Monday, September 19, 2011

This Mom Recommends...

Win a copy for Mother's Day!

The 10 Habits of Happy Mothers by Dr. Meg Meeker.  I mean, who wouldn't want to learn to be a happy mother.  Dr. Meeker makes it clear that this book is not about making you a BETTER mother, but rather a HAPPIER one.  I wasn't unhappy, but really wanted to learn how to shake off those little things that get in my way.

She tackles those issues we all know we have, but don't talk about: competition with other mothers, money issues, low self esteem, anxiety, faith, fear and more.  She offers practical tips at the end of each chapter to help make the changes needed. 

Her website even offers a free Tool Kit to really get you started.  I am going to read one of her other books Boys Should Be Boys and get Strong Fathers and Strong Daughters for my husband.  Something for everyone, so check out Dr. Meeker's website.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Learning from Large Family Logisitics

Large Family Logistics

I mentioned before that I was reading this book and I have finally started to implement some of the ideas into my family life.
I have assigned tasks to each day.  At first the thought of giving jobs to each day seemed ridiculous, but now I totally get it.  While mine are not exactly the same as the book, here is how my week is structured:

Monday: Office/paperwork day
Tuesday: Laundry and cleaning day (Shared areas)
Wednesday: Errands (Running around) day
Thursday: Laundry and cleaning day (Bedrooms)
Friday: Outside and pet clean up day
Saturday: Meal prep and bulk cooking day
Sunday: Rest and plan day
I am also trying to get the work done before 4 as she suggested.  This way I am available for the kids in the afternoon.  So far having a plan feels good.  Keeping with the plan is another thing.  I'll keep you posted. 

Do you plan your days?  What is your plan?

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Cross in the Woods

While we were up north we went to the Cross in the Woods.  I just love it there.  So beautiful.
The kids with the Holy Family.  (I picked one where they aren't all looking, darn.)

At the statue of Kateri Tekakwitha.  (Still one not looking!)
#1 and #2 looking at the turtles at the feet of Kateri Tekakwitha.
With Blessed Mary!  (And all looking in the same direction!)
#3 helping #4 with her shoes!

We all enjoyed some quiet time.  The kids explored the grounds and walked from one statue to another.  #1 read signs and plaques to the others.  Hubby and I sat for a while, prayed quietly and chatted a bit.  It was a beautiful day!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Wrapping up summer

I know I did these backwards, but we took a trip to Northern Michigan to wrap up summer a week or two before school started.  My parents have a house up there, so it is comfortable and the kids have plenty of room to move around.
One (#1) whittled the time away.  He is so proud to have earned his Whittling Chip!
One (#2) gave another (#4) a push.  She is so proud to be a big sister!
And one (#3) master the art of tree climbing.  She was so proud of herself!
Even Gibson (#5?) got some much deserved rest time.  He is such a good dog!

We even made a road trip further north from here, but that is another post....

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Back To School

The kids have been in school a week.  We are off to a good start.  Working hard to get back in the swing of things.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Decision...

I have been trying to make a decision about schooling for my kids for months (I think it might be approaching a year!).  Last year I made the decision to send #1 to school all day, #2 for half a day and #3 to do preschool at home.  It went well, except...

#1 - Really doesn't like school.  He is going through some stuff.  I am hoping he can sort it out.

#2 - Loves being with the kids at school, but her medical needs are high.  Lots of kids love her, but a full day seemed like a lot.

#3 - Longed to be at school.  She enjoyed being home with her baby sister and I, but she really wanted to go to school, have a backpack and be with kids.

So, I have spend the last 4 months going back and forth.  I didn't register #3 for kindergarten for months.  I started looking at plans for homeschooling multiple children and thinking about curriculum.  I have read every homeschooling blog I could find.  I have looked at private schools, catholic schools and other local schools of choice. 

Here is what I have planned:

#1 - He is going back to school.  He is in the second year of a 2 year program.  He wanted to stay home, but when given a school plan he decided to go to school this year.  I think he thought staying home equaled summer vacation all the time. 

#2 -  She is going to school part time.  She will receive the special education services while she is there.  She will get to be with kids her own age and that motivates her to try things!

#3 - She is going to half day kindergarten.  I will do some schooling with her the second half of the day - just like I did Kid #2 last year. 

#4 - I have some really great tot plans from a few blogs and I am going to start some simple units with her this year. 

My plan is to reevaluate as the year goes along.  I will be more likely to change gears mid-year depending on how the year is going this year because of all the research I have done this year!

I will be homeschooling religion too.  I picked up Lacy's book from Catholic Icing.  Really great stuff!

I am also working on a plan for cleaning and organizing the house, oh and the budget....