Monday, January 22, 2018

Monday Menu and a Crockpot Favorite


How is it already Monday again?  Seriously, do you ever feel like all you do is fix food for people who won't stop eating?  I told my hubby this week that when it is just the two of us (it will come someday I tell you) I am fixing one big meal and we are eating it all week.  Check back in 10 years and see what is on our plates! ;)

Until then, I have people that need to be fed so here is another week of our menu, keeping in mind we plan simple to save time, money, and let's face it, my sanity!

Monday- Honey Teriyaki Chicken (thanks Beth!)

Tuesday- Salisbury Steak

Wednesday- Turkey Taco Cups

Thursday- Chicken Curry

Friday- Dinner out

Saturday- Mini Ham and Cheese Frittatas

Sunday- Southwestern Chicken Chowder

There happens to be no crock pot meals this week, but you know I love my crock pot and use it often.  I love the ease and the feeling of accomplishment so early in the day, and I love the smell of a home cooked meal filling the house, especially on cold days.

Because of that and because I know some of you are buried under snow again, here is a crock pot favorite we got from a friend.
 

Creamy Scalloped Ham and Potatoes

prep time: 15 MINScook time: 6 hourtotal time: 6 hours and 15 mins

ingredients:


  • 2 lbs. potatoes (about 6)
  • 2-3 cups cubed ham
  • 1/2 small onion, sliced
  • 1/4 c flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 TBSP butter, melted
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tarter

instructions:


  1. Wash and thinly slice potatoes
  2. Toss potatoes in 1 cup water and cream of tarter, drain
  3. Layer potatoes, ham, and onions in crock pot
  4. Sprinkle with flour, salt, and pepper
  5. Repeat layers!
  6. Mix melted butter with soup and pour over the top.
  7. Cook on low 6-8  hours, adding cheese the last 30 minutes.
Created using The Recipes Generator

The Details of Curriculum


We are back with week three of our Virtual Homeschool Fair, hosted by my friend Susan and Homeschooling Hearts and Minds.  Last week we talked about general Homeschooling Methods, but today the subject is Curriculum.

I want to begin this post with a confession- I have dreaded writing this one!  In the past, curriculum posts have been pretty straight forward, but well, this one gets personal.

Hang in and you will see what I mean.

I am down to just two students these days which is easier in a way and slightly sad in a way.  Schooling just two is less stress, but with two girls already grown, it is a reminder of just how fast time goes by and how fast they grow!  Cherish the moments, mamas!

The oldest is easier so let's start there.  He is a high school sophomore.  In the past we have done a lot of different things but have pretty much settled into what works best for us with a few tweaks.

  •      Math- Math U See Geometry  This is new this year, but we like it and recommend it.
  •      History- Sonlight
  •      Bible- Sonlight
  •      Literature- Sonlight
  •      Science- Chemistry 101 Series and Apologia
  •      Art Appreciation- Me (yep, I put together a simple 1/2 credit course because I wanted to!)
  •      Geography- Maps of the World (Emerald Books)
  •      Writing- IEW

Simple, straight to the point, and working well.  As our kids get older we encourage independent learning to help prepare them for college.  Next year our son will begin dual credit classes at the local college and we want to make sure he can hold his own.  So far, so good!

And then it gets complicated.  And a bit messy.  And very humbling!

Our last kiddo through the pipeline is our 10 year old who is in 5th grade.  He is my strong willed child that pushes all the buttons with mom.  Put him with someone else, and they sing his praises.  Put us together and we butt heads and struggle.  A lot.

I almost put him in a private school in January.  Quite frankly, I was at my wits end.

It was not that I wanted to send him off, but I really was thinking that to preserve our mother son relationship I had no other choice.

And then a friend talked to me about the Abeka streaming program, we tried a two week trial, and we started this week.



In no way do I want to sell you on this program, but I will quickly share why we are using it and how I feel about it.

I knew he needed an accelerated program.
I knew he needed someone else to be the teacher.
I knew it was a Christian program.
I knew we had to make a change.

And how do I feel?

Humbled.  Relieved.  Frustrated.  Thankful.  You name it, I have probably felt it this week!

Funny story!  When I began teaching our oldest almost 20 years ago we lived in Florida, not far from Pensacola Christian College (where ABeka is out of) so we bought ABeka and used it.  Not the video program, but just the curriculum.  Our needs eventually changed and we sold it.  All of it.  Or gave it away in most instances.  (So yes, I just RE-BOUGHT stuff I once owned.  UGH)


After several years of trying to do school just like the public school system, I finally got the courage to just TEACH my kids, not try to reproduce a system I felt was broken in many ways.  That's how things have worked around here for a long while.

Now my kiddo stands for the pledge of allegiance, sings songs with other students, recites verses, math facts, and spelling words, plays classroom games, and more.

IT MAKES ME CRINGE A BIT!

But guess what?  He loves it!
  • He loves the competition with the other students.
  • He stands when they do and sits when they do.
  • He is learning all the songs and memorizes things with ease.
  • He listens to the teacher without arguing about every. little. thing!
  • He is smiling more and complaining less.
  • He is so proud of himself and his work.
  • He is not just learning stuff from the books, but also learning about diligence, and doing your best, and listening skills.
And even told me he thought that going to THAT school might be neat.


With that being said, I have to remind myself this is not about me.  It is about my son.

Who is learning and growing despite my failures and shortcomings.

Yes, I can get school done with him in half the time this program takes him.  And yes, I think some of the stuff is wasting MY time.  But the bigger picture is that it is NOT wasting his time if he is learning and loving the process.  Just because I would not choose to learn that way does not mean it is not right for him.

I tell people all the time that every kid is different and therefore learns differently.  Now is the time I have to believe what I say and act on it. To do something that may not have been my first choice, but for this season clearly is the right choice.

And the bonus?  We had a peaceful week with a lot more smiles and a lot less head butting.

I call that a success.

Blessings,

Looking for more curriculum ideas? Visit my fellow homeschool bloggers! 

Note: all posts will be live after 8 am EST on Monday, Jan. 22nd.
Our Homeschool Plan for 3rd, 6th, 8th, & 12th Grades by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds
Our 10th Grade Plans by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool
Planning Out Our Unschooling Studies by Jen @ A Helping Hand Homeschool
The Details of Curriculum by Michele @ Family, Faith and Fridays
Reflections of a Curriculum Junkie by Brittney @ Mom's Heart
Freedom through nature journaling. by Kim @ Good Sweet Love
How I pull together a homeschool curriculum without packaged curriculum by Dana @ Life Led Homeschool
Our Favorite Curriculum and Resources - An Annotated Bibliography by Sabrina @ Kids, Crunch, and Christ
Our 2018 Homeschool Curriculum Choices by Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool
Top Home Educating Resources by Sarah @ DeliveringGrace
Homeschooling Curriculum We Are Using This Year by Laura O @ Day by Day in Our World
Use the Force and Complete the Course by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
Choices, choices - how to choose your curriculum wisely by Lizzy @ Peaches@Home
Our Curriculum Needs - grade seven by Annette @ A Net in Time
The Heart of Our School by Laura @ Four Little Penguins
Curriculum We Have Loved Using by Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory
How to Avoid Gaps in Education by Kristen H. @ Sunrise to Sunset
Tricky Subjects and Starting the Decision Making Process by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens
High School Syllabus by TrueNorthHomeschoolAcademy @ GoldenGrasses
How we Homeschool Together  Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine

















Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Top 5 Posts of 2017


2018 has entered my life so quickly that I have hardly had time to take a look back and reflect on this blog- something I try to do each year to evaluate where we have been, where we are, and where we want to go.

Numbers may not mean a lot to you, but for a blogger numbers are everything in many ways.  Good or bad, those numbers are often the key to success, or the demise of your blog.  Sad but true.

Years ago I decided that this blog was not a money making venture for me.  It's not that I have anything against making money, I just was not and still am not sure that is the direction I want to take.  For now I am content to write about what is on my brain and heart, as well as review homeschool materials just because I want to, not because I am getting paid to.

As you know, I am a pretty eclectic blogger.  There are not many subjects I do not cover at one point or another.  In the blogging world, many will tell you that is a recipe for disaster.  Never the less, it is my life and therefore my current formula.

After looking at the top 5 posts for 2018, it seems that formula makes most of you happy and therefore you can expect pretty much the same formula this year as well.  How else could you explain that in the top 5 you will find me blogging about my life, talking about our homeschooling, sharing a review, taking you on a cleaning and de-cluttering journey, and just sharing my heart?

If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?  That being said, if you have something you want to see more (or less) of in 2018 here at Family, Faith and Fridays, drop me a note and I will see what I can do!

So the Top 5 Posts of 2018?

Adoption Aggravations

Schooling Year Round While Other Kids Have Summer Break

Is there a Doctor in the House?

34 Weeks of Clean Masterpost

Refining

And just for fun- the all time most read post is one written by my oldest daughter years ago!  This post still gets read daily and it amazes me still!

Modesty- A Command, Not a Conviction

As always, we thank you for following this blog and being a part of our lives.  You are more than readers, you are friends, and I treasure YOU!

Here's to another great year together!

Blessings,

Monday, January 15, 2018

Monday Menu and a Breakfast Treat



Happy Monday!  Welcome back to another week of meals!  With my girl headed off to college again, we will be back to feeding 5 for a while.  Ignore me while I go pout!

We have loved planning soup for Sunday nights- a great way to relax and have a simple meal after a big Sunday lunch. This week we are going to try to incorporate breakfast into one meal as well.  My family loves breakfast food and by having it for dinner, it is often a good way to save some money.  I will let you know how it goes over.


Monday- Spaghetti Pie

Tuesday- Pork Chop Casserole

Wednesday- B-B-Q Chicken

Thursday- Breakfast Pizza

Friday- Care Group Night (not sure what I am making to share)

Saturday- Chicken a la Orange

Sunday- Broccoli Cheddar Soup


Have a blessed week!



Breakfast Pizza

prep time: cook time: total time:

ingredients:


  • 1 package crescent rolls
  • 6-8  oz. sausage
  • 1 c. frozen hash browns
  • 3 TBSP butter
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 3/4 shredded cheddar cheese

instructions:


  1. Spread pan with rolls
  2. Cook sausage, drain
  3. Cook hash browns in 2 tsp. butter
  4. Cook eggs in 1 tsp. butter
  5. Layer sausage, hash browns, and eggs on rolls. Season with salt and pepper
  6. Top with cheese
  7. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes

notes

* We double this recipe for a family of 6, three of which are boys!
Created using The Recipes Generator

Homeschool Review Crew Weekly Link Up

A Method to Our Madness


Welcome back to week 2 of the 2018 Virtual Homeschool Fair hosted by Susan at Homeschooling Hearts and Minds!  I hope you enjoyed last week and the 5 Reasons You will Want to Homeschool!  Today we are going to be talking about Methods of Homeschooling!

When I began teaching my kids at home almost 20 years ago, I had no idea there were "methods" of teaching or even rules for that matter.  At the time I knew of two curriculum options, ABeka and Bob Jones University, and I chose one and went for it.  ABeka won out initially though I did use BJU for a few years as well!

Now I know a bit more, and boy, have I used a bit more!

The methods are almost too numerous to list, but let me tell you about a few.

All in Ones-  These are those curriculums like Abeka and Bob Jones where you can order a complete curriculum, with all the materials you need, open the box when it arrives and then start teaching.  There are more out there like Sonlight (which I have also used for many years) and even companies like Christian Liberty Press and Timberdoodle.  Let me just say, if text books are your thing, there are many amazing companies out there.  Choose one that looks good to you and go for it!  There is much to be said for companies that provide everything for you including lesson plans, especially for a new homeschooler!

Living books/Charlotte Mason- This style is very BOOK based, usually rich with literature and living books.  Think of yourself in a library checking out books on every subject you can think of.  You will include fiction, biographies, non-fiction- anything that you can learn you will.  I know of families that practically live in their library and they LOVE it!  This method is also often very student directed.  If your child is interested in a certain subject, find books about that subject and let the sky be the limit in their learning.  My Father's World curriculum also has a very Charlotte Mason bent.

Unit Studies- This method is a neat one too, if you like to concentrate on one subject for more than a day!  Pick a subject and learn!  Take bears for example.  Use math to count bears and sort the kinds.  For science study about the kinds of bears and add geography by learning about their habitats.  Read The Bear on Hemlock Mountain for literature and diagram sentences from that book for Grammar.  Get the idea?  When you grow weary of one subject, choose another and off you go.  There are AMAZING unit studies to be found, and many people like to add journaling or lap booking to them.

Classical- Classical education is a back to the fundamentals.  There was a time when the biggest guidance for this approach was the now famous book, The Well Trained Mind.  It walks you through the stages of learning and the things your child should be learning and how to teach them.  Think Latin, and lots of reading of old, classic books and memory work.  I loved the years we used the classical approach, but I must say it wore me out because at the time I was creating my own lesson plans from scratch for 3 different grades, not to mention trying to round up all the books myself.  Now there are several companies and programs that take a classical approach AND have lesson plans and provide the books.  Veritas Press and Classical Conversations are two that come to mind.

Unschooling- Yes, you will hear this word floating around in the homeschool community, though not as much as you used to.  This is one method that makes me a bit nervous, but I have seen it done well by a few families.  They allow their kids to learn from the world around them, devoid of most "textbooks."  That is not to say they are not learning, but you will not usually find tests and quizzes or lesson plans in their homes.  They learn as they go through life, often studying within a child's interests for an extended period of time.

Overwhelmed yet?  There is no need to be.  Trust me when I say that no matter which homeschooling method you choose, your kids WILL learn!  I recommend you find what you are most comfortable with as well as the way you believe your child will learn best and go for it!

If the fit is not perfect, you can tweak and adjust as needed, or completely stop what you are doing and start with something new.

Ask me how often I have done that!

THAT will wait until next week!  See 'ya back then!

Blessings,

What do my fellow homeschool bloggers have to say about their Homeschool Methods? Go visit them to find out!

Note: all posts will be live after 8 am EST on Monday, Jan. 15th.
How Our Academic Co-op Completes Our Eclectic Homeschool by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

Finding Our Homeschool Method by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool
How We Homeschool by Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool
Give Us.... by Annette @ A Net in Time
A day in our Home by Sarah@DeliveringGrace
Lit-Based Education: How We Homeschool by Debra @ Footprints in the Butter
Overhauling Our Homeschool - Adjusting our "How" to fit our "Why" by Sabrina Scheerer @ Kids, Crunch, and Christ
A Day in the Life of a Homeschooler: Expectation Vs. Reality by Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road
How Charlotte Mason Transformed Our Homeschool by Brittney @ Mom's Heart
Captain's Log, Supplemental - Our Homeschool Days by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
How we get it done. by Kim @ Good Sweet Love
How to Organize Daily Curriculum with the School Cart by Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Learning For LIfe by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens
Eclectic Homeschooling: When It All Comes Together by Jen @ A Helping Hand Homeschool
A Typical Day? by Lizzy @ Peaches@Home
This is the Way We Do Our School, So Early in the Morning by Laura @ Four Little Penguins
A Little of This and a Little of That: Eclectic Homeschooling by Laura O @ Day by Day in Our World
Still Classically Educating After All These Years by True North Homeschool Academy
So what exactly is Life Led Homeschooling? by Dana @ Life Led Homeschool
The way we learn ~ 2018 Virtual Homeschool Fair by Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning
Our Homeschool Routine by Joelle @Homeschooling For His Glory
Homeschool Methods – 8 Tips for the Journey by Kristen @ Sunrise to Sunset





Homeschool Review Crew Weekly Link Up






















Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Don't Assume I Don't Care


Full disclosure- I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook.  There. I said it. 
I keep threatening to take a social media break. Or at the very least to check it only once a day instead of the numerous times that I do but would hate to confess to.

I admit it. I have an insane and growing fear of my missing a post and then my not commenting will be interpreted as "I don’t care."

But here is the reality.
I cannot ever see everyone’s posts due to the insane way Facebook works. 
As busy as my feed is there is a real possibility I will never see your post even if I scroll for hours. 
But I know (because I am guilty of the assumption as well) that most people post something and then assume everyone that needs to has read said post. It has become the way to communicate. Got something to say?  Post it. Need to pass information? Post it. 

We put it out there for the world to see and yet we have no idea if 10 or 10,000 people have seen it. 

Trust me I know. I see the stats of my Family, Faith and Fridays FB page. Some times the people reached is 25. Sometimes, if I am lucky that day and used the right words, it is 225. Despite the fact that over 1500 follow that feed. 

And yet we just keep loading our feeds with the stuff of our lives and expecting that all of our friends now know those details.

Honestly, in a season of my life where I desperately long to slow down and be quiet, it all weighs on my mind.  I am a people pleaser you know.  I want you to know I care!

It is a privilege to be a part of people’s lives and to have the opportunity to lift them in prayer. That is the thing I love about Facebook. But surely there is a better way to do that than social media in some cases.

Call me. Write me. Text me even.  But don't assume I don't care if I do not respond to your Facebook post.  Please know that me not responding to your post is not a statement on my feelings for you or your worth.

That being said, I am trying to step back for a while and put my family before Facebook.  I will be posting for Family, Faith and Fridays and continuing my part of social media for The Homeschool Review Crew, but other than that I will be checking in just one time a day.  I need a break from the hoopla.
But friends, I am not taking a break from you. 
I am here. Reach out if you need me. Reach out if you have a prayer request. And reach out just to
chat.  I play by different rules than Facebook, and unlike them, I am not randomly choosing whom I see. I always choose you!!

Blessings,

Homeschool Review Crew Weekly Link Up

Monday, January 8, 2018

Monday Menu!

Happy January and welcome back to Monday Menu!

Yes, I took off last week from posting, but I assure you, I did feed the family! ;)
Now that we are back to a regular schedule and starting school back today, I am ready to post our menus again.

Enjoy!

Monday- Chicken Stir Fry

Tuesday- Scalloped Potatoes, Ham and Cheese


Wednesday- Meatloaf

Thursday- Chicken and Dressing Casserole

Friday- Pizza Night

Saturday- Out to eat for Indian food (college daughter's request before she heads back to school!)

Sunday- Veggie, Beef and Noodle Soup

Here is a recipe we like to make and share with others!

Blessings,


Yield: 2- 9x13 casseroles

Italian Stuffed Shells

ingredients:


  • 2 boxes jumbo pasta shells, cooked and drained
  • 2,  26 oz. canned spaghetti sauce
  • 1 box frozen spinach, cook and drained
  • 1.5 ground beef
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp each- salt and pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 C. shredded cheese

instructions:


  1. Spread each 9x13 with 1/2-1 cup spaghetti sauce.
  2. Brown beef with onion, add remaining sauce and spices
  3. Stir in drained spinach
  4. Add eggs and 1 1/2 C. cheese to meat sauce
  5. Spoon meat into each shell, place in baking dishes and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  6. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes

notes

This is a great dish to eat one and freeze one, or better yet, eat one and SHARE one!
Created using The Recipes Generator

5 Reasons You Will Want to Homeschool

Welcome to Week 1 of the Virtual Homeschool Fair.  I have participated in this amazing event for a few year and LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!  I hope you will too!

Many thanks to Susan from Homeschooling Hearts and Minds for hosting each year and being the mastermind behind the fun.  For the next four Mondays we will be talking about homeschooling, joining many other homeschooling moms just like us, talking about the same.  I pray you will find some new ideas and inspiration, and maybe a few new friends.

This week's topic is The Reason We Homeschool and you might be surprised at all the different answers you will get by following the links below. 

That being said, I want to share with you the 5 reasons I think you will want to do the same!

#1-  You can shape your children!  I am not sure about you, but personally I do not want someone else to be a bigger influence in my kids' lives over myself and my husband.  They are our kids after all.  There is a place for others in our children's lives for sure, but not the MAIN place.  If we are spending less time with our kids each day than someone else, we should not be surprised when they are molding themselves around someone elses' beliefs and ideals.

#2- Religious Freedom- Let's face it- no matter your religious following, the schools do not care.  And they are not going to guide your children in those beliefs.  For our family, we believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God, and we desire to teach it too our children throughout the day with NO censorship.

#3- YOU can choose what your kids learn!- Have you heard about some of the things they are teaching our kids these days?  Sex ed in elementary school?  No thanks!  I could go on and on, but I will leave it at this- I will not allow anyone else to decide what they think my kids need to know. 

#4- LOVE!- No one loves your kids like you!  Know one knows your kids like you.  Who better to teach them and love them throughout the day than you!?

#5- It's just plain fun!  OK , maybe not every day, but most days certainly.  Learning is not just about books and tests.  We often discover so much more when we do experiments, gather with other homeschoolers or go on a field trip.  I don't get to just teach, I get to learn to and have a front row seat in the delight of my children a they learn and grow.


No matter the reasons you choose I pray you will be blessed.  As we always say around here, not every day is easy, but every day is worth it!

See you back next Monday as we talk about Our Methods of Homeschooling!

Blessings,




Now, let’s see what my fellow homeschool bloggers have to say about The Reasons We Homeschool.

Note: all posts will be live after 8 am EST.
5 Reasons to Homeschool High School by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds
Weird Homeschoolers by Kim R. @ Good Sweet Love
How We Make Homeschooling a Lifestyle by Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Our Ever Evolving Homeschool Story by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool

How Our Homeschool Came To Be (and why we continue) by Sabrina @ Kids, Crunch, and Christ
Home Education - 10 Reasons we keep going...even when it's hard by Lizzy @ Peaches@Home
So... Tell Me Again Why You Homeschool? by Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road
Virtual Homeschool Fair 2018 - Week 1 - Why do I Homeschool  by Joelle@Homeschooling For His Glory
Homeschool Reasons: Bullies, Faith and More by Annette @ A Net In Time
In Pursuit of Purpose by Laura @ Four Little Penguins
A Long Time Ago . . . Why We Decided To Homeschool by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
The Why Behind Hopkins Homeschool by Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool
5 Reasons We Love Homeschooling by Brittney @ Mom's Heart
Why We Homeschool - It's What We Do by Kristen H @ Sunrise to Sunset
Why we Home Educate and Extra Benefits by Sarah@Delivering Grace
Homeschooling: The Big WHY? by Lisa @ True North Homeschool Academy at Golden Grasses
Regaining Your Homeschool Focus by Jen @ A Helping Hand Homeschool
Why do we homeschool? by Dana @ Life Led Homeschool
Our “Homeschool” Why by Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning

Because Life is Precious by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens
1998 vs. 2018: Why We Homeschool by Debra @ Footprints in the Butter

Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory
Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Chelsea @ Pause.Reflect.Learn.Grow
Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
Lisa @ True North Homeschool Academy at Golden Grasses
Chelli @ The Planted Trees
Hillary @ Walking Fruitfully
Debra @ Footprints in the Butter

Friday, January 5, 2018

New Year, New Word, New Plan

When I first started blogging I was introduced to this WORD OF THE YEAR concept and it intrigued me.  Unlike New's Years Resolutions it was just a word to give meaning and hopefully a vision for each new year.


Who here doesn't need vision?


Webster defines vision as "something seen," or "unusual discernment or foresight."

And when the word popped into my head that was really what I was thinking- foresight, or a plan for the future.  We have some big events pending in our lives (one of which is retirement from the military after 26 years) and it has been on my heart that our family needs a new vision for our future- a new plan.

But then I referenced vision in the Bible and look at what I found.  
Take note of the different translations!


Where there is no vision [no revelation of God and His word], the people are unrestrained; But happy and blessed is he who keeps the law [of God].

Where there is no understanding of the Word of the Lord, the people do whatever they want to, but happy is he who keeps the law.
If a nation is not guided by God, the people will lose self-control, but the nation that obeys God’s law will be happy.

Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law.

Now I am no word study expert (I will leave that to smarter people than me) but I SEE that vision in the Bible is something quite different than what I was originally thinking.  And in reading it, I liked it even better!  Go figure- God has a better definition! ;)
Vision- revelation, understanding, guidance by God Himself.
Yes, please!
  • While I may long to have a plan, I need to know that God already has one and He will reveal it in His time.
  • While I often long for understanding, God has given me just what I need for the moment in His Word.
  • And while we may sometimes feel we are wandering down an uncertain path, have no doubt God IS guiding us.
That my friends, is all the vision I need.
How about you?

Be blessed, dear friends, and may the Lord of the universe be YOUR VISION!



In the past these are the words I have chosen-

2014- Grace
2015- Joy
2016- A New Thing
2017-Restore

Check out more blog posts from Homeschool Review Crew and Friends!
Homeschool Review Crew Weekly Link Up

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Living Deliberately


With 2018 here (yes I am a few days behind) there are a few things I have decided to be more purposeful about.  Let's don't go crazy and call them New Year's Resolutions, but really, they are things I want to see growth or change in.

Here's hoping!

Date Nights- This is the first thing I am working on!  Seriously, gotta put that husband first sometimes. ;)   We are not even what I would consider busy people, but it seems that other things just slide into the slots and we get the leftovers of each other sometimes.  Trust me when I say the left overs of me after a crazy day of schooling are not very pretty folks!  My goal is to put ourselves on the calendar at least twice a month for a few hours out alone.  We do not even require babysitters any more, so honestly this should not be that hard.  It's all in the planning. 

Exercise and Health- If you have been here long enough, you know my health has been questionable for a while now.  In the quest to find the problem, doctors found a gall stone and I had my gall bladder out in May.  While I no longer have THAT particular pain, the surgery gave me a host of other issues I am still dealing with.  It is burdensome and tiring and I have had enough already!  I am still tweaking things in my diet and such but had put exercise on hold because I have felt so poorly.  Enough of that!  I am getting my backside busy again if it is the last thing I do.  Someone hold me accountable!

Leisure reading- I read A LOT!  But mostly they are books on parenting and such, or curriculum or books for review.  This year I want to be a little selfish and read at least one book a month just for me.  Simple, mindless, sweet books.  Historical fiction.  Mysteries. Whatever.  Feel free to shoot me your recommendations!

Making memories with my sons-  I feel like I have fallen down on this a bit lately.  With the girls it was easier.  I was younger (think NOT tired) and let's face it I have more in common with them because well, they are girls!  But I do not want my boys to miss out on mom moments just because I am old and - a GIRL!  I am making specific plans with my boys for some fun at least once a month.  Again, it is all a matter of scheduling!

Simplifying life- In our 34 Weeks of Clean quest, we have simplified MUCH in our lives.  Layers of stuff are gone and it feels good.  It also motivates me to do more, especially with the possibility of another move in our future.  But it is not just stuff I want to simplify,  it is life in general.  I want to concentrate on what really matters and set aside the rest.  Take note, SOCIAL MEDIA is the first on my list!

Time with friends- This is an area that homeschool mommas seem to struggle with. (or is it just me?)  Lunch dates are hard to fit in the middle of our school days and by the time we are done, late afternoon coffees often require more than I have to give.  I am working on a plan to shorten my Fridays and dedicate some time to friends.  I am also determined to get over this crazy fear of flying and hop on a plane to a see a few friends.  Watch out ladies, I may land on your door step!

More time in the Word- This should have come first of course, but I saved the best for last.  While I attend a Bible study and we do devotions nightly as a family, time in the Word with just me and God often gets lost in the busyness of my day.  I am determined to get back to that time in the morning before I even step foot out of bed.  What a better thing to wake up and start your day with!

Oh, friends, I may be adding as I go, but this is where I will start!  Whether you choose to make resolutions or just want to make some positive changes in your life, I pray 2018 will be a year of great strides in a positive direction for you and one filled with love, laughter, hope and joy!

One filled with GOD!

Blessings,

Monday, January 1, 2018

January 34 Weeks of Clean Schedule

Physical and mental clutter can lead to unhealthy habits, obsessive thoughts, and anxiety 
-Psychology Today


It's January 1st and you know what that means.  It's time to begin 34 Weeks of Clean!

Welcome friends!  We are so glad you are here!

Let me start with a real quick background and then a few ground rules.

34 Weeks of Clean began a few years ago out of desperation to keep myself busy while my hero husband was deployed for a year.  Somehow I convinced some people to play along with my madness and such began a cleaning, de-cluttering and organizing frenzy!  Each year our followers have increased in numbers and each year I count them as friends.  I cannot even begin to tell you how glad I am you are here with us!

Plan to have fun, make friends, and take your houses back!

This year I will be running things a little differently due to my need to save myself some time that I need to use to focus on some big, impending changes in our lives.

Each month I will post the assignments that will take place within that particular month, with any updates I might have, here on the blog!  Each week on our Family, Faith and Fridays blog Facebook page, as well as my personal page, I will post a quick reminder for your week.  

Hence, these rules-

1- Stay connected!  Keep your eye on the Facebook pages and feel free to ask about anything or simply chat away.  Misery, I mean friends, love company.

2- Take ONE WEEK AT A TIME!  I cannot emphasize this enough.  Really, I can't!  Our tendency is to hit the ground running at the beginning (picture the gyms across America in January) and then fizzle out because we pushed too hard.  This is divided into 34 Weeks for a reason.  Some weeks will take longer than others, but all require some effort.  Do what you can when you can, but stay with us each week.  It will benefit you in the end, I promise.

3- If one particular week simply does not apply to you, enjoy a week off.  It won't happen often, but it can happen.  Treat yourself to a break that week and be ready to go again the next week.

4- Have fun!  Grab a few friends and challenge each other, winner gets dinner out.  Or enlist the help of your kids and then celebrate each success with a special dessert.  Or find a friend to work together with, a few days at your house and then a few days at hers.  Do whatever it takes to make it fun and get it done!  (hey, that rhymes!)

5- Keep the goals in sight!  We are DEEP CLEANING, DE-CLUTTERING and ORGANIZING!  It takes ALL THREE to equal success.   


So without any further ado, let's get January started.

Week 1- Holiday Decorations
Week 5- Recipes

 I can't wait to hear how you do!

Thanks to the many people who have shared 34 Weeks of Clean with their friends!  You have blessed me, and I know you are blessing others as well.  Plus, it is simply more fun to work with friends.

Blessings,