Thursday, June 30, 2011

Differences between The Voyage of the Dawn Trade book and movie by Flossy

The only thing that was different was that they didn't get captured as slaves the same way they did in the book. They didn't follow the blue star in the book. Eustace didn't sit on the mast in the book because he was a dragon and he didn't write 'I am Eustace' in lava letters. In the book they asked him was he Eustace and he nodded his head. He still could understand them even though he was a dragon. Aslan didn't change him back the same way he did in the book. In the book he took Eustace down to a well and then he told Eustace to take off his clothes, which means his skin. So he scratched his skin off and then he found some more skin, the same kind so Aslan made a deep scratch into all of Eustace's dragon skin and then he was a boy again.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Hawaiian Chicken

This recipe makes enough for 4 family meals.

1kg chicken breast chopped in thirds
8 rashes of bacon diced
2 brown onions diced
1 green capsicum diced
1 medium tin of pineapple pieces drained
800g tin crushed tomatoes
2 jars tomato based pasta sauce
2 cloves garlic minced
2 teaspoons sugar

Brown onions and bacon then transfer to slow cooker.
Add all other ingredients and cook on low all day.
Shred chicken pieces with a fork and stir.
Serve with rice, pasta or dry crusty bread.

Eat for dinner tonight then divide up the remainder and freeze for another time.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Milestones for Possum

Today Possum moved from his bassinet into his cot. He is a few days shy of 9 months old.

Also today, Possum started rolling again. Before he had heart surgery he had started rolling from his tummy to his back. After the surgery understandably he stopped doing it, but today he started again. He rolled both to the left and right several times this morning.


Perhaps you remember Mobilo from your own school days? I certainly do :) To be honest I had forgotten what it was called until Spring last year when we visited friends and the kids played with their Mobilo non stop. After that I knew what was going on our Christmas shopping list! I spoke with my wonderful sister in law who bought the kids a large bucket to share for Christmas. Six months on and the kids are still playing with the Mobilo almost every day! It is so versatile. Here are some of their creation.

Flossy built this train to collect Little People and transport them around the house.

After watching Star Wars everyone was busy creating. They did a very impressive job!

Bugsy and his X wing.

Chicky and her tie fighter.

Do you have Mobilo? What have you and your family been busy building? We love to take a look.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Rainy Day Fun

Generally the kids spend the entire afternoon outside playing but on a rainy day we pull out some games. Our favorites include Castle Logix, Pirates Hide & Seek, Sort n Shapes and Animal Lotto.

Chicky playing Sort n Shapes. This is the first time she has really got what the game is all about. Another developmental milestone!

Flossy playing Castle Logix. Everyone LOVES Castle Logix, even Russ and I.

Bugsy busy with Pirate Hide & Seek. This game is quite challenging. Bugsy is easily frustrated and doesn't last long but today he managed to keep it together and persevere through quite a few of the challenges.

Busy, but quite kiddos while Possum naps :) Hopefully tomorrow the sun will return and they will be back outside on the tramp.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sharing a Story

I had the pleasure of meeting Kat and Aaron through Possums journey in NICU. Their son Noah suffered Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy at birth and his prognosis is not good. You can read his story and find out how you can help these amazing people by visiting their blog or by visiting their Facebook page Noah's Ark (community). They will be holding an auction shortly to help raise funds to care for their son.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

All About Spelling Review

All About Spelling is as the title suggests a homeschool spelling program. It comprises 7 levels which do not correlate to grade level. Currently only the first 6 levels are available, the 7th level is due to be released anytime. An average student working for 10 mins per school day could probably complete 2 levels in 1 year.

This program uses rule based spelling instruction and strives for mastery. Eg - one rule learnt in level 1 is "c says /s/ before e, i & y". The student will then learn how to decide which /k/ to use at the beginning of a word trying c first then changing to k if the c makes the wrong sound. As the rule becomes firm and the child has practiced making the right choice it becomes an automated decision.

A whiteboard and tiles are used so that a young student doesn't tire and also to make the program more hands on. When starting level 1 you begin with a limited number of phonograms but as you move through the levels more and more phonograms are added until you have learnt them all. When displaying them on the board they are grouped together by type. Eg - the vowel teams are all grouped together, the consonant suffixes are all grouped.

Each level has 1 teacher manual. Within the manual there are steps. Each level has a different number of steps. Level 1 has 24 while level 3 has 28. At the beginning of each step there is review of previously mastered rules and phonograms and also rules and phonograms that still need mastering. The idea isn't to get bogged down here in the review just to make sure you do some daily.

The step is then presented on the whiteboard using the tiles. Only once the teacher feels the student is confident with the material should they ask the student to begin writing on paper. There are 10 words to spell at the end of the step and also dictation phrases and later sentences. If the student misses lots of words then they have not understood that step and should continue to work there before moving on. Only once mastery of that step is achieved should the student move on.

There is some flexibility with the dictation phrases and sentences. If the student finds the material easy and doesn't make any mistakes you might choose to only complete a third or half of the phrases/sentences. Similarly if they need more work there is plenty of material to expand the step.

This program is very teacher intensive. The student cannot be left to work on this alone at all.

We LOVE this program. It is explicit, very easy to implement and produces outstanding results!

** Please note that we do not receive any kick back for endorsing this program. We just like to share when things are working well for us. **

Friday, June 17, 2011

Home Oxygen for Possum

Possum's last sleep study revealed that he has oxygen saturations that are too low whilst he is asleep at night so he has been put on home oxygen. What does that mean?

Boc deliver medical oxygen to our house once a month. Every night we connect the nasal cannular up to the regulator on the bottle and a measured dose, in this case 250ml per minute is delivered all night. In the mornings we disconnect him and remove the nasal cannular.

Here is Possum taped up ready for bed.

Because we are removing the cannular daily we have put duoderm on his checks to protect them. We then use fiximul to tape the cannular down. The fiximul is removed daily and the duoderm as needed. We have also trimmed the nasal prongs as they were just too long for his little nose.

He has adjusted very well to having his prongs in. He sucks his fingers and thumb and didn't really like the prongs being in his way the first night but has settled easily since then. Babies really are very adaptable.

At this point we are hoping that he will come off night oxygen sometime in the spring.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Family Update


She has been busy working hard on school. She saw the eye Dr again a couple of weeks back and there has been no change on that front. She will continue to patch for 2 hours per day, her script remains the same.


He been a very boisterous boy recently and is struggling with self control, but he is getting there. His reading is coming along in leaps and bounds.


She has had a couple of head colds over the last month or so. Thankfully she has managed to keep her germs to herself and no one else has got sick. She loves to sit at the table and draw.


He has cracked 6kg now and is just moving into OO clothing. He recently had a sleep study to check on his apnoeas and it revealed that he continues to have low oxygen saturation overnight so he has now been placed on night oxygen. His hearing has recently been tested too as we were concerned that he may be deaf. The testing revealed that he has moderate low frequency hearing loss mostly likely caused by a fluid build up in his ears, so he will be having grommets put in later in the year which will hopefully fix his hearing problem. He is a happy baby and loves to play with his toys on the mat.

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