Wednesday, April 28, 2010

My family went to a homeschool conference this past weekend. It was so great! The vendor hall is enormous! There are so much curriculum to choose from. There are so many great books! You could spend a small fortune!
There were a lot of good speakers, but it's impossible to hear them all. There is always at least one speaker who really makes a huge impression on me. Last year it was a music teacher who talked about the different styles of music and how they affect us. He said that classical music is the only style of music that can actually make you smarter. This year there were 2 speakers that left a lasting impression. One speaker is a Mom to 6 children. They had 3 children, waited a while, and then had 3 more. The first 3 children rebelled against what their parents taught them and have had a strained relationship with their parents. This Mom and her husband started realizing the mistakes they had made with their first 3 children and changed the way they parented the last 3. Both parents have described ways in which they were too strict, too overprotective, and too harsh, but they have learned from their mistakes and try to parent with their children's hearts in mind. One story she told, was that her college age son came home from school one day while she was at the kitchen table with her youngest 3 doing school. She brightly said, "Hi honey. How was your day?" He grunted and said, "Whatever". She was shocked and hurt and one of her other kids started crying from seeing her older brother be so hateful to their Mom. The Mom's first thought was to go lecture him about being respectful, obedient, etc. But the Holy Spirit spoke to her heart and told her that something was going on with her son. She said to her other 3 kids, "I know that Joe (don't know his name) loves me, but something is wrong and we need to pray for him." They all started praying for him. 5 minutes later, he came down the stairs and apologized for being disrespectful and told her that something negative had happened to him at school and he was really upset about it. She said that that experience was a turning point in their relationship. She has learned that your pride or mood shouldn't drive how you react to your children.
Gotta go feed my children! I'll have to write more later!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I recently discovered this series of Slim Goodbody books at our library. They are awesome! There is one about the lungs, the heart, the brain, and several others. I absolutely love children's books and love to read to my children at night. It's also fun to snuggle in our pajamas on cold winter mornings and read good books. One of the many things I love about homeschooling! It's also fun to take our schoolwork outside on beautiful Spring afternoons. We get more work done that way than you might think. I have the best job in the world!

Carrington made a pasta salad for supper tonight while I pulled weeds and started working on another small garden bed. She did a great job and we all clapped for her at the table. She thought that was funny. :o) While I was pulling weeds I found 2 ugly frogs in the yard. Clayton had a great time with one of them. He carried it all over the yard. Carrington said of Clayton, "He is so.....ICKY!" She is not a fan of frogs, bugs, snakes, etc. I hate snakes, but I can handle bugs and frogs.......but I prefer them to be outside! I just love my Science and Nature little boy. I tell him often that God has big plans for his life. I told him recently that maybe he will be a Creation Scientist some day like Ken Ham. (I tell Carrington that God has big plans for her life too!)
The second picture above, is from a field trip we went on last Friday with our homeschool group. It was a gorgeous day and a lot of fun. We hiked up a mountain and a guide pointed out several evidences of a Creator and world-wide flood on the mountain. We love field trips!

Friday, April 23, 2010

"It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish." Mother Teresa

I don't think I've ever heard it put so eloquently.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Yesterday was my 12th anniversary of being married to my husband, Warren. I am very thankful for him! Here are some things that I love about my husband:

1. He is a follower of Christ.

2. He doesn't just read the Bible. He studies it.

3. He compliments me often and tells me I'm skinny (even though I could stand to lose 10 lbs). :o)

4. He loves our children and wants God's best for them.

5. He is completely supportive with my homeschooling our children and defends homeschooling with people who think we're crazy.

6. He is very smart and I love having conversations with him about the Bible, politics, family, and many more.

7. He has a smart business mind and makes good decisions with money.

8. He is very handy around the house and can fix just about anything.

9. He's not afraid to debate people when he disagrees with them.

10. He is very good at handling uncomfortable situations with people and doesn't get emotional even when everybody else is.

11. He gives the best shoulder massage in the world!

12. He has spent countless hours practicing baseball with Clayton.

13. He tells Carrington she is pretty.

14. He prays for our family.

15. He has a positive attitude.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

History with our version of the unschooling method.

For History/ Social Studies/Geography this year, we are sort of doing "Unschooling", which means that you randomly pick a subject you want to learn about and just dive in. It has been a lot of fun, and I would love to do this for every subject some time, but I'm not that brave. We have learned about various U.S. presidents, events in American history, and other famous Americans.
I go to the library and find fun books or series of books. This morning we read You're On Your Way, Teddy Roosevelt. It was a fun book. I ordered several more books by the same author, Judith St. George. Reading "living" books about a subject or person is so much more fun and easier to remember than reading something out of a dry, boring text book.
Another fun thing that we are doing as a family right now is to try to learn the states and capitols. Thanks to my sister, Kellie, we know a song with all of the states in alphabetical order, so we have that part covered. Kellie learned the song in school and sang it in the car all of the time until I learned it too! We have several of the plastic $1.00 place mats from Wal-Mart. There are a bunch of educational ones. I keep the United States map placemat on the table at dinner time every night and we try to see how many capitols we can remember. Warren and I will also tell a little trivia about the states. I traveled a good bit around the U.S. before I met Warren, and he has been to several states for work that I haven't been to. After we learn the capitols, I'm going to get the placemat with the presidents on it and try to tackle that. Unschooling has been very productive and fun this year, especially since my children are very young. If it's interesting, they are going to retain so much more information!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Bud and Me and our garden.

We started on our little raised bed garden yesterday. My children and I had fun picking out a few things at a local nursery. The people there were so helpful! I love talking to people who know a lot about gardening. It's a lot more fun than reading a book. I learned that fruit trees don't do very well in this area, but blueberry bushes do very well. I learned that growing mint in a pot is good because it tends to take over the area in a garden. Last year I put too much in my little garden. The tomato plants took over, but my dirt didn't have enough calcium so they didn't do very well. There is nothing better than home grown tomatoes in the summertime! We have 2 apple trees in our backyard. I planted them 2 years ago, so I'm not holding my breath, but it would be so exciting to get a couple of apples. Both of them have blooms right now.

I took the pictures of Carrington and Clayton while they were sleeping in my bed. Warren was out of town, so they got to sleep with me. They love it.
I had to share about the latest book on CD that we just loved! Bud and Me is a true story about the Abernathy boys who traveled across country on horsebook by themselves starting in 1909. They were little boys! Their Mom had died, otherwise I'm sure they wouldn't have been allowed to do it. Of course, it was a much more innocent country they lived in than what we are experiencing. They met a lot of famous people, including 2 presidents, and had a lot of great experiences while traveling. One of the neat things about the book is that both boys are very responsible, honest, and trustworthy. We have talked a lot about this book since listening to it. You can find it on or

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Easter weekend and Clayton's birthday

We went to my Mom and Dad's house for Easter. Both of my sisters and their families came too, so it was great fun for the kids. Clayton and Gabe have birthdays in April, so my Mom bought a cake for them. My Mom bought balloon launchers from Vision Forum for Clayton and Gabe. All of the kids had a blast shooting water balloons with the launchers. They go really far. Unfortunately Carrington got hit really hard in the neck with one of them, but she's much better now. I'll know next time not to let them aim at each other from close range. McKenzie, my niece, brought her baby goat with her. She has to feed her about every 4 hours with a bottle. She's really cute. Clayton loves animals, so he was excited to get to feed her.
Clayton's birthday was yesterday. He turned 7! We had a fun day. Carrington and I decorated his door yesterday morning while he was still sleeping. When he woke up, he was so excited. I don't make my kids do school on their birthday. I had an appointment with a local farmer to pick up 25 lbs. of grass-fed beef. The farmer was really nice. He let Carrington and Clayton gather eggs and feed the chickens. Then we went over and saw his pig and cows.
Clayton picked Moe's for supper. We love Moe's! After supper we went to Wal-Mart and let him pick out a new bike. He also got a new ant farm and a laser light. I included 2 pictures of Clayton when he was a baby. Wasn't he fat and cute in the picture in the stroller?! He was such a beautiful baby. We are so thankful for his life. I had a really hard time when I was pregnant with him. I will try to post the story later about that. I love having a little boy. He is so much fun to have in our family and makes me laugh all the time. Happy birthday to my little man!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Today was a glorious 80 degrees and sunny! Perfect weather if you ask me. We got up this morning and headed to the dentist. Our dentist is super nice and it's a small practice. I guess my more than daily question of, "did you brush your teeth?" is paying off. So far my kids have had no cavities.
After the dentist, we headed to the car wash/oil change business with school books in tow. While they worked on my car, the kids and I worked on Language Arts outside at a picnic table. A homeschool Mom is the ultimate multi-tasker!
Then we came home and worked on the rest of our school day. We are doing Jeannie Fulbright's Apologia curriculum this year. We have all learned a lot. The project above was fun. We used red hots, a marble, a pecan, 2 beans and sprinkles for the planets. By the time we finished, Clayton had marbles all over the place.
Clayton learned about a dozen and a half-dozen today with linking cubes. He loves using linking cubes, teddy bears, candy, and other manipulatives for Math.
Clayton loves climbing in our cherry tree. He asked me to take a picture of him hanging from a branch. As soon as I took the pictures, he started yelling for me to come catch him.
After school was over I took Carrington to get her toenails painted. She has been helping me with something every day for months and hasn't complained a single time, so I decided to reward her sweet attitude with a treat. She was very excited. It only costs $5 to get your toenails painted if you don't do the spa pedicure. I think her toenails look like Easter eggs. :o)
Matthew 28:50-54 "And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, and the earth shook: and the rocks were split, and the tombs were opened: and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised: and coming out of the tombs after His resurrection they entered the holy city and appeared to many. Now the centurion, and those who were with him keeping guard over Jesus, when they saw the earthquake and the things that were happening, became very frightened and said, 'Truly this was the Son of God!'"
That must have been mind blowing! I just love the part that says that the veil was torn in two. I'm so thankful that we can approach the "throne of grace" because of Jesus' sacrifice. I'm thankful for second, third, and fourth chances. I'm thankful that God is more merciful than people sometimes are with each other. I'm thankful that God hears my prayers for my precious children, and everything else I pray for. I'm thankful that He loves them even more than I do. I'm so very thankful for JESUS!

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