Monday, April 30, 2018

Science Saturday: STEM activities from the week

I know it's not Saturday anymore, but I didn't want to miss sharing some of the science activities that we've been up to. It's mostly a lot of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) activities that just happened without much thought throughout the week.

Aaron did a presentation to his co-op class on how a quadcopter works. He typed it all up on his laptop, and did an awesome job in explaining how it works. The boys were all fascinated. I was too, and even learned a few things.


Alex received this "curriculum" from his charter school on Tuesday. Well, we finally went out to pick it up from the school. They are magnetic wooden blocks called Tegu. I got the Travel Pals Whale set, it is similar to this one. These are spendy blocks, but I have always wanted to try them, so we gave it a go with some extra curriculum money that had to be used up.


He loves them. He played with them most of the time while we were at the school. The magnets are pretty strong, and they make some fun designs. 


I restocked on kinetic sand recently too, so this was out for a few days. Most of the kids played with it. I put the geometric shapes in there, and they had fun with making the 3D shapes.


We played a game to get familiar with the periodic table. I am not sure where I got this game. It's awesome though. We played through it once on Friday afternoon. I think we'll pull it out again this week.


Aric did a live hour long coding class for a review on Friday morning. He wanted to join the class and do more. He really liked it. The review will be up later this week!

CodeWizards HQ class
That's all for science Saturday!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

The things that keep me up at night {52 lists} #16

Oooh, the things that keep me up at night.... let me count the ways! I have insomnia, so despite the fact that I'm exhausted my body just won't let me sleep at night when I'm supposed to. There are a lot of things that wake me up, or keep me awake when I am trying to fall asleep. They include:

  • Worry (#1). This is probably my number one cause for all my lack of sleep. Usually it's a worry that I wake up startled to and just can't let it go unless I get up and try to shake it off. Or, when I'm going to bed, I just lay there and think and worry about everything.
  • Bad dreams. I would rather not dream at all. It wakes me up, and leads me to my first item, worry.
  • Blogging (#2). I have to admit I do a lot of catching up on blogging in the middle of the night. It just works for me, especially when I have insomnia.
  • Chores. This one is rare. Even though I'm up, I don't usually do too many chores because I just don't have the energy. I will often just switch out the laundry though.
  • Homeschool prep/planning (#3). I can often be found at the computer researching, putting books on hold, and getting ready various homeschool plans.
  • Kids. I have boys that come and wake me up almost every night. They are older, but they still come and say they are scared, or just need some loving. Other times it's sickness too.
  • Snoring. Certain household members might snore rather loudly. It keeps me up.
  • Hunger. I get midnight empty tummy rumblings sometimes that I can't seem to just ignore. This doesn't happen very often. Usually I just ignore my empty stomach, and I'm fine. But, sometimes it just really keeps me awake, and I feel like I would be able to go to sleep better if I just put something in my stomach like a piece of toast.
  • Birthday party or holiday fun. I have spent many Christmas eves awake being excited and getting things ready. Or, if I have some special decorations or plans for a birthday the next day I will get those ready while the kids are sleeping.
I put a number next to my top 3 things that keep me up at night, number 1 being the most frequent reason. Now I am off to sleep on the couch, which is my landing place on nights like this when I can't sleep.

I am linking this up to:

52 lists with Olive & Plaid

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Science Saturday: Chemistry & Physics and this week's science

Recently the crew did a review on an Apologia Science curriculum. I wasn't on that review because we already own the Human Anatomy and Physiology books, but it made me realize that I hadn't shared our science for this year at all, and since we are using a different Apologia title I thought I'd share what we are doing. We are using their Chemistry and Physics book for young explorers. I also have the notebooking journals to go with them. We really enjoy the Apologia books, and I'm pretty sure I have almost all of the young explorer series.


These books are packed with science experiments, so I knew it would be helpful to just buy the lab kit. I was able to purchase this with our charter funds. It has been great to have this because I can just grab the baggie for each lesson, and we don't have to go searching for all the material. It also makes the kids more excited to see all this stuff, they can't wait to get to all the experiments.


Here is one of the experiments we worked on this week. We are just getting into the elements, so one of the activities was to make atoms using candies for the protons and neutrons. They made 2 hydrogen atoms and 1 oxygen atom resulting in H2O.

Alex's H2O molecule
The candies came in the lab kit, and the kids really wanted to eat them for a long time, so we ate the leftovers. It was a very sweet science experiment.

Aric's molecule of water.
There are a lot of other activities in the notebooking journals like mini books. Here is Alex glueing in a mini book that he put together. There are also copywork pages, coloring pages, and science experiment recording pages. We always pull these out when we work on science.


Other science from the week:

Slime making seems to be a regular thing around here lately. We really like making this fluffy slime. It really feels amazing.


I even enjoy squishing it around. It doesn't stick to everything. Here are the video directions for making it.

Aaron (the middle schooler) doesn't really do science with us anymore. He has an online science that he's doing through the charter this year because he has one required online class that he has to do for the program that he's in. So, I chose to have him do science. Since he does science online, I really want him to have some more hands-on science to do because he finds it slightly boring to be doing science online.


He has a few different things he can do like a chemistry kit, building rockets, and other various youtube experiments. But, this week he got this with the last of his curriculum funds through the charter, a K'nex educational set DNA STEM building replication and transcription. He is doing a little bit of DNA stuff in his online science so I thought this would be a good fit. He loves K'nex too.


He started with the first project this week, a DNA strand. I believe the book has a few different projects to go through.


That's about all we did for science this week!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

My favorite meals {52 lists} #15

I have been MIA with my 52 lists posts! It's a bummer when life gets busy, and there's just not enough of me to keep up. But, I'm back for this one. How can I pass up one that involves food?? I think this one should be pretty easy.

Free breakfast at the hotel we are staying at for 5 days? Yes please!

My favorite meals:

  • Anything breakfast. This is my absolute favorite meal of the day. I'd be happy to eat it for lunch and dinner too, and no particular breakfast is my favorite. I love it all.
  •  BBQ. I really love most of what comes off the BBQ.
  • Mexican food. I could eat out at a Mexican restaurant pretty much anytime of the week. We have it pretty regularly at home too.
  • Eating out. I love any meal I don't have to cook. I am guilty of doing this way too much.

We had a fun St. Patrick's day potluck and invited several family friends over. It is something I've wanted to do for a long time, and we made it happen this year. Might be a yearly happening now! That will definitely count as one of my favorite meals.

  • With friends and family. I love meals where we gather whether it's for a holiday with lots of family, a picnic at the park with church friends, or a meal at a home with a family that invites us over. If I could, I'd have people over way more than we do.
  • Any meal that has a special theme, tradition, or holiday. I love to do things like make rainbow pancakes for my kids on St. Patrick's Day, or go to Chinese food on Chinese new year. 
We made rainbow pancakes on St. Patrick's Day again this year. It's a fun tradition now.

That probably covers a lot of my favorite meals. I'm sure there are more because I love food, but I can't think of specifics at the moment. I am linking this up with:

52 lists with Olive & Plaid

Princess Cut Movie (A REVIEW)

Watchman Pictures

I love a good, clean romantic movie, so I was excited to get the opportunity to watch Princess Cut from Watchman Pictures. This is a very family friendly movie, and good for the whole family to watch.


This is a sweet story of a young girl, Grace, who is dreaming of her wedding day, and hoping the boy she is dating will soon pop the question. He has a special dinner planned to tell her something important, but instead tells her that he is engaged to someone else. Brokenhearted, she is unsure what to do next. She meets a new boy, Jared, at a coffee shop, who remembers her looking/dreaming about rings at the jewelry store he was working at recently. He wants to get to know her more, so she gives him a chance, and they start dating. However he starts wanting more alone time with her, and wants to get a little too close before making a commitment to marriage. Grace knows her parents wouldn't approve of this, and realizes that they are not headed down the right path. She doesn't feel a true love for him, and feels something is not right with their relationship. She wants to do the right thing. She decides she wants to wait on the Lord's timing for true love as her father counsels her to do, and so Grace calls it off with Jared. He doesn't take it well, but she stays strong. She puts all her time and energy into her family and schooling. Of course, she still has moments where she gets frustrated, and wonders if God's timing will ever come, but it does. She catches the eye of their new neighbor, Clint, who is also a Doctor. After a twisted love triangle gets figured out, Grace finds true love, and realizes that God's timing was just perfect. I won't go into too much detail about what happens at the end because it's fun to watch it all unfold in the movie. I really enjoyed the story/plot.

Princess Cut The Movie

This movie was enjoyable to watch, and contained a lot of good teachable moments for me as a parent, and for a young person who is in this similar time in  their life. It's a perfect example of why it's important to choose carefully who to spend your lifetime with, and that God's timing is important. To think how life would have been for Grace with the first or even the second young man that came along in her life would have probably ended up heartbreaking. It's a good story, and good for the teens/young adults in the family to watch. It would be good for younger kids too, but they might not be as interested or get as much out of it. I know my younger boys would say it's boring, and has too much "love," so I didn't make them watch it yet.

If you want to see what others had to say about this movie you can click on the banner below.

Princess Cut {Watchman Pictures Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Homeschool Diploma (A REVIEW)

Homeschool Diploma

It's amazing how fast time flies when it comes to children growing up. I am already looking at my daughter graduating next year, in 2019, and recently had the opportunity to get a Homeschool Diploma as we prepare for her upcoming graduation. We had many options to choose from while creating her diploma with a fully customizable Standard Diploma. I was able to pick everything from size, orientation of the folder, to the seals, and writing.

The ordering and delivery process was quick and efficient. I was guided through each step of the ordering page with options to upgrade along the way. I was fully made aware of the costs of upgrades, and what was included. I had examples of everything, and what it would look like. After I ordered my package was in my mail box just a few days later! It came in a sturdy envelope with a reminder on the front to NOT BEND. I opened it up, and found that it came in a resealable plastic zipper pouch, which we are encouraged to store it in. I am very happy to see that as I have to store it until next year!

Storage envelope for the diploma and cover.

I just had my daughter's name printed on the front. I could have had some things added like 'Diploma of Graduation', or a school name (for an extra fee), but I chose to leave it blank since all that information will be on the inside. I do love all the choices though!

This is the purple cover choice. There are other color choices.

For the diploma itself, we could choose to put the name of a school on top. We don't have a good name for our homeschool, so I just chose to write 'Diploma of Homeschool', and it's optional to add the city you live in. Then, of course you put the student's name in. We also had the choice for the paper we wanted it printed on. There are 3 different choices for the seal as well. I chose 'Excellence in Home Education.' The other two seals say: 'Soli Deo Gloria To God Alone be the Glory,' or the year emossed in the center and spelled out around it. Finally, there were spaces for me to sign it when I received it. Now I get to tuck it away until next Spring when she has her graduation.

The finished product, dated for June 2019, which is when she will graduate.
This is just the tip of the graduating "ice berg." There are many more graduation supplies offered through Homeschool Diploma! They have caps and gowns, announcements, class rings and gifts, shirts, tassles, and more! If we have more needs as we get closer to my daughter's graduation, I'm thankful to know this is all available.

They also have products for 8th grade, and Kindergarden graduations too. There are options to order as an individual homeschoolers, homeschool groups, or school groups. Some of the other crew members reviewed different products, if you'd like to see what they have to say about the Standard Diploma, or any other products you can find their reviews by clicking on the banner below.

Kindergarten Graduation and Junior High Diploma for your Homeschool  {Homeschool Diploma Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Wordless Wednesday: Spring!

I am enjoying all the beauty and fun that comes with this time of year! Here are a few shots of recent events.

I finally got a good shot of all these beautiful blossoms right now. To see a tree that looks like it has just exploded with blossoms is so stunning


One of my boys found this hidden rock outside of the Sherwood ice rink the day after St. Patrick's day. It's from a fun Facebook group called "Hillsboro Rocks!" All the way from Hillsboro! They make some pretty amazing painted rocks.


Easter weekend fun!

We headed to Bauman Farms and Garden for their Easter egg hunt. They had cookie decorating for $1.


It was a fun little egg hunt!


 Linking up to Wordless Wednesday.
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