Wednesday, April 17, 2013

American Girl Unit Study #2- Felicity

We are in the midst of a really fun chronological unit study on the American Girl dolls!
(Here's the last post from the last doll Kaya 1764)
Next up on the timeline.......  
Felicity’s story is that of a spirited, adventurous girl growing up in Williamsburg in 1774 at the beginning of the Revolutionary War. 
 SO much to learn about during this time - here are most of the things we did......

After our trip to the library we found a Felicity cook book and tried a few of "her" recipes.
Corn Cakes and Apple butter.... DELICIOUS! 

 We made our lapbooks as always and created a few cut/paste/label papers for  
keeping home, plantations, chores from day to day and famous people in the 1770s,
not to mention worksheets from fellow bloggers, pinterest and 
Oh and on the AG website there are online games for most dolls, Bella of course loved that!
See below for all the links!
We learned ALOT!
(Yes I said we, it's amazing how much I've forgotten since I was in school) 
Throughout the Felicity stories she attends lessons at Miss Manderly’s
house to learn how to be a polite gentlewoman in 1774.
She learns things like stitchery, dancing, penmanship, and the proper way to serve tea.

I asked my Mom is she would serve as our "Grandmama Manderly" during our unit study, she eagerly accepted. Bella went to Grandmama Manderly's house for quill writing, stamp sealing, tea party etiquette and general conversation applicable for the 1770s.
For sure a highlight of our Felicity study!

I hunted forever to find a cute, easy embroidery kit for kids similar to Felicity's time. 
I'm not sure why this was so hard but came to my rescue, we found a butterfly!
Bella and I had a BLAST with this unit study, we took our time and spent a couple weeks in total on Felicity & the 1770s! To celebrate finishing our study we rented the official Felicity movie & snuggled up with her favorite stuffed friends and mini Felicity & had a movie night!
Cute movie, btw!

One of Bella favorite parts of school projects is showing her Daddy ALLLLLL she has done, in great detail. Its really so sweet. Note the every single paper she did & it was all perfectly organized & placed just so by Bella to present it to her Dad!

Below are a few websites I used to organize our 
American Girl unit studies








All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

American Girl Unit Study #1 - Kaya

My girl is a huge American Girl fan, as I was a girl!
I decided to start a chronological historical study of all the dolls to add to our daily school schedule.  (Reasons #764 why I love homeschooling, bc we can do things like this!)
We use this unit study mostly as an "ad on" and not a replacement for our bookwork.
After a few sessions on pinterest and pouring over fellow blogger sites I found a bunch of items some that I used as is (if allowed) and some I tweaked for my own personality/goals.

Michaels has awesome American Girl historical stickers that we snagged & used to make a timeline to keep us on track. Having a historical timeline is a helpful way for younger kids to grasp the idea of dates. Many times we have referred to a date in history by saying "During Felicitys time" of "Around the time Kirsten was born" etc... really has helped her!   
First up on the timeline - 
Kaya - 1764
"An adventurous native American, growing up in the Nez Perce Indian tribe"
Lapbook template-  HERE
I took the basic information from Kaya books and took off down my own path of finding out about the Native Americans and how they lived, we studied: 

Thank heavens for the Library, Pinterest & Google & my friend Kristina who came over and brought fun Native American items for us to see!

Then.... oh boy this was a mess, ha! At least my girls thought it was amazing....
1st- I musta had a brain spasm in thinking I was a super good seamstress
2nd- I couldn't get my machine to work
3rd- I thought I'd hand stitch, couldnt find thread
4th & finally- I hot glued it together/tied it together with the fringe ha!!
Dont judge me!! You've done crazy things for you kids too!

We had a great time and we both SO look forward to the next 12 dolls!!

Below are a few websites I used to organize our schooling for the American Girl unit studies.

All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Party time for a few v.i.p.s!!

I decided that March 13th is Bella's stuffed animals birthday, collectively! Bella was wild with excitement when I surprised her the night before as we went shopping for supplies. I let her be a part of the planning & we did it up big!! Why not, after all they are so special to her and deserve a birthday party! Of course this will be a yearly tradition.

First up we made play-doh cupcakes, each with their own candle!

I took a couple old shirts and cut arms/legs out as necklace gifts for all 20 animals! 

We decorated all around the party table.
(I squeezed the animals between the couch and the table as if they were "sitting" at the table)
Bella passed out a cupcake to each friend.
 Dinner time!
Each item we had for dinner correlated with things the stuffed animals would normally eat. (sorta)
Bear- Berry smoothies
Bunny- Carrots
Dog/Tiger/Turtle- Chicken Lettuce Wraps
I went to Whole Foods and snagged a couple of cupcakes for our dessert.
If you haven't tried them, Whole Foods has the most delicious cupcakes in town.
After Dinner we watched one of Bellas favorite shows "Doc McStuffins"
It was the perfect show to watch at our animal birthday party for it was all about that exactly.
Next came GAMES
This one was fun! We took turns blindfolded and snagged a stuffed animal and had to figure out which one it was by touch.

Then we played "Find Tigger" all over the house.

I highly recommend having a stuffed animal birthday party with/for your children, it shows you care so much about the things that are so important to them! Don't be embarrassed to "chat" with the animals and ask how they liked their party & pretend right along with your kids, I could tell Bella was so so happy when I played along. 
Don't you still remember the feeling of your animals seeming so real?
I love being a kid with my girl.

Play. Celebrate. Delight. 

All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Homemade Toothpaste!

I know that traditional toothpaste is said to be good for your teeth
BUT I dont generally take things at face value but I'd rather dig down to find
the reality of good or not good. For me, I found that it traditional toothpaste is full of not good
I didn't like the idea of all the toxins in traditional toothpaste, specifically the fluoride....eww!

So whats a girl supposed to do......DIY folks!

50/50 Coconut Oil & Baking Soda
Essential Oils (to taste) I like spearmint!
Xylitol or other sweetener (to taste)
(these measurements are based on your own tube size)
Xylitol has some interesting health benefits for teeth.... 
Bottom line: "xylitol consumption results in the re-mineralization, or strengthening, of tooth enamel.
In plain words, it protects your teeth and makes them stronger" Read here for more

Heat ingredients just enough that it combines nicely
Let cool off & scoop into a cleaned out traditional toothpaste tube.
To clean the old toothpaste containers,
cut off the bottom of the tube & clean it out with soap & water.
I used a clip to secure the closing after I put in the new coconut oil toothpaste!
Its awesome!

All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Spring is near & Im being impatient

We just moved into our new home a few months ago, so each season change is such a neat experience, it feels like seeing our home all over again for the first time.
Spring is the season Ive been impatiently waiting to come! 
I'm SO ready to plant a giant veggie garden and landscape my yard! 
When you've been in a rental for years there's only so much you can or want to invest there, but having our OWN land to invest in is so exciting.
Never mind the fact that my girls & I are SO ready to be outside all day.  We home school so we will literally be outside all day for school, for meals and I'm sure Bella would try and talk her way into letting me let her take her nap outside.... tempting. :)
 There have been a few spring "teaser" days lately & we bundled up and have taken full advantage of these beautiful days, as I'm sure you have as well!
 Come on Spring!!

All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Friday, February 15, 2013

FROZEN Coconut Oil Chapstick

FROZEN Pure Coconut Oil!
This coconut oil lip balm is awesome, super cheap, pure and so healthy for you!
We all know the ingredients in some lip balms are disgusting.
Lately, I've been reading a lot about the health benefits of coconut oil,
here is a GREAT blog post filled with a loads of additional information.  
Empty out a old lip balm tube and fill it with
Organic Virgin Coconut Oil.... the end!
It's THAT simple
I think coconut oil works like a dream, much better than
ANY other lip balm we have ever tried, especially this winter!
The best part is, I keep it in the FREEZER!!
If you haven't ever frozen your lip balm, 
you don't know what your missing, trust me!

Bonus, I ALWAYS know where it is......

All images on this blog are not to be copied or reproduced without my written consent. Thank you!

Friday, February 8, 2013

For coffee lovers everywhere....

Ask anyone who knows me and they will agree with me when I say, I am an AVID Starbucks fan!

 Being as such, I have always been very critical of "homemade lattes" 
UNTIL my sweet parents gave me my own espresso machine for Christmas! 
Now I'm HOOKED!!!
(Therefor, I don't go to Starbucks nearly as often, my poor gold card is not getting any use! ha!)

Krups Solo Steam Espresso Machine 
Krups Solo Steam Espresso Machine
Now heres what I dont know.... 
Is it the machine or is it the espresso that makes the latte great?? 
Anyone know?
IF its the machine then the one I have is awesome. IF its the espresso then everyone must run down to your nearest Whole Foods and snag their Organic Espresso.... WOW-ZA!!!
Trust me its THE BEST espresso!
Now if I can just learn to do FROTH ART like my local coffee shop.

So here are my attempts ... some accidental, some intentional.
 A "B" for Bella!                                           A Christmas tree!
     A Heart <3                                An Exclamation Mark!

Then, I looked into finding a vanilla syrup & they were all filled with yuck.... So I made my own & who knew its SO easy!

Homemade VANILLA Syrup
1Cup Water
1Cup Organic sugar
1Tablespoon Organic Vanilla extract
Boil together until syrup-y!
That's it!!

I'm not ashamed to say, I get excited to wake up in the mornings
and experience this delightful cup of espresso!
 Cheers to you!!