Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Rocks, rocks and more rocks.....


Who knew that rocks and minerals could be so interesting.
The kids have been doing experiments on a whole heap of different rocks and minerals over the last few weeks.

Ciara figured out the minerals in different toothpastes that were most effective for cleaning stains off teeth..


We grew crystals with our "Magic Rocks" kit...(didn't you always wanted one of those sets as a kid???)


And we looked at rock samples to determine whether they were igneous, sedimentary or metamorphic.


I will never look upon your humble garden variety rock in quite the same way after all this.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

County Fair

Friday we took a field trip to the County Fair with our homeschool group. Lots to see and do.
First off a visit to see the animals. The kids were nervous about turning their backs on these huge bulls. This was as close as I could get them to stand to the bulls and then they gave me a 2 second window to snap this picture before they took off.


The boys were a lot braver around the mechanical bull


Looking like true cowboys...


The sheep were a little less intimidating...


As were the horses...


Of course there is the obligatory silly picture...(really Mum... do we have to???...this is SO embarrassing)


A few rides....


And a fake tattoo rounded out the day beautifully.


What a fun way to spend a Friday!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Homeschool week 1

So we made it through our first few weeks of homeschool. So far so good. We have been getting through our workload and having some fun too. Here's a bit of a glimpse of what we have been up to.


Field trip to a Rock Ranch. This was organized through a homeschool group we are part of. It's fun to be able to go on these trips with a group of other families...its fun and well as a learning experience.


The kids got to dig up a variety of rocks and minerals....quartz, mica, name it. They had a blast sorting through them and trying to identify each one.


They used their rocks and minerals in some experiments. This one is part of a series of tests they did to determine the density of different minerals. They learned how to use a triple balance beam which seemed to be the least for Jack.


We cracked open some geodes and studied the crystal forms inside. Jack was a bit of a crazy man with the hammer. His first geode ended up as a powdered mess on the pavement. He managed to refine his hammering enthusiasm with his subsequent geodes.


For history we learned about the fall of Rome and the Barbarian invasions. We talked about the Anglo Saxons and read a version of Beowulf which inspired the kids to make their own double sided medieval axe and battle each other in the front yard.


For art we made some clay pots....


And our teenaged next door neighbor provided a music lesson for the boys


So all this plus math and language arts made our first couple of weeks a success. All we need now is to move into our homeschool room so we can have a little more space.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Summer Update

Life has been a little busy around here lately so there is lots to blog about. Here is a quick overview of what's been happening here.
Friends arriving out of the blue! A wonderful childhood friend flew all the way from Australia to surprise me for my birthday.


This was aided and abetted by all these terrific people I call neighbors AND friends . They were all so good at keeping her arrival a secret that I think they may have had some kind of CIA spy training at some point in their lives!


In the midst of all this excitement I turned 40. So far it feels a lot like 39 so I'm not sure what all the fuss is about.


And I was spoiled by some of my Aussie girlfriends who sent me some gorgeous jewelry! A beautiful necklace..( you can see on me here)...and earrings (which I am wearing too but are covered up by my low key hat).


This lingerie item that I am displaying was a gift from my ever thoughtful husband!


My friend Dana also turned 40...she is certainly aging a lot more gracefully than I am!


On the home front...the renos are nearly finished.


We won't be ready for the start of the school year...{boohoo}...but hopefully it will only take a week or 2 to finish off.


We undertook our annual pilgrimage to the local themepark where the kids spent the day enjoying the rides...


This one completely cracks me up!


And of course football season has started....


and so has soccer....


So that brings you up to date...phew!
I feel like I have a bit of a blog sweat up :-)