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The story of our precious little girl's 17 months of life with Trisomy 18 (July 4, 2010 - December 15, 2011) and of us, re-learning to live "after Lilly."
"I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ...." Psalm 139:14

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

More "Mont-sorri 'tivies"

The weather here has been cold, rainy and just plain yucky for days and days and days.  I'm forgetting what the sun looks like!  The mud and puddles in our yard are awful.  The mud is so deep in some places that my boots stick in it.  I feel especially sorry for the goats as deep mud isn't great for their hooves.  Thick mud, cold rain, grey skies = we've been staying inside as much as possible.

We took 3 weeks off for Christmas break.  After week one, Hunter asked "Can't we have school again yet?"  And Solomon asked me, almost daily, for "New Mont-sorri 'tivity?" (new Montessori activity)  Children obviously need to stick with routines and some kind of work for the most part!

Tabby filled some of her time with art and writing.  Here are some of her latest pencil drawings:

Thorin Oakenshield (from The Hobbit)
Tauriel - character that is in "The Hobbit" movie - but NOT in the book
I love seeing Tabby use her talent for others.  Recently she drew a picture for her best friend, Cassie.  The drawing is of Cassie's little sister Hannah, that lived 64 days with Trisomy 18. 

Tabby's Hannah drawing and the original picture of Hannah
Hunter, no surprise, has been busy building things.  Here he is with two furnaces, a thermostat, and a gas pack.  Notice that they all have happy faces:

Solomon was so happy when we got back to homeschooling last week, because I finally had prepared some new Montessori activities.  

A lot of pictures follow below.  I'm not trying to show off my kid!  But I know it helps me to see pictures of things people are describing.

When we are in the kitchen, Solomon usually helps me.  But if I'm doing something he can't help with, he likes to practice pouring water:

he has a tiny sponge to clean up any spills
The pouring has been a good exercise, because Solomon can now easily refill his water glass during a meal, all by himself:

Solomon has liked playing with this shape sorter ever since he was about 1.  I traced some of the shapes onto a piece of card stock and colored them in.  He matched the right shape pieces.  In about 30 seconds.

So I made a few more that involved a lot more pieces.  He still flew through them but he really, really likes this sort of activity, so he repeats it about every day.

Solomon can finally peel stickers off a page by himself now, so I gave him some truck stickers, crayons, and card stock.  The sticker part was good, but then he kept asking for help drawing tractors with the crayons.  That was not good, since I was helping Hunter.

We are continuing to work on colors.  Solomon can match colors just fine but he still confuses the names.  A lot.  He likes this fish color puzzle:

I took some plastic dinosaurs we had and photographed several.  Printed on card stock, laminated, and cut them into cards.  Solomon loves matching them onto the cards:

I recently bought Solomon this shape sorter .  (Tip - I got ours for on Ebay for much cheaper.)  He has always liked the simple one we had.  (Very similar to this one.)  The new one has proved to be quite frustrating to him though.  Perhaps because there are shape cut outs in 4 sides of the cube and so many pieces.  He wants my help every time.

One day I gave him some tool shaped sewing cards we had.  He stuck with working on those for awhile:

Finally, two more color matching activities.  For the first one, I took some little rubber creatures that Tabby had when she was little, and some pieces of colored foam sheets.  Easy for me, and Solomon did activity repeatedly for several days before he was tired of it.

The other was to put little pom-poms into the appropriate colored cups.  (You can buy this same activity here.  Lots of good ideas on the website.)  Solomon has a lot of fun with this one.  Even Hunter was itching to try it when he watched Solomon the first time.

One last note - though Solomon usually works hard at his activities during part of Hunter's schooling, it does not mean that he does not interrupt Hunter's work.  Way more than I wish.  Hunter doesn't seem to mind, but it can be frustrating for me.  So that is something we're working on. One day was particularly bad and I thought "Goodness!  I should just send my older kids to school so they can work without interruptions!"  But then I started remembering about when I was in public school.  There were SO MANY interruptions.  Kids causing trouble, kids asking questions, kids getting sick, kids asking to get water or go to the bathroom, etc etc.  I remember in one high school class, the guy sitting next to me poured out some cocaine onto his desktop, chopped it up a little, and proceeded to snort it.  The teacher didn't catch him until he had just finished snorting.  Hmmmm.  Yes, I think I'll keep my kids home!


  1. WOW Tabby's drawing are AMAZING! I agree about the public school. In stressful moments I often think I want to just send my kids then I go over all the reasons we homeschool and all the reason public school is a BAD idea. Having my hubby reenforce this after a bad day helps:) Thank for all the ideas, your amazing!!!!

    1. YES about the public school. Yesterday after posting this, I started thinking about all the horrible things that happened to me when I was there. And as for the education - in spite of being in Fairfax County, Va. which was supposed to be the top county in the country at the time - we'll let's just say that another thing I like about homeschooling is that I get to LEARN along with my kids. (I know I know - you get out of school what you put into it. But big old textbooks are such a boring way to learn!) It's so great how the homeschooling community is just exploding with growth! (Though I wonder how long the government will stand for it.)