Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Iowa Vacation

We are having so much fun in Iowa visiting my family and friends. We arrived on Friday evening and had a nice visit with my mom. My Dad wasn't home due to his work schedule. Saturday was jam packed full of fun. My husband did the Honor Guard for the Pilgram Virgin Statue that morning with my Dad. The FULL rosary was said and I am so proud of my Daddy for doing this. He is a roll model to us all. When they got back, Dom, I and Mena went to Palo Beach (man made) with my sister Ann, her husband Aaron, and their three darling kiddos. We played in the sand and got in the water a little but it was pretty cold. Fun times had by all. Then we went back to their house to celebrate their oldest turning three! I can't believe how darling Oren is. We ate pizza, wen't to a parade in a nearby town, had cake and icecream back at their house, then left again to go see the fireworks. It was great! The parade and fireworks were for the towns "Pickle Days" so at the end of the parade people handed out free pickles. Too funny!We were in the perfect place on the parade route. At the very end and there was no one in our immediate vicinity so the kids got all the candy for themselves! Worked out great. The kids were a little scard of the fireworks due to the volume of the BOOMS, but they eventually calmed down and loved the display. After fireworks, we came home and went to sleep. That was one full day! Sunday we went to 12 Mass sense we were all tired and wanted to sleep in. We saw Ann and Family at Mass at St. Pius and then had lunch with them back at the house. We babysat while they went shoping and then Played a game of Risk with my Dad, brother, and Dominic. I had to put Mena to bed so my mom took her place. It was so much fun and I think a rematchneeds to take place since I didn't get to play the full game and lost. Oh well!
Monday we wen't to Mass at the hospital and then ate there for lunch. It was a nice little meal. They even had French Silk Pie. UMMM!!! I LOVE ME SOME PIE! We came home and relaxed for a little while. That has been our week so far and we are having a blast. Stay tuned for more updates and I promise pics will be posted soon. We have our reunion this weekend and I can't wait for that. We are haveing a family softball tourney and there will be about 4 teams. Pray that I am not an embarrassment. I haven't played softball in forever!

What have you been up to lately?

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Say Cheese!

Doesn't she just look adorable?

Still not pregnant!

This is really getting hard to handle. We have been trying for two years now and this is my third month on Clomid. If it doesn't work this month I need to go to an infertility specialist. I wish my OB-GYN would have been a little clearer with me about the next step, but I am hoping that someone will increase my Clomid dose. I was on something similar to Clomid (Tomaxifen) before which helped me to conceive our beautiful daughter, and I don't understand why we are not using this again.
I hope and pray to conceive a child soon. If anyone has been through this I would love to talk. I know God has a plan. It is in His more than capable hands. Although, in my weakness, I doubt. Please pray for me to grow in trust and patience.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Flashback Friday!

This is from last summer. Mena with her Godmother Clare and her uncle Simon. So cute!


I love rearranging furniture. It always makes me feel great and like I have a fresh new area to live in. Change can be very good! I found this awesome, beautiful, and awesomely priced child sized desk on craiglist and had to have it. I had been looking everywhere for one. God came through once again and this landed in my lap for $25! Anyway, It is perfect for little Mena to play her computer games on. She just loves is. I sit with her and control the mouse while she points to what she wants. It will take a little while for her little hands to get the concept and feeling down of mouse control! I don't mind. So, we brought this computer up from downstairs and moved Dom's chair over so he could have a little reading nook. Perfect place for him! The coffee table you see in the picture saw it's last day on Wednesday night. The top piece of glass shattered and completely freaked the heck out of me. Dom fell and could have seriously got hurt. Praise the Lord that he only ended up with one tiny poke in the palm of his hand. He was fine, Mena was fine (very scared ), and I was fine too (very shaken ). I will never doubt the power of our Guardian Angels for I know with out a doubt that they were watching out for my husband! So anyway, That table is gone and I don't miss it at all. I was almost wanting to get rid of it, I didn't think this is how it would leave us, but oh well!

Mena loves her new area and I am loving how it opens up the room! We may put some book shelves where the coffee table was but I haven't decided for sure yet. One thing is for sure though. I need more shelves somewhere. On to rearranging and cleaning out the basement. Hopefully we all come back up alive!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Montessori info

I have been asked by several people to write about where I find my Montessori ideas and materials. I really just spent lots of time searching the World Wide Web and found these great websites. Some have free materials that you can print and make your own, some are blogs, and some are websites that sell Montessori materials. Have fun looking at these links, and do what I did, just follow every link on each page and you will find a plethora of knowledge at your fingertips! Enjoy!
1. http://www.montessoriservices.com/store/ This is a Montessori store. I love it because I look at all the materials they suggest and then go to garage sales and such and know what to look for! Ikea is a great place to shop also.
2. http://forums.atozteacherstuff.com/showthread.php?t=5379 Scroll down on this site and you will find many links to various site with manipulative's to make.
3. http://www.montessoriforeveryone.com/Free-Downloads_ep_35-1.html Another Montessori store. This site also has many free Downloads that I just love. They even tell you how to use them.
4. http://www.love2learn.net/ Awesome Catholic Homeschooling website with a ton of info and good suggestions.
5. The Playschool6 Yahoo group is awesome! It is down for the next few days but it is so worth the wait. It is a group for Catholic Montessori Homeschoolers. They are so nice and friendly and have wonderful ideas. They don't mind if you pick their brain either!
6. I have mentioned in a previous post that I found this great mother whom I met at the Michigan Catholic Homeschooling Conference that makes wonderful Catholic Montessori materials and sells them. Definitely check out her site at www.Jodyshands-onlearning.com

Well, that should get you started. Have fun and I hope you find what you are looking for. I am so excited to home school Mena and love to find others that are in the same boat.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Montessori Mena 3

I know many of you have asked about the Montessori materials I am using and where I find things online. I will write a post about that shortly. I have a big list of websites that I love!

Sport'n my new kicks!

I found these practicly new shoes at a mom 2 mom sale on Saturday. I got them for $2 and they look almost new! What a steal!

My Sunflower!

This is Philomena's first flower she ever planted. It is a sunflower! A little baby sunflower right now but this thing is bound for greatness! It has already survived wind and drought (yes, I forgot to water it sometimes and it has fallen off my porch railing when it was just a seedling!) Let's just say this plant is a trooper. Mena has so much fun watering it with her spray bottle now that it is in a big pot and she looks at it all day out the door. What a great way to teach her about plant life cycles. This may be the beginning of a great garden someday, for now, we are happy with the sunflower!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Jumpstart Review and Giveaway!

If your looking for something for your children to enjoy this summer yet still learn as they play...Jumpstart has just the thing for you! Here is a quick description of Jumpstart taken from the website...

"JumpStart is an award-winning adventure-based 3D virtual world that is super-personalized, wildly imaginative and really fun, but don't let that fool you - it also teaches math, reading, and critical thinking skills so kids get a real jump start in life."

I was given the opportunity to try out the new Jumpstart online world. All I have to say is "Wow! This game has everything!" I will definitely elaborate though for your benefit!!!

When you first load the game, you are introduced to Frankie the Dog who helps you when you have a question about where to go or what you should be doing at any point in the game. From there, you are able to create your own Jumpee. This was so much fun for my daughter. She loved changing her clothes, hair, eye color, skin color...and you can go back any time to change or get upgraded clothing options. There are two worlds to venture through. The first is an area called Storyland which is aimed at 3-5 year olds and the other area is called AdventureLand, for kids in kindergarten through 2nd grade. Soon they will launch a third world called Future Land for kids from 3rd to 5th grade. Stay tuned! My daughter spent all of her time with me in Storyland. I can't believe all of the things to do there. She was able to read an alphabet book and put items that begin with each letter on the page, then hear it sing a song. She thought that was so wonderful as she loves music! She could draw pictures and use all the different tools available to create pieces of art. Then take those pictures and display them throughout Storyland. You can also display your treasures that you win from playing all the games as decorations in your world. Very cool! There are different animals that you meet along the way to tell you what to do next. This seems very helpful for the young ones who can sometimes feel overwhelmed with so many opportunities. There are places to learn shapes, counting, letters, and just to have fun. What more could you ask for in a game, right? My daughter is almost three and really liked it. She never got bored of doing the same thing twice because there was always something new to explore. After I was able to pull her away from the computer, I got a little time by myself to explore Adventureland. It incorporates learning and fun in the most interesting of ways. I was able to go through training when I first entered the world so that I would learn all I needed to know to proceed. There are so many games, adventures, and fun activities. There is no possible way to tell you everything about this program. You are going to have to find out for yourself! Come on, you know you want to!
Go to http://www.jumpstart.com/ and check it out today!

Jumpstart also have a wonderful parent area with a blog and discussion boards. Wow! They have thought of everything! Good work Jumpstart!

You can win a free three month subscription by going to http://www.jumpstart.com/ and telling me something that you learned or like in my comment box that I didn't mention in my post. This is a mandatory first entry. You do not have to have a blog to participate. Just leave your email address so I can contact you should you win. This giveaway will end on July 21! I will send the winner an email and you will have 48 hours to respond. Hurry and tell all your friends. This is something that your kids will really enjoy and you'll be so happy their learning while they play!

Follow me on twitter (@domanda3) and tweet this contest. You can do this once a day.
Write a unique blog post linking to me and Jumpstart then tell me you did so in the comment box.
Email someone about this contest including the link to this post. Tell me you did so in the comment box.
Comment on any of my other posts and tell me you did so.


Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Montessori Mena 2

Here are a few more pictures of Mena doing her "work" at her new table from Ikea. Have I ever mentioned how much I love Ikea? No, well I do! Hubby is not such a fan but he was a real trooper yesterday. They actually have some great items for a Montessori environment. I am so pleased with my findings.

Fourth of July

Here are a few pics from Mena doing sparklers in are yard on the Fourth. Fun stuff. We also had a fire in the backyard and Mena got to eat her first marshmallow. Lets just say she LOVED it!

Family pic

Isn't this a nice family picture? I love it!

Friday, July 3, 2009

The Saint Song

This is a fun video naming lots of Catholic saints in a minute and a half! Do you hear your patron saint listed? I heard Philomena in it!


Montessori Mena

I have just started to make Montessori materials for Mena to use. Here are a few pictures of her doing the activities. She loves it so far and I know I will be making a lot more. She spends a good amount of time on each activity and then asks me, "What's next?" I better get to that!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Wordless Wednesday!

This is how are table looks when we set up for the conferences. Doesn't the table cloth look nice with our logo on it? Thanks Janice! I know my mom was curious about what it looks like when we are all set up, so I took these pictures. Enjoy!
Oh, check out our website at www.lighthousecatholicmedia.com/ use promo code 1740!!!

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