Friday, August 19, 2005

Yesterday started with Sunshine sleeping late. We found orange butterflies playing outside their window and watched them until they left, then Brighteyes insisted on showing me the two notes she could blow on the recorder, which she had learned from the recorder book. I showed her a few things I remembered from my days as last chair clarinet in high school and promised her my old instrument if she wanted it when she got big enough for it. She was fascinated to learn that recorders got that big.

We got through with lessons by 12:15. Brighteyes insisted on doing 4 pages in her handwriting book so she could go on and make the little alphabet primer at the end. We cut it out and assembled it. Brighteyes filled in the words and gave it to Sunshine so Sunshine could use it for her reading lesson. Sunshine thanked her, read it and colored in the pictures. I praised both girls and thought to myself, "This is why I don't want them separated in age-segregated classrooms."

I couldn't find any prehistoric activities, so we memorized "The Ages of History" instead: Old Stone Age, New Stone Age, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Industrial Age and Computer Age. I couldn't believe none of the children's history books listed those out. I explained that the ages were named after the most advanced tool-making materials available and illustrated the lesson with pictures from Eyewitness: Early Humans and stuff around the house. Brighteyes thinks each successive age had better toys. She was fascinated to learn that Mommy and Daddy had lived through the transition from the Industrial Age to the Computer Age, and wants to know what's going to come next. I told her there's no telling!

After lunch the girls were too wound up to settle down for quiet time. Usually Brighteyes will go read a book or play quietly while Mommy gets an afternoon rest. Not today. Unfortunately Mommy had been up with Sunshine for too many nights in a row, and with the heat near 100F I couldn't shoo them outside. I asked Brighteyes why she couldn't play in another room and she turned clingy. "But I want Mommy with me all the time!" By the time my husband got home I had gone from begging to yelling.

Fortunately his brains were working and he remembered the sprinkler toy my mother had bought the girls which we had all been too busy or too sick to pull out earlier this summer. Unfortunately no one could remember where it was. We ransacked the closets, found it, set it up, and it turned out to be defective. Brighteyes was disappointed, but I turned it into a lesson on why we hadn't bought any of the cheap radios we had found while looking for a joint anniversary present last week. Tomorrow I'll set up the garden sprinkler for them.

Right before going to bed I remembered that there were some Neolithic art coloring pages in a downloadable Pagan coloring book I had saved a while back. Well, we won't be leaving the New Stone Age anytime soon. I guess that can be next week's activity.

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