A is for Apple

We’re still doing the God’s Little Explorer curriculum and loving it!! I highly recommend it for your preschooler. In fact, since Luke is not even 4 yet, we’ll probably do it again next year. This week (as the title suggests) was all about A. I must admit that I was a little way slack on the activities this week. We’ve all been recovering from strep throat and are on antibiotics (which make me feel terrible!) and I have just been a bit lazy. We did however do our handprint, footprint, and fingerprint apple tree. Although, I didn’t completely follow the instructions on the footprint part so we have kind of a blob. Plus we didn’t have any brown paint so we mixed three different colors together and got close to brown. 😉 True to himself, Luke did not want to put any part of his body in the paint!! Here’s how he looked when I put his foot in it.

At least by today when he did the fingerprints for his apples he didn’t cry. I did have to put his finger in the paint for him though. As for the completed trees…well, last night they were laying on the kitchen counter and my mother-in-law asked what they were. 🙂 Oh well! We tried!

Another thing that I have fallen in love with is all of the tot and preschool packs that people make available to everyone. The one that we used this week is this one from 2teachingmommies. The theme was apples so it went perfectly with Stacie’s curriculum. Here are some pictures of Luke enjoying his pack.

I bought the crayola dry erase crayons and I LOVE them!

So many people put a lot of time into making printables and I am definitely thankful for them! I’m not at all gifted in that area so I truly benefit from other’s generosity! Besides the 2 ( http://www.2teachingmommies.com/ andhttp://www.motherhoodonadime.com/)  I’ve already mentioned in this post, I also get sheets and packs from these: http://www.homeschoolcreations.net/, http://livinglifeintentionally.blogspot.com/, http://www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com/, http://www.1plus1plus1equals1.net/

Thanks, ladies, for all you do!!

Our Creation Books

Stacie at Motherhood on a Dime did not disappoint us with her lesson plans for this past week. The theme was “G is for Garden”. The highlight of the week was the creation book. I had all 5 boys do the creation book. They all loved doing it! I have to admit that I’m not good at doing crafts and things like this with them so this is helping me put some fun back into our school! I’m going to share some pictures here from their creation book making. I’ll also throw in a couple pictures of Luke doing his school.

Pictured above are Isaiah and Luke putting in the dirt, grass, and leaves for day 3 of creation. We weren’t sure how the dirt was going to do going through the laminator but it worked great.

All of the boys love to “catch” their projects that come out of the laminator.

Getting our sun, moon, and stars ready

Sometimes it’s just fun to snuggle with the kitties.


The 3 big boys like to take pictures. They all took turns laying their first 4 pages on a towel and taking pictures of them. These are Isaiah’s.

Luke took some time out of his busy safari expedition to trace some g’s. 🙂

This is Josiah’s fish and birds page. He’s the only one that thought to draw a bird to add his feathers to. I thought it was very creative!

Everyone had a similar page for their day 6. They had fun picking their animals for the page.

Everyone’s cover

Here’s Luke with his “g” flower garden. Yep, he has a snotty nose because minutes before he was literally crying because he didn’t want to put his finger in the paint to make the flowers. Being the nice mommy I am I put his finger in the paint anyway and he was happy with the result…just not the finger painting. 🙂

We had a fun week and as I said before the boys loved doing the creation book! I’m looking forward to doing more crafts with them!

Our Schoolroom 2012-2013

Now just because I put the years 2012-2013 in the title does not mean that I have keep things the same through the whole school year. I tend to like to move things around! 🙂

I love looking at other people’s homeschool rooms so I thought I would share what our’s looks like this year. It’s also a great way to share how good God has been to us as nearly everything in the room has been given to us through the years!

The photo above is looking at the schoolroom from coming up the back stairs. Most everything that you can see in this picture was given to us! The desk on the left is Josiah’s. He’s in 3rd grade. He wanted it facing the wall so I obliged, figuring it might lead to less distraction. The wood flip-top desk all the way in the back on the right is Isaiah’s He’s in 5th grade. That desk belonged to my dad when he was around 12 years old. I’ve never let the boys use it before because I was afraid they would put too much pressure on it. I think Isaiah is old enough now to be careful with it though. So far he’s really taking care of it and loving having all of that space (the top section and 3 drawers) to himself. The little round table was where Silas (5) and Luke (3) were doing school but since I took these pictures I’ve already gotten another small school desk. 🙂 The small desk that’s in the picture is what Silas is using now and the “new” one I got is what Timothy (1st grade) is using.

This one is from the other side of the room. It shows the lovely lockers that my cute hubby brought home from work. 😉 Really, when he first said he was bringing that home I thought he was nuts! But now I love it!! The boys loving having their space in it and there are some extra “rooms” for me! 🙂 My desk and teacher books are in the back of this one. I love my desk! It was given to us too. I blogged about it when I first put it in our old schoolroom.

These are a few great ideas that I’ve found in the blogging world. The farthest thing in the picture is a drink carrier organizer that I learned about from Stacie at Motherhood on a Dime. I’ve seen the dish drainer book holder several different places, but the post that made me decide to do it was this one. And for me, who is not the craftiest person in the world, I was pretty excited with my recycled use of the ice cream container in the middle! 😉

This last picture I had to add because of the lego pen holder that Isaiah made for me. 🙂

Well, there you have it. It’s our place to learn. I’m very thankful for all the things that God has given us!

Our school year started on August 20th so we are officially done with 3 weeks of school. I read all over the web of other homeschoolers that use lots of different curriculum for their children. I’m a little afraid of that so I stick with one thing. We use Landmark Freedom Baptist Curriculum. I really like it and don’t have any plans to switch.

Isaiah is in 5th grade and doing well. One of the main problems I have with him is that he doesn’t think through things when he has to write short reports. I have a hard time helping him because I’ve never been a writer either.

Josiah is in 3rd grade. This is his first year to start writing reports. He’s doing a good job.

After my realization of failure with Timothy last year I am doing 1st grade with him again. He just turned 7 in June. I did not order new curriculum for him as we didn’t use all of from last year. I’m excited with the progress he and I have made so far this year! He is doing really well, and with God’s help I have been consistent! I have made it a point that during school time there is nothing more important than school!

Silas is in kindergaten. He is a great learner! He seems to really love school. He has fun learning sounds and doesn’t seem to get too frustrated when learning new things.

As far as Luke goes, I had gone through all the workbooks and things that I have (which is too much!) and just decided that when he wanted to, I’d “do school” with him. However, last week Stacie from Motherhood on a Dime announced that she was going to start sharing a preschool curriculum that she is writing. Luke is 3 (he’ll be 4 next month), but he is not your typical 3 year old. He’s only been talking for a few months and doesn’t use a whole lot of complete sentences. He’s really smart just never really wanted to talk…maybe something to do with having 4 older brothers to talk for him! 😉

Stacie’s curriculum is called God’s Little Explorer’s. We just completed our first week of it and we love it!! Here are some pictures of things that Luke did this week while learning the letter X.

On day one Luke went on a treasure hunt to find his supplies for the year and to find the greatest treasure of all, God’s Word!

Luke decorated his supply box.

Luke made an X with the pom-pom magnets that I learned to make here.

Does anyone have ideas on how to get Luke to hold his pencil right? This is how he holds anything that he writes with and I can’t seem to make him change it. I haven’t had this issue with any of the other boys. Suggestions?

Luke’s alphabet tree…I got this idea from Erica at Confessions of a Homeschooler. Luke wrote the X’s inside the big X (which is part of the God’s Little Explorer curriculum).

I’m really happy with how the year has started.

Last Friday was Public Garden Day and a few gardens near us were participating.  We chose to go to Callaway Gardens mostly so we didn’t have to go to Atlanta. We were able to get all 7 of us (and my mom) in for FREE!! The first thing we did was watch the Birds of Prey show!

It was fun to see hawks and owls very close!! We also were able to go in the Butterfly Gardens. The boys really liked it, but I think they liked seeing the huge goldfish more than all the butterflies!

We had a picnic lunch and walked around at the beach area.

Then my mom decided that it would be fun to ride bikes. So she paid for all of us to rent bikes and ride the trails there. I should say here that’s it has been for.ev.er since I have ridden a bike. Then I am “forced” to ride a bike pulling my 5 year old! I had a very slow start…in fact, Silas was behing me saying, “Mommy, maybe I should drive!” 🙂 Once I got the hang of it , we did pretty well…until we got to hills!! My mom, Terry, and I could be found at almost every hill walking beside our bikes! Terry had our 6 year old on his bike, and mom had our 3 year old on her’s. We really did have a blast, but it was a lot harder than any of us thought it would be!

One of the nice coasting places!

My mom with Luke

They also had what they called a Farmer’s Market (that’s not what I would have called it as there were barely any fruits and veggies). It was mainly just things that people made and brought there to sell. We bought some lemonade and as we waited for them to make it I got the cutest picture of 3 of the boys…


Now for the bees…Isaiah had to do a report on a local industry so we chose to go to a local honey farm. We were able to tour the whole place. They had much more than just bees. They raise cattle, have chickens, peacocks, pheasants, and a horse. The boys enjoyed the tour, and we were able to buy some local honey! I’m hoping that it helps with all the allergies that we have right now.

Some of the bee boxes…did you know that one level of the box can have around 15,000 bees!?

A very pretty colorful pheasant

We had never seen a white peacock before. It enjoyed “yelling” at us!

We’ve had a lot of fun over the last couple of weeks. I’m very grateful that we’re able to have family time and do field trips together!

I have failed…yes, it’s very hard to admit, but I have failed. You see this year our 6 year old started first grade. He wasn’t ready and neither was I but that didn’t stop me from starting him anyway. Long story short, somehow in everyday life I managed to let the year slip by, day by day, without teaching him everyday. School for my 2 biggest boys is “easy” for me since they do a lot on their own. But when it came to Timothy there was always something else that needed to be done.

I have stressed and prayed (probably in that order sometimes which IS a problem!). I’m the kind of person that wants a schedule but actually making the schedule is the hardest part for me. I feel like I would follow it if I could only write it out! So just this week I sat down to seriously start writing a schedule. I say seriously because I’ve “tried” before. I’ve read Managers of Their Homes several times but have yet to follow through.

With this new resolve to make it work now I have actually already felt a burden be lifted. We have decided that I will do first grade again with Timothy and he’s ok with that.

Then we went to church on Wednesday night. Our Pastor is teaching the book of Joshua. When God put Joshua in charge after Moses’s death Joshua was afraid at first. Then God told him to be of good courage and to not be afraid. It was Joshua’s calling to be the leader of the Israelites.

God has called me to be a wife, mother, and teacher to my children. I don’t doubt for one second my call to homeschool my boys. So if God called me to do it, then He’s sure that I can do it! I had been feeling very inadequate, like maybe I just can’t teach…I mean I felt like I couldn’t even schedule my time wisely enough. Then through the preaching of His word, God pricked my heart. He showed me that when I’m in His will there is no need of fear.

Joshua 1:9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Life as Mom

You know, there are days when I want to scream at the top of my lungs (thankfully, I can control that!), there are days when nothing seems to go right…you didn’t do anything on the to do list, you didn’t do everything that you should have with school, you didn’t have supper planned, and the kids fought all day long. I seem to have those days too much…the ones that when Terry gets home I say something like this, “Honey, I think we really need some milk so I’ll go get some.” Then 3 hours later, when I finally get home, the house looks like a tornado went through it! Then I wonder what in the world I left for in the first place! (A note here to say that I’m not blaming Terry for the house disaster…he’s dead tired when he comes home from work so if I need some alone time he usually falls asleep while I’m gone)


Then there are those beautiful days when I seem to be a more relaxed mom…like today! It was no really special day, just a Tuesday. I got up on time. Had a great morning. Got something in the crockpot for supper. Planned what would go with it. Didn’t feel too cranky with the kids. I even cleaned and mopped (on my hands and knees) the kitchen.

Some of the boys were playing the wii so Isaiah wanted to shoot his bb gun. He came in a few minutes later to tell me that he had killed a snake. He shot it, then chopped its head off…I thought that was gross enough. Then all the boys had been outside for a while so I went to see what they were doing. They were right outside the garage door where Isaiah had his pocket knife out dissecting the snake! I was completely grossed out but tried not to show it…Boys!! 🙂

Then it started to rain so, what do boys want to do? Play in the rain, of course! They played until they were soaked through and through! Then they tracked dirt and water through the clean kitchen! Yep, I swept the kitchen three times after I mopped it because of all of those boys! But somehow (not really, somehow, because I know that it was God’s grace!) I maintained a level of calm!

Then I remembered what our sweet neighbor told me just a couple weeks ago. You see, her husband of 40 years just passed away about a year ago. I was telling her about the kids leaving things out sometimes. She told me that her husband used to leave his shoes in the middle of the floor, and she would trip over them at night when she went to the bathroom. She told me how she longed for those shoes to once again be in the middle of the floor.

Lord, help me to not just see things in my way, but help me to see the lives that I am raising to serve You! Help me to see my calling as my husband’s help meet, not just seeing the things that are left undone.