Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Homeschooling high school

This year I decided to get some video lessons for the girls.  I just can't keep up with teaching every subject on four different levels, and its so important to help the older girls out with some of their subjects.  I reviewed Abeka videos but they seem so outdated, and quite frankly boring.  The teacher presents the material in front of a live class and asks the students to respond to the questions.  Unfortunately, they have to move the mic around so you're sitting there with dead space.  I don't have the patience for that type of teaching and neither do my girls, so we choose Bob Jones video classes.

9th Grade

History-Bob Jones Geography video lessons

Science-Bob Jones Earth Science video lessons(we didn't cover it last year and I thought it would be more fun than physical science)

French-Bob Jones video lessons also Mr. G's French class on Currclick

Math-Math U See Algebra (she has a few lessons of pre-algebra to finish up first)

Language Arts-Abeka grammar, Write Shop for writing, Wordly Wise and different novels to read including:  poetry, Animal Farm, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Tom Sawyer, Treasure Island, the Glass Menagerie, The Hound of Baskervilles, and a video of one of Shakespeare's plays.


Home Economics

11th Grade

History-Bob Jones American History video lessons

Science-Bob Jones Biology video lessons

Spanish Bob Jones video lessons 

Language Arts-Abeka grammar, Write Shop writing, Worldly wise different novels to read including: Swiss Family Robinson, Great Gatsby, To Kill a Mockingbird, poetry, a story from Poe, Scarlet Letter, the Outsiders, and a video of one of Shakespeare's plays.


Home Economics 

ACT prep 

I'm excited about this year because I'll be able to focus more on the areas that the girls need help with instead of trying to cover every single subject.

Monday, July 31, 2017

New Year....

I still have pictures to post from our vacation, but that may be a bit before I do that.  

I finished up my papers and classes yesterday.  I have one week off until I start my next two classes.  I'm on the run trying to get cleaning and yard work done.  I also have to start lesson planning.  Canning season is right around the corner and I want the lesson planning done before that starts.

This year, I have a 3rd grader, 5th grader, 9th grader, and 11th grader.  Here is what the two littles will be doing this year:

History-Homeschool in the Woods time traveler series.  We'll be starting with the colonies.  I really enjoyed this program when I did it with the older girls.  So many fun activities to do.

Science-Elemental Science physics.  I cannot wait to start this program.  I've always pushed off physics but thought it would be a great change for us this year.  

Geography-Passport Club with some country and continent studies thrown in there. We did this club years ago with the older kids and it was a lot of fun and they learned a lot.  I'm happy that they have once again started selling to homeschoolers.

Math-Math U See

Reading-All About Reading and Explode the Code workbooks

Spelling and Grammar-All about Spelling and Bob Jones grammar

Writing-different levels of Write Shop.  I've always struggled with teaching writing and I think I may have finally found a program that is fun and engaging.

We will be continuing riding classes through October and then we'll be doing some ice skating sessions.  I'm toying with some winter swimming lessons also.  

This year we are joining a co-op about 45 minutes from home.  I'm hoping, especially for the older two, for the kids to make some more homeschooling friends.  We have lots of young homeschoolers at our church but not many teens.  I also like the idea of the kids having a teacher different than me.


Monday, July 3, 2017

Trip to NY

Because of the size of our family and the expense of travel, I haven't been home in ten years.  We've lived overseas twice and on the west coast most of that time.  The last few years, hubby was stationed in another state so our funds were spent getting him home to us to visit.

This year, I decided that I was going home.  Ten years was way too long.  So the girls and I took the two day drive and we went home!!

Here are some pictures from the Buffalo Zoo.  We went today with my mom.
At the dino dig

Enjoying the merry go round

Got some face paint

The girls and my mom

Another fantastic thing is getting to visit some old friends.  One of my best friends, Glen, joined the Navy after high school and just retired from the Navy the year before Kevin did.  He moved back home with his wonderful wife.  His kids and my kids got along famously....navy brats that they are, they were best friends in a few minutes.  Here is my mom, them,and me (in the blue shirt).  We had such a good time.  We spent four hours there and even though we haven't seen each other in ten years, it was like we had just talked yesterday.  Wonderful!
The rest of the week will be spent with family and friends.  I cannot wait until I see some of them.  It has been way way too long.  I am also taking the girls to Niagara Falls this weekend.  We can't go to the Canadian side because I didn't get our passports renewed, but we'll have fun going on the US side.  

Have a wonderful Fourth!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Almost to the finish line

I haven't posted in weeks.  Mother's day weekend was the weekend of terrible things.  We received a call Friday night that Kevin's aunt had passed, Saturday morning I woke up to a wet, soggy bedroom carpet (bathroom shower pipe busted and flooded the bedroom and bathroom), and Sunday night my brakes started grinding in my truck when we went for ice cream.  Needless to say, as nice as Mother's day was, I was happy for that week to be over.

We took off to Iowa for the funeral.  It was very nice.  Aunt Suz was a wonderful lady, full of energy and life.  She was loved by our entire family and will be missed.

Last weekend, we went to Iowa again for Kevin's sister's surprise 50th birthday party.  She was definitely surprised.  It was a wonderful night and lots of fun.  We had a great time.  We got home Sunday night and Kevin spent Memorial Day smashing apart the tiles on the bathroom floor.  Our bath has a step up in the middle of the floor and is covered with 4 inch tiles from the 80s.  The fixtures are all solid gold 80s.  I fully expect Culture Club to break out into song when I go in the bathroom, lol.  We've decided to try to fix as much as we can as possible so that we can redo the entire bathroom and make it more user friendly.  We hope to bring down that step and make the floor one level.  Kevin's father has lost a leg and this will make visits to our house much easier on him.  

I'm still desperately trying to get my garden in.  Hopefully this week.  I got some done but we've had so much rain this month (over 14 inches) that the weeds in the garden beds are over a foot tall.  All the beds I had cleared out already are filled with weeds again.  I hope to have this all done soon!!!  

This week I'll be working in the garden and taking the yucky wallpaper off of the bathroom walls.  I have to clear out the bedroom too in anticipation of getting new carpet.  It was the nicest carpet in the house too......so sad that we had to replace that one.  Oh well.  

We finished up American Heritage Girls last week.  It was nice to have that finished up.  Next year, I'm only doing advancement coordinator.  This will be much easier on me.  We're looking for a new troop coordinator now.  I'm excited because I've been lucky to have wonderful women step forward to lead different levels so that my current leaders can step down from doing two jobs and only do one.  How wonderful is that!!  Yeah!!

The littles will be doing spelling, math, and reading four days a week this summer.  The big girls have another two weeks of science left and then I'll have them do reading and math this summer also to catch us up some.  I'm hoping to have that done by the end of June and then start again mid-August.  We'll start full days back to school after Labor Day when my dad leaves.  

Have a wonderful week!!!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

The end of the year always seems like a race

This time of year is always busy on our little homestead.  The raised garden beds are overflowing with crab grass and dandelions that need to be cleaned out.  The grass seems to grow about 4 inches a day.....or so it seems.  The barns need to be cleaned out. Its a busy time of year here. 

This year is not different around here, with a few exceptions: horse and goats.  The horse has been a lot of fun for the girls to ride.  Shiloh is a pretty good horse after working with her for a bit, we got her retrained on her lead rope.  (She hadn't been worked with for over a year so she wanted to do her own thing.)  We have a fairly large ditch in the front that is pretty steep and a pain in the rear to mow, so Kevin put up a movable electric fence for her that opens to the pasture so she can go out there and eat to her hearts content.

 Kevin also finished up the goats' pens.  We have several areas on the property that can only be pushed mowed.  They were set up that way, why we'll never know.  They could have easily extended a fence here or there so that it could all have been cut with the rider mower, but oh well.  We have goats, so we're putting them to use.  Above you can see what our fencing looks like around the pastures but the goats could escape through the holes, so last weekend hubby put wire fencing up along the posts to keep the goats in those areas.  Well, he ran out of time during the weekend so he just put up a flimsy fence.   By Thursday, we had to keep them in the barn as they got out of all three areas.  Hopefully, we'll be able to save up the money to buy fencing for two of the pastures, so that they will have a ton of room.

Above, is the littlest at riding lessons.  Their instructor has been placing her on bigger, stronger horses this year (ones with more spunk) so that she is used to riding ones that are similar to ours.  Here she's riding Charlie.
I have been missing Japanese food, so I looked on Amazon and was able to purchase some Yakisoba sauce and made homeade yakisoba this week.  It was delicious and we gobbled it down.
 Trey had to take and art class this semester at college and he chose ceramics.  I don't think he realized how much work was involved.  Above, is just one of the really neat creations he made.

The year is coming to a close for American Heritage Girls.  I'm the troop coordinator but also serve several other areas as well.  I'm glad that the year is almost over.  Below is Bug-a-bug serving refreshments at a Stars and Stripes ceremony for one of the girls in our troop.  Bug-a-bug had to organize, set up, serve, and clean up as part of her level award.  She did a fantastic job.

Although Princess is no longer a member of AHG, she came to the Stars and Stripes ceremony to celebrate with her friend, Amy.  It was a wonderful event.  We are all super proud of all Amy did.

Part of being a member of AHG, involves service to the community.  Here a few girls from our troop, including two of mine, are helping to clean out the local history center's buildings for the spring and summer.  We were in charge of dusting and sweeping out the medical building.  It was certainly interesting to see the tools of the doctors and dentists.  Interestingly, the undertaker had a corner set up in the back. 

I'm still working online and have started to work two mornings a week at the greenhouse that Princess and Bug-a-Bug are working at.  Its been a lot of fun.....and a lot of work.  I didn't realize how badly I'm out of shape.  Some stiff and sore muscles.....and  most  all of my paycheck will be buying vegetables and flowers.

I'm also getting ready to start school up in June.  I need to get on tomorrow and order my textbooks.  Fun!!

I think I've laid out the plans for next year.  The oldest are going to be doing video classes for history, science, and language arts.  Math will be a dvd also for Math-u-See.  It will free up a lot of time and stress for me.  I'm also looking into a co-op but its almost an hour drive away.  I'm not sure if we will do that or not.

Have a wonderful weeks!

Friday, April 28, 2017

So busy....

I started working again this week doing online scoring for the next few weeks.  Its interesting and fun but the first week is always a struggle; trying to figure out how to squeeze work into my daily routine.

The big girls are working part time at the local greenhouse.  I'm going to help out two mornings a week also.  I can't wait to learn more about some of the plants and spend my paycheck buying plants!!  lol  It was warm here up until this past weekend and then it dropped back into the 40s.  We even had a little snow this week.  I haven't been able to finish weeding out my garden and with all the rain the last few days and with what is expected this next week, I may need to mow it.  I did manage to trim the raspberries up and weed out the strawberries. 

Our year is almost to a close with American Heritage Girls. Tonight we had a celebration to honor our newest Stars and Stripes recipient (which is comparable to an Eagle Scout project).  It was a lovely ceremony.  This week is our last regular meeting for the year and then we will be holding our end of the year awards ceremony in a few weeks.  Bug-a-bug is leveling and moving up to the highest level that AHG has.  I'll be curious to see if she decides to do a Stars and Stripes project after seeing the ceremony tonight.

I've been  working on finding homeschooling material for next year.  I think that we are going to do a few dvd programs for the big girls.  I just can't teach them everything; there just isn't time.  I'd like them to do language arts and science with a dvd instructor.  I've decided to do Homeschool in the Woods for the littles.  We have not been great with history this year so I decided to start with the colonial period and start it next week.

Our easter was very relaxing.  We enjoyed staying at home that day.  I was wiped out from everything going on.  We did manage to color eggs, which was a lot of fun.  I realized that we haven't colored eggs in so long that the littles didn't even know what to do.  Bad momma moment!  I've been too lazy to color them and didn't want to purchase eggs when we have eggs from our chickens.  Our eggs are brown though and not great for laying.

We have two new goats on our little farm.  These girls are 100% boer goats.  The little red one is Little Lady and the black headed one is Moonlight.  They are very sweet indeed.

Have a wonderful week everyone!!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Catching up

I didn't post the last two weeks as we went on a quick trip to TN last weekend and I was getting ready and recovering.  In the mid 40's is not the age to drive 12 hours each way in three days, plus do a major event.  Ugh.  I was exhausted for days.  

We took the littles with us and went to TN for one of my husband's friend's retirement from the Navy.  It was a very nice affair and we really enjoyed connecting with everyone we haven't seen in a year.  We went to Steak and Shake and of course, Chick-fil-a.  The girls didn't get too spend too much time in the hotel pool as we were busy most of the time but that is okay.  They played with old friends and met some new ones.  Everyone was astonished at how think and long hubby's beard was.  He's even had it trimmed twice.

Another reason I haven't posted in two weeks is that I've been really busy around here.  I started scoring with Pearson again this weekend and in June, I'll be starting back to school to finish up my master's.  Also, I was contacted by the state regent from DAR (Daughter's of the American Revolution) to help me finish up my application for membership.  I had a few holes that I couldn't find information for and she called and then called  back 36 hours later to tell me that she had the information.  I couldn't believe it.  I hope to have the final information I need by mid-May to file my application.

Tonight, we are heading out to buy two more doelings.  We want to start breeding Boer goats and these will be the first ones that are registered.  The two males we have now are 3/4 boer and 1/4 alpine so they are not what we are looking for, but they will make good pets for the girls.  They love them already.

Have a wonderful week!

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Catch up

Good morning everyone!!  

These little animals we have added to the homestead certainly keep us busy.  Princess Buttercup told me two days ago that she loves living on her farm. ahhhh, warmed my heart.

The goats are getting bigger and getting their horns.  They are eating hay and solid food now so we have to get them to drink water so they can be weaned off of the bottle.  

The horse, Shiloh, is doing well.  The girls are anxious to ride but the weather is not cooperating too much.  They did jump on for a little bareback the other day.

Princess Daisy is working hard to earn her cooking badge with American Heritage Girls.  She is super excited to earn badges.  Princess Buttercup is working on a few also.

Bug-a-bug took this photo for her online photography class from Currclick.  I think she did a nice job.  

I haven't taken pictures yet but the girls are all working on presentation boards for a country fair with some other homeschoolers.  Each picked a country and it working hard on their board.  They are due on Wednesday so we will be spending most of out time on Monday working on the boards.

The littles are also busy working on their life size human body.  They are learning about the different body parts and what they do.  We traced their bodies onto paper and are cutting out the organs to put on the body.  Its pretty fun and they really enjoy it.

I'm off for now.  Have a wonderful and blessed week!


Saturday, March 11, 2017

Crazy busy

Hello everyone!!  I have not posted in quite a while.  Honestly, I'm not sure where the time goes.  We have been very busy on our little homestead.  The cow went into the butcher a few weeks ago and the two pigs went in last week.   Our freezers will be stocked.  Hubby has informed me that he'd like to get a meat grinder and we will attempt to make our own sausage.  Hopefully that will go well!

We also added two baby goats that we're bottle feeding and a new horse.

I'll have to upload the pictures of the horse for you to see.

One the school front, we've been very busy
  • Horseback riding lessons started again last week.  The girls have improved a lot from when they started two years ago.  This is helping with our horse also, as she is trained but hasn't been worked with in over a year.
  • Gymnastics class with other homeschoolers has been going on since November.  The three youngest participate in the class.  It has been a huge blessing.  There are only about four more weeks left then we will break until the fall.
  • We just finished up ice skating.  Twice a month during the winter, the ice rink has open skate on Monday afternoons.  The homeschoolers have taken full advantage of this.  I even skated.  It wasn't pretty as its been years since I skated but I didn't fall.  The girls have never really been on the ice and did great.
  • Read alouds:  I continue to read the Betsy books by Carolyn Haywood and The Boxcare Children books to youngest two.  They love the stories.
  • Bible:  Our American Heritage Girls troop is memorizing Proverbs 31 and the class at church is teaching the littles the books of the Bible.
  • Science:  The littles are studying the human body.  We just started and they are enjoying it so far.
  • History:  The littles are studying Native Americans
  • Math, Reading, Spelling, and Grammar continue.  Both littles are making huge strides this year but are a little behind so we are working hard to get caught up.
  • The two big girls are very independent in their work.  Princess is taking an Interior Design class from Currclick Live and Bug-a-Bug is taking a French class and just finishe da photography class from Currclick Live also.
I think that's it for now.  We've experienced some strange weather this winter.  We've had these really warm days and then it snows again.  We had a tornado touch down last Monday just south of town and then six hours later, it snowed.  We are expecting another storm tomorrow that may bring up to 8 inches of snow.

Have a wonderful weekend!!


Sunday, January 1, 2017

What a wonderful year!

This past year was full of blessings!  TL graduated from homeschool and is attending the local community college.  My stepson was married to a wonderful woman and right before Christmas they announced that they are expecting.  And Hubby finally retired from the Navy and is home with us. 

It has been a busy few months full of readjusting to life with Hubby at home.  Over the winter, he'll be on the road during the week and home on the weekends (he's a trucker).  He really enjoys his new job and is having a great time. 

We had a wonderful Christmas full of fun and games.  We put together three puzzles Christmas week and watched hours of Hallmark movies.  It was a lot of fun.  Very relaxed and easy.  I didn't feel too stressed at all.  I still have two boxes to mail out and a few Christmas cards and I'm not too worried about it.

I've spent the last few days working on homeschooling lessons.  I really let the planning portion of fun things slip away from me.  I'm glad I got it back under control.  I really felt like we were just doing the book basics and not doing anything fun.  So, we're diving into American Indians and the girls will be putting together all sorts of houses and crafts and making some recipes.  And we'll be studying geology in science and spending lots of time looking over rocks.  Later this year, we'll move forward into the colonies for History and study the American Revolution.  In science, we'll be studying weather and the human body.  I have some fun activities saved on Pinterest for those units.

I pray that you all have a wonderful New Year!!