Friday, May 8, 2015

When are you having another?




My whole life I always wanted 3 kids. Not 2, not 4 but 3. It just felt right. My husband was on board with 3 and when we decided to have our first and I was only 25, I knew we would have plenty of time for the other two.

Being pregnant was magical, I had morning sickness and even got kidney stones during my pregnancy but all I remember when I think back was feeling my daughter move, or listening to heart beat for the first time. I remember it fondly.

When Chloe was born, my heart grew about 4 times it's original size. I know this has been said a gazillion times but I really found out what love really really was when I held that little girl in my arms. 7 lbs, 7 oz of nothing but perfection. I loved being a mom and it felt natural. I was so in love with this little person, my life was from that moment forward - hers.

To this day she is the light of my life, for everyone else though - It felt like the minute she was born she became old news and the question "When are you having another?" kept coming up. Can you let my C Section heal before you ask me about another?

It was assumed that another would follow and apparently it was assumed it would follow right away. Even for me it was assumed another would follow, but when this question would come up I could no longer see the other 2 kids that I had pictured my whole life. Somewhere between changing diapers, and making a formula bottle - I had lost the desire for more children. I was so in love with this little girl that I don't need anymore, my life felt complete.

I was somewhat nervous to bring it up to my husband, I wasn't sure if in his heart he was set on more children. What happens when you disagree on something so big? It's not like not agreeing on what to have for dinner or what color to paint the living room wall - this was BIG. Luckily, maybe because he himself is an only child, it wasn't a huge deal to him. At first he was unsure that I really meant it and felt that I would eventually change my mind. EVERYONE thought I would eventually change my mind. Sometimes even planting the seed of doubt in my mind.

Telling people that I was "done" was an experience. There are many different reactions to that answer.

There are those that were supportive even some telling me how they wish they would have stopped at one. Others were shocked but were kind enough to keep their comments to themselves and then of course, there are those that needed to go through their 500 reasons on why I would be ruining my daughters life by making her an only child. "She'll be lonely!" "Only Children are socially awkward" "She's going to be spoiled!" - to me none of those arguments REALLY were "Only Child" problems more of an upbringing problem.  My favorite was the waitress at the restaurant that said "But you are going to have to play with her! If you have another they can just play with each other without bothering you". Sounds like a legit reason to have another. 

I didn't go into it blindly, I obsess over research and this was no different. I read article upon article on only children and impacts on their behavior and education - after my research I was even more at peace with my decision. 

It took a very long time for the mass interest in our reproduction plans to slowly die down. It never disappeared, every so often we got the "Time for another" and we politely smile or laugh it off depending on who made the comment.  

Now, Chloe is almost 4 years old. That little 7 lbs, 7oz. bundle of perfection is now a funny, intelligent, sweet and loving LITTLE GIRL.  I am starting to think that 3 years was some sort of bet people placed on how long it would take me to change my mind. The questions have now started again.

"When are you having another?" "are you REALLY done?" 

I still smile and politely reply that we are in fact - "Done". Now my answer is usually followed with a look of pity towards Chloe. She is a super social, independent, super smart and thriving little girl who has NO desire for a sibling even when asked multiple times. Yet, they give her this look as though I am condemning her for the rest of her life to this miserable life of being an only child. They fail to see all positives of her being an only child and only focus on their idea of what her life will be like.  

For me, I see the positives everyday. There are far far more times that I look at our lives and think "We made the right decision" and I can honestly say that the times that I have thought that maybe I should have another have been fueled by fear of the future and not actual events in our lives.

I have made peace with the fact that not everyone will understand my decision - in fact- most people disagree with it. I just wished that they would take a minute to step back and see that, it works for us. We love it.

I have the little girl, I always wanted. She is sweet, gentle and funny. She is equally a momma's girl and a daddy's girl. She is everything that I have ever wanted..she is the child that I prayed for. My heart is full. My life is full.  Most importantly, SHE is happy. If my baby girl is happy, I don't care what stereotypes say.

Hopefully they stop asking by the time she's 18. 


Friday, May 1, 2015

Butterfly Release!

For the past 3 weeks we have been a foster family to 5 wonderful caterpillars! Not the cutest pets we have ever had but they were certainly educational!

We are now very proud to say that our very own caterpillars turned into 5 beautiful butterflies and we were able to release them this week.  Chloe loved checking in on the caterpillars every day and we would talk about the development as they would happen.










Chloe did have a little bit of sadness releasing the butterflies but she made sure to ask them to visit us soon!





April in Review

So April was nothing but a flash in this house. We had so much on our plates that I could not find a second sit down and write a blog post, and for that I apologize.

The April theme for Mother Goose time was the Ocean and Chloe Bear could not be happier. For a little girl that thinks she is a mermaid this was right up her alley. We have a great time learning in detail about different aspects of the ocean and the creatures that live in it. I think Chloe will forever say "Ocean Commotionnnn" sounding like a game show host.

Even though, I can't go back in time to what we learned, I always had my trusty camera around and I will now show you some of my favorite pictures from the month of April in Mother Goose Time.

From the first day the theme captured her attention. Every month we have a blast exploring the theme poster, we usually take much longer on this activity than is probably necessary but it's amazing to hear her talk about what she sees and the things she points out.




Ever since Chloe was small she has always loved arts. Days where there are arts and crafts involved are always some of her favorites. Here we were making a whale made out of a paper plat but it also doubled as a cool hat!







I know I take a lot of pictures of Chloe doing arts but seriously these are the times that I will cherish..she loves to talk through her work and make up stories about what she is doing. This whale ended up having a very intense life.



Without a doubt her favorite craft of the month was the star fish. 






Just look at this face! 

Mother Goose time has been an incredible blessing for us. It is something we enjoy together and I feel like it helps me make the best out of the short time we have to home school together and not have to skip the details in the lessons. Chloe has been loving every minute. Right when I walk in the door from work she screams "It's time for School!"














Sunday, March 15, 2015

Experience God

One of my favorite features of the Mother Goose Time curriculum has been the "Experience God" Add-on. Since this is an add-on it is not included in the core Mother Goose Time box but if you are interested you can learn more about it here >> Mother Goose Time- Experience God

I am always trying to find ways to make God an integral part of our lives and not just a Sunday thing and this program has helped me so much. It can either be used as a Sunday School curriculum or incorporated into your normal routine. We have been doing this once a week. 



We start out with a prayer asking God to help us focus and understand the message.
 (Bad mommy should have been praying along and NOT taking pictures)



Each month comes with a memory verse that I put on the wall along with all the other monthly graphics that come with the regular curriculum.


This is what the teachers guide looks like. 


- The Story cards-



The story comes with colorful story cards that are easy and quick to read- this is a lot of help when trying to keep the attention of a Threenager. 

Chloe's favorite part is always the crafts and the Experience God curriculum comes with 4 crafts a month.




We have been enjoying the Experience God add-on, we make it extra special by inviting Dad to the mix (forgot to include him in the pictures). This has been a blessing for the family. We enjoy the time spent and the solid story that is included and Chloe has such a great time putting together the crafts. I highly recommend this add- on for any family that is looking to include God in their homeschooling. 



- Josy






Friday, March 6, 2015

Blast off!

WE'RE OFF TO SPACE! 

It is Thursday night now and we have just finished our 4th day of Mother Goose Time. So far we have nothing but great things to say!

The first success is the fact that we have gone 4 days straight without missing a day - very rare around here. Even when one night I had to stay at work later than normal, I was able to come home and still complete the lesson since like I mentioned in my MGT post - this is extremely easy to use.

I have also been extremely surprised at some of the answers Chloe gives me to the questions - kids know so much more than we give them credit for.

The first day we learned about Stars and the day ended with a dance party in the living using the Star wands she made. Onto of doing the activities suggested in the book, I created a scavenger hunt. Chloe loved going around the house trying to find items smaller or bigger than the item she had previously found based on the card she pulled. She was rather good at it.






By the 3rd day - we learned about the moon. We played with this amazing balancing game that was included in our March box. In fact- she's still playing with it as I type this. 



Like a typical 3 and a half year old who wants to do everything by herself, Chloe's favorite activity was by far making your own Moon snack.


She had a blast being in control and it is something that I will for sure incorporate more into our everyday lives. Seeing her be so proud of her snack at the end was extremely rewarding. We did replace the cream cheese the recipe asked for with Nutella...because it's Nutella.



Overall this has been a successful start to Mother Goose Time and I am extremely excited to share our journey with you as we go along.



If you would like to order the Mother Goose Time curriculum please head to www.Mothergoosetime.com




Disclaimer: Mother Goose Time provides their curriculum to me for Free in exchange for blog posts. All opinions expressed in the posts are mine and are real. I would never endorse something that I or my child didn't truly enjoy.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

What is going on here?!

There are moments in life when you look at your baby and you realize...she isn't a baby any more! As proud as I am to watch Chloe grow into an amazing little girl the mom in me wants to just stop time and have her stay little forever.

I know you can all relate!

So what caused this motherly crisis? my sweet baby on a bike.



How big does she look now?! WHY?!


Is my husband ENCOURAGING this unacceptable growth?!


All jokes aside..it is such a blessing to watch her grow and moments like these make me realize just how valuable these years truly are. I pray that I learn to never take them for granted because that bike will soon be replaced by a car and before I know it my baby girl will be a grown woman!





Friday, February 27, 2015

Mother Goose time!

Hey there! It's been quite a while! I have returned with some very exciting news for our homeschooling. As some of you may already know I work full time and have been doing some sort of homeschooling since Chloe was a little toddler.

It has been a challenge coming up with my own lessons, themes and gathering supplies each month - which is why I am super excited to share that Mother Goose Time has chosen me as a Blog Ambassador for their box curriculum! For the sake of disclosure I do get their product for free, but please know that all opinions are mine and are real.

This week Chloe and I were very excited to receive our package. As you can see she was very possessive of the box!

                                    

One of the biggest hurdles in my homeschooling journey has always been organization - I am not very good at it. Mother Goose Time seems to be the perfect solution to that problem. The first thing you notice when you open the box is the amount of bags in there. Each daily lesson for that month is packed in its individual bag with the supplies you will need for that day. Which means I can focus on spending time actually doing the lesson as opposed to trying to come up with the lesson :)


The day is clearly labeled with its corresponding number and subject


The bag also includes supplies and instructions for the days project.



Since this is the March box they included "Bonus days" which are crafts for St. Patricks day and one for Spring! 






There is teachers guide which explains the theme, it gives tips on following the program and then it goes into details for each day!



I am incredibly excited to start this journey and share it with all of you! Stay tuned to be see how we set up our space and more details on the wonderful things included in the Mother Goose Time box (There are just too many to post all in one post!)

If you are interested in the program you can visit their website at www.Mothergoosetime.com




- Josy