Monday, December 24, 2012

NORAD Tracks Santa

Got my world map hung up so we can follow santa on the tracker all day! What a fun way to learn geography and celebrate the magic of christmas! NORAD Tracks Santa on Facebook has a link to their santa tracker. Like the old radar one on TV news when we were kids only it goes on all day!
This is our second or third year and the kids have been waiting for the start for the last three days.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

ah ha day!

Littleman just looked at the crayola box and said "C in it  like in your name Cam Cam!" Pre reading is paying off big time. I am so proud of little man's ah ha moment.

Saturday, December 22, 2012


Our spelling word this week is STAR. We are studying stars and last year we made dough ornament stars that we hung on our tree again this year. When they all get the word right I have a special golden star to hang on the tree. There is also a star shaped basket to hold the spelling card (re-purposed from a boggle junior game) and all our collection of stars. Be a spelling star!

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Decorated the tree tonight.  The kids had so much fun. I must say Pitty-pat and I agree "the homemade ornaments make the tree the best of anyone" our Tradition is the each of the kids gets to put the ornaments that they have been given or made on the tree themselves. Yes, I do a little rearranging to even the tree out. but they are so happy to see all the past years ornaments with pictures or scribbled names. Little stories about when they made this oneor who gave them that one. Precious times.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Books in our Christmas Reading Basket This Month:
Snitzel's Cookies by Jane Flory
Jesus and the Very Best Birthday by Sunny Griffin
Kitten's Christmas by Dick McCue
The Happy Snowman (a board book)
A Very Special Night by Gil Davies
Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost (FIAR)
Boxes for Katje by Candace Fleming (FIAR)
If you take a Mouse to the Movies by Laura Numeroff
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski
Grandma's Christmas Tree by Grandma Janet Mary
Disney's Winnie the Pooh's Night Before Christmas
Disney's Winnie the Pooh Jingle Bells

Pitty-pat found one of my cooking magazines with 101 cookies. All three kids "read" it today. Too cute. "Hey, Mom, Can you make this one it looks like a hamburger?"she asked. I guess they never saw a sandwich cookie before. Maybe this summer I will make scooter pies.but not now.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Around the World

 Today I taught them how to say "Merry Christmas" in several different languages while we made cookies, 2 ingredient fudge, and rollo pretzel turtles. Here's our list of Merry Christmas so far
Merry christmas(English)
Feliz Navidad (spanish)
Joyeux Noel (French)
In Japanese, Merry Christmas is メリークリスマス (merii kurisumasu) or just Merry Christmas with more "u"s. I needed my friend from Japan for this one.
 Polish: Wesolych Swiat
 Greek: kala Christougena
Arabic: Colo sana wintom tiebeen. 
German :Schone Weihnachten Thanks to my facebook friend Kasia for these last four.

I gathered all of our Christmas books I could find and put them in the basket to read a new one each night. I didn't wrap them, not sure if I will wrap them this year. I know I am a week late.

Can't wait we are doing the a Jesse tree again this year and we have a couple new ornaments planned  to make for it. I got a fancy metal tree to hang the special ornaments on each night. It is table top size and gold. I think it was originally for mugs but a dollar for it on the garage sale site was a great deal. It has been in storage since I pick it up. One hook for each ornament looks like it was made for this.

I found clear plastic bulbs and stars to decorate for our homemade ornaments this year.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

This morning we watched a PBS travel show. It was Christmas in Europe and Steve Somebody showed several ways people in other countries celebrate Christmas. (Social Studies) It was almost two hours long. Pitty-pat stuck through it all, so I sat with her. Tippy-toe and little-man didn't make it past the first hour. I tried to find the book series I had on christmas in different countries but it must be in one of the decoration boxes.
We made peanut butter fudge. So easy 1 jar of frosting, 1 3/4 cups peanut butter and 2 cups powdered sugar. Melt in microwave. Stir. Pour into a dish and spread evenly. Aaron though it could use less powdered sugar. But otherwise it was alot like my mom's stove top from scratch recipe. But so much easier. Let the holiday baking begin!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

elderberry liqueur

Makes about 1 quart.
Prep Time: 30 days
  • 1 pint fresh elderberries
  • 1 quart vodka
  • 3 one-inch pieces of lemon rind, white pith removed
  • Sugar
  1. Put elderberries into a quart Mason jar and pour over the vodka. Add the lemon rind (make sure the rind has no white pith, as it is bitter.) Seal and put in a dark cupboard for at least a month, or up to 6 months.
  2. The alcohol will extract flavor from the elderberries over time, so the longer you let it sit, the inkier it will get.
  3. When it is the color you want – anything from a Pinot Noir color to downright black — pour the vodka through a strainer lined with cheesecloth into another jar and add sugar.
  4. How much sugar? At least 1/4 cup, but to your taste; I go with 1/3 cup. Shake to combine and put back in the cupboard.
  5. After a few days or weeks, the sugar will completely dissolve and the elderberry liqueur is ready to drink. It keeps forever.