Week In Review: Truman's Aunt Farm

This week was amazing!  Since I plan out my books a month in advance, I've known for a while that we were going to be reading "Truman's Aunt Farm" by Jama Kin Rattigan for a while, and decided to try and add a little surprise for Bitsy and Manly.  Because we are far from family, and the little ones don't get to spend a lot of time with our extended family I emailed all of their aunts, and asked them to write a letter or an email for us to read with our book.  As luck would have it Daddy is the youngest of five, and I have one brother who recently got engaged, so we have 5 aunts, one for each day of the school week!!!  Gratefully they all sent a letter and some even sent pictures, which I hid at the back of the book each day.  (By Wednesday Bitsy was on to me, and would check the back of the book before we read, once she was sure there was a letter she humored me by reading the book first, and pretending she was surprised at the end.)  

We did lots of map work this week as a result of our aunts, because each day we moved our story disc to the location of the aunt we heard from.  

On Monday we learned about aunts and how we are related to them, and then read a letter from our Aunt Missy.  Aunt Missy is loved because she loves rice pudding, and so the little ones love it too.  We made some for our Friday meal, and the kids were sad she couldn't come and eat it with us.  As soon as we finished reading her letter Bitsy wanted to know if we could go see her, RIGHT THEN!

We also spent some time cooking, this is Manly making some blueberry muffin "batteries".  Isn't he cute?
 We also made popsicles for the first time summer, I can't believe I've been so delinquent!  We just used grape juice, but the little ones loved them.  We also made some out of leftover smoothie later in the week.
On Tuesday we went through the book and looked for different activities the aunts are participating in, and made a list, then as we read we listened to see if there were any we missed.  Of a list of 34 we spotted 26 before reading, not to bad!  After that we read our letter from Aunt Julie who told us about how much she loves to be outside, and Bitsy wishes she could live outside, so there was a serious bond there!

Wednesday is art day, and we did a little tractor painting.  I saw the idea over at Counting Coconuts, but didn't follow directions real well, so instead of putting the paint on the paper and running the tractor through, we put paint in containers, ran the tractor through, and then repeated with another color.  If you did it our way, don't use one of those wind up tractors.  :)  Manly kept running it backwards, because he doesn't really understand that that makes it wind up...  well, needless to say, he was a little yellow in the face when he picked it up out of the container before putting it on paper. 

Because I'm not a huge fan of messes, or spending money unnecessarily we use daddy's old t-shirts as smocks, and the lids to my jelly roll pans as trays, since we never use them on the pans.

We heard from Aunt Jessie that day, which was fitting since she is our family artist.  They need no further endearing to their Aunt Jessie, because they adore her already.  Instead of visiting her, they wanted her to come stay here.

We learned about postage, and counted change on Thursday for math.  I had made these little cards for Bitsy a few months ago to help her learn our address, so we brought them out again, and I let her "buy" 2 cent stamps that I had laying around to put on the cards.  She also lined the nickels, dimes, and pennies up to make a 4 out of them while she was sorting the coins.
We also used colored craft sticks to count by fives, since that is how Truman keeps track of all of his aunts.
We heard from Aunt Crystal  on Thursday as well, and since she used the word "silly" in her letter the kids were in love.  Unfortunately for her they have decided that since she is silly she should be like one of Truman's aunt who "could do back flips with her eyes closed."  So, Aunt Crystal, you may want to start practicing.  :)

Friday we wrapped Truman up being hearing from Aunt Liz, who they want to teach them "how to throw corn" since she mentioned corn toss!  Of course our week couldn't be complete without getting our very own ant farm.
The ants aren't included, so we have to mail off for them, but we're excited to see them when they get here.

In addition to all of our fun, Lettie has decided to stand whenever she can,
and give you the stink eye if she thinks you're going to try and take her cantaloupe away.

(Yeah, her cheeks were totally full!)
For our final shot, Bitsy got down a puzzle game we have that matches baby and adult animals.  She matched all of the animals up, and placed each card end to end like this, and then laid down to measure herself next to her line.  As you can see, it was pretty long.  It was amazing to watch her focus as she made the line straight.  (After the picture she actually moved some of the cards under her desk leg to make the line completely straight.)
We had a great week, and I really appreciate all of our aunts coming through to help.  We all really loved it.  

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