Saturday, October 31, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
This week was bats. It's hard to be fall without being outright Halloween. Here is the counting song from today. I was thrilled to find one that didn't involved witches or gouls. It is from this site. I had trouble with Lou last week getting upset sharing the pieces to the felt board. It was rather embarrassing. Today we just used our hands for the counting. This worked much better.
1 little bat was trying to behave.
He hung upside down from his feet in a cave.
Another bat flew in, and said, "How do you do?"
The second joined the first, and then there were 2!
2 little bats were trying to behave.
They hung upside down from their feet in a cave.
To help pass the time, they sang "Do re me"
Another bat joined the song, and then there were 3.
3 little bats were trying to behave
They hung upside down from their feet in a cave
From their cave perch, they looked down at the floor,
A new bat joined the game, and then there were 4.
4 little bats were trying to behave.
They hung upside down from their feet in a cave.
One little bat zoomed inside and did a dive.
He stayed to take a rest, and with him there were 5.
Here's the craft from today. It's a little finger puppet bat. We'll be doing less 'pattern' projects in the upcoming months.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The bath makes them look pretty sloppy, but is necessary. I tried it once without and they were not nearly as pretzel like.
2 ¼ t yeast
1 ½ c warm water
2 T brown sugar
1 1/8 t salt
1 c bread flour
3 c flour
Knead well. Let rise 1 hour.
knead again. Divide and shape 12 large pretzels. Before placing on baking sheet, dip in bath.
2 c warm water
2 T bkg soda
Rise 20 min. Bake 450° @8 min.
Butter and salt (kosher) tops if desired
When it's the kids leader day, the parent stays and brings snack. I was surprised when the director said we could bring homemade treats, I think most places ask for store bought goodies now. The kids made a cute Dd doughnut paintings and wore hats from krispy kream. Nice and healthy. Here's Bee's doughnut, already safely inside a clear page protector and in her binder. The sprinkles don't stay on well and the kids kept eating them off the floor.
Lou got to stay and he just went along and did everything the big kids did. I was pleasantly surprised since he is so shy. Next month Bee is leader on Hh day. She wants to make hands. I have an idea.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I did 2 batches. Here is 1/4 bushel from the orchard. It's 10 pounds. I bought 1/2 bushel (20 pounds) for $12.00 there, not sure what that would be in the grocery. It's fun to pick apples and I like shopping from the farmer. Keeping it local you know. I went with a mix of gala, jonathan, and rome beauty- no real rhyme or reason.
All the apples were washed, peeled, cored and chunked. I cooked them on the stove in my large stock pot for about 30+ minutes and then used the immersion blender to make them into apple sauce. We ended up canning a jar of applesauce, but not in this batch.
Then, all the applesauce was transferred to the ol crock pot. The kids added a few shakes of nutmeg and a cinnamon. This cooked ALL day long, really it was like 10 hours. It needed stirred at least once an hour, more often the longer it cooked. The most important thing is to leave the lid propped open with a spoon to let the steam leave.
After 10 hours, I used the immersion blender again. There was a lot of taste testing too.
Here's where I did some learn as you go stuff. I boiled the jars and lids to sterilize them. Then I filled the jars and wiped the tops of the jars really well. Next, the lids went on and I loosely added the rings. This was all really hot and done pretty quickly.
I love the expression on Bee's face here, but also on Lou who is running to the pile.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
He takes 1 piece of construction paper (or 12x12 would be better)
12 q-tip tips (6 q-tips)
13 full q-tips
1 skull shape cut out of a piece of white paper
He is assembled pretty easily as the picture shows.
In third grade, I used this guy with my body systems unit. He was kind of a fun end of the chapter craft. My students always loved to do art projects (this isn't really art, but close enough) and while they did go to art once a week at school, most did not get many opportunities at home to do any art. When I taught 2nd grade, I used this guy as one of the centers for my fall party. There's a story there.... I caused a small scandal amongst my hallway my first year for throwing an unauthorized party. who knew? (and frankly, who cared!) You could have kids write stories about their bone friend, write a biography, write letters to him or from him... there are a number of reasons/excuses/rationalizations one could use to make this guy under the heading of a educational experience. It's a project I will do again I am sure.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Sunday, October 25, 2009
When anyone feels the tiniest bit of a sniffle or dry throat, we all spend a few days drinking elderberry tea. In FL, we had the greatest little herbal apothecary shop, Baileys Naturals, that sold dried herbs, teas, oils and such, including dried elderberries. The owner and herbalist was so knowledgeable about how to use the herbs and oils, and just what to take when. When we ran out of our dried elderberries recently, we went searching. (Our old shop does sell them online, but I needed them today!) We were not able to find any anywhere in town. We finally did find some elderberry syrup. As it turns out this syrup is really what I was boiling the elderberries down to, just a whole lot cleaner, easier and faster.
This syrup is fantastic! I will be getting more and picking some up for my sister who is doing student teaching stuff right now. We have been adding some to our tea each day. My kids love to have tea with me and think it's such a special treat. We sweeten our tea with a bit of honey from the co-op in our old area and some agave nectar. I am almost out of honey, but have a new local source all lined up. I have read that local honey helps with local allergies so we will happily switch sources. My friend Amanda says her parent's honey this last season is the best she has ever tasted. I can' t wait to pick mine up!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
I hope I am never asked to make another wedding dress. My sewing skills were tested here and did not prove to be great. This silly thing needed altered a dozen times and it is still not the fit I was looking for. Bee was done though, so here it is.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
I'l have to dig around for the picture of my brother in a cat halloween costume and his cowboy boots, because everytime I see a little guy in cowboy boots, that's what I think about.
Apparently, these are ballet boots?
While the kids were eagerly posing (especially Lou), I took as many pictures as they would let me!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Bee weaned about half way through my pregnancy with Lou and Lou weaned back in February. Much to my hubby slight (well hidden) displeasure, we nursed wherever and whenever. There are probably more than a few times I would have used a pretty cover though. Once though, I nursed Bee at the zoo just feet away from a mama chimpanzee while she fed her babe too. She made eye contact with me and seemed just sure what was going on. It was a super cool moment.
This one has a removable clip. This lets the user clip the strap to a blanket or something else if this is in the laundry. I made the ribbon extra long so that it can be adjusted as needed. Since I don't have nursing tot right now I wasn't able to figure out the appropriate lengths, etc. The bottom cuff has a nice pocket for discreetly storing those lovely nursing pads.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
The nachos are just layers of your favorite nacho or taco ingredients, black beans, taco meat, guacamole, salsa, cheese, onions and tomatoes served with some type of tortilla shell or chip. The sour cream web is put on with sour cream in a baggie with the corner cut off. I cut my whole a bit big, but we could all still tell it was a web. This was gobbled up by everyone!
The worms for dessert were much more labor intensive, but well worth it. They were creepy and slimy and super yummy.
Here are the directions:
100 bendy straws (place bendy part down in the cup)
A large cup or empty juice containers with the top cut off.
1 box (6 oz) raspberry jello (that's the large box
3 envelopes of unflavored gelatin (4 come in a box, so 1 box will work)
3/4 c heavy cream
3 cup boiling water
15 drops green food coloring
Boil the water. Add the jello packets. Let this mix cool a little, about 20 minutes in the fridge. Add cream and food coloring. Mix well.
Put the straws (bendy side down) in a large cup or orange juice carton. Pour in the mix. Cool for several hours or overnight. At least an hour before serving, remove from straws. Run a few straws at a time under hot running water (for 2-4 seconds). Gently push the worm out of the straw. Wiggle it out a bit. Let the worms chill for for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Monday, October 19, 2009
It was great to see my aunt and uncle and visit a bit. Both of my cousins were in town too. We had not seen them for 8 years and now hubby and I have seen one of my cousins twice in two months.
Hubby's blackberry was turned off for the first time ever! How nice not to hear every alert of every email, text, incloming call and appointment reminder. Forget about the kids, that in itself was peace and quiet!