Thursday, April 4, 2013

Easter and Spring at Last! {An April Daybook}

Outside my window...

Glorious sunshine with temps in the high 50s!  Oh, Spring, at long last you've arrived! :)

I am thinking...

...about how to best manage all the springtime trips with the kids (think picnics in the park and zoo trips) with a newborn in the mix.  Newborns cramp my spontaneity just a tad!  I've also been thinking about our homeschooling year.  It's been all kinds of crazy with the move and the baby!  Many homeschoolers reassess their academic year in February but I kinda had a baby instead, so here I am doing it in April!  I've been especially focusing on how to make my oldest more motivated to write.  He loves writing tasks when he gets to orally dictate, but cannot stand the mechanics of writing and spelling.  It's like pulling teeth.  I've tried to make it as fun as humanly possible--I made a snazzy journal jar filled with fun questions and even added a computer-time reward, but it's slow in watching mold grow seems to be faster and more pleasant!  Suggestions welcome! :)

I am thankful...


...for the sunshine and for everything greening up!  There's nothing like watching the kids digging around in the dirt and coming in from the yard with grass-stained knees to boost one's spirits! I'm also thankful for the Easter season!  We've been having fun using our Garden of the Good Shepard calendar as a launching point for activities to celebrate:

Megan making a marshmallow "sheep"

Luke's sheep

In the kitchen...

Ummm...still haven't found my groove with the cooking nice things for dinner yet.  All hail the quickie no-brainer meals!  But I did manage to make this yumminess for Easter:

soooooo good!
It's an adaptation of this recipe: Fresh Raspberry Almond Tray Tart.  (I made a strawberry walnut version!)

I am wearing...

Ick...sizes much too large.  Now that my little man is officially 6 weeks old it's time to get back in shape.  I just started using this DVD this week.  The pain, oh the pain!  I'm (reluctantly!) going on Weight Watchers, too.  It's what I've done after my other babies and it's always worked well for me. Getting started is always the hardest part!

I am creating...

Well, the kids have been crafting lately and I help out--does that count?!  They made these Easter "sun-catchers" last week:

coffee filter sun catchers 

 We also dyed eggs:
I love the green one toward the center with the purely accidental cross on it!

This week we made a Nature Mandala:

The mandala was an idea from the book 15 Minutes Outside.  I highly recommend it if you're looking for quick outdoor ideas to do with the kiddos!  It has 365 ideas broken down by season, so it's great to reference each month to pick out your faves when you're feeling uninspired.

I am going...

Still not too many places just yet!  But oh, how I have plans!!

I am wondering...

When I'll be able to read anything of substance again without falling asleep!  There are so many books I'd love to dig into but I just don't have the energy in the evenings.  Someday...

I am hoping... find some homeschoolers here in our new town.  I don't know a soul here and it'd be nice to get together for afternoon play dates!

I am looking forward to...

walks without jackets and the return of flip-flops!

I am pondering...

how to "live slow."  With a lot less time during the day and less energy in the evenings, I feel like I try to rush to cram things in, but often lose joy in all that hurrying.  I feel like I'm always looking at the clock to gauge my time left before the next feeding, the next mealtime, the next....   So, I'm trying to figure out a way to just be ok with less time and enjoy it to the fullest.

A favorite quote for today...

"Dost thou love life?  Then do not squander time, for time is the stuff life is made of." --Benjamin Franklin

Oh how this rings true these days!  Less idle time=more quality time.  It's a tough balancing act because when I'm tired I tend to just waste time clicking around on the computer or watching inane TV.  But then I don't feel fulfilled.  But I'm too tired for the deeper things I love to it's kind of a catch 22.  I know it's just a transient season of "newbornness" that will pass, but I'm trying to figure out how to best enjoy it!

One of my favorite things...

As part of my homeschool assessment, I've been thumbing through one of my favorite homeschool books, Real Learning: Education in the Heart of the Home.  It's so refreshing and inspiring whenever I'm feeling kind of...meh.

A Peek into my Day...
His double chin is coming along quite nicely, don't you think?  :)

Worm "grunting"

 After reading an article about worm grunting, we decided to give it a try.  It was a total and complete bust!  Not one measly worm came to the surface!  Decidedly we are NOT worm charmers.  But the kids had fun digging around in the dirt anyway. :)  They found all kinds of other creepy crawlies as a substitute!

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