Thursday, December 9, 2010

I haven't kept a record of our lives in the last time.... I have been so busy... so happy, so chaotic, so selfish....
The kids are great.. as always growing and learning every day ... after my last log feeling so overwhelmed by life in general...I understood that I have to keep growing in what I love and don't feel so overwhelmed by the house not being "clean".... I have to accept myself with my own limitations... and let's face it... cleaning and organizing is not my strength... I would LOVE to be like those mamas with perfect homeshooling blogs... so organized, with "workboxes systems" and schedules and routines guided by classic music and candles....but my life is far away of being like that.... we are messy and loud !!!... but some how I see how kids bring peace inside and even if they are not growing surrounded by wooden toys, calming colors and fairy tales...they find and share peace and love so easily....
My kids are awesome!!... loud... crazy some times... but awesome! compassionate other kids and nature.... the last month I have been focusing in growing in my knowledge of herbal medicine.. I love this so much... and I really needed to feel that I was "really focusing" on this..I have been reading, I am taking two online courses , making more herbal medicines, creating new herbal blends.. I am working in 2 herbal consultations....and I prepared an herbal class to house is FULL with jars and jars with herbs and concoctions.....The kids are so interested in what I am doing that somehow I see how they are learning what herbs to use in different situations and what are the flavors of different herbs, etc It is so sweet simple. And now I have charged batteries and a heart full of good ideas for my kids and myself.... so funny... I though I needed a vacation, but what I needed was to focus on myself for a bit....Vincent has been asking to do meditations with me and reiki... so I'm thinking about growing in that with him too...

Today is Dec 9th and we just set up our $10 Christmas tree... I had no "Christmas spirit" until today... and seriously this tree is so ugly!!... but we took it out of the attic and the kids "jumped" with joy and to decorate it.. Oh dear! they are so sweet!... the did it ALL by themselves, even the lights... we have the cheapest thing.... I have like 5 decoration for inside of the house , (also from goodwill) and that's after observing this wonderful kids being so happy with so little, I got inspired to have a weekend of "bringing the Christmas spirit home" haha!.. I just presented an herbal class yesterday , so my mind can go back to my normal state.... ah! I am tired... getting a cold... but I'm so excited of staying at home for the weekend , making cookies, ginger bread, decorations , etc, etc....
Let's see what happens .. for now... to sleep!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

I have been struggling a lot lately ..... I need to get organized...( against my disorganized nature.).. Our days are mostly guided buy our meals... but it seems that everything was easier last year when we didn't participate in the "classes" my kids are taking this year...somehow, our week is full... and there is not much time for "home" like before....this past "school " year was so "natural"..I cooked (alone or together) and then we cleaned and then did reading or activities.... but somehow now I feel I am "on the go"... or to classes , or to play dates, and cooking and cleaning and there is NO END..... etc.....and the house is still a mess....How to get more organized??......I have no idea.
I need a professional organizer.............................or maybe I'm just PMS'ing...because the kids are having a blast this fall!!!!!

I decided today that I need more inner work... I need to meditate more...use my singing bowls...Yesterday Vinchi was totally losing control of himself... he was acting totally off and nervous... and we decided that maybe we should do some Reiki to each other... and after we did it, he hugged me and he was totally better!...... he was calmed, and he even started practicing his guitar.....So beautiful...And today he asked me to do it again....
I will keep making my herbal products but mostly to save money to finish my "studio". or "la casita"... and have my own space to go to balance and recharge some energies...

I just need $600 !!!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Environmental Learning Center

Click on pic to album

Last week we had a great day at the Environmental Learning Center .. we were there for hours and the kids were just so inspired and happy, it was a beautiful fall day, sunny, and warm.... just perfect! ...It was also so healing and empowering to be surrounded by the trees of this forest preserve.
We had 2 guides that helped the kids to recognized different animals tracks and signs, so we were walking and trying to find signs of animals and also identifying what kind of animals left what "evidence" behind. How nice to see the kids so interested in poo and trying to find out what animal left it there, and what kind of food that animal eats... etc..
Vincent even found a turtle shell!! and after the hike they had a nice presentation about "producers, consumers and decomposer" and the kids run though the forest with magnifying glasses finding different kinds of decomposer.
I thought it was great for the kids to understand those biological concepts, and in such a fun way!


La semana pasada tuvimos un dia precioso en el Centro de aprendizaje ambiental, pasamos ahi horas dentro de estos bosques rodeados de una belleza natural que me llenaba el espiritu. El dia fue perfecto, soleado y caliente....
Teniamos dos guias que ayudaron a los ninos a reconocer distintos tipos de hueyas de animales, asi que caminamos por el bosque y los ninos estaban totalmente involucrados en reconocer los distintos tipos de hueyas y que podiamos aprender sobre los animales atraves de su excremento o el porte de las patas, sus casas etc..
Vincent incluso encontro una concha de tortuga! y despues de la caminata los guias tenian una clase de biologia sobre organismos productores, consumidores y descomponedores
y los ninos corrieron por el bosque con lupas buscando distintos tipos de descomponedores.
Me encanto ver como los ninos entendieron tan facilmente la diferencia de estos organismos y de una manera tan entretenida!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sailboat adventure!!

(click in the image to go to the album)

So, finally, after two years reading books about boats, carving boats, and making sailboats out of anything available, (including sticks, leaves, bottles, pieces of wood, etc) Vincent had one of those days I know he will not forget...My husband brought home a beautiful sailboat !! Vincent couldn't believe it...his happiness was bigger than his body, ah! what a beautiful moment!!, (specially for me that I knew Ashley didn't spend money on it, but he got it as payment for a job that he made.:0)

So then we had the problem...Ashley and I, well... we had no idea what to do with this sailboat!.. we never did sail a boat before, so we were pretty scared about taking the boat with the kids.... but last Sunday, we took kids and boat for the adventure..
So of course Vincent after all this time in studies of boats, and Ashley being so smart as he is.. both of them had the opportunity of being the first ones trying the boat... or better said... the opportunity to try to do something with this boat and come back save to shore... And they took the boat in the water while I looked at them from shore with a huge smile..I'm pretty sure Vincent felt something similar at what Columbus felt while sailing to the unknown.. but what a smile he had!!!...And then everything was so much fun, Vincent literally thought was the "Capitan" , and was yelling to us, "pull that rope!!", "move this way!", etc, etc.. it was just so funny...
I'm so glad and grateful to see my kids do what they love.........


Finalmente, despues de dos anos de ver a Vincent tallando y construyendo botes con cualquier cosa disponible, (como palitos, botellas, tapas, plasticos, hojas, etc,etc), Vincent tuvo uno de esos dias que se, no olvidara. Ashley llego del trabajo con un velero!!! Pobre Vincent no podia creerlo! no cabia en su cuerpo de tanta felicidad...Que cosa mas bella poder verlo asi...( lo bueno es que Ashley no pago por este velero, sino que se lo dieron como parte de pago por un trabajo que hizo)

Pero depsues nos enfrentamos al problema de que ni Ashley ni yo, tenemos ninguna experiencia o en armar o navegar veleros!, asi que estabamos medios asustados de salir a "navegar" con los ninos...Pero bueno.. el Domingo pasado nos atrevimos y partimos con velero y ninos a una aventura...

Por suerte que teniamos a Vincent , que alguna idea tenia despues de todo este tiempo viendo libros de botes y teniamos a Ashley (siendo tan inteligente como es el... )... asi que los dos fueron los elegidos para salir en el primer intento de nevegar...O mejor dicho... tratar de hacer algo con este velero y volver sanos y salvos a la orilla..
Por suerte todo resulto bien.. no tuvimos heridos y el velero no se dio vuelta..Yo los miraba desde la orilla y no podia parar de pensar que estaria pasando por la cabecita de mi Vinchi...seguro que estaba tan asustado y emocionado como Colon cuando navego hacia lo desconocido...Y Vinchi definitivamente penso que era el "Capitan" del velero.... nos gritaba todo el tiempo "Suelta esa cuerda!!", "Muevete para alla!!" " Cuidado con esa vela!, suelta la vela!, etc, etc...fue tan divertido.... Yo fui una vez con ellos y era un chiste!

Que feliz me siento de poder ser participe de estos momentos inolvidables en la vida de mis hijos... que rico verlos haciendo cosas que los apasionan, no hay nada mas bello que ver a alguien apasionado por algo.... no es verdad?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Finally I feel I have time to sit down and process all this ideas and experiences we have been gathering during the last month. We did go to New Mexico and it was spectacular!. The road trip was hard on the little ones, it took us 3 days to get there, but once we got there everything was just so nice...I was learning so much in this Herbal conference, I met great people, the teachers were so nice, so down to earth, the classes were so informative too, but there was not too much time to process in those days, I had full days of learning, I was exhausted walking in this hills from one class to another with a broken toe, and coming back to the camping so tired to just eat , and be with the kids and Ashley. And they had the best time!, enjoying the grandparents, going on walks, exploring... Vincent felt he was "Vincent v/s Wild" like the guy in the show in Discovery Channel.. he wanted to do everything!!, be on charge of the fire, cook, lead the walks...
Coming back to IL, my MIL left to Chile and I had to get back on my routine and start getting ready for a talk about herbalism to a group of people... and that class happened yesterday and it was great!!,I felt so good sharing my passion....I love what I do, working with plants and homeschooling my kids. I feel so grounded now. A couple of years ago I lived so much in my head.. that is one of the biggest presents plants give me everyday... they keep me literally "grounded"..

Monday, September 13, 2010

Finally vacation!!

If you ask Vincent what he wants to learn this year, his first answer is "wilderness survival!!" and finally we will be able to help him with that.
Because of my passion of herbal medicine , I sign up a few months ago to assist to the "Traditions in Western Herbalism" conference. This will be in New Mexico, rural Abiquiu
in the Ghost Ranch..So finally we decided that this will be the perfect (and only) opportunity to have a family vacation and give the boys the opportunity to go camping and learn about wilderness survival..We are taking my in laws too. so grandparents included we will have a full car and way too much fun.
I can't wait to meet all this great herbalists that have been such a big inspiration in my life..
And I can't wait to see my kids surrounded by hills, and wilderness...


Si le preguntan a Vincent que quiere aprender este ano, lo primero que responde es "como sobrevivir en la naturaleza"/// Y por la gran pasion que siento por la medicina herbalica, hace unos meses me inscribi para asistir a una Conferencia de medicina herbalica en Nuevo Mexico, asi es que esta sera la perfeca y unica oportunidad para ofrecerles a los ninos esta experiencia..Llevaremos tambien a mis suegros , asi es que vamos con un auto lleno en un viaje que durara dos dias..
Casi no puedo esperar para conocer a todos esos grandes herbalistas de los cuales he estado aprendiendo por todos estos anos...
Y tambien casi no puedo esperar para ver a mis hijos rodeados de ese maravilloso paisaje....

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The "back to school time"

And here we are again, another Sept, and my kids again are not going back to school. This is our second year "homeschooling", and definitely I feel more comfortable. I see a lot of friends panic a bit for the beginning of the new scholar year and their kids being at home, but for some reason, I feel so calm. I really don't want to send them to school and I love to see how much passion Vincent shows about being at home.
Last year we totally unschooled, we just let them play and play and play and play, and it was definitely worth it, little by little I saw Vincent's desire of learning coming back to life, slowly he started asking questions again... and I love to see how he is becoming a critical thinker. He is so small yet! but with such a mind!. just the other day he came to me and asked me how the languages started .. And I had to stop to think for an answer.. (I just love that!). I tried to explain a bit about language and communication, but his question was a bit deeper than that, we wanted to know also how people started talking different languages, where was the origin of English language and Spanish, why there is such a difference between both of them... Why North America and South America speak different languages, and it was so nice to after our conversation get to the point where he really understood and connected the dots and started talking about his classes of History of North America and how here in North America people talked English because they once belonged to England. I really think those are great questions for a little boy 7 yrs old!

I offered to them to take some classes in some homeschooler's coop, and Vincent decided he wanted to take "History of North America" and "Beyond our Solar System", these are classes he takes every Friday and he is LOVING IT!; And on Tuesdays Luciano and Vincent, will take a class together in another homeschooler's coop .. they are so excited of being in the same class together! they will take "Encouraging Literacy through active play" and after that class, Vincent will start with Guitar lessons too. They are beyond excitement right now for being in charge of their learning and being able to choose what they want to learn, and I am so happy for having the possibility of doing this.. They will also keep working in Tennis classes and Vincent keeps practicing his Skateboard...
So yes, I am happy, and they are happy and excited about learning .. I love homeschooling and I can't think about them being inside of a classroom for 6 hours straight...


El ano escolar esta comenzando ahora y muchas de mis amigas estan empezando a ponerse nerviosas por eso, pero yo, empezando nuestro segundo ano de "homeschooling", me siento super tranquila esta vez, mucho mas confiada de lo que se nos viene. Ademas me ecanta ver la pasion con la que Vincent quiere seguir estando fuera del sistema. El ano pasado realmente les dimos la libertad total de jugar y jugar y solamente los expusimos a aprendizaje, de una manera en que ellos comenzaran a entender mejor el mundo en que vivimos y a interesarse sobre distitas cosas.. Me encanta ver como Vincent esta dearrollando una mente super critica, es tan pequeno, pero tiene una cabeza que me asombra!. Como el otro dia, vino a preguntarme como se crearon los idiomas, y tuve que parar a pensar por una respuesta...( Me encanta eso!!) Y conversamos sobre el lenguaje desarrollandose por una necesidad de comunicacion , pero su pregunta era mas profunda que eso, el queria saber como la gente empezo a hablar disntintas lenguas y donde fue el origen de el idioma Ingles y como , donde y porque otros comenzaron a hablar Espanol. Porque en Norte America se habla Ingles y en America del Sur hablan Espanol.. Yo creo que son preguntas maravillosas para un pequenito de 7 anos...Fue super bello ver como el conecto todas sus ideas hasta llegar a hablar de que el sabia la respuesta, porque en su clase de "Historia de Norte America " habia escuchado que antes Norte America pertenecia a Inglaterra y el dedujo que era por eso que la gente aca habla Ingles..

Yo les ofreci tomar classes en una cooperativa de homeschoolers, asi que Vincent decidio que el tomara dos clases , "Historia de Norte America" y "Mas alla de nuestro Sistema solar", estas clases seran cada Viernes y esta feliz!, le encantan, y cada Martes el y Luciano tomar unas clases en otra cooperativa de homeschoolers, tomaran una clase de escritura y lectura , pero basada en juegos, donde hacen que la escritura tome un sentido practico para ellos, y Vincent tomara tambien clases de guitarra...Ademas de eso seguiran con sus clases de tennis por ahora , Vincent seguira practicando con su Skateboard y mas adelante natacion.

En fin, ellos estan felices de tomar clases de temas que les interesan, de tener una opinion importantisima sobre lo que ellos quieren aprender, asi es que SI .. me encanta hacer Homeschooling!! me encanta verlos felices, libres, amando aprender y totalmente entusiasmados por sus clases ..No puedo ni pensar en ellos estando por mas de 6 horas encerrados en una sala de clases.

Estamos felices de tener esta posibilidad de aprender activamente... WE LOVE IT!~

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A full house

So here I am, writing at midnight, because my day has been so full with fun and family that my "private time" literally doesn't exist....but guess what.... I just love it...
The last time I was in Chile was almost 3 years ago, this is my first time in the US for so long.. I was traveling there every year. (Like I said before, we have been living in USA for 6 years now)
I love and miss my family so much and I also admire and love my in laws in a really profound way... I have learned so much from them.. about parenting, freedom, ecology ...relationships ....well, kindness in general. and now I'm lucky enough to have them here with us....My MIL got here 2 weeks ago, bringing with her a breeze of pure mountain air. When I look at her I can see Los Andes mountain....I love to feel the wisdom she brings into my life...
And now my husband's grandparents and aunt (yes, he has grandma and grandpa alive..), are also visiting from SC... They also are Chileans, and really traditional ones, so the house has been full with great food and lots of people, (4 generations) talking and laughing in Spanish.... A great total of 10 people in the house!!

I like to see my kids dealing with this change.. Vincent is practicing talking more in Spanish , ( he is fluent but with a "gringo accent".. so cute! ) and the 2 little ones are just listening all day long to "mama's language"... I accept I don't talk 100% in Spanish to them... well... because it is a bit hard for me... everybody speaks English and I am the only one "hablando espanol"... with my husband we speak in spanish, but he speaks English to the kids... so yes.. we have a mess... but I know they understand EVERYTHING... but the 2 little ones don't speak it... and I feel bad for that...but here are some of my reasons for this to happen...

* we started having my husband talk to them in English, because I didn't speak it and we wanted our kids to be fluent in English ...(for obvious reasons... we live in US and they are creating relationships here)... and now he can't stop talking to them in English.!!
* then, most of the books we own are in English.. (I have a small collection of spanish ones)
* 80 % of the TV they watch is also in English...
* when we are with other people and friends I switch to English so my kids or the other people don't feel "weird"..
* sometimes when we are alone at home I just forget , and I find myself talking in English to them!!... and all the people that know me out there, know I have a "nice accent" .. so what the hell I do talking to them in English??!! I seriously have no idea...habits are just hard to break...and now I am realizing that I need to change this.. I need to help the little ones to SPEAK SPANISH... how?? I don;t have a plan yet... but I will just be more conscious about it..

And also I decided that I'll start saving money and I want go back to Chile.. for at least 6 months... maybe just me and the kids, but I need to bring them there, experience our family, our finally just talk and play in Spanish! I want to stay in my house by the mountain there... enjoy the simple life that made me who I am now... Our little house that we both built with my husband with our own hands... just mud and rocks... no electricity for 7 months...We lived in that house for 4 years, and while building it, we were also building our relationship...our first son was born there... so YES I MISS IT... and yes I need to go back... With all the family here I realized that I am getting to comfortable here... I am losing a bit of my traditions ad most important my language!.. I need to go back...(cross fingers for next year!)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Our Tepee

(click onthe picture to go to the album)

This are some of the pictures of our tepee.. we play there, we read there, and when a storm is coming , we run to the tepee to feel the storm closer.. we just love it!
and some of the pictures of Willowbrook wild life center, where they do rehabilitation to different animals that people bring there, or they find in the wild.. The boys were so excited and they learned so much that day!


Estas son algunas fotos de nuestro tepee, nosotros jugamos ahi, leemos ahi, la pasamos super bien!, incluso aveces cuando una tormenta fuerte esta llegando, nos metemos todos en el tepee para disfrutar y sentir la tomenta de una manera mas intensa. . Y las otras fotos son de un centro de rehabilitacion y vida salvaje, donde acepta animales heridos ue la gente lleva o que encuantran en el bosque. Los ninos disfrutaron tanto ese dia y aprendieron mucho!..

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Valedictorian speech

Great speech given by Erica Goldson..
Thanks to my friend Cathy ! you are always so inspiring !
This is the exact thing I needed to read tonight..

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I wish I was a super woman

I have been so busy lately, that I hardy took pictures ofthe last field trips we have done..
and so much has been going on at home, my life, the kids... but well ...I'm doing my best! That's life right?
We are trying to go to different forest preserves every week... It is so much fun, we get together with friends and we come back home full with ideas to investigate or just talk about new animals with dad. Sadly the truth is that sometimes I am so tired , or just so busy with cooking and cleaning the mess we left behind before going out that I can say 50% of the time, I don't help them do their research about animals.. or whatever questions they have.. I answer with my knowledge and then.. off I go to cook! .. of course when we have time again I go back to those questions and try to go deeper. (or go to the library and look at books about those subjects.),but sometimes it is too late.!!.they are interested in something new....I wish I was a super woman... one that can capture those moments, and also keep the house clean AND go to field trips with the kids AND (really important for me), cook nourishing foods AND take the time to study every night...
Somehow our kids keep growing and learning... we made again our tepee and they have been playing a lot in there...Vincent, (maybe because we haven't done much "research") has been totally into the mood of "making his own things with wood".. so he has been working hard in his never ending boat project and a couple of days ago he hired his dad and grandpa to make their own wooden swords... and those have been the best toy ever....So at this point I am totally trusting : "Kids learn through play".. because my kids have been doing just that lately...


Hemos estado yendo una vez a la semana a distintas reservas forestales , siguiendo nuestro goal de aprender sobre la naturaleza... a los ninos les encanta y es super entretenido., nos juntamos con amigos y volvemos a la casa llenos de ideas para investigar o super entusiasmados de llegar a contarle al papa todo lo que hemos visto... El problema es que cuando llegamos aveces no tengo el tiempo de investigar mas profundamente sobre esos temas que los han apasionado durante el dia, porque 50% del tiempo tengo que ponerme a cocinar o limpiar el desastre que dejamos detras cuando salimos . Porsupuesto cuando tengo el tiempo trato de traer de vuelta esas inquietudes , o vamos a la biblioteca a ver libros sobre esos temas, pero aveces es demasiado tarde porque ya estan interesados en algo nuevo... y me siento super culpable..!.. Me encantaria ser una "super woman", una super mujer, una que puede capturar esos momentos magicos llenos de curiosidad, y tener la casa limpia todo el tiempo, de poder cocinarles comidas nutritivas, y darme el tiempo de estudiar todas las noches..( aspiro a dos horas diarias de aprender sobre medicina herbalica)
Pero de alguna manera, nuestros ninos siguen creciendo, hicimos denuevo el tepee y han estado jugando mucho ahi, y ahora Vincent, (tal vez porque no hemos tenido tiempo de hacer mucha investigacion o tareas), esta totalmente en la onda de hacer sus porpios juguetes de madera.. ha seguido trabajando super duro en su bote y hace un par de dias contrato a su papa y abuelo para que hicieran unas espadas medievales de madera.. Esos han sido los mejores juguetes!!
Bueno.. en este punto estoy tratando de confiar en el dicho de que : "Los ninos aprenden atraves del juego", porque sinceramente los mios han estado puro jugando!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Geography Fair

(Click in the picture to go to an album)

Here are some pics from the Geography Fair that was organized by a coop group of homeschoolers, It was really nice because the kids got passports that were stamped when visiting each country, they had there about 10 countries, and they gave us some questions and we had to discover the answers.. It was really fun, specially because they had food testing ;0)... The kids loved it! and we learned a lot that day...

I also "had" to post some pictures of Vincent's boat.. he has been working in this project since last summer...(yes, ONE year ), and he keeps adding new things... started as a piece of wood, the he realized it would be better if hallow, then put a sail on it..Then it went to the side when it was in the water so he added a weight in the bottom, and like that, every time, he thinks :"it could work better "if""..... so there goes a new addition to the boat.. now in a garage sell , he found a really big book of boats, so he has been looking at it every day... figuring out how to improve his own.. I will keep posting pictures about this.. I am really intrigued about how this will end, ( I'm pretty sure he will want to add some kind of remote control to this.. LOL)


Aca hay algunas fotos de una feria de Geografia que fue organizada por un grupo de homeschoolers al que pertenezco, fue bien entretenido porque al llegar alla, a cada nino le daban un pasaporte que era estampado al visitar cada pais.. tenian un total de 10 o 12 paises mas o menos, y tambien teniamos que responder unas preguntas de cada pais y si las respondias todas al final te daban un premio... muy bello e interesante todo... me gusto mucho ver la dedicacion con la que presentaron cada uno de los paises, y en cada pais tenian degustacion de comidas tipicas!.. que rico todo! comimos desde Sushi, a Paella y hasta unas sopas frias de Lituania... Vimos como hicieron explotar un volcan en Islandia, etc, etc...

Ademas aca quise poner unas fotos del barco en el que Vincent ha estado trabajando desde el ano pasado... ( si, un ano ya), es increible.. comenzo como un pedazo de madera al que le puso una vela, de ahi se dio cuenta de que mejor lo ahuecaba asi que lo tallo por dentro.. despues , que en el agua se iba hacia un lado, asi que le puso un peso en el fondo.. y asi, poco a poco lo ha ido arreglando para que flote como un campeon!... Seguire poniendo fotos de este projecto de Vincent, porque estoy super intrigada en que ira a terminar todo esto...Me imagino que en algun momento le va a querer poner un motor a control remoto!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Awesome article...

This is just what I needed to read tonight....I see how my kids are in a stage of trying everything!.. how much discovery is on life for them right now, (7, 4 and 2 yrs old)... Everything is new and exciting.....I wander which of this passions will last in their lives...
Thanks to my friends Dawn and Cathy who shared this article on FB.

Perdon a mis lectores de habla hispana.. pero el articulo solo estaba en ingles... es una adolescente que comparte reflexiones de su vida siendo educada siguiendo esta filosofia libre de educacion...o "No- formal- educacion"... (ni se como traducirlo.). ;0)... Habla de la libertad en la que pudo encontrar diferentes pasiones en su vida y como descubrio que ningun aprendizaje real ocurria hasta que ella mismo tomaba las riendas en el asunto, hasta que realmente empezo a tomar sus suenos seriamente...Ojala puedan leerlo o que el computador se los traduzca..!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Red Clover day

( Click in the picture to see the album)

The other day in one of our Nature walks I realized that we have A LOT of Red Clover blooming around the house.. silently mother nature is giving us all this colorful presents for us to enjoy..I was so happy and excited to be able to harvest this flowers with the kids ...specially because I was getting ready to place an order and buy it online... and it was right here!!

Red Clover,(Trifolium pratense),is one of this herbs or bad called weeds that you want to have around.. Reading about the great benefits that you can get just by consuming them, makes it totally worth it to try it in different ways..(Red clover rice, red clover honey, red clover in soups , in teas, in breads, salads, etc, etc) it is one of those nourishing herbs, that more than healing a specific illness, help you to stay healthy.

Here are a few facts that I got from Herb Mentor:

*The National Cancer Institute found anti-tumour properties in red clover. Dozens of cultures around the world use it when cancer is expected.

*High in antioxidants, especially vitamin E.

*Red clover is nourishing, vitamin rich, mineral rich, containing vitamin B complex, vitamin C, calcium, chromium, magnesium, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, and protein.

*Nourishes hormones. Ten times more phytoestrogens than soy. An unexcelled tonic for menopausal women.

*Nourishes the Blood. Builds strength.

*An amazing fertility herb. Also regulates the menstrual cycle.

*Use infusion liberally for congestion and coughs.

Red clover blossoms has been used as an expectorant. Russian folk healers
recommend it for asthma. Other cultures have used it externally in salves for skin sores and eye problems and internally as a diuretic to treat water retention and as a sedative, anti inflammatory, cough medicine, and cancer treatment.

So we went with the kids one day and collected a basket of Red Clover and today we went again with some friends to collect more... all the kids were so excited in help me collect the blossoms.. they were so respectful with the plants and we had a great time!!

I made some yummy brown and wild rice with the petals of the flowers, and the kids couldn't get enough of it!
I just made the rice normally ,(2 cups) and at the end, I added 1 cup of the petals of the flowers, with 1 TBS of butter and salt.
Today I added some petals to our salad ... it was a colorful table!.


El otro dia en una de nuestras caminatas con los ninos, me di cuenta de que habia un monton de Trebol morado totalmente florecido alrededor de nuetra propiedad!. La Pacha mama nos tenia este bello y colorido regalo listo para nosotros> Me puse tan contenta! especialmente porque estaba lista para ordenar en internet esta hierba y al final la tenia al alcace de mi mano..

Tebol morado (Trifolium pratense), es una de esas hierbas, o mal llamadas malezas que uno quiere tener en su casa, ( como la ortiga), porque mas que sanar una enfermedad especifica , te ayuda a mantenerte sano.

Aca hay unos datos sobre el trebol morado:

*El Instituto nacional de cancer encontro propiedades "anti tumor" en el trebol. Docenas de culturas en el mundo lo usan como tratamiento preventivo contra el cancer cuando piensan que son propensos a contraer esta enfermedad.

* alto en antioxidantes, especialmente en Vitamina E.

*Trebol morado es nutritivo, alto en vitaminas y minerales, contiene complejo vitaminico B, vitamina C, calcio, etc, etc.

*Alimenta la sagre, y promueve fortaleza.

* Hierba excelente para la fertilidad, regula el ciclo menstrual.

*Usa la infusion libremente para tratar congestion y la tos.

Las flores del trebol han sido usadas como un expectorante. Algunos sanadores Rusos lo usan para el asma, otras colturas lo han usado externamente como pomadas para la piel y en problemas en los ojos, tambien como un diuretico y un sedativo, antiinflmatorio, remedio para la tos

Entonces nos fuimos con los ninos un dia a recolectar esta super hierba y hoy fuimos con otros amigos a recolectar mas. Todos los ninos estaban tan contentos ayudandome a recolectar las flores... fueron muy respetuosos con las plantas y la pasamos super bien

*Hice un arroz integral con petalos de trebol tan rico que los ninos no podian parar de comerlo..:
Haces el arroz normal, (2 tazas) y al final cuando esta listo le agregas una taza de los petalos de las flores, 1 cucharadas de mantequilla y sal.

Hoy agregue petalos a nuestra ensalada y quedo tan bella llena de colores!... me encanta comer asi, he aprendido mucho sobre "comidas salvajes", osea agregar e tu mesa todas estas hierbas que crecen salvajes a tu alrededor..

Monday, May 24, 2010


We had some interesting new things going on at home... first of all Vincent and Luciano decided that they want to learn more about the names of plants and animals that live right here in the area. When they told me, of course I got totally excited for two reasons; first, because that is something that I have been wanting to do for a long time now and never got or made the time to do it, and second, because one year after taking Vincent out of school, I am starting to feel him more interested in guiding his learning , and not to be afraid of saying it out loud. Somehow after school he was afraid to try to do something and fail, I see him not wanting to try to write or read because he knows he doesn't do it perfectly, so I'm glad to see now that he gets that he is not being evaluated or compared to others.. he is Vincent and we love him and support him no matter what. I actually LOVE this about homeschooling, the two boys are not competing about anything, they totally know that they are different to each other and just as Luciano is so good with books and he can be siting down working in "homeworks" for a long time, Vincent can be outside during the same time and be perfectly fine.
Well I got so excited that I got the book "Handbook of Nature Study" by Anna Botsford and a friend of mine in a homeschooling group, sent me the link to a blog about this book, ,and it so neat because they have "weekly challenges" and really nice ideas to go in Nature and learn really gentle in the process . Well of course the day that we got the book, Vincent and Luciano were so excited that they starting going through the pages discovering pictures about things that they know, or they have seen... at the end Vincent took his shell box out and starting comparing his shells with the ones in the book in the section of "invertebrates", and without any class or big explanation from me they got out running looking for invertebrates to bring them home!. First grade and preschool understanding "hands on" about the difference between vertebrates and invertebrates, for me that is priceless.
I also realized that they have learned a lot about herbs and plants around the house because of a game that I got the boys for Christmas called "Wildcraft",(An herbal adventure game),, this is a cooperative game,so they have to work together collecting herbs, to help each other get out of trouble and get to the end. ... So now they recognize plantain, echinacea, dandelion, chamomile, etc, etc..
Almost every day we try to go in our "nature walks", and in each one of them they find something magic. I have been trying to follow the weekly challenges in that blog, and they have really good ideas, like the last time we went out, I ask the kids to draw what was more interesting for them in our walk, and then close their eyes and say what noises the heard, how was the weather, etc.. seriously, I don't put much attention to details, and it was so funny to see how much they notice just by walking!
Also every sunset we do a family tradition here, we turn on a little fire and we sing some mantras , we stay in silence to feel the end of the day, the birds, the wind, I take this moment to think about the day that is ending... I love this moment of the day, I wait for it, sunsets are really important here at home.
Also this past week we saw how our son Vincent discovered a new passion in his life... Skateboard!!... My husband Ashley got him this present after he saw him getting books from the library about this, and he was totally right, he needed one..! he is a natural in this kind of sports, and with Ashley we are so happy to be able to support him, take him to the Skateboard parks and "see him fly".

Tenemos cosas bien interesantes pasando este ultimo tiempo aca en casa, primero que nada, Vincent y Luciano decidieron que quieren aprender mas sobre los animales y plantas que viven aca en nuestra casa y en esta zona. Cuando me dijeron obviamente me puse super contenta por dos razones; primero, porque hace mucho tiempo que yo tambien quiero hacer eso y nunca tengo o me hago el tiempo para hacerlo y segundo, porque recien ahora, despues de un ano de haber sacado a Vincent del colegio , estoy empezando a ver como el siente mas confianza para guiar su aprendizaje y tomar decisiones como esta, de algua manera ese ano que paso en el colegio hizo que perdiera mucho su autoestima, le daba miedo empezar algo y fallar, como por ej, lo veo evitando la escritura y lectura, porque como el sabe que no lo hace perfectamente, prefiere no hacerlo... en el colegio lo estaban dejando en el grupo de los "lentos" porque no leia igual que los otros ninos...Y me ecanta ver ahora como esta dandose cuenta de que nadie va a estar evaluandolo o comparandolo con nadie... el es Vincent y lo amamos y apoyamos pase lo que pase. De hecho esa es ua de las cosas que AMO de homeschooling, es ver como los dos ninos no compiten pero para nada entre ellos, se reconocen distintos el uno al otro y han aprendido que son un buen complemento, asi tal como Luciano puede pasar un largo rato viendo un libro o haciendo tareas, Vincent puede estar afuera por horas si problema tambien.
Bueno estaba tan entusiasmada con esto de aprender de nuestro entorno, que compre el libro "Handbook of Nature Study" de Anna Botsford y justo una amiga mia de un grupo de homeschooling me mando el blog the este libro, donde tienen ideas muy buenas para aprender de una manera super sutil y hasta tienen "desafios semanales": Bueno el libro llego a la casa y los ninos super emocionados se dedicaron a buscar fotos de cosas que conocian y una cosa llevo a la otra hasta que Vincent trajo su caja de conchitas y las comparaban con las fotos del libro en la seccion de "invertebrados" y sin ninguna clase o gran explicacion de mi parte salieron corriendo a buscar distintos invertebrados en el patio y traerlos a acasa para identificarlos y compararlos.... y asi primero basico y pre kinder , descubriendo a traves de experiencia la diferencia entre los seres invertebrados y los vertebrados.... que bonito fue..
Tambien me di cuenta que saben harto de hierbas y plantas gracias a un juego que les regale para navidad, se llama "Wildcraft", es un juego cooperativo,donde tienen que ayudarse los unos a los otros para llegar todos juntos a la meta , recolectando hierbas que los ayuden a salir de distintas situaciones.. bien entretenido el juego:
Ademas todos los dias tratamos de salir en estas "caminatas en la naturaleza", donde siempre aperece algo magico que quieren traer a casa.
Tambien esta ultima semana con Ashley tuvimos la suerte de ver como nacia una nueva pasion en la vida de Vincent : Skateboard.!! Ashley le regalo el Skateboard desues de ver como Vincent traia de la biblioteca libros sobre esto y lo hacia leer en las noches. El es super natural en este tipo de deportes y con Ashley estamos tan contentos de poder apoyarlo, llevarlo a parkes y verlo literalmente "volar".

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Our own dandelion revolution...

(make click in the picture to see the rest)

We have been enjoying and focusing in learning through nature, specially in this time of the year, when we are experiencing this explosion of flowers , plants and trees, with all their colors, smells and textures ... We try to be outside of the house most of the time, and I just let the kids play. Of course we are the only family in our neighborhood that doesn't kill, pull or poison the dandelions. It is just so funny to see our big patch of white and yellow flowers covering our grass against those immaculate and perfect lawns in our neighbors houses; I bet they are not really happy about this and all the seeds flying all over with the wind... but who cares!.. we just love to see it, and isn't the best to be a child and be able to go blowing this flowers all the time?? there is something magical about that. ( plus I harvest and make tinctures and teas with my dandelions, and I also put them in our salads.. so they have to be totally natural).

We made our own "nature journals" and each kid glued their favorite things from Nature and tried to draw it, and then we talked about it...It is so nice to see how much they know about nature just by spending time by themselves IN nature...Vincent is the one that spends more time by himself ... and I can totally see how he is the more connected with the cycles of the day and the weather .

(Haz click en la foto para ver el resto)

Hemos estado enfocandonos en aprender atraves de la naturaleza, especialmente en este tiempo del ano, cuando estamos siendo testigos de esta explosion de plantas, flores y arboles, con todos sus colores, aromas y texturas. Tratamos de estar afuera de la casa la mayor parte del tiempo y dejo a los ninos jugar. Por supuesto somos la unica familia en nuestro vecindario que no mata, saca o envenena los diente de leon. Es super divertido ver nuestra casa con una gran mancha de flores amarillas y blancas, en contra de esos pastos inmaculados, todos verdes y bien cortados que tienen nuestros vecinos. SEguro que no estan nada de felices con nuestro paisajismo salvaje, mas encima con las semillas de los diente de leon volando con el viento por todo lados.. Pero a quien le importa!! A nosotros nos encanta!.. es maravilloso estar en esta pradera que es nuestro patio, ademas no hay nada mas lindo que ser ninos e ir soplando estas flores todo el tiempo... hay algo magico en estas semillitas volando. ( ademas yo cuido los diente de leon para hacer tinturas, tecitos y uso las hojas para ensaladas, asi que tienen que ser super naturales)

Hicimos nuestros propios cuadernitos para aprender sobre lo que nos rodea en la naturaleza en este momento y cada uno pego ahi sus objetos favoritos del patio y trataron de dibujarlos y conversamos sobre cada uno de ellos. Es tan lindo ver cuanto aprenden los ninos sobre la naturaleza solo por pasar tiempo EN la naturaleza, en vez de aprender todo por libros. Vincent es el que pasa mas tiempo solito en la naturaleza y obviamente es el que esta mas conectado con los ciclos del dia y el clima..

Thursday, May 6, 2010

I just love our lives...

We just had a great couple of weeks.. I have been so tired that actually made it harder to keep on posting here, but well... Vincent is so excited of creating this record of our lives that I have to keep on trying!..But man, this kids have busy lives!! I love to try to keep track of everything we do and actually don't have time for it.
We have been busy playing, going to classes, working in our garden,playing more, going to play dates, park days, today we went to a play of "The Little Princess"..( I just love theater), and the last weekend a Chilean friend stop here for a couple of days in his way back to Chile after traveling through Asia... it was so nice to see him here and be able to show him our life and friends and it was also great for Luciano (4 yrs old), that got some bills from China for his first collection of "money from around the world".. it is so funny, when he starts talking to our friends , at some point he will ask:"Do you have money from around the world?"... he just has money from here, Mexico, of course Chile and now China... not that bad right?...
And after something so simple as getting money from China, Vincent and Luciano started asking where is China? What continent is that? Can we see pictures? etc, etc and actually I was impressed about the knowledge they had from China without never even made a "unit" about it....
They started talking about the big wall of China, how you can see it from the moon, how long took to build it, what language they speak in China, what are the traditional foods and clothes, about Pandas and what they eat, what herbivores are and at some point Vincent brought one of his ASK magazine,(, with a whole article about the Terracotta warriors , how they where found and their history... we read over an hour about this subject , I love how my active child ,(the one that never sits) can actually be quiet, concentrated, for over an hour and then jump in talking, yelling, laughing, pretending to be the archeologist that found this warriors...How nice, it gives me so much peace of mind to see him being able to do this...learn about his interests and them jump on being active and nobody asking him to sit still and put attention to the next subject to be taught...

Hemos tenido unas semanas super ocupadas y entretenidas, yendo a clases, parques, a jugar con amigos, deportes, incluso ayer fuimos a una obra de teatro donde los ninos se portaron excelente.. Con Vincent empezamos este blog para mantener un registro de lo que hacemos juntos y me encanta darme cuenta de que estamos tan ocupados y activos todo el tiempo que casi no tenemos tiempo para seguir con este blog, pero el esta tan entusiasmado en mostrarle a nuestra familia sus actividades que tengo que seguir intentandolo!.
Durate el fin de semana pasado vino de visita un amigo Chileno que viajaba de vuelta a Chile despues de haber andado viajando por Asia, fue muy lindo verlo y tener la posibilidad de mostrale nuestra vida aca, nuestros amigos, etc, y tambien fue muy lindo para Luciano, (4 anos), porque recibio dinero de China para su primera coleccion de "dinero del mundo" , (solo tiene billetes y monedas de USA, Mexico, Chile y ahora China).
Y despues de unos dias de algo tan simple como recibir unos billetes de China, Vincent y Luciano empezaron a hacer preguntas como "Donde esta China?", "En que continente"?, Podemos ver fotos?, etc, etc.. y fue impresionante para mi darme cuenta del conocimiento que ellos tienen siendo tan pequenos sobre este pais, sin nunca haber hecho una unidad de estudio al respecto!... Empezaron a conversar sobre la Gran Muralla China, cuanto se demoraron en construirla, que puede ser vista desde la luna, que idioma hablan ahi, cuales son las comidas y ropas tradicionales, Terminaron hablando sobre los Pandas y de como se alimetas solo de hojas de eucaliptos, que son los herviboros, etc, etc!! Y luego en un momento Vincent trajo una de sus revistas ASK ,(, donde salia todo un reportaje sobre los Gerreros de Terracota y de como fueron encontrados y la historia detras de este descubrimiento, leimos sobre este tema por mas de una hora... Me encanta ver como mi hijo mas activo,(el que nunca se sienta), puede estar concentrado por mas de una hora y luego saltar, reirse , actuar pretendiendo que es el arqueologo que encontro estos increibles guerreros... Es tan lindo verlos asi, y me da mucha paz interior y alegria saber de que puede aprender sobre lo que a el le interesa y despues saltar y jugar sin tener a nadie al lado que lo obligue a sentarse callado esperando empezar a ser "ensenados" sobre el proximo tema... estoy segura que estos guerreros estaran dando vuelta en nuestra casa por un buen tiempo.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Nice thoughts for tonight...

I saw this written today and it made so much sense for what has been going on in my head lately.. Every time I talk with my kids I have to listen twice.. they have so much truth, everything is so simple for them and here I come to complicate everything..
As adults we think we know how things work and how things should be done, but my kids are teaching me every day that maybe that is not the only way.. I have learned so much of spirituality with them, just by listening to the great thoughts they have about life, what happens after death, God, relationships, mother nature.. They inspire me so much.. to be a better person and to enjoy every second.

"When we adults think of children there is a simple truth that we ignore: childhood is not preparation for life; childhood is life. A child isn't getting ready to live; a child is living. No child will miss the zest and joy of living unless these are denied by adults who have convinced themselves that childhood is a period of preparation. How much heartache we would save ourselves if we would recognize children as partners with adults in the process of living, rather than always viewing them as apprentices. How much we could teach each other; we have the experience and they have the freshness.
How full both our lives could be."

John A. Taylor

"Cuando nosotros adultos pensamos en nuestros ninos hay una simple verdad que ignoramos: la infancia no es una preparacion para la vida; la infancia es vida. Un nino no se esta "preparando" para vivir; el nino esta viviendo. Ningun nino perdera el sentido y el gozo de vivir a no ser que esto sea negado por adultos que se han convencido a ellos mismos de que la infancia es un periodo de preparacion. Cuantas penas podriamos ahorrarnos si pudieramos reconocer a los ninos como companeros con nosotros adultos en el proceso de vivir en vez de estar siempre viendolos como aprendices. Cuanto podriamos ensenarnos los unos a los otros; Nosotros tenemos la experiencia y ellos tienen la frescura.
Cuan plenas nuestras vidas podrian ser"

John A. Taylor

Vi esto escrito hoy e hizo tanto sentido con los pensamientos que han andado dando vuelta en mi cabeza las ultimas semanas, cada vez que hablo con los ninos trato de poner mucha atencion,tienen tanta verdad en sus palabras, sin darse cuenta.. todo es tan simple para ellos y ahi vengo yo a complicarlo todo con mis "verdades".
Como adultos nosotros pensamos que sabemos muy bien como las cosas son y como deberian funcionar, pero mis ninos me ensenan cada dia que tal vez hay otra manera de ver la vida. He aprendido tanto con ellos sobre espiritualidad, solo escuchando esas grandes ideas que ellos tienen sobre la vida, que pasa despues de la muerte, Dios, el amor de pareja, y la pacha mama...Realmente ellos me inspiran, me inspiran a ser mejor y a gozar cada segundo

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

About us

We are a Chilean family, living in USA since 2004. We have 3 great kids, Vincent (7), Luciano(4) and Josefa(2), and we started homechooling last year after our oldest son was totally unhappy in school... Honestly, for us was a shock, I loved school in Chile and so did my husband... and it was so sad to see how Vincent started school so excited, and little by little during the year, he started losing interest and also his self esteem. Now that we homeschool and follow a child-led education we can totally see how his brilliance and curiosity are out there, surprising us every day with new questions and ideas. He is totally a hands on learner, an explorer, who doesn't like to sit down to do "school work".. In the other hand we have Luciano who has a love for worksheets and "homeworks", he is just 4 and every day he asks for books to work on tracing letters and doing math, he loves to dance and paint.

We are starting this blog to share our experiences and also to create a register of this magic years.
We love the way our kids and ourselves are learning from each other, with respect, trust, freedom and happiness every single day.

Somos una familia Chilena, que vive en USA desde el anio 2004.Tenemos 3 hijos maravillosos, Vincent(7), Luciano(4) y Josefa(2). Comenzamos a educar a nuestros hijos en la casa en 2009, despues despues de ver como nuestro hijo mayor estaba totalmente infeliz en el colegio. Con mi esposo no podiamos creerlo! A nosotros nos encanto el colegio en Chile y por lo mimo fue tan triste ver como Vincent comenzo el anio escolar tan feliz y poco a poco fue perdiendo el interes y su autoestima
Estamos creando este blog para compartir nuestras experiencias y aventuras siendo una familia que educa a nuestros hijos en la casa y tambien para crear un registro de lo que son estos magicos anios de nuestra vida.
Nos encanta la manera en que nuestros hijos y nosotros mismos estamos aprendiendo los unos de los otros, buscando respeto, libertad, amor y felicidad cada dia de nuestra vida juntos.
Tratamos de seguir una educacion guiada e inspirada por nuestros hijos, sacandonos de encima cada dia un poco mas lo que es el concepto de "educacion formal" y educando a nuestros hijos de la manera mas natural y organica que podemos.
Tenemos a la Naturaleza como nuetra maestra y el Planeta como nuestra sala de clases.


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