Why the Tree of Life?


Mommy & Ayla


Our first day of "school" will be next Wednesday, September 3rd. Kirven is really excited and keeps asking how many more days until he starts school. I would like to do something a little special that Wednesday morning, but I haven't decided quite what yet. Evan and I still need to discuss. I don't really want to give him anything, but I would like to mark the change in some special way. Any suggestions would be welcome. :)

We're starting to get questions out in public now. School started this past Monday, and everywhere we have been, someone has asked if Kirven was supposed to be in kindergarten or not. Mostly, we have gotten positive reactions so far, if a little awkward silence at first. Before the public schools started, the question was always phrased, "Will he be starting kindergarten this year?" to which I could honestly answer, yes, and leave it at that. Now, it is a little more complicated, and I haven't quite decided how or how much I should answer. I guess I need to work up some pat, one-sentence answer.


Big Planning Weekend

Ayla and I are on our own this weekend. It's just us girls in the house, counting our big, fat cat Molly and our devil dog Geena. Evan and the boys headed up to Waxahachie this evening so that I can plan our upcoming homeschooling term. It's going to be hard to actually buckle down and do this while the Olympics are still on. I've laid all my Enki binders out on the couch and made a prioritized list of what I have to do (because I know I'm not going to be able to get to it all-- like writing a couple nature stories that reflect Texas flora and fauna). I'm hoping that seeing all this laying out in the morning will remind me of what I am supposed to be doing and will prevent me from goofing off and napping. I'll be posting the results of my planning session on Tree of Life Musings, so check back there if you're interested in what we're theoretically going to be doing over the next few months. I'll be posting about what we actually accomplish here on Tree of Life Homeschool, hopefully with pictures.


First Tooth

Kirven lost his first tooth yesterday. As fits his personality, he has been very pensive about the whole thing and very reluctant to discuss anything about his tooth or the tooth fairy. Occasionally, on threat of going to the dentist since I never once saw him wiggling it, he would let me wiggle it.

Yesterday morning, when he was letting me wiggle it, it popped. Kirven jerked his head back in shock and spit his tooth out. Then he retreated within himself for the rest of the morning. Dunagan, on the other hand, was excited for him and all ready to see what all this tooth fairy business was about. Come evening, Kirven was no more ready to deal with his tooth than he had been that morning, so Evan put it in a ziplock bag on the counter.

This morning, it was still sitting there. I told Kirven that the tooth fairy wasn't able to open ziplocks. I have a very small, 2 inch square, Chinese silk pouch that I carry my earrings in when we travel, and I suggested to him that we put his tooth in my pouch in my jewelry box. I told him it is my pouch for special things, and his tooth would be safe in there. Since it only has one snap that the tooth fairy would be able to open and since she would also be able to get in the jewelry box through the keyhole, I thought that we might write the tooth fairy a note explaining that Kirven wanted to keep his tooth for awhile. Rather than shut me out as he had been doing whenever I tried to talk to him about his tooth, Kirven looked at me and said, ok.

So, we put his tooth in the pouch, and I cut a half inch by 4 inch piece of paper for the note. Why are you making it like that? "Think about how small tooth fairies are. It will be a big piece of paper to her! We can roll it up like a scroll."

Kirven giggled when I wrote as tiny as I possibly could:

Dear Tooth Fairy,
Kirven is not
ready to give
you his tooth.
He would
like to keep
it in this
special red
pouch for
now. Mommy
says that you
will understand.
If you really,
really need
it, please let
us know,
and we will
give it to
you. Thank
you for

Then Kirven signed his name, too.

The tooth fairy has written a reply in gold ink and green pencil (my pen ran out of ink because no one likes to put caps back on pens around here) that I will read in the morning with a magnifying glass:

It can be
a scary
thing losing
your first
tooth. Of
course, you
may keep
it as long
as you need.
If you
decide to
put it under
your pillow
we will
the Tooth Fairies


Summer Nature Table

This is a little section of our nature table this season. At the beginning of the summer, I cleaned off the top of a cabinet in our living room, placed a yellow, a blue and a green silk on it and called it our nature table. The boys have had a ball finding things for it on our walks. We will return everything we borrowed from Nature on the last day of summer, and we'll start fresh with an empty table and a new arrangement of red, orange and yellow silks on the first day of autumn.

Not pictured are my personal favorite item: the old shells of cicadas from before they had wings. Whatever you call those. Those are a favorite to find. And I am expected to hold them all the way home, very caaarrrrreeeeffffuuuulllllllyyyy, mommy, so I don't lose them or crush them. So, I hold them in my open palm and smile and try not to think of their poky legs and their eye casings and their split backs, and I deposit them gratefully on the nature table where they are welcomed by their brothers and sisters of previous days--- because we find one nearly every single time.


Family Reunion

We got together this past weekend with Evan's family for a reunion. Most of the boys' time was spent in the pool with Grammy and Grandpa, but we didn't get many pictures of that. Kirven overdosed on swimming the first day, spending five plus hours in the sun. I think he nearly killed Grammy.

Miss Ayla. She and I spent most of the time napping in the room.

Dunagan rode a horse last year and had been planning on riding one again all year long. Good little Texan. His horse was named Cody.

There was an indoor activity room with a bounce house and games for the blazing hot hours.

And a good picture of the boys on the playscape. We all had a lot of fun and enjoyed being together and visiting.




Cooling Off

Who needs a kiddie pool when you've got a sandbox and a hose?