Thursday, June 30, 2011

Oh no, I'm 40!

It doesn't seem possible, but I turned 40 today. I am truly thankful to God for all the blessings in my life and look forward to what this decade brings.

Here are my most precious blessings.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Double Celebration Day: Chantry's Birthday & Father's Day

Today we had ended up with two celebrations! Father's Day and Chantry's 9th Birthday.

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Birthday, Chantry!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal - June 12-18, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal

In my life this week…Everything was normal, though a little busier. My allergies have been horrible and I spent a lot of time blowing my nose and feeling blah! I guess I just have to expect this when the city I live in consistently comes up in the top 5 Worst Cities for allergies.

In our homeschool this week…Destini and Chantry finished up everything! Now we are just going to work on Math and spending time reading.

Caleb is still plugging away on science, history, and math.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…We went quite a few places this week. Monday was a baseball game. Tuesday we headed to the library and the kids signed up for the summer reading program. Wednesday we headed to the park for a Homeschool Day. Thursday I went to the used curriculum sale. Friday was our final baseball game for the season. Today we headed to the baseball potluck and award ceremony. Whew, no wonder I'm tired!

My favorite thing this week was…Going to the used curriculum sale and getting some great deals. I also enjoyed seeing by boys having a great time playing baseball and we are all sorry to see the season end.

I’m reading…
Rugged and Relentless (Husbands for Hire)Creative CorrectionPeacemaking for Families (Focus on the Family)

I’m cooking…I am using this category this week, since I don't do a lot of cooking. I made a Triple Chocolate Trifle for the baseball potluck. I also just finished making Chantry's birthday cake, Hot Fudge Cake. I won't be able to taste it until tomorrow so I hope it turned out okay.

I’m grateful for…The strong homeschool community that is around me and all the wonderful friends I have made.

A photo, video, link, or quote to share… what I found at the used curriculum sale.

See what others are doing over at The Homeschool Chick.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Book Review: Raising Real Men:Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boy - Hal & Melanie Young

Raising Real Men: Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boys

Book Description:

"Six boys!" folks say in mock horror, "Well, better you than me."
We answer them cheerfully - we love our boys and they're a gift from God...a reward.

Privately, though, we admit to ourselves it's not always rosy. Teenaged boys put away a startling amount of groceries. Young boys can be downright destructive. They're noisy, unconcerned with personal hygiene, and the dog has a longer attention span - or so it seems, some days.

If this is God's chosen gift to us, then why does it seem so hard? How can we prepare these boys to serve God when we can barely make it through the day. Isn't there a better way?

The answer is yes.

Raising Real Men looks beyond the untied shoes and dirty jeans to what the Lord means your son to be. Learn how to help him focus on schoolwork, find real heroes, stand alone when he needs to, and become a real man one day. Don t just survive raising boys, succeed at it and learn how to love them as they really are.

My thoughts:
Raising Real Men: Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boys by Hal & Melanie Young is a book full of practical advice for parents of boys. The first half of the book covers such topics as manliness, heroes, adventure and recklessness, playing, leadership, discipline, and competition all with a Biblical perspective. The second half continues with how to teach your boys about "real life" and to also instill in them the desire to be God's man. The authors reminded the reader that many things that drive us crazy about our boys are manly virtues that need to be understood, cultivated, disciplined, and practiced.

It is reassuring to know that something that especially annoys you about your son, when it is trained in the right way, can become his greatest asset. I found Raising Real Men: Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boys to be an encouraging read and a book that I will be referring to again and again as my husband and I  continue our journey in raising our "real men".

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Homeschool Mother's Journal - June 5-11, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal

In my life this week…
Whew! I had a busy week. Baseball practice and games, dentist appointments for all four kids, homeschool group meeting, church, and work. I was scheduled to go in for jury duty (my 3rd time I've been called in the last two years), but the trial was cancelled. I was doing a happy jig. Unfortunately, my name is thrown back in the pool,so that means I'll probably be called again in the next three months (sigh).

In our homeschool this week…
We are soooo close to being done. Chantry and Destini finished up Little Pilgrim's Progress, The Adventures of Robin Hood, and our readings in Our Island Story and This Country of Ours. Chantry also finished Little House in the Big Woods. Destini is sitting on some of her work, so next week all audio books are being banned until her work is finished.

Caleb finished up Joan of Arc, Boyhood and Beyond, Old Time Preacher Men, and his readings in A Child's History of England and Trial and Triumph for this year. Now we are just focusing on Math, Physical Science and Mystery of History III.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…
-Baseball practice and games
-The dentist
-The library

My favorite thing this week was…
My homeschool mom's meeting--I love the fellowship.

What’s working/not working for us…
Right now everything is going great.

Homeschool questions/thoughts I have…
I have started working on next year's planning. I notice Destini and Chantry have some stories of Greek mythology and I'm not too settled on whether these are for us.

A photo, video, link, or quote to share…
Since we are still in baseball here are a few more shots.

Shade pitching to Chantry's team.

From Blogger Pictures
Chantry is ready for the ball!

From Blogger Pictures
And last, but not least--Delani playing peek-a-boo with the teenage boys. I think she was really flirting, but I won't tell her dad!

See more over at The Homeschool Chick.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Book Review: The Penderwicks at Point Mouette by Jeannie Birdsall

The Penderwicks at Point Mouette
Book Description:
When summer comes around, it's off to the beach for Rosalind . . . and off to Maine with Aunt Claire for the rest of the Penderwick girls, as well as their old friend, Jeffrey.

That leaves Skye as OAP (oldest available Penderwick)—a terrifying notion for all, but for Skye especially. Things look good as they settle into their cozy cottage, with a rocky shore, enthusiastic seagulls, a just-right corner store, and a charming next-door neighbor. But can Skye hold it together long enough to figure out Rosalind's directions about not letting Batty explode? Will Jane's Love Survey come to a tragic conclusion after she meets the alluring Dominic? Is Batty—contrary to all accepted wisdom—the only Penderwick capable of carrying a tune? And will Jeffrey be able to keep peace between the girls . . . these girls who are his second, and most heartfelt, family?
It's a rollicking ride as the Penderwicks continue their unforgettable adventures in a story filled with laughs and joyful tears!
My thoughts:
I love the Penderwicks, who remind of a mix of  Little Women (Puffin Classics) and The Melendy Quartet. Their latest book, The Penderwicks at Point Mouette by Jeanne Birdsall is not a disappointment.

The story starts with their Father off on his honeymoon and Rosalind, the oldest sister, going away on vacation with a friend. This leaves the three younger Penderwick to take a vacation with Aunt Claire at Point Mouette at the ocean. They are soon joined by Jeffrey, their friend,  and from that moment the adventures begin. From a crazy dog, Jane's research on love, Batty's golf ball collection, Jeffrey's musical affinity with the neighbor, to Skye's worries about being the OAP, will fascinate and keep you on the edge of your seat. On a side note: When I started this story I had a premonition that a certain event was going to happen. When it did happen it totally took me by surprise! I think I got so caught up in the other events I had forgot about it. I appreciate a story that makes it hard to guess, or in my case, forget what is coming next.

If you are familiar with the Penderwicks you will not want to miss this latest installment, and if you haven't been introduced I highly recommend starting at the beginning of this series with The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy and The Penderwicks on Gardam Street.

Book Review: Pagoo by Holling C. Holling


Book Description:

An intricate look at tide pool life through the study of Pagoo, a little hermit crab. Every aspect of tide pool life imaginable is charmingly presented. Illustrations illumine the microscopic forms of life so abundant in the sea, and the habits and methods of survival are clearly related.
My thoughts:
For our curriculum this year, Pagoo was a pick for a science selection in our last term. If you are not familiar with Holling C. Holling's book you are missing a real treat. So far we have read Paddle-to-the-Sea , Tree in the Trail, Seabird , and Pagoo. In his books the reader is taken on journeys in exciting and wonderfully told stories. You don't just hear a wonderful story, but you also will learn about geography and natural history.

The story of Pagoo introduces a hermit crab who is no larger than the head of a pin. As the story progresses, Pagoo grows and with the help of his pal, Old Instinct, learns about the way of the ocean and the creatures in it. This is a story of survival, filled with wonderful description of sea creatures and filled with humor and suspense. It also has wonderful drawings on each and every page that help to tell the story, which you can check out at the bottom of this post.

Of all of Holling's books that we have read, I believe that  Pagoo has been our favorite. My kids really enjoyed the humor and suspense of the story, which had them begging for more, which is music to this mom's ears!

See what others are reading over at Hope is the Word.


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