Butterflies

Madeleine’s science co-op class has been going through the days of creation; studying light and dark, sun and moon, plants and animals, etc. When they got to the animals, she was sent home with four caterpillars. Three formed chrysallises; when they emerged, they were Painted Lady Butterflies! How fun that the boys and I got to experience this with her. She named all three; Goldie and Eleanor were the first to emerge, while Maggie waited until the next day. She must have stared into this netting all day, watching them stretch their wings. SO MUCH FUN!

We put a container with honey water in it in the net; a paper towel hung out for the butterflies to eat. We also put leaves and such in to imitate their natural habitat. We were hoping they would lay eggs, but they never did. We read that they would only live about two days, but they ended up living about a week.

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A First For My Kids

Last year, a group got together in our small town; the group is full of homeschoolers, and all we do is go to the playground. It’s a chance for the kids to play and the moms to chat for about an hour or so. Occasionally, we’ll plan a ‘field trip’, but it’s always really low-key.

One of the mom’s planned an ‘end of the year party’ this week at Chuck-E-Cheese. My kids were sooo excited! They had never been before. I was hesitant to go, as I haven’t been since I worked a summer day camp (I always hated Chuck-E-Cheese day!). But I made a sacrifice and went. The good news is, the place was virtually empty on a Tuesday morning during the school year! I gave my kids each 20 tokens and they had a blast! We even came home with 20 tokens to save for the next time (whenever that is).

Christopher went with Caleb so they could go really high.

Madeleine riding some sort of race horse game. No tickets from this one, so it wasn’t played again!

Caleb and Chuck-E-Cheese

Such an awesome time!

Have you taken your kids to Chuck-E-Cheese recently? What did you think? It hasn’t changed all that much in the 12 years since I’ve been!

Quick and Easy Homemade Play-Dough

So we made play-dough this morning! We’ve made it before, but not in a while. This recipe is great, and only takes about ten minutes start to finish.                             

All the ingredients, ready to go!

Begin by placing all the ingredients in a pot or saucepan.

1 cup flour

1/2 cup salt

2 teaspoons cream of tartar

1 Tablespoon oil

1 cup cold water

Our smooth mixture

Whisk them together until the mixture is smooth. Turn the stove on medium and stir continuously with a spoon. After just a few minutes, the mixture will turn into a mashed-potato consistency. Continue stirring until it gets thicker.

Beginning to mix together

Once it gets thick enough, dump it out on the counter. I placed a piece of waxed paper down first, since we were going to add food coloring.

Plain play-dough

Add drops of food coloring to the dough. You can wear plastic gloves or simply use your hands to knead the dough. Be careful, it will stain your hands for the rest of the day (don’t ask me how I know!) And be careful, the dough will be warm still.

Making yellow play-dough

Our finished yellow play-dough! We also made pink, blue, green and turqoiuse (which was then mixed with blue, so we have a TON of blue!)

Our finished yellow product

Playing with our finished products! We had play-dough out all morning, and the kids loved it. We hadn’t played with it in so long, since we hadn’t had any, but we had a great time today.

Playing at the kitchen table. Note our upscale tools like plastic knives and empty thread bobbins!

The Augusta Canal Museum

So besides going to see the Archie Butt Memorial Bridge and learning a little about his life, we got to see the inside of the Canal Museum. I’ve lived in Augusta for two years and never knew this existed! I am a sucker for history, so I ate it up. My husband and kids also seemed to enjoy it. We learned about how they built the canal so Augusta could become a cotton and clothing manufacturing city, the major one in the South. Very interesting stuff, I love learning all these new things.

The Major Archibald Butt Memorial Bridge. The city was considering tearing it down in 1983 or so, but a group got together to try and save it. They made sold bumper stickers that said "Save our Butt!" and had a rock concert called "Butt Jam!" Oh, the jokes could go on and on...

We had fun inside the museum after the walk down to the bridge.

These things are so fun, and they make me laugh. The kids had a great time.

But then I had to take individual pictures of each child…they were hilarious!

Caleb - So cute and funny!

Madeleine - is that a smile or a grimace?

Christopher - note how the head is so much larger than the body!

But in all, we had a fun time at the museum, and learned a lot about Augusta at the same time.

Speech Therapy

Buster has been attending speech therapy at the local elementary school for two weeks now. Even though he is three, he qualifies for state therapy help through South Carolina. Most, if not all, states offer speech therapy through an Early Intervention type of program. The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities offers a state search to discover if your state offers any help. You could also simply call the Board of Education offices in your county to find out information for your area.

Buddy attended speech therapy in Florida from ages 2 1/2 to about 4 1/2. He had a problem where he just wouldn’t speak. He started to form words, but then kind of regressed to where he wouldn’t even try to speak. The therapy helped him a lot, and now he is rarely quiet.

Buster has a different problem that we didn’t notice at first. He talked all the time! It was hard to get him to stop talking. The problem was it was hard to understand. He didn’t put the endings on most words and he substituted different letters in weird places. We started the process the summer before he turned 3, and he had his first therapy appointment a few days after his birthday. He has now been 5 or 6 times and we have already seen improvement. The therapist told us his speech problem shouldn’t be noticeable by the 3rd grade (!) but I’m hoping it won’t take that long.

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