Thursday, September 27, 2012

Homeschooling Decision

As most everyone knows, we moved in June from our apartment to a house. With that move, we changed school districts, so Liam was going to have to be in a new school. He was very excited about it and Josh and I were also because we had gotten really burned at our last school. We felt as though the teacher had given up on Liam when we were in the process of figuring out some medical issues with him, which she brought to light.

Josh and I had tossed around the idea of homeschooling from April or May of this year, but were feeling like the best bet was to try the new school and go from there. Well, needless to say, that didn't work out. When we went to register Liam, we were very unimpressed with the school and felt incredibly uncomfortable with him going there. We were new there and no procedures or handbooks were given out to us. I felt very unprepared for Liam to go there.

I called the bus barn in the next few days to find out which bus Liam would be riding and the timing for drop off and pick up. They called me back and informed me that we are in the walking district and there will be no bus for him. So I asked them what families did if they didn't have transportation for their kids. I was told:

"They walk.".

"Even on bad days when it's raining, cold, snowing etc?"


My first thought...oh. So in tears, I called Josh and my mom to find out what I could do. You see, I babysit other children out of my home. So I can have anywhere from just my 2 boys in the house to 6 kids in the house - ages ranging from 5 months up to 7 years old. I don't have a vehicle big enough to drive all the kids, nor am I going to try and cart that many kids all the way to the school.

So Josh asked me one question that solved everything.

"Home or school?"


I felt much more comfortable with Liam being home. All of my previous fears about homeschooling were instantly gone because I needed to take care of my son and do whatever was best for my son. So 1 week before public school was suppose start, we chose to homeschool Liam. I have had several talks with Natalie about what she is doing with her kiddos for school (she homeschools my niece and nephews, too!). We found the curriculums that I am using and we have been doing fantastic! We have our days where frustrations are high, but after the first one of those, I found out that I need to have a back up plan for learning. I have packets and other things for Liam to do on his own, while we both cool off.

There are other reasons behind the decision for homeschooling, but that was the straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak.

Happy Birthday, Austin!

Our baby is one now!

We had his party, celebrated him, loved on him and enjoyed the company that came. My youngest brother was dearly missed at this celebration because he was still in Japan.

When AJ woke up the morning of his party, he was terrified of balloons. Josh had gone to get him a special 1st birthday balloon and we had to coax him into being ok with it. Now, we can't go anywhere that there is a balloon without him reaching for it and saying the 'B' sound over and over. He loves balloons!

His cupcakes for the party were suppose to be in the shape of a honey pot from Winnie the Pooh. It didn't turn out the way that I had planned in my head, but that's ok. As we sang Happy Birthday to him, he smiled and loved it. The cupcake he wasn't so sure about. Josh tried to cut it up for him, but he just poked it and looked at it.

We got plenty of pictures from that special day - these are just a few :)

 Tears in his eyes because someone took away his balloon :)
 LOVE Balloons!
 Happy Birthday!
 Hmmm...what's this?
 Daddy put some in my mouth!
 Oooo BALLS!!

Happy Birthday, Monkey! We love you!!


Let's back up now a couple of months to some posts that I have not typed up, but had written:

As our baby turns one in just a few days, which totally doesn't seem possible by the way, I have come to the realization that I am in complete denial.

The invitations for his party were sent out later than I would have normally sent out invitations. Shoot, it took me forever to even buy them! Planning his party .... what planning? Buying him presents ...what's that?

Josh looked at me tonight and said "are we actually going to go buy him gifts this weekend?".

I just smiled and said, "no".

Because then it's real and my baby won't be a baby anymore. I know he will always be MY baby but he's not A baby.

This one is hard...and I'm not ready.

Denial ....

First Science Project EVER

As some of you may know, we decided to homeschool Liam. There will be another post explaining some reasoning behind it later - SO busy lately, that I have not been able to type up posts again. However, today - no, this week - has been extremely fun! Thanks to International Homeschool Spirit Week. I am hoping to blog a little bit about each day later in another post.

Every Tuesday and Thursday are science days! And boy has Liam loved to learn about science. Before we went out and bought different curriculums for me to teach, we talked with my sister-in-law about her recommendations. For science, we fell in love with the curriculum by Apologia. He got to choose which subject he wanted to learn about for the whole year. He immediately, without hesitation, chose Astronomy. I am having so much fun reading about everything as well!

So the second chapter in the book is all about the sun. One of the science projects that they do is melting a chocolate bar with a magnifying glass. We didn't have the greatest weather during the days that we were actually learning about the sun to do the experiment, but I kept the chocolate bar (even though there were many times I almost snitched it to eat myself) in the refrigerator - just in case.

Well today (even though it's a bit chilly) was PERFECT. The sun was shining without clouds, so before we even normally sit down to do school, I called to Liam and asked if he wanted to do a science project. At first, he was grumbling because I had already had him do something school related just an hour or two before that. Then he asked if we could do it outside, which is where he was headed anyway, and I said of course! And then he realized WHICH project we were doing and he was thrilled!

So off we trooped to the driveway, magnifying glass, chocolate bar and baby in tow. Austin crawled around on the ground while Liam concentrated the sun's energy onto the chocolate bar. Before we started, I was able to remember to grab my camera - so here are some pictures!

 Just starting out!
 Trying to concentrate and keep still!
 Working a different angle!
Our end result!
We knew that we had done well only because Austin got away from both of us and smashed his fingers into the chocolate before either one of us could stop him! :) Oh well! So this was Liam's first science project EVER! and he LOVED it!