Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Park

In addition to our art project today, we also met up with a friend of mine and her son at the park inbetween our houses. The kiddos had a blast.

Her son, Holden, turned a year old in November and could not be cuter. Natalie loves to mommy him. She even named her baby doll Holden.

They enjoyed the beautiful weather today (right around 70 degrees all day and just a gentle breeze) and they played on the slides and swings. Then we had a nice snack and parted ways. You should have seen Holden grinning when Natalie gave a kiss on the head! :)
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Portrait of the Artist

Today we made a few art projects. We did hearts for Valentine's Day and talked about how Valentine's Day is for people to show each other that they are special. We also traced our hands (she did hers all by herself!) and cut up some paper. Natalie had never used scissors before, so I thought she caught on pretty quickly! She cut and snipped for almost an hour! It was scissor love!

Then we made some lunch after we did our projects. Natalie made peanut butter and honey sandwiches on organic wheat bread. (It's special peanut butter - just nuts and oil freshly smashed up!)

Natalie did a very good job spreading the peanut butter with a butter knife and she even got to cut the sandwich herself! She was so sweet because she told me that I could have half of it because I was her Valentine. :) I love this kid! We finished off with some frozen grapes, yum!
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To Preschool or Not?

"Oh, my child is turning four! I must send her to the best preschool. She's been on the waiting list since my husband and I started trying to conceive...but I am still worried that she might not get in for this year!"

I really DO NOT want to be that mom. Natalie is three. She goes to daycare... against my better judgment but that's not a battle I want to have with the dear ole hubby again right now. Two weeks ago the daycare owner told us that if we hoped to get Natalie into the public (free) preschool for the fall that we needed to get her application in by the following week at the latest. Gosh, don't you love deadlines?

So this got the gears turning in my head. Should Natalie go to preschool? I did. My husband did - but we had totally different experiences.

More than that, should Natalie go to public school? I have absolutely no faith in the public school system. I am sorry to those few wonderful teachers out there trying to make a difference. The problems with the system are too big for a handful of great teachers to fix, IMO. Once upon a time I wanted to be a public school teacher. Then I started getting into the school system and actually reading about it. So I changed my major. (I'd much rather be a librarian and/or do art preservation.) And I knew that I did not want my child to go to public school.

I don't want her to go to a snooty school like the one the mom at the beginning of my post is trying to get her kid into.... first of all, we're middle class. We can't afford $1000 a month for a preschool. If I were to send her to a private preschool, it would be a Montessori school. I love the Montessori methods and have studied (and applied) them extensively.

So I asked my husband what he thought. I told him that I did not want her going to public school - and I am not wavering on that - and I told him how much our local Montessori school costs ($6000/year!) and I asked him what he thought we should do.

He thought about it a little while and here is what he said:
Natalie's a smart and curious kid. We're both very educated. I have a degree in theater and creative writing. I have a strong background in language arts and social studies. You have a degree in English and are only a few credits away from degrees in Early Childhood Education, History, and Art/Art History. You have a solid background in educational theory and practice and I am getting a stronger background with every class I take. Why not home school? Maybe try it for the "preschool" years and see how it goes.

Well...... that's really not what I expected my husband to say! His biggest concern is that she will be "weird" and I think that means unsocialized. But I really think there have to be ways around that! Don't you? So there it is... stewing on the back burner. I have some more reading to do, but I've been thinking about it. I still have really another 2 years before I HAVE to send her to school (according to SC laws) so why not give it a try? Maybe like a pre-test before the exam? Oh, and believe me.... this is something that I never expected to even consider!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Bye-bye pop!

I gave it all away. I had 6, yes, SIX fridge packs of diet pepsi in my closet. But it is all gone now! I gave it all to other people. That was one thing that I was really struggling with giving up. Wish me luck, say a prayer, or whatever you do because I have NEVER been able to give up pop. I am pretty confident that I will be able to do it this time because I really don't want those nasty chemicals in my body! Would you?