Sunday, December 27, 2009

Winter Solstice 2009

This year was another spectacular solstice. I love this family time it is so wonderful to be snuggled up at home working on things that feed our soul, fire roaring....toasty inside, chilly and dark outside.

This year there was no solstice light trade so we made our own solstice lights. Not sure you can see it clearly in the photo but the lights are decorated with glass beads and copper wire, also used some jade beads, clear quartz beads, turquoise beads and lapis beads. Just really pretty and they shine in the light. We also made our traditional solstice wish bread, yummy cinnamon, sugar bread with all our wishes baked in. We had a roaring fire in the stove, lights on, bread made and we waited out the longest night, watching the sun rise the next morning, welcoming in that lovely sun. Sunrise was about 7:45 for us, Phil wanted to sleep but Jackson, Dallen and I went down to the deck to watch the sun rise up over the tree tops. Just beautiful, and a nice clear morning. Wonderful. Then it was back inside, Phillip was up by this time, and we had hot chocolate and our wish bread for breakfast. It was just one of those loving, sharing, moments and a great reminder just how blessed we are.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Holiday Traditions

One of our holiday traditions is a gingerbread house. This is something the boys share with Jackson. I do so many things with the boys as the stay at home mom. Jackson doesn't have all that time with them. He is the bread winner and I am so grateful for his commitment to our family, and to the boys being homeschooled. Without his love and support we wouldn't be able to continue. So we work out special times for him to share with our boys. Building and decorating the holiday gingerbread house is one of those times. They so look forward to this year after year. And this year, thanks to a special friend, we have a home made ginger bread house, instead of the usual store bought kit.

They giggle, and laugh, and eat candy while decorating their special house. How much fun is that?!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Let It Snow

I can't remember if I have blogged about this before, but Phillip, my youngest, has been wanting snow this year, like REALLY wanting snow. One year we took a weekend trip to the mountains so we could be *in* the snow. It just doesn't really snow here. I am so thrilled with that, but my youngest would like some. We have discussed different options and one that we all agree on is taking another trip to the mountains if it doesn't snow here by the end of January.

Well it snowed, and snowed and snowed. Friday and Saturday, wonderful white stuff falling from the sky. Not the snow I grew up with, this was a nice wet snow, the kind you can sled in and make snow men. It was relatively warm out, reaching mid 30s to 40s during the day. We got around 8-10 inches, of course much of that has melted now but it provided our household with days of such blissful joy, playing in the snow, showing my boys how to make a sledding path down the hill, helping build snow gnomes when it first started snowing, and a snow man once it had accumulated. We all had fun. And I am so happy that the Universe saw fit to fulfill my son's dreams of snow this year. We are hoping for a couple more good snow storms before the winter is over (if you are listening Universe). What joy!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Explore Science Day

My youngest son has been interested in just exploring different aspects of science (electricity, chemistry etc). And of course these things are more fun with a group so I started organizing an explore science day at our house for our homeschool group. It is a relaxed day, I seek out fun things to do and provide the different items needed, the kids come and I give kind of a general overview of what we are doing and let them go at it, working as they like (or don't like). We do have a few that are sometimes not interested, so of course we have video games, board games etc for anyone to use, and many do at some point during the day....coming and going as they like.

This month was kind of like kitchen chemistry, and I got the idea from this web site. I loved the approach since the author said that he generally just puts everything out and then lets the kids go at it, figuring things out along the way (how cool is that). And we found the same results as he did, the initial "let's mix everything together", then settling down to "wow if I mix X with Y...this happens." Some really enjoyed just mixing everything together to see the coolest reaction they could get, and some really wanted to know what made the reaction, etc. Very interesting, lasted a couple of hours, lots of playing after, get a bunch of friends together and it is always FUN!