Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Candy Houses and More

One way of using up the Halloween candy is by making a candy house. Here are some old pictures of the kids making their houses shortly after Halloween. Yes, I realize it is almost Christmas and I am just now posting them. Sorry for the delay. I am trying to play catch-up with all the pictures and our activities over the past six weeks. Grammy and Paw-paw were here over Halloween and stayed to help with the kids. E had a wonderful time "helping" Paw-paw cut the grass.

Here is the cute hat a friend of ours made for D. She did a fantastic job! He looks even cuter in person.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

All Saints Day Festivities

We had a wonderful time celebrating All Saints Day at the local parish with two other large homeschooling families. The kids all dressed up like a saint, we attended morning Mass, and then went over to a class room for some activities. We were very fortunate that Grammy and Paw-paw were even able to come with us.
All the kids did a great job sharing some information about the saint they were pretending to be. At the end of the morning we prayed the litany of the saint while taking a walk through the cemetery. We also shared some delicious snacks and candy. I think all the kids really enjoyed themselves...and they looked so cute!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

All Hallow's Eve Fun/ Fall Parties

Little Bo Peep and Spider Man at the Cub Scout party.
The cowgirls with Aunt Olivia.
Our little pumpkin in a pot of boiling water while our chef stirs up some tasty treats with his own pot.
The seven trick or treaters with Paw-paw.
At T's cub scout Fall party playing spooky bingo.

Due to road construction/detours and gas prices, we haven't been able to be as involved in our home school group as we have in the past. So, this year we did not get to go trick-or-treating at the Little Sisters of the Poor nursing home. Instead we attended the cub scout party with T's den, a trunk or treat at the parish where we go to daily Mass, and a 4-H trick or treating event with Nana, Aunt Olivia, Grammy, and Paw-paw. We were rather busy celebrating the season.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fun Times in Town

A few weeks ago, we attended a fiber arts festival at the fairgrounds. I didn't take very many pictures, but we saw lots of neat things while there. The kids were able to see and pet angora goats, lamas, and alpacas. Venders were spinning wool and different fibers while some were knitting or felting. The above picture is of a man we spoke to who was weaving on a small loom. This festival was timely since the girls and I are starting to take up some more crafts. We will soon be learning how to knit from a friend of ours. M is really excited and can hardly wait to get started.

After the fiber festival, we went to a free event sponsored by a local Christian church. The kids were able to enjoy a free petting zoo, jumpy castle, large slide, cotton candy, popcorn, and a few games before the crowd and all the noise was just too overwhelming for us. Dear hubby and I took the kids to redeem their free kids meals at Chik-fil-A instead of fighting the crowd anymore. I think they enjoyed the little play area there even more.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Johnny Appleseed Fun

The local state park has been really welcoming to homeschoolers. They even have a "Young Adventurers" activity program specifically for the homeschooling community in our area to teach some lessons on science and history. They recently had a program on Johnny Appleseed. The naturalist discussed John Chapman's life and the importance of his contributions to our state, agriculture, and the first pioneers. I found the lesson very informative and interesting. It was a great follow-up to our library research we did as a part of our state history unit. The kids did apple carving as a fun follow-up activity to the lesson. These are a few pictures documenting our afternoon. The kids really enjoyed the great fall weather and the hike we took afterward, as well.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Family Picture

Here are some of the photos from our most recent family picture session. It is getting nearly impossible to get a good picture of all the kids. This one is just going to have to do. Poor little D was not happy. However, we were able to get one really good one of him once the photographer took my advice.

Don't Drink the Holy Water!

I've been thinking about all the trouble and messes that E has gotten into recently. He hasn't gotten into any more glue bottles, thumb tacks, staples, or paint, only the usual markers and scissors. He seems to be calming down a little. Or at least I thought so, until this morning when I saw him drinking the Holy Water out of our prayer altar AGAIN!

"What am I going to do with this kid?" was my first thought. Then the thought occured to me, "What would he be like if he hadn't drank all that Holy Water over the past few months?" I guess when I call him a 'Holy Terror' it has more and more truth to it the more Holy Water he drinks!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

B Looses Her First Tooth

B lost her first tooth the other day. She was soooo very excited and just had to have a picture of it to documrnt this milestone.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Family Fun

Wow! What a busy weekend! After our usual Saturday morning cleaning of the house, we went to the local state park again for some fall fun. The park was having a harvest demonstration and many volunteers were dressed in pioneer costumes while doing all sorts of activities. We were able to watch them make apple butter and lye soap, press some sorgum, forge strikers at the black smith shop, make wooden containers at the cooper shop, throw axes, and weave rugs on a loom.

One of the volunteers showed the kids and I how to finger weave. The kids are now hooked and have even shared this skill with some of their friends.
The kids and Dear Hubby enjoyed carving two pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns.
After so much outdoor fun, you'd think we'd head home and relax for the evening, but not us! We went to the Celebrate Life Family Festival at the Knights of Columbus Hall. Dear hubby and I worked a booth which promoted NFP while the kids visited with their friends and had lots of fun at all the other booths.

The kids really enjoyed the animal balloons, face painting, wrapping up little babies, and decorating their own helium balloon. However, the best part of the night was the fireworks display. It was spectacular! They did a wonderful job of timing the explosions and colors to the music. The songs were all very pro-life, life affirming, or celebratory in nature. The kids are already talking about going again next year.

Friday, September 30, 2011

State Park Adventures

We've been studying tree identification lately. The local state park has a path where it has identified some of the native trees. Our latest field trip took us along this path for a relaxing hike.

We are also studying ornithology for our Science Club, so we decided to visit the nature center where they have a very nice exhibit of native bird species' feather. We also viewed some birds in action at the bird feeders and on our nature hike. We were able to see some wild turkeys about 20 feet from us, thanks to a wild life viewing blind set up along the trail.

It was a really nice day and the kids had a great time exploring the park's wildlife and native habitat. They even got to pet the oxen at the pioneer village. I think that made their day. These are the kind of days that make home schooling worth all the trouble!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Great Granola Bar Recipe

This is a fantastic recipe for chewy granola bars. I've stopped buying granola bars and started making these instead. These cost at least half the price of store-bought bars. I'll warn you, these are way too good! These don't last long at my house.

Chewy Granola Bars


2 cups rice cereal

2 cups dry oatmeal (uncooked)

1/2 cup raisins, dates, or your favorite dried fruit

1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 tsp. vanilla

Cooking spray


In a large bowl, combine cereal, oats, and raisins (or dried fruit of your choice). In a small pan, mix brown sugar and light corn syrup. Heat and stir until boiling. Remove from heat, and stir in peanut butter and vanilla. Pour over cereal mixture and mix well. Spray hands with cooking spry and press mixture firmly into a 9x13-inch pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Cool in refrigerator about an hour, then cut into 16 bars. Store in an airtight container.

Each bar provides: 165 calories, 3 grams protein, 27 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams fat, 79 milligrams sodium, and 1 gram fiber.

Alterations to try:

*Add one scoop of vanilla flavored whey protein powder---to get more protein

*Substitute one cup crushed Total brand cereal for the crisp rice cereal---to add more vitamins

*Add a 1/4 tsp. cinnamin for a different flavor combination

*Use colored sprinkles to make them more festive

*Shape them into balls, squares, triangles, or rectangles while they are still warm