Sunday, March 28, 2010

Letters to you

I read about somebody who's new year's resolution was going to be to write a card or letter to somebody everyday.  I thought this sounded like a great idea, but everyday sounded a little intimidating for me.  I don't really have the time or the memory to do it everyday.  I have been thinking about this for awhile and decided I could modify it for myself and write a card or letter once a week.  

I think this is such a great idea because we rely so much on e-mail, facebook, and texts that we forget how much it means to a person to get a personal letter in the mail.  I hope the people I send cards to feel special when they get my card.

I am excited to be using some note cards that I won from More Than Word Photography by Tammi Dryden.  I won these beautiful cards with peonies that she photographed.  She does beautiful work photographing children and families.  

So far I am on track and haven't missed a week (although I only started 3 weeks ago).  I hope I am able to follow through on this for a full year.  

I hope that Annabelle will watch me write letters and see how important writing is as well as how fun it can be.  She already likes to "write" letters to people, so you may just get one from her included with my letter.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Let Me Introduce You To...

Super Dad

My husband is probably the best daddy you will ever meet.  

He watches Annabelle and Ariel every day while I work and then he goes to work.
He plays really fun things that mommy doesn't play
     Monsters, forts, pulling around on blankets, chasing
He always has something for us to do
     Walking trails, library, walking downtown
He reads books all the time
He works with Annabelle on beginning sounds, opposites, rhyming, numbers, letters, etc.

There are so many other things that he does that make him a wonderful daddy.


I was looking at some different research that I thought I had heard about.  It says that fathers are so important in a child's development.  Check out some of the facts I found:

Typical father could be called a primary playmate in the same way that a typical mother is called a primary caregiver 

By both the quantity and quality of their play, then, fathers often become the primary and preferred playmates

Father play may have a special role in supporting early development by providing greater variation in play experiences.

Fathers' responsive and didactic behavior during play is strongly related to children's early cognitive development.

Three-quarters of all children responding said they would rather play with Dad, indicating that there is a certain need that dads fill for their children.

The rather general term "roughhousing" can be interpreted in many different ways, but there is little doubt that this type of physical play is often a father's area of specialty.

"Roughhouse-type play such as tumbling and wrestling has been proven to teach self-confidence, assertiveness and self-control, as well as teaching limits.

Here are the links if you want to check out the articles.

I wish I told James more often how much I appreciate the husband and father he is.  

I Love You So Much

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Hello Spring

Annabelle has been riding her new bike around the house, but since it has been nice this past week, she was able to ride it outside.

Ariel tried out her sunglasses

The girls had lots of fun playing on Daddy.  My sisters and I used to do this.  We would pretend my dad was a car and then I would pull both of them back and we would yell, "Stop Suddenly!"

I am so glad my girls have each other.  They sure love each other.  
I love having sisters.  We sure love each other.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

It's Finally Coming

We have this student who is in Kindergarten who just came from Mexico at the beginning of the school year.  He had been living with his grandparents and didn't know any English.  When we first started working with him we didn't know what to do with him.  It was impossible to have him sit still for even a couple of minutes.  He would roll around on the floor or run out of the classroom. The 2 other people I work with and I each took some time to work with him.  One time I even let him just play with Duplo Blocks.  He didn't know that you could stack them on top of each other.  I had to teach him how to do this (isn't that sad?)

Last week he wrote to 100!!!!!!!!!!!!  We had a copy of his work from December and he had a few lines written, but nothing resembled a number.  Now 3 months later he wrote all the way to 100!

We are working really hard on teaching him the alphabet.  Sarah, who I have worked with for the past 4 years has taught me so much, and one of the things she showed me was that you can write on the table. 

Here is the kids' work.

Its a little hard to see, but he has written the letter C, X, O, D, and a bunch of others that I don't remember.  This is so exciting for me to see.  I love it when the students I am working with make progress.

Aren't we blessed that our children have parents who know how to help them learn at home. Our children are even learning when we don't think we are teaching.  My heart goes out every day to my students because their life is full of challenges.  

*They move every fall and again in the spring
*When the move in the fall they often are living in a trailer or apartment with a few other families
*They don't have parents who know English so they can't ask them questions and at school they don't know the words to ask the questions they have
*They don't have books, toys, crayons, etc. always available to play with at home

We are so fortunate that we can help our children succeed.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Where Are You Spring?

This weekend, we were pretty ready for some nice sunny spring weather.  We just wanted to get out of the house.  We did a couple of spring activities - walking the trails at Pigeon Creek and feeding the fish.  It was warm enough for the trails, but some sun would have been nice.  It turned out to be a bit too windy for our walk to feed the fish, plus Annabelle decided she would rather eat the bread than give it to the fish.  It was nice to get out of the house though.


Annabelle's boots fell off while she was splashing in a puddle.

We went and played at the mall.

Daddy pulled the girls around in a laundry basket.

Ariel got a new headband.

We fed the fish, but it looks like Annabelle fed herself a little more.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Make Up v. Make Up


Today I went to Smooch downtown and got some more Bare Minerals make up!!!  I seriously love it so much.  

My sisters and I talk about this pretty much every time we look at make up (which is often because we were brought up learning that "every barn needs painting").  When we got to Target, Meijers, Walmart, or somewhere like that to buy make up we have a really hard time spending over $3 on something.  

We will look at a mascara and say, "Wow, $6 for mascara" or "I can't believe an eye shadow costs $2.50"  But then we will got Smooch or look at Clinique and say, "Wow, that mascara is only $15." 

So today when I went to Smooch to buy my foundation and warmth I was happy to spend what I did, but I know when I got to buy my eye liner at Meijers and it is $2.69 I will carry it in my cart and when I get to the check out I will assess my cart and probably put the eye liner away.  

I don't think I would be able to spend the money on Bare MInerals if it was at Target.  And I wouldn't think twice about spending more for my eyeliner at Smooch.  So is it fair to judge the make up based on where we buy it?   

I really love make up so I will share all the stuff I use:

(Am I lame for writing a blog about make up?)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Monster

My sister and I really like to watch Infomericals, HSN, and QVC.  Well, there has been one product that I have really wanted to try, but I've never been able to call in the next 18 minutes to take a payment off.  

The sun was shining (finally) the other day and I was getting in the Spring Cleaning mood.  As I was looking around the house I realized there were just little areas that really needed some attention.  

I went to Big Lots the other day and found IT!  THE MONSTER STEAMER!!!

They had The Monster for only $30.  I figured that I would give it a try and see if I liked it.  It was a much better price than 3 easy payments of $33.33.  

You would not believe how fun and easy this thing is.  I've been able to get into the corners on the counters, the gunk around the sinks, the cupboards, the fridge, and I've only just begun.  I'm excited to get my home spic and span with The Monster!

I've read reviews, but it seems like the only people leaving reviews are those who are complaining.  I think it works great for me so I'm Happy!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Interview with Annabelle

I thought it would be fun to interview Annabelle.

What is your name?

Annabelle what?
Annabelle Tulip

 How old are you?
Uh, I don’t know what number I am.

Why do you like to take tubbies?
So I can have a popsicle

Do you like winter or summer best?
Summer so I can pick flowers

What is your favorite animal?
A kitty cat.  I want to call it… What can I call it?  Can you name it?

What do you want to name another sister?
I don't want another sister

How about a brother?
Brother Brother

Where do you want to go?
Big Lots

Do you like your new Sunday School?
No, I like the one with Big Dora.

Maybe we can put Big Dora in your new class.
No, because everyone will see her map.

What do you learn about in Sunday School?
About God and to give him money.

Where does Jesus live?
In my heart.  This is where he lives, in my tummy.

How does daddy make you laugh?
When he tickles me 

What was mommy like as a little girl?
Played in the snow

How are you and mommy the same?
We aren’t the same; I don’t wear the same shirts as you.

How are you and mommy different?
I’m not whiter like you.  We’re not the same talkers.  I want to be just like you.

While watching a “scary” Strawberry Shortcake movie:
Are you scared?
Why not?
It’s just on TV.

Smart little cookie!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Growing Up!

Ariel is basically a full time walker.  She just turned 10 months, but has really been working at walking for a few weeks now.

It seems like once they start walking they lose a little bit of that "baby-ness."

She loves to climb and explore.  

She learned how to say "more" in sign language.  

Donuts, Donuts, Yummy, Yummy!

Annabelle and I had donuts for breakfast the other day before getting groceries.