Sunday, November 27, 2011

Turkey Day 1k

Well I did it and even though my training went to pot I did it. I even finished it. I'd like to hope I would have done it faster without a crying kid I was dragging along but who knows. All I know is I tied my best training record and that's good enough for me. Now to train better and do a Valentine's Day run. My picture stinks. I hate the way I look in pictures but it's proof I did the 1k.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Moving On

Way back when I first got pregnant with Nathan I found a wonderful support group online. After a while some of us made a move to a private board and became really good friends. We even got together a few times and they were of great support. About a year and a half after the twins were born I came to discover that one member of that board didn't really like me and had secretly started a collection of all my posts, mainly bad ones or where I complained about how sickly the kids were. Yes for a while my kids were sick it seemed every other day. Well one day when I complained about how a neighbor called the police on us for letting a child cry it out I was told by this person she wasn't surprised as she felt I was a horrible parent. She then proceeded to post every single post I had ever made along with pictures I posted that illustrated what happened. Basically I was called an unfit mother and made to feel like I was a piece of crap. What bothered me most was supposedly this person was of the same faith as me yet I can tell you she did not act like any member of my church I had ever known. I left the group as I was ticked off that my trust with people on the board was broken. Sadly I allowed someone else who had also been treated unfairly by those on our private group to convince me I should share my story on the main group. A few details were changed and yes I allowed my anger to let everyone there know exactly how those on our private group felt about them. Unlike B I didn't think ahead of time to document every thing as I actually was friends with the people I chatted with daily. Well word got back to them and I was completely blacklisted and nobody from the group would talk with me again.
Now it's been almost 5 years and I've been trying to apologize, mainly because I know I did wrong, but I can't get anyone to even acknowledge I have sent messages to. They won't even respond with a you an ass and I don't ever want to talk to you again. The funny thing is two people from the group are members of my faith and I guess really don't believe in the lessons we learn from our prophet and his counselors. Years ago two of them suggested I listen to the this speech during general conference because I still held bitter feelings to our old ward. I find it odd that I was suppose to forgive yet they can choose not to. Granted I haven't done all I could do (meaning I don't have physical addresses to mail or visit these ladies anymore and that I have contacted them via their blogs, facebook, and email) but I find now that I just really don't care if I get their forgiveness cause I've finally forgiven them for what they did to me. I really only wanted to be friends with one lady again although reconnecting on a limited basis with the others would have been nice as we shared so much. One I was going to ask to take my kids if something ever happened to me and my husband as that's how close I thought we were. Yesterday I left a comment on a blog run by one of these women. She took the time to respond to each and every other commenter but my comment. A few hours later she removed my comment.
So today I say goodbye to my feelings of hatred, resentment, and hateful thoughts of these people. I have moved on. As James Faust said in the above speech:
"If we can find forgiveness in our hearts for those who have caused us hurt and injury, we will rise to a higher level of self-esteem and well-being."
I only hope one day at least one of them can also learn the healing power of forgiveness.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Testing the Mac

Just testing to see if I can load pictures from the mac onto blogger.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

What a wild two week!

Since starting school about one month ago we've had a wild ride. Stomach flu that took almost 2 weeks to recover from as everyone didn't get it at the same time and it was spread out over a two week period. And then the worst thing to happen if you home educate (someone told me this should be the new term for homeschooling) losing the pricey and most important curriculum you own.  Yes not only did one computer bite the dust but the second back up computer. My life was shattered. I can not believe how much computers play a role in my life. We took them to the computer repair store hoping and praying that they could be fixed while also contacting a few curriculum sites asking if they could replace or deeply discount a replacement for me. Lucky for me they all came through but even more lucky, while the computers were dead, the repair store was able to get all the pictures (which of course I hadn't backed up) and files. I ended up buying a used and repaired computer from the repair shop. Great deal from them and I was happy. However as my husband pointed out going back to only two computers (guess Noah's random bid on a laptop last spring helped us somewhat) was hard. So off we went looking for a brand new computer. I had my mind set on a certain computer at the Bx on base that was about $300. But I guess it wasn't meant to be as that is not what we bought. After being convinced by several costumers and sales clerks we walked out of the BX with a brand new Mac. I have to say I'm in love with this machine. So so easy compared to the pc. And once I figure out all the ins and outs  I'll probably be even more in love. Now I all I need to do is get caught up on my food blog and this blog.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

First Week of School

We had a rough first day, a pretty decent second day, a really rough third day, and then today which turned out pretty good. I'm realizing I have scheduled far too heavily in some subjects and way too little in other subjects. I think in the next week or two we will get the hang of things. Since so many of my homeschooling friends are posting schedules this week I thought I'd post a little of what we do.

School starts at 9:15. We start with a review of the day of the week, the month and the date. Then we recite the Pledge. Next everyone works on math, followed by spelling, handwriting, grammar, and writing. Then we usually take a 10-20 minute break.
Next we work on reading skills, learning to read (twins), and a few other reading related items. By this time it is usually 12-12:30 and we break for about 45 minutes for lunch.
After lunch we work on history (everyday), science (right now 2 times a week may be moving this to three), music (two times a week one being learning instruments and the other day singing), art (two times a week, once being a crafty or seasonal thing and the other day being an instruction in some fundamental of art), health (twice a week),  and geography (daily).School is usually over by 3 pm although some days much earlier and some days much later.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

1st Grade Plans

I'm taking the easy path with the twins this year. They did not learn to read as easily and quickly as Nathan did and Explode the Code just wasn't working for them. So in an effort to save time and money I put them into k12's language arts/phonics program. Anyway here is the rest of their plans for the year:

Grammar/Writing/Language Arts/Phonics
k12 language arts/phonics for k and 1st grade

Math Mammoth 1B and 2A

Wordly Wise 1st grade
Zaner Bloser spelling
Lollipop Logic

See Nathan's 3rd grade plans

Undecided at this time

See Nathan's 3rd grade plans

Monday, July 25, 2011

Our 3rd grade plans for this year

Looks like it's that time of year when everyone is talking about their plans. I tried to talk the kids into public school this year, lol, mainly because I get tired of arguing with everyone over our schooling decisions. Funny how I never talk bad about other's choices but my choice is fair game to argue with or fight with me about. Anyhow at least for now we will  be homeschooling this upcoming year. So here are our plans:

Grammar /Writing
Growing with Grammar Level 3
Writing Tales Level 1
Sentences to Paragraphs Book 1
Exercises in English 3
Grammar Tales

Language Arts
Handwriting without tears cursive
Zaner Bloser printing
Poetry for young people
Read and understand poetry
books I'll be reading out loud
books Nathan will be reading

Math Mammoth 2B and 3A

Geography from A to Z
National Geographic Kids World Atlas
Down to Earth Geography
Map Skills for Today
Evan Moor 7 continents
10 Days in Games

a spelling book from ebay that is used in public school
Spectrum vocabulary 3
Analogies for beginners
Listen Hear!

Elemental History
SOTW medieval times
Cantering the Country


a health book from PS found on ebay
Story of the Orchestra starting with instruments then heading into composers
Evan Moor How to Teach Art to Children
Evan Moor Art for all Seasons
Monthly arts and crafts

Friday, July 22, 2011

Garden Pictures 2011

We expanded the garden this year. We now have 12 squares within which we grow food. We do grow this stuff organically and this year after a really rough start our garden looks to be the best it ever had been.
What we planted this year, everything including fruit trees and fruit bushes is grown organically:
expanded our strawberry and herb patch
apples of some sort
our grape vines are producing high amounts for the first time, we have concord and himrod
23 tomato plants
6 tomatillo plants
12 sweet pepper plants
4 hot pepper plants
rainer cherry tree (planted this year)
raspberry bushes, fall gold and a red one that I don't remember right off hand
6 cucumber plants
one peanut plant
2 pumpkin plants
4 watermelon plants
2 cantaloupe plants
3 dozen sweet onions
white corn
Chinese red beans

Already harvested and gone:
snow peas
swiss chard
brussel sprouts
kolhrabi __________________

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Language Arts Find #1

We love this book at our house. Again no need to homeschool to enjoy and broaden your child's education with this book. It's full of old American rhymes and jingles. Fun to use for memorization or even copy work. Some of the rhymes and jingles included are:
The Bear Went Over the Mountain
Lazy Mary
Yankee Doodle

The book is titled The Rooster Crows A Book of American Rhymes and Jingles by Maud and Miska Petersham

Friday, July 15, 2011

Logic Find #3

I'm one of those people who can not figure out those little logic puzzles and I hate that fact. So I have been making sure my kids get to practice this skill all the time. I stumbled across this little gem at the local DI store for $1. Inside the book (as you can see from the pictures) are all kids of puzzles. The book starts off with Hide and Seek which has mazes, picture puzzles, and eye foolers. Followed by all the following types:
Riddles- Riddles from long ago, riddles from other lands, and joke riddles of today (today being 1982).
Brain Teasers- Puzzles in which the answers are "right under your nose."
Mystery!- A mystery story about a stolen vase, for you to solve.
Shufflers- Puzzles in which you can move toothpicks, coins, and buttons to make shapes and designs.
Ponderers- Puzzles that take lots of thought.
Brain Twisters- Puzzles in which you have to sort out may clues.
Look and Think- Puzzles in which you have to see in your mind what you can't see on paper.
Wordles- Hidden words, scrambled words, and secret codes.
Arthmeticks- Number puzzles, some of which are jokes and tricks.
Brain Busters- The hardest and trickiest puzzles of all.

Never fear if your like me and can not figure them out. The answers are in the book, usually with the description of how to solve the puzzle. You don't even have to homeschool to get use out of this find. It would be fun for anyone. The name of the book is The Puzzle Book. It's put out by Childcraft and this book is part of the 1982 Childcraft Annual series.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

History Find #1

This find is not something you do at home but it would make a really fun field trip during the summer. I say during the summer because that's when the summer adventure program is run at the American West Heritage Center in Wellsville Utah. Honestly this place was way more fun then I expected when we first set out. My kids LOVED the place and have asked daily since we left if we could go back.
Mountain Men- There is tent set up where you enter and chat with a Mountain Man. He taught us all about the different furs they caught and what they traded them for. They had some of the actual furs there in the tent so you could see what real furs looked like. They also had historic items that were used in trading. Like real 1800's playing cards, canteens, guns, and so forth. At the conclusion of the the info he shared we learned how to toss tomahawks, just like the Mountain Men did at their rendezvous
Indians- Next up was the Indian village where we entered a tepee. Inside was an "Indian" who taught us a little about the Northern Shoshone and their traditions. Along with teaching us the Indian signs for various items and animals. Fun but not as interesting to the kids as it was for adults.
Pioneer Living- This was set up just as life was during pioneer times. They had a dugout and a little log cabin. My boys helped weave a rug, attempted to crochet, helped make butter, helped make cookies, made popcorn, fetched water, gathered wood and helped with the fire, washed dishes, and so many other little things the pioneers did back then. After about 45 minutes of hard labor they got to tour the dugout and learn how they caught mice and was shown how snakes sometimes shared the dugout with pioneers. Then a short tour of the one room log cabin followed by some pioneer games including tug of war.
Next up we hit the pony rides and the train ride. Both were huge hits with the kids. We stopped at the wood working place and they kids played around with kid toys and the adults got to help cut two dove tails for a chest they were making. I kicked Don's butt at this.
The final destination was the 1917 farm. The tour of the farmhouse was boring for the kids, until they saw the upstairs, but I loved it. The hit here was the outside area. My kids did several loads of laundry in the old fashion way, tubs of water with a washboard and ringer then hanging up on the clothesline to dry. They spent a very long time with doing the laundry. They fed chickens and helped look for eggs. They fed the hogs and toured the outhouse. Then we stopped by and learned how to make a horseshoe and then back for more laundry.

I had hoped this would keep us entertained for a hour or two but when all was said and done we spent almost 5 1/2 hours there. A perfect day and so much fun with learning tossed in.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Nature Study Find #1

This find doesn't require a purchase. It's a link to a fantastic blog about nature study. Yes the blogger has all kinds of nifty things you can purchased to use in your nature studies but you can do almost everything without needing all her nifty downloads and stuff. Sign up for her newsletters cause they offer more things to do. The blog is titled Handbook of Nature Study. She has nature study activities all year round. Yes including that season of winter where I'd prefer to stay inside where it is warm. Seriously this is one of the best done programs for nature study. You will not be disappointed.
When we first started this program I wasn't sure how we'd be at doing it so we just made little books from construction paper to record our studies on. However we are expanding to a nature log that we are buying from Rainbow Resources. This way we can have a nicer book that will last longer than our little cheap books we made lasted.
Here is a link to the June Newsletter.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Vocabulary Find #2

This vocabulary find focuses on those crazy idioms that are so confusing to kids. This stand up flip over book has 200 idioms to learn and understand. You know what idioms are, right? Well I didn't know these little sayings were called idioms until I discovered this little gem. Again no need to homeschool to make this work in your house. We learn a new one everyday. It's simple to use this little book. We stand it up on the computer desk and flip daily to learn a new idiom. Each each has the idiom at the top. Then it has a sentence using the idiom and a picture. Finally at the bottom it contains the What does it really mean which explains what the idiom really means. I've enjoyed watching the lightbulbs go off in the heads of my kids as they finally figure out what some of the phrases they have heard from adults make sense. And it's really fun to watch them use those idioms themselves correctly when talking to other adults. This sells for about $10 on Amazon.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Vocabulary Find #1, Phonics Find #1

Again a great find for those who homeschool or even want to reinforce what their kids are learning in school. This one is called Vocabulary Power reading Grade K. It also comes in grades 1, 2, and 3. My examples are from grade k. There are 150 sight words in this collection. It stands up so we left it on our school table during the day and reviewed throughout the day. The way we used it was to review one word a day. On the top is the word, which in the first picture is am. Next they use the word in a sentence and show a picture that relates to the word. Then at the bottom they have two additional words that are usually from the same word family and they use them in a sentence. Just a simple and slightly fun way to increase your child's sight word readings. Amazon carries these for $10 and some qualify in the book 4 books get one free promotion they run.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Logic Find #2

*****Well as someone pointed out I totally spaced placing the name of this game. It's Think Fun Hoppers. Guess one shouldn't post on her blog when she is suffering from food poisoning.

This turned into a fun way to test your brains thinking abilities. An added bonus is the back has the solution just in case you can't figure it out. They start out easy and work their way to really hard puzzles. All the pieces store inside the game board so it's really easy to clean up.
The goal of the game is to move all the frogs off the board except for the red one. You jump over frogs to remove them.  You use between 4-12 frogs with each card. The front of the card has the placement for the frogs and then you start moving them. My 6 year old's have made it to level 20 without any help from me.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Math Find #2

So you have a child who loves playing with things while learning? Well here is a perfect fit for that child. The book is called Math Gears. As you can tell from the pictures each page has a dial that you move around to get a new addition/subtraction/multiplication/division problem then you lift the tab to check your answer. Facts start at 1 and go to 12. Great way to help little minds learn their facts. The cost is about $8 on amazon and worth the money if you ask me.