Friday, October 31, 2008

Gotcha Day with a Buzz and more...

Long post….Busy week
(Mostly pictures…!)
Last Saturday was a very special day for all of us. We celebrated DD’s Gotcha Day! Four wonderful years ago God added her to our family and our lives changed in ways we could have never imagined. What a blessing!!!

We started the day out with a trip to Dixie’s for DD's Gotcha Day charms (She chose Cinderella and her carriage charms), followed by a trip to the Disney Store for a special toy. DD's only comment, "WOW!" I really thought that she would choose one of the princess dolls, but instead she chose Buzz Lightyear! She never ceases to amaze me. LOLA special carousel ride at the mall with Daddy D… and Buzz
Just couldn't resist posting this. Doodlebug looks so happy!
(At the airport)
After our visit to the mall, we all went to the airport to pick up PawPaw and finished the day with dinner at a Chinese restaurant.
This picture was taken at the restaurant. How could you take this guy seriously? Cute girls though..

Here are a few pictures of our school activities this week. The topic was "Dinosaurs" and the theme was “Big and small, God made them all.”

Creative artists at work DD’s favorite kind of dinosaur….the Graciosaurus!

Meet "Dynomike."
Doodlebug with her ferocious dinosaur teeth (made of apples, peanut butter and marshmallows.)

From Dinosaurs to Dynasties... Mulan I and Mulan II
The girls really enjoyed the Fall Festival held at our church this week.

They went as Mulan I and Mulan II.
Notice the expressions as they played the same game…This is pretty much representative of how they approach life in serious and one happy-go-lucky! Can you guess which one is which?
The games were fun; the candy was good; but the pony ride was the absolute favorite activity of the festival for the girls. You can tell by DB's big smile that the Princess Bounce House ran a close second. Fun! Fun! Fun!

Monday, October 27, 2008

A New Month

Our conversation went something like this:
Mama Darling: “Today is Monday, October 27th. We’re almost at the end of October. DD, what month comes after October?

DD: November
followed by DB's response...
DB: Yesvember!!!
Too funny.
I learn something new everyday.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

See No Evil...Hear No Evil... Smell No Evil?

Oops, that’s not the way it goes. The girls learned a lot about their senses last week…5 wonderful gifts that God gave us…taste, touch, sight, smell and hearing. The theme was “God Made Us Wonderful.” It was a fun week.
Doodlebug really enjoyed this game of identifying items by touch.
Then we learned about hearing and the girls made their own music with a little wax paper and a comb.
Here’s a picture of DD trying to draw without her sense of sight...
And DB experimenting with DD’s sense of taste.
Is there any question about DB’s opinion of the smell of garlic?
I took this picture at the library, but don’t let these pretty smiles fool you. This is the same sweet Desheng Darling who informed me that the reason she wasn’t listening to me this week was simply because she was too busy using her other senses. Lol. And Doodlebug… Oh my…This little angel locked me out of the house this week and thought it was HILARIOUS! If you look closely at the picture, you’ll see that DD has on pink sandals rather than the brown ones that go with her outfit. The reason for this is that Doodlebug hid one of DD’s brown sandals as a prank and we didn't find it until later…Oh we have such fun!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Perseverance and Pumpkins

The theme of last week’s lesson was PERSEVERANCE. We used the story of The Tortoise and the Hare from Aesop’s Fables to illustrate this concept. Like the turtle who had to “keep going” even when the race seemed endless, we too must continue to carry out God’s plan even when it seems difficult. We must persevere and always try to do our best. We must not quit. Like the turtle, in the end we will win.
Our focus was on turtles…both land and sea. We actually saw a live turtle on a country road last weekend, but I wasn’t able to get any pictures. We stopped the car and let the girls take a good look. We also visited the pet store to look at turtles.

Check out the price of this Mata Mata. Can you imagine paying $499.00 for a turtle?
We also made turtle cookies that turned out looking like big green blobs!
The girls even made turtle bracelets...the latest fad! Although I learned a lot of new things about turtles, I have to admit that this was not my favorite week. I had a lot of activities planned, but we had so many interruptions that I just didn’t get everything done. Maybe I was experiencing the whole “perseverance” thing. One of Daddy Darling’s favorite sayings is “Persistence Pays Off.” He will stick with a project until every minute detail is complete. Maybe I should have let him teach about perseverance last week; however, I’m not sure what I might have had to persevere as a result of him being around the girls ALL DAY! Lol
We took some time on Friday to meet with our play group at the Pumpkin Patch…definitely cuter than turtles and a lot more fun!

Snow Bunny, Desheng Darling, and Marisa

Doodlebug, Desheng Darling, Snow Bunny and AR
DB and AR
SB, DD, DB, and AR

DD, Mama Darling, and Doodlebug

Friday, October 10, 2008

Nesting Time

After this week’s Nest Theme, I have a new respect for birds! Have you ever tried to build a nest? Oh my. Let me just say that if building a nest had have been required for me to have children, I probably wouldn’t be the mother of four today. Don’t get me wrong…labor with no anesthesia was DIFFICULT and spending approx. 20 hrs on a plane with a screaming baby was no piece of cake, but at least I didn’t have to make over five hundred trips (while pregnant) picking up little pieces of straw, thread, and “stuff” in my mouth in order to build a nice, safe home for the birth of the babies. If you ever get the chance, look closely at a bird’s nest and take note of the intricate details. It’s amazing.

This week’s Biblical theme: “God takes good care of me” was demonstrated by comparing the way God enables birds to instinctively take care of their young to the way he takes care of us. God wants to keep us safe and help us grow just like he enables the parent birds to take care of their young.
Psalm 91:1-4a “Those who go to God Most High for safety will be protected by the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, ‘You are my place of safety and protection. You are my God and I trust you.’ God will save you from hidden traps and from deadly diseases. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you can hide.”

Chocolate Chow Mein Noodle Nests....Yummy!
Making a nest from chocolate chips and chow mein noodles is a lot easier than trying to make a “real” nest. The girls and I set out on an adventure to collect materials to make a bird’s nest...The collecting part was interesting, but the building part wasn’t quite as simple as we thought it would be… Even when we started with a brown paper bag as a base and cheated with a glue gun. lol

Since we are obviously not gifted in the area of Animal Architecture, we decided to just stick with the chow mein noodles …. But this time we made a nest for our egg salad. Not bad when you mix in an egg and bake for a few minutes.
Something tells me that if I continue with these types of activities, I am going to have to buy bigger clothes. Next week’s theme involves turtles…Can you believe I’m already thinking about chocolate, caramal and pecan turtle candy???? Ummmmm.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Comparing Apples to Apples!

This week we have been studying about apples…planting, growing, harvesting, marketing, and cooking. DD and DB visited our local farmer’s market and saw many different types of apples. Who knew that there are over 7,500 different kinds??? Of course they weren’t all at the market. We bought a variety of types to compare and contrast. Our focus is not actually about apples; it’s about the Fruits of the Spirit. The theme is: “If I stay in Jesus I will have much fruit.” In order for an apple tree to produce qualitiy apples it must be planted, nourished to maturity, pruned at times, and then harvested. This process takes several years. Likewise, if we want to produce the “fruits of the Spirit” we must accept Christ, mature through God’s Word being pruned along the way, apply his truths and live accordingly. This process may take several years for us as well.
Below are some pictures of the girls involved in learning:
Making homemade apple sauce
Making homemade apple pie
DD and DB have learned many things about apples and orchards this week. They even learned about the adventures of Johnny Appleseed and how to make (or not make) an apple pie.
I learned a few things too:
  • Frozen pie crusts do better when you leave them in their original containers. I read somewhere that a glass pie plate would make a prettier pie..ha ha ha Mrs. Smith’s aluminum pan would have been just fine! Guess that's why she makes the big bucks for her baked goods!
  • If you are going to change the ready-made crust to a glass pie plate, make sure that it is the right size…duh! It doesn’t work well when the pie crust is TOO SMALL for the plate.
  • A play dough rolling pin doesn’t work well on pie crust. (Hey, it’s all I had!)
  • The correct temperature for cooking a pie is NOT 450 degrees! Let me explain. I’m really not as dumb as I sound. The recipe said to bake the pie for 10 minutes at 450 on the lowest rack, then change it to 350 and move the pie to the center rack. I was in the process of moving the pie when Doodlebug tripped and fell hard. She was crying, so I went to comfort her… forgetting to change the temperature on the oven.
  • My family will eat anything (even if it is a little too brown!) At the end of the day there was only one tiny piece of pie left. LOL
  • Most importantly, the girls had fun!

Lest you think this study of apples was all in vain…
DD demonstrated that she has a very good understanding of what I have been trying to teach her this week regarding the Fruits of the Spirit when she told me that she was experiencing “long-suffering” as she worked beside me in the kitchen. lol Gotta love that girl!