Welcome to TwoCowgirls, the blog about our crazy life in Downtown Saint Paul!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Owl Pellets, Share the Fun, and Syrup Making

"You know you're a homeschool mom when you have rodent
bones in a baggie in your purse."





Is it really Friday?  This week flew by!  It was cold and snowy again, so I'm glad the week went by quickly.

Here's what we did this week:





Monday:

The girls had farm school at Gale Woods Farm again.  It was fabulous as usual.  They love that class so much!  Since it was so cold and snowy, I went to Starbucks to do homework.  I got so much accomplished!  Before Gale Woods, I met up with a friend for breakfast, which was super fun.  I honesty felt like I ate all day, though.  Breakfast with a friend, lunch in the car, a treat at Starbucks...  I'm ready for warm weather so I can go on walks!

Tuesday:

Millie had piano lessons in the morning.  The girls wanted to forego playgroup today, because the neighbor kids were all on spring break, and they wanted to hang around the neighborhood.  Understandable, since we'll be leaving in a week or less!

Wednesday:

Today we were back in our normal school routine.  The girls did all their school work in the morning.  In the afternoon, they had a class at Dodge Nature Center, where they learned all about bones.  They even got to dissect owl pellets!  For the second part of class, they got to explore several stations in a barn.  The most popular station was definitely the "knuckle bones" game station.  Good times.





Thursday:

This was the first day all week that we didn't have to leave the house (until evening).  It was so nice!  The girls did their school work in the morning, and spent the afternoon playing with the neighbor kids.  I had the entire afternoon to do school work and clean the house.  In the evening, the girls had their first Share the Fun play practice.  It's always fun for them to see their friends.  I am so happy that we happened upon this particular 4-H group.  The kids are all really great.

Friday:


Academics?  We don't need no stinkin' academics!  (I don't really mean that, but that seems to be our philosophy right now.  We're still doing better than last year, so I'm OK with it).  Today we thew caution to the wind, picked up cousin Patrick, and went to the farm.  We needed to boil the sap that Grandpa Howard collected from his maple trees.  It took so long, we weren't able to stay for the whole process.  It was so nice to sit by the hot fire!!  The kids spent a lot of time playing "veterinarian" with Grandpas vet medicine books and Millie's stethoscope.  They had a couple (willing?) victims playing along :)












Well, I have next year *almost* entirely planned out.  I have earth science and ancient history detailed out in two future blog posts.  It has all the links I'll need to refer back to throughout the year.  I just need to make my supply list so I know I'll have all the supplies on hand (you know, so the experiments and projects ACTUALLY get done).

The big thing I have to work on is a homeschool group.  I need something similar to what we were part of when Millie first started homeschooling in 2nd grade.  It's the part of our homeschool journey that we're missing right now.  I know, I know, how could we possibly add anything into our week?!  I'm not too worried.  Next year will be different.  I'm known for making everything work out, so I imagine I'll do the same thing next year ;)

Have a great week!  Find out what other homeschoolers are up to, here.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Farm Class, Lil' Biologist Class, and the First Day of Spring

The best part of this season, is that our weeks are filled with nature study.  I may teach a little, but there are classes aplenty that are taught by others, which is fabulous because I can't answer many of the kids questions: "What kind of fungus is this?" "What bird is making that sound?", for example.  Oy.

Here's what we did this week:

Monday:

The girls had farm class again.  It was a cool and windy day, and I wasn't prepared for it, so I ended up sitting in the car for 3 hours (THREE HOURS!).  If I had been prepared, and brought a coat, I could have walked around the farm, but I didn't, so I got 3 hours of 2015-16 planning done.  At least the time wasn't wasted!  It was actually pretty fabulous.  Anywhooo, back to the kids and their farm class ;)  Millie's group drew blood from rams, testing for OPP (sheep pneumonia).  Each kid in her group got to pick out a pregnant ewe to observe and monitor throughout the rest of her pregnancy.  Millie is going to bring her stethoscope next week so she can listen to see if she can hear the lamb's heart beat.  They made sour apples, which Millie did not like.  Elise's class learned about and took care of the chickens, and made maple syrup popcorn.  I'm guessing she did more than that, but she can't remember.  Ha!

Tuesday:

Today was music and play group day.  Millie had a great piano lesson, and continued to work on her recital pieces.  Here's a little snip from her lesson:

video


After lunch, we met up with friends at Silverwood.  The moms sat inside and drank coffee and chit chatted, which is always so SO fun.  The girls played outside with their friends (doing what?  I don't know.  I hear there were dogs involved).

Wednesday:

In the morning, Millie had her Lil' Biologist class at the Wildlife Refuge.  Elise and I went home, since the house we're staying at is only 10 minutes away from class.  It was nice to have that alone time with Elise.  :)  At class, Millie learned all about raptors, and went on a raptor walk.  She got to see a barred owl in the wild (her first wild owl ever!).  After class, one of the teachers walked a couple of us down so we could see the owl, too.  It was so cool, and so much bigger than I expected!  In the afternoon, we did our regular school routine (math, reading, etc).  The neighborhood kids started spring break today, so the kids spent much of the afternoon running around, playing.

 Thursday:

Fun with congruent shapes


Today was a full, stay at home, focus on school work day.  It was SO nice to stay home and not drive anywhere!  The girls got through their work quickly so they could play with friends in the afternoon.  In the evening, I had school (earth science).  I love that class!



Friday:

Happy 1st day of spring!!  We started our day with a walk in the woods.  We didn't get very deep into the woods because the kids were distracted by a tree with woodpecker holes, several varieties of fungus, fallen trees, and pretty mossy logs.  It was a magical morning.  When we got home, we did a little nature study about buds and tree growth.  We all learned a little something this morning.  We spent the rest of the late morning/early afternoon working on school work before the kids left for an afternoon of fun in the neighborhood with the neighbor kids.
Never leave home without your rocks
and minerals book!
Flying through the sky on a
dragon.









Elise can spot a fungus from a mile away.


The weekend will find us prepping our condo for sale, taking Millie to a Ukrainian Egg class, attending a birthday party, and SNOW!!

Find out what other homeschoolers are doing this week, here.


Friday, March 13, 2015

Farm Class, SciGirls, and Lots-a Playing




Oh Spring, you're such a distraction!!  I'm very happy to be able to spend these early days of the spring-like weather outside with my kids.

Here's what we did this week:





Monday:

The girls sat down and did some school work, finally!  Last week was a blur, and they didn't get much accomplished.  Monday was difficult because it was like getting back at it after a long break.  Oops.  Anywhooo, they finally did some work.  It was a challenge.  Around 11:00, I threw together some lunches, ran to Fleet Farm to get rubber boots for the girls, and left for an hour long drive to farm class.  It's their favorite part of the year!  It's 8 weeks of fabulous farm lessons.  They are in separate classes (by age).  Since it was the first day of the class, they toured the farm, looked at all the (pregnant!) farm animals, and spent time in the kitchen.  Elise's class made pancakes, and Millie's class made cinnamon scones.  I can't wait for them to bring home the recipes so they can cook for me!










Tuesday:


Tuesday the girls did some school work in the morning, and the we left for piano lessons.  Millie's recital pieces are coming along nicely :)  Afterwards, we went to the condo for lunch, and then went to playgroup.  The weather was so nice, we were finally able to meet at a playground.  It was fabulous!!  It was so nice to be out in the sun without a coat!!  Millie started working on her big science project.  She's testing the water in two fish bowls.  One has one goldfish, the other has a goldfish and a snail.  Her hypothesis is that the water in the one with the snail is going to be cleaner ;)  Only time will tell!

Wednesday:


SciGirls day!  Elise spent the day with her good friend.  I'm so thankful her family was willing to watch Elise; it's hard to find a sitter during the day.  They did some science experiments, cooked lunch together, and went to the park.  Fun!  SciGirls was awesome, as usual.  The girls did some taste testing, and tried to figure out why some people like certain veggies, and some people don't.  Then, we had someone from Mad Science MN come in to teach the girls about chemistry.  The experiments were really cool!

Thursday:


Looking for rare stones in the asphalt ;)
Finally, a day to stay home!  We did our regular school in the morning, took a nice walk in the afternoon, and then hung out until the neighborhood kids came home from school.  Once they were back from school, the kids were gone for the rest of the day.  Millie & Elise love playing with the neighbors!  It's a perfect little group of kids.  We're going to be so sad to break up the group when we move back to the condo in less than a month!



Friday:

Well, this was the day that I found out that we need to spend more time on math, with Millie.  She had a math test, and couldn't even finish it.  Grrrr.  I'm not sure what's going on, but I think the answer is to do math every.single.day.  Even on weekends.  Bud took the afternoon off from work, and we went to the MN Zoo.  It was such a nice day!

This weekend will bring a fun 4-H event for Millie, Share the Fun auditions for Elise & Millie,
 and probably a lot of playing in the neighborhood.  If I have it my way, we'll go to the condo and start packing up our things to get it decluttered and ready to put on the market soon!

Find out what other homeschoolers did this week, here.