Category Archives: Home Education

Our Favorite Homeschool Convention

We had a wonderful time last weekend at one of our favorite homeschool conventions. Our family has volunteered at their used curriculum sale for many years, and this year Lady L also had a “young entrepreneurs” booth selling crocheted hair flowers!

I had taken this picture and noticed nothing amiss (besides uncooperative subjects), but when I got home Thursday evening and put them on the computer, I noticed a crazy friend in the background… how he must have laughed when we didn’t even notice him!

With her booth fully set up Thursday evening!

If you’re interested, you can see Lady L’s business “website”, Hooked On Blooms, and also visit her business blog for more pictures.

Part of our job at the used curriculum sale is to sort the consignment tags by seller ID so that if there is any problem with the online system, or a question arises, the tags are in order. In the past couple of years, we have also gotten a few other families that we know involved, and it’s been a joy to work together!

“E” with a handful of tags to sort

Our three families taking a break and having lunch together on Friday

Friends and helpers at Lady L’s booth Saturday evening right before packing up – from L to R, “N”, Lady L, myself, Amanda, siblings “D” and “J”, and “E”

Our friends, Mr. and Mrs. L, also the parents of “N” and “E” [Photo credit: Mama – it’s a really nice picture!]

On the way home Saturday evening, we had a first-ever experience for our family – a tire blowout! We were on the interstate going 70mph in the left lane, and it was a bit scary, but everyone is safe and the van is fixed. The Lord provided in many different ways, with roadside assistance just added to our insurance plan in the past month, being only 10 minutes from home, having friends very close by who could pick us up, and other blessed details! It also wound up being a great photo opportunity as we were stranded there for 45 minutes or so… πŸ˜‰

The rim was all bent out of shape and had to be replaced

P.S. Are all the pictures showing up? I’m having a problem with one, but cannot find anything wrong!

A Post for March 1st

Oh, the seasons of life – how they change! We are at a strangely quiet time in our lives right now. There is a lot we are looking forward to and working towards, but nothing big is happening RIGHT NOW! You know how that is, right?

Sometimes the illusion that β€œnothing” is happening can be frustrating, but as my dear, wise mama pointed out to us at breakfast recently, there ARE things happening, subtle and important things. There are relationships being built. There are spiritual lessons being learned as we seek to know and obey God. We have the time to truly invest in people and things, not simply keep up with their constant growth. We can make plans, in submission to God’s perfect will, and let Him prepare us in whatever way we need. This is a special time – a time to treasure and make the most of, instead of be anxious over.

One thing I have really enjoyed is all the time we have been able to take for reading about history! Especially read-alouds in the afternoon. Yes, we still enjoy them. How could we not?! All the wonderful times together as we take turns reading, interjecting thoughts as we go, working on handmade projects while another reads, and simply sharing in the experience as a family. We’ve been reading books like Jared’s Island, Duncan’s War and The King’s Arrow, Amos Fortune: Freeman, and River of the Wolves. Separately we’ve read Calico Bush, Robinson Crusoe, The Battle for Quebec, Colonel Anza’s Impossible Journey, Shaw’s Fortune, and many more.

During our read-alouds, and sometimes in the evening while Mama makes dinner, I’ve been experimenting with Spelt flour. You see, we’re out of the wheat berries we purchased back in August, but we still have Spelt left, so we’re forced now to do what we had in mind from the beginning – vary our grain consumption. With the gluten content of Spelt being lower than I’m used it, it is somewhat challenging, but I think because of that very fact, certain cookies come out amazing with Spelt! The successes so far have been Chocolate Chip Spelt Cookies, Spelt Biscotti (two different varieties, both of which need tweaking flavor-wise), and a mixture of Spelt and Wheat in regular bread. I’m hoping to try Spelt sourdough soon!

While I’m thinking of it, do you have a favorite Biscotti flavor? What about your favorite type of cookie? I’d love to know the most popular ones so that I can replicate them with healthy ingredients! Thanks!

There has also been a new challenge, and it’s changed my schedule a bit. My laptop is seriously broken, possibly beyond repair, and so we are down to one computer. There are five people in the house, each with their own computer needs, and this poor Macbook is getting more than it’s fair share of use! Unfortunately, with the way we do things, about half of us (no, not β€œ2 ½” people, but 2-3 people) wind up wanting the computer at the same time. So now, I’m finding that my best opportunity for the computer is in the morning when everyone else is either still asleep, or having their personal time with the Lord. Because I get up earlier, I can still have some time to pray, read God’s Word, and be prepared for the day, but then get in my computer time before breakfast. Later in the day while everyone is practically in line for the computer, I can then spend more time studying and journaling as I would have spent the rest of the morning previously. It actually may work out better this way, because by the time the afternoon rolls around, I can certainly use some refreshment from the Lord!

Some of us have also found time for crafty projects. Seasonal decorations, flower headbands, hand-lettering practice, dishcloths. Sometime, I’ll get around to posting about our homemade Christmas presents from this year, as well.

I am so, so thankful for our home and family. A couple days ago, someone who had never been to our house before came over to pick up honey, and I cannot tell you the feeling that came over me as I watched him briefly glance around at the shelves of books that line our walls, the paper chain garland decorated with hand-written Bible verse hearts for Valentine’s day, the boxes of honey by the door, the living room space cramped with furniture to fit our family and guests. It didn’t matter what he thought in that instant, and he didn’t say anything, but as I watched him taking it all in, I felt a proud ownership of what God has accomplished in our lives and the different ways in which He has blessed us with things that draw us together.

Trip Preparations

Yikes! I am really out of the habit of posting! Of course we have been quite busy, too. πŸ˜‰ We’ll be leaving in less than a week for the Family Economics Conference 2012… and I’M SO EXCITED! πŸ˜€ There are so many happy little details that I could ramble on about, but to sum it all up, God has abundantly blessed us in being able to take this trip and attend the conference. I’m also thrilled to be doing a lot of the food planning and prep for this trip, which I hope to be posting about tomorrow. But for now, here are a few pictures of what’s been going on over the past few days.

With some lovely weather early in the week, Lady L and I went for a bike ride

At the dining room table - a busy hub of our family-centered-homeschooling-lifestyle. Amanda helping Lady L with some schoolwork while Mom works on something special...

Sewing Colonial dresses! It's been a "dream" of ours for awhile to make period clothing and go to/host historical events (history is a favorite subject), and this year, we will have the opportunity to do so by attending the Liberty Day Celebration held in conjunction with the Family Economics conference!

Lady L's dress, prior to hemming and finishing touches

Once again the dining room table is a mix of sewing station and school room

Practicing for piano lessons with Amanda

And lastly, trying out a new recipe for the trip - a sneak preview of tomorrow's post! Lady L did a great job putting it together and it was delicious!

Pictures from CHAP 2011

Each year we go to this convention. Each year it’s a little bit different. There are things I wish I had done, there are things I cringe over having done.

I wish I had…
… taken pictures of and with people we talked to – friends old and new…
… had the courage to ask someone to eat lunch with us…
… paid more attention to gifts for my parents…
… taken pictures of memories as they happened.

I cringed over…
… letting my bad mood nearly ruin the weekend…
… my bad judgement in taking both a heavy purse and my camera bag to carry around all day…
… saying some things that didn’t need to be said, and might have been wrong to say.

BUT for all that, the weekend was precious with family time, and that is what remains primarily in my memory. Their sweetness and love make me happy to just be around them – all of us together – for any amount of time, with anything happening, when I am in any kind of mood.

I love how this picture communicates how the world appears to just keep on spinning, but then there's the individual people in it - the ones you know (Amanda) and the ones you don't (everyone else who hasn't noticed me)

Playing a Professor Noggins game while waiting to be seated for dinner at a very busy Cracker Barrel!

Lady L was enthralled with this science toy - an electronic experiment with HEX bugs

My beautiful sisters and Mama, looking pretty and put together, as always (while browsing materials at the Answers in Genesis booth).

Oh, yes, and about the actual convention: It was wonderful to hear Ken Ham a few times over the weekend, as well as Mrs. Maxwell. We enjoyed browsing the vendor hall, finding a few lovely books in the used curriculum sale, and the occasional talk with friends.