Jorie and the Gold Key by A.H. Richardson- Review

Have you ever imagined a world parallel to our own? A world in which whimsy and magic are as commonplace as electricity is to us?

Such a place can be found in Jorie and the Gold Key by A.H. Richardson. The second installment in a fanciful seriesJorie and the Gold Key picks up where the first book, Jorie and the Magic Stonesleft off.  Continue reading “Jorie and the Gold Key by A.H. Richardson- Review”

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Homeschool Moms Need to Read, Too! My Classic Summer Reading List

One thing I’ve noticed as a homeschool mom is that I am extremely diligent about my kids reading quality literature but pretty lax about what I read myself.

Don’t get the wrong idea. I don’t spend all my time- or any time, for that matter- reading romance novels (yuck) or celebrity magazines, but I do read quite a bit of what some may consider to be “fluff.”

To my defense, I do devour endless literature selections on education and homeschooling, buuut…okay, I’ll admit it. The rest of my reading selections usually come from the young adult section of the library. Yes, I do like to read many of the same books as my teenage daughters. 😛  Continue reading “Homeschool Moms Need to Read, Too! My Classic Summer Reading List”

10 Books That Will Forever Change the Way You Look at Learning

Sometimes it can be extremely hard to rid ourselves of an accepted concept that not only we grew up with, but so did our parents, grandparents, and, sometimes, our great-grandparents. The educational institution we know of today has only existed for a very short time when compared with the rest of history as we know it; however, since the past several generations have never known anything different than the brick-and-mortar school setting, oftentimes our idea of what “real” education looks like gets crammed into a neat little illustration of what’s going on within the four walls of the public school down the street.  Continue reading “10 Books That Will Forever Change the Way You Look at Learning”

How to Homeschool Preschool- And Is It Even Necessary?

Being a parent is an exciting thing. There’s just something about watching the little wonders we’ve doted on, fed, and nurtured grow up to be little explorers that just can’t seem to stop getting into things.

Once these little scientists-and that is what they are- reach the age of 3 or 4, we often begin to think about school. The current groupthink of the educational establishment is getting kids started in school as quickly as possible. Hearing the terms “early childhood education” and “early literacy” has become almost as common as hearing the sound of our own names.

Because of this, the use of preschools and pre-kindergarten classes is soaring. But for those of us who have chosen to homeschool, we often begin to think about how we should start homeschooling these little bundles of energy.  Continue reading “How to Homeschool Preschool- And Is It Even Necessary?”

5 Days of Christmas Lists- Day 1- 25 Must-Read Christmas Books

This is going to be an exciting week! For the next 5 days in a row, I’m going to be linking up with iHomeschoolNetwork.com and a slew of other iHN bloggers to bring you some amazing ideas and inspiration for the upcoming holidays.

Keep your eyes open this week for posts on:

Day 1- 25 Must-Read Christmas Books (That’s this post!)

Day 2- 25 Fun and Engaging Christmas Activities

Day 3- 25 Christmas Specials That Are Near and Dear to Our Hearts

Day 4- 25 Simple and Creative Christmas Crafts

Day 5- 25 Christmas Goodies to Make with Your Kids

Continue reading “5 Days of Christmas Lists- Day 1- 25 Must-Read Christmas Books”

Photographs from the Edge- Review

The beauty of God’s creation can be seen throughout the world in the variety of animals, habitats, and people groups to be found in abundance the world over. Photographer Art Wolfe, in collaboration with Rob Sheppard, has compiled an exquisite collection of the photos he’s captured in his travels throughout the globe in Photographs from the Edge- A Master Photographer’s Insights on Capturing an Extrordinary WorldContinue reading “Photographs from the Edge- Review”

The Kingdom of Oceana- Review

Imagine the beautiful island of Hawaii 500 years before it was ever known by that name. Imagine a world at one with nature and all that belongs to it. Imagine a place of unimaginable warmth and beauty.

Welcome to The Kingdom of Oceana

Have you ever wished you could escape your daily life just for a little while to visit someplace magical? Recently I’ve had the privilege to do just that.  Continue reading “The Kingdom of Oceana- Review”

Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Became Parents- Review

Plus a giveaway!!!

How many times have you heard someone say that parenting doesn’t come with an instruction manual? What if I were to tell you that I’ve found the closest thing to it?

Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Became Parents, by Gary Chapman, author of The Five Love Languages, and Shannon Warden, assistant teaching professor at Wake Forest University, is a treasure trove of information for new and expectant parents.

This book covers topics such as: how much a child changes your schedule, the costs of parenting, the uniqueness of each child, how to keep your marriage strong, and even thoughts on preparing for your child’s education, among many others. In fact, there are several ideas broached here that even I- a mother of 11 children- have never consciously thought much about.  Continue reading “Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Became Parents- Review”

3 Reasons Not to Worry About Homeschool Subject Requirements

If you’ve ever visited this blog before, you are well aware of how passionately I try to spread the message that homeschooling does not have to be a replica of school and how important it is to get out of the schoolish mindset. I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately and have come to the realization that homeschool laws and even homeschool curricula can make that very difficult. (Watch my video on this topic here.)

Many states have specific subject requirements that must be fulfilled each year, thus homeschool resource publishers follow suit and produce textbook after textbook covering grammar, writing, spelling, reading, math, social studies, science, and so on and so on.

Countless times I have seen stressed out homeschool moms completely burned out from trying to fit all of these different classes into their day, inevitably erasing the possibility of any enjoyment that might have occurred in their homeschool routine. Continue reading “3 Reasons Not to Worry About Homeschool Subject Requirements”

An Inside Look at Our Relaxed Homeschool- Spotlight on the Middles

The other day I wrote about a specific day in our homeschool with the littles. Today I’m going to focus on a recent day of learning with my 9, 10, and 12 year olds. 

As with my younger children, I do not consider only our structured homeschool time as our learning time because each day brings so many opportunities for natural learning experiences that I’d be remiss to not mention them.

As you may notice, our middle children’s homeschool day is very similar in structure to their younger siblings’. It is this familiarity that helps me remember everything that has to be done from day to day- and it also helps me keep my sanity!  Continue reading “An Inside Look at Our Relaxed Homeschool- Spotlight on the Middles”