27 September 2008

Chicken Dreams, Homeschooling and Avoiding Stretch Marks

Chicken Dreams
All day I've been dreaming of chickens in between signing and faxing paperwork and other moving details. First thing in the spring, we are ordering our brood and building a hen house. I'd like to get eggs to incubate and hatch so Savannah can see this wonderful process right before her eyes. It will mesmerize her and me too! Plus, if one of the chicks imprints on her and follows her around as "Mommy" that would be an added thrill for her. We'll probably order Rhode Island Reds but I haven't finished researching all the breeds yet.

Belly Potion
Today I made a belly potion (as Savannah calls it). "tion" was one of the new sounds we've been practicing this week and potion is one of her favorite "tion" words, hence the belly potion. It is for mothers to rub on their bellies everyday during pregnancy to avoid stretch marks. I had terrible stretch marks with Savannah so I'm trying to prevent or minimize them this time. Even four years later, I can't stand to have my belly touched, even by my own hands, so rubbing it on is not a party. But it does soak right into my skin so I don't have to worry about getting it on my clothes. It looks like my entire belly shattered and had to be put together again, piece my miserable piece like a Victorian crazy quilt made from the tiniest scraps of same-colored material and assembled by the most skilled surgeon who stitched the scraps together with the finest silver thread. It's almost like a spider web fused to me but not quite one of Nature's masterpieces. Anyway here's my belly potion recipe and I'll let you know if it works for me.

Belly Potion Recipe (to avoid stretch marks of pregnancy)

Mix together in a jar with lid:
  • 4 oz of almond oil
  • 2 oz of jojoba oil
  • 1 tsp of vitamin E
  • 2-3 drops of lavender essential oil
Cap it and shake. Apply daily during pregnancy from the top of the public bone to the bottom of the ribs and make more potion as needed.

Savannah has been doing extremely well in homeschooling. I can hardly believe it. I have an organized curriculum and teaching folder with lessons and activities prepared (language and literacy on one side, math on the other) but not a schedule. This way we actually have "school" for two or three 20-30 minute intervals in a day. Our first is always the reading and writing lesson. I love this time together. She sits on my lap as if she were smaller and I were reading her a story, but really, she reads the stories to me. She's already reading the Level 2 easy readers on her own and everyday she escapes to her room and sprawls out on her reading rug to read herself (or her animals) stories. The other day we stopped at a restaurant for lunch and I was grumpy from feeling so hungry (apparently with this one I'm much more likely to feel grumpy than puke). Savannah was dawdling and said she didn't want to get out of the car until she had finished the book she'd begun. I had to laugh - I was looking at a replica of myself as a young child, always with my face in a book, even through meals and family events. It drove my mother crazy. Now I suppose it's my turn, but to be honest, I love it.

I've started introducing a math unit almost every day as well and she's been doing very well with that too. Today she completed charts and read them, counted, played numbers Bingo, and put events in order. Kevin wants me to commit to homeschooling her through high school but I'm not sure. He has some very good points but for now I'm going to take it month by month. The 20 minutes of one on one attention she gets is superior to the attention I could give a classroom of students in a regular 90 minute period. And there's no need to waste time catching others up, returning paperwork, performing housekeeping tasks such as attendance, grading, announcements, breaking kids into groups, signing up for technology, etc. and she gets to choose how fast she goes and what her current interests are. For "science" right now, she's interested only in baby so every week we look at three websites to track baby's progress over time. She chooses one picture that she likes the best of a fetus in utero and prints and cuts it out to add to her baby book to see the progress baby makes week by week. We measure the approximate length on her ruler and she keeps it all together like a weird science scrapbook album. This week she's impressed that baby's skin is transparent and eyelids are fused shut. She doesn't know what to make of the placenta yet and says it looks more like a belly button tail. But, she's relieved that baby no longer has webbed hands like a frog and is growing finger nails. As for me, I'm impressed that my uterus is the size of a grapefruit but feels like it's the size of a sofa...

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