Saturday, May 31, 2014

Wiffle Ball Mania

   All three boys were up at 5:15 in the morning yesterday.  How we went from 7:30 sleep in on Tuesday to a 5:15 wake up on Friday I have no idea... but I much prefer the 7:30.  When the kids were in public school I used to wake up as early as 4:30 or 5:00 and one of things I love most about homeschooling is being able to sleep in and have nice relaxing mornings.  I was dreading the day thinking that all the boys would be so grouchy after waking up so early, but I was wrong and we had an amazing day!  The younger two boys went right to the Wii and started playing Skylanders.  Ian sat down to eat breakfast and watched a few shows on our DVR like Dual Survival and stuff like that. 
   I was amazed when I looked at the clock around 9:00 and realized that it was only 9!  I had exercised, gotten dressed, did some laundry, worked on my scrapbooking, and felt like I had really accomplished a lot.  The boys had taken a few small breaks from the Wii.  Ian played in his room for a long time building with his Legos and Evan and Alec both worked together to clean Alec's room and put away all his laundry. 
         Even though the weather forecast wasn't looking good I offered to take the boys to the zoo, or hiking, or the beach, or really anywhere.  They all said they'd rather stay home!  I couldn't believe it!  I told them they would not be playing/ watching screens all day and asked them what they were going to do.  Their answer "we want to stay home and play more Wiffle Ball."  All three of them agreed that they'd rather say home and play Wiffle Ball than go anywhere else.  I couldn't believe it.  I don't even like Wiffle ball! 
    They all headed outside and played on the swing set until I could join them outside.  Ian and I palyed Wiffle ball alone for awhile since the younger two boys were busy playing Skylanders in the woods.  They used the poster that came with the game as a map and assigned each other roles and attributes.  They joined us eventually and then we all played Wiffle Ball together, though Alec did start working on drawing his own map on the back of the poster.    No one argued over batting order, which bats to use, or anything else the whole time we played.  They all got along great and we had a huge family discussion about where/ what to do for our family vacation (I still haven't book anything even though I've been planning for months).  We had so much fun and the weather forecast was wrong-- it was a beautiful sunny day.  I even managed to go outside in a tank top and pants today.  Finally some nice warm, sunny weather! 
Alec drawing his map of Skylanders

      We went inside long enough to make lunch and decided to, once again, have a family picnic on the lawn.  I read another chapter in Harry Potter and we stopped for some discussion about the choices Harry and his friends were making.  We watched the helicopter fly overhead, listened to some bullfrogs croaking, watched an inchworm crawling, and just enjoyed being outside. 

   Once lunch was all cleaned up we headed back to our game of Wiffle Ball.  The boys weren't getting along quite so well this time around and the bugs were out in full force.  The sky clouded over and we unanimously decided to head back inside.  The boys all took turns playing Wii together-- all three of them-- without argument!!  I couldn't believe it.  I had to take a picture; that just never happens! We only have two controllers so there's often a battle about who will sit on the sidelines and then they often start yelling at one another that they're doing it wrong and I end up shutting the whole thing down.  But today they really worked together as a team.  They listened to one another, helped one another and patiently taught Ian how to play.  It was great! 

    I persuaded them to turn it off and we ran to the library and the grocery store. I just had to pick up some strawberries and cream to go with the chocolate pound cake I made this morning.  Something about chocolate strawberry shortcake....mmmmm!  While at the library Alec was thrilled to find that 3 more chapter books came in for him.  He was dismayed when he realized that the books skipped over one of the books in the series that he has not yet read.  I told him we should check to see if our library had a copy that we could just check out right now.  We went to the computer and used the on-line card catalog and I showed him how to tell if  the book was available and what the call number was (in this case the author's last name).  I then walked him over to where the fiction chapter books were and showed him how the isles are arranged alphabetically by author's last name and we found his book.  He was skipping back up to the counter and by the time he handed it to the librarian he had already read several pages. 
    The boys were thrilled to be listening to more of The House of Hades in the car and we stopped the disk often to talk about what was happening or what we thought was going to happen.  I noticed Alec would sneak peaks at his Dragonbreath book any time I stopped the disk. I'm always amazed that he can read and carry on a conversation fairly well when needed.  Annabeth and Percy are in the middle of Tartarus and the rest of the clan are completing their quest in Venice and heading to Hades to meet up with Percy and Annabeth.  We're constantly wondering how they're going to complete this quest and yet we know they will... somehow.
    We came for a quick dinner and change of clothes before heading out for the boys' karate graduation.  Ian moved up to the intermediate class with Alec and they are thrilled at the idea that they might get to spar with one another in class.  Evan earned his next belt level last night too and was told he could try out the next level of classes this coming week.  He's been in a class designed for 3-6 year olds while his brothers were in a children's beginner class; now they've graduated out of the beginner class Evan has been asking how long he had to wait to be in that beginner class with the older kids.  His instructor heard him asking the other day and told him that since he's almost 7 he could come to the children's class and try it out.  As long as he can listen and remain in good control of his body he will be able to stay in that class and move up to yellow belt.  He's been talking about getting his yellow belt ever since.  I think he was hoping that they'd just give him a yellow belt last night!  Graduations tend to run long since they have so many kids and adults graduation and they like to show off a variety of skills.  Alec had brought his new chapter book to read and ended up finishing it long before graduation was over.  Both him and Evan were getting antsy and bored until some of the junior black belts started sparring and breaking boards.  I think they're all fascinated by the idea that they could be doing that one day. 

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