Monday, February 29, 2016

Happy Leap Day!

I love Leap Years! We did the Leap Year survey again this year and this time, Olivia was able to take part! Can you believe the next Leap Year will be 2020?!

The last Leap Year was in 2012.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Weekly Wrap Up - Feb 26th

I'm testing out a new format for Weekly Wrap Up, so bear with me. I'm going to list out our activities per subject to get a better understanding of what we may be missing. This is more for me lol

We got a new computer this week so probably did less schoolwork than we should have while I figured out Windows 10.

It was my birthday on Thursday, so no school (we take off all household birthdays), so we played 3 way Minecraft almost all day. Productive? No. But it was fun lol

Math: Brianna is working on percents. I love that discounts and taxes is a big part of this chapter as it has almost daily real life aspect to it. Olivia is speeding through her adding and subtracting review chapter.

English: Olivia's copy writing this week is writing out O Canada. She's taken to singing it often and almost knows all of it. She's also working through a quick phonics book to review some of the letter sounds she has issues with

Science: Olivia finished up her Senses unit, covering smell and taste this week. We also read The Senses that we got from the library. She was not a fan of the smell of most of my essential oils and was not a fan of the taste challenge at all (not surprisingly with how picky she is).

Geography/History: Brianna looked up and drew a picture of our "latitude twin", Bordeaux, France. She remembered how to tell if a location was north or south of us, just by looking at her daylight graphs.

Olivia told us about the tundra and permafrost at the poles. Then decided she was going to watch Happy Feet and March of the Penguins to remember more about the South Pole

French: Brianna has been really excelling at French, coming up with her own sentences with words she's learned. Olivia is busy absorbing and questioning (which helps Brianna since she can't just spew out French words, she has to know the English translation to answer Olivia's questions)

Health/Phys Ed.: We got snow and ice this week, so me and the girls worked together to shovel ours and our neighbour's walkways and driveways. Brianna did her cardio workout twice and ran on the treadmill once for her running training.

Linking up with Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

Monday, February 22, 2016

New Computer!

I got a new computer yesterday and finished setting it up and transferring files today. I had an hour or so of sweating while I was transferring all the school files, praying to the computer gods not to kill my gazillions of files.

It's still a "bottom of the line" computer (because I'm cheap) but it's a big upgrade from our previous 6 year old bottom of the liner. Twice the storage space and seems way faster too! It'll help a lot with the kids school projects and various programs that require something a little beefier.

The old computer will eventually become a family computer that the kids can run Khan Academy on and play their learning software (like Reader Rabbit) that doesn't require high speeds and great graphics. I just gotta finish cleaning it off and getting a new monitor for it.

*runs around excitedly*

Friday, February 19, 2016

Weekly Wrap Up - Feb 19th

We started the week with Family Day and a day of laziness. Then on Tuesday we got hit by a nice winter storm that had Brianna shovelling majority of the day. Freezing rain > snow > freezing rain > snow does not make for a pretty property.

My car ate my snow brush

Olivia's friends finally came back from their European trip. You'd think they were gone 4 years instead of 4 weeks!

We finally caught up on Mystery Class. I've lost 10lbs so far this year. Brianna started a new chapter in math. Olivia is doing a science unit about the senses.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

World's Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

Brianna and Olivia went to make my favorite cookie recipe and the recipe seems to have disappeared from, where I originally found it! So I'm posting it to my blog to prevent it from permanently disappearing if I lose my recipe card.

Soft & Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 1/4 cups     flour
1 tsp              baking soda
1 cup             butter
1/4 cup          sugar
3/4 cup         brown sugar
1 tsp              vanilla
1 pkg             instant pudding
2                    eggs
1 pkg             chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375F.
Mix flour with baking soda in a small bowl.
In a large bowl, combine butter, sugars and pudding mix. Beat until smooth and creamy.
Beat in eggs and vanilla and gradually add flour mixture.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Roll into balls and flatten slightly onto a cookie sheet.
Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Dad Bashing Sucks

My aunt posted this article to her Facebook ( <--- it's a good read, read it!). It's 110% true.

While I openly tease Lee about being my 6th child, he knows (because I tell him verbally, not just cause I assume he knows) that he is an immeasurably important person in our house.

He is a great parent. He is allowed to succeed and fail just as much as I am. I am not the queen of mommies and he's just a lowly dad. He changed as many if not more diapers than I did. He got up in the middle of the night. He gave baths. He picks out the kids clothes (usually with better taste than me!). He stuffs cloth diapers. He washes floors (on his hands and knees!). He IS an equal parent.

Too often I see moms not "allow" dad to pick clothes, do hair, snuggle baby when they're upset, ect... Then, those same moms complain that dad doesn't "get it". How could they? They're not allowed to be parents. They're sperm donors who get to live with their kids.

Society says that dads only babysit. They say that dads are bumbling fools. Look at most sitcoms. Dads are either idiots or assholes. Sure not all dads can sit through the 64th episode of Caillou (hell, neither can I!), but does that mean they suck as parents? Hell no! It means they're human, just like us moms.

ALL parents excel and lack in various area of parenting regardless of what's in their pants.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Mystery Class 2016

Mystery Class is back! We missed last year so we're pretty excited to start again this year. Brianna loves trying to guess where the locations are and see how her guesses change through the class.

We got a bit of a late start due to various illnesses but we're catching up!

Brianna is tickled that we have 2 "odd" mystery locations, in one has a very long day and another has a very short day.

Right now, Mystery Class is mostly just graphing photoperiods (daylight vs. night time) and doing journal pages, both teaching about the earth's axis, longitude and latitude and Prime Meridian. After the Spring Equinox we'll start getting clues to the specific locations.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Weekly Wrap Up - Feb 12th

That's how most of our weekend/week was spent. Piles upon piles of Kleenex. Several illnesses in a row have floated their way through my house since Christmas. We're normally healthy people so this has been quite annoying.

Brianna did manage to get some schoolwork done but I had no energy to sit with Olivia to do hers most of the week.

We continued reading Our Canadian Girl: Rachel and Brianna watched a few more episodes of World War II in Color. Olivia started back on Khan Academy which she did really well with.

We seem to be all on the mend now, so hopefully next week will be more normal!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Joshua's Speech Update

The parent to child class that Lee and I have been taking haven't really done much as we were already doing majority of the "techniques" at home. Joshua HAS improve since last May when we first started this speech delay path. Of course, now, at over 2 1/2 and still not speaking, he is considered mute or non-verbal rather than simply speech delayed.

We met, again, with a speech pathologist for an assessment. She agrees that Joshua is improving and even thinks that he may start speaking real words within a few months. However, she agrees (as we've known from the beginning) that he'll need one-on-one speech therapy. Because of his more advanced age and the fact that he is still non-verbal, she's going to try to push him into the earlier sessions of therapy that begin this month or next, instead of waiting until "his" group, which wouldn't start therapy until May/June.

Joshua's current list of communication is: 4 "words" (num num, uh uh, woah and yuck) and 40 signs (24 of which he signs on his own with no prompting).

Friday, February 5, 2016

Weekly Wrap Up - Feb 5th

On Monday, Brianna organized and ran her first homeschool coop meeting. Our usual coordinator is out of the country so our family has taken over for the time being. Brianna's great with crafty stuff, so she found this cute Pompom Popper craft to do.

On Tuesday, we ran our No Technology Experiment. Check out the results here!

We've started our 3rd round of Mystery Class. I'll have a post about that soon!

Olivia had a rough week with her attitude. She was refusing to do schoolwork, generally not listening and being hateful. Friday was a MUCH better day.

We started reading an Our Canadian Girl series for Black History month. This series is on Rachel, a girl trying to come to Canada to escape slavery. Olivia will be taking part in this read aloud, her first longer-than-10-minutes read aloud, so hopefully it goes well

Linking up with Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

No Technology Day Results

It was slightly strange writing down my notes for the day on paper instead of directly into my blog editor.

The experiment went better than I figured it would. I was expecting lots of whining, especially from the 2 yr old who doesn't "get" it. My kids don't have a lot of computer time as is, but the TV is on all day for background noise.

End results:

Joshua: He seemed pretty unaffected by the lack of TV. He definitely wanted out of the living room or for people to come play with him more often than when he had the TV for distraction, but that's not really a bad thing.

Olivia: She had a wee bit of a meltdown near bedtime about wanting to watch a movie with Brianna, but otherwise did well. She was bored and digging through the school room and decided to pick up the recorder and ask to be taught how to play.

Brianna: We had Brianna turn off her cell phone so she wouldn't be tempted to cheat and she agreed it was a good idea. She jokingly whined about not being able to play on Facebook, but otherwise seemed unaffected by it. She even picked up a book by her own choice in the middle of the day to read.

Myself: I kept my phone turned on (I am the emergency contact for a few kids' schools) and on me (so my step-counter would still work). I did a quick lock screen check 4 times to verify that no one had called (it was on silent to help prevent me from wanting to check it), but otherwise did ok. It was definitely a challenge to not check on my business and various homeschool or craft groups. I did, however, get a whole book read and half the marking done (that I had been ignoring since New Years)

Lee: he managed to be electronics free until about 7pm then said F-it and watched TV lol I actually assumed he'd give up way before, but he surprised me!

Mom: Since mom lives with us, the kids informed her that Grandma had to take part too! Outside of texting her boss (needed), she played along too, sorting my grandmother's pictures.

All in all it was a decent day. The kids found non-electronic things to do and I got more cleaning done than I normally do lol