Tuesday, July 19, 2011


I can barely believe that the photos show the same baby girl. The photo on the left was taken July 1st 2010, moments after we arrived home from the NICU. It was a wonderful day. But, I was scared to death to have this five week old, under five pound baby, just one week post second surgery, under my care--no monitors, no NICU nurses or doctors advising me. With the support of family, friends, doctors and nurses, we made it through her first year. It wasn't easy, we faced dealing with silent reflux (very scary); an often very sick baby (scar tissue was causing a lot of illness); two more hospital stays; a third surgery and many weeks of recovery. But, in the end, we did it as a family and have grown so much to appreciate one another and to be thankful for all the things God has provided us. I will always love the doctors and nurses who were Willow's first caretakers when I couldn't be. When I look at Willow now, so vibrant and almost walking, communicating with the sweetest voice and batting her lengthy lashes at her daddy, the past year almost seems like a dream.

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Creation to Greeks Tabernacle Model: Our Style

I'm not the best at planning for our projects. The teacher's manual says to use a milk or juice carton, well, two of them. I didn't have one, or two. : ) We're also way behind on our history : ( due to life's circumstances. So we are sort of in the fast lane with our history reading and projects. A week long lesson plan for this, turned out to be a morning long project. It was actually very nice to sit and do it and have it be completed in one day. Thankfully, my mom stepped in and cared for the baby for a while, so we were actually able to complete this modified model. I really like how it came out. We used two pieces of black scrap book paper that I simply glued together to use as a base. I did use google images to show them other models that have been made to show them what it "really looked like." It is nice and simple, but the boys were able to learn each part and its purpose. My 11 year old liked doing this. I know because I just asked him and he said, "yeah, it was pretty cool."

I really love how MFW lays out exactly what to say about each item (what a huge help.)

The Ark of the Covenant in the front and the rest of the project, still unlabeled in this photo. Yes, I labeled everything myself. After all the cutting and gluing, oh and my mom gave the baby back, it was just time to let the kids go jump on the trampoline, so they watched me label each thing. I first, asked each of the boys to point and discuss each part of the Tabernacle.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Time4Learning Review

Time4Learning has been an excellent addition to our homeschool. My two older boys, ages 11 and nine, have used it over the past month. One of the main reasons it has been especially great this past month has been the convenience of being able to tell the boys to sign on and within seconds, they are doing school! No prep work for mom which has come in handy the past couple weeks due to a very busy schedule. Normally, school would just be lacking at a time like this.

One of the features I like best is the Parent Login section. I loved and was surprised that, after a couple weeks, I was able to sign on and with just a few clicks view everything the boys had looked at, completed and could know exactly how much time was spent on each activity.
I know that we haven't even scratched the surface on how we can incorporate Time4Learning into our homeschool studies, mainly due to our own time restraints. But so far the boys have learned so much by using the curriculum. My nine year old immediately gravitated to the science section of his level. He was able to view and study things that we hadn't covered yet in our own curriculum.
"I learned about earthquakes, the human body, digestion, the food pyramid and that's only in science," said my nine year old. He continued, "Then, I learned about Franklin D. Roosevelt and The Great Depression." When I asked him why he liked Time4Learning he responded that it is really easy because "they" read it to you and then you get to answer questions. "They" is the narrator for the lessons and it is definitely a great asset.
I have a four year old and a newborn and Time4Learning has enabled to me to feel like we're well rounded in our teaching. I haven't been able to sit through each lesson, individually, but as I stated already, I was able to login and then check on precisely what my child had viewed and completed in their lessons, including the content. And, it didn't take much time at all.
We use a Charlotte Mason inspired curriculum, so having short lessons such as the ones in Time4Learning fit right in with our style of learning. But, I don't think anyone who isn't particularly CM-inspired would have an issue with the lessons.
My 11 year old also really likes Time4Learning as well.
"I learned a lot of the things I never learned before, some of the stories are really cool. This one about the little girl who figured out when the moon would be full in, Phases of the Moon, was much more interesting to learn about by reading a story than to just be told about it."

Both boys and my four year old really loved the Playground section. I like that it is limited to 15 minutes increments per day!

Overall, Time4Learning is a great product. I'm pretty frugal with what I spend for our curriculum and at first I wasn't sure what the cost would be compared to what it would provide for our family. I asked my husband thinking he would be reluctant, but he said, "Well, if it is something you are going to use for them, then it is worth it."

I look forward to continuing with Time4Learning, as are my children. Like I said before, I know we've only scratched the surface so I am excited to see how else we can learn using it.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


I've been invited to try Time4Learning for one month in exchange for a candid review. My opinion will be entirely my own, so be sure to come back and read about my experience. Time4Learning is an online educational program that can be used in many ways including as a homeschooling curriculum or afterschool tutorial. Find out how to write your own curriculum review for Time4Learning.

Friday, February 11, 2011


Finally, the little beauty has enough hair for a bow to
clasp on to ever so delicately.
It surprised me just how excited I have been about this. But, friends have assured me that they felt the exact same way with their girls. Is it a rite of passage? And, is that for me, the mama, or for the baby girl?

Monday, January 17, 2011


It's not a month past Christmas 2010; technically, this can still be timely!

Here are some of our Christmas photos. I finally put a bunch together for a card when I realized in almost every photo our baby girl was grabbing someone's hair, or face or just doing something funny.

The message reads, " Love [US] and our newest troublemaker..."

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


I'm joining FOR EDIE WITH LOVE today.

Life in Grace is one of those blogs I love to check regularly. I find Edie to be so inspirational, so sweet, I love her style, her posts are always so interesting, but it is her complete abandonment in writing that really draws me in. There are posts of Edie's that read like beautiful literature and I'm drawn in not only by the content, but the style. And, by abandonment I mean this: she's genuine. I don't believe she writes to try to portray who she wants to be seen as; she writes who she is: a sinner who needs a savior, one who wants to be sanctified continuously. One post that came to mind was when she writes about how divorce affected her children.
I feel like most people would write a post explaining how everything is OK now because they have a new beautiful marriage. Instead, Edie just lays it out there. Raw truth, lacking pride.

My heart broke the morning I read about the fire. I cannot even imagine. So thankful God spared their lives. There was never a doubt though, that The Wadsworth family's faith wouldn't succumb to this tragedy.

Another post that really hit home for me was this one
The Bridegroom
I wrote to Edie to express how much this post meant to me.
I hope she doesn't mind if I share her response here, but I believe it's very telling of her faith and response in the midst of their own trial right now.
...There is something very unique about suffering though. It drives us to Christ-----where we find our peace and hope---like nothing else can. And I know that He will work all those hurts together for your good, to strengthen you and to give you character and hope and a full abundant life. I pray for you today and am thankful that God is doing a work in your heart.
lots of love and blessings,

EDIE...so thankful to know you, to read about your life and to be able to share in this time of blessing you in this way.