Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Preschool at Home, the Park, and My Current Struggles

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon and Zaycon Fresh.

So I thought I would give a few updates as to what's been happening at our house. Since I normally feel like I ramble in my posts, I decided to switch it up with our current life under a list. This way actually works best for me as I am a perpetual list maker and love to check my lists off as I go! Here's what's going on at our house, list style for your viewing pleasure!

We did not send Payton to preschool at 3 and we chose to work with her at home instead. We are undecided still about this next year but Payton is loving the lessons I pull together for her. We got  this exact workbook set and Payton has loved it. I started with doing 1-2 numbers each day from the Mickey Mouse workbook and then I would find an online worksheet to accompany it. Check out this website for free worksheets. We are now working on the alphabet and I am following the same plan but I have also incorporated Bath time toys and Fridge Magnets throughout the day for further review, also known as lots of repetition!

The flashcards from the above set are awesome as well. We use them almost daily. I don't always just show her the card and have her tell me what it is. Sometimes, I hand her the cards and ask her to find a certain item (like a red rectangle). Other times, I pull cards out and we play the matching game and match them up. I want to get the cards laminated though as they have been fairly well used already and I want them to last for our son when the time comes for him.

Lastly, I am trying out ABC Mouse for preschool activities as well. I got a coupon from Groupon and will decide in a few months if I want to continue this or not. We don't allow Payton to have much screen time as we have found that too much technology for her can cause major behavioral issues, sometimes lasting the remainder of the day. So, that being said, she is very limited on ABC Mouse but loves it. She gets about 15 minutes at a time and only uses it a handful of days each week. 

I don't know for sure what is working but the combination (and possibly her age) seems to be working well for her at this time.  We will keep on going with this routine for the time being. 

The Park

If you have followed me for awhile (or know me personally), you know we love to be outside. We caught another break from the freezing cold of winter and were able to make a trip to the park. This always makes for a good time. The kids fed the ducks, went for a walk, and we played at the playground.
The next day we were sentenced inside again with a light snow and freezing temperatures.
Riley spent most of his winter looking like this. He has to always have a blanket on him and also loves to just randomly lay down on blankets and "rest."

This is quite a comparable difference to our little Payton, who fights bedtime, resting, and sleep like her life depends on it. Riley, though, you just need to wave a blanket over your lap and you have a cuddler headed your way.

Getting Out and About

The weather may keep us from going outside but I am still trying to get out during the week with the kids. Payton has gymnastics and Riley spends some quality time with Daddy during that time. We also visit those at the nursing home about one time each week and we are trying to make it to one story time at the library each week.

Story time is great because both kids can go and participate. It's not great that sometimes the kids will run around in opposite directions and make this trip a very trying time for me. The struggle is real when one tired momma is chasing 2 very active, young children. We took a long break from story time after a few really bad trips to the library (and a few times of getting sick from there) but the kids seems to be back on track.
While at the library, we always stock up on books (and some movies) to read. I love a change up in books from the ones we have at home.

Freezer Meals

I used to regularly do freezer meals. I have slipped horribly recently. We fell into a pattern where we were eating out regularly because I wasn't planning well for meals. I was the first one to admit it was increasing my pant size and also left me feeling horrible from all the processed foods.

So, I am trying to get back into the swing of freezer meals and meal preparation. Last week, I bought bulk chicken through Zaycon fresh and was very pleased with the chicken we got. I had very little fat to remove and the chicken breasts were huge! After the kids went to bed, we made up 12 freezer meals.

I keep it so simple. We bought several kinds of Lawry's marinades and poured them with the chicken into freezer bags (about 4 breasts to a bag). I also prepared a few batches of chicken strips and put them in the the freezer as well. When I pull the meals out, we normally grill the chicken and I throw together some rice and veggies. Viola! Dinner is served.

Over this weekend, my hubby and I made homemade runzas. These were so good and we got about 40 runzas into the freezer.
I'm slowly finding a baking/cooking groove again. It's hard to get back into the cooking habit when you fall out of it. If you freezer meal prep, share with me some of your meals you use or tips to stay motivated!


This should have honestly been titled lack of sleep. We still aren't getting much sleep at our house. My daughter is sleeping fine, with the occasional waking at night. My son, on the other hand, is sleeping worse than he did as a newborn. Some nights, he isn't even making it an hour. It's been rough here. 
Naps used to not be a struggle and our only problem area was night sleeping. That has changed recently as well. We said goodbye to the 2-3 hour naps he was taking and are finding several times a week he will sleep maybe 45 minutes. He is so tired when he gets up but I can't get him to fall back asleep except the one time in the above picture. I embraced that nap with all that I had. It had been a long while since a child randomly fell asleep on me in the living room. 

My Personal Struggles

See the above sleep section to understand my personal struggles lately. Sleep deprivation has not looked good on me lately. I am tired and there doesn't seem to be enough coffee. ever. I have also been getting horrible headaches, which I think are due to lack of sleep (or maybe the coffee, who knows). 

Between lack of sleep and poor meal planning lately, I've been riding the struggle bus a lot lately. I'm hoping things can start turning around soon, but it's so hard to know when I will start getting sleep again. Or what the right thing to do is. Or if I am even doing the right thing. So, if you could say a little prayer for me, I would be much appreciative. Until I get off the struggle bus, I am using this time to turn to my faith and find appreciation for the life I have been given. 

Happy Wednesday! We are almost through the week!

This post contains sponsored links from Amazon and Zaycon Fresh.

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