Saturday, July 6, 2013

As Boys Grow

I have had a difficult time this  school year accepting that my baby, (youngest of 4 boys) baby boy is coming into young adulthood. He starts high school in the Fall and with this coming upon us so quickly the thoughts of him starting college and leaving the nest are upon me. 

I just love and miss the legos everywhere, the cars, trucks and G.I. Joes scattered, the skateboard days, the outdoor fort building, even the endless skinned knees; only because I felt like the hero with a band-aid. 

As I have struggled with accepting that my baby, baby boy is growing up and the thoughts of him not needing me as he did when he was a little guy are hard to accept; he steals my phone without me even knowing it was missing. And why did he do this?

This is why.......




And my heart is full of love. A love that is endless for my babies; especially as they come into young adulthood and prepare to leave the nest. This endless love is a gift from God that I cherish.

 I will thank Thee, Lord all of my days for this kind of love and for the memories along the way. You are a God of love ~ a love we have learned from YOU.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Summer Reads

I found this link that gives even more ideas for our Reading List/Summer Reading Bucket List. 

We have been slacking (a lot) so I am hoping this helps get us back on track (with some vintage flair). 

classic kids books
Follow the link below for the list:


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Loving Summer

With Summer upon us I always-always have outdoor plans and always plan way more than we can ever do. But this Summer I have planned to organize and start a new routine. We WILL be extra ready for the new school year and it WILL be better for all. Who knows; maybe we will have more time during the school year for extra fun things!

My (OUR) Cleaning Plans:
(This is a quick way to stay clean all week)
  • Monday ~ Dust, Sweep, Mop the Family Room, Foyer and Stairs. Sanitize the Downstairs Bathroom. Wash, Dry, Fold and Put Away 1 Load of Laundry.
  • Tuesday ~ Dust, Sweep, Mop the Dining Room and Sun Room. Wash, Dry, Fold and Put Away 1 Load of Laundry.
  • Wednesday ~  Dust, Sweep, Mop the Living Room and Kitchen. Wash, Dry, Fold and Put Away 1 Load of Laundry.
  • Thursday ~ Upstairs Dusted and Vacuumed. Upstairs Bathrooms Sanitized. Wash, Dry, Fold and Put Away 1 Load of Laundry.
  • Friday ~ Wash, Dry, Fold and Put Away All Sheets, Towels and Whites.   
(With all of the above we include the normal daily routine of making our beds, and tidying up our bedrooms and bathrooms which means nothing left on the floor! And our evening chores like dishes and garbage removal.)


It just seems there is no escaping laundry:
(1 Load a day and 3-4 on Friday)
Here is what we will be using:

 More on that later.......

Note: Monthly cleaning of baseboards, fans, and changing of air filters helps make for a squeaky clean home.

this will take a while.....
I love what I found over at:

from kitchen ideas.....

To keeping the master tidy.....

 We are going to do this!

And as I say (we) I really mean it! I know my children will gain from these changes and it only takes 30 days to make things habit. 

It WILL be a Summer to remember!
(I'll throw some dessert and a craft or two in along the way.)
(found on Pinterest)

 also found on Pinterest
(I think Gabe will like the candy part)

P.S. The above words presented in red I have come to believe are of the utmost important to require in our households....and the remainder will come together like sweet cream and bread.




Monday, June 24, 2013

After a Week at the Beach

After a week at the beach and now that we are home, all I can think of is beach life.

Here is something that just made me smile; and her blog of beach inspiration is unique:

Check out her blog at:


Saturday, April 27, 2013

Sweet Memories

As I am editing today I cannot help but get misty eyed over the sweet memories of my oldest baby's special day this past Fall. I truly am blessed beyond measure.


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Oh, Wowzers ~ I Found The Mother Load Of Creative Writing Ideas



Can I just say that this sight makes me so happy! 2012-10-25_011
There's a basket for each month just chock-full of writing goodies.  (Rubber maid stackables for the win!)  The framework stays the same each month: journal prompts, list tags, research cards, and stationery.  Only the content changes.
Here's a month-by-month look:
Research cards: Jobs (from Jo-Ann's)
List: Download september list 1
Download september list 2
Journal Prompt: apple cut outs from Dollar Tree
Bus box from Target
  • If you could become a cartoon character who would you be?  Why?
  • If you could change 3 things about school, what would you change? 
  • if you could only have a computer OR a TV, which would you pick?  Why?
  • What do you think makes the best lunch?  Why?
  • What do you think makes a happy family?
  • If you could do whatever you wanted right now, what would you do?
  • What do you think about frogs?
  • Write a story: I planted an apple seed, but...
  • What do you think about homework?
  • What if everyone lived underwater?  How would our lives be different?
  • Our class is awesome because...
  • If you were a teacher, what would you  most like to teach?  Why?
  • How is being in 2nd grade different than being in 1st grade?  How is it the same?
  • What is your favorite room in your house?  Why is it your favorite?
  • What if we got a new kid in class--and it was a bear?
  • What do you think about yo-yos?
  • What if animals could talk?  What would you ask them?
  • What if you could walk on ceilings?  What would you do?
  • What is a memory you have of 1st grade?
  • What do you think about school buses?
  • What is your favorite thing about school?  Why?
  • What would happen if you could fly?  When would you do it?
  • Pretend you are traveling with Johnny Appleseed.  Write about your adventures.
  • Write about a time when you were sick.
Research cards: Animals of the World (from Target)
List:  Download october list
Journal Prompts: written on the inside of little note pads and put in a ghost bowl (both from Target)
  • If a witch lost her cat, what could she use for a pet?
  • What would happen if you were in a graveyard at night?
  • Imagine you run a restaurant for monsters. What sorts of things would you serve?
  • What if you were trick-or-treating and your bag broke? What would you do?
  • I think my teacher should be ____ for Halloween because _____
  • Have you ever been really scared? What happened?
  • I wish I weren't afraid of ...
  • How would you make a robot costume?
  • What do you think about spiders?
  • What do you think about mummies?
  • How would you catch a vampire or a ghost?
  • The mad scientist was creating a new monster that could...
  • How do you carve a pumpkin? Write all the steps.
  • What if you had a pet werewolf?
  • Imagine you're walking your dog and he runs into a creepy, old house. You follow him. What happens?
  • Tell all about your favorite thing about Halloween?
  • What were you for Halloween last year? What did your costume look like?
  • Pretend you have a magic broomstick. What does it look like? What does it do?

Research cards: 50 States Facts (from Target)
List:   Download november list
Journal Prompts: written on silk leaves with gel pen (leaves and basket from craft store)

  • Write a letter to a fall tree.  Try to convince the tree not to drop its leaves.
  • What will you do during Thanksgiving break?
  • Write a recipe for cooking a turkey.
  • What if you found a magical pumpkin patch?
  • What if Thanksgiving were in the summer?
  • If your Thanksgiving turkey burned, what would you eat?
  • Imagine you'll turn into a pumpkin at midnight tonight.  Write about all the things you'd like to do before you turn into a pumpkin.
  • Once upon a time there was a turkey who never...
  • Tell about your favorite thing about autumn.
  • Imagine the school voted you principal.  What would you do?  What changes would you make?
  • Write about an autumn day.  What would you do?  Tell about the colors, smells, tastes, and sounds.
  • Would a turkey make a good pet?  Why or why not?
  • If you could have whatever you wanted for Thanksgiving dinner, what would you have?
  • Write a story about a squirrel getting ready for winter.

  Research cards: Insects (from Target)
List:  Download december list
Journal Prompts: written on the inside of gift tags (from Target) and displayed in a gift box (from Dollar Tree)
  • Write a story about the day an elf was your substitute teacher
  • What if you had a reindeer for a pet?  Tell what that would be like.
  • Think of someone in our class who is in need of a friend.  How can you show love and friendship to that person and let them know that you care about them?
  • What do you think about red and green?  Are they good Christmas colors?  Tell your opinion and some reasons why.
  • Should Christmas trees be real or plastic?  Give your opinion and some reasons why you feel that way.
  • Tell about a time you surprised someone with a gift.
  • Do you wish Christmas were every day?  Why or why not.
  • Tell how to wrap a present.  What are some things you could use if you didn't have any wrapping paper?
  • Imagine you won a free ticket to the North Pole.  Write about your experience and things you would see and do.
  • Think about all the things you have in your house.  If you could give away one thing to someone in need, what would you give and why?
  • What if you got a gift that you didn't really like?
  • You've heard of the gingerbread man.  Make up your own special cookie.  What about a gingerbread dinosaur?  Or a chocolate chip cookie shaped like a star?  Will your cookie have sprinkles for eyelashes?  A smiley face drawn in frosting?  Tell about your cookie and draw a picture, too!
  • Draw your family celebrating a holiday.  Then tell about your traditions.
  • The gingerbread man jumped out of the oven and...
  • Pretend that you woke up Christmas morning and your family went on a trip and forgot about you.  Write about what you would do if you were left home alone on Christmas.
  • December is the 12th and last month of the year.  But what if there were a 13th month?  What would it be called?  What holidays would be celebrated this month?  For example, National Waterslide Day.  Write all about your imaginary 13th month and let your imagination run wild!
  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was different.  He used his difference to help.  What special abilities do you have?  How do you use them?
  • What is your favorite Christmas book?  Tell about the story and what makes you like it.
Research cards: Space (from Target)
List:  Download january list
Journal Prompts: foam penguin and polar bear photo frames with the photo space replaced with cardstock (bought on clearance from Hobby Lobby)
**the kids didn't seem too interested in this presentation of the journal prompts.  I don't really love it either.  I'm on the lookout for something else wintery without being Christmasy.  No luck so far.
  • Imagine that you and your friends are in a large field of snow.  What do you do?
  • Write a story called, "The Funny Snowman Adventure"
  • Tell what your day would be like if you lived in an igloo.
  • If you met a talking polar bear, what would you ask i?  What would the polar bear say back?
  • It snowed 5 feet and school is canceled for a week!  What would you do to keep from getting bored?
  • Write everything you know about what animals do in winter.
  • What are your dreams?  Write about the dreams you have for the future.  How will you make them come true?
  • The best part of January is...
  • Would you rather live in a place that gets lots of snow or a place that never gets snow?  Tell what you think and why.
  • Do you like snowball fights?  Why or why not.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. wanted people to live in peace.  Describe your idea of a peaceful day.
  • Would a penguin make a good pet?  Why or why not?
  • Which are you more like: a snowflake or an avalanche?  Why?
  • What do you think about football?
  • Every snowflake is unique.  I am as unique as a snowflake because...
  • Write about a winter day.  Tell about the colors, smells, tastes, and sounds.
Research cards: Presidents (from Target)
List:  Download february list 1
Download  february list 2
Journal Prompts: printed on strips of red, pink, and magenta paper folded and put in heart boxes (from Dollar Tree or Target?)
Download february journal prompts

Research cards: US animals (from Target)
List:   Download march list
Journal Prompts: adhesive labels on rainbow colored Popsicle sticks and put in shamrock bucket (from Michael's).  I tried to sell it as the "pot at the end of the rainbow," but they weren't buying it.
Download march journal sticks
Research cards: Transportation (from Jo-Ann's)
List (not pictured):  Download april list
Journal Prompts: printed on strips of paper and put inside small plastic eggs (from Hobby Lobby).  Stored inside felt Easter basket (so it stores flat!) (from Target).
**I purposely mixed up the tops and bottoms of the eggs before setting out the basket because I knew I'd have some kids (boys) who would think it was funny to spend writing time switching all the colors.  This way I beat them to it!
Download april journal prompts
Research cards: Landmarks (from Target)
List (not pictured):  Download may list
Journal Prompts: lenticular stickers (from Target) in a beach theme.  Adhered to bright cardstock with a handwritten prompt on the back.  Stored inside a plastic coconut drink holder (from Dollar Tree).
  • How could you make a snowman last all summer?
  • What do you do to stay cool when it's hot outside?
  • Pretend you are on vacation.  Draw a postcard and tell a friend what you're doing on your trip.
  • What do you think about bees?
  • If you were an insect, what kind would you be?  What would you do all day?
  • Write a recipe for making lemonade.
  • What will you remember about your 2nd grade teacher?
  • How do you feel about going to 3rd grade?
  • Draw a beach scene and write about a day at the beach.
  • Imagine you built an awesome treehouse.  Tell about it and what you would do there.
  • Did you make any new friends this year?  Who?  How did you become friends?
  • What do you think about coloring on the sidewalk?
  • Would you rather live in a sandcastle, a tent, or an igloo?  Why?
  • Write directions for how to plant a garden.
  • WRite about a happy time you've had with your mom.
  • What if you went to an alien planet and came home with a pet.  What would it be like?
  • What do you think about mother's day?
  • would you rather explore the inside of a volcano or the deep, deep ocean?
  A year's worth of writing fun!

Some of the ideas are for a traditional classroom but could easily be tailored for a homeschool experience.

Credit at:  Second Story Window


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Some Great Fun in History and Science

Classical Conversations Week 23
What are some types of clouds?

Great Find over at

Types of Clouds Craft

Hope to try this at the week's end.....
IMG_8671 copy2
I made the poster sheet to show the kids what they were going to do for each cloud, and then gave them the individual cards to illustrate each cloud.  I recommend that you print the cards or the poster sheet directly on card stock so it is sturdier and it also gives you the background color so it is not white.
This is what we used for each cloud. For the cumulus and cirrocumulus, we mixed equal parts of shaving cream and glue. I had heard about this mixture but never tried it. It is so fun and it dries puffy.
The cumulonimbus is the same mixture of shaving cream and glue and then I added a few drops of black paint to make it gray. The cirrus clouds are chalk marks and the stratus and stratocumulus are cotton balls spread out.

IMG_8670 copy

Here’s a video showing you how to put it together.

 Here is the link for download:

History Sentence:
In the early 1800s, San Martin of Argentina, O'Higgins of Chile and Sim`on Bolivar of Venezuela fought to liberate South America from Spain.