Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Summer is going so fast.  It's already the end of July.  J started her summer reading for high school and chose The Outsiders to read first.  She's still not much into reading, so thankfully that book seems fairly lightweight - and it's on the list.  The next book she's going to read is called The Glass Castle.  That one is mandatory and a project will be due.  We're getting ready for her dance challenge next weekend.  Then she starts working on a performance for a fundraiser that's in August, and then she starts on her new dance solo for the upcoming season.  This year she chose "lyrical" and she was lucky enough to get an excellent choreographer who is flying in from California for only 3 days.  J will have a total of 5 hours over 2 days working with him.  She's so excited.

Camp is still going strong for W.  He gets to be active and busy all day with lots of other kids - and he's wiped out tired by 9pm.  I'm glad he's on a good bedtime schedule now.  Once school starts for both girls he'll have to start getting up early anyway.  I'll be driving J and B to the train and then K to school.  I figure it might be better to get an earlier academic start with W, too - that means more of the afternoon free to play and go places!  I plan on being more active in the homeschool groups this year and I want to get lots more Manhattan time in.  There's still so much out there we haven't experienced yet.  W doesn't know how he's going to like homeschooling without J, but I plan on making this year extra special for him.

I'm trying to figure out which IHIP I should send in next month.  I have my general, all-encompassing one I always use and I have my Ambleside Online -specific one.  It doesn't really matter, although I may need more of a quarterly with the latter.  Ugh.  Not sure what to do.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Beautiful Blogger Award

What a nice surprise to be given the Beautiful Blogger Award!  I want to say thank you so much to the wonderful mom over at Eclectic Homeschoolers

There are 3 rules associated with the Blogger award.

1.  Add a link and note of thanks to the person giving the award.
2.  Pass the award on to the bloggers whose blogs you love (15 tops)
3.  Share 7 things about yourself.

I'd like to pass along the award to:

  1. Blessed Life - A great blogger and personal friend who lives life to the fullest and has taught me how very special a family really is.
  2. What's On My Mind - Awesome words from another friend who reflects on how the normalcies of life can be so interesting and fun.
  3. Majikfaerie - A wonderful free spirit who lives in Australia with her beautiful family.  I love reading about their adventures.
  4. Nurtured By Love - A talented family I enjoy reading about so much.  This mom was one of the first bloggers I came across while finding my own homeschooling journey.  She showed me that not only can this be done, but done well.
  5. NYC Homeschooler - Another good friend who loves NY almost as much as I do, lol.  I enjoy reading about what cool project her kids will come up with next.
  6. A Mother's Journal - a great blog to get lost in.  This mom is using Ambleside Online with her daughter and knows how to bring it all to life in such an inspiring way.
And 7 things about myself:
  1. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology
  2. I won a karaoke contest once
  3. I hate my hair
  4. I love scary movies and roller coasters
  5. I can waterski
  6. I love birds more than any other animal
  7. I can spend hours in a bookstore

Monday, July 12, 2010

Camp Update

So, as nervous as I was on Thursday when W started camp, things are going incredibly well.  I had a huge knot in my stomach leaving him there that first day.  One of the counselors is a 4th grade teacher and gave the usual fixed smile "ohhhhhhhh" after our answer to "where does he go to school".  I just hoped it wasn't going to be like sitting in a classroom for 10 hours.  I went down to see the main camp area and saw that W was already given breakfast (cereal, milk, juice) and that it was nice and cool in there.  The 4th grade teacher made sure he moved down to sit next to some of the other kids.  I walked out of there a little worried.  It sucks being the new kid. 

I told W that if he needed me at all, for any reason, he could tell one of the adults he wanted to call me.   By noon he still hadn't called.   I knew that they played outside in the water at around 12:30, so I drove over and inconspicuously parked across the street from the playground area.  I watched W for about a 1/2 hour.  I know, I'm crazy.  But I wanted to see how well he was getting along with the other kids and that he was having fun.  He seemed to have made quite a few friends and looked like he loved being there.  Ok, good.  I can go home and relax now, lol.

He came home raving about his day again on Friday (no, I didn't spy on him again, lol).  Then he talked all weekend about how he couldn't wait for Monday.  I'm actually very happy that he loves it.  Gone are the days where you can just let your kid run wild outside, not see him all day, and then call him in for dinner.  I grew up in that time of carefree fun and it was great.  Unfortunately, nowadays, we are more aware of stranger danger and what could happen, and how frightening it is when your child is out of your sight.  You could live in the city or the most rural woods - someone could be watching your child, waiting for that moment he's alone, and then just snatch him away.

I am grateful to have a place W can go where it's fun, he has friends, and he is safe.  He's already hugged me and thanked me for letting him go there (and hugged and thanked MIL for finding it for him).  Too bad schools aren't run like camps.  Imagine how great schools would be if they allowed for more freedom, more fun, more outside time, more cool activities, more socializing time, more socializing with different age groups, snack time in all grades, and making learning enjoyable.  What a concept, huh?

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Day Camp

W will be starting day camp tomorrow!  I've had the kids in camp over the years and they've really loved it.   I guess with all the high school stuff and next year's homeschool curriculum and the girls' endless summer plans it slipped my mind this year.  Thankfully, MIL found one in walking distance with the perfect price.  It will be from 7:30am to 6pm.  They provide meals and a full day of cool activities, including water play, academic competitions, movies, and cooking class.  W is an early riser, so that works out.  B will take him in the mornings before work and pick him up when he gets home.  W is so excited and is looking forward to it. 

We will still be doing as much academic stuff as we can.  I'm not worried about finishing this curriculum before autumn.  Camp is just what he needs right now.  Friends on the block and the playground are great, but when it's too hot (it was 103 the other day) or no one's home, W has a hard time knowing what to do with himself.  We go places, do crafts, cook, and he still does his cartooning, claymation, and weapon-making, but after a few hours, he's bored.  He's the kind of kid who loves being on the go and keeping busy. 

So, he starts tomorrow.  He didn't even want to wait til Monday, lol.  Tonight I'll pack everything he needs:  sunscreen, swim trunks, extra shirt, plastic bag for wet clothes, some snacks, and water.  I hope he loves it.  He can then do the whole 6 weeks.  Wish us luck!