.
1. keep your promises
2. mean what you say
3. Do what you should- even if it is hard
and last but not least-tell the truth
They kids wanted me to write "never believe a sneaky, lying bird" but I told them that I wanted something postitive to put on the poster- so "tell the truth" was it.

Later, we hardboiled some eggs so that we could investigate them.

We peeled our eggs very carefully and found all the main parts, then we drew and labeled what our eggs looked like. I also found a fun book about eggs at Enchanted Learning.
It is a layered book that begins with a robin's egg and continues with the eggs getting bigger and bigger until...
it ends with a dinosaur egg.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Prayers Needed

Please join us in prayers for the soul of a young man who past away today. He was a classmate of my older children at Holy Cross Academy. His death was very unexpected. Please pray for his family, classmates, and the whole Holy Cross family.

Eternal rest grant unto John, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May his soul and the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen

Pictures of the Day

Just watchin' tv
Fun under the table

Friday, February 22, 2008

"A person's a person, no matter how small"

For today's Dr. Seuss unit we read Horton Hears a Who! I spent quite a bit of time trying to decide what type of project I wanted us to do along with the reading of this book. I knew I wanted to incorporate the pro-life theme that runs throughout the story into some sort of large project.

Babies have been a constant in this house for the past 21 years-so we started by spending a lot of the afternoon looking through shoe boxes full of old (and new) photos.

I decided that we would make a collage of baby pictures that would be a constant reminder that "a person's a person, no matter how small!" I took this time to also remind the children the important job they have in praying for unborn babies in danger of abortion. We have always spiritually adopted babies in danger of abortion and this book helps bring the whole idea of the sanctity of life into a format that even my younger children can understand.

We had fun collecting our photos! We discussed the morals of this story and put them on our collage.

We glued the baby pictures around a photo of some on the family at the March for Life in Washington DC.We all love our final display.

Later, Gracie and I made this very cute and easy "Horton" the elephant paper bag puppet. I found the instrustions and template for it at Dltk's crafts for kids. All in all, we had a very successful Horton Hears a Who day.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Dr. Seuss-part 1

We have started our Dr. Seuss unit and have been having a lot of fun with it. Of course, this is all due to the upcoming Seussical the Musical.
We began our journey by learning about Ted Geisel, the boy who became Dr. Seuss.

I found this wonderful book at the library, The Boy on Fairfield Street. This biography begins, "Once upon a time, there lived a boy who feasted on books and was wild about animals." It is a beautifully illustrated book that was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone aged 6 and up. It seemed to especially attract the teenagers.
We learned the Dr. Seuss grew up three blocks from the library and six blocks from the zoo, and with this beginning, Ted Geisel began his unique style of art and literature.

The first story we delved into was Yertle the Turtle. We discussed how many a Dr. Seuss' books have morals, lessons that everyone can learn from.

We made a poster, and everyone discussed the moral of this story. This was very insightful, it made me realize how thoughtful even my youngest kids are, but my favorite had to be,"if you burp, good things might happen."

We went on to tongue twisters next, with the book Fox on Socks. I do need to tell you where I found these wonderful books and stuffed animals. They came from Kohls. The books and animals are only $5.00 each and 100 percent of the net profits of these go to helping children in our community. You can learn about them at Kohls Cares for Kids.

Everyone enjoyed twisting their tongues around this book.

The project we did to go along with this book was making our own tongue twister book. We used a Cat in the Hat template that I found here. I found many sites with tongue twisters on-line, and we made books that we are learning to read and say.(Daddy seems to be the best at tongue twisters-I am terrible at them.)
We will be back soon with more Dr. Seuss fun!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

A Road Trip

Today, Becky, Pat and I took a three and a half hour road trip to visit Paul Smith's College in the high peaks of the Adirondack mountains. This is Becky's first choice in a college specializing in the culinery arts.

This photo is taken from the college student center. It shows the ice covered Lower Saint Regis lake in the foreground and Saint Regis Mountain in the background.

This college is also the state's enviromental conservation/forestry college, so it offers a lot of enviromentally friendly, fun outdoorsy activities to enjoy in your spare time. (We will all love visiting.)

On the drive home we saw about ten white-tail deer in a group along the side of the road. We stopped, and they posed for me so I could get these pictures, another bonus attraction in the mountains.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Seussical the Musical

It is very exciting around here. Danny, Amy, and Laura have begun rehearsals for Seussical the Musical. It is a musical based on many of Dr. Seuss' most beloved characters. Danny is Yertle the Turtle, and Amy and Laura are Whos. Becky will be an helping the director. We have been listening to the soundtrack for the past week, and I think most of the family knows many of the songs by heart all ready.

Because of the Dr. Seuss craze around here, I didn't want to leave the little children out, so we will begin a Dr. Seuss literature unit this week.

I have found a great looking unit study at Homeschoolshare. There is also a Seussville web site that looks like fun.
I found some printable and coloring pages at this site.

If anyone has any other suggestions I would love to hear from you!

We will keep you updated as we follow our Dr. Seuss Trail.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine's Day.
My super husband took me out to dinner tonight, and when we got home I had these beautiful flowers waiting.
Thank you, kids and Daddy!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

St Benedict and St Scholastica

We have been busy learning about important Saints of the Chruch using the wonderful Catholic Mosiac book, thanks to Cay.
This week the Church celebrated the feast days of twins, Benedict and Scholastica.

We learned about these saints as we read The Holy Twins:Benedict and Scholastica. It is a wonderful book illustrated by Tomie dePaola, and the children had fun looking for all the religious imagery included within its pages.
I also took this time to talk about our Holy Father Pope Benedict. We discussed how a Pope chooses a name and we discussed the succession of Popes, beginning with Saint Peter.

We also made copies of the Cross of Benedict as found in the book, The Holy Twins. I found a template for this cross over at Gray Family Circus. Thank you Andrea!

Mark's finished product, all ready to be proudly displayed on our "learning wall."

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I couldn't resist posting this newspaper photo of two of my girls, Becky and Amy. If they use this for publicity, they are sure to always have a large turn-out for the Sportsman Show.

They are dropping like flies!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Picture of the day

Sippy cups in the morning


We have sickness around here. We have ear aches and sinus infections and sore throats. We have babies with fevers who throw-up their Tylenol. We have so many noses running that I should buy stock in Kleenex.We have people coughing, everywhere, that wake up the baby when she finally goes to sleep. The kitchen counter looks like a pharmacy.

Oh where, oh where is spring?

Monday, February 4, 2008

A Meme

Heather, at Doodle Acres, tagged me for this meme.

The rules for this meme are: (1) Link to the person that tagged you. (2) Post the rules on your blog. (3) Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself. (4) Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs. (5) Let each random person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their website.

1. I am too short to reach the top shelf--of just about anything.

2. My glasses are held together with (oh no) tape.

3. I love to grab the hand of one of my children as we go into a store and skip--dragging the totally embarassed child with me. (This works best with the 11-16 age group.)

4. I played cello throughout my school life-and sometimes I dream I am still able to play.

5. I have a tremendous addiction to diet-coke.

6. I love to knit, and now everyone I know that is having a baby expects to receive a handknit blanket from me. (Hopefully, I will always be able to keep up.)

Now I tag, Jenny, Jessie, Stacy, and Anne.