Monday, December 22, 2014

Happy Solstice!




I have read about the beautiful spirals done in Waldorf schools in December, but had never attempted our own! And it was every bit as magical and beautiful as I had hoped.


e and I raked up pine needles into the spiral and laid pine boughs rescued from a tree lot over the pine needles. We set bricks for the candles, warmed the cider, filled a bucket of water, and invited our neighbors and of course S and s. We sang Rise Up O Flame, read a winter poem, and then walked the spiral. The kids played on the swingset, swinging high above the spiral in the dark. It was a beautiful night.


This morning e and I went to see if any animals had found the apple snacks (from the candle-holders) we had left out in the spiral for them. Indeed, one was missing and three had been partially eaten. We even found a very happy slug eating its apple breakfast.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A Love of Learning

e has a pretty good grasp of regrouping, thanks to all that acorn counting!
Saints and Heroes:
e also wove a paper mat (like Rabia's mat!) for her stuffed animals to sleep on.
This one made her does simply being confidant and speaking directly help to solve problems? I could see this question bumping around in her head. She didn't voice it and I didn't ask it, but I know she's given it good thought.

e's form drawings:

E's final two animals for his zoology block. I didn't require any writing beyond the mapping, which is actually in more of my handwriting than his...mostly because he was incredibly passionate about these two animals that he read the books by himself and was so eager to tell me about them that it might have ruined the enthusiasm to turn it into a writing assignment. Above all else, I want my children to be excited about learning. If we lose the excitement, we lose everything.

E had his second pre-season meet. Just like before, he took three golds, two silvers, and a fourth place. I love watching him perform. This is what he lives and breathes, not for the competition, but for betterment of his own skill. I know his coaches are being careful to push him for personal best rather than higher scores, and I am thankful. He is thriving.
Flexibility bonus
Back lever

While we were cheering E on at his meet, e was braving her first sleepover with her best friend s. Children's Museum, Muppets Most Wanted, a mom who gets the importance of rhythm and reassurance...she had a GREAT time and can't wait for E's next meet!

Friday, December 5, 2014

St. Nicholas Day

We have celebrated St. Nicholas for a handful of years now, and every year has been magical in its own way. Always every year the kids put out a dish of hay and carrots, and every year the white horse leaves a crazy mess in his haste to gobble the goodies! They find oranges, nuts, and dried fruit in their boots, as well as a scroll of the year's accomplishments.


Last year, e was beginning to understand about Santa, so I tried something different. I asked a friend to have her children set out their shoes, and I prepared scrolls and treats for them, as well. My kids didn't see the prep, but after dark I explained what we were going to 'be St. Nicholas'. They were excited, but the best part was when we arrived home and e wondered aloud who had filled her shoes! She ran to check and I reminded her that St. Nick wouldn't be arriving here until after she was in bed. Even though she knew...she didn't know. :)


So this year, s gets to be St. Nicholas to my kids, and e and E get to be her St. Nicholas. They planned the whole thing, including making her scroll and painting walnuts gold. We threw in some finger puppets, golden dollars, mama and baby oranges, cashews and pistachios, and gold stars. e keeps checking the clock, and the boots and hay are already outside. This is undoubtedly more magical than simply receiving!

The first light of Advent is the light of stones, light that shines in seashells, in crystals, and in bones.

Wishing you a magical season of Advent!