Friday, June 26, 2015

It's Almost That Time Of Year! (And My New Cloffice!)

Next week is 4th of July, so that means one of my favorite times of the year is almost upon us! Although school won't resume for most families for another month or two, back-to-school supplies will start hitting the shelves in about 10 days! Woo Hoo!

Yes, we homeschool, and we try to do some sort of schooling year 'round, but who says we can't be excited by 10 cent notebooks and fabulously decorated folders of puppies and Spiderman? I mean, what other 80's kid used to drool over Trapper Keepers?

Personally, I love it! Not only the cheap prices, but the demarcation of a new year and a new do-over. It's like January 1st in homeschool land! 

This is when I get to look over the past year and see how I can correct any oversights in the coming one. I can review my priorities for each child, and also review my spaces/materials/curriculum to make sure that I'm providing the best learning environment for my students. Aaand since our main curriculum choice of Heart of Dakota is based on Charlotte Mason teaching methods, it means I get to review, and shop for, fantastic literature!!

We have had a record-setting summer thus far in terms of sunny days and warm temps. In coastal Alaska, that means that you spend every possible moment outside; hiking, berry picking, gardening, sightseeing, home repair-ing, etc. I am grateful to say that the residents of Wildwood Cottage have done just that! And now we're exhausted.

So, I am thrilled to be spending this gray, rainy day here:

Cheesy name, but I love the functionality!

I am going to camp out in my new 'cloffice' and revel in spreadsheets, book lists, and homeschooling blogs until my eyes cross, or until 3 year old Little Brother needs to go potty. Did I mention that we're in the throes of potty training? Man, I forgot how much my productivity goes down during potty training...

I will post more about my curriculum plans, hopes, and dreams later, but in the meantime, I would LOVE any recommendations or links to your favorite homeschooling treasures!


Hillary At Home

**PS-Don't forget to think of Operation Christmas Child when you pass by those bins of crayons and notebooks! Those make fantastic shoebox gifts!**

Friday, June 5, 2015

Our First 'Before and After' and WC Experiment #1!

So here's the 'Before' pic of this part of our living room:

And here's the 'After':

Okay, Okay, so this is not the most genuine makeover, but I am tickled pink to show it to you! When we first found out last Fall that we could be moving into this smaller cottage, I realized that our big sofa would not fit. Since large items had to be moved down an outdoor staircase at that house, we gambled on getting rid of it early before Winter set in. So, since October-ish, we've been using these classy camp chairs and planned to save up for a reclining love seat. 

So, fast forward to just this past week when someone was offering exactly what I wanted: A light brown, microsuede reclining loveseat for, wait for it...$75!!!!! Non-smoking home? Check! Firm seating? Check! It was only a year old, but the couple had no space for it in their apartment. Yay for Me! :)

But now this is where the WC Experiment comes in. The sofa was pretty dirty. It had a lot of water spot and stains. It wasn't a deal breaker because I've had microsuede before, and know that I could always shampoo it if need be. But first, we decided to try this tutorial that has been pinned on one of my pinterest boards for forevah.

Now here are some true 'Before and Afters'!



Farmer Girl started out with this as her project...

...but, as to be expected, Lil' Sis decided she wanted in on the fun.

And the dramatic After:

Isn't it incredible? We pretty much did it as she said to in the instructions. We only scrubbed the cushions, arm rests, and foot rests, and the whole sofa looks like new. I followed it up with one more good vacuum with my Kirby, and I am so thrilled with my $75 loveseat!

If you have a micro suede piece of furniture, I would wholeheartedly recommend trying this out.

And if you really want to improve the 'After' effect, 

then add some vintage end tables, mattress ticking pillows, and a cozy sherpa throw! (Yeah, that's like giving you the After shot with make-up on!)

WWC Experiment #1= A true success!

Hillary At Home

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

No Ugly Ducklings On This Farm!

Lil' Bro and Sir Topham Hat
Unfortunately, the ducks came to the feed store from the hatchery un-sexed. This means it's a gamble whether we're gong to have laying hens to keep or drakes to give away. The kids were willing to take the risk-especially after I told them we could probably order replacement hens direct from the hatchery.  One benefit of keeping ducks over chickens is that you don't have to have a minimum order of ducklings. They aren't quite as fragile as chicks, so you do not need as much body heat in the box. They are more spendy to ship that way though...

Farmer Boy and Elvis Duckley
 I found it humorous that while we're hoping and praying for hens, 3 of the ducklings were given male names. :/

Farmer Girl and Doofensmertz (From Phineas and Ferb)
The ducklings are so sweet! We are learning that they like to climb-especially into hair! And they'll will occasionally nibble on your finger or skin and shake it like it's a dandelion leaf. Thankfully they do not really have teeth!                                                                                                                              
Diva Lil' Sis and Delilah
 And they cheep! They aren't quackers yet! We weren't expecting that. We are anxious to track at what age they start to quack. And no, I resisted the urge to just google it. We are actually going to derive this information straight from the source!

Praying that your day is just ducky!

Hillary At Home