My Little Star

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My daughter is my biggest achievement. She is a little star and my life has changed so much for the better since she came along. – Denise Van Outen

Not my words, but I can totally relate. Nothing compares to the unexpected gift of being blessed with a fabulous, happy, intelligent daughter. She is definitely the star that makes my sky brighter every day. The sunshine that makes me excited about getting up in the morning.

Happy International Women’s Day!!

Yours,

Maria

Adorable Birthday Boy

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Three days a week I’m blessed with three extra bonus kids. The youngest one celebrates his first birthday today. We did a little mini photo shoot this morning. His mom gave me permission to share a photo with you. Isn’t he the most adorable little boy? I feel so blessed to spend time with this little guy, and his siblings. Both my daughter and I love them so much.

I hope the sun is shining on you! It’s finally shining here in NorCal. Spring is in the air 🙂

Yours,

Maria

Planning 2017’s Garden

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I absolutely love this time of the year! The time to plan, and soon plant, a garden. It’s exciting times!

 

The photo above is of my daughter, super proud over her zucchini’s, that she grew all by herself. We are mostly into growing food, a lot of food. This morning I wrote a list of the container garden we have now, and the annual garden I want to plant this year. It’s all based on what we enjoy eating. We are not vegetarians, but we eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, because we like it! This is the list I came up with.

 

 

Container garden:

6 Olive Trees

4 Fig trees (2 one year old + 2 three year olds.)

1 Nectarine Tree (1 year old.)

1 White Peach Tree (2-3 year old.)

4 Elberta Peach Trees (1 year old.)

1 Pomegranate tree (2-3 year old? Maybe get a couple more for better pollination?)

1 Sweet Cherry Tree (2-3 year old. Maybe get one other variety? Usually a good idea for better fruiting.)

1 Wild Plum Tree (BIG, and very beautiful.)

A bunch of 1-2 year old apple and pear trees of unknown variety.

 

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Annual Vegetable Garden:

Heirloom Tomatoes

Cherry Tomatoes (LOTS, my daughter’s favorite vegetable..)

Corn (my daughter’s second favorite.)

Pumpkins

Watermelons

Zucchini

Sweet Bell Peppers

Jalapeno Hot Peppers

Baby Spinach

Strawberries

Blueberries

Basil

Cilantro

Should I ad something to my annual garden? What did I forget? (We live in hardiness zone 9, with long hot summers.) I always love new ideas!!

I am going to make a garden at a new location. So I have to figure out what kind of garden beds I want to have. Something I’m planning on dedicating this weekend to. I’d love ideas about that as well. Last year I made garden beds out of old tires. It worked, but I might try something different this year. I want a bigger garden! I do like the ideas of garden beds, I feel that it makes me more in control. Bring it on! I want to hear all about your successful garden tips!

Yours,

Maria

Graceful

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Gracefulness is a tricky quality — it manifests itself as an effortless, subtle harmony between a subject and its environment.

Graceful is the theme for this week’s photo challenge at The Daily Post.

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Real, live, animal cats, are the image of graceful. I don’t know about this cat though..but we had lots of fun dressing up as cats.

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I am blessed with three bonus kids this week, while their parents are on vacation. My daughter LOVES it! There’s been a lot of arts and crafts, dress-up, and fun imaginary games. We’re still having a winter storm, with lots of rain, and have been spending more time than usual inside (the youngest kid is only ten months.) It’s busy, busy, busy, with more fun than you can imagine! It’s another aspect that I enjoy very much, seeing my daughter interact with other children. Of course it would be a totally different thing if I always had four kids, but to borrow a few, from time to time, that is pure joy!

Have an awesome weekend! I know I will 🙂

 

Yours,

Maria

Unschooling – School – Home Schooling?

 

Cowgirl Framed Print featuring the photograph At The Ranch by Maria Jansson

 

Do you know how you learn? There are different ways of learning. Some enjoy the magic of listening to an inspiring teacher in a class room. Some love reading books. Others love to explore. While others learns best with hands on learning, learning by doing practical tasks. Did you know that some studies show that both children, and adults learn challenging subjects, like a completely new language, faster while playing football (or other sports)?

Learning, and how we learn is something I’ve spent a lot of time studying, and thinking about. I have a Bachelor in Early Childhood Education, and I worked in the field before I was blessed with a daughter.

 
Baby Framed Print featuring the photograph Discovering A Friend by Maria Jansson

 

Personally I learn best by first reading, or seeing someone do something, and then trying it myself. Hearing someone just talking about a subject doesn’t do much for me. I need to see it, either with the eyes of my mind while reading about it, or seeing a live demonstration.

I still love exploring, and learning new things, it’s one of the ultimate pleasures of life. I’ve been thinking a lot about how my daughter learns. She has always been a little explorer, enjoying the outdoors. I’m doing my best to let her indulge in her current passions, and let them become her teacher’s. I feel blessed every minute I get to spend in her presence. We have been traveling a lot together. I believe she’s seen around 40 states so far (I need to do an exact count.) I haven’t decided yet wether I am going to homeschool her completely, or send her to a public school as a compliment to our lessons. That is something I am going to decide before the end of this summer. She does get plenty of time with other children in her age every week, so she does get the social part.

 
Toddler Framed Print featuring the photograph Into The Wild by Maria Jansson

 

To make her education richer her father and I, decided to give her an iPad for Christmas. Even though we are not together anymore, we are on the same page when it comes to her education, which makes things a lot easier. We just started to use ABC Mouse learning program for preschool children. I am very pleased so far. It allows you as a parent to tweak the program to suit what your child needs to work on, while still letting the child choose the activities they want to do. My daughter loves it! I think it will be a great compliment to our hands on learning. Especially since it can be used wherever we are. This was a little different post, to share where we are right now.

If you are a parent, I’d love to hear your thoughts about how your children learn!! do they prefer hands on activities? Exploring? A combination?

Have a wonderful day!!

Yours,

Maria