the why in the school

I have a college degree in early childhood education.

I stay home with both my kids.

Education can be such a bear on the wallet.

My children will have more individual attention.

We can go at our own pace and set the schedule we like.

No need to give up the 3 hour afternoon nap yet.

Attention spans are limited.

Learn during play.

Field trips and vacation whenever.

Well this list is incomplete and only partially true but true there are some valid reasons why we decided to homeschool this year. I’m not saying every year will have the same reasons or even look the same but for now this is what is happening.

We are in out third week of homeschool preschool with Archer our 3 yo. If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen a couple pics of the first week. Then I had the intention to write a post about our week and the ins and outs of what we were doing. But then the second week came and well now we are on the third.

We are keeping things pretty lax and seeing how she handles working. We are now doing three mornings a week. I decided on which mornings based on other things we have going on during the week. We only do mornings because truth be told she still takes a three hour afternoon nap almost everyday.

We started just working with the calendar and counting the days and learning a letter of the week using the activities. I don’t take it too seriously if she needs a break, wants to work with something else or if Griffin wants to join in with the fun I’m totally ok changing things up. Some mornings she doesn’t feel up to it but as soon as griff shows interests she jumps right in where we are. Ok here are some pictures I’ve taken over the past three weeks. I think the picture pretty much explains what is happening but if you have questions I’ll be open to talking about it more.

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the why in the school

happy birthday archer

Archer is finally understanding and able to get that she is older. She proudly puts three fingers up to show how old she is and sings the birthday song. I think there is a bit of an obsession with birthday cake even though she never eats the actual cake only the icing. My aunt made a wonderful cake that any little girl would dream of and we got he inspiration from Pinterest and then let Archer choose the colors and style. We also grab some frozen yogurt from a local shop called The Cultured Swirl! For the party favors I whipped up some homemade playdoh in “neapolitan” style and put balls of “ice cream inside piping “come” bags. Here are a few pics from the day:

 

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happy birthday archer

How to define beauty

How to define beauty is all I can think about tonight. It has been one of those days actually it has been a few of those days in a row where things seems to take a downward spiral. Little Man not wanting to nap and wanting to be held, personal health issues, a flat tire, The Babe falling and skinning her knee, elbow and forehead and a huge limb falling in our yard again.

So today when I felt like I had some energy even without a nap and finally when Little Man took a nap on his own I agreed to The Babe to make some cookies. Baking is something that we do regularly if not weekly and at one point daily. She loves watching me pour in the ingredients and to watch the mixer whirl around. She most definitely loves when I’m done and I give her something to lick.

Today I thought I would try something different. I think it was out of pure laziness I just didn’t want to clear the table we normally worked from so I let her stand on a chair and watch. I continuously told her not to touch and to not out her hands in the bowl ad the mixer went around. I was standing next to her measuring out an ingredient when the bowl started to make a weird noise. In a split second her bangs got caught in the mixer and her head was pinned to the bowl. I went to stop the mixer and that is when her hair was pulled out. I began to soothe her and cry because I couldn’t bear to look at my little girl. What kind of parent was I to allow this to happen?! I felt ashamed that I wasn’t more cautious.

Then as she settled I kept thinking that my daughter’s beautiful hair was ruined. Her hair has become such a part of her. From the full head that she had when she was born to the ringlets that spring up here and there. I just kept looking at that spot and started to cry. I was so sick to my stomach.

But my little lady just felt it and looked in the mirror and smiles. She let me pull it over to the side to hide the spot. She didn’t see what I saw. Yeah it might feel a bit funny and when she asked me to make cookies again she would point and say ow, ouch at the mixer. But she wasn’t so concerned with how beautiful she looked or didn’t.

This all takes me back to my childhood. I had a step-dad that adopted us and was very into the fact that girls should have long hair and boys should have short. That long hair was beautiful. And even now I look on Pinterest or see celebrities in magazines when I’m shopping and I comment about their long, beautiful locks.

I also struggle with growing mine out or cutting it off because I know when I cut it I will get remarks about it being short or looking like a boy. And I remember times when I’ve left the hairdresser crying because I wasn’t sure why I decided to do that to my hair.

So I think when did hair become such a status symbol of beauty? When did I as a child become so ingrained with the notion that long hair is beautiful? Can I look at my daughter and see the true beauty that she is regardless of some missing hair? I know that the next few months will be hard as we grow out that portion and I will tend to not want to take pictures because of the shame I feel as a parent. But with it all I need to learn to capture her true inner beauty.

How to define beauty

Remembering the past…

As we only have a day left until our new bundle of joy will be here I had to look back to the arrival of Archer:

 

Her= Archer. my joy, happiness, love and things that words cannot express…

finally 3

as I was saying it didn’t give me much time to really sit down and write about it all. so I would find myself making small notes on my IPhone so I could go back later and remember. I’m hoping to slowly tell my story and hers through all our moments that will never be undone.

where else to start but day one of my new life….mommyhood! the day before she arrived I had a doctor’s visit to have my stress test and ultrasound (conclusion: this little girl was too comfy and it was time to evict) I was past my due date and I was bound and determined to have her that day. it was a monday, rain was in the forecast and that meant my hubs wouldn’t have to be at work. I mustered up al my energy to raise a FIT so that this little girl would be meeting me and to my surprise my doctor wasn’t about to put up a fight. she calmly said it was getting late today (it was 11 am) so we would have to wait till tomorrow. UGH is all I could think…

  1. because I was so tired of trying to sleep and not being able to
  2. the 6 runs to the bathroom at night were beginning to be routine
  3. my ankles, feet and toes were becoming sausages
  4. the crazy baby dreams were starting to get strange and I do mean STRANGE
so I sucked up all my disappointment and made the earliest time possible to be induced the next day. I told my hubs we needed to have our last date without a babysitter and away we went (after 6 texts and 4 phone calls that is to prepare the family). we hit a matinee and one of my fav restaurants Barcelona Tapas. I gorged and enjoyed and made it to bed by 9, BUT I just couldn’t sleep.
we rose early in the morning (all the bags were packed plus the car) and arrived at the hospital at 6. jog back about 10 months and you would see this powerful, natural woman that wanted to have this baby the way God intended it to be done. I thought that being induced would just put a tiny strain in my plan but it ended up being more of a sprain and then a break and then well nothing is worse than that. they began the medicine by 7am and my water was broke by 9am and things just seemed to be very slow. I had to just sit in the bed waiting it all out because of the IV. everything I wanted was gone. after about 4 nurses and 5 hours I had about enough and that is when the pain set in. I continued to have this sharp pain in my right side and I asked if I could walk around… HA to the chair was my answer. SO I sat and it got worse. ALOT WORSE. 7cm and I had had enough and asked for the epidural. this was the first time the hubs had to go out of the room. after that things got rolling (my legs felt like when you sleep on your arm and you wake up and can toss it because it is so numb) my blood pressure kept dropping to the point I should be dying but nothing was wrong. I kept having contractions but they all thought they weren’t doing much.
it all took a change around 6pm. they checked me and I was fully dilated it was time to push. I could feel my legs more and I was so ready to see this baby girl. SO I pushed and pushed and well an hour and a half later things were still the same. the doc came in and I could see by her face that she was about to say a c-section. I was ready and told her let’s go just get her out. a few more this and thats and out the door I was being pushed into the OR… this is where things seemed to speed up as my body began to shiver and I was asked so many questions that now I know were routine. I started to cry because I knew this meant my birth story wouldn’t be the one that I wanted. it seemed only seconds later my hubs was by my side I was looking into the light above and could see the doc working and I kept asking questions and then there was silence as if everyone was waiting and I heard her first cry and yell. I couldn’t help but cry but I was quickly told that the work wasn’t over and only her head was out (doc said most babies don’t cry till their whole body is out). her cries filled the room and continued until she was nestled at my side. born may 3rd weighing 8 lbs. 5 oz. @ 8:20 pm Archer Quyen was born
together at last
Remembering the past…

It’s Your Birthday

FYI: This post first appeared on my other blog but I wanted to move it here because it represents what I am going for in this blog 🙂

May 3, 2011

Archer,

Last night as I was thinking about writing this I started reflecting on the past year but all I could really focus on was the last week. This past week has been a hard one. You were/are sick and fighting so hard to be better, your temper and tantrums have hit their highest point, and your love for snuggles has grown. We have begun butting heads and I am realizing that even though you may look only like your daddy and his family, you have my spunk and personality with a little bit of his thrown in. I think that is why I have such a hard time with you because we both want it our way. But at night when you won’t go to sleep for your dad, when you want a little more cuddling and all I can do is oblige because it gives me those precious moments where I get to hold you just a little longer. Where your hand lays softly on my chest and you want my eye contact until you can no longer hold yours open. It is in those moments that I am glad I listened to the sayings that “time goes so fast” they grow up so fast” they will be old before you know it” because I have been able to spend almost every moment with you.

In this past year you have learned:  to walk, run, jump, shake hands, high-five, use the stairs, use the potty, hold hands in prayer, do your version of the sign of the cross, talk in sentences, show your glee, find the tiniest little ants and other bugs, drink from a cup, feed yourself, wash your face and hands, sleep in a big girl bed, put yourself to sleep at naps, almost dress yourself, water the plants, unload the dishwasher, draw with chalk, use a drill, give kisses and hugs, throw things in the trash and recycling, “read” books to us, make cheers with glasses, put on your shoes and socks, play peek-a-boo, use a vhs player, rock and swaddle your babies, use the rain barrel, spot an airplane in the sky, follow the squirrels through the trees, hold my hand when walking, eat an ice cream cone…

Just writing the title is bittersweet to me because I really no longer have a baby, especially when I see you growing and changing so quickly in front of me. Two years ago today you were born after a very long and then complicated delivery. And in a couple of weeks you will have a sibling. I really had a hard time deciding if another person in our family was right because I knew that meant that the time I have with you would be shared and I know that sometimes its hard to share. That our lives would be turned upside down again, our routines changed and our house a little fuller. But then your dad and I thought about how much you would like having another small person in the house. How as you grow older together you would get to play, laugh and maybe sometimes even fight but that person would become your best friend. Saying all of that I have to say that small person will take up a lot of my time and that will cause mommy some pain at first that won’t allow me to hold and rock you or to play as hard as you like but will also bring joy to your life. But this pain will only be temporary and that I will always still be here and you will always be my baby girl.

I love you baby girl! Happy Birthday 🙂

Love,

Mommy

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It’s Your Birthday