Thursday, December 5, 2013

Week 16 and 17 ~ Enjoying the Season

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King -- I suppose I say this all the time, but the last two weeks have been a whirlwind. I can't believe Thanksgiving was just last week! It seems like ages ago. Maybe it is just that we are now in full Nutcracker mode. This week is defiantly overshadowed by the Nutcracker. We will log 20+ hours at the theater this week. The last two weeks have had many ups and one big down (which I will get to later in this post).
A Sailor and a stuffed cat
My little candy cane!
A Guard who was in a rush to get to a costume change!
Last week we had our first snow! The kids were delighted to wake up last week to an inch of snow. They were out in it as soon as the sun came up. Our dog Boomer loves to run super fast in the snow. He is always a blur in my pictures.

Thanksgiving found us very thankful indeed for our many blessings. We decided to go with a traditional feast since Tom Sawyer is handling wheat in small quantities. He did eat too much stuffing, though, so is gluten-free this week. The menu was as follows: orange juice punch, stuffing, veggie platter, sweet potato and apple pies, turkey (decorated by Tom Sawyer), rolls, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce. Note to self...making the cranberry sauce, pies and bread for the stuffing several days in advance helped tremendously on turkey day.

We have a new therapist for Goldilocks. A few weeks ago, I took Goldilocks for an intake at a mental health center in our area. We have been looking on our own for a new female therapist for awhile with very little luck, until we found this organization that specializes in finding good matches for kids. They found us a match within two weeks. We have only met her once, but she seems great. I really am looking forward to some more support with helping Goldilocks meet her highest potential.

We are busy decking our halls. We found a sweet little tree this year at Home Depot. The kids decorated it on the first of December. We also put up two nativities and started our advent books and wreath. This week the kids' favorite advent things were making and eating latkes, plus decorating the tree. My favorite thing was sitting with my kids in the dark looking at our Christmas tree and nativity.

Tom Sawyer was shot with a pump rifle BB gun by the neighbor boy! He was shot at close range while riding his bike. It left an ugly welt on his leg and chipped the paint off his bike. The boy wasn't angry at him; he just was using my son as target practice. This kid and his chums, who also were firing BB guns at dogs and cars, have no concept of gun safety! The police took more than TWO hours to show up! Oy!! Living in the South is sometimes hard for me. Where I grew up, being shot with anything would have been a criminal offense. Here, the police think most boys are going to get shot with a BB gun (by mistake) at least once in their childhoods. They weren't even sure if it was against the law or not!! Since Tom Sawyer was threatened and then shot (the boy said, "I'm going to shoot you," and then shot him!), they agreed to go talk some sense into the kids and their parents, but since they took so long to arrive, when they went to speak to the boy who actually shot Tom Sawyer, he was no longer at home. I don't think the police ever bothered to come back. Did I mention that this boy's older brother shot Tom Sawyer (supposedly by mistake) with a BB gun this past summer? So, here we are again in a neighborhood where the kids are not appropriate playmates. I guess we are just going to have to isolate and import our playmates from elsewhere. I am so thankful for a really large fenced yard. We will be working on making it more tween/teen friendly for our kids over the next year. The hardest part is the bike riding...since riding in our neighborhood means risking being shot!

This month's poetry tea was all about Christmas. We read Christmas Trees by Robert Frost, Christmas Eve in Our Village by Phyllis McGinley, and A Visit from St. Nicholas by Clement Clarke Moore. We also enjoyed eating off of our Norman Rockwell plates and looking at his illustrations in the Norman Rockwell's Christmas Book.

We are officially Christmas schooling. The kids begin their day with CNN student news, one subject (history, science, or geography) and working on a page or two from each section of their Flash Kids full curriculum workbooks. Then it is on to Christmas school! We finished Mary's Christmas Carol mini unit study. It was wonderful. The kids and I also discovered Pentatonix on YouTube. They are an awesome acapella group that has many Christmas songs. We were able to find almost all of the songs in Mary's study on the Pentatonix channel. We also did our Advent books with activities each day. We delivered this week's Christmas charity of shoe boxes to Meals on Wheels. The biggest part of our Christmas schooling is the Nutcracker. This week, our studies are very heavy in music, theater training and social skills for the upcoming performances on Friday and Saturday.

Lastly, we squeezed in a library program. The girls loved making rubber band bracelets at the library this week. It is really easy and fun finger weaving. 

Well, I wasn't kidding that it has been a whirlwind the last two weeks. Thanks for hanging in there.

Blessings, Dawn


  1. Oh My Gosh did anyone sleep the past two weeks? LOL Fun fun! Those costumes are so cute on the kids. I am sure they will ROCK the performance! I love Christmas School in your home, relaxed and learning fun! That just sucks (pardon me) about the BB gun incident(s). I am so sorry for Tom S. and the police sound crappy down there. 8( I am glad you found a new therapist, I pray it all works out! Huzzah to your HUGE traditional meal at turkey day! Enjoy the last few weeks of 2013!

  2. Dawn ~ your son being shot with the BB gun makes me VERY VERY angry. Two years ago my son's sweet friend, Ellie (she was 6) was shot accidentally with an airsoft gun and tragically passed away. It was a horrible, horrible accident, but my view towards BB and Airsoft guns is very strict now.

    I love seeing all of the pictures of your kids in the costumes!!!

    I'm so thankful for you!

  3. I am very frustrated to hear how the neighbor children are not properly supervised with their BB guns. I would be furious if I were you too!....Good luck with the performance and enjoy all the Christmas schooling!

  4. I'd be steaming and anger is not an emotion I feel very often! But if anyone dare get between a mother and her cub....
    Thank God for big yards. I'll be interested to see how you make it tween and teen friendly. In our village it is frowned upon for children to play out in the streets, so it is not something you see very often. A fact I'm quite pleased about and I'd love some teeny and tweeny ideas!
    Have a great Christmas season!

  5. Your Thanksgiving dinner looked awesome!! You certainly have been very busy.

  6. I can't believe that the police didn't take the BB gun shooting seriously! That is unconscionable! That kid needs to learn that what he did was serious offense! Anyway...Did you actually make your own bread for the stuffing? I'm impressed! The feast looks yummy and the kids look adorable in their costumes! Enjoy your holiday preparations and activities. And stay out of that BB gun shooting kid's way!