10 Good Things

I’m so behind in housework and homeschooling and laundry and writing (and getting out of pajamas, if we’re going to be perfectly honest!) but had to share a few good things with y’all…

1.  Thirteen “extinct” animal species that were found alive (in pictures).  Check out the little marsupial who was thought to be extinct for 11 million years and the giant lizard thought extinct for 500 million years!

2.  These pumpkin spice cupcakes with cream cheese frosting are to die for.  (Recipe note: I just used 2 cups of pumpkin puree because I freeze it in one cup portions and I use half a brick of cream cheese, which may be 4 oz. instead of 3.)

Also to die for, getting to have one with a birthday candle you can blow out again and again.  Talk about an easy way to make a kid’s day.  🙂

(Note:  This is a crafting shirt.  The kid does have better clothes!)

3.  Here’s a great list of all different ways to search for books on various subjects.  What a great resource if you’re looking for children’s books on obscure themes or have kids who are very interested in certain themes.

4.  I’m going to blog a full post about how to do the cabbage juice pH experiments but in the meantime here’s a super easy and fun way to occupy kids from toddlers on up.  Cover some chopped purple cabbage in boiling water, put a lid on it and steep it for 10 minutes.  Strain the cabbage and use the juice to fill compartments in a light colored ice cube tray or other dish.  Put out a small dish of baking powder or baking soda, and another small dish of an acid like vinegar or lemon juice.  Put an eye dropper in the acid and a baby spoon in the base and give the child another little spoon to stir with.  Show him how to put a scoop or squirt in a compartment and watch the color magically change.  Put the opposite in and it changes back!  Plus you often get fizzes too, depending on what base you use and how much acid.  Make sure your tot doesn’t drink it (though these are non-toxic).  Total fun!  I told the kids Cinderella must have had a pH testing dress the way it changed from pink to blue.  🙂

5.  History for Kids seems to be a very helpful site.  We’re studying explorers right now so I’ve been looking through that section.  The information is short but helpful, though I’m not a fan of reading off the computer so I’m still figuring out how to use it best.  There are apparently games and such too.  I’ve just started to scratch the surface of it but it looks promising.

6.  Chore sticks are working so well for us right now!  Yesterday, Annalee did 16 chores — 13 more than she had to!  Granted, some of the “chores” she pulled were treats like “get a quarter” and “take a walk with Mom” and “get a candy.”  But she also read an educational book for 20 minutes, cleaned the microwave, vacuumed the living room and lots more.  As soon as she woke up, she asked if she could pull 3 chore sticks.  She got dustbust the stairs, color with Mom and tidy the yard, and announced “I love chore sticks!”.  Victoria and Jack have been happily doing them too.

7.  Here’s quick and easy links and lesson plans for Veterans Day.

8.  Chem4Kids looks like another fabulous site we’ll have to explore.  They have sister sites on geography, math and more, too.

9. The Washington Post has a good article about the history of H1N1 and how viruses spread and mutate, what those letters mean, and more.  This is a very interesting article and it’s explained simply.  It’s a science lesson and a history lesson in one.

10. That duck in the zoo picture was a goose, I’ve been told.  I’ve been told the exact type of goose, but I’ve already forgotten.  See why Daddy’s in charge of bird ID?  Speaking of which, while we were at the zoo Victoria pointed out a rare something or other bird, which I had never heard of.  I love when my kids teach me things, and I love how often it happens!  🙂

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