Monday, May 30, 2011

May 30, 2011

We have not blown away, although we were close to going to the storm shelter the other day. I have not posted lately because I just have not felt like it.... plus I am still finishing up a few things around here, such as hanging pictures, so we can feel settled in and at home. I'm almost done. Just a few more touches and that will be it, thankfully.

Not much new going on around here really. The boys are still taking violin and we had a very good week with it this week. They are now learning to use their fingers on the neck of the violin and they have learned several new notes that allows them to play the beginning of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and all of Hot Cross Buns, or at least all of the version that is in the book we use. I'm sure it is not the entire song. This is the first week that they have been able to play something they recognize and they have been so excited about it. It is fun to see them get excited about it and I am hopeful that it will mostly be downhill from here.

They are taking the summer off of soccer and next week they will start gymnastics for the summer instead. After the summer, they will have to choose which they want to do for the school year. They have had two weeks out of swimming lessons but will also start that again next week. They are both doing very well with swimming now. They can both jump off the diving board and swim over to the ladder or to the side of the pool. They can also swim across the pool, coming up to take breaths when needed. So they are doing pretty well but I would not call them strong swimmers, by any means. We are planning to have them continue to take swimming lessons through Kindergarten and possibly through next summer and then we will reevaluate.

My goal is to have them in only one sport, plus violin lessons, when we start 1st grade. However, if we really feel they need to stay in swimming lessons, I'm sure we will manage to fit it in. I just know that we will have a lot on our plate then, so trimming out everything we can would be best. We will also be adding a once a week meeting with the homeschool coop and once a month field trip with them, so we will have plenty to keep us busy.

I started looking through our Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading today to see where we left off several months ago. It has been quite a while since we have done any lessons but I would like to start up again soon. Nick is really reading very well these days, definitely past where we left off in the book, but I know he will progress even faster when we start lessons again. And Ben is reading very well but probably a bit behind where we left off in the book. He is so into pretending that he is not very motivated to pick up a book and sit down on his own to read. Nick is always reading something and stays up reading something or looking at pictures after we tuck him in at night.

Speaking of bedtimes, I am quite surprised at how late the children in our neighborhood are up in the evenings. There are two little boys who live across the street who are around the same age as Ben and Nick and I know at least one of them definitely stays up much later than Ben and Nick. Our schedule is that they normally start getting ready for bed around 7:00 to 7:15ish. Then we sit and read for a good amount of time and say prayers. Then we go upstairs and brush their teeth, tuck them in and give them hugs and kisses. Our goal is to have them tucked in around 8:00ish. We try to stay with our schedule most of the time but there are times when things come up and we run late....or if we are reading a really good book and just can't find a good stopping place for a while. But the vast majority of the time, they are in bed sometime between 8:00 and 8:15 and they normally sleep until 7:00am. The two boys who live across the street both have older siblings so I am sure that plays a big role in the schedule they keep.

I still miss my Zoe, although the painful part of it all is not as bad, of course. I do still have my moments and one of them was just tonight, when I saw her picture on my blog. When I let myself really think about her, my heart hurts so much and I miss her so very much. It is so sad to think that I will never see her and hold her again. I am very blessed though that I still have my Dancer boy. He has decided that the screened-in back porch is his new favorite place. He sleeps out there most of the day in one of the two lawn chairs (we really need to buy some new outdoor furniture and are looking for some). I have to make him come in at night so I can lock the door. I'm glad he is enjoying it so much.

The new cat news is that we are getting another bengal girl cat, well, kitten actually. She is just a baby kitten and she is a lighter colored bengal like Zoe was. The soonest we can get her will be July 2nd. I am very excited about it but I also feel a little guilty when I think about Dancer and I wonder how he will react. I know his initial reaction will likely not be very positive, which is natural, but I am really hoping and praying that he will come around to like her and be nice to her.

In other news, we have been enjoying our new neighborhood and yard a lot. Bike riding around here is great. The boys and I biked over to the nearby elementary school the other day and they enjoyed playing on their playground. We took the boys to the Renaissance Fair on Saturday. They enjoyed it and there were parts of it that were good but, overall, had I known then what I now know, I probably would have skipped it. There were just too many things that were not kid-appropriate, in my humble opinion. Oh well. Live and learn. Our neighborhood pool is under construction so, hopefully, by the beginning of July, we might be able to start using it.... that's what they say but I seriously doubt that it will be ready by then. I have really enjoyed being home more since we moved here. I'm not sure when I became such a homebody but I sure am. Who'd have thought??

Time for me to get some sleep. Sorry I have not been updating as much. Maybe I'll have more to write about once we start schooling.

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