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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Another Week Passed?

How do the weeks flit by so unobtrusively? How does the time slip through our hands?

 Well the last week of school here was trying to say the least. In my attempt to buckle down I lost sight of the important fact that when one is learning and moving forward, no matter how slow it may feel, it's still in a forward direction. I need to remember this. It's important to keep my goals in check with what the kids are capable of accomplishing. So I have scaled back the work and continue to try to shift things around to fit the days better.

With the coming of the end of summer here you really notice it. The days are shorter, as it gets dark earlier and the leaves start to change color. The fall fair is around the corner for us which means getting the kids entries ready. Close on the heels of the fall fair our homeschool group, which I run, is planning a kids centered fine arts show. I am still working on a venue and making sure my kids have the pieces they wanted to enter ready.

If that wasn't going to keep me busy for the immediate future, I also am planning the kick off event for our homeschool group. Thankfully I have some great ladies helping spearhead that or I would be a complete wreck at this point.

So with all of those upcoming activities the family decided to do something we enjoy together. Garage Saling. I must say if you are fortunate enough to live in a city such as ours where the sales are unregulated and happen in large numbers every week you can make some terrific finds. We bought all the great books below for less then $10!

Join in next week to see how our projects are progressing for the fair!
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Sunday, August 18, 2013

Weekend on the Water.

Please note that the frog pics are not my own...due to catastrophe befalling our camera pics will be limited for bit. 

 This weekend we enjoyed a return trip to the most amazing, peaceful geocache location we had found to date. A rock outcropping overlooking the blue of the North Channel. The small islands dotting the horizon were sparsely inhabited making the appeal of putting the canoe in the water irresistible. We packed a picnic, fishing rods, dip nets for minnows, and off we went.
 Although we found no fish we did find a large amount of freshwater mussel shells along the edge of one of the island. Covered by a few feet of glistening, ice cold, freshwater made it a challenge to use the kids small butterfly nets to retrieve any. My daughter however had been scouring the waterways for such a scene for some time with an art work in mind. So knowing it was one of the last canoe opportunities for this year to gather shells made the few feet of icy water a barrier we couldn't allow to stop us. Not to be daunted we tied the small nets onto the end of our fishing rods and took on the new 'fishing' for the day.
 It quickly turned into a competition between myself and my ten year old son. Who could scoop the most in one sweep. It was difficult because of the sun glinting off of the surface and the sand in the bottom was very soft and stirred easily. So we often fought to see though clouds of silt and weeds. I pulled my net up to discover I had skillfully captured 5! My son not to be out done kept at it on the next sweep. We didn't count the mussels that had inhabitants and they were returned to the water.  He yanked his net up and started tossing out mussels and I was thinking he wouldn't have any shells remaining. But he did manage to catch the most with 7, job well done I conceded.

To have more fun learning about fresh water mussels. Learning about mussels Or Xerces freshwater mussel guide to download

We continued back to shore where we were going to picnic on the rocks. The rocks had many names carved into them from people back in the 30's which was interesting. Taking a stroll across the rocks we found a few small pools which mosses growing in them. Among the moss many frogs had made their home. We saw both

amongst the spongy wet mats. I noticed nearby growing blueberry bushes ripe with berries. My son and I started to pick as my daughter happily observed the frogs. 'Mom!' shouted my son as he pointed. A few inches away clinging to a leaf was a small almost white frog! I grew up in the area and we had often found tree frogs that were brownish. This small white frog almost appeared to be albino at first glance. I picked it up tenderly and noticed a black striped running from its eye to its nose. I am pretty sure it was a
  Not having a functioning camera was rather disappointing in this moment. The rest of the trip was a indeed interesting as we noted several fruit bearing plants. The Saskatoon berry, Elder berry, Blackberry, Blueberry, and a few we were familiar with. That is the joy in connecting with nature. So many discoveries to be made and a connection to the world around us that can't be achieved from pages in a book.

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Friday, August 9, 2013

The Chore Jar for My Sanity! Week One.

 So I am a bit of a clean freak...well not really but I do have standards. I expect some things to stay at the very least tidy. We have a large dog who sheds so it's nice to keep on top of that as well. Of course with a small entryway we also have the shoe problem, which I don't get because we have a custom made shoe cubby system. With the kids getting older and us schooling year round I have found things sliding, sliding too much making Mondays nightmarish. I found myself running around cleaning up from the weekends mess and trying to make the home look the way I had just managed to get it to look on the previous Friday. I was getting irritated, I knew something had to change. The kids didn't seem to have any responsibilities or wouldn't take care of them without me getting after them as us Mom's do. Looking around on the internet I could see that many Mom's had come up with cutesy chore jars for their families. I decided to give it a go this week. Well I learned two things, one making it into a game caused fights. No one wants to trade their chore's with each other for 'fun'. The Whoo hoo no chores today cards were being found 'randomly' by one or the other daily....seemed a might suspicious if you ask me. The other thing I learned was even though we have many chores not all of them need doing daily. So having a jar where all the chores are put isn't sensible. I was pulling scrub the microwave daily. I hadn't even used it. So I have decided for week 2 of chore jar to eliminate the games and make two jars we have to draw from. That's right folks I said we. 10 chores each, except Dad who only has five because he isn't here everyday. I know some men may balk at the suggestion of doing anything but our fellow is pretty amiable. I shall keep you all posted on how week two with chores progresses.
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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Check Out on Facebook

We just got more active! Having spoken with some more experienced blogging Mommies. I discovered you can have a blog of sorts on Facebook. Now the downer to mine right now is that my RSS feed won't work properly. So what you read here, you won't there. The bonus is...you get completely different insights, news, and freebies on our Facebook blog. So be sure to click on the link to the right to take you to our Facebook page. It's a work in progress but we hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoy keeping it updated.

Also please note the link ups down lower. There are so many wonderful blogs out there. You never know when you will find one that will resonate with you and your homeschool method or style. Looking forward to a more active blogging year as we delve deeper into our homeschooling with the approach of fall.

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Saturday, August 3, 2013

Our Term One Curriculums

We didn't stop for summer break this year. Which means we have already started our new school year. I know I like to see what other people have picked for their year so I thought I would share what we are currently doing. This will change as each subject is finished up of course throughout the term.

( I still am not sure when we will switch to term two but I think likely around the Christmas holidays)

Daughter: Grade 3: Term One.

Language Arts:




Complete k12 Internet Usage

Keyboarding Skills







We notebook a lot of the ideas

 Of course all subjects have supplemental materials and books. It would take to long to list it all. This is a basic outline. Also we are currently working on acrylic painting with my daughter for an upcoming homeschool art show.

Son: Grade 5: Term One:

A lot of our subjects are shared so I am only adding what extras my son has for grade 5 here.

Language Arts:



There are so many great things to teach kids when homeschooling. Finding what works for one doesn't always work for another. The challenge in that can be daunting. Don't let it. If you start something and find it isn't working don't be afraid to set it aside for another time further down the road. I find asking the kids what they would like to learn helps shape our homeschooling experience. We love to add new topics into the mix regularly.

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