Friday, August 31, 2012

Tales of a Homeschool Nothing ~ Amo Amas Amat

We have successfully made it through week 2 of our 3rd year in homeschool land! Woo Hoo!

It was a relatively "normal" week - whatever normal may be. Nothing really special, nothing too traumatic. That's ok, I'll take ordinary anyday over drama!

We welcomed Hurricane Isaac by having a hurricane cleaning party. And since we live in NC, there's no real threat from Isaac anyway. BUT, Hurricane Logan is another story all together. He has WRECKED my house. As we speak, he is in the kitchen flooring, getting jacked up gaining strength on froot loops. WOW! Who would have believed that such a little bitty critter could make such a mess.

Anywho, we added Latin this week. {Hey, don't look at me that way! I already know I'm nuts.} WHY Latin you may ask? Well, I asked the same question. But, logically, its the best choice for my kids at this age. It helps with understanding English, grammar, and will make learning another foreign language easier later on.

I didn't expect to see immediate results, but guess what? They LOVE it! No, really! They have actually asked "Can we do it again?" {Who are these kids & where did mine go?} I must admit that the chants are very catchy. I find myself singing "amo amas amat amamus amatis amant" in my head at the strangest times. By the way, just in case you were wondering - amo means "love".

We also made our very own solar system in science. We are studying astronomy with Apologia this year. I have always wondered why God created all the stars & planets if He didn't plan to put life on them. Yeah sure, He could have just given us something else beautiful to look at & study, but was there any other reason? I never thought about everything having an equal pull on each other & keeping us in our rightful place. I also didn't even consider the time, days, or seasons.

Our God is awesome! I can't wait to get outside at night & have an excuse to watch the stars.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Devotions ~ Noah's Ark

Justin & I try, we really do try, to make time for devotions as a family. Unfortunately, time is not something in great abundance around our house. Yes, I know that I have the same 24 hours in my day that you do, but somehow, the majority of those 24 hours slips away from us.

So, with that being said, I'm going to try, really try, to post when we do make time for devotions. I am NOT doing this to brag. I am hoping that broadcasting to the world will make us a little more accountable. Hopefully it will remind us when we slack off.

Tonight, we studied Noah's Ark. We have studied it before & I'm sure we will study it again. The kids could tell us everything about the story. But this time, after reading from the Bible, we turned on the audio book of "the True Story of Noah's Ark". I believe they really enjoyed seeing the real perspective of the design, shape, & size of the ark.

Hey, do me a favor. If I go too long & you haven't noticed any devotions posted, please remind me. I won't get mad. I can use the encouragement & it might motivate you to read the Bible more in your home as well.

How Do You Use your Training Manual

"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6

Do you realize just how much promise is in this one verse? There are so many verses in the Bible that I LOVE. This is one of them. I love being reminded of God's promises, of the fact that He loves & cares for us, of knowing that there is more than the here & now.

After working on my training manual all summer (obviously I didn't work too hard or it wouldn't have taken me that long), I am finally done.

Some friends & I got together & decided to make our own Child Training Bible. We wanted to start  actively seeking God's face in what His Word said about certain behaviors. We all want good moral children, but do we know how to help them become that way? We can tell our kids all day long how they should act, but until we show them God's Word & He speaks to their hearts, they will continue to act in their old sinful nature. 

So to make that "job" a little easier, God impressed the idea of a "Child Training Bible" onto a lady by the name of Mindy's heart. There are 20 negative character traits addressed in the CTB that we all need to work on. Everything from anger to laziness, disobedience to wrong friendships, and then a section of Gospel as well. Thank you Mindy for minding the Lord! 

To make your CTB, all you need are a Bible of your choice (you KNOW that I am KJV, but any Bible will work), the character traits, lists of verses, colored sticky notes, & colored pens, pencils, or crayons (I personally like the Twistables Colored Pencils).

We haven't started using our CTB yet, but the kids have seen me working on it & are very interested in it. Makenzie has even asked me a few times when I was going to "train" them.

I can't wait to see how this helps our daily struggles.
Maybe you should start one too!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

A Higher Calling

We reached another milestone today. Justin became an ordained preacher.

Even though ordination is mostly a man made notion, we still seek after this service as an additional approval while serving God & our fellow man.

When Justin accepted his call to preach a little over 4 years ago, we knew that one day we would have to leave our comfort zone to follow God.

We have always talked about all the options out there, but never felt lead anywhere in particular.

When our pastor's health began to decline, Justin knew he needed to look into getting ordained. He wanted Fellman to be a big part of his ordination. At the time, we didn't really have any other motive than to have the memories of Fellman being there.

Surprisingly (to us, at least), as soon as the process was begun, God started working all around us. There was talk of a possible position at another church. This idea had been bounced around for a while, but no one really took it serious. But maybe we should.....

God had other ideas. He knew of a little church that needed something. He knew of a country preacher & his family that needed something. God knew that by bringing these two groups together, bigger & better things could occur if only we would let it.

I know that Justin is nervous as we start a new chapter. He is not "used" to preaching 3 times a week. I know that I am nervous. I have NO IDEA how to be a "pastor's wife". I believe that the kids are nervous. They are leaving a church they love for one where they don't really know the people.

Pray for Unity Baptist Church as Justin serves as their interim pastor for as long as they will have us & as long as God sees fit. Pray for us all as we try to follow God.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Do You Kiss Your Momma with That Mouth

As kids growing up, most of us have went through a phase where we thought we were cooler, tougher, better, smarter, & stronger than other people. Believing that we were so smart & so cool made us do things that we knew better than to do. We longed for respect & acceptance from others that made us act in ways that were not truly reflective of the people we were on the inside.

We have all said things that we shouldn't say. We have all acted in ways that we would later regret. We usually try to apologize for our wrong doings. Sometimes, its enough, but unfortunately, sometimes, the scars run too deep for a mere apology to repair them.

Society today has brought cussing, sex, & drinking into the main stream so much that we are barely affected by it anymore. Pre-teens are having sex, teens are drinking, people use cuss words without any thought, everyone thinks they are entitled to anything they want, no one takes responsibility for their actions.

I witnessed an exchange between a parent & child today that was very disturbing. A question was asked, a response was given. Cuss words were said. And a staring match lasted until tears welled up. The really sad part was that the child was the innocent party in this. The anger & hostility was evident to me from over 10 feet away. The smell of beer was too.

I also happen to know that this is no where near a first time offense. I couldn't help but wonder just what this child went through at home. Knowing that the parent had so little concern for the child & its well being.

But its not just this child's well being in jeopardy, its also the parent's, mine, my children, & anyone else who just happens to be close enough to this person to witness this abuse. Its also an extremely dangerous game they are playing by getting behind the wheel. Its only a matter of time before something horrible & irreversible happens.

I just pray that this child learns from the example set before them & chooses a different path. But, more than likely, history will only repeat itself.

Once words or actions are said or done, we can't take them back. Please think about how your actions affect everyone around you.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Tales of a Homeschool Nothing ~ The End of Week 1

Well, we did it. Somehow, someway - we have managed to make it through our 1st week of our 3rd year of homeschooling. And everyone is relatively ok, undamaged, & somewhat sane.

The week started out good. Most of the week went surprisingly well. We have been finished by lunchtime everyday except today, but we haven't set our schedule yet & we haven't added Latin.

Today, the dreaded monster reared its ugly head. I'm sure you are familiar with this monster. It speaks in a strange language that constantly says "But...", "Why...", "Ugh...", & "Wait a minute...". It moves about by shrugging its shoulders, rolling its eyes, whining, & huffing...a lot.

I'm talking about the attitude monster. Oh, how I loath this creature. When it appears, I turn into a monster myself. To say that we don't get along would be an understatement.

Please explain to me when the "teenage attitude" trickled down to preteens. Seriously, he's 10! Why does he act like he has a chip on his shoulder part of the time?!

Oh, Heaven help me for the true teenage years.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Happy Birthday Justin

I would like to wish my wonderful hubby a very happy birthday!

Justin likes to tell me ALL the time just how old I am. Hey, its not my fault that he lied to me 14 years ago about his age. Nope, I will never let him live that one down! ;) Its ok, because if he hadn't lied to me then, I would have went out with him.

Well he can no longer claim to be "30". He is now "IN HIS 30's". Its ALL down hill from now. LOL

I am very thankful that God has blessed us with 13 years of marriage. It hasn't always been pleasant, but it has made us who we are today. It has strengthened our bond with each other & our relationship with God.

Justin, I love you with all my heart & soul. I don't tell you nearly enough, but you mean more to me than you will ever know! Husband, father, preacher, son, brother, fireman, provider, EMT, businessman, Eagle Scout - you wear many hats & each one fits you well. Thank you for all you do for me & for our family.

Now, where are you taking me for dinner? ;)

Tales of a Homeschool Nothing ~ School Pictures

Austin - my oldest, my first born, my (not so little) man of the house

Lover of music, dirt bikes, football, farm life, & art, he has a heart big enough to change the world & the confidence to match. Short tempered, independent, & head strong, Austin wants things his way & has problems adjusting when something doesn't come natural. HA - He is my child, that's for sure!

Even though I wanted to homeschool him from Kindergarten, we sent him on to public school. After 3 years, we knew the time was right to bring him home. I'm sure that public school is in our future again, but for now, we are taking it one day at a time & enjoying the ride.

Makenzie - self proclaimed princess, drama queen, & persistent hugger

Loud, outgoing, & energetic, she can go from twirling ballerina to rough & ready brawler in 2.5 seconds. She's as tender hearted as they come & will cry during commercials. If Makenzie had her way, we would take in every stray animal known to man. She loves to sing, dance, cheer, & idolizes her big brother.

Logan - mess maker, snuggle bug, cookie lover

He is my only child to have strawberry blonde hair & already displays the temperament that goes with it. He loves being tickled, food of any kind (nothing slimy though), milk, & waking up early. Logan is very easy going as long as he isn't sleepy or hungry. He can jerk everything out of a cabinet faster than you even realize he is doing it.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Tales of a Homeschool Nothing ~ A Brand New Year

We started back to school today.

What, wait, how did that happen? Where did the summer go? It seems like only last week we were wrapping up last year.

Oh but yes, it is that time again.

We have tried to run by a 6 week schedule before, but never really stuck to it. I'm trying again this year. I have already planned our lessons for the 1st 6 weeks in most subjects (some have even been planned for the whole year!) Yes, you should be shocked! Last year, I was frantically planning the week ahead at 11:30 on Sunday night.

We had a decent day & I only raised my voice one time (during school, that is). I got the basics accomplished for both of the kids - math, language arts, history, reading, & even art. I remembered to take some pictures, but not nearly enough. On top of it all, we were even finished by lunchtime. Yeah! I will add in our history cards & Latin next week. And hopefully, we will get our actual school pics done soon.

Logan thought we should "study" him.
We keep our library books in this box.
But wait, I deserve a few more stars today. I cooked breakfast, washed dishes (dishwasher & by hand), washed 3 loads of laundry & have most of it put away, cooked lunch, cut out coupons, ran 3 miles, showered, & made a quick trip to Walmart.

Today was a beautiful morning
for watermelon on the back porch.

If you are a homeschool mom or even a stay at home mom, you KNOW the significance of this list. Now the only thing I really want is to go to bed.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

One Lone Wolf

I have always had a fascination & respect for wolves. They are beautiful, mysterious, & deadly creatures of habit.

Occasionally, you will find a lone wolf who has either been forced out of the pack or one who has opted to venture off on their own. But for the most part wolves stick together. They fight fiercely for what they consider theirs, claim far more territory than they could ever need, & hardly ever accept a new comer into the pack.

Did you know that wolves will rarely attack if the prey stands its ground? They enjoy the rush & the chase entirely too much to just pounce on something. 

I see so many parallels between wolves & people.

There are a lot of things going on all around me right now. Things that I have to be completely vague about. Things that have caused harsh words, broken friendships, numerous tears, countless questions, & endless prayers. Things that truly don't have anything at all to do with me, but somehow have sucked me down into the swirling vortex of them.

I am watching people's lives being ripped apart as choices are made. I am watching people making snap judgements without knowing the whole truth. I am watching a beautiful, sacred institution on the verge of being ripped apart & I am screaming on the inside how wrong this is.

Justin is one of the few people who sees things from my point of view. But do we get involved when clearly the lines have been drawn? Do we state our beliefs about fairness even though we don't know the truth? Do we risk it all just to make a point?

I remember being thrown to those wolves just 3 years ago. What I wouldn't have give for someone, anyone to stand & fight for me then.

That deserted island looks better every single day.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Be Still My Bleeding Heart

Pardon me. This is not going to be my usual uplifting inspirational post.

I am usually a generous person. I am usually open minded. I am usually a glass half full kind of girl. I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt.

Maybe that's the problem. Maybe I have the word "SUCKER" tattooed on my forehead.

Well, I think that may need to change. I feel the sudden urge to become cynical, to doubt everyone, & to question every motive. Hey, you know that whole innocent until proven guilty thing. Yeah, well, no more. Now it shall be guilty. Yep, just guilty.

If it looks like a duck........

Wait who am I kidding?

I have always worn my heart on my sleeve. I have always felt the sympathy in most situations.

Regardless, I HATE to be taken advantage of.

Here lately, there has been one person in particular who I have felt has certainly taken advantage of my good nature. This person has one sob story after another. I don't know if the stories I am hearing are worth more than the breath it takes to tell them.

I know we all fall on hard times, but come on. Can anyone's luck (fate) be THAT bad?

Unless your name happens to be Job, you just might be exaggerating a wee bit.

Hey, did you ever think that maybe God is trying to get your attention?

Friday, August 3, 2012

Olympics - All Glory?

I am not an avid sports fanatic. I enjoy watching the occasional game, especially if I know the players. I tend to pull for certain teams due more to tradition than knowing who the players are & how they have scored this season. But, just like most of the world, I have found myself enthralled with the Olympics recently.

I have enjoyed watching the jubilation that comes with breaking records & winning gold. I have laughed along with the parents as they ride the emotional roller coaster. I have seen the devastation when the unthinkable happens. I have cringed, gasped, cheered, & sighed along with everyone else.

Among all the excitement, I can't help but think about the cost as well. These athletes begin as children & devote their whole life to being better than they ever dreamed they could be. I wonder if given the choice now, if they would do it all over again. Would they be willing to give up their childhood again? Would they train all those hours? Would they ask their parents to invest all of that money again?

A lot of them would, I'm sure. But, I just wonder if there aren't a few who would say, "No, its just not worth the cost".

Then take a look at the less fortunate countries. A lot of these athletes are hand picked as children & forced to train. These children come to not only want to do their best but NEED to do their best. The realization has been reached that the Olympics could be their only ticket out of their situation.

So what happens when they don't win that coveted medal? When they under perform? When they fail their country?

Do their coaches & sponsors continue to pump more money & time into these people who are now "losers"? Or do they cut their losses quite literally & focus on someone else? Are these former stars punished for their lack of ability?

I've heard rumors & I have my own opinions, but proof is hard to come by.

On a lighter note: I came across this little tidbit of information yesterday


The word "gymnasium" comes from the Greek root "gymnos" meaning nude; the literal meaning of "gymnasium" is "school for naked exercise." Athletes in the ancient Olympic Games would participate in the nude."

Makes you wonder, hmmm.

Well this is Logan's take on the original Olympics. Yep, he's going to KILL me one day!

I’m Waiting on the Bigger & Better

Sometimes certain people have been in your life so long it’s hard to remember where they came from, how they got there, & even how you l...