Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The Village Fair! The Village Fair!

*This post contains two Amazon Associate links. I just wanted you to know that I haven't been paid to talk about any of these products and none have been gifted to me. I simply like the following items and would love to share what I've found with you! To read my complete disclosure, please see HERE! Thank you! *

Our little city was first a wilderness, vast and natural, with a winding, pristine river. Native American tribes live upon its banks for a long long time. In the early 1800's came a handful of settlers. Our little city was merely a settlement, a "corner" where two dirt paths intersected. It was shortly then called "Piety Hill" for a while, if you can believe it. The "hill" being the very same hilly elevation that our house now stands on. Over time, "Piety Hill" grew into a village and then a town and now it stands as a small city of about 20,000.

Yet still, as probably the most anticipated event of the year, (other than the first day of summer vacation) by every child in the city, is the Village Fair.  And this year, it is the 53rd annual "Village Fair" to be exact! I grew up on the fair. I couldn't wait for fair weekend because it meant I could ride the rides and eat the junk food and that school would soon be out.

Look at this wonderful, nostalgic video that I found of the village fair from 1967 on Youtube. It's by a man named John3inDC. How wonderful!

I think the most magical thing about the fair, is that you wake up Tuesday or Wednesday morning and it's suddenly there. All of the trailers of rides and booths and prizes and food, they just silently come to town in the night. It takes a day or two to set everything up, and then the fair runs Thursday through Sunday. It all goes in reverse on Sunday evening, and just as suddenly, you wake up and there's nothing left but the old park in the center of town, empty except for a stray corn dog or gum newly stuck to your shoe.

Who's ready for summer!!!!

Currently wearing:  My go-to summer cotton dress, the Boden casual Jersey Dress. When you want something to knock around in, but sill look a little polished, you can't go wrong with this one. It's stretchy but not too stretchy, cool cotton jersey. I've been wearing them for several years. Boden comes out with new prints several times a year.

Each year at the beginning of summer, I gift myself with a new pair of Birkenstock sandals to relive my high school pseudo-hippie days  because I know I am too lazy to care to wear anything else. These aren't your hippie daughter's Birkenstocks though, they now come in sparkly, iridescent materials! My favorite style is the Mayari sandal. I purchased mine through J.Jill this year, but I have bought them in years past at Zappos as well. I've owned a silver pair and a gold pair and I must say, they really hold up. More substance than a basic flip-flop, but still the perfect slip-on for casual summer. This time around I chose a fresh pair in "Antique Lace." They're a perfect, crisp shade of cream with just the right amount of shimmer. I love them! And, since I am now slathering myself head to toe in white mineral sunscreen, I match my shoes. I think you'd like them too. 

Currently testing out:
Joico Color Endure Violet- Sulfate Free Shampoo and Conditioner

Ok, I've taken the leap! You guys have told me on several occasions about Joico's SULFATE-FREE violet shampoo and condition. I've been meaning to give them a try for a while. I saw a nice deal on Amazon where for just over $39, you get giant 33.8 oz bottles of both the shampoo and conditioner. I'm going to test it out and see if it takes out the yellow, dull tones from my gray hair and makes it shinier! I will report back to you!

Back to the Village Fair....

This morning I listened to the first podcast that was put out by Tilt Parenting.  It was life-changing. I was already exploring and heading towards the idea of changing my expectations and beliefs that I needed to control as much as I do, but Tilt's episode one: Margaret Webb on Parenting the Child You Didn't Expect When You Were Expecting,  solidified my plans. If you have a "differently Wired Child," a child with learning differences, emotional special needs, one who is gifted or 2e or  ADHD or on the spectrum, please take a listen, I think you will really really enjoy it. This podcast is all about finding peace and relishing in the joy of your uniquely different child, and meeting them where they are at rather than trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. It's also about letting go on some control and taking an introspective look at yourself! For a long time, once homeschooling began, I felt like I must, I must, I must "have school at home." Not only did that makes for conflict and tears, but Noah shut down from learning. It's only when I started to relax and realize that I wasn't going to get anywhere "trying" to force him to learn and retain knowledge, that I began to work collaboratively with him, asking Noah to lead with his passions, and that is where true learning started. I am not a radical unschooler, I am not even technically and "unschooler," but these days, I see myself as a mix of an eclectic, homeschooler and an interest-lead unschooler, and it works!  

I've been very curious for quite a while about Sarah Janisse Brown's series of homeschooling journals. For example, I've had my eye on the following:

Homeschooling Boys - Library Based Curriculum Journal: 60 Day Plan - For Active and Adventurous Learners (Volume 1)

Sarah is a pen and ink artist, writer and homeschooling mother to nine! She travels around the world with her family living and learning. Here is a short blurb from her Amazon page: The Brown family started The Thinking Tree Publishing Company in 2009 and they publish outside-the-box curriculum and dyslexia therapy books. They focus on the needs of active and creative children who learn differently.  "

Her journals really spoke to me. Essentially, I want to be teaching Noah a love for reading, (which he honestly already has thankfully) how to write proficiently, and most of all, to enjoy LEARNING, seeking out knowledge in an independent and deep way. These journals do a great job at fostering that!. Essentially, each week the journal asks the child to go to the library and choose eight or nine books on different subjects that they would like to learn about. Then, the journals lead them through gentle exercises in retelling what they have learned.

I'd love to purchase a journal for Noah for the next school year as his favorite way to learn is to read and discuss! (By the way, we use the Life of Fred curriculum for math and ADORE it. More on that in another post.)

This morning though, since I do not own a journal yet, I made my own, little "Sarah Janisse Browm-esq" adventure into learning. I told Noah that we were going to go to the library and that his mission was to choose at least two books on any science topic or topics that he would like to learn more about, and at least two books on any history/current event topic or topics that he would like to know more about. The hope is, to get Noah inspired! To help him cultivate deep interests and enthusiasm for new topics.

So he rode his bike to the library, and I walked. We are very lucky to live two blocks away. That is when we saw that the FAIR had quietly ridden in during the night. Magic!

We spent a bit of time in the children's room, looking up call numbers, perusing different sections, choosing books, and staring out the window. It is not everyday that you see the Golden Sphinx ride from the non-fiction section. :)

What library excursion is not complete with bike riding at daring speeds before heading home?

Here is the boy's haul! I know these aren't all the thick textbooks of some fifth graders, but I figure knowledge is knowledge, learning is learning no matter what form it takes. And besides, his "novel," one from the Percy Jackson series is a whopping 550+ pages, so I figure he has that end covered.

Noah knew that he wanted to learn about dogs for science this week. We found the section and then I began asking him questions like: What do you want to learn about dogs? Their history, about different breeds? How to train them? Without a moment's hesitation he said: "I'd like to learn about service dogs and other working dogs!" So a short chapter book of working dog stories and an adorable sweet book called " Brave Dogs, Gentle Dogs- How they Guard Sheep," came home with us. (Awwww. ) In addition, Noah wanted to learn about city infrastructures, and what lies underground! We found two great books with diagrams and technical drawings. Everything from sewer systems to subways to the mechanics of  foundations for great big skyscrapers. On the history end, there was a book about medieval castles and because one of his greatest interests lies in Greek mythology, a book on ancient Greece and also one on ancient Rome, "for comparison." I slipped in a book on the history and meaning of the summer solstice, as we're upon it, and read to him over lunch. It was lovely!

And now my fingers are tired from typing and Jon is home getting dinner started. I need to go help. Tonight is a new recipe that we're trying. Thai Noodle Bowls with Almond Butter Tofu by the Minimalist Baker. I'll let you know how it turns out!

Until Next time!



Rescuedogmom said...

I love your ideas on EVERYTHING!!! I wish we were neighbors! You are an inspiration to me as a Mom. I have a very spirited soon to be 5th grader,and so I will look for that pod cast.

I'm originally from Detroit but now live in IL. Your town sounds awesome. That fair is something to look forward to I'm sure! And watching it come into town looks so fun for your son also!

I think that none of us knew what to expect from our children. It's a journey that unfolds as we continue down the path of parenting. I always think it's our "job" to help them become the best they can in the way they need, if that makes any sense. I have twin girls and they are very different! Sometimes it can be a lonely path when you thought it would be different, and hope everything turns out ok. It's such a big responsibility!!!

I follow your instagram pictures and love, love your pets too! We have a dog. Would love a cat but one of my girls is allergic. I had a cat for many years as a single girl...she was my kitty soulmate!

I still think about going gray, not sure yet. I almost stopped a woman at the store and told her I loved her hair. She had a cute cut and awesome color gray.

We are on summer vacation now, but after reading about your excursion to the library I may give my kids an assignment! I love how your son picked out the underground infrastructure! I have no idea what goes on underground...he is very bright and inquisitive!

Thank you for your blog and sharing your life with us!


Lauren said...

Hi Heather!!! \('-')/

It's so so nice to meet you!!! :)
Thank you, I really enjoyed reading your comment and to meet a new mama friend. <3
I'm glad that you've enjoyed the blog and I'm grateful for your encouragement. Thank you!!!

Oh yes, library trips are a fun thing to do in summer. I hope your kiddos find good books too!

I appreciate your "hello." Sending big hugs you way!
Lauren :)

Anonymous said...

Eager to hear your report on the Joico. My biggest frustration with going gray has been the yellowing ends to my med length gray hair. I have tried so many things (still haven't tried White Hot - wish they were on amazon), but I always feel like the ends are slightly yellowed / dull.

I rotate my solutions (davine, klorane, pantene silver, fanci-full, and vinegar rinse) but keep searching for the *one* thing that will solve it long-term with continual use (silver bullet, if you will)! Seems like you are in the same boat.

Keep us posted with all your findings!!


Deborah Reber said...

Thanks so much for mentioning our podcast, the TiLT Parenting Podcast, in your post :) We LOVE Margaret Webb's perspective on shifting our thinking as a way to change our experience parenting our kiddos... so happy to hear it resonated with you! Best, Debbie Reber, founder, TiLT Parenting

Lauren said...

Hi Debbie!

Thank you! Oh I can't tell you what a difference Tilt has already made in our family. A big "thank you to you and your guests and Asher too! Such a positive, encouraging community and resource to families. <3 :)