Archive for December, 2009

Sweeping Out The Year

December 31, 2009

Tonight at midnight we will be sweeping the old year out the back door. One of us (Papa)will sneak around to the front door ringing the doorbell welcoming  2010 in.

Happy New Year !!!!!!!

Anyway

December 30, 2009

 

Mother Teresa’s Anyway Poem

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
It was never between you and them anyway

The original version of this poem was written by Kent M. Keith.

Merry Christmas

December 23, 2009

 All the hustle and bustle that this holiday season brings , all the last-minute preparation touches, now it is time to be still and enjoy our time with loved ones. To await the arrival of the Christ child.

” Shh, shh,shh… What is that I hear?     The cry of Baby Jesus, oh so dear!”

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. May peace, love and joy find you this holiday season.

Happy Winter Solstice

December 22, 2009

King Winter paid us a visit this morning leaving behind big powdery snow flakes. The Little’s were so excited he came on the first day of winter. They awoke to find King Winter on the nature table and as every seasonal change they found the winter stories had been placed in the story basket along with a new one. They also found Mama still in bed, so with stories in hand we snuggled up and first  read the new one. Next comes the Little’s favorite which is Winter Awake by Linda Kroll and Little Sis’s favorite I Like Winter by Lois Lenski. Then I make it into the kitchen to start breakfast but sweet Papa volunteered and made pancakes and bacon. This also marks the fourth and final week of advent.

 The fourth light of advent is the light of humankind. The light of hope that we may learn to love and understand.After clean up we made our Christmas stars and paper snowflakes. I love the color the stars give in contrast with the grey of winter. A tutorial can be found here. http://www.duofiberworks.com/journal/2009/1/5/window-star-tutorial.html

Wishing everyone a very happy and warm winter.

Family Traditions

December 21, 2009

I’m not exactly sure when or why it started but there is one tradition that has been in my family for a while.This to me is what makes holidays memorable. I don’t remember what I received that year for Christmas but I do remember my grandmother always dumping to many pretzels in the crock pot at once. I remember her always getting chocolate on her fingers which of course led her to licking it off (hum coincidence ? I think not). These memories and the many that followed are what have stuck with me on my journey and I plan to pass them down for my children to take along with them.

What about you? What family traditions do you plan to pass along?

Unschooler At Heart

December 20, 2009

I’ve always liked the word Unschooler, even though we are not. Yes I am a Waldorf groupie but there is truth in the word. I laugh while talking with other homeschooling mothers about  Christmas “breaks”. Even though our rhythm will be different these next few weeks we are never really on a break. In my opinion it’s during these” breaks” when the real learning takes place. Each day there is a new discovery waiting to be found. Miss Sky has taken it upon herself to learn cursive and is copying sentences I have written out for her. There have been new games invented.

(Picture above taken by Miss Sky)

Not to mention all the math we have used this last week baking gifts for friends and neighbors. Plays that need to be written for our Christmas eve performance. Songs being wrote with the penny whistle, and of course the discovery of a great reading spot to snuggle up in front of the fire while snowflakes quietly fall to the ground behind you unnoticed.

 Here’s to taking more breaks. 🙂

DIY Craft Kits

December 19, 2009

I love giving gifts that the recipient has to put together themself. The Little’s always find a shared gift waiting for them under the tree on Christmas. This year they will find the book A Donsy of Gnomes by Sieglinde De Francesca along with everything needed to make their own gnomes. Here is a link to some other great last-minute handmade gift ideas. http://www.kidscraftweekly.com/diycraftkits_issue.html

I have to say the wooden spoon puppets were a huge hit with The Little’s and wooden spoons are now a staple in our craft cabinet. I think we will be trying our hand at the match box car next.

 Peace

The Gift of Sun

December 18, 2009

The Little’s and I have been busy making Christmas gifts for friends, family and each other. I think this year has been my favorite so far. I quit putting pressure on myself of what I “need” to do and just have been enjoying the season of giving with my family. I love beeswax. It feels so alive whether we are modeling it or drawing with it, but especially when it is lit. Marsha Johnson from Waldorf Home Educators yahoo group wrote a magical story about The Boy Who Loved Summer. It can be found in her files section under Advent. It’s about a boy who decided to search for the warmth of summer when the season started to change. It ends with a gift of a beeswax candle from the fire fairy to remind him of the sun and it’s warmth. After I told the story to The Little’s it’s like a light went off as to what we could make this year.

As the light from each candle shines forth this upcoming season remember winter will not last forever, that the warmth of the sun will be back before we know it.

(Update) I just wanted to thank Tonya and her lovely family over at Plain and Joyful Living  for her wonderful smelling beeswax . http://plainandjoyfulliving.blogspot.com/

Warm wishes to all this winter.

Henry David Thoreau

December 16, 2009

Late at night once I have tucked The Little’s into bed with a steaming hot cup of egyptian licorice tea by my side ,I settle down in front of the computer and find myself lost in the words of a writer I have just discovered. I came across a quote from his book ,that has received so much of my late night attention, while reading the blog from one of the writers here  http://simple-green-frugal-co-op.blogspot.com/.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

I was hooked this is exactly where Papa and I are right now on our journey. The book is Walden by Henry David Thoreau http://thoreau.eserver.org/walden00.html written in 1854. His words  have given me something to cling to, that one day our dreams will be a reality one baby step at a time.

Life in the Big Wood Orphanage

December 16, 2009

Thought I would post what we have been up to these last few days. Yesterday was spent outdoors enjoying the gift of 54 degree weather and the oodles of mud. Then today it was back indoors to a high of 27. Meanwhile time has been spent making supplies to put back for days just like today and filled with lots of play. On rotation in the background has been Little House in the Big Woods audio book during those quiet handwork moments along with the Annie broadway musical soundtrack. So this morning while Miss Sky slaughtered the pig and Little Sis gathered the eggs I used the last of autumns apples to make apple coffee cake. After our usual breakfast clean up we started making blank books to have ready for those times when inspiration strikes. These are smaller versions of the MLB. The directions are similar to the ones I posted here earlier in the year https://dkjsv05.wordpress.com/2009/08/24/making-main-lesson-books/. The difference being after folding in half again you fold in half once more.

Then cut down the middle .This will give you 4 books to work with. I fold 6 pages of multipurpose paper to fit the books. Punch holes down the outside and bind together.

These are also a great size to make up your own early reader stories.

These have been put back ready to grab at a moments notice after scrubbing the floor and washing windows no longer seems like a fun thing to do.

Wishing everyone a happy Tuesday.