Sunday, August 24, 2008

Emma's 4th Gotcha Day

I'm working on a special something to commemorate the four wonderful years we've had with this special little girl..
Until then hopefully this will help paint a picture of our 4th Gotcha Day Anniversary with
Miss Emma Grace YunNa..

We celebrate each Gotcha Day with a cake picked out, made
and decorated by that particular child.
The look of concentration

The Smile

Her cake!

And now for her Mini Photo Shoot:
(I've expressed before how hard it is to photograph Emma because of her constant-wiggly-worm-zero-attention-spanned-can't-sit-stillNESS.
However, this was her day because these turned out GREAT!

(My Favorite)

So Serious

And yet so silly!

I love you Emma Gracie-Poo!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Rainy Fay Day

What to do on a Rainy Fay Day..?
Why, go out and enjoy her "gifts" while it lasts......

Rainy Trampoline Fun

Elena has been working with Ian to successfully do a backflip..
Attempt 20: Spotting
(I say 20 because I didn't want to bore you with 20 of the same photo-these were the best)
Attempt 21: No hands! He did it! =)

Jump, jump, jump!

Yes, our dog jumps on the trampoline
Elly has ADHD, so she has to work off that energy somehow.
Sigh. Crazy dog.

Ohh, not impressed? She also jumps in the pool. But most of you have seen her do this before.

Even though she looks like a Dalmation with those spots, she's actually a full blooded white Boxer!

So much rain, the pool is overflowing onto our deck!

Our other Boxer, the loveable motherly, Ivy.

Wet children!

"Raindrops keep falling on my head.."

"..but that doesn't mean my eyes will soon be turnin' red,
Cryin's not for me,
Cuz I'm never gonna stop the rain by complainin',
Because I'm free,
Nothin's worryin' me!"


Remember the tadpoles that invaded our pool last month? Well we managed to have mercy and rescue a few to as a science experiment for the kids.

<--The picture on the left shows the tadpoles during the 1st week of August.

<--Here they are August 23rd.

It's been so neat to watch them grow over the last two weeks! Already they have doubled in size and started developing bodies looking more like frogs than fish.

We have unfortunately, lost a few.. but we have about 15 surviving right now!

To me, this furthers justifying the notation that life indeed begins at conception, whether it's a frog or human being. They may only look like little "blobs" now, but soon they'll be frogs. =)

Hurricane FAY

Although she was only a tropical storm, Fay left her mark here in our house!
We've been through many hurricanes during our 13 years here in Florida, yet this one did the most damage ever to our home!

Leaks along the back wall of our house

Towels are lining each of our windows/doors along the backside of the house.

Notice the air bubble?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

School Bells Are Ringing

As you might have figured already, school is in session here at our house! While I may be a bit behind in my update, there are reasons! I've started a new transition in my life- I moved to start college on August 18th. While I'm only an hour away, it's still been an interesting transition to say the least. Going from a household of nine people to one roommate and a hall full of girls, sharing the community bathrooms, different food, back to school and meeting new people; that has been my life for the past three weeks. Don't get me wrong- I'm enjoying every second of it! I'm having a blast meeting new people and learning what it is to be an adult. But it's still nice to come home once in awhile, and I've been able to do that for the past two weekends. But enough about me.. onto the rest of the crew!!

School is back in session and this year we range from one in college to two in kindergarten!
(With an 11th grader, 8th grader, 5th grader and 2nd grader in between)
To say the house is busy, would be an understatement.
I don't know how Mom does it teaching all of us, but somehow it happens!

This is our tenth year of homeschooling!
Since Mom has been doing it so long she is using a smorgasbord of different curriculum's but her favorites are mostly Abeka and Sonlight.
Abeka is one of the most known and easy to use homeschooling curriculum's out there. It may seem like a daunting task at first, but once you get into the routine it just becomes second nature.
We are also part of a homeschooling group and attend once-a-week co-ops which gives the experience of a classroom setting.

This year Mom is starting something new: She enrolled Asher, Esther and Emma in Classical Conversations. This class works alongside homeschooling families and uses the means of memorization to learn. For example the kids have a STACK of 3x5 note cards full of information that are to be memorized once a week. These cards include information from History, Science, Grammar, LATIN and Math. They use the philosophy that a child's brains at this age is like a sponge, and much more able to digest information than a 16 year old would. Here's a sample of what the kids memorized last week:
  • In 1492 Columbus made the first of three(?) voyages to discover new land aboard three ships: the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria.
  • The FOUR types of skin: 1) Nerve, 2) Muscle, 3) Epithelial, 4) Connective
  • Latin roots (can't remember which ones..)
  • The states and capitols for Connecticut, Vermont, Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island
When I come home this weekend I'll have to get it on video.. it's amazing to hear Esther splurt out that Augusta is the capitol of Maine. I barely knew how to write my name at her age!

Homeschooling obviously is not for everyone, but for our family it just works. We enjoy the added flexibility and "community learning" that comes with this approach to schooling.

The new bulletin board holds all of the schedules and assignments for the new school year.
Asher's books for 2nd grade!
The school room is clean, organized and ready for learning!
Esther and Emma have their own shelf for kindergarten!
Mom works on completing the "Massive Schedule"- the one keeps our house running!
Can you take a guess at who's backpack is who's?

And a peak at my dorm room:
(I'm on the top bunk)
My desk, and the new headquarters for blog updates!