The Love Books Exchange: a sneak peek at what we’re sending


We are doing the Love Books exchange from The Educators’ Spin On It and the kids and I are really happy to be participating! (note: sign ups for this year are now closed).

This is our second year participating and the kids and I aren’t sure what we are more excited about: receiving our package or sending Teach Beside Me their package!

Last year we did a fun exchange with the Kid World Citizen kiddos and one of the coolest things was this collaborative art project based on this book about artist Diego Rivera.

We can’t wait to see what the gang from Teach Beside Me sends to us!

I don’t want to give away any secrets, but here’s a sneak peek of the package we are sending to our 2014 exchange family:


Can you guess what book we are sending and what our project is?

Stay tuned …


Home Sweet Homeschool: May 2014

Home Sweet Homeschool: May |
Note:  there are some affiliate links in this post.  Thanks!

I know not all of you who follow this blog are homeschoolers, but enough of you are that I thought sharing this monthly wrap up would be fun and beneficial.

We spent the month of May working toward the end of the homeschool year for 2013 – 2014.  What  year it has been!

Jillian and I traveled from one side of the country to the other, we’ve read dozens of books, created art projects, learned new skills.

We’re (more than) ready for a summer break.  We’ll be using the Nature Camp ecourse I’m a part of again this year and spending a lot of lazy days hanging out in the backyard, at the local park, and the library.

In the meantime, though, we had some work to finish up for May.

Here is what the kids have been up to:

[Read more...]

Come follow, follow us to … Touch a Truck Day

Touch a Truck, Fishers Indiana 2014 |
I‘m so happy to introduce a new series here on the blog, all about our family field trips and adventures: Come Follow, Follow. Do you recognize one of the littlest Fleck’s favorite songs?

Last week we attended Community Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Today the kids and I wanted to share with you our recent trip to Touch a Truck in Fishers, Indiana.

The idea behind this special day is a simple one: let kids get up close with the police cars, fire trucks, diggers, mowers, dump trucks and other vehicles they love plus give them a chance to talk to the men and women who do the jobs that go along with those vehicles.

As my kids have been big truck fans from way back (every Wednesday you can find them with noses against the window waiting for the garbage truck to come down our street) and since my son has been telling us for about three years now that he’s going to be a policeman when he grows up, we knew this was a must do for our family.

We loaded up the kids and Aunt Angela and we headed out for some cool vehicle adventure! So in today’s post, the kids and I invite you to come follow, follow, follow us to … Touch a Truck!

[Read more...]

Soul shaking influence (poem)

Since I’ve been talking about my big kid here on the blog lately, I thought I would share a poem that I wrote last year about her. I know it isn’t the type of content I usually publish here, but I thought you might enjoy it. Also, it gave me an excuse to share one of my favorite pictures of her at age four.

(And if you’re ever interested in more of my creative writing, you are invited to visit my personal blog. The Love Songs are my favorite.)

Sometimes I’m not sure which I find more startling as a parent: the things they do which are the perfect echo of myself or the things about them which are so entirely unique to them, bursting forth
without any influence.  I think those thoughts are where today’s words come from.

[Read more...]

Kiddin’ Around: the 4th week of May

Little poser Kiddin' Around |

Note: there are affiliate links in this post. Thanks for your support.

Welcome to Kiddin’ Around, where I share different activities, games, crafts, and links the kids and I have loved each week.

Right now my kids are ages 2, 6, 7, and 12. Here’s what we’ve been up to this week and how we’ve been kiddin’ around:

Music: – not really music, but music to my ears! I really enjoyed listening to this episode of a very fun new podcast, The Read Aloud Revival. This episode features one of my favorite people, Tsh Oxenreider talking about how reading aloud is like comfort food. I know I keep mentioning this here, there, and everywhere, but it really is a great podcast.

Watching: – our favorite cars go around the track.  When we haven’t been visiting the Indianapolis Motor Speedway ourselves this week, we’ve been hooked on the app and the website watching the LiveStream.

Very, Very Pinteresting – we are planning a super laid back Summer. Aside from Backyard Nature Camp, we aren’t planning much.  No summer reading challenge, no bucket list, no 100 Days lists.  We have had a hectic year and I don’t want to commit us to any more than a real, true break full of downtime and freedom. Amen.

However, this pin on Pinterest certainly has our attention and I think the kids and I will enjoy printing this out and having it handy in the minivan for all of our Summer travel days.

Things to Eat and Drink – As the temps climbed this week, we’ve been breaking out the homemade popsicles (take that, ice cream truck!).  Some of our favorites are here at Simple Bites. Note: we used raspberries with this recipe as that is what we got from our CSA this week and they were yummy!

IMSgigglesAll giggles at IMS on Wednesday.

Games: – we’ve been playing an awful lot of Spot It! this week after we rediscovered it during a recent play room clean out. Don’t you just love it when something old is new again for your kids?

What We’re ReadingMy oldest is very excited about this book as we are planning a visit to Walt Disney World in the future.

Also, speaking of books, I want to take this moment to remind you one more time about the special launch week only price for Three to Five: Playful Preschool.

How about you? What have you and your kiddos been up to this week? Share in the comments below.

Summer looming large ahead of you? Unsure how to fill the dates on the calendar? Jessica of Life As Mom has you covered with her Summer Survival Guide, on sale for $5 until May 27. Grab your copy today!