Tuesday, March 24, 2015

C for Caterpillar

ABC Snacks are quickly becoming a hit during our mornings here! C is for Caterpillar. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Buying Food in Puerto Rico

Last week I stopped in the grocery store to pick up some organic peanut butter. The prices for this have been between $6.50 and $8.00 depending on where I shopped. I just couldn't take it anymore when it was $8.99. My sweet sister-in-law just hooked me up in three days with definitely enough peanut butter, and chocolate to boot, for quite a while. Who would have know that sixteen jars of peanut butter fits perfectly in the USPS large flat-rate priority box? And that little space on top needs a few of my favorite chocolate bars so nothing shakes around. So, $67.96 + $17.90 (postage) = 85.86, would have bought me 9 jars of peanut butter here. Thank you so much Becky and Trader Joe's!! My check is in the mail!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Spring Equinox Celebration

Last night we celebrated the changing of seasons. A day of equal light and dark, a pause between asleep and awake. A time to remember the rhythms of nature, a mysterious and sacred element of God. Many Christians turn away from seasonal rites, thinking they are left over from pagan worship, saying that people were giving too much attention to the seasons. Christopher Hill rebuts this saying, "Our problem today is the opposite. Instead of paying too much attention to this face of God (if that's possible), we pay far too little," (Holidays and Holy Nights). I so enjoy that my children are not just learning about the solar system, but celebrating the rhythm that it brings to our lives, year after year, at the sustaining hand of God.

What a different place in the world we are in now. Last year we celebrated the Spring Equinox in the Black Hills. This year we celebrated with new friends, great food, and so much fun around a bonfire. We made flower crowns and leaf masks for the kids to wear. In the morning, we read about spring and what this day is and means to many cultures in the Spring Equinox. A lovely way to enter Spring. 

The Spring Equinox

Now is the pause between asleep and awake:
Two seasons take
A colour and quality each from each as yet.
The new stage-set
Spandril, column and fan of spring is raised against the
winter backdrop
Murrey and soft;
Now aloft
The sun swings on the equinoctial line.
Few flowers yet shine:
The hellebore hangs a clear green bell and opulent leaves
above dark mould;
The light is cold
In arum leaves, and a primrose flickers
Here and there; the first cool bird-song flickers in the thicket.
Clouds arc pale as the pollen from sallows;
March fallows are white with lime like frost.

This is the pause between asleep and awake:
The pause of contemplation and of peice,
Before the earth must teem and the heart ache.
This is the child's pause, before it sees
That the choice of one way has denied the other ;
Must choose the either, or both, of to care and not to care;
Before the light or darkness shall discover
Irreparable loss; before it must take
Blame for the creature caught in the necessary snare:
Receiving a profit, before it holds a snare.

~Anne Barbara Ridler, 1912-2001

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Waking up with Coco

As soon as Pieter wakes up in the morning, he runs outside to see Coco. This morning I grabbed my camera and went down to the back patio to watch the boy and his rooster. Pieter was sitting half way down the steps with Coco crowing to the morning again and again. So cute. Pieter brought him up to the top and Coco had his breakfast in a coconut bowl. What a great way to greet the morning.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

B for Butterfly

We have gotten back to some regular homeschooling again now that we've had a chunk of time without visitors. I've been using PreK Sonlight for reading and now I've added a few more things to help with learning the alphabet and reading. We initially tried Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons and Pieter hated it. There wasn't any fun to it, just sitting and saying sounds and doing some writing. So we quit for a while to get that bad taste out of his mouth. I had heard about All About Reading and decided to use their Pre-reading curriculum. I ordered that this month and we've been using it with great success. Both kids absolutely love Ziggy the Zebra. They are excited to see her and learn with her. A little fun makes all the difference. While Ziggy is talking to the kids, Juliana will grab Ziggy and hug her and say "I love you Ziggy" in such a sweet way that melts my heart. I've also been using Handwriting Without Tears at the same time. The kids like making the letters with the wood pieces. So, things are starting to look a little better. We are using All About Reading's great ABC Snacks cookbook. Today was B for Butterfly!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Coco the Rooster

Pet rooster? I never imagined it. A few weeks ago Ben came home from work and said he passed by a rooster on the side of the road near the house. So we all went to look at him and brought some bread. The rooster jumped like mad for it, showing how hungry he was. Ben picked him up and brought him to the house. We didn't have any chicken feed, but we had a bunch of coconut meal left over from making coconut milk, so we gave him a tray of it and he ate and ate. And earned the name Coco. The poor thing was so skinny, just bones. His top beak is clipped, which appears to be what people do to fighting cocks. I just can't imagine that this gentle creature would survive that. Maybe that is how he got his freedom. Anyhow, he now mostly stays in the side yard and roosts at night right next to our bedroom window. The first few days he didn't have enough strength to crow, but now he certainly is busy with that. This mama isn't so pleased with the 5AM wake up calls, but the kids just love him so. Pieter will go out in the yard and hang out with Coco for quite a while. He gets petted, carried around, and loved in any imaginable amount of ways. If you go sit down next to him, he settles down with a little clucking and cooing and is just as happy as a rooster could be.
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