Our Family

Our Family

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Review: The Wedding Shop by Rachel Hauck

The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck is my absolute favorite book.  I can't even remember how many times I have read it.  I love characters and the story, but it's the message of the book that makes it something extraordinary.  The Wedding Dress was the first book I read by Rachel Hauck and since then I have read all of her new ones and even went back and read some of her older books. I have enjoyed every one of them.  I was so excited to be chosen to receive an advanced readers copy of her newest book, The Wedding Shop.

The Wedding Shop will be released on August 16th, but it is available to pre-order now in ebook format for only $4.99.

The Wedding Shop is set in Heart's Bend Tennessee, in two different time periods.  In the early 1930's Cora Scott inherited her aunts wedding shop.  Brides come all the way from Birmingham Alabama to visit her shop and experience her special bridal treatment.  Cora's true love is a river boat captain and she is counting the days until he returns and makes her his bride.  But the days turn into months and months into years and still he hasn't proposed.  Meanwhile Birch Good tries to show Cora that he is solid and dependable and in love with her.

In the present time, former Air Force Captain, Haley Morgan has returned to Heart's Bend trying to figure out what to do with the rest of her life after the death of her best friend Tammy and discovering the truth about the man she loved.  She decides to open the abandoned wedding shop where she and Tammy played as a child.

" As Cora's and Haley's stories intertwine throughout time in the shadow of the beloved wedding shop, they both discover the power of their own dreams and the magic of everyday love."

I loved The Wedding Shop!  Rachel Hauck has an amazing ability to draw readers in to the story, transport them back in time and make them feel as though they are there.  I love that the story is told from the perspective of different characters and that you get to see the story develop in the two different time periods.  One of my favorite parts about the story is the tie ins to The Wedding Dress and The Wedding Chapel.  Throughout the story we get to see the characters go on an amazing journey and apply what they have learned to our own lives.

"It's the gospel," Charlotte said.  "It fits everyone who tries it on.  The trick is to believe."

Pre-order the Wedding Shop now for only $4.99!  Also if you have not read The Wedding Dress or The Wedding Chapel, I highly recommend them!

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book for the purpose of writing a fair and honest review.  I received no other compensation and all opinions are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance to FTC regulations.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Homeschool Wrap Up Week 35

We have officially completed the 2015/2016 school year!

That does not mean that school is finished for us.  School is never really finished ;)  We do take some breaks over the summer and are even more laid back then usual. We will continue doing some math and reading over the summer.  We also will have product reviews to work on.  Right now we have several fun review products that the children are really enjoying that are perfect for summer school.  I also have a few fun science activities.  Our weekly posts will change from counting the homeschool weeks to our week in review for the summer months.

First and last day of school pictures

Week 35 in our Homeschool

Bible: We are working on a review of Veritas Bible.  This gives us access for one year to three different Bible studies and I chose to start with Judges to Kings.  The children are really enjoying this study.  It is interactive and has different videos and games throughout each lesson.

My Father's World Adventures: We finished! In our history study we learned about The Flying Machine.  In our state study we completed New Mexico, Arizona, Alaska, and Hawaii.  In science we read about electricity and the space program.  In Birds, Nests, and Eggs we read about White-breasted nuthatch, mourning dove, and the killdeer.

Art: We started a review of Art Achieve.  We did the warm up lesson (lesson 1) and a lesson called the Czech Cat (lesson 2.)  In these lessons that are taught by streaming video there is a warm up worksheet for the children to draw on.  They then draw their picture and color it in.  There are also cross curricular lesson suggestions on the website.

Math: We are finished with our current Math U See levels.  Over the summer we will be working on some areas that need improvement and everyone will be moving on to the next level next year.

Reading/Spelling: Anthony and Christian finished All About Reading Level 3!  Lily finished the lessons in the first volume of Level 2.

Nature Study: One of our reviews is for notebookingpages.com.  I printed out several nature themed pages for a nature study.  I printed out flowers for Lily and a page on gila monsters for Anthony and Christian.

Latin: We got the cutest books from Laurelwood Books to review. It is called Olim, Once Upon a Time in Latin Reader 1 and Workbook 1.  The reader has 3 stories: The Three Little Pigs, The Tortoise and the Hare, and The Crow and the pitcher in English and in Latin.  The workbook exercises has the children translating the words.  It is a great, low key, fun way to learn some Latin and words from English that came from Latin.

Emmie is in footie pajamas because she went swimming and was cold!

Other Activities this Week

We had no scheduled outside activities this week!  That was very nice!

We did go to the library on Wednesday and ran a few errands.

Our chickens turned two weeks old on Wednesday.

On Thursday the girls and I started working on their mermaid dolls.

Friday was my amazing husbands birthday.  We met him for lunch and went grocery shopping.

I noticed that these were growing in our garden.

And this was our ecosystem in a bottle.  It has grown a lot!

I hope you had a great week in your homeschool!

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Cute Sewing Project for Little Girls

The other day I saw on a homeschool facebook page a picture of a little girl with a sewing project that she just completed.  I thought it was so cute and knew that my girls would love to make one.  I found out the name of the fabric, got on Etsy and found what I was looking for.

The fabric panel is called Coral Queen of the Sea Doll Panel by Moda Fabrics.  The panel includes:

The doll front and back
sea horse front and back
pillow front and back
blanket front and back
mermaid tail front and back
skirt front and back

I found it for $9.75 from Three Oaks Fabric Company and it arrived 2 days after I ordered it.  The only thing I had to buy was some stuffing.  You also need some light weight batting and of course thread and scissors.

We started with the pillow and blanket because I thought those would be the easiest.  We then moved on to the sea horse.

My 5 year old sat in my lap to help me sew hers.  She did a lot of asking when it was going to be finished!

The next day we started working on the doll. She was a little trickier.  I had to help Lily turn it right side out and stuff she had trouble getting the stuffing to the arms and legs.

We also made the mermaid tail the second day.  The hardest part of that was turning the belt right side out and making the casing on the tail.  We were ready to be finished for the day after that.

Day 3 we just had to make the skirt. It didn't take long at all!

The girls absolutely love these dolls and their accessories!  They are a good size and the girls have had a lot of fun playing with them. We had a great time making them together.  I was so excited that everything came all on the one panel and the instructions were easy to understand. I was so impressed with how much Lily could complete on her own. She was able to cut all the pieces out herself.  She also has grown tall enough to reach the pedal on the sewing machine so she did all of the sewing too.  I just had to supervise her and tell her when to start and stop and turn the fabric.  The most help she needed was turning the fabric and sewing the openings closed.

I saw that there was also a Little Red Riding Hood set after I ordered this one.  I think we may order that one some time in the future.

Happy Homeschooling!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Schoolhouse Crew Review: Science Shepherd

Science Shepherd Review
Science Shepherd Science Curriculum was developed by a homeschool dad with a Bachelors of Science degree when he saw the need for high quality homeschool science curriculum.  They offer 3 different courses that come from a Biblical perspective: Biology, Life Science, and Introductory Science.  Over the last several weeks I have had an opportunity to use and review Introductory Science from Science Shepherd. 
Science Shepherd Review
Introductory Science is suggested for children ages 6-11.  It includes both online streaming videos and a workbook.  Workbook Level A is for 6-8 year olds and Level B is for 9-11 year olds.  The Level B workbook has the same content as Level A plus additional content for older students.  The program is set up to be used 5 days a week for 35 weeks but you can adjust this schedule as needed for your family.   You have 12 months access to the streaming videos. Topics covered include:

Science Skills and Tools
Under Water Creatures 
Flying Creatures
Land Creatures
Human Beings
Ecology and Natural Resources

Each day's lesson includes a short 3-5 minutes video, followed by a workbook page.  There are also hands on activities that use simple supplies that you probably already have around the house.

Sample Video

Scope and Sequence

Sample Workbook

I have been using Introductory Science with my 7 year old, 1st grade daughter.  In our homeschool we have a wide range of ages.   For science I usually have the younger children tagging along with the older children because I just don't have the time to do a separate curriculum for the younger children.  But sometimes that is just not as much fun for the younger children. I was very excited to have an opportunity to review this with Lily.

Each day's video lesson is very short.  We have VERY slow internet (it's supposed to be high speed, but I live so far out it is barely faster then dial up but it's all we have!)  We usually can stream videos ok as long as nobody else in the house is using the internet.  These videos did take a little while to load, but I just had to log in start the video, pause it for a few minutes so it could load all the way and then was able to play the videos.  

I was thrilled that Introductory Science is Creation based and begins with the creation of the world and the fact that God's Word is true and from that everything else can be understood, even science. Creation is something that we have gone over many times, but we went ahead and started with those videos.  We have worked on Introductory Science 4 days a week for the last several weeks (I doubled up every Thursday because we only have a 4 day school week)  and have made it into Meteorology.  

The video lessons were interesting and to the point.  The course covers a variety of science topics. I chose the Level A workbook for Lily.  I love that it was spiral bound and could lay flat on the desk. The workbook activities were a great review of what was covered.  I did have to read the workbook questions to Lily because the reading level was higher then 1st grade, but her comprehension of what was taught and ability to answer was perfect for her age.  There was a good variety of questions , activities, and spaces for drawing. One of the pages had a word search and she was so glad she could do it herself! 

She especially loved the hands on activities.  Some of the things we did included making pictures of the days of creation, doing a classification activity, a 5 senses activity, pine cone bird feeder, and weather observation. The activity videos were some of Lily's favorite to watch. 

Introductory Science is a great, quality, Christian science course that can easily be fit into a busy homeschool mom's schedule and it's fun for the children too.  Members of The Crew reviewed Introductory Science, Life Science, and Biology.  To see what my Crew Mates had to say, stop by the Crew Blog!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Homeschool Curriculum For Sale: Language Arts, History, Art, Spelling, Science, Literature, and More....

It's the time of year that I have to make decisions about what to keep and what to sell. I only have so much shelf space and really how much history or spelling curriculum does one family need anyway? Prices include shipping.  I accept paypal payments.

ARTistic Pursuits Sculpture Technique Construct $28

Learning Language Arts Through Literature Student and Teacher $30 (student book has some writing though lesson 4)

Logic of English Essential 2nd Edition Complete Set $150 (student book has writing through lesson 5) SOLD

Memoria Press 8th Grade Literature Set $65: Includes Student and Teacher Wind in the Willows, Student and Teacher Tom Sawyer, Student and Teacher As You Like It, and Teacher Treasure Island

Memoria Press First Start Reading $30: Includes Teacher Book and Student Books B,C,D

Master Books Life Science: Origins and Scientific Theory Curriculum Pack $75

Common Sense Press World of Insects and Discovering the Ocean $20

Master Books Christian History Biographies of Faith Curriculum Pack $65

Roman Roads Media Old Western Culture The Aeneid $35

Roman Roads Media Old Western Culture: The Greeks 4 Volume DVD Set $120