TADTown How I Have Missed You

So I  have been on break from my blog for summer vacation, but just like summer vacation, I feel that I have had enough. In the beginning it was liberating to have a break, to not feel the pressure to write, but now I am just bored (much as my children are on their break), so I have decided to start blogging again.

The twins coming home from the hospital for the first time. How did twelve years past so fast?

Now that I am sitting here I am not sure what to write about today. Hmm…The twins turn 12 in a few days. We are going to Vegas for their birthday, and I am taking them to see Phantom of the Opera. They have been wanting to see  the Phantom again for so long, so I thought it would be a perfect birthday gift. It worked out great because we got free Phantom tickets with our room. In anticipation of seeing the Phantom, Decca has been walking around in his phantom outfit.

What else has been going on? The kids and I went up to the mountains for a week and stayed at my parents house. We had so much fun up there enjoying all the beautiful outdoors. We were hoping to see a bear, but we didn’t this time.

Up in the mounains.

Decca turned eight a few weeks ago. We had a nice party, and he received some great gifts. I got him a spark scooter, which is a scooter that sparks when you press the brake. Some people (I won’t mention names) thought it was a dangerous gift, but I knew he would love it. What kid would not love a scooter that sparks?

I made this for Decca with the blocks.

He also received a huge set of CitiBlocs. I wasn’t sure about this gift, I thought maybe it would be too young for him, but he and the twins have been enjoying them all summer. It has spurred on their creativity, and they have been building some great creations. Autry made an opera house and several towers, and Tru made a great base for some Lego figures he also made.

Autry and her tower

Tru and his base

Tru has been making several short films this summer. He taught himself to edit in iMovie, and he has been having a good time with that.

Grandma assisting Truffaut on making his film.

Autry has been working hard on her singing. She is very excited about starting OCHSA in the fall. She also misses her singing class from the spring. She took a class at Orange Coast College and enjoyed it so much. Here is  her final performance from the class (sorry for the spotlight).

Decca has been keeping himself busy writing songs on the piano, shooting nature videos, and writing a new series of book. They are called the Kingsley Kelley Mysteries, inspired by the Scooby Doo books.

So this is what we have been up to lately. We are off to Vegas tomorrow morning, and then we go to New Orleans on the 4th, then up to Chicago (via Amtrak) on the 12th. I am sure I will have many pics and stories to share from our trips. Until then…

Summer Theme – Changes

So there has been a good deal of changes going on here this summer, and all I can say is that we have had no time to homeschool, although we have done plenty of learning. We are in the middle of moving, and I just have no energy to write a long blog post. Hopefully sometime next week I will be able to post about some of our changes and what we will be working on next year.

For know I thought I would just post some pics of what we have been up to lately.

Tru's good friend Joaquin visited us for a week. They had so much fun!

Autry played Beethoven in a play.

You can see her solo here.

Callie packed herself in a box. She must have been worried that we would leave her behind.

Decca has been practicing piano with a baseball bat.

Truffaut has spent a good deal of the summer "thinking" as he says. He hates to be interupted when he is "thinking".

Autry has been making lots and lots of movies.

And Decca has decided he likes to put on his own suntan lotion.

Strange Visitors

Last Sunday I was awaken at 6:00 A.M. by a loud honking outside my bedroom window. At first I thought it was a car, but as I woke up further, I realized the honking was a bird of some sort. I got out of bed and looked out my window and saw this.

A second later another duck (or goose?) joined the first, and now I had two birds on the roof outside my window.

They were honking quite loud, and I couldn’t figure out why. Their honking woke up all three kids, and the kids were so excited to see the visitors. The kids and I love birds, as we have been bird watching for years. To them it seemed like we had hit the jackpot. Autry was concerned something was wrong, Decca wanted to catch them and bring them in, and Tru thought they were cool and then went back to bed (he was excited, it’s just that he loves to sleep!). Anyway, they stayed at our house for an hour or so, and then they flew off. The kids are hoping for more visitors, but I don’t think that will be happening anytime soon.

In other news, Autry had her last day of school today. She was sad, but we celebrated her great year, and the start of summer, so I think she is feeling better now. We went swimming today, and the kids loved it.

We then ate lots of ice-cream and home-made cookies.

Now all of the kids (and their cousins) are lounging in front of the tv having an Avatar marathon. I think they are on the 3rd part of the series. To them summer has just started, and it is already perfect.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Weekly Report

It’s funny how every year I start the summer off thinking that the kids should continue doing some academic work. The kids always readily agree to this, and I think the reason is that they know that I never stick with that plan. The kids know that I love summer as much as them! It’s funny, but I think my big speech about how we are going to continue homeschooling through the summer actually signals the start of summer for the kids. So as I give my big talk, the kids just nod and agree, and then they run off and celebrate. One year I think I will surprise them, and actually make them work through the whole summer ( That would show them!).

So what have we been doing? Well Autry is actually still in public school, but it is winding down, so even she feels that she is on break. Her last official day is next Wednesday, and I can’t wait!! It has been a great year for Autry, but I really need a break from getting her up every morning and packing her lunch everyday.

Almost 11

The twins birthday is coming up (they’ll be 11), and I am planning their party for next Saturday. We are having an old-fashioned outdoor party at a park. We are going to have a water-balloon fight, a limbo competition, and other games. It is getting harder to plan their birthdays. Autry wanted a dance party, and Tru wanted a Nintendo DS themed party (not sure how I would have done that). Tru very quickly nixed the dance party, and Autry didn’t want a DS themed party. They couldn’t agree on anything, so I just took it over and planned it myself. Sometimes I think it is a little hard for them to have to share their birthdays, but they are quite close. By the end of their birthday, they are always happy to be twins and to have each other.

The twins at 6

Autry had her end-of-the-year performance for her acting class a few weeks back. She played a turtle in Yertle the Turtle and Sylvester in Sylvester and the Magic Pebble. She was great!

As a turtle

As Sylvester

Decca decided to start his Hideaways in History program early, and he didn’t need anyone’s help. He found a box and made it into a sarcophagus. He decorated the lid with a picture of Prince Decca and added some hieroglyphics that he found in one of his Egyptian books. He then wrapped up in some cloth and also “mummified” his cat. He had so much fun! I am so happy with Hideaways in History already, and we haven’t even started it.

There is a mummy inside....

Mummified prince and mummified cat

I started a summer reading/writing program for the kids (is that school?). It is just my way to get the kids to read and write in the summer. They are working at earning gift cards to Barnes and Noble. My mom and I put together a little bulletin board. It is a summer themed scene. The kids read and write to earn beach balls, and each beach ball they earn equals a dollar from Barnes and Noble. At the end of summer they will get a gift card, and they can use it for new books for the fall. They are all working hard trying to earn their beach balls. Tru seems to be putting the most effort into it, but reading comes easy to him, and I think he already is planning what to do with the money he earns.

I am still working our history program for next year. I have weeks one and two scheduled out, and I have decided on many of the books we will be using. I will post our schedule up in a few weeks for anyone that wants to see it. I am happy with what I got so far, and I think this will turn out to be a great year. You can see my book choices here.

Some of the books for next year