Thursday, August 30, 2012

I Have Many Titles

Lost and Found.

Stop and Start.

In Which the School Year Does Not Get Off the Way I Envisioned.

Pick one, any title will work. We were off school today to help our good friends pack up and move away. Enjoyed being off school. Did not enjoy why. The collective girls got to play together all afternoon and then we all went to one of our regular hang-outs to eat. And then we said good-bye.

Thankfully, we have reservations to go camping together again this October. So---six weeks or so and we'll get to see each other again.

It doesn't change the fact that we will walk through the doors at church every week now and they won't be there. Our lives just changed for sure. It hasn't fully hit me yet.

While we were at their house today I got the call that my uncle had died. This is the uncle who taught me how to tie my shoes when I was 5. He teased a lot. I always liked him when I was little. I started to tell funny stories about him in the car to the girls and then realized I was going to cry if I kept talking so I quit. But he was funny. Funny and sad.

He was married for a while and we didn't like his step-kids. We were thrown together with them and expected to play of course. Because that's how it is with kids. Mostly, he was a bachelor. And he lived alone. My grandmother worried about him a lot. Everyone else had families. He had a lot of nieces and nephews.

He would hand my older cousin some money and tell her to go buy us all Christmas presents. We found out later that it wasn't much money to buy for that many people. So THAT is why we each got a pair of crazy socks or pantyhose. She did a great job shopping for him.

One year he made the mistake of spouting off that he hated Brut cologne. So we all--every single member of our extended family--bought him a bottle of Brut that year for Christmas. It was beyond funny watching him open them all.

I would go stay with my grandmother for a week or two in the summers when I was 14 or 15 years old. Old enough to go alone and stay but too young to have a life or a job or a car so going there was exciting. One morning when I was there my grandmother went out on the front porch to sweep and nearly had a heart attack. My uncle had brought his laundry by and left it on the porch. He was pretty round most of my life and he had stuffed all his dirty clothes into one pair of his overalls and tossed them up there. She said she thought a dead man was laying on her porch.

He was bald just like my dad, but actually a bit balder. He ALWAYS wanted us to say HE had more hair than our Daddy, but we wouldn't. So one time he met us at the door with a wig on his head and said, "Who has more hair now??" Silly man.

He didn't go to church and I think that worried my grandmother more than anything else. I hope he got things right before he passed away but I don't know.

He was the baby brother. He should still be here. I hate cancer.

And so we will be off school again tomorrow to go be with our family and have a memorial service. Then we will come home and S will start preaching at church. And we will start school (again).

I think I've had enough changes to my life for now.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

God Cares About Little Things

Last week I boxed up Bee's newborn clothes and mailed them to a friend. Friend is due in about 3 weeks. Friend needed those clothes.
The postman brought her a crushed, empty box yesterday. All the clothes gone!

Will you say a prayer for those baby clothes to be found and delivered to my friend? The God of the universe is able!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Life v. School

Schooling is a priority around here. I take my responsibility very seriously. But there are times when life is just too busy and other things are just more important.

Not that we drop school completely, but we let other things take priority.

Which is why I'm not going to get every single subject done this week. And maybe not next week. We'll see.

But we most assuredly ARE plugging along with school. Just not at 100%, that's all.

Some of the things going on?

  • My uncle is in hospice care with terminal cancer. We suspect he will not live through this week. There will likely be a memorial service to attend very soon. 
  • My dad has had these scary spells of confusion. We were really worried something was very wrong but the doctor seemed to think it was a UTI. Seems confusion is often the only symptom in elderly folks. BUT we've been waiting for blood work results since last Wednesday. So frustrating. Hoping it IS just a UTI and that he can get started on meds tomorrow. Mom has been afraid to leave him. 
  • Assuming everything referenced above is OK, he will be starting a trial for his cancer. Prayers would be appreciated for both situations. 
  • Our good, good friends are moving away this weekend. We're helping them how we can this week. And guess where they are moving? Pretty much in the path of the hurricane. 
  • S will start preaching "full-time" this Sunday. I say full time in quotes because he will also have his regular full-time job. Two sermons a week plus one Wednesday night Bible study. Every week. 
  • It's our month to clean the church building.
BUT. I always try to do what Philippians 4:6-7 says and present my requests with thankfulness. 

So, I am thankful for:

  • My health. That I am home and well and able to care for my family.
  • Baby Bee, Little Bit, and Sweetheart. I love them so much. 
  • Our home, cars, my husband's income, food....we are so well provided for by our Heavenly Father. 
  • That I've been married to my best friend for 19 years. 
When burdens seem heavy and there is so much going on you don't feel you can JUST focus on school....that's a good time to remember WHO you should be focused on anyway, right? 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Our First Week and How I Don't Really Know What I'm Doing Yet

This is our 6th year of homeschooling. I thought I had this "making a workable schedule" thing down pat.

Actually, I do. If you're talking about scheduling work for the older 2 girls. I think I have a handle on them. Especially since this is our second year using Sonlight. I knew kind of what to expect. What I had planned SO would have worked.


Hello. My name is Baby Bee and I'm in charge here.

So after 2 days of struggling through the morning trying to manage 2 grades and teach math with a baby on my lap who was fussing, I finally got smart. WHY NOT WORK WHEN THE BABY NAPS, I thought to myself.

Myself is getting smarter every year.  I mean, after struggling through the morning, the child took a 2-3 hour long nap where we could have been doing lessons in peace!

So on day 3, that's just what we did. I started the day all leisurely. I had the girls do what they could on their own in the morning. And after lunch I awaited the glorious nap so we could get down to business.

You know where this is going, right?

The opposite of this is what happened. THIS did NOT happen. 

But we're slowly getting used to it. She did nap the next 2 days and we somehow got (almost) everything done last week. It was a good start anyway.

Friday morning I even threw in some home economics and life skills training before the school day started called


Not all 7th graders get to start their school day running the bath water for their baby sister.

But see? Those kind of events are not on the schedule. And feeding? Who knows? I just feed on demand and couldn't tell you if you paid me how often or when I feed her. When she's hungry or fussing--that's when. So here's how I scheduled read-aloud times with each girl:


So, basically our schedule revolves around Bee. For now. She's little and it will change. Somehow we're getting school done and I'm trying to make it as regular as I can. Little Bit likes regular. Little Bit also likes it when the baby disrupts the lesson and she gets to go play. Ahem.
I've only got one picture of Little Bit working last week and I promised her I wouldn't post it. I called it "Little Bit  v. Math---Math WINS!" She was not having a good day. :) This one is happier. 

And I was going to be so organized and gather up their week's work and paper clip it together and archive it on Friday. Come to find out, Sweetheart had nothing on paper at all to archive. She is doing so much on the computer this year and what she is writing is something that will accumulate over time so--nothing to put away just now.

Miss High-Tech working at her new desk. 
So tomorrow we will start again. This week our very good friends are moving and we will be helping with that where we can so our school days will be a bit off schedule.

Ha ha ha ha!!! That was funny.

You can't get off schedule when you don't have one, you know.

Your Flexible Friend,


Friday, August 24, 2012

Why I Might Be Tired

We've had a lot of secrets around here lately. Finally, last Friday morning we were able to start revealing them.

Thursday I secretly packed a bag for Sweetheart. Friday morning my sister showed up to take her on a surprise trip for her 13th birthday.

No, they did not take the baby with them. They drove to a quaint little Texas town and shopped, went to a play, and stayed at a Bed and Breakfast. They got home late Saturday afternoon.

The minute they left, Little Bit and I started dragging Sweetheart's heavy metal desk to the backyard. Listen y'all...Little Bit was a trooper. My uncle is very ill so my parents had to go out of town unexpectedly and all I had was Little Bit to help me. She helped drag that desk, she kept the baby while I was outside spray painting, she did everything. SUCH a big helper! I was only outside for 10 minutes at a time but I came in one time and Little Bit was changing Bee's diaper. That girl is awesome.

Anyway, I ran out of spray paint so we loaded up and went to get more. Only...I couldn't find anymore of the pink color I needed for the chair.

Chair fail. The beautiful pink color did not cover all the crazy paint from the art chair.

Friday night the four of us went out to eat when S got home from work. Saturday morning, bright and early, we headed out in search of that paint color. But we did not find it.

Time for plan B. We bought an office chair from Wal-Mart (the kind in their dorm stuff) and S put it together. Much better. Then we hurried and finished the rest of the make-over.

All matching hot pink desk accessories, new chair, painted desk, wall stickers, bulletin board, and...

...all new stuff inside too! Three hole punch, stapler, push pins, school supplies, etc.

So Saturday afternoon Sweetheart got home and we revealed her new desk. She loved it! And then we rushed right out the door to an ice cream social with our church.

Sunday morning was, of course, church. I had baked cupcakes on Saturday, but we also had a potluck on Sunday after church. Mama had no time to be cooking so S went to the store and bought some pies. Good enough. We left after the potluck and came home to get the house ready for a birthday reception for Sweetheart. The only way to accommodate everyone was to have a come-and-go event. It worked beautifully. They came, they ate cupcakes, they visited, and they left. I think everyone had a good time and they didn't feel they had to stay for 2 hours. Her cousins came over a few hours early and they all got to swim (thus, the wet hair!). After the party we took her out to eat.

AND...then I came home and started putting together a "Back to School" banner and setting everything up for school the next day.

Yes. I did. Someone please remind me next year to NOT plan her birthday and back to school in the same weekend, k?

And so now we're wrapping up the first week of school, which I'll tell you about later. But suffice it to say, we need a little down time around here! (More on that later too!)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Back to School 2012-2013

Since we don't have a homeschool room this year, I decided to have a Back to School breakfast instead. That let me set the table up special for the morning like we usually do.

There were treats for later in the morning.

And treats for each girl for the school year.

A desk lamp for Sweetheart and a backpack for Little Bit.

There were pancakes for breakfast.

I think Little Bit liked the backpack!

Then we took our back to school pictures--with our back to school banner and with our traditional numbers.

Sweetheart, age 12 years and 362 days. :)

Seventh grade! How is it even possible?

Little Bit, age 8 1/2

Third Grade!

Baby Bee, age 3 months

We had a light day of work on the first day, but it was a lot harder than I thought with a new baby! Wowzers. Mama will be re-thinking the schedule for sure this week.

All printables came from this site.

I'm linking this post up to the Not Back to School Blog Hop for Week 3--Student Pictures. 

Not Back to School Blog Hop 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Weaving the Bible in Your School Day

I've been pondering how to fit more Bible into our days. We certainly need to read and study the Bible more around here.

My plan is to eat breakfast together as a family this year. Well, minus Daddy who will already be at work. We can read some together at the breakfast table and pray for our school day. We have, in the past, just eaten in shifts. I'll be working to change that this year.

It will take discipline.

The Bible as a subject in school will be first in our day, as usual. I won't be doing everything in our Sonlight plans in favor of doing more together. For example, we'll be working on memorizing the same passages instead of 2 different ones for 2 different grade levels. We'll do their assigned Bible reading together this year too.

But it's more than just checking off the box that we "did Bible" each day. I really want it in front of us. I want it to be a part of our whole day.

One idea I had was to put Bible verses on Sweetheart's subject folders.

Instead of a binder this year, Sweetheart will have separate folders. I think it gives a sense of accomplishment to put a folder away when that subject is done!
Aren't they colorful?

I searched for a meaningful verse for each subject. The verse for math is my favorite:

For God is not the author of confusion but of peace... 1 Cor. 14:33 :)
Here are the other verses I chose if you want to use them:

Bible: Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119:105

History: For whatever things were written before were written for our learning...Romans 15:4 (I know that is talking about scripture but I still think we can learn from History.)

Reading: When wisdom enters your heart, And knowledge is pleasant to your soul, Discretion will preserve you; Understanding will keep you, To deliver you from the way of evil...Proverbs 2:10-12a

Language Arts: Apply your heart to instruction, And your ears to words of knowledge. Proverbs 23:12

Science: (we are doing Anatomy this year) I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made...Psalm 139:14a

How do you weave scripture in your day?

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Day of Not

Tonight I am not packing a diaper bag.

Tonight I am not figuring how much milk to get out of the freezer for tomorrow.

Tonight I am not writing down the baby's schedule for the babysitter.

Tomorrow morning, I will not be getting up at 5:30.

I will not pray that the baby is hungry at the right time so I can nurse her before work.

I will not wake up a sleeping baby to dress her and put her in the car seat while it is still dark outside.

I will not be loading a breast pump, work bag, diaper bag, lunch, and purse into the car.

I will not drop my child off with someone else tomorrow.

I will not kiss her 20 times before I leave.

I will not pray and cry all the way to work.

I will not pick her up at the end of the day and wonder what she did all day.

I will not miss her smiles, her laughs, her firsts. Someone else will not comfort her when she cries.

Because NOT the end of my 12 week maternity leave. 12 weeks....I will just continue being her Mommy.

Thank you, Lord, for that blessing.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Our School Space 2012-2013

This is it. Our first year of homeschooling to NOT have a dedicated homeschool room. *sniff sniff*

At the beginning of last year, we had a perfectly lovely room. In the past, we've had other lovely rooms. 

But now, we have a perfectly lovely new baby.
Photo by H-Mama.
Which necessitates using all of our bedrooms for sleeping instead of for school rooms. And that's OK. It's better than OK. We are blessed.

So this year...things will be a bit different. {UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE YEAR}

We have sort of a utility room on the way to the garage. If you look to the right, you would see our washer and dryer. If you look to the left, you have our new "homeschool room."

This used to be my sewing room. It's pretty small. 
The closet covered with a curtain now holds all my sewing stuff. The little desk in the nook is our bill paying desk.
And to the left of the cabinet is our All About Spelling board and shoe pockets full of supplies. That white door is the door to our cleaning closet--you know, the vacuum, broom, cleaners, etc.
Told you the room was kind of small. And hard to take pictures of. I was sort of leaning backwards over the dryer to get these shots!

Inside the cabinet...
Each girl has a shelf with their books and materials for the year. The bottom shelf holds teacher books and a basket of paper. Last year's work is archived in the black crate on top. Flash cards and stuff in the small baskets on top. 

I always lamented not having a shelf in this bottom section. Then I saw my exact same armoire on Pinterest loaded down with scrapbooking materials and they had used these drawers in the bottom. Genius!
So...I guess it's not so much a Homeschool Room as it is a Storage Space, huh?

I bet you're wondering, "But Brenda...where will you work?" Good question!

Just outside of the utility room is our dining room.

I know most folks who homeschool in their dining room use a hutch or china cabinet to store their homeschool stuff. However, our china cabinet belonged to my husband's great grandmother. It's small, it's a bit rickety, and it's crammed full of dishes and cloth napkins and place mats and tablecloths, etc.  I have no better place to put that stuff. And the utility room is just a few steps away.

We'll work in here some. But even better than the dining room... our new coffee table! We were blessed to get some new living room furniture a few weeks ago. It's the first new furniture we've bought in about 13 years. I'm so excited to have that coffee table! I can sit on the couch taking care of baby, while Little Bit (age 8), works here at the coffee table. Perfect!

It's so perfect that I set up a little area right by the couch just for school.

See how handy?

The black crate holds Little Bit's every day school stuff. No need to traipse back and forth to our storage area all the time. On top are our Bible books for school/family Bible time, hymnals and our globe. 
The last area of our homeschool is my oldest daughter's desk in her room. This picture is from last year but you can see the crazy-painted chair, the metal, sprayed with grey primer desk, and the mis-matched everything on top.

I am giving her desk a make-over as a 13th birthday surprise and that isn't done yet so I can't share pictures of it just now.

But it's going to be awesome!

And that is those are our homeschool spaces for this year. Hope you enjoyed the tour! Now hop on over and see some more awesome spaces!

Not Back to School Blog Hop

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Friday Pile 'o Random

  • Got a little experiment going on over here at the House Revised. Waiting to see how long until it occurs to the 12-year-old-turning-13-in-less-than-two-weeks that she needs to do laundry. Her basket is piled very high right now. She doesn't have that many clothes, by virtue of not benefiting from any hand me downs, so it can't be much longer until she runs out of clean ones. But I'm waiting her out. No reminders. No suggestions. Let's just see if this brainstorm can happen on it's own, shall we?

Because you can teach a man to do laundry, but if he doesn't know WHEN to do it...he'll still be naked.

What? You haven't heard that old proverb?

  • The big girls and I looked back at old homeschool pictures yesterday. Oh my word they were such BABIES! And it made me SO SO SO thankful to be homeschooling them today. Time goes so fast and homeschooling allows me to enjoy my children each and every day. I must take lots of pictures this year because looking back at those makes you realize that you really did have a good and fun year. Anything will beat last year. If anyone had been taking pictures you may have seen:
1. mama sleeping on the couch, the read-aloud book dropping from her hand to the floor
2. the girls tip-toeing away to play

Just kidding. I did nap a lot, but we also got school done. But it wasn't above-and-beyond the basics in any way. Dry. Boring. There, we did it. That was our school year. Looking forward to a new start!

Two years ago: Little Bit on the first day of 1st grade!

Three years ago: Sweetheart at her 10 year old birthday party!
  • I didn't think we'd ever hit this point this summer but we did. We are ready. It happens every summer. Towards the end, the girls start wandering around, bored. They can't find anything to do. Swimming doesn't even entice them much now. With our doing-school-all-summer-because-the-new-baby-was-born summer, I didn't think they'd really be ready for school. But, it looks like we are. This week they are bored. And I am getting ready too. That's good news!
Make your plans Mom. I am in charge!
  • This next week--the last week before we start school--is going to be insane. VBS for Little Bit, S going out of town overnight, getting everything ready for back to school, Sweetheart's birthday surprise, her desk re-do, and her party. WHEW! I'm a little stressed out is what I'm saying. But so thankful to be here with my family. The Lord has truly blessed me. 
Have a great weekend! See you Monday for the Not Back to School Bloghop where I'll be showing off my homeschool space. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

In Which Crunch Time Hits At Our House

Eleven days people! Eleven days until school starts at the House Revised!!!

And, may I say, there is nothing like The Not Back to School Blog Hop to get you going on your homeschool space. Knowing I have to take pictures this weekend has gotten me motivated to finish the organizing. Bee cooperated today and is taking a nice long afternoon nap.

I also totally bribed convinced the older children to do chores by offering the day off of math lessons in exchange for some organizing around here. I can't be ready for school until the house is ready, you know? I suppose that's not the case if you send your children to school. Those moms wait until school starts and then go crazy cleaning out their kids' rooms. Homeschool moms like to do that before school starts.

All that nesting I did in the spring is paying off, too as the house isn't really THAT bad.

I'm awaiting the arrival of Sweetheart's back ordered Instructor's Guide and then I can get her school all planned.

I declare next week to be PLANNING WEEK at this house.

Which means this week is ORGANIZING WEEK.

Also, Sweetheart's birthday is 3 days after our school year starts. So, we are celebrating the weekend before. She's getting a very exciting birthday surprise that weekend, which will cause her to be away from the house. While she's gone, Little Bit and I are going to surprise her with a makeover for her desk! I can't wait!!

Above is a really random picture of Sweetheart's desk. It's an old metal desk that belonged to my parents. It's sturdy. It used to be that greenish color that makes you think of the desks in the astronaut's offices at NASA during Project Mercury. Well, that's what it made me think of anyway. So several years ago I drug it outside and sprayed it with grey primer, intending to paint it black for our "home office" we had at the time.'s still grey.

Also Sweetheart's chair is painted all crazy from when they painted their chairs for the art table we had a few years ago.

Needless to say, a girl who is about to be 13 needs a more grown-up space in which to work. And heaven sakes...things just need to MATCH somewhat in her room! I can't believe I have to wait another week to do this project! I can't wait to surprise her.

And lastly, I need to archive our work from last year. This might consist of putting everything in chronological order and stacking it neatly. Or, it might consist of shoving everything in a crate and sticking it on top of the homeschool cabinet.

 I'll let you know which one wins.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Three Moms in One

It's so interesting in our family now.

I've got one daughter who is trying so desperately to be grown up. She needs me to help her learn to fix her own hair, and remind her to wash her face, and keep on her about her room. She needs praise when she does responsible things on her own and when she makes wise choices. She needs me to allow her to stay up later, sit with the adults sometimes, and still skip off to go play with her little sister too.

I've got another daughter who is getting to be a big girl. She needs me to read to her, sew dolls for her, and cuddle with her on the couch. She needs to be listened to, not be treated like she's little, and included. She needs me to braid her piggy tails every morning. And run her bath water for her at night.

And I have another daughter who needs a whole lot! She needs to be nursed, held, changed, dressed, bathed, and played with. She needs naps and consistency and attention. She needs me to talk to her and sing to her and let her try new things. She needs mama every minute of the day.

They all need love. And I feel so honored to be their mother. To be entrusted with their little lives. With our 13 year span of age, I sometimes feel like 3 different moms. And I love how I'm learning to flow from one to the other seamlessly. Yes, I can nurse the baby, listen to the 8 year old tell me what she's pretending, and tell the 12 year old where the correct measuring cup is for the meal she is making--all at the same time.

Now don't ask me how I'm going to do school this year.

It might not be so seamless.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Myth of Independence

I recently turned down an invitation for a birthday party and sleepover for Sweetheart. It was for one of her oldest friends, but a friend we don't see very often anymore. I guess that's mostly because this friend goes to public school and everyone just gets so busy.

After I said she couldn't go, I felt bad. I have to tell Sweetheart today that she was invited but isn't going. I have to explain why---well, I don't HAVE to, but I will. How do you explain to a 12 year old all the complex reasons that her Dad and I understand, but she likely will not?

It hurts to do things differently than others. I know so many children Sweetheart's age who go and do tons of stuff apart from their family. It seems in other families that by this age, really...she "should be" more independent.

But we are a family. We are her parents. WE are responsible for her. WE are called to teach, protect, and raise her. I know that doesn't mean she can't ever leave our presence! But it does mean we must use wisdom in who we let her spend time with, where we let her go, and how much we let her be away from the rest of her family.

My beautiful Bee--photographed by H-Mama. 

The problem is, I don't buy this whole "independence thing."

I first ran across this when Sweetheart was 8 (our first year of homeschooling) and she was in a homeschool Girl Scout troop. Overall it was a good experience. But then I found out that the end of year camping trip was one which parents were most assuredly NOT invited. I wasn't comfortable letting my 8 year old go an hour or 2 away from home with only a few adults who I didn't know all that well in charge. So I volunteered mid-year to be a leader. It was a pain in the neck, but it allowed me to go on the camping trip with them. The camping trip where 20-30 little girls slept in a cabin all by themselves in 30 degree weather. (And the older girls were in cabins by themselves too.) The adults all slept in a separate cabin.

That was all fine, but it was the explanation I received from one of the leaders that concerned me. 

"Parents aren't allowed to go camping with them because our goal is for them to learn 
to be independent of their parents." 

Hmm. See? That's wasn't one of our parenting goals. Don't get me wrong--I understand that one day our daughters will grow up and move out. They may get married. They will not live with us forever. I know this. But is independence the goal? 

Little Bit and Sweetheart enjoying the water.
A friend posted on Facebook the other day about her baby still waking up several times a night. Of course everyone was telling her in the comments to let the child cry it out. One of her friends said, "It's the first step to teaching them independence." Really? A 9 month old baby needs to start learning independence? 

Even if you think a baby doesn't need to learn it, most people think at some point a child needs to. I know many people think that a girl needs to be on her own a few years before settling down. She needs to go to college. Get her own apartment. Have a career. Go on trips. I don't know what they think. But I would be perfectly happy for my girls to go straight from our house to their husband's home. I went to college. I had an apartment. It was kind of lonely. I felt unprotected, honestly. I was homesick. 

Now this isn't to say that we will have our thumb on them until they walk down the aisle. A child can remain living in their parents' home AND have a job, go to college, etc. They can live as a young adult in our home, and still be a part of this family. I have visions of Sweetheart attending college, and then also helping with the dishes after supper. Not because she'll get grounded if she doesn't (!) but because helping with the dishes is something you DO when you are part of a family. 

And then when/if our daughters get married, they will be a part of a new family with their husbands. They will be a part of a church family. I don't see a whole lot of "independence" in the life of a Christian. We have fellowship with one another. We are called to be part of a family. 

Does this mean it is wrong for a child to move out on their own? Well, I think the answer might be different for boys and girls. Call me sexist, it's what I think. But no, I do not believe it is wrong for a girl to move out of her parent's home. I just feel it isn't all that necessary most of the time and certainly not imperative. 

So the question is, how to raise daughters who do not grow up believing their rights are being violated. How to keep their hearts from rebellion. How to keep them from feeling hurt/left out by our decisions that go against what we see around us. It's much easier when you have like-minded families around. I have several friends who I know would have turned down this same birthday invitation had it been for their daughter. I don't feel crazy--I'm just worried about how our girls will feel the more our path seems to deviate from the norm. 

The thing is...this birthday could just as easily be celebrated with families. That's how I hope for my girls' parties to be--families coming together to celebrate. Isn't that how it would have been done a really long time ago? When did things change? When did 12 year old girls start being independent from their families? Is that healthy?

Your thoughts?

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Our Second Box Day!

We are using Sonlight for the second year. Last year was our "trying it out" year and I knew I loved it immediately. I've talked about Sonlight a lot--if you are interested, feel free to click the label in my sidebar for those posts.

The exciting thing about boxed curriculum--and Sonlight is certainly not the only one who sends everything in a big 'ol exciting box--is the day that box (or boxes) comes in the mail. And Sonlight ships crazy fast too!

This year, both girls were getting a new core. And they knew what to expect. I'll just show you the pictures...

My dad had to come down and help us get the box off the front step. It was HEAVY!

There were some unexpected things in the box (math manipulatives). 

Sweetheart was happy to see a new CD. She really enjoyed the one last year.

Eight year old Little Bit with all her 3rd grade books. 

My big 7th grader--who will turn 13 a few days after we start school. 

I'm happy to report that all the books have been shelved in the appropriate place and I've started pre-reading Sweetheart's readers. (Little Bit is using the 2nd grade readers and I've read most all of them before, plus she'll be reading to me.) The books, all stacked up like that, look daunting. I doubt I'll be able to keep up with pre-reading through high school. 

I am so thankful to be able to use Sonlight again this year. It really does take so much work off of me in the planning and preparation department. It's not even funny how much easier it is for me! And I'm excited about all the changes that were made for this year. Can't wait to try out their Language Arts (which is now included) and see how we like it! 

Have you gotten your new curriculum yet, homeschool mamas? Don't you just LOVE this time of year?