Saturday, October 22, 2016

Fall Fun! September-October 2016

It has been a busy time of year for us.  We were eager to get back into routine this fall but it seems we have been going nonstop ever since.  My kids are growing and changing a lot!  I'm trying to take advantage of my days with them, while also maintaining my sanity.  It can be a struggle to find a good balance of our time!  Our summer was packed with travel, and it seems as soon as we hit September we started being busy in a different way.  There are so many things going on!

Chad got the new play structure set up in our yard and the kids have been so excited to play on it!  I'm a big supporter of giving them a full childhood, so playtime often comes before school.  However, Joelle's assessment scores show that she is right on track- so no worries there at all.  Both kids are doing great, and learning plenty on their own timetables.

We had some new beginnings and some big accomplishments this fall.  Joelle started back up in American Heritage Girls, which keeps us both very busy!  She also finished her level in the All About Reading curriculum we have been going through, and we went out together to celebrate.  She is doing very well in reading and enjoying it.   

Jaren qualified for speech preschool, which is free to us through the school district.  He goes every Friday afternoon, and he rides the bus there and back.  He has been very excited about the fact that he gets to ride the bus. Joelle has not been super pleased by that, as she is quite jealous.  However, Friday afternoons have been turning into a wonderful time for Joelle and I to focus on her school work.  At first she was not super happy about it, but she is realizing that the one on one time is a really great thing.  Jaren also seems to be really enjoying his afternoon at school.  I'm very impressed by the school.  His class has five kids, one teacher, and one aid.  He seems to be getting plenty of attention there and help with his speech.  We have already noticed some improvement after one month.

My sister Natalie has moved back here from Idaho.  It is nice to see her more often and get the opportunity to spend time together sometimes.  The kids really enjoy spending time with her too.

We have been enjoying many projects lately.  I received a beautiful curriculum free from a fellow homeschoolers that is all about learning through play.  It is perfect for my style.  We are planning to use it a lot this year.  Today we made a thankfulness tree from one of the ideas in the book.  The kids had a lot of fun, and it will make a great growing display as well as learning opportunity on our refrigerator for the month of November. 

We are back into pretty full weeks again- ballet, American Heritage girls, Community Bible study, Life group, piano lessons, Women's book group, sewing night, Awana.  We are busy four nights a week, but I can't think of anything to drop because it is all great.  Chad and I have made Thursdays, Awana night, our regular date night.  It has been wonderful to have a set night to get away while both kids are occupied!

The kids also got to enjoy a special sleepover with their cousins a few weeks ago. We did homemade pizza and movie night.  It was a big highlight for them.

In my efforts to have a more peaceful home, I am working on getting rid of clutter.  The kids and I have redone their rooms when it comes to toys.  We took their toy shelves out and put all their toys in labeled bins in their closets.  Now they can ask for one or two bins at a time.  The toy chaos is gone, and we are all happier!

Life is busy but great!  Feeling blessed all around!  Here are some sweet pictures to leave you with.  Watch for another blog post soon with details about what we are studying this year for school.  I hope fall is finding you happy and blessed as well!

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