Thursday, March 27, 2008

A. A. Milne

Now We Are Six by A.A. Milne came off the bookshelf the other day (there's a great post about books by Sandara Dodd here). A couple of the poems jumped out at me, including this one, which I find to be a good reminder about being present:

Come Out with Me

There's sun on the river and sun on the hill . . .
You can hear the sea if you stand quite still!
There's eight new puppies at Roundabout Farm-
And I saw an old sailor with only one arm!

But everyone says, "Run along!"
(Run along, run along!)
All of them say, "Run along! I'm busy as can be."
Every one says, "Run along,
There's a little darling!"
If I'm a little darling, why don't they run with me?

There's wind on the river and wind on the hill . . .
There's a dark dead water-wheel under the mill!
I saw a fly which had just been drowned-
And I know where a rabbit goes into the ground!

But everyone says, "Run along!"
(Run along, run along!)
All of them say, "Yes, dear," and never notice me.
Every one says, "Run along,
There's a little darling!"
If I'm a little darling, why won't they come and see?
And this one:
The Good Little Girl

It'’s funny how often they say to me, “Jane?
“Have you been a good girl?"
“Have you been a good girl?"
And when they have said it, they say it again,
“Have you been a good girl?"
“Have you been a good girl?"”

I go to a party, I go out to tea
I go to an aunt for a week at the sea
I come back from school or from playing a game;
Wherever I come from, it'’s always the same:
“Have you been a good girl, Jane?”

It'’s always the end of the loveliest day:
“Have you been a good girl?"”
“Have you been a good girl?"
I went to the Zoo, and they waited to say:
“Have you been a good girl?"
“Have you been a good girl?"”

Well, what did they think that I went there to do?
And why should I want to be bad at the Zoo?
And should I be likely to say if I had?
So that'’s why it'’s funny of Mummy and Dad,
This asking and asking, in case I was bad,
“Have you been a good girl, Jane?”
I don't know much about A. A. Milne's background, but it seems with these two poems he's reminding us to take kids seriously and treat them as we would like to be treated...among other things!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Food for thought...

...from The Parent's Tao Te Ching: A New Interpretation by William Martin
76. Hold tight only to compassion
It has been said by experts,
"You must be consistent,
or your children will be confused."
Who among us is consistent?
Circumstances are always changing.

Children become confused
when parents become rigid,
holding rules above love.
Be consistently flexible.
Hold tight only to compassion.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Male Pattern Baldness Convertable Igloo...

Just something to think about...Bret wanted to make sure I noted that the sun did this to the has nothing to do with his workmanship...Guess this is spring in the mountains. Kind of like the great spring flower photos we keep seeing...just different.

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More clay class creations

These are some bowls Sabine made...and the thing in the lower left corner is a "whistle" she made for Vivian.

This is a birthday box. Sabine says that every year on your birthday you can put something special in it. The next year you take that item out and put in something new that is special to you. Each side represents a member of our family.

One of the reasons I think she likes this class (and one of the reasons I like it) is that when she wanted to add the piece on the right (above -- below it's on the left) the box was basically done. Tasha, the teacher, just said -- sure -- not "no, you can't put a piece there...what's that for?..." etc...Nice to see that kind of respect for kids.
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Who says TV kills creativity?

Sabine made this in her homeschool clay class. It's the late Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin with his daughter Bindi. There's a daddy and a baby croc in the water (along with some fish you can put in different locations) and a chinchilla standing by Bindi...Yeah, have to say the Crocodile Hunter is not something we would have though to introduce her to...but she loves everything about him and his family...and animals as well...

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Under-represented second child

Poor Vivian...she really gets the short end of the stick sometimes...but just so you know, we do take photos of her too!

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Happy first day of spring

Sunset: Planet Earth
Credit: Expedition 15 Crew, NASA

Explanation: Today, the Sun crosses the celestial equator heading north at 0548 UT. Known as the equinox, the geocentric astronomical event marks the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere and autumn in the south. Equinox means equal night and with the Sun on the celestial equator, Earth dwellers will experience nearly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness. Of course, for those in the north, the days will grow longer with the Sun marching higher in the sky as summer approaches. To celebrate the equinox, consider this colorful view of the setting Sun. Recorded last June from the International Space Station, the Sun's limb still peeks above the distant horizon as seen from Earth orbit. Clouds appear in silhouette as the sunlight is reddened by dust in the dense lower atmosphere. Molecules in the more tenuous upper atmosphere are preferentially scattering blue light.

From this webpage.

I found this from which was advertised in Mental Floss magazine, one of several new periodicals I subscribed to this year. Others include: Life Learning magazine, and Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life. I had subscribed to Newsweek and Real Simple for years (among others, thanks, Granny Jean and Boopy for the continued Utne subscription). Nothing personal, Newsweek and Real Simple, just needed something new here...

Monday, March 17, 2008

Oudoor winter fun...

Sabine has her own style of skiing...Vivian had given up on her skis...

Vivian...not so sure about the igloo...

And just in case you haven't gotten enough of the igloo-cam...
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Happy St. Patrick's Day

In case you didn't realize it...this is a leprechaun trap. No leprechauns were harmed in the making of this trap. Nor were any eggs.

Apparently those little leprechauns can't resist a carton of eggs, and, not knowing that it is actually empty, jump down the tube...and can't get back out. Now what to do with them...?
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More igloo photos that didn't work before...

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Are these photos working?

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Photos missing below...

trying to figure it out...check back soon!

The igloo is done!

Here are a few night time photos...yes, that's a decorative door way...made with snow packed in the wading pool, with an ice "gargoyle" type of thing on top.

Bret took a light into the igloo...very cool glow!

Happy daddy...

...and even happier Sabine! The pile of small blocks in front of her are "supplies" because a "storm" is coming and the leopard seals (or something!) come out after the storm and will eat you if you go outside of the igloo. Consider yourself warned. BTW, the large block of snow behind Sabine is the TV. Thank goodness.

Daytime igloo fun

9 out of 10 dogs love playing in igloos with little girls...

Sabine and Birch bringing in supplies...

Birch inspecting the supplies.

Crystal garden take two

Found a "recipe" for a salt crystal garden (we had done this back in July 2007 with a kit we got from Browse n Buy) in the most recent issue of Home Education Magazine. We went to the store and got the supplies, and followed the directions. I had no idea how long salt should take to dissolve (while stirring it) in equal parts Mrs. Stewart's and ammonia, but Sabine was over it in a few after I stirred the mixture (near the kitchen exhaust fan...phew, stinky!) for about 20 minutes, then put it in a jar and shook it for another 10 minutes and the salt still hadn't dissolved, I looked at the Mrs. Stewart's page (conveniently listed on the bottle) and noticed that they didn't say anything about waiting for the salt to dissolve (instant gratification...much better), and while the "beautiful flower-like growth" didn't appear instantly...

it looked pretty impressive after a few hours...
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