Cook Book for Christmas

As a Christmas present Liam received a Children’s Cookbook. I hadn’t really planned anything for the day’s lesson and grabbed the book for a possible cooking project. Well, it turned out to be a whole day’s activity! The book entails many great recipes and a bonus introduction with a How to eat Healthy page. We read together about Protein, Carbs, Fiber, Fat and Vitamins and Minerals. Liam asked do I get all those things with what I eat?  So we headed to the kitchen to read labels and see if he in fact has a balanced diet.  With that I suggested he make us a balanced family dinner. He liked that idea.  He chose a meal, and dessert. I had him look through the kitchen to see if we had all the ingredients and make a grocery list of what we needed to pick up at the store.

He chose to make Cheese and potato pockets for the meal, with broccoli, and brownies for dessert.

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He prepared the whole meal, with little assistance.  Luke ended up making the brownies with me once Liam discovered how much work the pockets entailed!

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Everything came out great, lessons learned in nutrition, preparation, measuring, team work and reading and making adjustments to the directions!

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All about Winter-Books, Activities and Animals

Briggs' illustration of the snowman.

Briggs’ illustration of the snowman. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The month of December is always festive, hectic and full of events! Knowing this, I planned to have an easy breezy December homeschool schedule this year. (Not to mention a full 40 hours of work each week, being in retail) Most days we just did some quick math sheets with either a winter or Christmas theme, copywork of multiplication facts, LOF and patterns and shape matching with Luke- the rest looking back just fell into place! In covering the topic of Winter, we read many books on Hibernation, Snowflakes, The Arctic and Antarctica, The History on Christmas and Christmas traditions around the world, baking in the kitchen, and several winter outings as well.

As we wrapped things up this week before the Holiday ahead, my oldest put together this Arctic/Hibernation poster on the highlights of his studies over the month.

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Luke has been working on his patterns and using scissors as well as the what seems like…the never ending potty training! ;p His favorite book this month was  Pooch on the Loose by Steven Kroll. A story about a dog who wants to explore New York City at Christmas time. He loved it mostly because it had a map on the inside front and back cover of the book. He just loves, loves maps lately!winter 005

His other favorite is the story Jingle, both boys now have the story and the dog and have sat together a few times to read together. Love those kind of moments!

I wanted to share the books we read this month for anyone who is interested in a Unit type study on Winter, Hibernation, Snow etc.

Have a wonderful Holiday Season and hold those memories in your heart! This year in wake of the recent Sandy Hook event, I will be extra thankful I get to spend mine with my family and friends (near and far)  Enjoy and I’ll share again real soon as I already see a break in work hours for January, so I’ll be planning to get more accomplished with some activities!

Cover of "Welcome to the Ice House"

Cover of Welcome to the Ice House


Book List:

Snowballs by Lois Ehlert

The Snowman by Raymond Briggs

Come Look with me Animals in Art by Gladys Blizzard ( great picture study book)

The Story of Snow The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Mark Cassino

Ice Bear and Little Fox by Johnathan London

Welcome to the Ice House by Jane Yolen

Over in the Arctic Where the Cold Wind Blows by Marianne Berkes

Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration by Marianne Berkes

How do you know it’s winter? by Ruth Owen

Toddler Time and Tin Cans


Most of my posts about homeschool are based on projects done with my oldest, but the last couple of days my Toddler has been very active in the kitchen!

I love that he likes to help bake, and it’s so important for toddlers to be an active participant in their families, that I always welcome the helping hands. (even if it entails more work in the end for me 🙂

What Toddlers learn in the kitchen:

Math- shapes, sorting, measuring, counting

Social Skills- team work, following directions, responsibility

Reading- even though they can’t yet read, pointing to and looking at the books or boxes are beginner steps in reading!

Fine Motor Skills- Stirring, pouring, mixing, and pressing.

The first recipe we made was a fruit smoothie! We had peaches to spare and several other ingredients, so we made it up as we went along and it came out pretty good! We combined peaches, yogurt, milk, ice, peanut butter and     fluff… was tasty!






The next baking project was brownies, and both boys shared in who got to add what ingredients and – the most important part- who go to lick what when we were done!                                                                                                                                                       The other project we did today was with my oldest. As we study the colonial times I like to throw in some hands-on activities. The idea of making our own tin can lantern came into play as we take a closer look at what life was like in comparison to today’s world of technology! We have a book filled with ideas to do as we go along, so we started with this one! I saved a tin can, it is to be filled with water and set to freeze as it makes it easier to punch the holes. I tried to do it without and it, and it just didn’t work ;P  Once frozen he drew his design and then we laid it down on a towel and he used nails and a hammer to punch through, we added a tea light after melting the ice out and ta- da!-

a Colonial lantern!


Just Because It’s Fun!

Summer is full of fun adventures, tasty treats and good old fashion fun!  We combined all three today right in our living room and in our backyard. After a quick trip to the store we came home and set up camp in the living room.

After showing my oldest how to set it up, he was the first to jump inside and set up to watch some t.v. with his pillow and blanket. Of, course when I think of camping I think….S’mores! So I used what we had on hand and made some indoor S’mores- yumm! Graham crackers, peanut butter, chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and sprinkled graham cracker crumbs on top! Cooked them in the oven for about 5 minutes.

Later on we headed outside for some messy art! Fly swatter painting! I set up a small portable table out back and some paints and with fly swatters in hand, they began to paint.  They got as equally covered in paint as the paper did ;0)

It was so nice to have a day to enjoy doing activities instead of just swimming to keep cool.  Thank you for the break in heat today!