here :)

http://morrisfamilymadness.blogspot.com/2010/07/little-things-make-it-all-worthwhile.html

and moving to Blogger. I admit defeat…. I cannot conquer wordpress. I apologize and I know it’s annoying ( trust me I just moved  every post I’ve ever made) But I just cannot figure out how to do the things I want to here.

Here’s our new digs :)

http://morrisfamilymadness.blogspot.com/

I know you’ve all been waiting for this… you can hardly handle the anticipation. Drumroll please………

OK fine so maybe it’s NOT that big of a deal to you but I’ve put a LOT of work into deciding what we would use next year so you all have to hear about it. If you love me you’ll pretend to be excited ;)

In addition to the curriculum I have chosen we have also been selected to Join The Old Schoolhouse’s Homeschool Crew this year! That means we will get the opportunity to receive and review homeschooling products throughout the year. The Firefighter and Australia reviews I did were “audition” reviews if you will. We are honored to have been chosen and can’t wait to try new and different things that we wouldn’t have otherwise had the opportunity to try.

This year Weylin will be attending Haas Hall Academy . He is very excited about getting to go there. It is a math/science based charter school which is right up his alley…. so I will be leaving his curriculum choices to them this year ;)

Peyton will be going into 3rd grade and still working on mastering reading. He excels particularly in Science and Math but his real passion is History. Ask him anything about Ancient History that we learned last year and he can tell you all about it… he remembers more than me and spent countless hours pouring over the books. My Main goal for him this year is to get him reading fluently. We are fairly certain he is dyslexic and honestly he just doesn’t have any desire to read which doesn’t help things.

Amelia managed to finish not only 1st grade but also 2nd last year so will be joining Peyton in 3rd. Her passion is reading. You can find her at any moment snuggled up with a book. I am quite amazed by the things she can read and spell. School is a breeze for her. My goal for her this year is to keep her interested and engaged without having her finish high school at 9. ( I’m mostly kidding but I would like her to stay at about the same level as Peyton, it’s too much for me to teach too many different levels. Selfish maybe but until I have more independent learners it’s just life)

Audrey and Avery will be starting Kindergarten. If it’s too much for Avery I will back off but I don’t think it will be. One never does anything without the other. I think Avery would be devastated if she wasn’t included. Our goals for this year are to have fun and start learning some basics. ( while looking at photos I realized we have another goal for them… stop sucking their thumbs!! )

Anna… hmmm who knows what we’ll do with her. She is quite sure she’s big although she is not even 2.5 yet. I may do letter of the week with her just so she will have something to do. Who knows maybe she’ll know her letters by the end of the year. I would be ok with that :) My goal for her is potty training lol.

We will be doing some things as a group this year. They include ….

Tapestry of Grace year 2 for History, Geography, and other things as they fit.

The younger girls will join in as they wish, or not at all if they’ve had enough for the day. Peyton will be doing Lower Grammar and Amelia will be doing Lower with Peyton but with Upper Grammar reading and writing assignments.

Elemental Science Chemistry.

Same as history, younger girls as interested.

Nature Studies will continue with all.

I would also like to find something I like to use for art… I am inept in this area in particular.

For Classical Music I got some of the Music Master CD’s for us to use. They tell a bit about the composers life and include some of their music. That feels like plenty to me at this age :)

The 3 older girls will be continuing with their Ballet instruction and Anna will be starting in March when she turns 3. All of the girls are moving to the next class up and Amelia is going to start going twice a week. They love dance so much. It is inspiring to me to watch them daily dance and practice and see the joy it brings them.

We will also start Piano in September for the 4 Middle children.

Amelia and Peyton’s 3rd grade Line up

Michael Clay Thompson for language arts.  I’m very excited about this program. It is Grammar, Poetry, Vocabulary, Writing and beauty all combined into one. It is done almost entirely orally which is fabulous for Peyton. I’m hoping it works as well as I think it will.

Math Mammoth 3rd grade. Same concept as Singapore but a lot less work for me.

All About Spelling we will be finishing level 2 and also doing level 3 at the minimum. I cannot say enough good things about this program. Peyton could not spell at all before starting it. Now he can spell most of what we’ve learned. Amelia well lets just say in a homeschool spelling bee of multiple grade levels she was the 3rd to last out. The 2 other kids left were in 6th and 7th grade. The girl can spell ;)

Handwriting without tears Cursive

Explode the Code Peyton will be on book 4 Amelia on book 7

Mad Libs for fun to cement grammar concepts.

Paddle to the Sea for additional Geography.

I got a great deal on 3 levels of Hooked on Phonics (This set for $26) so I plan on using the 1st and 2nd grade levels a bit with Peyton

We also plan on starting some logic work this year.

I still haven’t composed final reading lists for next year yet… I tend to change my mind often on those.

Avery and Audrey

Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading this contains simple concise lessons to teach your children to read

Hooked On Phonics Kindergarten level

Handwriting Without Tears Kindergarten book

Explode the Code book 1

Math will be either Right Start Level A or Miquon or a combination of both… I really can’t decide on these. I even bought them both so I could look them over and decide and I still can’t choose… so it will probably be both ;)

We may or may not start on All About Spelling level 1… we’ll see where we are later in the year.

I have a huge list of books I want to read with them so it is sufficient to say we will do a lot of reading ;)

That’s about it.. stay tuned for a schoolroom post when I get everything set up and organized for next year :)

For the past several days I’ve noticed the AC hasn’t been working properly. It’s been very humid in the house and the temp has been hovering at about 78. I just assumed it was because it’s been 90+ outside and humid as can be.
Well the gas company came out to change our meter and when he went in to relight the pilot he came to find me with “maam, you have a little problem here”
UH OH…. go out there and the AC is sputtering water. Fantastic.
Call the repairman and he says turn it off NOW… Ughhhh.

By this point I was feeling near tears… this is the type of thing Joe deals with. The repairman said he’d be out sometime tomorrow afternoon. I called Joe and whined. He said to go to a hotel and not to worry about it.

I’d like to tell you at this point in the story I sucked it up and we’re sitting in the hot house dealing….. but that’s not what happened. I.. am a wuss. It’s plain and simple. I packed up my kids, grabbed their swimsuits and PJs and we went straight to the hotel. We did have a lot of fun swimming though and plan on doing it again tomorrow… right up until they kick us out ;)
So I’ll admit it I’m a baby… but I’m not hot and the kids are happy and comfy and sleeping so I’m ok with that. Hopefully tomorrow will bring a day filled with a fixed air conditioner. ;)

Just a little update… our air conditioner is now fixed and our house is nice and cool again :) I wanted to add some pics that I snuck of the kids wiped out in the hotel room because clearly a pictureless post breaks my rules ;)

Amelia and Anna in the crib there

Audrey and Avery

And sweet chivalrous Peyton insisted he be the one to sleep on the floor because he’s a boy and he’s tough :)

I know this is a day early here but in a couple hours our Daddy will be waking up in Australia. Considering Dad’s half a world away our gift ideas were limited… hope you like what we came up with Daddy :)

Underneath everyone’s pictures is what they said they love best about their Daddy :)

Weylin likes hanging out with his Dad because he likes his personality and thinks he’s fun to be with. He also likes that he knows how much he loves him and is able to be supportive of him.

Peyton loves his Dad because he’s nice to him and works hard for us.

Anna likes Daddy’s snuggles and says he’s funny.

Amelia likes her Daddy because he gives her candy and is nice.

Audrey loves her Dad because he’s nice and he gives us candy…. there must be more candy than I know about ;)

Avery loves her Dad because he’s her Baby Daddy ( this is what she calls him because then she has to “take care”of him)

I hope you have a wonderful day Daddy… we’re thinking of you and we love you!!

Here are the pictures we took before Daddy left with the 5 younger kiddos :)

We Miss You Daddy!

We were blessed yesterday to be able to go with  friends to work with some ponies. They have been volunteering for years to work with these ponies. Basically they are being trained to be good with children so they can be used as therapy for special needs children. If the families of the special needs child have room at their home they even donate the ponies.

I cannot tell you how much we enjoyed this experience. We hope to be able to start doing this on a regular basis.

Anna’s reaction was PRICELESS! She loved the ponies so much, when she was on one she was giggling and when she had to get off she would get so sad.  Just see for yourself how much she loved them…

Avery didn’t stay on long enough for me to get a picture… I’m sure she’ll warm up to them :)

Amelia of course loved it and can I just say I am so glad Amelia has found some friends she loves so much! All of them are such fabulous girls!

Audrey even loved it which really shocked me… she especially loved braiding the ponies hair :)

We went this morning with some friends to Tanyard Creek to hike and swim in the creek. The kids all had a blast! We just love the family we went with, all of their girls are so wonderful and so is their mama!

I took an obscene amount of pictures so if you think this is a lot just be thankful I’m not posting them all ;)

Hiking… aren’t the little girls so sweet :)

I promise she wasn’t miserable the rocks were hurting her feet.

Poor Peyton surrounded by girl… or was it poor girls surrounded by Peyton?

Sweet baby Annabelle

Amelia needed some new shirts and a new dance outfit ( because she’s moving up a class and now wears black :) )It’s amazing to me how much I enjoy sewing again now. Selling things I sewed killed the joy of it for me. When I quit I didn’t sew for over a year unless necessary, but now I feel my creativity back in full force and I love it once again!

Didn’t get a pic of this one on yet

Her new dance duds… the pink trim has sweet little black butterflies on it too :)

And some new napkins and cute butterfly napkin holders the kids made :)

Last week we went to the gardens for Avery’s birthday. It is by far one of the kids very favorite places to go. They’ve really done a fabulous job of making it both beautiful and fun. I always bring my camera because it’s such a perfect place for pictures!

This picture just makes me melt… what a good big brother he is!

Since I made the other post prematurely I’m adding pictures from  her actual birthday now.

This year I sewed most of her presents because that’s what she wanted since usually she gets stuck with mostly hand me downs. The only other thing she asked for was flowers.

We went to the Botanical Gardens in the morning, I’ll share more pics from that later but here’s a few of the birthday girl.

Here’s her “official” birthday outfit I made her.

New Dress and Leggings… and matching undies of course ;)

A new leotard made by me and a Tutu I couldn’t resist at the dance store

New Blanket/Pillowcase and a Princess nightie

Good night Birthday Girl!!

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