Friday, April 26, 2013

Healing Hearts with Helping Hands

Sometimes I just don't know what to do or say.  I'm socially awkward.  Especially around death or around people that are grieving.  It is something that I'm working on, as I want to be a blessing to those around me.

As usual, Lorrie Flem, helps me out.

As usual, Lorrie doesn't just give us vague notions of how to be a blessing.  This book is FULL of ideas to help us help others during their time of deepest need.  She gives us the words to write, the words to say, the actions to take. 

Since food can be such a blessing at this time, some of Lorrie's focus (but not ALL) is on how to take food, what food to take, AND she includes recipes for several easy to serve items that should be universal hits. 

The ideas in this book are very useful in a variety of other situations as well; new baby, sick family member, etc.  I loved the ideas for care packages that can be made for friends that are going to the hospital to help family members or for treatments themselves. 

Lorrie ends this book with scripture to reinforce our desires to bless others.  I just can't say enough good things about this resource.  I feel more confident in my ability to help others now :)

This book is available now at Eternal Encouragement for $3.50, or as a Kindle download from Amazon for $3.99.  However, May 1-3 it will be available from Amazon for $0.99!  So be patient and get it then :)  And don't forget that you don't have to actually have a kindle to read kindle books (I have a kindle yet still read mostly from my Droid phone).  If you need more information about that, you can read HERE.

Need more encouragement or know someone else who does?  You can get Lorrie's Eternal Encouragement magazine for free!!!!!

***I received this product for free in exchange for a fair review as part of the Gabby Moms review program.***

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Reading List April 25, 2013

To the Grave by Carlene Thompson
***A very good mystery.  You will never guess who did it :)

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
***I finally borrowed it from the library and loved it.  Haven't seen the movie and won't rush to, I'm afraid that it won't be the same.  Fantastic read for both the cultural education and the story line. 

Placebo by Steven James
***Just finished this one today.  Another sci-fi type mystery.  I had a hard time wrapping my head around the physics mumbo jumbo but one of the characters was a conspiracy theorist and another was a homeschooling single mom so that made it more interesting for me.  There seems to be another book with these characters coming out in 2013 so I'm going to watch out and try to snag it. 

Families Where Grace is in Place by Jeff VanVonderen
***I picked this up at the APACHE convention and am so glad that I did.  A must read for anyone that came from a yelling family or for parents or for married couples.  Really, anyone could benefit.  I marked my copy all up with my highlighter and will digest it for a while then reread before shelving.  Good, Godly stuff.

Planning Your Charlotte Mason Education: Create a custom plan for your family by Sonya Shafer
***As a long time Charlotte Mason follower, I bought several new resources this year.  I read this start to finish in my hotel room at APACHE taking notes the whole time.  If you are new to Charlotte Mason methods I strongly recommend this resource - it is wonderfully informative for the rest of us as well.  You can take notes and highlight or use the copyable forms that are provided.  A definate go-to resource for me.

I've got another 2 books started (one actual book and 1 kindle book) and I've already put another book on my kindle app on my phone.  I brought 2 books (1 fiction, 1 biography) home from the library yesterday and there are still several in my stack on my table plus my mother-in-law sent some home for me to read while returning some that I sent her. 
There will be more to come :)  I know that I'm not keeping the list up in the sidebar.  Honestly, the time I spend updating that thing can be better spent reading.  I'll do my best, but know that I'm probably reading stuff that isn't on there.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Spanish for You!

I have always found teaching a foreign language at home a little tricky.  Honestly, I found learning a foreign language in school (spanish in high school and french in college) a little tricky.  I taught my older sons a little Spanish and some Latin.  Honestly, I wasn't looking forward to teaching another round of foreign language.

Enter Spanish for You!

Available for grades 3-8 and for use in a classroom or homeschool (family or individual) settings; Spanish for You! lets the child work at their own pace.  We used a "trial" type kit so I received the ebook and audio files on the computer.  The child learns via listening to the lessons, reading the lessons and writing (learning to use the grammar properly).  The lessons aren't based on LEVELS, they are based on themes, so each theme can be used independently and in any order. 

Honestly, my students were a little young for this curriculum (Bear is Prek4) but we did listen to the audio files and looked at pictures while I pointed things out to them.  They learned some new spanish words to add to their Dora/Diego vocabulary.

I can see where this is a total immersion program and would be a fun thing for the students to use.

Prices are in varying ranges depending on grade and which theme, they can be viewed here. 

***I received this product for free in exchange for a fair review as part of the Mosaics review team.***

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Ultimate Planners

What do you think about when you hear Apologia?

Science, right?

Well, not so much anymore.  Apologia, as a company, has started branching out into other areas.  There's a lot of good stuff over there if you haven't checked them out lately!

Anyway, as part of the Mosaic's Review Team I received some planners, The Ultimate Planners, from Apologia to review.

Created by Debra Bell, author of The Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling, these planners are designed with maximum flexibility and usability for families of all sizes and homeschooling styles.

This planner is designed to be used at the very beginning of your planning for the homeschool year.  Not only that, but it gives instructions on how to plan your homeschool year.  Not rigid instructions, but goal setting guidance and various "how to use" instructions.  In all my years of planning homeschool, I've never been instructed on how to do it, and let me tell you, the advice is wonderful - even for a seasoned homeschooler like myself.  I felt like we were covering definate goals and then breaking them down into manageable pieces.
Since I'm working with 2 younger children (Bear is technically K4 and Abby is PreK2) I listed the various "working areas" at the top (numbers, letters, Bible, character, phonics, hands-on) and then their names on the side (they each got 2 boxes) and then there is a box that I have labeled Together for the activities that we do together. 

There are a myriad of ways you can use this planner - subjects at the top, subjects at the side, etc.  All the options are laid out at the beginning of the planner. 

After the grid page each week there is a 2-page spread that allows you to write in prayer requests, weekly goals, hospitality goals and a space to record those special little things you want to remember (or notes, I'm using it for lots of notes).
The main goal of this planner is that Mom will have the guidelines in her planner and the weekly work will be transfered to the student planner. 
My littles don't read so we aren't using it, but it is a very standard planner with lots of space to write daily work, chores, etc. 

There is also a teen planner if your children are that age and I gather that it works well if your children are in public school also (our school supplies planners).

The MOM planner is $28, the STUDENT planner is $19 and the TEEN planner is $19.  These are nice, spiral bound planners.  My planner has a pocket in the front and has already been very abused - still going strong!

There will be a facebook party if you are looking for more information on Friday April 12th.

***As always, this product was given to me for free in exchange for an honest review as part of the Mosaics Review team.***  You can read other reviews of this product HERE