From House to Home {Link Party} #114

 

It’s time for our Link Party:

From House to Home!

Thanks everyone for joining today and sharing your wonderful posts!
Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (up to 5 and exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God! Giveaways, too!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! (If you don’t link back somewhere on your blog, your link might be deleted. Find the html code on my Link Party page.)

3. Optional: Comment or pin a post or two that you see here!

I Choose Joy!

Follow on Bloglovin

Review: Memoria Press “First Start Reading”

First Start Reading review
Are you teaching a student to read?  I am now teaching my 7th child!  I’ve used numerous phonics resources in the past, and am now happy to review First Start Reading from Memoria Press.  The set includes 5 paperback books: the Teacher Book (322 pages) and consumable Student Books A-D (68-106 pages each).
Overall, First Start Reading has been a really great resource for my 4-year-old son.  He was able to combine phonics, reading, and handwriting lessons in one book.  When we were doing our previous reading lessons, he would ask each day if he could write the words down after he read them.  You’ll see how perfect this was for him!

Memoria Press Review

Book A:  25 lessons 

The first book begins with each letter separately presented. The order is similar to other phonics teaching materials I’ve used: M, A, S, N.  It allows the child to begin sounding words out pretty quickly (am, Sam, man).  For each of these lessons my son learned to pronounce the letter and print it in upper and lowercase.  There are coloring pictures of things that started with that letter that he enjoyed coloring.  The final word mastery review includes words such as Pat, that, cap, fan, has, naps, and sap.

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Book B:

The second book of First Start Reading is a bit more advanced.  I like how in the beginning of the book it lists in chart form what the contents are.  You can easily check to see which letter/sounds, common words, reading skills (like using an exclamation point), and sentences will be taught in each of the 25 lessons. There is a lot more writing of words, as opposed to individual letters, in Book B.  My son started reading sentences and stories, which he loved!  He also had the opportunity to draw his own picture of something from the story.

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Book C:

Book C continues getting more difficult and adds some sight words like of, said, and does.

Book D:

The final book still has the same basic format but adds some other activities such as a page where the child is to find and color an animal that begins with wh, an object that ends with ch, etc.  There are assessment pages at the end of each book which help you determine where the student needs more practice.  The very last two stories in Book D contain words such as sleeve, stitch, and trash.  It will be fun when my son is able to read those!

Memoria Press Review

Teacher Guide:

The teacher book was extremely specific in explaining how to teach each lesson. Every student page is pictured in the teacher book, along with explanations on how to teach that page. If you have never taught a student to read before, you can do it with Memoria Press!  This curriculum can be used in a homeschool or classroom setting.  The reading philosophy is phonics driven.

One of the things they included in the First Start Reading Teacher Book were some small “posters” to put up on the wall: to show right from left, how to slant the paper while writing, using “bed” to help prevent b and d letter reversals, and a picture of each vowel.  See below how he colored those.

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Memoria Press First Start Reading 006

 

Memoria Press is a really wonderful curriculum company which produces classical education products, such as Latin, Logic, Literature, and History.  I’ve used some of those and am glad to now have tried one of their Preschool resources.  The Schoolhouse Review Crew will be reviewing more Memoria Press products in the coming months!

Be sure to follow them on social media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/memoriapress
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MemoriaPress
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/memoriapress/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+Memoriapress1/posts
Instagram: https://instagram.com/memoriapress/

 

 

Memoria Press Review
Crew Disclaimer

Field Trip to “The Grove Log Cabin” in Glenview, IL

Field Trip The Grove Glenview

We had a fun field trip a few weeks ago to someplace we had never been to before: The Grove in Glenview, IL.  It’s actually called The Grove National Historic Landmark. Our group did a special program called Log Cabin.  They have other buildings on site that we didn’t even have a chance to look at, such as a Native American Longhouse, a mansion, and a one-room schoolhouse.  So, we’ll definitely need to make another trip there!  (But I think we’ll go next time when it’s warmer!)

Two ladies were our guides. They were wonderful in teaching the kids about the pioneers and encouraging them to “act it out” themselves.  This particular log cabin was built in the 1800’s and was disassembled and moved and reassembled in this spot.  It had two rooms and a loft.  See the pictures below for the experiences my kids had.

Carrying water:

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Ironing:

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Sewing:

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Taking a bath:

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Churning butter:

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Cooking:

They ground corn and chopped apples.

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Sweeping:

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Washing clothes:

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The wagon they packed their worldly possessions in and traveled to start a new life:

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Giveaway: A Pair of Prescription Eyeglasses from Firmoo

Fashion the frugal way!

Do you wear glasses?  I do every night before bed and have loved the new glasses I recently got from Firmoo.  (See my Firmoo review here.)

Today you can enter to win a pair of glasses for yourself!  If you are the winner, you’ll need to get the prescription information from your eye doctor to fill in the order.  Then you just pick your frames from this page.  One neat thing you can do is upload a picture of yourself so you can “try on” the frames to see how they look with your face.  Or, you can use one of the photographs they provide.  Then, just wait for your frames to arrive.

By the way, there is a great 50% off sale going on right now to get 2 pairs of frames sitewide. Use code EASTER50

Firmoo eyeglasses (2)

Firmoo is an online eyeglasses website.  They have so many different styles of prescription glasses for men and women, as well as some neat sunglasses (you can get those with prescription as well.)  See here for my sunglasses review.

The winner will get one pair of Firmoo glasses with free shipping to US from this page. Glasses include the frames, standard 1.50 index single vision lenses. Upgraded lenses and add-ons will be charged an extra fee.

Enter to win on the Rafflecopter app below.  The winner will be chosen on April 18, 2015 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Firmoo, and this post contains affiliate links.)

From House to Home {Link Party} #113

It’s time for our Link Party:

From House to Home!

Thanks everyone for joining today and sharing your wonderful posts!
Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (up to 5 and exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God! Giveaways, too!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! (If you don’t link back somewhere on your blog, your link might be deleted. Find the html code on my Link Party page.)

3. Optional: Comment or pin a post or two that you see here!

I Choose Joy!


Follow on Bloglovin

Vacation Scrapbook: Visiting Los Angeles

imageWell, better late than never!  I’m finally finishing up our Vacation Scrapbook of our California vacation last summer.  The final leg took us from Monterey, CA to Los Angeles.

We had a very interesting drive through some very different types of towns.  I have never seen so many grapevines in my life!  Once we got to LA the kids wanted to go to the beach, but we didn’t have any towels.  (My sister had provided the ones we used in Monterey and had taken them back with her.)  So, we went to a resale shop and picked some up.  I had expected that we could just leave them at the hotel if we couldn’t fit them in our luggage.

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I loved the sailboats we saw!

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One day we spent at Legoland California, which I have a whole post dedicated to:

Legoland California

The other day we visited The Getty Villa: the ancient world of Greece and Rome.  In addition to the amazing old artifacts and artwork, there were some fun things for the kids to do.

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The world’s first laptop!

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If you’d like to read about our other summer vacation posts see here:

Here We Come (San Francisco and Sacramento)

Visiting My Sister’s family (and Mom’s funeral)

Monterey

Legoland California

 

 

Review/Giveaway “Grace of God: A Story of Easter Traditions” DVD

It’s a blessed day today, the day we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus!  Easter means that we have hope, we have forgiveness, and we have salvation.  If you don’t know Jesus personally and have assurance of spending eternity in Heaven, please pray and ask Jesus to save you today.  It’s a free gift–you do nothing to earn it!  Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Grace of God Movie
Hope, forgiveness, and salvation are the themes of the movie I’m reviewing today: “Grace of God: A Story of Easter Traditions.”

“Having lost his faith many years ago, Detective Bill Broadly is called to investigate the disappearance of the local church’s collection box. As he questions its various church members, rumors swirl as more congregants learn about the theft. When one unexpected church-goer confesses to stealing the funds, the confession resurrects Broadly’s views on God, and helps him see that through faith and belief there really is rebirth and redemption.”

 My husband and I enjoyed watching this movie.  It was a modern story centered around the workers at a church and the lady secretary’s family at home.  After the money is discovered to be missing, they decide to hire a private investigator instead of calling the police.  But the story of the theft ($30,000) gets out anyway and causes a lot of hurt feelings from those at the church who are now suspects.  The investigator is not a believer and hates the hypocrites in the church.  But it is the confession and repentance of the thief who changes his mind about both Christians and Christ.
 
About the movie:
Releases on DVD March 24, 2015
99 Minutes // Genre: Family, Inspirational // Rating:  NR

 

 
 
OFFICIAL WEBSITE (Walmart is the primary retailer.) 
 
 Enter to win a copy of the Grace of God DVD on the Rafflecopter app below.  The winner will be chosen on Monday April 13 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.

Giveaways are only valid in US & Canada.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

 Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this movie in order to write this honest review.

Little Explorers Special Deal

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**The links in this post are affiliate links, and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Little Passports is offering $15 off of their 12-month Early Explorers by entering REVIEW15 upon checkout. Buy your subscription today by clicking on the banner or text link. This offer is valid until April 30th, 2015.

Sign up for a Little Passports Early Explorers 12-month subscription!

Fine print: *Offer valid on new Early Explorer subscriptions only and cannot be combined with any other offers and/or applied retroactively to previously placed orders. Offer applies only to the 12-Month Plan. Offer not valid on Personalized Products or the World Coin Collection. Offer excludes shipping and taxes. Offer valid from April 2nd, 2015 at 8:00AM EST to April 30th, 2015 at 11:59PM EST.

Interested in learning more about how to use Early Explorers with your kids? Read the Little Passports Early Explorers Blog Post for some of Little Passports favorite Early Explorers reviews giving great ideas for using this subscription with your young adventurers!

Introducing the NEW Educents Marketplace

Introducing the NEW Educents Marketplace

I just received an email from the founders of Educents, Kate and Kaitlyn, with some really exciting news. Until today, Educents was a website for parents and educators to take advantage of daily deals. But those deals expired… And there were only 50 deals available at once… I wanted saving money to be even EASIER. Kate and Kaitlyn agreed. So they created the new Educents Marketplace. It’s even easier to discover affordable educational resources that make learning FUN!

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Thousands of new products – Educents Sellers can now offer ALL of their bestsellers on the new Educents Marketplace. There’s a wide variety of worksheets, lesson plans, educational apps and toys. Shop The Young Scientists Club, Scholastic, Workman Publishing, Alpha Omega Publishing, Life of Fred books, hundreds of printable units created by educators, and more!

Offers that NEVER expire – Sellers can offer our favorite educational products year-round. Once a deeply discounted Daily Deal expires, you can still find that product available on Educents at the lowest price.

Discovery – It’s easier to search on Educents. Search for your kiddos’ interests like Minecraft or Frozen-inspired resources, and then sort by grade level, subject, brand, and more!

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Follow your favorite brands and Sellers – The “Follow Me” feature lets me add my favorite Sellers to a list. Click the heart on the Seller Storefront. You can also see which Sellers are the most popular with other shoppers!

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The Educents Marketplace is exactly what I want it to be — the best place for parents and educators to find the resources I NEED at an affordable price.

 

(Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Educents.  This post is a sponsored post and contains affiliate links.)

 

 

Review: “Really Woolly Nighttime Lullabies”

Memoria Press 005
We received a very cute book recently called Really Woolly Nighttime Lullabies
by Bonnie Rickner Jensen and illustrated by Donna Chapman.
It’s a sweet padded board book, just perfect for ages 2-5.  I’ve been reading it to my 2-year-old daughter.

*Encourages child to spend time with God at bedtime and have a peaceful night sleep

*Teaches little ones about God’s many loving attributes, through Bible verses and prayer starters

This book begins with a “Note to Parents” explaining about the importance of lullabies and the best way to help children go to sleep is with “gentle reminders of God’s love and care.”

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Then there are 19 sections, each with a Bible verse, poem, a short prayer, and cute illustration.  I truly enjoyed reading these poems to my child.  They are well-written and full of important truths.

Here is an example: The title is Discover.  The verse is “God takes care of us richly. He gives us everything to enjoy.” 1 Timothy 6:17  The poem talks about imagining doing different things such as going to discover a far-off place or playing drums and cymbals. And the prayer thanks God for imagination and creation for there’s so much to be thankful for and discover!

You can see  Really Woolly Nighttime Lullabies for yourself in this Flipbook

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(I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tommy Nelson.  This post contains affiliate links.)

Giveaway: The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies Blu-Ray DVD

The Hobbit Giveaway

Welcome to the Blu-Ray Giveaway of The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies!

The final installment of The Hobbit is here! Warner Bros. is proud to bring you the Blu-Ray release of The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies!

• Are you Brave like Bilbo? Take the quiz to find out if you have the bravery it takes to journey through Middle Earth!

• Mouse over the Interactive Map to learn fun facts about Middle-Earth.

• Watch the official trailer & click the box art to bring the film home today!

 

 

About The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies Blu-Ray:
From Academy Award-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies, the third in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies brings to an epic conclusion the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, Thorin Oakenshield and the Company of Dwarves. Having reclaimed their homeland from the Dragon Smaug, the Company has unwittingly unleashed a deadly force into the world.

Special Features on the Blu-Ray combo pack include:

• New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth Part 3
• Recruiting the Five Armies
• Completing Middle-earth: A Six-Part Saga
• Completing Middle-earth: A Seventeen-Year Journey
• The Last Goodbye: Behind the Scenes
• Music Video
• Trailers

#TheHobbit

Own it on Blu-ray NOW!


Giveaway open to the U.S. and Canada. The prize will be sent via FedEx or USPS. No P.O. Boxes please.  Each household is only eligible to win One (1) Blu-ray The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.  The winner will be chosen on April 11, 2015 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I am working with Warner Home Video.  This post contains affiliate links.

From House to Home {Link Party} #112

It’s time for our Link Party:

From House to Home!

Thanks everyone for joining today and sharing your wonderful posts!
Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (up to 5 and exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God! Giveaways, too!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! (If you don’t link back somewhere on your blog, your link might be deleted. Find the html code on my Link Party page.)

3. Optional: Comment or pin a post or two that you see here!

I Choose Joy!


Follow on Bloglovin

Review of Greek Morphemes Lessons (It’s NOT Greek to Me!)

Ready to Teach Review
Greek Morphemes Lessons (It’s  NOT Greek to Me!) by Ready to Teach is a wonderful new curriculum that we have spent the last 6 weeks working on.  I’m so happy to have found it!  I received the Student and Teacher books (both paperback physical books 102 pages long) with CD and flash drive.  The CD and flash drive both contained the same information, a group of instruction files and a group of review files.  

So what is the purpose of Greek Morphemes Lessons?

Basically, it’s a homeschooling vocabulary program which teaches the Greek roots, prefixes, and suffixes (as well as some Latin ones) so that students will be able to figure out many difficult English words.  Personally, I want my kids to learn these morphemes so they will perform better on college entrance exams.

What ages is it best for?

This program is really great for junior high and high school students.  Be sure to have your student complete it before they take the SAT or ACT test and they will almost certainly do better on the tests!

How long does it take each day?

The suggested lesson plans included in the curriclum say that you can use it for only 10-30 minutes a day.

How did we use it?

My 12-year-old son finished the first and part of the second lesson of 12 total lessons in the 6 weeks we worked on it.  We didn’t follow the suggested lesson plans exactly, but did it in a way that would work for our family and homeschool time.  Usually, he only worked on it for 10-15 minutes each study session, but sometimes worked for 30 minutes.  I also had my 14-year-old son work on some of it.  Both boys will definitely be finishing the whole book because I am certain that it will be useful for SAT preparation.

Each of the 12 lessons contains:

  • 15-22 Greek morphemes
  • Note-taking page
  • Words to Work exercise
  • Word analysis, word synthesis, context cluse composition activities, and review activities
  • Color pages for making study flash cards

Greek Morphemes Lessons Greek Morphemes Lessons Greek Morphemes Lessons

The Teacher’s Manual contains:

  • Suggested Lesson Plans and instructions on how to use the program
  • Answer Keys for Words to Work and Review matching exercises
  • Transparency masters
  • Tests and Keys
  • Premade study cards
  • Bulletin board ideas and graphics

How did we like it?

I am so happy with this program!  Watching the Powerpoint slide show was how I taught the first part of each lesson.  It was really cool. I would read the slide, then click the next one and it usually added to what was already on the screen.  Sometimes there were questions for the boys to think about.  After they gave an answer I would click and find out if they were right.  It was a very handy (and fun) way to teach the lesson.  Obviously, this would also work very well in a classroom or co-op situation.  All the written pages were in the student book.  I loved how there were a variety of activities for each lesson.  It really got the boys to use the morphemes a lot in many different ways so that they could get them fully memorized and understood.  The teacher book was easy to follow and was organized in a way that I could quickly find what I was looking for (such as answers to the lesson pages or tests.)  I like how the student book had colorful pages to use for the flashcard that were made for practice.  And the teacher book had them printed so I could practice my own and learn them as well!

See the website for sample lessons.  I’m sure you’ll like it, too!

 

Koru Naturals Review
Crew Disclaimer

Review of “Thick as Thieves” by Susan K. Marlow

Thick as Thieves Book Review
 

I have the pleasure today to review Susan K. Marlow’s newest book, Thick as Thieves.  It’s book 1 of the series Circle C Milestones.  The author’s website is Circle C Milestones, and the vendor is Kregel Publications.

This historical fiction book is paperback, 173 pages and is recommended for ages 12 and up.

There is also a downloadable Study Guide that’s great for homeschoolers to use for a more thorough literature study or even to help turn this into a full unit study! I can envision studying about horses, California and California history, ranching, cattle branding, and music and art from the late 1800s.  The study guide is free (you can get it now) and has 40 pages.  The activities in it include vocabulary, idioms, characterization, answering questions about the story, drawing, learning about foaling, a crossword puzzles, Scripture memory, synonyms and antonyms, math problems from the 1880’s, training foals, timelines, lice, similes, cattle rustling, The Palace Hotel in San Francisco, and dime novels. There are also answer keys for everything.

A Brief Summary of the Story:

The main character is Andi, who is a 13-year-old girl and the youngest child at the Circle C Ranch.  She has a mother, 3 brothers, and 2 sisters.  She loves her horse Taffy, and the story opens as Taffy is ready to give birth.  She works with her brother to save the horses’ lives. She is so excited to be able to train the foals.

Andi goes to school in Fresno and in a suprising and exciting manner end up befriending a poor girl named Macy who isn’t very lovable.  Another story line is that cattle rustlers are about and begin stealing horses as well.  Andi, her new friend Macy, and the Circle C Ranch are all in the thick of it.

My Review:

I really enjoy reading juvenile historical fiction, probably because I love reading to my kids so much.  But I have never read one from this time period: 1882.  It was really fun learning about life on the ranch, in Andi’s school, and in the California town.  I really loved how Andi deals with the real struggles of trying to follow and trust God because sometimes it’s really hard to!  The theme of the book is “Friendship: unselfishly giving support and expressing compassion to another.”

Here is one of my favorite quotes:

“Macy nodded. Tears filled her eyes, and this time she didn’t try to hide them or brush them away. ‘Ain’t nobody ever been as nice to me as you,’ she said. ‘Ain’t nobody tried to be my friend neither. Why would you–a respectable girl from a rich family–bother with the likes of me? ‘Specially when I’ve been so mean and spiteful.’ . . .

Only one reason mattered–the real one. ‘It’s because I decided to care.’ ”

Compassion and showing kindness to all is a virtue I want to teach my children.  I know that Thick as Thieves gives a great example for all who read it to follow.

The story is also well written and exciting to read.

Follow on Social Media:

https://www.facebook.com/CircleCAdventures
http://twitter.com/SuzyScribbles

The next book in the series Heartbreak Trail comes out July 2015. My daughter and I will excited to read it!

Koru Naturals Review
Crew Disclaimer

Last Day for Pre-Sale in Well Planned Day Planners!

I just ordered my 2015-2016 Wall Calendar for 20% off this morning!  Today is the last day to get all of next school-year’s Well Planned Day planners for 20% off.  Head over to HEDUA to check out all their choices.  You can find planners for junior high students, high school students (including my favorite 4-year planner), college students, busy moms, homeschool moms, and blogging moms!  Have well planned days for the 2015-2016 school year!

(This post contains affiliate links.)

Field Trip to Adler Planetarium

Adler Planetarium 5

It’s field trip season!  I love it when the long winter ends and we can finally get out to do things again.

We finished our study of Exploring Creation With Astronomy

Exploring Creation With Astronomy

by Apologia (with my elementary students), so it was definitely time to visit the planetarium.  Below are some pictures of our visit to Adler Planetarium in Chicago.  We saw two of the six shows and had time to explore some of the exhibits as well.  We got a membership (usually the cheapest way to go to museums with my family!), so I hope to return within a year so we can see what we missed.

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To learn more about how we’ve studied astronomy in our homeschool, see this post:

Outer Space Lapbook

 

Review/Giveaway “The Adventures of Pajama Girl”

I have a lot of giveaways this week, so keep checking back in!

 

We’ll start today with a cute children’s book called The Adventures of Pajama Girl: The Coronation of the Cupcake Queen by Sandra Hagee Parker.  This hardback book has adorable illustrations by Sarah Bussey.  The story is based on the Commandment in Exodus 20:15 “Thou shalt not steal.” The main character is Ellie who says she’s the Pajama Girl.  She has a little sister, Princess Sis. Pajama Girl’s adventures happen every night as she sleeps. One night she puts on her cupcake jammies and has the adventurous dream that our book is about.  First, she prays that God will give her sweet dreams, and then she ends up in a kingdom of cupcakes! She and Princess Sis sample the treats and see a parade come by. Then they go to the castle and meet the Cupcake Queen, who is sad because someone has stolen all the sprinkles.  Ellie and her sister discover what happened and everything ends happily.

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The Adventures of Pajama Girl and the Coronation of the Cupcake Queen is a sweet book, and was thoroughly enjoyed by my 6-year-old daughter. There was only one thing I didn’t like about it, and that was that is was written as a poem but doesn’t follow a very strict poetical meter, so it wasn’t fun to read aloud.  I think it would have been better if it had been written in prose.

You can get some free downloads and and have Pajama Girl fun at PajamaGirl.com.  And if you buy the book from any store or online and then enter the receipt at http://pajamagirl.com/downloads.phpyou’ll receive 10 free Pajama Girl Activity Sheets sent to you via email.

Giveaways valid in US & Canada only.  Enter on the Rafflecopter below.  The winner will be chosen Monday April 6 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

 Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

This post also contains affiliate links.

Review/Giveaway: Biotin Bursts for Healthy Nails, Skin, & Hair

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I recently had the privilege to try a month’s supply of Biotin Bursts by Neocell.  Biotin is vitamin D7 and is important for healthy clear skin, shiny nails, and thick hair.  It’s water soluble, so you need to keep adding it to your body (it isn’t stored).  Each Biotin Burst chew has 10,000 mcg and is very yummy!  It’s low calorie, but does have 3 grams of sugar. I know that contributes to them tasting so good, though.

I have a multi-vitamin that I try to take daily.  It contains only 100 mcg of biotin in it, compared to the 10,000 mcg in Biotin Bursts.  And those vitamins are horse pills that I have to force myself to take!  Biotin Bursts were like getting a sweet treat everyday.  You can see the size of it in the following picture

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They are individually wrapped in a little foil wrapper and stored in a box.

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They recommend keeping them in the refrigerator, which I did.  It probably kept them fresher.

But the best part is that I did see an increase in the thickness of my hair (and it seemed to grow faster, too, but I can’t prove it), and my nails were much shinier.  I think I’ll get some for one of my daughters who struggles with getting her hair to grow.  Perhaps she has a biotin deficiency.  We’ll see if it helps!

You can get Biotin Bursts or read more about them here at the Neocell website.  Or purchase Biotin Bursts at Amazon.

 
Receive a one-month supply of Biotin Bursts if you win the giveaway. Enter on the Rafflecopter below. The winner will be chosen on April 6, 2015 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclosure: I received a month’s supply of Biotin Bursts in exchange for this honest review.  This post contains affiliate links.)

From House to Home {Link Party} #111

It’s time for our Link Party:

From House to Home!

Thanks everyone for joining today and sharing your wonderful posts!
Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (up to 3 and exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God! Giveaways, too!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! (If you don’t link back somewhere on your blog, your link might be deleted. Find the html code on my Link Party page.)

3. Optional: Comment or pin a post or two that you see here!

I Choose Joy!

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Tapestry of Grace: Spring Unit Celebration (plus a curriculum giveaway!)

Tapestry of Grace Spring unit celebration

I can’t express to you how wonderful it has been to switch our history/literature curriculum to Tapestry of Grace this year, and to be a part of our Tapestry of Grace Fellowship Group!  We have just completed our 2nd unit celebration of the year.  We did one last fall which was focused on The Roaring Twenties.  This time we expanded even more with the time period being the 1930s – 1960s in 6 different countries that we have recently studied: Israel, India, China, Cuba, Germany, and the southern U.S.

**Be sure to read to the bottom of the post to enter to win a full year of Tapestry of Grace Curriculum!

Everyone was encouraged to dress from one of the countries and/or the time period. My family was dressed from the 1950s. I made poodle skirts for myself and 3 of my girls. My oldest daughter wanted a car-hop costume, so I made one for her. It was easy for the boys–jeans and a t-shirt, and we got (borrowed) a couple of black leather jackets.  So fun!

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The food was almost all catered and was so yummy!  Here is what we had:

Israel:
Red Roasted Pepper Hummus
GF Crackers
GF Popcorn Chips

India:
Dal Shorba  (Soup)
Chicken Tikka Marsala
Naan
GF Naan
GF Chana Masala

China:
Vegetable Eggrolls
Chicken Fried Rice
White Rice

Cuba:
Cuban sandwiches
Congri ( Black beans and rice)
Yellow Plantains

Southern USA:
Crispy Fried Chicken (Spicy & Reg)
Collard Greens
Candied Sweet Potatoes
Cornbread
Hoppin John (Black-eyed peas and rice)
Fresh Fruit

Germany:
German Chocolate Cupcakes
Mock Black Forest Cake  (Chocolate cake with cherry filling, whipped creme frosting, topped with chocolate shavings)
Carrot Cake

The decorations were amazing!  The big room we were in was divided into 6 areas, with each representing a different country.  Don’t you love this?

India:

Tapestry of Grace Spring Unit Celebration

Israel:

Tapestry of Grace Spring Unit Celebration

Southern U.S.A.

Tapestry of Grace Spring Unit Celebration

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China:

Tapestry of Grace Spring Unit Celebration

Germany:

Tapestry of Grace Spring Unit Celebration

Cuba:  (The cigars are Twix!)

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After dinner each student group did a presentation:

Acting out the “Pledge of Allegiance:”

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Reciting “I Have a Dream” speech and sharing their own dreams:

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Sharing some Chinese words and inventions:

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Singing “This Land is Your Land:”

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The high schoolers acted out a scene they wrote based on “To Kill a Mockingbird.”  We had folk singing, Cuban cha-cha dancing, Cuban drum music, a presentation about missionary work in India, recitation of the Hebrew alphabet, and a presentation about Deitrich Bonhoeffer.

During dinner, a slideshow was playing on the big screen and CDs of each country’s music was playing over the sound system.

Tapestry of Grace: Spring Unit Celebration

My kids loved sitting on the floor to eat!

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TOG Y4

If this Tapestry of Grace post interests you for your homeschool, you can enter to win a full year of curriculum (about $150 worth)!  And, if you win, I’ll win too!

So, please put my name Gena Mayo as your Sponsor in the comment field  for the giveaway entry!

You can enter if you are not yet in Tapestry’s database as a customer (meaning, you have never made a Lampstand Press purchase).

To enter add this FREE ticket to your shopping cart and proceed to checkout, where you will need to create an account at their store.
At checkout, ENTRANTS should look for the “comments” section. There, type in your SPONSOR’s name: Gena Mayo.  (You won’t be making a purchase, just signing up to win the curriculum!)

The drawing will take place on April 1, and there will be Three Winners!