Friday, December 31, 2010

My Favorite Christmas Photos

Today I am just going to share some of my favorite Christmas photos with you. As you may have already heard, my wonderful husband got me a new camera for Christmas. I had previously had an SLR but it broke and we could not afford to replace it with another SLR. At first I was hesitant about a point and shoot, but I am very happy with my Cannon Powershot and the quality of pictures I am getting.

 Isabella got her American Girl doll, Kirsten that she has been wanting for some time!

 My husband's face is priceless! You can't fake that kind of surprise!

 Alex looking at the ornaments on the tree at his grandma's house.

 Alex getting ready to open presents at his grandma's.

 My sister Megan, and my niece, Aubrey. Aubrey really loved that Chicken dance Elmo!

 Aubrey also really loved that sucker!

 She was a mess!

 Their aunt and uncle got one for each of the kids.

 Bella also got a camera for Christmas. Going to be just like her mother?

 Alex finally had had enough.

 Isabella got an iceskating outfit for her American Girl doll. This outfit is gorgeous. I looked everywhere and this was the prettiest (and best valued) one out there, and I was not dissapointed when I got it!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas break is almost over!

This is the first year that we have actually taken a Christmas break. Isabella is finally old enough that she wanted to be out of school when the other kids were, and I agreed. She has enjoyed it for the most part, but Alex and I are bored. The structure that school brings to our days is very important, I think. Without it we are all just kind of laying around in our pajamas while the house gets dirtier and dirtier because I never feel like the day has actually "begun." Alex cannot entertain himself as easily as Isabella can, so that also makes it hard. I am tired from trying to find things for him to do. He prefers school to toys. I can't wait for Monday!  Bella, meanwhile, is enjoying her crafts like (shrinkidinks) and all of her new dolls. They have taken turns having "sleepovers" in each other's rooms. 

Bella with her Shrinkydinks.

Yesterday was my husband's day off so things were a little more interesting.
We spent the day looking for the red booster deck for our Killer Bunnies game, and
finally found it in a game store in Independence. The red booster deck is only $11 in stores but there was a problem with the printer so most places are on back order and they are selling for about $35 a deck on ebay. I was so glad to finally find it! You can't expand to any new decks until you have the red deck, and the game is so fun!
We have played with a lot of people and most of them love this game, if you haven't played it you should definitely check it out. 

Today my husband's little sister is over, which means we have a third person to play it with, I can't wait! We also bought the kinderbunnies edition yesterday to play with Alex. Bella is old enough to figure out killer bunnies, but kinder bunnies is for kids ages 5 and up and Alex (age 3) can play with a little help.
We took the game to a coffee shop, ordered drinks, and settled in to play. What a fun way to spend the day.

Next week I am going to start posting about the new curriculum I have been working on, which uses the Little House in the Big Woods book. I will also start the Expedition Earth geography in earnest. 
I got a new camera for Christmas, so I can't wait to post and share all of our adventures with you!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Candy - This One is for Grandma

Last year after Christmas my mother in law bought a candy making kit for my kids on clearance. This year they got a chance to use it, and they had a blast! I thought it would be difficult but it was easy, and even my 3 year old was able to use it!

We used the candy making kit plus another mold for nativity chocolates that I had bought the previous year on amazon for like $2. The kit was so easy. You just put those chocolate melts in the squeeze bag and  microwave them in the bag for 30 seconds and then cut the tip of the bag off and squeeze the chocolate into the molds. It provided tons of interactive fun for my little ones, I think I will make this one a new tradition!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Around the World - Japan

In continuing with our Christmas around the world theme, my daughter made some beautiful temari Christmas ribbon ornaments.

First I took a Styrofoam ball, a hot glue gun, and some red embroidery floss.

I wrapped the floss around the ball, using the hot glue gun only at the beginning and end of the string.

After that my daughter decorated the balls using ribbon which she attached with straight pins, and glittery string which we "sewed" in and out of the ball using a large needle at an angle.

Finally we attached an ornament hanger at a spot where the ribbon was very secure.

We got this idea from the Expedition Earth curriculum at Confessions of a Homeschooler.

My son also used the preschool ideas for Christmas from her site this week. He really enjoyed them! Here is a picture of his ornaments with clothespins on them:

You can find all of this curriculum at <a href=""><img alt="coahbutton" src="" width="150" height="150" /></a>

Another thing we did this week was make candy. We do it every year, but we didn't make nearly as much this year as we did last year. This year we made peanut butter fudge, regular fudge, cherry mash, and molded chocolate. Here are pictures from the peanut butter fudge:

You can find the recipe we used here: Easiest Peanut Butter Fudge

Here is a picture of the cherry mash

We used the recipe on the back of the bag of cherry chips, so I don't have that one for you.

Anyways, I have more stuff from our Christmas week to post tomorrow. I know I am super behind, but I still want to share all of the fun stuff we did and I have some adorable pictures coming up that I can't not post! I hope everyone had as great a Christmas as we did!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Countdown to Christmas...8 Days

What a crazy week! Sick/busy/sick/busy! If we don't stay well around here we will never get caught up enough to not be busy!

I took my Finals this week and I officially have all A's in my courses for the semester, so that is good. I also got to finish my Christmas shopping and have a little bit of Christmas fun with the kids as well...

First we did Expedition Earth's Christmas Around the World Curriculum this week and studied China.
You can find this curriculum at:  <a href=""><img alt="coahbutton" src="" width="150" height="150" /></a>

We made Chinese knot ornaments in the shape of dragonflies:

We also made Plum Blossom trees to represent the Chinese New Year. I think they look so cute with my Christmas Village:

Today we went to a Christmas party at my friend Jami's house and the kids made gingerbread houses, watched Christmas movies (for like 5 minutes until the kids found something else to do), and drank hot cocoa: