{this moment}

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{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

{Inspired by SouleMama}

Homeschool Days - warming things up a bit in the school room

Fall always calls for a little bit of rearranging and redecorating.  This year, with the big kids already in the thick of the school year, it was about incorporating Luke into the school room.

I wanted to bring in the natural elements that I love so much and then keep the function that we have enjoyed without making the room seem too bland. 

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This space is for Luke and me.  He enjoys lots of time rearranging the doll house and getting his quiet toys out to play while I am doing my work at the table.

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I added a new chalkboard to the school room by using command strips.  This gave me a larger space to do my chalkboard work examples and I have been having a blast with lessons that can be illustrated in beautiful ways.

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This was part of Cyan’s lesson on healthy fat and liquid measurements. 

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I also use it for our copywork and other examples for our lessons.  I like to keep it pretty

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When we light our candle at the start of the school day, the kids are ready to start with story time and art, then we move on to the other parts of the day and in this beautiful space they can really enjoy learning.  All in all, the arranged space is working wonderfully! 

Meet our new baby

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My daughter has been begging for a dog for the past three years and this week we finally gave her her wish.  Meet Ember - our half German Shepherd half Cattle Dog puppy.  She is currently 9 wks old.

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Our sweet pup was in a litter of 11 pups, 9 of which were healthy enough for adoption at 8 wks.  She was the biggest of the litter and the spunkiest of the batch that we visited.  So we thought she would be a good fit to our wonderfully alive and spunky house.

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Her “safe spot” in Cyan’s room if we ever need to go out without her.  Which isn’t very often.

Someone told my daughter when we in the pet store “One day that dog will be able to do your homework!” and they are almost right.  5 days in a new house, and she already knows where to go potty (mostly outside unless we are not paying attention), ‘sits’ when she is asked, will ‘lay down’ and ‘come’ if you have a treat, and has discovered that she can push her pen over to the door so she can bang against it and we will come.  We had to put a stop to it, but that was impressive!  She is a SMART little dog!

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We have been watching a lot of Victoria Stilwell dog training videos.  She has a wonderfully gentle manner that Cyan and I have employed to teach our little miss manners and new skills.  She has picked them up so fast it threatened to give me whiplash!  She’s really that smart!

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Having only ever owned a Westie and Boxer before this, her mind and desire for training was something of a shock.  Not that those other breeds are unintelligent… but being German Shepherd/Cattle Dog mix, she is bred to watch for physical queues as well as verbal commands and when training is employed with this combination in mind, it isn’t more than 15 minutes before she has a new skill.  The trick will be for us to train her enough so that smart little brain of hers doesn’t make trouble!

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Cyan is overjoyed and although tired (puppies are hard work)!   Ember has settled in very nicely and is currently laying at my feet, with a long leash we use for house training, chewing on her favorite treat, a pigs ear.  <3

{this moment}

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{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

{Inspired by SouleMama}

Homeschool Days - A trip to Latin’s Cider Mill and the pumpkin patch

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Crazy Weather, Winter Greens, and Hoop Houses

Over the past week, we have gotten 5 inches of rain, totaling over 8 inches in September alone, setting records all over the state of Washington where I live.  Just 2 miles from my house, a tornado touched down and another out towards Puget Sound just days later.  Crazy!  Flooding in most of the city was causing cars to stall and work places to shut down as water came into their doorways…  and just as quick as it came, it was gone again.  It wasn’t a flash flood, it was a pouring of water from the sky that even our well-worn Western Washington drains couldn’t handle.  It went from 73* and sunny to weeks of downpours and broken gutters. 

Summer can do that here.  The last weeks can be as fickle as May.  Monsoon weather usually comes and goes though… it doesn’t just hang around until your rain gauges are full and your hoop houses are blown to pieces. 

Gardening seems to be hanging on a little.  I go and repair the hoop houses I placed over my winter greens at least once a day.  I am getting better and better at finding new ways to secure the plastic to the hoops.  Despite natures best attempts, my rows of lettuce, kale and chard keep sprouting in the neat little rows under the plastic covering.  It will sustain our table in salads until hard frost.  Which, with any luck, won’t happen until early Dec.  But who knows? 

Tomatoes are holding on for dear life.  I have picked anything I assumed would actually ripen inside last week, and I cut the stalks to the top of the support pole to encourage the rest of the fruit to ripen ASAP.  The zucchini and other squash are done, but the beets are near harvest ready and I had some on a beautiful salad last week!  They will just get sweeter from here!

School is going again, full time, and I usually have some canning on the stove.  This week it’s apples!  I bought 64lbs of apples last week and we have been eating a ton but that should get us quite a bit of apple sauce and apple chips for the year.  The kids are looking forward to hot applesauce… out of the cooking pot is the best! 

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Speaking of applesauce - do you ever use your applesauce to replace oil in a quick bread recipe?  I just made a recipe for an amazing quickbread muffin that has zucchini, pumpkin, carrot AND applesauce.  It’s like a breakfast straight from the muffin tin.  Come and check it out over at Inner Child Food.

© Collecting the Moments

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