weekending jan 26-30

31.1.15 1 comments
Another week gone, and the end of January...whew!

This week didn't seem as long as last week. While each little one was still under the weather, they definitely had more energy and appetite. I didn't make a note of it, but at the end of last week we finally changed our second seasonal table (in the basement) from Fall to Winter (see below).

On Monday we made split pea  soup. I found that serving the soup over rice makes it easier for the little ones to eat (or) at least be more independent. J likes his soup that way...H does too. Z loooves soup so I don't actually have to do that. Teaching her to master the spoon  is at the top of my list.

Baking day...


Thursday was Pjs and pancakes day; thus all could be found wearing pjs or some variation of pjs...Thursday was also baking day. Baking has been very tricky with all the runny noses :( but it's something that the kids really look forward to, so we try to include them in some way.

Iman has been baking with the kids for the past 3 weeks...they really like trying to impress her with their pouring and measuring skills. Unfortunately, exam breaks are over, so it will be just us again...I will miss her as well.
This week the kids made cupcakes...they ate quite a few of them too.

painting & seeing green

29.1.15 0 comments
M, one of our dayhome friends love the colour green, so I decided that the colour of the week for painting would be green.
J actually found it exciting to be painting...probably because he was rested. Z tried to eat the paint as usual, and H is always so serious about his work.

just another soup monday: peas soup

26.1.15 2 comments

I was in the kitchen all by myself yet again. My days are so full with kiddie activities that I can't complete simple tasks without them around me anymore. Anyways, the kids were all stuffy and cranky, so there was no point in having them all in the kitchen. 

It's not cold outside; it has been unseasonably warm, but it was a nice day to cozy up and drink some warm soup.

I hope you had a great Monday!

Book of the month: Stranger in the Woods

24.1.15 0 comments
We read a few pages of our book of the month Stranger in the Woods: A Photographic Fantasy by Carl R Sams.

weekending jan 19-23

One  of the things that I like about having a daily rhythm is that no matter what happens...sick child, napping conflicts, or *gasp* a sick caregiver, most of our planned daily activities will not be cancelled. One thing that I have had to do, however, is modify and modify and modify.

This week we had sniffles and runny noses...there was less outdoor time, and not as much hands-on assistance in the kitchen. Instead of letting the kids get all the ingredients (measure, pour etc), Iman (my assistant for the week), put everything together and let them stir it...they got a minute each, and they poured the batter into the muffin tins.

Aside from that, Monday's soup was made by me because  of napping conflicts.
We learned about fire safety (part 1 of 4 series).
We also went on a safari & did drumming - did you read about it? Post is here.
...and dress up/role-playing
We even hibernated...when was the last time you saw a koala hibernating?
We painted and coloured

There were talks about empathy, and sharing. Discussions about hand-washing, nose-wiping and covering mouths when coughing and sneezing.
There was so much life and laughter in our activities, and having an assistant came in really handy when it came to story-time, and especially nose wiping...lots and lots of nose-wiping this week.
By the time Friday came, I can say honestly that I was more than ready for it. I am beat!
We also visited the library for story-time (there are some pics on my phone...maybe later?)
Stay tuned for our book of the month update...

Baking day treats & etcetera...

23.1.15 2 comments
Baking day is probably our favourite day. Starting off the new year I knew that I wanted to find or create a way for the children to get excited about baking, and to have something special to take their treats home in...

I really wanted to sew these (look below), but a part of becoming wiser is the fact that I understand now more than ever that efficiency is common sense really. The first issue is that the silly me that I was 4 years ago when I moved, left my sewing machine behind. So instead of sewing the bags by hand, I bought them at the Dollarama.
All I did was cut out the first letter of each child's name and stitched it onto the bag...don't judge my work, I did it while nursing :)

This week Iman was in the kitchen with the kids again...they baked chocolate chip muffins. If you look closely you will see that a few of the muffins are green and blue. They boys would have it no other way. So each week, our little ones can bring home their home-made goodies in their own little sacs. It feels communal in a way...

drumming & dancing at the end of the day

20.1.15 0 comments

It was the end of the day,...Mondays always seem so long. We all needed to shake our sillies out. I don't know who started it...probably Z who is always running or jumping and dancing to some imaginary beat.
I brought out the instruments to get everyone singing, moving and shaking - only the drums were used. J was super-excited...I have never seen him drum like that before...

This time our musical experience took us on a safari...the lion, tiger and elephant and the giraffe joined in.
Feet were moving, hands clapping, and the beat of not one but 2 drums could be heard.

Nature in winter part 2: 10 things to do in winter

19.1.15 0 comments
We love nature walks, don't you? Our weekly nature walks have been a fun way to explore and see all that nature has to offer, regardless of age. The beauty of getting out in all types of weather and seasons is that they kids get to experience all the changes.

1. Just play - there's nothing like just enjoying the elements.
2. Hug some trees - can you find one that you can wrap your arms around? He did...sort of :)
3. Tracks animals - whether it's muddy, snowy or rainy encourage kids to keep their eyes on the ground in search of animal is a fun nature walk activity...especially if there is snow on the ground!
4. Collect & bring a piece of nature inside - collect rocks, pine cones or (whatever) you can find and bring home to place on a nature table or decorate.
5. Enjoy a picnic- help keep little tummies happy...and a hot beverage is a great way to warm up on a chilly day – our favorite is hot chocolate.
6. Count critters - big or small, there are so many critters outside in the winter...finding their hiding place can be quite an adventure.
7. Go bird watching - look  for birds and count how many bird nests you see in the trees. Bring a pair of binoculars to get a better view. And don’t forget to listen for them as well!
8. Create - rocks, pinecones or leaves can be used to create  beautiful mandalas- it's so much fun  to put them together. Gathering materials first is best.
You can also draw designs in the snow...
9. Play iSpy - What's better than playing iSpy with kids? It's so much fun. On a nice day, why not set out  and seek treasures. Encourage kids to find different shaped objects...looks for objects/animals with different characteristics, or colours etc.

10. Learn - have you ever tried snow math? Adding and subtracting just doesn't seem like work when done in the open elements, with raw materials...

So there you have it...winter can be fun if you just get out and enjoy all it has to offer.

weekending jan 12-16

17.1.15 0 comments
Winter is here, but our very cold days have been so nice lately, it seems the kids will have to wait to make their snowman. 
Some photos from the week:

On the cold days finding warmth means something different for each child. Z likes to settle in the hibernation zone, unless one of the boys zoom by with a car...then she's off. J likes to cuddle up and just watch, OR sit in his high chair for a while longer, sippy cup with milk in hand...perhaps it reminds him of his mom(?)

The boys even in play seem to huddle together, always on some great car or train adventure. 
Me? I keep moving about...shuffling around the room with the kids...watching here and there.
We are enjoying the most beautiful mild weather with longer playtime and discovery of nature (when the babies are not sleeping).On Thursday I told the kids that we could go make a snowman...bad idea, it was not the right type of snow. Whatever the case, it was not hard to distract them from our planned activity...they just played. We wrote their names in the sand...the big kids had say all the letters (amusing). The made tracks in the snow...slipped on ice...blew and threw snow and most importantly, the pointed out squirrels and birds.

...and because we spent a great time outside, we didn't bake...we made pudding instead.

Oh, and last week I had to have a stern talk with the older kids. Recently, they refuse to participate in circle time. I was open to allowing things to flow, because I don't force anyone to the circle, but I figured it's not fair to the babies that we either don't do it, or it is cut short because the big kids start a ruckus.
Starting next week, they will be expected to participate in at least 1 circle time activity...let's see how it goes.
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