Monday, 26 December 2011

Christmas 2011

When you are away from family over the holidays it can sometimes be difficult but we found away to connect. Thank goodness for technology!!:)

Saying Hi to Nana and Grandpa with the kids opening up their presents via the computer connection, so Nana and Grandpa could see the kids reactions. The gifts were a success. We love you and miss you both:)

A family tradition at our house to to make a cake and have the kids decorate it and then sing Happy Birthday to baby Jesus. This is our cake this year.

It is custom here in Jolly Ole England that on Christmas Day the Queen gives a speech to the nation. We have been here 3 years and this is the first time I have sat down to watch it. I am sharing it with you today:) Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

I will be taking the rest of the week off to spend with my family. See you all in the year 2012!!!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Friday, 23 December 2011

Christmas Market in Rochester, UK

Christmas markets are very popular over here in the UK and almost every weekend from end of Nov til Christmas you can find a Christmas market that you can visit. Last year we attended one in London this year we went a bit further away to Rochester to visit their Christmas market and see their Cathedral and castle.

This Cathedral was built originally by the Normans

Beautiful organ. We even heard a bit of music as the choir was practicing for the evening service.

Main altar

Baptismal font

Original (13th Century) painting found on one of the walls in the church.

Castle ruins

This year the theme of the market was Dickens, there were a few people wearing costumes of the early Victorian period

Traveling band

By the time we found Santa we were told we needed to make an appt and it would be 2 to 3 hours. So we moved on to other things.

Several fair rides but we restricted the kids to each picking only one ride each as they were very expensive!

I am taking the week between Christmas and New Year off to spend some quiet time at home with just my family.


I am linking this post to the Home school Field trip hop

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Science lessons

We are continuing our Science lesson using Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry Level 1 and really enjoying it. It helps that we have good friends that get together with us to do labs. Here are some of our different experiments. Since we are with friends I don't always remember to take pictures of every step so bare with me here:)

Unmixing a solution

We had the kids mix several items and then brain storm how we could unmix them. We mix, salt, sand, lentil and iron shavings into a bowl

Used a colander to remove the lentils

Use a magnet to remove the iron shavings.

Used a sieve, coffee filter and water to remove the sand

boiled the water away to reach the salt


Finding starches in food using iodine

We are enjoying both getting together with friends to do our labs as well as the actual science program - Real Science 4 kids.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Portugal Day 5

Oops forgot to publish our last day in Portugal:) The tiles in this castle were so amazing and the decor is so different from anything I have seen in England that I wanted to share it with you!

Our last trip in Portugal was to visit the town of Sintra which is located about 45 minutes by train from Lisbon. It was a beautiful quaint village with several castles. We only had time to visit the National Palace and were able to see the amazing tile work inside.

When we first arrived to town we took a horse and carriage ride around the town.

We saw some teenagers performing songs and dancing on the street.

Amazing building sites

National Palace

The main hall

King's bedroom

dining room

another room in the palace

This room had no tile work but tapestries which is more common to see in the UK

Another bedroom

My picture doesn't do this room justice. It was breathtaking to enter into this room. Gold painted ceiling contrasting with the traditional blue and white Portuguese tile work on the walls.

All the wall were covered with hunting scenes and the were quite detailed.

Tile work even went around the corners of the walls.

Another impressive and different site was the kitchen and the layout. There was a central spit but it was in the middle of the kitchen and directly above it was a massive chimney flume (see next picture)

I couldn't help but think being a kitchen helper would have been very dangerous, and since I am known for being clumsy, I wouldn't have made it very long if I had to work around a large fire in the middle of my kitchen floor !

Chimney flume

I am linking this post to the Home school Field trip hop!

Friday, 16 December 2011

Schooling with Daddy

Last Week my husband took the day off work and told me that he was giving me a day off from teaching. WOW!! I was supposed to use this time to rest and relax but I did a bit of housework.

While my husband didn't cover the subjects that I normally cover in a morning, I thought he did a great job! I did have to laugh out loud though as when he sat the kids down he told them to be as good for him as they are for Mommy during school:) I can assure you they were :) !!!

Daddy decided to clean the computer and use this time to explain the parts of the computer to the children.

Daddy and the kids cleaning the dust out of the inside of the computer, and looking at more interesting computer parts.

Next, my husband decided to cover a bit of geography. I had been meaning to review longitude and latitude with the kids for some time during our geography lesson, but hadn't gotten around to it yet. So I handed my husband the supplies and let him have a turn.

Using the globe to locate countries and cities we have been studying this year using longitude and latitude.

Next Daddy used the Google Earth to compare the longitude and latitude the children located on the globe.

School lasted for about 2 hours and then we took the rest of the day off. The kids really enjoyed having Daddy do school telling me that Daddy's school isn't as hard as Mommy's school;). I wonder how long it will be before I get another day off:)