Saturday, September 29, 2012

Celebrating Michaelmas

O glorious prince St. Michael, 
chief and commander of the heavenly hosts, 
guardian of souls, and vanquisher of rebel spirits,
thou who dost shine with excellence and superhuman virtue, 
vouchsafe to deliver us from all evil, 
who turn to thee with confidence, 
and enable us by thy gracious protection 
to serve God more and more faithfully every day. 

Sancte Michael, Ora pro nobis! 

Friday, September 28, 2012

"A" is for Apples, Altar, St. Aloysius, and Archangels!

Why did I even question whether I would do the Alphabet Path with Snuggles or not?  We have been having SO. MUCH. FUN!  The Alphabet Path is definitely one of the highlights of our days, and all the big kids are really enjoying watching and helping their little brother - who is always such a character!  (And Rose is joining in, wherever she can!  Even Bud is intrigued!!)  Here is some of what we Accomplished for the letter Aa...

*Warning!  This is a really long post!  Practically the equivalent of 10 posts in one... Maybe I need to break up these "Alphabet Path" posts?  Hmmmm.... Hope you all don't mind!

.: Letter Introduction & Formation :. 

"AAaaaahhhhh!!!  It's the A-A-Angry A!  'Cause someone pulled her ponytail!"
(Yep!  Those little stories from Primary Arts of Language:Writing are sticking! It's so fun to hear Snuggles talk about the letters as he is practicing writing them!)

A green Alligator with super Awesome googly eyes
 Snuggles colored this picture from My Book of Letters last school year (along with B-E)...

I pulled out the rest of the activity pages for the letter A...

... including An Apple Tree with Painted Apples for lowercase a...

... Adding the pictures that begin with "a"...

... circling All the A's and then looking through a magazine (we used a Leaflet Catalog) for pictures that begin with a - like Advent Wreath, Angels, Archangels, Apples to Apples, Aaron, St. Augustine, St. Anne, and St. Anthony!

Snuggles apparently isn't too crazy about Modeling Wax (maybe later in the year we will try again) but the Wikki Sticks were a huge hit!

.: A, B... Seas & Storybook Science :.

A is for Aqua 

Snuggles will be making an A, B... Seas Ocean Box this year!  The first thing we did was find a box and cover it with construction paper.   Since we had just finished learning about the different zones - the  sunlit zone, the twillight zone, and the midnight zone - he insisted on using light blue, dark blue, and black paper!

A is for Anenome

Sea Life Alphabet Coloring Book
(and of course we had to rent Finding Nemo for our family movie night!)

A is for Apples :: Apples with Appeal

The suggested expierement in Apples, Bubbles and Crystals: Your Science ABCs was all about apples!

We also read a bunch of books about Apples, including the following:   

Pressing Apples

During our field trip to a "farm" earlier this week the kids picked apples and made Apple Cider!  Snuggles especially loved turning the wheel on the Apple Press!  (And how Appropriate for A week!)

.: Arts, Crafts & Additional Activities :. 

A is for Angel of God
I posted the instructions and additional pictures from this craft here: Angel Art for A Week.

Assemble Aircraft

I also had been saving a little aircraft lego set for Snuggles to Assemble...
(Bud always has a smile for his Momma!  Oooh, I love him!!) 

... with a very Attentive Audience!

.: My Catholic Faith :.

A is for Angel

In addition to St. Anne, St. Anthony, and our little Guardian Angel, a couple of our Archangels have been making Appearances around the house!  We've also been reading a few of our favorite picture books about angels including:  

Pascual and the Kitchen Angels
My Guardian Dear
Angels, Angels Everywhere
Angel in the Waters
Angels: God's Messengers and Our Helpers

A is for Angel our Guardian so bright:
Say to him, 
"Angel dear, help me do right."
God's Alphabet

A is for Altar

Captain helped me teach Snuggles a little about the Altar and a few additional Items Used at Mass using the First Presentation from the lesson book that came with his (Captain's) Miniature Mass Kit.  

The Mass Kit is expensive, but such a lovely set!  We purchased ours years ago for the big boys and were given a second set (which is Rascal's) from friends.    

I'd love to eventually get Snuggles his own set as well.   In the meantime his big brothers are more than happy to share and are hoping they can start teaching him to serve Mass with them soon!

A is for Always Ask

I am so excited to be using Writing ABC's on Little Hearts by Pondered In My Heart with Snuggles!   He has already enjoyed coloring the cover page and Always Ask for the letter A.

Snuggles:  "See, Rose, we should Always Ask Mom when we want something..."
Rose:  Well... Mom needs to have some Compassion and get me dressed Already this AM! ;) 

I had ordered a few 8.5"x11" blank books from Rainbow Resource (Amazon has them too, just more expensive at the moment) and am using a few of them for the Alphabet Path.   They contain 14 pages - 28 back and front - which is just perfect for the 26 letters of the Alphabet!

After gluing the cover page on, we laminated the cover with like we did for our "Wisdom of the Saints" Journals.  We skipped the first page, front and back (saving it for a title page and index), adding Always Ask to page 3.

A is for St. Aloysius

He is also going to make "My Picture Book of Saints" using a saint (of choice) coloring page for each letter!

Since Snuggles was born on the feast of St. Aloysius, and since my Grandfather was named (middle name) after St. Aloysius, we decided to include it in his name as well!  Our little Snuggles, with two middle names, has quite the long name - and he is very proud of it!

He asked for a St. Aloysius coloring page.  I wasn't able to find one, so I made my own by converting the image from Picture Book of Saints into a Pencil Sketch and adding text.

Here is the link to our document if anyone would like a copy:  

Note:  I've actually been completely amazed at Snuggles interest in coloring!  I really didn't think he'd want to color much, but has really been enjoying it!  Yay!!

In addition to reading about St. Anne (An Alphabet of Catholic Saints) and St. Anthony (An Alphabet of Saints and S is for Saints)  we also read about Saint Aloysius from A Picture Book of Saints.

.: A to Z Recipes :.

Oatmeal Sparkling Cider Pancakes 
with Homemade Apple Cider Syrup

We started Aa with an Applicious breakfast!  I love homeschooling and being able to enjoy yummy meals on Monday mornings!  

Oatmeal Sparkling Cider Pancakes
2 cups pancake and waffle mix
1 cup cold water
1/2 cup instant oatmeal
1/2 cup sparkling cider

In a medium bowl, blend together all ingredients using a wire whisk. For thicker pancakes, allow batter to sit for 5 minutes. Cook on a hot griddle. Serve with Apple Cider Syrup.

Apple Cider Syrup
3/4 cup apple cider
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup (I used honey)
2 T butter
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg

Place all ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and stir occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until thickened. Serve warm.

Ants in My Applesauce

We made Ants in my Applesauce from My A to Z Recipe Box: An Alphabet of Recipes for Kids.

A is for Apple Pie

After reading How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World we used the recipe in the back to make our Apple Pie, substituting refrigerated pie dough for the crust.  Super easy and so much fun for Snuggles!  (And the girls kept saying... "Oh!!! Remember when....")

Yep, Snuggles thinks this Alphabet Adventure is AAA-wesome!  

We will Begin Bb on Monday... In the meantime, everyone is Bouncing off the walls as we wait for Daddy to get home tonight, after 16 days away!   
I hope you all have a Beautiful and Blessed weekend! 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Highlights from "Z" Week

*I wasn't able to find all the pictures, or all the worksheets/coloring pages to take pictures of (they were on my desk until a week or so ago!), but here is what I have for Z Week - over 2 years later!  :)

~  Zinnia Fairy Coloring Pages ~

The girls colored the Zinnia Fairy from the The Flower Fairies Alphabet Coloring Book while listening to A Flower Fairy Alphabet on CD.

~ Letter Formation ~

The girls made the letter Z with Modeling Wax, Wooden Pieces and on paper.  I can't seem to find the pictures from that, but here are some of the Zoo Animals they made out of Playdoh, which was a gift from a friend, and a very rare treat in our home! ;) 

~ Picture Book Science ::  Zoo ~

Here are the books we've been reading about Zoo's:

Z Is for Zookeeper: A Zoo Alphabet
My Visit to the Zoo
Curious George Visits the Zoo

Coloring Pages and Extra Activities from Wild Animals Fun Kit

The girls also helped plan a birthday party for Snuggles with a "Zoo" themed cake!

~ Z is for St. Zita ~

Here is our hand-painted St. Zita which completes our Alphabet of Saints.

They also colored St. Zita Coloring Pages from Catholic Artworks and completed some copywork, which I created at Writing Wizard using the quote from An Alphabet of Catholic Saints.

~ Picture Study : Z is for Zig Zag ~

I'm pretty sure this was the girls favorite picture study this year from the Museum ABC's book and nesting blocks

~ Z is for Zucchini ~

I actually can't even remember how I made these "Zuccanoes," but they were so yummy!   You can find lots of recipes online, but since I didn't have all the ingredients for any one recipe I combined a few.   I'm going to have to make them again since everyone loved them.   Updated to add:  Forgot all about these!  Sure wish I would have saved (blogged!) the recipe so we could make them again.  ;)

~ Z is for Zamboni ~

I surprised my children with a copy of Z is for Zamboni.  They were SO excited!

Whew!  That wasn't so hard!  Now I can move on to posting pictures of Suggles' A Week without feeling behind!  ;)