Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Stones

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Yesterday in House Church, we read from Joshua 4. The story takes place following the Israelites' miraculous crossing of the Jordan River. God told Joshua to build a memorial with 12 stones representing each of the 12 tribes of Israel as a remembrance of what had happened. So that when their children saw the stones they would ask what they meant. Then, the children of Israel would remember and tell of God's goodness and deliverance.

We talked about Memorial day and what that means. How the freedom we have today came with a price. Men and women gave their lives so that we can have all the things we enjoy today. Then we talked about the ultimate freedom- freedom from sin that only comes when we accept Jesus as our Savior. We looked in our thankful journal to remind us of times God had provided for us or delivered us.

Then each person picked a stone. On the stone, you were instructed to paint a symbol that reminded you of a time that God provided for you or protected you or just something about God you wanted to be reminded of. Everyone then painted their rock and shared what their symbol meant. After they dried, we sprayed them with a sealant so that each person could put the rock somewhere special to serve as a reminder of what God has done.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Simple Joys of Summer- Make Your Own Fingerpaint

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Fingerpaint Recipe
found in Parenting magazine, March 2005
2 cups cold water
3 tsp sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 Tbs light corn syrup
Liquid food coloring
Small bowls or jars with lids
1. In a small pot, stir water, sugar and cornstarch. Whisk over low heat for 5 minutes until mixture is thick and clear. Note: We stirred over low heat for over 10 minutes with no change so I turned up the heat and brought the mixture just under a boiling point. Then it thickened really nice.
2. Stir in corn syrup. Pour (or scoop) into small containers with lids.
3. Add a few drops of food coloring to each and shake until color is well mixed.
Ours thickened up a lot so I stirred in the food coloring instead of shaking.

Update: This fingerpaint does not do well stored long term- over a few days. Ours grew black mold- yucky!

Simple Joys of Summer

We are scaling back this summer just a bit. Our summer vacation started with an actual vacation and the next 2 weeks after that, running non-stop. That is not my idea of summer. I remember growing up, we spent our summer watching TV, laying out in the sun when we were not hot and bored. That wasn't very productive and while I don't want to do those things now, I like the idea of just hanging out close to home. After the first two weeks, I decided to reign in the extras and plan on doing cool stuff at home this summer. That doesn't mean we are not doing anything outside the house, just not as much. I also don't want my kids to feel bored this summer either so I'm planning this series Simple Joys of Summer to help myself remember that simple fun is good. Popsicles, homemade ice cream, finger paint is easy and enjoyable. So I'll be posting most days of the week, ideas that can make your kids' summer memorable yet relaxed and satisfying for the parent at the same time.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Coloring aka putting Crayons in a cup....

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Tera has been teaching Michael how to "color" but he seems more interested in putting his crayons in the cup instead or his mouth whichever is closer.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Garden 2010

We planted a Three Sisters Garden this year in one of our plots- squash, corn, pole beans.

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Bordering this plot we have planted carrots, radish and lettuce, which are not pictured here.

In our second plot, we have tomatoes, green and red sweet peppers, hot pepper and basil.
We are starting a pizza garden which will be in a round plot that in the past was a flower garden. We have garlic planted there already and will add lemon basil, parsley, tomato, and peppers.
We are also planning a fall garden this year to extend our harvest time. We are going to assign the kids their own plot and have them pick their produce then do the work until harvest. I've gotten Daniel interested in Kohlrabi- "the alien veggie" and Tera is looking at doing potatoes. We are planning another round of squash, spinach, radish, lettuce, tomato, bush beans and parsnips.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


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We met with a few friends for a morning of PE and play. The bottom picture is my favorite- Tera is watching everyone else run for the ball while she is cheering them on. She is such an encourager, this picture is such a snapshot of her personality.
For more pictures of our day, check out The Forest Room

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wordless Wednesday- Chillin'

Wordless Wednesday

Hiking- Middle Prong

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Daniel, our gentle entomologist
Daniel has awaken to the world of insects-he is the Crocodile Hunter of the insect world right now. You name it, he's catching it and handling it. This day hiking the Middle Prong trail, there were thousands of butterflies. It was like being in a fairy world.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bland Diet Examples

This is for my mom but maybe it will help others too. :)

Bland Diet
Foods allowed on Bland Diet
Foods list

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Art and Science

To see what we did yesterday with a group of friends, check out It's a Boy's Life blog or The Forest Room. I forgot my camera. Tera and Daniel had a blast as did all the kids.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Summer Ticket Program

I love summer vacation but my kids thrive on routine and schedule. So during the summer although we do not have regular "school", they still need something to fill up those long hours of the day. Last year, they had certain things everyday to accomplish: 1 hour of reading, 30 minutes of instrument practice, 30 minutes of computer time and then helping outside with the garden in addition to their regular chores. This year I am trying something new.

Our Summer Ticket Program:


1 Ticket items:
Learn 1 Scripture Verse from list
Read book over 50 pages
Daily Chores without Complaint
Instrument Practice- 15 minutes
Extra Chores

2 Ticket Items:
Writing a letter or email
Nature Blog entry with Picture and description
Math Practice


25 Ticket Items:
$1 from Dollar Tree
Trip to Bike Park

50 Ticket Items:
Trip to Kite Park
Candy Treat from Store
Extra Movie Night

100 Ticket Items:
Ice Cream Treat
Trip to Zoo
New Book from Paperback Swap

The kids found 2 glass jars from the cupboard, decorated them on the outside with stickers and paper. Then they cut strips of paper for tickets. As they earn tickets, I initial the tickets and they deposit them in their jars.
I tried to keep prizes very manageable and inexpensive. They basically take time and very little money. We will probably add things to the earning list throughout the summer. Today was the first day and they are on the ball- writing letters, doing math practice, reading, asking for extra chores. I know the newness will wear off but I'll enjoy it while I can.
You can come up with your own ticket program- pick things you would like for your kids to do and prizes you are willing to give them. Give them a jar and make some tickets.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Zoo Trip with Friends

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We had a zoo fieldtrip on Monday right after vacation, boy were we tired. We all had a blast with friends- new and old. Daniel petted a rat (wretching noises). We didn't get too many pictures, we were busy trying to keep our big group together. It was fun, Tera and Daniel especially had a great time with their friends.


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