Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Week Update for Sept 5-11

I just realized it has been over a week since I posted any updates, so I guess I will start with last Monday, Labor Day.    Since Russ had quite a bit of work to catch up on, I went ahead with homeschool on the holiday.  We enjoyed having Caleb join us for morning devotions and art activities just like old times.   Of course, I didn't want to be accused of being no fun at all so that afternoon I suggested we take a trip to the fish ladder on the Grand River.  The dam on the river prevents fish from moving upstream so a fish ladder was built for the fish to jump their way to the top and over the dam.  It was such a gorgeous day!  We started at the fish ladder, then walked on the sidewalk along the river to the Ford Museum.  On the lawn by the museum several tents were set up by various businesses and unions, live music was playing and food vendors were selling their goodies.  We evidently walked into a Labor Fest.  We wandered around for awhile enjoying the museum fountain and then walked back to the fish ladder where we had parked.  Probably the most memorable for the kids was the evidence that homeless people were living under the I-196 bridge by the river.   We first noticed the grocery carts parked in the bushes and then saw the blankets, clothes and other items that indicated people had "set up house" under the bridge. 

Walking along the Grand River

Labor Day 2011

Tuesday morning I had a hard time saying good-bye to CJ--we so enjoyed having him home for the long weekend.  It helped that Grandpa and Grandma B were coming later in the day though!   They arrived late afternoon and were pretty tired as they had left quite early and made the trip in one day.   I left them in good hands later that night and went to our first Ministry Wives Institute meeting in which Dr. Beeke addressed the wives on being a pastor's helpmeet.

On Wednesday Nicolas had his first meeting of the school year with the homeschool orchestra.  Grandpa and Grandma watched the younger three for me that morning.  That afternoon after Caleb was done with school (and we completed our homeschool day) but before he had to return for soccer practice we took Grandpa and Grandma to the fish ladder.  The fish are just starting to "run" more and will increase as the month goes.  We'll have to take another trip soon.  On this trip we were able to actually see one of the "below the bridge" dwellers, pushing his grocery cart full of stuff. 

Thursday morning Grandpa and Grandma went to visit Aunt Alyda while we homeschooled.  That afternoon we made a trip to Sam's Club.  I do not have a membership so shopping there is always a treat.  Later we went to Caleb's soccer game at Covenant Christian HS.  From there we picked up a Jet's pizza and went on to Holland State Park.  I thought the whole night was turning into a fiasco as it was drizzling outside the Jet's Pizza when we realized we had called our order in to the wrong place.  Our pizza was waiting at the Jet's Pizza 20 minutes away in Holland, not in Zeeland like we wanted.   But the rain stopped, we ate our pizza a little later then planned, but it still tasted good as we watched the waves on the beach of Lake Michigan!

We had fun watching this little mink(?) dodge on and off the pier and in the rocks.

We were still able to catch a beautiful sunset!

Friday, Mom and Dad did some shopping in the morning while we homeschooled.  Somewhere in these days we also canned pears and tomato sauce, but that all runs together for me...Friday afternoon Russ and Nicolas left for a Tigers/Twins game in Detroit.  This was the outing they were to have last summer for THE TALK, but with the move never got done.  After a one hour game delay due to rain they were able to watch the Twins lose--bummer.  They stayed for the fireworks and I think arrived home around 2:30 in the morning!  The rest of us went to the Bleeker gathering at Gary and Jerry's house Friday night.  They just built a beautiful home east on Leonard.  Jerry called ahead to make sure the kids brought their suits and they enjoyed swimming for an hour or so.  I think this was the first birthday gathering since Uncle Clarence passed away in August.

Saturday Dad left early to go to his Mission Committee meeting.  Mom and I went the the BSF leader's meeting.   I don't remember exactly what we did all day, but I know mom and I made a trip to Meijer and we made detergent and pigs in the blanket and canned pears and crab apples.   

We went to church at the FRC on Sunday morning.  Dr. Murray preached and the kids started the new year of Sunday school.  Mom and Dad left a little bit after Sunday lunch and we missed them almost before they left the driveway.  We love having them here!   I know it is a long drive, but hope they can make the trip more often (hint, hint).

For our homeschool week we continued working through Genesis studying primarily Noah and the flood.  One morning we went outside and actually measured 475 feet on the sidewalk just to get an idea of how large the ark really was.  The kids decided that the trees were not actually destroyed in the flood, but they were all used to build the ark before the flood.  We also looked at several creation myths, discussing similarities and differences to the true creation story.  Specifically, we read The Star-Bearer:  A Creation Myth from Ancient Egypt and Lord of the Animals:  A Miwok Indian Creation Myth.   Seth finished up his 10 day introduction unit which included a study of  Creation and a review of the alphabet.   Now we start studying one letter a week for the next 26 weeks.   He continues to have trouble learning the names of the letters.   With alphabet flash cards he can probably name 6-7 accurately.  He can, however, give me the sounds that all the letters make.    Hmmm...wonder if watching The Letter Factory umpteen times has something to do with that. 

We are off to another busy week.  Music lessons, soccer games, BSF, homeschool, orchestra...sometimes I wish it were still summer.


  1. You're just a little ahead of us. We are on Day 5 of creation:) Your weeks might be a bit more structured than ours:) I am loving the Kindergarten MFW. I will have to share with you what we decided to do with the flash cards instead of making them into "badges". Looks like you had a great time with mom and dad! Thanks for the update.

  2. Our youngest (Jett) also knows all the letter sounds but not their names! I decided that the good news is, when reading, sounds are the key and names are pretty much irrelevant. You know what's funny? The common denominator between Seth and Jett (and primary difference between Jett and my other 3)... The Letter Factory! :)