1John 4:7 Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Shape Art

We have all mastered the list of shapes that I like to have the kids learn for preschool.  Yesterday we used random shapes for free art.  
"I found a triangle!"
They just created what they thought they should create.
My favorite part is asking them about their art.  I love that all of these kids communicate very clearly!
Last night, a fiery sunset grabbed onto the Wisteria.  It only lasted a few seconds.
♥♥♥Happy Thursday!♥♥♥

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


We created a tulip for art yesterday.  The original plan was to complete a concept worksheet, but the art wall was looking empty.  Creating a tulip was the perfect way to celebrate Spring.  Sorry in advance about the darkness of the photos.  I could not get the camera to take a decent photo-- why is it so difficult for me?   
The kids colored some dirt onto their papers.  They added the tulip pieces.
They chose a color of paper and ripped it into small pieces to glue to the tulip petals.
This is a simple way to add some time!  
I love that the kids used different colors to create a sunshine.  (Of course, they wouldn't see yellow on the yellow paper.) 
A tulip garden!!  We all pointed to the letter u.
I'm a bit distracted this morning because of a lockdown at my daughter's school due to an armed man in the area.  Even though it was not a school shooting, it can unnerve me to know that there is a lockdown.  Thankfully, the lockdown happened before she was inside and she was able to ride home with Adam.  Now that everything has been given the "all clear", we get back to normal.  It just reminds me how vulnerable we are in the world.  I fear people.  My goal is this:  
Colossians 3:2 "Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things." 
♥♥♥Happy Wednesday!♥♥♥

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Beauty Of Aging

There she is!  The Wisteria blooms, bringing me great joy!!!  I am thrilled that it has grown enough for me to lead it along the beams.  It seems happy now that it is established.  Kind of like me, happier the more I age.  Someone my age was recently commenting about our age and I couldn't tell if she was happy about it or not.  There is a beauty that comes from aging, and I really embrace it.  All of a sudden, I am comfortable in my skin.  I am taking better care of myself.  My concerns turn to my health, rather than the size of my jeans.  I'm ok with the lines on my face, I'm honestly looking forward to graying hair.  It's a part of life, it is beautiful.  I think there's a peace that comes from embracing it rather than fighting it. Meanwhile, there are some more favorite products that I have and want to share with you.  It's been a while since we've had a favorite things post!
 THIS stuff is a new favorite of mine.  First of all- it's Tillamook.  You can count on creaminess that surpasses all others.  Second of all- it's nectarine!!  This is great with breakfast or as a snack.  It is so good that I feel like I'm eating dessert.  Now that I have discovered it, you can bet that I'll be snagging up enough of them to last me through the week.  The cost is somewhere around $1.00, and worth every penny.
As I age, my skin is changing, too.  I needed a new cleanser and a good moisturizer.  My mom has always used Clinique, so I gave it a try.  I am happy with the product.  It's a little pricy, you can purchase it in Macy's at the cosmetics counter or online.  The sizes above are travel sizes that were included in my initial purchase of the three piece set.  I thought that was pretty generous to include the travel sizes, and I don't go anywhere without my facial regime.  The great thing about Macy's is that when you spend a certain amount (last time it was around $28) you get a free gift, and they do not skimp on the gift.  It's different every month, last time we got two cosmetic travel bags, eyeshadow, mascara, lip gloss, and something AMAZING... see below.
The free gift included a sample size of this amazing cream.  IT IS MAGICAL.  I use it every morning during my normal face routine.  Goodbye under eye puffiness.  Even after you have a good cry.  POOF- gone!!  You can bet that I immediately went online to purchase this magical stuff in a larger size, and I paid about $50.00 for it.  (Got another gift, too!)  
It's downright decadent, and doesn't leave an oily residue. It will last forever, as a little bit goes a long way.  
There, my new favorites for now.  
I failed at taking photos yesterday.  These kids are so smart and didn't even need instruction about the steps to complete this worksheet.  Cut, glue, write and color.  Look at the beautiful way they are holding the scissors!!  They are getting more and more accomplished.
It was raining heavily yesterday morning, we had to carry umbrellas to the bus stop.  Right around 11:00 the rain stopped, the sun came out, and it was HOT!  
I wish every day began with a bit of rain.  The gardens are happy right now. :)
♥♥♥Happy Tuesday!♥♥♥

Monday, April 27, 2015

Make A Fort Kit

My nephew is having a birthday party and I thought this would be a fun gift for him to use. (With help of course, until he gets old enough to use it by himself.)  What child doesn't enjoy playing in a fort?  By "fort", I mean under a blanket or sheet.  I love this idea because it reminds me of being a kid, pitching a blanket up over a tree branch and creating a space to play in for hours.  We used to play under the truck bed shell that was propped up against the house.  My brother built a really neat hut that looked like a pile of garbage from the outside.  Inside there were at least two rooms.  My nephew needs a fort kit, immediately.  
I found a portable laundry bag and decided that it would be strong enough to hold the items inside.  I used some felt to create a simple sign for the bag.  I hot glued the letters and sewed the sign to the front of the bag.
I purchased two flat sheets at Fred Meyer.  At $4.99 each, I thought this was a steal!  I chose black because it's fun to play with a flashlight in a dark tent.  My only regret is that I could immediately notice every piece of fuzz on the sheets, but I still stand by using black.  I grabbed some fabric scraps that I had and cut them into strips.  These were sewn onto the sheets to create ties.  
I drew a simple photo of how this should work.  Secure the clothesline, drape the sheets over it.  The ties should secure the fort. 
I added some fun animal clips and some clothespins.  This way the sheets can be hung up by the shorter side to create a tall fort.  Also included in the kit:
Two strong clamps, these should be able to hold a clothesline up. 
Glowstick stuff!
I used a 100 ' clothesline.  
I added a couple of cars for instant gratification.  My nephew is 2, and he isn't going to care so much about the other stuff in the bag until he gets to play in it.
It all fits inside the laundry bag, with room to spare for extra toys and blankets, anything else needed. 
Friday we worked on the concept "behind".  They created a barn, added a horse with a cart BEHIND it.  Simple, and they get it.
Here's Smudge being perfect, attempting for the millionth time to get Chippy to play with him.  Nope!  
♥♥♥Happy Monday!♥♥♥
Now playing at Henle House- "Spoonman" by Soundgarden.  This song takes me back to 1994, I got to spend part of my summer visiting my Grandparents here is Washington.  Washington has such a different kind of energy compared to Utah, so  was always really happy to be here.  I purchased this Soundgarden tape during that visit, and the song Spoonman is about Artis, the Spoonman who performs on the streets of Seattle.  He has also played his spoons with the Seattle Symphony, I'm sure you can search for a video on Youtube. 

Friday, April 24, 2015

17 Beads

I notice that late in the preschool year, the end of the alphabet and the numbers higher than 15 tend to get lost in a jumble.  The kids remember the first half of the alphabet really well, and can count as well.  Recognizing the letters and numbers can be a bit more difficult.  How do they see what 17 looks like?  We just count, count and count again.  It's nice to give them a visual.  
We looked at the number and then counted together, 17 beads.
Each child counted his or her own beads.  This is special because they need to choose the ones that they want to add to their necklace.  They only get 17.  Suddenly the number didn't seem so large.. :)
They worked steadily.  Once they had the beads onto their yarn, we counted them together. 
I caught this one counting and re-counting his beads.  He was just making sure there were 17. 
Here comes the rain!  The sky was so dark right before the bus stop walk this morning.  I was certain we would feel it's wrath!  We were walking along and the sky parted-- a giant WARM ray of sunshine followed us all the way to the bus stop.  We made sure to stop and feel it, stuffed some into our pockets for later and LOUDLY thanked God for holding the rain.♥  I hope we get to hear some thunder.  
Now playing at Henle House, "Forgiveness" by Sarah McLachlan.  Fridays are the perfect day to listen to Sarah.  She is like a warm soothing hug after a very busy week!  I don't care how ridiculous her 'save the animals' infomercials are.  She's a musical genius.  
♥♥♥Happy Friday!♥♥♥

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Our Little Friend Came To Visit

This is our nephew, and we are always happy when he comes to visit us at Henle House.  We knew that he was going to visit yesterday, and all morning the kids were asking me, "When is our little friend going to be here?"  "But will he miss group time?"  I love that they call him their "little friend."  They came up with that on their own.
A mouth full of snack smile. :) 
We had planned to create a beaded necklace, but it just sat right where it was on the counter.  The sun was out.  We had a visitor- goodbye schedule!  We enjoyed a nice group time about bugs and Spring time.  Our "little friend"  seemed to enjoy it, too!
Every year I worry about this Peony because of where it sits.  It was here when we bought the house, and I like that it is right here, but the kids over the past 7 years have crashed and burned into it so many times!  It looks really good this year!  Wow- look at the grass!! (Or lack thereof..)  We have weeds, moss and sporadic grass..  As long as there is anything green to cover up the mud- I do not obsess about the grass.  Weeds look nice when they are mowed.
We enjoyed the late afternoon sunshine.
I hid and took some candid shots.  They were playing so contently.
His parent arrived.
The kids are happy to be here, but happy to leave most of the time, too. 
Today we will complete our beaded necklaces. 
♥♥♥Happy Thursday!♥♥♥

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Cut, Glue, Write & Color

This is the norm on mornings when we have toast or banana bread.  "Did your cheeks get hungry and take a bite?" I usually ask.  "Yeah!"  Sometimes the shirt takes a bite, too.  Breakfast is the best.  They come to see me so I can wash their cheeks off.  These cheeks were so peanut buttery that I just had to snap a photo. ♥
I gave the kids a worksheet about the letter Tt.  My goal was to stand back and let them do it all by themselves.  I drew an orange line along the place that I wanted to see them cut.  The kids are doing a great job handling the scissors once they get them in the correct position.   I gently help them flip their hand over.  The most common mistake is when they hold the scissors as shown above.
I decided that even if the kids went off of the line, I was backing off.  
The next step for them was to glue the two pieces onto a piece of paper.  
The next step was to write their names.  I did not correct or help them.  (It's hard for me because I am a control freak.)  Some letters were missing, but in reality, this is FANTASTIC for a child this age to write this much of his name.  Sometimes I realize that my standards are high.  But are they really?  I don't believe that any age is too young to learn.  Besides, they are enjoying it.
Glue glue glue.  
When they finished tracing and writing their own letter Tt's, they colored the pictures of things that start with t.
Out we went.  "Miss Nicole!  We have to show you something!"  They found a baby pumpkin plant.  Our large pumpkin didn't break down, but we did throw several Jack-Be-Little pumpkins in the garden that DID break down.  We fertilized and watered the baby pumpkin plant.  We then found ANOTHER one.  A slug ate it last night.  We will protect the other one by placing a cup over it to keep it away from the slugs at night.  Good eyes, kids!!  They are concerned that there are weeds in this plot.
It's a great place to look for small bugs, too.  
Look at this unique tulip that is getting ready to bloom.  I love the ruffly petals.
♥♥♥Happy Wednesday!♥♥♥