Friday, August 29, 2008

Free Fun For Good Grades

The bowling alley was giving away free bowing for good grades. They also were giving away game tickets for perfect attendance. We got those too!

check out his form. He even had a spin to his throw :)

Faith bowling with her "lucky" ring. She thought maybe it would help her beat her brother :)

Landen trying out the "red" ball

now trying the "green" ball.........

yeeeeeeeeaaaaaaa! green ball it is STRIKE for Landen

A Sweet Little Man of God

My heart breaks for a fellow homeschool blogging family.
Marsha a fellow homeschooling mom and a contributor to Heart of the Matter has lost her son. He has gone home to be with Jesus.
He was a three year old little boy who was so excited to begin school in the coming weeks. He had only been a spectator to his two older brother's but couldn't wait to start preschool.
I was forwarded an email that went throughout the homeschool community asking people to pray for Christian because he had been missing for 3 hours. Then the next morning the first thing I saw in my inbox was that his body had been pulled from a pond behind their home. I have been sick with grief today since reading the outcome.

I can't even imagine.... With a little 3 year old boy of my own, it hits too close to home. May God be with this family as they deal with this.
My heart is breaking for the Drews family.

Although I don't know this family personally I feel as though I do. I often visit Marsha's blog and enjoy reading her posts. She is a contributor to one of my favorite homeschooling resources - a huge asset to the blogosphere and the national homeschool community. We share a lot of the same similarities such as homeschooling and having children the same age. This causes so much grief for a mom I have never met.

“And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.1 Corinthians 12:26

Please pray for Marsha, David and the two brother's Austin and Noah.

Cards or Correspondence can be mailed to:
David and Marsha Drews
c/o Rachel Harris
12830 N. Cypress Lane
Tomball, TX 77377

She will be sure to get them all to Marsha and David.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

My Oldest and My Youngest

It's hard to believe my oldest baby will be 9 this Saturday. 9 years old, how is that possible? Where did the time go? It seems like just yesterday he was Finley's age and now he's 9! Finley is 4 weeks old today and I look at how fast these 4 weeks have gone by. These pictures remind me to slow down and enjoy them because time goes by way too fast!

I'm mixing things up a little this year. I am going out side the box and doing a lot of my own curriculum. I am using My Father's World as our main source but am branching out to keep it fun and interesting for all of us. I recently was introduced to "life learning." At first I thought there was no way it would work for our family. Being that I was raised in goverment schools it is hard to break that mind set. Life learning is a self directed way of learning. I plan on doing a lot of life learning this year too. I really want to get to know my children and what they are interested in. That way I can gear them in what they like. Don't get me wrong we will still be using plenty of curriculum. I am not that relaxed and am to afraid to let go of the text books. I need direction and schedules and so do my kids. What are your thoughts on "Life Learning" Do any of you take this approach on teaching your children?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Blogger Friend School

I'm starting to get a hang of this blogging (almost) and seeing that there is so much out there for homeschoolers.

I just joined Blogger Friend School!
This is a class that builds friendships, strengthening faith, and Journals memories together.

This class consists of homeschooling moms across the globe who come from a variety of cultures and different number of years in the homeschooling field.

Check it out
chick on my sidebar

they also have giveaways:

Blogger Friend School is having a

Nice to meet all of you thanks for the emails and commments:)

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Next Vera Wang

Faith has been begging me to learn how to sew. Since I can barely sew on a button I figured the best person to teach her would be Great Grandma. Faith and Grandma started lessons last Thursday. It's a great way for them to spend time together. Faith has already learned so much and knows how to run the sewing machine by herself. She plan's on designing and making wedding dressings (including her own). haha! We'll see about that!
Here's Faith with her new sewing machine.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Homeschool Memoirs #1

I signed up for a Homeschool Blogger Class but they have changed it to Homeschool Memoirs. Every Wednesday, is a new theme. This weeks assignment:

This week, we want to hear about YOU. The author behind the words. The Momma behind all the homeschooling kiddos. Just write up something about you, your family, and your home. How long you’ve been homeschooling and why you decided to homeschool. It doesn’t have to be anything lengthy at all, but we’d love to hear it! You might include a family photo too!

Ok,I gotta make this fast... the kids are on the loose:
I am a wife and mother of 5. This is our 2nd year homeschooling. Something I never thought I'd do. God placed it on my heart along time ago and I finally listened to him. (I couldn't be happier) I could not fulfill any of these roles without Him.

I realize now that if I just listen to him and obey him and stop trying to figure it all out for myself I will be happy. He created me and he knows what my heart desires most.
Why do I have to be so stubborn!
"Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4

I look forward to getting to know more of you on our journey through homeschooling.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I'm Going Part Time

Well not really, but I signed the kids up for some co-op classes. After cordinating both of their schedules together, I am only going to be teaching them three days a week. They will be in classes most of the day on Tuesday's and Friday's. Of couse I will be driving them here and there so I don't know if I can really call it part-time. Landen too will be in school for a couple hours on Tuesday's and Thursday's. So, Tuesday's I will be down to two kids. Anyone want to get together for coffee??? Tuesdays are the day!
I look back on all the things the kids and I would of missed out on if we never gave homeschooling a try. They have been involved in so many things from leather working to photography. There are so many classes out there for the kids. Although, I am a part of Western Christian as our umbrella school I am also a part of many support homeschooling groups. We have joined two new ones this summer. I am finding support groups popping up everywhere. Homeschooling seems to be getting more popular. These groups offer classes, field trips and more. It's nice to be a part of these groups as the kids get older too. They offer classes like Forensics, Government etc. (things I know nothing about) I already think about how in the world will I ever teach Chemistry! Thank God for teachers who are willing to offer these classes to us.

Austin and Faith both will be in a building blocks class that consists of IEW writing, history, and math. They will also be taking a sign language and spanish class. For music, Faith is still in violin and Austin starts guitar next week. The are both in an Art class and a sciece lab based class that is centered around creationism. Austin also will be taking a critical thinking class. This course will help develop his ability to think, reason, eliminate and analyze. I think this will be a good challenge for him. The spiritual benefit will be the ability to use this process for inductive study and deductive reasoning. At the end of the couse he will have to use his new skill to examine and learn a simple inductive bible study to encourage the delight of digging into the scriptures to find the treasure therein.
Our schedules are set, and we are ready to learn but first we are going to enjoy the last few weeks of summer (I decided to extend our summer for a couple more weeks) Why? because I can! Oh, the joys of homeschooling.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Drive In Movies

We told all the kids to get in their p.j.'s and get in the car. They didn't understand were we could possibly be taking them in their p.j.'s. We told them it was a surprise. Surprises make everything a little bit more fun. We packed blankets, pillows and snacks then stopped by KFC for a bucket of chicken and were on our way. The last time we went to a drive-in Austin and Faith were both very small they don't remember. So this was new to them, and they were excited to watch a movie in the car! Before the movie started we had a little picnic and let the kids run around and get all the wiggles out before the movie started. It was a cheap family fun night. Even better, they didn't have to be super quiet or whisper before or during the show.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

A Homeschool Mom. . . With Cute, Prada Shoes?!

At a homeschool convention this summer a mom of three came to our booth to talk, ask questions and share ideas. We talked about our kids, their learning styles, how our family homeschooled and also about curriculum. Another mom joined us. After a while we all admired the first mom's very cute shoes. "Thank you!" she said appreciatively, and added simply and honestly, "They're Prada." I blinked. To myself I thought: "I've never seen a homeschool mom wearing Prada shoes before!" My sense of surprise probably shows how easy it is (even for we who homeschool ourselves) to sterotype about homeschooling and who homeschoolers tend to be. But the truth is that families from all different backgrounds, countries, and walks of life homeschool their kids. No matter what we have or don't have, no matter how we homeschool, we need each other. The desire to teach and our love for our children and for learning is what makes a homeschooler -- not what we wear, what we have, or how or where we do our homeschooling.

and 10 other things I've learned while homeschooling:

1.Not all home schoolers are nerds.

2.I do not have all the right answers , yet they are just a click away ! LOL

3.I can teach math after all.

4.Science experiments REALLY do require adult supervision!

5.It's ok if my 6 year old corrects my spelling on the grocery list. It's a good thing!

6.It's fun looking at all the learning material out there. I didn't realize I could spend more money on books than clothes or shoes.
Can anyone say addiction?

7.I'm ok with "sheltering" my children.

8.Bribery has it's advantages, it gets things done.

9.We have met so many nice families through home schooling and I was surprised at all the wonderful support groups out there.

10.I really love being a mom AND a teacher. Even though I was the beginning, I now know that this is what I'm supposed to do. I can't imagine my life if I wasn't home schooling my kids. I'm SO blessed!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Good News

I forgot to post this :
On Aug 8 California appeals court reversed itself and ruled that parents in the Golden State can home school their own children without having to obtain a government credential. (Not that I was too worried)
The freedom to home school is a precious gift from God. Keeping it
free requires vigilance and perseverance. We must continue to pray and work together diligently to preserve this precious freedom in California
and elsewhere.

The Perfect Park

I was invited to attend a home school meeting in Azuza. That is how I found this awesome park. It's perfect for all of us. It has a workout area, tot area, big kid playground, basketball courts, and a splash park! I have a feeling we will be taking more trips to this park. It will be perfect for P.E.

All I wanted was a quick picture
(Leave it to Landen, he thinks it's funny to stick his finger up his nose)

and then wipe his finger on his brother...

The Next Apprentice

Austin has been taking some classes this summer and one that he enjoys is his leather class. They are learning how to make leathergoods such as wallets, belts, bags etc. He also has learned to decorate leather with tools by carving, inlay, onlay etc. He just finished his wallet and will be working on his belt next week. I'm sure he will be taking orders soon as he is very business minded. Be on the look out for "Aut" wallets and bags(I'm told they will be the new "in" thing) haha...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Look Who's In the Olympics

The kids and I had a little fun today making this for daddy. LOL...babe you look great in speedo's!
He's gonna kill me:)

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

My Father's World

The new school year is creeping around the corner at our house. In about a month (YIKES) we plan to be back into the full swing of things. Scary and exciting. Scary, as I am still cleaning out and organizing the school closet, working on my teachers planner, and adding a newborn to our already busy schedule. Exciting to be again adventuring into the land of learning. I can't wait to see what God has in store for us this coming year.

All summer I have been doing research on different curriculum and working on field trips and upcoming classes the kids will take part in.
We will be using My Father's World again as our core curriculum. (Let me just say this is no ordinary curriculum.) I also plan on bringing in some other curriculum here and there that I have found helpful. The author of My Father's World (Marie Hazell) is just amazing. This curriculum is a God send to me. I was so lost when I first started home schooling. So much curriculum to choose from I didn't know where to go. After having the privilege of speaking with a women who went on missions with Marie and her husband and know them very well, I just knew this was the curriculum for us.
I am so excited to be teaching my children the "Exploring Countries and Cultures" The Hazell's have produced a geography unit study that is one I'm sure my children will grow and learn from. (I love unit studies) The Hazell's spent eight years in Siberia, following the Lords leading and spend time translating the Bible into languages for minority groups that don't have their own written language. They have seen the world, felt the need, and now they are back in the U.S. writing for children with the prayer of equipping a generation of children to see God's hand in all of history, and share God's heart of the nations. In our studies this year we will read about true stories of godly men and women who served as missionaries overseas, using Hero Tales stories to illustrate specific character traits they portrayed.
We will also get weekly information about different ethnic groups around the world and their specific prayer needs, using Window on the World.
MFW has a strong mission focus. We will be praying for countries as we "visit" them.
I hope my children are inspired by the missionary biographies that we read.
I hope by these studies my children will gain a mission oriented world view.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Snuggle Bugs

Remember my fabulous friend Rochelle Ax? (By Faith She did my pregnancy pictures and I couldn't wait for her to do Finley's newborn pictures. She did these for me the other day. Finley is just 9 days old in them. We had to sneak Aven in for a few too. Look how cute they snuggle!
Here are a few:

Newport Dunes

Farrah strutting her stuff on the boardwalk

enjoying the breeze

stop and smell the flowers

I had a little bit of cabin fever the last couple of days. I know, I know, Finley isn't even two weeks old yet. I just am not one to stay in doors for too long. With a small living room and five kids I was about to go crazy. There is only so many times you can play Candyland and build forts out of blankets and sheets.
I have been feeling so much better. Everyday, I seem to walk a little faster and move a little better. Thank God! The kids have been such a help to me and I know they needed to get out too.
Grandma and Grandpa had a spot at Newport Dunes so we all headed down to the beach for a few days of fun! The boys had a blast playing in the water (even though there were jellyfish and stingrays!) I think they thought that made it a bit more daring and fun. Faith figured she would be safer staying ashore collecting sea shells and building sandcastles with the girls. Finley enjoyed the nice ocean breeze and cuddled with mommy in the lounge chair. Life couldn't get any better! Here's a few pictures (ok a lot of pictures)from our much needed mini vacation.

Landen jumping on the trampoline

Justin (child #6)

10 days old and she already loves the beach