Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Fall into Co-op

The beginning of Fall brings us back to school, changing leaves, cooler temperatures, apple cider, anything pumpkin, and the start of our homeschool co-op.  Our co-op this year is quite small but very cozy.  Skye is teaching the little pre-schoolers, and the older girls are having Art Class and Tea Time with Poetry and Book Discussion.  Everyone joins in for Gym and Nature Study which we are calling Rabbit Trails :)  We had a great first day!  It is really fun having little ones around again, and Aly and Priscilla are enjoying being the oldest.  

Skye has settled on doing a theme book for every co-op week.  Since we went to the Butterfly House at the Arboretum, she picked The Very Hungry Caterpillar as her first theme.  After reading the book, the pre-school tots made caterpillars with marshmallows.  Eleanor had to taste her marshmallow before painting with it :)

In Art Class we studied horizon lines and learned a new technique with the watercolor paints (in Aly's picture that translates into what looks like the moon, in other pictures it looked like clouds).  I love all kinds of tree art.  I have to limit myself when choosing the Art projects for the year that we don't do too many trees.  

The little boys waiting for their turn.  They needed some constant supervision while learning to stand in line lol!  I love Skye's expression here.  Usually she needs them to "keep your hands to yourself" and I think she is waiting for this to turn south fairly quick.  But seriously, how cute are these little rugrats!

Aly practicing her soccer drills.  Lorin is teaching Gym and had them doing ball drills.  Skye said that Mr. Lorin needed to know that she was not participating in Gym class :)

Even the little ones are getting in on the soccer.  Here they are practicing kicking the ball through the cones.  Sammy plays soccer with Kenny & Makenna so he is a pretty good kicker.

Our Rabbit Trail adventure was at the Arboretum.  We were there to see the Butterfly House before it closes for the season.  But, of  course, there is a lot to be explored along the way!  Missy brought some magnifying glasses, and Ben, Sammy, and Gabe were all checking out the tree.  

There were so many butterflies in the Butterfly House today!  I had never seen so many there before.  I had printed off a Butterfly Scavenger Hunt page for the kids, and they were able to cross off the butterflies they found.  Skye is trying to show Sammy which butterfly he is seeing.  He just liked to mark his page :)

Aly and Priscilla and Ben 

Our little group :)  

After the Butterfly House some of us climbed the Bird Tower.  Not me, the last time I tried I about threw up!  Who knew I was so scared of heights!  Gabe took my hand and said that I needed to face my fears (he's 6) and said he would make a deal with me so I would go up the tower.  He assured me it wouldn't fall over and that it was safe lol!  I walked up about a quarter of the way and then let Gabe go on!  We also checked out the children's maze, and some nice people shared their bread with us and the kids all got to feed the turtles and blue gills.  I'm looking forward to what the rest of the year holds for us!

La, La, La

Basically, I'm ignoring (for now) January through August.  In my alternate life I have the time to catch up on the year and on each month of 2014.  In reality, my laptop stopped working and January to April pictures are on the other computer, and really, there just hasn't been the time to go back and post pics from those months (for now).  So we are just going to start with the beginning of our school year and carry on...

Saturday, March 1, 2014

2013 in Review

My blog has felt neglected and alone these past few months.  It doesn't understand that my multi-tasking skills are woefully inadequate as is my tendency toward perfectionism.  My last posts were of our church youth group's history trip.  Even those posts were left undone as I was unable to achieve good wi-fi signal at our hotel.  Upon returning from the history trip, I dove headlong into planning Aly's 13th (yes, I said 13th, how in the world does that happen!) birthday party.  And after that, planning for our school year and our co-op, where I'm teaching three classes this year.  All of this has really taken up a chunk of my time.  Anyway, I couldn't just pick up and post (OCD tendencies as well).  I needed to at least document some of the past things we had done!  And that is where nothing got done!  So here it is, March 1st, and my blog is calling my name.  I've updated her, gave her a fancy new look, and she is ready for me to try again!  Seeing as how I'm still OCD, I couldn't just leave last year unattended :)  So here are a few of my favorite things...

 Christmas in January with Kenny, Danielle, and family
Skyeler, Aly, Madi, and Makenna

 We celebrated Christmas in January with Cheryl and the boys.
Carter, Bryce, and Aly enjoyed the hot tub in the winter weather.

Obviously nothing happened in February because I have no pictures from that month.  I know I 
was busy decluttering the house but I'm not sure what else!

 In March, Aly had a sleepover with Noelle and Priscilla and their American Girl dolls

 Easter was celebrated at Aunt Cheryl's house since Skyeler and I shot Dan's friend 
John's wedding the night before. 

 Aly joined an American Girl Book Club in April and May with Hannah, Priscilla, and Nina.  
Here they are dressed up for Hobo Day while reading the Kit books.

 We spent Memorial Day Weekend with my parents.  It was a wonderful, relaxing weekend.  
The highlight of the trip for Skyeler - the BUNNY!  She has been begging for a bunny but our answer is no.  At least at Randy's farm she was able to snuggle one for a bit.

 Skyeler wanted an updated picture for her blog profile.

 Aly and Granny (and O'Malley) goofing off while I'm taking Skye's pictures.

 June brought VBS.  Instead of doing our normal "Toss for a Fish" game at the VBS carnival, Dan made Ooblek.  All the kids had a marvelous time playing in it.  I don't know if Pastor was so appreciative, it DID make a big mess!  Aly, Kami, and Skyler Ray taking a turn.

 Skyeler and Elizabeth jumping in it.

 There is always face painting at the VBS carnival.  With this year's craze of My Little Pony, many of the girls had Cutie Marks painted on.  Elizabeth-Pinkie Pie, Aly-Rainbow Dash, Madi-Rarity, Skyler Ray-Rainbow Dash, Skyeler-Fluttershy, and Victoria-Twilight Sparkle.

 Skyeler decided to paint her room in July.  She and Aly did it all by themselves!  The turquoise blue color really goes well with her black and white accessories.

 On one of the hottest days of the summer, Danielle and I took the kids to Cox Arboretum.  
We enjoyed the Butterfly House and splashing in the creek.
Makenna, Aly, Sam, and Madi on the Butterfly Bench.

 Skye and Makenna taking a break.

 I posted some about the history part of our teen trip.  So here is a little fun.
Dan and Aly running down the beach at Point Pleasant Beach in New Jersey.  
It was cold and overcast and the sea was rough, but anytime you are on the beach is a good thing!

 Aly and Dan come down the Alpine Slide at Seven Springs Resort in Pennsylvania.
I was too scared to ride the ski lift to the top :)

 In August Dan and I met Gene and Sue at the Columbus Zoo for the Day.  We enjoyed 
spending the day with them until a huge storm moved in.  It flooded the gift shop of the manatee exhibit
and the tunnel leading back to the other side of the zoo.  The ONLY tunnel leading to the other side
of the zoo!  We had to take our shoes and socks off and wade through almost knee deep water.  Ick.

 Aly's 13th Luau Birthday Party!  We had a BLAST! 
We had crafts (you can see their flip-flops we made in the picture), swimming, lots of food, candy kabobs,
hula and limbo contests!  Everyone was exhausted by the end of the day but Aly enjoyed it so much!
Abigail, Skyler, Nina, Madi, Aly, Makenna, Noelle, & Brianna

 We lost Sparkles to Congestive Heart Failure in September it was sudden and heartbreaking
for all of us.  We still miss him all the time.  Here he is at Aly's Luau party with a Lei around his neck
courtesy of Skyeler.  

 Dan ran the USAF Marathon in September with his best friend Roger who was in the 
country from Kenya.  Dan not only ran with him, but also trained three others who ran 
with them that day.  I'm always so proud of him, and I know he was excited to have 
people to run with!

 Skye, me, Dan, and Aly after the Marathon

 Aly had to do a Nature Scavenger Hunt for her Science book and we took Madi along too.  It was a very warm September day but we enjoyed walking around the Arboretum.  Aly and Madi were very serious about their hunt and were upset that we didn't have more time to complete it.  Here they are looking at a woolly worm we found.

 Sam enjoyed the Arboretum as well!  He likes it when he gets to go on field trips :)
Skyeler likes it too, until she realizes just how tiring taking Sammy on a field trip is lol!
This was such a cute picture of the two of them!

 We had snow on Skyeler's birthday in October...that should have been a warning to the horrible, horrible winter we were going to have.  Aly got the chance to Trick or Treat again this year with Priscilla.  The were both Elvish Princesses.  It was cold and rainy and by the time we finished we were all soaked through and the cape Aly was wearing must have weighed 10 lbs!  The girls still had a ton of fun, though!

 What's our favorite thing to do in November?  Thanksgiving at my parents with Cheryl and Glen and the boys!  This year it snowed!  That hasn't happend.  Granny was so excited that she and the kids could get out and go sledding.  And they did, every day!   This is my favorite picture from the weekend :)

 Our annual picture of the Yahoo's.  I remember the first year when Skyeler had to hold Carter!
Now they are growing up so fast we are afraid to blink!
Aly, Carter, Bryce, and Skyeler

 Thanksgiving around the table, yes I make everyone wait to eat until I've gotten a picture :)

 Me, Mom, and Cheryl
At this point in the year I have lost 19lbs, and darn it if the picture doesn't seem to show it!
I'm glad, though, that we got an updated picture of the three of us.

 We always look forward to Granny and Papa coming for Christmas.
Papa and his girls

 Granny, Papa, Aly, and Skyeler

 Our Christmas tree-Doctor Who style.
In celebration of Doctor Who's 50th Anniversary, Dan and the girls wanted to make our tree a Doctor Who themed tree.  So we have a Fez, Fez's are cool! and red bows, bow ties are cool! and Sonic Screwdrivers, 3D glasses, Snowmen and Snowflakes, Bad Wolf, Weeping Angels, and a Tardis ornament.

 Aly and Elena looking all grown up!  

Dan's family

So now I can begin 2014 with a clear conscience.  
Hopefully, it won't be another seven months before I post again :)