Ever since my oldest son was born, every year, either my husband and I or just me alone would take our children along with us when we went to vote. I felt it was important for them to learn about the process and the importance of voting. We need to let our voices be heard and counted. Most years, we went as a family. Ever since we started homeschooling, I count it as an educational field trip.
Two years ago at the midterm election, our oldest son became old enough to vote. This year our second son was going to be eighteen in time to vote in the election. Back in March, we moved from Pennsylvania to Texas. Upon arriving, my husband and I were registered to vote when we changed our drivers’ licenses from one state to the other. Then a few months later, my mom and two oldest sons were registered to vote.
So yesterday afternoon, we loaded everyone up into the van and drove to the voting location, even our youngest two who could not vote. Upon arrival, I saw a line of people and expected we would have to wait. But, they were in a different line from the one we needed to be in to actually vote. Because nothing is ever simple for our family, I had hidden my second son’s voter registration card from myself. So I quickly said a prayer that he would have no problem. I stepped up to sign in first. Once I signed in, I asked about our second son. The lady informed me she would use his identification information to look him up. My daughter, our youngest who is not a crowd person, chose to walk with me. We were taken to the voting booth and the lady made sure I knew how to use the machine. I began the voting process while my daughter watched. My husband and oldest two sons were each shown a booth in turn. Finally, our youngest son decided to stay with my mother. I finished first and exited the voting area with our daughter. We waited in the hallway for everyone else.
My husband was the next to exit the room. Then our oldest son exited followed shortly by my mom and youngest son. So all that was left for us to do was wait for my second son to exit. I suggested my oldest son take the keys to our van so my mom, youngest two and himself could get settled into the van. As they headed to the exit, my husband and I waited for our other son. I could not figure out what was taking him so long. About the time I was ready to look back at the voting room, I saw him. Uninformed by the person instructing him on the proper voting procedures, he exited the same door we had entered the room. So we did not see him come out since he went and sat on a bench to wait for us.
The funnier or scarier thought is when the next election rolls around, my other two children will be old enough to vote. I pray we have instructed them in the way they should go so they will take this responsibility seriously.
So if you have children, do you take them with you to vote?
So this is day 8 of the #Write365 project and I would like to incorporate the principle of the idea into our homeschool. I want to get our children writing. I know the more writing they do now, the easier it will be for them later – when they have to write. So I want some of the writing assignments to be ones they enjoy and want to write.
Another activity I want to incorporate into our homeschool is the idea of Bible Journaling. This year I am attempting to participate in both the Documented Life project and the Documented Faith project. Now I have to confess, life interfered and I did not get to really start either of these projects this past week. But I am determined to spend some time this weekend catching up. For Documented Faith, I choose to order the binder kit and spent some time this evening working on the cover. This is what I have accomplished so far:
We now have a better idea of when we are going to be moving to Texas – so it makes it easier for my to make plans and decide what to do. For the moment, I decided it is in the best interest to do a limited amount of school until we move. So this means Math and Language Arts will be where we focus. Of course, the children will be able to continue working on anything of interest to them as well. The remainder of our time will be spent preparing for the move.
Several boxes of books have already made their way out of our home, but we still have more to purge. In the meantime, we are purging other items as well. The more I get done on this end will result in less we have to do on the other end. This will result in us returning to school faster.
So what is going on where you are? I would love to hear from you. Also, if there is anything I can pray about for you, let me know.
#Write365 #Homeschooling #DemandsofMoving
So a new year is under way. This means we will be resuming school shortly. In just two days, the learning will start in our home. But it may quickly be interrupted by cleaning and preparing for packers and movers to come to our home. The anticipation of waiting is getting old now. I am ready to begin this new stage of our life.
Because I know where we are going, I joined an email group for the place we will moving to earlier this week. Yesterday, I received several emails regarding activities and possible friends for our children. The local homeschool group has an amazing variety of items to choose from and I think my children are really excited. From an Archery club to involvement with Habitat for Humanity to Golf lessons to dance to art to music to singing and even drama, the possibilities are endless. We also began searching online for a church and already have several possibilities to check out.
So what is going on where you are?
#Write365 #ANewYear #Beginnings
I love homeschooling most of the time. I refuse to exaggerate and say that every minute of every day is perfect. Nor am I willing to say that planning makes everything perfect. I have a general idea of what I want to do when. This year, I have even entered almost every single class in its entirety in Homeschool Skedtrack, an awesome online virtual homeschool planner that is best of all……FREE! I love the fact that it will automatically adjust the schedule to whatever lesson is the next one that is due.
So on the subject of adjusting – sometimes life happens and you have to go with it. We started school in July. I planned to take two weeks off in August – one to go with my husband while he went to a work seminar (we took our daughter with us for that one), plus the week after so we could go to Williamsburg with our family and celebrate 23 years of marriage. Now for some 23 years may not seem like a lot, but for me it is a milestone. You see my parents separated right before their 23rd wedding anniversary. So I feel like I have cleared a hurdle.
But those plans changed to include a third week when my husband decided to take off extra days from work. With this change came lots of work, as you can see in the picture above, we put up/canned, preserved or other wise put in mason jars and sealed a bunch of vegetables. Since this picture was taken, we have added more vegetables and some fruit. Now we are going to add Chili and Spaghetti Sauce to the mix, along with Vegetable Soup and some other kinds of soup. We added a pressure canner to our kitchen as well (Oh how I love what that can do for our family). For the very first time this year, we canned potatoes, corn, tomato sauce, sauerkraut and green beans. I love being able to just go to our shelves and grab things for our meals. And oh the fresh made sauerkraut (made by our hands) is amazing to eat.
Our children helped with these endeavors. They shucked corn. They help peel potatoes and apples and tomatoes. They fill in where they are needed. So to me, they are getting Home Economics, Cooking 101 and Life Skills all rolled into one neat package. Then my husband had to go have a pre-cancerous spot removed from his face last week – so that kind of threw a monkey wrench into life. So next week, we will be saying hello to several of our new classes. By the middle of October, everything will be in full swing – of course having three children with birthdays within less than two weeks will make that month interesting. But we homeschool year round, so I am not too concerned. Everything I want to get done will eventually get done. But all too soon our children will pass from our home in to the lives God meant for them to have. I want to be able to look back and see that we lived life rather than being so caught up in keeping to a schedule that the schedule dictated our lives instead of the reverse being true.
I would love to hear from you about what is going on in your life
So yesterday we spent the day putting up vegetables:
We canned tomatoes, blanched and froze green beans, canned bread and butter pickles, plus started the process for 9 day sweet pickles,with yesterday being day 1.
Here are some pictures:
in some of the pictures there are items we bought from some of our local Amish farmers – including Pepper &Onion Strips, stuffed peppers, Chow Chow, Applesauce, honey and some jellies.
So for the last several months we have been having church in our home. Being a military family living away from our home church presents some unique challenges. My husband is an ordained Primitive Baptist preacher and has been preaching for over 23 years. We are used to being actively involved in whatever church we attend. So we look for churches that will permit us to do so. While we had found one to attend in our current duty station, we discovered that ultimately it was not the right fit for our family. With homeschooling and everything else going on in our lives, we made the decision to hold church services in our home.
So here are some photos of what it looked like during today’s service.
Our message for today centered on Matthew 5:13. It was interesting to hear the remarks regarding salt and its various uses in Biblical times and current days. Because of the situation, our services tend to turn more into discussions and thoughts rather than a typical sermon.
In addition to a message, we also sing songs from the Lloyd Hymnal (used by many Primitive Baptist Churches). We sang “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross”, “Come Thou Fount of Many Blessings”, “Alas and did my Savior Bleed” in addition to a couple of other songs.
So that is how we had church services today, How did you spend your Sunday?
So Friday night one journey ended and another journey began. Nine years ago, our family started down the path of homeschooling because of our oldest son. Friday night that journey came to an end as we recognized him as a “Graduate”. It is bittersweet in so many ways. It means his journey of childhood is over and his journey of adulthood is beginning. It is so wonderful to the see the man he is becoming. He has accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior and plans to follow in the footsteps of his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather in the ministry. I can see God working in his life in so many ways. I have been blessed to walk much of this journey with him thanks to homeschooling.
At the same time, I have three more children yet to go. It will be five years before we end our chapter of homeschooling our own children.. So I still have time to enjoy this season. Our daughter is not quite a teenager yet. But our time is growing short for this season. I can’t say I ever expected to begin the homeschooling journey, but I certainly have been blessed beyond measure through the experience.
This past weekend as we attended the CHAP convention in Harrisburg, I was reminded of how special each of my children is. As we walked around the convention speaking to various vendors, it was amazing how we were able to find just the right items for each child.
For example, our third son has wanted to learn to play the harp for years, but we never anticipated finding a harp that we could afford or that we would be able to move easily, but we did. There is even a book available from the company to teach him how to play it. Our daughter wants to learn how to play the flute and through a vendor who was at the convention, we found a site where she can take online lessons for that. We found online lessons for the piano as well. It is amazing how much we can find when take time to walk around and actually look at what is available to homeschoolers.
On Saturday, while my husband and I looked around at the books and curriculum the rest of our family (our four children and my mother) played cards at a table in the cafeteria. When they noticed a young lady sitting alone, they invited her to join them in their game. It is wonderful to see how these children interact with each other. My children are not afraid to talk to people. They are not afraid to speak up and try to make friends. Homeschooling has definitely blessed our family through the years.
There is such a feeling of satisfaction when I meet someone at the convention that I am able to help or provide information to thanks to the experiences we have had. It is wonderful to find exactly the right curriculum choices for each child. It is amazing to watch how God leads, guides and directs our steps.
How have you been blessed lately?
So I somehow missed getting this actually posted the other day. But here is my “N” post for the Blogging A to Z challenge. I am really enjoying this challenge. Some letters are definitely easier than others.
The first thing that comes to mind when I see the letter “N” is Nathan. He is my 3rd son and is going to turn 15 this year. He is my very active, always looking for something to do son. He keeps me on my toes. He loves to talk and to draw and build Legos. I love my son.
“N” is also for Nature. Taking nature walks, especially when my children were younger was a great way to spend time learning and being outside as well. Art can also be incorporated into Nature walks by keeping a Nature journal.
“N” is also for noise. With us homeschooling, our family frequently has quite a bit of noise. I know my children will be out of my house all to soon and the noise level will be gone.
“N” is also for NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo as well. I have learned about these two challenges in the past year and have really enjoyed participating in them. I have learned so much from these experiences.
So what does “N” bring to mind for you?