Sunday, 15 March 2015

Our Week: So much fun!

Wow yet another super week!  Here are only a few highlights (although a lot of photo)...

Finally some warmer weather!  The boys got outside, down and dirty.

I wrote about this one day on our Facebook Page.  MJ takes much longer than his older brother to fall asleep.  We have given him some extra settling time to play and unwind.  With the time change he was up even later but instead of being frustrated I took time to see what he was up to.  MJ had built a pyramid from pattern blocks.  Later he added a pond for sharks.  When I went to bed I turned out his flashlight and discovered that he had added sharks to his pond too.


One day this week I pulled out the science kit TJ had received for his last birthday.  We did the last few experiments together.  After watching for a bit MJ decided he wanted to make his own concoctions.  This went on for a few days as he had them in and out of the fridge and freezer.

The next day was wonderful as we spent a great deal of time at home without having to rush off to lessons, playgroups etc.  I wrote a whole separate blog post HERE.


Even warmer weather came towards the middle/end of the week.  My boys had a water fight with ice cold puddles.  They splashed and ran around enjoying the sun!

At times TJ has expressed boredom.  Not with being home with us or anything.  He is going through a transition between being a little kid and becoming a big kid.  It is hard for him and we are patiently helping him through this time.  One day I gave him a few suggestions to get him started on doing something other than bugging his brother.  The two actually came up with the most crazy chalk drawings.  I believe one is of a skidoo with a door at the front, hay bail cab and volcano passenger.  There is a monkey on the back holding another volcano.  Volcanos and tractors have been a big theme for the past few weeks.  The boys have really enjoyed learning all about the different types of volcanos, their names and how they are formed.  They have expanded their vocabulary and imaginative play.


One day while playing farm MJ found his needle felted mouse and was using that.  TJ went on a search for his and our game continued.  Then TJ suggested that we make some more needle felted friends to add to our play.  Of course I said yes!  So TJ made this adorable bunny almost all by himself.

MJ made a tractor almost all by himself.  He was sure to include headlights, tail lights and wheels.  Although, it hasn't survived his rough play as well as I had hoped but he loves it.  He has shown it off to everyone he can.

This week we joined a book club that meets at the library once a month.  There was an opening for the last few weeks of the year.  I told the boys we' go this week just to check it out and then discuss what we thought of it.  Well huge success there!!  It was a group of homeschoolers (mot of whom we already knew).  The topic this month was aliens.  One of the moms had gathered several children's books and read a few to the group.  Next she had planed a fun craft for everyone to make their own space ship and aliens.  Even though we joined late in the year we offered to take on next month as they needed someone to lead it.  Not sure yet what topic we'll choose.

I love Pinterest.  I often find some really cool ideas and then forget to share them with the boys.  On morning I told TJ about these balloon powered Lego cars I'd seen.  He went off to build one but it didn't really go anywhere.  He was rather disappointed and frustrated.  I was disappointed too because all the blogs I checked out said it worked great.  So I made a few different designs for us to test.  It turn out that you need a car that really rolls well.  TJ had the bottom one go all the way down the hall!

After our last trip to the library we changed up all the books we had out.  MJ still took out some tractor books but since he'd read them all he added in some construction trucks too.  On the shelf across from him we noticed the human body section so he took out a book and video from there too.  TJ's new interest is space and he also got some motorcycle books too.


One of TJ's library picks was a movie about the Mars Rovers.  It turns out to be a documentary that he has been fascinated by.  He now knows all the ins and outs of the Spirit and Opportunity space missions.  This I'm sure will lead us to research more on Curiosity and more.  My boys often like to take what they have learned and build a model of it.  TJ wanted to make his own Mars Rover.  He's added great details such as brown dirt, a camera, satellite, and rock collection bucket.

While he got started on that I pulled out a robot kit the boys ere given at Christmas.  It has extra moving parts and things you can add to your own recycled parts robots.  Perfect timing!!  As you can see above the boys made some really creative looking robots.

We also had out play group this week which didn't last long due to a cold wind  But it was nice to get out and see everyone.  On the weekend Grandma and Grandpa Scott dropped by.  MJ helped to make the salad for everyone.  We also checked on the progress of out seed experiment.  We had a great visit and a nice long walk before Grandma and Grandpa headed out.

TJ's been reading a lot more in the past week.  I'll be writing a separate post on that soon.  After telling him how I used to track my student's reading when I was a teacher, TJ decided to do something similar.  He wants to read 50 books by the end of April.  His reading chart is a path from Earth to Mars for his Mars Rover that he drew.  We'll write the name of each book on a star as he reads to us.  In his excitement to get going TJ read 3 books on the first day!!


While out shopping one day TJ say a really cool net with a telescopic handle.  He had to have it!!  Daddy and I did explain that we already had three nets at home in the shed and the handle looked like it might easily break on this one.  But TJ locked on to the idea of having this net.  So we told him that if he had enough money of his own we'd take him to the store.  Surprisingly he had a whole lot of dimes and nickels in his jar.  Pleased with his purchase we went over to the thrift store for something we needed.  MJ wandered to the toy section and was playing for ages with a bag of parts that were open on the floor.  We asked at the front how much this toy was and since there was no price he lady rang it in at $3.  I also happened to get 30% off my whole purchase from all the purging we've been doing lately.  TJ became rather jealous of MJ's new toy.  Oh what a dilemma, what to do... on the way home we talked as a family and decided that as adults we often change our minds about a purchase and are allowed to return it.  TJ had given some more thought and can to the conclusion that he did have other nets at home and would rather spend hi money on something different.  After dropping MJ and I of at home, TJ and daddy went back out to return the net and choose something different for TJ.  
Not everyone will agree with our parenting choices here.  But we both feel it was a valuable learning experience for TJ.    He started with a jar full of money and all he got was a flimsy net, while his brother spend less on a really cool used toy.  TJ learned that we can sometimes return our purchases, but can not at the thrift store.  He and daddy talked about what might be a better use of his money and he is thrilled with his new purchase (he got a soccer ball shaped pillow and a tire shaped carrying case).  Next time I believe TJ will think more before jumping in and buying everything he wants.  He'll also have to wait a while until he saves up more money too.

Oh super awesome bonus:  I looked online to find out more about what it was ha MJ bought.  Turns out we scored two sets worth $25 each all in one bag.  So that's an awesome $50 construction toy for less than 3!  It really is cool and MJ has been building for hours (even in bed).


Our fun week ended with a joint birthday party for the boys cousins who are now 1 and 3 years old.  This Minion party was so adorable.  They made minion play dough, another fun minion craft, had a minion easter egg hunt and adorable baked minion goodies.  My sister knows how to add special details and a fun party!!!


So there you have it.  Another busy week from us.  What have you been up to?