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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

 Everything Thanksgiving- Blessings, Recipes, Crafts and More

Each year we spend Thanksgiving at my grandmother's. After we pray we have a tradition of asking everyone what they are thankful for. I know already what I'm thankful for. I've began to ponder on my blessings in life. From our Heavenly Father's Creation of beautiful fall colors that we Minnesotans were able to enjoy this year, to the white crisp snow that sweeps and fills the trees. 

A few weeks ago....

A few weeks ago my family and I went back to Iowa ( Legend had business meetings) and we were able to visit my parents and grandmother, who in beginning stages of Alzheimer's. We all know its sad to see someone's mind slip slowly away from them. But I felt peace within my family that day, because it seemed as if each of us felt an appreciation for who she is and has been in our lives. Even my oldest son's spirit calmed as he spoke to her gently.  We all sat in the living room while she played on the piano.And boy did she play. She is a wonderful,  extraordinary pianist. It was amazing! 

So to complete the title I just wanted to add a few things that I'm loving right now. This month during homeschool we have been teaching the bull about Early Exploration and Settlement of Columbus, The Conquistadors, and English Settlers. I used the following lesson plan this month for school:
Y'all I can't tell you enough how tickled pink I was when I  stumbled upon a great animated movie to incorporate with this lesson. Animated Hero Classics: William Bradford: The First Thanksgiving from Nest Entertainment .The Animated Hero Classic Series consists of 20 inspiring and educational stories of heroic men and women, with the emphasis placed on their accomplishments in world history and social sciences. The series focuses on the role in which they contributed to developing social, economic and political structures as well as in establishing and spreading ideas that helped to transform the world forever.

Teaching historical empathy for those who have made important choices, overcame obstacles, sacrificed for the betterment of others and embarked on journeys that resulted in new ideas, new inventions and new communities throughout the world and history.

Children will expand their knowledge of these extraordinary heroes and heroines while developing an understanding of the economic, cultural and scientific contributions described in these biographies.

With a wide range and continuity of human experiences this series introduces the concepts of courage, self-control, justice, heroism, leadership and patriotism in America. While it is also reinforces and develops core curriculum knowledge, skills and builds positive character values by promoting personal, social, and civic responsibilities. 

At the end of our lessons I like to incorporate a day filled with activities or a field trip.Last year  we had a pow wow with activities, food and music. I listed below a few recipes I used.

Buffalo Stew


    • 1 1/2 lbs buffalo, cut into small pieces ( like stew meat)
    • 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
    • 5  potatoes, with skin
    • 2 cups baby carrots
    • 2 medium onions
    • 8 ounces mushrooms
    • 1 (14 1/2 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice
    • 4 bay leaves
    • oregano
    • fresh ground pepper and salt
    • 2 cups beef broth  


  1. Dredge Buffalo in Flour, set aside.
  2. Slice  Potatoes, place in bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Cut onions into large pieces and layer over potatoes.
  4. Clean Mushrooms thoroughly, cut in half, and layer over onions.
  5. Layer Baby Carrots over mushrooms.
  6. Layer floured Buffalo over carrots.
  7. Pour Diced Tomatoes and liquid evenly over Buffalo.
  8. Season with Bay Leaf, Oregano, and Pepper.
  9. Pour Vegetable Broth evenly over all.
  10. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, stirring towards end.

Were lucky enough to have a buffalo farm close to us. Last year Legend drove there with the bull and they loved it! I served our stew with corn and Navajo Fry bread. And it me tell ya- it was delish! Below is a few books we use for school. My favorite ones for storybook reading and storytelling  is I know An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Pie. And this year I even have a really cool activity to go along with it.  The Activity involves the children retelling the story using the cards and printout. Click here for the activity.

So this year I would love to change it up a bit and maybe have the boys invite 1-2 friends over. Which brings me to crafts and ideas. I'm lovin' (like always) Martha Stewart's  celebrational ideas for Thanksgiving. Here are a few pics I wouldn't mind incorporating.

Well y'all, there you have it. I pray each of you have a blessed Thanksgiving.

God Bless



Sunday, October 24, 2010

 I've Been Tagged! Want To Know More..(Plus Home School Room Pics!)

Hey Y'all. To all my readers, I'm sorry I haven't been the vigilant writer/reader for sometime. This year has been extremely busy for me. But all is well. Praise the Lord. Jeanine over at Peel Academy tagged me awhile back with some questions. So without further a due....here it is!

  1. What do you love most about homeschooling? I love seeing the "I get it" look on my children's faces. Its wonderful.
  2. What is your favorite way to socialize? We recently joined a home school co-op. Its fantastic. Besides that were planning on enrolling the boys in home school activities this winter at the YMCA. Oh...and once/twice a year I throw a educational themed party.
  3. What is one of your attributes that only other homeschoolers understand? Knowing my child and there ability. There strengths and weaknesses.
  4. What makes you human (i.e. less then perfect)? Hmm.. I could take a picture but I think some of you would be horrified..just kidding. Housekeeping. Seriously-I go on a streak of keeping my house clean for a few days then it looks like a frat house afterward.The sad part is most of the junk is from me!
  5. What are your strengths? I love reading and learning new things.
  6. What books are you enjoying? Spring's Renewal By Shellie Shepard Gray.
  7. What charitable or social cause would you devote your time to if time was not an issue? My family and I  serve at a shelter each Christmas. If I could I would love to do it twice a month.
  8. What do you want to be when you grow up?... lol Hmm...I've thought about being a pediatric doctor. But by the time I would finished I'd be older then dirt and water.

So after a long winter by the time spring came, I was so tired at looking at our drab home school room that I decided I would liven it up for 2010-2011 school year. So I crawled the Internet looking for great ideas. I found inspiration for our room at  Pottery Barn Kids. 

So for weeks I worked on painting and rearranging. The left pic is the entryway into our transformed room. I loved the look of Pottery Barn Kids-Reading room (picture to the right). I couldn't figure out what to do about artwork. Then a light went on (upstairs!). I could use pictures from the old damage children's books I have laying around. Even though we have replaced them I  still could never bring myself to throwing away books that I've loved reading to my children.

The Midnight Farm by Reeve Lindbergh is my all time favorite book I enjoy reading to my boys. It has such beautiful paintings. If you have ones who are afraid of the dark this is a must-read! Now can you guess what book the picture at the bottom left is from?)


I really wanted this jumbo ruler that Pottery Barn Kids had (no longer available). But the price tag was out of my budget. So I thought and said aloud like my three-old "I can do it myself". And I did. See! (Pictures: left- home school room. Right- Pottery Barn Kids) I'll be posting a tutorial and more pics on my new blog sometime in this century (hopefully in the next few weeks along with some other goodies. Stay tuned!)

Our first year of home school we purchased some big ticket items like the rug pictured (Menards). And this easel by Little Tikes (Americana Wood Make Believe Easel)to go with his toy box (Americana Wood toy box) . They've held up wonderfully. It's funny too because we bought these items when we lived in a two bedroom apartment that was around 780 square feet! Now we've dedicated a spare room for schooling.  Both of these items though are no longer available. The picture to the right is a shot of what you would see when leaving. So that's all folks.Thank you for joining here at The Way We Home School. God Bless.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

 Free Sample Shout Color Catcher

Sign up to receive a free sample of Shout color catcher. 1 per household. They also have a .55 cent coupon good on any Shout Color Catcher.

 Get A Free Trio Race Car Set

What a great deal. Head on over to Mattel to sign up for a free trio race car set for your child. Shipping is absolutely free!

 Free Magazine Subscription Lego Club

I found this goodie posted over at Well Trained Homeschool. LEGO® Education and LEGO Club are proud to offer exclusive LEGO Club Jr. School Edition Magazines and LEGO Education Teacher's Guides to first-grade educators this fall!

These special publications continue the LEGO philosophy of providing children with products that promote imagination, pique curiosity, and enhance learning. Both focus on fire safety and provide important information on what these young learners should know in case of an emergency.

The LEGO Club Jr. School Edition Magazine is designed specifically for first graders. The edition includes exciting puzzles, comics, and games with a fire safety theme. These activities focus on basic reading, math, and critical-reasoning skills.

The LEGO Club Jr. School Edition Magazine combines the thrill of LEGO building with content that will help your students learn important safety tips - and best of all, it's FREE!

In addition, a custom LEGO Education Teacher's Guide will be sent with each magazine order. The guides are filled with hands-on activities, classroom tidbits, and articles about how you can create a LEGO SmartTM classroom for your students!

To recieve complimentary copies of the LEGO Club Jr. School Edition Magazine and Teacher's Guide, simply complete our online request form located at Lego Education.

For additional information or to inquire about other LEGO Education promotions, contact Debra at dsmith@LEGOeducation.us.

Grab A Cup Of Tea & Sit A Spell

Messages are from North Point Community Church.Discussion questions can be found here.