Sunday, June 30, 2013

Schoolroom In The Making

It's Official!!!
Aiden & Gracie are now enrolled in their homeschool program and our schoolroom has begun to come to life!  Both kids completed testing for placement and to have their curriculum customized.  I've filed with the state.  I'm now patiently waiting for their books and my teaching resources to be selected and shipped!  So while we hurry up and wait, I wanted to give you a glimpse into aesthetics....
(Now remember, this is still a work in progress!)
This is my desk and work area.  Tons of storage and organization hidden within!  According to Tommy, this is his (the principal as he's informed the kids) area.
This will be Aiden's work area.  I figure it's best to keep him in his own space to focus more on the work he'll be doing at his grade level.  However....I still need to come up with something to make this space 'his'.  Still turning my wheels on that one.
This will be the little kids' work area.  For Cass, he will be able to come and go as he pleases, as we're not officially starting him on any curriculum.  But this way, he will have a place when he wants to be involved.  I know very well what's required for PreK and will be giving him activities to prepare him! 
Now the chairs are another story and something that I"m VERY excited about!  The chairs (we will bring in another for Aiden) belonged to my Grandpa who passed this last January.  They were handed down to me to use years ago.  I've found directions to revamp them and they will fit perfectly in the room when I do.  The cushions will be redone in the same fabric pictured below-which will also be used to make the valance and covered cork boards.  The body of the chairs will be painted the same yellow in the pattern of the fabric!  I can't wait to share before and after pics!
And onto organization....
I took this shoe organizer and filled it with supplies, then simply printed labels onto card stock and hot glued them on!  Easy, simple, and efficient!
I was amazed at how many resources we already own!  Going through the kids' rooms, I've gathered so many valuable, educational tools and books that we've had here all along!  They are stored in this cabinet!  The organizer atop will shelf an 'inbox' for Tommy's paperwork that come in while he's working, for my things to grade and such, then one for each of the children!  The storage bins will hold extra books, etc. that will be needed for assignments.  They will be able to go here daily and find everything required for the lessons planned.  Once we get into the school year and feel things out, I'll know just how many lessons to have work pulled for in advance!
These have been fun to remake for the kids!  Aiden's isn't quite finished so I will be posting pictures of it later!  We had these old, battered, and outgrown responsibility charts that we no longer used!  They came with magnetic labels and 'stickers'.  So, we personalized them.  Gracie helped to paint her labels and glue on the pompoms.  These will be used for their daily 'checklists'.  Once each days schoolwork and chores are accomplished....then they can choose to do other things.  I figure it will give them a visual (and help me keep up too) of what needs done before TVs get turned on, games get played, etc...
This is their 'achievement' wall.  I'm not sure I like the location or look yet, so it may be changed up some.  But the concept is a MUST in our schoolroom.  I'm a firm believer that it's not only my responsibility to educate them, but to help them be involved, active, and committed to things other than school and home life!  And my kids have a lot to be proud of!  So I figured this was a great way to incorporate this into our school room and serve as a reminder of all they've accomplished and everything they have to look forward to!
I couldn't resist posting this last picture!  Cass came to me today and said, "Mama, JoJo needs me."  He then proceeded to lay down next to him and read his book to our sweet CottonEye Joe.  I'm excited to see just what little man will think of school here next year!  He already loves having everybody home together again-and so do I!  I hope he'll enjoy being little, playing, and learning at his own pace this year leading up to starting him with curriculum the next school year.  I'm a firm believer in structure and high expectations for my children's learning.  But for this year....he gets to stay little and play all he wants to! 
Coming Soon....
We will be moving a futon into the room, it will go under the window.
Binders!!!  I'm excited to put together both kids' and my own personalized lesson planners.
I will update as we continue our preparations!
I'd love to hear suggestions from anyone who has to share! 





Saturday, June 29, 2013

Sweet Summertime

Sweet Summer Time
Favorite Gracie Moment....  A walk on the beach with just my baby girl and me!  We walked, we talked, we danced, and we played!  It was OUR time, the rest of life stayed frozen while we made a forever memory!

 Favorite Aiden Memory.... We did it when no man said it was possible!  With an exam glove, garbage sack, saran wrap, and angry bird duct tape, we successfully kept his cast sand and water free!  Although, after such an ordeal, the beach calls our names once again for another visit...without a cast!  This picture captures his curiosity as he tries to capture a little sea creature that stealthfully dodged into the sand!
Favorite Cass Moment....  I would say this picture says it all.  There's something sweet, priceless, and irreplaceable about the baby of the bunch!  I love these little arms wrapped around my neck!  The ocean was a little too big for his liking, but playing in the sand was a whole different story!

How I love these kids and will cherish this trip with them forever!  Thanks to Daddy for shipping us off to sand and waves!

Two of our favorite people!  This picture is definitely a framer!  Love them and hope this Mama and kids getaway turns into an annual event!
With only one day left of June, it does seem summer is flying by!  We are enjoying every moment of just being together and being home again!  It never fails to amaze me at how God knows exactly what we need before anything in our life even comes our way!  I have so much to be thankful for today, everyday.
1.  God's grace, provision, and all knowing presence in our home!
2.  A husband I love that does anything to take care of us!
3.  Parenting grace....when I rock, and when I need 'redirected'!
4.  Coming home for heart is here, with this man, these children, and in our home!
5.  Watching God's plan unfold in our homeschooling journey...coming this fall!!!!
And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart;  And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.  And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.   And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates. 
Deuteronomy 6:6-9 
6.  The awe at realizing I once again underestimated the heart of one of our children!
7.  Going back to LifeChoices, a ministry both to others, but so very much to me also!
8.  That every trial has had it's purpose, and seeing how the Lord protects us, teaches us, and separates us from the wordly through those times!
9.  Being part of a new, growing church, and seeing how God has prepared and provided for this long before it came to be!
10.  Daily realization of who I am in HIM!
Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain:  that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. 
John 15:16