Thursday, September 22, 2016

Great Books Preschool Story Time

So, I am finally getting to sit down and publish the next set of plans.  I really wondered how much I should do with Little Man this year and what type of curriculum would work best for him.  Then I thought of one of his favorite activities, sitting on my lap and reading. Every time I sit down, he grabs a book he wants to read.  This could be why I haven't gotten much posted lately.

I didn't want to just read, though. I wanted to read him great books.  So, I sat down and looked through our collection, what was available at the library, and what I wanted to order online.  Here is the list of what I chose.  Certainly, there are more great books to read, but I am only one mama and have only so much time.

We are keeping a small stack of books (I really want to get a basket) next to the upstairs sofa, so that we can read while the other kids are doing their independent work.  I let Little Man choose what to read and then swap out the ones we have read over and over again at the end of the week.  This way it puts him in charge, but makes sure that we cover all the books I've chosen.

That's it, that's all we are doing.  No fancy projects, no workbooks, no formulaic study, just reading from great books. And you know what?  He's learning!  He is already learning to recognize some of his letters, making comparisons between stories, and telling me about different animals.  It isn't happening quickly, but it is happening joyfully and that, for me, is more important!


So here it is my " Great Books Preschool Story Time."  Enjoy!

**Please note that most of these links are for Thriftbooks.com. If you have not joined them, I highly recommend that you do.  They have made homeschooling so much more affordable. On top of great prices, they offer free shipping on orders of $10+, and a $5 coupon off your next order, every time you spend $50 cumulatively. Can't be beat! Click here and sign up for a 15% off coupon for your first order, any size. (I will receive a small reward for you signing up to help my family keep reading! Thanks.)

Literature:

On Christmas Eve by  Brown

Miss Rumphius by Cooney


Owl Moon by Yolen


Ox-Cart Man by Cooney


Rembrandt’s The Story of Christmas

Mother Goose Rhymes and Poems  (I have several vintage collections we are using)

Scuffy the Tugboat by Crampton

The Rooster Crows by Petersham

Nicolini’s Song by Wilcoxen


Math:


One is 1 by Tasha Tudor

One Tractor by Siy





Religion:


The Bible in Pictures by Rev Kirby








Tasha Tudor First Prayer



Science:





Autumn Leaves by Robbins





Five Senses by Tasha Tudor

Have any you would add?




Friday, September 9, 2016

Seven Super Quick Takes: First Week of School Lessons

I am linking up with Kelly--a little late but I hear late is better than never--to share what I learned this first week of schooling!



1
Scheduling two birthday parties within five days is kind of crazy.  Scheduling two birthday parties within five days when it is the first week of school and you are six months pregnant should be considered criminally insane!!!  What was I thinking?  

Buddy had a party on Sunday which included an "old fashioned, proper, sit-down family dinner" with his best friend (and future bride) and her family.  Cowgirl is currently downstairs in the family room making s'mores on the fireplace with dad and two of her best friends (camping got rained out) and we will be doing a campfire breakfast in the morning.  All good kids, all great memories, still one tired mama!

2
The curriculum I planned for the year seems to be working well, but I got all the plans together too late and am struggling to catch up with the prep work--like reading all the books I assigned my children.  Next year, I will be going back to my usual plan of having a rough plan done by the middle of June.

3
If you write an article outlining all your grandiose plans to make this year super special, but forget to write these plans in your planner--they probably won't happen.  I am going to make up for it on the feast of St Therese.  

4
Audio books of all sorts are a homeschooling mom's best friend!  I know I haven't gotten the rest of my plans posted--see number 5--but I have added in audio books for Buddy and Cowgirl, along with audio textbooks for Buddy.  It really has made schooling so much easier.  I still need to supervise their progress, but it gives them independence and me a little more time to work with the other children. A bonus is, they WANT to do the subjects on audio more than any others.  SCORE!  Oh, and if you have never heard of Phonetic Zoo, check it out, best spelling program and completely hands off for the mom.

5
Pipe dreams and delusions, I say! I somehow thought I would not only accomplish a week of school with all new curriculum, write five blog posts, host two parties, and get my garden weeded this week.  I blame the hormones.  So the plans are still coming, but at least I got this up!

6
To eliminate the glut of "not-me's" glasses that would fill up the table and sink each day, we got each person their own, distinctive glass. Amazingly, not-me stopped showing up and raiding our glasses.  I am thinking that I need the same thing for plates.  The amount of dishes we have been going through as my boys eat eight meals a day is mind boggling.  I just can't keep up.  Anyone ever try this?

7
A "Great Books Story Time" curriculum was the perfect fit for Little Man.  However, I need to discover some clean, hands-on, engaging activities for when I can't be reading stories.  Coloring with markers was great, until he colored most of his hands and then started running through the house as I chased him envisioning red hand prints on every wall and piece of furniture from now until the end of time.

 Also, I found all these great documentaries that go along with our curriculum so I could have some time off when I needed it when baby comes--or when I am just too uncomfortable to deal with it all as I wait for baby to come.  However, Murphy is a cruel companion.  Our Wii has decided to stop working and that was our source of "TV."  Now, I need to research other options or figure out how to fix the Wii, however, I know if I call customer service they will laugh that I want to fix a Wii that "we just got" six years ago!

How did your week go? 
  

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Let's Get Planning: Cowgirl's 7th Grade

Wow, 7th grade.  How did that happen?  Seems like we were just wrapping up second grade a few months ago.  The jump to schooling older children in upper grades has taken a lot of adjusting for me and to be honest, I'm not completely there yet.

I had contemplated signing Cowgirl up for Homeschool Connections, but it just wasn't the right time to do that for any of us.  The amount of anxiety that she and I were experiencing just thinking of starting led me to realize it wasn't the right choice for us.  That's the great thing about homeschooling, lots of flexibility.

I decided, instead, to take a Great Books/Charlotte Mason approach.  Here is our extensive list of plans for the year.  I mixed print books, e-books, and audiobooks to give us the most options and make life with a newborn more bearable.

This is a fairly lengthy list of books, and our budget is tight presently.  I used Thriftbooks to find most of my books, as well as Librivox, and the library.  In the end, I spent about $120 on curriculum total and will have it for future years, since most is not consumable.  







History:

Royal Diaries:






10 American Girls From History

9 Great Horse Stories

A Child's History of Art

In Art: Horses



Civics:



Religion:




Choose one Gospel to Read

Read about four saints of your choice that you know nothing about


                           
Literature:















Writing/Composition:

Copy two paragraph of literature each week

Write a narration of what you read once a week


Math:


Spelling:

Handwriting:

Language:
Sign Language resources

Science:
Continue Independent Study of Horse Anatomy












                           

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Let's Get Planning: 2016-2017

It's September.  IT'S SEPTEMBER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Did you hear the collective gasp across the country side as homeschool moms everywhere woke up to the reality!!



I really have been planning, it has just taken me so long to get settled on my plan this year.  I didn't want to post my dithering and million updates and changes. However, seeing as school starts for the Academy of St Therese for the Glories of God next Tuesday, I have been dotting my i's and crossing my t's in a digital age sort of way.

In the next week I will have all our plans posted, including my Great Books Story Time curriculum for Little Man.  Please come back and be willing to lend your input.  Have a great school year everyone!

Coming posts:
Cowgirl's 7th Grade Curriculum
Buddy's 3rd Grade Curriculum
Little Man's Preschool Story Time Curriculum
History--Civil War to World War I
Morning Basket Plans

How's your planning going?

Thursday, August 25, 2016

A Rosary Shower for Baby

I have so much updating to do, including finishing my posts on the mother/daughter event.  Where did the time go?  As the summer draws to a close, I am getting more excited for fall and our coming child, as well as overwhelmed, by everything I must accomplish in the next three months.

Every child is a cause for celebration and a special gift from God.  I wanted to do something for this baby to celebrate the amazing joy that has come to our lives through this pregnancy. Despite all the difficulties and complications I have faced over the years with every pregnancy, I still truly have enjoyed being pregnant whenever I have been blessed to be so.  However, there is something truly special about this pregnancy.

I have not had one single complication or issue, it has been smooth sailing the whole way.  If I were only about six years younger, it would be considered a picture perfect pregnancy.  It has been a great blessing and gift, and my husband and I are just overflowing with joy and happiness.

One of the members of my online pregnancy group posted the idea of a rosary shower.  It seemed like just what I was looking to do.  So, I sent out evites to the special ladies in my life from church and long time friends asking them to gather for a rosary to pray for baby.

Every new baby is a cause to celebrate. Come celebrate with us as Jennifer gets ready to welcome her new child.
Please join us for a “Visitation” where we will pray the joyful mysteries of the rosary for Jennifer, Drew, and Baby.

The Annunciation –Like Mary she has conceived and will bear a child

The Visitation – Like Mary, she has been blessed and prayed and trusted in God to give her children

The Nativity – We will celebrate the birth of her child

The Presentation in the Temple – Like Mary & Joseph, Jennifer and Drew will bring their child up in the Catholic faith, beginning with a baptism

The Finding in the Temple – Jennifer and Drew will teach their child to proclaim the messages of the HEAVENLY FATHER

Please join us for a tea and light refreshments.  This is NOT a gift giving event, only a chance to gather and pray.  Thank you.

Pretty

I truly enjoy fancy tablecloths with linen and lace.  Pink is my favorite color, always has been. I agonized over whether to use a pink or blue tablecloth, though.  Pink because it is so pretty, blue for Our Lady.  I knew either one would leave people reading into my choice, when it had nothing to do with the baby itself.  I was relieved when I realized we needed two tables.  So, I used one of each.  

I even broke out the good china, silver flatware, and crystal glasses.  Some of my guests were a little afraid to use such nice pieces.  If a miracle baby isn't reason enough to use the good stuff, I don't know what is.


A dear friend from church brought me this beautiful rose.  It made the perfect centerpiece.  Have I mentioned that pink roses are my favorite flower?


I was blessed to be able to have the pilgrim statue this week.  She was really the only decoration I had for the shower.  I found my mother's pressed rose rosary and her Infant of Prague statue to complete my display.

  Happy
I was so happy that my best friend and college roomie was able to make the long drive for the shower.  We are like sisters and often got mistaken for twins in college.  There are many things that computers mess up, and quite honestly they often complicate life instead of fixing it.  However, a computer randomly matched us up and it couldn't have been more right.  Kim is the perfect compliment for me as far as friends, and one of the only people I would ever willingly choose to be my roommate. I always joke about playing the lottery to win millions, but truly I have already won the best lottery there is.  I not only ended up with the best roomie ever, I have a best friend for life!

Funny
I have not perfected the art of entertaining, serving, AND photographing events.  Photos always seem to fall off the radar for me.   However, I wanted some photos of the event.  My Comare (Godmother) always takes pictures of the food at events, then we discuss the amazing menu.  She was sick the day of the shower, so I wanted a photo for her.  I was rushing, and am not quite tall enough to get a good aerial view, so this is what I ended up with.  Please, believe me, it was much more impressive in person.  We dined on Gluten free goat cheese, cherry tomato, and purple basil pizza, zoodle cucumber salad, homemade caponata (an Italian eggplant stew), roasted chicken, farro salad, gluten free blueberry lemon cake, vanilla meringues, hazelnut chocolate wafers, and lemon tartalettes.  

I also found it funny that I discovered this delicious, yet incredibly easy, recipe for caponata for the first time. For generations, my family has been paying exorbitant prices to buy little cans of the stew imported from Italy.  It is a family favorite, but we only ever had it at major events and holidays because it cost so much for so little.  All this time, we could have just made it in the slow cooker.  Wish I could have brought a pot of it to my grandmother, she would have enjoyed it so, and was always my best cheerleader.

So, rushing around and trying to take photos before anything got moved led to very blurry photos.  My little set up looked so lovely, if I do say so myself, with my crystal stemware, pretty, blue china, crystal ice bucket, and selection of drinks on a beautiful cream table cloth.  Please, close your eyes and imagine.  I purchases a couple of French sodas, my favorite splurge drink ever. (You can keep you wine and fancy mixed cocktails, I'll savor my French lemonade soda.) a delicious peach nectar, and seltzer.  What's that you say?  There's no tea at my tea party.  Well, you are correct.  I got so caught up in everything, I forgot to make it.  Mea culpa. No one missed it, though.

Real

I have been acutely aware of my grandmother's absence this pregnancy.  I miss her so very much and wish she could be here to share in my joy.  It seems difficult to comprehend that this child will never know my parents, nor my grandparents who have meant so much throughout my life.  My heart aches for them every day, but they will only be vague stories and old photographs to my baby.  I prayed on my grandmother's silver rosary and wore her MOM bracelet that my mother had bought her.  

I also wore coral beads that I discovered in the jewelry box I inherited from my grandmother.  There isn't anything very special in there, all her fine jewelry was stolen in a burglary over two decades ago, however it is priceless to me.  I love to go in there and explore to find a piece that matches my outfit. The best part, though, is when I pull out a drawer or open a side, it still smells like her, and for that moment she is close to me, like she never even left.


A friend gave me a beautiful swing that her daughter has outgrown.  It couldn't be more perfect.  Another special blessing.  Teddy is keeping it warm for baby.  Despite all that has been lost, every goodbye that I have cried through over these past eight years, there is still so much hope and joy to be sought.   Last year, beginning at Christmas 2014, was a heartbreak of a year.  I lost my mother and my grandmother in four and a half months.  I bid goodbye to my grandparents' home just two weeks later, my favorite place on this earth, as a child, and the most welcoming little space I ever knew.  My heart was shattered, my soul crushed, I reeled from the intensity of the loss, and the trauma of watching the two most important women in my life slip into the hereafter.  I was determined to make 2016 a fresh start, to find my joy and purpose once more.  Now, after all those who I bid goodbye, I am preparing to welcome a new little love.  Life truly is a circle, and God has been so good to me.

Stay safe little one, Mommy longs to hold you close, but for now rest well deep within me and remind me that the best is always yet to be!




 

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Blog Hop Curriculum Sale 2016

Well, I am a little behind on joining in but, I'm linking up with Jessica for her annual blog hop.  I'm going to follow Jessica's guidelines for shipping and prefer to have payment made in Amazon e-card if possible--I have been trying to avoid Paypal as much as possible.

Here are the rules:
  • If you wish to purchase an item, please comment below and I will respond as soon as possible.
  • Please only reserve an item if you truly intend to purchase it.
  • For shipping and handling, please add $5 for 1-3 items and $7 for 4 or more items.
  • Please purchase an Amazon e-card and send it to my email jennifer.veilsandvocations@gmail.com once we have agreed on a price.
  • Please remember to include your full name and address in the notes section of the gift card.
  • Thank you so much, items will be shipped out next Tuesday after the sale is over. I may be adding items, so please check back.
NEW in sealed shrink wrap--First Communion Missal asking $4

NEW Holy Heroes Lenten Adventure Activity Book 1 (retails for $14.95) asking $8

**I apologize that this photo is sideways, I don't know how that happened. 

Prima Latina Instructional DVD set--case is not in great shape but DVDs are in excellent shape. Retails for $45, asking $10

Rock and Learn Addition & Subtraction CD, Workbook, and Tape.  This was never used, the package was only opened.  Everything is still like new.  Retails for $15, asking $5

NEW, never used, Simply Grammar by Charlotte Mason Asking $7
NEW in shrink wrap Blessed Miguel Pro Comicolor Saints pack of 5 coloring books 
retails for $2.95 each, asking $8

 Another sideways picture--need to figure out how to fix this!

Good condition Teacher Manual A Reason for Spelling A  Asking $2
Excellent condition Christian Liberty Press Building Spelling Skills (two exercises in the beginning are completed in pencil, the rest of the book is like new) asking $2

If you have any questions, please ask!  I hope to list a few more things tomorrow. Thanks so much!

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Pray Along: Day 9

We have made it to the end of our novena of novenas.  I am glad that I we have done it, but feel that there is still so much prayer that this world needs.  Today begins the novena of St John Vianney.  You can join in on that one by signing up here.  August 15th also begins a Rosary novena for our country and the upcoming election, learn more about that here.  More than anything, we need to keep praying, that is our greatest comfort and strongest weapon.

Thank you for taking this journey with me.  Please stop back later this weekend for my Annual Blog Hop post, and check out all the other wonderful buys available over at Jessica's blog.



Here are the prayers for today:

 Dear LORD, we have made this novena of novenas in petition for the protection of our priests and deacons and for the conversion of our enemies.  Please fortify our priests in heart and mind that they may be graced to easily endure the challenges placed before them.  Protect them from harm and help them to guide their flock through these turbulent waters.  Please LORD protect our enemies and conquer their hearts, lead them to Your merciful and undying Love.  Give them the strength to do what is right and just, and purify their souls that they may rest in Your Peace at the end of their days.  We ask all of this in the name of Your beloved and holy Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Memorare (Pray nine times)
REMEMBER, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly to thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother; to thee do I come; before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Amen.


St Michael Prayer 
Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the malice and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.

The Prayer to the Sacred Heart

Oh Lord Jesus Christ, to Your most Sacred Heart I confide this intention {name petition}. Only look upon me, then do what Your love inspires. Let Your Sacred Heart decide. I count on You. I trust in You. I throw myself on Your mercy. Lord Jesus, You will not fail me.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in You. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I believe in Your love for me. Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your kingdom come. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I have asked You for many favors, but I earnestly implore this one. Take it, place it in Your open Heart.
When the Eternal Father looks upon it, He will see it covered with Your Precious Blood. It will be no longer my prayer, but Yours, Jesus. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You. Let me not be disappointed. Amen.
- See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/prayer-to-the-sacred-heart.html#sthash.3R4CoVC6.dpuf

The Prayer to the Sacred Heart

Oh Lord Jesus Christ, to Your most Sacred Heart I confide this intention {name petition}. Only look upon me, then do what Your love inspires. Let Your Sacred Heart decide. I count on You. I trust in You. I throw myself on Your mercy. Lord Jesus, You will not fail me.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in You. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I believe in Your love for me. Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your kingdom come. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I have asked You for many favors, but I earnestly implore this one. Take it, place it in Your open Heart.
When the Eternal Father looks upon it, He will see it covered with Your Precious Blood. It will be no longer my prayer, but Yours, Jesus. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You. Let me not be disappointed. Amen.
- See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/prayer-to-the-sacred-heart.html#sthash.3R4CoVC6.dpuf

The Prayer to the Sacred Heart

Oh Lord Jesus Christ, to Your most Sacred Heart I confide this intention {name petition}. Only look upon me, then do what Your love inspires. Let Your Sacred Heart decide. I count on You. I trust in You. I throw myself on Your mercy. Lord Jesus, You will not fail me.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in You. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I believe in Your love for me. Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your kingdom come. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I have asked You for many favors, but I earnestly implore this one. Take it, place it in Your open Heart.
When the Eternal Father looks upon it, He will see it covered with Your Precious Blood. It will be no longer my prayer, but Yours, Jesus. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You. Let me not be disappointed. Amen.
- See more at: http://www.prayers-for-special-help.com/prayer-to-the-sacred-heart.html#sthash.3R4CoVC6.dpuf