Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Winter Solstice 12.21.09

This morning the Fall fairy moved out of the fairy house and the Winter fairy arrived and made herself comfortable. Today we celebrate the Winter Solstice! Our artistic activity today was to make a Santa face. I read the children the story "The Night Before Christmas" because there is a great description of Santa in it. "His eyes how they twinkled! His dimples how merry! His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow. And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow."  Bella & Ian cut out two triangles, one for Santa's hat and one for his beard then they traced a cup to make the circle for the top of Santa's hat. They used a paper plate for his face and colored what they thought he would look like from the description in the book. We had a great conversation about what twinkling eyes look liked;) The children then glued cotton balls onto the bottom triangle for the beard that was as white as snow. They did a great job and were very proud posing with their Santas. We then moved onto Bread Making! Yule is the celebration of the return of the rising sun so today we baked Sun Bread to celebrate the beautiful light the sun gives us. Both Bella & Ian loved the kneading part of the bread process and both of them commented on the funny smell of the yeast and how the dough stopped sticking to their fingers when we added more flour. The way the dough rose was also a big moment of the day. Ian shouted "it's growing!" Bella wanted to know how big it was going to get. We headed outdoors to go for our nature walk. We did a slow walk through the forest.....little legs & deep snow are a tough combination. Everett dislikes the snow very much, I even tried giving him a sleigh ride but nothing seemed to make him happy:( My guess is he's more of a summer kind of kid (like his mama). A happy closing thought......the daylight stays with us a little longer each day starting today:) Enjoy the light!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Our Yellow Wagon

Harrison arrived today in good spirits. Still had a runny nose but so do all of mine so I'm getting pretty good at the surprise nose wipe. In fact today we used 1/2 a box of tissue at The Nest:) As you can see from the picture we finally put up our Christmas tree! We are trying a new spot in the living room this year, the corner, hoping that the couch will stop it from falling on anyone when Everett inevitably pulls it down. We also decided to not put up the decorations that we normally do, again Everett is the reason for this. He proved today why that decision was the right one..........he pulled off 3 of the 4 cranberry chains that I painstakingly created . Oh and smooshed them as well so he was covered in cranberry juice. I would have taken a picture for you but I was trying to save the couch from an unremovable cranberry stain;) After snack I loaded everyone into our yellow wagon and took them for a wagonride through our neighborhood. Yes, I played the part of the horse. Eeva was a great help and held Harrison for me. Someday(a long long time from now) she will make a wonderful mother, she is so gentle and understanding with Harrison. His little face lights up when he sees her get off the bus. Really special:) I never realized how heavy 4 little kids could be, we only went about a 1/2 mile up and then turned around. On our return trip we ran into some trouble.......we had a roll over! Not really a roll over, more like we tipped on our side. There was a car approaching and it was going a little too fast for my liking and not moving over far enough either so I made a B-line for the side of the road and our little yellow wagon flipped onto it's side. Thank goodness no one was hurt but there was a lot of crying. Again Eeva saved the day and held onto Harrison as tightly as she could. So I dusted them off, gave them each a kiss and we headed home! It will be awhile before this horse takes her wagon out onto the road again.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Baking Bread

This week Bella, Ian & I made Corn Bread together. Last week we made Banana Bread. I love to bake and I want the children to experience baking as well. I hope to graduate to baking bread that needs to rise and be kneaded. I have a wondeful book called Baking Bread with Children by Warren Lee Cohen. I often flip through it and long to create all the wonderful breads. But then reality sets in.....bread making, real bread making is messy and time consuming. In the introduction of the book the author says " Creating something to eat from such basic ingrediants(yeast, flour,water & salt) is real life magic." he also adds " It is an unforgettable experience to bake a beautiful loaf. It touches all our senses as well as feelings of accomplishment, wonder and joy. Baking bread is meaningful work that teaches a diverse set of skills and offers bountiful rewards." All wonderful reasons to roll up our sleeves and get baking bread with our children. I will keep you posted on our bread making adventures.