If you leave a comment under anonymous please put your name at the end of the message so I know who left the comment. Thanks! Laura

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Leland happenings

Courtney has been here since Sunday and James is coming down today. James is staying until Wed. next week because he has football camp here in Omaha. Courtney isn't sure how long she is staying. Jordan is ecstatic to have her brother and sister here.

I only have Erica and Parker for 7 more days. I have them tomorrow and then just M-W-F for the next 2 weeks. I'm glad I am almost done with them. Parker is getting to be SUCH a handful.

Jordan, Courtney and I are going to Des Moines Saturday to meet my mom and scrapbook. We are only staying one night so it will be a quick trip.

That's about it from this neck of the woods

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Kindergarten Girl

My baby is officially a kindergartener now. Her class had their PreK celebration on Friday. They sang songs for us. It was so cute. Here are some pictures, although I'm disappointed that they turned out grainy.
Haley, Jordan, Andrew and Kamrynn. No she wasn't picking her nose. She was scratching her mosquito bite on her cheek
Ashten, Carissa, Alexis, Haley, Jordan, Andrew, Kamrynn, Tessa, Joshua, and Kamian singing "skidamarink"
I don't know why these turned out so grainy. My camera usually take such good pictures. I must have had some setting off or something

All the parents with their kids eating snacks and looking at the folders Ms. Jo gave out with their certificates and some of their work in them.
Jordan's seat-mate Carissa

She has love in her eyes for Ashten. Did I post on here about how she told me that back in Jan or Feb? It was so funny. One day out of the blue she says "mama I love Ashten." I said "Oh yeah?" and she says "yeah, when I look at him I have love in my eyes." LOL! I couldn't believe she said that! I have no idea where she heard it from

Jordan and Ms. Jo.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Fieldtrip to the zoo

Today was Jordan's class fieldtrip to the zoo. What a mad house! There were probably 50 other school groups there today as well. The kids had a good time though. We were there for about 2 1/2 hours. It started to rain so we came home. Tomorrow is supposed to be the family picnic at a local park but it's supposed to rain so I don't know if we will make it. Here are a few pictures from the group we were with.
Joshua, Jordan, Dominic (Ashten's little brother), Tessa, Ashten and Andrew playing on the lion sculptures

Andrew, Joshua, A kid from the PM class, and Jordan

Noah (Joshua's little brother), Kamrynn, Tessa, Ashten, Joshua, Jordan, Dominic and the PM kid

Jordan and Tessa in the aquarium tunnel
Andrew, Jordan, Tessa, Noah and Joshua watching the polar bears

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


I have all of our reservations confirmed for our trip in July now. YEAH! I ended up reserving the KOA at Three Forks, MT instead of Butte because I looked again and Three Forks has a small farm with horses. It says in their write up that you can feed the horses. Jordan will love it. I'm glad this is all taken care of now and all I have to do is wait 7 weeks and 3 days until we leave! Oh and I have to find a dress that I can fit into to go to Ali's wedding in :)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Our Summer Trip

I've been reworking our summer trip and trying to look at alternate places to stay on the way home because I can not get an associate rate at any Marriott hotel. I've also decided we won't be going to the tri-cites or over to Seattle. We will just be staying at my dads for the whole week. With the way gas prices are and the fact that I don't want to be so rushed I think this is the best way to go. I've decided we will leave my dad's a day earlier than we had originally planned. We will take 4 days and 3 nights coming home and stay in KOA campgrounds. It will end up costing almost what we would have paid to stay at the Spearfish, SD Fairfield Inn for one night and we won't have to drive 12 hours to get there. That was my original plan--to drive from dad's to Spearfish on the 23rd and then drive home from Spearfish. Based on how tired I was driving home in April I don't want to do that. So my plan is to get money out of my savings account tomorrow and put it into my checking account and book the reservations at the KOA campgrounds. they require pre-payment but you can cancel 1 week before arrival so if I do change my mind again I can still get out of it. At two of the camp grounds (Buffalo, WY and Kennebec, SD) they have teepees to sleep in! I'm going to try to get those reserved. I think Jordan would LOVE sleeping in them. Here are the places I'm going to make reservations at: Butte, MT http://www.koa.com/where/mt/26106/ We will just stay in one of their one bedroom cabins. Buffalo, WY http://www.koa.com/where/wy/50152/ These guys have the teepees and Kennebec, SD http://www.koa.com/where/sd/41101/ These guys also have teepees Here's a pic of the inside of their teepees. We just need to take our sleeping bags with us. All of these campgrounds have pools and the Buffalo, Wy one has horses nearby and has a horse corral on property so campers can bring their horses. Jordan would be in absolute heaven if they had horses there. So as of now this is my itenerary for our trip:
7/13—Home to Sioux Falls, SD (RI)= 174 miles approx 2 hours and 43 min

7/14—Sioux Falls to Billings, MT (SH) = 722 miles approx. 9 hours and 52 min

7/15—Billings to dad’s = 520 miles approx 7 hours and 15 min.

7/21—Ali’s Wedding

7/22—Dad’s to Butte, MT—KOA= 297 miles approx 4 hrs and 18 min

7/23—Butte to Buffalo, WY—KOA= 391 mi approx 5 hrs and 24 min

7/24—Buffalo to Kennebec, SD—KOA= 387 mi approx 5 hrs and 19 min

7/25—Kennebec to home—approx 5 hrs

Friday, May 18, 2007

Jordan's pre-k pictures

I cheated and took pictures of the pictures since our scanner is broken. These are not the best quality but at least you can see them.

My little girl is growing up

I got Jordan's Pre-K class picture and individual pictures back yesterday. My little girl looks so grown up in them. Our scranner is broken or I would scan and upload them here. Jordan is anxiously awaiting next week. It's the last week of school and the Pre-K class has 4 field trips planned! She gets to ride the school bus for two of them. Monday they are going to Neale Woods, it's a nature conservatory here. I wish I could go with her on this one but extra children are not allowed and I don't have anyone to watch Parker and Erica for me. Tuesday they are going to the local library. Parker, Erica and I will meet them there. Wednesday is the family trip to the zoo. We are all meeting at the zoo at 10:00 to spend the day there. Thursday is the family picnic at a local park. Again we are meeting there at 10:00 and spending as much time as we want. Friday is the Pre-K graduation. I'm trying to find someone to a watch Erica and Parker for me that day because I'm fearful that they will be loud and obnoxious during the celebration.

Jordan is looking forward to this summer. I've told her we will do all kinds of fun things together. She can't wait until the second week of June when we don't have Parker and Erica anymore. Parker has REALLY become a handful and mean. Jordan is really having a hard time putting up with him lately. She keeps telling me she doesn't want Parker here anymore. I just keep reasuring her it will only be for a little longer. Jordan will be taking several classes at the zoo this summer. My mom sent her money for her birthday for classes. I just need to get her signed up for them. I think she is taking 4 or 5 classes. We absolutely love our zoo and spend alot of time there each summer. If we ever move away from here we will really miss it.

It's starting to warm up here and I need to get out to my backyard gardens and get them weeded. I noticed yesterday that they are getting really bad. Jordan has been having a great time digging up worms. She has all the older neighbor kids looking for worms for her too. She is such a nature freak like me. Although I don't like worms :) We got some more bird food last week and we are having a great time watching the birds come to the feeders in the backyard. Jordan can now identify some of the birds too. It's so cute to watch her eyes light up and say "There's a house finch mom." or "There's the daddy cardinal." Of course we have several squirrels we feed too and it's fun to watch there antics. We really need to live in the woods where we can enjoy more nature.

That's about all for an update from us.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Mother's Day Pictures

Jordan and I had our pictures taken today for Mother's day. Here's the copies from the Picture People website. With their lovely water mark on them.


I went to Scrapmania tonight at Archivers. It's so relaxing there. I got a few things done. There's always things to scrapbook. It seems my pile of projects just keeps growing. I need to get my count of how many scrapbook pages I've completed updated one of these days too. I'll have to go back and count what I've done. Hopefully in June I will meet my mom in Des Moines for another scrapbooking weekend at the Residence Inn.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

School Decisions

I'm still spending every waking moment researching homeschooling. But today I found out that Jordan got into the small school I had requested for her for next year. So now I'm in a dilema over what to do. I have researched this school and really liked it. There's only one class for each grade level and only 150 kids in the whole school (the school that is our "neighborhood" school has 650 kids!). Jordan's pre-K teacher says that Ponca school is really good. She used to teach there a few years ago. She said it's nice little "country school". Now I'm thinking that I may send her there and just do all the volunteering I can with her class. I will need to talk to Jim about it tonight when he gets home. here's a link to the schools site. http://www.ops.org/elementary/ponca/HOME/tabid/36/Default.aspx

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Thinking About Homeschooling

I'm sorry I haven't posted much on here since we got back from Washington. I have been spending all of my free time on the computer researching homeschooling options. Jim and I are seriously considering homeschooling Jordan next year. People have been asking me why we want to home school. My answer is 3 fold:

1. I would put Jordan in a private Christian school if I could afford it but that's out of the question until we are done paying child support in 2 years.

2. I don't like all the violence that is going on even in the elementary schools these days.

3. My own selfish reason. All Omaha kindergartens are now full day and so if she were in school I would only see her for an hour a day before I had to go to work. She would get out of school at 3:50 and I leave for work around 5:00. I don't think I can go from having her with me all day long to only seeing her for an hour a night.

We have been looking into different homeschooling curriculums and also considering "unit studies". A friend of mine who is also going to be HS her daughter for Kindergarten also pointed out that with Kindergarten you wouldn't necessarily have to purchase any curriculum because of the wealth of free information available via the Internet and the library. Here are the content standards for Omaha Public School's Kindergarten:


Discover… Art Is All Around Us

01 Use various art media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas.
• Use art materials and tools safely and appropriately.
• Explore simple art media in creating art works.
• Create artwork about people, places, and things.

02 Demonstrate an understanding of the visual arts in relation to aesthetics,
history, and culture.
• Discuss the question: What is Art?
• View and discuss artworks from different cultures and times.
• Examine artwork that reflects how people are alike and different.

03 Analyze the characteristics and merits of a work of art.
• Develop and comprehend a basic art vocabulary that exhibits knowledge of
the following art elements and their characteristics:
Line: words that describe lines, i.e. straight, curved, and zigzag
Shape: circle, square, triangle, rectangle, oval, diamond, nature shapes
Size: small, medium, large
Color: red, yellow, blue, orange, green, purple, white, black, brown
• Compare and contrast artists’ subjects to objects in the real world.

04 Explore ways that art is connected to other things we learn.
• Compare elements in works of art to elements found in nature.
• Observe and describe daily and seasonal weather changes as seen in works
of art.


01 Communicate the meaning of numbers 1-20.
• Demonstrate one-to-one correspondence.
• Recognize numerals 1-20.

02 Demonstrate the concept of addition and subtraction.
• Demonstrate one-to-one correspondence.
• Recognize that addition is combining sets.
• Recognize that subtraction is separating sets.

03 Estimate numerical solutions.
• Demonstrate number sense.
• Understand estimation is not an exact answer.

04 Apply concepts of measurement.
• Match types of measurement with types of machine.
• Apply nonstandard measurement.

05 Identify, describe, and create geometric shapes.
• Match shapes to names.
• Match shapes to descriptions.
• Recognize sides and corners.
• Reproduce geometric shapes.

06 Demonstrate knowledge of math related vocabulary to analyze data for
• Select the vocabulary related to graphing (shortest, longest, tallest,
smallest, same).
• Create a graph.
• Compare items on graphs.

07 Describe, create, and extend patterns.
• Choose a pattern that demonstrates a repeated sequence or design.
• Create the next object in a pattern.

08 Sort and classify objects according to one or more attributes.
• Group things together that are alike in some way.
• Demonstrate the use of reasoning in explaining the method used for
• Identify an isolated attribute when sorting and classifying.


01 Demonstrate phonological awareness.
• Identify rhyming words.
• Identify beginning, middle, and ending sounds in one-syllable words.
• Blend individual sounds into words orally.

02 Memorize and recite familiar nursery rhymes and poems.
• Demonstrate the ability to recite familiar nursery rhymes and poems orally.

03 Apply knowledge of the organization of print to reading.
• Demonstrate the ability to point to words.
• Demonstrate the ability to locate top to bottoms.
• Demonstrate the ability to track left to right.
• Demonstrate the ability to turn pages sequentially.

04 Name upper and lower case letters of the alphabet.

05 Produce single consonants and short vowel sounds.

06 Recognize color, number, and high frequency words.

07 Listen to fiction and nonfiction to demonstrate understanding.
• Make reasonable predictions based on information from the story.
• Recall events of the story.
• Distinguish between reality and fantasy.

08 Self-select and independently “read” fiction and nonfiction materials.

09 Write the letters of the alphabet.

10 Use writing to convey messages.
• Demonstrate the ability to form letters.
• Write from dictation.

11 Use oral language to communicate.

12 Gain information and complete tasks through listening.
• Follow 1- and 2-step directions.

13 Recognize that people come from different cultural backgrounds.
• Listen attentively to multicultural literature and poems.
• Respond to questions about multicultural literature and poems.
• Use illustrations and multicultural literature to answer questions about
other cultures (attire, food, holidays, and traditions).


01 Examine problems using scientific inquiry.
• Collect information by observing sorted sets of materials
• Collect information by observing living things as they grow.
• Collect information by observing a weather graph.

02 Integrate unifying concepts and processes in science experiences.
• Use one or more of the five senses to sort common materials
• Describe and record how illustrations can represent change in living
• Describe and record how a model can represent the weather.

03 Observe, describe, and sort common materials.
• Objects can be sorted by various attributes.
• Household tools can be sorted by design and use.
• Many things in our world can be recycled.

04 Investigate and describe how living things change as they grow.
• Living things change as they grow.
• Living and non-living things are different.
• Living creatures must satisfy basic needs in order to grow and be healthy.

05 Observe and describe daily and seasonal weather changes.
• Each season has different weather characteristics.
Winter Summer
Spring Fall

• Day and night have unique characteristics.
Stars Sun

• The sun gives us heat and light.


Focus - Self and Families

• Identify the likenesses and differences of self with others.

• Demonstrate an understanding of the concept of yesterday, today,
and tomorrow.

• Recognize the globe as a model of the earth.

• Identify how families and communities work together to meet their
basic needs and wants.

• Participate cooperatively in group activities.

• Follow school rules.


01 Memorize and recite familiar nursery rhymes and poems. *

02 Listen to fiction and nonfiction to demonstrate understanding. *

03 Self-select and independently “read” fiction and nonfiction materials
(decode story through illustrations).*
04 Formulate a basic question about an information topic.

05 Be familiar with the following terms: title, author, illustrator, cover,
spine, pages.

06 Exhibit appropriate library media center behavior including proper
care of materials, equipment, and facility.

07 Demonstrate proper checkout procedures, and return books in a
responsible manner.

08 Recognize that people come from different cultural backgrounds. ***

* Matches Reading/Language Arts standards.

*** District-adopted multicultural standards intended for use in all subject


01 Demonstrate an understanding of movement concepts and demonstrate a
variety of physical skills.
• Model non-manipulative skills.
• Perform locomotor movements.
• Display manipulative skills.
• Exhibit an understanding of spatial awareness.
• Demonstrate an understanding of how the body can move in relation to
self, others and objects.
• Apply the concepts of force, time and flow.

02 Understand the benefits of a physically active lifestyle.
• Demonstrate an awareness of physical activity opportunities inside and
outside of school.
• Recognize inhibitors to physical activity.
• Know how to modify daily routine to include physical activity.
• Identify and demonstrate the components of physical fitness.
• Demonstrate an awareness of consumer issues and exercise

03 Demonstrate responsible personal and social behavior during physical
• Demonstrate an understanding of and follow good sportsmanship
• Cooperate in small groups.
• Use resources available to deal positively with conflict situations.
• Follow basic safety guidelines.


01 Use basic technology-related terms to identify the components of a
computer system.

• Screen
• Keyboard
• Mouse (drag, click)
• Printer
• CD
• Internet
• Dock
• Icon

02 Show appropriate care and use of technology.

• Demonstrate appropriate use of computers.
• Demonstrate appropriate computer etiquette.

03 Use grade appropriate software with assistance.

• Open and close a software application.
• Open, view and print documents

If anyone has any insight in to homeschool please feel free to share it with me.