Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!!!

We made a paper fireplace for Christmas.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Christmas Pic Attempt 1

We tried to take Christmas pictures this last week, but I just could not get the lighting right.

The Crew

Malfunctioning Christmas lights

Sunday, December 16, 2012

First Communion

Jackson had his first communion today and he grinned the whole time. When they passed the elements he made sure that the ushers knew he could have it this time. Of course, he picked up a big piece of element. It was neat to experience it with him.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Break

Since we did not go to Nassau this year, we will take a bit of a longer Christmas break this year. We have Entertaining Angels on the 19th of this month and will go right into break after the distribution. We will return to school in the new year on the 7th.

It looks like we will celebrate Christmas Eve at my mom's house this year and then come home for Christmas. We will have Dollar store gift exchange on Saturday, December 29th as my brother cannot make it home for Christmas Day this year due to work.

What are you doing for the holiday?

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Shepherd

In Pre-K I use Bible ABC Printables which uses a LOTW. Last week it was L and the story came from Luke 15. After hearing the story a couple of times, I asked him what the good shepherd does for the sheep and he said, "He gives them red grass and dry water." I corrected with "green grass and clean water" and he made the correction, but the very next time I asked, he went back to red grass and dry water.

I was his teacher last week as Jordan was not available, so when she ask him today what he had learned last week, he repeated, "He gives them red grass and dry water." I don't know why...but that is funny to us.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Happy first of December!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


The Mamma's vacation went well. The children did school on their own for 2 days and the only thing I had to do was give the special holiday spelling test with words like: turkey, stuffing, etc... For craft they made toilet paper roll turkeys. As you can see...some had difficulty standing up. LOL!

Wednesday, November 21st we had Entertaining Angels and the crowd was lined up in the parking lot before we even got there! I had to have people clear the way so the kids and I could even get into the building. We had 50 fresh whole chickens, 100 pounds of potatoes, and hundreds of cans vegetables  We also had over 400 personal need items. Needless to say...we ran out again. It was crazy, busy and so much fun. Next month will be good. I hope to secure some kinda of small gift to give at Christmas. I was thinking about a gift card to the Family Dollar Store. We'll see.

Thanksgiving was GREAT! It was my birthday and the kids let me sleep in and then made me breakfast in bed. I had scrambled eggs with cheese, ham and a blueberry donut  We laid around and watched old "I Love Lucy" reruns. I had a roaring fire in the fire pit and then later we had our traditional Thanksgiving dinner of grilled cheese and french fries.

There were lots of suspicious phone calls and meetings behind closed doors going on. Of course I was being nosy asking a lot of questions, but kept getting looks of confusion. On Friday morning I was sent to the basement for an hour (which by the way is where I wanted to be in the first place, HMPFFF!) There was a barrage of noise and furniture moving upstairs and the not-so-soft pitter patter of little feet. When I was called upstairs, I was told to close my eyes, something was pinned to my shirt and a tiara was placed on my head. I was led into the dining room and opened my eyes to a beautifully decorated room with purple streamers and the biggest cake ever. It was a surprise for sure.

Sunday was Jackson's baptism and it was so sweet. He was excited and had the biggest smile the whole time. The water was deeper than usual and after he was so buoyant that he could not put his feet back down. ~Smile~ He changed into the free white tux and looked so cute. It was beautiful and the whole family was there.

Monday was back to school and I feel like a I need a vacation from this whole last week.

Peace All!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Indoor Outdoor Purchase

I was able to purchase an outdoor basketball hoop system for the kids for a very reasonable price. I am usually able to assemble furniture, toys and most "some assembly required" items, but this thing....well. The instructions are in Chinese and the pictures with no English words don't look much like any of the parts in the box.

Big Sigh!

So the huge box has been sitting in my living room for almost 2 weeks now.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Mamma's Vacation!

Today I begin my vacation from school. The children have agreed to do school on their own for Monday and Tuesday of next week. I am excited! They will not be doing full curriculum, but will be doing practice and review work. On Wednesday, we have Entertaining Angels with a surprise for our clients.

Fun and excitement!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Swamped & Sometimes Drowning

The last 10 days have been a cray roller coaster of happenings.

One of the positive things is that we had the opportunity to participate in The Race for the Cure Run in our town. It was so fun and encouraging to see so many people there.

9th grade has been ill for many days.

We went to the bounce house with our home school group and the place has changed the rules so that 13 years old and older may no longer bounce. Jordan was so bummed and so were a bunch of other 13 and 14 years old people.

The fall is my favorite season, but raking and bagging leaves is not.

The goal is to have school for 2 more weeks and then to take a fall break.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Weekend Happenings

We had a great weekend. I actually rested on Saturday which was nice. We did rearrange the shed to put the mower in back and bring the snow blower and shovels out to the front, but it was an easy job with many hands helping. We still have so many leaves it is not even funny. The kids did 10 bags of leaves in the front yard alone last week and by Saturday there are easily 7 -8 more bags worth on the ground. The back yard.... Oh My Goodness. We have an Ohio Sycamore Tree that has the biggest leaves. Some have a 14 inch span. Our neighbor has a huge Oak which hangs more in our yard than theirs so we get most of the leaves. So we have quite a few left to rake.

The children took their progress report cards to church yesterday and received signatures from many of the members. It was a nice way for them to be accountable for their school work to others and it was nice to see so many members invested in encouraging the children to do their best.

We use 1 inch white binders for school. The kids keep their schedules, calendar and everything else they need to do school on the run (as we seem to do more than school in the home some weeks). I had a few extra binders, but used the last one to replace a broken one. I got on E-bay to find more and came across an item titled, "1" Heavy-Duty Binders Not Full of Women -- 3-Ring, Clear Overlay, Lot of 12". I fell out laughing! I wrote the seller to tell them how funny it was and they wrote back saying thanks and that he just could not resist. Funny! I still need to find cheap binders.

My Pre-K teacher is ill today so I had to sub for her. ~Smile~

To my local bloggy friend: I am so very sorry and heartbroken for you. I am praying for you and wish you so much Peace!!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

6 Week Progress Reports

The time is flying and yet sometimes it feels like we are standing still. Progress reports have gone out and most are very happy. 1 of my 2nd graders does not have enough grades yet, so we are waiting for that.

Jackson is doing well in most areas. Bible verse memorization seems to be more difficult for him this year. Spelling however is a strong area with him earning 100% on all of his spelling test thus far.

James is doing very well this year. History and Geography gives him a bit of trouble as it is so abstract to him, but he is doing better at keeping up this year.

Jordan is having a wonderful year so far, earning a 4.0 GPA for the first marking period. She enjoys New Testament Survey and Science.

Pre-K is coming along nicely. He is very eager to read and has almost mastered his high frequency words list.

Wednesday is Entertaining Angels. We now have approx. 274 people on our list and are now purchasing between 300 and 400 items each month. It is an amazing and wonderful experience. certainly bigger than we ever imagined.

Moving along....

Monday, October 8, 2012

Garden Finale

We harvested the last of the veggies from our garden yesterday, pulled all of the plants out and raked over the plot. There were tons of unripened cherry tomatoes and a few immature cucumbers left. There were also a few green beans. We put the tomatoes in the window to see if they will ripen. It was a very productive garden and we are already looking forward to next year's.

Morning classes have gone well. Currently the kiddies are upstairs for lunch. My mom is our "lunch lady" during the week and the kids very much enjoy hot lunches everyday. I guess it beats bologna! LOL!

I ordered a cord of wood about a month ago and have already gone through about 3/4 of it. We have had fires in the pit almost every day. Sitting around the camp fire soothes me and I guess I have needed lots of soothing. I really like the guy I bought wood from, so it will be a pleasure to order again.

Better get some grading and such done during this time.

Peace everyone!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

What Happens Next?

This morning Pre-K was working on sequencing. In his workbook it showed pictures and then asked, "What  will happen next?" One of the pictures was eggs in a nest, the eggs cracking, beaks poking out and then baby birds. Jordan pointed to the eggs in the nest and then to the eggs cracking. She asked him, "What will happen next?" and he said, "You make toast!"

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Still Here...

It has been a while since I have blogged. It has been a rough couple of weeks, both emotionally and academically. We have a anniversary that has wreaked some havoc and then our newest 2nd grader is struggling with the new curriculum. Not so much the work, but her confidence level is low. As in the past with my other children, bringing her home from public school has a transition where I have to spend a great deal of time teaching her how to learn. I feel like she was fed information that she had to reproduce, but was not required to search for and find information  She loves being home and if I drive anywhere near where her old school was she hides her face and ask me not to take her back there. I assure her all of the time that she is safe and home.

Anyway... for the record.

9th grade is doing well in school, currently having a 4.0 GPA.
4th grade is keeping up and seems to be doing much better in math.
2nd grade (Jackson) is doing excellent. He works so independently and has tested out of 2 units so far.
2nd grade (Jeanna) is working hard. She has leaned some key information that will lead to more success.

We are still working out some kinks, but making good progress. I hope things will smooth out in the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

One of My Favorite Things

The week did get better. We are still struggling with getting to bed on time. The day just gets away from us and the long daylight trips us up, making dinner late every night.

The little kids had a first this week. We made shish-kabobs on the grill with veggies from the garden; corn, green beans, tomatoes, green peppers, onions and good 'ole hot dogs. They made very interesting kabobs and the 4 year old kept asking for "more stick please".

I bought a cord of wood today and when it was delivered, the guy asked if the boys could help stack it. Well those 2 unloaded and stacked that wood so fast the man wished they were old enough to hire. He said he hires high schoolers and college kids that don't work that hard. He was so impressed that he reached in his wallet and paid both boys $2. Of course...that meant we had to have school outside this morning.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Monday... Oy Vey!!

We have had a rough day today which actually probably started late last night with a real fire (drill) emergency.

When James loaded the dishwasher last night, a plastic lid to a storage bowel was loaded incorrectly. As the drying cycle came around, the lid had fallen onto the heating element and started melting which caused a major burning smell. I was on the couch and even though the detectors did not go off I quickly got the kids up to leave the house thinking it was electrical. As we walked through the kitchen to leave we could smell it was coming from the dishwasher. We opened the dishwasher to stop the cycle and found the melting lid. Whew.... glad that is all it was. I had never had that happen before so I was a bit nervous.

They all did a great job of getting out of bed and getting out of the house in less than 1 minute.

Of course the kids were a bit nervous to go back to sleep so I let everyone sleep in this morning for an extra hour. That seemed to throw every one off their schedule and school was not very productive today. Oh well... we will catch up this week.

9th grade finally started today. She had delayed her start due to many family emergencies last week. She is off to a great start, but the rest of the kiddos....oh my. Lots of weeping and tears today.

Praying for a better tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

New School Room

I have been talking about this for 2 years now and this summer we were finally able to get our school room. We really like it and especially like that we don't have to break down school in the evenings and weekends so that we can eat at the table or have our living room back. Also with the school room being downstairs we actually "leave" school in the evenings which is very much needed.

Custom Monogram!

Pre-K Bible lesson

homework drawers

Joshua is already very good at puzzles

Second and fourth grade busy at work

Working on stacking.

The student with perfect attendance

Pre-K's circle time calendar.

The new and improved play/recess room.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Kidnapping

My brother came from KY to attend the party and was then planning to go to Canada for a little get-away. He ask if he could take Jordan as a surprise and I thought that would be cool. I packed her a bag the night before and pulled out her passport. The kids thought that "Uncle" had left to go home and were sad at his short visit. He had brought a friend home with him and came back in the house to fuss at Jordan for not saying good-bye to Ms. R. She went out to the car to say good-bye and he pushed her in the car and took off driving. She thought it was a big joke and that he was just going around the block. When they got on the highway, she said she was a little nervous, but she knows that Uncle would never hurt her, so when I called she said, "Uncle got me and I don't know where we're going." She said that she then thought they were going out to dinner in the next town, so fell asleep in the back seat. When she woke up later, she was at the Canadian border patrol. When my brother pulled out her passport she said she was so surprised.

She had a BALL!!! They shopped and ate and stayed at a very expensive hotel. She swam and rented a movie and had a king sized bed all to herself. When she saw her suitcase she said she was worried about what I would have packed. (we have a difference of opinion as to what is modest and acceptable clothing) She was surprised that I packed some of her favorite outfits.

All and all it was a great experience for her and gave me a chance to clean that bedroom of hers..."ha ha ha" she says with a smile...

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Adoption Party Success!!

We had a wonderful party! It kinda turned into a backyard camping party as we had the pop-up and RV open, I put up the screen house with the picnic table inside. We had about a dozen camp chairs set up under the awning and a great big 'ole fire in the pit. We hired a hot dog vendor who works downtown on the corner to bring his cart and set it up in the driveway. It was a HIT!

There were about 13 kids running around, we had great music and fantastic fellowship.

I am so pleased and blesses with the building of my family.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Looking Back & Looking Forward

James has been in school for 2 weeks now and has done well. He is anxious to start doing homework full time, which I know sounds odd, but he really likes doing homework.  He has had 2 projects so far; (1) a report on state flowers and (2) a letter to a friend explaining why Peter left his job to follow Jesus. I like SOS a lot, but the projects can get to be much. There are usually 2 per unit, per class. With 5 classes of 10 units each it works out to 100 projects or essays for the year. Too much. I usually only keep the ones that reinforce the lesson and any that sound "fun" to the kids, like in science.

Jeanna finished her first half week last week. She reviewed letter sounds, long and short vowels and phonics. I taught her to count to 200 and we talked about 1's, 10's and 100 places. I will spend 1 more week on that kind of review to catch her up to the 2nd grade curriculum that we use. She is eager to learn, but needs lots of repetition and brain gym breaks.

This week, Jackson starts on Tuesday and Joshua starts on Wednesday.  They are both very excited.

Great news!! We finally finished our new school room! It is Beautiful and we are all so happy. I will take pictures to post later this week. We got the whole basement repainted and the floors had the tile removed and masonry paint applied. This weekend we went down just to sit in the room and grin. LOL!

No school on Monday due to an appointment.

Have a great week.

Monday, August 20, 2012

It's Official!!!

I now have 5 students!!! Our adoption has been finalized.

Jeanna was funny. When I told her that it was final, she said, "Whew! I've been waiting for those papers to be signed!"

We did not have a court appointment as Jeanna was afraid to go before the judge, this is our 5th and 6th adoption and my brother and father were not able to get away, so we just had the judge sign and the agency let us know.

And I am Jordan, James, Jackson, Jeanna and Joshua.

We are having an adoption party in a couple of weeks. This is the picture we used for our announcement.


Thursday, August 16, 2012


My youngest turned 4 years old on Tuesday. He is the one I refer to as "Preschooler". He does have a name... I was kinda waiting until the adoption to introduce them officially. Also, I have decided that he is not going to do the preschool curriculum again, but is ready for Pre-K. I don't usually like to start my kindergartners until they are six, so I am not sure what will happen next year.

Anyway...Happy Birthday, Kid!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

First First Day

Today is James' first day of school. He got up on his own, had breakfast, got dressed and got to the school room before I was even up good. At this point he has completed Language Arts and Math lessons 1 with 100%. on both. Good start!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Olympic Goals

Jordan and my brother both had a serious case of Olympic fever! My brother and I were able to go to the 1996 Games in Atlanta and had planned to go to the 2000 Games in Australia, but I ended up adopting the year before and could not go. In 2016, my brother is planning to go to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and has invited Jordan to go with him. She is super excited and already planning her budget to save money. I am excited for her. It will be such a great experience and the perfect High School graduation present.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


We had orientation Moday and it was crazy. My printer would not "listen" to my computer. Microsoft Office was "not responding" and was nutso, but it was us and everyone was excited to see their new books, schedules and even their homework schedules. My student body has grown so much. Of course, the dog had to be included as he tends to have perfect attendance!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Testing 1, 2, 3

My father has close friends whose grandson was killed in a house fire last week. So very sad as it is reported that the child ran back into his bedroom to hide instead of getting out of the home.

I have mentioned this before. It is important to me. Please check your smoke, fire and CO detectors.  Change the batteries at whatever interval you like...even if the old battery still works. Test you detectors often and then the most important, plan and practice escape routes.

I run practices day and night. During daytime practices, I sometimes have the children wear coats/jackets zipped up and on backwards with the hood up to simulate the darkness, the heat and the disorientation. Teach alternate routes. Practice crawling and feeling for heat. We asked our neighbor if their porch could be our meeting place.

My children STRONGLY DETEST middle of the night drills, but I believe those are the ones that need to be practiced the most.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

That Time Of Year

This is what's going out in tonight's "mail" ( I don't really mail it...just will mix it in with tomorrow's mail).

I think I have start dates figures: 

James, August 13
Jeanna, August 22
Jackson, August 27
Preschool, August 27
Jordan, September 4

I have all of my curriculum except 1 book which is easy enough to get, I just don't want to pay full price for it. I am a very frugal shopper. I am currently working on my portfolio folders. They have become messy and unorganized over the years. 

I am kinda looking forward to getting back into the schedule. Jeanna is very excited... the rest are kinda ready. 

Monday, July 30, 2012

It's Done!

We really really like it!!! It is a solid structure. It's not going anywhere. I hope the next people who buy the house like it too, 'cause I don't even want to think about taking it down LOL! Really though,

I am very pleased with the investment and the boys seem to like it. It smells so good in the boys room right now with the freshly cut and painted wood. Don't worry... I am sure they will have it smelling like dirty socks and undies in no time.

I had to put signs on the doors because every one is all confused now about the boy's room versus mamma's room. I found the preschoolers pajamas on the floor in my room this morning after telling him to take them to his room. Ha Ha.

The bottom bed has a toddler mattress on it for now as I will need to buy a new twin.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Load In & The Build

Please excuse my carpet and floors. I have good excuses for both....but I'll spare you. The bed was delivered in more pieces than expected, but the instructions at least include words versus just pictures.

the very skinny hallway

Ok... I will explain. The previous owners glued the carpet down and that patch is the last bit of glue that needs to be scraped up. 

No! the children will not have a t.v. in their room. This room was the master bedroom and the t.v. is moving.

The Build

more progress....

Friday, July 27, 2012


Triple bunk bed.
This is being delivered to our home today. They boys are very excited. I am a bit overwhelmed with what it will take to get it into my house, down the hall and into the bedroom. An adventure to say the least.


Wow... It's here. How will we get that into that room? I will take pictures.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Splash Pad...Pffffttttt

The county park that houses the splash pad that we enjoy used to be free on Mondays. This year the free day is Wednesday, the same day as the free library shows so we have not been out there this year. So many free little time. LOL! Anyway, The kids were dressed in their swim suits today to play in the water in the back yard and I had to run an errand so just threw them in the car. On the way home, we drove by our local baseball team stadium which has this fountain out front.

Of course, I was laughing and grinning too much to remember to take pictures.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Record Keeping Question

For those of you who home school... how long do you keep completed work? We use a completed drawer and completed file system where completed work is placed in their drawer and I gather it for grading. When  I have graded and recorded the work, it is placed in a completed file. Some things are placed in the kids portfolio, especially if it is a basic skill that I want to track progress on (i.e. writing samples, reading comprehension, certain math skills).  At the end of the year, we end up with really thick files that I tape close and label with the year and grade level and placed in a large storage bin downstairs. After 8 years, I have lots of completed files. I live in a state that requires no testing or paperwork, but want to be sure to have a good records of the kids schooling. Thoughts?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

4 Cans of Black Olives

Someone donated a case of canned goods to us and there were several cans of black olives included. We tried a can and the children did not like them, so I separated the cans out with the intention of seeing if someone at church would be able to use them. Well, last week my 3 1/2 year old started playing with them and he has played with those cans more than I have ever seen him play with any toy. He stacks them and rolls them and spins them. He puts them in and out of a bag, a box and the back of his truck.

Ahhh.... cheap entertainment. ~Smile~

Sunday, July 15, 2012