10/10/10 is a pretty cool thing! I didn't realize what the date was til part way through the day. Anywho.
What have we been up to? The fair was fabulous fun for the whole family. Buddy got to go with us for a bit, which was a huge help, especially the petting zoo area. Hannah wouldn't have been able to see very well had he not held her. (pardon all the alliteration!) She got to pet a goat, which she really enjoyed. There was so much to see! Caleb saw how other children were using the little shovels that were tied to the fencing to feed the goats. Since I hadn't purchased any feed and there were saw dust chips all over the floor, he figured that was what they would eat. He kept trying, but they knew the difference, and didn't want anything to do with it. We did find some feed, and he got such a kick out them eating!
The best parts of the fair for the kids were getting a yard stick and the play area where there were blocks, a huge sand box, little cars, bubbles with giant wands, a jungle gym/ball pit kind of thing, and science stuff. They big boys of CC made a city, which got partially destroyed by a cute little girl, and then the boys finished it off. Sad moment after all their hard work. I do have pictues, but don't see my cord.
Mom came to pick up the little ones so they could have naps, and we could keep going. We hit the big expo buildings and saw all the booths. It was fun, but after 5.5 hours, I was done for. So happy to come home and just sit down with the kids. We watched Knights of the Round Table to go with our history, (or maybe just because it kept everyone occupied while I made dinner.) 1954 had some good effects! I liked them seeing the story while avoiding all the bloody images a 2010 movie would have shown them.
Yesterday was dance, a nap with Caleb, who wanted to "snuggle on your belly," and hanging out at home. The kids made up some cute skits, with a store in the trampoline. The sweater I made this year was for sale for $15!!! I felt a little cheated after all the time and effort I put in, but I got over it.
Catherine has a way of getting the little ones to do what she wants, so yesterday afternoon, she had the littles racing around the back yard. Of course, H was a little slower, but if her face was any indication, she was going like the wind! Earlier, she and Caleb played by themselves outside and were on the trampoline, went down the slide, played on the teeter-totter, and she even tried to sit in the swing. Right now, she doesn't like being swung much, so that was huge. It was the most independent and adventurous I've seen her. Very fun to watch unawares!
It was also a big day for Samuel. We've been working with a different math curriculum, which I see the beauty of, but have only experienced the drudgery of so far. However, Samuel made a turn around yesterday! He did 400 math problems in less than 18 minutes, with only 1 mistake! I was so pleased with his progress. He's dreaded it, complained about it, avoided it, and now he's almost conquored it! The goal he has right now is to do all 400 correctly in less than 20 minutes without mistakes. (100 of each math function.) Catherine caught on that division was reverse multiplication, and she has begun to do division. I had her do it one day just to try it. We did about 15 problems together, but then she was ready to go on her own, and has done it every day since! She had been struggling with subtraction and has made a huge turn around there!
Hannah today, for the first time, said, "drink, please!" We've been working since I got her to ask for things with a please. Most of the time, it's just been the thing she wants, with no please. Fabulous moment! We made such a big deal out of it. We were later out in our new play area and Caleb had a bag of carrots. Hannah would say, "carrot." So, Catherine would ask Caleb for carrots, with a please, and he'd give them to her. Lights clicking on, I guess, and she would then ask right. We had to keep repeating the process, but I think she's got it. Well, with carrots, at least, and maybe drinks. ;) We were driving around yesterday, and Caleb had the first words book we'd used in the past to teach her some signs. She saw the pictures of table and chair and told me what they were. I see her catching things and it's really neat to watch.
One thing that we have to be dilligent about, and I was given some great info earlier in our journey by one of my readers, was how important consistancy in stretching and exercise is for Hannah. I'm seeing that more and more. She's gained a lot of strength over these almost 3 months. However, she really doesn't enjoy most of the things that make her work. She cries a lot, and loudly. If we don't work with her, she'll lose her independence and abilities, which I know she'd probably not like. So, almost every day we do exercises. We have skipped a few days and felt it the next day. She particularily doesn't enjoy us stretching her toes or legs. Remember how she couldn't wiggle her toes at first and then gained that ability? Well, we stopped stretching her toes and feet because she cried so much. This morning, I asked her to wiggle her toes, and they barely moved. Guess what it was time for? If we didn't love her, we'd leave her to herself and let her go, but we can't. We see her potential and know that if we help her now, she'll be so much farther ahead. It doesn't take long to do, and we can see how it's helping her. If we can keep her talking and distracted, she does much better, but if I'm by myself, it's a lot harder. In comes Catherine, again! Hannah actually bends her legs now when she walks. Before, it was like she was on stilts, but now I see her moving her legs at her knees. She's more stable when she walks, she can stand on the trampoline for longer without falling over, she can grip my fingers and pull herself up when she couldn't even squeeze my fingers before.
Our new play area is in our garage. We have a small house, 4 kids, and we homeschool. It's so easy to get things messy! Today we decided to move some things around in the garage and set up a play area. We have a salon, a kitchen, a tool box, table and chairs, coloring books and crayons. We did it during nap time, so they were thrilled to come out and find their new spot. This will keep them out of older siblings' things, and help them keep their rooms neater. It's nice weather now, so it works. When it gets cooler, we'll use our portable heater, and see how things go. I'm pleased, and I think everyone else is, too. Their rooms look a lot better! 3 have 3 bags to go to GoodWill tomorrow. :)
Ok, time to hop off the computer and get back to Mansfield Park.