Wednesday, July 12, 2006


I have not forgotten about this blog, as it may seem. We're just enjoying the beautiful Minnesota summer that comes and goes rather quickly.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Aliyah's blog

If you have not checked Aliyah's blog out lately, I invite you to take a look. This girl is up to something!

Accountable Kids

I have not updated this blog for a while so I thought I would share my favorite purchase from this year's MACHE Homeschool Conference.

I could not say enough good things about this program. Initially, I got one for the 9 year old. Although the program is designed for children ages 3 and up, I honestly didn't think it would work for mine. No, not for my three year old! But as I was having my quiet time the next morning, I felt peace and confirmation through a verse from Proverbs that I should get one for this girl, too. And so I did. It's a $20 investment for each child, plus a book that costs $15, and a free DVD.

Basically, the children earn tickets for chores done. Tickets are to be used for activities and privileges like television or computer time. Anyway, the Accountable Kids website explains the program better so just check it out!

Now, I am thrilled to report that the 3 year old is the one so diligent with getting chores done! It is amazing, considering that this is the same child who would rather cry for hours than help mom make her bed and who, like every other 3 year old, didn't like brushing her teeth on cue!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Welcome Spring

March 18...
2 weeks later
Aliyah and Zurielle reminiscing snow days and standing where they dug a snow tunnel last winter while Lyrica enjoys the sunshine. Spring is finally here in our neck of the woods and while it came later than expected, the children wish that winter could stay a bit longer and give out more snow for them to enjoy.
Earlier that day at Wise Swim School

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

A Book by Edgar Guest

A Book

“Now” - said a good book unto me -
“Open my pages and you shall see
Jewels of wisdom and treasures fine,
Gold and silver in every line,
And you may claim them if you but will
Open my pages and take your fill.

“Open my pages and run them o’er,
Take what you choose of my golden store.
Be you greedy, I shall not care -
All that you seize I shall gladly spare;
There is never a lock on my treasure doors,
Come - here are my jewels, make them yours!

“I am just a book on your mantel shelf,
But I can be part of your living self;
If only you’ll travel my pages through,
Then I will travel the world with you.
As two wines blended make better wine,
Blend your mind with these truths of mine.

“I’ll make you fitter to talk with men,
I’ll touch with silver the lines you pen,
I’ll lead you nearer the truth you seek,
I’ll strengthen you when your faith grows weak -
This place on your shelf is a prison cell,
Let me come into your mind to dwell!”

by Edgar Guest

Saturday, March 04, 2006

New Art Project

Aliyah's first painting project at the Art Academy .

Thursday, March 02, 2006

The Unselfish Missey Gray

"I have another ultrasound, dr. visit, and non-stress test today so I will update y'all this evening. "

That was the first entry on Missey's blog yesterday. She wasn't able to give that update anymore...

Missey, a homeschool mom, died yesterday after an emergency c-section. I learned about this shocking news from a Yahoo group that we're both members of. I don't know Missey, and don't have all the details, but PATTYCAKE has the updates on her blog. Please keep Missey's family in your prayers. She has a husband and 5 children: 3 girls, a young boy, and the newborn- Melissa Kate.
Click HERE for Missey's blog.


Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Listening to beautiful music, looking at a picture or painting, observing nature, singing a hymn, memorizing scriptures and reading a poem-
These are things we do everyday that mean more than schooling to us- they have been incorporated in our lives.
Poetry, in particular, has the power to make a thoughtful child happy, and I say that from observation. Poems take us to places and time we've never been before. They make us laugh or even cry. They make us think and be inspired. Whatever it is, every child should be exposed to good poetry. We do that by reading one everyday.
Most of them get added to our notebook. We often use part of a poem for copywork. Heavy papers are used because Aliyah loves to illustrate her copyworks in markers or watercolors. We like browsing at our pages a lot, so cardstocks inside sheet protectors are the way to go. I designed the paper so that there is blank space for illustration, and the rest is lined.
Here are some sample pages from last fall:

Bible Narrations

Here are sample pages from Aliyah's Bible notebook:
"The Tower of Babel" by Aliyah 2005

Aliyah 2005

"The Ten Commandments" fold
glue happy...

From the Book of Joshua
Aliyah 2006

Thursday, February 23, 2006


I dug and dug amongst the snow,
And thought the flowers would never grow
I dug and dug amongst the sand,
And still no green thing came to hand.

Melt, O snow! the warm winds blow
To thaw the flowers and melt the snow
But all the winds from every land
Will rear no blossom from the sand.
-Christina Rossetti

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Bible and Memory Work

Narrated Bible in Chronological Order - The Book of Joshua
* Sometimes, I would get voluntary narrations from these readings. See Bible Narrations for samples.

Proverbs - from the chapter that corresponds to today's date
Psalms -
* Don't hesitate to read the King James Bible to young children. If they are to enjoy great literary works like Shakespeare later on, they need to be acquainted with the beautiful language of the King James first!

The Ten Commandments, Joshua 1:5-9, Books of the OT

Psalm 91, The Beatitutes, 1 Cor.13, Books of the NT

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Winged Creatures

We are now reading Exploring Creation with Zoology I and loving it.

history & copywork

Once in a while, we would use books we've read for copywork. We use Italic for hand writing and before I got the Educational Fontware software, I would handwrite everything for Aliyah. It was a lot of work, but I firmly believe that she should be copying texts that are meaningful, and I want her to copy them from the Italic handwriting. With the Getty-Dubay books, I felt like we were compromising something. We also have Penny Gardner's book, but we got through it pretty quickly. Using the EF software, I just type in future copyworks on the PC and link them to Italic. Now, I'm able to offer more choices for copywork. What a timesaver!

colonial times notebook pages

Click on the pictures to enlarge.

Aliyah put a lot of work in this multi-fold page!

Inspired again!

History Jeopardy

New cards like these get added on Fridays. These are of people we read about during the week. We use these cards in a game of Jeopardy.
I resize and print the figures from History Through the Ages CD ahead of time (but Google works as well) and the notes are usually dd's narrations.
We love playing this game, and hey, it's a fun way to retain information!


1st Astronomy page

Earth's layers

Uranus' & Neptune's flaps
We thoroughly enjoyed learning about Astronomy last year!

This solar system accordion was an ongoing project. Planet facts were saved in the pc as we learned them, and Aliyah worked on the illustrations 3 planets at a time. Just like what we did in the above Uranus and Neptune project, we used black construction papers for frames, and cut big round holes in them. I supposed we could have just pasted pictures of the planets in the black construction paper, but that was not dd's idea of "creative". Haha!

Monday, February 20, 2006

Presidents Day

Happy Birthday, Mr. Washington!

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Timeline Book

We got this beautiful Record of Time from Homeschool in the Woods last year. We still use it for major events we study, but we're not so diligent with it. We have the nicely done HTTA timeline figures on CDs that we use with this book, but for what we utilize them for, I still haven't justified the cost. Since we're only on our 3rd year of History adventures, it's not very fulfilling flipping through so many blank timeline pages. I know, I know. It will look better as time goes, but for now, we are keeping a history binder filled with pages of events and people we read about. I will be posting some of these pages later on.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Nature Observations

One of the things we love to do is taking nature walks. At the moment though, it is a bit of a challenge for me with 2 little ones in tow, not to mention it's winter. But I would let the kids go outside while Lyrica and I watch. They were always proud to show me their "finds". It could be twigs, leaves or anything that moves!
We also enjoy birdwatching (or deer watching) even when we're at home. Birds and their habits just never cease to amaze us!
Have you seen these Laptop Lunchboxes? They are great for nature walks, field trips or other outings. It's a great way to pack healthier food and it's easy on the environment, too! We love them.
But wait, we could be outside enjoying nature right now!

Book Illustrations

These are from the book illustration project Aliyah did at the Art Academy.