Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Out takes

It seems every time we try to take a family photo, I get way more outtakes than I do usable pictures. But the outtakes are always some of my favorite.
Josiah was in this picture but it was just his bottom, 
and Titus couldn't keep his tongue in his mouth.

Check out those expressions!
Josiah looking away
And another questionable expression

This was one of my favorite outtakes;
My silly boy!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Looking back :)

I'm having fun looking back at our past Christmas pictures. It's amazing to see how fast the kids are growing. Thought some of you might be interested to see how much the kids have grown too.




Sunday, December 8, 2013

The reality of life :)

Don't buy into the lie that quiet time has to be quiet in order for God to speak. Squirming, active children in a motion filled home is ripe soil for the Gospel. It's supposed to happen this way because this is real life with young children; at least that's what I keep telling myself. We attempt to have Bible reading as part of our daily life.  Most days it happens. Some days, life gets crazy and it doesn't. Some times it goes well. The kids sit still and listen. Great truths of our faith are shared.....
 Other times..... bad attitudes, unrealistic expectations and life with young children happens too.  Kids squirm. They tickle or hit the sibling sitting beside them. They are grossed out by whatever they just put in their mouth! Any number of things can interrupt the "formality" of our teaching.

Thankfully we've been instructed by scripture that teaching the Bible doesn't have to be a complicated thing.  Deuteronomy 6:7-9, "Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.

The reality of life with kids is that they are not going to sit still. The best listening they do is when they are engaged in the story, acting along, answering questions and are allowed to interrupt to ask. questions. I've been amazed at some of the thing they want to know.

Josiah needs something to do while he listens. Often, I will give him a toy car or something to occupy his hands. I've learned, even when they are running around or playing they are still learning. Sometimes, I'm amazed at what they pick up when I think there is no way they heard what I was saying. 

It's also a relief to know it is a continually process. We hope that we will have many years to share these truths with our children. We've read through many different children's Bibles with them. Many of the stories of the faith have been repeated over and over. The kids can can bring up details and facts that have been building over the past few years. We are also able to get onto more complicated and mature issue as they mature. It is our goal to help them see how all of the stories are not just individual stories, but are all connected. They are all part of the ultimate story; the story of Christ.

Christmas Parade

Our homeschool group was able to participate in our towns Christmas play. The
kids had a blast and we were able to put "normal" faces on homeschooling in our community.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

In the Wilderness

 I feel as if we're keeping Moses's pace in the wilderness in getting through our History and Bible curriculum. Maybe we can complete our lessons in less than 40 years! While we're moving slow, I have to remind myself, we've covering important material, the basis for our faith. There is no reason to rush our children learning this material. God taught the Israelites many lessons on trust and obeying while they wandered. He'll teach us as well.

As part of our studies on the Exodus, we had a dress up lunch and tried foods like the ancient Israelites ate. I was as excited to try it as the kids were, But I didn't dress up. We have tried pita chips, hummus, lentils and barley though these studies. Most of our family liked it; Josiah doesn't, but they probably didn't have hot dogs and macaroni and cheese in Egypt. I have tried to add these new foods to our regular meals. In fact, I made a chicken and barley meal last night that was delicious. Barley will probably replace rice for our family because of the nutritional superiority. If you haven't tried it, please go pick up a bag and you can thank me later.

We borrowed costumes from the church. The kids loved getting into character.
 First we played a matching game on hospitality found in ancient customs.

We also read about life during the Exodus and looked at pictures of the area to see what it might have been like to live during those times.
Then we had lunch, lentils, pita chips, dried cranberries and raisins.
My picky eater trying somthing new. 
He liked the pita chips, but not the lentils.
Eden liked it all :)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Boy and a Box

It's been said, the best thing you can give a kid is a box. That held true for us this past week. This large box eventually became the Mayflower for our homeschool play. But for the few days before she became seaworthy, she was Josiah's tool box. He really enjoyed playing with his tools and creating his own little world inside of the box. I'll have to look for another one.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Our family's first pumpkin carving :)

 This evening I found some cute photos in my draft folder.  I think these are from the fall of 2010. I don't believe these were ever published on the blog. When I saw these I thought, oh how time passed by so quickly. I also can't get over how much Titus and Josiah resemble one another. I've never really seen it until I looked at this picture of Josiah.

Pumpkin carving with Daddy :)

Camo Sunday

 I'm not a hunter. In fact, If you hear that I've killed a deer you should ask to see our mini van, because that's about the only way I'll have opprounity to kill one. However, hunting is huge in our area. One of our church members suggested that we have Camo Sunday and invite hunters who might not attend church to worship with us, dressed in camo. We also hosted a wild game lunch. It was a great success.

 This sweet church member outfitted our whole family in camo, which by the way, our kids love! So while I can't see me climbing into a deer stand in the wee hours of the morning, I can anticipate the day when my children decide they want to.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Windsor Zoo

A few weeks ago our local homeschool group got together at a local park and zoo.
 It was a beautiful day. The kids had a blast! There was a nice boardwalk that ended at a river bank.

  Josiah was able to take a few minutes to study the environment and cross off some things on his scavenger hunt list. I was so proud of him. I was concerned the list would be over his head, but he did really well looking for items and crossing them off himself. It brings me great joy to know that our kids will have the opportunity to learn in a way that will be outside of a classroom and in God's creation.

 Eden was also able to accomplish a first. She crossed the monkey bars all by herself.
She's growing so fast and is truly gifted athletically.
 And my sweet Titus, along for the ride :)

A pit stop for a group photo.


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I've been in a crafty mood lately. Maybe it's the time of the year.  Maybe it's that my kids are getting old enough they can play while I work outside. Maybe it's that I felt had to do some of the things on Pintrerst I read about to justify the amount of time I spend online. Whatever it is, here is my latest creation. I found this dresser on a Facebook yard sale page. I primed it white and it looked great, but Eden wanted a pink dresser. This became our compromise. Watermelon pink and glossy white. My next project will be refinishing Eden's old dresser for Titus. Now to go find some masculine ideas on Pinterest.

Let the record show.....

...... How cool it is to use old records for purposes other than listening!

If you're like my parents, you've got a ton of old records laying around. You can't stand the idea of getting rid of them, because there are fond memories from decades ago that you've associated with the sounds on that vinyl. 

Now you've got reason to pull out those old records, and put them to some good use. 

A few weeks ago my siblings and I threw a surprise birthday party for my mom. I wanted use old records for decorations for the party. A friend gave me a bunch of records she didn't want anymore.  If you don't have an old stash, or a kind friend willing to help you out, Goodwill has them all the time for $1 each.  I used gorilla glue and glasses I found at Goodwill to make these cupcake stands. I picked cute martini glasses that looked neat upside down and had a large enough surface to glue the records. I also used some candle holders I found a the dollar store. I made a few single layered cake stands, and a multiple layered one with a 45 record on top. They turned out great!

Side note: I tried to use hot glue, but it just didn't work well. Gorilla Glue worked great, but took a lot of time to dry. So you shouldn't do it the morning of the party like I did. Learn from my lesson on hot glue not working, so you're not scrambling at the last minute. Your Welcome. :) 
Another cool thing I did was melt the records into party bowls. I picked out all kinds of different shaped bowls and pans. I turned them upside down and put them on a baking pan, baking them at 350 degrees for about 2-3 minutes and they were done.

Another side note: do this on a nice day so you can open your window. After the first few records were complete, my kitchen took on the funky smell of melted vinyl. But the fire alarm never went off, and I just kept working.

The records were able to be slightly molded after they came out of the oven. I pinched the corners or smoothed out edges.  Each bowl looked different based on the size bowl I used for the mold, the larger the bowl, the flatter the record bowl became. 
You can use the bowls for candy, nuts, chips whatever, you want for a party. You could also use them for a decorations or just to through your keys in it. The possibilities are endless.

Sorry I don't have more pictures, I sent the bowls home with my brother for a 80's themed party they were going to attend. These did turn out great and added an extra little oomph to make the party fun.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Map time

One on the fun things about homeschooling is all of the neat stuff you get to learn. Geography has never been a strong suit of mine. So I've decided to introduce it to my kids at an early age in hope of instilling a  knowledge of different countries and cultures. As an added bonus, I'm hoping for an improvement in my since of direction in the process!

One of the best bargains I have found was this world map at Wal-Mart.  I purchased it a while back, but finally got around to hanging it up this fall. If  I remember correctly, is was less than $5. A great price considering it's size and up to date information.

Did you know that in 2000 scientist named a new ocean? It was always there, but a bunch of smart people got together and named it, and poof, we have a new ocean for my kids to learn. If you can name what and where it is, you'll be as smart as my first grader :) For the answer you can click here.  See you learn cool stuff in home school!

The first day I had the map up Josiah goes over to explore it and responds,
"Look mom, Madagascar!"

 I call map time and send the kids climbing on the couch to find a place we're studying.

Eden finds Egypt!

and North Carolina.

So far it's been a big hit. The kids have enjoyed finding places. Eden has learned all of her continents and oceans. My since of direction is no better, but it's still the beginning of the year. :)

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Ancient Egypt

The first three weeks of our history curriculum focused on Ancient Egypt. I've been able to find lots of hands on projects to help the kids enjoy learning about this time frame. 

I let the kids wrap up each other like mummies

 We built pyramids with mini marshmallows and toothpicks.
 Josiah ate as much as he built.
Savannah joined us

Eden thinking about how to construct her pyramid

I just love the look on Josiah's face. 
I wonder what he's thinking???

 Still building
 Still eating :)

Titus wakes up from his nap ( that would explain his hair)
  and decides pyramids look yummy.

Out of focus, but oh so cute!

We made a salt dough maps of Egypt that I let the kids paint.

They love anything to do with paint.
The toothpicks hold the place for the cities to be mapped.

Eden also completed a lapbook on Egypt.
I'm sure there will be a blog post on those in the future as well.