Library Haul {2}

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I’ve been twice to the library since the last of these posts. And apparently I’m not doing very good at paying attention to my piles of books because I had not one, but TWO books out that didn’t get returned on time (that includes the one I just found today… and the library is closed today…. which I also just found out…. *sigh*….)

Anyways, moving on…

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ABC Dream by Kim Krans
Oh my goodness, gorgeous illustrations. But… it’s an alphabet book, so there’s not *that* much story line, but the pictures, beautiful.

Before Morning by Joyce Sidman
Basically a wordless story about a little boy who’s mom has to leave to go to work, before morning, but eventually gets snowed in and is able to return home and spend the day with him instead. Illustrations are sweet. Personally I find wordless books almost harder to “read”, but the kids really liked looking at the pictures.

This is Our Baby, Born Today by Varsha Bajaj
Sweet story about the beginning of life. (This was one I returned last week, so I’ve already managed to forget… but I think it was of all the animals welcoming baby elephant to the world.)

The Uncorcker of Ocean Bottles by Michelle Cuevas
About a man who’s job is to uncork all the bottles that wash up on the shore of his particular beach. Love the illustrations.

Why Christmas Trees aren’t Perfect by Dick Schneider

The Night of Las Posadas by Tomie dePaola
So, I actually had never read this one before, and we’re big Tomie fans over here. And it pops up in everyone’s list of “must have” Advent/Christmas books. So this year we managed to read it {albeit after the feast day, but, whatever}. I liked it well enough. I think the kids missed the fact that the people playing Mary and Joseph for Las Posadas was THE Mary and Joseph, but it was still cute and they enjoyed it.

The Very First Christmas by Paul L. Maier
A boy is wanting a true story for his bedtime story, so his mother tells him about the very first Christmas. This is interspersed with his questions and her explanations, which could actually be a good addition to the story. And nicely satisfy a curious child. I only thought it went a little over the kids head.

Lulu’s Birthday by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard
The kids are talking with Grandma (Lulu) and trying to come up with a good idea for her birthday party. They think and talk about all the fun things they did over the summer trying to come up with something. A sweet story about Grandma and grandkids and family.

 

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These would have been good if my kids had been a but older. They have to do with math, measuring, and Roman Numerals. They weren’t any of them stories per se, but they presented the concepts in a visual way that I think would work better for kids *slightly older* than mine

How tall, How Short, How Far Away by David A. Adler

How Long or How Wide? a Measuring Guide by Brian P. Cleary

Fun With Roman Numerals by David A. Adler

Also on the return pile:
Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Connor (again… in English this time) and a handful of Disney storybooks and random other twaddle-type books that I try to return as soon as possible. 😉

 

Siblings {November & December}

The Five.
{Short sweet *nearly* photo only post for you this evening}

 

1 ~ From that day in November when the time changed and all my kids got up around 5:00 AM

2 ~ Leaf Pile

3 ~ More leaf piles. I guess it must have been warm…

4 ~ Oh, yes, and there was this gem from that time we I decided the playground would be great fun, even though it was nearly sundown and windy and just plain cold.

5 ~ Lights!!! This was the only picture of the bunch where in no one’s head was captured mid-turn… however, I did lose a few in the “looking at the camera” department 😉

6 ~ Ok. Not of the kids, but inspired by them.
{I found a painting app on my phone and doodled this. Now, I changed phones and no longer have this app… good recommendations for (preferably) free watercolor apps on the google play store?}

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{This post is part of an ongoing project to take at least one photo a month of them all together. Intro’s here}

The Me and Mine Project

Project 366: Week {almost the last of the year…}

Honestly guys, I don’t know what we did this week. I mean, I know that’s a cliche and all, but I truly have NO IDEA where all the time went. I can’t remember doing much out of the ordinary. We did regular school work, and regular ballet and religious ed. But, really… No idea…. Oh well, at least I have pictures that show random moments of the days during the week 🙂

1 – Katherine. We did our St Lucia Feast Day celebration: dress up and sweet bread… two days early (this, maybe, should have been my hint that *something* was off for the week)
2 – We received this in the mail. Apparently Katherine, all by herself, signed up for a magazine subscription, and they were needing to collect payment for it…
What am I going to do once she figures out credit cards???? Hope she’s not smart enough to get passed the computer password I guess.
3 – Baby Boy turned 9 months!!! ??? !!!
4 – We DID manage to put up lights around the house.
5 – Both Z and Nicki have had some yucky colds. Not what I would call super “bad”, but… so. much. snot…. EVERYWHERE.
6 – One of my birthday presents from Katherine. Artificial poinsettias, that she picked out special on their shopping trip.
I don’t do much crafting with flowers, but, she was SO happy and excited to give this. I was literally crying because of the joy she had.
Side note: Now that I think of it, I do actually have a wreath that I could use these on. Maybe make a nice special Christmas/Winter wreath.
7 – My Birthday!!! We got our Christmas Tree (not these pictured, but these were just so cute with their red bows and snow). Also, it snowed, then rained, and I stayed curled up on the couch as much as possible just reading a book.

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Project 366: Week ??

As promised… Our week in photos.

This could technically still be considered part of the 366 project, but I haven’t posted in a very long time. Although for the most part I’ve only missed a few days here and there.

(From the top down)

1 – Katherine. She was so happy that her hair was just the teensy tiniest bit wavy after leaving it in a bun all night.
2 – One of Z.’s current made up games.
3 – {bonus photo, since I forgot one this week} St Nicholas’s Eve. I think we have officially run out of room on our fire place.
4 – Another one of Z’s current favorites. This particular time he was joined by Nicki, who was having the grandest time (until he spotted me, then it was all over). Seriously, he’s been super clingy recently.
5 – One of the kids on a whim asked if we could make mint tea. So one google search later and I decided we could try it. It turned out well enough (tea isn’t my favorite), but the best thing is, it was WARM and didn’t turn my stomach like multiple cups of coffee will do. I’m thinking I may keep doing this, as we still have a good bit of mint in our fridge from the summer.
6 – First successful time to carry him on my back. He did good for a while, then got tired of it. (Side question: can anyone tell me if his positioning looks good? He’s the first one I’ve carried this way)
7 – Like I said folks, it’s been much chillier this past week. Frozen leaves in a puddle.

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Religious Education… in the home {mostly} // {a JEI post}

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The ladies from The Zelie Group are chatting about religious education today, and I thought I’d join in.

First off, let me state: my background in RE? Absolutely none. I wasn’t raised Catholic, didn’t go to Catholic school, nada. So, the whole teach your child your religion thing was a little intimidating when it first appeared on my radar.

I have found though, that it’s gotten easier. When we first joined the Church (my really, super, long winded Conversion story starts here if you want to read…) our oldest was 3 1/2. At the time there were tons and tons (and tons) of Catholic mommy blogs sharing “ways to bring your faith into the home” sorts of posts. Now, I’m not saying they were bad, no, by all means they were great. But… I wasn’t ready for them. I was still trying to wrap my head around what  was supposed to be/do/say/etc.. and I had no idea how I was supposed to teach ALL THAT to these little kids, and I ended up just very overwhelmed.

{Here’s where I start answering this week’s questions…}

1. Do your children attend your parish’s religious education program? 

Yes and No

Katherine is in 2nd Year First Communion with the parish. So, in that sense, obviously “Yes, we DO use the parish’s RE program”.

But, so far, only for the “Sacrament” Years. The parish offers RE from Kinder through Confirmation (which I think is 10th grade for them). And while it’s highly recommended (and I can totally see the reasoning), we decided not to attend when we started first grade (homeschool) last year. Jared graduated from Seton (Catholic homeschool) and loved their religion program, so I thought, how hard could it be? And we ended up going with that. The other reasons we didn’t go were time commitment and cost.

I have been glad for Katherine to be going this year. Not so much for “new content”, but I’m noticing that she’s picking up on things in a new way from her teacher there. She’s been way more chatty about topics of Faith – maybe to the extent of showing off to her younger brothers – but that’s opened up times of discussion.

We’re still doing a partial religion program at home this year, and I’ve noticed a lot of progress in her understanding (we’re still in the basics here, but still… progress!) Maybe it’s just her age, maybe that whole “Age of Reason” thing really does play into it. But regardless, she’s starting to remember stuff, she’s starting to think things through, and she’s asking SOOOOO MANY QUESTIONS (ohmygoodness… so many questions). But, it’s all good. It’s helping me too 😉

2. Do you or have you ever taught religious education? Tell us about it.

Only with the kiddos at home.
I still feel like too much of a baby Catholic, although it’s been nearly four years, so I guess I’m not so much “baby” any more. Maybe pre-schooler… I don’t know how comfortable I’d be teaching other people’s children.

3. What are your favourite religious education resources for kids?
For the little kiddos (maybe 5 and under?) I think the best thing you can do is just to live your faith. Attend Mass. Pray together. Read Bible stories.

I linked to this post the other day, but this book list is a picture book list for the Jesse Tree, which, in a nutshell, gives an overview of history of Jesus, from creation to his birth. Anyway, she has some really great picture book recommendations for Bible stories, and my kids love listening to them.

For parts of our school work we’re using the resources from Mater Amabilis (we’re in Level 1A). This link is to the General Lesson plans for that level, but the religion section is the first item (after the “General Instruction” section). We have substituted their catechism for the Seton Religion program (it’s there, on that link, that’s just the entire 2nd grade curriculum), but other than that I’ve really been enjoying the book recommendations they’ve put up (on the M.A. site).

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I think that’s all for this evening folks. It’s suddenly than I thought. And I’ve been really REALLY trying to be off electronics for at least a little while before bed. Also, books won’t read themselves 😉

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