Birthdayz and Lazy Summer Dayz…

This is the time of year that I feel thoroughly blessed to be a SAHM! We have had an unusually amazing run of good weather. The west coast is known for it’s rainy weather and with 4+ weeks of sun under our belts we’re all sitting on pins and needles wondering how much longer this can possibly last!

As a SAHM I get to spend my summer hanging out with my kids and just drink in the beautiful scenery of this place. Image

June and July are birthday months for our family. Last year E was supposed to have a big picnic at the park with 10 of her friends and their families. It poured rain and we hurriedly came up with plan B and used a multipurpose room at the church across the street. Unfortunately the change in plans meant we had an indoor party with 40 people and E ended up being a bit overwhelmed. In an effort to find new strategies to help Miss E enjoy her birthday to the fullest, we decided to try and have mini-party/ playdates with each of her friends this year rather than one large party. And so without further adieu here is the run-down: Party 1 – Princess tea partyImageImageParty 2: Horseback riding and cowgirl campoutImageImageParty 3: Diva Dance partyImage

Party 4: Beach BumsImageParty 5: Pollock Painting Splatter PartyImageParty 6: Space SurpriseImageImageParty 7: Fairy garden party – somehow I can’t find the pictures for this one 😦

Another joy of lazy summer days are visits with loved ones who live far away. We are so blessed to have young enough great-grandparents that we can spend time with. Here is little S cuddling with Great-grandboy 🙂 (Our nickname for him as my kids have two living and healthy sets of greats so we have to distinguish between them. Hence Great-grandboy is a real deal cowboy and his title of Great grandad the cowboy was naturally shortened to our cute nickname by our 2 year old.)Image

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Bees, Butterflies and Caterpillars, oh my!

With a long weekend and warmer summer weather starting school is really winding down, however, we’re not really done yet so without further adieu here are the missing weeks since my last update in mid-may!

First, we went on a great impromptu field trip to the Honeybee Centre as we had run out of honey and wanted to source out some raw local honey to try. This turned out to be a very educational trip with hives to observe, books to look at and samples to try!

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E has been embracing Language Arts this term with reading more complex novels, and a new-found love of writing, Hallelujah!!!! She and her cousin are now engaging in a regular pen pal exchange, she has a diary that is extremely PRIVATE and our house is filling up with little signs and cards that she makes every day.

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In co-op this week we had a medieval market to teach the children a tiny bit about medieval Europe but also to prepare them for the Farmer’s Market sale they will be participating in shortly. We all dressed in prince, princess and pauper clothes and the kids started by reviewing Canadian money denominations by doing coin rubbings and working out some basic change calculations. (ie. “what are three different ways you can make $1?”)

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After practising the money we set up our wares and designated shoppers and sellers.

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Ms. M .made a great observation with the children that a sad or bored seller does not attract customers…

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But a happy, enthusiastic seller does! She demonstrated how you can call out to customers and promote the items you are selling to increase business!

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A few days later we had the pleasure of attending a birthday party for one of our co-op littles that was based on the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

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The moms in our group are always amazing but this party really stood out as a fantastic holistic, community learning adventure! From the decor, to the food and the great activities my children were engaged and enthusiastic throughout!

We made multi-media caterpillars with printed outlines and tissue paper strips and glue,

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butterflies with coffee filters, clothes pegs and food colouring,

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and tiny hungry caterpillar food sculptures with clay. Then Ms. J read the story to the kids.

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They loved every second of it!

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What is the best birthday party you’ve ever been to?

Secret Agents – Mission Possible

So our week was all about a certain middle child’s birthday! Happy 5th Birthday D! First up was his actual birthday celebrated with family and his big sister happy to make him a card and read all of the other cards to him.

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He decided/ Mommy suggested we would have a Secret Agent party. This was a great theme and everyone got involved in selecting items for the goody bags,

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…creating the goody bags by drawing and colouring our criminal masterminds on paper-bags,

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…and setting up the decorations for a Top Secret Birthday Misssion!

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Finally the day of the party and we brought an excited group of soon-to-be spies home. We were about to sit down for lunch we when found a Top Secret Memo on our table telling us that Secret Ingredients from our domestic laboratory had been stolen by a gang of nefarious Criminals. The memo said our Secret Agents had 20 minutes to find the clues and rescue the Secret Ingredients before the crooks could detonate the bomb they had set.

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With great enthusiasm and focus our Secret Agents set off to find the clues hidden throughout our home base.

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Each clue had a letter on the back and the final clue was a message explaining that their next task was to use the pattern clues on each letter card to spell out a word that would tell them where the secret ingredients could be found. Our young Agents did a fantastic job of spotting the matching patterns and our older Agent Trainers read the word and rushed to rescue the secret ingredients!

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Mission accomplished!

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Now that we had our ingredients the Agents washed up and prepared to assemble their own pizzas. Despite a large range of choices I believe almost everybody had Ham & Pineapple! 🙂

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After lunch it was time for more party fun and we ran the agents through our laser training course. The course increased in difficulty with each round and culminated with the invisible white yarn pattern that was the most difficult level. Almost everyone was able to complete the course without touching the lasers!

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Following the laser course we had the obstacle course with a plasma car drive up the hallway, chairs to circle in the kitchen, under the little tykes slide, over the couch, across the balance beam, 5 jumps on the trampoline and a race back to the beginning.

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With more energy used up it was time to refuel and so Operation Cupcakes commenced! The children were given icing, sprinkles, and ninjas (licorice babies) to put on their cupcakes. They were also warned to be on the lookout for suspicious or unusual cupcake behaviour and sure enough…

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… with further investigation they discovered treasure hidden inside their cupcakes!

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They actually ate their cupcakes as well as the icing and because we had one coin that had a colour pattern on it, we were able to choose who got to give their gift to the birthday boy first.

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We kept our numbers down for this party with a total of  7 kids  (including mine) and it was a really fun day! All the kids were picked up happy and ready to do it again – I love a birthday without tears!!! 🙂

One down, two to go…