Thursday, April 24, 2008

4/24/08

Today the three girls made yarn dolls, just as some of the pioneer girls made their own dolls because store bought dolls were expensive & not readily available. Then they looked at maps of the U.S. and traced the travels of the Ingalls family. We looked at a book with real photos of the Ingalls and their homes. It's so incredible that the Ingalls girls lived from the time of wagon trains to the time of airplanes. The times changed fast!

Other than that, the girls have had the tiny dollhouse items spread out all over the living room all day. Now they're playing in Mane's little tent in the dining room (since it's raining outside), and the play kitchen stuff is getting spread out all over my kitchen!

Lessons we're working on:
* asking for what you want, rather than complaining about it
* working things out without involving a grown-up all the time
* using "kind & loving" words with each other
* using "inside voices"
* using words to let people know that you've heard them

That's all folks!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Best Friends

I realized today that I'm missing the opportunity to write about these beautiful days of friendship. Mane & her girlfriends are together every day now until the end of the school year, and I am watching them build their friendship right before my eyes. They have always called each other their best friends. Now they've had the chance to make it real. They've made Egyptian princess wigs together, fashioned digestive system costumes, and built a food pyramid. (Don't ask the crazy homeschooling mother about these things). They've been playing "Little House on the Prairie" for the last few days, and they love to read to each other...and play music...and make a house in the tent on the porch...and sing... They're beautiful and energetic and full of life. And *sometimes* they give me time to write! ...unlike now...gotta run!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Fast Changes

I thought I was going to write about digging in the dirt this weekend, expanding the borders of my garden, planning the vegetables, playing in the sunshine...

And then I thought I might write about Mango losing his teaching job & being moved to another place in the district...

And then, this happened to our car while it was parked in front of our house Sunday night:





And now I don't know what to write about. *sigh*

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

And in case anyone is wondering...

I've said much here & there about talking with Vespera about relationships, dating & sex, but I haven't said much about how we've been talking about & introducing these things to Mane.

Mane has been SO super interested in both childbirth & human anatomy since she was a tiny little thing that she's known about where babies grow & how they're born since she was 2. She watched the birth videos for my childbirth classes right along with me and was completely captivated. Sometime last year we talked about eggs - like chickens & lizards & such - and related that to how she, herself, came from a different kind of egg. She's known about egg & sperm since then.

We've also talked pretty much all of Mane's life about how having babies comes after being married. She's been talking about her own babies almost since she could talk. So, we've said things like, "First you find a really nice guy. Then you get married. Then you have babies." She's figured it out on her own that life is easier with two parents. So, she talks about the things that are going to be her husband's job when she gets married (things like brushing her hair because she hates brushing her hair!). She once said that she was going to find a man like Jesus to marry.

So, the other day we took a leap & checked out Making Animal Babies (see sidebar) from the library. We are talking (again) about animal eggs & babies as part of our study of Make Way For Ducklings this week. (We studied the digestive system when we were reading Madeline a few weeks ago. So, this week our science studies are focusing on the reproductive system. I'm hoping to tie in most or all of the body systems in the next several weeks of school before summer.)

I have to say, Mane wasn't phased at all about the explanation of how the sperm & egg get together. She took it all in stride, little biologist that she is. Her favorite book on the planet is the Smithsonian book called Human: A Definitive Visual Guide. It's a GIGANTIC hardcover coffee table book. So, after we read the book about animal babies, she looked up the reproductive system in the Human book & compared notes. She was most impressed by the fact that baby girls are born with all the eggs they'll ever have in their lives. She's a cool kid.

For My Friend Who Is Getting Married In May...You know who you are...

This song has been playing on repeat at our house. Some of ya'll aren't going to like it, but I've decided that my blog is a place for me to be me, and I happen to love this music.

So, I've been musing a lot about how so many people I know have had trouble with others getting in the middle of a good relationship. Specifically, parents seem to have this problem - getting into the middle of their children's relationships, I mean. Though, for Mango & I, it was a pastor who tried to tell us not to get married. I *do* think people should consider the thoughts & advice offered by others. I'm not saying that a right response is to just walk away & tell people you're gonna do your own thing. I just wish people would be more careful about the advice they give, the thoughts they offer, and the positions they take about OTHER people's relationships. We'd have a lot less hurt in this world if we were a little more careful of each other.

So, this song is for those people who know, after careful consideration, that the relationship they're in is a gift directly from the Creator, and they are going to stand strong & hold fast to that gift no matter what other people have to say.

Listen to the song here: No One by ALicia Keys (A side note, I'm not a big fan of watching Ms. Keys sing this song. So, this is a YouTube video of the lyrics.)

No One by Alicia Keys
I just want you close
Where you can stay forever
You can be sure
That it will only get better
You and me together
Through the days and nights
I don't worry 'cuz
Everything's gonna be alright
People keep talking
They can say what they like
But all I know is everything's gonna be alright

No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you
You you
Can get in the way of what I feel for you

When the rain is pouring down
And my heart is hurting
You will always be around
This I know for certain

You and me together
Through the days and nights

I don't worry cause
Everything's gonna be alright
People keep talking
They can say what they like
But all I know is everything's gonna be alright

No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you
You you
Can get in the way of what I feel

I know some people search the world
To find something like what we have
I know people will try
Try to divide
Something so real
So till the end of time
I'm telling you there is no one

No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I'm feeling
No one no one no one
Can get in the way of what I feel for you
Oh oh oh...

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Spring Break 2008

After a most beautiful spring break we begin to turn our minds back to school and the last two months of hard work before summer...but not before an evening of listening to some hardcore worship music and thanking God that we have had these moments.

Monday was snowy, but the family gathered for a birthday party anyway. We made crispy tacos. Yum!

Tuesday found us at the Como Park Conservatory taking pictures, posing for pictures, watching tropical animals, and generally letting the tightness of life unwind. Tuesday afternoon we wandered through the Minneapolis Institute of Art. Highlights included the Japanese tea room and reading about how the Chinese scholars kept pet crickets. Oh, and the really, really old elevator!

On Wednesday we went to both Central & Washburn libraries for a homework & homeschool planning extravaganza. I checked out Spanish language learning materials for Mane and Portuguese CDs for Vespera. This will be her 4th language.

Thursday we took in the Minnesota Orchestra along with my friend's twin girls & their babysitter. Vespera & Novio celebrated their one year dating anniversary by making dinner while we went out to dinner someplace else. We came home to find the kitchen spotless & a candle burning brightly on the table.

Vespera & I went out for coffee/smoothies/breakfast Friday morning. My parents arrived home from a visit to Mexico & Utah. So, we picked them up from the light rail. And then we went rollerblade shopping for Vespera. Friday evening we (Mango, Mane, Vespera, Novio & I) had Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, and rode contentedly home listening to some of the world's greatest love songs.

Mango & I are in a groove. We've had a beautiful, connected, passionate, romantic week in the middle of all the outings and doings. And today we all got to open our hands and lift our faces to the sun. What could be better?