Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Before FIAR co-op: Snowy Day

I think I need to officially admit that I'm a slack blogger as of late.  I am getting caught up on some other things though, as its all a juggling game, right?  Trying to get pictures printed and into scrapbooks!  Hoping to have a scrapping week-end soon!  That would be fun!

Anyway, this is our co-op from this month.  Its been fun that we have had some (very little) snow this month too!  :-)

We read the book The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats.

We talked about snowflakes and how each one is unique.  

 Our devotion was on Jesus calming the storm at sea.  They discussed how Jesus is in control of all weather.
 We read the story and had more discussions and activities including sequencing the events in the story, acting out different types of weather and learning signs for weather.  I really thought Eliana might shine in this activity, but she was not hugely cooperative.
She instead loving hanging on my sweet friend!

We had snowy snacks and they were a HUGE hit with everyone!  Hot chocolate and making your own snowmen!

 Apples were also offered to provide a little something healthy.
 I made a demo for them and then they went to work.
 Some of them just preferred to eat the marshmallows rather than eat them.
 We had toothpicks, 3 sizes of marshmallows and blueberry jelly to paint the face and buttons.
 Aren't they cute!
 While they little ones were focusing on snow activities, the older ones were with Rebecca doing a chapter from the Mad Scientist Club.  They first discuss the book, then have a show and tell.  I did not get a good picture of the robot that Daniel made from Legos.  It was really neat.  He really loves being a part of this.  Rebecca was wonderful to help out doing this since I was helping with the little ones.
After our snacks, the Mad Scientists did experiments.  The experiments that they did are here if you are curious.

The younger children had craft time after snack.  I found these trays at the dollar store and thought they were great for sorting and displaying crafts materials!
We made snowmen.  We started with an oversized piece of construction paper and lace doilies.  They were able to find a small, medium and large to use to make the body.

 Then they could decorate it however they wanted!  Supplies available were popsicle sticks (for arms), yarn, pipe cleaners (sparkly), googly eyes, pom pons, and various colors of tissue paper circles

 Once again, my sweetie was not the most cooperative.  Hopefully we will get one made at home!

Isn't this one adorable?!

Always a fun day to hang out with our friends!


Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Year's Eve!

This New Year's Eve was a little different for our family.  We had some sickness running through our family and while we all felt pretty well on this day, it was just too close to risk sharing it with friends.  So we celebrated with just our family this year.  

Some things were the same.  We still had bags to count down the hours.  This has been such a fun tradition and its one that we all really love.

The kids take turns opening the bags and this one made me laugh as you can see that someone can be a little bossy.  

Some of the items in the bags are the same from year to year.  Making noisemakers.  

One that we added last year that was a HUGE hit was silly string.  We definitely kept that one!

Lined up and ready to go!

It was hard to get pictures with all of the running around.
You can still see some of the fun that we were having though.
The laughter and the mess.
Everyone got 2 cans this year as we found that one can was just not enough!
We didn't decorate houses this year, but did finally pose for pictures.  This is Daniel and Rebecca's creation.

And here is Christopher and Isaiah's train.  

Sometimes a girl just has to find a quiet space to hang out with her ipad.  
In the past we have done pizza which we all love, but its just really hard to make GF pizza so we opted this year for a less labor intensive meal ... taco bar!  Yummy and pleasing to everyone!

We played a game of Quirkle.  Rebecca won easily.  
One of my favorites is the questions that are asked from year to year including a favorite trip and hopes for the upcoming year.
I like getting a family photo on New Year's Eve.  Its a fun way to start the new scrapbook each year.  This year, since it was just our family, we took the pictures using a timer.  Since nobody was watching our group, we couldn't see what was going on.  Two people were being silly.
Then it spread to two more.
They aren't coordinated yet though.
Then the word spreads and its most of us now.
Well, a majority at least.
Silliness is abounding and we are all laughing so much.
Eliana is not quite sure what is going on and Roger never did any of the silly faces.
The rest of us were quite tickled though.
OK, lets try to get one regular photo.
Everyone cooperating?
Now its back to silliness once again.
I loved this part of the night.  Maybe one of my favorite memories of the evening!  Just lots of laughter. We'll definitely have to do this again!
We watched the ball drop.  It was even more fun this year since we had been there just a couple of months earlier!

Holding onto our bubbly drinks and waiting for the clock to strike midnight.
 Happy New Year!
Praying that this is a year in which you know God's abounding love, grace and peace.  Praying that you would know His perfect plan and that you would follow His leading and call on your life.  Praying that His love would shine through in your words and actions.


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Beyond FIAR Co-op: Marie Curie #4

This was our last co-op of last semester.  Our 4th one for Marie Curie.  We ended up swapping around our co-op lessons for the 3rd and 4th due to some sickness and conflicts so if you see that some things are out of order, that is why.  It all worked out beautifully though!

We started our time with a devotion and then discussion on the importance of family relationships.   The students took turns sharing a favorite family memory.
Next they split into two groups.  One worked on making a family tree.  A literal tree.  Painting it on canvas and then writing family names on leaves to add to it.
The other group wrote notes to people in their family sharing a favorite memory with them.  Really sweet!

Love seeing the creativity.
Some of us didn't finish up there, but this is something we can easily add to at home.
Next, was an exercise on listening to others and valuing their opinions, persistence and cooperation.  They were given instructions as a group and their goal was to get from point A to point B.  There were obstacles or decisions that had to be made along the way.

The obstacles kept coming and sent them back to the starting point.  This gave them many opportunities to get frustrated or to give up.
Thankfully there were also encouragers in the group that motivated and encouraged those who were weary.  (Isn't that a great analogy to life?!)
In the end, they did make it and they were most thankful!
Snack time!  Always a treat in our co-ops!  This time we had yummy foods that were from favorite family recipes - haystacks, sausage/cheese balls, pickles, dip and crackers.  Yum!  Another delightful day and a fun way to end our book!
We continued our learning at home and made our meal to go along with the book just a week ago.  It was a delicious crock pot dish with sausage, cabbage and potatoes, pickled cucumbers and boiled potatoes.
We enjoyed our Polish meal very much and the time we spent learning with this book.  I love that we have these lessons and shared memories.  I'm thankful that our family has so many sweet ones tied to stories that we love!
More coming soon on our next book ... The Saturdays!