Wednesday, August 25, 2010

2010-2011 Learning Plans and a School Room Spruce Up

We are excited to get back to school this year, and have decided never to take the whole summer off again!  

We have all turned into wild, undisciplined beasts.

Hurray for Dr. Robinson to get us back on track.   We loosely follow his advice.  I say loosely because I could never get through the day without at least a little sugar, and we do not spend 6 days a week on school.  My kids are not as, how shall I say this nicely, academically minded, as the Robinson clan.  My kids have ants in their pants, they like to dance, and do other things that do not include sitting at a desk for so many hours in a day.  We will keep our 4 day week.  Thank you very much.  Fridays are for field trips, catching up, and reclaiming our sanity.

I do add in a few more requirements than the Robinson's basic 3R's only formula.  I'm a rebel.  It's a requirement for being a homeschool Mom.

Here's how it all shakes out:

Madeline 6th grade

Saxon Math (Probably done before breakfast)
Simply Charlotte Mason- Math Pet Shop
Writing- IEW
Grammar- Daily Grams
Phonetic Zoo spelling program
Reading- Robinson curriculum reading list (Slightly tweaked) - done for about an hour during quiet reading time after lunch
Handwriting Without Tears
History/Science - Unit Studies and Homeschool Program at the zoo!
Sew Teach Me - A learn to sew curriculum

(All work completed shortly after lunch)

The Girls Desks

Marney 4th Grade

----"Do we have to do school today?"----
Saxon Math
Writing- IEW
Grammar - Daily Grams
---Break for laps around the house, snack, and checking on everyone else's progress----- 
Phonetic Zoo spelling program
Explode the Code
----More laps, more disrupting checking, snack, some whining thrown in for good measure---
Reading - Robinson reading list - done during quiet reading time
Handwriting without tears
----"Can I call Thomas?  Jacob?  Sofia?"----
History/Science - Unit Studies and Homeschool Program at the zoo!

(Finally done, bedtime)

There is no spell check on Picnik, and I'm too lazy to fix it.  OK, I couldn't take it any more, I fixed it.

Owen 1st Grade
Saxon Math
BJU Press reading program - Level 1
Explode the Code - phonics
Handwriting Without Tears
First Language Lessons- Peace Hill Press
History/Science - Unit Studies and Homeschool Program at the zoo!
Lot's of outside time and Lego building
(Slow to start, but finishes strong before lunch)

My work space

My work space and Ben's corner, still a WIP.

*Also will add in read alouds, right now we are working on "The Tale of Despereaux" lot's of fun to read out loud!

*BTW, in case you are wondering, I'll be keeping Marney's schedule.  She is her Mother's daughter after all.   Our whining begins Tuesday, don't you wish you were here?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

Field Trip! Part 1

Today my sister Jen called and invited us to the marsh.  They came and picked us up in their new big white van.  It was fun to all go together in one vehicle again.  There is even one extra seat just waiting for Ben!

it was a beautiful day, to go for an adventure...

into the tree tunnel....  

We captured the cousins all in one place, at the same time, twice!

Levi is in there somewhere, really.

After the marsh, it was on to Calder Dairy for the best ice cream around.

These two boys could really get into some trouble have some fun if they lived on a farm.

Next up...part 2...When Geese Attack!

Friday, August 13, 2010

More from Sanctus Real

I think I'm going to buy a t-shirt and join their fan club.  And I'm so not the t-shirt and fan club type.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What if Mother Theresa had Listened to her Mother?

From a special edition of TIME magazine "Mother Theresa at 100:  The Life and Works of a Modern Saint"

By 18, after going on several long, thoughtful retreats at Cernagore, she had decided on a more personal investment. "I want to become a missionary," she wrote later.  "I want to go out and give the life of Christ to the people."  When she first expressed that intention to Drana, her mother forbade it, then took to her room for 24 hours before emerging to give her consent.  The Jesuits (who are men) put Gonxha in touch with the Sisters of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary-the Loreto Sisters for short-who were active in Bengal and who accepted her.  In October 1928 a weeping Drana, accompanied by Gonxhaa's older sister, Aga, saw their "flower bud" onto a train leaving macedonia.

"We are called into a life of adventure. It is in our heritage and our call. Jesus uses adventure to confront who we are and make us who we are to be. Adventure may not come in a form you expect or at a time you anticipate. God's adventures are personal, purposeful, and productive. So come, step out into adventure this season. Experience life as He intended - a God-centered adventure."

- Wanda Ventling and Allen Edeker, Life Beautiful magazine Summer 2010

God has plans for our lives.  We may not always understand them, or even like them.  They are bigger than us.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Movin' on up

First let me say, I blame the poor photography on Owen.  Sorry to sell you out buddy, but I cannot tell a lie.

One of these things is not like the other...

The girls and Jim all tested this month for their new belts.  Jim for his 1st geup, and the girls for their 5th geup.

It was quite exciting.  This was the first test for Jim since he started back at TKD.  He left as a brown belt in High School, and has always regretted that he did not earn his black belt.

I have no idea how he has learned all that they have to remember in such a short time.

He. Was.  Awesome.

He has loved getting back to this sport.  He loves coaching and encouraging the kids.  I love that they all have something they can do together.  

I love that they are all getting into great shape, and love the discipline and character building that our kids are learning.  

 I also love that I get to be team Nurse, equipment manager, chief cook & dobok washer.  I carry band-aids with me at all times.  You never know when there is going to be a hang nail that gets out of control.  Don't worry, I can handle it.  I'm trained.

Marney suiting up to spar.

Madeline breaking boards.

I guess there could be a severe splinter once in a while.

I am one proud,  wife/momma.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Love this song..

I heard this the other day on the radio, but I did't catch the artist.  I couldn't stop thinking about it, but never got around to searching for the song.  Then today a friend posted it on Facebook.  Thanks Amanda (who doesn't know my blog exists)!

This song makes me so glad that I am finally in a place with my career where I can take a contingent position, and concentrate on my family!!!   I'm going from 32 hours a week to 16 hours a month!  Yipee!

To lead them with strong hands
To stand up when they can't
Don't want to leave them hungry for love,

Chasing things that I could give up

I'll show them I'm willing to fight
And give them the best of my life
So we can call this our home
Lead me, 'cause I can't do this alone

Sorry it's so big, hope my face isn't visible through the whole thing!

Monday, August 2, 2010

My heart goes out to this family...

They waited for 2.5 years to bring their son home.  He fell ill, and passed away while they were in country, finally completing his adoption.  In all their wildest dreams, I'm sure they never thought they would bring him home in a casket.

I wish they could have had a happy ending.   Fortunately, stories like this one, are far more common.  I love the last line,


The paperwork we have been waiting for arrived last week and revealed that our Ben was hospitalized last month with bilateral pneumonia.  He is OK now, but I feel helpless, and an even stronger sense of urgency to get him home.  This is the second time he has been hospitalized since we committed to him.   Please pray for his health.  We can't wait to get him home and see how he blossoms with the love of a family.

In seemingly unrelated news...

Today I heard from a friend about two local, Christian, OB/GY doctors sacrificing a life of comfort here in America to make a difference in Africa.  They are married, have two young children (homeschooled!),  and are leaving their successful practice here, to spread their knowledge of medicine and love of Christ.

For those who think the medical community is full of heathens,  I wanted to share a positive story.  They are maybe not as much fun to talk about as the negative ones, but much more inspiring.

Let's hope that the Hauflers' tragedy will shed some light on the plight of the most vulnerable, children with special needs in orphanages around the world.  I'm sure the love that this family showed, to a child they could have easily ignored, will make an impact on someone who can make a difference in their lives, as stories from Africa inspired two American doctors.