Happy Halloween

So this was the first year that we took the kids out trick or treating. We wanted to wait until they were older enough to say “trick or treat” and “thank you” themselves- honestly so that it didn’t just look like we were going all the candy for us. I have to say that J and E loved it.

We prepped the boys with a Calliou episode where he goes trick-or-treating. I then went over the rules and how things work. What to say, what not to do, and to always listen to mom and dad. J could repeat the list back to me and E would try to chime in as well.

They did amazing.

Best argument ever

So today, like most days, I hear the boys arguing. I stopped doing dishes for a moment to figure out if I needed to step in it let them resolve it themselves. This was what I heard:
J: Bye, E. I love you (as he headed out the door to backyard).
E: Bye. I love you more. (but holding door open to go outside as well).
J: No. I love you more. (Trying again to close the door despite E being there).
E: I love you more! (Still trying to go out.)
J: No! I love you more! (Still trying to shut the door).
Needless to say, I think the arguing was more about the door being open or closed, but the words were too precious to stop. Finally they decided both could be outside, looked at me said “love you mom”, and shut the door….which made G cry because she couldn’t crawl fast enough to get outside as well. Well, you win some, you lose some. I’ll take what I can get.

Pumpkin pounding

Our first day in our fall unit started with pumpkins. We read 5 Little Pumpkins. I then invited J and E to pound pumpkins with golf tees. I had purchased little styrofoam pumpkins from the dollar store so it would easier to work with as the boys learned how to control the rubber mallets. It was cool to see them learned how to pre-pierce the pumpkin with the tee then use the mallet to pound the tee in without having to have little fingers in the way. To say that the boys liked it would be an understatement. J and E spent all afternoon pounding tees in, taking them out, and repounding them back in. There were so many holes the styrofoam started breaking apart!

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We will definitely do this activity again.

Tooth appeared so on with the show

Miss G’s first tooth finally poked through. Her temperament had improved greatly so we were able to restart our letter of the week school routine. We continued with G. This time G was for gorilla and garbage truck.
We read Trashy Town about a garbage man who cleans up all the trash around town before taking his full truck to the dump. The boys loved the phrase “is the truck full yet? No!” and repeated it throughout the day during their play. We then made shape garbage trucks.

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Both concentrated very hard on writing-I suggested they copy my “garbage truck” writing onto their trucks. E had scribbles but that is a great precursor so I was happy. J wrote all the letters-just not necessarily in the right order. I am impressed with how well he has been able to hold the pen and copy his letters.
Both J and E wanted “more school” so we pressed on. I read Little Gorilla. J remembered the noise that the gorillas at the zoo made. We had a quite a few activities with gorillas. First we colored and practiced writing with our gorilla worksheets . Then we put our clipart gorillas in sequence. I had 5 different sized gorilla prints cut out. We reviewed which was biggest, smallest, and medium. The boys worked together then to tape the gorillas in order from smallest to biggest. (Sorry forgot to take pictures.)
Finally, the boys colored their gorilla faces, taped them to a cup, filled it with dirt, and sprinkled grass seed for gorilla hair.

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The grass seed hasn’t sprouted yet, but the boys were excited nonetheless. (I will update with sprouted pictures when it happens).

Update: seeds have sprouted enough that we needed to give our gorillas a “haircut”:


Now we are taking another little break from letters for a fall/Halloween unit. We will continue with H the beginning of November. I am excited how well it has been going and how much both boys look forward to/get excited when I say “want to do school?”.

Sorry but, everything about teething sucks

We have kinda stalled in school due to a high cry front that moved in. I try to squeeze in some books and activities when G naps; for when she wakes up, she demands full attention. G is probably midway through the teething process of getting her first tooth. And boy has it been a rough one!
The boys first teeth I don’t remember this much crying. With both it seemed like one day they were gummy smiles and the next was a little tooth peeking out. No real change in temperament. Now subsequent teeth were more brutal. J’s teeth came in in bunches. First tooth no biggie. Next came 3 to round out front four. Then most brutal was 6 (all 4 molars and 2 canine). Of course timing was horrible-his teething crying/bad mood during the time family is visiting for E’s baptism. E, honestly, I don’t remember his mood ever really changing. He would suck his thumb a bit more than usual,but no crying.
So now with G, I thought first tooth wouldn’t be that big of deal. Wrong! She turns from our ever smiling baby into a scream crying wreck in a matter of seconds. Nursing doesn’t help-in fact sometimes makes it worse. Husband feels helpless so hands her off to me, but I am not much better right now. There is nothing really either of us can do, except wait for the stupid taking forever tooth to poke its way through.
Please hurry up tooth. Make your appearance and let my sweet smiley girl return.

G is for gorilla (and a trip to the zoo)

We started out our new week with a trip to the zoo. We stopped by the gorillas and talked about how gorillas are the same as us and how they are different.

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The boys loved watching the toddler gorilla(about 2 years old-we saw him as tiny baby when we came when E was 2months old!). The little gorilla would take a handful of dirt and throw it at the dad gorilla to entice him to play. Most of the time the elder seemed to just ignore the little one’s antics, but would occasionally wrestle and tumble with the toddler. It was so similar to our family sometimes when we have a chore to get done but kids nag to play.
We also learned how giraffe starts with a g as well. J noticed right away how long the giraffes’ tongues are when they ate the leaves.

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giraffe picking over rocks at us

And we of course saw many other animals too. Miss G was so good the whole time.

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But no trip with the kids seems complete without a souvenir ride on a train.

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