The “Wonder” of Books

There’s no denying that we love books around our home. Sarah Ann and Reece would stay up all night reading if we would let them. They explore and learn and grow with each and every book they read. Carson loves to pick out the books we read during lunch and listens intently as we open a new world with each book. And our time reading together has been one of my most favorite parts of homeschooling, and even on those crazy, full days with a to-do list that is miles long, time spent reading together is always the best choice (and always my favorite too)!

“By the time our children leave our homes, we don’t want them to wonder whether their lives matter. We want them to know that they do. If we tell them enough stories, they will have encountered hard questions and practice living through so many trials, hardships, and unexpected situations that, God willing, they will have what they need to become the heroes of their own stories.” –Sarah MacKenzie, “The Read Aloud Family”

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“If every single person in this room made it a rule that wherever you are, whenever you can, you will try to act a little kinder than necessary–the world really would be a better place. And if you do this, if you just act a little kinder than necessary, someone else, somewhere, someday, may recognize in you, in every single one of you, the face of God.”

 

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And today this little ninja boy had his book character day at preschool! He had so much fun dressing up with his friends and reading all of their favorite books! 

Broadwell Academy, March 2018

Whoo! I think after I post about a March month of school, I’ll be all caught up and ready to share about all the fun we are having this April! Spring is flying by, and as I’m finally getting a chance to sit down and post about school, we actually only have 14 weeks left of this school year! Hallelujah!

But before I get too far ahead of myself, let me try to go back and remember all that we did in March…

Math–Sarah Ann has been focusing on her multiplication and division facts and getting lots of practice with her wrap-ups and fact sheets. Reece covered a lot in March including multiplication, arrays, perimeter, measurement, angles, money, and graphing. Carson has been doing lots of counting, shapes, graphing and sorting, and using objects to create number sentences.

Social Studies–We started back with our SC History studies in March and studied Native Americans in SC, famous explorers, the South Carolina colony, and the American Revolution and Civil War in SC. We worked a lot with map skills, and the kids have so loved being able to relate to so many places that we have visited this year, and Reece’s favorite has definitely been Fort Sumter! Several of the books that Sarah Ann read in the Magic Treehouse series covered some of these historical topics, so Sarah Ann has been able to share lots of information with us too, which she has certainly enjoyed!

Science–This month in science at co-op, we began a new unit on the electromagnetic spectrum and energy in motion. We learned about several different kinds of waves, including radio and television waves, and light waves and visible light. We were able to do some fun experiments with light to see how it is reflection, refracted, and absorbed. We will continue with waves for the rest of this unit to finish out our semester at co-op!

Language Arts–We start our day with all of our language work. We have our calendar time and answer our “daily questions,” and then we move into handwriting and spelling. I know I’ve talked about our spelling curriculum before, but the kids so enjoy learning little facts and bits of information each week when they get their new passage. Reece has loved learning about animals, and Sarah Ann’s passages have all focused on different historical people or events in America. Then the kids get to rotate doing their reading comprehension activities on Reading Eggs or doing First Language Lessons and Writing with Ease with me. We do a lot of our reading aloud during lunch or outside after lunch. We continued reading “Wonder” in March, and we also listened to a book from the “Volunteer Vet” series about manatees in the car, because the kids so loved the manatees at Sea World. We welcomed spring with a fun afternoon reading books outside in the much needed sunshine! We also had our poetry tea time at the end of March when we were celebrating Holy Week leading up to Easter.

Classical Music–This month we studied “The Tortoise and the Hare” with Maestro Classics and talked about how the instruments and music used so very well describe the characters and what was happening in the story. We also read several versions of tortoise and the hare one afternoon too!

Act of Kindness–In March we focused on gratitude, so the kids all chose someone that they would like to write a letter of gratitude too and drew pictures for them. The kids always like it when we get to pull out all of the art supplies and make something for others!

Field Trips–We took a cold, but fun field trip to the Hickory Hill Dairy Farm. We got to take a tour of the farm, see where the cows are milked, and even visit the baby calves, some that had even been born that week. And we of course got to try some of their delicious milk and bring home a couple of gallons too! We also spent a beautiful, warm, and much needed day at the zoo one Friday along with the rest of Columbia! Ha! We had a super fun field trip Friday seeing Columbia City Ballet perform “Cinderella” at the Koger Center and then meet up with friends to go on a scavenger hunt and have a picnic at the Carolina Children’s Garden! And right before spring break, we got to take a tour of Spirit Communications Park, the home of the Columbia Fireflies. We got to visit the dugout, suites, batting cages, and locker room too!

Our South Carolina Spring Break

Monday: Jeffrey took a half day on the first day of spring break for Reece’s birthday, and as always, we so enjoyed having a family day together! Strawberry picking opened up on Monday, and we were so excited to have Daddy go with us for the first time! We’ve always gone during the week or with friends, so it was a treat to have Daddy help us find the biggest and best berries! And boy, did we enjoy eating them too! We spent the rest of the afternoon at another local favorite, Frankies! The kids had a blast doing laser tag, riding the go karts and bumper boats, and playing in the fun house! It was a perfect, sunny South Carolina day celebrating our birthday boy!

Tuesday: Oh, Tuesday was the day I was waiting for! This Momma need the sand and sea and sunshine and the salty air! We loaded up the van and packed in the kids in and spent the most wonderful day at the Isle of Palms with our dear friends Holly, Ella Ray, and Addison! The kids had so much fun playing the sand, jumping in the waves, snacking, swimming in the tide pools, and being together! And Holly and I had the best time relaxing, watching the kids, snacking, and talking all day long! It was a beautiful, sunny, sweet, and fun-filled day! Dinner was quite a different story–ha! It involves not waiting at the restaurant we wanted to go to, but then waiting forever at a different restaurant. But in the end, the kids were awesome and so well behaved, and they gave us our dinner for free! So it all worked out! And we’ve already got another beach day on the calendar, we’ll just pick a different restaurant to eat at next time!

Wednesday: The kids slept in on Wednesday morning and then we met up with some of our friends at Wingard’s Nursery for their kids day supporting Carolina Wildlife! We got to see some of the animals from the wildlife center, making bird feeders (which the birds have devoured), plant flowers, put our handprints on a collage, and visit with the police officers and firefighters! Afterwards we took our picnic lunch to the Irmo Community park to eat and play! After a bit of a windy morning, it turned out to be a beautiful afternoon spent with friends! After a little bit of work around the house and quiet time, the kids went over to Nanny and Pops’ for a spring break sleepover! I got to run a few errands around town alone (Hallelujah!) while Jeffrey played frisbee golf with some of the guys from work, and then we met up for a dinner date at Carrabba’s! Wednesday night date nights will always be my favorite!

Thursday: I picked up the kids on Thursday morning and we headed down to Aiken for the day with Melissa, Caroline, William, Maria, and Sarah! We had a delicious lunch at Trio in the Alley, walked around downtown a bit, got an ice cream treat at Cyndi’s Sweet Shoppe, and then drove over to Hopeland Gardens. We enjoyed walking around together, seeing lots of fish and turtles, and exploring the gardens! Before heading back to Columbia, we went to the Aiken Library park to let the kids play a bit more and then made a stop by Sonic for Happy Hour treats to enjoy on the way home! It was another fun day exploring another part of our great state!

Friday: Friday was a day filled with friends! We had a play date with Carolyn, Nathan, and Emma that morning! The kids played outside, in the woods, with all sorts of swords and weapons, and Sarah Ann and Carson always love “cooking” treats in Emma’s kitchen. Sarah also spent the day with us while Maria at work, and we also made a trip to the library before lunch. Sarah Ann also got to have a special playdate with Chappell on Friday afternoon, while the boys rested, and I got everything ready for Reece’s party! And then we spent the rest of the evening at the park celebrating the birthday boy with his friends! Our friend filled Friday was certainly a fun day!

Saturday: We had originally planned to go to Greenville on Saturday after soccer, but with a forecast full of rain, we decided to have a restful day right here at home! We had three early soccer games in the rain, and three more big wins! We ran a few errands on Harbison, had lunch at Chipotle, made a quick appearance at a birthday party, and then spent the rest of the day at home! Jeffrey and I both took long and much needed naps while the kids played (and J napped), and then we grilled out for dinner that evening and played Pie Face before baths and bed! Not everyone was a huge fan of the game, but they all thought it was fun to see someone else get pied in the face!

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Sunday: And for our last day of spring break, we got to spend some quality time with Devin, Kathy, Anna Claire and Charlie! After church we went to their house to play, eat lunch, and catch up! We also got to spend some time with them outside once it warmed up later that afternoon! And as they say, all good things must come to an end, so Sunday evening we prepared ourselves for the new week ahead and watch the new episode of “Little Big Shots” before bed! A wonderful ending to a most wonderful week!

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Celebrating Our Sweet Zombie!

This year our sweet zombie got to celebrate his 8th birthday for close to two weeks, and I don’t think he minded one bit!

Uncle Jeremy, Aunt Melanie, and Annalee came to South Carolina the weekend of Nanny’s birthday and we were able to celebrate Melanie, Nanny, and Reece’s birthdays all together! I already posted about our fun family day in Charleston, and on Sunday afternoon we all got together again to open gifts, eat pizza and cookie cake, and enjoy spending some more time together before the Georgia fam headed back down I-20. Time together always goes by so quickly, but it’s always such a treat to have a weekend all together! And now we can count down to our beach vacation and Disney World!

On Easter, Reece got to open his birthday presents from Nanny and Pops, and he couldn’t wait to start building with his Lincoln Logs! For dessert, we also had delicious ice cream cake and enjoyed celebrating the soon to be eight year old again!

Reece was pretty excited that his birthday fell on the first day of spring break this year and that he didn’t have to do any work on his birthday! Ha! Jeffrey took a half day off from work, and we had such a fun family day all around Columbia celebrating our Reecer! After having lunch and opening presents at home, we went to pick strawberries, which just happen to be on of Reece’s absolute favorites! Next up was a trip to Academy Sports so that Reece could pick out his new bike! He found his favorite, and he has been riding it all over the neighborhood since his birthday! Reece had been talking about getting his hair cut, so we thought what better day  to do it! And then all of the sudden he looked way to grown up! But he loves it, and it will be so nice to have it shorter for the summer! We spent the rest of the afternoon at Frankie’s Fun Park! The big kids did laser tag with Daddy, while Carson and Jordan played in the fun house! Then we went outside to ride the go-karts and bumper boats! It was an absolutely beautiful day and such a treat to have Daddy with us too! Reece, of course, picked Moe’s for dinner to wrap up his birthday celebration! And after a bike ride around the neighborhood and a few more rounds of laser tag, our big eight year old happily crashed in his bed! Oh, Reecey, you sure to make life fun!

And lastly, our Zombie fan wanted to celebrate Zombie style at the park with his friends! It was the most laid back, go with the flow, most fun party, and we couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful evening! Reece picked Gibson Road park so that everyone could play on the playground or play football and soccer. The kids had so much fun playing, digging in the sand, and eating lots of pizza and cupcakes! Reece is certainly loved, and he has such sweet friends, and we are so thankful that we got to celebrate with them! After his party at the park, Nathan, Anna Claire, and Charlie came back over to have a movie night and watch “Zombies.” They danced, laughed, and ate lots of popcorn and chips! And it was the perfect evening for our sweet boy!

Eight Days of Easter

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Dyeing Easter Eggs

Making Watercolor/Suncatcher Crosses

“An Easter Carol” Movie Night

Carson’s Easter Party at School (our last preschool Easter party ever!)

Poetry Tea Time

Decorating Easter Cookies

Good Friday Service at church and dinner with friends

Fox Farm’s Easter Party and dinner with friends again

Celebrating Our Risen Savior together at church

Enjoying the day with Family, hunting eggs, and enjoying a beautiful day together!

march memories

Y’all, I don’t even know where 2018 is going! We are already 1/4 of the way through the year! And we’ve had so much excitement around here the past couple of weeks, I’ve got a lot to catch up on…Reece’s birthday, finishing another month of school, a wonderful Easter, and so much more! But before all that, here’s a little look back at some sweet March memories….

Happy 8th Birthday, Reecey!

Dear Reecey Piecey,

You are our blue eyed, curly haired, snaggle toothed, sweet and silly boy! I loved your long curls, but your new haircut definitely makes you look eight years old! And I just simply can’t believe it!

You were our greatest surprise, and you still keep us smiling and laughing and surprising us all the time now you! You are our karate ninja, non-stop eater, etch-a-sketch master, and the best middle brother! You and Sarah Ann certainly live in your own little world, but you and Carson are filled with adventures too! You love tacos, apples, strawberries, carrots, wings, pizza, and really anything! You are always eating, but I’m not really sure where it goes, because you are our tall and skinny boy! Some of your favorite things include basketball, soccer, riding your biking, going to church and awana, legos (of course), and being outside as much as possible! You read all the time, draw all the time, love math, and you are always creating or building something! You are a loyal friend, a great helper, a extroverted introvert, a super sweet sibling, and I’m so very thankful that I get to be your Mommy! You are going to take us on a wild ride, I’m sure, but I know that the Lord has big plans for you, and my prayer is that God will draw you to Himself and that you will love and follow Him all of your days!

We love you so much, Reecer! I am so proud of the young man that you are so very quickly becoming! Happy, happy birthday to one of our most precious gifts!

Love, Mommy

Happy Easter 2018!

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The moon and stars they wept
The morning sun was dead
The Savior of the world was fallen
His body on the cross
His blood poured out for us
The weight of every curse upon him

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One final breath He gave
As Heaven looked away
The Son of God was laid in darkness
A battle in the grave
The war on death was waged
The power of hell forever broken

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The ground began to shake
The stone was rolled away
His perfect love could not be overcome
Now death where is your sting
Our resurrected King has rendered you defeated

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Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive

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We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

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Celebrating in Charleston!

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Saturday we took a trip down to Charleston for the day to celebrate Nanny, Melanie, and Reece’s birthdays! We spent the afternoon exploring all over downtown historic district: Waterfront Park, the Battery, a local playground, King Street, and the market. It was an absolutely beautiful day for walking around and playing, and the cousins, of course, loved being together! Reece also picked his favorite, the Noisy Oyster, for dinner, and we can’t end a trip to Charleston without stopping by the candy store! Family time is always so very sweet, and we are so thankful for such a fun day celebrating together!

Field Trip Fun!

We had a week filled with field trips last week, and it was so much fun!

Last Tuesday Carson’s sweet class went back to the Lexington County Museum to learn about the one room school house. He asked Pops to be his chaperone and go with them, and they had a wonderful time! It was a little chilly that morning, but it turned out to be a beautiful day for a walk to the museum. And Carson has not stopped talking about all the things he learned while on the field trip. He has told us about using quills and ink to write with, carrying a tin bucket with their lunches inside, boys sitting on one side and girls sitting on the other, using hornbooks and the Bible to learn to read, and about the schoolmaster ringing the bell to let everyone know it was time to start school! Thank you, Pops, for joining Carson on his field trip!

Then on Wednesday, Jordan got to meet his teachers and some of his classmates at the zoo for their “Lead and Learn” day. We walked around the zoo with his friend Zoe and her mom, and they had a blast looking at all the animals and completing their scavenger hunt! It was quite the cold and windy morning, but that didn’t stop Jordan from checking everything out! And it was nice to be able to go into the buildings to see some of the animals in between being out in the cold. Jordan’s usually the one following the other three around and trying to keep up with them, so I think he really enjoyed having all the attention that morning! Thank you, Nanny, for taking care of the big three while Jordan and I were having fun at the zoo!

And lastly, we had quite the Field Trip Friday this week! We started the morning off at the Koger Center watching Columbia City Ballet’s performance of “Cinderella!” They did a wonderful job, all of the kids were so engaged in the performance, and we even got to sit on the front row! After the ballet, some of our friends from co-op invited us to go with them to the Carolina Children’s Garden. This was our first visit, but we’ll definitely go back again! The kids loved exploring all the different garden exhibits, completing the scavenger hunt, enjoying a picnic lunch, making up their own “shows” to perform on the stage, and soaking up the sweet sunshine! Oh, it was such a fun day and one of those days that makes me so thankful that we get to homeschool!