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Showing posts from August, 2014

A Summer Reading Wrap-Up

I don't know about you, but Labor Day weekend always marks the end of summer to me.  Even though the actual first day of fall comes a few weeks later, it just seems like the beginning of September really makes it feel like fall. And with fall here I thought I would do a little Summer Reading Wrap-Up ! The kiddos have been busy reading and earning $$ all summer with our very own custom summer reading program .  They've kept me on my toes making up coupons and coming up with prizes!  As the summer began to come to an end, I resorted to recycling coupons and then finally just saying "if you bingo, I'll give you a dollar" (just so I didn't have to make more coupons...haha).   The Princess ended up earning $47.81 and Mr. B earned $20.27.  That was at a penny a page.  You can tell who loves to read the most:) I'm just glad they were motivated to read though.  The Princess was definitely more motivated than Mr. B was but they both got

Back-to-{home}school: our learning room spruce up

Now, right off the bat I want to say that not all--or even most--of our schooling happens in this room.  Our Learning Room (a converted dining room) is where our family computer and printer is, our art supplies can be found, wall maps and chalkboard are hanging, a large portion of our family library is (although every room in our house has bookcases!), and our educational resources are. It's pretty much the organizational hub for our homeschool.  But learning happens all over our house ...and yard ...and often other places, too. Each fall I like to do some cleaning (and cleaning out!), hang a new thing or two on the walls, and just spruce it up in general. This year I've put our reproduction historical US documents back on the wall since we're studying US history.  I've add a few cool printable infographics from Kids Discover about how our bodies work since we're studying human anatomy.  A new map of the apostle Paul's world is on the wall

Tasty Tuesday {roasted marinara sauce}

Welcome back to Tasty Tuesday!!   Recently, as in: the-month-of-August-which-has-been-one-of-the-busiest-months-of-my-life-ever , I decided it was time to can some tomatoes.  And after hearing of a great local place to buy some, proceeded to purchase a ridiculous amount of those lovely home-grown beauties.   So....canning tomatoes has been happening at my house.  Yes, it has.   And I used this easy-peasy method.    However, after canning lots of tomatoes in this way I decided it was time to branch out.  I just wanted to try something that was different--and maybe something a little less time consuming. So when a friend shared this super easy and oh-so-delicious recipe with me, I had to try it.   I was NOT disappointed!   Roasted Marinara Sauce (from my friend Beverly Wilson) 1. Quarter (or smaller) the tomatoes and place them  cut-side-down on a baking sheet with edges. 2.  Quarter a large onion and spread around on top of tomatoes.

'Best Friends and Mean Girls': a Review

Up until recently I have only been vaguely familiar with the Secret Keeper Girl organization.  This is a wonderful ministry devoted to teaching girls ages 8-12 about purity, modesty, and about "keeping the deepest secrets of their beauty for just one man".  Having an 11-year-old daughter, this definitely strikes a cord with me. So I was very excited to have the opportunity to review a copy of Secret Keeper Girl's newest book for moms,  8 Great Dates: Best Friends and Mean Girls  by Dannah Gresh. This book is all about relationships.  Your relationships as a mother, your relationship with your daughter, and--primarily--your daughters relationships with God, her parents, her siblings, her BFF, her neighbors, mean girls, and boys.   There are three short introductory chapters, then you dive into '8 Great Date' ideas designed to help you discuss all of the above relationships with your daughter.   For each date idea there is: a challenge for m

Homeschool Day at Cheekwood Gardens

This week felt almost like our school year had started back again.  We took a fun field trip with several other families from our homeschool group to Cheekwood Gardens in Nashville.  Each year Cheekwood hosts a special homeschool day, usually developed around their summer theme.  This year the main theme was Big Bugs , along with emphasis on Andy Warhol's Flowers and a couple more smaller-but-just-as-beautiful exhibits.  We really enjoyed it ( even if there was a heat advisory and I thought at one point we might truly melt...ha!) !   Here are some highlights from our day:    David Rogers' Big Bugs  Patrick Dougherty: Little Bitty Pretty One twig sculpture On the Carell Woodland Sculpture Trail More of the Carell Woodland Sculpture Trail If you live near Nashville or are passing through, this is a great spot for enjoying nature, strolling through gardens, taking a leisurely "hike" on the sculpture trail, browsing the art museum,

Back-to-{home}School: Curriculum Choices

It's that time of the year again!!  I love getting all organized and prepared for the start of our homeschool year.  It hardly seems possible that this is our 7th year of homeschool and I now have a 4th grader and a 6th grader.  This year it seems we have more subjects and books than ever!  We'll be starting back in just two weeks. Here's my 6th grader's personal lineup: What's worked in the past that she's continuing with: Math : Teaching Textbooks Handwriting : Getty Dubay Classic Literature units using various sources What's new this year:  Supplemental Math : Life of Fred Grammar : Rod & Staff Bible : Journeys of Faithfulness  (to start the year) Guitar & Piano lessons Here's the 4th grader's personal lineup: What's worked in the past that he's continuing with:  Math: Teaching Textbooks Handwriting: Getty Dubay Spelling: Sequential Spelling & Bi

End-of-Summer {field} Trips

 Our summer is about to officially wrap up~can't believe fall is almost here!  August has been crazy busy so far, but these last couple of weeks are (hopefully) going to be a little slower. We had two short trips back-to-back at the beginning of this month ...which made me realize more than ever that my son is just not a very good traveler.  But we survived.  And even had some fun in the meantime ;) Our first trip was to Indianapolis for a ministers conference.  I didn't attend much of the conference, but I did get to hang out in a cozy hotel room downtown with my kiddos, eating some delicious pizza, and watching lots of the Food Network (a guilty hotel splurge since we don't have cable). The kids and I also did a bit of walking around downtown while Vince was at the conference.  Indy has a lovely downtown and I always enjoy visiting there! So then we came home for a couple of days and turned around and headed back to the Cincinnati area.  One of my child