Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Frogs, Mount Battie and Special Collected Rocks 5/31/2011

5/31/2011 - Catchin' frogs

5/31 - Let's look for more! "More frogs!" Kanoa says.  Sometimes Kanoa dips the net and dumps it out (leaves fall out) and he says "No frogs."

View from the tower on Mount Battie.

5/31 - Makana and Wolfgang - Camden harbor below - view from top of tower on Mount Battie.

Another view looking down towards Camden harbor - 5/31/2011

5/31 Another view from the top of Mt Battie

5/31 - Makana, Li and Wolfgang at the top of the tower on Mount Battie

This nice man at the top of the tower noticed that Li seemed afraid of heights and expressed that he too had that.  Just before Li went down the spiral staircase, he asked the man if he had ever gotten over his fear of heights.  He and Li had a conversation and the man explained that he did still have a fear of heights, but encouraged Li to keep trying to work on it and get past it as best he can.

5/31 - Me, Kanoa, Kana and Li with Camden harbor in the background.

This is the tower at the top of Mt. Battie.

Kana enjoys finding sparkly rocks.

Many special rocks and shells we collect go alongside the garage.  Others go inside particular glass jars which sit in the kitchen. 

Monday, May 30, 2011


What do parents think happens when they ground their child?  Do they think that their child will no longer do the offending behavior or speak the offending words?  Do they think it will teach their child a lesson? 

Why would a parent think to ground their child when they do something wrong?  Maybe because they were brought up that way?  Maybe because they have seen others do that or heard about doing that from living in our culture? 

I don't believe a child would feel grateful for being grounded.  Instead I think that a child may feel seething anger, resentment and may even think of more ways to get even with either their parents or the person they felt upset with.  They may want to blame others.  They may feel a loss of power and disconnect with their parents.

Being grounded seems condenscending to me in the sense that children are being treated as "less than" and not heard and treated like a person who is an equal or like a person who is cared about and considered as having a hard time, difficult experience, troubled moment, or who has made a bad choice.  Don't we all make bad choices sometimes?  Don't we all have difficult periods in our life or bad days?  How would we treat our spouse if he/she had a bad moment or hard day?  I bet we would treat him/her with compassion, offer to listen or to talk, to give space if needed or wanted, to give a hug, to offer to do something he/she likes to do together, to bring him/her a cup of tea or whatever comfort food or drinks you thought would bring relief and make them feel loved, cared for and provide a sense of peace and calmness.  Wouldn't that be a better choice to offer our children rather than roll our eyes, throw up our hands in disgust and shame and ground them? 

Another way to help us better treat our children is to remember the golden rule and think of love instead of fear.   A note on fear - Much punishment is done because parents are fearful that if they don't nip that "behavior" immediately their child will turn out bad or do the offensive talk or actions forever.  So parents justify the punishment as a means of stopping the actions or words from "ruining" their kids.  This is so fear based!! 

Instead of punishing or grounding, first get into your child's head and heart.  Try to understand where they are coming from instead of immediately justifying why you are right.  Think of how your child feels and what they may be going through and why.  Think of all the phases and stages you and almost every other person on the planet has gone through and how we each have our own paths and processes to get to wherever we are going.  No matter whichever paths we have taken (whether by choice or not), for better or worse, we are where we are now.  How can we make it "for the better" for our child?  Make that better choice instead of doling out the punishment, shame, guilt, distrust and disconnect. 

Instead of punsihing or grounding, give children the same love we would wish someone would have given to us when we were down or that we later regretted.

Give your child credit.  They want to do what feels right to them.  They have reasons for what they do based upon what they think and feel and perceive just as we all do, even if you disagree, don't understand or would choose to do something different.  Try listening to your child ....with love and compassion and empathy.  If your child is willing, have a conversation.  If you still feel it necessary, explain why you felt what he/she did was wrong and what else might have been kinder and more acceptable in our society.  Brainstorm together any other ideas that your child could do if the situation arises again?  Talk about consequences that could arise from the various choices.  If your child doesn't want to talk, maybe they need some space.  Maybe in time, if and when they feel like they can trust you, they will know you are there for them and will be able to share their feelings and thoughts more or ask for you to listen if they would like your opinion, thoughts or ideas. 

Do remember that parents are important models for their children!  Our kids notice (greatly!) how we treat others and how we speak about others.  If you don't like how your children treat others or their siblings, before casting stones, look first in the mirror.  If it is you who needs to apologize and change your ways, do so.  Please don't punish your child for acting the same way you do!  No more "Do as I say, not as I do!"  Instead, talk the talk and walk the walk.  Be the model you want to be!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Misc May Activities

5/13/2011 -Hooping by the Harbor every other Friday.  Check out Maria's website fmi: http://www.hoopmeonline.com/

Makana and I at our first Friday hooping time!

Love the vibrant spring colors!  Wish I had taken a picture of the bold forsynthia flowers to..so bright and yellow! 5/14/2011

Day Lillies coming up! 5/14/2011

Was so proud I didn't burn the egg and cheese omlet!  It came out so nice looking I had to take a photo. 5/17/2011

Jim helps Kanoa try to talk through the megaphone at Walker Park.

Kanoa loves to wrestle with Daddy! 5/22/2011

Love it when they have such a good time together! 5/22/2011

Kana, Li and Wolfgang play Sorry. 5/23/2011

Daddy and Kanoa play "catch" as Kanoa calls it. 5/23/2011

Katie joins in with a brownie snack she and Wolfgang made earlier. 5/23/2011

We tried to grow wool on the Amazing Sheep.  Alas, it wasn't very amazing....  The directions did say humidity and movement could affect the outcome.  And it was moved a couple times and it was very humid out.  Oh well.... 5/28/2011

Went ice skating on Sunday 5-30-2011 - neat to be in a cold place and then go back outside to such a warm environment!

It was nice that we basically had the whole rink to ourselves (except for two other skaters who ended up leaving shortly after we got there).  Lots of space!

Makana pausing for a moment..

Think this is our broccoli plant from last year...and doing well!  (Deer!  Stay back!)

Strawberry plant we just transplanted as a seedling last week.

Radishes!!!  Think we need to space them out a bit...hmmm.

Chocolate mint plants making a comeback!  Yum!  And especially yum coupled with Stevia!  Our stevia plant didn't survive the winter (or I can't tell them apart from the weeds!)  Was told by a grower at the farmer's market that stevia would not last if they were not brought inside over the winter.

Lemon balm plants thriving in the tomato patch.  (No tomato plants in there yet, but this plant is doing great!)

Lily of the valley plants!  Bought these at Merryspring when they had a plant sale because my Grandma used to have these all around her trees and they smelled so wonderful and remind me so much of her and childhood and her

Anyone know what these are called?  What is a good site to look up the names of plants (maybe by color)?

Kanoa sporting a hat to help stop the black flies from biting his head!

Makana and Kanoa eating pizza together.

Kana and Kanoa were being silly with their food...he was mimicking what she was doing and they'd laugh together!  So glad they are great pals!

Kanoa wanted Daddy (preferred Daddy) to hold the pizza a certain way and then he'd take a bite.

Kanoa at Walker Park enjoying the tube slide!

Kanoa LOVES to throw things.  So....we often head to the water where he gets his fill of throwing rock after rock into the water.  I do it too or try to skip rocks with Li.  Li often tries to show Makana how to throw a good "skippah."  Skipping rocks is great family time together!  Li especially loves it and remarks about how fun doing that is.

Such a beautiful view here down by the water!

Notice the lighthouse in the background over Makana's head.  That's Indian Point Light in Rockport, ME.

Love how they are both standing and looking out, each to different directions.

Wolfie and Kanoa throwing rocks.  Still.  Yep, Kanoa loves it that much!

Li checking out the seaweed (mostly rockweed I think)

Spin us Daddy!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Two Months Into Middle School - an update

Katie is still so glad she is in school.  She does have alot of homework many nights.  Sometimes she is doing it for hours...much of the time while multi-tasking (texting, skyping, watching a show).  She is so proud of herself for having almost all A's so far this quarter.  (All are A's except one B+).

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Nice Spring Thursday 5/11/2011

Tulip blooming...finally!!!  Yippee!  So nice to see vibrant colors!

On the way to Belfast, we stopped at Lincolnville Beach and had pizza.  In just a month or two, this beach will be very crowded!  Li got very wet and sandy, so we left to go home for a change.

This gave us time to see if Katie wanted to come to homeschool group with us.  This is the long line of cars waiting to pick up kids after school.

Makana and Azure, her best buddy!

Makana and Azure

People doing some kind of meditative exercise at Belfast City Park (and swatting black flies too!)