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 9th year of homeschooling using a Classical ~ Charlotte Mason approach.

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



Thursday, December 31, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ I is for...2015 In review

It’s always fun to look back at our year in blogging. Today I am linking up with my Blogging Through the Alphabet friends Meg and Christi and also participating in the Year in Blogging review hosted by Tracy @ Work of Heart and Soul. It’s pretty simple and I hope you will join in on the fun too.
 


To participate, simply post the title or first sentence of your first blog post from each month. You can also add a favorite picture from each month {my pictures do not always correspond with the blog titles}, even though it doesn’t necessarily go with that post.  I would love to see your year in review, link up with Tracy on her blog in the comments.


~A Stable Beginning’s Year in Review~
 
 

 
 
 
 

 

 
 

 
 


 
 



Thanks for taking the trip down memory lane with me! We have had a truly blessed year! I encourage you to start your blog or to write more on your blog in 2016 so you too can look back at the end of the year. 

From the fullness of His grace
we have all received one blessing after another.
~John 1:16

The weeks have flown by as we wrap up the end of 2015 and week nine  of Blogging Through the Alphabet with Meg @ Adventures with Judeand Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm. Be sure to check out the posts from this week and see how creative everyone is as we make our way through the rest of the alphabet in 2016!




Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.

 
 

©2008 - 2015 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.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ Grace Extended and the Honor Roll (Dean’s List)

I missed linking up last week with the Blogging Through the Alphabet crew, I fell asleep before getting my post finished, but I am back this week and posting what I had to say last week here too.

We picked up Marie from school on Thursday, December 17th. It was a wet and rainy day as we made the 3 hour trek to pick her up. Traffic was strangely thin and we made good timing there and back. The girls, Micah and I were so excited to see her and bring her home. Marie chatted eagerly about finals, the end of the school year, and prepping for the new semester in January on the way home. She told me that she wore her red Santa hat and red lipstick every single day, from Nov. 30th until her last day of finals, two days before. Now, I will admit that I was taken aback at the thought of her wearing red lipstick, especially since she is so fair, however in just 4 days that hat and the red lips would be her saving grace! Let me explain…

Marie left school with straight A’s in her 6 classes she took Fall semester! Late Sunday night, she was checking her grades again and noticed that her one of her professors had marked her off –75 points for attendance. I told her to call in the morning, but to send an email that night. Monday morning the professor had written back saying that his attendance book showed that she did not sign in for 8 classes! WHAT!?! The professor could not figure out why a student with an A average would miss that many unexcused classes, and said he would only take off –75 points instead of the –300 that would have been the standard deduction and an automatic “F”.

Marie and the professor spoke and emailed several times over the course of Monday, when the professor said show me your notes for those days. That’s when my heart sank…Marie threw away all her notes and papers in preparations for the new semester in January. EVERYTHING! I did not know what to tell her, her notes would prove she was in the class those days. She told the professor where she sat in class each day, and that she wore the Santa hat and red lips, but he wanted notes to show proof.

I was angry, sad, and discouraged all at once. Marie worked so hard to earn straight A’s during the semester and it was slipping away over something so small as her initials. Mr. M was not available by email in those days proceeding so I could write all I wanted, but I didn’t get a response to know whether or not he knew what was happening. It was stressful and I probably sprouted a few more grey hairs! As I dropped McKenzie off at her practice Monday evening, I prayed that a gymnastics mom I know who has “been there, done that”, with her daughters was at the gym to offer any advice. Thank you Ashley for your advice! It meant the world to me to hear another perspective and other options that might be available to try.

And then my phone rang out of the blew while talking to Ashley. It wasn’t a number I recognized but I answered it anyways and it was Mr. M! Thank you Lord!!! He had no idea what was going on, so I asked him to just listen to me for a few minutes so I could talk and get it all out. In the end, Mr. M wanted the professors email so that he could in turn email him. I love this man! He listened the whole time I talked in the parking lot in tears.

Mr. M was able to email the professor even though it was after midnight, his time, and even call me back to let me know it was sent. So Marie and I waited, all night long for a response from either M or the professor. And as it would be, email was done again, so we didn’t hear anything on the matter until mid-day Tuesday. Yes, stressful and more grey hairs.

In the end, the professor “extended grace to Marie, because grace had been extended to him.” Let the tears flow again and reason #58 why I love this university! All Marie has to do is go to the professors office in January with the girls she sat with and have them vouch that indeed she was present. The professor remembers her in the hat and lips, because she sat in the front row, every.single.day and stood out from her normal attire and appearance.

So, Marie has learned a life lesson in this whole situation and will not be throwing away anything until courses are finalized. I am grateful to the Professor in believing Marie’s word and extending grace to her two days before Christmas.

In the end, Marie has made the Dean’s list and has earned 5 A’s and 1 B, (89.6%) in Psychology, which technically should be rounded to 90% but the professor is being a stickler about rounding up. But you know what?! I know it’s an A, Marie knows its an A, so we will leave it at that and know that making the Dean’s List with a 3.81 GPA is a huge accomplishment for the first semester of Freshman year!

The weeks have flown by as we wrap up the eighth week of Blogging Through the Alphabet with Meg @ Adventures with Judeand Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm. Be sure to check out the posts from this week and see how creative everyone is as we make our way from A to Z.



Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.


©2008- 2015 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.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas

From our family to yours, 


Merry CHRISTmas!!!

Monday, December 14, 2015

The Pencil Grip, Inc.: Kwik Stix ~ a review & giveaway

What if I told you there was such a thing as no mess painting? That's right, no cups, smocks, brushes, or a single drop of water needed to paint a masterpiece for your budding Picasso.



A few weeks ago I was sent a 12 piece set of Kwik Stix from The Pencil Grip, Inc. It has since changed the way we paint.

The 12 pack of  Kwik Stix contains the following colors to use:
white
yellow
orange
red
pink
lt green
green
lt blue
blue
purple
brown
black 


These 12 vibrant colors are contained in a tube roughly the size of a glue stick.  It is the perfect size to fit any hand. With a fast drying formula, the colors dry in just 90 seconds after coming in contact with your paper, cardboard, wood, or even canvas media. Just pop the cap off, twist the stick to make the paint rise up and you are ready for hours of fun painting.





We love these paint sticks! They are so much fun and I have no problem letting Micah paint at the easel by himself. I don't have to worry about him spilling, or in his case flinging paint all through the house. He loves it because it gives him some independence while I am teaching or helping one of his sisters. Sometimes it's hard to share, but we are working on that :-)


I look forward to bringing these with us during gymnastics meet season. I know these will be a helpful activity while we are on the road traveling or while at a meet. These would make great stocking stuffers too! In fact, I am ordering an extra set of the 12 pack, so we can try to alleviate too many melt downs. We are also going to be giving Mikayla's and McKenzie's secret gym sisters a set of 12 for Christmas gifts.
And guess what!? I have a set of the 6 pack to give away to my readers! Just leave me a comment below and tell me who you would give the set to. Easy Peasy! The giveaway is only open to US residents at this time and  one winner will be picked on Wednesday, December 16th at 6PM Eastern. The winner will have 24 hours to contact me with their address so that we can get your product to you in time for Christmas {I can't promise it will make it}.




Price ~ $11.99 

Ages ~ toddlers and up







©2008- 2015 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.




Sunday, December 13, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ F is for Flipping




This little girl has got it bad! You know, when you find something you love and you go forth with it 110%. She’s gotten bit by the gymnastic bug a few years ago but now its all starting to come together.



She should come with a warning label some days…CAUTION: WILL FLIP AT ANYTIME! because her feet are rarely on the floor, especially while at home. Many times have I said, “McKenzie please stop cartwheeling {handstanding, leaping, skipping, somersaulting} in the house.”


Because she likes to take pictures I was able to also get some snapshots this afternoon. And yes, she dressed herself today Smile




She has been working hard on her press handstands and regular handstands because she wants to make the TOPs practice team come next June along with the level 3 team. Watching her sister and the other big girls in the gym is really pushing her determination. She may be tiny but she’s got Pee-Wee power and she’s ready for her chance to shine.


Six weeks down, 20 more weeks to go! This is the end of week 6 of Blogging Through the Alphabet with Meg @ Adventures with Jude and Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm. Be sure to check out the posts from this week and see how creative everyone is as we make our way from A to Z.


Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.



©2008- 2015 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.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ E is for Endless Energy

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Being a boy mom after 5 girls is amazing! This little guy keeps me busy keeping up with him. He loves to climb, play, and explore all day long. He is loud and tough and tumble from the moment he awakes until he lays his sweet head to rest.

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Micah loves to do school already too. I captured these shots of him last Friday after McKenzie and I had finished her math lesson with the weigh scale.

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It’s almost like he understood the concept of heavier and lighter because he stacked his pennies onto one side just as I had did with McKenzie. He even counted in his own little way with his sweet voice.

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My baby boy is growing up into a big boy right before my eyes! I am blessed to be his mother!

This is the end of week 5 of Blogging Through the Alphabet with Meg @ Adventures with Jude and Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm. Be sure to check out the posts from this week and see how creative everyone is as we make our way from A to Z.

 

Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.

A is for Arithmetic

B is for Birthdays and Bones

C is for Caramel Corn

D is for Decorating Disasters

 

©2008- 2015 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.

http://astablebeginning.com

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ D is for decorating disasters

Have you ever put up and taken down a 7.5 foot artificial tree 3 times in a span of 24 hours? What about stringing 850 lights on said tree, 3 times?

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By golly, its not for the faint at heart. The girls and I are were having THE worst luck with Christmas lights this weekend. First, our lights blew out after we had them on the main tree Friday afternoon. I went to Walmart Saturday morning after dropping Mikayla off at carpool and bought all new lights. Once we took the tree down and took off all of the old lights and it was completely re-stranded with ll 850 lights, the center pole light cord ripped clear off the strand! Seriously, I almost cried at this point. I was this (<) close to just having our Advent tree up this year, or biting the bullet and purchasing the Basalm Hill tree of my dreams.

So, I trudged back to Walmart and exchanged the lights for a new set while the older girls took down the tree again. Thankfully, the third time was the charm and our big family tree is up and looking as beautiful as the day we bought it 17 years ago.

This is week 4 of my attempt at Blogging Through the Alphabet with by Meg @ Adventures with Jude and Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm. Be sure to check out the posts this week and see how creative everyone is as we make our way from A to Z.

Blogging Through the Alphabet” style=

 

Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.

A is for Arithmetic

B is for Birthdays and Bones

C is for Caramel Corn

 

 

 

©2008- 2015 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.

http://astablebeginning.com

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ C is for Caramel Corn

We love to make homemade caramel corn around here. In fact, Madison requested some for her birthday last weekend so we whipped up a batch.

BTTA C

The recipe is a family secret of my mom’s that has a special step, so I won’t be sharing it here, however, there are several variations online :-)

As she used to say,

 Bon Appetite!

Blogging Through the Alphabet” style=
 
Missed a post? Catch up with the links below.
 
 

©2008- 2015 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.

http://astablebeginning.com

Friday, November 20, 2015

TOS Blue Ribbon Awards

Over this past year I have had the privilege of reviewing over 50+ products from curriculum to things just for mom. At the end of each review year, the members of the Crew vote for their favorite products. Several of the products listed below are some of our favorites too, be sure to check them out!

2015 Schoolhouse Review Crew Blue Ribbon Awards

Favorite Reading Curriculum: Reading Kingdom Favorite Writing Curriculum: Institute for Excellence in Writing

Favorite Vocabulary Program: Dynamic Literacy Favorite Spelling Program: Institute for Excellence in Writing: Phonetic Zoo

Favorite Grammar Program: Institute for Excellence in Writing: Fix-It! Grammar

Favorite Penmanship Program: CursiveLogic Favorite Literature Curriculum: Progeny Press

Favorite History Curriculum: Home School in the Woods

Favorite History Supplement: Heirloom Audio Productions: In Freedom's Cause

Favorite Science Curriculum: Visual Learning Systems

Favorite Science Supplement: Ann McCallum Books: Eat your Science

Favorite Math Curriculum: CTC Math
Favorite Math Supplement: SimplyFun
Favorite Christian Education Curriculum: Grapevine Studies
Favorite Christian Education Supplement: Brinkman Adventures
Favorite Foreign Language Curriculum: Middlebury Interactive Language
Favorite Fine Arts Product: Maestro Classics Favorite Elective Curriculum: Apologia Educational Ministries: Field Trip Journal
Favorite Audio Drama: Brinkman Adventures Favorite Video: FishFlix.com
Favorite Preschool Product: La La Logic
Favorite Elementary Product: Star Toaster
Favorite Middle School Product: The Critical Thinking Co
Favorite High School Product: Writing with Sharon Watson
Favorite College or College-Prep Product: Freedom Project Education
Favorite Parent Product: Koru Naturals
Best Resource I Didn't Know I Needed: Homeschool Planet
Best Online Resource: Super Teacher Worksheets Best e-Product: Home School in the Woods
Just for Fun: USAopoly
Kids' Choice: La La Logic
Teens' Choice: YWAM Publishing
All Around Crew Favorite: Institute for Excellence in Writing

I am pleased to announce that I will be rejoining the TOS review Crew for my 6th year. It’s been a fun ride and I look forward to reviewing more products and telling you all about them!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ B is for birthdays and bones

20151114_141555Yesterday we celebrated Madison’s 15th birthday. Not quite sure how 15 years has flown by, but it has and we have been able to see Madison blossom into a fine young lady.

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She is not one to want a big party or for us to fuss by having a big celebration. She actually wanted to go to Chuck E. Cheese because she knew her younger sisters and brother enjoy it. So, that’s what we did.

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This week, we also finished up our bones unit in science for Montana and McKenzie. They both were able to tape their bones to their body outlines. Montana’s body is obviously bigger than the bones we received, but she gets the jist of there location.

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One morning, McKenzie came running to me and said that Montana’s leg fell off. What!?! Then I remembered the skeleton Smile and we fixed it by adding more tape. Next week, we start on the muscular section and I have some fun activities planned to round out our school year before Christmas break.

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Be sure to check out what everyone else is blogging about this week for letter “B” by clicking on either hosts link here or here.

 

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