Thursday, April 17, 2008

Nature Journals

Singing Happy Birthday with our lovely Columbia friends who are helping contribute to global warming by driving 5 vans for 4 hours each to be here with us. Now is that true love, or what?? And then we drove 4 hours to see them the next day. Insane, I tell ya, totally insane. Or just a bunch of really close friends!

If I were homeschooling as I intended to, we'd be keeping a nature journal for each kid. Since we've moved in, I've been really getting my butt in gear with staying in some sort of routine for school. I'm much less of an unschooler than before, and I also feel good about that. I like seeing the "progress" the boys make each week. Philip has moved from just learning to regroup, to it being second nature, in a matter of weeks. I noticed that I've been focusing on what he still needs to learn, instead of how far he's come. I gave him lots of praise today and asked him if he's proud of learning so much. He got pretty giggly and red, so I assume he appreciated my late, but not too late praise. :) Tyler is reading more each day, and loves "staying ahead of Philip" on his math book lessons. He's only ahead in page number, and doesn't understand at all why Philip takes longer. Oh, and Evan requested to do math today! It was neat to watch him finally figure out that once you get to your fifth finger, you start at 6 on your next hand, hehe! He kept holding up both hands, showing me 7 fingers and then he wanted to draw the number 7. Even if you're not impressed, I am!! Anyway, since I'm feeling so good about where we are, even doing history, geography, and science daily, along with the math, I've decided to jump in with the nature journals. Surfing around on the Internet and sorting through my favorite places, I've found these great sites to get us started. Keeping a Nature Journal - Environmental Education - Sierra Club, The Heart of Harmony - Green Hour: Let's Started Challenge, and these additional printouts to help record our observations, etc. at Free file hosting by This will be gratifying to me, as I really enjoy being out in nature and hearing the birds and other creatures scurrying around in the brush, etc. And once the boys have been dragged out into the great outdoors, they'll come around too. We really had fun with the Great Backyard Bird Count — Great Backyard Bird Count we participated in last year, and we have one feeder up already in the front yard, plus the garden. So, we're off to a great start!

Philip ended up having a really nice turn out for his big gathering Saturday and even got to go spend the night with his best friend in Columbia, along with Tyler. Evan and I drove up to get them the next day and got to hang out for another birthday party. That's enough traveling for me for a while, I think I'll stay home and enjoy the beach and my beautiful new house and, oh yeah, I forgot to tell ya we got this new and perfect washer for $200.00 off because it has a dent in the back!!!
Other Views It's got a "play/pause" button to start and pause the cycle, ha! It's digital and will estimate the time for me and count it down too! I've never had so much fun doing laundry! It holds more than my top loader ever could and everything feels and smells cleaner at the end. It takes less time to dry too, because of using less water I guess. I am using this great new laundry detergent that I found at Offering thousands of items you won’t find in your local Costco. called Ecos that smells better than anything I've used before, and it only needs 1 oz per load!!! Just in case you're not a link clicker, this is an all-natural detergent, with a built in soy-based fabric softener. When I pull the sheets over me at night and breathe in, it's like aromatherapy! Nothing like that to motivate ya to finish the laundry, heheh! As you can guess, we're all still pretty darn happy here in this new town. We've settled in, made friends, started gardens, joined playgroups and got back into a wonderful school routine all in 9 weeks. AND we got the boys signed up for gymnastics today, for an awesome monthly price, with all three of them in the same class. Please excuse my numbers being spelled and then numerical, it's late and I'm tired and pumped up on caffeine. I had a terrible headache earlier this evening and decided to take two migraine tablets, eat some chocolate and drink a can of Pepsi! And I even thought to myself, boy I'm gonna be up all night! But to be rid of the headache, truly it was worth it. And now I've updated my blog and prepared for school tomorrow. Ain't I good? Night y'all, I think I'll go run around the block now. Yeah, right! :)


Hannah said...

Thanks for the nature links, Tracee. I'm always looking for inspiration!

Oh, and I'm going to check out that detergent, too! :-)

Happy Birthday to Philip!

Bramble said...

whispers: you have friends here too :-)