Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Photos

Here are some photos from October so far :)


Puddles counting our pebbles on a sunny day and making a spiral and a line. Very Richard Long! He is currently very in to counting and keeps asking if certain numbers are the highest number. 


After the pebbles he went to watch Yetti playing with his kit car. Puddles knows how to check the oil in the car already!


Earlyer in the day Yetti and Puddles worked on writing the names of the octonauts. Printales from http://www.1plus1plus1equals1.com


On a colder day Puddles decided we all needed hats on. The Bolt stance is a current photo pose favorite of Puddles'.



Yetti came home one day (as he does occasionally) with a random ebay buy. A box of car cards. The two of them havd a great time going through them



 Puddles making the number ten.

On the train to gloucestershire to see my folks. Again with the Bolt pose.


Meeting up with friends in Gloucester. We went to Frankie and Benny's and it took 45 mins for a our food to come and they managed to get mine wrong twice!



Whilst craft supply shopping with my mum Puddles spotted this red "Poc Poc"


Mum and Puddles made a WONDERFUL pudding almost like a pudding omlet swiss roll. It was very yummy.Here is Puddles putting on the strawberrys for it to be rolled up :)

Home Ed Ideas.

Tommorow I have Puddles all to my self so I want to do some activities.

Using apples to print then numbering them one to twenty and hang them up on the birthday card line in the house.

Rainbow words. writing a word in black then useing different coloured crayons to write over the word.

Bubble painting.

Using marbles and a tray to paint.

I think that is enough to be getting on with :) We will head in to the city tomorrow to get Yetti some car parts and maybe stop for wagamamas too :)

Today I went to my breast feeding peer support training course. My confidance is slowly building with the course. Thou I feel there is still a great deal to learn. Today our usual tutor was away so we had some one else, and the session was much less informal, lots of chatting about personal experiances instead of power point presentations. Next session is about hand espressing so we have all been given a knitted boob to practice and demonstrate on :D.

Diet wise today I had a carrot for breakfast, 2 carrots and an apple for lunch, a bowl of fat free spicy onion and lentle soup for home-from-course-need-to-eat and square of dark chocolate, Dinner was a bowl of cerial, a bowl of soup and a homouse wrap (and a tiny bit of homouse wrap that Puddles didn't eat and a piece of apple he didn't eat. Must stop eating his left overs!)







Friday, 11 October 2013

Chugga chugga CHOO CHOOO!

Today has been a day of trains.

I got up at 11am as per my 40 day challenge. I felt very anxiouse about hanging around the house when I didn't need to leave for hours. I think one of my next 40 day challenges will be just "being" in the house, but not yet, I have enough goals and I don't feel ready for that one just yet.

After packing we had an hour or so to kill so I decided to treat Yetti to Pizza Express. Out the window went my no dairy and no bread goal. But I've decided to keep it as a goal even if I stumble occasionaly.

Puddles was as always very good on the train. He wants me to play octonaughts with him (he has the little figures.) I find make believe play SO hard, also the repetitiveness (Rescuing the same charictor again and again) But I am slowly learning how to just BE with him and be on wave length and in his space. It's very hard but hopefully he will rememeber me as a mummy who was there for him when he askes to play, and not a mummy who ignores him to play on her phone as I so often tend to be. I have so many wonderfull memories of playing with Ro who was my sort of foster mother. She would play with me for hours letting me do really repetative games like play cooking and letting me ride on and look after my rocking horses while the horse "gave birth" to my many My Little Ponys. She would just let me play and be there for me as I needed her. She was a genius with children and my inspiration and idol.


Any way back to trains! Our first train was 14 minutes late so I had very little time to grab my prescription from the chemist and dash to the next station for our next train. We made it with a minute or two to spare. So we are now at my Mum and Step dads house till tuesday. Puddles is missing Yetti greatly already :(

Tomorrow I will hook my phone up to the wifi here and get some photos uploaded!

Much love Bx

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Brum..Brum..Brum....

Today I took Puddles to Birmingham by train. We went to meet up with a friend to eat Wagamamas and to fabric shop. My friend was late so Puddles and I looked round a toy shop. Puddles kept pointing at stuff wanting it. I had to say "no" so much. Wish I could buy him everything! I love spoiling him.

At Wagamams I had ginger chicken udon. Yummy, and my last meat and processed grain dinner for the next 40 days. I am challenging my self for the next 40 days to :

Right! I'm In! My goals:

No bread or wheat pasta
No things that should go on bread but are on a spoon due to the no bread rule (peanut butter on a spoon, nutella on as spoon ect.) 
No dairy apart from whats in quorn.

Blog every day. Even if its a couple of words to sum up what I've done.
Take a photo of Puddles every day.
Get up at 11 every day even if it means I come down and flop on the sofa, no more hiding from black dogs in bed.
Read a chapter of a book every day.

Think that's enough to be getting on with!


Today's fabric shop was for my little business making cloth sanitary pads, hot waterbottle covers and wet bags. I found some lovley fabrics mostly pinks and girly fabrics and lots of zips.



Monday, 9 September 2013

Preperation for tomorrows first day of Oak Meadow

Tomorrow I plan to start Oak Meadow with Puddle. We will start the day with circle time. I will put a play silk on the floor and light a candle and start with the verse

"Morning has come, 
Night is away.
We rise with the sun,
To welcome the day"

Then we will go through finger plays he already knows. Clap your hands together, The scarecrow song, two little dickie birds, and I will introduce Little Miss Muppet. 

Closing the circle time with 

I can be as small as a small small read, 
I can be as tall as a tall tall tree.

and blow the candle out. 


I will then read him the first Beatrix Potter story as set out in the Curriculum. 
I will then draw an "A" and a gate around in and encorage Puddle to do the same. 
I will explain to him that "A" can be an A as in Gate but also A as in Apple and Adam. 
After that I shall write some words with A in and get him to find them. 
I will put some wool on the floor in the shape of an A and get Puddle to walk, jump, hop its shape or I may sprinkle flour on the grass in an A shape and do the excersises on that depending on the weather. 

For Maths preperation we will do some puzzles.

Creative play will be up to Puddles.

I will start science in our second session of the day. As per the Curric. Puddle and I will draw things that remind us of summer. We may go out for a walk and photograph some summery things that are still about. 

So! That's the plan! Lets see how much I can actually do :) 




Monday, 2 September 2013

Oak Meadow Kindergarten

Hey every body!

Today I started reading The Oak Meadow Kindergarten Syllabus. So far it has covered that the children should have a rhythm to their day, so breakfast,  Circle time, morning main lesson, free creative play, lunch, afternoon hour, free play, dinner, free play, bedtime routeen.

I will need to tweak this a bit as generally I am not well in the mornings so planning stuff then seams a bit counter productive. Mornings Puddle plays with his dad, they eat breakfast then go to the park or the workshop. I think its great Puddles has this time with his dad so I don't to interrupt that either.

So our circle time and main lesson will be in the after noon; this will focus on maths or and language arts Then some free play and maybe an afternoon lesson covering science or arts crafts and music. I'm not sure puddles is up for hour long lessons yet so I will just follow his lead and not push when hes had enough.

 I would love to have more of a ritual around meal times. We have no table in the house so we cant sit down together round one. So at the moment its eating off out laps in front of the telly. :( When we move, a dining table is a priority for me. I loved eating round the table when I was younger spending time with family and hearing how every ones day was.

The rest of what I have read so far was a break down of the above routeen. The how to do free creative play is very helpful. Talking about getting clothes from charity shops for dress up, using real food (tins, packets and fresh produce) so that they get to imitate what they see around them more. I've noticed at Puddles' age he is really keen to imitate what I am doing and saying, he will play out events or stories that have happened through  out the day.

The syllabus also recommends a nature table. I am going to turn the top of our electric stove in to a nature table for leaves and conkers and whatever other treasures Puddles' finds on our walks. I must also DO more walks with him, even if its to the end of the road and back. It will soon be autumn and the leaves will be changing and falling, perfect for crunching under foot. We need to go bramble picking soon too. I know when the cold weather kicks in I will be wanting bramble and apple crumble. Best get the freezer stocked!



Just a quick post with a batch of photos!


On Monday the 26th August Yetti and I took Puddles to the cinima for the first time. We went to see Planes. We went to Frankie and Benny's first where Puddle had some corn on the cob. 

He really enjoyed his popcorn. He did leave the cinima for a quick run up and down the hallway mid film but was fine after that and enjoyed the film. He even got up and had a boogie to the music of the closing credits.



A Page full of balloons.


 We recenetly got a slimline dish washer for the kitchen. It is useless as our dished are to tall for it! But Puddles has enjoyed having a new castle to play in and decorate. With everything from shapes I cut out for him. Thou he was adamant he didn't want shapes so I had to be careful not to cut any shapes he recognized! he also picked all the dandelions before Yetti cut the lawn and stuck those all over one side of the box. Today he has been writing sums on the box. He confuses = and + so very little of the sums were do able but it shows he's thinking about them and still interested in numbers.

Puddles' writing is improving quickly. Here is him copying the names of his favorite tv charictors.


Here are his party invites which I just told him which letters to write and he wrote them with out any help. I am SO proud. He's doing so well!

For some reason for  Toby's invite he insisted he needed dots to follow. I refused so he drew the dots himself and then wrote following them! he got his b and p muddled here, and he put the Y at the begining but its still pretty good!



Puddles is really in to this wipe clean book at the moment. Its a Disney cars maths book. Again I had to quell my urge to correct him and get him to do the activity properly but he insisted he drew tiny wheels for baby cars. Must remember exercises like this are great for developing pen control and will help him more with his writing.





Friday, 31 May 2013

Waldorf and Curricula

As Puddle's school starting date draws nearer, thou still a year and a bit away I have been thinking about how I'm actually going to DO homeschooling. (I know here [UK] its known as home educating and homeschooling implys "school at home" but I have read to many american forums and blogs and tend to refer to all learning other wise as homeschooling, ok, so bear with me.)

I have come to the conclusion that, although I LOVE the idea of unschooling and autonomous learning ( not actively teaching and following the child's lead)  That this is not the best was to start our journey as a family. The reasons being that:

left to his own devises Puddles will turn the laptop on and browse youtube for hours watching cartoons in variouse languages and watching toy reviews, usually toy cars. Now this is not a bad thing, I think his happyness to listen to variouse languages is great, but he will do this for hours and hours on end.

I suffer from Bipolar and M.E., The M.e. is a real tiring pain in the arse, but the Bipolar is the one that really effects my parenting and my ability to homeschool. If I have the evening before to plan rough lessons and activities it means that when I wake up things are there for me to do with Puddles, and then I am much less likley to let him sit infront of the computer while I curl up on the sofa. Planning ahead also means on my really bad days I can say to Yetti, "Look, this is what we should be doing, can you take over today I need to go and hide and curl up in a ball." So even better yet is having a rough curriculum to follow so when I am not even up to the planning, I can wake up glance through the guide and off we go!

I don't see that we will always have a curriculum to follow, as Puddles gets older I would like to move him on to a more self directed project based type learning. Its something I did as a child, I would read books then draw pictures and find out everything about a subject and espress my learning usually throu artistic mediums. Its something I remember loving and still do it as a method to learn new things now.

So I have been looking throu curricula. What I have been really drawn to is methods that utilise stories I really love the idea of a story being a jumping board for learning. Espheshally learning new concepts such as maths and also I love realising stories in our daily life, for example if the story was about a chicken that made bread then you would make bread with your child that day!

Because of the stories and the arts and crafts I have really loved Waldorf / Steiner method of education. Teaching through stories and realising stories throu arts and crafts. How ever I am reluctant to use the steiner spirituality so after looking at Enki, which for me has to much planning to do on the parents side, to much information to be sorted through. Christopherus seamed to be to spirituality heavy. Then I found Oak Meadow. (http://www.oakmeadow.com/) Now with all the reviews of Oak Meadow say its not "true" Waldorf, alot of them say that it doesn't follow the spirituality of Waldorf and its just Waldorf flavored on the arts, crafts and story side, and that's exactly what I wanted. So after finding out that in May Oak Meadow has a 20% of curricula and arts materials, yesterday I took the plunge and purchased Kindergarten and grade one as well as a few arts suplys that are cheaper to get through them.


Why buy two grades? Well, Kindergarden coveres numbers one to ten and learns the alphabet in capital form. Now Puddle already knows most of that and is starting to be ready for a bit more . But I didn't want him to miss out on the Kindergarten stories and crafts. He is to young for first grade which commands better control of writing implements and understanding. So the plan is to start him in Kindergarten in September in a very casual way. learning as and when he is interested as he shouldn't really be starting it for at least another year or two (or three depending who you ask!)  But I feel he is ready for something. Though are days will mostly be filled with imaginative play, cooking and playing with bowls of water in the sunshine.


So! Now I wait! I am very excited about all the materials coming in the post. I shall have to spend less time on face book in the next few months and devote my self to reading through everything and preparing my self for this next exciting adventure.

I already have  Waldorf Curriculum Overview for Homeschoolers and From Nature Stories to Natural Science by Christopherus so I shall finish those first.

Exciting!


Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Buttons!

Just to let you know Puddles can do up his own pajama buttons now! My big beautiful boy!

Holidays and lots and lots of photos!

Hello! Last week Puddle Yettie, Yettie's mum, dad, brother, sister inlaw and their son all went to Majorca. It was Puddle's first time on an aeroplane and, and he was VERY excited about the whole thing. He clicked that we were going on holiday about 2 weeks before we went and the questions of "Are we going on holiday yet" were incessant  Unfortunately when in his seat belt for take off and landing he couldn't see much out of the window but was still very excited all the same.


I LOVE U.H.T milk tastes of holidays, And I loved the graphics on this carton :)




Puddle drew a smiley face on his face.

We stayed in a lovely villa with in door and out door (FREEEEEEZING) pools a games room and a resterant that did takeaways, and some pet gekos (welcome) and miggies (less welcome)



Puddles playing pool in the games room.




Yetti bought a boules set and Puddle had great fun throwing them in the pool, the big ones floated and the Jack sank!

 Yettie and  I went off for the day to Coves Del Drac. I have been a couple of times before but still loved them. I can imagin gnomes living in the underground formations. We had a pizza there and I had a cookie ice cream sandwich which were both yummy! The caves have a lake inside which we sat infront of and it all went dark and three boats lit with fairy lights came out and drifted across the water. There was a quartet in one of the boats but you couldn't see them. They played beautiful Classical music and I promptly fell asleep!

Whilst we were away The Inlaws took Puddle on a glass bottom boat. If I had known it was going to be glass bottomed I think I would have liked to go too, but we didn't know it was going to be at the time. My Father in laws (further more to be known as FIL.) made Puddle a map of all the coves and bays they would visit on the boat so he could look out for them. He was delighted and it kept him busy the whole trip. FIL,  BIL(Brother in law) and SIL(Sister in law.....you getting the hang of this?) Saw a family of 3 dolphins but Puddles and MIL( you guessed it.........mother in law) were on the wrong side of the boat and missed them. Puddles was quite upset by this, but was cheered up by the thought of the treasure marked on the map. Unfortunatly Puddle fell asleep befor the end of the boat trip, so FIL made another map, of the villa this time and hid the treaure. BIL and Puddle searched for it excitedly



X Markes the spot! It was (fools) Gold! Puddles was extatic, but he thought there would be 3 treasures when there were only two. One found in a palm tree one in an olive tree ("But there were three trees on the map grandad!")


Yettie and I tool Puddle to Palma Aquarium. It was brilliant. there was one HUGE tank that we sat by for ages just watching sharks and rays fly gracefully past.



We enjoyed cake and Ice cream




When I was pregnant I took a series of photos called "Travels of the bump" and you could always see my crocs peeking out from behind the bump. So now my old (4 years) Crocs have given up the ghost and I bought a new pair for holiday I desided they need their own set of photos. So here it is!




 For Puddle "Holiday" means "beach" So we spent to the beach twice. Once with all the family and once just Puddle. These photos are from our last day, hours before flew home. Puddle found a hole and decided to dig it deeper. I sat and read Phillip Pullmans Northern Lights. I had started to listen to it on audio book years ago and never got in to it. But I am liking it better this time.
 Puddle spooning the sea in to his bucket. The water was SO clear I even went for a paddle in it, up to my knees.



 My beautiful Brown eyed boy!


Puddle with his pirate bandana on with his papa on the last day.

 At the airport going home!





One of the days there was a BBQ and I wore my new spotty dress. This is a photo taken by Puddles!








Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Washing up and fish and chip babies.

A friend of mine asked me if I would teach some of the women from church how to crochet. I said yes delightedly, but then remembered that we are going away this weekend, so today I went to her house and taught her to crochet Grannie Squares that can then be made in to a blanket. It was great fun to have a chat and to catch up with her, I haven't seen her in ages!

The blankets (and other knitted things) are needed in Africa for the "fish and chip babies", These are babies who are being sent home wrapped in newspaper as there are no clothes for them. Charities are putting together packs of jumpers, cardigans, hats and blankets for mothers to be who attend anti-natal clinics, And the women in our village have been knitting like mad for them! So I have joined in with my crochet hook and have started a blanket. 


I sat this evening watching "World's Strictest Parents" and crocheted these two squares, to be made in to a blanket. I had forgotten how relaxing crocheting is. I am aiming to do one an evening for the next few nights so I don't over whelm my self trying to to many! 


When I got home from my friends, washing up had to be done. Puddle asked if he could help me so I set him up with a mixing bowl of water, some dirty cutlery and a tray. He happily washed the cutlery with a duck scrubbing brush for 10 minutes or so before getting board. 





Home Ed Group

Hello!

On monday Puddle and I went to our local Home Ed group. It was ment to be on the theme of James and The Giant Peach by Rohl Dahl but some of the children who are very in to Harry potter had been making toy pygmy puffs, wants, chocolate frogs and chocolate frog cards. The stall was a big hit with all the kids and nearly all bought a magic wand. They spend the group running around hexing each other and casting spells. It was great fun to watch, although I had to hold my self back from saying "that's not very nice!" Or words to that effect when some children where doing the "Avada Kedavra" (The killing curse).cure at each other. Also had to hold my toung and not tell the parents "abracadabra" was not a proper harry potter spell. 



I like that they remembered to have a petrified cat next to the sign.


Puddle is to young for harry potter so played with the cars (ofcourse!) for a while. We sat and did one of the activites together which was the life cycle of a lady bird. I did not know that lady birds had lavae and cucoon elements to thier life cycles, you learn something new every day! 

I had a lovely time chatting with some other mums and got to cuddle an 8 month old baby who was very cute and smilie. 


Here is Puddle's bee that he very carefully coloured in. He is usually more of a scribbler, but he really consentrated on this. The little card is a chocolate frog card that one of the children made.

At the end Puddles Yetti and I played in the park on the round about for 15 minutes before we went home. 


Friday, 19 April 2013

Juice!

A few weeks ago Yetti bought a juicer. I was very skeptical at first, I drink a lot of juice and thought a juicer would just be a lot of faf and expense but I have been proven wrong. The juice is delicious  I haven't been very experimental apart from discovering I don't like carrot juice or kiwi juice, but Yetti did leave the skin on the kiwi which might have had something to do with it.....

I LOVE just plain apple juice and have been trying differnt varietys of apple. I love the froth on the top too. Its like the fresh made juice in Wagamamas.


Puddle likes dropping the fruit in 


The only negative thing about the juicer is that it takes A LOT of washing up. Some days I've just not had any juice as I couldn't be bothered to do the cleaning! Must work the cleaning in to my evening routeen so its ready for the morning. 


Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Poorly Puddle

Puddle has not been very well the last few days. He is being sick at night and very sleepy during the day, lots of falling asleep on the sofa which is very unlike him. So not much has been happening, he has been missing nursery too :( So here is a photo of a sleepy boy.


Sunday, 14 April 2013

A Day in Spring

Today is the first day that has felt like Spring had sprung. It was warm but windy and just right for a walk. So Puddles and I set off to find and photograph some flowers. We didn't get very far but Puddles was quite taken with these Daisys



Not sure what this one is.....answers on a postcard.

.....and some daffodills.


I have been letting Puddles take as many photos as safe for him and the camera, so expect to see a lot more tiny fingers. Puddles told me all about how flowers contain honey for the bees. I was pretty sure that wasn't right so we asked Grandad who said bees make honey from pollen, but google says bees make honey from nectar that the flowers produce to attract insects, the bees transfer pollen from one plant to another to fertilse them. So now you know! 

We got as far as Grandad's house and then went in for a drink and to help him battle facebook (facebook won :( )
 
Yetti met us there and we all went to the supermarket. On the way home Puddles and I played in the park whilst Yetti had a nap in the car.


I love out local park all the toys are wooden and it looks out over a lovely playing field. Unfortunately other users haven't worked out what the bin is for and it is often scattered with beer cans fast food wrappers and today a dirty nappy. I must remember to take a litter picker with me when I go next!