Monday, November 7, 2011

Tis the season!

It's November which means HOLIDAY SEASON! November has Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. December has my birthday and Jesus' birthday! Plus, New Year's Eve! There are holiday parties, hot chocolate, and pumpkin scented candles. Normally I refuse to listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, but this year I'm making an exception. Maybe it's my old age. Who knows. Regardless, I'm definitely getting into the season early! As I type, Christmas music is playing! It's delightful and makes me happy.

I've learned a few things lately and I want to share with you.

#1: Homeschooling does not have to create headaches or tears. When my aunt came to visit a couple weeks ago she brought a blue reading strip for Faith. This has been an answer to our prayers! The reading strip is suppose to promote concentration and because it changes the standard black on white it helps if you have dyslexia and other "kinks". I didn't really know what to expect, but as soon as Faith put the strip over the sentence she was suppose to read she started reading two-three words AT A TIME! Tears have been eliminated and she actually COMPREHENDS what she reads. Now granted, we still take turns reading- her a paragraph, me a paragraph. I no longer wait until the END of the story to ask questions, instead I ask questions every so often and use it as a "review" of what has already been read. This is huge!

I've also learned to "go with the flow" and that my "lesson plan" is only a rough draft! It makes the students, principal (daddy), and teacher happy when you don't allow little words on a paper to dictate how your day goes. Today was a prime example. I really wasn't wanting to just sit and do more "school". I wanted to do something fun! We started the day together working on writing (keeping on track with our M/W "math and writing" day). I wrote on the dry erase board and the kids copied. I did cursive for Mistic and print for Faith and Aspen. We wrote words like "November", "fall", "autumn", "Thanksgiving Day" and sentences about what we were thankful for. During this time we talked about phonics and special sounds- "au" for "autumn" was a great example. Compound words like Thanks and giving. We talked about commas (review for Mistic but new to the younger two). When you have a series of words, like a series of things you are thankful for, you seperate them with a comma. We then moved to art, but before we started the preschooler got in on the action by naming the different paint colors we were about to use, and THEN, just for fun and because I can, I made the older girls spell the paint colors. Orange was tricky!

#2: Exercise does not have to be boring, horrid, awful (please insert any adjective you prefer)... You just got to find the right workout partner, the right motivation, and to make time to stop and smell the roses.

I snapped this picture of Faith this morning. She has become my walking/running buddy. She completed her first official 5K Saturday morning- walking for a lady in our community who has breast cancer. We did it in 55 minutes, too! Today we headed out for another 3 miles, but because of the SNOW we opted to only do 2 miles! She has shown me how much fun it is- to walk and to RUN! She doesn't like running for long, but when I'm out with her my mind isn't on "getting into shape" or "how much longer" it's on ENJOYING my time with her. We've stopped to moo at cows (hey! We live in Nebraska!) and to watch horses in a field. We talk a lot while we're out, sometimes it's educational (I discovered that she really COULD tell me what number 708 was by reading a house number) and sometimes it's just, well, talk.

And the greatest thing, since I'm inspired to get out and move with her I'm teaching her (and the other lazy ones) what a healthy mom looks like. Plus, it makes me want to do more! Today I put in an additional 3 miles on the treadmill for a total of 5. My goal for the holiday months is 20 miles a week- walk/run/whatever. I'm starting off my goal and week right! I've also lost about 25 pounds with about 15 1/2 pounds being from the end of September to now.

#3: Some other random things I've learned... I don't really care for hunting season. This is the first season in my entire marriage that my husband has actively hunted. Well, I take that back, he hunted the fall after we were married, but I went with him. Since then kids and jobs have prevented him. I'm happy (honestly) that he can hunt and do something HE enjoys, but being gone during his free time has been less than desirable. He has been spending valuable bonding time with Mistic though because she is becoming a hunter as well.

Doing a ladies' Bible study strictly from the Bible with NO wonderful pre-written lessons is challenging, but it's been good. We've looked at Proverbs 31 (yep, the famous virtuous woman) and all my lessons have came from what I gather. Yes, I look at different sources, other verses, ask my husband, etc... but I've put a lot of time and effort into these lessons, but I've also learned a lot, too.

I don't have as much "free" time as I'd like. I miss blogging, reading, sewing, and just sitting and watching TV. I definitely keep busy and that's a good thing. I'm keeping busy with all the blessings God has given me and I'm not complaining. Just sometime I'd like to have more time.

Oh well... Must wrap this post up. I have three children to bathe and dinner to start, my hunters will be home soon.


Our Side of the Mountain said...

Oh, where did she get the blue reading strip?! My youngest has visual tracking issues and it's been suggested to get him strips! Lovely painting! Stoppin' by from the HHH!

Lexi said...

The blue reading strip is a great idea! I wonder if that would help my daughter focus on one line at a time...going to have to look into those!
And way to go on the exercise and weight loss! I'm trying to hit the treadmill at least 4 nights a week. It's not my favorite thing!


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