Monday, April 29, 2013

Make it Monday: $2 Birdhouses

Erika asked me to make birdhouses with the kids last year, yes, last year. I, being a Maker and woodworker, loved the idea. Yet I still managed to forget about the request for a little while. Then one day it was brought up again and I hopped to it. I immediately turned to my favorite DIY site,, for ideas. One of the first returns on my search was the $2 Birdhouse posted by CheapChuck. A simple birdhouse that didn't cost much, but still did what we wanted. I knew instantly what birdhouse we were making.

The basis for this birdhouse, or our building material is simple. You need one, yes one, five to six foot long dog-eared cedar fence picket. Small disclaimer: in the instructable the house is referred to as a $2 house but my local Home Depot charges $2.25 for the picket, but I still think it is a cheap build. They do sell a $1.18 pine picket, but that one is treated. Not very bird friendly. Plus cedar is a good outdoor, low maintenance building material. Anything else you need you can probably find in your workroom. I did.

So last year I went and got three, we have three kids old enough to make houses, cedar pickets. I spent a few minutes one evening cutting out all the pieces. You need two peaked, end wall panels, two side wall panels and two roof panels. The floor panel you wait to cut out until you put the rest together so that you can measure what you need.

I also trimmed one of the roof panels for each house along its width equal to the thickness of the board. This allows for a symmetrical look to the finished roof.
Cutting it all out really wasn't difficult. Getting around to putting the houses together, now that's a different story. We didn't get around to making them last year before the birds nested. So I intended to get them together for this years nesting. Still not entirely sure if I managed that, but they're together none the less.

To construct these I used exterior wood glue, 18 gauge brad nailer, hammer, drill with 3/32", 1/4" and 1 1/4" bits. I have to admit, I had to buy exterior wood glue since all I generally use is interior, but that is not much cost added to the project. When it came time I covered the kitchen table with newspaper, and ran my air hose in from the porch. I called the kids in and we began assembling birdhouses.
We started by assembling the four walls. A peaked wall goes at either end with the rectangular walls between them. Apply glue to the edge of the rectangle wall, align with the peaked piece, and give it a couple of nails from the gun. If you are going classic with a hammer and nails I recommend pre-drilling the holes so as not to split any wood.

There was no problem getting the kids to help with the gluing process, they're used to that. But the nail gun brought fear to their eyes. It's new to them and loud, none of them like how loud my tools are. I do appreciate their fear of the tools though. It will help them learn to respect how dangerous they can be and the proper way of using them.
From the walls you move to the roof, putting on the piece you trimmed first. Apply your glue on one side of your peaked walls. Align the edge of the roof piece with the other peak surface to create an even surface for the other, wider piece to sit on. Nail again.
And this is when the battery in the camera died. Not too many more pictures were taken. I apologize for that. I plan to make another house with a clear rear wall. At that time I'll take more pictures of the process. We're hoping that we can mount that house someplace close to a window so we can observe what is happening inside.

Once that side of the roof is secured you can apply glue for the other side. Make sure you put plenty along the top ridge so that it will create somewhat of a seal from rain when it dries. Place the piece and nail again. Once the roof is in place you can work on your entrance. I drilled a 1 1/4" hole center on the front in line with the bottom of the roof. Make sure to sand both sides of the entrance so has to help avoid a splintered bird. Before you drill that hole though, mark the spot for a perch two inches below the center of the entrance. I used a 1/4" drill and inserted a sanded 1/4" dowel roughly three inches long.

Now for the bottom. This will also be your entrance to clean the house out once the occupants leave. Yes, just like human renters, these users do not clean up after themselves. Cut you base leaving yourself about an 1/8" around the perimeter, 1/4" smaller than what the house measures. On one end cut or sand a 45 degree angle off the bottom so the panel can hinge out for cleaning.
Pre-drill holes for a standard nail, I used a 6d 2" nail on either side as my hinge. A 3/32" bit made a hole just the right size so I could simply push the nail in with almost no hammer use. On the other end of the base I drilled a hole the size of which I do not remember and insert a standard coarse thread drywall screw to hold the floor up. When it comes time to clean the home I will remove this screw and swing the bottom out and allow the contents to empty.
Yes the kids did help me with this project in between trips to the living room to slide on a big cardboard box they had been playing with. I still get a little nervous having them run power tools so I do a lot of that for them, but I try to get their hands on the tool while I am doing it.
What they had fun with was painting them. I was not at home for this process, but it was something they can do mostly on their own. So with no one hindering what they had to do, they went wild painting them however they felt.
Well, our kids had fun making our "$2" birdhouses, and if I manage to get them up in time some birds will enjoy them. How about you, want to give your kids, or yourself, a good time and a couple of birds someplace cozy to stay for a while?

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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Institue for Excellence in Writing Giveaway

Do you remember when I talked about one of our favorite products that we've been blessed with? We have loved using the Institute for Excellence in Writing PAL (Primary Arts of Launguage) curriculum. My review was recently featured at IEW! And if my glowing opinion of the program wasn't enough, here's another reason to like this company . . .

IEW is giving my readers 4 free downloads and a chance to win a $50 IEW gift certificate!

All you need to do is click on this link and login or register. It's that easy!

So what will you get???
  • Articles and Stories for Units 1 & 2 e-book
  • Reaching the Reluctant Reader audio
  • Nurturing Competent Communicators audio
  • Four Deadly Errors of Teaching Writing audio
And a chance to win $50!

You need only to fill in your basic information. Everyone will get the 4 free downloads. One winner will be chosen on May 1 for the $50 gift certificate.

To enter, click on this link. And please leave a comment here, too, so I know who's entering. 

Enjoy your freebies!

The giveaway is open to US residents. IEW will be handling the drawing. I was given the oportunity to bless my readers and was in no way compensated for this post.
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Friday, April 26, 2013

Things That Make Me Smile 4/26/13

Jake (7), Alyssa (5), Zac (3), Tyler (1)

Happy Friday! What a fun week it's been. We had the Grand Prix (pinewood derby) at our church on Saturday. Leighton's going to write up a post about it, but I will say that we had fun and came home with a few trophies! We did a little geocaching this week and spent some time outside playing. And I finally made homemade tortillas like I've been wanting to do! I hope you all had a great week, too. 

1. Zac: "I love you until Jesus comes."

2. Jake: "What's better than strawberries and caramel?"
Me: "Strawberries and chocolate?"
Jake: "Nope."
Me: "Apples and caramel?"
Jake: "Nope."
Me: "Nothing?"
Jake: "No. A kiss from your mom!"

3. Tyler wearing shoes for the first time.

4. Me: "Your hair smells good."
Alyssa, smelling her hair: "Mmm, it smells like it has fresh air in it."

5. Looking at old pictures with the kids and listening to them laugh and giggle.

6. Me: "I think Tyler's getting antsy in his exersaucer."
Zac: "Tyler's getting ants in his exersaucer?!?"

7. Me: "Tomorrow is Papa's birthday."
Jake: "How old is he gonna be?"
Me: "Sixty-eight."
Jake: "Sixty-eight??? Sixty-eight is a huuuuuge number."

8. Playing in the rain.

9. Me: "Finish your breakfast."
Zac: "I don't like eggs."
Me: "Yes, you do!"
Zac: "No, I don't. They're yellow and that's not my favorite color."

10. Alyssa, about the birdhouses Leighton was building with them: "Are we making them out of Legos or wood."

11. Zac: "Every girl loves me. And I love every girl!"

What made you smile this week???

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Active Play

My kids love to exercise. After the last couple babies were born, I used a postnatal tae bo video to help lose some of the extra weight. Each time, I'd have little sidekicks exercising right along with me. They ask even now if we can pull the video out and all exercise together. Imagine 3 little kids and me standing in a tiny living room trying to bend and kick and punch. Zac, the 3-year-old, jumps randomly around the room; Alyssa, the 5-year-old, mimics everything I do and practically stands on top of me; and Jake, the 7-year-old, thinks he's a martial arts expert; all while I attempt to follow the video and avoid punching one of my children in the head. Yeah, we don't pull out the dvd all that often. 

So, when I told them about Dr. Craft's Active Play books and explained that Active Play! Fun Physical Activities for Young Children was their very own exercise book, they were excited! Needless to say, this has been one very fun review.

This spiral-bound book is filled with 52 activities and is meant to get toddlers and preschoolers physically active while having fun. Not only are these activities good for exercising, they're also good for strengthening gross motor skills; recognizing objects, shapes, letters, colors, and numbers; teaching spatial relationships, following directions; and pretend play. The book is written primarily for childcare providers, but can easily be used at home by parents.

There are plenty ideas for both indoor and outdoor use. Some require a little setup and others can be played immediately. Most of the equipment is regular household things that you probably already own: balls, baskets, paper plates, hula hoops, nylons, socks, etc. There is also a chart at the beginning of the book that lists all the activities and the skills they develop. 

Since the book was written with young children in mind, I had to be a little creative to get Jake interested in some of the activities. Even though he's only 7, there are times he thinks he's 17. For the game Alligator Pit, you place flattened pool noodles on the floor and carry objects across the balance beam while avoiding the "alligators." It just so happened that we had found a  buried treasure! We had to carry it across the bridge over the alligator pit to reach our get-away plane on the other side. But if that wasn't bad enough, we had to hurry because the natives were chasing us to steal the treasure. We were halfway done when Zac slipped off the bridge and almost fell into the alligator infested waters! Thankfully, Alyssa grabbed him just in time and she and Jake pulled him to safety. We got the treasure all in the plane only to discover that it wouldn't start. We then had to drag the box containing the goods all over, trying to find someplace to hide. We encountered many hardships along the way, but eventually got the treasure home!      

The kids ask every day if it's time to play our exercise game. With games like Clean out the Backyard, Hoop Limbo, Lug-A-Jug, and Sock Tails, it's easy to keep that excitement. I love that the book is simple to use, the equipment is easy to find, and my children are physically active. But the thing I love the most? Listening to my kids laugh as they're playing.  They truly have fun and enjoy the activities. That makes for happy kids and a happy momma.

Now, you think they'll let me exercise on my own???

The Active Play! book costs $39 and includes a dvd that features some of the activities. There is also a section that list activities for infants 6-15 months and a section for school-aged children. You can download sample pages on their site.

If you'd like to learn more, you can read more reviews of Dr. Craft's Active Play book from the Schoolhouse Review Crew. 

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Sunday, April 21, 2013

E is for Elbow

It's been forever since I wrote a Blogging through the Alphabet post. Marcy started back at the beginning again, so I'm going to try to fill in the letters I've missed . . . which is most of them. Remember my issue with that from the beginning? Oh well, I guess that fits perfectly with this week's post.

I can remember driving with my parents when I was a little girl. As I sat in the backseat, I noticed my dad's arm resting casually at his side. I was intrigued by his elbow.

"Why do you have so much extra skin here?" I asked as I squished it between my fingers.

My father's answer was a simple one. He explained that in order to bend, to move, to be functional, you needed that extra skin. If your elbow were taut and rigid, you wouldn't have that flexibility.

Of course, to an adult mind the concept is obvious, but that lesson has stuck with me all these years. I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. Self-examining. Reflecting. Analyzing. I've realized how much our schooling has changed over the last three years. How much I've changed. What worked for us then, doesn't really work for us now. What worked last week might not work this week.

Why is that? 

Simply put, things change. People, needs, responsibilities, likes, moods.

I had to learn that even though I may want the day to follow a particular schedule, sometimes it's best to ignore it. And other times, I have no control over it at all.

Sometimes school gets set on the back burner; sometimes it gets taken completely off the stove. 

It may be because spring has finally come after a long winter and we take advantage of the warm weather or because the Crabby Monster has visited our house and we need to do something to make him leave or because the baby is in the hospital for nearly 2 weeks or because we're running him to doctor's appointments or because we spend the day baking to be a blessing to others. Or just because we want to. We can do school in the morning before we start the day or wait until evening when our fun is all done.

We can be flexible, like an elbow.

To me, homeschooling is not just about learning the 3 Rs; it's a way of life. That's why we school year-round. I want my children to constantly grow and learn. I want to give them many rich experiences and intrigue their minds. I want them to desire to gain knowledge about so much more than just facts for a test. I want them to learn valuable life skills.

Homeschooling is not just schooling at home. Homeschooling is applying a learning attitude in everyday situations.

If we miss a day here or there or don't get everything on my list accomplished, that's ok. I know that my kids are soaking up information all the time. I know that we're not taking 3 months off from that thinking during the summer months either. Sure, our days may look a little different then - a little less book work and a whole lot more real-life, hands-on learning. 

I've realized that if our days aren't always the way I'd like, it's ok. We don't have to be rigid. 

It's much more fun to bend and move and be flexible. Like an elbow.

* If this is not your style, then that's fine too. One of the great things about homeschooling is discovering what works for you.

Blogging Through the Alphabet

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Things That Make Me Smile 4/19/13

Happy Friday! I have the biggest smile this week! We took Tyler to his ENT doctor and found out that his ear infections have finally cleared up. After nearly 4 months, Tyler is completely infection free!!! We want to thank you all for your prayers and encouraging words. I really didn't need anything else this week - that news was smile-worthy enough! - but here are a few more precious memories. 

1. Alyssa, singing: ". . . I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart Tuesday!" (should be to stay)

2. Me: "Do you know what chicken cordon bleu is?"
Jake: "Yeah, it's chicken and corn that's blue."

3. Zac: "That wind is so blowy!"

4. Zac: "Who are you going to marry?"
Alyssa: "The person that Jesus tells me."

5. Alyssa: "Do you know why I put this shirt on? It's more spingableish."

6. Enjoying the warm weather and eating lunch outside.

7. Zac: "I'm sitting on something that's under me."

8. Me, about a Lego creation: "Wow, how did you make that so fast?"
Alyssa: "Oh, it's because Zac barely bothered me." 

9. Zac, while driving, about a tractor on a trailer: "Wow, that's driving by itself!"

10. Me: "I think this might be getting a little too small for you."
Zac: "Why?"
Me: "Because you're growing up and getting big."
Zac: "Yeah, I'm getting big like a big, scary monster!"
Me: "Oh, no! That is scary."
Zac: "Don't worry; I still talk like a little boy."

What made you smile this week?

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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Supercharged Science

I have a confession to make. Maybe you've already noticed; maybe not. But here goes . . . that Theory Thursday tab at the top of the screen? It's been kinda lonely lately. The last science experiment we posted was all the way back in August! My poor science-loving kids. It's not that we haven't done any experiments at all. We've done a few that I just haven't taken the time to blog about and we've done a few repeats (like this favorite), but I have definitely not made weekly experiments a priority.

And even though we've been greatly blessed with a subscription to review Supercharged Science, we still haven't done weekly experiments . . . It's more like daily experiments! Ha!

The kids and I were very excited to reacquaint ourselves with the e-Science program. Do you remember the simple hovercraft we made a couple years ago? We found the directions from Supercharged Science. Over the last 2 years, we've joined in on a few of their online teleclasses and preformed many experiments. Aurora, owner and founder, is extremely personable. Whether she's speaking in front of the camera in a video of an experiment, conducting a live class, or writing an email, it's like she's talking directly to you. She's one of those people that you want to be your friend. She has a wealth of information, yet has a way of explaining things to make it easy enough for a child to understand. But it's not just her magnetic personality that draws you to e-Science; it's the program itself.

One thing that makes this perfect for my hands-on kids is that they recommend "teaching science from the inside out," in other words, starting with experiments to pique their interest and then moving on to explain the reasoning. But it's so much more than a list of experiments! They offer resources for each type of learner: teleclasses & videos for auditory, text downloads & reading for digital, videos & projects for kinesthetic and visual. 

Since it's a full curriculum, it's very thorough. I'm talking 20 study units, over 1,000 videos, more than 900 science activities, experiments and projects thorough. Lesson plans, data lab sheets, quizzes, exercises, reading material - everything you need to teach kids kindergarten all the way through 12th grade is included on this one site. The program contains so much, but they make it easy for you, the parent, to give your child the best science education possible. The getting started page takes you step-by-step through the program and explains just how easy it is to follow. 

My kids are young (7, 5, 3), so we pretty much kept to the experiment portions. We did read through some of the explanations and further study materials, but I tried to keep to that "inside out" teaching. Of course, Jake, the oldest, is my question child. Why does this do this? Why did that happen? How does this work? He is the one who wants to understand it all. I usually respond with I don't know or my favorite Ask your father (since he gets that science-y brain from him anyway.) But I don't have to say those things anymore. Now it's Well, let's find out. E-Science has made it so easy to find the answers to his questions. 

We did things like bounce magnets, made kazoos, baked bread, classified objects, play thumb war, bounced balls, made a pendulum, made a pulley, rolled balls down an inclined plane, and more. But our very favorite activity? We made a robotic hand! The kids were ready to make a full-body robot, but I told them they'd need their daddy's help for that one.

I really can't say enough good about this program. It's thorough, easy to use, fun, organized, and the kids enjoy it. Even Zac (3 yr) will sit and watch video after video and continue to ask for more. It's quality content that truly appeals to the kids.  The program costs $37 a month for the K-8th plan and $57 a month for the K-12th plan. You'll receive access to the first 7 units and some additional sections filled with useful content and projects. You gain access to 2 new units each month after that. If you'd like to use e-Science as a supplement to your current science curriculum, they have a list of conversion charts for many companies that make it easy to find the topics you're studying and match up additional study.

Whether you use it as a stand-alone curriculum or a supplemental program, e-Science will not disappoint. There's even a 30-day money-back guarantee, so there's really no reason not to give it a try! They also offer a free science guide filled with 30 fun activities to get you started! Head over to Supercharged Science today to see all they have to offer.

Watch the video below to see how Alyssa shows off our really cool robotic hand . . . while her brothers act like typical brothers.

As always, you can read more reviews of e-Science from the Schoolhouse Review Crew.

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Friday, April 12, 2013

Things That Make Me Smile 4/12/13

Happy Friday! It has been cold and rainy all week, but we did manage to get outside for some geocaching over the weekend. It's one of our very favorite family activities, and we've been itching to get back into it. Leighton bought a new truck, we had a revival meeting at church, and Jake and Alyssa started soccer. I hope you've all had a good week, too. 

1. Alyssa: "What smells so crunchy?"

2. Zac: "But it will make me choke.
Me: "Just take a little bite."
Zac: "When I eat a little bite, it makes my tummy choke."

3. Zac, after I gave him some apple slices with peanut butter: "Mmm, yummy! You're pretty smart."

4. Me: "Zac, will you close that cupboard, please?"
Zac: "Yes, boss."


6. Jake: "I know where it is, but I don't know where it is."

7. Alyssa: "I want to wear my sweater today. It makes me burning! Like a piece of toast."

8. Zac: "Tyler, do you love me?"
Tyler, crawling: "Da."
Zac, sad: "Oh, he doesn't love me."
Me: "Yes, he does."
Alyssa: "Well, he did move away."

9. Zac, holding a die upside down from Boggle: "What letter is this?"
Me: "E."
Zac: "Nope, you're wrong. It's a 3."

10. Zac: "Do you want to try a carrot and peanut butter?"
Alyssa: "Uh uh."
Zac: "But it's really, really yummy."
Alyssa {dips a carrot in the pb and takes a bite}: "Mmm, it is yummy!"

11. Zac, sad because Jake pushed him down: "Mom, he broke my heart."

12. Me, while looking at pictures: "Wow, my hair's getting long."
Jake: "Yeah, it's almost as long as Gandalf's."

13. Jake, putting money in the offering plate at church: "There are only dollars in there, no checks."
Me: "That's because it's not a regular offering. It's a special offering for the guest preacher."
Jake: "Oh, so he can get home?"

14. Jake: "We've had that since I was a baby. It's an antique!"

What made you smile this week?
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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wordless Wednesday 4/10/13

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ABeCeDarian Review

One of the greatest joys for me as a mom is hearing my children read. My recently-turned-5-year-old and I have had the opportunity to use the ABeCeDarian Reading Program.

Key Features 
  • Explicit, comprehensive, multisensory phonics instruction 
  • Sound blending and segmenting explicitly taught and practice
  • Letter/Sound correspondences taught in the context of reading and spelling words
  • Letter sounds taught before letter names
  • Code knowledge organized by sounds with engaging sorting activitie
  • No rules
  • Precise practice routines and error correction procedures
  • Integrated handwriting and spelling instruction
  • Expert oral reading fluency practice

I started Alyssa at the very beginning of the program. Level A is for non-readers or very beginning readers. She has been reading cvc (consonant, vowel, consonant) words for a little while, but since there are some sounds that she struggles with, I wanted to work from the beginning.

Each lesson is a combination of sound blending, sound segmenting, learning letter/sound correspondence, and reading and spelling words. The teacher's manual can be read word-for-word, if you so choose. The author of the program has made it very easy to teach your child. There's no guess work. There's nothing confusing. Just simple, easy-to-understand instruction.

Since Alyssa was already familiar with the letters and their sounds and blending them to make words before we sat down with this book, she was able to fly through the first lessons. The spiral-bound workbook is straightforward. No flashy colors. No distracting pictures. Again, just simple, easy-to-follow pages. By the time a student finishes Level A, he will be able to automatically read over 100 words.

There is a list of letter tile sets included as part of the free supplement materials. The tiles are used in many of the activities. I printed them off and was planning to laminate them, but decided to use some of our other hands-on resources that we own. The variety kept things interesting and fun. Alyssa would get excited to see what I picked for each day. She especially liked banging on the letters with a tiny mallet, instead of pointing to it with her finger. One of the great things about homeschooling is taking something and adapting it to fit our needs.

One thing I really like about this program is the directions for forming letters. Instead of just showing the student how to form the letter or having him follow arrows on the paper to trace it, you say things like Fall down to the line. Bounce up. Curl over and tuck in. (Can you figure out that letter? How about the next one?) Curl back like a rainbow. Slide across. Swing around.

Another point I like about writing the letters is the format of the workbook pages. Instead of trace trace trace write write write, the program has the student trace write trace write trace write. The intermittent tracing helps to reinforce the proper formation, whereas with the other approach, the letter can vary greatly and get sloppy by the end, like with the game Telephone, where the end result is far different from the beginning. 

Along with the Level A-1 book that we are currently using, we were sent the teacher's manuals and student workbooks for Level A-2 and Level B-1, a set of 10 storybooks ($21.50), and ABeCeDarian Aesop ($2.50). You can purchase workbooks and teacher's manuals individually if you have a more advanced reader, or you can purchase the books I received (A-1, A-2, B-1) for $29.95. There are books all the way through a 6th grade reading level. There are many free supplement materials on the site, including a placement assessment.

Alyssa did well with this program and can't wait to get to the storybooks. If you're looking for a simple, easy-to-follow reading program, ABeCeDarian might be for you.

Want to learn more? You can read more reviews of ABeCeDarian from the Schoolhouse Crew Review.

P.S. Did you figure out the letter I described by the formation directions? The first was b; the second was s.

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Friday, April 5, 2013

Things That Make Me Smile 4/5/13

Jake 7yr, Alyssa 5yr, Zac 3yr, Tyler 1yr

Happy Friday! What a great week it's been! Alyssa's birthday party on Saturday, Easter on Sunday, a brand new stove (!) and shopping with my mom on Tuesday, Tyler's birthday party today. We took Tyler to see his doctor on Wednesday and found out that the infection in his left ear is completely gone! The right ear is still being stubborn, so he got some new antibiotic drops. He and I also went to church that night. We're starting to take him out and about again. He hasn't been sick recently and the weather's warming up. Yea! Lots of reasons to smile.

1. Zac: "That smells cold."

2. Jake: "Our room has been so super-duper clean for so long, I can't even remember what it looks like when it's messy."

3. Alyssa: "Mom, Zac jumped on me!"
Zac: "No, it wasn't me. It was Alyssa!"
Me: "Alyssa jumped on herself?"
Zac: "Yes!"

4. Me: "I am not happy that you put a hole in Alyssa's tent."
Zac, whining: "But I love you."
Me: "I love you too, but I'm not very happy with you right now."
Zac, whining: "Oh, I'm so sad that you're not happy."

5. Jake was holding a book with one hand and using his teeth to scratch his other hand.
Me, teasing: "Are you hungry? Should we stop for a snack?"
Zac: "I'm hungry."
Me: "You're always hungry."
Zac: "Yeah."


7. Zac: "That sounds bumpy."

8. Seeing Zac with blue lips from his sucker.

9. Zac, after running around: "I can't feel my brain."

10. Me: "Alyssa, did you put Goldfish on your peanut butter sandwich?"
Alyssa: "Yes."
Me: "Why?"
Alyssa: "Because it's delicious. And crunchy delicious."

11. Jake: "Do we have a tiny, brown fedora?"
Me, laughing: "Do you know what a fedora is?"
Alyssa: "Yes, it's a hat!"

12. Me: "Did anyone notice if our strawberries are starting to come up yet?"
Jake, running to grab his coat: "Strawberries? Let's go check! . . . Wait a minute. Are you just trying to get us to go outside?"

13. Listening to Jake read his western book with a southern twang. 

14. Zac: "Are cows real?"
Me, chuckling: "Yes."
Zac: "What?!? I don't even like cows."

What made you smile this week? Leave a comment below so we can smile with you!

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