Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Happenings

Rather than have multiple posts about our  Halloween happenings.  I just have one big picture heavy one.  LOL!

We have kept busy getting ready for Halloween. 

We carved pumpkins.


Finished products

Emily’s is the cat, Tommy’s is the ghost, Katey’s is the multiple eyed pumpkin.



Tyler painted his, as I wasn’t quite ready to let him carve one this year. 

We went to a Halloween party at the grocery store.

The kids got to fish for a treat. 


I love in this picture how Tommy is helping Tyler.  Such brotherly love!!

Tyler does NOT like Halloween, not at all.  He covers his eyes every time we use our front door, because of the decorations.  He will not wear a costume.  I even bought him a Thomas the Train one this year, thinking he would love it so much that he would want to wear it even if it is not Halloween.  I was wrong.  He won’t put it on.    He won’t go to the scary people for Halloween candy either. 

The girl in charge of decorating cookies was dressed up as a hunter.  So Tyler was not scared of her.  (We hunt, so he is used to that attire)  So he was willing to decorate a cookie.


He would not however go get a Fall picture taken with Tommy and Katey.


He would just watch Katey and Tommy play the games. 

This one was bowling.


For our family Halloween party I had each child choose an activity to put together and teach the other kids.  If they needed my help, I would help them.  They needed to get me a list of supplies they would need.  I am very proud of what each of them chose to do. 


Tommy chose to do Ghost Prints.  He did very well at teaching us all what to do. 


My activity was next and to “get two birds with one stone” I chose to do lunch stuff.  We made Mummy Dogs, and apple teeth for lunch.  Then we made Halloween sugar cookies. 



Tyler even decided to try on one of his costumes.



Next up was Katey’s choice.  She chose to do to claying. 

This was everybody’s favorite.  After we each made our Halloween art, we decided to combine it into a “Witches house”. 


The view from the top.


The witch, her caldron, her black cat, and her spell book.


The witches in bed and their broom. 


Emily’s activity was some games, such as Zombie, Zombie, Brains (Duck, Duck, Goose) and Freeze Dancing to our Kids Bop Halloween music. 


Our community has a big carnival at the rec center.  We went to that on Halloween night. 


I tried to get a picture of all of the kids together, and wouldn’t you know it, my camera acted up. 

After messing with the settings I fixed it. 


Tyler would not dress up to go to this.  He is so funny.  He is just not sure about this Halloween thing. 



The girls are posing by a decoration.  Then Katey playing one of the games. 


They also had a “Haunted Alley” which was Katey’s first time in something like that.  She absolutely loved it. 


We had such a fun Halloween. 

And now we are curling up to watch a Halloween movie! 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Lazy Days

Have you ever had one of those days where you just feel like laying around?  I have, today in fact has been one of those days. 


Sure I got up and did a 5 minute pick up around the house, got kids a bowl up cereal, then got my kids in Halloween costumes and took them to the grocery store “party”.  I bought them popcorn chicken from the deli for lunch.  I came home and sat around.  I cooked a can of soup and some fries for dinner. 


Tommy and I did go out this evening and do our chicken chores. 


My normal Saturday’s are jam packed full, and this one should have been too.  I have left so much undone around the house. 


Yet, I don’t feel guilty.


I feel like going to sleep!


Sometimes we all just need those lazy days, right? 


Well that’s what I am going to keep telling myself.  Oh yeah, I am also going to blame it on the freezing weather.  BRRRRR…. 

I did it!

I think, I hope I am done…….for now!

I have updated my own blog.  I am fairly happy with it.  It is in no way professional.  It was my first time after all!

I even made a button.

Feel free to grab it!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Under Construction!

That's right.  It's Friday night.  I got/am getting my kids into bed, and then I have BIG PLANS to try my own hand at redesigning my blog.  I have been creating things in the background using My Memories.  (see sidebar). 

Seeing as how I couldn't even find an Under Construction photo to put in this post, I think I am going to need all the help I can get.  

Baking Bread for Math


Emily has been learning about multiplying and dividing fractions.  What better way to put it into real world learning than to bake.  Emily tried her hand at a bread recipe she chose.   Peanut Butter Bread.  She had to 1 and 1/2 times the recipe.  She did great and the bread turned out wonderful.  So wonderful in fact that I forgot to take a picture of it before we devoured it. 


Yummy! Thanks for the great snack Emily.  We are all so glad you got your math right.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

George Washington Carver

Marshall Publishing

Is the company that publishes those Lots and Lots movies, like Lots and Lots of Fire Trucks. 

Did you know that they offer educational movies as well?

Like George Washington Carver His Life and His Work.

In this 29 minute DVD you will meet George Washington Carver.  With it’s relaxing music and pictures, we were very into it.  It is just enough to keep us interested, but not so long that it was boring.  I love biographies so I would have enjoyed a longer movie, but this is perfect for a taste, to see if you are interested in learning more about him. 

You will get to know who he is and what he struggled through and what he did for our country, involving peanuts, agriculture, “his people” and more. 

We (Tommy and I) really enjoyed this movie.  It fit in perfectly since he just finished a scientist unit in literature. 

They even have a study guide along with questions on their website to go along with this.

Right now this DVD is on web sale for $19.95 and Marshall Publishing is offering a 15% discount when you use the code TOSC1

To see what others though of this check out this post. To see a wide variety of reviews check out our crew blog.

As a member of The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew I review products like this, which I receive for free in order to be able to write my review.

Pumpkin Patch/ Corn Maze X 2


Yeah, it was so great we went twice. 


We picked pumpkins, of course!


We went through the corn maze and played too.


The kids played tag on the hay bails with their friends. 


Tyler loved all the dump trucks!  All the kids loved feeding the goats.


They loved the “Corn Barn”.  Emily and Tommy buried each other while Katey and Tyler played with trucks.  

We took a class on the water cycle and even played a very fun water cycle game each time.  I am so proud of my children how they all worked together to play the game.  Actually, they were great friends with each other both days. 

I even got a picture of all of them together on the hay wagon. 



The corn maze/ pumpkin patch has always been a yearly tradition for us.  I wasn’t sure if there would be one where we live now.  I was glad to find  one in the next town, even if it is an hour away. 

It was also a great drive over there both times.  We were able to compare the leaves colors each time.  The second time was much more colorful, but also much colder. 

If you have a corn maze or pumpkin patch near you I would recommend going.  They are usually family owned and you can learn a lot about farming and more. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Excellence for Literature

Everyday Education offers all kinds of homeschool resources for homeschooling through High School. 


Many crew members reviewed Excellence in Literature:: English 1: Introduction to Literature with the Honors option

Introduction to Literature was created as a college-preparatory course.  It consists of 9 units, the first one based on short stories and the second through ninth unit are based on Novels.  The author of this curriculum, Janice Campbell, put a lot of thought into choosing the books and you can read about how she did that in this blog post.

Each unit has focus text(s) along with context text(s).

I love it when you can take a book and get so much out of it.  Excellence in Literature does just that. 

Taken straight from the website:

Throughout this course students gain an understanding and development of literature and will practice the skills of close literary analysis through essays, approach papers and other evaluative writing.


  • Understand the process of writing, including the use of tools such as a writer’s handbook, dictionary, and thesaurus.
  • Have specific understanding of selected representative texts by major authors of the periods studied.
  • Have a general understanding of the historical and cultural contexts of the works.
  • Be able to analyze literary texts and present thoughtfully developed ideas in writing.
  • Demonstrate competence in essay organization, style, and mechanics.

Unit 1: Short Stories by-
• Sarah Orne Jewett: A White Heron
• Edgar Allen Poe: The Purloined Letter (This one is not scary, if you're concerned about that.)
• Guy de Maupassant: The Diamond Necklace
• O. Henry: The Ransom of Red Chief
• Eudora Welty: A Worn Path
• James Thurber: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Unit 2: Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
Honors: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Unit 3: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain
Honors: The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain

Unit 4: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Honors: Shirley or Villette by Charlotte Brontë

Unit 5: Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
Honors: Murder in the Cathedral by T.S. Eliot

Unit 6: Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
Honors: Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson

Unit 7: Animal Farm by George Orwell
Honors: 1984 by George Orwell

Unit 8: The Tempest by William Shakespeare
Honors: A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare

Unit 9: Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift
Honors: The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan

The print book 132, 8” x 11” pages is $29 + $4.95 Priority Mail Shipping. 

The Ebook version is $27 with instant access and is designed to be printed double sided and put in a 3 ring binder. 

While I absolutely love the concept of this program and the ideas of being able to dig so deeply into literature.  This program was just not for us, yet.  It is to advanced for my middle-schooler right now.  While he reads and comprehends on level, he is still working on expressing his feelings and even discovering what they are.  So he is not quite able to do that with books yet.

Some of the things that were particularly above his level included writing the paper,

I am definitely going to work hard with him to get him at this level for High School.  I am looking forward to revisiting this with him in a few years. 

To see what others though of this check out this post. To see a wide variety of reviews check out our crew blog.

As a member of The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew I review products like this, which I receive for free in order to be able to write my review.



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