Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Around Our House Week 34

We took a little break from school last week as the boys went hunting. It was so nice to have some time with my little ladies! 

Friday, September 8, 2017

Around Our House Week 33

We are really starting to get the swing of back to school. I started a lot of new to me curriculum this year, and it has been a learning curve. 

Friday, September 1, 2017

Around our House Week 32

We are officially back to school and finding out groove! It has been a good week but definitely had some challenges. I knew the kids would be coming down from summer mode, but I didn't realize how much I would be too! Working on getting those habits back.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Around Our House 31

We watched the eclipse this morning! The fog was so heavy we could barely make out the sun through the clouds. It was still fun to sit in the lawn with the kids and my morning coffee though.

I think next week we will start school- but this week we are squeezing every last drop out of summer!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Around Our House

This busy little girl loves Beatrix Potter!

I am starting to get a the new school year planned. It just about that time. We just spent a relaxing weekend camping with out church family.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Different by Sally and Nathan Clarkson

I have almost all of Sally Clarkson's books over the years. Her book Different, is well, a little different for her. This book is co-authored with her son, Nathan Clarkson. Nathan struggles with anxiety, OCD and learning issues. This book focuses on both of their experiences, as mother and son, navigating those tough waters.

Sally encourages us to see our children as God made them, gifts! She explores how trying to "fix" or mold your different child into something they are not, simply doesn't help. You don't need to have a child with mental illness to gain insight from this book. There is a ton of great wisdom for any weary mom. Sally has a way of speaking to the heart and adding Nathan's perspective is so insightful. Full of practice advice as well as inspiration for your parenting journey, Different is a book worth reading.

I received a copy for free in exchange for review from Tyndale Publishing 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Bible Sleuth- New Testament Review

The days have been so hot we have been spending more afternoons inside looking through books. This fun kids book, Bible Sleuth, Illustrated by Jose Perez Montero, keeps my kids attention. Bible Sleuth is a Bible inspired "Where's Waldo" like challenge.

Through 14 challenging, full spread pages, kids will have to search for various figures. It's just as fun to see the various scenes and details hidden on the page as it is to find the characters! I love that each page has a passage of scripture that corresponds to the picture. This book has a nice hard cover and large pages. This is a fun and interesting book that kids 4-7 and even older could enjoy!

I received this book in exchange for my honest opinion. 

Around Our House Week 29

It is so HOT here! We are just trying to keep cool and survive the week. It's getting close to a new school year and I'm starting all the scheduling fun!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Around Our House Week 27

Everyone around our house is finally better, summer sickness is the worst. I have been planning and ordering all our materials for next years school! So exciting!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Around Our House Week 26

My little wild man in the grapes. He was really feeling sick yesterday and spent the day resting. It was so unusual because he spends a majority of his time outside. I usually only see him when he gets tired of eating wild plums and wants food!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Around Our House Week 25

It's been a rough week around our house. We have all been sick. I am looking forward to all of us being well and enjoying some sunshine together.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Around Our House Week 24

Last weekend we had a blast exploring the beach for father's day! The weather was fantastic with no wind. The kids waded in the ocean and played in the sand. It was exactly what we needed!

Harvest by Stefanie Bittner & Althea Harampolis

Summer is finally here on the Oregon Coast. My garden is drying out, my plants are coming back to life in earnest. We had a long, wet winter. Honestly, it's hard for me to feel inspired to plan a garden when everything is muddy and soaked outside. On stormy days, this wonderful book by Stefani Bittner and Alethea Harampolis, was a great motivator.

Harvest is full of practical, but unexpected ways to use different plants from the garden. Featuring 47 different plants from early, mid and late season in the garden. The projects and recipes really are unique and creative. I found myself learning new uses for plants I already grow and adding a few new plants to my wish-list. I never would have thought of pickling rhubarb or turning apricots into a facial mask.

The instructions for each project are simple and easy to follow. The ingredients needed are clearly listed and each step thoroughly explained. I made the calendula-infused oil and rosewater facial toner, both with great results. I also really appreciated the list of alternative ingredients at the back of the book. The instructions in the Terms and Technique page were helpful as well.

I know sometimes it can be overwhelming when you start actually harvesting from the garden. In late August it feels like I have an abundance of everything and am running our of ides for how to use it. This book provides ample inspiration and is a delight to look at and read. Harvest helps new and long time gardeners find new uses for their harvest.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Around Our House Week 23

We have had a few days of rain and the garden is loving it! It has been nice to take a break from watering, even though the slugs are back.

The kids seem to be impervious to the rain and continue their summer fun. Lately they have been making forts in the field next to our house. The grass is taller than me! They come in with grass seed in their hair and scratches on their arms and smiles on their little faces. 

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Memoria Press Prima Latina Complete Set *REVIEW*

  Latin has always seemed like something totally inaccessible to our family. I learned a little bit of Latin in high school, and always found it helpful and interesting. However, it was not comprehensive enough to make me a qualified teacher. I was scared of messing up the pronunciations and grammar. I knew if I was every going to teach Latin, I needed a program that was really going to hold my hand and do the teaching for me, and Prima Latina Complete Set by Memoria Press does just that.

Prima Latina is intended for 1st-4th graders. It is perfect for younger students and takes things slowly with lots of review. There are 25 lessons. Each lesson is intended to be spread out over the week and has four corresponding student pages. In each lesson the student learns new grammar skills, a practical Latin phrase, five vocab words, and one line of a prayer. In total there are four Latin prayers learned, Sanctus, Doxology, Table Blessing, and Pater Noster.

The Prima Latina Complete Set has everything any parent needs to give their child a great start in Latin. The set includes:
  • Teacher's Manual- The Teacher's Manual contains all the answers to the Student Book as well as all the tests and keys. There is also a sample lesson plan which I found really helpful.
Student Book
  • Student Book- This is a spiral bound book that contains all the lessons and activities for the students to complete. I really liked the larger text and writing spaces, perfect for early elementary. While the rest of the materials can be re-used for another student, I'll have to purchase another workbook for my younger daughter. The price is pretty reasonable though.
  • Flashcards- This set comes with a huge stack of flashcards. These can be used for Prima Latina and Latina Christiana (the next curriculum intended for 3rd-6th graders). These are printed on thick cardstock and obviously made with students in mind. The cards are two sided- one side has the English word and the other has the Latin, lesson number, and any derivative. These cards are really helpful and get used frequently throughout the curriculum. As you can see in my picture, there are a lot of cards!
  • Instructional DVD- This DVD is really what sold me on this curriculum. The lessons are 20 minutes each and taught by Leigh Lowe. She does a great job. She is very clear and easy to understand. There is a lot of review covered in the DVD, which has been really helpful for my son.
  • Pronunciation CD- The CD is set up to accompany the student text and drills. Students can hear their vocab words, and the lines from the prayer they are working on.
I have been really pleased with the amount my son has learned from this program! On Monday we watch the DVD and then go through the workbook the rest of the week. He is only 6, so it is a lot of writing for him. However, he has been able to keep up. A few times life has gotten very hectic and we have stretched the one week lesson into two. The CD really helps with review.

What I think really sets this curriculum apart is its many components. You don't only write Latin, but listen, speak, and watch someone else speak. This has really helped my son to retain the information. Leigh does a great job teaching in the DVD and really takes care of the part I was scared of. I am so thankful for this curriculum from Memoria Press. It has truly made Latin accessible to our family.

Click the banner below to find out how other families are using Prima Latina or to see reviews of these Memoria Press Curriculums, Latina Christiana, First Form Latin, Second Form Latin, Third Form Latin, Fourth Form Latin, The Book of Trees or Nature's Beautiful Order
Latin, Nature and Trees {Memoria Press Reviews}
You can connect with Memoria Press on-
FacebookTwitterPinterestInstagram, Google+YouTube, and LinkedIn  
Crew Disclaimer

Around Our House Week 22

We did something we rarely do last week, we went to the park! We have so much room outside for the kids to play, going to the park just doesn't usually happen. My dad met us in town for a picnic and some play time and it was a blast. I always forget, how simple things like that, can make a regular day a special day.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors byThe Pencil Grip, Inc. *REVIEW*

When it comes to school supplies, there are two things I just can't pass up, good books and art supplies. When I saw that The Pencil Grip, Inc. makes a product we have never tried before, I knew we needed to test these out!

Tempera paint is one of my go-to's for art projects. It's vibrant, dries fast and washes easily-- basically it's great for kids. I never knew that solid tempera paint sticks even existed, but that's what Thin Stix are. The set we used are the Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors.

This set comes with yellow, red, green, blue, black and brown. These Thin Stix are about the size of a marker and have a blunt, crayon like end. They are really easy to hold and perfect for little hands. Depending on the angle you move the tip, you can achieve both fine and thick lines.

I found these to be much smoother to use than I expected. I anticipated them being more crayon-like. Really, they are super smooth and almost feel like you are coloring with a glue stick. They have held up to scribbling, smashing and all other sorts of art shenanigans. They dry super fast, in only 90 seconds. Even when they are wet, they are only sticky. It is so easy for littles to catch a sleeve or elbow on their paintings, but these have minimal mess involved. They are non-toxic and they wash off easily if needed.  

We even experimented with color mixing. These dry super fast, so they are not ideal for mixing. It is possible though. We drew with two colors and then used a finger to mix. My kids enjoyed experimenting with what other colors they could make. Kwik Stix makes tons of other colors too, even metallic ones. I also learned that if any other color gets on the stix, you can easily wipe it off with a paper towel or a finger.

We have been focusing a lot on our nature study recently. We are really blessed to live in a place where we can step outside and learn so much. We packed a lunch, Thin Stix, paper and our lesson down to the creek. Generally, we use portable field watercolors to paint outside. For this lesson though, I thought the Thin Stix would be perfect.  

While the kids ate, we talked about what the riparian zone is and why it is important. We identified where our stream, riparian zone and uplands are. My goal was then to have the kids draw this and label the zones.

They did a great job using the Thin Stix to paint the stream, mud/sand, rocks, willow trees and the grassy field. These worked really well for this project. They are so easy to grab and go and would fit perfect in a backpack. There was no water needed, so nothing extra to pack. We were on rocky and uneven ground and I didn't need to worry about anything tipping over or paint running. Best of all, NO MESS at all. These aren't super ideal for detail work, but this project was more about identifying the zones, not about detailed painting.

 The kids really enjoyed using these. My daughter has since used them every day. She loves to paint and I love to encourage her to be creative. However, I don't always love the sometimes epic mess. She can get these out by herself, use them and then put them away with zero mess or spills. The caps need to be securely attached or they will dry out. They are easy to put on though, even for a four year-old. I love that they make art more accessible for my kids.  These would be absolutely perfect for toddlers even, as they are easy to grip.

Here's the Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors in action! 
I would highly recommend these for the little artists in your family!

To find out more about this product and see how other families are using it, click the banner below.

No Mess Art with Thin Stix Classic Colors {The Pencil Grip, Inc. Reviews}

Find them on-

Crew Disclaimer

Around Our House Week 20

  It's beginning to feel like summer around here! We have been spending lots of time soaking in the creek and putting in the garden. The creek water is so cold it hurts, but the kids don't seem to mind..

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Around Our House Week 19

We have been enjoying the sun and closing out the school year. Titus finished up all his books and now we are working on getting in some nature study. The weather couldn't be better for it. Our yard is full of flowers and we have been journaling and observing!