Wednesday, August 31, 2016

2016-2017 Homeschool Plan, 6th Grade...

Since this is my third go around with 6th grade, one might think it would be easy, no decisions necessary, just follow what you've already done.  Ha, let me tell you, there is no one size fits all.  Not to mention, I'd be bored doing the same thing....yes, I create my own crazy ;-)

As mentioned in a previous post, I'm trying something totally new with Ruben this year.  He is going to use Heart of Dakota Creation to Christ, among other things. I will be modifying the program to meet our needs.   The following is Ruben's Year 6 complete plan...

Bible - The DK Illustrated Family Bible (HOD); Throughout the HOD plan, Ruben will also be studying the Book of Ruth, Jonah, and Esther directly from the bible.

Citizenship - I'm still thinking about Plutarch and will most likely add something later in the year.

History and Literature - I did omit a few of the HOD selections because we already read them or I plan to substitute something that we already own on our shelf.  I will play it by ear when the time comes as far as substituting and/or adding, but for now, the following are Ruben's intended history and lit picks...

The Story of the Ancient World by Christine Miller (HOD)
Genesis: Finding Our Roots by Ruth Beechick (HOD, AO 6)
What in the World? Vol. 1: Ancient Civilizations and the Bible by Diana Waring (HOD)
Draw and Write Through  History: Greece and Rome by Carylee Gressman (HOD)
Dinosaurs of Eden by Ken Ham (HOD)
The Golden Bull by Marjorie Cowley (HOD)
Boy of the Pyramids, A Mystery of Ancient Egypt by Ruth Fosdick Jones (HOD, SCM)
Hittite Warrior by Joanne Williamson (HOD, Sonlight)
Jashub's Journal: An Old Testament Law Story by Simply Charlotte Mason (HOD, SCM)
Within the Palace Gates by Anna Pierpoint Siviter (HOD)
Peeps at Many Lands: Ancient Greece by James Baikie (HOD)
God King: A Story in the Days of King Hezekiah by Joanne Williamson (HOD)
Alexander the Great by John Gunther (HOD)
Cleopatra by Diane Stanley (HOD)
Famous Men of Rome by John H. Haaren & A.B. Poland (HOD, SCM)
City: A Story of Roman Planning and Construction by David Macaulay (HOD, Beautiful Feet)
Traveling the Way by Drusilla McGowen (HOD)
Twice Freed by Patricia St. John (HOD, My Father's World)

Book of Centuries - I plan to have Ruben begin a BOC this year. 

Geography - A Child's Geography II - Explore the Holy Land by Ann Voskamp and Tonia Peckover (HOD)

Math - I plan to use the Math on the Level approach with Ruben this year.  MOTL will allow me to teach math concepts in an order appropriate for Ruben's readiness rather than a contrived scope and sequence.   The program's "Concept Chart" helps me keep track of the concepts he's mastered as well as the concepts I have left to teach.  The program is very flexible and offers enough math instruction for pre-k through pre-algebra.


Apologia's Exploring Creation with Zoology 3: Land Animals of the Sixth Day (HOD)
Birds of the Air by Arabella Buckley (HOD, AO)
Plant Life in Field and Garden by Arabella Buckley (HOD, AO)
Exploring the History of Medicine by John Hudson Tiner (HOD, Sonlight)
Galen and the Gateway to Medicine by Jeanne Bendick (HOD, Beautiful Feet)
An Illustrated Adventure in Human Anatomy by Kate Sweeney (HOD)

Literature - Much of Ruben's literature is a part of his history study this year.  I'm still working out which books he'll read on his own and which will be read alouds for me.  I'm also in the process of planning another book club for Riley and Ruben this year, which will add to their literature.  I will post more about that in the future as it comes to fruition. 

Poetry - Ruben will study the poems of Robert Frost this year through HOD. 

Composition - Ruben will continue oral narration and begin written narration this year.  I also bought Writing & Rhetoric by Classical Academic Press to aid us in this transition.

Grammar - I plan to use a combination of Winston Grammar and Harvey's Grammar, which are both new programs for me as far as teaching.

Latin - I'm debating on Latin. I have English from the Roots Up and may use it in the beginning or I may have Ruben follow along with Riley in Latin for Children (Classical Academic Press). I hope to tie grammar and Latin together to make it more practical as Ruben is a no nonsense kind of guy.  I love the way Henle Latin does this, but I'm a little intimidated since I've never studied Latin personally.  This will be a learning experience for both of us.

Spelling - I'm going to have Ruben try IEW Phonetic Zoo along with Riley.  I'll also pull from How to Teach Spelling, which was a program his tutor referenced at the Children's Dyslexia Center.

Shakespeare - I'm hoping to lead a group of 6th through 8th graders in the study of Julius Caesar toward spring. Shakespeare will be a new adventure for me and Ruben as well.

Art - Ruben will participate in our local homeschool art class.

Music - Ruben will participate in our local homeschool choir.

I'm really looking forward to Ruben's academics this year.  Since learning to read, he has blossomed in his thinking.  I'm hopeful for a positive year of transition to help him gain more independence.  As mentioned above, I'll be modifying his curricula to meet his learning style.  I'm excited about the mix of great books, audio material, and hands on drawing opportunities that HOD has to offer. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

2016-2017 Homeschool Plan, 7th Grade...

I can't believe RileyAnn will turn 13 years old soon!  She is officially entering middle school this year.  As mentioned in the past, Riley has asked for more independence so I'm splitting her and Ruben this year in pretty much every subject.  I'm sad for me and excited for her all at the same time. This is my second go around with 7th grade and it looks considerably different this time.  I've learned a great deal over the years in this homeschool venture. Overall, I think it's going to be a good year.  Without further ado, today, I am finally able to share her 7th grade plan...

Bible - Ambleside Online Year 6 Old Testament of "Through the Bible" plan.  Since we read New Testament and church history last year, I'm only going to assign her the Old Testament portion this year.  The plan is laid out as follows:

Term 1: Genesis; Psalm 1-20; Proverbs 1-6
Term 2: Job and Exodus 1-24; Psalm 21-37; Proverbs 7-11
Term 3: Exodus 25-40 and Leviticus; Psalm 38-55; Proverbs 12-16

In addition, Riley will copy the Psalms as she reads them into Do You Journible? Psalms 1-72, The 17:18 Series.  I actually bought this for myself, but after seeing it, decided it would work well for Riley.  I will be ordering another copy for myself so I can copy the book of Psalms along with her.

Missionary Study

Jungle Pilot: The Life and Witness of Nate Saint by Russell T. Hitt
God's Smuggler by Brother Andrew
Teresa of Calcutta by D. Jeanene Watson

Citizenship - I'm still thinking about Plutarch and will most likely add something later in the year.

History - Beautiful Feet Ancient History; in addition, Riley will read the following books as part of her history study:

Genesis: Finding Our Roots by Ruth Beechick (AO 6)
Adam and His Kin by Ruth Beechick
The Story of the Greeks by H.A. Guerber (AO 6)
The Story of the Romans by H.A. Guerber (AO 6)
The Boys' and Girls' Herodotus by John S. White

Book of Centuries - Riley will begin keeping a BOC this year.

Geography - Riley will be mapping the world this year based on a the Classical Conversations Challenge A Debate model. We saw it put into play last spring when we observed a CC Challenge A class.  She and I were both very intrigued by it.

Math - Lial's Basic College Mathematics, We are trying something totally different this year for math.  I began hearing rave reviews of Lial's math years ago on the Living Math Yahoo Group.  This spring, I happened across a copy at a used book sale.  After a bit of online networking, I found out about My Homeschool Math Class, where Mrs. Perkins teaches online classes using Lial's.  Riley is signed up for the online math class.  This will be our first experience with online courses.  I'm looking forward to trying something new.

Science - Apologia's Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology and Exploring the History of Medicine by John Hudson Tiner

Natural Science - Keeping a Nature Journal by Clare Walker Leslie; Secrets of the Woods and School of the Woods by William J. Long (AO 3 & 6)

Nature Study - Riley will venture out on a weekly nature study.  A while back I bought Journaling a Year in Nature from Simply Charlotte Mason to guide her in her study.  I have been on again off again with nature study, but Riley has been fairly consistent.  I'm interested to see what she does with this journal.

Literature - I'm in the process of planning another book club for Riley and Ruben this year and will post more about that in the future as it comes to fruition.  The following literature will be assigned to Riley by term.  In addition, she has a "Free Reading" list to choose from, which is a conglomeration of AO Free Reads from various years.

The Winged Watchman by Hilda Van Stockum (Sonlight)
Black Ships Before Troy and The Wanderings of Odysseus by Rosemary Sutcliff
The Ides of April by Mary Ray (Sonlight)

Poetry and Fairy Tales

Gilgamesh by David Ferry
The Blue Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Composition - Riley will continue with oral and written narration.  I also purchased The Lost Tools of Writing from the CiRCE Institute, but am trying to figure out whether or not to incorporate it this year.  I'm going to see how it goes, I just may wait until next year.

Grammar - Jensen's Grammar by Frode Jensen (AO 7)

Latin - Latin for Children (Classical Academic Press)

Spelling - We are going to try IEW Phonetic Zoo this year for spelling.  Riley and I both love All About Spelling, however, if something was going to fall by the wayside, it was this.  At the end of last year, Riley asked if there was a spelling program she could work through independently...I guess she was sick of waiting on me :(  After a bit of research, I found IEW's program and we've decided to give it a try.  We always have AAS to fall back on.

Shakespeare - I'm hoping to lead a group in the study of Julius Caesar toward spring.  Shakespeare will be a new adventure for me.  Although Riley is familiar since reading Lamb's Tales from Shakespeare a couple of years ago.

Logic/Rhetoric - Riley's been working through Building Thinking Skills for the past couple of years and will finish it up this year.  She will also be reading It Couldn't Just Happen by Lawrence O. Richards, which is a Sonlight, Ambleside Online, and Classical Conversations recommendation, in addition to The Fallacy Detective by Nathaniel and Hans Bluedorn (AO 7).

Handicrafts - Riley is interested in learning to crochet.  Since I have Handicrafts Made Simple by Simply Charlotte Mason, she will most likely use it to learn.  I'm also thinking about having her chose a couple projects from Nature Smart by Gwen Diehn.  Riley enjoys the outdoors and is very crafty so I think this will be a good fit for her.

Art - Riley will participate in our local homeschool art class.

Music - Riley will participate in our local homeschool choir.

Well, there you have it!  In looking back, Riley's plan looks a bit lofty.  However, when divided over three twelve week terms, I believe it's manageable.  Of course, I'll adjust accordingly and post reviews throughout. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Restful Teaching Seminar Notes...

Inline image

I had the opportunity to watch the Restful Teaching seminar by Andrew Kern and Matt Bianco with a friend via download replays and it was fabulous!  The seminar had five sessions, including:

  • Restful Teaching: Why restful teaching rises when teaching is oriented toward perceiving truth and Truth
  • Restful Planning: There are three modes of teaching/learning (the three columns) that enable us to plan restfully
  • The Restful Curriculum: The arts of truth-fishing
  • Restful Pedagogy: Teaching truth
  • Restful Assessment: Evaluating truth perception

Today, I thought I would share my notes in the hope of easing some anxiety you may have as we gear up to begin the 2016-2017 academic year.  I've highlighted some key points in pink that stuck out to me.  If you've watched or were able to attend the Restful Teaching seminar, I'd love to chat in the comments section below.

Restful Teaching

Restful teaching is not dumbing down
We should ask ourselves, "Is it philosophy if it can't be put into practice?"
Principles govern practices, practices are individual

Andrew Kern suggested 5 principles

  1. Principles set you free
  2. Practices not derived from principles enslave you - a person who is not thinking for himself is not a free person
  3. Bad caricatures lead to bad thinking, bad thinking leads to bad actions
  4. Therefore, we need to align our thinking and actions - thinking guides actions (this is wisdom)
  5. Everything begins with a caricature

Caricature -
  1. a picture, description, etc., ludicrously exaggerating the peculiarities or defects of persons or things:
His caricature of the mayor in this morning's paper is the best he's ever drawn.
  1. the art or process of producing such pictures, descriptions, etc.
  2. any imitation or copy so distorted or inferior as to be ludicrous.

What we are is more important than what we do

Saying "yeah, but" is Socratic discussion

Restful Planning

Matt Bianco began with Where is the Lord? - we see this in the Gospel of John, chapter 1

The object of education is to train our children to perceive truth, so when truth is the Lord, they recognize Him. 

There are two truths - upper case "T" truth and lower case "t" truth

Truth is God. Everything else is truth.

We need restfulness in rigor and diligence

     (Logos Incarnate)
       (art of truth perception)
Discuss an artifact or phrase
Contemplation of artifact or phrase
Reproduce (assessment)
Joy incarnate
Feedback on mastery of the given skill or art

adj (usually immediately postpositive)
1. possessing bodily form, esp the human form: a devil incarnate.
2. personified or typified: stupidity incarnate.
3. (Botany) (esp of plant parts) flesh-coloured or pink
vb (tr)
4. to give a bodily or concrete form to
5. to be representative or typical of
[C14: from Late Latin incarnāre to make flesh, from Latin in-2 + carō flesh]

To incarnate means to become flesh. The incarnation of Jesus is when the human nature (Jesus the man) was added to the nature of God the second person of the Trinity. It is where God became a man (John 1:114Phil. 2:5-8). It was the voluntary act of Jesus to humble Himself so that He might die for our sins (1 Pet. 3:18). Thus, Jesus has two natures: Divine and human. This is known as the Hypostatic Union.

Every piece of information orders the soul towards Truth if you use it to do so

Curriculum makes you a slave

How to implement chart above:

Choose any subject (ex. History)
Make list of truths/principles regarding that subject
Make list of desired skills you want your child to attain while studying that subject
Make list of content to study about that subject - should be smallest and most insignificant list

"Succession is difficult." - Andrew Kern

It's totally OK to learn as we teach.

  1. Identify the goal or desired outcome of teaching each subject
  2. What column on the chart does that goal come from?
  3. Teach accordingly/appropriately
  4. Having taught based on the column, assess them, give specific feedback

Constantly reorient, repent, and take your time

Content is less important than Truth.  Truth exalts content to its honorable place as a servant, but when content raises itself to the position of master it renders everything meaningless.

Truth is way more important than skills.

Restful Curriculum

7 Liberal Arts - grammar, logic, rhetoric, mathematics, geometry, harmonics, astronomy

Mathematics is a place of rest.  It's orderly and ends with an answer.

Restful Pedagogy

Don't try to justify the reason for teaching - don't reduce to utilitarian (ex. You will need this math because some day your going to be a ….) - in line with Charlotte Mason

Restful Assessment

Goal is to point students toward Logos - orient towards Truth

We want to perceive and embody Truth.

Curriculum: learn to perceive Truth

Pedagogy: Incarnate the Logos when we teach so that the student having perceived the Truth has incarnated.

Students will learn what I embody, not what I intend to teach.  (modeling for imitation)

More than any other lesson, we must teach how to have faith in a world that doesn't have it!

Ephesians 5:1

We have to demonstrate faith in discord.

Assessment: Able to perceive and therefore incarnate Truth/Logos of the lesson

Friday, August 12, 2016

Friday Findings: Liberal Arts and Servile Arts, Grammatical and Rhetorical Terms, Dysgraphia, and More....

This week, I happened across Liberal Arts and Servile Arts from 2009, written by Andrew Kern.  It put me in mind of Charlotte Mason's Principle 12, which is a great reminder as many of us are making preparations for the new school year.

I keep hearing and seeing words like "progymnasmata", "refutation"  and "chreia" in classical education circles, particularly when it comes to writing.  After clicking around online, I found this Glossary of Grammatical and Rhetorical Terms quite helpful.  Also, I now understand how Classical Academic Press came up with their Writing & Rhetoric titles :)

In Trouble with Handwriting? It Could be Dysgraphia Marianne gives a great list to help identify a child struggling with dysgraphia.

Joshua Gibbs hit the nail on the head in The Teacher is the Chief of Sinners!  It'a a bit unsettling really.  How many times have I pointed out the sliver in someone else's eye before seeing the plank in my own?  The last line in summary was humbling in a goose bump sort of way.

Hot, sultry summer days with bare back and skinned knees reading The Snowy Day ;-)

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

2016-2017 Curricula Choice - Beautiful Feet Ancient History....

It occurred to me that I keep mentioning the fact that we'll be using Beautiful Feet this year, but I really haven't shared the plan so here goes.  RileyAnn will be using Beautiful Feet Ancient History as her primary curricula for 7th grade.  She's really excited about the great books she'll be reading and I'm very pleased with the intermediate level book choices as well.  Here's the list of suggested resources and literature used in the guide, as well as a little bit about our plan for each suggested resource:

BF Ancient History guide - We will be using the first half or intermediate section of the guide, which was written for 5th - 8th grade.  The guide is intended to be completed in one traditional school year.  There are 71 lessons total in the intermediate section so I am scheduling Riley to complete about two lessons per week.  She will work independently on the reading and notebook assignments.  I will listen to oral narrations and read written narrations weekly, with periodic checks on her notebook.  We will also have regular discussion prompted from the study guide questions.  There is an answer key in the guide for the discussion questions.  I will give Riley a copy of the lessons for her to use as her guide on which, I will mark and highlight the questions, writing prompts, mapwork, etc. that I wish her to complete. I will retain the actual guide for myself so we can stay on the same page.

Streams of Civilization text and test booklet -  I was a little up in the air about using this book as some have reported it to be very dry.  However, I think in the start we'll give it a try and play it by ear.  Upon skimming the pages, there looks to be a lot of good information there and I like the fact that it's biblically based.  I will not be administering the tests.

The Student Bible Atlas by Tim Dowley - Riley will complete the mapwork in the BF Ancient History guide using the Bible Atlas for guidance.  I did end up purchasing the new edition and I hope it matches up.  It really is a beautiful book.

Ancient History Timeline - We will not be using the BF Ancient History Timeline.  Instead, I hope to encourage Riley in using her Book of Centuries.  You may recall, I made the BOC last year, however, it didn't get used.  I failed to instruct and remind Riley about how to incorporate it into her study.  This year, I aim to walk her through the process for the first few weeks or however long it takes to become a habit.  I also hope to begin keeping my own BOC.

Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt by Elizabeth Payne
Tales of Ancient Egypt by Roger Lancelyn Green
Pyramid by David Macaulay
The Golden Goblet by Eloise Jarvis McGraw
Ancient Greece by Christine Hatt
D'Aulaire's Book of Greek Myths by Ingri and Edgar D'Aulaire
The Children's Homer by Padraic Colum
Augustus Caesar's World by Genevieve Foster (also used in AO Year 6)
Galen and the Gateway to Medicine by Jeanne Bendick
The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth Speare
City by David Macaulay
The White Isle by Caroline Dale Snedecker

Doesn't that look like a great literature list!  We're both looking forward to it and as mentioned previously, a few of the books cross over with Ruben's HOD Creation to Christ study.  I will also be adding a couple of books from Ambleside Online Year 6 to Riley's Ancient History study, but will explain more about that in a 2016-2017 curriculum overview post.  I am really excited about the potential discussion within the family as we begin our journey through Ancient History this year.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Updated List of Language Arts, Bible/Character, Electives, and Other Misc. Books for Sale....

Updated 9-21-2016  Updated 11-23-2016

Below you will find our latest list of Language Arts, Bible/Character, Elective, and misc. teaching resources for sale.  Some of the books are ex-library and some are from a private collection.  Workbooks are clean, new, and unused unless noted.  There is a variety of curricula and study guides as well as living books.  The prices do not reflect shipping. I accept PayPal and ship media mail within the U.S.  Please use the contact form on the right side bar to send inquires and desired list.

Thanks so much for your consideration,

Michael Clay Thompson (MCT) Voyage Level $160 set
    Complete set with all new unused student material as well as teacher book.  The Caesar's English II student books, part 1 and 2, are still in shrink wrap, pictured on the lower right corner.  This is a fabulous all inclusive language arts program! I will also include printed lesson plans/schedules.

Writing & Grammar Books

Daily Guided Teaching and Review for 2nd & 3rd Grades by Wanda C. Phillips $5

Language Lesson for the High School Student 2 by Sandi Queen – student book & key $10

Many Luscious Lollipops – A Book about Adjectives by Ruth Heller $4

Up, Up and Away – A Book about Adverbs by Ruth Heller $4

Zaner-Bloser Handwriting Practice Master Student Workbook (cursive) grade 3 $3

Bowmar/Noble Handwriting Level F (cursive workbook) $3

Quad-Line Advanced 3/16” Ruling 100 sheet pack $1 each

The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. & E. B. White (hardcover) SL AO 9 $4 each

Scholastic Success with Writing Grade 5 $3

Evan-Moor Daily Language Review Grade 2 $4

Evan-Moor Daily Language Review Grade 5 $4

Evan-Moor Daily Language Review Grade 6 $4

Reading, Phonics, Vocabulary & Spelling Books

Scholastic Teaching Reading with Bill Martin Books Grades 1-2 $2

Spectrum Word Study and Phonics Grade 5 $4

Claims to Fame – Fourteen Short Biographies – Book 3 $3 each

Claims to Fame – Fourteen Short Biographies – Book 2 w/key $5

Reading Response Forms by Classroom Complete Press grades 1-6 $5

Spelling Power 3rd edition (3-hole punched in a binder – includes 2 new Student Record Books) $15 set

Bob Books – Levels 1, 2, & 3 $4 each level

Wordly Wise – prices as marked
-       Word Wise, Expanding Vocabulary with Roots and Prefixes (student book w/answers) $4
-       Wordly Wise 3000 2 Teacher’s Key $1
-       Wordly Wise 3000 3 Teacher’s Key $1
-       Wordly Wise 3000 4 Teacher’s Key $1
-       Wordly Wise 3000 6 Test Booklet & Answer Key $3
-       Wordly Wise 3000 7 Test Booklet & Answer Key $3
-       Wordly Wise 3000 8 Test Booklet & Answer Key $3
-       Wordly Wise 3000 11 Answer Key $1

Vocabulary in Action by Loyola Press Level E (student workbook) $3

A Troll Question Book set of 10 books $2
-       Seeing
-       Thinking
-       Smelling
-       Hearing
-       Touching
-       Tasting
-       Who?
-       What?
-       Where?
-       Why?

The Writing Road to Reading by Romalda Bishop Spalding $30 set
-       Starting a Spelling Notebook by Mari McAlister
-       5th edition Writing Road to Reading
-       McCall-Crabbs Standard Test Lessons in Reading
-       Spalding Word Builder Cards
-       Phonogram Cards
-       Misc. notes for using program

Study Guides

The Biggest Bear w/book $4

The Westing Game w/book SL $4

Misc. Study Guides $2 each
-       Oh, The Places He Went: A Story About Dr. Seuss
-       Ishi, Last of His Tribe
-       Arthur’s Honey Bear

Total Language Plus Guide - The Wheel on the School SL $10

Progeny Press Study Guide: The Bridge $4

Art, Music, Foreign Language, & Home Economics

Art & the Bible for Children by Barry Stebbing (NEW hardcover) $20

Feed My Sheep by Barry Stebbing – Student book with videos $30 set

Come Look With Me – American Indian Art by Stephanie Salomon (hardcover) $4

Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists – Monet by Mike Venezia TQ $3

Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists – Grant  Wood by Mike Venezia (hardcover) TQ $3

The Art of China by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) $5

The Art of the Woodland Indians by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) $5

The Art of the New American Nation by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) VT $6

The Art of Colonial America by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) VT $6

The Art of America in the Gilded Age by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) VT $6

The Art of India by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) $5

The Art of the Old West by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) $5

The Art of Egypt under the Pharaohs by Shirley Glubok (hardcover) $5

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards $4

Kids Colorpix My Favorite Masterpieces Assorted Cards & Envelopes $3

The Gift of Music, Great Composers and Their Influence by Jane Stuart Smith & Betty Carlson $5

Linnea in Monet’s Garden by Christina Bjork (hardcover, ex-library) $4

Sketching Outdoors in Autumn by Jim Arnosky (hardcover w/Mylar, ex-library) $4

Sketching Outdoors in Autumn by Jim Arnosky (hardcover w/Mylar, ex-library) $4

The Yellow House by Susan Goldman Rubin (hardcover, ex-library) $4

Ed Emberley’s Fingerprint Drawing Book (ex-library) $3

Bible, Character, & Misc. Resource Books

Bible Quest: God’s People, God’s Land – Home School Teacher’s Edition $5

Treasury of Bible Stories (hardcover) $4

3 in 1 (A Picture of God) by Joanne Marxhausen $3

Little Visits with God by Allan Hart Jahsmann & Martin P. Simon $3

More Little Visits with God by Allan Hart Jahsmann & Martin P. Simon (hardcover) $3

Releasing Your Potential by Myles Munroe (book and workbook) $4 set

My Tall Book of Proverbs by Donna Huisjen (hardcover) $1

David by Beth Moore (hardcover) $4

Egermeier’s  Bible Story Book by Elsie Egermeier (hardcover) SL K $7

Egermeier’s  Bible Story Book by Elsie Egermeier SL K $5

Hurlbut’s Story of the Bible for Young and Old (original 1932/1947 hardcover) $10 each

The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren (hardcover w/jacket) $3

The Seat of the Soul by Gary Zukav $1

Nearing Home by Billy Graham $2

Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo $2

The A Life of Faith Collection based on books by Martha Finley (Elsie, Millie, Violet, Laylie) $3

Martha Stewart’s Homekeeping Handbook (hardcover w/jacket) $4

What your Fifth Grader Needs to Know by E. D. Hirsch (hardcover) $3

The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease $3

You Can Teach Your Child Successfully by Ruth Beechick grades 4-8 $4

Honey for the Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt $3

Sue Patrick’s Workbox System Starter Kit for 2 Children & A User Guide book $20

Big Book of Books and Activities by Dinah Zike $3

The Message (hardcover - New Testament) by Eugene Peterson $2

Zondervan NIV Women's Devotional Bible (hardcover) $5

Little Ladies series by Sandi Queen (new) $10 set
- Dressing for God
- Speaking to Please God

- Keeping Myself Pure for God

Saturday, August 6, 2016

When Your Ideal Meets Reality in an Unforeseen Way...

Love the utility sink and laundry room combo.  Look at all that storage space! Oh how I dream!:   

On the top you see a lovely looking utility room with stainless steel sink and counter top.  It is neat and tidy, freshly scrubbed and even appears to have an in tact faucet.  Now look below....Yup, that's my utility sink faucet.  It came right off in RileyAnn's hand this morning while she was making bottles for the calves.  If that wasn't bad enough, while taking the photo, I noticed all the dirt and grime surrounding the sink and faucet that I haven't cleaned. This, added to my homeschool planning failure, has caused me to see that my ideal sure is not meeting my reality.

Spring is always such a busy time here on the farm.  There's baby animals, ball, and book/thrift sales.  We're trying to finish up those last few lessons when the weather breaks after what feels like forever of snow, cold, and being cooped up.  Everyone wants to get outside!

This spring, I had a plan.  We finished up the bulk of our studies in mid May, everything except history.  Both kids were playing ball.  I was running around buying and selling books, as well as thrift saling to purchase our wardrobes for the coming year.  I was expecting chaos as usual, but planned that it would end with June. As a matter of fact, I didn't even make the pages of my calendar/planner for the second half of the year.  I purposely left them blank in the hopes of creating time off.  In July, we would have no outside commitments.  We were going to be home.  I was planning to pick our history study back up.  I was going to organize the school room and create fresh plans for fall.  In between, we would have beach days, cook outs, and leisurely reading.

I was also planning to try something new this fall.  We were going to start school in early August so we could have more breaks throughout the year, possibly testing a Sabbath school schedule.  I figured we'd all be refreshed and ready for a new start after our relaxing July.  This was my ideal.

Well, lo and behold, July came and reality set in.  The kids were offered a job.  The day after celebrating our independence, they were to begin pulling giant ragweed from organic corn fields.  The job would be short term and it was a chance for them to earn money.  It would be Ruben's first official employment outside the home.  It sounded like a great opportunity, however, the job was too far away to drop them so I would sit and wait at a friend's house while they worked.  I lost the first two weeks of July doing what felt like nothing.

Next, I was asked to volunteer for VBS again this summer.  I felt like I should since I had three kids participating.  It was Levi's first year attending and I was to lead the preschoolers.  Here went the third week of July away from home!

The worst part was the first day, Monday, when we arrived back home from VBS, shortly after noon to no water.  We have tannin and iron in our water and it had plugged the pump and the water lines.  We did not have water fully restored until Thursday!  Prior to the water stop, we made an impromptu play date with some acquaintances from the city who had never been to our home.  I debated on canceling since we had to use ice cream pails of borrowed water to flush the toilet, however, in the end, I decided the show must go on.  

At this point, I was down to one week left of July and you may have guessed that it did not go off without a hitch.  The Farmer received a call from a neighbor friend stating his elderly mother had fallen and refused medical treatment.  It was several days later and she was since unable to move from the chair.  He asked us to come over to help.  It took us three long visits over a four day period to convince her to allow us to take her to the hospital.  Needless to say, I am not the nurse type and was totally out of my comfort zone!

Now that we're heading into the second week in August, the reality is that I didn't even come close to reaching my ideal.  I have no lesson plans to show and no beach days, though we did sneak in two different water park trips.  The school room did not get organized.  Not only didn't we pick up and finish our history from last year, but I didn't get a single book read.  One might even say, my reality was dire compared to my ideal.

The funny thing is, I don't feel robbed or jaded.  I'm actually fairly calm, cool, and collected.  When I look back instead of seeing my ideal slip down the drain, in reality, I see God's ideal coming to fruition.  I watched my kids learn responsibility and gain employability skills.  I modeled service for them within our church family. We persevered through four days and near 100-degree temps with no running water, cultivating new friends along the way.  Lastly, I learned humility from our neighbor in the most humbling of times.  All the planning in the world, couldn't have prepared me for the last five weeks.

Today, was a new day.  We sorted clothing the kids have outgrown and cleaned the garage.  I updated book sale lists and answered neglected e-mails.  The Farmer cut hay.  Riley and Ruben helped with many odd chores.  We may be no where near my ideal as we begin this second week of August, but I see we're all the better for it.