Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Reversing The Trend -- You Are Not A Number, You Are Strong!

The joy of Christmas is upon our home and treats and feasting abound.  I wish I could say that my little fit self is no worse for the wear this Holiday season but I cannot.  Each time I wake up and done my workout clothes my shorts let me know that the season of eating has settled in, literally.  It was my hope that INSANITY/ASYLUM was going to stave off the seasonal weight gain but I was wrong, but oh what a mess I would be in if I wasn't training myself each morning to just show up and do my best.  I read this article this morning and I think it really could speak to so many during this season and each day. 

6 Reasons Why Weighing Yourself is a Bad Idea

We really ought not to allow the scale to dictate our health, our self-esteem or our happiness.  Our bodies are a temple of the Holy Spirit and we should make it a nice place for Him to dwell, both physically and spiritually.  We should have good health not twiggy little bodies or unreasonable goals.  We should worship the Lord with our inner thoughts and feelings in regard to ourselves because yes, He is listening and out of the heart the mouth speaks.  We are God's workmanship, His very creation and he created us to glorify him and to do good works.  So, don't put yourself down because of what the scale says but rather glorify the Lord and prepare yourself to be God's best through taking care of yourself, spiritually and physically.  Now, yes, I know our spiritual life is number one in the whole realm and scheme of things but our physical life can impact how we carry that out, so we need to take care of our bodies.  So, please don't think I am preaching body and fitness is number one, because I am not.  I know from first hand experience, that when we are right in our heads and hearts about our bodies then we are more effective ministers of the truth to those around us.  When we feel good about ourselves we are more able to let the Lord's love shine through and do the good works He has purposed for us to do.

So how do I do it?  Well it is simple, I didn't say easy, just simple---Decide, Commit, Succeed.  That is the motto of Team Beachbody.  Deciding dosen't do it, but committing does. If you commit you will succeed.  I get up at 5:30 every morning and workout.  I mean really workout, not just glisten.  I sweat, I grunt and I work hard for however long the day's workout is going to be.  I might take an non-prescribed break but I don't stop and I don't give up and I have succeeded at becoming healthier and stronger. Notice I said "healthier and stronger,"  not thinner.  The number on the scale is not where I want it to be, in fact the number is currently nowhere near pre-baby four's number and I struggle. However, I decided and committed and I am stronger. I wish I fit into pre-baby four pants but I don't. I am stronger and challenged to do things that I never would have thought of or attempted.  I am so thankful for the challenges BeachBody provides and here is a little look at what I or should I say Jay and I have done this year and what we hope to accomplish in the next:




Jay's Blog Post on Les Mills PUMP

Tuff Mudder

So as we look to 2012 remember you are not your number and you are only one decision and one commitment away from success.  If you are up for the challenge, let's talk because together we can Reverse the Trend and be healthier, fitter and stronger!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Kindergarten #2

Kindergarten is so much fun and I just love me precious girl, come along and explore the wonders of learning.  I have been amazed at how absolutely quick K picks up on things, before I know it she is accomplishing tasks on her own and saying "let me finish it."

Matching beginning sounds

reading word booklets--K loves this and does it very often

2 letter word puzzle cards

block puzzle--this is one activity I am always asked to start and then asked "can I finish it?"  It's hard for me not to finish a puzzle when I start but I do show self restraint and grant the princessie's request.

stamping hand prints and coloring with rock crayons.  These rock crayons are just another way to make the oldest of activities, coloring fun.  Plus, the colors are fun to see.  The rock crayons came in a red velvet bag, also a fun and interesting presentation.

Making bean and grain mosaics with her little brother

Tis the season for puzzles.  K is currently working toward being able to complete 50 piece puzzles independently.  Puzzles are out almost daily around here.

We started working on large number cards.

Playing Sum Swamp--early addition and subtraction game that includes odds & evens as well.

Coloring--K is working toward completing one whole coloring book neatly.

Isn't that an amazing face paint?  K went to a friend's Birthday celebration and got to be a butterfly.
Thanks for stopping by and enjoying the journey with our family--God bless you all!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hands on Preschool

Take a look at our Preschool happenings.  I truly enjoy the days when B brings out one tray after another or I find him working in the loft on his own.  My favorite moment of the week was when I found K and B snuggled in his bed and K was "reading" a book for them.  Nope, there is no picture--Sometimes I can't grab the camera fast enough but sometimes I just want to savor the moment and not interrupt it with a photoshoot.

vehicle matching mats

file folder fun--color sorting

enjoying a tea party for one and practicing pouring with a creamer
magnet pompoms

color matching

shape matching

B loved this--finger print stamping, using an Ed Emberley book.  This was a fun activity to do together , B picked the picture and inked his fingers but I had to help with finger placement and drawing the details.

sticker time

color matching with hair clips and hair ties, also good fine motor practice
opening and closing locks

fine motor practice--placing clothes pins on a rim

ABC train puzzle, we need to do this a lot more
cutting practice

our rice box--Hats off to all the ladies who make monthly themed sensory boxes but I cannot keep up.  So we just have a rice box that they love to play with every so often and they always love it.

color matching and sorting with Dollar Tree gems

We hope you enjoy the week, thanks for stopping by.  I'm linking up for Montessori Monday at http://onehookwonder.blogspot.com/2011/12/montessori-monday_12.html

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Loving Elementary Learning

Here is a look at what we have been working on.  I always try to make our lessons as hand on as possible while incorporating both Montessori and Charlotte Mason teaching styles.  Emry is currently 9 and Ayden is currently 7.

We started out Math this season with a unit on geometry focusing on learning the names of the geometric solids. We still need to spend time on area and perimeter.  For area and perimeter we will be using Take It To Your Seat Math Centers.

E and A are matching geometric solids with cards in order to learn the names of the shapes.

This is a Build and Learn Geometry kit from Lakeshore Learning.  The kit walked us through how to build each solid shape as well as how to identify faces, vertices and edges.  One of the shapes was enough of a challenge that I called in the "big guns" --Dad.

E and A are sorting object cards into geometric solid groups.

In language arts we have been working on punctuation and reviewing synonyms, antonyms and parts of speech.
E and A working on matching punctuation marks and their definitions.  I made these cards using the Perfect Punctuation book as my guide.

A is using the Montessori grammar shapes to label the parts of speech on his sentence strips.

A is working on some antonym review cards.

In science we studied the moon using The Moon Book by Gail Gibbons as our spine.

We made the phases of the moon using Oreo cookies and then drew them on a notebook page.

And yes, I did let them eat all of the moons when they were done drawing them.  Even the littles loved this project because of the treats--you can see K in the background with her cookies.

Creative Pursuits
A was experimenting with different colors and brush strokes which led to a great painting of a monster truck.

E using some fall leaf stamps to make notecards which we all used later as thank-you notes.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


I'm enjoying Kindergarten with my girl, I just wish I had more time to dedicate to it.  Here's a look at what we have been enjoying.

Even though her cutting skills have progressed beyond simple snipping, Kensley always loves this activity.

Working with our homemade Montessori Teen Boards and our version of  Montessori Golden Bead Materials to learn numbers 11-19

Melissa and Doug Spelling Boards.

A living & non-living sort from a Take is to Your Seat Science book.

Water color resist painting.

Working on prewriting skills by coloring and drawing lines.

Tracing window clings to work on pencil control.

Tracing Letters

Puzzle Art.  The first time Kensley tried this activity she got tired and wanted to stop but with encouragement she continued and then couldn't stop.

Working on table setting skills with a matching mat.

More prewriting and pencil control practice using this fun stencil.  The stencil is part of a book called Shape Builders.  The book comes with a stencil and patterns for making bugs, houses, ect.  This has been a favorite of all the children.

Ya know potato stamping, well we did fruit and veggie stamping after reading the book From Tops to Bottoms.  It was a fun and creative extension to painting.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Hands on Preschool

Brady has really taken an interest in hands on activities and will do one right after the other.  Several times a week I try to designate a time to sit with him and encourage exploration of the prepared activities.  I also try to make time for daily reading, he really enjoys non-fiction car and truck books (go figure.)

Using watercolors over crayons.  

Playing with window clings from the Target $ Spot.

Exploring the Open & Close Basket.  Brady really enjoyed this activity and did it all the time.  I hid letters in each item, right now we have numbers in each.

Brady also really liked this activity--fall punches.  I had to help him but it was fun to see him try so earnestly.

I found this great 2 piece puzzle set at Ring Around the Rosie and it has been used often.

farm animal matching

tonging golf balls   

tweezing and transfer leaves  

Pouring corn or beads--he absolutely loved this activity.

This is a wonderful fine motor activity--balancing marbles on golf tees.

Sorting forks by color--white, clear & silver.