Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

American Heritage Girls – summary

We had our awards ceremony in June, so I’m a little behind but I want to share what a wonderful program American Heritage Girls is.  My daughters and I were so happy when a new troop started that was within a short driving distance of us and I also decided to become a Unit leader, so I work with the Explorer Unit and it’s so much fun.


One of our service projects was to meet at a nursing home and sing Jesus Loves Me to the residents who attend the church service then we walked the halls passing out homemade flowers to the residents.


Bethanne and one of her friends towards the end of our Camporee in May. Bethanne took BB guns and Hannah did archery. They each completed one badge. We all ended up sun burned but had a great time!


Our troop participated in the Memorial Day parade, the girls rode in the trailer while us moms/leaders walked it.

In June, we had our awards/cook out where the girls received their Joining Award (this is a big award, one they must earn before they can earn any other badges).

The joining ceremony symbolized the girls going out into the world and shining Christ’s light to all.

There were fun and games to be played and enjoyed by all. We had nice weather for the cook out.

The girls are working on badges through out the summer, I’ve had each go through their books and pick out one badge from each frontier.  Hannah’s goal is to reach the Explorer’s level award which is called Lewis and Clark, and there is a lot of work that goes into and she only has 1 year to complete it so I’m working on that with her in hopes that come next May/June she’ll have earned her Lewis and Clark award.

I’m so glad that there is a Christian alternative to some of the other groups that are available to girls today.  Not only do they earn badges but they are engaging in character building from a Biblical perspective and also encouraged to do a lot of service hours – my girls are wanting to volunteer time at our local Animal Welfare League.

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Trip to a museum.

Earlier this month one of our favorite children’s museums opened a satellite location in our city!  So we tried it out last Friday and it was fun – although it was geared more ages 10 and under, but even that was pushing it.  My children are not your average 6, 8 and 11 year olds – but there were some things for each of them to explore.


Since this was a satellite location I wasn’t expecting to see the museum on as grand a scale as the real location.  I have to admit if my children were younger (mine were the oldest by far there that day, of course it was also during prime school hours) they may have had more fun – but two of them do want to go back.  The oldest will go with us and I’m sure like this last time she’ll find something to occupy herself.


Hannah and Bethanne making something – none of them could agree so I don’t think it got made?


Hannah working on a maze for the balls that they had.


Christian thinking he can make a better maze than his sister!


Bethanne making something…..


Bethanne, again.


I’m hoping if we keep going back they’ll see there is a need for some stuff for older children and they’ll add that as they see a need and that this satellite location is a good thing for our community.  As you can see my children all found something to do and it’s less than the actual museum, although we can get in free due to being members – but for those who aren’t the $3.00 adult ticket and $2.00 child ticket is affordable and for what you get it’s worth it.


Scouting for Food – AHG meeting

We have been so enjoying our American Heritage Girls – and I so happy that a group has formed close enough for us to join!  We have some great coordinators and some wonderful Unit Leaders (I have to say that though since I’m one!!).  I’m really praying that come May the Boy Scouts will have made the right decision so that my son can become a Cub Scout – he had so much fun helping the girls and I collect food for the Scouting for Food event we did.


Christian collecting a bag of food that was left on a porch.


All three lined up with the bags of food, we only got 6, and the sun was brightly shining hence the reason for the look on Christian’s face.

Bethanne carried the AHG flag for our opening and closing flag ceremony at the meeting last Sunday. She really enjoyed being able to do this.


The girls have each been working on a badge at home, Bethanne is going to do cake decorating and Hannah has started creative writing.  Since we have to bring snack to the next meeting I told Bethanne that we’ll be bringing cake!  Of course, we also have a lot of service activities too so that we can be the hands of feet of Jesus.



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Homeschool Mother’s Journal – March 8, 2012

In my life this week…..

Well the girls finally made it back to their dance class after missing two classes due to illness, Christian tested for his next belt in his martial arts class and I posted my first review for WAHM Reviews!

In our homeschool this week…..

We began Mystery of History Vol. 3 and the children are still enjoying it – they actually asked to keep reading.  We are in week 7 of Swimming Creatures.  We are finishing up reading the 1st book in the Mary Poppins series and I’m not sure if we’re going to continue.

Helpful homeschooling tips or advice to share….

School year round.  Seriously.  We began our 12-13 year in April and the children are almost done, they’ll finish their current math right before our assessment in May.  Schooling year round, affords us the flexibility to take Fridays off or swap it for another day for visiting friends, field trips, errands or just stay in.  It also allows us time off when we are sick or just need a break as well as a nice time off for holidays.  I’m so glad that we started year round schooling.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…..

Martial arts class and dance.  We really haven’t been anywhere else this week as we were trying to get in stuff that didn’t get done last week due to illness.

My favorite thing this week was…..

Seeing that my son is remembering the sounds of his letters in phonics and is making progress in remembering his sight words as well – even though he may put up a fight.

My kiddos favorite thing this week was…..

Probably staring our Knights and Castles lapbook or knowing that we’re almost done with Mary Poppins (usually I love the classics but well….you’ll have to read it yourself)

Things I’m working on….

Reviews – I’ve got some great reviews coming up both for the TOS Crew and the WAHM reviews – so be on the watch for those and to stay updated follow me 🙂 Trying to find other Mystery of History users who want to work a shift at the Midwest Convention in April (if you’re going let me know if you’d like to work a shift).  Trying to narrow down the workshops and vendors I need to hit at the convention.

I’m cooking…..

I’ve been trying to do a lot more cooking and am going to invest in a kitchen scale but lately I’ve been using my beautiful salad plate to put my meals on so I don’t overeat.  Oops, sorry got off track  here are some of the meals I’ve made this past week:

  • champion all beef chili
  • beef, mushroom and barley soup
  • spaghetti bolognese
  • coated pork chops, with carrots and salad

Again, just a few of the things I’ve made – I need to come up with a shopping list for this coming week.  Tonight is going to be roast chicken (substituting whole chicken for chicken breasts) w/ garlic and potatoes, unless hubby decides he wants to go to dinner tonight for his birthday tomorrow.


I’m grateful for….

My weight loss – truly I can’t believe how wonderful I feel – I’m also feeling more patient with the children and my mind seems clearer.

I’m praying for….

A friend of mine’s mother-in-law is in the hospital with a serious infection in her leg.

I’m also praying that on March 18th my A1C is normal and I can go off my metformin!

I rewarded my children this week by….

I have no idea, maybe by not having them work on a lapbook today?

Something I’m oogling or have my eye on…..

Same as February 22nd’s entry, a very badly needed new printer (any suggestions), and a kitchen scale – I’m thinking this one – Biggest Loser 11 pound kitchen scale

A photo to share….

My son with his new obi – yellow w/white stripe. He passed his test and is so happy.

The drawing my oldest daughter did of Dr Who and Rose – no tracing.


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Finis! (Latin for The End)

We began our school year in April 2012 and we are now at the end of February 2013 – this was also our first year of year round schooling, which has gone very well and allows us to take Fridays off for planning, errands, field trips or whatever needs to be done that.  We’ve covered much ground – having completed the entire text of Apologia’s Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day by December of 2012 and moving on to Apologia’s Swimming Creatures of which we are already in week 4!



We also finished Mystery of History Volume 2 last week!  Which was bittersweet, we all enjoy Mystery of History and the fact that it comes from a Creationist, young earth and Christ centered perspective makes it all the better.  The children enjoyed learning about Roger Bacon (mainly they enjoyed his last name), I enjoyed learning about Johannes Gutenberg (I’ll let my readers come up with the reason for that!) my oldest enjoyed learning about Joan of Arc.

My son holding up our finished timeline – while the oldest takes a picture.

A bit of an up close – yes we had lots of lines left so I know to spread them out more during MoH 3

Along with completing Volume 2 we also completed the time line, which we didn’t do with Volume 1, I’m disappointed we didn’t but we’ll cycle back through again later and will do it then.  Our timeline looks lovely – the only thing I did (with hubby’s help) was to cover it in the contact paper and put the duct tape strips on – the children decorated the figures themselves, I like knowing it’s their timeline versus my perfect one that I would have tried to make.  It’ll be a keepsake for years to come!


The children participating in the experiment of how well sound travels – using yarn and Styrofoam cups. It was fun and was much like the telephones I’d make as a child.


The other item of note that was finished last week was my oldest DD’s Writing Tales Level 2 – I made a deal with her that if she’d work on the Poetry course I’d been given to review, she could be done with three weeks early with Writing Tales.  She liked that idea.  Also my middle daughter finished her 2nd year of Latin!  She now knows 4 prayers in Latin, lots of vocabulary and declensions.  I’ll be drilling her on this until we start her new Latin in April.


Our assessment is already scheduled which makes me happy and I’m am so glad that our year has gone so well and I look forward to keeping on keeping on!


Hands-On Science Fun

We are really enjoying our Apologia Swimming Creatures study.  We finished up Lesson 3 this week by doing an experiment to simulate blubber that both pinnipeds and cetaceans have to stay warm.  This was very messy but we all had fun with it.

I managed to get some video so if you’re interested feel free to watch the children.


Bethanne’s video


Hannah’s video


Christian’s video


So we discovered that blubber, or in our case, vegetable shortening, does indeed keep one warmer than not having blubber.  My son has been asking to repeat the process but I don’t think I’m up for it just yet – it got quite greasy.  I also must say that I was thinking that there was no way my children could have been able to do this experiment had they not been homeschooled.  It was great to see them get so excited over this experiment.

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Hair cuts!

My son was looking shaggy and needed a hair cut and so he decided it’d be easier to wear his sparring gear if he buzzed his hair, my husband told him if he did it then he’d do it too…….so the girls and I went and had a girls day out and the boys went and did this:


Isn’t he handsome – I do admit I like this look on him but it makes him look ornery.


My other handsome guy – he doesn’t really like it but it’s growing on me and I think it looks nice, although I was surprised when I came through the door on Saturday.


The girls and I went out and had our hair done.  I decided I wanted something that while still feminine made me look and feel younger and better about myself – I was tired of the lllloooonnnngggg and limp thick hair that made me look older than I am.  The girls wanted and needed something a bit more manageable – my middle has VERY thick hair like me and it becomes WW3 to brush it.


All three with their new do’s.


And me – this cut is feminine with lots of layer so now I have some body and it’s not hanging limp down my back. It also makes my face not seem as chubby IMHO and it’s easy to comb and care for. Best of all, my husband likes it but I’ll keep his comments to myself 😀



Birthday Party!

This past Sunday the girls were invited to a birthday party for a friend and they were able to pick a piece of pottery to paint.  It was so much fun.  I got to see some friends I hadn’t seen in awhile, hold my friends 10 week old baby and my girls got to see their friends as well.  It’s hard to believe how fast our children are growing – my friend’s daughter turned 13 and next month my oldest is going to be 11.  Where have the years gone?  Truly they are like a vapor.

The frame that my oldest painted for her friend. I love the tree with the added owl sticker.


Bethanne, prepping her bear pottery piece.


Bethanne working on painting her bear – it’s quite colorful. I’m excited to pick them up next week.


Hannah working on her pottery piece – a vase.



Bethanne working on a sewing craft that she wanted to give to her friend. Her friend enjoyed it.



Some pictures from last year, this year!

I just realized that I hadn’t shared some pictures from Christmas Eve or Christmas 2012 and since it’s almost the end of January I thought well, now is the time!  Our Christmas Eve tradition has included going to my Dad and Step-mom’s and then to my in-laws and this year my nephew was old enough to really get into things and my children had a blast playing with him and when I could catch him I enjoyed giving him hugs and kisses!

The girls playing with their cousin.

Isn’t she beautiful?

There is a bit of guinea pig obsession in the house!

Christian opening his Creepy Crawlers present Christmas morning.

A Bitty Baby outfit for Bethanne’s AG Bitty Baby dolls from Grandma Cindy.

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Science – it’s fun!

We started our second science of the school year this month!  We completed 100% of Flying Creatures and instead of letting a bunch of time elapse we are continuing on with Swimming Creatures.  I have to say I get excited when we complete a whole curricula because that didn’t and doesn’t happen in ‘real’ school.  I remember knowing there was something I wanted to study in school but we never got to it because the teacher’s had to teach to the test or there just wasn’t time because of everything else a teacher has to do.


We’ve finished the first lesson and are once again working in the Apologia notebooking journals as well.  I can’t say what a time saver and space saver the journals are!  At one time I was doing a lot of lapbooking but I began to run out of room and I hate to throw all that work in the trash so now when we do lapbooking I do it in a spiral bounded scrapbook or use the Apologia journals for science.  It’s a bit more expensive when you multiply it by three but since I’m not having to make copies, cut, color, glue, provide file folders, etc it works out in the end – as well as saves my sanity.  Three children lapbooking and completing journal assignments and one of those is still learning to write, well it can get a bit hairy!  I’m not complaining, but I’m just glad there are simple ways to now make it easier for larger families to do lapbooking and such.


The cover of the journals we use for our science, this matches the cover of the text book as well. -Christianbook


So I made a list of what would be needed for the experiments and try its through the book so we wouldn’t have to hunt and find or skip and minus out the goldfish experiment (I just can’t justify adding a fish to our house with two dogs and two guinea pigs for the sake of an experiment 🙂  )  Otherwise we’ll be doing them – I just need to find another triops or sea monkeys kit but that’s later on so I have time.


One of our first try its was to test air pressure since we were studying oceans, currents, etc and while we have experimented with air pressure at demonstrations at the local science museums there is something about doing it at home.  So I barely, blew up a balloon inside a 2 liter bottle and put the cap on, then the children stepped on it as it’s stepped on the balloon gets smaller and as the pressure is released it goes back to it’s original size.



One of the other experiments was to determine whether cold water or hot water is heavier, unfortunately because it involved water, transferring water and food coloring I needed to be more hands on and didn’t get pictures.  Suffice to say it was fun and our hypothesis turned out to be the correct answer!


Another fun thing that is suggested is to do an ocean box – where each child adds the creature(s) being studied each week to their box.  Again, we don’t have room for 3 large boxes, so someone mentioned using the tri-fold display boards.  I didn’t want three of those either but the children were agreeable to doing 1 board for all three as long as they each get to add an animal each week.  This week the children colored the board (light, darker and black – to semi represent the zones of the ocean) then we added our abyssal animals (those that live in the very, very bottom of the ocean where even humans can’t go).  So we added gulper eels, angler fish, giant squid, phytoplankton and tube worms.


My iPod didn’t do the board justice but this will give you an idea until I take another picture later.




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