Collage Friday - Pumpkins, Science, Voting & Read Aloud Wrap Up

As I sit each Thursday evening to write my Collage Friday post  I am forced to reflect upon our week.   Making the collages allow me to celebrate our accomplishments, joyful moments, and hard work of the week.    It is a time I set aside each week to be intentional, peaceful, and thoughtful.  

We started off our week on Sunday evening with an impromptu dinner with my sister-in-law and brother-in-law.  Their neighbors had new calves in the pasture.   We got out of the van to just stand and marvel at these creations.  The sun was setting, the kids were quiet and in awe, and I was thanking God for this small moment.  

We enjoyed pizza on the porch and then just sat and chatted.  My sister-in-law and brother-in-law are huge proponents of home education, and they care about my children's education.   It's nice to know you have comrades in this journey.   

This week has been harder than others, not for any particular reason, but just BECAUSE.  Sometimes life is just HARD.  It makes me thankful for the little moments, because guess what?   Those precious little moments strung together definitely trump the hard times!  

I will share all of those little moments in my collages this week, and I'd also like to "review" my Reading Aloud series, too.  Stick with me -- these Friday posts always seem to take up a bit of room!

1.  The calves; we had to laugh at how they ran from us and stayed right beside their mama.

2.  The Mummy Pumpkin.  I have a confession:  I really dislike carving pumpkins, and so does my husband.  We do it every year but this year my kids didn't really have a desire to carve.  They wanted to decorate their pumpkins.  I thought this one was pretty clever.

3.  We visited our local fire station that sells pumpkins each year.   The kids picked out their own pumpkins and a few gourds.

4. Our sweet dog, Gizmo - Gizmo doesn't do well when we are away, and after our trip out west we came home and he was STRESSED OUT.   He also had some fleas (grrr....) and had scratched himself raw in several places.   After a trip to the vet and a good grooming he was good as new.   I just think he has the cutest face.   Gizmo was a "Happy Homeschool" present for Anna when we started this journey over three years ago now and I can't imagine our lives without him.

5. "KOTE EPU!"   I bet you didn't know that's code for "KEEP OUT!".   Grant decided to get creative with his Keep Out Halloween door sign.  We went to Michael's and hit their $.99 bins to get lots of melty bead crafts and foam projects.  I also used my 40% off coupon to buy a big variety pack of Sculpey.   Fun!    

6.   I'm surprised I could get them to pose for a pumpkin patch picture.  There were several families there with little babies all dressed up and I must admit I longed for those days... I am missing the baby years, but know these years are full of good times, too.

Monday we headed to our "downtown" area for the morning.   We live in a suburb of Atlanta, and our closest small town has a lot of rich Civil War history.  It's always fun exploring here.   

We started first, however, with an orthodontist appointment for Anna.   She does need braces, so we will be traveling down this road now.   When did my little girl start growing up?

We also took the opportunity while downtown to early vote.   Surprisingly there was just a 10 minute line and we were in and out in no time.   The kids have heard us talking a lot about the election and we also started reading The People Pick a President, and began learning about the Electoral College.  I'm thankful to CSpan Classroom for the free map and activities to go along with it.   You can print your own .pdf of the map from their site.   (This is my Favorite Resource This Week!)

Monday evening was spent (after baseball and chorus practice) watching the Presidential debate and really talking with the kids about debate formats and the finer points of politics.   


I don't blog a whole lot about our science activities.   Science just isn't a strength of mine, but the kids do enjoy our science studies.   

I will writing about this resource much more, but we have a monthly subscription to Discovery Boulevard's "Why? Box".   Basically, it's a great science unit delivered to your door once a month.   This was our first month using it and I have to say I was IMPRESSED.   

We talked about the structure of soap molecules and then learned why soap gets us clean.  The kids did a simple experiment with water, vegetable oil, and dish soap.  Then, they made their own bar of soap.  Fun!   This, of course, made them want to make MORE soap.   We put on our thinking caps and decided that making LEGO soap would be great fun.   I'm sure you'll see a post about this in the next few weeks!  

Other events of our week included A LOT of reading.   Anna is working on the Inkheart series, and Grant was reading more LEGO Ninjago chapter books (shocker).   I also took a cue from my friend, Aadel, and practiced The Art of Strewing in my house.   I'm going to be doing this more often because it got them engaged in some subjects they wouldn't normally take an interest in.

Our Writing With Ease curriculum included poems for both children this week.  I am so pleased with this curriculum choice for us, and the poetry excercises just reinforced my good feelings.   Grant had to narrate a couple of beautiful poems, and also complete copywork from those poems.  Anna learned about anapestic tetrameter and narrated poems as well.    I want to be intentional about adding more poetry into our homeschool.

I also want to READ ALOUD MORE POETRY each week.   

. . . which brings me to The 10 Days of Reading Aloud wrap up.

  Of course I think all of 10 days posts are worth reading (wink), but there are two in particular that you won't want to miss.

Heritage History Digital Living Books giveaway

Andrew Pudewa FREE audio downloads, IEW booklist,  and an IEW giveaway

Hopefully you were inspired to read aloud to your children and read aloud OFTEN.   If you do nothing else in a day, you should read out loud to your children.  I'm CONVINCED it changes their lives.


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