July 8, 2016
Summer week 2

Summer week two was the first of three weeks of our summer homeschool program.


Elizabeth is going into grade two at Francojeunesse this year, and Matthew will be starting at the Glebe co-operative nursery school in the fall. This does not mean that we have stopped doing school at home.


Our summer homeschool goals:



-Finish MathUSee Beta (multiple digit addition and subtraction) and get a solid start on Gamma (multiplication). Supplement with Usbourne Brain games, which are math logic problems that she really likes. Work on mental math capabilities with some memorization puzzles and games.

-Summer journal at least five days a week in English or French

-Writing some postcards and letters to penpals (and our regularly scheduled birthday card time; if you want to get on our birthday card rotation, make sure we have your address and birthday...)

-Summer maintenance piano lessons

-Time to draw at least three times a week

-Electricity unit study

-Great artists unit study

-Make a pair of footy pjs

-Regular independent reading in both languages




-Jolly Phonics SATINP book 1 (letter recognition)

-Playdough letters

-Working on learning to write his name

-Make a quilt



-Science (for instance, measuring the amount of water we got in one of the epic rain storms we received this week - about 4"!)

-Completing at least an elephant's worth of books a week (that would be 20 under this year's summer reading program!)

-A chapter from our read-aloud book every day (currently: Danny, the champion of the world)

-My first map book (a geography curriculum focussed on map-reading)

-Cooking class (Kids cook real food video series)

-Lots of physical play, especially outside


Amelia mostly plays with Elizabeth's math manipulatives and empties the craft supply cupboard all over the floor. Good thing she's cute!


We made great progress on our goals this week. We mostly complete school in the morning, leaving plenty of time for fun at the beach. Or the park with cousins. Or the wading pool. In the sandbox. Doing crafts with friends. Watching our favourite cows head out to pasture. Playing in the basement. Playing in the rain... It was a pretty fun week!

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July 4, 2016
Amelia is thirteen months

Thirteen months is climbing everything. Amelia especially likes to climb up ladders and chairs that are already occupied by siblings or parents. She's still a perfectly happy little girl, so long as she is getting her way. Boy does she have ideas about what she would like to do. Luckily she often likes to do what her siblings are doing, and her siblings can often be convinced to do something that will amuse her.


The biggest change is that she is suddenly communicating more understandably - the number of signs in consistent use has gone up quite a bit. She signs "hurt", "bye" (she has a lovely wave), "more", "all done", "dirty", "clean", "change", "no" (emphatic head shaking), "yes" (adorable nod) and "GIMME" (holding hand out emphatically with a high pitched shriek). She has a few words too - "Mum", "Dada", "mmmm" (I'm not sure about this - hungry I think? Maybe milk?), "boof" (demand to nurse - boob?), "hi", "all done". There's a lot of babbling but we are quite dense.


These days, Daddy is in charge of Amelia's bedtime routine: change diaper, put on pjs, brush teeth, drop toothbrush on floor/sink, read story, say good night to the sheep on Daddy's computer (ie Daddy turn's his computer off and Amelia waves to them) and then either get carried up and down the stairs until she passes out or go play with Daddy until Mommy is ready for her, usually somewhere between 7 and 8pm.


At thirteen months we have started experimenting with putting her on the potty. Amelia thinks this is great fun but mostly this is just a fun game. She does often head to the toilet if she needs a change. She tries to dress herself in the morning by putting random clothing on her head and then shrieking until someone helps her put her clothes on. When she wants to go out, she brings me her shoes. When she is hungry, she opens the cupboard and helps herself to the cookies.

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July 3, 2016
Isabelle is three

Isabelle celebrated three with a "princess" themed party. There were many princesses. Many hoo-hoos (owls) and many items in pink. Auntie Karen made some amazing glittery crowns for the youngest guests.


Auntie Janice dressed up as Princess Merinda's Scottish cousin so that Zee could have a real princess at her party. I thought she should have just claimed to be Princess Merinda with a dye job, but Janice was having none of it.


The kids had a marvellous time running around the backyard and playing "king/queen of the castle". We gave Isabelle a new swing which immediately saw heavy use.



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July 2, 2016
Auntie Mary

Auntie Mary took the family out to East Side Mario's for my birthday! Matthew had dinosaur chicken fingers.

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July 1, 2016
Canada Day

We celebrated my birthday with brunch at Dave and Karen's house. There were sausages, bacon, smiley potatoes and hash browns, mushrooms and eggs and fruit, cream and two kinds of English jelly (of course). I might have used some to make into Canadian flags in honour of the other celebration on July 1st.


My aunt Mary made the trip from Wellesley for my birthday. Auntie Janice had to work but provided balloons and a lovely birthday banner.


Grandma J made her famous gluten free sponge strawberry sponge cake. My parents skyped in from Angola and helped me blow out the candles (along with many small children).


Some of us braved the weather forecast for a boat ride. Brendan and Margaret sat in the car but the kids (sans Theo), Mary, Dave, Mike and I squeezed into the boat during the storm.


As soon as the driving rain let up we motored out. Time constraints meant we didn't actually hoist sail but the kids all greatly enjoyed getting to drive. Isabelle had a truly wicked glint in her eyes as she wildly swung the boat from side to side. It was a pretty good thing we didn't have sails when the under-threes were driving!


We headed home to the annual neighbourhood block party and the kids ran around like hooligans for a while and then it was time for fireworks. Our kids don't cope that well with late nights, so we made a deal that we'd do a movie night instead with canned fireworks. We replayed the highlight reel we took at Iain and Renée's wedding and watched minions.

Brendan and I toyed with actually going to see the real fireworks after the kids were in bed but the weather reminded me of the super cold, windy and miserable year the fireworks were cancelled so we played Scrabble instead.

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