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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Fix a Word

This was a neat game we got the other day. You add prefixes and suffixes to words. The first one to complete their card wins. You can also play variations where you just do prefixes or just do suffixes. I had to look up many words because I was not sure if some endings could go with words. (Most I knew, but I thought there might be a few that I did not.)



Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Books I am looking for

These are some books I am trying to acquire. If you have these and want to sell them please let me know how much you want for the book. My library has several of them, but if I could manage to get a good deal on some that would help in planning. (Not having to worry about getting them in time.)

From Sea to Shining Sea-Peter Marshall

Sound Forth The Trumpet-Marshall

Pedro's Journal -Bulla

The Double Life of Pocahontas-Fritz

The Mayflower Secret -Dave and Neta Jackson

The Courage of Sarah Noble -Alice Dagliesh

The Light in the Forest- Conrad Richter

Johnny Tremain- Forbes

The Cabin Faced West- Fritz

Ben and Me-Robert Lawson

Abandoned on the Wild Fronteir-

Soft Rain-Corneilssen

Beneath the Sky of An Angry God

Moccasin Trail -Mc Graw

What are You figuring Now? A Story about B. Banneker

Amos Fortune, Free Man

Bound for Oregon

Dame Shirley and the Gold Rush

Listen for the Whippoorwill

Little Pilgrims Progress -Taylor

Fun Math Books

In a previous post I mentioned how much the kids were enjoying Mathterpieces.  So I ordered a couple more books from our library. During our read aloud time, we read through a few of these problems.

These are the latest 2 we have been working on. We finished The Grapes of Math today.

The Grapes Of Math

We will start this one tomorrow.

Math For All Seasons (Scholastic Bookshelf)

Curriculum and books for sale.

Here is what I still have available. I also added a few items to the list.

New Items

Teaching Your Children -Lopez (A Curriculum Guide to what children need to know at each level through 6th grade.)  $5.00

Teach Your Own -John Holt  $10.00

Books for girls

The Christian Girls Guide to Being Your best  $5.00

The Beauty Book It's a God Thing (The Lily Series)  $4.00

The It's MY Life Book it's a God Thing. (Young Women of Faith) $4.00

Millie's Unsettled Season Book One (Life of Faith) -Finley  $5.00

Dinosaur Lapbook from Live and Learn Press  -Cover looks different (For Elementary level students.) $6.00

Other Things

Weaver Curriculum Lot- includes Volume 1, Day by Day, Wisdom Words, Penmanship to Praise and the lessons audio cassette tape. The materials are used. It does have some highlighting. (A little) and some pages were re-copied because they came loose from the 3 ring binder.

All pages are 3 hole punched.
I am asking $65.00 for all. $75.00 if I have to ship it.

Misc. I have included links so you can view the books.
The Big Tennessee Reproducible Activity Book $6.00

WWJD for Kidz $4.00

What’s Inside You? Usborne Starting Point Science $2.00

Sign Language for Everyone -Cathy Rice $7.00

First Comes Love –Jennifer Davis $2.00

To Everything There is a Season –Leo and Diane Dillon $4.00

Roger The Jolly Pirate (HB)–Brett Helquist $3.00

Best of All –Max Lucado $3.00

Genesis for Kids Science Experiments that show God’s power in Creation $3.00

I wonder why Kangaroos have Pouches and other questions about baby animals. (HB) $2.00

I wonder why Soap Makes Bubbles and other questions about science (HB) $3.00

I wonder why Triceratops Have Horns and other questions about dinosaurs. $3.00

Fishing Just Makes Cents

I made this scrapbook page for my dh's fishing album. Dh is the one in the red shirt. He and his partner won their first tournament a few weeks ago. It was their first tournament to fish. (And they actually brought in more weight that day than any of the tournaments on the lake. (There were 3.)


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Memorize in Minutes

I purchased this program about 6 months ago because dd was struggling so much trying to learn the times tables. She knows how to skip count, but that can still take too long when trying to do multiple digit multiplication. I looked it over and decided to give it a try. Once I got it, however, I read through a little with her and thought "Memorizing this would be longer than just learning to memorize the tables themselves." So I put it away.


After reading over some information the other day from Diane Craft about Right Brain Integration, I realized I was wrong. Just because it might be easier for me to memorize tables doesn't mean that is the best way for dd.

So we pulled it back out and started at the picture lessons. Today we went over what each picture stood for. Shoe is for 2. (It rhymes.) 3 is for Tree, 4 is for Door, etc. Not only do they look at the pictures, they repeat it to themselves, and then do motions. They touch their shoes for 2, act like a tree for 3 etc. So I can see how this would actually get into the brain easier. (I just wanted a faster way out.) Unfortunately, when I put it down I lost time, and now I have to go through it again. So we have set Gamma down for now, until we get through these lessons. 


After today's lesson of memorizing the numbers and the associated pictures. I had her draw them from memory. We will review them tomorrow and go onto the 2X table stories.


Here are what a couple of the 2x table stories look like. Each picture is associated with a story. So you read the story and the child remembers 2 X 2 =4 (Shoe times Shoe = floor.) Then once she has those down and can tell me the stories, she will draw those like she did in the page above.


Monday, March 28, 2011

A Typical Homeschool Day

This is what a typical home-school day looks like at our house.

8:00 -9:00 AM wake, eat breakfast, brush teeth and hair, make beds.

9:00 Begin school day. (The order may change on any given day depending upon what I have to do. )

Math-Peyton Complete book of Math grades 5-6, Lexi Gamma and Times tables the Fun Way

LA  -Peyton Lifepac, DD does Marching Along Reader and Workbook, and spelling words-sight words.

Cursive -modern cursive for both.

10:00 or 10:30 Praise and Worship, Devotions (Frogs in Pharoah's Bed), prayer time.

Read alouds for History or Science (We generally rotate one week of science and then the following week is history.)

We narrate and journal what we read about.

12:00 -12:30 Lunch

12:30-1:00 Piano and chores

1:00-2:00 Room time (A short devotional read a chapter in book of choice, play quietly or listen to music.

2:00-3:00 Outside play, board games, educational games or shows.

3:00 Errands, sports, extra curricular groups, or just general free time.

6:00 prepare for dinner, clean after dinner

9:00 bedtime routine.

Monday Story Starters

I thought I would share the kids stories today.

Lexi chose "What If ice cream never melted."

I would get every flavor in the world.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner too,

Yum yum yum for me and you.

I think she was trying to make it a poem story. Anyway I thought she gave it a good try.


Peyton chose "How would you build a snowman without any snow?"


The ray is a "ray gun". So the ray gun would bring him to life. Maybe I should now have him design the ray gun.

Homeschool Monday

On Mondays we usually do things a little differently. Because this is our cleaning day. We spend about 2 hours cleaning. (Life Skills). So our academics for the day are lighter.

We usually do :

  • A Story Starter (So they have a writing assignment each Monday.)
  • A math page
  • Science lesson and journal
  • Daily Reading

For cleaning we: (This can take 1-2 hours depending upon how focused the kids are.)

  • Dust all furniture and fans
  • Sweep the wood floors
  • Vacuum all carpets
  • Mop if necessary
  • Empty all trashcans

This afternoon we have Anatomy Group here at our house. And then gymnastics follows. I usually try to go to the store during this time and then when we get home dinner gets prepared. (My plan today is to crockpot something.)

Take My Heart from Acquire the Fire

Yesterday afternoon I was watching Perry Stone. I really love the knowledge and wisdom from the word that he shares. During the program break, they mentioned a book/DVD about spiritual war in the home, (called Purging Your House Pruning Your Family Tree) and one of them was how music can effect the spiritual nature of your home. Another thing that was mentioned (And I have heard before) was about breaking generational curses (depression, suicide, alcoholism and many other things get into a family and go on for generations or manage to plague many of the family members.) I believe that we are free from the curse (through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross for us) and that these can be broken. You can find out more at

So I decided we need to get back to more music (praise and worship) and less news especially in the mornings. So I just bring up my blog and hit play and I have a pre-arranged play list that I like.

Take My Heart lyrics
Lord I've come to abandon me
Take this life and make it Yours
No more running from my destiny
Draw me ever nearer to Your heart
Ever deeper to Your love.                                                                                                                                                                                                       Take my heart, take my soul
All that I have come to know
Take my plans, make them Yours
Let Your wisdom overflow
Take my life, take my will, take my world
Take me, Take me
Lord I've come to the end of me
In sweet surrender here I stand
Its Your spirit Lord that beckons me
Draw me ever nearer to Your heart
Ever deeper to Your love

Friday, March 25, 2011

Weekly Wrap Up

  • This week we have been learning about the Digestive System.
  • We had a field trip today with our 4H Engineering Group-we learned about cranes and hoisting.
  • We did not get much done in LA or Math. Peyton is continuing Review and Lexi is on lesson 22.
  • Lexi is on Sight Word List 5 now. Peyton is in LA 506.
  • We spent one afternoon out with friends.
  • Dd had a friend stay overnight during the week, they had a great time.
  • Had a nice moms night out this week with other homeschool moms.
  • Our church craft day was Tuesday so I managed to get 3 pages scrapbooked.
  • I only have 2 more bible study classes and will finish my Daniel-Beth Moore Study.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

Here are some pictures of tonight's dinner.

Monday-Parmesan Chicken, Garlic-Butter roasted asparagus, and sweet potatoes. In fact I let ds help me tonight, since he kept bugging me about supper, saying he was starving. So I told him we could get it going much faster with his help.

He placed the chicken in the garlic butter.


Then rolled it in the bread crumbs/parmesan cheese mixture.


And set it on the greased cookie sheet.


This was dessert -Strawberries, whipped cream over sponge cakes. It's under there. Just well hidden!


Here is the rest of the week's menu.

Tuesday-Turkey Burgers


Thursday-Roast with Gravy, Brown Rice, Green Beans with Almonds

Friday -Roast Sandwiches.

Saturday -Salmon Patties ,steamed veggies, angel hair pasta

Sunday -Pork Loin, sweet potatoes, steamed veggies

Ramblings, books I am reading, things I am learning.

Well I am in the midst of reading a few different books.

Educating the Wholehearted Child -Clay and Sally Clarkson  I wrote a few things about this the other day on Knowing Your Purpose. (Anyway, the reason for the post is mainly that as I write it I keep a journal of what grabs me and what I glean as important. (For my own notes.)

Teach Your Own by John Holt -Now I must say this book is really different-because John's educational philosophy leans more toward "Unschooling." (But I can glean things from him as well, even though I may not totally feel confident in that approach.)

You Are Not What You Weigh-Lisa Bevere- This is a really good book, and I am learning a lot here. I hope to share more in the next few days.

Daniel by Beth Moore (I am still in the middle of this Bible study we are presently in Chapter 9.)

Experiencing God -I am beginning to doubt I will ever finish this book.

Lord Change My Attitude-James McDonald (This I have set down until Summer break,  when I plan to work on this.)

  So from Educating the Wholehearted Child, today I was reading about Priorities. Of course this isn't too terribly hard. I am task oriented after all, I always have a list, a schedule, etc.  Over the past few weeks I have really been sensing something different. I am more aware now that Peyton will be in 6th grade next year. (Wow, Jr. High ) I only have 3 years to get him ready for High School. We (Gary and I ) only have 7 more years to really influence him, to help him become the man of God, that God wants him to be. I only have 7 more years of "being able to really have a say in that time". Now is my opportunity, and If I don't take it, I will miss it. Now is the time for relationship, now is the time for board games, now is the time to read with him, now is the opportunity to impart to him what I have learned from God. It is the time to teach him that life's simple pleasures are the best, and to begin to focus his time on what is most important. It is great to try many things. I love to do many things, but truthfully I am only good at a few things. If I had taken the time to work at one thing more diligently I would be great at something and still okay at many other things.

  Before every new semester I always re-evaluate where we are, where we need to be going. These things just came fresh on my mind. What are the most important things I want him to know, and am I doing the things I need to do to help him go in that direction. I really think one of those major things is teaching him to come before God, teaching him to pray. More importantly than "what you know" is "Who you know". Of course that doesn't mean we don't take care of the what you know, but knowing God has to be the foremost goal. A recent thread on one of our home-school forums asked this. "What do you want your child to know by the time they finish school, or by the time they are ready to be on their own?" This was one of the answers from a friend on the forum. The advice is spiritual. But I really loved that it was put into concrete words.

I'd want them to know.... how to discern the Lord's will.
I'd want them to be able.... to learn about anything they want to on their own.
I'd want them to have read.... the Bible through several times.
I'd want them to have experienced... life on the mission field.

So to add to this, I would say I also want my children to know that prayer matters. That prayer is a 2 way conversation.  I want them to know how to hear God's voice-thus being able to determine His will and direction.  I want them to discern the presence of the Lord. I also want them to learn to be "still. "This is a hard thing in today's culture. I also believe it is one of the enemy's greatest tools. (Keeping us so busy, we don't take time for God, we don't take time for relationship. We focus way to much on ourselves and all the things that seem like such worthy causes." Martha had a list of them, but Mary chose more wisely."

So as I focus energies on these things, I first have to come before God myself. How can I pour God into my children if he is void in me? How do I teach them to pray and come into His presence if I never show them. This is another important reason we do devotions, and singing in the mornings. We open ourselves up to God, to hear from Him, to ask for His priorities in our day. To lift others before Him. If I am on the run all the time, I can't do this, I would also be physically spent.  And truthfully, this time isn't really for God, as much as it is for "us".

When we come into His presence we are changed, we are moved, we are transformed, we gain direction and insight, we gain strength and refreshment, we see things differently because we have sought the heart of God. When we don't take time to get before God we try to do all these things in our flesh and we fail miserably. We lack joy, we turn to false idols and things for fulfillment.

I set down some things this semester. I decided not to return to our home-school co-op. While we enjoyed the fellowship of other families I do have to admit that I felt pressed all week to try to make up the day we missed at home with our own studies and routine. So I had to decide which fit our priorities more. I know it was a move in the right direction for us. I limited each child to one  (sport) and church activities.  I also had to be careful to not allow other things to come in and fill our schedule now that our schedule was eased.

It is important to show our children how to set priorities. We cannot possibly do it all, we never will be able to."  Neither will they.  It is important to seek God about what to say yes, and no too. They have to learn this too. How will they determine if we have never set priorities ourselves. Opportunities will always be there calling us to come. In some seasons there are more opportunities than others. They all look like such worthy opportunities, and we just don't want our child to miss out. The truth is when we say yes to something we are also saying no to something else. So saying yes to being much more busy in our schedules, means less time with God and with family, and with learning the simple pleasures of life. How can we learn to "Be still" if we never are? How can we have real joy, if we never spend time with the Joy giver?

I remember as a child telling my parents "I am bored". I woke early every day, went to school, came home, had homework, had chores, then I might have had a little time for play, then it was time for dinner and the bedtime routine. My whole day was ordered, by the American institution of "school". I remember always feeling restless when I didn't have something fun planned. I could hardly stand a Saturday at home.  After I came to the Lord all that began to change. I learned to "Be Still". I remember spending hours in silence. No TV, maybe a little soft music, not even reading. Just basking in the presence of God. I must admit, I don't get that much time anymore. I am glad I had it when I did though. There are seasons I get more time with God and it helps to sustain me in the seasons where I don't. Lately however, the seasons where I don't get the time with God, turn out to be trying, and much less joyful. So what is the point in all the running and activity, when we only run ourselves ragged?

It's funny, because I am never bored now. Never. I also don't feel the need to run the roads, or go here and there. I am content "being still", "being at home" and I am glad that I can enjoy the simple pleasures in life, without feeling I am missing something, without feeling I am doing my children an injustice, because I have decided to limit our activities. She mentions keeping the mentality "This one thing I do".  So I allow the children to follow their interests, but at the same time, they must keep reasonable priorities that can fit for our whole family. (Which must be considered -First.) The children and their activities/interests don't come first. The family comes first, and then we decide which things would benefit the one child and do we really feel God saying this is something that would be worthwhile to pursue-and would not put an unnecessary strain on the family as a whole.

In the world of homeschooling, many times we have a tendency to try to overcompensate for what our children might be "missing" from not being able to be involved in public school activities. Not that I have really felt that way. I really feel like my children are gaining something much more valuable. Learning to walk in peace, not striving, not living overly busy lives, learning to enjoy the simple pleasures of life and family. I hope that as my children grow they will learn that "relationships" are the where you need to be more than a "place" is. So many people run to and fro trying to go and do things so they can enjoy life, so they can have joy, so they can find peace and fulfillment. But LIFE and Joy is in HIM and thankfully we don't have to go anywhere to find Him.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spring Break accomplishments

This was my list of things I hoped to accomplish over Spring Break week.

1. Clean the patio table, put it on Craigslist to sell. (Did it  and it is sold and gone!)

2. Get all of Peyton's clothes out of his closet that no longer fits and give them to someone that could use them. (I have them bagged and ready for new homes.)

3 Take my piles of books to McKays for credit and hopefully find some books I can use.  Got a $36.00 credit. I used it to purchase more books for our American History studies next year. (And still have about $17 left in credit to use.)

4. Plan for our last 9 weeks of school.

5. Continue looking into curriculum for next year. Well this is still in the works, but I do have it narrowed down. I will either use the America Unit Study from Christian Novel Studies-Or just piece together my own program.

6. Renew my drivers license.

7. Take Buddy to the vet. We are still waiting on this. His kidneys seem ok so I think he just ate something disagreeable. He is having a harder time breathing though. He is due to go in May or June. So we may put it off until then if we can.

8. Wash the curtains.

9. Paint my wicker furniture-It is green and I want it to be black. I did manage to clean the patio though.  I also need to cover the cushions. I just need to find a pattern that would allow me to take them off and on to wash.

10. Go through Lexi's clothes, and donate ones she no longer needs. (Everything smaller than a 7-8). If you can use them let me know. Hmm, I forgot about this one. I will save this for another week. She did manage to clean her room though.

11. I need to shampoo the carpets, so it is on the plan. I didn't manage to get them cleaned, but did get the shampoo from the Orek store.

12. Take the kids somewhere fun at least 2 afternoons. We did manage to go out one afternoon, and they had plenty of fun just hanging out at the house.

13. Change my wooden kitchen calendar from February to March



14. Continue doing all the daily things I normally do too like cooking, grocery shopping, cleaning, etc.

I also did some weeding, sprayed some of the onion grass with Weed B Gone, hoping it will kill it. I managed to list and sell some of the curriculum I no longer need. I also switched out my Winter clothes with Spring clothes. I try to limit my bedroom closet to the current season if possible. I left out a few sweaters in case it turns cold again.

I also managed a little time to relax. Truthfully, I really wish we could just take another week off, but if we did it would make us go longer into May and I really want to be done by May 20th. I will just slowly start to get the other things done little by little, and if they are not done by the time summer comes, I will do them then.

Fishing Club -1st Tournament Cherokee Lake

Many many years ago, before Gary and I were married. Gary fished tournaments. They met every month on different lakes in Texas. He really enjoyed it, and he did very well at it. He won Angler of the Year his last year in the club. Since we have been in Tennessee he never has been involved in fishing clubs or tournaments. Recently he and a friend, Scott decided to join a local club that competes on local lakes.

Today was their first day fishing in the club, and the tournament was on Lake Cherokee. Gary and Scott both had a fun day of fishing. They caught 16 fish, but rules state you can only bring in 5. Some were under limit too, and some were stripers (which they cannot keep.) Anyway, they brought in 17.5 pounds. Winning the tournament. They also got big small mouth and big largemouth. They won $425.00 to split between them. Scott actually landed the two big fish. Gary had a one just as large as Scott's but it got off while they were trying to bring it in. (While they were trying to get it in the net.) They still beat the competition by over 3.5 pounds.



                                        5 fish totaling 17.5 pounds.





A fun day of fishing, and some money to help pay for fuel and the next few tournaments entry fees.

70 Calorie Iced Double Mocha Cappuccino

Yesterday I was looking at a recipe from Hungry Girl. If you have never heard of her. That is a website where you can find lower calorie alternatives. I have tried a few of their drinks, and well-I will pass. So, yesterday I got an email with some different coffee alternative recipes. One included instant coffee grounds, powdered creamer (Sugar free of course), Vanilla Almond Breeze (fake milk) and a sugar free low fat or fat free pudding pack, ice and water. (I don't know but the sounds of a pudding pack in the middle of my coffee wasn't real appetizing.) But of course the great part was it was only 158 calories.  So then I thought-"Wait a minute, my Double Mocha (Sugar Free) is only 50 calories per serving. And I have to add that no flavor is sacrificed at all in this. I absolutely love it and never can tell I am giving anything up. So I added a little ice, 8 oz. of half and half -FF(20 calories) and 2T of the double mocha mix. And I poured on a little FF Hershey's chocolate syrup with FF whipped topping on top.

I IMG_7170

Ingredients used. No hassle!


Well now if the chocolate chip cookies that followed would have been sugar and fat free it would have really been great. My motto is-save the calories when you can. So you can still have the items that don't save calories.

Around the house Spring Time

All around our house are signs of Spring. My tulips are budding, and about to bloom. These actually came as a gift from a family at our homeschool co-op. The bulbs were buried in the vase. When you are ready to force them to bloom, you just water them and give them light.



Buddy is enjoying the outdoors. I am hoping he will make it through to Next Spring. His health is beginning to deteriorate. He will be 13 in a few weeks.


Lexi taking Dixie on wagon rides down the hill. She says Dixie likes them, but I wonder.


I don't see the glee look in Dixie, but Lexi is making sure Dixie doesn't fly out.



Feeling good about the things I did manage to accomplish this week.


Making mental notes of the many other things I need to do around here for Spring. Much tree trimming, raking, mulching. Ripping out old flower beds and replacing another one in the back. We also hope to add border rock to the front. (This is a flower bed here with the bird bath.) It is just covered in leaves, so you cannot see it.


Gary, paying attention to what is most important of course. Cleaning his boat for the fishing tournament tommorrow.


I always wonder why he does the big clean now. I mean it is just going back out on the lake tomorrow.


The lake inviting and calling for Spring Fisherman to come!


Spring Break/Cleaning

Painting my back patio furniture was on my "to do" list this week. I did not manage to accomplish that. We did however, manage to get the back patio cleaned off. It looked much worse than this before I was able to remember to go snap a picture. Well at least that is what ds claims. Anyway here he is in the midst of sweeping the leaves up. I actually did most of it. He complained his back hurt while he had to hold the dust pan.





I don't know, maybe I should just go with a shabby chic theme.


I need to either sew a cover or find one to fit this cushion. I cannot decide. Of course finding one is best, since it would keep me from having to sew one. Having to try to find something to match the other two cushions also might be difficult. So anyway, this project is on hold until I figure out what I want to do. I am considering painting the furniture black. It is now pealing off green. (Which you can see it had been painted over and was originally white.)



I need to get some flowers to put inside this.



Friday, March 18, 2011

Spring is in the Air

Well the last 2 days have been just beautiful here. The weather has warmed. Flowers and trees are budding and blooming. Birds are singing and are seen much more at our feeders. (Now that they are filled again.)

Yesterday the kids and I went to the dam to get a little sun and some exercise.