Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Busy Week

We have had a crazy week around here! Last Tuesday was the Race for Education at Sora's school. Kyle was able to volunteer for most of it. Sora ran and walked around the playground for an hour. Each time she passed the checkpoint Kyle punched her card. She went around over 12 times!
 She borrowed my running headband: "Forget the glass slippers, this princess wears running shoes".

Their school raised over $15,000 in their race - pretty impressive for a school with less than 100 kiddos!

Friday after school, we raced to meet the bus to go up to camp for Haunted Weekend. Sora loved all of the crafts, cooking, games, and kids.
We did Spooky Science, Halloween Building extravaganza, Zombie glow-in-the dark tag, trick-or-treating and more! Sora got to stay in the cabin with the kids and made a lot of new and old friends. All of the kids had come to summer camp, so many remembered Sora but she has a terrible memory so they were all new to her.
After we got home on Sunday, we got all cleaned up and headed to Sora's school for their Harvest Festival and bake sale. Sora had a lot of yummy treats, played some games and bounced in the bouncy house. In the middle of the night, she got sick, but we thought it was just from all the excitement and fun, so we sent her to school on Monday. As soon as she sat down for lunch, she got sick again so Kyle picked her up. She took a long nap (which is a very big sign that something is wrong for Sora) and got sick when she tried to eat dinner. I am staying home with her today, but she hasn't been sick in over 20 hours, so I think she's back to herself and ready for school tomorrow.
Sora resting and watching Kiki's Delivery Service. Another clear indication that she was sick is that she didn't even flinch at having her picture taken. She's typically NOT a fan!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Pumpkin Patch

Every year since Sora was born (actually, even the year before that) we have gone to a pumpkin patch. For the past 4 years in Wisconsin, it was just me and Sora (and once her friend Walker). We would take advantage of the local play group's field trip and it was cheap and amazing. Anyway, this year we headed back to the first pumpkin patch we took Sora to near my parent's house. It was way bigger than it was 5 years ago!

First, we got lost in the corn maze.

 Sora was semi-excited about the multiple photo ops that she was even more excited about as a baby.

We had a family photo shoot with a woman my mom knows while we were at the pumpkin patch (which explains the adorable coordinating outfits). Sora typically hates to take pictures, so we bribed her with donuts and cider. Both were fresh and amazing! They had mini-cider donuts as well as full sized pumpkin donuts. We tasted both and were split 2-2 about our favorite.
 The hay ride was very short.

My mom knows the man who runs the train. He wanted Sora to sit in the back since it's more fun, but she had her heart set on sitting close to the engine. Instead, he made me and my mom sit in the back. It was not as fun as he had led us to believe.

While we were at my parents house, Sora got to ride Dakota. She loves horses and sweet talks her papa into letting her ride any chance she can.
 She also practiced riding her bike without training wheels. She is capable but very scared and since we live in town, she doesn't get a lot of good opportunities to practice.

Our weekend visit was short, since it's a long drive, but we definitely enjoyed it! We are already planning our next trip!

Sunday, October 12, 2014


Kyle's family met us at camp this weekend for a few days of campy fun. Most of Kyle's family hadn't been up to camp yet, and they had a blast!

They explored the fort building area, made a hot (but fun) mess at our cabin, and experienced a little bit of camp life.

 Sora and Dylan ran all over together. They got along fabulously and shared their grandma and grandpa better than ever!

 All the kids tried archery, even Sora (which she has only tried one other time in all the time we've been at camp - it's pretty hard for a 5 year old to do correctly, but she was a trouper).
 There was a lot of hot chocolate involved of course.
 We hiked to the spillway, waterfall and up Sora's tiny mountain.

 She even let her uncle help her across a fallen log over a creek.
 After the hike, the kids went rock climbing. Sora and Dylan stopped mid way to high five each other.
 It rained all afternoon which was a perfect time to break out the arts and crafts.
 Once the rain died down, Sora helped her cousins build their own fort.
 Then they celebrated with banana boats.
Sora stayed up ridiculously late, but was up bright and early to go boating. Luckily her cousin was willing to do most of the work, which worked out well since Sora's not much of a paddler and her hands were freezing.
 Before everyone left, we hiked to the top of Kamiakan. It's a hard hike, but totally worth the view!

On a side note, the picture below is of a lake that they drain in the fall for irrigation. The mud/dirt areas you see are all filled with water in the summer. It looks crazy up there compared to the same hike during camp!
We all had a great time with the family and are looking forward to seeing everyone again at Thanksgiving!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

School work

I love Sora's school for so many reasons, but what I love most is simply the Montessori style of teaching and learning. Sora comes home so many days with projects that I can tell she was excited about doing and no unnecessary busy work (contrasting with what I see at work which involves a lot of busy work and a lot of language arts that is way below Sora's current level). I could probably write a whole book on this subject, but instead I will share some of Sora's recent projects (because I don't have the space to keep all of them but I want to remember this year of her schooling).

In addition to maps and diagrams, there is are a lot of art possibilities, which again contrasts greatly from the school I work at. Some of Sora's art projects look like they were more time consuming than others, but she's excited about all of them and I know that she had to set up and put away each project, so she's learning responsibility in addition to the pincher grip and other normal painting type things.

Sora's favorite thing to do at school, of course, is food prep. She gets to do Tang, jam spreading on crackers, and cheese cutting once a day if she chooses (and she always chooses) in addition to morning snack. I'm surprised this kid is even hungry for lunch with all the other stuff she eats at school!

One of the things I love about Montessori is that there isn't homework. With spending 6-7 hrs at school each day, I want Sora to be totally free in her spare time to do fun, imaginative play rather than do more school stuff. One of the neighbors who is in 2nd grade has homework, so sometimes Sora makes up homework to fit in. It's pretty cute. She also loves projects and makes up her own frequently. For example, here is her clock project (her clock is the 21 hour kind).
And here is the politest keep out sign ever. I am hoping that Sora remains as cordial when she hits middle school!  

Do not come in. Thank you. You're the best. Knock and can come in.