Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday, Monday...

Woke up to fabulous news! We got our confirmation letter to a very special ribbon cutting ceremony in a couple of weeks (more on that later) AND I won a colorful beanbag and VersaTiles Favorite Children's Books (PrimaryStarter Pack) from ETA/Cuisenaire! Now that's a great way to start a Monday!

I want to highlight a few other bright points in our day. We began rowing The Clown of God by Tomie dePaola. I can already tell it will be a family favorite. It kept the attention of all three easily. It would be a great story to read around Christmas, but last week we checked out Little Grunt and the Big Egg by the same author and it was a huge hit. I remembered Tomie dePaola was on our FIAR list and that is why we began The Clown of God today. The setting is Italy and as an extra activity, the kids watched Muzzy in Italian while in the car this afternoon. We were also careful to use grazie and arrivederchi during our day as suggested by FIAR.

Today was gorgeous. We completed most of our seat work outside.We made sure there was time for outside pretend play and a bike ride, too.
While out and about, Ryan saw this  and declared he'd found a "cotton tree"! Bradford Pears are in full bloom and just beautiful this time of year. Their smell, we'll that's another story!

Our next stop was Home Depot. We bought a soil testing kit for our garden and the kids picked out their own flower seeds and a starter box. We were thinking The Lorax and Mrs. Rumphius would be proud. As soon  as we got home, the kids wanted to plant their seeds. I helped Jonathan (mammoth sunflowers). Caraline (pink impatiens and cosmos) and Ryan (purple morning glories) surprised me and planted theirs independently. Bittersweet, I suppose...

Tonight, we had a rare opportunity to view Mercury, Mars, Venus, Jupiter and Saturn all in one night. Mercury still eludes us...We need to be on a huge lake or on the coast where the western horizon is just water I suppose. Anyway, we did get the telescope out. It took forever to get it focused, but we did see Mars. The moon was bright and beautiful. Jupiter's stripes were stunning and it's four visible moons were shinning brightly. Venus we admired with just our eyes. It's so bright. We found Orion; our family favorite is Betelguese. Sirius was a point of interest for Ryan tonight. Grateful,  were able to share our astronomy adventure with a neighbor and her eight year old daughter.

If you're interested in an easy to follow night sky almanac, try Jay Ryan's here. I listened to a talk he gave tonight courtesy of This Old Schoolhouse and he just makes sense to me. I have his January and March almanacs and have learned a great deal from them.


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