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  1. I don't have specific resources, as my oldest is only entering 6th grade. The first two thoughts I had though were suggesting James Herriot books, if you think they can or would get them from the library, and including nature study. Just last year we had parents bring in chicks, hamsters, and what I think were cow bones for different classes. I'd probably have them keep a nature journal, with a focus on animals of course.
  2. Yes, it's a bummer when things don't work out as planned, but like Sabrina said - God always has a plan! Hopefully you can fall into a new routine that works just as well for your family.
  3. I can't let my youngest outside without an adult either, so I understand the frustration, but I also hate going outside right now, because I can't just sit down and read a book or tend to outdoor chores. I'm constantly watching her like a hawk, or walking her back to a safe place. It is exhausting, and I've said the same thing--hopefully by next summer! There was an article going around FB recently by a mom who didn't like to go to outings/parties/events, because of young children, and I can so relate. My younger two are now 5 and 3, and I feel like we're getting close to seeing the light at the end of that tunnel, but as of right now, I feel like I have to be a homebody, because it's impossible to go places with toddlers and actually enjoy myself.
  4. I'm no help. My 3 year old is also that child. When we lived in town, our front steps went straight to the sidewalk, so we installed chain locks at the top. Perhaps you could combine that with some kind of door alarm like mentioned above, to at least give you time to get there before he gets out. If he can climb the fence, you're only option is to train him not to climb it, and to respond immediately to your commands to STOP or return to you. We live rural, but also on a road where they drive too fast. We don't have a fence, and have a shared driveway, so I understand your concern. If we are playing in certain areas you can't see us when you're driving up, so if she darts out from behind the storage building or parked car, which was a scary habit of hers for a long time, they wouldn't know to watch out. The only thing I CAN do is to make sure she doesn't go in the driveway (or "the rocks" as she calls it), and make sure she responds immediately to stop or come back to me. It is exhausting and time consuming, but I have worked at removing her immediately and making her sit with me if she doesn't obey, which is not nearly as fun as playing with siblings. She's gotten a lot better over the last few months. I wish I could say she was consistently obedient, but we're still working on that.
  5. We've never had a serious injury or an ER trip, thankfully! I have boys and girls, and by far the one that worries me is the youngest, a 3 year old girl. She's *that kid* when it comes to climbing up and jumping off things she shouldn't be on.
  6. Good question. I just checked last night and realized St. Bartholomew's Eve is now available for download.
  7. Yes, definitely enjoying this weather more! No better way to tire a 3 year old for bedtime than running outdoors! Co-op is now over, and AWANA is winding down. There's a lot of group activities starting up that we may consider with co-op friends . . . flag football, chess club . . . VBS is right around the corner. So there's always something to keep us busy!
  8. I'm not sure my kids would be open to those sandwich options, but this was a great article!
  9. I think today was worse, because it's supposed to be turning spring and we keep having these dreary cold snaps . . . bleh! We switched to a new curriculum in October, so with regular Thanksgiving and Christmas break, we'll have to go about 6-8 weeks longer than I would normally go. I think, however, we'll plan to keep pressing on, taking off for VBS. We'll take a "light" summer, and just start back up a little later than usual so we still get a break.
  10. We have 3 dogs and a cat. Two small, indoor dogs. The lab is mostly outdoor. The cat is outdoors. The boys have had hermit crabs and hamsters in the past, and now they want lizards and/or turtles. My daughter wants a parrot. We live adjacent to the family farm where my husband was raised. His parents have 3 donkeys, half a dozen or so goats (I haven't counted lately but I know they sold some), 2 outdoor cats, 2 rabbits, 2 ducks and a lot of chickens. They have a dog and bird inside. The other field has a handful of cows, split between them and my brother-in-law. My kids basically consider all those animals as their own. Not sure what happened to his beehives, I never did ask. My brother-in-law has a dog that never stays home and sits outside my house yapping all the time. We don't claim him, LOL!
  11. Math gets done online math, and it grades automatically. If they don't get a passing grade, I go through it with them and they redo it with new questions the next day. We are Charlotte Mason homeschoolers, so there isn't much to "correct" otherwise at this point, except maybe in copywork and dictation. I make them immediately correct spelling, punctuation, etc. I don't give grades yet. I'll figure that out when they need it, but they're all elementary ages right now.
  12. I've never been to one. I would like to go, but arranging childcare for those few days is a major factor. I don't really feel like I'm missing out, though.
  13. Fascinating! I'm sure my kids will want to try these too.
  14. Right now, we only do co-op. My boys (8 and 11) are going to have an instructional Basketball class before co-op starting in March. In the past they have both done homeschool gymnastics, and my oldest has also done soccer, basketball, boys gymnastics and golf. He likes to try things, but rarely wants to continue. My younger son wants to learn piano, so I need to find an instructor for him. My 5 year old daughter wants to take dance but we missed sign-ups this past fall, so she has to wait until later this year. Now that she's 5 though, I might put her in the homeschool gymnastics class, and I think the Olympics have inspired ice skating, LOL!
  15. Formally, we follow a traditional school calendar, but we don't stop for summer either. We start our "new year" around the same time as public schools, but we're way more flexible with our schedule. Usually by summer we slow things down and it is pretty light and casual. We can't take off completely though, or it's too hard to get back into a routine.