Monday, October 19, 2015

Just maybe Fall is finally here..

It's starting to actually feel like fall around these parts. For a long time here, the weather wasn't keeping up with the calendar. We finally got a true fall feeling day, complete with fog and showers. I love a rainy day excuse for cozying in and spending some intentional, slow time with my boys. There was pumpkin pie baked oatmeal and little tomatoes to pop in the food dehydrator. My Oldest loves to arrange the multi-hued tomato halves on the dryer shelves and gush about how prepared we're going to be for winter with all our yummy dried tomatoes.

We enjoyed a fall time nature collecting field trip to our "tree farm" property. The boys took their nature baskets and collected fallen leaves galore along with whatever other treasures caught their fancy. (including some wild pears we found!) I really love using nature collecting and journaling as "science" for the boys schooling. Children are always curating their own nature collections as it is-why not add in some classification and interesting facts and call it school?

I have absolutely no artistic abilities to share with my boys, but I'm hoping by encouraging them to start young they will acquire at least basic skills. My Oldest has been pretty enthralled with sketching birds out of a North American bird field guide we have on the bookshelf. I'm impressed with his eye for detail and love seeing how proud of his finished masterpiece he is.

Timelining is nothing new to the homeschool scene but we just started incorporating it into our studies! I have a feeling it's going to be a really enjoyable way for us to track what we learn about during the year and how it fits into the history of the world. The boys loved seeing the looonngg "span of time" we have to fill in. This past week, we added timeline figures for Abraham, Isaac and the ancient Egyptians.
The work of doing some lesson planning and making the time in my daily schedule for the boys schooling is daunting at times. Adding "Teacher" to my list of roles is taking some time to become second nature. But seeing the wonder spark in my sons' eyes as they encounter new ideas and interests makes it worth it to me. Their love of learning makes me slow down and appreciate all their is around us to "educate". My Little/Big Boy asks "Why?", just like every other 3 year old, but he also asks "How?". I love that.
I'm excited to add a new podcast series to my "play list". The Mason Jar Podcast looks like a great resource for all the Charlotte Mason Mamas out there!
To add to the constant activity that is our household, we decided to a bring a new family member on board. My determined husband has been talking about getting a Rottweiler for years now. I was so hesitant about the idea of a large, aggressive dog living with my kids for a long time. I finally got on board with the benefits of a protective breed being right for our family. Then it was just never the right timing- too busy of a season or the kids were too young. Finally, we decided the time was right. We've been on the lookout for a puppy for months before finding the perfect pup for us. Introducing Stella.

We drove up the coast with all the little boys in tow to pick up our new pup. Stella was the puppy who instantly jumped into the boys' laps and wouldn't leave their side. She is a sweetheart and I'm excited to have a pal to grow up alongside my boys. My middle boy has a real heart for animals and we especially wanted to find a good puppy for him. It made me smile to watch him spend the morning out in the rain playing with his new friend. :) And my responsible Oldest has been happily feeding the puppy and even cleaning up puppy piles!
Every little boy needs a dog.

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