Dorian arrived home today and we are thrilled to have him back. I missed him and his help, but it was also nice to be the sole caregiver for a short time (emphasis on short) and not have to share the snuggles (my girls usually prefer my husband for cuddles and me for fixing boo boos). It was nice to get all of their affection for awhile.
I used this time to transition into later bedtimes which will allow us to start having dinner as a family. I always imagined that we would eat as a family but with the girls so close in age it was just too much to help both of them eat while trying to feed ourselves. They are much more capable now and the littles and I have enjoyed eating together this week and are looking forward to dinners as a family in the week ahead. I had also hoped that the later bedtime would translate to later wake up times. We didn’t see that in the beginning of the week but the last two mornings the girls have been waking up closer to 5:30 (instead of 4:30) so we are moving in the right direction.
Literacy and Language Arts:
Our Webbing Into Literacy rhyme this week was Simple Simon and here we are acting out the rhyme by trying to catch a whale in a pail. Later Kooks played the dickie bird and Boo chased her around with a salt shaker. We thought Simple Simon was a very fun rhyme to act out.
We also made books this week. It’s something I’ve been meaning to do for a while now and I’m so glad we finally got around to it. I had the girls tell me a story which I wrote down and they illustrated. I’ve been reading the books back to them all week. Boo told a story about she and her sister as princesses that included her birthday party and a visit from Santa. While Kooks loves to tell me long stories, she decided to go for a much shorter book that reads, “ABCD, twinkle, twinkle, the end.” She tells me it is “so funny.” They are both very proud of their books.
Cognitive Skills and Math:
We also made some clocks and talked about time. I wrote the numbers on the clock face (err paper plate) and then gave Boo some squares of paper with the corresponding dots to match up. It was a bit challenging because the squares of paper were so small but when I pointed to the dots for her she did a great job of counting them correctly and then finding the right number on the plate to paste them next to. It ended up being a really good matching and number recognition activity. For Kooks I just pointed to the number, said it, and then had her pick out what shape she wanted to put next to it and tell me the name of the shape and its color. Then I repeated the number while she pasted. We have been playing with our clocks and to get a better idea of the concept of time we moved our kitchen timer into the bathroom and are now making sure that our teeth get their full two minutes of brushing.
Science and Nature Studies:
We started talking about the difference between living and nonliving things using this tray idea from Tattooed Soccer Mom. After exploring the tray Boo seemed a bit skeptical when when I told her trees and plants were living things and that they made their own food from the sun. I think she might have been imagining our tomato plant making a banana and eating it so I can understand the confusion. We spent some time talking about our one lone tomato plant and how it grew from a seed and what we need to give it to keep it alive and I think she gets it but we will definitely be continuing the conversation on this one.
We live in a hot valley and it is the dry season which means water needs to be conserved and I am always on the girls about being careful not to waste water when they wash their hands and making sure that they turn the taps off completely so they don’t drip, however, almost every time I fill our waterhole I forget to turn off the hose and end up with a telling pool of mud to the side of the waterhole. This annoys my husband to no end, in fact for the past few months I have been completely relieved of the waterhole filling duties as he has been getting to it first to avoid the waste, but he was away this week so it fell to me again, and again I forgot that I had the hose running. I always get so annoyed with myself when I let the waterhole overflow but on this particular day a couple of warthogs found the mud and spent the entire day in a mud bath. The girls and I had so much fun watching them and so this one time I prefer to think of my oversight as a community service to this pair. It was really hot, and don’t you think they look appreciative of my thoughtful forgetfulness?
We replenished our playdough supply this week and that act alone has saved my sanity. Absolutely amazing what a some colorful balls of dough will do to keep you entertained and relaxed. I think the littles enjoyed playing with it too.
Dorian was able to pick up a few DVDs I ordered for the kids when he was in Zambia. I had them shipped to a friend of mine when she was on home leave in the States knowing that eventually Dorian would be back in Zambia and could pick them up from her. I ordered them three months ago and am so excited to see if the girls like them. One is a children’s yoga DVD and the others are LeapFrog DVDs which we have heard great things about but have never tried. I typically have a no TV except for weekends rule but I think I will make an exception for these – if they are as good as I’m hoping they will be.