Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New year, new resolutions, new motivation... Maybe

I've never been one to make new year's resolutions. I believe that if you want to make a change or do something different, then just do it. You don't need to wait for January 1st. This year though, January 1st just happened to fall right around the time that I decided I needed (or wanted) to make some major changes. Ok, not major, but some changes.

We missed the New Years start point though because we were fighting some sickies in the monkey cave, but we are all recovered this week and started fresh yesterday. So what's going to be different? Our schedule and goals I suppose.

This year I'm going to spend some time focusing on myself as well as my kids. I've been just "mommy" for three years now. We made a big decision this past week that we are done having kids. Baby Monkey will be our last. So Mama Monkey wants to work on my health, my relationship with my husband, my faith, and just getting back into the things we enjoy but couldn't do because we had a baby (or two). This means schedule changes to fit everything in. I've registered for a half marathon in October and hope to do a 10 mile in April. So I need to run and train several days a week. It's hard to fit in preschool, training (especially as my milage goes up) and play all in the same day. So we will be doing school 2 days a week most weeks. We will spend the other days of the week training, playing, getting outside time, and other day to day activities (laundry and grocery shopping have to be done at some point! The Monkey family needs clean underpants.).

This summer Big Monkey will start a reading program with me if he seems to be ready. Right now he doesn't have the attention span or motivation. We are also lacking a few pre-reading skills that we will work on this spring. If he's not ready by summer, then we will wait until fall or possibly until his fourth birthday next winter.

After this spring, we will have 2 more "preschool years" before Big Monkey starts kindergarden (possibly at the local public school). So this fall we will start a more challenging preschool curriculum and the year after that we will do a pre-k program. Which I have not decided yet.

We got lots of great educational toys for Christmas, so we will have plenty to do between now and summer. Most importantly, I want the boys to experience some fun stuff and enjoy their time with Mama Monkey while they learn important readiness skills.

Oh and over the break we got a caterpillar kid from Insect Lore. It was neat! We got 5 caterpillars and watched them grow into huge fat caterpillars. Then they went into "cocoons" and later "hatched" into gorgeous painted lady butterflies. Here are some highlight photos.

A week or so after they arrived:

 Another week later. Getting bigger.

 Cocoons! There was one more on the floor. He survived despite falling.

 Our first butterfly! We never saw one emerge. I looked in on this guy before breakfast and there was no butterfly. By the time we finished eating breakfast, we had a butterfly!

 We now have 4 of these. If it was warmer outside, we could release them. Instead we are feeding our little butterflies and keeping them for their full life cycle. I have no idea how long that will be nor do I know what I will tell Big Monkey about the butterflies once their life cycle is over. I'm taking it all one day at a time.

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