Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday !

In the afternoon the kids all together finished a project Gaia started yesterday then they spent at least a couple of hours playing with it. I've been really happy, i didn't help them at all. Gaia had the idea and told brothers and sister what to do to help her. I only had to enjoy taking pictures of it :)

The four of them at work in the afternoon

Painting the streets of their city

Finished ! So it's a board game so to say. The four houses are their houses, Gaia wrote above each house 'House is Gaia\Leo\Seba\Milla' i know it's not correct at all, but i really loved the effort she made to write in English.
Each of them painted one of the houses, not his\her own. And each of them painted a moment of the day, dawn,noon,sunset,night.

Here a detail, the traffic light. As you see they used mixed techniques, including collage.

And here the four of them playing. They took a lego man\woman and a car and each of them was living in one of the houses. Then they started making stories, visiting each other's house, talking on the phone with the neighbor ... :))

Milla's house

Leo's truck parked in front of his place.

While they were playing i just sat knitting and crotcheting and enjoying the creativity of my little people.

I love them to pieces.

Have a wonderful new week !

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Final harvest and much more

Today, as every saturday, it has been our cleaning day. We clean both inside the house and outside in the garden. And today we took off the summer kitchen garden. Before that we harvested the last goodies

Here what i harvested today before taking off all the plants to get the soil ready for winter vegetables.
And here a pic of all the canned goods from the summer. We've been really blessed. I still can't believe all this came from a little seed and love. It's incredible.

And these pictures were taken before processing today's harvest. If my memory serves me right at the moment we have something like 8 kilos and half of tomatoe sauce and i think 4 or 5 kilos of eggplants canned in different ways, and then fruit, jams, greenbeans, pesto sauce, and then dryed herbs and frozen herbs and vegetables.

And here one of the 'little ones' waiting to grow in our winter garden

One of our peas plants.

Then while i was mowning the lawn Fabio called for me in the turtles fence to show me something :

We immediately called for the kids and we all got very excited as we always are when we find new and interesting  insects . We wanted to try to capture it alive, but then we had to poison the little thing ( we couldn't risk to let our new friend to deliver her up to 1200 kids at home, i'm sorry ). Anyways we'll keep it for a while in a glass jar to study it a little more.

Then in the evening we headed to Ostia and while we were driving to the play park we saw all these Carabinieri Horse Trucks, so we parked the car and went closer. We found out at 7:00 there would have been a parade to the main church, so we stayed there watching the horses and talking and learning until they left, at the sound of the beating drums. We were all delighted. After that we went to the playpark and then to Burger King ( a super special treat ) and while we were eating ( we were just behind the main church ) the firework started ! So we went out in the sidewalk and enjoyed the show. It has been a wonderful evening. I wish i had the camera with me, but maybe not having it let me enjoy everything even more.

We really needed a good day :)
Thank God !

Have a wonderful sunday everybody dropping by !

Friday, September 25, 2009

A new full homeschooling week

 How good and pleasant it is
when brothers live together in unity!
 It is like precious oil poured on the head,
running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron's beard,
down upon the collar of his robes.
 It is as if the dew of Hermon
were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the LORD bestows his blessing,
even life forevermore.

This is my favourite psalm. It gives me strengh in the hard homeschooling days, put a smile on my face. I know i probably take it too litterally, but reading the first two lines makes me think how good and how right it is for us homeschooling, living together, always together. Family as the foundation of the society should be the cradle of everything good, everything beautiful, so that once the kids grow older will bring these same feelings and way of acting and believing and behaving , outside in the greater world and make of it a better place. This last week has been a bit hard on the homeschooling front. I see now all the dameges done in few years of awful teachers. My kids have problems in almost all the subjects and one of them has some kind of problems writing. I think last year he has been treated so badly that he has lost almost all interest for the very concept of learning. My guess is that he prefers to be considered 'evil' then stupid. I'm trying my best to keep my nerves at bay, but since he can act really badly it happens that i 'lose it' and scream and put his stuff away telling him to go away. This is the hardest side of this new adventure. I'm praying i'll find a way to reach my precious child's heart, it's only so difficult for me to put aside the 'world' point of view about what our schooling should be or should not and just let my heart and soul lead our days.
Anyways the week in general has been good, i love the very idea of spending all my time everyday with my family. I love my full and filled days. I love the many many chances i have now to share all i love with my children. I'm so grateful for the chance i've been given. Yesterday we had science. So we went out in the garden and since the winter vegetables were ready to be repotted from the seebed into the bigger vases, we had a practical lesson, checking roots, the stage of development of the plant, the shape of the leaves ... so so beautiful !
Instead here is a pic of a cake Gaia baked on tuesday. I can't believe at 9 she can bake a cake complitely on her own, she take our family cook book, pick her favourite recipe, takes all the ingredients and weigh them, warm up the oven, everything. I only help her to put the tray in and out fearing she might burn her hands. When she baked this last cake she could even direct her brother Seba in helping her. I see it pays off to have always got the kids helping me with the cooking and baking isn't it ?

Then of course, being friday we had our special night. It was Seba's turn so he asked me for homemade pizza and organized a sort of self-service and he was the check-out boy giving ice cubes and candies. He decorated his table with the autumn stuff we have around and took also the toy cash desk they have to be more credible. How fun !

Well, it's time to get some mail out and other serious stuff, better to stop writing.
Have a blessed weekend everybody with your loved ones.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Un regalo inaspettato

PapaF ha saputo sorprendermi.
E' meraviglioso vero ?
Cestino di vimini e gomitolini di colore vario,
l'ideale per iniziare dei Granny Squares.
E' così bello che me lo guardo, lo rigiro e lo metto in posa
come fosse un Picasso.
Ma è il mio cestino, regalato inaspettatamente dalla mia metà.
E' molto più di un Picasso
e merita un trattamento adeguato :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Homeschooling life

Even if we've been 'lightly' homeschooling since the end of the last school year, for the law this has been the first week we're considered officially homeschoolers. I have to say it is hard, especially since the kids come from years of 'normal' schooling, but it's so so rewarding so far. i love our unrushed days. I can hear the schoolbus driving by while i'm waking them up in laughs and again i can hear it while we're finishing lunch and planning the afternoon, that is of course homework free. I love planning the lessons. I love spend my mornings sitting with the four of them around the table working together. It's not always easy or fun of course. But i can see a change in the kids. I remember usually the beginning of the school year was my dreaded nightmare. Kids nervous wreck, underpressure, forced in a schedule, judged and pointed at because they didn't have the cool stuff, they didn't watch tv ( and still don't watch it ! ), they didn't have any kind of video games ( and still don't have ). This year they are more calm, starting acting better with each other. Loving the family life. Loving the houseworks ( ok they don't really love to do everything around the house, but still they're getting better ). Loving cooking, yes Gaia can bake a cake on her own without any help already ! They're learning to sew, they're learning to LOVE learning, and this is just great !!! I have set a routine and a sort of schedule, they're not used to all this and going from public school to unschool couldn't work well with them, but our schedule is very 'mild', relaxed so to say, we take the time we need for the lessons and it can be more or less then the scheduled one. And if someone has a little crise mid morning, we can finish the lessons later on when we're more calm.

Anyways, this week was quite full, i have tons of pics of what we have done :)

Leo fixing the homeschool cabinet

The little pet shop


Our homeschool class

Kids love the art lessons, we were colouring autumn decorations and they wanted to invite some 'friends' over :)

Last wednesday we went to the beach in the late afternoon\evening. It kinda fun, we never went to the beach during the summer ( we live 2 km away from the sea ). We don't like the crowd, the heat, being in swimsuit. But we love the beach in autumn\winter time. So last wednesday was a stormy and cloudy day and we just had to go :)

The fabulous four


Like a castle in the sand

Our flag

Leo was so tired but so happy and excited.
I feel so so blessed at the moment. I have been dreaming about homeschooling for the last 6 years. Reading all i could find. Filling my head with 'i wish i could' and now I CAN, even more, I AM DOING IT !!!! Thank God, for listening my heart, or maybe i was listening to Him. I want to enjoy this year. I want to get closer and closer to my kids. I want them to start loving the family, the house and the simple life as much as i do.
Have a blessed wonderful full week-end !

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Our week so far

Busy busy busy ! We've been beyond busy this week. Every morning homeschooling is in full gear and every afternoon and evening there re billion of things to do. But ou know what ? I love it this way !! It's beautiful having a full and busy life and knowing why you're doing what you're doing. Thank God for all this.
Anyways, some news from our household. Summer is really ending, no rain yet, but a chilly night wind has lowered the temperature a lot. The kitchen garden is about to be removed to get the ground ready for the winter vegetables that hopefully i'll be able to grow. The tomatoes plants are really worn out, full of green tomatoes that probably never be ripe. I have to find recipes for green tomatoes, every idea is welcome of course. Zucchini is dead and so cucumber, green-beans are quite tired and the sudden wind has killed the last pepperoni. Salad is almost over and basil too. Eggplants are so full i really hope they'll have time to ripe properly. I've been canning almost constantly and i'm drying my herbs for winter use. Here some pictures from our life.

Eggplants, pepperoni and herbs, time to harvest the last goodies from the garden

Learning the 7 notes in a creative way, a water xilophone :)

Every night after dinner we light two candle-lanters and we head to the boys room (it's bigger then the girls room ) and in the otherwise dark room i read to them aloud. At the moment we're reading the firs Harry Potter. The kids love this, they sit still ( heheheh not easy to run around in the darkness ) and carefully listen to the story, we discuss difficult words, we talk... then they take turns blowing the candles ( for example today was Milla's and Seba's turn )

Fishing math, Whatever i can turn into a fishing session will do the trick at the moment. Practising with the abacus, it took me a lot of creativity and a late night of work, but the kids liked.


For science we're studying the different parts of a flower, couple of days ago we completed the drawing, this morning while they were doing art and fishing math i cut the different part from coloured paper so the could 'build' the flower writing the names on every part of it.

Today's art. We talked about warm colours and cold colours. Then they had to draw somthing related only with warm colours and somethins with cold ones. The first drawing is Leo's warm colours, a volcano and a dinosaur. The second one is Gaia's cold colours, it's a wood in the night, there's a river and the moon reflect into the water of the river. I loved it.

Hope everybody stopping by had a beautiful week so far. Enjoy your loved ones, build good memories, fill your life with happiness :)

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday again !

I can't believe it's friday again. Our days are so full and so filled that they go by so fast i can't almost keep track of them. Homeschooling is nearly in full swing, i already had my personal crises over it and for the moment i could face it just changing my state of mind. I've been so worried to do it well i was basically take the public school here at home, then i started to relax and put my faith in the Higher Power that everything will be ok if i do it with my open heart, enjoying my kids and the time spent with them and just passing them my knowledge as much as i can and learn what i do not know alongside with them. I know hard moment will come again, but everytime i can overcome one of them i gain more experience to face the next challenge we'll meet in our new path.
Anyways, as i said it's friday again. And this means 'Special Night' again. Tonight was Milla's. I fried all the junk food, they cleaned the living room and set the table and the chairs in front of the tv. Milla was so so happy, she served all of us and she helped herself at the latest after we were all already eating. She chose the movie (Shrek III) and laughed and smiled all the time and went to bed happy kissing and hugging me so tight. This is something i love.
Well here some pic of today and my best wishes of a perfectly wonderful weekend spent with your families and dear ones :)
Blessings, Flavia

A glimpse of our homeschooling day

Milla's night, the table is decored with a wooden castle and knights ( Milla loves medieval knights)