Thursday, December 27, 2012

Snowed In!

We made it to Arkansas! Had a very nice drive here. The dog traveled much better than I anticipated. As did the kids for the most part.

We had a wonderful Christmas. It turned out to be a white Christmas for us. Started raining late Christmas Eve and continued through Christmas morning. By that afternoon it had turned to snow. Great big flakes of snow! and LOTS of it! In fact, it has been a record snow for this area. My kids are LOVING it! They had never seen snow till now. They are getting their fill of it now. I wanted to post pictures, but the only internet we have access to is moving extremely SLOWLY right now. I guess the pictures will have to wait.

My kids have been spending time playing video games with their cousin and their older cousin's boyfriend. Some of the games they are playing have language that I am not thrilled with. Hoping they will not choose to study vocabulary from those games! If they do they will find themselves in big trouble! We just might have to end up having a homeschool language arts lesson!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Round 'Em Up an Herd 'Em Out!

Tomorrow is the day we leave on our trip! All week has been a mad scramble to get ready! You might be wondering what in the world we needed to do to get ready. Well, for one thing, we live in sunny FL. We are in shorts and tank tops nearly year round and only have like about 2-3 days out of the year when it is actually cold enough to need a jacket. But we are headed to Arkansas where it is going to be cold. Even to those of you who know what cold is! We needed some winter type clothes before we headed up there. To that end, we have been making frequent trips to the thrift store.

Also, we had doctor appointments for kids who have been coughing for way too long. Two out of my three kids are now on antibiotics. There have also been Christmas meals to attend and shopping to get stuff to make the special recipes to bring to those and the time in the kitchen cooking the special recipes.  Not to even mention all the loads of laundry and packing and dropping off critters to be babysat while we are gone. Making special Christmas gifts to bring for family and then wrapping Christmas gifts. Whew! No wonder I'm so tired!

So when you are heading out on a long road trip with three kids and a dog, it's good to have a game plan for the drive. Our game plan is to listen to audiobooks. In particular, "The Lord of The Rings" trilogy. I've been trying to get my family to read these books for years. So this is my chance to finally get them to enjoy them as much as I do! It may or may not increase my kids' reading comprehension, but it will certainly make the drive more enjoyable. My husband says that audiobooks put him to sleep when he is driving, so we will only be able to listen when I am driving. I may have to do most of the driving just so we can listen! LOL I don't plan on there being any roadschooling happening on this trip. Unless it happens accidentally!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Meanwhile, In Our World This Week!

Last week I shared about how we are fighting colds in our house. Things haven't gotten any better so yesterday I took RoboBoy to the doctor. He's been complaining that his ear hurts and is all plugged up. Sure enough, the doctor confirmed that he has an ear infection. I will be taking the other two to the doctor next week. They couldn't get them in any sooner than that. Praying that soon the dueling coughs will stop in our house!


Alabama Road Trip by goose, on Pix-O-Sphere We have also been working to save up and get prepared for a trip to Arkansas to spend the week of Christmas with my family. The plan is to drive with 2 teenagers, 1 pre-teen and a dog! It's doubtful that MyHero and I will have any remaining sanity by the time we arrive at my parents' home. It's a little over 18 hour trip, which we will break up into two days of driving.


In the meantime, I've been trying to get in as many hours of work as I can. With gas prices being what they are, it's going to take all that we can save up to make this trip! Praise God that I am able to help contribute to that! I can't remember if I've mentioned on here that I work from home as a contractor for Time4Learning.com. It's the perfect job for a homeschooling mom. 

One of my responsibilities is to author two blogs for them. On one of them, Time4Learning Community Blog, I share the writing responsibilities with two other lovely ladies. The other one, Parenting In An Electronic Age, I author on my own.

In my last post for the Electronic blog, I actually wrote about teaching kids to write! If you are quaking at the thought of trying to teach your kids how to put together compositions that make sense, then you might want to check this post out. I give several suggestions for motivating kids to write including having them take a blog writing course. You might also check out some online writing ideas.

The other way that I have been able to bring in a small bit of income has been via my crochet business. I have been crazy busy working to get orders done before Christmas. I believe that I have all my Christmas orders finished, but am now working on some very special "Look Alike" crocheted dolls for a friend of mine. She asked me awhile ago to make these dolls to match each member of her family. I will eventually post pictures of them. Right now they are bald and Fashionista says they look like monkeys. I'm going to have lots of fun personalizing each of these dolls to match the person they are to look like.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Fighting the Creeping Crud

I love this season! Love having our Christmas decorations out and seeing homes lit up with Christmas lights. Love getting cards from friends and loved ones in the mail, watching Christmas movies and spending time with MyHero and our kids.

Unfortunately, this is also the season for colds! It seems that there has been an epidemic of colds in our area and we haven't been spared. My kids have all seem to have come down with the creeping crud. RoboBoy sounds terrible with a croupy sounding cough and Fashionista isn't sounding much better.

When they are sick like this, it makes it very difficult to get them to do school work. I can understand that. When I'm sick, I don't want to do much of anything either. This might be a good time to relax and watch educational videos together or have them do some math games.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

It's MyHero's and My Anniversary!


Nineteen years ago, my beloved and I became one! Even though we have had our trials just like any marriage does, I wouldn't trade those nineteen years for anything! Our love has only grown stronger as we walked through those struggles together and with Jesus Chist leading us.

We had a very difficult time having children in the beginning. In fact it took us 4 years to conceive our first born. I firmly believe that God opened my womb after I completely surrendered my fertility to HIM. After having three babies in quick succesion, I yanked back control of my fertility. I do regret doing that, but know that God is bigger than even that. If He really wanted me to have more children He could easily have circumvented the preventive measures we had taken as humans.

Our children have grown and filled my days with homeschool math and other homeschool curricula. We always knew as a couple that we would homeschool our kids. It was never an option to do anything else in our minds. Even before we ever had kids.

One of the biggest challenges we faced was dealing with a child who has Asperger's Syndrome. It actually helped to finally get a diagnosis for this in addition to his ADHD. Learning about his disability opened my eyes to realize that I have the same thing. This has helped us to understand why some of our other struggles have always been a part of our marriage.

Through it all, God has been faithful! I have no doubt that He will continue to be faithful as we muddle our way through our kid's teen years and into eventually, should the Lord choose to tarry, becoming grandparents.


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

So Much to be Thankful For!

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I have SO much to be thankful for!! I could seriously go on and on and on and I know you could too. One of the things I'm especially thankful for at the moment is that I DON'T have to do any cooking for tomorrow! I'm letting Bob Evans do all my cooking for me. MyHero is going to be picking up our meal today and then all we have to do is reheat everything tomorrow.

So I'm looking forward to a day of relaxing and crocheting!! That will be good since I have a TON of crochet orders to get done! Yep! People actually pay me to do something that I love and would be doing anyway!! Yet another thing to be thankful for!

We are "babysitting" our neighbor's dog while they are out of town. This is going to be quite interesting since our dog is scared of their dog. She is bigger than him although not much taller. Segmenting them should not be too hard though since their dog has her porter here to stay in. It is still going to be quite the adventure. It may turn out to be fuel for great homeschool fiction since my daughter loves to write!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Learning the Joys of Delayed Gratification

RoboBoy's birthday was back in July. He scored around $40 in cash and wanted to get a video game. So I took him to Game Stop. We scoured the shelves but he couldn't find any games that he really wanted. So we decided to ask at the front counter for any recommendations for 11 year olds. They informed us that Scribblenauts Unlimited was ready for pre-order and would be released in November. 

RoboBoy LOVED Scribblenauts and had been reading up about all the new features available in Unlimited. It only took a few minutes of debating for him to decide to plop down his $5 pre-order payment with the understanding that he would not be getting his game for another 4 months, AND that he would need to save his money to cover his game when it did come out.

Fast forward 4 months. Yesterday, Scribblenauts Unlimited hit the stores so daddy took RoboBoy to pick up his game. He still had all his money saved along with the pre-order receipt! I know some adults who couldn't have accomplished that! One of my friends said, "I AM an adult who couldn't have done that!" It was so good to see RoboBoy enjoying the fruits of delayed gratification. 

I'm quite certain that this situation is what prompted MyHero to make the proclamation that he did to the kids this morning before I woke up. Apparently he told the kids that they needed to get their schoolwork done before he got home tonight. How do 11 through 14 year olds interpret a mandate like this?? What they heard was, "You can play all day, as long as you get your schoolwork done before I get home." Maybe he did actually say that to them. Like I said, I was still in bed.

So I got up this morning to find all three kids playing! One on the 3DS and two on the computers. Oy!! I guess RoboBoy still has a lot to learn about delayed gratification as do his siblings. I really don't think this is what they had in mind when they coined the phrase eclectic homeschooling! At least RoboBoy is learning with the puzzle games on Scribblenauts Unlimited! It's helping him to build his vocabulary and discover how to use adjectives. He is also developing his creative thinking, although I think he already does this pretty well!

I have decided not to stress myself over making my kids do school today. If they don't do it, then they will suffer the consequences. Perhaps this little experiment will teach them all that it is better to delay gratification until after you have fulfilled your responsibilities. One can always hope!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Finally, Some Cooler Weather!!

We are finally getting some much needed cooler weather here in Florida! The reason I say much needed, is because last winter was too mild here to kill all our multitudinous bugs! As a result we had almost an overpopulation of them this past summer! Eeeek! Can you tell that I hate bugs? So I'm sitting here with my socks on to keep my feet warm, wearing a pair of shorts and t-shirt. ONLY in Florida! lol

I've had to put a halt to my running for a bit. Since my last race, my left foot has been quite painful to walk on. I did try to run a couple of times in spite of the pain, but then realized that I could only be injuring it more. I have a bunion on my left foot, inherited from my dear mother. Running has not done it any favors. I had high hopes that my running would have no effect on it, but I really should have known better. 

So as I'm recovering from this injury, I have a couple of aids to help my bunion calm down. The first one looks and sounds quite silly, but the principle behind it seemed sound so I decided to give it a try.
It's a contraption called Yoga Toes.


It is supposed to stretch the muscles in your feet. The idea is that if you recondition the muscles around the bunion, it will help it to heal and the bones to go back to the position they are supposed to stay in.

The second is as much for maintenance of my bunion as for helping it to settle down. They are a pair of special bunion socks which have a divider sewn in between the big and second toes.


I slept in these last night and have hopes that they will also help retrain those bones to stay where they should. I plan to use these for running in as well. May need to get another pair or two of these. 

We had the privilege on Friday of having my dear friend's 4 year old boy with us for a few hours. It was so cute how he wanted to spend the time playing all the "big kid" games on our gaming system. I wanted to spend some time doing phonics games with him, but he would not be torn away from the "car game". Guess I'll have to leave his early child education to his mom. I know she would have appreciated any little bit of input I could have added.


Monday, October 29, 2012

Our Accidental Field Trip!

We had a busy weekend as a family! Sound familiar? We launched the weekend on Saturday by going to a Pumpkin Festival at a local farm. The kids had fun feeding the animals in the petting zoo. We walked past lots of booths challenging us to try our skill at the ring toss and many other such games. There was a guy who was making carvings using a chainsaw. 

Then we got to the crafty type booths. There were three "booths" set together that caught my attention and I made a bee line to them. The first was one where a couple were working cotton together. He was "carding" cotton using a cotton gin while she was spinning the cotton into yarn. We stopped and talked with them for a few minutes about the tools and techniques they were using.

Then we walked over to the next booth where the guy was a leather worker. He had a bunch of hides which he had tanned. Most of them seemed to be deer hides but there was also a buffalo. He explained to us how the process of tanning works.


Next we walked over to talk to a guy who had a bunch of old guns and sabers on display. Most of these were from the Civil War era. We stood and talked with him for probably over an hour. I could have talked with him for many more hours! This guy was just SO fascinating! 



He explained and showed us the difference between a flint lock and a percussion style rifle while lacing his narrative with details of how the soldiers fought and the wars in which each style rifle was used. My kids got to hold some of the guns and sabers and even had their pictures taken holding them. This is the kind of learning that will stick in their minds forever and in homeschooling that's what it's all about!



When we got home, MyHero and ManBoy went back out to get pumpkins and then the kids got to work carving them. This is the first time my kids have ever carved pumpkins so they had a LOT of fun doing it!

We all got up super early the next morning and headed out for my race! Yep, I ran my 2nd 5k on Sunday! Since this was a Halloween themed race lots of the racers were dressed in costumes. I met up with a few other people from my running team but most of them were serving as volunteers for the Half Marathon portion of the race. When the race started and we all started moving forward, I found it extremely difficult to keep myself from wanting to keep up with everyone else. As a result, I pushed myself too hard and eventually realized that if I kept going at that pace, I wouldn't be able to finish the race. They would have had to send someone out to rescue me! LOL I DID finish the race and even half ran, half limped across the finish line. 


We are trying to get back into our normal routine for the rest of the week. As usual, I'll probably at some point find Fashionista sitting at the computer working on one of her many stories. I really should get her set up with a writing tutor and take advantage of all this writing she's been wanting to do all on her own!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Life is Interesting!

Life just stays interesting, doesn't it?? Hopefully I'm learning from my many mistakes and getting better about having a balanced approach to life and working out!

I have another race coming up this weekend. I really wish that I'd read the information more carefully. I thought I'd signed up for a Saturday race. Turns out it is on a Sunday. Bummer! We will have to miss church. Don't like having to do that. There will be other team members at the race which means that they will also be missing church. Technically, we could attend on Saturday night and therefore still get to see the service.

I'm feeling totally unprepared for this race. But if I really think about it, I'm actually better prepared for this one than I was for the last one! So it will be interesting to see how things go! Pictures to follow next week!

Have you ever heard one of your kids use a word in the correct context and wonder to yourself, "Where in the world did they learn THAT word??" It seems that I'm constantly doing that with my kids. Maybe they are playing vocabulary match when we are not watching! It's too bad we can't include these times in their homeschool portfolios!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Balance Needed!!!

I'm in need of some balance here! I have a tendency to go overboard. For instance, this week I've already burned 1431 calories and I haven't worked out today! My friend and personal fitness coach reminded me that my body is a living organism, not a machine. My body is reminding me of this fact as well! Last night I was having severe leg cramps in both legs. Seriously, they reminded me of being in labor! Yeah, I think it's time to pull back and find some balance.

So I'm taking it easy today. My kids are helping me to get this house clean since we are supposed to have a houseful of friends here tonight. I'm thinking as far as school goes today, this is a great day to have my kids play free games. We might even watch an educational video or two.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Feeling Challenged!

This week I'm feeling challenged in a number of ways! I've managed to get out and run three days in a row, but I'm really suffering for it! Must be pushing myself too hard and too fast because I could barely walk by the time I got home from my run today. My calves have been SO sore! They were even throbbing when I was trying to get to sleep last night. I can't help but think that this is part of getting my body used to this type of exercise, but not sure that it is supposed to hurt this badly.

It has been extremely challenging to get myself motivated this week. Not for working out, but for my other responsibilities. Perhaps it's partially because my legs are so achey, but it's been almost all I can do to make myself do laundry and perform my work responsibilities. The worst has been checking schoolwork. I'm ashamed to admit that I haven't been keeping up with making sure the kids are doing their assignments. I know that I really need to get a handle on this or my kids will get lazy and do the minimum of what they think they can get away with.

I'm especially feeling the pressure since I'm high school homeschooling. ManBoy and I have been "reading" a great book called, "The Cat of Bubastes".  I actually finished it the other day. Learned much about ancient Egypt that I didn't know. Quite fascinating! ManBoy needs to finish this book this week.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

I Turned 45 and MyHero Got a New Wife!

This past Friday I turned 45! I'm not afraid to tell my age. Maybe it's the Aspie in me, but it's just not that big a deal to me.

I had been telling MyHero that I wanted to go get my hair permed and cut for my birthday. He had agreed that I could do that. Then I started looking online and found a site where I could "try on" the hairstyles to see how they looked on me. It even gave me recommendations for what styles would look best with my face. After seeing some of these styles I realized that I really didn't need a perm. My hair has PLENTY of body and wave all on it's own.

So it was time to go get it done! The guy who did it was very nice, although very lost! Please pray for him! I showed him the pics of the styles that had been recommended for me and together we chose our favorite. Then he went to work making it work for me. I kept looking at the pieces of hair landing in my lap and commented that there was WAY too much gray in them. I was going to grab a box of color on my way home and do it myself. Then my hairdresser offered to do it for $10 less than the normal price. I thought, "Well, MyHero already approved the perm, but since I'm not doing that, I think I can do this instead!" So I went for it. I'm so glad I did!

This is me before my new "Do". I had not put any product in my hair so it was all frizzy.
And this is me after the new "Do". Granted the makeup helps a lot as well! hehe
So the next day we went to church. I got rave reviews on my new haircut and color. But what really impacted me was chatting with a dear friend. She was encouraging me to do my best to look nice for MyHero. She explained that our husbands are going out into the work world and seeing women dressed for business everyday. We want them to feel like we are putting effort into looking nice for them. So I've been working on this. MyHero seems to be greatly appreciating this effort on my part. He makes comments about how pretty I look with my makeup on. 

Note here:  If you are reading this and are the mom of young children, please don't feel any condemnation on this point! It was after my first child was born that I actually stopped wearing makeup on a regular basis. Really, who has the time for that when you can barely get a potty break or a shower without interruptions? If and when you have the time and energy, then by all means go for the makeup. But in the meantime, love on those babies and know that your husband loves you with or without the makeup.

Now that my kids are teens and pre-teens, I really have no excuse not to be taking a few minutes everyday for this. I believe that it makes MyHero feel loved and respected. Especially since he knows that I'm doing it for him. I'm finding that I like feeling "pretty" all day as well.

This weekend, with all the craziness going on, I neglected to get school assignments made. When I did try to get them done, at the last minute, I realized that my printer was out of toner. I needed to print out records of the kids' work for the week to help me know what to assign for this week. Fortunately, my kids can STILL do their work. They just won't have their agenda to guide them.

It's nice to see ManBoy taking the initiative and getting his schoolwork done on his own. He has even completed his history without needing to ask mom for help 2 days in a row. Usually, he comes to me to help him find the answers from the text. I'm thinking that we have finally found the homeschool learning styles that work for him. He seems to do much better when he can take his time and read it from a textbook. My other two are doing well with doing their schoolwork online.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I Don't Wanna Be The Teacher!!!!

Have you ever had one of these weeks? This is only our third week of being back to school and already, I'm tired of prodding kids to do schoolwork and checking numerous times to make sure it was actually done after one declares that they finished. I know much of it has to do with the fact that I'm just not feeling well. All I'm wanting to do is sleep because my body is so overwhelmed with what is making me feel icky. This is one of those weeks when teacher resources can be a lifesaver! I'm taking things as easy as a mom can when they are homeschooling 3 kids. I keep telling myself that next week I should be feeling much better and things will go much more smoothly. I'm so thankful for like minded friends who encourage me to keep at it!

As you may have guessed, I haven't done much running this week either. I did run Monday. Over the weekend I had mapped out a route for 5k, but I realized this morning that I haven't been running the full route I'd planned. Somehow I got it into my head that I was to turn down one street when I'm supposed to go further down to another street before I turn. This is really going to make my training a challenge! And I thought I was challenging myself before!

At least I finally have music to run to. I got some new ear buds that are made just for runners. I LOVE them!! I've been listening to stuff like, Newsboys, Toby Mac, DC Talk, and the worship band from my church. All very upbeat stuff. Loving the way this music puts my thoughts on my Lord first thing and sets the tone for my day! Of course, I make it my habit to spend time in the Word before I even put my running shoes on. The music I'm listening to also helps me to remember that I'm doing this for God's glory, not my own.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

My First 5K!

As I shared last week, this weekend was my first race. I had planned to only do the one mile course. However, after meeting up with my team and realizing that I was the only one who was going to do the one mile, I asked the registration peeps if I could switch. They had no problem with me doing that.

So I joined the rest of my team at the starting line. It was so exciting to be among the crowd about to run and think to myself, "I'm going to run a 5K!" My predominant emotion at that point was nervousness. I had no idea how I would do or if I would even be able to finish! What if they had to send someone out to "rescue" me? LOL

Then the race started and everyone began running or walking. I thought, "Well, this is it! I guess we will see just what I'm capable of!" The rest of my team was quickly ahead of me, some far ahead, amongst the crowd. I started out walking to let my muscles warm up, but soon gave into the urge to run. My friend, Michele, wasn't too far ahead of me so I made it my goal to catch up with her every time I started running again.

There were people hanging off their apartment balconies cheering us on. There were police officers stationed along the course who cheered for us. There were even cows who cheered for us!! Yep, you read that right! There was a whole herd of Chick-fil-a cows at this race.



So I made my goal of catching up to Michele each time and at the end we were both able to run across the finish line together! What blew me away is that Michele ran the entire race! One of these days, I'm going to be able to do that! In fact, this morning I managed to run almost half a mile! That is the furthest I have ever run before.

This is our second week of being back to school. We are starting to hit a stride, although I'm still spending a LOT of time asking kids, "Did you do your math?? Did you clean your room?? Did you..." Fashionista has developed a habit of writing to "help her brain think better". I think I am raising a future homeschool fiction author! It reminds me of myself when I was her age. Except that I didn't have a computer to write my stories on. I had to use notebook paper and pencil. Doesn't make for the easiest revising and rewriting. LOL

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

In Training

This Saturday is my first race. I'll be running in the Chick-fil-a Fall Stampede. I'm imagining chickens stampeding! LOL But seriously, I will be doing the one mile walk. However, I will be alternating between walking and running. This is what I've been doing in my morning runs as well.

As a beginning runner my goals are to build up my cardio endurance and to build and train my muscles for running. The way I do this is by gradually trying to increase the amount of time that I spend running while decreasing the time I spend walking. My goal is to eventually be able to run for the entire mile. This seems to be a far fetched dream to me right now. But if I just keep at it and increase my running time a little at a time, then I will ultimately get there.

I'm finding that it is a similar situation with our first week of school. I'm working to train my kids in getting their schoolwork done. Yes, they've been learning this all along, but as every homeschool mom knows, this is a work in progress. For instance, ManBoy is having to learn how to read his textbook while scanning for the answers to the questions he will have to answer.

This applies also in the area of chores. It's been a continuing process teaching my kids how to do each of their chores correctly. Fashionista has developed a nasty habit of stuffing dirty clothes and even the clean ones, into remote corners of her room and closet. In teaching her to clean her room, I am forcing her to clean up these piles of contraband. I've found them in her closet with a blanket covering them so mom won't see, stuffed into bins, and shoved up under her bed. We've mostly conquered the area under her bed. Now it is just a matter of maintaining it. What we are doing now is tackling a pile or two of mess each day while maintaining the areas that have been vanquished. In the process, I'm trying to teach her that if you keep up with these things every day then it will not be such a huge ordeal.

I feel as if I'm spending most of my time dealing with kids while redirecting, training, and correcting them. But then that's my JOB as a homeschool mom! And progress is being made. As I continue to be consistent then things will get easier. I'm finding that it is helping me immensely to have a daily agenda for each of my kids.  In these agendas are included lesson plans for each subject for each child. I have to be committed to following up on each of these agenda's daily.

One of the fringe benefits of all this is that MyHero has been very pleased to see the progress we are making. Our home is becoming more organized and things are getting done when they need to be done. Items are beginning to find homes and living there. As a result, MyHero feels that he is being honored and respected by the way I am caring for our home and training our children.

I want to leave you today with a post that a friend of mine shared on Facebook yesterday:
After an interesting conversation with my hubby of days events, we were reminded of something his father has said from the pulpit: "Sin takes you further than you want to go, makes you stay longer than you want to stay, and makes you pay more than you want to pay." It is foolishness to think you will NEVER _____(fill in the blank)_____. That is pride and pride cometh before a fall. We must always be on guard, especially with our marriages. Satan loves to destroy. Don't give him the opportunity. That is all.
I must be on my guard when it comes to my marriage and the way I'm training my children and managing my home.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Signed Up For My First Race

I just signed up for my very first race,  the Chick-fil-A Fall Stampede! I'm so excited! This race is a benefit for children's cancer. I'm glad to be running while helping in such a great cause. I still need to get some good running shoes. Hoping to be able to do that this weekend.

This week will again be filled with lesson planning. This is my last big push to get it all done! If you are wondering why in the world this is taking me so long, believe me I'm wondering the same thing! It's because I'm planning for the entire year for 3 kids in at least 5 subjects for each. That is a LOT of work! However, it will save me in the long run in a couple of ways. First, once all this planning is done, I will be able to simply make assignments during the rest of the year. Second, I will be able to re-use many of these lesson plans with my two younger kids. So, yes, this is going to be worth all this pain. And, yes, I have asked myself that many times during this process!

Since I'm devoting this week to getting these lesson plans FINISHED, I'm only attending to my basic weekly duties for work. One of my duties is to monitor and update our Facebook pages for two of our sites. Check them out:  Learning Games For Kids and Vocabulary.co.il. It can be a challenge to decide what to post to these pages each day. Today I decided to post about root word games in the vocabulary page. The learning games page got a post about slow motion science. You really should check out the video on that site about soap bubbles. It's super cool!


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Finally on the Right Track!

As those of you who follow my posts know, I've been struggling with a weight loss plateau for a long time now. About a week ago, I was at my doctor's for follow up to routine blood work. I asked her for advice on how to break out of this rut. She suggested that I use My Fitness Pal to count calories. Now my friend who is a fitness instructor doesn't encourage calorie counting, saying that the best thing is to listen to the promptings of your body. Because of that, I have not really spent much time on this app before now.

However, she does see the value in counting calories for a short amount of time. After having used this for about a week, I'm seeing a pattern. I seem to have a consistent issue with eating enough calories for how many I'm burning during exercise. I'm rather shocked by this, since I always thought I was eating too many calories, even after I started working out. But when I stop and think about it, it does make sense. Many experts recommend eating at least 3 meals a day, with snacks in between. I have a nasty habit of skipping lunch and I very rarely snack. Add to this, that I've been working hard to choose lower calorie options for my meals.

As I see it, my options to change this pattern are to either, work out less, or eat more. I don't see myself working out less, especially since I just joined our church's running team! More about that in a bit. So, I'm doing what I can to add more calories to my diet. One of the ways I'm doing that is by having a protein shake daily after working out.

You might be wondering, "Why is this even a problem?? Aren't we supposed to eat fewer calories than we burn?" Well, yes and no. There does need to be a deficit in our calorie intake vs. calorie burn. However, if that deficit is too high then our bodies go into starvation mode. At that point, our bodies refuse to let go of any calories and it can cause muscle to break down as well.

So, yes! I joined the running team! Today was my second 1 mile run. Now you need to understand that when I say, 1 mile run, I don't mean that I ran for that whole time. Maybe some time in the far distant future, I will be able to do that. But for now I am alternating walking with running. My goal will be to shorten the length of time I walk and increase the time I run. My first official race will be September 15. I'm sure I will be posting about it.

On the school front, we have not started up with our homeschool for the year yet. My plan is to start the week after Labor Day. The kids will have the week of Labor Day off from all school. The reason I'm doing this is because MyHero has Monday off. Many of the lesson plans in the curriculum I'm using with ManBoy are based on a 5 day school week. I don't want to break that up. So I guess those fraction lessons will have to wait. As a side note, I was excited to find out that Time4Writing has added a new high school course. This one is an essay writing course, and I have very little doubt that ManBoy will eventually be taking it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Too Much To Do and Too Little Time

This has been a crazy week already! I'm sure you can relate. There just aren't enough hours in my days, or energy in my body to do all that I need to do. I guess I'll just keep doing my best and trust God with the rest! LOL That sounds like it could be stitched into a pillow.

I've backed off some on my working out. Not working out quite as hard. I think it may actually be helping. Not sure, but I think I might have been going overboard with trying to burn too many calories before. It might have been sending my body into panic/starvation mode, thinking it needed to conserve every calorie to keep from starving. Not sure that I was eating enough calories for all that I was burning. But again, I could be way off here! I can't even pretend to understand the science of weight loss! All I know is that it is much more complicated than it seems.

We are about 2 weeks out from starting our homeschool back up. My plan is to start back the week after Labor Day. I'm going to give my kids Labor Day week off from doing math so that I can figure out where they are in math and make schedules accordingly. I'm still busting my buns trying to get lesson plans done before we start school. Like I said, "Too much to do and too little time." Story of every mom's life!

Yesterday, my kids were watching an episode of Phineas and Ferb. I just love that show! Anyway, it was the one where they take Candice to Mt. Rushmore for her birthday. Fashionista looked at me and said, "If you guys take me to Mt. Rushmore for my birthday, I will cry!" I informed her that Mt. Rushmore is in South Dakota and would be much too far for us to travel for a birthday. Of course, my kids then wanted to know where South Dakota is! I found a map of the U. S. on line to show them. It might have been smarter to have them play some geography games to figure it out for themselves.


Sunday, August 19, 2012

My Reality Check from the Lord!

Typically I only post on here once a week. Therefore, this post is a freebie. Something happened yesterday and this morning that I just had to share.

I was in that place where all moms get to eventually. I'm sure you know the place. Homeschool moms are especially familiar with this place. It's the place where you are just absolutely and completely FED UP with your kids and in DESPERATE need of a break. I was about ready to run screaming from my house, or call in the guys in white jackets. So this is the mindset I was in. As you can imagine, I was crabbing all over everyone in my family.

My hubby had brought home the DVD copy of "The Hunger Games" so we sat down to watch it as a family. If you've seen the movie or read the books, you know that there are a couple of very sad scenes. It was after one of those sad scenes, that had been causing me to tear up, when I needed to take a bathroom break. While I was in the bathroom, the Lord tapped me on the shoulder and asked me a question that totally changed my mindset.

He asked me, "When was the last time you cried because you were sad?? Not because a movie was making you cry, or you were empathizing with a friend's pain, but because YOU were hurting?" It caused me to take a step back. I honestly can't remember the last time! WOW! Talk about a reality check! It made all the things that my kids had been doing to bugg me seem insignificant. I realized just how blessed I am!

I have to admit here that my next thought went something like, "Oh, no! What if something happens to one of my kids or my husband since I'm due for some pain????" I'll just have to trust that to my Lord. They belong to HIM and even if He should decide to take one of them or even all of them, I will remain faithful to HIM. However as a side note, isn't it just like the enemy to butt into a wonderful moment with the Lord, and insert some doubt to try to shake our faith?

Anyway, this morning during worship at church one of the songs we sang really hit me. It spoke to me of how my Saviour calmed the raging sea I was in yesterday. He walks with me through the fire of raising children. He heals my disease of bad attitudes. He holds my world in HIS hands!


By the way, I'm getting that much needed break from kids. My hubby took them all out for the afternoon to allow me to have some quite time alone at home! Thank you, Lord for a husband who is willing to do this even though I'm sure he would rather be home relaxing.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

It's a New Day With a Clean Slate!

I was thinking yesterday about how each new day is a chance for a fresh start. I like how Anne says it in "Anne of Green Gables", "Each day is new, with no mistakes!" I may not have gotten that quote exactly right, but you get the jist.

Each day is a chance for me to make a fresh start in my weight loss journey. I don't want to get caught up in the mistakes and slip ups I made yesterday. I want to keep moving ahead with new vision each day. One of my dear friends posted something in Facebook this morning. I love this perspective!

This is an excerpt from "Running with Joy" by Ryan Hall, Olympic marathoner and professional runner:
I’m excited about what God is doing in me right now, and I’m feeling freebecause running isn’t the most important thing in my life. Intimacy withGod is so much sweeter than running fast. But ironically, as I get closerto God, apply His principles to my life more consistently, and allow the
Holy Spirit to guide me more, I run better and enjoy my running more.
I’m always tempted to feel as if I can use God to run faster, but I know
this is shortchanging God’s best for me. All I want is God. All I need is to
receive His love. I need to continually ask myself, what is giving me joy
today, my accomplishments or God’s presence? “In Your presence is fullness
of joy.” The key to joy is continually being in God’s presence—running,
working, eating, or even sleeping.
After all, what is it about winning or running fast that is so great? It’s the joy
that such an experience releases in us that makes us hungry for more. We
were created to experience joy. The key to unlocking this daily, lasting, and
more fulfilling joy isn’t winning or setting personal bests—it’s being with
God as we run or do whatever we are doing. Sometimes our performance
brings us joy, and we shouldn’t feel guilty about enjoying those moments.
Still, we must realize that we can’t perform like that every day, but we can
experience joy every day if we remain in God’s presence.



Last night I had the privilege of attending our local homeschool support group meeting as a representative of Time4Learning.com. It was wonderful to chat with old friends as well as brand new ones. I was able to tell people about this great curriculum and how it can help them in their homeschools. There were a few parents of  preschoolers who came to my table. I was able to tell them about Time4Preschool.com. I was even able to tell some of the parents about Learning Games For Kids. This is a site that has all kind of fun educational games for kids. They even have educational videos which are fun for even parents to watch!

I'm taking a little step back from working so much so that I can get some homeschool planning done. I think I'm finally nailing down what I want to do for my 9th grader in each subject this year. I've gotten so spoiled having every subject covered while using Time4Learning. Sadly, they only teach through 8th grade though. I feel like I'm having to re-ajust my teaching hat for the high school years!


I was sharing with a friend last night about how terrified I am about this upcoming year and teaching a high school kid. She gave me some great encouragement as someone who has been there, has graduated a student and has another entering 9th grade. She said to me, "Remember how terrified you were when you first started your homeschooling journey? You discovered that pretty much everything you were worried about was not an issue. This is the same thing. You'll get to the end of this and wonder, 'What was I so worried about?'" I so needed to hear that! Maybe you did too!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Spinning My Wheels

Do you ever feel like you are just spinning your wheels in life? That's how I'm feeling with my weight loss and homeschooling right now.

First, I will elaborate on what I mean about my weight loss. I ended up having to take nearly 2 weeks off from working out due to a raging sinus infection that I developed. Took the last of my antibiotic last night and I'm feeling much better. I started back with my workout routine on Monday and Tuesday,  but now I'm having menstrual cramps (sorry guys) and just can't get excited about working out today.

I gained 2 pounds during my sabbatical from working out. I'm actually thrilled that I didn't gain more! That 2 pounds could even easily be period weight. So here's what I'm thinking. Perhaps I needed that 2 weeks away from working out in order to get past the plateau I had hit. It seemed like nothing else that I was doing was able to do the trick. I guess only time will tell.

As far as homeschooling, I've been feeling the back-to-school pressure. With all that I have to do for work and as a wife and mom, I've not been able to make the time or find the energy to finish my homeschool planning. There is still a LOT to do! For instance, I still have to find a language arts curriculum for my 9th grader. Let's Homeschool High School is helping with that. I'm helping to put together a directory of high school curriculum that will soon be published on this site.

As I understand it, whatever curriculum I choose for ManBoy will need to be literature heavy. The boy is a good reader, but he tends to be very picky about what books he chooses to read. He is going to have to start learning to read what is assigned to him or he is going to have a tough school year!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Well That Figures!

Almost as soon as I made public my resolve to reach 145 lbs before I turn 45 years old, I came down with a nasty sinus infection. I've been unable to work out for a little over a week. Not sure what the Lord is trying to teach me in all this. Perhaps it's a continuation of the lesson in relying on Him and not my own strength. I'm on antibiotics now but still have this nagging cough.

We survived our week of VBS day camp. I have the kids back to doing their math. Soon we are going to have to get back to doing full scale school. I'm still trying to round up curriculum for ManBoy now that he is starting high school. I know that one of the curricula we will stick with is Spelling City. I'm going to be quite busy with work responsibilities in addition to learning how to teach a high schooler! One of the things that will be a big help to me is that I will be able to have him take his spelling test online each week. Anything that our curriculum can do for me, so that I don't have to take time to do it, is a huge bonus in my book!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My Newest Goal!

Yesterday while I was working out, for some reason I started thinking about my birthday which is coming up the end of September. I will be turning 45 years old. Then I got a cool idea! Why not make it a goal to try to reach 145 lbs before I turn 45! Right now I am hovering at 157 lbs so that would give me 10 weeks to loose 12 lbs. I'm thinking with some determination and discipline, I can do it! I had a really tough workout yesterday that left me hurting last night. I backed off a bit today, but still got a great workout.

I'm also going to be extra careful about what I'm eating. I've gotten into the habit of eating ice cream and junk like that again. Keep telling myself, I had a really great workout today so I can do this. However, workout or not, that ice cream is probably part of what is holding me at 157!

This is the week that my kids are all at VBS Day Camp. It's a long day for them starting by having to get up around 6:30 every morning and not getting out of the church till around 3:30. For that reason they are getting a break from their online math.

As for me, I'm getting to enjoy having a quiet house for a few hours while they are away!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

When Will Things Slow Down?

Busy, busy, busy!! That's me right now! Next week is VBS at our church. The two older kids have been going to help with decorating during the day. Since we only have one vehicle in our family, this means that I have to get up early enough to drop MyHero off at work. I also get to drop the kids off, go back and get them to bring them home and go back out later to get MyHero from work. All this running everyday is exhausting me! Yes, yes, I know. Many of you run like this everyday! My body just isn't used to it and my personality wasn't built for it. Being an Aspie, I'm much more comfortable just staying home.

I'm still hoping to get more homeschool planning done. It's been so crazy the last few weeks that I haven't managed to get any done for a while. One of the things on my list to do is set up spelling vocabulary lists for ManBoy's Biology course. I think it would be an excellent activity for him to play matching definition games using his biology words. But first I have to figure out which words to use and get them set up. Shouldn't be hard with the system SpellingCity has set up.

I also have projects I'm doing for work and a big project that is being prepped for me to start soon. I finished the afghan project I was doing for my Brother-in-law. He had ordered 3 crocheted afghans from me. Now I have an order for 2 sets of Star Wars figures. Yep! I'm going to be busy for a while yet!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Award!


I got an award! My new friend over at Learning 4 Keeps nominated me. Now I get to nominate 15 other bloggers. Well, we will see how many I can come up with.
The Rules for accepting The Versatile Blogger Award:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you. 
2. Include a link to their site. 
3. Include the award image in your post. 
4. Give 7 random facts about yourself. 
5. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award.
6. When nominating, include a link to their site. 
7. Let other bloggers know they have been nominated.

So for the 7 random facts about myself:
  1. I can't smell. When I was a kid I would try to learn how to smell.
  2. My favorite color is purple.
  3. I'm a geek. It took marrying one to bring it out of me!
  4. I have Asperger's Syndrome aka high functioning autism
  5. I'm learning to love working out.
  6. I love to crochet.
  7. I gave my life to Jesus Christ when I was in 4th grade.
My nominees:
  1. Five in Training For HIM
  2. Little Farm in the Big City
  3. The Family that Likes Each Other
  4. Shapes of Angels
  5. Pandahoneybee's Homeschooling Adventure

  6. 3DLearners
That's all I can think of right now.

Hanging Out with RoboBoy

I'm still going sloooowly down in my weight. It's a struggle not to want to focus on doing all I can to make the numbers go down more quickly. I love what my dear friend said about that recently on Facebook.
I was reading 2 Chronicles 14 last night and here's how The Message renders that verse: "O God, you aren't impressed by numbers..."
No, God's not impressed by (in this case) the number of soldiers marching against His people. Nor is he impressed by the number on my scale or the number of pounds I can report having lost. God is impressed with whether or not I trust Him to provide what I need when I need it and not try to get it for myself. 
I'm the one who's impressed by a lower number on my scale or on the tags of my clothes. 
Then God reminded me that I don't live for myself. This isn't about me. It's about Him.
I think my friend Michele has got the right attitude here! Lord, please help me to have that same attitude!

As our church is getting ready to host our annual VBS Day Camp, my two oldest are going to help with decorating during the day. Actually they are preparing all the decorations which will be put up closer to the week of VBS. We have quite a large church so there are a LOT of areas to cover. This afternoon it was just my youngest and the pets here at home. We had gotten a few chores done, so RoboBoy and I decided to play a bit of Minecraft together. It was fun to just hang out with him doing something that he loves.

By the way, in my opinion, that is a GREAT way to foster internet safety for kids. Get involved with the things they like to do online so you will know what they are up to. By doing this you may also help them to see potential problem areas that they might otherwise not recognize.

If you have younger kids who you are just now teaching how to behave on the internet, you might want to check out the preschool games on Learning Games For Kids. There are lots of fun games that your little one and you can play with out worrying about accidentally seeing something offensive.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

May the 4th be With You!

I finally did it! I broke past my plateau! I'm no longer stuck at 158 but am now 157.6. The challenge now is to stay below 158 and keep going down. I have help with reaching this goal. Someone anonymously donated a month of Fitness Bootcamp for me! I'm SO thankful for this gift!! While I didn't miss having to get up so early on Saturday morning, I DID miss working out with my friends!

We decided to enjoy some "fireworks" last night and invited our neighbor and her daughter to come join us. Our neighbor was commenting on how RoboBoy is getting so tall. All three of my kids are getting tall, but RoboBoy in particular seems to be in a major growth spurt.

One of their favorite activities is to write stories. Fashionista is working on one which she has asked me to edit for her when she is done. I figure that this is a great way for her to get creative writing help and also practice her spelling and punctuation skills, as well as grammar skills!

We got our new doggie, Lightening. He is so sweet! We couldn't have asked for a better dog to fit our family! Lightening is getting spoiled rotten with so much attention. I think even MyHero, who was reluctant to get a dog, is being won over by Lightening's loving personality.

I want to give a shout out to all the soldiers and vets who have served to protect and give us the freedoms we have here in America! This is a graphic made by a dear friend of mine and shares most succinctly my gratitude for my freedom! Thank you, Melanie for this wonderful graphic! Hope that you don't mind that I've been using it!



Friday, June 29, 2012

Getting a New Family Member!

I'm still working out and attempting to loose weight. Just keep reciting my mantra of "slow and steady wins the race". Still building muscle so that's a good thing and my clothes are bigger on me. Looking forward to finding out what my weight is at my next weigh in.

We are getting a new dog tonight. The kids and I are so excited! I've been wanting a dog for such a long time and saw that a family near us needed to find a new home for their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. They have a 4 year old who apparently can't keep his hands off Lightening. I'm guessing that their 9 year old named him. He was named after Lightening McQueen in Cars. Hehe This family has had him since he was a puppy and he is now 5 years old. We are so looking forward to spoiling him!

This past week was quite a busy one for us. The kids went for their yearly homeschool testing. I knew that math was going to be an issue for them and it was. This is precisely why we are continuing to work on math through the summer. I'm seriously considering giving the 2 month trial for Aleks a spin. They have an artificial intelligence which is able to target a student's problem areas so that they are able to get special focused attention on those. I'm thinking this may be just what we need to get our math levels back up around here.

Now that we have our testing done and the results mailed off to the appropriate authority, I just need to make sure that our homeschool portfolios are in order. This shouldn't be a terribly difficult task since our chosen curriculum, Time4Learning keeps records for me.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Trying to Break Out of This Plateau

I have been sitting at the same weight for 2-3 weeks now. The only thing that is keeping me from being TOTALLY discouraged about this, is that my clothes are still feeling loose. In fact, I went shopping with my Mother-in-law yesterday. She pointed out a dress on a rack in Walmart and said, "That would look really cute on you!" I took a look at it and saw that it was marked down to $5 from $20. I decided to go try it on. While trying it on, I realized that it was a size 10 and if FIT!!! I can't remember the last time I could wear a size 10! A month or two ago, I would not have been able to get into that same dress! I kind of feel like this is God's special little gift to me as a reward for working so hard. And an encouragement to continue. God knew that I would never even consider buying the dress unless it was priced that low.

I'm continuing to work to get lesson plans ready before our new school year starts. One of my goals is to set up spelling lists for ManBoy in our homeschool spelling curriculum. My plan is to use vocabulary words from his science course. That way he will be getting practice learning how to spell these words as well as hopefully making it easier for him to learn his science.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A Little Wisdom, (very little!)

Yesterday during my workout I was telling myself that it was a good thing that I wanted to quit. The thought occurred to me that if you don't want to quit during a workout then you aren't challenging yourself. Then, as I tend to do, I related this to my spiritual life. I ended up coming up with a phrase that probably isn't all that deep or original, "The Christian life is like a workout. If you aren't feeling the burn, then something needs adjusted!"

My kids are feeling the burn! Even though it's summer break, I've been making them workout and do math. I just started a new math curriculum with them, Teaching Textbooks. Today is the first day with it. ManBoy has already voiced his approval of it. Praise God! Of all the pros and cons of homeschooling, one of my favorite pros is getting to choose the curriculum that best fits our family! We have struggled for so long in the area of math, it will be refreshing to finally find something that will work for us!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Still losing!

I'm down another pound this week! Yippee! A big part of me really wants this to happen faster, but I keep reminding myself, "Slow and steady wins the race!" This refers to my weight loss, not my movement!



I also was able to break past a MAJOR (for me) fitness barrier this past week! Warning:  Any guys reading this, you may want to tune out for the next paragraph or two.  

I tend to have very painful periods due to having Endometriosis. Because of that, I've always taken my period as an excuse to lay off working out. Previously, this has caused often long disruptions to my workout routine with me taking weeks or months to get back to working out. Doesn't make for very consistent weight loss!

Last month, I was thrilled that I was able to get right back into my routine after taking 10 days off for my period. This month, I'm elated that I've not taken ANY days off!! I managed to continue my workouts right through the cramps! I felt better during this period than I have in forever! My hope is that I'll never have to skip another workout due to my period again!

Ok, guys, you can tune back in here! I'm adding in a new thing to my "rest days". I want to start doing yoga on my non-workout days. A friend told me about this DVD that offers a Christian Alternative to yoga and I ordered it. It's called PraiseMoves Flow and incorporates scripture into the workout. They have other workout videos on their site as well. There's even one called, PraiseMoves Alphabetics DVD!
It's all yoga postures that mirror the letters of the Hebrew alphabet! Now that's what I call a unique way to put words in ABC order!
 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Can't Get Me Down!

It has been an interesting week. During one of my workouts last week, I pulled or injured a muscle in my abdomen. After that I would get intense pain when I moved or stretched certain ways. Not fun! Because of this, I knew I was going to have to modify my fitness bootcamp workout with the girls on Saturday. I was already feeling at a disadvantage because of that.

So then our instructor, Brandice, had us go do some suicide runs on a strip of pavement nearby. I was on my way back from the very first cone when my knees buckled and I wiped out on the pavement. How embarrassing! Brandice wouldn't let me do any more of the suicide runs after that. I joked that I guess I took the name of the drill a little too seriously. I did manage to get through the bootcamp in one piece, although my knee and palms are a bit scraped up.

I've been very careful this week to let the muscles in my abdomen rest and heal. I believe my injury is healing nicely since I can now do the stretches that before were causing so much pain. What a relief!

This past weekend was Memorial Day Weekend. I want to say a big THANK YOU to all the soldiers and veterans who sacrificed so that I can have my precious freedoms!

We celebrated the holiday by taking MyHero's mother to the beach! We all had a great time and then enjoyed a wonderful meal back at our house.



By the way! Did you know that you can get a Memorial Day spelling list at spellingcity.com? You can even go into the play games section and play hangman. What a neat way to learn the meaning of Memorial Day while learning spelling words at the same time!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Milestone

I've hit a milestone this past week in my weight loss journey. I've lost 10 pounds since I've gotten serious about loosing weight! I know my ticker shows less, but it doesn't really reflect my progress from where I started. I really should fix that.

On Saturday I went to a fitness bootcamp that is run by my friend Brandice. She is a certified fitness instructor and has a business called, Fitness Infusion. It was tough getting up that early, but well worth it! We met at a local park and there were about 6-7 other women there. We got a great workout that left me sore for a few days afterward. It was nice for me to get to work out with friends since I normally workout here at home.

We have moved into our summer routine. What this means for us is that we are taking a more relaxed approach to school. I still want my kids to be practicing their math facts every day. I feel this is important so that they don't loose ground. I'm also thinking about having them do some summer reading. Maybe some homeschool fiction will grab their fancy!

In the meantime, I'm trying to use this time to get a lesson plan set up and ready to go for this next school year!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Building Muscles and Vocabulary!

I didn't blog about my weight loss last week. That's because I felt like a train wreck all last week. I was having my monthly ickies, to put it delicately. Every month it is an ordeal. I have Endometriosis which causes lots of pain. Migraines also go hand in hand with my monthly ordeal. Yeah, doesn't make for a fun week!

I also didn't get any workouts in last week for the same reason. Based on my lack of exercise and extra calorie intake, (thanks to cravings), I fully expected to have gained back some of what I've lost. I was THRILLED when I stepped on the scale Monday morning to find that I'd only gained 1 pound back! I'm learning first hand how much having some muscles can help burn those calories! Yep, I'm going to be working to build more muscles!

As I posted last week, I've been purchasing new curriculum for our coming school year, specifically ManBoy's 9th grade year. For science he is going to be learning biology.  He will be using Apologia Exploring Creation with Biology. However, I plan to supplement his science studies using Spelling City. The really cool thing about this is that I can create my own spelling lists so that we can incorporate his spelling and science. I can even use that spelling word list to create our very own vocabulary quiz. How cool is that??

Plus, I can set up all these lists ahead of time and then assign them for each week of his curriculum. Then, I can go onto the site and check the records to see that he did the assignment and print out the same records to keep in his portfolio.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Time 4... New Curriculum!

This past Saturday, I helped out at our local homeschool support group's used book sale. While I was there, I shopped for new curriculum for ManBoy. I made a couple of great finds which I'm hoping will fit with his learning style. I suspect that he is a visual spatial learner. I got him a couple of "Drive By History" DVDs as well as a couple of History Channel DVDs. He will of course need more than just these for history, but this is a start.

For Science, I found "Apologia Exploring Creation with Biology". The set included the text book, a tests and solutions book, an extra module one test booklet and a multimedia CD. I also found the experiment kit that goes with the set. I'm excited to have science covered for him.

For math, a friend of mine gave me a spectacular idea. She is a professor at our local community college. Her suggestion was that I go to their book store and ask for the remedial math section. She said that these books cover what ManBoy is struggling to learn and as an added bonus is also what is included on the actual entrance exam!

I even found curriculum to teach my kids French. I tried teaching them Spanish but just couldn't get into it. I took several semesters of French in college so I have a bit of knowledge under my belt. I suspect that I've forgotten the majority of what I learned though. I'm eager to brush up on my French.

Fashionista says that she wants to learn Korean instead. Yeah! Sorry, dear, but mom is not teaching that! She helps teach a 3 year old class at church and one of the ladies who works with her is Korean. She's been learning some cool stuff from her.

I still need to figure out what to do for Language Arts with ManBoy. What I would really like to use is Time4Writing. Just need to talk it over with MyHero and see if he will allow me to spend the money on this. I figure we are going to have to spend some money either way. I feel that this would be the best use of our money for this subject.

Anyone else getting ready to teach a new high school student? What curriculum are you using?