Monday, September 1, 2014

First Day of School 2014

It's here! First Day of School!

I'm tired!  Declan nurses constantly and Fiona is sweet and loving with him, but is definitely a little needy nowadays.  But the show must go on and the big kids have been restless and Chandler is so eager to start Kindergarten! 

Claire is finishing up 2nd grade and will be moving to 3rd by the end of the year.

Chandler is now a Kindergartener! 

Group picture including Fiona!
 Notice the 1st day of school crowns they made yesterday?  Yeah, that's homeschoolers for you!  ;)  We started at the table and Fiona had colored pencils and a notepad to entertain her.  She loves drawing and to take the pencils in and out of the box.  It almost made her through all the schoolwork!

The gang hard at work!  Minus the sleeping baby boy in the next room. 
 I never did get a chance to share our homeschool plan this year!  I have a 2nd/3rd grader and a Kindergarten student plus Fiona is 20 months old and Declan will turn 1 month on Wednesday.  Obviously I will need to get my ducks in a row and need to make a plan.

 So this wonderful book comes into play.  This is "A Simple Plan" from Mardel.  This is what I have at the end of our first day:
In the planning section I figured how many lessons I want done in a week.  This is the current week and I wrote what we actually completed today.  The post-it notes are where I broke down what I actually want to read, etc in History and Science each day.

And on that note, our curriculum for this year:

Math is Horizons.  Chandler is starting the Kindergarten book and Claire is actually finishing up the 1st grade book and then will move on to 2nd.  Horizons tends to be a little "ahead" grade level wise so I'm not worried about it.  I would prefer for her to have a good, sturdy math foundation instead of rushing her. 

Language Arts:  Claire is finishing up The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading and Chandler is starting it.  Chandler is doing Language Lessons for Little Ones and Claire will be doing Language Lessons for the Very Young.  So far they both really like it. 

 Handwriting is Handwriting Without Tears for Chandler and New American Cursive for Claire. 

 We will be doing Science and History through our homeschool co-op.  We do the reading at home and meet once a week for two hours with 29 other families to do the activities and experiments.  I love that my children get to see their friends every week and it's a wonderful group of families! 

 Science is Apologia Astronomy and Claire will be adding the Junior Astronomy Notebook as well.

History is the Mystery of History Volume 1.  So far it looks great! 

Well, that's a rundown of our curriculum, plus in the moment learning of course!  We also have monthly P.E. class, Claire is signed up for an art class and they both have a one time Horsekeeping class!  I am also planning on a having a once a week sign language class at home with them.  As long as I can keep Fiona and Declan entertained we should have a great year!

And a super cute picture to end us off with:

My littles on the first day of school! 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

What's Been Going On

Summer is coming to a close.  School is fast approaching!

Declan is growing fast!  He's a strong little guy.

Fiona adores her little brother.  She always wants to be near him and help take care of him.  She moved to sit at the table with us this month and loves it! 

Claire and Chandler have spent their summer using their imaginations and playing outside.  Inside fun has included making robot "masks" and cars with cardboard boxes and lots of art projects. 

Some pictures:

Fiona telling Declan all about life

Fiona the princess

Ahhh!  Robots!

Fiona likes the swing

Best big sister ever.

They are creative about seating.

Handsome little guy

Fiona's at the table!

LOVE this picture of them!

Declan's First Bath!

Sleepy boy

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

We have a little boy!!

I am busy and tired and completely in love. 

Declan Elliott James L. was born on August 3rd at 10:28pm after 16 hours of labor!  He was 8 lbs even and 20 inches long. 

I was scheduled to be induced on Monday morning, but woke up Sunday at 6:30 and realized I was having contractions about 3 minutes apart.  We got to the hospital around noon and ended up reading our books most of the afternoon.  It was a slow, easy labor, but super fast and intense at the end.  He was born after only 3 pushes!  Daddy was awesome the whole time. 

Declan was fussy and whiny the first few days which was really scary for me, but the day my milk came in he settled right down.  He's apparently a lot like Daddy and was just hungry! 

He's here!

Ready to go home!

My four babies!

Sucking his thumb

My precious little guy

Friday, July 25, 2014

2014 Rabbit Update!

The sad news first.  Some idiot neighbor let their dogs run free and they attacked and killed our sweet buck, Captain Jack.  It was just sickening. 

Our Jack
Nicholas came home and started working on a fence.  We now have all of our rabbit hutches inside a fence and we reenforced all the cages as well. 

An update on all our rabbits now:

This is Jack's last litter.  Aren't they a great selection of colors!  We decided to save one buck out of these. 

This is Jack's son.  We're going to keep him around - isn't he handsome?  We are calling him Gimli.  It just seemed to fit.  He is mostly New Zealand with a little Dutch thrown in. 

This is Gimli's mom, Dulci.  She is the sweetest and well mannered doe!  She is a NZ/Dutch mix.  

This is Rosette.  She is also a NZ/Dutch mix.  She was pregnant when Jack was killed, but none of her kits made it.  But it was her first kindle and that is common.  

This is Rosette's sister and litter mate, Suzette.  You can see the Dutch more in her.  She was also bred before Jack's death but didn't take.  It's possible she miscarried due to the stress of the dog attack.  

And the newest additions!  Last week Mom brought home this handsome boy to "replace" Jack as our Senior Buck (Gimli as the younger one will be the Junior Buck). 
He is a 4 month old Satin and we named him Thorin.  Yeah, we went with the Hobbit/Lord of the Rings theme for the boys this time.  You should always give rabbits a break in the worst of the summer in breeding.  Pregnant does are susceptible to heat stroke and bucks are frequently infertile in the heat.  So by the time the weather breaks he will be old enough for breeding. 

And today she brought home this little sweetie:

 This is Snickerdoodle.  She is a baby Flemish/Rex mix.  She's actually much younger then we thought, just old enough to leave mama.  We would have preferred for her to stay with mama longer, but the seller was ready to send her on.  She has all of the rabbits around her and lots of straw to burrow in.  She seems active and healthy.  And it looks like she may end up being Claire's special pet.  We told her she could keep one of her choice and she saw Snickerdoodle and adored her.  And she picked the name after her favorite cookie and her colors are cinnamon and sugar!  :)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Fiona's 18 month and pregnancy update!

And my baby Fiona is 18 months old!  When did that happen?

She's finally walking!  They say not to worry until a child is 18 months and not walking and my stubborn little girl waiting until 17 1/2 months to finally decide she was ready. 
She is full of cheesy grins when she sees a camera lately! 
Walking with Daddy

At the park!
Sisters!  I love that they practically have the same expressions on their faces!
33 1/2 weeks pregnant me with Fiona
 Yes, that's me!  I feel huge and uncomfortable and hot.  I've started weekly visits at the chiropractor.  I was experiencing a lot of hip and sciatic pain and my midwife recommended it.  The chiropractor said she can tell how I hold Fiona.  My hip is cocked from holding her on my left hip all the time - but hey, she couldn't walk!  The adjustments are helping and she has me icing my back at least 3 times a day and I have to say that if giving me a lot of relief.  I am measuring large.  At my 32 week appointment I measured 34 weeks!  And I usually measure small once I go into the 3rd trimester so I have an ultrasound at 36 weeks to check up on him and see how big he looks.  I just keep remembering that Fiona was born at 38 1/2 weeks so I may only have a month or so to go!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Claire is now 8!

I just can't believe my baby is 8 years old.  How does the time go so quickly? 

She had a fun birthday!  Her birthday was on Friday and we took a picnic to the park and they got to play in the creek.

She said she was an explorer!

Treasures from the creek.

Fiona thought the water was awesome!

Water fun!

Then on Saturday we had a ball at The Fun Factory, including the inflatable slide, mini golf, video games, air hockey, bumper cars, go-karts and more!  Claire requested it as her birthday present.  :) 

My golfer.

So big!  (And so hard to take pictures in the dim florescent lighting!)

Go-Karts with Daddy were her favorite part!

Chandler waiting his turn.

Fiona walking!  Eek!

Then we hurried home to prepare for family coming over for dinner - tacos, of course - and dessert.  

We went simple this year - Claire requested Chocolate Eclair Cake!

The fam.

My Claire with an amazing missing teeth smile.  :)

We have a very happy 8 year old!