Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Doll Review

Recently, I was asked to test a product for ebeanstalk. I'm not allowed to talk about it because it's not out on the market yet; but they sent me a toy as a thank you for testing the product for them. The product was for baby Daniel, so the toy was to be an age-appropriate toy for him.

Here's what they sent us (modeled by my beautiful oldest daughter)

It's a plush baby doll. It'd have been nice for it to have atleast been blue for our little fella, but we do have some people in our house who like pink :)

He's not old enough to play with any toys other than looking at things that are hanging over him and he's beginning to swat at things. However, here's what I think about the doll from what I can tell. . .

~I really like having toys that don't have a lot of bells and whistles. This one certainly doesn't have any. That's a good thing for using our imaginations, which is a very important skill in my opion!

~I like that it's plush, so it can be one of the first toys that Daniel plays with.

~While this was sent as age appropriate for our baby, our big girls have adopted her into their family of babies and she has enjoyed the stroller rides up and down our street!

~I probably would not have bought this for Daniel (being pink and all as well as having a supply of babies here already!), but our family is taking good care of her and enjoying her!

Ebeanstalk is a toy website dedicated to selecting the best toys by age and kids toys. The in-home feedback of bloggers and moms like me around the country help to make sure ebeanstalk continues to provide the best educational toys for your child. Check it out for yourself!

disclaimer: I was given this doll in exchange for product testing and for agreeing to review it on my blog. All opions are mine. I recieved no other compensation for this review.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Baking Time

A couple of weeks ago, Mary Helen had a playdate, so Anna and I decided to do some baking together. We made a most delicious recipe. Yellow Cake Mix with a tub of chocolate frosting :) Here are a couple of pictures of my little helper.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Fun in the Sun!

We pulled out the kiddie pool the other day. I think it's time for an upgrade :) They had fun just getting wet though!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Pre Planning Days!

I love planning for school. It seems so ideal all the wonderful things we will accomplish this year. My children will sit perfectly still taking in all their lessons, then joyfully completing the day's work. There will be no whining, no stalling, no back talking. . . My children will graciously thank me at the end of each day for my creativity and fun in lesson planning. Mary Helen will win the National Spelling Bee at age 6.

Well, I can dream, right?

I do hope that we have a fun year with lots of learning. I don't really care if I don't have the smartest kids on the block, but I want them to have a good education!

I am following some of the things I learned in The Well Trained Mind book. Science will follow the model set out in the book, but I am putting together my own stuff (actually I'm mostly following exactly what another homeschool mom did and emailed me, but I'm adding and subtracting to suit us).

I'm also following the WTM's recommendations for History, and using Story of the World.

Reading will be taught using The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading; for grammar, we will use First Language Lessons.

I'm considering getting Handwriting Without Tears.

For math, I've decided to give Saxon math a try this year.

I look forward to sharing our fun science topics we are going to cover this year!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

What Else We've Been Up To. . . . (in pictures - lots of them!)

In no particular order :)

My grandpa turned 90 last week, and here are a few pictures from his party. There were 5 generations represented there!

Here is a picture of the birthday boy, and one of his cake. It looks like his business card and reads, "Preacher by profession, Craftsman by trade, Fisherman by choice." He is a neat man, and we are grateful to have had him for a grandpa. He gave his "last sermon" to all of us that afternoon, and he said something that he's been telling us for years - a Chinese proverb "Die young, as late as you can" and a poem that he wrote to go along with it. I can't remember word-for-word, but the gist is to be nice to that old man that you'll be someday, for his aches and woes depend on things you do today. He talked so sweetly about his bride who was not there for his birthday, the first he's celebrated without her in over 60 years. I hope that Joel and I are still that in love after 60 years.

We took a cruise. . . or atleast played on a structure that looks like Noah's ark :)

fed turtles

made Daniel mad a few times. . .

rode on our cousin's horses. . .

Here is a picture of my grandpa, mom, me, and my kids. . .

Daddy with his boy. . .

my dad's side of the family with my mom

and a few more from the hospital when Daniel was born. . .

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tap, Tap, Tap. . . Is This Thing On?

Well, it's been almost a whole year since I last blogged. SO much has happened. It has been a sad year for us. First, my dad and stepmom got a divorce after about 12 years of marriage. It has been tough on our family. Then, in September, my grandmother died - she was the first of my 4 grandparents that I have lost, the other 3 are still living, and they all live in my small town. Later, in January, Joel's grandmother died - his last living grandparent. Both of our grandmothers led full lives, and made the most of their lives on our Earth. Both left amazing legacies behind.

BUT, we had something very amazing happen. . . his name is Daniel, and he has the hearts of all of us. Here is our first family picture.
and a few others. . .

so. . . we have been busy around here, but I am looking forward to getting back to blogging! I have missed it! It's so fun to look back and see the things we've done, and I want to keep it up for our kids to have to see some of our memories!
We will start back to school on July 5th. I have had fun making plans for this year. I can't believe Mary Helen will be in first grade already! Anna will be doing Pre K fun stuff. Daniel will hopefully be very cooperative to our homeschooling efforts!
In the coming days, I'll be sharing some pictures from the last 2 months since Daniel has been born, and sharing some of our homeschool plans.