This weekend we’re supposed to be heading to Belton for a Campfire campout, followed by a day trip to Austin to enjoy the Kite Festival. The Boy and I are ubber excited. I’m doubly excited because the following week my sister is flying to San Antonio and we’ll get to spend some time with her. These distractions are wonderful. They keep me focused on today instead of thinking of all the days to fill without my better half.

All week I’ve been working on my assignments for two of my college classes. I’m officially on Spring Break next week and for some reason my professors ramped up our assignments this week. So I’ve got twice the work due in the same amount of time. Knowing that tomorrow I wouldn’t be able to work on my assignments I decided that after homeschooling The Boy I would focus on my schoolwork and he could do some free play.

I love listening to Brooks play. His imagination can be pretty wild, and I love the things he comes up with and the character’s he creates. It always reminds me of something he told me when he was three, that when he slept he “had stories in his eyes.” So today while I was studying and trying really, really hard not to get distracted I heard him playing in his room and snapped this picture:

I wanted so badly to join him on the floor and play too, but it’s good for him to keep busy, and I really had a lot on my plate, so I was content to watch him quietly from the door for a few minutes.

Although I knew we were doing an art project during Campfire I got some paper, scissors and glue out for Little B so he could work on some paper monsters. I can’t find the blog I got the idea off of now, so I’ll have to add that later in case anyone wants to check it out.

BB loves monsters. It’s one of his favorite things. Some of his other passions have come and gone but monsters have been his thing for a while, kind of like his zeal for filling notebooks full of drawings. Brooks also LOVES cutting paper. He’ll do it for long stretches of time. He jumped right into this project. First he helped cut out lots of different shapes and then he began to assemble his monsters. Here’s a little bit of his process:

Tonight, being Friday, is our Campfire meeting night. I had decided to invite all the kiddos to join us for an indoor picnic of mac and cheese, hot dogs, and Paula Deen’s wicked corn casserole. The kiddos came with hearty appetites and enjoyed eating dinner while being able to spend some time with their friends. Afterwards we did a lesson on paint and watched a Brainpop movie on the same subject.

As a side note, I absolutely adore Brainpop. Obviously, I may be a bit biased because I homeschool and find the short videos great supplements for lessons and subjects covered. In all honesty though, Little B and I love nothing more than curling up on the coach with blankets, the laptop between us, as we take turns choosing which video we’ll watch next, often pausing a video at funny parts so we can laugh hysterically and rewind to watch the whole thing again.

What I find fascinating is that my kiddos, which number 11, will be so full of energy and excitement that sometimes it takes a little bit to get them to settle down so we can begin our lessons and activities or projects. If I happen to play a Brainpop video… forget about it. They are all as still as statues, not one peep out of any of them. It’s as fast as flicking a switch on or off. It always cracks me up!

I had planned on working with the kiddos on Campfire’s National Art Competition, which this year was using paint as a medium. I had done some string painting with Brooks recently and thought the kiddos might like it. The process is simple, fun, and engaging. I was so pleased that the kiddos had such fun exploring with the string and trying different methods to make their art pieces. One of the boys used the string to flick paint on the paper and ended up with a very Jackson Pollock looking piece. The girls ended up using their hands more than the string, engaging their knuckles, fingertips, and even forks to paint.

And now Brooks is enjoying another sleepover with his bestest buddy Jason. They have been running around, laughing, pretending, talking, and just all around enjoying each other’s company.

I love the sound of their laughter and the energy they emit. They probably won’t sleep much tonight. But that’s okay. Days like today are meant to be enjoyed to the fullest.