View From My House

View From My House

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


I know my posting has been somewhat erratic. We've been very busy, and even though I'm getting healthier I still have issues from time to time. Seriously though, I've just added a week and a half worth of posts below. Enjoy!



Face Painting and Bushwalking

Monika is asleep after we had a bushwalk and found blackberries along the side of the trail. It was about a 6 kilometre work. We all realised that it was good but we need to do it more often! It is a lovely walk along the derwent river.
I've been dreaming of building a house that generates it's own electricity and supplies its own water, where we can have a big vege garden with lots of fruit too, and a goat and a sheep and some chickens. I've been researching how to do this and best methods of building etc. So I guess we're going green! But we're saving up and trying to achieve our goals realistically. We're putting in a vege garden right here and we've gone and brought a bananna plant (which we're potting until we get our block of land). I'm keen and I'm even trying to look at ways of generating money beyond the pension. (but that is heavily penalised, let's be honest.)
Anyways, as a result of my researches we decided to go to the Building Sustainable Expo at the Derwent Entertainment Centre on Sunday. Although it just seemed like a whole lot of expensive crap and postulating, there was some gems amongst the preverbial ***. Such as using bamboo which only takes 5 years to regrow after harvesting (not to mention 1/4 of the price). The economically soundness of a huge water tank. As for composting toilets, there wasn't any there. In it's place was an amusing toilet that used alot less to flush. I maintained that I didn't wan't his toilet on the grounds I AM prepared to take out the composting matter and use it on flower beds, and a dry toilet is still OK, and environmentally sound.
Of course the chidren enjoyed the free attention in the form of lollies/face painting, as you can see above... Raven became a T-Rex, Labyrinth a Jaguar, Kai a Parrot and Dante who wanted to be a chicken got something else... naturally Monika didn't get her face painted, she's a bit young yet.

Some cute Art

But first... Monika's naughties!

Raven's House and he's really developmentally jumped! He now draws eyes and includes pupils. He draws fingers/finger nails. What a huge happy surprise!

This is Kai's house, its like a lift the flap picture showing yard/house and inside the house.

And this is Dante's house.

And here we have Labyrinth's impression of Monika and her house below.

Please excuse the formatting. Blogger seems to be doing some strange things.
They are interested in houses at the moment because we are working towards maybe building a green house on a block of land sometime in the next year... if only we could find someone who would lend a pensioner some money!

Finishing off our Life in the Undergrowth unit

We watched the last of Life in the Undergrowth: SuperSocieties. It was fascinating. Here is an example of the work we did, putting words into alphabetical order. We also did math and science work as well. The next set of documentaries is entitled Private Life of Plants. I've actually seen some of these on TV and found them quite interesting, but looking at the amount of episodes dedicated to our planet's plantlife and weighing up keeping the children interested throughout all of it - plus I'll be making the unit worksheets/activities/lessons to accompany I'm thinking I've got my doubts. I mean it's not quite the volume of work that birds/mammals will be but I am confident I'll be able to keep them interested in that. We'll we will see... I intend to do practical work with them (ie we're about to put in a vege garden and we have roses/jasmine/tomato plants already going - oh and lady finger banannas. So I guess I'll have to be creative about how we go about our next adventure to keep up their enthusiasm and interest. Wish me luck.

Fishing off the Rocks

Andrew and I decided to spend the day with Dante. We went fishing off the rocks at Bellrieve.
Straight up I caught (and Andrew help get him in - real fighter) the Gurnard. He's related to the Lion fish and quite a pretty boy. Dante's drawn a picture of him while we were having not much luck. Andrew, just before we decided to call it quits caught a cockie salmon on the fly. This is the first time I'd tried fly fishing and kept getting snagged. But it was a really enjoyable day even if it wasn't as productive as we'd of liked. Dante even did his bit for the environment and fished out all the naughty starfish he could find (about a dozen). We also explored the mussells and other shell fish life in the rock pools around about. It was fantastic! Dante really knows his stuff.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

As Promised - a photo update

I promised SIL to post some recent pics of the kidlets. Enjoy!

More Art - They are on a roll...

Yes, all they wanted to do after we decided to not go fishing was art!
Here are a selection (way too many to blog this time - really!) Top left is Raven's centipede. Top right is Kai's naval vessel. Middle left is Dante's Web. Middle Right is Labyrinth's Rocket and next to this text is Labyrinth's version of the house we should make. That is an attic window of stained glass up there on level 4. Oh, yes it would be lovely to be able to live in a house that tall, I'd not say no! Lots of rooms dedicated to things like libraries and art rooms and conservatories ... oh the possibilities!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Art Day

Above and Below: Monika's learning fine motor control, plus she has a good time being 'just like the big kids'.

Below: Kai drew a face. He wasn't really interested in doing much today but I was glad he finally drew something, and it's cute to boot.

Dante Above and Below: Another great love of his - Dinosaurs! RRRROAR!!!

Raven Below: He loves birdees! He's forever pointing out when we drive past birds, wether it's black swans, ravens or other avarian friends we happen across.

Labyrinth Below: a picture of her baby sister, Monika, and further below a card she made for her cousin's birthday.

Labyrinth Below: I've been checking out a few websites on sustainable living and wishing I could get the money for a block and dreaming about how I'd build a house - and this is how it's translating to the children - Labyrinth's drawn a farm she'd like to live on! Another obsession of the children is the PS2 and PS3. Because the controller is so big, even Raven has a problem holding it! Let alone poor Monika who so desperately wants to be one of the 'big kids'. So Labyrinth designed a baby controller that even the very young baby could use. Isn't she cute? What an idea! She wants to email this design to Sony so they can begin building them immediately!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Silk Spinners

The Silk Spinners is the third part of Life in the Undergrowth. It wasn't just spiders but they were the main theme. Beautiful and amazing, even Labyrinth was fascinated. Here is some of the worksheets they did afterwards, maths and science are there but the language excercises (nouns/verbs and sentence structure). The first 3 belong to Kai, then it's Raven's Maze and his drawing of a catepillar, followed by Dante's and Labyrinth's efforts.

And this is Labyrinth's Rabbit. So cute, so until next time, Adieu.