home || about me || tutorials || shop || my favorite blogs || home education

14 October 2014

Pumpkin Patch

Brett had Columbus Day off from work (bank holidays are the best!) so we spent the morning at the Colorado Pumpkin Patch. Papa and Gigi were watching cousin, Ian, so they all came along. The morning started off a little chilly, but it ended up being a perfect day to be outside as a family.

The slides were a favorite for both kids.

My handsome fellas...love them both immensely!

Maren is growing up so much...I love her personality and her winsome outlook on life. She was THRILLED to spend the morning at the pumpkin patch...family time is very important to her.

Truett, Maren and Ian trying to pet an ornery duck.

We spent a decent amount of time feeding the animals, too. Watching my kids with livestock *almost* makes me want to live on a farm.

I love these next two pictures...Truett was posing for a picture with the pony and didn't realize how close that goat was behind him...

...I really wish I'd have snapped a picture as he became aware of the goat's presence...he was out of there so quickly!

The pony rides were another highlight...Maren looks like a natural cowgirl, doesn't she?

Truett rode the tiny pony...I was impressed with how brave both kids were around the horses. They loved the rides!

Papa, Ian, Maren, Daddy and Truett racing rubber ducks...

My girls...Elin is buried under the blanket. It was definitely too cold and windy for her to make an appearance. ;)

08 October 2014


We've got two new pets in our house...thankfully they're the kind that don't require food, water, or supervision of any sort. We made spiders!

I punched holes around the edges of paper plates and the kids made yarn web homes for their spiders.

Next, we cut spider bodies from an egg carton and painted them in the colors of our choosing.

After the bodies were dry, we added pipe-cleaner legs and plenty of scary googly eyes.

3 Babies

When Maren first joined our family, I had all these aspirations for taking clever pictures each month to document her growth...and I spent time planning various photo ops to add to our family holiday traditions. Upon Truett's entry into our family, I quickly determined that my previously planned photos were going to be unrealistic with 2 children. Enter Elin...and we're pretty much sticking with a candid shot now and again. There is one picture I've taken of all three kids, and I'm so glad to have these to compare! All three were taken within a day or two of the kids being 2 months old. The kids definitely have some similarities, but even at 2 months they have their own looks. And Elin is certainly our chunkiest baby yet!

I sure love these three!

07 October 2014

Johnny Appleseed

Last week we did a fun little unit on John Chapman, better known as Johnny Appleseed. We have an apple tree in our front yard, and Truett loved picking apples this fall. Both kids were excited to learn about this interesting man. 

I checked out several books from the library, and these were our favorites. Truett even commented on the beautiful illustrations in Steven Kellogg's book.

In addition to reading about Johnny Appleseed, we also learned a little about apples...

To top off our lesson, we did some apple stamping. With plates full of red paint, this craft turned messy real fast. My kitchen table looked a little bit like a crime scene when all was said and done. Thank goodness for washable paint!

01 October 2014

Changing Leaves

We're one month in to our homeschooling journey and I'm increasingly thankful for the decision we made to start off in this direction. We're developing our own stride...figuring out timing, learning styles, routine, and diligence. I hope to write a more detailed post in the near future about what we've chosen to do this year for curriculum as well as a bit about our schedule...mostly just for my own records, but also because other blogs and recommendations were so helpful to me as we started.

With it being fall [YAY!], we've been reading and learning a bit about leaves.

Truett and Maren both enjoy art, which has made it a special part of our learning times together, and something I'm working at incorporating even more into our weekly schedule. For this project, I used painter's tape to make a tree shape on a canvas. The kids painted the canvas and we peeled back the tape to reveal the tree shapes. 

I really enjoy watching the kids be creative...I gave them no instruction whatsoever as to where to place colors. I gave them the paints and brushes and they had free reign...so fun to see what they ended up doing! I intended these to be 'Family Trees' that we'd write the 4 generations on after painting, but I loved them so much just plain, we decided to leave them that way! We'll come up with another way to make a family tree next spring.

Maren's tree

Truett's tree

As soon as leaves began to fall in our yard, Maren started asking to make a big pile for jumping in...something that's just not the same here in Colorado as it was back in Michigan. I remember spending HOURS on the weekends in October raking leaves and stuffing what felt like thousands of bags...and the piles were so huge our entire family could easily get buried. Someday we hope to make a trip back to Michigan to enjoy a good midwest autumn.

Thankfully, Maren doesn't know what she's missing when it comes to leaf piles. Brett took the older 2 kids out front one night after dinner to play in the leaves, and they were thrilled. This might be one of my favorite pictures I've ever taken...they were running at me for a surprise attack while I was snapping pictures...Maren's face is so full of joy. I love it.

Truett filled up his bucket over and over to dump on the rest of us.

We checked out this book from the library to read while we did another leaf craft. The story was a great level for both kids...they learned a few things without being too overwhelmed by scientific jargon. 

I cut out leaves from coffee filters and used a glue gun to make the veins. The kids painted the leaves with watercolors while we read our book.

In the midst of our learning...sweet Elin continues to grow and grow! She's become quite the chunk and we're all smitten with her generously offered smiles.