Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Last Homeschool Nerf Club/Viimeinen Nerf-klubi?



Our big kids' favorite activity here in New England this year has been a monthly homeschool Nerf Club, organized by a local homeschool mom and attended by dozens of local homeschoolers. (More info in this post.) Today's was probably the last time for us as we are preparing to start our travels again.




We brought a friend along for Little Miss, but to our great disappointment the room for littles was not open during Nerf Club. The girls watched the big kids for a while, and we spent some time at the playground too. Brrr!!! It was not as warm as it looks!! We definitely missed our hats and mittens, and were so thankful for hot chocolate afterward.

This is an activity we'll miss when we leave! As well as all our good friends too...

I'm linking this post to Hip Homeschool Hop!



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Alamme olla valmiita aloittamaan matkustelut taas, joten tämänpäivän Nerf-klubi oli todennäköisesti viimeinen meille. Harmi, koska tämä on ollut koululaisten lempiharrastus täällä Uudessa Englannissa. (Lisää Nerf-klubista tässä postauksessa.)

Tänään meillä oli Pikkuneidin ystävä mukana, mutta valitettavasti huone pikkuisille oli suljettu. Tytöt katselivat isojen meininkiä hetken, ja lopun aikaa leikimme ulkona leikkipuistossa. Hytisten. Kaipasimme lapasia ja hattuja, brrr... Onneksi saimme kuumaa kaakaota sisällä!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sunday Snapshot: {Little Miss}



Our big kids were gone for the weekend, so Little Miss got to spend a lot of quality time with mommy and daddy. She was a natural choice for today's Sunday Snapshot!



Our sweet and spunky five year old {going on twelve, at least}.



One of her favorite things to do is arts and crafts. Every day we get I <3 U notes, pretty pictures and collages put together with glue and tape. Lots of tape.



These scissors may be as big as Little Miss, but no worries, she has years of experience wielding them ;-)

For more Sunday Snapshot entries, please visit Stefanie's Ni Hao Y'All blog!

Ni Hao Yall

Friday, March 25, 2011

Happy Weekend/Hyvää viikonloppua!



These four were so excited to leave today for our church's Youth Weekend. Their first! Mom can't believe they are old enough to go... It will be a quiet weekend at our house.

video

Of course, Little Miss will keep filling our house with her sweet voice. Singing songs like this one found in my mac's Photo Booth collection (to my great surprise - this girl at age 5 is a computer whiz!). And what do you think of this next one? :)

video

She is hilarious!! And precious. So precious.

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Isot lapset lähtivät innoissaan kirkkomme nuorten viikonloppuleirille. Ensimmäistä kertaa. Vaikea uskoa, että ovat tarpeeksi vanhoja... Ja kuinka hiljaista kotonamme tulee olemaan?! Pikkuneiti toki viihdyttää meitä ihanilla lauluillaan. Yllä kaksi videota, jotka löysin yllätyksekseni tietokoneeni Photo Booth-ohjelmasta - pikkuinen osaa tietokoneen käytön :)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Our Bible Curriculum For 7th Grade Homeschool

Let me start by saying this post is long overdue. In February I participated in Hip Homeschool Moms' Homeschooling Giveaway Extravaganza and actually won something (thank you thank you thank you!!!). Not only that, but I won something fantastic:



I won a Bible Curriculum called: 'Apologia's Who Is God And Can I Really Know Him?'. It arrived the same week I found out I was a winner, and I took a quick look at it. I liked what I saw, and kind of thought about using it as our Bible Curriculum for next year (7th grade). But then I set it aside, and we've been busy homeschooling, traveling, planning our future months and basically just living our busy lives.

Not until today, about a month later, did I have a chance to take a good look at this book. I read through How To Use This Book and Lesson One (you can see a sample page here). I really like what I see, and want to read through the whole book myself. In the beginning of the book it lays out how to use the book. It is designed to have three lessons a week, notebooking as the student goes along, with a lot of Bible interaction and prayer.

We are definitely going to use this for next year's Bible. I assume my 7th graders can share the book by taking turns and having their own notebooks and Bibles. If that doesn't work out, then we'll order an extra copy or three. This curriculum is also designed for the older students to do it independently. Which is my goal with all our homeschool curriculum.

Now we have been really happy with AOP's Bible Curriculum on Monarch. We are using the five subject curriculum for 6th grade, and all my students have enjoyed the Bible. So much, in fact, that all four of them are already done with their 6th Grade Bible, and we are still in March. So we were not searching for a new Bible curriculum, it just sort of fell on our lap.


This is what Apologia's website says:

"Our children are bombarded on a daily basis with competing messages. Every song, movie, book, TV show, blog, and game is full of ideas—ideas about truth, morality, beauty, identity, faith, and more. Not all of these ideas are true. Some are wrong, some are deceptive, and some are outright destructive. It is more important than ever that young children be equipped to discern among competing ideas and stand in the truth. This is why Apologia has teamed with Summit Ministries to bring you the "What We Believe" Series. The "What We Believe" Series is an outstanding way to teach your child the essential beliefs of the Christian faith, but it’s so much more! With this student-directed, Bible-based curriculum, your children will learn how to use Scripture as a lens through which to view the world around them—to see everything the way God sees it—and know the truth.

Who is God and Can I Really Know Him?, introduces the concept of worldview while laying the foundational truths upon which the evangelical Christian worldview is built: God is truth and He reveals His truth to people; He is the one true and almighty God; He is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; He created everything; we are God’s children and are made to love and to praise Him; God meets all our needs; sin keeps us from God; and Jesus is the only way to God."


I am really excited about using Who Is God next year, and hope my students will be as impressed with it as I am.

As for rest of our curriculum? I am currently looking at Apologia's Science curriculum, specifically "Exploring Creation with General Science" - any feedback from my readers?

For Math, Language Arts and History & Geography we are planning to use AOP's Monarch. We haven't looked at any electives yet, and I am still working on Little Miss' Kindergarten curriculum. I would love any feedback on that as well.

It is kind of exciting to get excited about curriculum planning. If you haven't read our story how and why we started homeschooling, you can do it here. Two years ago excitement and homeschooling didn't exist in the same sentence for me ;-)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

One Year Later/Yksi vuosi myöhemmin



One year and 140 posts later.

Today our blog Mothership Adventures turns 1 years old!

I read the first post I had written a year ago today, and had to chuckle: in a way not a lot has changed in a year. I guess we are all a year older, but we are again in New England, planning to head to Florida next month. Still self-employed, homeschooling and Little Miss attending preschool. Still a little bit in limbo on where God is leading our family. Our New England house is going back on the market soon (we took it off for the winter while living here). We'll see what adventures God has planned for us this year.

But what a year it has been! We started last year in New England, then spent a fun Spring in Florida, but returned to New England (& Canada!) for the Summer. The Fall found us again in Florida where we attended a fantastic homeschool co-op, and were involved in all kinds of homeschool and non-homeschool activities. Oh, and loving the beach!!! But then came back to New England for Christmas and the Winter season. So, not very hard to figure out where we headed next, lol...

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Tänään blogimme täyttää yksi vuotta!! Vuosi sitten kirjoitin tämän postauksen, eikä paljon ole muuttunut siitä tilanteesta. Olemme jälleen Uudessa Englannissa, pian lähdössä takaisin Floridaan. Mutta täysi vuosi takana: pohjoisesta etelään, takaisin pohjoiseen kesäksi, etelään syksyksi ja talveksi pohjoiseen. Ei ole vaikea arvata mihin suuntaamme seuraavaksi :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

The First Days of Spring/Kevään ensimmäiset päivät



Since it was getting kind of muddy in our neck of the woods, we decided to celebrate the First Day of Spring by driving North for the weekend where there still was plenty of snow. Nothing like being in denial.... ;-)



The sun was so warm and there was no wind, so the boys had a great time sledding.



The lake was all ice and it make it fun to slide slide slide....



My three happy boys!





They welcomed Mama and her camera, and included Little Miss in their adventures.
(I love that about my boys!!! Little Miss is one of the guys here :)




No diving allowed, but how about some extreme sledding???



As Mr. D was still thinking about this drop, Little Miss helped him along, tee hee...




And fast and far he goes.....!!!!





How about this run?? As Mr. D advised Little Miss: "Just close your eyes and you don't get hurt!" I was doubled over in laughter, and he had to explain it to me: "Mom, there were branches in the way, and by closing your eyes they didn't hurt your eyes!" Ok ok, I get it, but I think we need goggles and helmets for sledding these days!!



And today? We are home, it is snowing, and we should be getting three to six inches of snow today. I think we brought the winter back {ducking all the snowballs hurled this way :}

I am linking this post to Sunday Snapshot at Ni Hao Ya'll (thanks, Stefanie, for hosting this fun blog hop), and also to Hip Homeschool Hop. Make sure to check out both sites for more blog posts!

Ni Hao Yall

Hip Homeschool Hop Button


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Eilen oli kevään ensimmäinen päivä, muttei se siltä tuntunut pohjoisessa (olimme mutaa paossa). Saimme laskea pulkkamäkeä taas oikein kunnolla! Aurinko onneksi paistoi lämpimästi eikä järvelle tuullut. Jää luisti hyvin pulkkien alla ja pojat saivat harjoitella extreme-laskettelua läpi puiden ja pensaiden. Onneksi kenellekään ei sattunut, muuta kuin yksi poika sai pienen naarmun leukaansa. Eilen illalla saavuimme kotiin tuoden talven mukanamme: tänään on satanut lunta, eikä keväästä ole tietoakaan :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Six Seasons/Kuusi kautta

Did you know New England has six seasons? Yes, six! The typical four: Winter, Spring, Summer & Fall are just not enough for us hardy New Englanders. Oh no, we have been blessed with six seasons. (At least here in the Northern New England states.)

Folks, we are about to enter The Mud Season in New England. Welcome to our muddy roads and muddy clothes and muddy trucks and muddy boots and muddy laundry and, well, you get the point.


A picture of our four older kids in The Mud Season of 2008, taken by our babysitter while the Captain & I had escaped for two days the season to a Southern New England state where the tulips were already blooming.






As I was forcing encouraging the kids to go outside for some fresh air (as we do, every day), they were complaining how it wasn't cold enough and how we didn't have enough snow for sledding. (I know, they we are weird.) The boys had clearly forgotten the joys of mud. I decided to go for a walk with Little Miss, and soon everybody followed, as I had expected.

Soon our dirt road will get a sign (if it isn't there already) limiting the weight of the trucks. The sides of our muddy roads will get super soft, and it isn't pretty when trucks get stuck. I think it is still cold enough, but soon you will want to stick to the middle of the road when traveling on a dirt road (no pun intended :).





Open water, melting ice has powerful draw - especially when it comes to boys and their sticks.... Last year we lost all snow end of March, I'm not sure if we can do that this year. There is still a fair amount of ice and snow on the ground. And yes, it's a miracle nobody fell in the water!




When we got back to our house, a snowball fight ensued. I was just thankful it wasn't a mudball fight. I had enough laundry to deal with as it was.



Little Miss tried on her sister's snowshoes - they worked for her! She had so much fun conquering our yard and making tracks everywhere.

Oh, and you ask about the sixth season in New England? Why, that is The Black Fly Season, closely following The Mud Season and Spring. And us? We are hoping to be in Florida by then, no black flies for us, thankyouverymuch.


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Meillä on täällä Uudessa Englannissa kuusi kautta. Uuden Englannin asukkaille ei riitä tavalliset neljä: talvi, kevät, kesä ja syksy. Meillä on myös mutakausi ja mäkäräkausi.

Mutakausi on juuri alkamassa, kaikki kuvat on tänään otettuja, paitsi yksi kuva koululaisista mutakaudelta 2008 (sekä tuo viimeisin mies mäkärävarusteet päällään).

Mäkäräkauden aikana meidät löytää Floridasta!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!





There is some Irish on the Captain's side, but I have to admit, we don't usually observe St. Patrick's Day. Today there was some pinching happening to those who didn't wear green, and we made two desserts: these St. Paddy's Marshmallow Lollipops for lunch dessert, and Lime Jell-O for dinner dessert. We also learned a little about St. Patrick. It was fun to celebrate a little!


Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

From St. Patrick's "Breastplate Prayer"

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Bowling/Keilaamassa



We had a fun outing today to a local Bowling Alley. Usually our outings involve a friend (or two!) of the big kids, but today we brought Little Miss' best friend G from preschool along. What a treat for Little Miss!! I wish I had videotaped her dancing and prancing around as she was so excited and happy. We need more fun outings like this!

Oh, and for the big kids: this was definitely homeschool PE, don't you think?! ;-)

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Kävimme tänään keilaamassa Pikkuneidin kerhoystävän kanssa. Kyllä meidän neiti oli innoissaan, kun hänen ystävänsä tuli mukaan, eikä koululaisten, niin kuin normaalisti. Harmitti kun en kuvannut videolle onnellista tanssia. Useammin tällaisia retkiä!

Ja isoille lapsille tämä oli luonnollisesti kotikoulun jumppatuntia taas, eiks niin?! ;-)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Banana Dippers/Banaanidippaajat



Yesterday, as Little Miss and I spent hours in the waiting rooms of first the garage where our car was getting an oil change, then at the dealership where a problem that was under warranty got fixed (yay for discovering problems at check-ups, instead on the road -- I kept telling myself as hours ticked by), Little Miss discovered a recipe.

It was in an old Highlights Magazine, and without looking at the recipe much I snapped a photo of it. (The stack of about ten Highlights magazines saved our time at the dealership, I tell you!! Very entertaining with a restless preschooler who had already spent three hours at school.)

Tonight Little Miss asked me about the recipe, so we decided to try making these Banana Dippers for evening snack. We didn't really follow the amounts on the recipe, but did mix peanut butter and honey, warmed it up in the microwave, and dipped our banana slices in it, then in raisins.



And to my great surprise, it was yummy!! We ended up replenishing our ingredients a few times, as siblings came to check out the evening snack and liking it too. Oh, and why such surprise?

Peanut butter is an American thing. I am a Finn, and didn't grow up here, or on peanut butter. I will eat it a peanut butter sandwich if that's the only thing to eat and I'm starving, and do like peanut butter in Thai cooking, but usually that is it. Occasionally I find Ants On a Log good too, but will usually pick something else to eat if I can. None of my five kids are crazy for peanut butter either, but the Captain loves it, and I have a feeling he is disappointed he missed our evening snack tonight when he finds out about it by reading this blog post ;-)

I am linking this post to Hip Homeschool Hop. Hop over there to check out other bloggers ;-)

Hip Homeschool Hop Button

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Eilen jouduimme odottamaan tuntikausia autohuollon (noh, kahden oikeasti!) odotushuoneessa Pikkuneidin kanssa, ja viihdytimme toisiamme pinolla lastenlehtiä. Yhdessä oli tämä resepti, josta napsasin kuvan, ja tänä iltana Pikkuneiti pyysi, että tehtäisiin iltapalaksi näitä banaanidippaajia.

Niinpä teimme, tosin en noudattanut reseptin mittoja, vaan lisäsin vaan maapähkinävoihin hunajaa, lämmitin sekoituksen mikrossa, ja niin dippasimme banaaninsiivuja ensin maapähkinähunajaan, sitten rusinoihin. Ai kun oli hyvää!! Yllätyin, koska en suomalaisena tykkää maapähkinävoista (paitsi thai-ruoassa, ja silloin tällöin sellerin ja rusinoiden kanssa), mutta tämä maistui. Lapset olivat samaa mieltä, eivätkä hekään yleensä tykkää maapähkinävoista. Mikä on Kapteenin herkkua, ja hän varmaan tulee olemaan aika pettynyt kun lukee tämän postauksen ja näkee mistä on jäänyt paitsi tänä iltana ;-)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Time4Learning Curriculum Review

Three of my five children and I have been reviewing Time4Learning Curriculum for this past month. We received free trial one month memberships in exchange for a candid review.

Thoughts on T4L Kindergarten

Little Miss will be starting Kindergarten this Fall, and I have been looking at various curriculum for her. She loves to use the computer, and we have already used Starfall and PBS Kids websites for homeschool preschool. We also use these workbooks for her (and Little Miss has been attending a local preschool both in Florida and here in New England).

I haven't decided for sure yet, but I am leaning toward doing a similar approach to Kindergarten with Little Miss. We already know we will be mothershipping again (aka it will be another year of traveling back and forth), making it impossible for Little Miss to attend a Kindergarten in one place - as I would prefer her to. At the moment I am thinking she will be working on Kindergarten workbooks, arts, crafts, PE & various activities at home, supplemented by online learning, possibly Time4Learning.

Little Miss liked Time4Learning, and the online work and games seemed age appropriate and fun for her. I would need to ask her to log-in though, she wouldn't ask to use it (like she does to access nickjr.com or pbskids.org). I do think using Time4Learning would be a good supplement for our homeschool Kindergarten curriculum.

Seventh Grade Review


Missy and Mr. D will be starting 7th Grade this Fall. What I appreciated about Time4Learning was my students would have access into 6th, 7th and 8th grade material with our monthly membership(s). It is also easily accessed being a web-based curriculum, and works both on macs and pc's.

Yet, I don't think this is a good fit for Missy or Mr. D.

Missy did not care for the program at all. She thought the 'talking mouse' was so childish, and she quickly lost interest. I'm not even sure she gave Time4Learning a fair chance, but she is thriving on AOP Monarch anyway, so I didn't push her.

Mr. D liked reviewing Time4Learning better. He appreciated how many of the lessons were interactive, visual and/or read to him by the computer. He is an auditory learner, and he enjoyed that part of Time4Learning.

At this point, though, we are not planning to switch Mr. D from AOP Monarch to Time4Learning. He didn't seem enthusiastic enough about the curriculum for us to make the change, and we have found ways for AOP Monarch to work better for him. I am also keeping T4L in mind in case we want to supplement Monarch.

So I guess overall we are still seriously considering Time4Learning, but aren't 100 % convinced it is a right fit for our family. We really appreciate Time4Learning allowing us to review their curriculum for free.

***** The author’s opinion is entirely her own, the content was not written by Time4Learning, but the writer was compensated.*****

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Birthday Fun/Synttärihauskuuksia



Mmm... chocolate cupcakes with sprinkles for breakfast...
Must be a Birthday somewhere *<;-)

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Nam, suklaa pikkukakkuja nomparellien kanssa aamupalaksi...

Täytyy olla syntymäpäivä jossain *<;-)





Oh yes, definitely a birthday. Presents!!! Lots of presents to open!!!

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Täytyy olla syntymäpäivät. Lahjoja!!! Paljon lahjoja avattavaksi!!!



Birthday wishes from near and far {insert hearts}

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Synttäritoivoksia läheltä ja kaukaa {sydämiä}






And games!!!

We decided not to homeschool as the big kids had such a good time entertaining the Birthday Girl. There was pin the tail on the donkey, a doll tea party (girls only :), nerf war, sledding, more cupcakes, a trip to the gym to play, and Chinese food for dinner. What a fun day celebrating the big Little Miss :)

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Ja leikkejä!!!

Päätimme olla pitämättä koulua, koska isoilla lapsilla oli niin hauskaa synttärisankarin leikittämisessä. He leikkivät aasinhännän laittoa, nukeilla (ja tytöillä) oli teekutsut, nerf-sotaa, pulkkamäenlaskua, lisää pikkukakkuja, reissu voimisteluhallille leikkimään, ja kiinalaista päivälliseksi. Oikein hauska päivä juhlien meidän isoa Pikkuneitiämme :)

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I'm linking this post to Stephanie's Sunday Snapshot at Ni Hao Ya'll.

Ni Hao Yall