Nellie just turned 5! Which is crazy. I love that I have a summer baby and a winter baby because party planning is my favorite (I already have Remington’s 1st birthday planned, and did before he was born!). Because we just moved, we just had a small family picnic at the beach. But there was enough food to feed A LOT of people.
Something that drives me crazy is the party trend to have cake and donuts and candy and cookies and cake pops all at one party. Are we trying to get sick?!? But I like the variety and Nellie is a huge snack fan. It’s her favorite “meal” so that was her birthday dinner.
In case you can’t tell: raspberries, pineapple with salsa inside, crackers, Nutella, chocolate covered raisins, almonds, strawberries, cookies, grapes, pineapple, hazelnuts, blueberries. And pretzels! Not pictured are tortilla chips and a pasta salad.
Easter is just a couple weeks away! Gifts are definitely a love language of mine and while I try to be more minimalist I still love to do a little something each Easter. First, I do not buy cheap things that won’t last and second I like to find things they might need.
Here are my kid’s baskets and a few other ideas for both babies and older kids.
Born March 6th at 2:31 am. He was our smallest baby at 6 lbs 4 oz and 18.5 inches long.
Born 3 weeks early, my water broke in the middle of the night, so our other two kids had to come to the hospital with us. Grandma was on her way but had a six hour drive and neither of my other two labors were that long. Because it was flu season and there have been a small measles outbreak in our area, they wouldn’t let the kids come into the delivery room. Anthony finally got them to let the kids come back (and so he could too) but they had to wear little face masks. It was cute but a kind of stressful start, thinking I’d have to do this all by myself. After a fairly short (but still not fun) labor (too short to get someone to give me an epidural like I wanted!) Remington was born while the kids watched videos on their kindles. And after only about 16 hours at the hospital we were on our way home! It was nice to get to “sleep” in our own bed. It has been almost four weeks now with our little guy and he loves to sleep, especially while being held, and gets very mad about being woken up, diaper changes, and baths. Basically he likes to be warm and cuddly.
We are all very much in love with our little Remington Locke.
Language and math: We started the year with the Star Wars books. I wanted something fun and easy to start our first ever homeschooling year, especially because we hadn’t done much preschool work. We love Star Wars so we enjoyed these books but they really seamed more geared for supplemental summer work. After we finished the kindergarten books (we also did first grade for writing) we started Explode the Code and Mathematical Reasoning level B. We are about half way through each and I really love then both. I love how Explode the Code is very simple but a great mix between reading and spelling. The only negative thing is, sometime there are drawings of a man or women and are for people’s names (like Jan or Sam) and that sometimes confuses Jaxon. Mathematical Reasoning has been great at mixing up adding, subtracting, geometry, graphing, patters ect. but could could use more measuring, telling time, and 1’s, 10’s, 100’s places.
Reading: We started Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (after working on letter names and sounds for a bit). I love this book but it quickly became obvious that it advanced to quickly for Jaxon. So we bought some Bob books and Primary Phonics books (both great) and just read and re-read the first few books for awhile. We are continuing to do reading lessons but just slower (1 or 2 a week) and then Bob books the other days.
Science/art: Nature Connection. This is a great book and I’m sure we will use it many more years. It is divided by months and has activities, drawing, and even fiction book recommendations each month. Tinkerlab. Jaxon really likes this book and has done many of the art projects. Most are fairly easy and use items I already have. The Curious Kid’s Science Book. We didn’t use this book much. Many need special items that I would have to order and the few we have done didn’t really turn out… Red-Yellow-Blue. We got this at our library, and had for almost six months. It is a basic art introduction that is divided by color. It focuses on the meanings of colors and how they have been used over time.
Activity books: Geography this year was the fifty states (mostly a coloring page for each state and a $1 book I got at Target, and forgot to add to my photos) plus the 50 States activity book. This follows the 50 States Book (which we started but I found to be not a great read aloud). But I really like this activity book and you wouldn’t need to also buy the 50 States book, it is just fun and easy activity pages. Jaxon liked the Sticker Fun History (found in the bargain section of Barnes & Noble) and it is a good basic introduction to Egyptians, Greeks, Vickings, ect. Jaxon, however, did not really like the Space book. I don’t really know why he didn’t like it but it wasn’t that educational either so I wouldn’t really recommend it.
So that’s a wrap for kindergarten! I’m already working on next year’s curriculum and am super excited (I will share those soon)!
For us, summer means multiple road trips so I thought I’d share a few audiobooks we have loved and will keep your kids entertained while on those long summer road trips:
The Mouse and the Motorcycle
A Bear Called Paddington
The 101 Dalmatians
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
The Swiss Family Robinson
How to Train Your Dragon
Also I highly recommend the app Libby by Overdrive. This free app lets you borrow digital media from your local library. You have to have a library card and a way to play them (iPad, Kindle, ect). It is great for road trips because you download the book so you don’t need wifi to play them.