Wednesday, February 22, 2017

In Memory of My Mom

I though of you today Mom.  I've actually been thinking about you all week.  I remembered all the fun times.  Tea time, zoo trips, and hosting guests in our home.  Hosting guests was always so fun for us kids.  There would often be a fire in the fireplace if it was cold enough.  It was generally the only time we were allowed to consume soda and other fun treats.  Tea time after school with egg salad sandwiches was always enjoyable.  Miss the tea time.  Miss you.

So grateful I took the time to tell you how much I loved you.  Sad I didn't get to talk to you one last time.  We didn't know did we?  None of us.  You were here, and then you were gone.  We were blessed to call you mom.  Blessed you were able to stay home and raise us. I know you are gone in body but I believe your spirit lives on.  You are ever present in our hearts and memories. 

Thank you mom, for who you were and everything you did and sacrificed for us.  Hug your loved ones today.  Cherish every moment with them.  Don't let the distractions of life keep you from creating memories with those you love.

My mom passed away unexpectedly last fall.  She will be forever remembered in our hearts. ❤

You are not promised tomorrow.  I pray you have a relationship with the one who died for you.  Who took all your sins on the cross.  Who is your comforter and your advocate.  Jesus.  If not, I pray you take the time today to seek Him.  Pick up a bible.  Read it.  Let it speak to you and answer your questions.  God's word says that if you seek Him you WILL find Him.  It is appointed for every man to die.  I pray you give your life to Jesus to be Lord of your life.  He promises you eternal life with Him if you just ask, believe, confess your sins and repent (turn away from them).  Find a good Bible believing church and just give it all to Him.  You will not be disappointed or dismayed.  May you be blessed beyond measure in the coming year.

Middle Ages World History Study REVIEW

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

I was so excited to get the opportunity to review HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study: Middle Ages by Home School in the Woods.  I had looked at this curriculum in the past and thought it would be interesting to work through. We received a downloadable copy of the program and it was very easy to download and use. Once unzipped the program loads all the necessary files you need that are accessed via your web browser.

This series of studies currently has four time periods (Ancient Greece, Ancient Egypt, The Middle Ages, and Renaissance and Reformation) with a fifth one on the way.  Ancient Greeece is the newest study with Ancient Rome scheduled to be available in 2018. The study is available as a downloadable file or on a CD.

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

The series is recommended for grades 3 - 8 and could be completed in as little at 5 weeks but that would be a pretty intense schedule.  The publisher recommends an 8 - 12 week time schedule.  The Middle Ages study consists of 25 "stops" that would each be considered a lesson.  You could complete a lesson or "stop" per day but as I mentioned, that would be pretty intense.  The stops are not all the same length and some are longer than others.  The first two stops are pretty intense as far as time goes since you are basically "setting up" your curriculum.  I had planned on completing 3 lessons per week but have found that 2 works better for us.  My son is not a strong writer and dislikes it very much. I had hoped that with all the hands on activities he might be more engaged but it has proven a slight challenge.
The variety and depth of material is wonderful!  There are lots of hands on activities that include:
  • cutting and pasting or taping
  • coloring
  • assembling a timeline and post card rack (paper project)
  • building with sugar cubes
  • creating a newspaper
  • cooking
  • and many more
Binder created to store lesson plans
Scrapbook of Sights binder

Each stop has a 2-3 page Guide Book Text that gives you the lesson story for the day.  There is also a Travel Itinerary which provides the instruction for what needs to be done for the day's lesson that includes projects. As stated before, this is all very hands on and does a great job at engaging the student through assembly of projects, coloring, and even cooking. The activities included in each lesson vary and you do not have to complete every activity in a lesson.  It allows for variation and customization for your particular circumstance.  
Assembled Luggage Folder

The flexibility and ability to use this with multiple ages at the same time make this a perfect fit for multiple age households. I liked it because even though my son detests writing, we can still learn a lot from this curriculum.

Assembling the passport
As I stated before, stops 1 and 2 take a little longer because you are basically setting up the framework for the study.  You will do quite a bit of printing to  create:
  • Scrapbook of Sights
  • Moment in History Timeline
  • Passport
  • Luggage Folder
  • Medieval Times Newspaper
  • Post Card holder and postcards
Finished passport

Everything you need is in the program with links to print all the pages.  The Travel Itinerary gives you instructions on what type of paper to print on and what needs to be done for each project. It is user friendly and the instructions are clear. You will need some extra items like notebook binders, glue stick, colored pencils or markers, laminating pages, colored card stock paper, colored paper, and hole puncher.  I think that if you are on a tight budget you can certainly improvise in many areas.

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

We like this curriculum because of its flexibility and ability to learn through short lessons and hands on activities. I really like the timeline that we chose to create in an accordion style so it lays out flat in one long page.  There are also instructions to just hole punch the pages and put them in a binder. The art and craft type projects really engage the student and help to create variety in each lesson.  I would recommend this study especially if you like unit type studies and hands on craft projects. I think the children learn better and retain more when they are more involved and are able to be fully engaged in the projects that are present in this study.

You can connect with Home School in the Woods at the following links:
Check out some of the other reveiws on the different studies available

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study Reviews
Crew Disclaimer

Monday, February 13, 2017

Foster/Adoption Update

So.  We wait.  And wait.  And wait.  I have said it before and I will say it again.  Fostering is NOT for the faint of heart. We have had our little one since she was 8 months old and she is now over 4 years old and still, we wait for the paperwork for adoption.  Rights were terminated last April.  Yet here we sit, and wait. No reason to really complain, but it does get so tiring waiting for the finalization.  I think there will just be a sense of calm when it is finally finalized.  There are a lot of reasons for that feeling that I will cover at another time.  Just suffice it to say for now that we are anxious to get this completed.  Hmmm.  Lot's of life lessons here, huh?   God says to have patience.

And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience (Rom 5:3)
But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it (Rom 8:25)

He says NOT to be anxious.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God (Phil 4:6)

Ok Lord, so we will wait with patience and pray to not be anxious.  I know He will be faithful to perform that good work in us.  My heart is at peace when I call upon His name.  Jesus.  He is truly our all in all.  He is the reason for our being, and certainly the reason for our faith.  I will trust in you Lord and that the timing of even this event in our life is in your hands.

Blessings to you as you go through your week.  May you find peace in your journey that you are on in your life.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Fat of the Land

Pheasant hunting

So, the boys recently went pheasant hunting again.  They had an opportunity last year to go with one of my husband's good friends from work and they had a blast.  I had never cooked pheasant before and was not even sure I had eaten it before.  I looked up a recipe on All Recipes and found an awesome crockpot one that we tried and absolutley LOVED IT!  They were able to go two weekends in a row this year so we have some nice pheasant put away in the freezer for some future yummy meals.  We actually just finished up some yummy pheasant noodle soup :)

I love that the boys love to hunt together.  I love that my son gets the opportunity to do things like this with his dad.  I love that they got to spend some time with some other men.  These are good experiences for my son.  There was a very kind man there that was hunting and spent some time mentoring and showing my son some tricks of the trade.  I especially love having fresh meat in the freezer that was put there by my boys who pesonally worked to get it there.  It is a blessing and a privilege to still be able to hunt for your food.

I had hoped to use our chickens for meat on the table also, but that hasn't quite happened yet.  We did process a few of the roosters when we first started but haven't done any since.  My hope is that we might buy some meat birds this spring (it's all but here!) and process those.  Our local farm store had Red Rangers last year and I am hoping they get them again.  They are supposed to make good meat birds without all the problems that come from the Cornish crosses.

The challenge with our main crew of chickens is that so many have become pets.  We currently have 24 laying hens and 2 roosters.  I had to recently rehome two of the roosters.  It was sad because one was the son and the other was the grandson of my current top dog rooster.  You can read more about that in my previous post about having one boss. Of our 24 hens two are from our very first batch (Misty Dawn and Gertrude -Gertie) and they will stay until they pass. Several others in the flock have become very dear to us so they will probably get to stay and 10 of them are new layers from last spring.  I have been contemplating who might need to go this spring.  I have not come to any final decisions.

At any rate, being able to put food on the table from something you caught (we have fish in the freezer too), hunted or raised is certainly a great privilege. We can definitely enjoy the fruits of our labor from this.  It will be garden time soon and I hope once again to attempt to have success in this area.  It has been many years since we have had a truly productive garden.  We have battled bugs and weeds horribly each year and one year pretty much lost the whole tomato crop to blight.  Ughh!  It remains a challenge.

How about you?  Do you have big garden plans?  Do you or someone in your family hunt? We are certainly ready for spring around here.  Until we meet again!
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