Friday, August 15, 2014

We are going to school!

We are beginning a NEW chapter! Alyse and Grant will be attending public school this year and I will be starting the online Pathways program through BYU-I to complete my BA.

Alyse and Grant are so full of energy and excitement for this upcoming year! Alyse will be in 1st grade and Grant in Kindergarten- they will be gone all day M-F; I am not quite sure how I feel about that!! I am excited for them to learn and meet new people, but of course I am concerned that they will learn things I don't want them to learn. I don't know if I have much control over that anyways...

Convincing myself to  transition from homeschool to public school has been a slow process and I have given it much thought. I think my desire to homeschool came from the desire to keep my chicks close and protect them from this scary world. Also, its HARD to let your babies go, I think I am freaking out more about not seeing them then anything else. What if they fall off the jungle gym at recess, or don't make any friends? I have already taken them to the elementary playground and made sure that Alyse can reach the monkey bars and Grant knows not to climb too high... I am slowly coming to the realization that my kids need to get out of my shadow of protection and think and act for themselves. I know Jeremiah and I will do our best to have good discussions with them and be involved in the  their interests. I want them to see the good and the bad and choose the good because THEY want to and because THEY can see the difference from their own personal experiences. All we can do as parents is be the example in word and deed and trust them to make correct decisions.

I am excited to complete my degree in Applied Management- it will take me a few years, but I have my associates degree already, so hopefully I will be able to apply some of the credits I have completed. I will post pictures soon of Alyse and Grant on their first days of school!! This is going to be a wild year for us, Claire and I will get some one on one and I know that is a huge blessing as well. I am grateful for a good companion who counsels with me and is right there with me through all of this. He is my support and my strength. Here's to a great year of education!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Living at the Farrm

Its no secret that I have warm feelings for the home of my youth- my family lives on a small 12 acre farm and when we moved here and with the last name Farr- it quickly was dubbed "The Farrm". We lost our job in November, moved here about a week after we found out- and made it just in time to celebrate Thanksgiving with my parents and 4 teenage siblings!! What fun we had cooking in the kitchen! I haven't lived closer than 8 hours away from my family in the last 9 years- so this has been a treat for me. Never at loss for bbsitters, someone to sing with, bake with, talk to, go shopping with- I guess I should mention that 3 of those teenage siblings are girls... :) Our homeschooling experience has been enhanced with hands on learning about a new climate, new plants, farm animals, and a bit of marine biology (which was my favorite class in HS). Its been sooo much fun going for hikes in the woods and turning over rocks at the beach to find crabs. Alyse's reading is really coming along now and Grants is not far behind her. I guess I am a bit overwhelmed by the many blessings we have been enjoying. Jeremiah is loving his new job in Kent at The Robbins Company, better than any job previous and it is a permanent hire. As we have been looking for a home near his job we have felt very hesitant about moving to Kent. While there are some nicer areas- it is so close to Seattle that the cost of living is ridiculous. Jeremiah has always been conservative about finances and so we are in the process of putting together floor plans to build a 2 bdrm 1 ba here on the Farrm separate from the main house. My parents had already closed off the 3 car carport with attached room with intentions of turning it into an apartment in the future.  It will be small, and the commute to work is 45 min, but it will allow us to pay a realistic rent, build our savings and still enjoy the benefits of living on the Farrm and the community of Gig Harbor. After a few years- if J's job proves to be stable we will think about buying our own home.
 The ward here has changed a ton since I was young, but Alyse and Grants have fabulous teachers in Primary and Jeremiah and I enjoy making new friends. Jeremiah has been cooking a lot lately- he started with naan bread and now he is using similar dough to make pizza bombs. I have been spending time taking a math class online and reading. Alyse still loves to color and play with the chickens, Grant loves to ride his bike and climb trees and Claire just loves to be outside walking around touching everything and getting into yelling matches with the family rooster.

Last, but not least, my brother Elder Josh Farr is coming home from a 2 year mission to Brazil on Feb 28th! We are SO excited!! We are going to make Cheeseburgers and fries and chocolate cake- all American foods that he hasn't had for these past 2 years. Having him home will be great- he will get to meet Claire for the first time.

Until next time!!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Big Changes

We are moving and leaving Boise and moving to Gig Harbor, WA. Not what we had expected and its come as a bit of a surprise. We love it here- we love our ward and our callings and the home we have been living in, but the Lord is calling us on to a new adventure. Jeremiah's job began as a 6 month contract position and ended up lasting 1 1/2 years. While we knew this time would come, its been hard living here because no one at work would talk to Jeremiah about an end date- so we have been in the dark all this time. I know that the Lord has something planned for us. I don't know what it is- but I feel at peace about this life changing event. So many things change when you move- not just the people you associate with, but also the patterns by which you live your life. You are able to set different routines and rethink what is important. I think this is going to be so good for our family.
We are busy packing and cleaning this week.  Good news is that Jeremiah has a few sticks in the fire and one of them is that on Monday he has a 2nd interview with a great company in Kent, Wa!! This job is 45 min from my mom and would be soooo wonderful! We are hopeful that this works out and that we will be able to transition smoothly- but time will tell.
So for now we are content knowing that while we don't know what the future holds, we will be taken care of and the way will be prepared as we work hard and have faith in our Heavenly Father. He always provides!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Voss happenings

This week for school we have been focusing on sounding out simple words. This is the egg game! 

I list a few words and letters and Alyse and Grant take turns sounding them out and if they get it correct they can flip the egg onto their plate.

They enjoyed doing this for about 15 minutes.

See how creative we are?

Alyse has found the most disgusting spider outside in our backyard. There are a few. They are called 'Cat faced' spiders and after looking them up we found that they spin ultra strong webs (which we tested to see if correct and YES! That web is crazy strong!)
They are also harmless.

This is not its web, but we have seen a bunch of new webs in our ward lately as Fall approaches! We are going to be very busy researching spiders!!

Wednesdays my friend Tiffany and I put together a PE class for the younger kids in our ward who are not old enough to go to school yet. These are the kids Grants age. Alyse and Claire join in too and we have a lot of fun!

Claire is so laid back and easy... She is content to think her own thoughts and explore. She loves to be outside following her brother and sister around, or talking to herself.

Claire is always good for a laugh. Alyse was helping me blanch broccoli today and Claire came in to brighten our day!

She can make anyone smile!

Love my kids!

Alyse was making sure all the broccoli was rinsed in salt water before we blanched it to kill any bugs or larvae. (gross) I might never eat raw broccoli again! Alyse is a good helper in the kitchen. She will know how to cook almost anything before she is 10 :)

In our school closet we have many boxes full of hands on activities. The tool box is by far one of the favorites!

They are asked to draw a circle and keep all the nails and tools inside the
circle for easy clean up. Its worked pretty well!

Alyse and I made a little table today out of some of the wood pieces. We only had 3 legs for the table so she ran into the garage and grabbed dads hand saw so that I could help her make the 4th leg the same size. She is so resourceful!

She painted it when it was all put together and it looks very nice.

I didn't take a picture of the finished product. She is so creative!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Soccer- Alyse's first game

Here we are! Ready to go! Now... where is our team?

We found them! time to warm up!

Taking her turn sitting out. They played 3 on 3.

These guys were so good clapping for Alyse! Grants got his game face on!

Alyse was a great team player, she never made a goal herself,
but got the ball across the field many times.

She's pretty proud of herself right about now...

I have to take a picture of me once in a while..

Alyse is all the way to the left. She rocked!

Pretty girl, pretty braid!

We're sooo excited of all this!! I love this goofy smile of his.

White team kicked it out- Alyse got to kick it back in (a few times) haha
(Same game, they just switched colors around a bit because most of  the other team didn't show)

Good game

Good job girls!

So sweet!



Friday, September 6, 2013

The school year begins!!

Alyse has begun Kindergarten!! We have soo many fun things to do this year- My goal is to post once a week a few pictures from school. Everything that we do we can do with Grant and Claire as well- they are right along for the ride, and will be better prepared.

Our Daily Schedule:
7:30-9a Breakfast, Dress, Grooming, Devotional
Devotional consists of: Review of current Primary songs, prayer, scripture study and then, if both Alyse and Grant are well-behaved they get to pick a fiddle stick, which have many fun activity ideas to get our morning started- They love this! Even Claire likes to pick a few.
9-12p Subject of the Day
Monday: Prep for FHE, which consists of assigning who is in charge of what and then baking something sweet for our treat.
Tuesday: Art and Geography, we'll do an art project and read Paddle to the Sea, a great story that happens to teach about the Great Lakes and about how water flows down from the mountains and out to the sea.
Wednesday: We use Five-in-a-Row suggested books and use this day to read and do a related learning activity. The subjects range from math and science to art and nature observations.
Thursday: Science, we have watched Bill Nye, checked out books about bugs and the animals my kids are excited about. Science days might even include a fun project- once we did float vs. sink experiment.
Friday: History, I have a few history classics that so-far have been enjoyable to the kids. We are learning about Early English history in storybook form and then checking out our huge map of the world to see where we are learning about. The books that we use are 'An Island Story' and '50 famous stories'. They usually play with blocks or play dough while I read to keep their focus. The chapters are usually 2-3 pages long. History can be fun! Also, I plan on doing a family history project around November- on our ancestors, each making a paper doll to look like their ancestor. I remember doing this in Kindergarten and it was enjoyable.
12-2p Open school closet, Free play
The school closet is usually locked and holds all of our special learning toys and tools. In our closet you will find, puzzles, art supplies, paper, staplers, scissors, learning games, math manipulatives (dice, cards, rulers), we also have a 'baking box' which is another way that I teach math, Grant's favorite is his 'tool box' which has pieces of wood, tools, screws and nails for him to create anything he wants.

Here are some pics from this week

One of our fiddlesticks was to choose a picture out of our National Geographic coloring books, color it and then watch a video about that animal online. This has been so much fun. They wanted to keep coloring and learning about new animals. So we did!

Beluga Whale
After watching each short clip I asked them what they learned and wrote on their picture what they had learned about each animal.
Alyse learned why the Beluga whale is called the "sea canary"- she got to hear the sounds it makes under water.

Grant chose to learn about the Crane
He learned that when 1 crane flies away they ALL fly away
They sleep in their wings and they use their beaks to catch fish and drink water

These coloring books are going to provide hours of learning this year!! Now I just need to find a way to display all of their art!

Our school closet

All the supplies we use for school!

Grant played with the magnetic numbers for a while on the fridge, when they are able to choose it helps, because then I know they are willing to learn about what they have chosen. We will be spending more time on numbers now that I know he's interested.

Alyse and Grant got to paint. Alyse chose to paint a campfire. We just got back from camping. She is such a good little artist!  

More painting. I didn't get a picture, but Claire got involved and I found that she has 2 different colors of paint up her nostrils... I should've gotten a picture!!

Alyse has had matching hair with her Strawberry Shortcake doll every day this week... Later in the day it looks a bit better... Alyse is also learning how to do hair!

I BARELY missed the CUTEST picture ever!!! When I walked around the corner I saw Claire laying on her tummy coloring on a piece of paper and crossing her ankles. I missed that picture, but this one is pretty cute too! She watched Alyse writing ALL the time and now its one of her must-do's of the day.

We read a book earlier in the week called 'A storm in the night' one of the Five-in-a-row activities was to make a Geo Board

Homemade Geo Boards are awesome!!
They help teach how to make and identify shapes.

Grant observing Alyse

Grant liked making circles; Alyse was teaching him how to make other shapes

Our rearranged living room!

We are using our map of the world every day. This wall is going to be a place to display our best art and our word caterpillar- you can see above the map we know how to read and spell one word-- GO! Hopefully we will get to add to our wall each week and have quite the collection by the end of the school year!

We did National Geographic pages a second time- the kids requested it.

A closer look

Nothing too fancy, but its sure kept their attention and interest, and that's the whole point!

Until next week!