Thursday, November 18, 2010


MME Damask Papers
I have decided this year to really simplify my approach.  In the past three years, I have made a determined use of my scrap pieces to complete each page of my DD, but this year I have decided to use only the red colour wave of patterned paper from MME damask range.  Love the feeling of warmth and Christmas I get when I look at these papers!  It just makes me want to bake Christmas mince pies!  The red will go really well with the time of year in NZ as well, given we celebrate Christmas during our summer season.  So the papers are gathered, tomorrow it will all be about the collection of embellishments, totally my favourite part!  Who doesn't love a bit of bling in their lives, even us linear gals like a bit of sparkle!  So the white is starting to look a little more festive with a shot of Christmas red ... totally loving reading and ogling everyones blogs listed on Ali's blog :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


As I mentioned in my initial December Daily post, my pages are very white and very different from previous years! I have printed off my 26 days of December (I include Boxing Day for mine as we have family traditions we always participate in on that day as well!) ready to set off once again on this journey.  I will be posting each day where I am at with my December Daily, today was about the printing off of white foundation pages on white linen cardstock.  This year, my DD is an 8" x 8" album with clear acrylic covers.  I have used a Jolee's on the cover as I like the instant dimension you get from her embellishments (slightly lazy and unaltered but satisfying to have it underway and manageable!). 

Foundation pages ... very white!
This year I have also done something really different for me and that is printed all the numbers on each foundation page.  Depending on the photos for each day, I plan to embellish the actual "number boxes" and I love that each day this year has a dedicated box for journalling.  I am hoping this will make each day a little easier in terms of limiting the choices I have to make each day and making the process a little faster.  Even though I have done the foundation pages each year, some nights in December I have spent an hour trying to work out how to lay the journalling and photos together!  I'm a linear kinda gal and I am hoping this will narrow my nightly decision making process to only 1/2 an hour!  So loving seeing everybody else's, they are so cool.  If you come by my blog leave a comment and a link to your album so I can follow your progress each day as well.  Isn't Ali Edwards awesome for inspiration and sharing!


December Daily Albums from 2007, 2008, and 2009
Yip, I AM!  That is taking over my home school blog for my December Daily album this year.  This will be my 4th year doing the album totally inspired by Ali Edwards (one of my favourite scrapbook/memory keepers).  I am so excited this year as I have gone with all white foundation pages, so far no patterned paper, no transparencies, and no felt pages, this is all feeling very strange!  I didn't step out of my comfort zone with the acrylic bases still my preferred option for the covers.  Can't wait to see what I will end up with this year!
These are my pride and joy, say Hi Benjamin and Pollyanna
Oh and yes, my kids are still home schooling kiddos and the update on their learning will just be at the bottom of each post ... Just as important but not with so much eye candy as a December Daily!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


We had a day of testing today, so I could make sure the kids were on target and the education they are getting at home is helping them with progressing.  Today the testing we did was for Spelling (Schonell Spelling Test) and the Burt Reading Test (both standardised and used in NZ schools)

Pollyanna (age 6 years, 1 month)

Spelling age of 7 years exactly

Reading age of 7 years 6 months

Benjamin (age 8 years, 11 months)

Spelling age of 12 years 8 months)

Reading age of 13 years, 10 months

Aren’t our kids awesome and I marked them really hard and gave them no warning of the testing!  I am just having one of those proud moments where I am seeing the benefits of home schooling ... I don't often acknowledge the wonders of my two littlest hero's but today I want to acknowledge their hard work and dedication and the effort they both put into learning is just awesome and boy is it paying off :)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


We had a great day at Howick Historic Village yesterday.  The kids were awesome, so well behaved as were most of the home-schooled children.  They also had the most amazing time learning about history by being involved in it ... its incredible how hands-on learning provides so much more understanding than just standing, listening, reading, and writing.  This was truly a day where the education and the ability to home-school my children was so rewarding.  They learnt everything from washing duties, ironing, the foundation of nursery rhymes, and the types of homes that were waiting for those that made the voyage from Ireland.  Incredible stuff, and I can't thank the people at the village enough for their care in teaching and their passion for passing on knowledge.  AWESOME DAY >>> AWESOME :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Well it was today!  Both kids spent some maths time today working on their telling time skills.  For Ben, its about reading times on clocks more accurately, and for Polly we are starting to move the big hand to the half past position and start learning to tell the time when the big hand isn't at the 12 position!

It was actually fun.  Ben had a great sense of achievement at knowing the times on all the worksheets I gave him which was fantastic.  So I then moved him on to a timed multiplication test to reinforce his times tables ... another big up for him with only one in 50 wrong.  Polly did really well too.  At first she struggled with which number the half past referred to, but I showed her it was referring to the PAST number, so the correct one was the number which the little hand had just past.  This knowledge made it easier but will need continued practice but she made a great start!

It was then onto the dreaded writing, so to cheer them up I had a two prong approach.  One was to say if they went at their writing with an upbeat attitude they could make the Lego advent builds from last year when they had finished and I also wrote a starter on the board .... I can't wait until Christmas.  I really like .......   that got them firing!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


We have had a great first few weeks at the beginning of Term Four.  The spelling books are fantastic and something I will definitely keep buying for future terms.  The best thing about them is not only the learning to spell aspect but also the working on word knowledge they also bring. 

Statistics is most certainly a favourite maths subject! They both love graphs and Ben is learning how to apply that knowledge so that data collected can be presented in a meaningful way. Polly is also learning to tell the time more this term and hopefully the reinforcement of this continues to give her a better understanding of how time works.

We are off to the Howick Historic Village next week to discover and work and play as we would have done in Victorian Times .... the sewing has begun with the costumes!  The workbooks and story about Polly and her Farming Family are paying real dividends in this area. 

Writing is still not a favourite, so we are going slowly with this, especially for Polly who has decided reading is a far better pass time than writing!  Ben's writing is almost unrecognisable from two terms ago.  The work we did on Narratives means he can now create a story with a beginning, middle, and end which is awesome.  His editing has also come along way and I am so proud of the work we have done together to make his writing so cool.  Some days he even enjoys writing .... OMG!  This term we are focused on exposition writing and how we have to provide reason if we are making a statement to support what we feel.  Here's hoping this learning is as successful as the Narratives.  I am using newspaper reading each day to provide him with plenty of opportunities to investigate this style of writing in every day life.  For Polly, this term is all about the little steps and making each writing experience on a daily basis a more positive experience. 

That's about it for now, Christmas is coming so we started our weekly Christmas crafts yesterday with the kids decorating Christmas stockings ... we love Christmas!