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Showing posts from 2015

Math and Reasoning

My oldest daughter is 11 years old.  Everywhere she goes she asks people if they have to do math to do their job.  She abhors math.  She is trying really hard to figure out what sort of job she can do that doesn't require any math.  Sadly for her, she probably won't find a single job that doesn't involve some sort of simple arithmetic.

Math is used so much, everyday without even thinking about it.  For instance I used (very basic) math today when I made lunch.  I had to count how many carrots I was giving everyone.  I am not a huge stickler for "fair" and often intentionally give one child a noticeably larger or smaller serving of something just to give them an object lesson in "life's not fair".  They inevitably point out the inequity and I take the opportunity to remind them that there are people that are sick and dying, people that are homeless, people that starve to death, and people that are rich beyond words.  I think I will also add in the w…

Sights and Sounds Outdoors - Mother Goose Time

To start off our second week of Sights and Sounds of Winter, we moved on from Orchestra to Sights and Sounds Outdoors.  Instead of doing daily posts I am going to try to do weekly posts, plus some extras.  Some weeks I might do more when we did really well at doing all the activities, but we have been doing pretty bad the last couple weeks because...  WE HAVE A NEW BABY!  Which means that I am getting up a few times a night and feeding the baby a zillion times a day, plus I really like to snuggle the baby all the time, so school time IS being done, but not nearly as well as we did the first week.

Day One: Animal Tracks - We had a weird day, because we had to drive down to Michael's school to drop off some paperwork (we also went to Target where he got the Pikachu hat he wore all day), so we did half of school time in the afternoon and the other half in the evening after the girls got home.  The circle time activity was making tracks in the "snow" with the provided Shape B…

Learning About Pianos - Mother Goose Time

Let me start with an embarrassing/adorable story.  For our first week of school we were learning about Orchestra.  When we went to church the next time, he QUITE LOUDLY announced "HE HAVE GUITAR!" at the end of the first song.  Then a man next to us put his violin away, and although he managed to contain himself a bit better since I reminded him church was not a good place to be yelling, he was pretty excited to see the violin.
Another fun day of school with Little Guy courtesy of Mother Goose Time!  Thanks to Michael's mom we have an adorable mini piano, which was perfect for today.

There were a lot of interesting things to do today, and all of them held Little Guy's attention really well.  To start with we used some glow in the dark stars that came in our MGT box to make a path on the floor and then tapped them while we counted.  I loved that he made a connection between the stars on the floor and the Christmas book "Little Star" that we read a week or s…

Learning About Stringed Instruments - Mother Goose Time

Learning about stringed instruments with Mother Goose Time was really fun for Little Guy.  He loves guitars for whatever reason, and was pretty stoked when I brought out his ukulele to mess with during circle time.

First we made a violin prop.  It is a cardboard violin and bow.  First he decorated it with markers, because markers are less messy than paint and more fun than crayons.  Then he laced the first part and I finished the lacing because I didn't want to cut the yarn since I couldn't find any scissors.  It doesn't look quite like the picture, but he liked it.  I showed him how to hold it, and then showed him a picture of a man playing a violin and he copied him and played along. Now Little Guy might not have a lot of crafting or dancing experience, and he might not do well with controlling his breath, but he knows his alphabet really, really well.  So V is for Violin was cake.  He didn't do very well with making the letters with the string, but then the string …

Learning About Horns with Mother Goose Time

Today we continued our week of learning about orchestra instruments.  This was my favorite day so far, but that might be because it was also the day that Little Guy did the best!

Our day's activity didn't start off the best.  First up was working on his My Little Journal and decorating the front of it.  He started by using paints to make dots (his first time painting- we are not a very artsy craftsy family, mostly just crayons around here), which he really enjoyed.  We also looked at which of his dots were big and which were small, so we added some math in there.  Then he was supposed to draw a picture of himself playing an instrument.  He can't draw anything.  Not only can he not draw anything, but he doesn't really want to try.  Mostly he wants to "write" letters, and when I ask him to do something, he asks me for help.  Time to encourage a LOT more independence I guess.

Next we played Guess the Sound.  We listened to clips of different instruments being pl…

Learning About Woodwinds - Mother Goose Time

I have to say that I LOVE the fact that the pre-school curriculum from Mother Goose Time is going over orchestra instruments this week.  It is something I NEVER would have thought to do myself, and so much fun!

Today at Circle Time, Little Guy was a lot better at doing the weather, rather than just saying yes for everything,   I also hid Mother Goose, and he had to find her, which he thought was a lot of fun.  I had him find which day of the week it was based on the first sound, and we listened to the Days of the Week song.  
Our activities went better today.  The first thing we did was Find the Flute.  We used "magnifying glasses" to look at our theme poster.  It took him a minute to figure out what we were doing, but once he figured out we were matching things, he did it like a pro.  When we had the open one where you can put anything in the window you want, he found EVERYTHING in the picture and named it.
Then we played a fun game called Woodwind game.  He practiced punch…

Our First Day of Mother Goose Time - DRUMS

I was so, so, so excited to start Mother Goose Time this month.  Little Guy knows his basics (ABCs, letter sounds, numbers to 6 - well kind of to 10, but he usually confuses them after 6 - and colors) and it is definitely time for him to get some more hands-on learning before he is old enough for book work.

It was seriously hard for me to wait.  First waiting for my kit to arrive (I feel like package tracking is such a catch-22, on the one hand its cool to know when your package will arrive, on the other hand it kind of ruins the surprise...) and then waiting for the new month to start so we could start school.  It was only a few days, but they were torture!!!

We actually started a day earlier than the calendar suggested.  We started on Monday the 29th, and will be a day ahead until the week of Christmas, at which point we will fall behind when we take the week off.  I am a little "type A" about some things, and separating themed weeks seemed like a mental challenge.  So we …

Keep Your Drink Cold, and Your Muscles Flexed! A Slap Koolers Review

At first I didn't know how to begin this post.  I was given (free of charge) a SlapKooler to review, via Tomoson.  As you will see, that in no way influenced my opinion of the product.

The purpose of the SlapKooler is to be a promotional item.  You give them out free or cheap to spread the word about your company/event/cause.  The item itself is a combination drink insulator/slap bracelet.

Unfortunately, there is a big problem with this product.  It smells exactly like Les Schwab (for those of you not in the northwest, Les Schwab is a tire store that tries -and fails- to cover the scent of tires with the free popcorn they have for while you wait), which is not really that appealing when it is wrapped around your beverage.  It is of good quality for a promotional item, and really a lot more fun and useful than a pencil.

BUT, there is one use that the makers have probably never thought of.  Little Guy liked mine (it is camouflage after all) and he asked me to put it on his arm.  T…

What's In the Mother Goose Time Box? Part Four

Three bags down, 21 left to go.  No I am not kidding.  There are 24 packages to open in your first Mother Goose Time kit.  Its like Christmas morning, but a little more work because there are a TON of things to cut out.  A lot of them are punch out, but a lot of them require cutting.  But I am not going to go over every single bag so this will not take forever.

Let us start with the Celebration Kit.  I don't know if each month has a Celebration Kit or not, but because it is Christmas they sent me a Santa's Workshop Celebration Kit.  It is obviously intended more for a classroom setting, and comes with an invitation (which looks pretty sad since I only get a kit for one child LOL) and guest sign in sheet.  Maybe we will invite Grandma, and the girls will be on Christmas Break when we do this, so they can participate.  Anyways, it comes with supplies for one craft, a snack, two games, special Circle Time activities, and some ideas for your Investigation Stations, which we will p…

What's In the Mother Goose Time Box? Part Three

There is still a ton of stuff in the Mother Goose Time box that I have not told you about yet.  In fact, I have only covered Circle Time!

The next bag is the Teacher Tool Bag, and its pretty interesting.

The first thing it has is a gathering list, which tells you everything you need to provide for the month.  Honestly to look at the list it looks like this is much less "all-inclusive" than it is.  The list is LOOOONG!  Upon closer inspection you notice that the vast majority of the items are either basics like tape, glue and crayons, food items, or things you already have around the house.

There is also the theme web, which I described in the first post, a poster of all the skills the children will be working on, and on what day (this is a seriously exhaustive list!), a planning journal, a teacher guide and MANIPULATIVES!  This month I got jingle bell counters, a die, and shape builders.

The planning journal includes an overview of the month, what activities are done on whi…

What's In The Mother Goose Time Box? Part Two

Last time I gave an overview of what was in my Mother Goose Time box for December.  Today I will give more details on exactly what kinds of things are in each specific bag.  I will probably do a few of these, because I want to keep them reasonably short, and there is a TON of stuff!  Just so you know I have been messing with this curriculum a lot since I got it, and there might be a few pieces that ended up back in the wrong bags.

Like I said last time, the first bag is an introductory bag.  It has the Getting Started guide, which has an overview of how to use the curriculum and set up your circle time display, and some additional information.  You only get this bag once a year.

The Circle Time Display includes a number tree, alphabet strip (which you are supposed cut to look like grass, but I just taped it on there all lazy like), month labels for the calendar, an artist's palette for the color of the month, a friendly bee hive with a ribbon for character traits, a world map, Mot…

What's In the Mother Goose Time Box? Part One

I am so excited to share this post with you!  I am now a Blog Ambassador for Mother Goose Time*!

What is this Mother Goose Time I speak of?  It is an incredible curriculum that has been around for over 29 years!  
Why is it so awesome?  It is essentially preschool in a box.  It is designed for preschools, but used by many homeschoolers (such as myself!) as well.  It is astonishingly thorough.

I just received my first box.  I wanted so much to do an unboxing video, and I set it up and then my camera ran out of battery halfway through.  Since I do not have the patience to wait, I opened it up without recording it.  So, my pictures and description will have to suffice.
The first thing I pulled out was the Circle Time bag.  This is a one time bag for when you first start Mother Goose Time, and has a getting started guide, as well as all the stuff you need for a Circle Time display.  It includes a world map, alphabet strip, labels, month strips for your calendar, a number tree, a circle ti…

How To Make an Incredibly Easy Elegant Christmas Gift

Christmas is coming!  I am super excited about Christmas, and just realized TODAY that Christmastime starts in 2 days!

Gifts are a fun part of Christmas, but some people are easier to shop for than others!  Children always have lists a mile long, but adults tend to buy they things they want or need throughout the year.  Thanks to Pinterest, people are really into DIY projects.  Oftentimes those don't turn out exactly how you picture them though (seriously, you should check out Pinterest Fail).

I have a quick and easy solution for you!

(In the interest of full disclosure, I was given a free sample of this product in order to write this review.  However this has no impact on my opinion of the product.  I strive for honesty in all I do, even reviews!)

Melinda Wood Designs (when you subscribe you get a free artwork download!).

All of her designs are $5, and you get the JPEG file when you purchase it.  You can then print it yourself, or for a super high quality look, get it printed o…

Funny Phonics

Little Guy is pretty smart.  He picked up on all his letters really quickly, learning the first few on his own, which I of course ran with.  Once I knew he was capable of learning them, I started to work on teaching them to him.  He knows them all now, although he struggles a little with lowercase letters.

Knowing your letters is a fun "parlor trick" but doesn't really help much on the path to reading and literacy.  I have read that you should NOT teach your children their letters, but rather teach them the sounds that they make FIRST and then the letters later.  I forgot to do this, so we are working the other way.

He has a Star Wars Pre-School Workbook, (He calls it his 3PO book - C3PO is on the cover) and instead of saying capital A and lowercase a I have been saying capital aaaaa (imagine the sound not repeatedly saying "a") and lowercase aaaaa.  Since he is not slow on the uptake, it only confused him for a little bit.  He was like "This not "a&…


Everyone wants silky soft, smooth skin right?  Well maybe not everyone, but at least a good majority of women.  Today I am going to tell you about a new product that will help you get super soft skin in seconds a day!

I was able to review (free of charge) CX 35 Vitamin C Complex Plus Retinol by Michael Todd Skincare.  It is a serum, which I prefer over moisturizer. The fact that I received it free has no bearing on my opinion of the product, because that would be super lame and dishonest.

Michael Todd Skincare  seems like a pretty cool company.  They don't add water to their products, they use organic ingredients, they don't test on animals (it literally says on their about us page that they test on their chairman, so they have a sense of humor too!), don't use artificial scents or fragrances (or other nasty stuff), AND they are made right here in the USA!  
I was honestly surprised when I got this in the mail, because there is usually a back and forth regarding the produ…

Three Times I Love to Dance

- When I am playing Just Dance.  Yes its absurd, and I look like an idiot because the part of your brain that allows your arms to move opposite your legs is not fully developed in me, and I am pretty sure it never will be.  So I flail a bit.  Luckily it mostly tracks you right arm, so I can still get decent scores.

- When the music is cranked up and the kids and I are all dancing around like crazy.  I did this a lot more when the girls I baby-sat were little than I do now.  My foster daughters are to old (6,9,10) to be super amused by it, and didn't grow up doing it so they would probably laugh with me.  My son isn't big on doing what you want him to do, when you want him to do it, even if it is fun like dancing around like a maniac, so I think I would be dancing by myself.  I might try it again and see what he does, but I don't count on it being fun like it was with the girls.
- When a slow song comes on while my son and I are listening to music and I stop what I am doing…

Ingredients of Godly Discipline

*This post is a review of a product I received free of charge in exchange for a review.  The opinions in the post are all my own and not influenced by the fact that I received it free*

Doorposts is an awesome company that has MANY different products to help you train your children.  This is their newest product, and is designed to help you guide your children to Jesus while they are being disciplined.

Honestly I have not used this as much as I was hoping to.  While it is an amazing resource, it is also rather time intensive to follow all of the steps.  As I am hoping to really work on my discipline skills (I yell a little to much and I am not as consistent as I know I should be), I am going to be referencing this chart every chance I get for the next month.  At that point I will give a results oriented review, for now its just a product review.

This chart is sized to keep in your Bible, which is where mine has been since I got it.  Unfortunately, along with having a messy house and inc…

Pure Green Coffee Bean Extract Cleanse Detox - Review

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I received this product free to review from the seller via Tomoson. All opinions in this review are my own and not influenced by the fact that the product was free.

My plan was to keep a daily journal type thing to discuss how well this worked, but since I didn't really notice any changes I didn't have much to say.

I have never taken anything that is a cleanse or detox product. I didn't really know what to expect, but I expected something. Although there were no negative side effects, there didn't seem to be any positive effects either. Some of this could have been "user error" as you are supposed to take it twice a day, 30 minutes before meals, and I only took it once a day most days (because I would forget until I was eating...).


Slowly Going Mad... Or My House Is SO Messy and Noisy I Don't Know What To Do!

*I realize that this post is very poorly written.  I also want to say that while this post is very negative, I do realize how very, very blessed I am.  These are definitely "first world problems".  I am thankful for my husband, my son, my foster daughters, my house, and my overwhelming abundance of material possessions.  I am just having a hard time keeping up with the house, and adjusting to having older children.  Most people grow into having a 10 year old, they don't just get one randomly.  I don't know what to expect, I don't know what to require, and I don't really know how to entertain them without them making huge messes, which I cannot handle at this point in my life, or sticking them in front of a screen a lot, which I refuse to do.*

I am NOT a neat person.  But I don't worry to much about it (other than trying to never have people over so I can pretend I am a good housekeeper) because inevitably, when it is time for the items to be cleaned up, I…

Who Is That Baby, and WHY Does He Have My Blanket?"

I have quite a few baby pictures of Little Guy, and yesterday he and I were looking at them together.  He did NOT believe me that the little baby in the picture was him, much like he refuses to believe that the pictures of me as a baby or little girl are actually "Mama".

In one of the pictures he had not one, but two blankets that he still has and uses.

He was dumbfounded as to why "That baby share my blankets."  Now it sounds like perhaps he was being sweet and thinking it was nice to share with the baby, but from his tone of voice, and the expression on his face, it was apparent that sharing his blankets with some baby was not a good idea.

Sharing is hard.  It seems especially hard when you are very small and seem to think that anything you have touched, is most certainly yours.

I took both the little ones (Little Guy is 2 and Z is 3) outside yesterday, and brought them both a "bicycle" (tricycle) to ride.  They rode around quite nicely at first, wit…