Saturday, August 27, 2011

Creation Museum Day 1

i don't know about where you are, but around here things have been a bit busy!
Trying to get everything ready for school and then taking a week off for a long "field trip", really put me behind. It was well worth it though!

i promised you a post about the Creation Museum. Let me first start by saying, it is well worth the trip! If you have no idea what i am talking about, check it out here:

It took Bitty, Baby and i two days to get there. It is really only 12 hours drive from here, but, we have friends in Tennessee that we wanted to see, and we stayed with them. On our way to the museum we visited Abraham Lincoln's boyhood home at Knob Creek, Kentucky. It was a nice place to stop for a break. It was amazing to see just how small the houses were in those days. i love the stories of when Abe was a boy and he would walk a long way to borrow a book. i always thought that the area he grew up in would be flatter, and easier to travel. (are you laughing yet?!) It is not flat and it still is very woodsy. Even the walk that he and his sister took to school was a long and arduous one.

When we got to the Museum it was just as wonderful as the pictures said! The first thing you see when you walk in is a giant Mastodon fossil. It towers over the foyer of the museum. The other thing that struck me is how well done everything was. The attention to detail really impressed me. It is as if you were in a canyon some where after Eden. There are dinosaurs and a child playing by each other.

We had a "back to school" speaker presentation with Bodie Hodge right after we got into the Museum. Bodie talked about Dinosaurs and the Bible. It was really a great presentation. It was hard on me after being raised in the public school system. It went against everything i was taught; that dinosaurs came millions of years before man and all. If we are to believe in the Bible, which we NEED to do, we would find that dinosaurs (or dragons) were created on Day 6, along with all the other land animals.
Dinosaur is a newer word to describe dragon. It was coined by Sir Richard Owen in 1841 and it means terrible lizard. Before then, dinosaurs were called dragons.
We bought an amazing book about Dinosaurs. It is called, "Dragons: Legends & Lore of Dinosaurs". It was written by Bodie Hodge and Laura Welch. It is an interactive book, full of pockets and pull outs. My girls love it!

The next thing we did was visit the planetarium. We watched an amazing show about the size of the universe. It still dumbfounds me that people think that we were created by chance. If they would only read the Genesis account, it makes so much more sense.

After the planetarium show, Baby said that she was hungry, so we headed over to Noah's Cafe. They had good food! Bitty had chicken noodle soup with lots of oyster crackers and Baby and i had burgers. The food is reasonably priced for those of you who don't want to bring your own lunch.

After lunch, we went through the "Walk Through History". This takes you from Eden to the present day and through the "Seven C's of History": Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, Cross and Consummation. i am really looking forward to the consummation part! :)
The exhibits are state of the art and the girls kept saying, "Wow, Mom! Look at this!" It was awesome!

We didn't get to spend a lot of time in the walk through as we had another presentation to attend. This one was with Buddy Davis. He is an amazing guy. He travels all over digging dinosaur bones, playing music and sculpting. His wife, Kay, goes everywhere with him. They are a lot of fun! The girls and i really enjoyed learning about and sculpting an African animal. Buddy did a lot of the dinosaurs in the museum. Some of them took him a long time to complete and are HUGE! There are a few of them that are animated. The best thing about Buddy is that he gives the Creator all the credit. We picked up his CD called: "Buddy Davis: Creation Musical Adventures". We also got his new DVD called: "I Dig Dinosaurs" which is the first of a new series. Buddy takes viewers to an actual dig site in Montana to show them what it is like to hunt and find fossils. He was, by far, the girls favorite part of the museum!

After that, the girls and i took a break at The Palms Cafe, where they got ice cream, and i got a iced coffee. We then walked around the gardens. The gardens at the Creation Museum are glorious! There were flowers everywhere and butterflies too! Baby wasn't too fond of the bouncing bridges, as she called them. i'll admit they were a bit tough to walk across. i don't like to have the ground moving under me when i walk! :) The only drawback to our garden visit was the heat. If you decide to go to the Museum, walk through the gardens first, and then go inside. You will be happy that you did!
The gardens are home to the Petting Zoo also. As it was the end of the day, the animals were hot and tired. We did not ride Gomer, the camel, as neither of the girls wanted to do so. The zorse and the zonkey were funny, and Baby loved the tortoise.
After the gardens, we headed back to the hotel to rest before dinner. That was the end of Day 1 at the Creation Museum!

More later... i need to rearrange the school room!


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Stay Tuned

The Creation Museum post is coming! Now that we are home and resting, i plan on working on this post tomorrow! We just drove home today from Franklin, Tennessee which was about an eight hour drive. i have to apologize, but, i'm pooped!

Off to bed now, church and a new post tomorrow.


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Back to Homeschool 2011-2012

A lot of the other homeschooling blog-friends are sharing what they are doing for curricula this coming year. i thought that i would jump on that train! :)

Bitty is 9 and will be in fourth grade this year. Since last year was a extremely difficult for our family, we are a bit behind, although not enough to redo third grade. Since Baby just came home last June, 2010, we are kind of doing a Pre-first grade with her. She is already trying to sound out words and can read "cat" and "rat", but still needs phonemic help.

For Math, we are going to try Right Start Levels A and C. i say "try" because although i firmly believe this to be one of the best curricula out there, it is really tough for me to teach. It is bright and colorful and uses a lot of games and manipulatives to teach basic skills. The cool thing about them is that they take phone calls and can help the teacher teach! :)If you want more info:

For History, we all will be enjoying "Portraits of American Girlhood". PoAG is a unit study based on 7 of the American Girls. We are all excited that we get to do this! Both of the girls are really enjoying their American Girls and love playing with them. For more info:

Here is another great site that i found! It is not affiliated with the book, but, this wonderful homeschooling Mama gathered a lot of helps for using PoAG into one blog. Here is that link:

We are doing Nancy Larson Science 1, for both girls and will also be finishing up our Jeanie Fulbright Astronomy.

For Bible this year, we are going to be doing "Bible Study Guide For All Ages", Book One. i cannot tell you how much we learned when we started using this last year.
My friend, Linny, at told me about it, and we like it! The girls draw stick figures of the basic points of the story as i read it. There are daily drills to help them to retain what we read. You can also order a time line, and other things to go along with the study. You can find out more at:

Bitty and i are also going to do a bit of studying on our own. We are visiting the Creation Museum this week where i hope to lay to rest some of her doubts. She is my analytical one, the one who questions why she should believe. She is struggling with believing some of the basic foundations of the Bible, and i hope to be able to give her some firm answers. We will be working through Answers in Genesis' "Answers for Kids" Bible Study Curriculum this semester. If you haven't seen it, please check it out at:

For teaching reading to Baby, we are using Starfall. Starfall is a FREE online phonics website. They use cartoons and stories to teach kids how to read. Baby loves it!
Here is that website:

That is just some of the things we are using this year. We love to do read alouds, and spend a lot of time doing that. We are currently reading through the "Wizard of Oz" series. These were some of my favorites as a child and i am enjoying sharing them with the girls.

i'd love to hear what you are doing this year for school!


Monday, August 8, 2011

More helpful links

Have you heard of Currclick yet?!
It is a neat website that has many lapbooks, notebooking pages and mini unit studies for sale. There are also a TON of freebies!
If you enjoy learning about new products and getting a free product once a week, sign up for their email list.

Want to get rid of some of the homeschool books and stuff, and bless others less fortunate than you? Here is a great site for doing just that! If you are in need of something, this is the place to go to for help.

Here is a link to one of my favorite homeschool magazines!
The Old Schoolhouse is chock full of good tips, helpful hints, and tons of product reviews and ideas. This summer's HUGE 10th year anniversary edition is free to read online! Here is that link: www.thehomeschoolmagazine-digi​

Do you have trouble with planning school, home, and life in general? i do too! Not so much anymore as this year i found The Well Planned Day planner!
It was put out by the folks at Home Educating Family Publishing who also publish the
Home Educating Family Magazine. i love this magazine! Here is a link to their website where you can sign up for a FREE 7 day Digital Subscription to the magazine!

One more thing...
Have you heard of Clickschooling? As the website says "Get 1 FREE, Web-Based Curriculum Idea Every Day — Monday Through Saturday!" i have to tell you, this has been one of my favorite resources since i started homeschooling 12 years ago. i actually look at each link that is sent to my email, and then save it to my "favorites" or bookmark it under the appropriate category. i have lots of links for science, math, language arts, virtual field trip, social studies and art, thanks to Clickschooling!

Enjoy the Journey!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Helpful links

i'm back again.
i'm so excited about this blog that i had to start posting things that i have used, seen or heard that have helped me!

The first one is a universal help for homeschool families everywhere. Other people, corporations, etc. pool their buying power to get discounts on things they need. Why not homeschoolers? We do!!! Here is the link:

The co-op has special months for each subject. This month is BACK TO SCHOOL MONTH
There are a lot of neat things available for a discount. It is free to join, and there are many things that are available for free too! (think student ID cards) Head on over to the co-op and check it out!

Here is another great website to help you with the "gentle art of learning"
We use some of Charlotte's ideas like narration, nature journals, and the "Book of Centuries". A friend of mine recently told me about the Scripture Memory System. It took me a bit of time to put ours together, but, it is well worth it. Enjoy browsing the website!

Another great resource is found at Donna Young.
Donna has graciously posted all sorts of forms, handwriting pages, attendance sheets, calendars, etc. for you to use to organize your school year. Here is that link:

Do you have a hard time finding good handwriting worksheets for your kids? Here is a great resource to help you! With this worksheet maker, you can have your child write whatever it is that you want them to write. i have used this to help Bitty, "write sentences" for discipline, ie, " I will not hit my sister" :)

Okay, just one more for now. Are you trying to figure out how to teach your young ones to read? Would they rather play games on the computer? Starfall has that covered! Baby has been teaching herself to read by watching and playing on Starfall.
Here is that link:

i hope these websites help you in your homeschool journey!



i hope that this blog will be a blessing to you. That is my desire. In this crazy world, full of stress and chaos, i want to be a blessing.
There are many blogs that i read daily. Some focus more on adoption, some on homeschooling, some on handy tips. i hope to share a bit of everything.

Let me start by sharing a bit about what brought me to this blog.
To do that, we have to go back a few years...
1999 was the year we moved from the Northeast to the great state of Texas.
Our firstborn, Lady, was going into 3rd grade. She had 3 good years of a wonderful Christian school education under her belt, and was looking forward to more.
That first year in Texas, she had a wonderful teacher whom we are still friends with to this day. However, there were many things that i didn't like about that school. i didn't like having to drop her off on the first day without seeing her to her classroom. i didn't like not being able to help out in her class. It seemed to me a bit secretive and legalistic. For the most part, Lady was happy there, although she had a lot of homework. In the 4th grade, that all changed. Lady started having tummy troubles and headaches when she thought about school. Her after school routine was snack, homework, dinner, homework, violin practice, bed. It didn't seem much of a childhood to me. In late September, Lady caught a cold that turned into pneumonia. She missed a week of school. Everyday, the teacher sent home all her seat work and homework for her to catch up on. It was a ridiculous amount of busy-work. My husband and i took a long hard look at what our options were, prayed and decided to homeschool her. When we told Lady that she was going to be taught at home, she was overjoyed! My little homebody was going to be a home-school body! :)

Fast forward to today. Now Lady is grown up, and in college. She came through all of her years of homeschooling well, and even learned a bit! Since then we have adopted two more daughters; Bitty, who came home in 2002 at 10 months, and Baby, who came home in June 2010 at 4 1/2. Poor Lady was my first and therefore my "guinea pig". i have learned so much since those early days of teaching at home. It took me until Lady was a Senior in high school to discover that she likes workbooks best. Sigh.
i am hoping that my mistakes will help you all on your journeys.

In homeschooling, i use a rather eclectic style; a lot of Charlotte Mason, some classical, and unit studies too. i try to do some of each learning style during the day, so that the kinestetic, auditory and visual learning can take place.

My hope for this blog is that in encouraging you, and giving you tips and ideas, i can glean from you also.

Enjoy the journey!