Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Considering God’s Creation ~ Review


For my final review for the TOS Crew we were very happy to receive a product for one of our favorite subjects ~ science.  I received Considering God’s Creation from Eagles Wings Education Materials


About Considering God’s Creation

Considering God’s Creation is a natural science curriculum with a biblical perspective.  It is designed for 2nd to 7th grade, although it is adaptable for younger or older students.  We received the Student Manual, which has 268 pages, Teachers manual, and audio CD.  

Considering God’s Creation contains 36 lessons which cover the following topics:

  • Creation
  • The Universe: Stars, Sun and Planets
  • The Earth
  • Non-Living Things: Rocks and Minerals
  • Weather
  • The Plant Kingdom
  • The Animal Kingdom
  • Animal Anatomy & Physiology
  • Man: Made in God’s Image

Here is a sample of what the workbook pages look like, image

and here is a sample page from the Teacher’s Manual. image

What I Thought

There is so much that I love about this curriculum!  The lessons are broken down so you can teach one lesson per week.  I didn’t have to buy a lot of extras ~ just a notebook.  At the beginning of the  lesson it gives you a simple list of what you will need during the lesson (crayons, glue, scissors, etc.).  Each lesson contains:

  • Vocabulary
  • Introduction to the lesson
  • Song/Poem
  • Bible Reading
  • Activity
  • Notebook
  • Evolution Stumpers
  • Review
  • Digging Deeper

What I loved the most ~ I was able to pick up the Teacher’s Manual and get right to it and what I was teaching was from a biblical prospective!  We are going to continue using Considering God’s Creation this summer.

Considering God’s Creation (including Teacher’s Manual, Student Notebook, and CD) is available from Eagle’s Wings for $29.95.  Additional Student workbooks are available for $13.95 each.

To see what other crew members thought click here.

This product was given to me for review purposes, and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are mine.


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Ministry of Motherhood Book Club ~ Week 1

imageI am very excited to be joining the Good Morning Girls who are hosting the read along of the Ministry of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson.   My friend Jolanthe at No Ordinary Moments has started a Ministry of Motherhood accountability group ~ so very glad she started this!  This week we started reading assigned bible verses and using the S.O.A.P.  Method.

The S.O.A.P. Method stands for:

  • S - Write out the scripture passage for the day.
  • O - Write down 1 or 2 observations from the passage.
  • A - Write down 1-2 applications from the passage.
  • P- Pray over what you learned from today’s passage.

John 15: 4-5 really spoke to me this week:

“Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

So often I feel like I am alone and struggling with simple day to day things.   This verse reminds me that he is ALWAYS with me.  If I become stubborn and try and break away I will continue to struggle and most likely fail.  I want my kids to see me seeking God in ALL things, not just when life gets difficult! 

I can’t wait to see what God gives me as I start reading the Ministry of Motherhood. 


Wet Felting

This is one of those ~ why didn’t I try this before crafting experiences!   I found a wet felted water lily at Wee Folk Art I decided it was time to give it a try.   

My first attempt at wet felting a water lily.wet felt water lily

It was very easy to make and scrubbing the wool roving was quite relaxing.

wet felt water lilyDirection for making the water lily and reeds can be found on Wee Folk Arts website. 

You can check out how I will be using the water lily and reeds in my What’s in the Tub? post Monday at Totally Tots.

The kids saw how much fun I was having and immediately wanted to join in so I let them wet felt soap.

What You Need:

  • hot water (as warm as little hands can stand) and dish soap
  • wool roving
  • bar of soap

Wet felting soapWhat You’ll Do:

Wrap the bar of soap in several thin layers of wool roving.

wet felting soap

Once you have the wool in place, hold the wool in place with both hands and dip it in the hot, soapy water a couple of times, gently squeezing the water out.

wet felting soap

Once the wool is tacked down hand it over to the kids so the can rub, rub, RUB!  You will need to dip it into the hot, soapy water occasionally.  It may feel like it’s not working just keep rubbing!

wet felting soap Once the wool has felting, let the soap dry completely on a drying rack.

wet felting soap

Next up needle felting! 


Friday, May 20, 2011

The Homeschool Village’s Playdate

HSV Playdate door (2)Welcome!  I’m very excited to participate in The Homeschool Village’s Playdate.  Let me introduce myself.  I’m Cindy ~wife, mother, homeschooler, domestic goddess wannabe, and I am  somewhat of a crafty gal.  I’m currently homeschooling my daughter, Emily (8) and my son, Aiden (4). 

    IMG_5244_edited-1   IMG_5233

Sorry, no family picture, I like to stay on the picture taking side of the camera!

My story as a stay at home, homeschooling mom began about 6 years ago.   My daughter was almost 2, and I was working full time at a bank as an Assistant Vice President, in charge of Human Resources and Compliance.  I put in LONG hours and I was dedicated to my job.  In December 2004, my husband and I were so excited to find out that I was pregnant.  At our second doctors appointment we discovered that we lost the baby.  I was miserable!  Work no longer seemed important, my daughter was growing up so fast, and our life was always in hurry up mode!   I believe God has a purpose in EVERYTHING.  He was calling me to rethink my priorities and stay home.  My husband and I talked about all the pros and cons.  A big con was the loss of a paycheck (1/2 to be exact).  We decided to trust God and I put in my notice.   Homeschooling was also part of God’s plan.  He has placed some amazing friends in my path, who have helped me on my homeschooling journey ~ and maintain my sanity!  I have bad days, days I struggle, days I long for just just 15 minutes of quiet, but I don’t doubt that I am following God’s plan for my family. 

So my questions for you are:

  • Do you require your kids to take quiet time every day?
  • If so, how do you keep them in their rooms? 
  • Have you ever locked yourself in the bathroom just for 5 minutes of quiet? (Not that I have EVER done this. : )

Thanks for stopping by to play!


Wordy Qwerty {Review}

Talking Fingers, the creators of Read, Write and Type (a product I reviewed last year and loved), have delivered another favorite in our household ~ Wordy Qwerty!


About Wordy Qwerty

Wordy Qwerty is intended for children ages 7 to 9.  The program helps with reading and spelling by providing the following foundations for fluency:

  1. Some sounds can be represented in several different ways.
  2. Most words follow about 20 easy spelling rules.
  3. There are many word families, (words that sound the same, or rhyme). By changing the first letter(s), you can make hundreds of words.
  4. Some words are "outlaws". They don't follow the rules. They must be recognized quickly and automatically.
  5. Writing to dictation develops vocabulary, comprehension and fluency as well as spelling skills.
  6. Reading (and filling in missing words) develops vocabulary, comprehension, and fluency skills.

The program has 20 lessons (6 activities per lesson), which go over the following spelling rules: image

Wordy Qwerty teaches these rules through the use of fun games and songs.  You can hear a sample of some of the songs here.

Our Thoughts

This is have been a great addition to our language arts program.  My daughter is not a confident speller yet and she tends to ask after EVERY LETTER if she is spelling something correctly.  The program has been a blessing for me because I do not have to sit with her, therefore, she is not asking me constantly “Mom, is this right?”  I have seen an improvement in her spelling and confidence!  The games are challenging enough to keep her interest and the characters, Qwerty and Midi, are fun and quirky.  My daughter’s favorite game is Pop-a-Word.  You are given a sentenceimage

and the you have to click on the balloons with the correct spelling of each word in the sentence in the correct order.

imageMy only complaint with the program is the time it takes to load the games, which means my daughter has time to get sidetracked and distracted.  Overall, we have enjoyed the program and I can see improvement in my daughter spelling and reading.

Find Out More

Want to give the program a try?  You can download one free lesson (Silent E) and see what you think.  Plus, if you join their mailing list you can get a coupon for 20% off your next order. 

Wordy Qwerty is available online (a 5 year subscription) for the following cost:


You can also purchase the CD Home Version for $35.00, which includes the JingleSpells Songs CD.  NOTE:  This version NOT compatible with Windows 7 or Mac 10.6

You can read reviews by other TOS Crew Members here.

This product was given to me for review purposes, and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are mine.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Twister and Twister Curves {Guidecraft Mom Review}


Our latest construction toy from Guidecraft ~ Twisters and Twister Curves have been a hit in our household.

About Twister and Twister Curves

Each set includes 66 colored building pieces (blue, yellow, green and blue), 24 connecting rods, and a pair of pliers.

             image  image

The sets are recommended for ages 3 and up.

What We Thought

Emily (and I) have had so much fun creating with these sets.   She made a mask, although I’m not sure what creature she was suppose to be,


a lizard,IMG_5295_edited-1

and a rocket.IMG_5296_edited-1

Aiden loved the set however he got frustrated that the pieces came apart fairly easily.   He did make a few structures and was very proud of his caterpillar ~ even though you can’t tell it by the picture.IMG_5298_edited-1

Find Out More

Twisters and Twister Curves can be purchased directly from the Guidecraft or from Amazon.

Win It!

Carisa from 1+1+1=1 is giving away a set of Twisters and Twister Curves! The giveaway ends Sunday, May 22nd.

As a Guidecraft Mom blogger, I was provided this product to review. I was not paid for this post and all opinions expressed in this post are mine.


Saturday, May 7, 2011

Our Memory Garden

Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose.  

   ~From the television show The Wonder Years

The kids and I have talked about planting a memory garden for over a year and we finally finished it ~except for a couple more bags of mulch.  We planted flowers and plants that remind us of loved ones (and pets) we have lost.


Over the past two years we have lost two very dear people to us.  My dad died unexpected almost two years ago and then one year later my mother-in-law passed away.  I’m not sure why but, the kids have been talking about their granddad a lot lately.  Emily has a blanket and several toys that she recently put in a safe place because they remind her of granddad.  Aiden, who was only 2 1/2 when my dad passed away, still talks about him all the time.  I asked Aiden the other day if he had two wished, what he would wish for.  His first wish was to have granddad come down from  heaven.  Can you tell what a influence my dad was in our lives?

Since the kids seem to need to talk about granddad and I need to let them know that it is ok to ask questions and talk about him, I decided it was time to plant our memory garden.

My husband and I bought the house I grew up in so finding the perfect spot for the memory garden was easy.  I use to sit on this rock bench with my dad all the time. 


The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. ~ Psalm 18:2

Some of the plants and flowers we planted include:

Elephant Ears ~ my husband remember his mom planting these all around their house.IMG_5268 

Dianthus ~ they just smell so good!IMG_5274_edited-1

My dad loved orange, red and yellow so we planted some Marigolds.  IMG_5270_edited-1  

Hostas ~ I just think of my dad when I see them.  Probably because dad and mom planted so many of them in the yard.IMG_5280_edited-1

Gerbera Daisies ~ these are one of my favorites.IMG_5273

The owls in my blog header represent my kids.  This sweet little owl in our garden is in remembrance of the baby we have in heaven.    IMG_5276_edited-1

When I look at our memory garden I smile.  I think of my dad, mother-in-law, and baby.  I remember that God is with always with us and will bring us through all things. 


Friday, May 6, 2011

Circle C Beginnings {Review} ~ Andi’s Pony Trouble


When we received the package from Kregel Publications containing the Circle C Beginnings books Andi’s Pony Trouble by Susan Marlow, my daughter saw the horse on the cover of the book, immediately grabbed the book, and headed to her room to start reading it {insert gasp}.  My daughter can read on her own however, it is not often that she will do so without my encouragement. 

About Circle C Beginnings Series

The Circle C Beginnings Series published by Kregel Publications is written for children ages 6-8 and tells about Andi, a 6-year old girl who lives on her family’s ranch in 1874.  These easy reader chapter books contain beautiful pencil drawings.  Each story has free activity packs available on the author’s website.

imageIn this particular story, Andi’s Pony Trouble,  Andi wants a horse of her own more than anything in the world.  Her mother thinks she is too young, so Andi is stuck riding Coco, a hand-me-down pony.  Andi is determined to prove to her family that she's ready for a horse of her own.

Our Thoughts

I knew that I would be purchasing the other books in the Circle C Beginnings series before I even had a chance to finish reading the book.  My daughter loved the story and I loved the attitudes of the children.  The illustrations are beautiful and the story was engaging!  The activity packs were a great way to expand the learning and I could make sure that my daughter understood what she was reading.

Find Out More

Andi’s Pony Trouble is available for $4.99 from Kregel, as well as the other books in the series.  The Circle C Beginnings website has free online puzzles and coloring pages available.  There are also free activity pages for each book to download.


You can read reviews by other TOS Crew Members here.

This product was given to me for review purposes, and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are mine.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Yesterday’s Classics ~ Review

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.     ~Charles W. EliotPhotobucket

There is so much to be learned from classic books ~ you can travel the world, meeting presidents, missionaries, learn about nature, and go on exciting adventures.  I am a true believer that my children have learned and retained more information during our family reading times than from all of the worksheets we have completed!  My problem has been where do I find the classics without spending a fortune and just where do you put all those books?  imageI received the opportunity as part of the TOS Homeschool Crew to review a package of 225 ebook titles (Kindle or EPUB format) from Yesterday’s Classics ($99.95 from May 1st – 31st).

Yesterday’s Classics republishes classic books for children which were originally published from 1880 – 1920.  Many of the titles are hard to find or have been out of print for decades.  Titles are available in paperback, Kindle or EPUB format. 

The 225 ebook package includes books from 22 different genres (a few titles are listed in more than one genre):

  • World History
  • Children of the World
  • Nature
  • Ancient Greece
  • Fables
  • Ancient Rome
  • Kindergarten
  • Fairy Tales
  • Britain
  • Shakespeare
  • Faith
  • Early Civilizations
  • Poetry
  • Middle Ages
  • Legends
  • Renaissance and Exploration
  • Science
  • Readers
  • American History
  • Christmas Stories
  • Literature
  • Biographies

You also receive a list of all the books arranged by level, genre, author and title and a list of books with descriptions and thumbnails so it’s easy to find what you are looking for.

Many of the books available from Yesterday's Classics fit in curriculum plans such as Ambleside Online, Living Books Curriculum, and Pageant of History.

To view a full list of all the books included in this package click  here

My Thoughts

I will admit before receiving this package of e-books I use to think that there was nothing like the feel of a book in your hand, but this package has changed my mind!  It amazes me that I can purchase 225 classic books for $99.95 and not have to worry about shelf space.  I have 225  books at my finger tips and don’t have to worry about putting them away!  The quality of the books and illustrations is fantastic (all in black and white).  We have enjoyed several of the titles during family reading time, including:

       image image image 

This collection has been a great addition to our Kindle homeschool library and contains books that we will use for many, many years. 

Find Out More

Yesterday’s Classics provides a very helpful explanation about e-reader software in their Guide to E-reader Devices and Software.

The 225 e-book (Kindle or EPUB) package is available for only $99.95 through May 31st, 2011. 

You can read reviews by other TOS Crew Members here.

This product was given to me for review purposes, and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are mine.

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