Thursday, February 28, 2008

An Evening Schedule?

This really may not work but...I believe it is worth a try! Andrew works LONG hours and often Saturdays and lately a bit on Sunday too. Which means not a lot of time with Joshua. So, when he gets home from work we have less than 2 hours before Josh goes to bed. So clearly we need to go for a bit of quality because quantity is out of the question.

Now lately, because Andrew is exhausted and Josh is...well...a typical boy, they tend to either sit together and play Momma approved video games or just Andrew sit and watches TV while J plays with trains or something. Both are fine but I thought it might be a little better and maybe even more fun if I actually provide something for them to do that is REALLY easy for my exhausted husband while still fun for the little man!

So here is the trial nightly schedule that we will begin Monday Evening. (Edit - I just read through this again and would like to clarify that we will be doing all of these activities as a family. I unintentionally made it sound as if they were on their own!)

Monday - Movie night (Andrew's most tired evening). They can just snuggle up on the couch and watch a movie. May include popcorn or other treat.

Tuesday - Game night. This is a great open option because it could include time on the Wii or a board game.

Wednesday - Play in Josh's bedroom. This is the most "painful" for the adults but Josh just loves to play with his guys with Daddy. Mostly because I am just awful at it! I know I am but I just do not know how and am always making them be nice to each other when all they are supposed to be doing is fighting etc... I so do not know why boys are like that...

Thursday - Free play night. This evening Joshua just needs to find something to do by himself. I think this is important to include. He does need to learn to entertain himself. This is also an evening in which we could include and extra special activity for a great week. (We are currently trying out a marble system in which he can buy items/activities with marbles he has earned for good behavior).

Friday - Craft night. This will most likely be an activity that goes with our daytime theme. Daddy does not get to do much preschool stuff so this is a nice opportunity for him to do an easy, fun craft with Josh.

I left Saturday and Sunday open. And I plan to be pretty flexible with the other days too. If Andrew is just too tired than I can pick up slack. And hopefully, eventually, he will get a weekend off to rest up!
We shall see!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Another Schedule Change!

Our schedule is just not working. Josh is mostly a laid back kid and could care less what we do what day, as long as we include playtime. However, I am not at all laid back! I have been just "going with the flow" but it truly makes me crazy. So I am revamping, or rather, have been revamping and here are my latest results.

Preschool Schedule
Monday - Enchanted Forest - Josh's 2 hour drop off playgroup (better known as my sanity restorer!)

Tuesday - Training Tuesday - Way to focus on a small skill (for example, yesterday we worked on learning to sort laundry). I am borrowing this idea from another Mom's blog!

Wednesday - Montessori Learning

Thursday - Montessori Learning

Friday - A day filled with possibilities! For example a few weeks ago, Josh was OBSESSED with Spiders so we spent a day learning about them, and had a great time. This Friday I am planning to spend the day snuggled up on the couch reading The Mitten by Jan Brett and doing some fun activities based on the story. (I tried including these activities in our classroom but in Montessori he gets to decide what to choose and often he left stuff until weeks after the story and that made for a crazy disjointed activity. And honestly, I am not willing to just give up on these sweet moments!)

We also started a new phonics program today and I am THRILLED so far! It is Get Ready for the Code which comes before the popular Explode the Code. Josh just loved it today! We really had a ton of fun with it.

The reason I liked it so much is that I have been struggling with what to do with him. He already knows all the sounds but does not really seem ready for reading. He never really wants to write with the movable letters so we are going to incorporate this into the Montessori phonics program.

Today with Ff this looked like...We began working on the pages- so after he traced it in the book, I had him trace it on the sandpaper letter and on the sand tray. We will do that again tomorrow and use the Montessori Sound card etc. to reinforce /f/. And ya know not tell...but Josh likes worksheets. We do not do many so using this workbook is a treat for him and he really enjoys it!

I am also working on an evening schedule and will post more about that tomorrow!


This Weeks Menu

...only a few days late.

Monday - Grilled Cheese with Provolone cheese, a bit of garlic sprinkled on top with s. sauce to dunk it in. Yummy!

Tuesday - Turkey Hotdogs (needed a quick and easy!) Andrew just loves hotdogs so this is always a possibility here for a quick meal. We try to "healthy" it up a bit.

Wednesday - Chili cheese Empanadas. A big fave here! this is close! We add tomatoes with peppers (like Rotel), and of course use ground turkey instead!

Thursday - Lasagna. I make it WITHOUT boiling the noodles first. Always turns out excellent.

Friday - Shrimp and some sort of potato. Corn with peppers too!

Saturday - Go out!

Sunday - Stromboli Club Sandwich. Just bread dough flattened, sprinkle with shredded cheese, add turkey and ham then roll the whole thing up. Bake and slice. So easy and soo good!

Lunches this week are leftovers ( as usual!) Baked Potatoes, salad etc...


Monday, February 25, 2008

Well...I am IT!

I was tagged for the Four Things Meme so here you have it...

Four Jobs I Have Had in my Lifetime...
Camp Counselor (where I met my husband!)
Toddler Teacher
Infant Teacher
Kindergarten Teacher
hmmm... do you see a theme?

Four Places I Have Lived...
Muskegon MI USA
Mt Pleasant MI USA
Big Rapids MI USA
Grand Rapids MI USA (in the 'burbs)

Four Places I have been on Vacation...
Jamaica (we were married in Jamaica)
Florida Keys
Michigan's Upper Penninsula (UP)

Four of my Favorite Foods...
Chocolate (only since having Josh!)
Fries with Mayo
Taco Salad (no meat)
Spicy Garlic Boneless Chicken Wings from Buffalo Wild Wing
(Now there is a healthy list!)

Four Places I Would Rather be Right Now...
Aruba (or anywhere warm, without all this crazy snow)
Snuggled up in bed with Andrew watching a movie.
Visiting old friends I miss!
Just anywhere on vacation!

I am supposed to tag four people now but since I already tagged people for the blogger award I am going to just leave this open to anyone who needs an easy blog idea for the day!

Thanks Jo, this was fun!


Sunday, February 24, 2008

My First Award!

Wow...honestly, I did not even think anyone was reading my blog! I have only told a few people I actually know. Thank you so much Tracy I appreciate it!

Now to nominate other bloggers who have not already received this award...

Crunchy Chicken Great Earth loving Mama!
Boomama Just went on an incredible trip to Africa!
Melissa Another inspiring homeschooler using Montessori!
CGS Moms Great group of Mamas using Montessori here!
Susan Montessori Teacher's Blog!

Blogging With Purpose Award Rules:
1. Awarded parties must nominate five people who have not received the award.
2. The blogs that receive the award must serve some purpose.
3. In their post about the award they need to link back to this entry.
4. Awarded parties must post the award banner on their site.

Thanks Again!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

I cannot believe I forgot!

I promised to post pictures of all the cool new Montessori items I ordered. I took pictures about 2 weeks ago and forgot about posting them. they are!

The first pic is of a cool magnet kit. It is great for experimenting with magnets and making geometric shapes.

The second is the addition strip board that allows the child to see how the numbers "add up".

The third is from the SET of botany puzzles which are great for teaching the parts of trees, leaves, and flowers. Also great for tracing (fine motor).

Here we have the hundreds board. Josh puts the tiles in order 1-100. As it is in the picture he is just finding the missing tiles.

The beautiful bead set is the addition snake game. Which adds in learning to add, also making 10's.

The colorful cylinders are called the knobless cylinders and are great for learning to put in order by size.

This beautiful fish puzzle is from the SET of 5 anatomy puzzles. Same uses as botany puzzles.

Finally this is a game called The Bricklaying game, where the players take turns rolling a die and putting the correct piece in.

Any questions...just leave a comment!


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

This Week's Menu

Thought I would share this weeks menu with you since I am sitting at the desk working on it and the grocery list! I will add directions when needed. If you need a more specific recipe leave a comment.

Monday - Corndog Muffins
Mix cornbread, throw in can of drained corn and 2 TBS brown sugar. Add chopped up Turkey hotdogs. Pour evenly into muffin cups and bake 15-18 minutes.

Tuesday - Thanksgiving Dinner

Wednesday - Enchilada Casserole
This is similar! We do not add the tomato sauce but I may actually try it this time...a bit more veggie action... ya know!

Thursday - BLT's (maybe with leftover chips?)

Friday - Jambalaya (for Andrew) Fishsticks & Fries (for Me & Josh)

Saturday - Chicken Dinosaurs & Twice baked potatoes
The potatoes are pretty easy...just bake them and cut them in half. Allow them to cool for a few. Use a spoon to scoop out the potato pulp. Throw it in a big bowl, add milk, and egg; then mash. Throw in cheese, bacon, sour cream, whatever you like! Put back in skins and reheat for a few until cheese is melty! Enjoy. (I save what won't fit in for Josh. He will eat mashed but not if it is back in potato. KIDS!?)

Sunday - No plan here...I will probably just make Andrew think he wanted to go out for dinner Sunday. Tee Hee!

As far as lunches go, Josh and I generally eat leftovers during the week. And, Andrew usually wants Tuna for lunch one weekend day. For weekdays, Andrew has varying purchased lunches that we buy every week. He likes a quick hot sandwich thing that he can eat while he reads.

Hope you have a yummy week!

Silly Boys!

We check on Joshua every night before we go to bed. You him and remove the 20 books from his bed. Well a few nights ago I was watching TV in bed and so Andrew went to check on Joshy alone. He comes back with a strange look on his face.

The following conversation takes place...
ME: What now?
HE: What color sock was he wearing today?
ME: Uuhh...Blue...I think...WHY?
HE: Well...he is now wearing blue socks on his hands.
ME: Ugh...Did you take them off?
HE: No
ME: Well...did you at least take a picture of it?
HE: (Crawling into bed...) Did you really want me too? (Switching off lights)
ME: YES!!!
Followed by sounds of him sleeping and me sighing!

Silly boys!


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Life sure is crazy!

So...I was taking a bath this afternoon (yep, I did say afternoon!) right after I put Josh down for a nap (ah-ha). Anyway, I was thinking of how crazy life is...

When Andrew and I were first married we lived in this TINY little bitty shoebox of an apartment. The bathtub was easily the smallest I have ever seen. (And I AM a bath person!) Then, Andrew graduated and we moved from married housing to our first real chosen by us apartment. The bathtub was very normal and we really loved most everything about that apartment except the fact that it was an apartment!

Now we are living in our first house. It is actually going on 6 years here. We have a fabulous bathtub. It is a Jacuzzi brand, very deep, with jets. And I LOVE it.

But now, I am so completely "all about" not leaving this planet worse than I entered it, that I pretty much refuse to fill it up. Which means that we never use the jets and might as well have that first tub back. You know the one, Me 5' tall Shannon, could not even really fit in.

Which leads me back to the thought...Life sure is crazy! And, I am afraid that this is what it means to really be a grown up!