*****Please note that there are days where I will post more than once. So, to find out all the latest happenings and "goings-on" in our family (or my random thoughts), be sure to scroll down.*****

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

First Grade Week 40 in Review

I cannot believe that first grade is almost over.  Now, I’m glad it’s almost over, but it’s still hard to believe that our son will soon be entering 2nd grade.  We’ve got 5 weeks left (or 20 days) of first grade, and then we’ll take at least 2 weeks off (maybe more depending on how quickly we finish up the next 20 days) before starting 2nd grade.  Here’s how week 40 went for us:
Math:  We discussed the fact families for 15, 16, 17, and 18.  Caleb also worked on multi-step word problems. 
Bible:  Our Bible story this week was on “Jesus, God’s Son, Gave His Life.”  Our memory work was First Catechism question 56. 
Vocabulary:  We added “month, mural, imitate, applause, and photograph” to our list of vocabulary terms.
Phonics & English:  We reviewed punctuation, capitalization, silent consonants, contractions, and possessives.  We added “enough” to our list of service words.
As you can see, we’re slowly finishing up with some of our subjects.  We’re completely done with science, heritage studies, and reading.  However, Caleb is still required to read at least one book each day until the end of school.  We’ll finish Bible and Vocabulary in Week 41.  Handwriting is almost complete, too. 
Thanks for continuing to follow our homeschool adventure.  We’ve got several exciting field trips planned as we wind down the year, so be sure to keep checking in to see what we’re doing!  I’ll post soon about our plans for 2nd grade.  I’m excited about 2nd grade, and I hope Caleb will be as well!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Let’s Go Back to the 1800’s…

Caleb and I had the opportunity to go back and see what life was like back in the 1800’s on Friday.  We met up with many of our homeschool friends, and we all traveled to the Agrirama in Tifton.  It was quite the experience. 
The trip started with Caleb and the other boys donning their suspenders, and the girls dressing up in skirts from that time period.  Then, they were off to the one-room schoolhouse.  The 3rd grade and younger crowd went to the schoolroom, and the older kiddos went to the church (not enough room in the schoolroom).  They sat in old school desks, and the teachers explained how things were back then.  She showed them all the switch that was used when anyone was out of line.  Of course, my child had to share that I’ve had a switch used on me before…and yes, it’s true.  LOL!  My dad didn’t hesitate to grab a switch if we were cutting up back when I was growing up. 
The teacher had them work on their writing, math, and reading.  They then got to go outside for recess and play a game from the time period.  I don’t know what they called it, but it’s similar to Duck, Duck, Goose.  However, they were using a “rag” (bandana).  After recess, they were all dismissed. 
We then enjoyed a picnic lunch with our friends.  Once lunch was over, we headed off to tour the facilities.  We were able to see what the building were like back in that time period, and we saw how they worked and lived.  The older students actually got to do some of the “chores.” 
We toured the doctor’s office, the drug store, the blacksmith, the print shop, the sawmill, the train depot, and several of the farmhouses.  The kids also enjoyed the chickens, cow, sheep, ducks, and the gardens.
Overall, it was a fun trip.  However, I don’t know if we’ll do it again any time soon.  Maybe once Caleb is old enough to do some “chores” we’ll go back.  That might make it a bit more interesting for him.  He enjoyed being able to spend time with his friends though.  Heck, mommy did, too! 
Here are some pictures of our day.  Enjoy and be thankful that life isn’t still like this.  I, myself, love modern-day conveniences way too much to live back then.  LOL!

Caleb standing by the “wishing well” while we waited for our tour to begin.IMG_5417 I promise you that he is a sweet kid…he just refuses to smile in pictures.  LOL!IMG_5419 Caleb with his suspenders on…again, not happy about the picture.IMG_5423 Caleb and his friend, Colton, donning their suspenders.IMG_5424There’s a smile…in school, no less.  LOL!IMG_5427 Caleb listening to the teacher explain how things were back in the 1800’s.IMG_5429 Caleb reading from his book in the one-room schoolhouse.IMG_5431 Caleb working on his writing assignment.IMG_5436Getting ready to play the game at recess.IMG_5441 A horse and carriage in the Museum.IMG_54441926 ChevroletIMG_5445 Caleb and Colton in the tobacco room.IMG_5446 Caleb standing in front of the cotton gin.  IMG_5447 Caleb was mesmerized by the blacksmith.  I think he could have stayed there all day if I let him.  It was too hot and stinky for me though.IMG_5448
Have any of you locals been to the Agrirama?  If you haven’t been, then it is worth a trip just to see how they lived.  It’s amazing at what they accomplished without the technologies we have today.  Sometimes, I think maybe we should go back to that era…life would probably be much more simpler.  However, I might not be a happy camper because I’d miss my air conditioning, my Starbucks, and all the other conveniences we have today.  LOL!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Another Update on Caleb…

Brian went and met with our pediatrician yesterday.  He basically let him know that we felt we were brushed off by the pediatric neurologist last month.  Brian explained that we’ve brought several concerns up to the pediatrician, but nothing has ever been explored (Caleb has had body odor since the age of 5…not normal in my opinion; gray hairs…again, not normal; sensory issues…doesn’t like his socks, underwear, etc touching him; etc). 
Our pediatrician was very understanding and willing to step up and handle the situation.  He has ordered a battery of tests, and then we will be seeing another doctor in Atlanta once we’re done with these baseline tests.  Brian has taken Caleb to the hospital now for them to draw some blood.  They will use the blood work to check several things…thyroid, cortisol, IgE, metabolic stuff, blood count, etc.  We’re waiting to hear from the pediatrician’s office on an MRI and an EEG. 
We are hopeful that these tests will bring us closer to finding out the cause of Caleb’s tics.  While we are not doubting Tourette Syndrome, we just want to be absolutely positive.  By reading and doing research, we have noticed that tics can be caused by so many other things…allergies, hormonal abnormalities, etc.  Besides, with all of the upcoming changes to healthcare and insurance, it is more important than ever for us to figure this all out before it’s too late.  So, we’re being as proactive as we can for Caleb. 
I will keep you all posted on the outcome of these tests.  Thank you for your continuous support and prayer.  We truly appreciate it, and we are grateful to have so many family and friends thinking of us during this time.

Monday, April 19, 2010

First Grade Week 39 in Review

We are getting closer to the end of first grade.  As of right now, we’re only about a week behind.  So, that’s not too bad.  With the end of the year approaching, we are finishing up lots of our books early.  So, our “school time” will be less and less each week.  I’m sure that Caleb is super excited about this okay…I am, too!  LOL!  With all of this said, here’s how week 39 panned out for us.
Heritage Studies:  We continued to discuss how a family has history.  We also discussed how each person has a history.  Caleb took his last Heritage Studies test, and we are DONE with this for the year!
Math:  We discussed adding 6, 7, and 8.  Caleb also worked on adding 3 addends and double fact families.  We finished up the week by discussing the fact families for 13, 14, 15, and missing addends.
Bible:  Our Bible story this week was on “Telling Others About the Savior.”  Our Bible verse was Matthew 4:19.
Vocabulary:  We added “meadow, atmosphere, crash, search, and clever” to our list of vocabulary terms.
Phonics & English:  We added “-umb and –ew” to our list of word families.  In English skills, we worked on alphabetical order, punctuation, capitalization, and following directions.
Extra Stuff:  Two weekends ago, Caleb was invited to celebrate his friend Ashton’s 7th birthday.  Ashton is the son of one of the homeschool families in our co-op.  We’ve gotten really close to the family, and the boys LOVE to hang out with each other.  His mom, Naomi, and I also enjoy spending time together.  We joined Naomi, Ashton, and Ariana (Ashton’s 5yo sister) for some strawberry picking and a playdate at their home.  Again, they had a blast playing with each other.  I’m also thankful for Naomi and her friendship. 
Here are some pictures from the birthday party and strawberry picking.

Ahoy, Matey!IMG_5391 Who is that mean looking pirate there?!!?IMG_5392 Oh, look!  Micah has turned into a semi-pirate!  IMG_5393 Caleb and another homeschool friend, Collin, making parrots.IMG_5394 Caleb with his parrot on his shoulderIMG_5398 Two friendly piratesIMG_5401Getting ready to sing Happy Birthday and EAT some lunch!IMG_5402 Caleb playing musical “islands.”
IMG_5406 Caleb stopping on his island.IMG_5407 Micah had fun just hanging out in Mrs. Naomi’s van.  LOL!IMG_5408 Caleb and Ashton at the strawberry patchIMG_5411 They had fun because we let them run off on their own.  They ate sooo many strawberries.  LOL!IMG_5413 Caleb enjoying himself.  His shirt, hands, and mouth were covered in strawberry juice.IMG_5414 Two friend walking in a strawberry patch.IMG_5416
As always, thanks for following our adventures in homeschool and daily life.  We always enjoy sharing what we’re doing.  Join us next week as I post about Week 40 and a field trip.

Friday, April 16, 2010

First Grade Week 38 in Review

YEAH!  We are finally done with another week of first grade.  I don’t know about the rest of you homeschoolers, but it sure does seem like time goes by much slower in the springtime.  LOL!  Maybe it’s because I would rather just enjoy the weather than school.  OOPS!  Did I say that?  No, I wouldn’t ever trade school for nice weather…smile_embaressed  Anyway, with all of that said, here’s how week 38 went for us (we finished it on Wednesday I think…I don’t even remember):
Heritage Studies:  We continued to discuss how a family has rules.  We also discussed how a family works and plays together. 
Math:  Caleb learned how to add doubles, add near doubles, and add 9 or 10. 
Bible:  We reviewed all of our memory work thus far, and our Bible story was on “Giving What We Have to Jesus.”
Vocabulary:  We added “simple, rude, wind, sob, and damaged” to our list of vocabulary terms.
Phonics & English:  We added “-ead, –ild, –ind, –olt, –old, –oll, –alf, and –alk” to our list of word families.  “Guess” was added to our list of service words.  In English skills, we discussed contractions.
Extra Stuff:  We’re still enjoying the spring session of co-op.  We’re also having lots of fun with playdates and park days with our homeschool friends.  I LOVE the flexibility of homeschooling.  It’s so fun to get all of our work done, and then enjoy the rest of the day with our friends.  Fun stuff!!!!
Caleb is also doing well in gymnastics.  Now that he is in the correct class, he’s learning all of the techniques, rolls, stretches, and other exercises.  Hopefully he’ll continue to enjoy it for a long while.
Speaking of Caleb, we are in the process of seeking a 2nd opinion on his diagnosis of Tourette Syndrome.  I mentioned it to the other pediatrician at the practice we use when I took Micah in on the 6th.  She said that she would mention it to the referring pediatrician.  Hopefully they will get the ball rolling quickly.  Brian is going to call and schedule an appointment with the pediatrician so he can share our thoughts and concerns.  Maybe his meeting will expedite things even faster.  We’ll see…I will definitely keep everyone posted.
Caleb’s tics seem to be improving at the moment, so we are happy about that.  We’ve noticed that most of his arm/leg jerks happen when he’s telling us something (standing in front of us sharing a story or something else exciting) or standing at the front of the class at co-op.  So, maybe it’s all “anxiety” related.  Again, we’ll have to wait and see what becomes of the 2nd opinion. 
As always, thanks for following our adventures at Childress Academy.  Check back soon for details about Week 39.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Has it REALLY been TWO years????

To be honest, I didn’t even realize that today was my 2nd BLOGOVERSARY until I read a comment a few minutes ago wishing me a happy one.  LOL!  How crazy is that?!!?  Time has really just flown by lately, and I guess I’ve had other things on my mind.

So, yes, it’s been TWO years of blogging bliss.  Let me just tell you, I thoroughly enjoy blogging, and I see it as a great way to remember all the special and even the not-so-special memories we are making within our family.  I hope that one day my boys will be able to join me in posting, and I know it will only be time before Caleb is able to sit down and read the blog.  Heck, he could read it now, but I’ll hold off on that for a bit.  We limit his “Internet-ting” to just games at the moment.  I’m not ready for him to join the whole Internet world just yet. 

If I had realized that my BLOGOVERSARY was fast approaching I might would have offered up a giveaway, but it totally just slipped past me.  So, maybe I’ll have to throw together a giveaway here soon.  Now, don’t hold your breath waiting…with all that is still going on, it may be a bit before I can actually pull it all together. 

Anyway, HAPPY TWO YEAR BLOGOVESARY TO ME!!!  I am grateful for all of my “bloggy” pals that have come into my life via this little social outlet.  You have offered up some great words of wisdom, encouragement, friendship, and support.  THANK YOU FOR READING OUR EVERYDAY ADVENTURES!!!  I look forward to spending many more years in this little blogosphere!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Gardening 2010

I’ve mentioned several times that we’ve been getting ready for the garden season. Brian spent some time with my brother, David, and built 4 raised beds for our garden. They turned out fabulous. Last Saturday, they finished it all up by laying pavers along the paths, and putting a border around the garden to enclose it all.
Caleb and I then spent late Saturday afternoon and evening getting everything plated. We ended up planting the following: big beef tomato, cherry tomato, yellow bell pepper, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, giant marconi peppers, squash, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, strawberries, cabbage, sweet potatoes, romaine lettuce, and yellow onions. These were all planted from transplants we bought at the garden centers. We then planted carrots, English peas, green beans, and snap peas from seeds. So, we’ll see how it all grows.
We’re hoping that we’ll get better produce using the raised beds. We filled them up with our soil, manure, peat moss, top soil, mushroom compost, and garden potting soil. Next year, we’ll just have to add another layer of compost I think.
Here’s how it looked on 4/3/10:

This is the view of the raised beds when I stand at the swingset and look towards our neighbor’s side fence.brick pathway This is the view from the back of our house looking towards our back fence. (Brian has to add a few more pavers to the path that you see).raised beds This is the northeast bed. It has the cherry tomato, big beef tomato, giant marconi pepper, red pepper, yellow pepper, green pepper, and squash plants. I also added in a few onions and romaine lettuce.tomatoes and peppersThis is the southeast bed. It has squash, zucchini, broccoli, and cauliflower.broccoli and cauliflower2 This is the northwest bed. It has strawberries, 45-day cabbage, romaine lettuce, sweet potatoes, and yellow onions.northwest bed This is the southwest bed. It has carrots on the far right, English peas, green beans, and snap peas on the far left.southwest bed
Do you have any experience or tips for raised bed gardening? Mine aren’t as neat as I’d like them to be because I wasn’t sure how close I could put the plants. I know that you can put them closer because you don’t have to leave walking space. However, I wasn’t sure “how close”. So, once I see how it all grows this year, maybe next year’s will be neater. fingerscrossed
Did you plant a garden this year? If so, what did you plant? We’re hoping to add some fruit trees to our backyard at some point. Caleb wants a few, so we need to oblige I think. Besides, we’d love to save some $$$ by growing our own food if we can. Too bad we can’t have animals…chickens would surely help the grocery bill. smile_regular

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Easter Fun 2010

Yeah, yeah, yeah…I know.  Easter has come and gone, but I’m just now getting around to posting.  We enjoyed a fun-filled day on Easter.  We always go to my parent’s house for lunch, so we headed over there around 12:30.  Micah fell asleep on the ride, so we gave him a few minutes to get his snooze on.  Then, he woke up and the boys enjoyed hunting for eggs. 
After the egg hunt, we enjoyed a fabulous meal prepared by my sweet momma.  She always prepares a wonderful meal for the holidays, and she works her tail off getting it all done.  One of these days, I’m going to step up and ease the burden by doing the meal myself.  I’m just not quite ready yet.  One day though…
Here are some pictures of our cutie pies on Easter.

Look at that boy…he’s growing up too fast.IMG_5368 There’s the big guy.IMG_5370 Micah looks for another egg.IMG_5373Caleb was told to look up in the tree, but I guess he got a bit confused.  He soon figured it out though.IMG_5374 Uncle Daniel helps Micah find another egg.IMG_5377 There’s our sweet little one.  His basket is getting heavy.IMG_5379Sweet, sweet Caleb…love him to pieces.IMG_5381
I hope you all enjoyed a wonderful and blessed Easter holiday!  I’ll be back soon to post pictures of this year’s garden.  We changed things up a bit this year, so look for that post coming soon!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

First Grade Week 37 in Review

We are done with another week of first grade.  We’re now counting down the days or I am anyway until it’s all over for a bit.  Here’s how week 37 went for us:
Heritage Studies:  We continued to discuss how everyone is special.  We also discussed how a family is special and how families have rules.  I, myself, was glad to teach that particular lesson. 
Science:  We talked about describing the water in air, the jobs of a weatherman, and how to be good stewards.  We are now completely finished with our 1st grade Science book, so we’ll spend some time doing some lapbooks and reading library books if I can get it all crammed into the lessons.
Math:  Caleb learned how to read a Celsius thermometer and how to measure perimeter.
Bible:  Our Bible verse this week was I John 3:18, and our Bible story was “Thanking the Lord Jesus.”
Vocabulary:  We added “bold, divide, equal, length, and receive” to our list of vocabulary terms.
Phonics & English:  We added “-are, –air, –ief, and –ield” to our list of word families.  The word “won’t” was added to our list of service words.  In English skills, we discussed describing words, alphabetical order, contractions, and changing ‘y to i’ before adding ‘es’ and ‘ed’.
Extra Stuff:  We finally got our garden planted.  That will be a separate post soon, so look for that.  Other than that, we’ve been spending some time with our homeschool friends and enjoying playdates and fun!
As always thanks for following our adventures.  Check back next time to see what we’ve been up to!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

When neighborhood kids get bored…

they start fires!  Yep, that’s what happened on Tuesday.  It was sometime after 1pm, and I was sitting on the couch while Micah was napping.  I smelled something burning, so I got up and asked Brian if he smelled it.  He really just brushed me off.  After a minute or two, I decided to look outside.  Boy am I glad I did.  When I looked out our back window, I saw about 5-6 boys, smoke, and fire.  I went to our bedroom and told Brian that he might want to go see what’s going on because there’s a fire behind our back fence.  Once he saw what was going on, he asked the boys what they did.  They of course denied any wrongdoing.  I then asked where there parents where, but I didn’t get any response.  While I did hear sirens, I wasn’t sure if they were headed our way, so I called 911 to report the fire. 

At this time, the fire is in our neighbor’s yard, and it’s pretty fierce.  Brian jumps the fence and starts fighting the fire while we were waiting on the fire department.  Well, the fire truck parked in front of our house, and I told them that it was behind our fence.  Once they figured out how to reach it, they moved their trucks to the appropriate place and started doing their thing. 

Our neighbor’s son eventually finds Brian outside fighting the fire off of their fence (he had been sleeping and was headed to the shower until he smelled the smoke and saw Brian).  So, the fire department is doing their thing, Brian is fighting the fire still in the neighbor’s yard, and it’s slowly creeping up under our fence.  Brian finally comes back to our yard, and it’s still creeping under our fence.  It ended up burning up three spots in our back yard, and the majority of the backside of our fence is charred.

After a while, the fire department came knocking on our door asking for our name, address, and phone #.  They were able to figure out which kiddo started the fire, and they had to get everyone’s information so that the damage can be taken care of.  So, hopefully, we won’t have to come out of pocket for any of the repairs.  Trust me, if we do, Brian will be livid.

***The boys were wadding up pieces of grass, lighting them on fire, and throwing them down a metal drainage grate.  Well, when it rains, all sorts of debris falls down the grate.  So, all of that debris caught fire, and it spread rampant because it’s been so dry here.  Our fence and several of the other fences near us butt up to an open field, and that’s where the fire got started.***

Thankfully, Brian was working from home.  I honestly don’t know how this would have turned out if he hadn’t been here.  I don’t even want to think about what would have happened.

So, that was another highlight of our week.  And if that’s not bad enough, I got a call on Friday morning from my mom.  She informed me that my baby brother’s apartment building burned to the ground.  Thankfully, they were able to save themselves (he and his girlfriend) and their dog.  However, they lost everything else.  I’m sure it will take a while for their emotions to return to normal.  They were able to get another apartment at the complex, and the Red Cross and apartment owners have been very gracious to them and the others that were displaced. 

Here are a few pictures from the fire at our place that Brian took.  We are not sure how long it will take for someone to replace the fence.  My oldest brother did give us a quote from his company who specializes in fire restoration.  So, we’ve got that on hand just in case we need it.

This is our neighbor’s fence.  Brian was able to help keep it from spreading any further.IMG_5332 This is a view of our fence and some of the damage to the field.IMG_5333This is another view of our fence and the field.IMG_5334 This is a closer shot of our fence.IMG_5335 This is another side of our fence that joins up with our neighbor’s.  They didn’t go back as far as we did, so there’s a gap.IMG_5343 This is one of the grass spots that got burned.IMG_5345 This is a view of some of the damage that we see from inside our yard.IMG_5349 This is another spot that got burned.  This was near the raised garden beds, and we’re so thankful they didn’t up in flames.IMG_5350

Without a doubt, it has been a crazy week around here.  However, we are all grateful to be alive, and we are blessed to have so many family members and friends that care.  So, even though the week has been dismal (Caleb’s diagnosis, our fire, and the fire at my brother’s apartment building), God is in control. 

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