Monday, March 22, 2010

Bluebird, bluebird, fly through my window...

It's a good day when the bluebirds come visit.

Butterfly Snack Craft

How cute is this little butterfly! I saw this in the Family Fun magazine and knew it was the perfect thing to make for our spring equinox party. They were super easy to make and the whole family helped put them together. All you do is paint/decorate/glitter glue some clothes pins, glue on some googly eyes, use a pipe cleaner to sinch a snack sandwich bag filled with goodies (I used a nut, cranberry, carob trail mix) and to form the antennae, clip the bag and voila! Now go make some of your own ;-)

She's too smart

This girl is too smart I tell ya. Not only can she climb up all the stairs by herself (and has been for a couple of weeks now), but she has also figured out how to duck to get under things. Here is a little game her and Jakey like to play:

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bath Hair

Kenna's hair is becoming quite curly! I couldn't resist snapping a picture of how it looks after her bath. Usually, sleeping will smooth is down flat, at least on the top (she is a belly sleeper) and the back stays pretty fuzzy looking. I can't wait to see if it stays curly as it gets longer!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Friday Co-op

After a small hiatus from our friday co-op, we were very happy to return and play with our friends in the woods! The weather was perfect-we only felt a few drops and the sun managed to peek out for a bit. We had a wonderful time, as always and were just as happy to see some springtime weather bringing out our woodsy friends-two red tailed hawks, a woodpecker, a baby water snake and our first frog of the season. Yay! It is always so wonderful to romp in the mud and breath in the fresh air and such a great way to end our week!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Here is a little game Parker came up with to entertain Kenna while I cleaned up dinner (our dinner and her bedtime coincide most nights and she gets real crabby real fast!)

Fun with Friends

Monday afternoon, we headed over to one of the nature preserves to hang out with some friends and enjoy the 70 degree weather! They have an annual Fairy House festival here and the kids enjoyed playing with the storytelling structure that was left intact.

It was made from bamboo and decorated with seed pods and pine boughs. The kids spent half the time adding to the interior.
One of our favorite fairy houses on the fairy trail (not built by us) excuse the sideways pic-blogger is being a pain right now...arrgghh.

someone had created a child sized fort using the bamboo. The boys loved checking it out.

They wanted me and Kenna to get in too. It was a tight squeeze for this tall mama with a backpack on and wearing a baby. I could barely turn around and I am pretty sure I whacked Benji in the face with the backpack!

The other half of the time was spent on the lakefront. Kenna has pretty much decided that she would much rather be down and eating things off the ground then all snuggly with her mama. She was pretty grimy by the end of the day, but she had oh so much fun!

And who can resist playing in the water! It was too tempting to not wade deeper and deeper and the boys were all completely soaked and happy by the time we had to leave.

There is something relaxing about splashing in the lake and digging your toes in the sand. We all had soooo much fun and it was such a beautiful day! We can't wait to do it again soon.

Family Hike

Last Saturday, we went on a hike to one of our favorite spots to enjoy the spring weather! The kids did a great job...we hiked about 3 miles and only had to carry Parker for about 1 of those ;-)

the creek looked magical with the sun sparkling on the water
this definitely looked like an occupied gnome home
Jacob looking to cross

I love how Parker is holding up his pants...he fell in anyways about 5 minutes later.

Poking at the "strings" in the creek (algae)

the sweet sound of a babbling creek

the crew on overlook rock

Daddy and his girl

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Our Week

On Monday we began our Fables Language Arts block. We always start our learning time with a small circle (using seasonal verses, songs and fingerplays) and move into a little practicing on the recorder. With spring on its way, we learned the song "spring is coming". Blake picked it up pretty quickly and we now know 6 notes on the recorder! Following circle, Blake wrote a spring poem in his poetry book (about a Bluebird). We then talked about foxes and their characteristics, where they live, what they eat, etc. I followed this discussion with the telling of the fable The Hungry Fox. Then it was on to free play and chores.

On Tuesday, we were in the middle of circle when it began snowing! The kids were so excited for what will hopefully be the last snow of the season. I decided we should make snow scenes (as found in the book Earthways)
Here they are shaping the snow, which is a mixture of grated ivory soap, borax and water.

Blake's scene, complete with a tiny snowman- juniper berries for buttons, tiny twigs for arms and an acorn cap!

Jakey's snow scene- he wanted a larger snowman

Parker's snow scene- he pretty much took any of our nature treasures we had and put it on there.

The snow scene outside. It snowed all day, but was gone by the morning.

My chalkboard drawing.

One of my hungry foxes ;-) We reinacted the story many, many times. The kids love acting out the stories!

My other hungry fox- his tummy was too big to fit through the wall.

Blake's MLB drawing and story summary.
We also painted using the wet-on-wet watercolor technique, trying to capture the "redness" of the fox. I had 12 words from the story for Blake to learn for spelling and we reviewed the 4 times table through movement and clapping games. Not to mention all the lego building, battleship playing and outdoor time.
Next week we will move on to another fable and learn a new poem and song for the recorder. We will also be starting to move on to spring crafts!

Weed the Gnome

For Valentine's Day, I got Blake the book A Donsy of Gnomes which has a collection of 7 gnome stories. At the end of the book, there is a section for all sorts of gnomey crafts. After reading just one of the stories, Blake was hooked and wanted to make and do all the crafts! Our first project was to make the beard. Thankfully, I had some black wool yarn and the beard was whipped up in about 10 minutes.

pretty handsome, no?
all gnomes need a bag for collecting treasures! Blake sewed this all by himself following the pattern in the book! This was his first solo sewing project and he was so proud (as was I!). I think he did such an awesome job.

Here he is putting some treasures in his bag. Next on the to do list is a hat!

Mama Made

I've never considered myself a very creative or crafty person, although the desire was there. I remember my grandmother making clothes for my sister and I when we were growing up, but other than that, it just wasn't present in our home. Even after having 3 kids, I still really didn't make things for them. It always seemed easier to just buy it. However, this all changed once I discovered Waldorf education. It really is more than a method of learning, but a lifestyle as well. There is a large emphasis on creating with your own hands (whether this is art, toys or cooking!). I have been slowly improving my crafty skills and pushing myself to learn new (and at sometimes, intimidating) things. So....

meet Elizabeth! Last fall, Blake announced to me that he wanted a doll for his birthday. We have several friends in our co-op who have babies and bring them on their adventures and I think after all this time, Blake finally decided he needed a baby of his own. Of course I was more than happy to oblige! However, it couldn't be just any baby. Children view dolls as an extension of themselves and I wanted to give him something that could "live". She is made with wool interlock and stuffed with carded wool therefore, she is soft and can cuddle and is warmed when held. Her face has very subtle features so that she can have any emotion that is imagined. Her hair is made of mohair and can be brushed/styled when needed.

She was not easy to make. This was my first sewing project since 8th grade home ec class! I learned so much though...including how to crochet! Countless hours of love went into making her and boy does she show it. When Blake opened her up his birthday morning, he just kept saying over and over how much he loved her! She goes just about everywhere with him and he sleeps with her every night. It makes this mama very proud! Now, two more dolls in the works for some very impatient brothers (thankfully, I have time before I need to make one for Kenna!)
When I was several months pregnant with MaKenna, I learned how to knit. My only completed project during that time was a small gnome that seemed to take forever. My pregnancy with her was pretty rough and so I put the needles down in favor of coma inducing couch potatoing. After we survived the "colicky months", I decided to jump in and knit a pair of longies. Did I mention that I had just learned to knit??? Once again, I pushed myself and these darn longies just about killed me. But I finished them and my knitting skills have improved dramatically (not to mention my confidence). Now I have a pair of shorties in the works ;-)

Love that cloth diaper butt! Oh and for those who may wonder, these were knitted up in Cascade Wool using the Aubrey Doodlepants pattern (a very good "beginner" longie pattern).

Eight times around the sun

Last Saturday, my first born celebrated his eighth birthday! There are moments when I look at this boy and can see the little toddler that once was. In other moments, he seems so grown up. I look at him and think when did this all happen! He had a wonderful day spent with family and friends and a smile that never disappeared.

blowing out his candles on his "custom" football cake!
birthday presents waiting for him in the morning

opening his gifts from Granny and Gramps (a camera!!!!)

a pocket knife that belonged to Grandpa Barry, his namesake

We all had such a great time and thanks to everyone who helped to make this such a special birthday! We love you Blake!