Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Our State Study Scrapbook~ Maryland


I just realized that I never posted about our Maryland scrapbook pages.

Maryland was an easy state for us to study. I grew up there and still have plenty of family there, so the kids have been to Maryland plenty of times.

We used the following books for our study.


Here is a cute board book for little ones.

After reading from our selection of books, we filled in our notebooking pages. Here a few of the notebooking pages we like to use.

Harrington Harmonies
Notebooking Nook
The Happy Housewife

We filled in our notebooking pages and then got to work on our scrapbooking pages.

We colored in the state map, colored in Maryland on the map of the whole United States, and colored the state flag.

Map of the United States
Map of Maryland
State Flag

 State Bird~ Baltimore Oriole

 State Flower~ Black-Eyed Susan

We colored a few other pages too.

Maryland State Quarter
Maryland State Seal
Maryland Postcard
Blue Crab Coloring Page

Maryland was founded by George Calvert. He wanted to create a haven for Catholics in the New World. We like to believe Maryland was named after our Blessed Mother, Mary.

Saint Ignatius Church in Port Tobacco, MD is the oldest continuously serving Catholic parish in the United States. It was founded in 1641 by Jesuits who arrived on the Ark and Dove to help form a new English Colony. 

Finally we colored in a picture of Francis Scott Key, since The Star Spangled Banner was written at Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. We will be heading there this year for a field trip since we are studying the that time period this year.
Another fun activity would be to learn the song.

A few recipes to try
Maryland Crab cakes .... just don't forget the Old Bay seasoning! 

It tastes great on fries too.

and for desert Smith Island Cake.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Happy Homemaker Monday

Happy Monday, y'all! Sorry it's a day late.

As I look out my window....
I see rain! It started raining last night and has continued with a nice steady rain. I don't mind since we need it. I only wish we would have had this rain when we put the garden in. Our garden this year has done horribly. No beans, no cucumbers.....the list goes on. Hopefully we get a good fall crop.

Right now I am....
Sitting on the couch drinking my morning cup of coffee. Maddie, our black lab, is circle up on the couch next to me. Yup, we allow our pets on the furniture. 

The cats are chasing each other down the hall. They are usually filled with lots of energy on the mornings. Lego Man is wrapped up in a blanket watching some morning cartoons, while Princess P is still sleeping.

Thinking and Pondering....
My mind has been filled with lots of thoughts lately. Our co-op, our homeschooling lessons, my lessons for CCD, purging the house, cleaning the house, etc. More importantly I have been thinking about the world we live in. It scares me the way the world is. There is so much pain and sadness in this world. It makes you want to lock the doors, close up the curtains and hide inside your home. I pray everyday for the thousands of Christians being tortured and killed, especially the children. When I think of families being slaughtered Mother Teresa's quote always pops in my mind.

Listening to....
Oldies and Goodies! I am still listening to the Cd's I got from my grandfather after he passed. He had a few Cd's of music from the 1940's! 
I love the music from that time period.

Boys Adrift by Leonard Sax, M.D. The book talks about factors that are causing our boys to be unmotivated and underachievers.

and St. Rita of Cascia by Rev. Father Joseph Sicardo

She is the patron saint my grandmother was named after.

What's on the dinner menu......
Sunday-Grilled Steak and Zucchini
Monday- Hamburgers, Homemade mac n cheese, Green beans
Tuesday- Grilled Italian Chicken, Leftover Mac n Cheese, Salad
Wednesday- Dinner out with In-laws
Thursday- Asian Lettuce Wraps with Rice
Friday- Pasta or Gnocchi?
Saturday- ?

On my to do list this week.....Too Much
Finishing cleaning out the house
Finishing deep cleaning the house 
Organize school room 
Finish lesson plans for my kiddos-  #1 priority since school starts next week for us
Call my priest to set a small homeschool group in my parish
Get CCD plans reorganized and start room decorations
Visit with in-laws that are coming from out of town
Finish Alphabet books for our homeschool co-op
Start art projects for co-op

What I am creating this week.....
I really want to start sewing the dress I cut out 2 weeks ago. I am hoping I will get to it by Friday!

Looking around the house......
The school room and the bathrooms need attention. After they are done, we are good! Well except for the outside. Maybe we'll work on that next week. 

My prayers for this week.....
My prayers are for us as a nation and for all Christians that are being persecuted for their faith.


Summer time fun in the pool.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Answer Me This...driving and grandparents

Hello friends! Linking up with Kendra over at Catholic All Year again.

1. What's your favorite thing on YouTube?

I have to be honest, we don't watch much YouTube. Our internet connection is not the greatest. Videos and clips take too long to load. Snail mail sent from California would get here faster!
When we do watch it, it's usually videos of cute animals. The shorter the video the faster it loads.

2. Who taught you to drive?

A few different people. My dad and mom usually taught me. My boyfriend and best friend also helped out. My best friend would let me practice driving on the back country roads where we grew up. This wasn't really allowed, but we did it anyway. My boyfriend taught me how to drive a stick in a town of all hills. He was a brave soul!

3. What's your favorite thing to cook?

I love to bake! I have always enjoyed making pies, cakes, and cookies. Now I have to focus more on gluten free baking. I have been trying to change over much loved family recipes, like my grandmother's banana bread recipes, into gluten free recipes.

Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't!

4. Are you a hugger or non-hugger? Why?

It depends. With family and close friends I am a hugger. With people I don't know, I am a non-hugger probably because I am more on the shy side. I don't usually approach people I don't know.

5. Where do you pray best?

I tend to pray better when I am doing things. When I sit down and try to pray when it's quiet, my mind starts to wander. I start thinking about all the things I need to do, what I need at the grocery store, and for some reasons things I have forgotten to do usually pop into my head. Maybe that is God's way of helping me remember?

6. When was the last time you saw/spoke to your grandparents?

Unfortunately, most of my grandparents passed away years ago. My dad's father passed when I was 12. My mom's mother when I was 14. My dad's mother when I was 27. My mom's father, my grandaddy, passed away this past February at the age of 92!

 I was lucky enough to go up and visit him a week before he passed. His health had been deteriorating and his dementia had gotten worse. He didn't know who I was, but I am glad I was able to say goodbye.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Our Curriculum 2014- 2015

For 2014-2015, we are doing a combination of Classically Catholic Memory (CCM), Mother Of Divine Grace (MODG), and a little of my own stuff.
This year, I will have a 6th grader and a 4th grader! Yikes, how did that happen.

Sunday~ Church & CCD
Monday~ Friday- Saint of the Day
Monday~ CCM Gamma Year Religion at our Co-op
Tuesday~  Bible History: Of the Old and New Testaments by Father Ignatius Schuster
Wednesday~ CCM Religion & Baltimore Catechism Book 2
Thursday~ Faith and Life Credo: I Believe Book 5
Friday~ Our Holy Faith Living Like Christ, In Christ Book 5

Monday~  English from the Roots Up Volume 2 at Co-op
Tuesday-Thursday~ First Language Lesson Level 4
Tuesday-Friday~ Intermediate Language Lessons by Emma Serl

Monday-CCM Latin Prayers
Tuesday-Friday~Memoria Press Prima Latina

Princess P~ All About Spelling Level 3 and Level 4
Lego Man~ MODG- How to Create a Spelling Notebook

IEW U.S. History Based Writing Lessons Volume 1

Daily Journals
Seton's Handwriting for Catholic 4 (finishing up from last year)
Catechism in Rhyme from Crusaders for Christ

Monday~ CCM Gamma Year
Tuesday~ Catholic Geography Bee
Wednesday~ Catholic Geography Bee
Thursday~ CCM Gamma Year
Friday~ Review weeks work

Monday~ CCM Gamma Year
Wednesday~ CCM Gamma Year & Pioneers and Patriots
Friday~ CCM Gamma Year & Pioneers and Patriots
History will be a combination of CCM, Pioneers & Patriots, living books, and fun activities.

State Study
Tuesday & Thursday
We will continue with our United States Scrapbook.

Monday~ CCM at Co-op
Tuesday & Thursday~ CCM Gamma Year Chemistry and Physics
                                   Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry
                                   Real Science 4 Kids Physics

Monday~ Renaissance artists at co-op
Wednesday~ Renaissance inspired art project

Art History
Monday~ Renaissance artists at co-op
Wednesday~ Renaissance artist that art project is inspired from

Monday~ Gregorian Chant~ The Chant Kit
Tuesday~ Friday Music from Renaissance Composers

Nature Study

Tuesday-Friday~Free Program from the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia
We never got around to this last year, so we will do it this year.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Answer Me This....

1. Have you ever walked out on a movie?

Yes, I was in college on a date. We went and saw a Woody Allen movie. It was horrible. I don't think we knew what the movie was about when we bought the tickets. We left after 15 minutes and went to play mini golf and pool.

2. What do you most often use for blogs and blogging: desktop, laptop, tablet, or phone?

My laptop. I hate typing on my phone and our service isn't that great.

3. Have you ever had anything stolen from you?

Yup...in 2nd grade I brought in a strawberry flavored lipgloss and the girl at the next desk stole it out of mine. I never did get it back. I think my mom bought me a new one.

4. Do you identify as a member of a particular ethnic group? 

Nope, I would have to claim too many. Irish, Scottish, German, English, and Native American.

5. Do you abstain from meat on Friday?

All the time during Lent, sometimes during the other times. I grew up being told that the church no longer made you abstain from meat on Fridays. I found out that it hadn't chnaged from our priest 4 years ago. Now I tend to forget that it's Friday when I am planning meals.

6. Seen anything weird lately?

A 200 pound Black bear on out back porch eating the chicken's food. He had climbed over out fence and climbed on the porch and decided to sit down and have a meal. Of course, I completely forgot to snap a picture. I was too worried about "the girls" He started walking to towards them and they were rainsing all types of ruckus. Thankfully he has not returned and he didn't eat any of the girls.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Answer Me This...Buses, Bees, and Roller Coasters

1. How often do you take public transportation?

Ummm.....never. We live out in the country, so no public transportation for me. I guess I could hop on a cow and ride it to town.
When I lived in New York, I took the bus or train all the time. It's the only way to get around in NYC.

2. How many cousins do you have?

I have 7. There are 6 girls and 1 boy. The first 5 of us girls were born with 4 years of each other. We grew up together. We were always together. It was like having 4 sisters.

3. Have you ever fired a gun?

Yes, I have if a BB Gun counts. My kids have the Red Rider BB Gun, so I shoot with them sometimes. You know you just thought about A Christmas Story with little Ralphie. "You'll shoot your eye out!"

4. Do you ride roller coasters?

Sometimes, I rode the kiddie one at Dutch Wonderland recently with my kids.

I don't usually because they trigger migraines for me. The last thing I want to do is cause a migraine to come on and ruin everyone's day.

5. What's your favorite flower?

I love the Calla Lily! My goal is to add them to our flower garden next year along with an Iris bed.

6. Are you allergic to anything?


source~ wikipedia

and Gluten......so no wheat, rye, or barley for me.

Linking up with Kendra at Catholic All Year

Friday, June 27, 2014

How I Homeschool~ In Which I Interview Myself

I'm linking up with Micaela over at California to Korea in her How I Homeschool Series and blog link-up.
I am excited to be linking up since it's my goal to blog more about what we are doing in our homeschool journey this year.

So here goes!

How long have you been homeschooling?

We officially started when my son was 3, almost 4. We had him signed up for preschool and then changed our minds. I started working with him at home since he was reading and eager to learn. Because of his late birthday, he wasn't ready for kindergarten for another year, so we continued to work with him. By the time it came around for him to start school officially, he was ahead and the last thing I wanted to do was send him to school where he would be bored. We all know how bored little boys behave. It would have been a DISASTER! So homeschooling came into our radar. Before that I was under the impression, homeschoolers were weird.
So officially this is 7th year, unofficially our 8th.

How many kids do you have?

I have 2 children. A son in 6th grade and a daughter in 4th grade.

What laws are in your state regarding homeschooling? How do you meet them?

VA doesn't require too much from homeschooling parents. We have to file our notice of intent and show proof of progress every year. You can show your progress by either supplying them with CAT tests scores or by having a portfolio reviewed by a licensed teacher. We choose to do the test. It's simple to do and we order it from Seton.

If you could summarize your homeschool philosophy in one sentences or mission statement, what would it be?

Instill a love of learning and provide my children with a strong faith. If a child knows how to read and tries to discover new things, then their learning will never end. Having a strong faith will help guide them through life during the good and bad times, especially during the rough times.

What is your homeschooling style?

We follow a Charlotte Mason, Classical, and hands on approach. It varies sometimes. I'm willing to change things if they are not working. What works well for one child may not work well for another.

Do you follow any homeschool curriculum?

Over the years, we have tried lots of  "curriculums" like Seton, CHC, All About Spelling, Saxon, MUS, Story for the World, etc. Anything we didn't like I scrapped.

The first 5 years I created my own lessons. We used the library, unit studies, lap books, and crafts. We learned the basics but then threw in subjects that the kids wanted to learn about. I didn't feel like for K, 1st, or 2nd grade I really didn't a set curriculum.

Two years ago, I discovered Mater Amabilis. We loosely followed it. I took aspects of it that I liked and added them to our lessons. We followed their religion and science. We tried the Mater Amabilis history, but my kids found it boring. We then tried Story of the World, but I wanted something more Catholic.

For the past 2 years, we have used CCM. We joined a co-op that uses the program. I took the weekly topics and added more to them. We continued using the religion suggestions from Mater Amabilis on top of the CCM religion.  With CCM, it's very easy to add to it. We can make it fit our needs. I prefer not to have too much laid out for me. I like to create my own lessons.

Next year, we will be using a combination again. We won't be using Mater Amabilis next year. We will continue with CCM, but will be adding Mother Of Divine Grace. With my son heading into 6th grade next year, we have started to look into higher learning. Our plan is to enroll him in MODG for high school. So next year, we are following the CCM weekly lessons but adding recommendations from MODG for English, Spelling, History(additional reading), and Latin. We'll be using All About Spelling for my daughter.

For math, we have used Saxon in the past, but we are switching to Math U See this year. I still like Saxon, but it just wasn't working for us right now. We may switch back to it when we get to high school.
I don't want to add anymore gray hairs to my head.

What do your best homeschooling moments look like?

My best moments are when my kids whip out information that they have learned. It makes me proud (and relieved) to hear them remember stuff they learned. I think the best homeschooling moment for me was when my daughter finally caught on to the reading thing! The pride in her face and the sense of accomplishment she had was priceless. Nothing beats seeing their faces light up when they have mastered a new task. I love days when the kids are happy, eager, and full of smiles.

What do your worst homeschooling moments look like?

Our worst days include frustration, shouting, tears, feelings of failure. Days when school work isn't done until 5:00 and we started at 8:00. This is one reason why we are switching math this year. When we have days like that, it's time to take a step back and reevaluate. Sometimes you just need a break.

One thing I am trying for next year is taking a Sabbath week. We will do school for 6 weeks and then take a week off. A dear friend sent me a link to a blog about taking a Sabbath week. The mom, from the blog, talked about how God took the seventh day for rest and how she discovered they needed the same break in their schooling. During our Sabbath week, we will straighten up the house (not much fun), take field trips, and just have fun!

How do you keep any non homeschooling children busy?
Unfortunately, I don't have that problem. When I first started homeschooling my son, my daughter was only 2. She wanted to do what he was doing, so I gave her coloring pages of the letters. She practiced using scissors and glue during art. Thankfully, she only cut her hair twice.  She did puzzles, played with play doh, and her toys. One toy that she played with a lot while I taught her brother was her My First Dollhouse from Fisher Price. She LOVED that thing!

If you could give homeschooling advice to a new mom starting out, what would it be?

Don't try to do school at home, so much of learning takes place outside the classroom.
Love them. Encourage them.
Don't get caught up in what others are doing. Don't compare yourself or your children.
There is no right way to do things.
Most important be willing to change if something isn't working.
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