Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Baking Fun

Christmas is just around the corner.  Who is ready?  Thankfully, I only have one person left to complete.  Every year along with primary gifts, the girls and I make homemade gifts, cards, and home baked goodies.  Our baking fun continues this Saturday, can't wait!


So far, to lighten the load,we have made gingerbread cookies and 7 layer cookie bars.  This Saturday, we will be making traditional Christmas cookies.  I have every Christmas cookie cutter cut-out known to man.  Okay, this may be an exaggeration, but we do have a nice variety.  We go crazy with our cookies.  We use a variety of big, medium, and small cookie cutters and decorate them to the max.  In the end, they are so pretty, who wants to eat them? Haha!

Along with Christmas cookies, we are attempting holiday brownie/cake pops.  I have never made these before, so this should be very interesting, yet a lot of fun.  Can't wait!

I am between two more Christmas goodies, homemade fudge and rice crispy treats.  I guess it depends on how well our other two recipes turn out.

Baking is such a fun activity for kids.  It's great too, because it sneaks in a little bit of science and math.  Gotta love that as homeschoolers.  Hmmm, now just to add a yummy cup of hot chocolate to the mix, and I think we've got it all covered!

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What Christmas goodies have you made or will be making this year with your kids?  Please share your ideas, I love trying new things!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Images by Lindsey Clair

Monday, December 17, 2012

In Loving Memory of Sandy Hook Elementary Students and Faculty



My heart just aches.  All I can seem to think about is this shooting.  I have been praying for these families without ceasing.  Fear has struck our country.  It is time for America to get on their knees before God and really pray.  Christians, it's time to spread God's Word, He's coming very soon.

I recently shared with my 9 and a half year old about this devastation.  I felt she had a right to know and learn about America's reality.  Kids her age and younger witnessed this horror and it could have been anywhere.  She immediately broke into tears and prayed for these families, (faith of a child).

Heaven welcomed more beautiful children this past weekend.  Heaven indeed is filling up fast.  These words stuck out in my head yesterday as we had a memorial for my Uncle Dwayne.  We included the shooting victims in the memorial as my mom stated: "Heaven is filling up fast."

I cannot even begin to express how blessed and how humbled I feel at the fact we homeschool our girls.  I can see why God called me to do this now being in our second year.  Any worries, heartaches, and struggles that I had with it in the past are now gone!  So what if we have hard days! So what if it doesn't feel like they are learning anything!  At least we are able to hold our babies right now.  God sees the bigger picture though.  I have learned so much from this, some I won't even express here on my homeschool blog. 



I asked the Lord, "If you are a God that sees and knows everything, why did you allow this to happen, why didn't you stop it?"  His answer was simply this, and through a shared Facebook photo I might add: "I am not allowed in Public Schools."  Boy, was this a revelation.  How true is that.  God swept those precious children to heaven and they are now truly safe.  I can't even imagine losing a child in such a tragedy such as this.  Losing a precious baby full term was painful enough and life was hard living.  These families, I can't image... (tears streaming, can barely type) losing a child because someone shot them.  I know these parents had to identify their children through photos.  I am so grateful they didn't have to see them in person as multiple close range gun shots were documented.  I also can't imagine all of those who had to arrive on the seen to see this blood bath.  How can your mind not be traumatized from something like this? Ugh, I know they went home holding their families.

Lord protect us, let us not live in fear, but trust you.  Our future is so uncertain, but for Christians, we have eternal hope, thank you Jesus.  We need to be bold and teach others about Jesus Christ.  How will they know unless we tell them?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Holiday 2012 Package at Knowledge Box Central


Does your homeschool enjoy doing lapbooks?  When we first started our adventures last year, I didn't give them much thought, but now having done about 8 of them so far, I can honestly say we enjoy them.  The concept of lapbooks are very intriguing.

Upon researching lapbooks my favorite has to be Knowledge Box Central, home of the $5 lapbook.  Can't beat that right?  Well, you probably could put your own together for close to free, but it's nice to have a format when it comes to lapbooks altogether.

Because we are now in the Christmas season, we are enjoying Christmas unit studies and lapbooks.  Right now, Knowledge Box Central is having a deal on a package you may be interested in.  It's their Holiday 2012  Package.  It's originally $55.  Get it today for $20! Save 64% off.  Awesome right?

Knowledge Box Central
 
 
The Holiday package currently includes 11 products and 567 pages. Limited time only and in eBook format only.
 
Here is an idea of what is inside this holiday package:
  •  New Year's Around the World Lapbook
  • New Year's Fun and Activity Book
  • Valentine's Day Lapbook
  • Labor Day Lapbook
  • History of Halloween Lapbook
  • Thanksgiving Lapbook
  • Turkey Talk Activity Book
  • Christmas Fun and Coloring Activity Book
  • Christmas Symbols Lapbook
  • Kwanzaa Lapbook
Click here to order this Holiday Package 2012.

Happy 12-12-12!


Friday, December 7, 2012

Schoolhouse Teachers Website Review

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Welcome to my very first review for The Schoolhouse Review Crew! I feel so very excited to be a part of a wonderful crew of bloggers as well as researching different curriculums for my family.  Now, onto business, haha!

One of the many perks of homeschooling would have to be the freedom to explore and find what works for your family.  Now being in our second year, I am learning that I don't have to limit to just one curriculum in particular, especially if it doesn't work for my family.  From textbooks to online learning there are endless possibilities to what a child can learn and achieve.  Need lesson plans at your finger tips? The Old Schoolhouse Magazine contains a variety of resources that meets specific needs of any homeschooling family.  One awesome resource I found helpful is Schoolhouse Teachers, a division of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine.
 
Schoolhouse Teachers is currently $1 for the first month then $5.95 per month after that.  You can also choose to purchase a full year option at  $64.26.  If you sign up for the full year membership you will receive a free tote bag and 1 back issue of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine (U.S. only).  The site is designed for Pre-K through 12th grade which is a plus.

 
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 I really enjoyed utilizing the resources on Schoolhouse Teachers.  There was actually more than I originally anticipated which is great.  Here is what the site includes:
 
 
This page of the site lists all of the teachers available for these particular subjects:
  • Asia: It's People and History
  • Career Exploration
  • Chemistry
  • Classical History
  • Classics-Based Writing
  • Economics
  • Elementary Literature Kits
  • Figures in History
  • French
  • Filmmaking
  • Geography
  • Beginning Guitar
  • History
  • Home Economics
  • Lapbooking
  • Literature
  • Logic
  • Elementary Math
  • High School Math
and much more.  Click here for teacher biography, other available subjects and descriptions.
 
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Other pages include:
 
Family
  • College Choice Guidance
  • Guitar
  • Monthly Reading List
  • Special Needs
Dailies
  • Every day Games
  • Every day Explorers
  • This day in History
  • This Month's Menu
The extras include downloadable planners, E-Books, etc.  It also contains an online library and a site tour. The Schoolhouse Teachers website as a whole appears clean and clear with easy to use formatting.  Upon entry of the site you feel confident and not overwhelmed with confusing resources.  This is a definite plus as well.
 
I have thoroughly enjoyed going through the resources that pertain to my 9, 6, and 3 year old.  Even though there wasn't as much available for my 3 year old as my other two, it was still great to utilize what was available. She practiced coloring skills with a Christmas lesson and fun toilet paper roll Christmas craft.  We are currently working on a Christmas Lapbook printed from the site, can't wait to see how it turns out. My 6 year old tried out a copywriting activity to enhance her writing skills.  She loves writing so this was one of her favorites thus far. My 9 year old benefited from a History lesson and will possibly be doing the math drills etc.  I also really enjoyed the arts and crafts pages.  The Christmas card idea with shaving cream and paint is awesome.  I changed it up a bit and will be doing it with Christmas tree cut-outs.  The concept is pretty much the same.  I will post pics in a future post of our creations.
 
I believe that you as a homeschooling parent may enjoy the site as well.  If anything it can also be used as a supplement right along with what you are currently using in your family.  Feel free to check it out.  Again, visit schoolhouseteachers.com to view the site or visit the Review Crew page here!  Many blessings to you and your family as you continue on with your homeschooling adventures.
 
 
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Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are mine.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Goodbye Uncle Dwayne, See You Soon!

Kelly and Lyssa with Uncle Dwayne a few months ago. 
He was always fun and silly and a very talented musician.

Tuesday morning, December 4th, 2012, my dear uncle Dwayne passed away in his sleep.  He was a fighter and that is something I/we will never forget.

During the past couple of years, I really got the chance to get closer to him.  The girls really enjoyed his company as well.  Their memories of him will always be when he would drop by during homeschooling at my mom and dad's house and bring "after lunch" treats.  Kelly always prayed for his health and developed a pretty neat relationship with him.  It was very precious.

Uncle Dwayne was my mom's younger brother.  We will most definitely miss him.  This has been a very solemn experience and a definite emotional rollercoaster for all of us.  We didn't want him to suffer as he had multiple heart attacks, strokes, etc. and a history of other problems, but we believe Jesus saved him and that he's dancing free with my grandparents and our sweet Brandon Michael.  God is so faithful.

"We look forward to the day where we will see your face again. We love you Uncle Dwayne and will never forget you." Lindsey, Ron, Kelly, Lyssa, and Bethany




My Three Blessings

My Three Blessings
Photo by Emily Haapala Photography

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