Saturday, October 31, 2009

Early Thanksgiving

Here are the girls dressed up and ready to visit with family at our early Thanksgiving dinner. That is the house we are renting in the background. Can't believe some of our geraniums are still blooming!

We should have taken these a week ago when the fall colors were the prettiest.

I am still getting used to blogger and I didn't realize my pictures were going to come out backward from the way I selected. Here is Ari at the church after we have already eaten.

The two guys on the right are my nephews. Hard to believe they are 21 and 19! I used to take care of them when they were 3 and 1.

Bruce and Lorilyn chatting. (No, Bruce is not drinking out of a child's cup. )

My brother, Monte sitting across from his MIL, Lilly and SIL, Lisa.

Monte's FIL, Richard, our BIL, Dan, my Dad and Aaron.

I caught Mom and Dad in line. You can tell I caught my dad off guard; he is actually smiling.

Lisa and her husband Tom.

Getting started!
Alpheus, Dad, Richard, Lilly, Hannah, Bryce, and Sharon.

Monte, Bruce, Dad, Dan, Richard, Lilly, and Hannah.

Smile guys!
Leah, Bruce and Ben. Ben had to leave before we started for a Band Competition. :(

Thanks, Leah, for taking a picture of the 6Atkins!

A blessed day with family and friends!

5 Cookie Monsters

We had a coookie day at Grandmom's house! It was work, but it was enjoyable as well! Here are some of our creations.

Heart, smiling flower, bear (yes, really) and star.

Here are the girls with all the finished cookies that weren't eaten right away. A few were so thin they fell apart during decorating and we had to sacrifice and eat those! ;)

One of the great things about visiting Grandmom's house is that she usually buys special things for her grandchildren. Here is her latest gift to her "grandgirls." She bought a colored sugar cookie kit. It came with four primary colored cookie doughs, two cutters, sprinkles and icing, as well as ideas for many neat creations! Each girl designed about four cookies. This was very time consuming so we finally sent them out to play while we finished with just round cookie shapes.

More closeups. Basically all the round shaped cookies were decorated by my sister, Lorilyn, and me after the girls had decorated theirs.

two smiley faces, another bear that looks more like a frog, a round cookie and a domino cookie. Can you tell we love dominoes?

more fun with sprinkles!
Here is a star, flag, bear, two hearts, a round, and a present shaped. My personal favorite to decorate was the red heart and blue icing.

They each especially loved their initial cookie. We made one for Uncle Vance and Aunt Norma too, as they were visiting that evening.

Thanks Grandmom for a sweet day in many ways!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Present Participles

This precious girl has been the cause of a bit of anxiety. In this case it has been for her lack of language. She has been a bit on the slow side for pronouncing words. For the last year or so she has mostly spoken in one syllable words and usually she left off the initial consonant sound. For example: cup was spoken as "up"; Hannah was Ana and Sarah was Ara.
At her doctor's visit in September I was reassured of my own opinion that she was not really impeded but just slow in actually speaking. It certainly wasn't her hearing, and it wasn't that she couldn't speak anything. Some words were clear; "No" was a disctinctly clear word as was Mama and Dada. Around July she did begin to string together two or three syllables to make a sentence, though they were still hard to understand. Ex: ink peas mama aka Drink please Mommy. This was also usually accompanied by the sign for eating, just in case fuzzy brained mommy wasn't correct in interpretation.
When our Florida grandparents came up recently, we could see a big improvement in just the week they were here. Lydia was definitely saying more of the initial consonants and more multi-syllable words were understood.
Today she did a new skill! She spoke in the present participle form.
Mommy: "Lydia, are you finished?
Lydia: "No, I not done. I am poopooing."
Okay, so it seems a disgusting example, but it is the first that I heard from her that I recall. Also, other writers, including reporters at Reuter's have used this term with a different conotation. (I know because I googled it to check the spelling! LOL)
Seriously, I am so thankful and excited that she is blossoming in her language skills. We pray for many things for our children and sometimes later is seems silly, but I truly am thankful for each answered prayer, no matter how small.
In Him, Eva
Picture taken by Mary when we were at dinner in Macado's.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Moving my blog

For several years now, I have been been blogging on homeschool blogger. I loved the community of people and wanted a place to record our homeschool experience. However now, I see that blogger is so much easier to use. I have been wondering if I should move over for a while now. One reason I hesitate is that I don't know how to do it easily so it would take a while. I also had a friend (Jessica from Trivium Academy) do my design. I hate to part with that and I have no idea how to transfer it here, if it is even possible. The reasons I would move it are: easier to use, adding photos is a breeze, and comment moderation which is not offered at HSblogger. So I am still debating. For now I may post the same post twice at both locations.

So this first post is a double and it is a follow up to my new school calendar plan. The plan is to do six weeks of school and then take a week off until we have completed the 36 weeks in our Ambleside Online curriculum. (Also I mention other odds and ends.)

Things don't always go as planned. It seems that every time we stop for a week it takes us another week to really get going again. This past break we had company come and really that shouldn't have made us get off track. I suppose I have been slow to start this week because I felt like I had no break. I had a wonderful week with them and really enjoyed the visit. (Almost had them talked into an extension! That is all of us when they had to leave.) Yet for some reason I am having a hard time getting motivated to start again. I did manage to get some in today but not as much as I had planned. So I am not sure how this plan will go. I am going to try to catch us up on this week in the next two days and hopefully next week I will be more motivated.

What else? Things are going well at church. We have a few more people attending and a new Sunday school class has been started. We are planning a baptism in a few weeks. So we are thankful for that. The girls really enjoyed when Memaw was their Sunday school teacher, too. Our band, Alleghany Strings, played for a Senior's dinner last weekend. It was a small event but it was a very joyful time. I have a new autoharp too, thanks to God. A friend of dh's mother learned that I was playing and gave me an old one they had. It is a very good quality autoharp; Oscar Schmidt 21 chord. These can run over 200 dollars on Ebay sold as is. I hope we can afford new strings for it soon. It has been stored for a while and needs some TLC, but still it does sound fine as is. I love that I have more chords so I can play on all the songs the band is learning.

Our baby girl is really getting big! She is finally learning to pronounce more words, especially the initial consonant sounds for which I am so grateful! Now I don't have to wonder if "up" is cup or up or pup and so forth. She really blossomed the week our Florida Grandparents were here and I was so glad they were here to experience it. Maybe it helped having more adults who encouraged her to say things correctly. The girls are bad to just know what she means and leave it at that. It is kind of comical to hear them play twenty questions with her just to figure out what she is saying.

Now is my favorite time of the year and the girls and I have really enjoyed whenever we go driving. We each love to point out the next colorful tree. The mountains are splendid. It is the one time of year that the Blue Ridge mountains don't live up to their name. We are traveling to West Virginia on Friday for a one night visit with my aunt Edie. We are all looking forward to the views, be we will be prepared for any unpleasant car sickness those roads sometimes bring on.

Now I am off to prepare lessons and write my to do list on the school board. Maybe we will all be more motivated to get through it!

Blessings, Eva .