Saturday, August 30, 2008

History Days

This year we are studying WW II. I love to do history as a hands on unit study and the Konos curriculum (love it) taught me how to do this.
We formed a small co-op with 3 other families who we meet with monthly. {We've tried the big co-op thing and found that creativity and interaction was diminished and the kids don't learn nearly as much} We are also planning all our field trips together. We each continue our studies at home as desired but then come together for reports, activities and projects. This was our first get together.

We began our background information with stories, discussion and map work. (Yes as I prepare I am learning as much or more than the kids !)

We made passports.

At home we are busy gathering all the things for military uniforms for the boys. So far I've found some really great stuff. The girls are researching clothing trends and hair styles for that time period. You know the fashions changed to reflect the shortage of cloth. Then they will sew/gather and put together their outfits. (Were do you find nylons with a seam up the back?)

So what would you have taken with you if awakened at 2 AM and given an hour to leave your home with your family?

Matthew and I are reading A Father's Promise aloud together. It's written about a young Jewish boy and his father living in Warsaw during Poland's take over by Germany. Good stuff.

Susan was our first boarder guard as we were leaving for the museum. She stamped each child's passport.

Anna was so cute/serious. She was thinking about all that we had talked about to explain passports and check points etc. Susan asked her if her name was Marie Something-or-other. Anna stood there for the longest time trying to figure it out and finally told her full name with a huge sigh. Our "boarder guard" then said it was a good thing that her name matched the info in her passport. Now she could go with the others on the field trip. =)

You just can't imagine the fabulous books, videos, pictures, tapes and materials out there about WW II. "drool" (Andrew, do you remember when you studied this listening to speeches from that time . . . . . . . . .over and over again ?)

Haley is about to read Never Give In: The Extraordinary Character of Winston Churchill. I thought this quote from Henry Kissinger about Churchill was particularly poignant for today.
"Our age finds it difficult to come to grips with Churchill. The political leader with whom we are familiar generally aspire to be superstars rather than heroes. The distinction is crucial. Superstars strive for approbation; heroes walk alone. Superstars crave consensus; heroes define themselves by the judgment of a future they see it as their task to bring about. Superstars seek success in a technique for eliciting support; heroes pursue success as the outgrowth of their inner values."

Who will she look like??

It's been officially announced on K&G's blog that they are 90% sure of having a GIRL!

Who will she look like?

Honestly it's getting harder and harder to avoid those baby aisles in the stores. And yes I am about to start a quilt! I'm glad to know that it's okay to use purple and pink.

We are sooooo excited and thankful! Can't wait to meet her.

Oakland Stop

Last week Friday and Saturday Ken and I had a two day ICHE Board Retreat. Very Productive! From there we headed down to Oakland to pick up Matthew.

We stayed over night. K& G took such good care of us. They always go above and beyond to make us comfortable. THANKS you guys.

Because we have gotten to know the folks in their church, it was great to catch up with everyone after the meeting on Sunday. Do you suppose it will be like that when we step into heaven. . . . . . . being greeted by folks we haven't seen for a while and care about?? Happy thought.

I think it is safe to conclude (just look at his face) that Matthew had a great time. We loved visiting Gretchen and Kyle and we're really glad to have Matthew home!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Happy 6 Month Anniversary You Two!

We love you!
How blessed is everyone who fears the LORD,
Who walks in His ways.

When you shall eat of the fruit of your hands,
You will be happy and it will be well with you.

Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
Within your house,

Your children like olive plants
Around your table.

Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the LORD.

The LORD bless you from Zion,
And may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life.

Indeed, may you see your children's children
Peace be upon Israel!

Psalm 128

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Matthew's Gone a' Visiting

Matthew has traveled to Oakland to visit with Gretchen and Kyle for the week.

We are missing our Matthew!

It's awfully lonely around here without him.

Nobody wanted to play a game tonight! =(

There is a certain sparkle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . a certain excitement

a joyful activity missing when he's gone.

(Juggling an ax)

So we are comforting ourselves with some pictures.

I know he's having a great time but we'll be happy to have him home.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Gretchen's Visit Hooray!!

Last week Gretchen came up in the middle of the week for a little visit!

After lots of hugging and kissing, the first thing that all of us wanted to see was how much the baby was showing. So of course I had to get pictures so everyone else could see him/her. GJ graciously posed for these shots while we were all waiting for our sunscreen to soak in before heading to the pool.

They are a little more than half way along. Can't wait.

We all pitched in with food preparation.

The following was Nate's version of "cooking"!

This takes great skill . . . . . . . no really!

You must be very precise with measurements!
The recipe says ---"Dump".

It's all in the wrist.
Admit it, you want some don't you??

A Little Pool Time

Weather to float, splash and swim in!

Could we count this for school time?? What do you think---spelling or penmanship??

We had grandparent's night a bit early.

We headed out to Bombay Louie's (what a goofy name for a restaurant). Only one other table was in use while we were there.

This was perfect. We could relax and be ourselves. Also Gretchen shared stories and we all could hear her. =) I really like this picture of she and Ken's dad. What beautiful and loving smiles.

Haley's hands were busy. She's our creative project girl.

She brought along a pair of gloves she's making for our next English Country Dance.

I am so thankful for these sweet times.

Game Playing
No visit would be complete without playing some games.

It was fun to play with a bigger group. I had no weapon cards and only two rooms. A good challenge!

With all these masterminds I didn't win.

Nate went out just before Matthew was able to make his accusation.

I didn't have a clue. (Har Har-- unintentional pun!)

Maybe I know something, and maybe I don't . . . . .

We just had to laugh when Ken showed Nate a card that he hadn't even asked about. Boy does that mess up all your calculations.

Think of it this way--playing games with us older folks is MORE FUN!

What a wonderful time building memories. How can we thank the Lord enough for His goodness to us in giving us such a family.