Too busy these days... and no, I am not really accomplishing much, so don't envy me ;) ... wanted to share some info.... A few days ago we went to Manning's Open House for Educators and got to see some new (and old) products displayed and get some freebies. First of all, I got way too many catalogs, but that's okay. They are great for brainstorming and using some of the ideas, as well as, having them to order from, etc.. Some of the other freebies I got were :
Sergeant paints, sculpting clay, markers; various pens and markers; window marker; two Steve Spangler Mentos geysers kits; various scratch pads; decorative note pads; awards tags; achievement/chore sheets; Carson Dellosa sample Panda poster; spray hand sanitizer; bookmarks; etc.. All that and they served Walnut brownies, a variety of yummy cookies, mini sub sandwiches, and drinks. Throughout our visit we were served soda or bottled water while we waited... did I mention we were there THREE HOURS?! Yikes! But I am glad we went.
So, what did I buy? Not much because we had all our kiddos and we needed to get out of there and it was a packed house. I have some things I will go back for, but all I bought was this wonderful little folding ruler made by It's Academic. So, it folds down to the size of one inch, which I think is a great visual way to put into perspective just how much one inch is. Also, when folded down you see the numbers on the side and it shows the odd numbers.... when folded a different way you see the even numbers and at the same time counting by twos. I am going to use it as a visual for fractions, also. Many uses... great hands-on visual and only $1.49 !
What was the coolest thing that stood out for me? Crayola Dry Erase Crayons!! Great for the kids to use on dry erase boards, but also great for the teacher, too. I can't stand how quickly dry erase markers dry up. These crayons are just like crayons only softer making them smooth flowing to write with. Very similar to a grease pencil, if you are familiar with those. The crayons EASILY wipe away. Oh yeah, I did not buy them because they will not arrive in the store for about two more weeks. I tried to find a link, but they are not even on www.Crayola.com, yet. I assure you they exist... maybe we will see them in stores soon.
A couple days later I attended a small local Conference that made it's debut. It was the first annual Mid-County Homeschool Conference (MCHC). They did a great job and I believe it will grow tremendously in the years to come. I loved the workshop sessions and they had a panel of four homeschool graduates that did an Open Forum Q & A segment. They also had a panel of four homeschool fathers that did an Open Forum Q & A segment. All the speakers were local and they were great. It was a great opportunity to re-focus on our homeschool. I have been feeling a sense of fear the closer we get to starting our new year off. And I actually keep pushing our start date back because I don't feel ready. Going to this conference really helped me start to feel a little more ready. Ready or not we will start back on Monday, anyway. :) My husband will go back to work on Tuesday, so we might as well jump in to!
I have been re-organizing our school area, developing a schedule for our day, trying to figure out a strategy to make it all work, begging Savannah to please try to do her work without a struggle, looking through their school books, etc.. Okay, yes... today I begged Savannah and she said she would. And she will.... she tries, but she just is distractable and thinks she has to be perfect which is a bad combo. She is a wonderful kid and just today her Sunday School teacher was talking to me about her. She was the last one to leave the classroom because she was not finished with her project and I looked at her teacher and said something about her "speed" in doing things and the teacher said, "But she has such a sweet, sweet spirit." And she does!! She is a wonderful child.... and I am too hard on her. I just can't fail her.... she has to learn and learn well. And she is, but what is missing is all the fun extras that we have to push out because of all the procrastinating. Urghhh.... she has learned that from us, too. I have to admit that.... all her faults come from us, her parents. Arghhh... reality stinks doesn't it. So, I have to find what we are doing wrong and fix it. Like NOW! One of the speakers at the MCHC said that when you start homeschooling one of the things that happens is God starts to show you your problem areas. She said God let her see she had an anger problem. Yikes.... I'm sure she is not the first homeschool mom to have this revelation. We get frustrated and angry and start crying or squawking like a child ourselves. So, we have to deal with our issues.... not easy... but it is necessary to accomplish our goals. The one thing I said when I started homeschooling is that my biggest fear was that my kids would turn out like me. So, I am working on my issues.... I'm sure if I fix my issues then her will be fixed... simple really... right?! ;)
Okay, so I got a little pick-me-up from the MCHC, but now I am thinking that I might want to make last minute plans to attend the THSC Convention this weekend in Houston. Maybe it would just give me that extra boost and "direction". Maybe my husband could find some support in going and my kids could get another chance to enjoy a conference experience. Anyway, blogging is not something I can spend much time on these days... sorry, no pics right now.... and I have to get off this computer.... arghhhh... quite honestly, I would rather sit here and type and run from all the things that I should be doing, but I can't and I am sorry for that. I hope some of you will stick with my boring blog until I can commit more time to it. ;) Goodnight!!