Thursday, August 27, 2015
Tuesday, August 18, 2015
This summer, I've been spending a lot of time getting ready for our new year. Five kids in different levels means a lot of planning, but that's okay. I'm enjoying the planning once again which tells me that I really really needed some time off.
I've also been busy with our garden this year. It was the biggest ever but we still had some disappointments. The carrots refused to grow and I planted them twice. Not really a disappointment, but I have enough cucumbers to feed an army. We have a ton of pickles left from last year so I definitely do not need anymore of those! The tomatoes haven't really come in yet....a few a day. Nothing to can with. Its supposed to be cool here today and tomorrow so I'm not sure if these green tomatoes will ever turn.
so far this year I've canned:
7 qts of peaches
9 half-pints of peach jam
25 quarts of green beans
3 pints pickles
3 pints of relish
4 pints of salsa
And I've frozen:
Many many green peppers cut up
Lots of jalapenos to make fresh salsa this winter
3 quart sized bags of green beans
52 quart sized bags of fresh corn cut off the cob
8 bags of shredded zucchini to make bread this winter
and a ton of zucchini and eggplant diced really small to feed the chickens this winter.
I still have peppers and green beans coming in. The zucchini and eggplants are still producing. The onions will be pulled when the tomatoes are ready to make sauce. We've enjoyed 8 cantaloupes so far this year. The only two watermelons that came up, my son accidently ran over with the lawn mower because he couldn't see them and we have about 8 pumpkins coming in.
So, right now, I'm in the midst of canning and freezing. The two pigs will be taken next month to the butcher so we'll have pork for the year. My chickens were wiped out by a predator (probably a raccoon) this spring so I got a bunch of new hens. They won't be laying for a while. I was going to wait so I didn't have to feed chickens over the winter but it seemed silly to wait with the egg prices as they are. And the cow will be ready to butcher this spring. So very thankful for this little homestead!!
I promise to post pics later on. Right now I'm just busy busy! Enjoy your day!!
Sunday, March 29, 2015
Since then, I've been extremely lazy. I have tons to do and just now starting to get some ambition to do stuff. Maybe because spring is finally in the air!
Here's what's been going on here:
- TL tested for and received his red belt in taekwondo. Only brown, brown with black stripe and then black. Can't wait for that one!
- Our beloved Shadow had to be put down last week. His legs/hips gave out on him. We tried for a few days to deal with it but he wasn't eating either so we had to put him to sleep. It was a horrible day. THe kids took it hard and so did I. Even now I'm tearing up. He was so patient and caring. We definitely miss him around here.
- Bug-a-bug is also missed. She went to grandma's Friday and we will pick her up on Easter when we go down for the day. She's helping my sister-in-law scrapbook....graduation is in May and she's not ready with the pics yet.
- I finally finished the wallhanging for the living room. Now I just need to hang it up.
- American Heritage Girls is coming to an end for the year. I'm a little nervous for next year as I will become the coordinator. I'm praying for lots of guidance and great leadership skills.
- I'm working on a Sunday school program for our 6th and 7th graders. A tour of the bible....one year the New Testament and the next is the Old Testament. I'm hoping that the kids will learn a lot and be ready to enter into our Remnant program for 8th graders with a little more knowledge under their belts.
- I'm working on some geneaolgy.....just discovered an ancestor that was a life guard for George Washington. I don't know much about the life guards so I hope to learn more.
- Of course, looking at curriculum for the next year. Our homeschool convention is in a few weeks and I'm looking forward to going. I need to recharge my batteries.
- And lastly, we took two seven month old pupppies in. Brother and sister: lab/irish setter mixes. Its been forever since we had puppies. Shadow was nine months when we got him....already potty trained but still chewing. Have to start everything with these two and train them to stay on the property. They are adjusting well. Oliver is loving and wants to please. Jasmine is very very timid but very sweet. I'm so pleased that we kept them together. They were the last two and I don't know if she would have done well in a home by herself. She lights up around her brother and is being more forward with us now.
Saturday, December 6, 2014
I found myself struggling trying to homeschool and go to college full time so I made a few changes. I'm getting up a little earlier to try to get some of my reading done before I start their school day and I changed some of our curriculum. As a history major, I love to design my own curriculum for the kids but it was seriously falling through the cracks. They hadn't done history in about four weeks so I brought down and purchased a curriculum for them. Not how I like to do it, but it will work for this year and next. I just can't juggle it all.
It doesn't help that with popcorn sales in Boy Scouts, I've been really busy with that and thanfully this is my last year being the treasurer. I'm done. TL has one more year of scouts and I'll have volunteered for ten years on scouts. The girls need me with their American Heritage Girls program so that will by my focus. Christmas program practices have kept us busy also. I'm hoping to spend more time with the kids but it seems like all I do is housework, laundry, homework, and homeschooling. We've gotten off of our chore chart schedule so I'm making sure that we get back on track this week. I'm planning on taking May off this next year (I have two classes right now that end in February and will take one eight week class in March through April). I'll have five classes after that and will hopefully be done by April of 2016.....so the prize is in sight. I just have to stay focused and pray alot. I've been losing my patience with the kids when they interrupt me doing homework. My other problem is that the little ones need to have a more structured bedtime. If I get them in bed at a set hour every night I'll be able to do some homework then and not be too exhausted. Unfortunately, as I get older, I'm finding late study nights are not my thing. I'd rather go to bed and sleep a good eight hours.
I'm off to bed for now. Early day tomorrow with Sunday school. Have a blessed weekend everyone!
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
- We were visited by our homeschooling blogging friends that we'd never met but "known" for years. It was a wonderful visit and way too short.
- The teen got his driver's license!! WOOT! WOOT! I don't have to drive him around anymore! And at the end of the month he'll have his own vehicle.
- Boy Scouts is in full popcorn swing. I'm tired of it already. As treasurer, I'll have a busy few weeks.
- American Heritage Girls has started. As an explorer leader and vice-coordinator, I'm really busy.
- Last three weeks of this term for school. I have two 12 page papers to write, ugh. It wouldn't be bad except that I wasn't able to pick my own topic for the one class so I'm dragging my heels on it.
- Canning is done for the year. We've had frost several times and I didn't get as nearly as much done with the tomatoes as I wanted but sadly its over.
- We got a pig and a calf to take care of. We're still getting plenty of eggs from the chickens so that's a blessing.
- The heat is on already. I had to do it because it gets down in the 30s at night and its just really really cold.
- My dad and his wife have decided to sell everything and travel in their RV full time. I'm very excited for them. Should be alot of fun.
- Homeschool co-op is going really really well. The girls are enjoying all of their classes.
- TL is taking Russian classes through Currclick and loving it. The classes are fun and engaging and he likes his teacher alot.
Saturday, September 20, 2014
For a printable version of this Native American study, go here.
For a printable version of week four immigration, go here.
Friday, September 19, 2014
At that moment, I decided that my children would learn better geography skills than I possessed. So I've come up with this study program for them to do. The wonderful thing is that this program can/will be used for years as they can do as many levels each month as they wish.
I have a blank world map hanging on the wall that we use to test with.
Each month, I print out the sheet corresponding to that month's study and then I give them a blank map to fill in themselves. It gives them ownership of what they are doing. I designed the program to go over countries, capitals, vocabulary terms, oceans, lakes, rivers, mountains, deserts. Here's a look at month one and two. September is a short month because we're getting into the swing of things so that only has two levels. If your child knows these already you can move onto level two. I've designed a ten month program.
Wednesday, September 3, 2014
I cannot function this way. Perhaps its because I have so much on my plate between homeschooling, full time college, American Heritage Girls, and Boy Scouts? Probably not...I've always been this way. Making lists checking things off. I've even done things for the day not on the list and then written that item down just so I can check it off. I know, I'm pathetic.
With homeschooling I struggle to juggle five different levels. I have two that need one on one time for all their lessons and two that work independently that need one on one time for certain things and one that is almost exclusively independent. And of course, they are all clamoring for my attention at the same time.
This year I made a very organized detailed schedule. Listing what happens when and if mom is needed for the lesson. Now I do answer questions or give directions as needed but the kids know that I am working with someone else and are pretty patient for a few minutes until I get to them.
One saving grace is Homeschool Tracker. I love that I can plan out lessons for the entire year for each subject and each grade level. Once the lessons are in, I just use the scheduler button to plan out each week and I can even include a time for the subject to be started and completed. A lot of times, the girls are done ahead of schedule so they just move onto the next subject. No problem there. Several times during the day, I grade their work (with the girls its usually after each subject) and mark it completed. The program records attendence, grades, and books for me. I have purchased a yearly plan of $60 for the online version. I used to use the Plus program but when the computer crashes there goes your lesson plans. I enjoy having access wherever I am at. It also saves lesson plans for me to use for the kids that are moving up so I don't have to replan or retype or rewrite in plans. What a blessing! I can even type in goals if I wish. I'll do a more in depth post on the tracker program later this week.
On the homefront, I'm canning up a storm. I did eight quarts of spaghetti sauce, 6 quarts of chili, and 3 quarts of pickles in the past week. I still have to do relish, salsa, and the carrots. I've already done the green beans and the apples will be ready in the next week or so. We still have apple butter left from last year so I'll do applesauce and some apple pie filling recipes. I'm hoping my friend will let me have access to her pear tree which is loaded with pears and they don't plan to use. That would be a huge blessing! And of course, tomatoes are still coming in so I'll be doing more spaghetti sauce and chili. I already pickled beets for Kevin. I think they're yucky and so do the kids. Peppers and onions are all in. We now have 12 quarts of bread and butter pickles so I'm pretty sure we're set for the year with those.
Have a wonderful week!