Cultivating Knowledge in Mommy's Garden

Following the adventures of two little girls and their mommy, as they learn and create together!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christmas Around the World Planning

I decided instead of taking December off or continuing as usual, we would do a special unit about Christmas in other countries.  I’ve been seeing blogs with all kinds of similar things popping up and thought I’d use some of what is made already.  Then looking through it, though nice, things are done differently than I would do (such as studying Sweden, but not on Santa Lucia Day).  Since we have Swedish heritage, this really bothered me.  I decided to do my own research and put together what I want us to study based on the availability of resources.  I'm also taking into consideration that some countries celebrate during the 12 Days of Christmas.   After much agonizing over what days to celebrate which countries, I’ve come up with a complete (?) list.  There are some empty days, but those will fill in with things that don’t get completed and if I want to add in more countries. I will post information about each days activities after they occur, since I'm usually still in the planning stages while I'm doing an activity :).

  1. Introduce Topic
  2. UK England
  3. UK Wales and Scotland
  4. Ireland
  5. Netherlands
  6. France
  7. Hawaii
  8. Spain
  9. Italy
  10. Sri Lanka
  11. Africa
  12. Saudi Arabia
  13. Scandinavia: Sweden
  14. Scandinavia: Denmark and Finland
  15. Israel * Hanukkah (we celebrate all 8 nights regardless)
  16. Switzerland
  17. Russia
  18. China
  19. Philippines
  21. Scandinavia: Norway
  24. United States (our traditions)
  25. United States (our traditions)
  26. Canada
  28. Mexico
  29. Austrailia
  30. Germany
  31. Germany
  1. Greece
  5. Brazil
  6. Egypt

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Decorating the Tree


Elf on the Wall Black Friday

It would have been nice if I had taken a wider picture of this.  I just re-did this wall with new pictures and new frames.  The wall even got a fresh coat of paint. 
I didn’t take any pictures, but we had a fun and busy day for Black Friday.  Grandma and I went shopping and then when we got home, all of us watched Brave.  It is such a fun movie.  After the movie we took Great Grandma Pat out for dinner for her birthday (I can’t believe that she is 79!)  We had a nice day and are looking forward to more holiday festivities!



Setting the table for dinner :)

Selena helped with most of the cooking, the stuffing of the turkey, basting, pealing and chopping, and writing recipes



Our Christmas elf made his debut for the season.

Disney on Ice and Birthday Parties

Disney on Ice 2012

Disney on Ice with the cousins

100_9580  100_9585

A shared birthday with Great Grandma!


I went a little crazy with the food and treats.  Everything was in the ocean/mermaid theme.


Tube Worms (Selena’s invention, blueberries inside of raspberries) and Flip Flops (Nutter Butters with frosting on a bed of crushed Nilla Wafers)


Sea Slugs (red, orange, and yellow peppers), Sea Anemones (celery cut pretty), Crab Legs (carrot sticks), and Sea Cucumber Slices (cucumber slices)


Sand Dollars (Sugar cookies with frosting and sliced almonds) Salt Water Taffy (salt water taffy :) )


Sushi (Rice Krispy square with Swedish fish and Fruit by the Foot), Fish and Chips (goldfish and chips)


Sea Water (Blue Hawaiian Punch and Lemonade) Octopus and Shells (hot dogs cut to look like octopus and shell pasta)


Shrimp Cocktail (shrimp and cocktail sauce) Seaweed Dip (Spinach dip)


Fin Salad (bowtie pasta salad)


And of course gifts!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Abby’s Birthday

On Abby’s actual birthday, we had some delicious princess waffles…

Had birthday cupcakes with Grandma and Papa

Opened a few presents


Played in the Ariel “fairy garden”


And checked on the ants

Snow Day!!!

So we had our first snow a couple days ago, but overnight and this morning (November 12) we had a lot of great snowman snow!

I couldn’t get the girls to stay inside!


Front yard snowman.  In the second picture, you can’t tell, but they are playing catch with Frosty!



This is Frosty 2 and Clarice the girl reindeer from Rudolph.

After we came in and had hot cocoa, we watched a frosty marathon;

Frosty the Snowman

Frosty Returns

Frosty’s Winter Wonderland

Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July

An update on the ant farm.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

First Snow November 9, 2012

There wasn’t a whole lot of snow, but just enough to play in and make a few snowballs for a snowball fight. 




Quilting and Quiet Time

I have decided to try my hand at some quilting.  I cut up all the girls receiving blankets and am going to make two quilts out of the squares.  These are going to be my trial runs for the super special quilts that I have started cutting the squares for, but am not ready to start yet.  More to come soon!

The girls are getting between 30 and 60 minutes of quiet time each day to read and look through books.  I’m LOVING this bit of time, and also the results Selena is showing from having dedicated time for this.