October 08, 2006

Random Stuff

It's nearly 4:30 a.m. and I've been up for 2 hours. Such is my lot during pregnancy, I guess. I get up to go to the bathroom and can't get back to sleep (primarily because a certain someone in my bed snores!). Even after trying to sleep on the couch, I'm still awake and decided I might as well be awake doing something rather than nothing. Here are some random thoughts from a tired brain.

Last week's home school theme was Bedtime. We had some fun books from the library and some great stories/poems from our Sonlight books. The kids enjoyed the reading, but there was nothing terribly spectacular about the week. No field trips this time, unless you count the Land of Nod. ;-)

Charis passed her math test with flying colors--she's really getting this addition thing! I was delighted to see she got 20 out of 20 correct the first time. I was planning to take the rest of this Math-U-See book fairly slowly, because she's so young and I really wanted her to learn thoroughly rather than just get through the book. I think the week we took to review addition facts awhile back has paid off. It's nice to have the freedom to evaluate what my child needs and then do it, and it takes a lot of pressure off when I realize that I don't HAVE to be at any certain point in our lessons at any given time!

Tobin continues to improve his reading with amazing speed. We're now somewhere around lesson 75 or so in his 100 EZ Lessons book, and he surprises me by reading random things (like cereal boxes and t-shirts) out loud, reading words we didn't realize he could figure out yet! Once again, this is a lesson to me to never assume anything about my children or their abilities. "Everyone" said that boys need more time than girls do to grow and develop before they're ready for academics (probably the same "everyone" who said that boys are harder to potty train than girls--not so in our family). So I really did not intend to do anything even remotely formal with Tobin for another year or so. I figured he could color in workbooks or do whatever he was interested in doing, but I had no idea he'd be such a fluent reader at 4 1/2 years old. He was the one to initiate the reading lessons, saying he wanted to be able to read like Charis! He's not, however, interested in handwriting in the slightest--no surprise there! He's doing fairly well with writing numerals, but I haven't done any handwriting to speak of since we did a pre-K Handwriting Without Tears book last fall. It was a good introduction, but I don't think he's ready for anything else yet. He enjoys writing his name but doesn't seem interested in doing anything else but coloring, and I know that's good for his development as well.

I've been asked several times what I do with the boys when I'm home schooling Charis. We begin the day with Bible stories, verses, and prayer, so we're all doing that together. Then, truthfully, Tobin keeps busy with his own little math workbook and reading lessons while Charis works on her math and handwriting. He usually colors while Charis and I do her phonics and dictation exercises, and then it's time for Sonlight/library reading, which we all do together. So, Tobin's easy to work with right now.

And amazingly, so is Arden! I had all sorts of grand plans of setting up little learning stations for him to be playing at (and keeping busy with) while I schooled the other two, but he's figured out his own plan. He heads to the family room and plays with Wedgits, Lincoln Logs, or Superstructs...or, sometimes he stays in the school room and plays with the Math-U-See blocks. (His creations are getting more and more grandiose as the year progresses!)

The first week we "did" school this fall, I was a bit concerned about what to do with Arden, as he wanted only to sit on my lap or cling to my leg. I guess he's figured that whatever we're doing is not worth his time, because he has no problem leaving me alone now during our first activities. Often he comes to read with us on the couch when it's reading time, and it's nice to be together for that when he's interested.

So, thankfully, "what do you do with your pre-schoolers" is not really an issue at this point for us! I'm sure that will change when we add a baby to the mix, or when Arden gets a little bit older, but for now I'm enjoying the ease with which we are carrying out our schedule.

I've managed to maintain a reasonable exercise regime so far during this pregnancy. I had taken a few weeks off because of nausea and exhaustion at the beginning, but after I started to feel better, I began jogging again. For a few weeks I was doing a total of about 10-12 miles per week. (Since I had been doing 20-22 miles a week before I found out I was pregnant, this was not, I felt, unreasonable.) Gradually that number has dropped significantly! This past week I jogged a total of 3 3/4 miles, though I did walk a total of 2 1/4, so that has to count for something.

The doctor said I could continue exercising but to listen to my body. It seems my body is telling me it's time to slow down! I really want to continue doing something, even if I can't run 4-5 miles at a stretch (or even 1 1/2 or 2!), so I hope to at least go walking 3-4 times per week. It's nice that we now have our treadmill in our bedroom so that I can get exercise when Ted is at work. The mornings have been dark and blustery lately, so I have not actually exercised outside aside from my walk yesterday at lunch time when Ted and the kids played at the park.


Megan said...

Your home-school stories are very inspiring! We are currently doing a "trains" unit, if you can even call it that when you're working with a 2.5 year old. :) She's all about trains, so we have train DVDs and train books from the library, and today on a trip to the store, we happened to see a real live train at a crossroads. Woohoo! It's going to get even more fun the older Sela gets, I think.

Ski said...

Hi Beverly,
Sorry you aren't sleeping well, get some nose strips for my brother. Would Charis and Arden like their own set of Wedgits? I was thinking of getting them some for their birhtdays. Then the kids would have 3 set total and can make some really interesting things. I thought I would get Tobin some of the idea cards. Enjoy your time with Ted.

Beverly said...

Hey, Ski,

Ted DOES have nose strips!! I'm not sure how much worse it would be if he didn't have them, but he's faithfully putting them on every night!

The Wedgit idea cards would be fabulous. Right now Arden is the main person to play with Wedgits, though Tobin did take them to his room today. We had thought about idea cards for Arden as well, since he's memorized all the other ideas from the paper that came with the Wedgits box.

Arden DOES show an interest in the things that can be built with the next set up (is it Wedgits Jr? can't remember right now), so maybe that's a possibility?

Charis is really into the Only Hearts dolls (http://www.onlyheartsclub.com/). She has Anna Sophia and Karina Grace, but no extra outfits, as we just started collecting this year and she saved and saved her allowance to purchase both dolls herself! If you end up wanting to get something like this, let me know, as I may get her something from the collection as well.

Bob & Claire said...

LOL, we have the same snoring problem here. I have a set of ear plugs (those little yellow military issue ones) in my bedside table for the nights where I wake up and then can't get back to sleep because of the noise! : )

We have a treadmill in our room too, and I have also been really enjoying walking on that in the morning (no running here, LOL). I'm kind of worried about gestational diabetes, since I've had a lot of kids, and 2 of mine were over 9 pounds (not that I've ever had any problems, but . . .). So I am trying to be extremely consistent about exercising!