This blog is my attempt to document our busy but BLESSED lives raising and educating our children for His glory. A child of God, wife to one, and mom to 6 fabulous kids. We are in our 11th year of homeschooling using a Classical ~ Literature based approach.

Come along for the good, the bad & the ugly.



Friday, September 13, 2019

Happy 13th birthday Montana!


Officially a teenager! Love you, wild cat!



© 2008 - 2019 A Stable Beginning. All rights reserved. All photographs, text, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the author.         

Grammar lessons in just 10 minutes with Easy Grammar Ultimate Series: Grade 11 ~ a TOS review

I’m a bit of a stickler when it comes to Grammar in our homeschool. Why? Because if you have a solid foundation in grammar, other subjects like writing will be a bit easier. I am trying to raise strong readers writers who can express their thoughts effectively in writing so I was so excited to get some extra help with Mikayla with the Easy Grammar Ultimate Series:  Grade 11 from Easy Grammar Systems.

Now, I’ve been homeschooling awhile now and I have always heard of Easy Grammar but never have jumped in to see what it is all about. I am sorry I waited so long because I love the quick and easy lessons it provides for my busy girl.


We received the digital copy of the Easy Grammar Ultimate Series: Grade 11 that also includes the Grade 11 Test Booklet. This curriculum includes 180 daily teaching lessons geared towards any student beyond 6th grade. With short 10 minute lessons, students will get step-by-step teaching lessons written at a fourth-grade reading level so that they can focus on learning the grammar concepts without all the fluff.

Each daily lesson includes several different types of grammar instruction including: 
~ sentence structure 
~ parts of speech
~ punctuation 
~ sentence combining and more

In our house, we have been using the Easy Grammar Ultimate Series: Grade 11 since the end of July to help Mikayla prepare for her upcoming ACT. Before we started back to school in mid-August, I had scheduled Mikayla to complete 3-4 daily lessons three to four days a week. Now that we are full force into our school year she only completes 2 daily lessons on the days that she doubles at the gym, which is two days a week.

Since we received the digital copy, I simply just print the worksheet pages Mikayla needs each week. She keeps her completed papers filed within her school binder. As you work through the lessons you will find an assessment test after every 10 lessons. I found these to be a good assessment of how much information Mikayla had retained and helpful to know what she needed to spend a little more time on.
Overall, Mikayla and I have both enjoyed this language arts curriculum. She especially likes the short and sweet lessons because it makes it easy for her to get her grammar lessons completed, especially on our busy days. I love that the program is spiral and comprehensive but doesn’t take all day to learn and/or teach. I also like that the answers are provided. I have other children that need to be taught and having the ability to grade Mikayla’s work without having to spend too much time on my end is priceless for me.
Easy Grammar, Daily GRAMS & Easy Grammar Ultimate {Easy Grammar Systems Reviews}
Sixty-nine of my CrewMates reviewed several different curriculum including: Easy Grammar:  Grade 1,  Easy Grammar:  Grade 3, Daily GRAMS:  Grade 3, Easy Grammar Plus, Daily GRAMS:  Grade 7, and Easy Grammar Ultimate Series: Grade 9. Be sure to check out their reviews and see what their thoughts are on these language arts curriculums. As for us, Mikayla will continue to use this grammar curriculum in her weekly studies as well as her test prep.

Easy Grammar, Daily GRAMS & Easy Grammar Ultimate {Easy Grammar Systems Reviews}

Format ~ digital copy 
Price ~ $29.95 
Ages ~ 6th grade and up

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© 2008 - 2019 A Stable Beginning. All rights reserved. All photographs, text, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the author.         

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Wordless Wednesday




© 2008 - 2019 A Stable Beginning. All rights reserved. All photographs, text, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the author.         

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Middle School Music Appreciation with Zeezok Publishing ~ a TOS review

I have a secret to tell you! For the last several weeks Montana has been learning all about Frederick Chopin using Music Appreciation Book 2: for the Middle Grades from Zeezok Publishing. It’s been really fun incorporating this homeschool music program into our weekly studies. Let me tell you about the newest program from Zeezok Publishing.


 If you are not familiar to Zeezok Publishing then you need to know that they are committed homeschoolers just like you and I. They started providing homeschool materials to the community way back in 1993 traveling to homeschool conventions with a simple vision; “to publish top quality materials that will complement your educational needs”. In 2003, they launched Zeezok Publishing to help all the homeschools enrich their children’s schooling.



 We received the jackpot with the Music Appreciation Book 2: for the Middle Grades! The set covers seven composers through nine biographical books and also includes a Student Book. The biographies include:
 Frederic Chopin, Early Years
Frederic Chopin, Later Years
Robert Schumann and Mascot Ziff
Adventures of Richard Wagner
Stephen Foster and His Little Dog Tray
The Young Brahms
The Story of Peter Tchaikovsky
Peter Tchaikovsky and the Nutcracker Ballet
Edward MacDowell and His Cabin in the Pines

This middle school set meets all the national standards for music appreciation for 5th-8th grade students through living books. This unique approach enriches the learning of these composers as we get a first-hand glimpse into their lives of yesteryear. The program has several components to it and using all of them will give you and your student the most benefit of the curriculum. The Journal notebook, Student book, Readers, and online apps all work together simultaneously to give the best music appreciation program.



 Getting started for us was easy! Montana is a fluent reader so she literally just took off with the program. For each composer there is a weekly outline laid out for you to follow. I love this feature because I don’t have to break it up on my own. As a busy mom trying to fit everything into the day it is great to see what needs to be done each week without too much planning on my part. We simply have followed the schedule for the composer/books and have made great strides.


Another great feature, especially if you are not musically inclined is that all the answers to the activities and quizzes are included! The graphics throughout the Student Book are in color and black and white and are easy on the eyes. The layout of the reading inside the Student Book is also easy to read and not overtly distracting. The QR codes are fantastic! My daughter had permission to use her phone when listening to the pieces of tracks for the composers. I love that technology has made this possible, especially since it makes this music curriculum portable for us.

Music Appreciation Book 2: for the Middle Grades {Zeezok Publishing Reviews}
For my 7th grader, this is the right program for learning all about famous composers. Montana has enjoyed listening and learning about Chopin and Schumann so far and is looking forward to learning about the other composers studied in this set. Overall we have loved this program and will continue on with it. Now that we have started back to school full time, I plan to slow down our learning pace and spread this into her 8th grade year as well. It’s that good that I don’t necessiarly want to rush the learning when we have the option to slow down and savor each chapter. But, don’t just take our word for it, check out what my CrewMates think of this music appreciation program by clicking the banner below.
Music Appreciation Book 2: for the Middle Grades {Zeezok Publishing Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Wordless Wednesday




© 2008 - 2019 A Stable Beginning. All rights reserved. All photographs, text, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the author.         

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

{almost} Wordless Wednesday


© 2008 - 2019 A Stable Beginning. All rights reserved. All photographs, text, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the author.