Sunday, January 30, 2011

Week 1 : Term 1

Well we are off to a flying start as the new school year begins. This term we've decided to do 4 unit studies in 2 week intervals. The first one is The Body.
We'll be using the lesson plan from Homeschool Share.
Why reinvent the wheel when it's all been done for you. This unit study is fantastic and totally age appropriate for the girl. We started looking at this one during the holidays and are all keen to get into it. By the end of the 2 weeks I figure I 'll have a pretty good DNA profile of the kids if nothing else. By the time we've finger printed them, pulled out a few strands of hair and taken height & weight measurements,looked at blood under the microscope, we'll have a great record.

The theme behind it is from the LDS Children's songbook #153 -The Lord Gave Me a Temple. I will be including stories from the LDS Friend magazine to tie it all together. With a 10 year old that is as girly , girly as they come it's important to tie this unit study together with, virtue, modesty, and what the Lord has to say in regard to our bodies. How it is a temple.

On to the other side of it.The girls love the Blood & Guts book that's the recommend text for this unit study. Linda Allison has done a great job of presenting all the facts in a fun, not so clinical way which appeals to Maddie who has a sensitive tummy for anything along this line. This is the same child who can't stand to see meat or chicken cut up.

We're still using Maths U See but I am adding
a few activities from Mammoth Maths.
Maddie can't understand the man in the Math U See video clips, she doesn't learn that way, so I just show her myself. Using the manipulatives does work well for us over all and the pace of Math U See is perfect for us.

At the moment we are still in the process of reviewing I See Sam readers. Something that we are really enjoying. My girls aren't into the computer, but holding a book in their hand is just their pace. I'm looking forward to writing a review for that one.

My favorite homeschool curriculum has to be anything produced by Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer. We love The Story of the World as our history curriculum. I supplement it with lapbooks if the subject really catches their imagination.

We also use First Language Lessons book 1 & 2 for our grammar. It has been rewritten into individual levels now with workbooks to go with it. I love the new download method available on Peace Hill Press website. I'm going to download the audio that goes with the level 1 & 2. My girls love audio. They perch themselves on a beanbag and can spend hours listening to stories. Of course a lot of our audio's come from Homeschool freebie of the Day . I love this site and we have accumulated a fantastic little library of audio and classic books that we otherwise would not have been able to access.

So we're excited to be setting off on another year of homeschooling. It is a fantastic journey.

Monday, January 17, 2011

QLD Flood Appeal Auction

You can see a master list here on make it perfect of all the handmade dolls, toys,quilts and so much more. 100% of the funds raised will be going to the Flood relief Effort.

We had to venture the city yesterday as my 90 year old Grandma was isolated at the hospital on the Brisbane River. We had been unable to see her in a week as that suburb was very hard hit. Apart from the stench, the lost and devastation is really rather terrible. Our Stake President said it was far worse in real life than it is on the TV. After seeing it for myself I would have to agree with that.

So this is a fantastic effort in those who have contributed and those who are bidding on the items. So much on offer I hope to have a look at all that is on offer.

We have decided to take the girls away for a few days. Get away from the constant flow of tragic news. The fear of the floods and panic that followed was bad enough. Now they are putting faces to the tragedy and that is more than our girls can bear. The lost babies on the news and front pages of the newspaper. Everyone is talking about it and understandably so. We are taking them to one of the few places that haven't been affected. When we looked on the map it was hard to find somewhere that wasn't. So Hastings Point in New South Wales is the destination. then back to reality Thursday & Friday when we'll be joining the Church's volunteer group to continue in the clean-up operation of the city.

So have some fun & checkout the list of fantastic items up for auction.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Homemade Chapstick

This my favorite recipe for chapstick and is so easy to make.

Homemade Chapstick recipe

2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
2 Tablespoons Shea Butter
2 Tablespoons Beeswax

Melt the beeswax then add the other ingredients until all melted. Using a large syringe or turkey baster, squirt the melted liquid into each tube. Leave a little at the end for topping up because they tend to settle a little while cooling.

When we made it today we filled 22 tubes with the above recipe. LOVE IT!!

You need a couple of dozen chapstick tubes or containers of some variety. I bought these chapstick tubes from ebay for $15.99 with free postage for 50 tubes in those funky colours.

It feels so nice on your lips!

Reusable Sandwich Wraps

Well for us here in Australia it's that time of year 'Back to School Shopping'. Yes we are fast approaching the start of a new school year and while we may not all technically be going 'back to school', we are starting a new round of extra curricular activities and excursions.

Now my latest project is making these 'reusable sandwich wraps'. I used this tutorial which also included a template. I didn't use laminated fabric because I'm sure about the plastic and whether it is food grade. I sniped open Glad ziploc bags as the plastic is foodgrade and stronger in quality.

What Do You Need

* fabric of your choice

* ziploc bags

* Velcro

* your preferred method of sewing. I used my overlocker for this project & my machine to attach the velcro.

Once they have been used you just wipe them out & if they get too messy I will just drop them in a bucket of napisan to soak & then drip dry. Easy & our use of plastic bags is now reduced.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Let It Rain, Let It Rain, Let It Rain!!!

Well after 6 weeks of rain, over 75% of our state of Queensland is under water. We have seen some of the most horrific footage and watched it unfold in towns near us. Our city is going under as we speak and my husband has headed to the city to take a gas bbq & crank radio & tv to a unit full of older single women who have no power and will not be getting any, any time soon. It did just start to rain again which is not good news. It has just been so tragic as we watch wives looking for their husbands (plural) in the mud and debris that was once their homes.
While we are not affect in our suburb it is really difficult so sit at home and wait. Daniel (son) has been helping members of our ward move today and went through the city and took these photos.

These photo's are of our State Library, Museum & Performing Arts theater. As you can see Wicked is on and has been canceled for now. (lead actress is a Latter-day saint as well)

The Brisbane Temple is high on the hill at Kangaroo Point and over looks the Brisbane River but if you drive a 100 meters down this main expressway, you look up and see Angel Moroni on your left.

This is where our oldest daughter Ashleigh works. Aptly named the Riverside Center. They were evacuated from their offices yesterday and won't be heading back for a little while.

I'm so glad that we are also totally into our homestorage and have more than enough supplies to get us through. We didn't have to go to the store in a panic thankfully. We went to get chips & a few odds and ends yesterday and people were really panicked. The shelves where empty of almost everything in the form of convenience foods. Chicken & Chips!! When we lived in cyclone prone territory in far north Queensland , people always rushed to the shops and bought hot chickens & potato crisps. Always made me laugh. They have no idea how to bake a loaf of bread from scratch. I'm sure glad I do in times like this.

Breaking news for my son. EFY, scheduled for next week has just been canceled. The University was going under today, but he just got word that it has been canceled. He is so disappointed. He did get to attend YSA Conference in Sydney last week. Great to be 18!

Well I am off to bed. We have been told to prepare for the worst when we wake up in the morning as the river will peak at 4am. It's hard to believe that there could be worse than what we have already had this week.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

13th Article of Faith Subway Art

Well this is my first project on my Silhouette Machine. I was one very lucky mum at Christmas time this year and was blessed to have one arrive in the mail! I just did this one a a $2 canvas because I didn't want to, well, wreck anything on my first go at it. I loved all the Subway art that was done for Christmas on all those blogs out there. However I wanted something 'unseasonal' and the 13th Article of Faith came to mind. Now I'm off to make one focusing on our Ward goal for the next four months which is focused on remarks given by Sister Beck at a CES Training Broadcast which is "Live so that you are brilliant at the basics". Family & personal prayer is this months goal followed by scripture study, Sacrament attendance & Temple attendance.

Well I'm sure I can turn that into a tile or something. I will show you when I 'm finished.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Maths Facts Now

Maths facts Now 2.0 is a fantastic drill program that is used to reinforce those essential maths facts.

We have been trialling this over the Christmas break with a great deal of success. I love the simplicity of the program. Once you (teacher/parent) set the program in motion during the initial process, it regulates the strengths and weakness of the student and sets the program accordingly.

If the student makes a mistake on a problem, Maths facts Now will take them back over that problem several times with a little warning 'be careful' just to remind them not to be tricked again.

I'm not good with things that have timers. My girls are not competitive by nature and find that hard, but the beauty of this program is that you can set the 'times up' timer to your own request. I did want it longer but they do limit you with that.


Math Facts NOW! 2.0 IMMEDIATE DOWNLOAD costs $15.95 NO S/H!

Math Facts NOW! 2.0 on CD-ROM costs $15.95 + $3.95 S/H

System Requirements: Runs on Windows 2000, ME, XP, Vista and Windows 7. 4.5 Mb of free hard drive space required.

For a free trial of this program click here

What We Think

While maths isn't one of my girls favorite subjects, this one works really well for drill practice with purpose. I like that there is no blurry lines to distinguish between as far as 'games' are concerned. No animation. No playgrounds to venture into when you have done your facts. Just straight out maths facts in a clear, easy to follow method of delivery. For $15.95 its not a big out of pocket expense for a fantastic program.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Read the Bible In 90 Days

Today I began my 90 day 'challenge', to read the bible in 90 days. I will call it a challenge because I have to be honest I'm not very disciplined with this aspect of my life. However this morning I was up early and read my first assigned target for the day. 1 down only 89 more days to go!

The part that really grabbed me about this challenge was S.O.A.P. I have been involved with many scripture reading goals over the years and always participated well, and felt the blessing in my life. But this aspect of the challenge, while not necessarily new, has a fresh approached with the simplicity of the idea but the value of the personal lesson's you can learn from them when guided by the spirit certainly add value to the challenge. Click on the S.O.A.P link above to read what Amy from mom's toolbox blog has to say about it. This is also the jump off point for this challenge so if you think you might like to join it pop over to that fabulous blog to check it out.

As for me day 2 is almost here and I'm excited about being a part of this. Hope you can join us as well.