Saturday, December 20, 2008

Mary, Did You Know?

May you celebrate the true meaning of Christmas throughout the year.

"For God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16

Monday, December 8, 2008

My second favorite Christmas story (the first being about the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ) is A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. This animation is by Richard Williams and was aired in the 70's.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Election

Tonight is the culmination of Carol's Election Lapbook. She is sitting up with her Dad watching the polls and keeping track of the Electoral College.

I read this from Homeschool Weekly E-Newsletter.

The Familyman
Todd Wilson, Familyman Ministries

Election time is where the homeschool rubber meets the road. Do we really believe God sets up kings and presidents and that "He's got the whole world in His hands". . .or do we show our children by our gloom and doom predictions that all we've taught them about God is a bunch of hooey (to use the Greek word)? To hear some Christians talk, you'd think that God steps down from His throne on November 4th.
We can teach them all we want about God through reading the Scriptures and memorizing Bible verses. . .BUT they LEARN the most from the way we live when "school" is not in session.
We don't watch TV, but on November 4th, we plan to plug in the TV and watch the presidential coverage. I'm sure we'll cheer on our favorite. . .but afterwards, no matter who walks away as winner, we will pray for our new president and thank God for setting him in place. Then no complaining.
Oh, here's one more thing to leave you with. . .the absolute truth is that what takes place in YOUR house is way more important than what happens in the White House.

Be Real. . .and trust God,

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Gooney Bird Greene

by Lois Lowry

Gooney Bird Greene is a fantastic book. Gooney Bird is a girl who tells only true stories to her classmates.

Chapter One: We learned about parts of a story and things not to stick up your nose. We also made a five-pointed star.

Chapter Two: We learned how Gooney Bird Greene got her name and what a Laysan Albatross (otherwise known as a Gooney Bird) was. Also, we learned a little about Rudyard Kipling.

Chapter Three: We learned all the different places called China and how many definitions there are for "consume".

Chapter Four: We found out who Napoleon Bonaparte was and where he lived. Also, we learned some about hypoallergenic dog breeds and homonyms.

Chapter Five: We learned about the symphony orchestra.

Chapter Six: We learned about different wildflowers.

American Girl Felicity Lapbook

Doing the Felicity lapbook, Curly and I found out a neat fact. Let's see if you know it.
Clue#1: Who is know as the Father of the American Revolution?
Go ahead, take a guess--I am not going to tell you yet.

Felicity's story takes place in 1774. During the books, the Boston Tea Party occurred. I found these stamps on the internet and thought it would be a nice addition to the front of the lapbook.

The inside of the book. Curly used colored pencils to add color to some of the pictures.
Do you need another clue? OK, here goes--he organized the Boston Tea Party.
Is your answer still the same? A little later you will get the final clue--hope you get it.

Some of the elements in the book.

We made a pocket with the recipe cards of the food Curly tried at an American Girl Book Club meeting. Some of her favorite foods are the Queen's Cakes and Apple Butter.

The underneath of the flap.

When you lift the flap, this is what you see. It is hard to see from the picture but Felicity's dress has metallic pink and green flowers on it.
Final Clue: His ran his family's brewery.

This is a picture of Mr. Merriman's shop.

It was quite interesting watching the girls play the Game of Graces. They are supposed to gracefully toss rings and catch them with sticks. They are not very graceful but boy did they have fun!

Do you know the answer? If you said "Samuel Adams" then you are correct!

I got the templates from HomeSchoolShare and the graphics from the American Girl Website (except for the Game of Graces graphics--don't remember where I got them)

Life and the Shed

Oh my. It has been almost a month since my last blog. We have been very busy. Between homeschooling and trying to get my garage ready to close in, I have not had anytime to blog. In the next few days, I will be trying to catch up.

I have pictures of the girls making bread and of them sewing their first quilt block. Hope to get them posted soon. Also a couple of lapbooks have been completed that I need to show you guys. And my little Donna has been taking swimming lessons. She is having so much fun.

As for the shed, I have been cleaning it and the garage. So far, we have had over 20 bags of garbage, one truckload of hazardous waste (paint cans, pool supplies, etc) and at least 10 bags of donate.

This past weekend, we resided the shed. I must remember, if you think it will take a day to complete--it will take three.

This is some of the wood that was on the shed. It has a lot of water damage from the wood touching the ground. To eliminate that problem, we put flashing at the bottom of the shed and then will caulk it on the inside to seal it.

Mom and I started working on the shed on Friday. We put the door up on Monday. I think Mom and I did a pretty good job on the door. It should look good, it took us around 6 hours to construct and hang.

I think Mom and I would still be working on the walls if it weren't for their help. I still have some of the little stuff to do--caulk, trim and attach a latch on the door. But that will be easy compared to what I have been doing.
Hope to have pictures of a finished garage soon!!

This is the shed without the doors.

Here is a view of the inside of the shed and the inside of the door. The great part is the cost. It just cost me 3 days of work (but I got to spend it working with my Mom--a plus!) and less that $375. Try to buy a 8x12 wooden shed for that price!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Mr. Popper's Penguins Lapbook

We have finally finished our Mr. Popper's Penguins Lapbook. I got the penguins craft from a Sea World Teacher's Guide. Aren't they cute? I got most of the elements (except for compass rose and color wheel which I made myself) from Homeschool Share

We had so many elements that we had to connect three file folders together. The left side has information about penguins, the center has big sheets and "school" stuff, and the left side has information about seals.

Left side is about penguins.

Some of the penguins in the book were named after famous people. Some of the famous people are Queen Victoria, Christopher Columbus and James Cook. They are represented by a picture of Victoria, and maps of the routes of Columbus and Cook.

The center of the lapbook has various "school" stuff. We learned about a compass rose and some basic map reading, complimentary colors, snow, writing a print ad, occupations, compound words and word problems.

We learned about the food chain and what happens if we change one "link" in the chain. We also learned a lot about seals. By the way, they are pinnipeds.

Friday, September 26, 2008


We have been busy runnig around. I have many pictures to post. Hopefully I will have time next week. My daughters made their first loaf of bread and a their first quilt block this past week. We are still struggling to get through Mr. Popper's Penguins (the book is great, it is just finding time to read it and do the lapbook elements). The girls start swimming lessons in a couple of weeks. I am excited but that will be another chunk of our day lost for the next four weeks (twice a week). I know I need to RELAX!!! I am trying---really I am. I am trying not to think about all I want to accomplish tomorrow (or next week). Breathe. Relax. OK--Good night. I am going to bed now.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

My 7 by 10 foot space

My 7 x 10 foot space. That is the extent of my "school room".

I have two 2ft x 4ft tables (one for each girl), my "homeschooling" computer (along with computer table) and a bookcase in that space.

(Curly's Desk)

(Angel's Desk)

(My Desk)


I don't have a dining room table and sometimes I want to scream "Where am I supposed to put MY stuff?" Then I turn around and see my two beautiful girls working on their lessons (or staring out the window) and I smile. Yes, I have a small space--but if I had a bigger space, I might not have been able to stay home and have the privilege to teach my kids.

I would not see my oldest turning into a sweet beautiful lady of the Lord right before my eyes. She is my serious one. She loves reading and learning new things and is ready to share with us at a moment's notice.

I probably would have spent a lot of time in teacher's conferences with my youngest. She is the type that will not let you know she knows something until she is good and ready. I am convinced she knew how to read months before she decided to share it with us. I have seen her mature and have seen the complete joy she has in learning something. She calls it getting "her smarts."

(I am in green with Angle beside me. Hubby in front with Curly beside him.)

Also, I have a terrible confession to make--are you ready??--I like my kids. I want to be with them. Even when they drive me crazy, I still want to be with them. I want to be the one who teaches them right from wrong (not situational ethics but right and wrong). I want to be the one to teach them the facts of life (not some kid down the street or some government program in the schools).

Am I overprotective? You bet I am. My kids are a gift from the Lord and I am responsible for them. I have had people say ,"When they get in the real world, they won't be able to handle it." My goodness, they are 5 and 8. Unfortunately, they get enough of the "real world" at church. If you think there is no peer pressure at church, you are sadly mistaken. We learn how to handle the "real world" with Biblical principles (how would that go over in public school--can we say "detention")

I want them to have a love of learning not just digesting and regurgitating (yes, I said regurgitating) facts. That is how I got through school and I can honestly say I have retained absolutely nothing.

So I thank God for my 7 by 10 foot space. Without it I would have missed this wonderful opportunity to homeschool my girls.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Starting a new lapbook-Mr. Popper's Penguins

I am so OCD. We are using Sonlight Curriculum and my girls somehow got whopperjawed (is that really a word?) in regards to what week they were on. Angel just ended week 8 and the Curly completely missed a read-a-loud book and was only half way through with week 8. Now I do know that you do not have to do all the read-a-louds, but this is one I really wanted to do. I had a lapbook for it and everything (insert whining here). SO after completing the other work for week 8, I decided to just do the book and let Angel listen along while she watercolored (her new most favorite thing to do). Tonight we read the first 3 chapters and worked on the elements that corresponded with those chapters. We learned that the Emperor Penguin was the tallest and heaviest bird, the Marconi Penguin has the biggest population, and the Galapagos Penguin in the most endangered. Oh and there are 17 types of penguins. I look forward to posting the pictures of the completed lapbook.

MY FAVORITE PENGUIN VIDEO (yes, it is in a foreign language)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Meet Me In The Stairwell

No other words are needed. --dottie


You say you will never forget where you were when you heard the news On September 11, 2001. Neither will I.

I was on the 110th floor in a smoke filled room with a man who called his wife to say 'Good-Bye.' I held his fingers steady as he dialed. I gave him the peace to say, 'Honey, I am not going to make it, but it is OK . . . I am ready to go.'

I was with his wife when he called as she fed breakfast to their children. I held her up as she tried to understand his words and as she realized he wasn't coming home that night.

I was in the stairwell of the 23rd floor when a woman cried out to Me for help. 'I have been knocking on the door of your heart for 50 years!' I said. 'Of course I will show you the way home - only believe in Me now.'

I was at the base of the building with the Priest ministering to the injured and devastated souls.
I took him home to tend to his Flock in Heaven. He heard my voice and answered.

I was on all four of those planes, in every seat, with every prayer. I was with the crew as they were overtaken. I was in the very hearts of the believers there, comforting and assuring them that their faith has saved them.

I was in Texas, Virginia, California, Michigan, Afghanistan. I was standing next to you when you heard the terrible news. Did you sense Me?

I want you to know that I saw every face. I knew every name - though not all know Me. Some met Me for the first time on the 86th floor.

Some sought Me with their last breath. Some couldn't hear Me calling to them through the smoke and flames, 'Come to Me... this way... take my hand.' Some chose, for the final time, to ignore Me. But, I was there.

I did not place you in the Tower that day. You may not know why, but I do. However, if you were there in that explosive moment in time, would you have reached for Me?

Sept. 11, 2001, was not the end of the journey for you. But someday your journey will end. And I will be there for you as well. Seek Me now while I may be found. Then, at any moment, you know you are 'ready to go.'

I will be in the stairwell of your final moments.


Additions to Kaya Lapbook

Curly dressed up as a Native American.

The one thing I really love about lapbooking is that you can add to a book whenever you want. Case in point, Curly went to her American Girl Book Club meeting and they had games and food. We got to add those things to her lapbook even though it was technically done.

Underneath the inside center flap, we added the Food Menu that we ate at the Kaya AGBC meeting.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Curly's First Lapbook American Girl: Kaya

Curly belongs to an American Girl Book Club through our homeschool support group. It has 10 girls that enjoy a book discussion, a period craft, and the opportunity to try foods from the time period. Curly is going to make a lapbook for each American Girl to share when their book is discussed.

This is Curly working of her first lapbook. We got the templates from

The front of the lapbook has a picture of the fictional Nez Perce Kaya and the historical Nez Perce Chief Joseph along with a short biography and famous quote.

The inside of the lapbook with center extension flap down.

The top of the flap extension has an accordian fold about living in 1764 that is glued in a mini folder. The Kaya Family and Friends has pictures and Curly had to write down their names.

The center pocket has recipes that she tried at the American Girl Book Club and her opinion of them. The bottom is a petal fold book.

Curly glued this picture in the center of the template.

Backside of center extension flap.

Center part of book with extension flap up.

Instead of traditional vocabulary words, I had Curly translate Nez Perce words to English words (found in the back of the Kaya books).

For the American Girl Book Club, the girls have an opportunity to design an outfit for the American Girl we are studying. This is a dress that Curly designed for Kaya out of some fabric.

Curly proudly showing off her first lapbook.

The sites that I got American Girl graphics from:
Chief Joseph graphic and information