Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday:Sometimes it's OK to Stay Up Late



Especially if you are having a 90's dance party.


Halloween Work Box Ideas

To continue the October theme here are a few "halloween" work box ideas!




Even at 6 and 7 my girls still appreciate being able to dig through beans. Something about being able to dig and spill stuff is just thrilling to kids. Plus it is a great sensory activity and also appeals to the preschooler. So with just a pack of black beans and some super cheap plastic bugs you can make a really cool creepy crawly sensory bin.


Picture Credit


This isn't exactly a bin but check out this really cool I spy Bottle! This could easily be adapted for any other holiday as well!


Some other fun ideas:

Fill your box with dress up clothes (or if you don't have space you can use a notecard to let your child know the activity)

Playdoh,

Homemade slime
Gutting a pumpkin with your hands is a great sensory activity

If you have any workbox ideas be sure to leave a comment!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Review: Walt Disney World Adventure A Field Guide and Activity Book for Explorers

Do you think of educational when you think of Disney World? If not you should! Disney is full of everything from history and geography to science and art. When we planned our trip to Disney I was determined that in the homeschooling way, that even our vacation would be a learning experience. I flopped. Well sort of. I have to admit that in all of the chaos I did not pull Walt Disney World Adventure out at all, but not to worry! This book is so fun and thurough that we were able to complete it as a unit study after we got back!



Walt Disney World Adventure: A Field Guide and Activity Book for Explorers is a great book by Tracie A. Cook filled that retails for around $12  and is filled with fun facts and activities. There are traveling tips, back stories to the rides, puzzles and other interesting facts through out the book. It covers all four of the parks so you will have plenty do do! The over 100 pages activities are age appropriate for around 8-14 but even as an adult I found the facts in it interesting! Activities include mazes, cryptograms, numeric puzzles, decoding and so much more. With a little bit of help even my youngest could do some of the activities. And don't worry, the answers are in the back of the book if you get stuck on something!

While this book is obviously more fun at the parks or directly after, you could actually modify this to be a unit study! So whether you are just looking to make your trip educational or if you are just interested in studying Disney World, Walt Disney World Adventure: A Field Guide and Activity Book for Explorers this book is a blast!

Be sure to visit Tracie's site for other Adventure guides as well as crafts and more!

I was given a free copy of Tracie's book in exchange for an honest review. This blog is a truthful opinion of the book. Please take a moment to check out my full disclosure.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

There are Elephants Upstairs



I can always tell when daddy gets the kinect out. The sound of my roof about to cave in used to scare me. Now, I just trust( and by trust I mean that I close my eyes and cringe every time I hear a bang) that my house can withstand not only the movement for the games, but also the mad attempts by my 3 year old to fly off the furniture. I am waiting for the day he decides to try to fly over the open banister. The noises are usually followed my my husband's half-hearted attempt to convince our son that pretending to be superman and actually BEING superman are two different things. Whose idea was it to get a two story house?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Not So Scary Halloween Art, Lesson Plans, Lapbooks and Activities

We don't celebrate Halloween for personal reasons (this is not an attack on those who do, this is just our personal conviction), but there is no getting around the kids knowing it exists so we take this opportunity to do some "not so scary" activities. Besides, you don't have to celebrate halloween to know that bats, bugs and all things creepy crawly are pretty cool!



Check out this cool pumpkin eyeball! This could be a great opportunity to learn about the parts of the eye and how they work.


This terra cotta pot pumpkin would make a cute decoration that you can leave out for Thanksgiving as well!



Who doesn't love learning about mummies? Do this mummy craft and visit the mummy maker to see if you can make your own mummy the ancient Egyptian way!



In this really cool Curiosity Files unit study Anna Lyze takes you into the world of Zombie Fire Ants. Best of all it is currently on sale for just $1!!

And halloween wouldn't be complete without exploring the grossest of body functions. Learn all about what causes zits, vomiting and even scabs and puss. GROSS!!!

These are just a few of the great ideas you can find all over the internet. So if you don't trick or treat, don't worry, you can still have lots of fun exploring the creepy and the disgusting!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Featured Sponsor: Apologia and our 2 Runner Up Winners

And our final sponsor of this giveaway is Apologia who have offered 2 copies of their Ultimate Homeschool Planner!




From Christian Bookstore:

Designed for the busy homeschooling mother, help bring order---and less frustration---into your life. A user's guide will help you set everything up; a one-year planning grid, student goal setter, pre-planning guide, monthly planners, weekly planner, records, teaching tips, and a high school planning guide are all provided. Yearly planning pages provide room for vision-casting with your family priorities, a review of the previous school year, a goal-setter for character and academics, and timing grids. Weekly plans provide room to write in your Bible plan, battle plan, prayers, hospitality/outreach efforts, memorable moments, achievements, and evidences of grace. Schedule pages may be filled in as you see fit-both the vertical and horizontal axes are blank for you to fill in days and subjects as you prefer. Boxes along the facing page include room for notes, supplies, and appointments. The plastic covers include folder pockets on the inside for handy storage. Spiral bound.



Apologia also offers a variety of homeschool curricula including creation based sciences. Visit Apologia and see if they have the science you are looking for!

Our two winners for the Ultimate Homeschool planners are:


Winners will have 72 hours to respond to the email before a new winner is chosen. Congrats to all who won and a big thank you to all of our GREAT sponsors!!



And the Winner of the Mega Homeschool Giveaway is...





I will be contacting the winner via email today! The winner will have 72 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. Congrats to Lynda!!! If you didn't win don't fret! Apologia has offered us two runner up prizes that I will be posting shortly!

Featured Sponsor: Work at Home Moms

I love supporting my fellow work at home moms! Here are the one's who helped sponsor the Mega Homeschool Giveaway. With Christmas right around the corner this is a great way to get some unique gifts as well as support a work at home mom!

Planning a Disney vacation soon? Trust me when I say having an agent that specializes in Disney makes all the difference! Naomi does just that! Contact her today by visiting her site or email her at naomi@themagicforless.com to get your quote!

For handmade little boys accessories specializing in bow tie and suspender sets visit Golubchick on Etsy!




Get your personalized fabric and marble necklace from Gone Marbles on Facebook!


For handmade goats milk soaps and other handmade skin care items visit Providence Farms!






Featured Sponsor: Master Books



BIG BOOK OF HISTORY



Learning Just Became BIG FUN!


Families, schools, and churches can unfold 15 feet of the most interesting history of the world. This easy to follow, color-coded, multi-stream timeline teaches six thousand years of world history to children ages seven through thirteen. These exciting facts and so much more wait inside:






•who were the first emperors of China and Rome


•what discovery unlocked the secrets of a forgotten language


•how modern robotics had its roots in the tea dolls of Japan


•where Christians faced death for the entertainment of thousands


•why the languages of Greek and Hebrew were used to write the Bible


•and how the Age of Discovery meant wealth some, and the destruction of civilization for others.






Understanding how the past has shaped our future will inspire young learners to make history for themselves!

Visit New Leaf Publications to see more about this great homeschool resource!




Sunday, October 16, 2011

BabyNes Instant Formula Maker?!

I have to admit, I love my modern tech. I rarely hand wash dishes, and we would go naked before I hand washed clothes (ok, maybe not, but I would have to be dragged kicking and screaming). I am a mom of three I totally get the temptation and sometimes the necessity of a microwave pizza, but I absolutely do not get this machine. I know what first comes to mind, it looks just like a Kuereg coffee maker! However, this little marvel of the modern world is actually an instant formula maker!

That is right, an instant baby formula maker. This machine, currently being sold in Switzerland for hundreds of dollars, comes with individual packages which are mixed with water by the "BabyNes" before being warmed and distributed into baby's bottle. Ok, so I am not going to go off on a tangent about how breast is best and all that. I had a pregnancy that literally required me to formula feed (go on judge me), so I can see where formula can be a good thing for some mothers, but it really didn't take me that much time to dump a scoop of powder into warm water and shake.

So, I say all of this simply to point out that we are blessed, so very blessed with our modern day technology. Remember though, that these things can either give us more opportunity to serve our families, or they can breed laziness that results in not even being bothered enough to shake your baby's bottle.

Picture credit: Nestle.com

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

TOS Review: Always Icecream for Girls



After doing two other reviews for online learning I was beginning to think what else could one possibly do to make an online learning site fun and unique? Surely, at this point people are running out of fun ideas! Well, let me tell you about Always Icecream, a educational site for girls that takes the best of learning and merges it with fun!


You can tell which games earn scoops by the icecream laid over the game!

Always Icecream is an online site designed specifically for girls ages 7-12 and is available with a monthly membership starting at $4.99 (Free Trial and $.99 for first month!) up to a lifetime membership for $99.99. It has a mixture of educational games which earn your daughter scoops of icecream which can be spent raising a pet in pet world and decorating a home in miniworld. Girls can also create a mini-me and interact with other girls that they "friend".



Games include wide variety of subjects such as math, US geography, language arts, foreign language, Bible and my favorite, typing skills. There are even videos to watch!


As your daughter plays the games, they will get progressively harder and parents can apply for a free parent account that allows them to see a comprehensive view of how their child is doing as well as manage account settings and other details about her online activity within the site. An especially neat feature is that you can set up a custom activity for your daughter and reward her with extra scoops!



So what did the girls think of this site? They LOVED it. I mean LOVED. I had no problems getting them to play the games because they were rewarded with playtime afterwards in miniworld and petworld. We have truly enjoyed it! I as a parent also love the option for an affordable lifetime membership. This is a review site but could nicely supplement your current curriculum and a lot of online learning sites have very expensive subscription fees, but Always Icecream is actually affordable! This is by far our favorite online learning site so far!

Be sure to find out what my fellow crew members thought about Always Icecream!

I was given a lifetime membership to Always Icecream in exchange for an honest review. Any opinion expressed here is 100% accurate to the best of my ability. Please take a moment to visit my full disclosure policy.



Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Featured Sponsor: Currclick


From the Website: Your one-stop shop for electronic lapbooks, affordable curriculum, and homeschooling resources. Unit study, novel study, bargain home study online downloads for home education!




Currclick has thousands of printables, from ebooks to workbooks, planners, unit studies and much, much more, at very affordable prices. You don’t have to wait for the books or workbooks to come in the mail. Just place your order and download immediately. They also offer some items for free on a regular basis. The website is simple to navigate and makes it easy to search for exactly what you need. Visit the website today to find your next piece of curriculum.


Be sure to stop by our HUGE GIVEAWAY for a chance to earn a Currclick gift card plus many more prizes!


Monday, October 3, 2011

Disney World Day 2: Epcot


Day two was the start of a series of early risings for breakfast reservations. We were up at 6am to make it in time for breakfast with the princesses at Akershus.

Breakfast was wonderful. This might have been one of my favorite meals. The food was just buffet style American food but the atmosphere was wonderful and the girls especially loved meeting Belle!



After breakfast we set about riding anything we passed that striked our fancy. We managed the Mission Space, Soarin, and a few others. It was VERY hot and when it wasn't hot it was pouring rain so between that and our dining reservations we didn't do much but walk. Epcot has never been my favorite park though so I was fine with it. The kids seemed to have fun despite all of the walking. We did have a bit of a mix up with our dinner reservations so ended up having to make some last minute changes. We ended up at Maya Grill (don't waste your time!) and it was nearly mid-night before we got back to the hotel!