Friday, June 28, 2013

Farm Friday

One of our filler roosters.  They are turning out to be very friendly to humans but we have too many roos to hens :(

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Classical Historian- a review

Hint #1 FUN

Answer: Classical Historian Ancient History Go Fish Game!  This deck of 50 sturdy cards is jammed packed with ancient history photos, illustrations and facts.  The deck comes with instructions for several games that can be played with the same deck.  Our family's two favorites were Go Fish and Collect a Card.  Go fish was excellent for at home.  I would take out the deck and we would play several variations.  One was where you asked in classic go fish style for a category ex. " Do you have any Ancient Egypt?" the other harder and slightly more cut throat version we played was asking for a specific card from a specific category.  My two kids ages 8 and 10 loved both variations and begged for just one more hand!
Another game that can be played with the same deck is called Collect the cards.  I use this one in the car while my husband is driving.  I start giving the hints on the cards and the person who guesses first gets the card.  It engages everyone in the car (::ahem:: even the driver).  It gave us talking points and a reason to shut off devices and the radio, a win in my book.

Yet another game involved setting out the continent cards and placing the remaining cards onto the pile of Where they took place.  This was a perfect review game for my little learners who have just finished up a year studying ancient history.

This deck of cards is so versatile and portable, at $11.95 it is also a great value to supplement anyone's  study of Ancient History.  It was fun to add a fun yet competitive element to our studies.  
Classical Historian offers a other time periods as well as a full history curriculum.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Waterproof Bible

Refreshing words on refreshingly waterproof pages
I was incredibly excited to get my hands on a Waterproof Bible.  In my mind I was thinking that only the cover would be waterproof and not the pages.  I was wrong.  I love this Bible and its extreme ability to repel water and even dirt.  If you have an active lifestyle or a Boy Scout in your life then you are going to love this Bible.

You see I live on five acres of raw land (read lots of dirt).  We are having a house built on the front 2 1/2 acres while we live in a trailer and 400 sq ft outbuilding on the back.  We are raising 28 chickens and one very mud loving border collie.  We live in dirt and when it rains we live in mud.  We have ruined countless things over the last 10 months by accidentally leaving then in the rain.  Books mostly are the victims.  With a beautiful swath of land we often sneak outside to find a space to spread out and have some quiet time.  The problem came when I would be called in to pluck a cactus thorn or find a random item in the underbelly of the trailer, my book would get left outside.  Without a doubt it would sprinkle, rain or mist heavily overnight and covers would get soggy.  With the waterproof Bible however that was never the case.  My KJV New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs arrived in the mail on a day in which I was mourning, it was unfazed by my tears and I watched as they just rolled off not only the cover but off the pages of Matthew as well.  Blessed are those that mourn.......

Here it sat
In an effort to test this Bible I left it out in an area we have deemed the "prayer garden".  It sat out on that table for almost 5 weeks.  It weathered several gully washers and frequent bouts of heavy dew.  I would just wipe it off and pick up my reading where I left off.  The makers of the Bible recommend the  use of a dry highlighter to mark on the waterproof pages, which have a very slick but not overly shiny look and feel to them.  I purchased such an item at my local Christian bookstore.  It is akin to a crayon and works very well on the pages of the waterproof Bible. It did not bleed, run or wipe off when the Bible got its dunking.
Dry highlighter after it took a swim
My son obliges the dunking
For further proof of its waterproofness I dropped it in my friends pool.  I hesitated before doing so because it just goes against all I was raised with to willingly dunk the bible.  My son however was game and dropped it in for me.  Upon pulling it out I saw that the cover was wet but the pages had remained dry.  So I fanned the pages and dropped it in open.  The whole Bible came out wet but not ruined.  I was able to wipe it down with a towel and set it up teepee style to finish drying, bonus it came out clean too :)

It doesn't float, but would be perfect for baptisms
Nice and wet but never soggy
In all honesty there is nothing bad that I can say about this product. It met and exceeded all my expectations

Bardin Marsee offers a full Bible for around $45 and the version that I got for about $25.  Several colors and translations are available on their website to fit anyones needs.  This product is perfect for my scout, but I will have to get him his own as mine is pink :)

If you or someone you know likes to take scriptures on the road less traveled I highly recommend this product.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


The kids and chickens are eating us out of trailer and outbuilding.  All 5 kids and all 28 chickens are growing.  Avery earned her tenderheart level award for American Heritage Girls.
The house is slowly moving forward.  The roofers are out there right now in drizzle putting the metal roof on.  You can see the beginning of the roof over the carport on the right.  All mechanicals are in and they have covered the floor in prep of foaming the attic and walls.
It is a dreary, humid day that demands a nap and a good piece of chocolate.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Saving Memories Forever is an app based method for saving audio memories.  The resulting audio or mp3 files can then be uploaded to the website and stored to share with others.  The app for your iPhone or droid is free but the website offers a premium service which is fee based.  Here is a good chart to determine you needs and whether you need to upgrade to the premium service.

I am not big on recording memories other than scrapbooking so getting into this particular app just didn't work for me.  I found the scripting restraining and frankly boring.  With today's technology I think just recording a story using your smartphone is sufficient for me.  But that is me.  If you are very much into family heritage and love to work through scripted questions than this may be for you.  An option I thought about for me to enjoy this app would be to use the premium service while at a family reunion.  Then you could pass the phone for each "storyteller" to record their history.  Seeing as I don't live near much family at the moment, except my sister, it just didn't appeal. I could have given family members login info and they could have added themselves as story tellers, but outside a reunion setting it just seemed like another thing to add to the to do list. Your mileage may vary.

Spanish For You

My ninth grade daughter has been asking to take a foreign language, never mind that she is taking Latin.  She considers Latin a dead language and not worthy of being called foreign, just dead!  So when the opportunity to review a Spanish curriculum came along I gladly agreed.

Spanish For You is a multi level, simple, and cost effective Spanish curriculum.  The package I received was Fiestas for grades 3-8.  Now my daughter is 9th grade but she was not bored with the program.  The program is both hard copy and digital.  The workbook is a 45 page soft cover book.  The lesson plans and worksheets are downloadable pdfs.  The same book is used for all the grade levels while the worksheets are grade based.  Audio files of the workbook being read are also included.
My daughter and I sat down and printed out the first few weeks of lessons plans for grades 7-8.  The program sets it up for a four day week.  Perfect for those families who attend a co-op or the like one day a week.  The lessons per day are easily completed in a timely matter.  My daughter enjoyed the fact that the lessons and vocabulary were centered around Fiestas and not just random boring vocabulary.   You can choose from different themes too in order to engage your student according to their interests.
She created her own flashcards, although Spanish for you does include pictures for flashcards she chose to do her own.

We found the material was presented a bit disorganized in the book.  My daughter needed some time to orient herself with the material. With that said she can function with the material just fine now.  
 Spanish For You is incredibly affordable!  For grades 3-8 the curriculum package is $64.95.  You get all levels for that price!  If you want just one level it is $39.95.  Honestly after using some other programs this one is a steal!  The author is also very quick to respond to questions and feedback.  A huge plus with any program. My only disappointment is that she doesn't offer more languages :)

In our homeschool I just used it with my ninth grader.  However, this summer I plan on using it as a boredom buster/hide from the heat activity for my third and fourth grader.

A pesky little organ

I've been absent for several weeks.  April has not been very nice to my health!  I have been suffering with some right sided pain for several weeks.  We thought it might be a UTI and a course of heavy duty antibiotics were prescribed.  Two days after I stopped the antibiotic the pain came back and I was done.  I went to urgent care who triaged me to the ER because they did not have the machines to scan my innards.
Once at the ER I was given a CT scan which revealed an inflamed/irritated appendix.  The surgeon recommended it come out.  So Tuesday morning it did.  I left the hospital Wednesday afternoon.  Recovery was slow, I'm assuming my creeping upwards age is what slowed it.  As of Tuesday I was released to regular activities, to celebrate I restarted the Couch 2 5K running program and plan on running a 5k the morning of my 40th birthday!