Saturday, June 30, 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Thankful Thursdays-cool luxuries

Today, the temperatures are estimated to reach 100 degrees in my area, and higher as the week ends.  I am utterly and truly thankful that I have a home to stay in and an a/c unit that works.  I know there are many out there with no air conditioning system in their homes, or even a fan, or worse, no home at all.  I'm thankful for shelters for the homeless to go to for relief from the heat, and for ministries that try to provide fans or window units to the elderly and medically weak.   If you are among the fortunate to have the luxury (it is a luxury) of air conditioning, count your blessings today and don't take it for granted.

God bless! 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

How We Became Homeschoolers

As previously posted from my older blog...

HomeSchooling From My Heart-The Journey  Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Home schooling is not really a new thing. It has been around for a very very long time, in fact. But, there has been such a recent surge to home school in the past couple of decades that it causes quite the stir, from the government to down to family, friends, and even strangers you meet in the school supply isle at your local super store. So, I'm going to share my journey in this decision and my heart on the matter. I hope you will read it with understanding, whether you decide to agree or not.

Before my husband and I ever had children, we had the blessing to know others that did home school their children. On of my dearest friends in fact, has home schooled her children from the very beginning and I have observed how well they do. We also had the honor of having a young harpist play at our wedding, who was just early in high school at the time. Her much younger sister assisted her and even played a couple of songs herself. They and their brother were also home schooled. My best friend home schooled her daughter the last 2 years of her high school years. She was able to graduate a little early and has just started college. All of them can think for themselves, are very confident and stable, and have a level head on their shoulders. They are blessings to know.

Honestly, I didn't really think when I first got married that I would actually home school myself one day. At the time, I didn't have the confidence in myself to think I could possibly teach my own children, much less anyone else. But, there was a seed planted in my heart. When we were finally able to have our first child, we lived in a small town in which I had worked with many of the children in the school system. I saw first hand how the system worked, or rather, didn't. However, I was honored to go to church with some of the best teachers in the county. I knew their hearts and thought I would be okay with my child under their watchful eye.

But, something deep down inside wouldn't let me go of the thought of home schooling. So, I began praying. Yes, even as my first child was just an infant, I started praying about this decision that would have to be made one day. And as we all know, those precious years fly by before our very eyes. On and off this went for several years. My husband was not a big proponent at first, and I would never make a major decision like this if we weren't in the same boat together. He knew I didn't have confidence in myself and worried about that. And of course, there is the whole issue of sports. So, back and forth I went, battling with myself, mostly. I would ask myself the same questions that others ask. "What about socialization?" "Aren't you afraid they are going to miss out on something?" "You don't have a teacher's degree, so are you sure you can really do this?"

I brought these questions to the Lord. He knew my concerns, already. But, I believe that the Lord gives you the desires of your heart. I tried to deny this growing desire I had to teach my children at home, but the more I prayed, the stronger the desire actually grew. I started praying that if this is truly what the Lord wanted me to do, then to make it very clear to me and to work on my husband's heart on this matter.

God works in mysterious and even humorous ways, sometimes. A couple of years ago, a young gentleman named Tim Tebow won the Heitzman's Trophey award, probably the most prestigious college football award around. He was home schooled all the way through high school. Not only did this open up a lot of eyes and opportunities, it helped bring my husband around. I also grew in confidence that I could do this home school thing, one year at a time, one step, one day. I also talked to friends at church who's children were in the public school system. All of them encouraged me to home school as long as I can.

The more I prayed, and studied God's word, the clearer His answer to me became. So, this is how my husband and I, together, came to the decision to home school our children. I don't regret for one minute making this decision, even though I know it will prove to be challenging at times. We are grateful for the family and friends we have that have given their full support and are understanding of those that give loving skepticism. It will remind me that others are watching and that I need to be 'diligent to show myself approved.'

This is my journey on how we came to be a home school family. I don't ask for you to agree or disagree, I just ask for your continuing prayers as we start on this new and strange adventure in our lives.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Feed the Birds

*This post was originally posted by me on my older blog, but I liked the activity, so I'm re-posting it to my new blog...enjoy!*

One of my children's most requested bed time songs is "Feed the Birds" from Mary Poppins.  I love to sing it to them because I want to instill in my children a sense of caring for the world around us and the creatures that share the world with us.  Our little feathered friends are easy to help care for and a great way to teach a lesson of taking care of what God has given us.  There are several easy-to-make bird feeder ideas in the internet world, and I'm going to share just a few. 

A very simple and "green" bird feeder idea is to simply find a pine cone, tie some yarn at the top, making sure you have enough to hang from a branch, and cover it with peanut butter.  You can add lard or cornmeal to the peanut butter to help it go down easier, but there is no evidence to suggest that peanut butter can choke a bird.  For an added treat, you can sprinkle birdseed on the peanut butter and pat it down lightly to make sure it sticks. 

Another simple idea is to take yarn and thread it with Cheerios or other cereal that is round with a hole in the center, make a loop, then hang it from a branch.  This is great for small children because you can do counting lessons, or take the colorful cereal and practice with patterns.   If the little birds prefer, you can cover the cereal with peanut butter, and for an extra treat, sprinkle with bird seed.  With this idea, or any of the other ones, you can also keep watch of what kind of birds come to visit your little cafe.  Take pictures or keep a sketch book and then look them up on the internet to find out more about your wild neighbors.  You can also keep track of what time of day the birds visit, how long your particular feeder lasts before you have to create another one, and so on.  The educational lessons are almost endless.

As a fun Christmas idea, take your (real) Christmas tree outside when you are finished, and adorn it with the above ideas until you just absolutely have to get rid of it.  Popcorn is also a safe treat for birds and would look so cute.  What a great idea to get a little extra use out of those trees!

For other ideas, just search the net.  There are several ideas as well as food options for our little friends.  Have fun and feed the birds!! 

Enough Said Saturday

Honey bees...beautiful...enough said.


Funnies on Friday (a day late!)

I know this is already Saturday, but I still want to keep up with my new Funnies on Fridays, so....
Yesterday, Friday, I picked my Buddy up from a week long camp adventure.  After a very long afternoon nap and a good supper, he finally started talking about his experiences.  And he was cracking me up!  So, here is my top 3 list of funny things little Buddy learned or said about camp...

Number 3 ~ the "Fart gun", where you take your hand under your armpit, make a noise and act like you are shooting a gun with your finger.  Buddy says he learned this at camp.  He says, "It's kind of a boy thing, because you have to use your armpit."  I laugh because he had to explain that it's a boy thing.  (I would 'never' have guessed, lol!)

Number 2 ~ Buddy made a new friend.  He said his friend "did crazy things, like he would clap his hands then have everyone else clap their hands."  His friend would sing, "I'm sexy and I know it and I'm not afraid to show it."  Buddy explains the song to us, "It's about inappropriate your underwear and your belly button."  Underwear and belly buttons, yeah, I'm glad to know that's all he thinks it's about, lol!

Number 1 ~ I knew in advance that my Buddy never intended to take a shower the entire week he was at camp.  It's like a secret badge of honor among the boys.  But, I was not lost on the irony of his reason for not taking a shower this year.  "Did you take a shower this week?"  Buddy, "No."  Daddy asks, "Why not?"  His answer, "Because the showers were too dirty."  Not taking a shower for 5 days because the shower stalls are dirty...priceless.

I hope this made you chuckle, laugh out loud, or at least smile a little.  If you can't laugh at yourself, laugh at me!

God bless!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Thankful Thursdays

This is the first of the Thankful Thursdays posts and since I have been missing my oldest while he is away at camp this week, I'm thinking about how thankful I am for my children.  All three of them.  They are such a blessing in my life and I can't imagine my life without them.  I know what it feels like to think you may never have children of your own, and I'm now honestly thankful for those days and years that taught me a lot about myself and drew me closer to the Lord.  I'm thankful for all of my friends that have chosen to adopt a child and make them their own.  Although that opportunity has not been able to happen for us yet, I have not given up hope for the possibility of it in the future.  Whether you have one child or 21 children, they are each a perfect gift from God. 

What are you thankful for today? 

Friday, June 15, 2012

First 50, First Giveaway!

I want to have a fun little giveaway!!  When I reach my first 50 followers, I will give away one of my own creations that I have blogged about.  Perhaps a tutu and coordinating hairbow?  Maybe...but there might be other things coming between now and then I could giveaway.  More details will be given the closer we get to the goal, and the more I blog about.  I'm sure you know some little girly girl that would love a fun, surprise gift.  I hope you will follow me, today and join in the fun.  (And don't be stingy...tell your friends, too.)

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

My First Handmade Hair Bow!!!

With two very cute girly girls, it is inevitable that I learn how to make hair bows.  With Pinterest and Youtube, there is no excuse not to learn.  There are so many amazing resources out there with step by step instructions and even videos, you can learn to make any kind of bow you want. 
I picked Twenty Three Oh One to start my bow making adventures.  Her list and instructions were simple and easy to follow and her pictures were very helpful, especially for this visual learner.

 So...drum roll, please...My First Hair Bow!

I will confess, I did not follow the instructions on the site I chose, completely.  I did not have enough 1 1/2 inch wide ribbon to make a complete one~layer bow.  So, I decided to do the triple bow, only I used one layer with the 1 1/2 inch ribbon, and the other 2 layers were 1inch ribbons.  I think if I had enough ribbon, I would have used contrasting colors with the different size ribbons.  But, as it is, I used left over ribbon that I saved from various gift packaging.  (That, my friends, is called recycling, lol!).
I don't think it's quite 'etsy' quality, yet, but my Sweet Pea was very pleased with me and with the bow, and was a most gracious hair model. 

Here's how it looks on a headband for the littlest ones...
(This was the only still picture we could get of Sunshine, and just before she removed the bow...again!)

All in all, I am happy with my first attempt and my girly girls are happy, too.  And that's what matters to me.  Thanks to Twenty Three Oh One for your awesome directions and pictures. 
I can't wait to make even more!!

God Bless!!

Funnies on Fridays

Every Friday, I will try to post something that I find funny and amusing.  I hope it at least brings a smile to your day.

This week, I have been laughing at my Buddy, now 8yo.  He is insisting on wearing white undershirts all the time.  He wears them alone, under other tees, and even under his pajamas.  He says it's because, "That's what a man does.  And I'm almost a teenager, which is almost a man."  
When he was about 3 or 4 years old, he went through a phase in which he had to wear socks at all times.  Day and night.  The only time you could get him to take his socks off was to take a bath.
My Sweet Pea, now 6 years old, went through a phase just a year or two ago, in which she would only wear dresses.  Because "princesses don't wear pants."  She even told me I was just a "regular queen," not a royal one, because I wore pants.  I can't wait to see what my little Sunshine will come up with. 
What funny phases have your children, grandchildren, or other kiddos in your life gone through?

Remember...if you can't laugh at yourself, laugh at me.  :)