Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Worth Watching

When Mark Hamby of Lamplighter Publishing (who is not in favor of wasting time in front of a computer or TV/movie screen) says something is worth watching, you watch it. This video is totally child friendly, but you may have to read the words to them.

You must watch this...

Our Homeschooling Plan (Sept-Nov 2009)

While we do homeschool year round, we have taken off a pretty huge chunk of time (ever since visiting family in Branson and then going onto Kentucky just because we had never been). :D So we plan to start back next Monday and the kids are pretty excited!

I am taking this week to plan out the next semester. We take off from formal schooling from Thanksgiving through New Years. That is so we do not feel so overwhelmed during a most overwhelming season. But of course the children are still learning! We read Christmas stories and watch Christmas movies. We bake Christmas cookies and have Christmas teas. And we play in the snow! We make snow angels and snowmen.

If you have been reading my blog for any amount of time you know that I am a VERY relaxed home schooler. I truly believe that most of our best learning is done through experiencing life rather than sitting behind a desk reading about it. I like what a friend of mine said. She doesn't use the word homeschooling, but home discipleship (as we are to train up our children in the fear and admonition of the Lord). Another friend uses home educate.

Both are of the same mindset that I am. We do not homeschool to do school at home, but rather to instill in our children the values and lessons that they will need in their future life. To love and serve God with all their heart (as one friend put it "Fill 'em with so much of God's word that if you cut them, they bleed it") and to know skills (like reading and writing and math) that are things every person should know and are necessarily in life.

Here are the actual books we will be using this semester for teaching Bible/Character. Of course we are doing other subjects! :D But I know the materials for teaching those are subjective to each parent and each child! :D Not that teaching the Bible isn't. :D But teaching other subjects have PLENTY of curriculum out there with reviews. Teaching Biblical worldview has so few. So with that in mind...

Leading Little Ones To God - I absolutely love and admire Nancy Leigh DeMoss. I heard her mention this book on her radio show one day. She was talking about the importance of this book in her childhood. "My parents used this resource in our family devotions when I was a little girl; it was the means God used to bring me to faith in Christ as a four-year-old child on May 14, 1963. This book is a great way to introduce your children to the basic biblical doctrines of God, man, and salvation. It includes short Bible stories, hymns, and questions for children to answer." Nancy Leigh DeMoss

Truth and Grace Memory Book 1
- Instilling a Biblical worldview in my kids was not a very important thing to me. That is until I read Voddie Baucham's books and heard him speak. Now it is super high on my list! This book is AWESOME! You start at age 2 (yes, we will be playing catch-up) and, with all three books, move up through senior year in high school. Each year has you memorizing questions and answers from the Westminster Catechism, foundational Bible verses and hymns.

Susan Hunt's Big Truths for Little Kids - Growing up Catholic, hearing the word "catechism" brought up really bad memories. Now that I was a Christian, I wanted my kids to have a personal relationship with the Lord and NOT a rote relationship. As I grew in my walk with the Lord, I met ladies whom I greatly admired. Their children had a deep understanding of God and His word. Something that I did not have. They all had one thing in common - the children had gone through the Westminster Shorter Catechism. I put that thought on the back burner, but when I heard Voddie Bacuham talk about it, he related it like this. We do rote with our children all the time. Whenever you ask your child a question, and they respond with an answer you taught them - that is a catechism. I had mentioned before a book called Training Heart, Teaching Minds that also goes through the catechism. That book really is for OLDER children. This book, Susan's book, is for YOUNGER children. A word of warning about this book. It does focus a bit on how non-Christian's sin without having the Christian children realize that they are sinners too. But that is just a great opportunity to discuss with your children the importance of looking to the cross and not being legalistic. :D

21 Rules of this House - while there is a book for this (which we have, but only because I found a used book in AWESOME condition for a buck at a garage sale), you do not need the book. The web site I gave has all 21 rules. We go through one a week, catechism style (LOL!). We have already done up to number 6 and I will tell you that these are GREAT! When a child is breaking a rule we have already learned, I can point to the rule (what is rule number 3?) and the child will change their behavior!! I know that with the other books I am using, the Scriptural reference for the rule will be hidden in their heart.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What's UP???

So I realized today that I have been posting a LOT of stuff on my Facebook page and next to nothing here. I think part of it is because I get feedback on my Facebook page. People thank me for sharing a link or a thought.

I realize that most of the people who even take the time to read my blog are probably like me - they LOVE to read, but have so little time to respond. Especially when you can't just click a "like" button, or comment on the page you are on and click submit. Blogger (like most blog interfaces) makes you jump through hoops to comment.

But it feels so GOOD to have FEEDBACK. To know that you are not just doing this for yourself. Although, to be honest, I am doing this blog for MOSTLY myself. Hence, this post.

I realized that while I am getting feedback on Facebook (and it feels so good to feel appreciated!), I am not able to search through my past Facebook posts. At least not easily like I am able to on my blog. So all those great thoughts and quotes that I put on my Facebook account are long lost in a see of sharings.

So here I am. To share in a way that I can search through at a later time. And if I do post something that is in someway helpful to someone else, that is comfort enough. Why do I need the appreciation? Can it not be sufficient that I have helped someone without knowing it? I clean and cook and make sure the children are fed and clothed .. and I do not do that for appreciation. But I know one day I will face the Lord, and He knows and I am sure appreciates how I care for His children.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Using What You Have Meals: Tomato Vegetable Soup and Taco Casserole

Recently, we have taken to using what we have when cooking. Last night and tonight's meals are two examples.

Taco Casserole (pictured above)
1 lb Meat
1/2 an onion
Frozen Corn
Can of Black Bean Soup (about to expire)
Can of Tomato Paste
Seasonings (chili seasoning, garlic powder)
Corn chips
Cheddar Cheese

Brown onion and meat. And frozen corn (to stretch meat). Add can of black bean soup. Add 1/2 can of tomato paste (and stir in as much water as needed to thin). Add seasonings.

Crush corn chips on top. Spread shredded cheese on top and cover till cheese melts. We only added a little cheese because of the girls and their intolerance. (Pictured is the meal in my cast iron - LOVE my cast iron. It is uncovered for the picture and because the cheese has melted). Serve with rice and refried beans.

Tomato Vegetable Soup
Bottle of Organic V-8 I had bought months ago
Frozen veggies

Use V-8 as base for the soup. Add frozen veggies. Cook till veggies cooked. Add pats of butter in individual servings if desired. This was REALLY good and had my daughters asking for thirds!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Me Eat Pizza!

Me Eat Pizza!
Originally uploaded by lvg4him
Tears (happy ones of course) stream down my face as I upload these photos and share this happy moment. We found a pizza JJ can eat! There are other pictures you can see by clicking on this one and following the pages. I am so so happy! Look at him ... eating PIZZA!!! ANd loving every moment of it!

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Spring - Ladybird in Flight
Originally uploaded by paurian
We have a ton of ladybirds in the backyard! Of course, when I sent daughter for the Handbook of Nature Study (after she had promptly grabbed the bug catcher, put the catch as well as a leaf with aphids on it in there for his/her lunch), she began looking in the index for "lady bugs." I cannot believe we had not taken the time to teach her these are also called by their more common (and in my opinion more elegant) name - ladybird.

My beloved took this amazing shot back in 2006, when my daughters were begging him to take pictures of the ladybirds. He snapped the picture and God blessed him with this amazing shot!

But how PERFECT it was to show AA the wing cases and wings hidden underneath! I am hoping to get her to do some observation drawings. We have gotten out of the habit of doing them. She was getting REALLY good there. Need to get back into practicing! :D

Still Here Ya'll!

Brian had two weeks off and I totally enjoyed our time together as a family. GREAT memories were made! Now I am working on getting my home in order.