Saturday, August 31, 2013

Zoo-Friday School Day

Yesterday was the last school day of our first week and I really wanted to focus on some specific Ontario Curriculum Objectives.
After some extensive research I decided on the skills listed below

1.2 use adaptive, management, and coping skills to help them respond to the various challenges
they encounter as they participate in physical activities and develop movement competence
A1.1 actively participate in a wide variety of program activities according to
their capabilities, while applying behaviours that enhance their readiness and ability to take
A3.1 demonstrate behaviours and apply procedures that maximize their safety and that of others
during physical activity
A3.2 describe common precautions for preventing accidents and injuries while participating in different
types of physical activity
B1.1 perform a variety of controlled static balances and transitions between balances, using a variety
of body parts and shapes, at different levels, individually, and with partners and equipment
C2.2 apply a decision-making process

It seemed obvious that the best place to challenge the above skills was at the Gorilla Climbing Structure at the Zoo. 

And since we were already there we threw in a little Science Curriculum.

3.1 demonstrate an understanding of habitats as areas that provide plants and animals with the necessities of life

Friday, August 30, 2013

Behind the Curtain

When M heard he would be going to school for a year in another city .... we followed along behind him. Luckily for us his school is very supportive of the families that tagged along and today they had an orientation and Meet and Greet.
The kids loved seeing where M sits in his class, the library space and the briefing room. He gave them a personal tour and we pretended to be giving our own briefing.
There were 50+ kids there and they played a rousing game of soccer after dinner. A good time was had by all.

On another note .... we finished the Narnia Series. I can't remember exactly when we started but it was probably just over a year ago. I committed to reading the boys pages from the Narnia books each night. With seven books, and a forced hiatus while M co-opted reading time with a book of his choosing, it has taken us until now to finish. What do we read now?

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Other Me

You see this picture right here?
This is the real me.
Exactly how I would choose to spend pretty near every minute of every day. Quietly reading some giant tome on some significant person/place or time. Bliss.

It's not that I don't like people. It's just that I don't like a lot of people for a lot of time. And I'm not particularly fond of meeting new people.

(You would think that having moved so often and been so fortunate to make such great friendships that I would learn to adapt .... nope.)

However, I'm a mom and I'm a homeschooler. And that means it is my responsibility to 'get these kids out there and get them socialized'!

With that in mind I have been putting out feelers and looking for people in our area. Luckily there are people who like people and I've had some responses. Tomorrow we have a park/library 'date' with two other homeschool families.

Wish me luck as I put away the 625 page auto-biography of Nelson Mandela I'm currently reading and venture out. Picnic lunch packed and a smile on my face ..... it's time to make some friends.

Monday, August 26, 2013


We have had extraordinaryily nice weather since we arrived at the beginning of the month.
All the better to enjoy the garden and our company.

And who's that hiding behind the polka dotted girl?
UncleM. He's a sucker for this girl.
But who wouldn't be ..... look at that face.
Or maybe there's something about uncles.

Back in the Day


There they are above on one of our first homeschool days ever. 


Starting our fifth year now.

The adventure continues.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Lost(?) and Found

And the search was on. We needed to find a local park.
Some green space, swings, somewhere in the shade to picnic lunch.
On our way North we came across a lot of grates, cars and people.
About 1.5km up the road we were feeling a little discouraged. So we stopped for tea and cookies.
The 1st picture is how the kids wanted to pose. The 2nd is how I wanted them to pose.

We decided to veer off the main road and go a little east.
Less than 1km from our building.
We found out what we need.
Swings, green space, shade and a picnic area.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Puzzle Pieces

All is well here in our new home. No boxes left to unpack.
I've been searching for activities for us in the new school year. And it got me thinking about what it takes to get settled in a community.
Building a 'life' is kind of like putting together a puzzle.
All these little pieces of places and people that we visit and need.
When we move it's like someone takes it away and gives you a new puzzle box.
You know all the pieces are there but they need to be put together.
Some pieces fall into place no problem but others are tricky and hard to find.
I wonder what it would be like to have had the same puzzle for a long long time.
I keep getting new puzzle challenges.
1999, 2001, 2008, 2011, 2013, 2014.......

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Hello, Good-Bye

The boys were so excited for our friends to arrive on Monday.
A&E went out on the balcony to try and signal them as they pulled on to the street.
I don't think they were looking quite high enough to spot the boys .... 23 floors is a lo-o-o-ong way up.
We showed them around the building, visited and then zipped off to the mall to check out the LEGO store and grab some ice cream before dinner.
Today we scouted out a park that's only about 10 minutes from here.
Definitely a park we'll return to.
The kids were happy to 'joust' on the equipment.
Two points for a hit. Two points if your opponent doesn't make it across the zip line.
Five points if you knock your opponent to the sand.
These two littles should get points for cuteness!!
But alas, all good things must come to an end.
We'll miss you friends.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Before We Start A New Week

Learning while we walk. On our way to the movies the other day we saw an open manhole.
So the question was ... what's in there?
We went to take a peek and the gentleman got out of his truck to talk with us. He gave us a great description of what wires/cables were there and how some are deeper than others. He explained how they service them and what special training is required to go down. (There were a couple of deaths a few years ago so new restrictions were developed.) We asked what work they were doing and he explained that they are adding something to ground electricity after a small dog was electrocuted walking over a metal cover on the sidewalk. Interesting.

Nana babysat the boys while M and I went on a date night. And just to give the kids a hard time .... we took a picture of ourselves at the LEGO Store and emailed it to them. Hahaha ... we're hysterical.

This weeked we drove up to OwenSound. (We can do that now because it's so close.) There were tall ships there .... and of course the VMB household.

UncleJ took the kids out on his boat for a quick spin on Friday night. But on Saturday they decided to really make a day of it. 
 They took their snorkel gear with them.
And though the water was cold they could see right down to the bottom and the sun was shining.

E got to do his thing and drive the boat while A had a little nap.

The big boys did a great job of taking care of my little guys.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

How to Pick a Picture

M took his kids and his ladies on a fun field trip today.
The Zoo!
Right after we walked in the door there was a wonderful bird.
We heard some fun facts about its abilities and E was able to ask a question.
And did you know you could ride a camel there?
After riding the horses at the Medieval Festival this summer they were excited to try another mode of transport. They tell me that the horse was a smoother ride.
We were so so lucky to get in quickly to see the pandas. Bother were sleeping but stunningly beautiful nonetheless. My favourite as always were the giraffes. The white lions were gorgeous.
Did you know the hippo is the most dangerous animal in Africa? And the elephant is the biggest animal in Africa. And the alpaca .... well it's just cute.
A's favourite of the day .... penguins. I admit they are adorable.
The way they wobble and hop ... irresistible
Of course you always have to keep your eye on the photographer because you never know where he might be lurking. 
We spent some time in the KidZoo.
And even though the air was a little chilly the boys couldn't resist the call of the waterpark.
So let's do the math.
Science Centre membership + RoyalOntarioMuseum membership + Toronto Zoo membership
=One year of interesting field trips ahead of us.

Update Dec2020

My Guy A My Guy E School Rooms at Home Deck the Halls It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas