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School for us started the 2nd week in September. We homeschool, and sitting down at the kitchen table to get our work accomplished is something we’ve done now for years. This year I have a daughter who is a freshman in high school – and a 9 year old. The 9 year old is great – gets her work done, with a positive attitude (for the most part) and for the first 2 weeks “walked” to school. Really, with her back pack, around the block. My older one, however, is tough to get motivated sometimes, and with high school aged children come high school attitude. We may home school but I do have certain standards that she is having a hard time understanding. Like completing the work properly and finishing all that I’d like her to do! “Required reading”! -She’s read  not even 2 chapters of the book that’s required!  Time for some restructuring I think! And I think it might be on my part – A checklist might be in order or some sort of  .. I don’t know! Something.  The first weeks are always a trial – getting back in the groove – figuring out what works again year after year. The children get older, their need change, their attitude changes –  If you homeschool – how do you get your teens to finish everything you’d like?

For the most part though – our days go pretty smoothly. The girls get up – with plenty of morning time to read for my big one, school starts at the same time each day and we work until we’re finished with what we need to do for day. Sometimes it takes us 2 hours – other times it takes us ALL day.  Algebra, math, science, phonics, spelling, handwriting etc..  Afternoons are free – 2 days a week we head to the barn, 2 evenings we have dance, riding lessons, and homeschool park days.

These first few weeks have been hard for us – our routine has been interrupted 2 out of the 3 weeks we’ve been working – birthdays, friends over to visit, visits with my sister and nephew – and this week! Feet trimming for the horse and the equine dentist! Oh – I hope next week is smoother. We’ve GOT to get our rhythm down – if only for my sanity.

Row working on the brain for science. Biology for her this year and we’re studying the human body. So she’s making the brain!

This is what Row did with the left over clay – after she finished making the brain –

Today is Wednesday – off to the barn for us this afternoon – cleaning stalls, feeding and lessons!

thanks for listening to my grumbling.

Bright Blessings

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.   – Soulemama. Thanks for letting us join!

Rowan and my nephew.

Bright Blessings!

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.
(although I have to explain! Jaia got bored one afternoon at the barn and disappeared into the van for a while. She came out wearing this duct tape hat 🙂
Thanks for letting me join this week!
Bright Blessings!

This weekend was one of those crazy, boring, long, drawn out weekends. Ever had one of those? No one felt very well, my husband needed to travel Monday morning so we washed laundry and packed ,  and we all just need to Be. Jaia is always the first to get sick it seems – As soon as her friends left. Monday  morning brought us a low grade fever, cough,  and runny nose – nothing serious. With her the cough lasts and lasts though. Rowan was next last last week and my husband finally came down with it Friday and over the weekend. Luckily, I kept myself healthy by some degree of magic (or hiding out)  and Saturday I dragged Jaia, since she was feeling better, to some shops I’d been wanting to visit since I’d heard about them.  NEW antique mall/ thrift store shops!

I’m on the hunt for some retro pieces for our house, a 50’s stylish small ranch. I think the the perfect pieces for our house are out there somewhere. I just need to find them – and cheap.  Jaia tried on a few things while we were shopping.

I found nothing I wanted for the house. A lot of things that I wouldn’t mind having, but I don’t have a lot of extra space and we are trying to weed out unnecessary items – so nothing. But it was fun to window shop and I’m sure I’ll be back again to browse!

Last week, spur of the moment decision,  I had purchased a metal filing cabinet – like the ones found in offices. Well my husband hates it but I’m determined to make it work for some storage space. All of our school/art supplies are on open metal wire shelving and it’s just messy.

Ugly – yes? But I will make something useful out of this! So I dragged Rowan this time to the big box home makeover store to buy paint – where we/Rowan picked out antique white spray paint.

And I got to work. I am NOT a good spray painter apparently  – watching all the paint drip down the front – so I had to come up with an alternative plan – MOD PODGE! Believe it or not I have never really used this stuff – really WHAT have I been missing!

I dug out this pretty green paisley patterned material from my stash to cover all those paint drips. My plan? Covering each door with fabric and mod podging it on. I’ll keep you appraised to the progress. How DO you get the material flat enough so that it doesn’t bubble?  Sunday I was able to get 2 panels cut and covered. I hope it looks okay. It is just going down in the basement for school and art supplies so it’s not going to be in the main living area- but the basement is finished so it has to look okay-ish.

Jaia and I also started making a stall for her AG horses.

We’ve been holding on to this box for this very reason – and I actually found wood patterned scrap booking paper at our local craft store! I couldn’t believe it – So We go to work gluing the paper down.

We are not finished yet – I misjudged the amount of paper we needed so I need 4 more pieces! Then we’ll mod podge that and do something with the inside. More wood paper perhaps?

The horse seems to like it 🙂 Maybe a hook or two for the feed and water buckets? A hay bale – so much!

This is our second week of school – Going smoothly so far – last week ended up a much lighter week since no-one felt perfect. As the weeks go on we’ll settle into our routine. Math is seeming to take the longest – I so forgot about high school algebra! Coupled with Biology, History and other Misc we’re having to figure out our routine over time. But it will work! We do homeschool for a reason after all.

Today is also our not-back-to-school ice cream social. I think I’ll take Jaia – She’s my more social girl. And it’s nice for momma to 😉

Bright Blessings!

Well – we started school this week. We usually wait until after Labor day, simply because that’s what works for us, and it usually gives us time to visit places like the zoo or science center without being overwhelmed by the amount of people. Unfortunately it has been too hot to do any of those things so we’ll just have to take time later on. But no worries 🙂 we won’t complain too much about skipping school to visit the zoo!

Our first week of school didn’t quite go as I had planned. Both girls ended up with head colds. Jaia didn’t even want to go to dance so I know she wasn’t feeling well, and Rowan started not feeling well on Wednesday. So we had an easier week. We started our morning routine – waking up, breakfast, chores – those types of things, and we “got” our books, looked through them and started working.  I discovered I’m going to need to a bit more planning in the evenings – printing up worksheets or information for lap booking, but I think we’ll have a great year. Rowan is officially in High School – which is a bit daunting but really not too much harder than it has been. I need to work more on certain things she may or may not need for college…  And I will need to keep a transcript.  Rowan is taking “classes” with a local homeschool group – Algebra and art. I think it will be good for my ultra shy, introvert girl to get out there a bit – just to be with kids her own age. The friends she has are wonderful – and she’s been friends with them for years – but outside of the barn and horses – it doesn’t seem like they have much in common anymore. No big deal, we all grow and change, but now I think we need to open that door for meeting new people 🙂

Jaia will continue to take dance class and my goal for her is to get to our homeschool park days at least 2 xs a month –  if not more. She is my social(er) one and likes to just play. So that needs to be my focus.

I have a lot of plans for this up coming year that I need to get down on paper and make happen.   I. Just. Do. I procrastinate too much. That is MY personal goal this year.

Have a great and wonderful weekend!

Bright Blessings –

Over the weekend, Friday through Monday morning, we had some very special friends visiting. My girl’s two friends who moved about 3 hours away several years ago. Just. Far. Enough. Just far enough that the girls know they can’t see each other daily – or even weekly. But not so far away that a visit every couple of months is not impossible.  Most visits tend to occur around birthdays – March, April, September. And also around mini-vactaions. M and A’s mother’s wanted to have a mini-relaxing stay-cation, so I invited the girls to stay with us for the weekend. We met them halfway on Friday. Driving in the rain!

We really did not DO a whole lot this time around. Friday was homemade lasagna (I loved it – the girls not so much) and they played. Watched a movie and did each other’s hair.  Oh – I made them hit the grocery store with me  – otherwise there would have been NO food –

Saturday we went to the mall. I really don’t know why we hit the mall each and every time the girls come over. Well they ARE girls I guess huh?  I am not a mall person – oh there are a few stores I really enjoy. Well made clothes, high prices. Many shoe stores….. BUT, the girls very much enjoy going and spending whatever money they have on what ever they want to buy. Who am I to argue about that teeny, tiny little notebook that ONLY cost $2.00.  It’s futile to point out that 1 – we could have made that – and 2 it’s going to be lost/falling apart/ruined in a matter of days! I kept my mouth closed (such a good momma) and I let them enjoy the day.  The big girls (and small ones) split a yoghurt from the yoghurt shop and MY daughter actually bought a coke! Really not my choice drink for a growing 14 year old but hey – I guess I do have to bite my tongue from time to time   – yes?

J on the right and her friend M on the left.

The younger two insisted on going to the American Girl store. I do see why it’s such a draw for little girls. It has everything you could ever want for your dolls. I actually enjoy just looking at everything. We went to the store twice. The first time as soon as we arrived at the mall , but the little girls couldn’t decide what to buy so we walked around the mall – We went back before we left and I kid you not – J walked around the store for 45 minutes because she could not make up her mind! She only had x amount and wasn’t happy with anything! (I did lend her $3.00).

Rowan and her friend A huddled in the corner ignoring the rest of the AG store. Rowan could and did, sit here the entire time the little girls were shopping. Give her a book – any book –  and she’s content to sit and read it.

We had organic hotdogs and chips for dinner (requested!) and watched the Lorax.

Sunday we spent the entire day at home. The girls played horses, playmobile, American Girl dolls, beauty parlor and ran around outside. That’s all they wanted to do – so I let them. They had a blast.

Monday we met again – half way   – and dropped the girls back off with their moms. My girls were a mixture of sad, tired and just somewhat, a tiny bit, relieved? We love having  friends over and will have them over as often as we can – but you know, even though you enjoy someone’s company and they are your very best friend – It’s nice to have that quiet back, that down time after they’ve gone. So that you CAN do it all over again the next time you visit.

M and A – We love having you visit! Come back again!

Today we start SCHOOL! My girls are not pleased.

Bright Blessings!