Saturday, December 3, 2011

New Playground

We recently received the coolest play area...EVER.  For free.  Yep, this playground is us.  We are guaranteed to have many years of fun on this! 
 Look at the smiles on this little girls face!
 And here...
All three of the girls have enjoyed the past few weeks of playing on their new equipment.  Can't wait for the playdates to begin!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Halloween night

I am finally getting around to posting Halloween pictures.  (Truth be told there are posts older than Halloween that I want to add but I knew this would look awkward if I waited until Feb. to add their Halloween pictures.  In our family, we had a cowgirl, Dorothy, and Abby from NCIS on Halloween.  This was my favorite year yet as far as getting their costumes together.  They were so creative and everything fell together at the last moment, thanks to a friend!  I had ordered a Dorothy costume off of e-bay at the beginning of October and it never shipped.  (And, of course it had to be the youngest whose costume was about to crumble.)  I don't know what they are wanting for next year but in my opinion it is going to be hard to beat this years ideas!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Want to try it before you buy it?

If any of you out there are interested in trying the new Swiffer 360 Duster, follow this  

I have to tell you, when we got ours I was excited to give it a shot but I didn't even get the opportunity.  My middle daughter grabbed it and away she went.  She dusted everything she could, she was running from one room to the next.  

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Same old, same old

I am sick of this, and need a change...for those of you that don't know me probably don't realize how easily I get sick of the meals we eat.  It doesn't take very long for me to get tired of the same meals all the time.  Ask my poor husband.  I can't eat the same meal within the same 30 day period.  I detest leftovers.  I am finally at the point where I have an awesome system for supper.  I have 45 days worth of meals on our calendar(yes, I do plan out the whole 45 days at a time).  For me, having our meals planned that far in advance is a relaxation thing for me.  It is one less thing I have to worry about.  As it is now I go to the grocery store twice a month and buy what we need.  My goal in life is to get it to once a month but I am not quite ready to take that step.  I am slowly getting back into the habit of making my own bread and that will help our grocery shopping out a whole lot! However...back to the subject at hand.  I am so tired of our lunches, and breakfasts but mainly my new gripe is lunchtime.  I have no creativity in that area at all.  So, if there are any of you out there that have awesome lunch ideas, please pass them along.  I would love to find some really healthy ideas that I can rotate into our meals. 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Free is fun!

We got a very welcome surprise this week and yes, it came in the form of free.  My dad snagged this deal from his job before they sent it to the dump.  My dad and my hubby spent three hours this afternoon assembling our new toy.  The girls were so excited when it was finally time to play on it.  Even my little brother got in on the action.
This should be a whole lotta fun for them this summer!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Haven's birthday party.  

She wanted a cupcake decorating party.  The kids had so much fun decorating their cupcakes.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fall is in full swing

We finally have our internet back up and running...that was a llllloooonnnggg month of no contact with the outside world.  So much has happened, I am going to try to quickly recap the entire month in one blog.  We have been in full swing with school this month.  We took a trip to the apple orchard with a great group of homeschooling families last week.  The kids had an awesome time.  I learned a very valuable lesson, apple picking is not a mommy only activity...I definitely need dad reinforcement for my sanity.  Cheerleading and soccer are both going great.  There are only 4 more games until the regular season of cheering is complete and I have to admit, I am ready to have my Saturdays back. 
My mom signed Elyse up to start clogging in the middle of all of the craziness.  That girl is booked solid all week long, although I always said I only wanted one sport per child per season she is handling the craziness the activities nicely. 
Our co-op that we are a part of is going nicely, the kids love their classes and all the teachers aka moms are doing a great job with them. 
Birthday season is upon us, Haven's birthday party is coming up and I am very excited!  She wants a polly pocket party...any suggestions on cake ideas??? 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Back in the swing of things

We are back home, safe, sound, and sane.  I spent last week at my sisters house helping her daycare kids and their parents out.  My sister decided to return to the workforce and her new job required that she start sooner than a two weeks notice would allow so I packed up my 3 kids and myself and went to her house to finish out the two week notice for her.  Sounds like fun right?  How about when I tell you there were 11 kids (6 of which were my kids and hers).  And, I am very happy to report there was no hair pulling (mine or theirs).  It really was a fun week, I got to spend some time with my nephews and niece. 
I returned home to find out that my middle daughter whose cheerleading starts tonight has no coach and, because of their desperate state, I am going to be their coach.  For those of you that know me you know I am the exact opposite of a cheerleader.  This is going to be an interesting season.  I hope the girls are able to learn the cheers and it doesn't turn out to be a huge flop...hoping for some direction of some sort because I have none...none at all! 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

FREE...did you hear

A friend of mine pointed me in the direction of a blog giving away a free unit on Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten.  I am always looking for fun, creative things to do with my little ones, and to find them for free is that much cooler!  All you have to do is go here and follow a few simple steps and it can be yours also!
Can't wait to start this with my middle daughter, she will be so excited to have a complete unit just for her!  What are you waiting for...stop on over, follow the directions and you can get yours also!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

It's been a hot one that's for sure!!

It has been extremely hot outside, but surprisingly we have maintained our regular school schedule and excitement throughout the entire week.  That is a major score for this family!!  I am not particularly good at any temperature above 75 and below 70...there are only a few days out of the year that I am at my peak temperature. {grins}
But, horribly hot weather put aside, here is my curriculum choices for the upcoming  year.  (This is the first time I have written them down...I may overwhelm myself just seeing the list...beware).
My oldest one...starting 2nd grade:

Math:  BJU Math 2
Geography (and many other subjects thrown in there):  Galloping the Globe
Language Arts:  Spelling:  Spell to Write and Read
Reading:  Pathway Publishers Grade 2 Readers and Abeka Grade 2 Readers
Grammer:  First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind Level 2
Handwriting (although this is more for the art than anything):  Draw Write Now
Bible:  All three of my girls are using The Gigantic Coloring Book of Bible Stories right now, we are halfway through it...I am ready to move to something more in depth but they really enjoy the rhythm we have started with this so we will just continue on it until the book is completed.

My middle child entering her K5 my family we break the kindergarten year into 2 years, this year will be a step above where we were last year but not quite at the first grade level.  I have lots of worksheets, art activities, and lapbooks planned to work on with her while I determine what her learning style is like.

Math:  Making Math Meaningful is where I am hoping to start in the next few weeks, we may have to bump that back a little.
Geography (and many other subjects):  She will be working with her sister while we work through Galloping the Globe
Language Arts:  Spelling:  Spell to Write and Read
Handwriting: Draw Write Now (again, more for drawing practice)

For my youngest, blocks, puzzles, worksheets that she begs for her so she can do "school" like her sisters, work on colors, enjoy being 3, etc.

Please hop on over and see what others are doing for their weekly wrap up.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

It's finally....Sunday???

I can't believe the weekend is over.  It went by so fast.  I knew that on Friday I should post our update and thought I would do it later, and later...and later...until well, here is is Sunday night and I am finally doing it.
What has kept me so busy you might ask?  Well, pretty much everything.  We have barely been home for most of the week, on Friday I finally put my foot down and decided we were not leaving the house, and we didn't. Friday or Saturday.

Here is a quick recap of the whole week...
I have gotten a whole lot of scheduling done.  The girls stayed at my moms Sunday night so I was able to spend all of Monday planning for the new year, not the best 4th but I can guarantee it was the most productive one I have ever had.

We did absolutely no school this week, unless you count the summer reading program.  We were pretty busy reading every day.

I am going to sound like a freak manic organizer when I say this but getting so much work done all by myself in a completely empty house was my favorite thing.  It is quite therapeutic for me.

Getting the girls shelves organized with everything they will need throughout the school day.  The summer months have put a hurting on our pretty organized shelves.

I am almost embarrassed to say I am still reading the same three books that I started the summer reading.

That about wraps my week up.  Ready to start again fresh tomorrow...we start school again in the morning, Elyse seemed excited tonight when we talked about it...guess we shall see if that is true in the morning.
If you would like to read how others weeks are looking, head over toWeird Unsocialized Homeschoolers  and see who else linked up.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Busy weekend

Whew...this has been the busiest weekend we have had in a long time.  I don't think we stopped moving all weekend long.  We took the kids to the new drive in theater about an hour away from our house.  They had so much fun, we got to see 2 movies, and get a large popcorn and drink for 25.00, how often does that happen for a family of 5?  Last night we went to my dads farm and watched had a bonfire and fireworks, today is a family picnic and tonight, I think we will be crashing early.  I hate to miss the opportunity to see fireworks but I know that for my husband and children's sake, early bedtime is a must.  Hubby is such a trooper, we have not gotten a decent nights sleep since Thursday night and he had to be at work at 5:30 this morning.  I think he deserves a quiet evening at home relaxing before his whole week gets messed up because of being so tired. 

The rest of our week looks pretty boring, we are going to work on finishing up some more math, I guess I will succumb to the world of testing even though I absolutely detest the idea and get that taken care of so that we can report to our school system. 

I have every intention of finding one neat cool activity for the girls to do each week that will get us out of the house and learning from new experiences.  I will report on how successful I am and where our endeavors take us!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal...

I can not believe it has been over a month since I last posted.  This summer is flying by so quickly!!!  And, still so many thing that I want to do and places we want to visit.  Better start tackling the list soon or the whole summer will be gone.

I am once again linking up with Weird, Unsocialized Homeschooler for the Homeschool Mothers Journal, you can find it here if you want to join in also.

We had the pleasure (for us anyway) of having my hubby home with us all week.  While it was unfortunate for him (he was in quite a lot of pain due to a sprained thumb).  We have not had him home for a whole week for at least a year.
We have relaxed quite a bit the past couple of weeks, we are year round homeschoolers (we have just lost our direction a little).  Elyse has continued to do her math work for at least 3 days a week, but Haven's school has pretty much slacked completely off.  We are reading a lot, we started the Summer Reading program through our library and that is keeping all of the girls pretty entertained.  I also made BINGO cards with lots of fun activities on them for the girls to use so the "I'm bored" statement doesn't become part of their everyday lingo.
We met up with a group of friends at the Children's Museum this week, the girls had so much fun and I was completely worn out when we left there.  Hubby was a trooper, he went with us and at times it looked like even he was entertained being there.  Planning to go back again this week, they have a series that aligns perfectly to Galloping the Globe which we will begin in the fall.
Not being on any type of morning schedule at all.  I would not like survive if every week was without a schedule but one week a year is actually kind of nice.
The BINGO cards I mentioned earlier have been a wonderful hit for us, there are rules(isn't there always) that the girls have to follow before they can begin working on their cards, namely, their room has to be clean and breakfast has to be eaten.  Then they are free to begin the activities on their cards.  It has been so fun watching them try new things and revisit old activities that they used to think were boring.
I am so glad I finally decided on a math curriculum for Elyse, I chose Bob Jones...I know, I know, it wasn't even one of my original choices but I am so excited to begin it in the fall!!
This is not a recent pic. But I couldn't resist sharing.  I just found an old sd card that had pictures I had completely forgotten about taking.  This is my oldest and middle children about 2 years ago.  Wow, time flies!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal...

I found a blog that does a link up every Friday called The homeschool mother's gives me the chance to recap my week...and you guys the chance to read how on target we are (or are not...depending on the week).

This has been a pretty crazy week, we are down to only one vehicle (other than the motorcycle) and our refrigerator has been broken for a week now, we are currently waiting to buy one from a friend of mine, as soon as she is done using it.   I am so sick of eating out and eating things that don't require anything from the refrigerator I could scream!

We homeschool all year long so this week has been just like all others except that I am also trying to plan for next year so we are adding some testing and assessing to the mix.  Elyse loves to test....not sure where she picked that trait up from, I have never tested her before because I hate testing...apparently she is ok with it.Makes me feel a little better about having to test her at the end of the year.

The week ahead is a pretty boring week in that regards, I have no plans of visiting anyone that I am aware of.
A group of us homeschooling moms who are beginning to panic about next year got together to hash out plans for next year.  I loved being able to see what everyone else was thinking of using and letting our kids (all girls I might add) play together for H.O.U.R.S. uninterrupted and without often does that happen?

Schooling year round...I love, love, love the idea of doing school for 6 weeks and then taking a week off all year...of course we take extended time as need be (illness, dr. appt., etc.) but knowing that we can make that time up during the off week works great with me!!!

Why does it have to stress me out so much that I pick the *PERFECT* curriculum for math next is second grade math, how difficult can it truly be?

with this being my first time ever doing this, I am going to list some of the phrases I use with my kids that apparently others think are wonderful, as I am constantly told they are going to use these sayings whenever they remember...

* I am constantly telling my kids to "remain calm" whenever anything happens, be it drama, an accident, etc.
* Since we don't use the word bu** in our house, I will tell the kids to find a home for their hiney's if it is time for them to sit.

I am sure there are I think of them I will be back to update!

This post has been linked up to

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mothers Day!

I have to say that my sweet little angels did it again.

I have spent the entire weekend on the couch covered in blankets and mostly sound asleep.  Yesterday Jamie had to work the whole morning.  I told the girls I was sick (which Elyse informed me she could tell I didn't sleep well the night before because my hair was crazy) and would need them to be quiet and play nicely, somehow we would make it through the morning without their dad.
Today during naptime Elyse made me a Mothers Day card, she then helped both of her sisters make one and she made one for her dad to give me.
I am so thankful that I don't get sick very often because I am pretty miserable and unable to do much when I am sick.  I was finally able to get up and get some (read very little) things taken care of around the house. 

Friday, April 29, 2011

Ahhh yes, garden time!

It has been a crazy month...between the wild rainy weather and the illness and passing of two of my grandfathers, I have accomplished very little in the way of schoolwork, or gardening for that matter...we did get some work on the lapbooks (our first ever lapbook).  The girls love them.  Thanks so much to Jolanthe for providing the worksheets...I have lots of creative ideas but no so much time...

We have measured the perimeter of the garden and are going to tear down the old nasty fence and replace that starting this week. We will be mapping out where our seeds will go also.  Then by the end of next week we should be able to start planting...not sure if it is too early yet or not.  Will Should probably do some research before we begin that process.

***for some reason my computer WILL NOT let me download pictures right now...I am going to try doing it from the laptop over the weekend and see if that is more successful.**

Monday, April 25, 2011

The greatest men I have ever known

This past weeks was one of the worst weeks of my life.  I lost both my great grandfather and my grandfather within 3 days of each other.  These men were two of the most influential men in my life.  They were there for me from the very beginning.  Most of my childhood was spent at one of their houses....I was with them more often than I was with my own parents.  Thankfully the story doesn't stop there.  I know that both of them were also my brothers in Christ, I will see them again some day.  That doesn't mean I am not sad and do not miss them terribly, I just know that they have received their promotion (as Alfred would say). 

It is times like these that I am so thankful to be homeschooling.  It is such a relief that we as a family are able to stop worrying about the mundane things of this world and focus on the more important values and lessons that can only be taught in real world situations.

Tomorrow we will begin our normal schedule and get back into the swing of things.  Both the kids and myself could definitely use a schedule again.  And, it is just in time to prepare my neglected garden for pictures and posts on Thursday for the Garden Challenge.  

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Focus on Elyse

I love watching Elyse learn new things.  She is so concentrated and focused until that little light bulb goes and and you know...she has got it.  I have gotten to see that a few times the past couple of weeks.  We have been working on reading all year but she has just recently "gotten" that she no longer needs me to read her directions to her...she can sound it out on her own.  And, for a girl that loves doesn't get any better than that.  

In our grammer book we have been working on our has occurred to her that her initials spell 'end'...which to her little first grade mind has been the funniest thing ever.  

This coming week we will be focusing more on getting our garden together and probably possibly working on plans to build a chicken coop.  Will definitely be back to post pics of both of these endeavors.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

When the Roll Is Called A Thunder

Camdyn loves to sing.  All.the.time.  She sings with us, with Aunt Betty and all by herself.

We have a nightly tradition of singing three songs before she goes to sleep.  She gets to choose the songs, I try to help her some nights.  Some of the songs she sings are just too cute to pass up.
 I love to hear the words that she sings.  Her newest song to sing, "When the Roll is Called Up Yonder"...or as her version "When the Roll is Called A Thunder".  How precious.  The day is going to come when I have to correct those words but until then, I will just sit back and listen to her sing her own version. 

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Gardening 101

HSV Garden 

We are embarking on uncharted territory this year...for us at least. We are starting a garden. We have tried for three years and this year we are going to do it. The ground has been tilled, weeded and is ready to go. Now, if only the weather would would expect nice weather this time of year. Not so much.

We had an awesome dig-in-the-dirt-kind-of-day a few weeks ago but since then we have had what I would like to believe is our last snowfall of the year.

The garden has been tilled once this year, and will be ready to be tilled again right before planting begins. As for the fence area, it clearly needs to be revamped so the rodents will not take advantage of our garden before we can.

I am so excited to begin this adventure. And can't wait to begin the lapbooks that will be going along with our discoveries through this adventure.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Newfound motivation!!!

I have so many ideas brewing in my head...I don't even know where to start. For this very reason (and many more) I am so thankful that we do school all year long. I would be sad if I had to wait a whole year to get started on these ideas. And, truth be told, I would probably not still be excited about them by then. These are my ideas for starters:

1. Sensory bins...I have done a few this year but next year I want to go full force for Camdyn. I have gotten some great motivation and ideas from blog searching this afternoon and can't wait to introduce these ideas to our lessons as the weeks progress. And, of course I want to post pics.

2. Lapbooks...I have been very overwhelmed by the idea of lapbooks, I love the idea in theory but need a more detailed idea of what it actually looks like.

These are just two of my plans to begin in the next few weeks, I will be posting more of my ideas as they come into play!
Now to get back to the lesson plans that are going to incorporate both of these ideas!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Storage Solutions

I think we finally have a plan...a way to organize the girls room that they are excited about. While Jamie was at the Mens Breakfast this morning we pulled out all of the girls toys and have them organized and ready to be put in bins that have yet to be I am scouring the internet looking for the vision that is already in my mind. Why, oh why do I do this to myself? It is much easier if I go to store, find organizing solution and then organize...not the other way around...I never find what I am looking for and always get frustrated!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Taking the plunge!!

This week I am bound and determined to become way more productive than I have been in months. I am excited to make some changes to our homeschool schedule, help the girls get into more of a schedule. Give them more attainable goals as far as chores are concerned...Yes, I know it is very ambitious of me but, that is the way I roll.

I am researching lapbooks and am really liking what I see. Just enough structure for me while also allowing Elyse the ability to be creative.