Centers, Spring Baskets, and Beauty & the Beast

They say hindsight is 20/20, but when it comes to babies, I’m not so sure that’s true. It sure seems like once one stage is over, we tend to forget all the “bad” that went with it. We look at their cute little faces and instantly forget (or block out) the sleepless nights, sore boobs, etc etc etc. Sometimes we forget how horrible one night was by the next morning! We can easily minimize or forget the pain of labor and discomfort of pregnancy for the sake of having “one more.” Okay, maybe that’s not you, but it’s me. My husband and I always said we wanted four kids and it’s like, no matter how miserable my pregnancies are (and they’ve all been miserable) I’ve never let go of that “four kids” plan. So here I am, sitting on the couch feeling incredibly nauseous, tired, and overall miserable because I’m 13 weeks pregnant with number 4. “Fourth and final” I say! I say this to explain my near 2-month-hiatus from writing. I started feeling nauseous by week 6 and I just haven’t had it in me to think about anything other than daily survival. Ugh. When I was going through with my third pregnancy, I seriously questioned whether or not we would make it to number 4. But here we are! So much for that hindsight thing, I definitely forgot how purely awful pregnancy nausea is for me. But, I will make it through and the outcome will be worth it; this, I know. 😉

Anyway, I reworked our school schedule so we could take 2 weeks off and “regroup.” Abby had been asking for a break, I definitely needed one, and I wanted to start spring cleaning which is hard to do while also homeschooling (and nauseous). So I decided while on break, I could catch the blog world up on life a little bit. Let’s start with school. During school each week we’ve been incorporating “centers” every Friday which the kids can carry into the next week. If you’re not a teacher or don’t know what centers are–I pick three activities for Abby and Noah each that they can do independently. The activities usually have to do with what they’re learning currently in school and are fun. I give them anywhere from 6-8 minutes to do each activity and set the timer. They move through each center and then they can pick their favorite to do for longer at the end. Fridays are our “exploration” days so we don’t have our normal school routine. Abby and Noah can do their centers and I can help if they don’t understand something. Then we have time to do other exploration activities or fun field trips. The next week, while I’m working one-on-one with one child, the other may choose a center or two to work on independently. It’s really worked well so far! If you’re looking for a way to occupy a younger sibling during homeschool, try some of these ideas! I’m a huge fan of The Mailbox, which is where I get a lot of activities and ideas. Check out their website for activity books and cut-outs! For a full view and description of all our centers so far this year, check out my NEW center page! Here’s just a little photo preview:

Last week was the first week of spring (couldn’t tell from where I’m sitting!) so we did “spring baskets” at our house. I don’t have anything against Easter baskets in general, but we don’t really have time for them on Easter and I want to spend the limited time we do have focusing on Christ, church, and family. So the spring baskets are a fun way to celebrate the season of spring and makes an otherwise normal day seem fun! So what do I put in spring baskets? I fill ours with a little bit of candy, a small toy, maybe a chocolate bunny, a piece of jewelry for the girls and a keychain or something similar for Noah, and I usually like to incorporate something about the meaning of Resurrection Day. This year I bought a book for all of us and new Christian music CD for us to listen to when we’re cruising around town in our minivan. 😉 I also painted Abby a bag for her books a couple months ago so I stuck that in her basket as well.

Oh, and last week we saw Beauty & the Beast! It was phenomenal! Abby’s 5 and she loved it. The wolf scenes are a little intense, but she did great! I’ve seen some questionable opinions about the movie but I’ve also read some really good reviews! I can’t say anything more or better than what’s said here: ttp:// plus there’s a discussion guide! Check it out if you can!

So that’s all for me, I’ve gotta get to bed. Hopefully it won’t be another 2 months before I write more. Then again, my track record indicates long periods of nausea so I’m not too optimistic about it ending anytime soon. :/ Much love to you all!