Monday, May 24, 2010

Spring has Sprung!

We are loving this warmer weather and have been to the beach twice to enjoy the sand and surf. Evie enjoys exploring the rocks and really hasn't fallen much. Rory likes to dig in the sand and chase the birds.
I'm not at that point with this pregnancy that I'm feeling so huge that I'm uncomfortable. I'm sure I'll get there soon enough. But I have to say that I am really enjoying this pregnancy, even if I am larger than with the last two. I'm treasuring every kick and wiggle. It is really something to be carrying a small life inside you!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Gone Froggin

We noticed on Tuesday the Frogs had returned to the pond. So Wednesday afternoon the girls and the little boy I watch all headed down with nets to go searching. Evie ran ahead of us and before we had reached her her net was already jumping! I've never caught a real live water frog in my life (just toads) so needless to say I was so proud of her!
After that first frog we caught two more and put one in our little row boat. Evie sat in the boat and the frog hopped next to her. I said, "Evie, I think he is trying to give you a kiss!" and she said, "like a frog prince?!" So she has been talking non stop about the frog that tried to give her a kiss. :)
Just had to share!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

On Faith

This is a difficult post. And it has been a difficult time for my family on this subject.
Why bring it up? We now attend an awesome preschool coop with a Waldorf focus. I love the early childhood Waldorf philosophy, there are certainly things that aren't great about Waldorf philosophy, but in general for early childhood it nurtures the "whole child" and creates a true environment for creativity, imagination, and natural inner development.
Anyway, the Waldorf philosophy is great in that it allows parent and child to learn about many of the Christian cultures, festivals and their background as well as many other religious holidays. (Instead of trying to play nice and ignore them!)
This weekend we'll celebrate May Day, there's Michalemas, Christmas, so on... so I am glad to teach my children what it is and why it is we celebrate the way we do.

However, because of the changes my sister has faced with her faith, my family has been assessing their own beliefs and what it is that we value and believe in. One should not have to justify their faith, and I am certainly one to not "judge" others. But when it gets to a point where a person is not the person they were and has quickly morphed into someone else, sheltering themselves away...and that person is family, it is hard not to judge and you begin to question why some people value their faith.

When does a religious organization turn into a cult?
When they do not give or look outside themselves (think no mission work, no moneys to others in their community)
When the "leaders" have no higher educational background, and are not trained at all for their teachings. (Teaching that birth control to young women is not acceptable as well as certain clothing, makeup, jewelery, hair styles...)
When everyone is just as sweet as pie and as nice as can be.
When they claim not to judge, but the belief is that they are the "one true" faith, that only they will be accepted in heaven.

These are just SOME things that go over and over in my head every day. How does one person change their beliefs so quickly and so drastically... when they are hurt? Desperate? Recovering from loss?

These are lessons I will value in teaching my daughters strength. The importance of empathy, of having an open mind and experiencing life around them. I only hope my girls will be strong willed and believe in themselves enough to know that whatever type of god you believe in, he or she is looking at us smiling knowing we were given life and that life is what you make of it!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Homeschooling Update

I've been having so many conversations lately with people regarding schooling, people from all walks and ages of life.
I don't find myself feeling like I need to "defend" our reasons for homeschooling, more that they are concerned for their child and if they are learning enough or frustrated with the testing going on in schools. People are often surprised to hear I went to school to teach and after many internships in public school systems, seeing how much they have changed and then leading my own independent study on Waldorf and then Emergent curriculum, decided not to teach. (That and I couldn't find a job without a Masters degree, and I was pregnant!!) ;)

I told one mother the other day, "If I'm technically a teacher, why would I send my child to daycare so I could sit in a classroom and "educate" other's children?"

Anyway, wanted to put in some updates on Evie as she is quickly showing interest in some things...

Letters: She has not been one to show interest in letters but the past week I find her looking to "spell" her name and words and pretending to sound things out. All this means is that when reading I'll focus a little more on the sounding out and pointing out of words/letters. For example, this morning, we made Pancakes together. In the cookbook she helped me find the "P" in the index. See, no curriculum needed!

I've always been a strong believer in letting kids use and hold real world tools, with anything, if parental supervision around there is no need to worry. So, Evie has been using real scissors for a long time. She now can cut out pictures and squares!

Rory follows Evie's interests and it is so need to see her looking up to her big sister. :)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

So I'm not really sure why I can't post more often! Maybe I'll try at least once a week!

So, we have some exciting news! We'll be adding a new little life to this world around the end of August. So exciting! Evie named the baby "button" and the name has stuck. So baby button is going to be our little Lewis addition. The girls pat my belly at night and Evie has tried to feel her kick, but no luck yet! I'm trying to explain to Rory that she'll need to share Nu Nu's as the baby will need lots of Nu Nu milk, but she gets upset. I was hoping we wouldn't have the huge attachment problems with the bigger age difference this time around... but we shall see.

Our household has been sick the past 2 weeks causing us to miss out on countless playdates, appointments, as well as Easter and our trip to MD. Bummer. I am now just wanting everyone to heal but it has been frustrating. If only this particular mother had kept HER sick child home and thought about others for a change. But I must not dwell on this!

I am considering delaying or stopping my API leadership process. It has been a long process and I am nowhere close to finishing. I feel like I need to focus on the homeschooling and now that we have a found a wonderful small group to share our focus with, I think I need to look more at our needs. The API group has been wonderful, but the focus is on the young child, and I can't realistically see leading a group with a school age child, toddler, and baby in tow.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Long time no Post

Man it is hard to post entries! Not sure how people do it. Part of my delay has been due to the fact that we've lost a few computers inbetween now and this past summer, so I lost all my links and keep remembering off the top of my head which ones I have!

Some updates...

I am watching a friends child one day a week, going pretty smoothly...
I feel like Evelyn needs more in an activity and social sense. I don't know right now if this means preschool next fall or if it just means I need to make a strong effort to get out to playdates more often and out of the house in general. She is bored and she needs more than I can offer her right now.

Lots of changes in our family, good and bad. I struggle emotionally with a certain topic and wonder if my past "post partem depression" was more just a long struggle with dealing with so many stressful issues. Hard to say.

I'm enjoying learning more about Natural Parenting, Homeschooling, and Natural Living in general. So far, we have eliminated all cleaning chemicals in the house. This includes laundry detergents ( we use BioKleen for the diapers and our clothes) and use only baking soda/ vinegar/ water combo to clean. So far so good, except on the glass stove top. I'm trying to find a natural shampoo I like for everyone, but might just make our own. I wish I could say we eat all organic and local, but the cost is so high it isn't attainable. We will get there someday.

Rory just celebrated her 2nd birthday yesterday! She is such an amazing little one! She speaks full sentences now, is using the potty, loves sea creatures, kitty kats, playing in water, and is just an all around cheerful little one!

Evie loves drawing and painting, she makes some amazing artwork. She has just finished a fun ballet class and did a cute little holiday recital. She really is my special little girl.

Hope to be reporting some exciting new soon!

Peace to you in the new year!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Side Note

I forgot to mention another "Unschooling" issue that has come up in our house. Besides homeschooling I am officially "unschooling our home" in some aspects, including food. I let the girls choose what food they want in the house and when they want it. Usually Evie makes good choices, except when we actually have junk food in the house and she knows it (chocolate..etc..) but usually they eat a good diet. It came up this weekend from a family member and again last night with Chris, that the girls should "not eat treats unless they've eaten dinner, or if theydon't eat NOW, then they don't eat LATER even if they are hungry"
Ugh. NO. no. and no thanks.

Let me ask YOU this. Do you eat only when people tell you to eat and exactly what to eat? I didn't think so. If my child is hungry later, say at 8 PM instead of at 5PM, I will let them eat. I am not going to send her to bed without food simply because she didn't eat when I asked her to.
Also, if she grazes throughout the day and wants a popsicle in the afternoon, before YOUR idea of when "dinner time" is. THEN GIVE HER THE POPSICLE!
I don't keep a ton of junk in the house, so the choices they make are usually healthy, but if she wants a popsicle in the afternoon that is fine. Sometimes I actually have chocolate or candy in the morning> Can you believe it? What about coffee? Do you drink coffee in the morning? What if I told you you could only have that AFTER you ate your spinach with breakfast! ?

Ok that is all. Moving on.