Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday Week 26


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

DIY - Starburst Mirror

I've seen Starburst mirrors for a large penny however I will not pay over $60.00 for a mirror to decorate my home. I searched a few do it yourselvers blogs and came up with a way to go for it!

After a short trip to Wal-Mart for skewers and Micheal's for a candle plate because Wal-Mart was out. I had everything I needed and for under $8.00.

 I also used a hot temp glue gun. It uses a LOT of glue so don't be afraid to use it! Also Gorilla Glue over the hot glue to make certain that it wasn't going to move or break.

 This was my longest pieces. I marked them at 1 inch and glued them to establish my pattern.

 This was my final piece. I am very happy with it. It was a huge pain to paint the skewers! I read that newspaper or plastic wrap would work well and I used newspaper and cut it to size however it was hard! It did get some paint on the edges of my mirror but I took a few minutes and scraped it off with a knife.

I will say that I am planning on making another and I will paint the skewers before gluing them next time. That was a huge pain. The clean up was easy however took more time. I had never used Gorilla glue either and I will say its not my favorite but man did it make a firm hold. It expands so make sure you do not get to the edge of your mirror... Don't ask.

I love Do It Yourself projects!! Do you?


Monday, February 25, 2013

Weekly Menu Feb 25



Baked Chicken with rice and broccoli


Homemade Pizza


Cubed steak with mashed potatoes and peas


Grilled cheese with soup


Chicken Burritos


Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and green beans


YOYO (your on your own)


Friday, February 22, 2013

Weekly Wrap Up 25


This week was a very successful week. 
We had fun and had down time.

Yes this is me; I was doing a silly face at the request of my student...
Anything for learning.

Kyle had a wonderful accomplishment this week! We finished Level 3 All About Spelling!!! WOOHOO!!! See I knew with my word being "intentional" for 2013 I could help him accomplish so much more!! So this was awesome for me on two different levels. One for being intentional about teaching to Kyle and two was the accomplishment of completing something!!

Kyle stated Math U See Zeta, which is a Schoolhouse Review. Everyone already knows that my family loves Math U See. Look for my review soon but if you search on my blog you will see Math U See come up several times.

This is daddy helping Kyle Thursday with school. I had an early Dr's appointment, since I knew Kevin was home and I was so glad that he helped them. Blessed with a husband that helps with schooling!

Kyle is almost finished with 18th century history. Then moving onto 19th century and 20th which I think will only take another month and then we will start some Time Travelers studies!

On to my Lexi - Poo

She is moving along greatly in All About Spelling too. I think she is on lesson 23 which again has been a great accomplishment.
She's been learning her multiplication easily until we hit higher numbers after 5, which that will just come with practice. I think for about 3 months her understanding them has been good progress. So we have allowed her to do her best and then after I check her work I allow her to use our handy dandy tool.

Although our Apologia review is over she is still in love with learning about birds. I think every company that provides reviews enjoys seeing that after the review period is over that the family is still using and loving the item!! I'm happy to say she loves Apologia!


My little man has been silly this week. Can you tell by that awesome smile? He's just always full of life.

Reading and Listening time.

He really loves puzzles but gets frustrated very fast if they get hard! This puzzle was a review of the 12 months of the year that he is trying to learn.

Science this week was a little here and there but the main topic was of life cycles. I found some life cycle games on Shepherds Software and he enjoyed them! 

This was some highlights of our week, of course it's impossible to tell you everything that happened in my house this week.

I've linked up to some other great homeschool resources!!

Weird UnSocialized Homeschoolers and Hammock Tracks.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Handwriting without Tears - TOS Review

This review started out really crazy, see I thought that I could review the app,Wet Dry Try, they offer since I got a Kindle Fire for Christmas. However after I got chosen for the app I found out that it wouldn't work on the Kindle Fire and I was very upset thinking Zachary and I was going to miss out but the wonderful crew leaders we have on The Schoolhouse Review Crew was gracious and sent me a physical copy for review instead of nothing! I thank the Crew and Handwriting without Tears for allowing me to review these items even after my mistake! 


Using Handwriting Without Tears has been a wonderful option for Zachary's writing. You see, writing is something that is a challenge for him. He naturally writes things backwards and erases a lot during a lesson. However with getting this book and changing the way we were going to approach writing for now on, kind of gave us both a clear slate so to say.

Zachary and I are working on our review together. Zac is 8 and in 2nd grade and naturally struggles with writing. We are reviewing the new editions from Handwriting without Tears Printing Power which is Grade 2. The set came with the Teachers Guide, Printing Power Plus student book which also includes Kick Start Cursive student book. 

 Starting this was actually a little dreaded in his eyes simply because he feels defeated with writing. I was actually looking very forward to it. New changes had to have some new perspective as well. Something fresh, I love the look of the book. It isn't too overwhelming and seriously has a very fresh look to it which makes it easier to use.

 Look at that pretty handwriting and a happy boy!! 

We also made some letters to use with the set simply because of his reversal issues. If I had extra money I would totally buy the wooden building pieces that Handwriting without Tears sale, so I had to improvise with my budget. Let me also say it’s not required for this book, but with my son's issues with reversals I felt to get the full effect it would not hurt to use this with him.

Zachary and I use this book every other day for about 15 - 20 minutes each lesson. Some weeks we have used it Monday, Wednesday and Friday and others just Tuesday and Thursday. We started at the beginning and have went through the foundation skills of learning basics of writing such as paper placement, the way to hold pencils and where to start with each letter. He has done well with those and moved on to words and sentences. Capitals came easy and he enjoyed learning some of the names used by HWT like "Frog Jump Capitals". When it was time to add more of the lowercase letters, it became more of a challenge for him. He really likes the part of checking his own writing when he has completed the line of words or letters! He said "he was in control" lol! Kids...

With the issues Zachary has we have done LOTS of the activities with our writing pages. Air writing has been something we have done for a while however he loves writing the letters with a laser pointer, I can't believe I never thought of that. We also do the letter hand activities daily and I actually think they are helping him remember which letters are supposed to be written below and above the lines best. I pick words from his lesson page or even just from his sight words and have him do the hand activity.

Personally I have enjoyed the little catchy ways to remember how to write the letters. For Zachary he needs little rhymes or tricks to help him excel and I get that out of the program.

We currently are on page 24 of the program and I believe we have done wonderful in learning and using Handwriting without Tears. This has been a perfect fit for him.   

The set I received will cost you $19.50 plus shipping.  If you would like to see the items before you buy them Handwriting without Tears has sample pages for you here.

I loved this review item, personally I think the items are extremely reasonable when it comes to price. The teachers book is laid out wonderfully for ease and for insecure people like myself to teach and feel accomplished! Total win all the way!

Check out the other Handwriting Without Tears Reviews, members received different grade levels and some even got the app!!

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this product through the Schoolhouse Review Crew in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 


Monday, February 18, 2013

Challenges & Encouragement

Challenges are things that are going to test you, maybe personally or spiritually?

Challenges are also opportunity for you to grow and learn.

Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones. And when you have finished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake. -Victor Hugo

If we could personally choose not to have struggles or challenges than we would be cheating ourselves of some awesome chances to grow and improve. Our struggles are for a purpose much higher than our own.

Personally my struggles have made me more faithful to God, more intentional on keeping my family and I have become stronger and able to forgive quicker.

The stem of the issue comes from being human in flesh I think so often we think if we just had more or something better things would be easier, we always want more...

What if we had a larger house?
If only my husband had a better job?
If I didn't have to do laundry?
If only the kids didn't fight.

This is the point where you should really seek God and ask him to help you through your situation. Make a habit of not thinking "if only..." It’s a negative direction for your mind and heart friend and so many times that is what will bring your challenges! 

Moses faced lots of challenges. He looked at difficulties as opportunities to look at the hand of God working in his life.

Whatever comes our way we can be sure that our God is always with us. 

Fear not, for I have redeemed you;

I have summoned you by name; you are mine.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;

And when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.

When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;

the flames will not set you ablaze.

For I am the Lord, your God,

The Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

-Isaiah 43:1-3   

It states in the Bible we will have trouble in this world, but I ask you to have faith because there is coming a great day! Our Lord is always with us no matter what the challenge is. It makes me feel better to know that He loves me so much that he tailors my own personal trails and challenges to mold me to be the best I can be. I pray I have courage to get through because with God all things are good. 

 What encourages you friend? 


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Weekly Wrap Up 24 - Late Yes Again!

I have to praise God first and foremost!! 
I'm feeling better finally! I feel normal for the first time in 3 months. The Dr gave me some stomach medication until we could do further testing. They are thinking I need an ultrasound, CT scan and X rays. I'm just so thankful that I've finally gotten relief and I am praying with not having insurance we will still be able to get to the bottom of why I've felt horrid the last 3 months!!

So schooling has been hit and miss for me lately. I haven't felt well so school gets started late and then I need to stop for myself to rest or I don't do extras. I'm just so thankful!

This week we progressed greatly in math for Lexi and Zac. They are really loving the Horizons Math but have asked about Math U See again since it's a review item for Kyle. 

We are almost with Geography A - Z. When we moved it kind of got placed to the side. So we are laying Classical Conversations aside for right now and moving to finish this and then we will move back to Roadtrip USA and complete that. The kids need to see that when we start something we will finish it. I kind of need to see the accomplishment from it too!

Lexi has loved her science from Apologia. If you missed our review of it please read about it here. She has really enjoyed looking and searching for birds, she spends every chance she gets outside to look and see what she can see that day.

Zachary has been doing really great with Handwriting Without Tears. I will be saying more on our review.

We updated several things this week within the house. 
- Kids finally have rugs in their rooms!!

- A new kitchen faucet

- Painted under the sink

- Finished the counter-tops so next step is back-splash!!

- Kevin helped and with his blessing we demolished the kitchen cabinets.

See the sarcasm?
- Last week my washer died, he was an old friend he served me well for 6 years. His new replacement came Thursday. I'm still getting used to the new one but good to be able to wash clothes!

Valentine's Day was wonderful. We celebrated by making sugar cookies! We had a homeschool party and enjoyed visiting with friends. Daddy and the kids made a wonderful snack Thursday for us to eat... Dipped strawberries!! They were awesome!

Friday our church hosted a Valentine's Dinner. We baked spaghetti and enjoyed playing games and a member from our church volunteered to watch all the kids!! So all the parents had a small date night! 

Cuddling on the couch watching basketball while snowing
Saturday we finally had a little white stuff!!! SNOW!! Not enough for the kids to play in but it was a wonderful sight for sore eyes. We haven't had any since moving into our new home so it was a nice sight. It didn't stick around long!

Today - Sunday my family came over and we ate hamburgers and enjoyed playing and talking together.