A HUGE sigh of relief!!

Well, I finally got to order my curriculum for this school year this week! I feel sooooo much better now! School is about two and half weeks away, and I hadn’t gotten anything yet and it was really stressing me out. As always, however, the Lord provided a way, and I was not only able to order my stuff, but just about all of it should be here before we start! I am continually amazed at how God is able to work things out in my life, and this is just another reminder about how, instead of stressing out, I just need to relax and trust him!

Of course, now I have to start getting organized for next year…guess that means I’ve got some cleaning to do! 🙂 Once I get that done, I’ll post about what curriculum we will be using…making the final decisions was sooooo hard, but I feel really good about my choices and I’m looking forward to starting up again!

Now that I’m really excited about school ,  I’m off to stalk my mailman and UPS delivery guy! I can’t wait to get all my boxes.  🙂

Free Summer Digital Issue from TOS Magazine!

I am so excited to be able to share a really, really special offer with you. As you know, I am a part of the TOS Crew, but even before I was, I LOVED TOS Magazine. It is just chock full of great ideas, encouragement, reviews, recipes and so very much more! TOS  is currently offering a look at the newest issue absolutely free, for everyone. This is a no-strings attached offer! You can take a peek at the magazine here: Free Summer Issue. (or you can click on the button on my page)

Then share the magazine with your friends  by clicking on the share button at the top of the magazine pages! Enjoy!

 

Out with the old!!

I’m finally working on getting my homeschool stuff from last year packed up (it’s late, I know), and I figured I’d update some pictures of what we did this year.

These are pictures from our history lapbooks:

We used the Homeschool in the Woods Time Travelers CD’s as our base for history, and these lapbooks come from that. We really enjoyed using these this year. It comes with a TON of information, activities and projects, but I was able to pick and choose what we wanted to do. The lapbooks were a great way for us to document our learning, and very easy to print out and complete. I am looking forward to using the rest of the series next year!

For science, we have been using Exploration Education this year. It has been a great program, with lots of information and experiments. We weren’t able to complete all of it this year, but we did get as far as the mini house, which is an experiment that utilizes our circuit that we finished earlier as a power source:

A few people from my homeschool group also used the same science program this year and their kids liked it as well. We had quite a few experiments on display during our end of the year homeschool celebration! 🙂

We also had a great time with our homeschool group! My oldest son enjoyed working on the yearbook staff, and my youngest had fun in Lego Club and hands-on science class. They are both looking forward to starting up again in the fall. Of course, one of the best parts was the field trips! We went to a chocolate shop, the pet store, ice skating, and rock climbing!!

Looking back like this has definitely gotten me excited about next year!! Now, of course, I have to get busy planning 🙂

Panic! (and then some encouragment)

So I met with one of my homeschool friends at the beach the other day, and we were talking about next year.  Both of us are having difficulty getting motivated to start the prep work, and the school year is only about 5 weeks away now!! I think for me, the big issue is sorting through all my curriculum choices and trying to decide on the best one.

I am very thankful to have sooooo very many options as a homeschooler, but the sheer amount of options is part of what makes deciding so hard! Then there’s the pressure that leads to my panic…..what if I choose the wrong material and my child doesn’t learn? What if he falls behind in math/reading/science etc. etc. etc…..it goes on and on. Honestly, sometimes it feels like there’s a voice in  my head just trying to talk me out of homeschooling.

In discussing this with my friend, she shared with me a devotional she had read about how satan uses our thoughts/feelings/insecurities/doubts about ourselves etc. to discourage us from following the path God has put us on. It’s often those times that we are on the Lord’s path that our struggles seem their toughest, but that’s when we need to cling to God most, and stay true to what He has called us to do.

We both spent time in prayer, and after that I felt much better. We decided we are going to get together next week and sort through all of our curriculum choices together. I think it will be motivating for me to have someone there to discuss it with, and also helpful to have someone to bounce ideas off of. Today, I am very grateful for the support of fellow homeschoolers, because I know that this would be so very much harder without them!

Vacation!!!

We just got back from a wonderful week in the mountains of western NC. It was really nice to disconnect for a little bit and just have some family time! 🙂 We hiked, and swam, and my kids were even brave enough to try out Sliding Rock, even though the water was a chilly 48 degrees!! (That’s REALLY REALLY cold to people from Florida!!).

I was also able to spend some time reading by the pool and out on the balcony. Currently I am enjoying Beyond Survival. A Guide to Abundant Life Homeschooling by Diana Waring. It’s a good book to get me inspired to start school again next month. I’m enjoying the refresher on learning styles, which I do already know about, but need to give more thought to. I think that’s a topic I am going to do more research on in the coming weeks while I plan for next year. Both of my boys have different learning styles from each other (one is an intuitor/kinesthetic learner, the other is more of a feeler/visual learner). Unfortunately, I am more of a “thinker”, so my style doesn’t always mesh with theirs 😉

This is something I want to improve on for next year. I think I did a fairly good job of trying to adjust to my boys styles of learning, but I could still do more. It’s true that I find that when they are learning in their “zone” things are so much easier for all of us, but I have to fight the impulse to just do things my way. (Which isn’t easy!!)

So, I’ve still got about 5 weeks left to plan, as we will return to school about August 15. I should have curriculum rolling in soon, and I’m beginning to get excited!!