Friday, November 11, 2011

Homeschool Highlights

This fall we have been participating in our homeschool co-op classes. They are on Mondays from 12:30-4:15. J2 has been enjoying his photography and graphic design classes. B takes cake decorating, theater skills, and an art class that I teach. J3 was taking chess but stopped because it was not a good fit for him. He also takes a Lego class. The session runs nine weeks and this coming Monday is our last class. My class is putting on an art show and B's class is putting on a play. I will include some photos next week.

During the week, we started our lifesize body models.

B worked on finishing her art portfolio for my art class.

J2 worked on Blender for awhile. It's a computer animation program he downloaded for free. I'm counting it towards his Art survey course I created.

He's also been studying for his permit. Hopefully he will be taking his test soon.

The rest of our week can be filled in with the usual. Math, Language Arts, and yadda, yadda, yadda! :-)
Tonight we are hosting a homeschool highschool get together so I'm off to make sure all our games are ready!

Enjoy you weekend!!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Weekly Wrap Up -

I've decided to link my "Homeschool Highlights" up to the "Weekly Wrap Up" at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschooler's blog. I'm still new to all this linky parties and bloggy stuff so bare with me.

This week in Human Anatomy we did an experiment from Food and Nutrition to show how bile in our body acts as an emulsifier breaking down fats into small globules.

The blue bowl is the example of bile doing its job! B and J3 had a light bulb moment when they saw the results. I love it when experiments go well!

J1 helped me tremendously this week. He helped with math corrections, projects, and reading about the brain to B and J3.

B and that hat! She was wearing it all week! I'm not sure what that's all about. :-)
In Early American History we are finishing up the Seminole Indians. We are making Chickee huts as a final project to present at our quarter celebration. B and J3 went outside and gathered things from the yard they may be able to use on their models. J1 and J2 partnered up with each of them to help them costruct them. We will be working more on them next week.

J2 and I are still working our way through The Grapes of Wrath. Both of us are liking John Steinbeck's writing style. Pictures easily form as I am reading each chapter and I can at least understand everything that is going on! We can do this! We can do this! We can do this! (highschool literature that is)

Have a great homeschool week!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Enjoying Fall Art

For some reason fall is the season that brings out the artist in me. We all seem to make more time for art in the fall. Harmony Art Mom had some wonderful links here and here that inspired us.

We decided to try our hand at some apples and pumpkins from Hodgepodge
I was originally trying this out myself to see if my co-op class would enjoy doing this as our final project. Then the kids joined in on the fun.
Here's some of our finished work.

Then J2 and I moved onto the Tree Reflections project also from Hodgepodge. Loved it!!

The top one is mine and the bottom one is J2s. I love seeing how our styles differ. We are loving this fall art!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Homeschool Highlights

I have not written a homeschool highlights post yet this year. It has taken us quite a while to get into a grove. I think we are still working on it!
This week was B's 12th birthday. We included a lot of games into our homeschool days. Scrabble is back "in" I guess. It's funny how something they have not been interested in for months is now something they want to play all the time. I'm hearing alot of, "Is such and such a word mom?"

B got Monopoly with electronic banking for her birthday and they are having a blast playing it.

Mozart is our composer this semester and we are listening to Serenade No. 13 for Strings in G Major. We listen to it using a video from You Tube.

Notice my son J3's face? He's always making silly faces when he sees I am taking pictures of him. :-)
We are continuing with Sonlights Human Anatomy. I had used it with J1 and J2 when they were younger. I ended up buying the updated guide for the younger two because there were so many updates. To my surprise, J3 really loves this science! He actually looks forward to it everyday. Who knew?! We finished up the digestive system this week.

J2 is taking a photography and graphic arts course through our homeschool group. A dad who is a professional in both of these professions teaches the courses. J2 is really enjoying them and learning so much. This week he had to design buisness cards and a bookmark based around a book you love or are currently reading. I was thrilled when he showed it to me and it was based on the Grapes of Wrath (since we are reading it this semester).

J1 is home with us during the days right now and it's proving challenging.
It's hard to have one home and not schooling when all of the rest of us are trying to keep a schedule all day. He's planning his next move after interning for three weeks for an editing company. Lately, he has been thinking about how to expand his portfolio. We talked about him possibly shooting a faux commercial for his grandparents restaurant, which got him researching better cameras that have more professional microphones built in. He's showing me all of the info his research has turned up and it's foreign to me. I'm just glad he has a focus again.

Onward and forward!!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Front Entrace Fall Update

I needed a quick and easy fall update for my front door this year. I had to shop my house and last year's decor for the arrangement on the door. I had a couple of wreaths that I have been using for the last three years for lack of a better option or funds. So decided to wreck them both!! Here's a pic of one of them before I destroyed it.

Check out my previous post, Porch Reveal, to see a picture of the front door area a couple of years ago. This wreath is on the door.

After "wrecking" both wreaths, I created something new in the basket I had on the door through the summer months.

My ferns that were on each side of the door were still doing amazing! I repotted them and added some fall mums instead. I just need to find a new home indoors for my ferns.
Here is my new and improved fall entrance...

I'm linking up to Southern Hospitalilty's Fall Y'all Autumn Link Party

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Touches of September

The other day I took out all of my fall decor and started to take it all out of the buckets. I tried stuff here and there but nothing seemed to work. everything was aggrivating my eye! I took a break and started looking up ideas online and realized I did not want to fall decorate yet! I just wanted to ease into it naturally.So I packed everything up and sent it back to the storage room. Instead I came up with some September changes....

Just added some color with the faux flowers in a creamer pitcher

I seem to like things in threes. Here I brought out my muted table runner, added a wooden bowl I had just found at Target on sale ($13), and a vase from a garage sale ($3) with mint from my garden. Last, I finally found a spot for the sign I found while out to lunch at Cracker Barrel. It needed something so I rubbed chalk all over the front of it to mute it just the right amount. The pears I found at The Christmas Tree Shop last year.

Added a pumpkin from Hobby Lobby to some fall food magazines.

Sunflowers from my garden in a pitcher from Target and some wooden acorns from Hobby Lobby.

I had to figure out a solution for all the succulents I had on my porch. It's getting a bit chilly at night here already.I also had to keep them away from my cat! She tries to eat them! I found a way to transplant them temporarily and placed them above my cupboards. I don't think my cat will be getting up there any time soon :-)

Sharing this post at The Inspired Room’s Fall Nesting Party

Sunday, September 11, 2011

J2's Junior Year Curriculum Plans

This year is going to be an adjustment because J1 has graduated but is taking a Gap year (more on that later) and J2 will be schooling for the first time without his brother. All of us are trying to settle in on a new routine and way of doing things.

J2's schedule has finally taken shape! A lot of what we are doing this year will be new to the both of us so it's going to be an adventure.

Science: Apologia Advanced Biology, Fearfully and Wonderfully Made by Philip Yancey and The Human Anatomy Coloring book by Wyn Kapit
Also, to make my life easier, I ordered Sonlight's Advanced Biology schedule. We used it for Chemistry last year and it was a real time saver and great record keeper.

History: Ambelside Online's suggestions and plans, A History of the Twentieth Century by Martin Gilbert as a spine book. He has also started the book, Seven Men Who Rule the World From the Grave by David Breeze and Theodore Rosevelt's letters to his Children. We will be adding in Ambleside's speeches too. We are also gleening all we can from Harmony Art Mom since she has done this before and is doing it again this year with her last homeschooler. One of her suggestions was to use The Book of Centuries from so I purchased it this past week.

English: Ambelside Online's suggestions and a few of my own. We will be following their poetry schedule and some suggested by Harmony Art Mom. Our first poet is Edna St. Vincent Millay. He will be reading a selection of short stories and essays. For literature, he is starting with, The Grapes of Wrath. Shakespeare this year will begin with The Merchant of Venice. We will be working through Jensen's Grammar and also doing SAT prep. I'm still working on his writing plans. (This is where I always struggle)

Health: The SAS Survival Handbook:The Ultumate Guide to Surviving in any Climate, on Land or Sea by John Wiseman, The Survivorman Series, Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris
We will be adding to this list as the year progresses.

Art Survey: I'm not sure if I will keep this exact name for this class but it will include: acting, graphic arts, stop motion/animation, and photography, J2 already spent about 60 hours as an extra in a movie called, King's Faith over the summer. He will be taking the graphic arts and photography courses through or home school co-op. He has a program he purchased for the computer animation that he will be using to complete a short film.

We are looking forward to a great year!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Special last moments of summer

This past week we have enjoyed a few precious moments to take with us into the winter. We are such a summer family that we are all feeling a bit depressed that it's over. This week we will be gently beginning school again. I say gently because we will work into our full schedule over the course of the next two weeks so we will not feel withdrawals too badly. :-)

We enjoyed some time at our friends home who have a beautiful peice of property. They have an amazing tree house and one of the boys had built a small log cabin on the property. My kids were so inspired by them they came home and started building things.

Good bye summer! We will miss you tremendously!

Monday, August 29, 2011

We interupt this crazy, busy summer for a moment of art

I'm back! This has been a different sort of summer for us this year.
J1 has been interning for a film editing company and J2 has been spending his time as an extra in a movie they are filming in our city. Funny thing is J1 is learning to edit on that very movie! It's been so cool to get both sides of the movie business from both of them when they get home.
J2 has finally finished and we are trying to decide on our first official day of school. We have also had our family in from Florida this summer and have tried to spend as much time as we can together. Sadly, they go back today.
This week in the midst of all the hubbub, J2, J3 and B decided to have a time of drawing and painting at the table. Remember the saying, "Silence is golden?" I'm here to tell is!

J2 chose to draw a wolf using the book, Drawing Wildlife by J.C. Amberlyn

B is drawing from a book she found at the library, The Young Cartoonist by Syd Hoff

J3 is painting a pond scene.

None of us are ready to part with summer. We blinked (as hard as we tried not to) and it was over. We are ready to push forward and have a routine back but we will definately be taking a day here and there to pretend it is still summer. :-)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Porch Reveal

I just realized I never shared my porch redo with you. I guess I always feel like it's never finished. There is always more I could do and for lack of funds or finding the right extra pieces I am calling it DONE!

First, here's a couple of fall shots I took last year.

Here's the after....

I love sitting out there on my computer with my coffee now. I'll share all the details on everything sometime next week.