Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Herb Learning

We have been exploring herbs and wild edible plants as part of our homeschooling adventures. We love this kid's herb book and I highly recommend it 
As we learn more, we have grown more connected to all plants, we have learned about wild edible plants and enjoy finding them in our back yard (like chickweed) and we have even learned to make our own healthy root beer from herbs. Jetta is more involved in taking care of the plants in the house and I can even find her talking to the plants and listening to what they have to say back. 
Another wonderful tool for learning about herbs that we found this year is a fun wild plant game.

This is a fun, non-competitive and cooperative game that the whole family can enjoy and learn the different wild herbs and their uses. http://www.learningherbs.com/wildcraft.html
We are also planting an herb garden and are in the process of learning how to make our own tea's and tinctures. Time to check on our seedlings and maybe go harvest a basket of chickweed for a yummy salad for lunch.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Best Friends

Nothing makes me more happy
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Planting our seeds

We are planting seeds to go into our raised gardens this spring. So far we have planted lettuce, thyme, rosemary, arugula and basil in all different kind of containers from our recycle bin.

Jetta and Pilot planted all the seeds and love watering the seed and watching the seedlings grow each day in our window. We also planted watermelon which I have no idea how to grow, and Oat grass for the cats.

The Cat grass really took off fast. But the cats are not interested. We are planning to start our raised garden bed in the next week or so.
We are very excited about getting our hand dirty this Spring and Summer. I don't know why, but I just feel so much more alive and happy when I have dirt under my nails and my kids are covered in mud.
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Thursday, March 25, 2010

We're Knitting!

Well.....finger knitting that is. Yes, I was determined to teach Jetta how to knit when she showed the intrest, (even though I don't know how myself) so we got excited about our new found interest and marched down to the local 'yarn barn'. I was sure that we would find people so excited about knitting that it would inspire us and show Jetta how much fun knitting could be. I knew they would point us in the right direction to start. However, when we got to the store and began talking to the woman who worked there, we soon found out that knitting was not for kids and that nothing, I mean NOTHING was suitable for children in the store that had to do with knitting. I was told that trying to teach my daughter to knit would NOT be possible. " If she did knit something, there would be holes in it and the disappointment would be so great she may never knit again" one lady explained to me. I proceeded to tell them, in the nicest way possible, that we were not leaving without the yarn and supplies that we came for. I almost had to force them to sell it to me. I was so disappointed in these women, but I was going to show my daughter that if she wanted to learn to do something she could. On the way out of the 'Yarn Barn' Jetta asked me why those women thought she couldn't knit. I explained to her that they just didn't know any better. Maybe someone had told them that kids couln't do it, so that was their belief. We do not have that belief. So we marched home and decided we would just have to research it ourselves. We hopped on the internet and a few searches later, to our sheer delight, we found finger knitting! We watched the video a few times and we were off and knitting.

Jetta, age 5 (way too young for knitting, yeah right!), picked it up so quickly and I really had fun with it too.

Her fingers moved with dexterity and precision. Her whole body in a deep meditational state. This is just the experience we were looking for.

And here is the beautiful bracelet that she made for me.

It is so important to teach our children that when we are guided to do something, there may be many blocks set in our path, but if you trust yourself, you can always find a way. I did buy the knitting needles too, which I am"sure that kids can't use either" but we are sure going to give it a try. We don't worry too much about a few holes in our scarves. We like them!
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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ice Skating At Quiet Waters Park

We talked about going ice skating all winter and we finally made it. I have such fond memories of ice skating as a child and after we watched the Olympics this year, we just had to go out on the ice.

This was Pilot's first time on the ice and Jetta's second time.
I was so surprised and happy that both kids could feel happy on the ice and actually be independent with the cool walker provided by the rink.

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Monday, March 15, 2010

Zoku Pop Maker!

Banana Pop Anyone?!

With our Zoku Quick Pop Maker we can make healthy Pops in just 7 minutes. It is so easy to use that my kids can make them by themselves. Even these yummy banana pops are kid friendly. Just blend up a little plain yogurt, banana, raw honey and vanilla for the pop base. Save some slices of banana to stick to the side before pouring in your base.
Wait 7 minutes.................

When they are ready use the orange tool to twist them loose....


.........and enjoy!
I have to admit I am a little biased because my husband is on of the guys to developed this product. But, I can honestly say that it is my favorite kitchen tool. I am really into healthy eating, and quick fun activities that include my children and cooking and the Zoku brings joy and healthy eating into our lives. I have to say, I am so proud of my husband and the kids think their Daddy is pretty cool.
If you want one, you can get one of these cool Pop makers here http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/zoku-quick-pop-maker/?pkey=x414zoku0&cm_src=SCH

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Crispy Nut trail mix

This is my families favorite snack:

The recipe comes from my e-book, Living, Loving, and Cooking with My Daughter http://nourishingyouandyourchildren.blogspot.com/

2 C - Raw Almonds
2 C - Raw Walnuts
2 C - Pecans
1.5 C Raisins
1/4 C Raw Honey
2 T - Cinnamon
1/2 T nutmeg
1 T Sea Salt
All nuts are soaked overnight and crisped in a the oven on the lowest heat.
See Full recipe in my cookbook
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Giant Icicles

After the big blizzard this year, we had so many
Icicles hanging off our roof. They were almost as big as Jetta.

View from the bedroom.
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Saturday, March 13, 2010

Jetta's Apple Bread Pie

Jetta loves cooking and often comes up with a wonderful breakfast for all of us. This is one was a real hit with the whole family.

Jetta's recipe: The Apple Bread Pie
4 eggs, 1 cup of milk, 4 slices of millet bread diced, 2 apples diced, 1 TBS cinnamon, 2 TBS date sugar, butter for the pan and crispy nuts.

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Tea Train

I drink lots of tea and therefore go through lots of tea boxes. Here is a great project to do with them. You can make as many train cars as you have boxes.

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Pilot's Clay Man

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Clay play

I thought this little clay girl Jetta made was so sweet. This non-toxic modeling clay is wonderful. It never drys up and it is easy for even the littlest hands to work with.
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From a Child's Eye at the Aquarium

Grandma Boo and Papa took the kids to the Aquarium. These are a few the the pictures Jetta got with her camera.

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Is it going to Rain?

Another fun science project with Daddy. Barometers! It was so easy and I learned a lot myself about air pressure and weather. 

All we needed was a glass jar, a balloon, a straw and some string.

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Friday, March 12, 2010

A snow day by the fire

A magical snowy day doing crafts by the fire with Daddy.
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Paper, Scissors and Tape

The Magic of paper, scissors and tape amazes me every day. I make sure that my kids have access to these three supplies at all times at home. This way, they can create anything they want at any time. There is no need to go to the store and buy a figure of batman, when you can just make one.

Pilot, age 2, so proud of his batman he made all by himself. Not only does he get a new toy to play with, but he is continuing to develop his creativity and he can truly feel excited about this piece of art that he worked so hard on. And when he is done playing with it (as all kids get tired of all toys at some point) I don't have to feel bad about getting rid of it. He just puts it in the recycle bin or cuts it up to make something new.

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Wax figure play

We decided to try and new art medium, modeling wax.

Although it is very hard to mold at first, it warms up after a while and it certainly is a great workout for the fingers.

Since both of my kids were so into The Nutcracker this winter, we all worked on some figures from the ballet.

My 2 year old had me make him a Nutcracker and a Rat King. This is the results of my hard work. He certainly got a kick out of them and spent many hours playing with them.

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