Friday, November 16, 2012

One Year Progress Report

It has almost been one year since I decided I was NOT going to keep gaining weight and I was going to loose weight. I went to a movie at the same time last year as I did this year and have pictures on both days. This morning I looked at both pictures side by side and saw a huge difference. I wanted to share it with everyone but also wanted to have it on here to look at for encouragement to keep on going. 


In the past year I have lost 23 pounds. WOW In the first picture I was wearing size 14 jeans and in the second picture I am wearing size 10 jeans. I still have a ways to go but I feel so great to have done what I did this past year. I've done many different things as far as exercise and food. I've done different workout videos, treadmill running and outside running. I have been making very healthy smoothies each morning for breakfast. I have been doing Weight Watchers regularly since June. I am planning to stay on Weight Watchers the rest of my life, hoping to be a Lifetimer by this time next year. 

I showed my family the before and after pictures and they told me how proud they were of me and how I had done such a great job. WOW! That made my day. I had tears in my eyes as I looked at the difference. I feel so much better about myself. It has taken me a long time to do it but I have been making lifestyle changes each day. It is my hope that these will help me keep from gaining it back and help me loose the rest. 

Changing my life one day at a time.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Desires Of Your Heart

Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

Do you know the verse? What do you think it means? What has it come to mean to you? I would love to share the insight the Lord gave me this morning on my daily run in the park. I have said many times that running has never been my thing. Whenever anyone mentioned running my automatic response has always been "I can't run". I honestly believed I couldn't. I was terrible at it in school and never realized that I could take it slowly and get better at it or even want to run.

Here is where this verse comes in. The Lord has created in me a desire to run. He has shown me that it is something I want to do and can get better at. Eleven weeks ago, God placed a new desire in my heart. It started as a little glimmer of an idea from a friend who said she was going to run in a 5K in February. All of a sudden, it sounded like an awesome idea. I wanted to do that. I looked up the Couch to 5K and found a treadmill version. I spend the next 9 weeks running on that treadmill at the pace they set forth for each of the three days a week. I even added a day or two each week from time to time. I didn't JUST run the three days a week that I had to on the plan but I even chose to run MORE than required. ME. Running. WOW! 

I have to say that running outside has really changed things in another way. I don't just want to run because it is what I am supposed to do because I signed up for the 5K already. It is something I get up extra early to do and even WANT to do. I have even added to the amount of time and distance that I am running. I use a new app that helps me keep up with it and I push myself because I know I can do it and feel wonderful afterwards. I have been running outside for two weeks now. 

Can I picture myself running a 10K? Before today, I couldn't. But since I ran 4 miles today, who says I can't up that and actually run 6 miles at some point? I CAN do it! I know if I keep running each week and increase my time little by little I can also add to my distance in the hour that I have to run. It has become a desire of my heart. 

As I was running this morning, a joy filled my heart as I listened to my worship music (I spend my run time worshiping the Lord every step of the way). I realized that HE put the joy in my heart to run, the desire. And I realized that when I decide ahead of time what I am going to do, I do it. On Wednesday, I decided before my run that I would run the whole 3 miles without stopping. Today, I decided before my run that I could run the extra two laps and run the 4 miles. I didn't let myself quit because I made the choice before I got out there. I even got up five minutes earlier so I would have extra time to run if I ran at a slower pace. I actually ran at a faster pace than the other times so I was able to complete the 4 miles in under an hour. 

It is my desire to become stronger and healthier so I can live a longer and better life with my family. I have changed the way I eat and changed the way I move. I am making small but long term changes in the way I live and how my body looks. I can't wait to get to the weight I am going to stay at. But that will not be the end of the road on this running journey. It will only be the beginning. Thanks for coming along on the ride with me and cheering me on. It means a lot. 

Changing my life, one day at a time. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

First Day of School 2012

We started back to school on September 4 after a wonderful family getaway with a group from church. It was great to get away before we started back full force. Our curriculum has not changed for the new school year. We LOVE the stuff we have used the last two years and plan on using it through High School. The kids will be doing school pictures later this week but we managed to get in the "first day of school" picture on the second day of school. 

We got the kids new laptops this year so that they can look up the things our curriculum tells them to but they can do it at the table with me and we can share the information learned right then. Also, I wanted them to be able to do their math (they have a video at the beginning of each lesson) when they were ready and not have to wait for someone to get off the computer. So far, so good. We have been able to do many things for school on them and they enjoy using them in their free time, as well. 

We started reading through the Little House books and are almost finished with book two, Farmer Boy. We have some great books that we will be reading this school year and I look forward to sharing them with you. 

That is our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Couch to 5K Update

I thought I should update my progress since I started my Couch to 5K treadmill workout ten weeks ago. The workout itself was a nine week program. I was able to work up to running for 3 miles by week 9. The time it took for my workout was 50 minutes with 5 minute warm up and cool down, so 40 minutes of running. After I completed that, a friend recommended that I run outside if I was going to run in a 5K race since running outside is so different. I really didn't understand how it could be so different.

Running outside is VERY different than running on a treadmill. 

My usual running days are Monday, Wednesday and Friday (with an added run in the evenings one or two nights a week if I feel up to it). But we went on a family getaway for the Labor Day weekend and returned on Monday afternoon. We didn't get up and run (I didn't anyway) because I didn't bring running clothes. But I did spend an hour in the pool two days in a row and did exercises while I was swimming. We also went for walks most days. I took my little blender and made my breakfast smoothies instead of eating the wonderful smelling pancakes they made each morning. I did eat candy that weekend which is why I only lost .2 pounds this week. But I did loose thanks to the small things I did and the running I did when I got home.  

We have figured out that in order to get our run in and be back home for the first daycare kids to arrive at 7 I have to get up before 6 a.m. and head out as quickly as possible. Those who KNOW me KNOW I am not an early riser. I am usually a night owl. But I have had to change that in order to make my life work and not be running on empty (and I mean that figuratively not literally). But you also have to remember what I said about NOT being a runner either. So this is totally out of character for me. But it is becoming me. 

This week we ran Tuesday and Thursday mornings. My husband figured out approximately how many laps around the park it is for one mile. I have to run eight laps to reach three miles. I have not been able to run the whole eight laps yet without walking but I do keep going and start running again as soon as I can make myself. I usually run the whole first and last laps with minimal walking on the other six. It is my hope that I can run the whole things in a few weeks and even run more laps in the hour I have to run each day. 

I am thirty-six pounds away from my goal weight now (I had about 56 pounds to loose when I started this blog last December). Some important dates ahead are goals for major accomplishment. There are eleven and a half weeks until my birthday, twenty-one weeks until the Hot Chocolate 5K and twenty-eight weeks until my 30th wedding anniversary. I am doing well with my Weight Watchers. I have lost weight each week since I got serious about it. My goal is to become a "Lifetimer" and not have to pay to weigh in each month but to have that accountability that I so need. I need to keep it in front of my mind so that I won't go down this road again and have to take the weight off AGAIN!   

I will measure again at the end of the nine weeks of outside running, which is in eight weeks. It is my hope that I will be down another jean size! I was in a size 14 when I started this blog. I am now in size 10's. That alone makes me smile. I have lost 10 inches so far. At the end of the eight weeks I think my reward for completing it will be to buy myself some new running clothes and shoes. I have walking shoes and would love a nice pair of running shoes. I think that is a good goal reward. 

Changing my life, one day at a time.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Trail Guide to Learning Review

We are about to begin our twelfth year of homeschooling. We are super excited and have been for the past three school years. The main reason why is because of our wonderful curriculum. Here is the review I sent them of their product.

I have been homeschooling since 1997. I have four children, 25, 19, 13 and 10. I started out homeschooling my two oldest children who were 5th grade and Kindergarten at the time. Needless to say, I have used various curriculums over the years and found things I loved and didn’t love. And I found things that worked with one child didn’t work with the second child. We had times of public school and private school for the younger three children in the middle of our homeschooling years. But after a year and a quarter of public school and two years of private school we were back to homeschooling. The first year we used the math they were using in the private school and found we loved it so we still use it (Math U See). We will be beginning our fifth year back to homeschooling this fall. Three years ago I found Trail Guides to Learning and it changed our homeschool experience into something I always hoped it would be, amazing and fun for them and me.

Trail Guides to Learning fit our family just right. I needed something already put together with lesson plans that weren’t overwhelming and easy to follow. The fact that it was based on books instead of text books was an added plus to me. Text books can be so dry but novels come alive when you read them. I loved how you could buy everything all at once without having to go hunt things down. I also love the middle school supplement that is offered with each level. We used the middle school supplement because one of my children is one grade higher than each one said it covered. I loved the extra book for each unit. That became our book we used for dictation and that they read silently each day. We used the other three books for each of us to read aloud to the “class”. My younger child reads the easiest and my older child reads whichever of the other two he chooses while I read the one remaining. We got so many different looks at each period of time.

The middle school supplement had extra work that you could assign to challenge your students. It was easy to understand and the kids were able to complete it in a timely manner. I love how I can teach both of my children from one lesson but give the older one more without it disrupting our flow. In fact, I often give my younger child the same extra assignments if I feel she can handle it. Even though she is two grades below my son, my daughter has excelled and done most of the same extended work he has. Sometimes she is more willing to do the extended work than the older one is.

I have and will continue to recommend this program to any and all who are homeschooling or thinking about it. After seeing the different curriculums for the past 15 years I can honestly say it is the best program for our family and I wish it had been around when I taught my older two children. We have such fun discovering history together. I never had this much fun when I was in school but I am learning along with my children and having fun. We connect what we have learned with so many things we see and do in our everyday lives.
Thanks so much for creating this program and please keep working on the ones for the years to come. We look forward to going through high school with Trail Guides to Learning series!

That is our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

DIY Fence Easels

If you are a teacher, homeschool mom, or home daycare provider you might be like me and get catalogs from school supply companies. I love those books. I look through them and day-dream about what I could get for my kids. One of the things that has always caught my eye was the fence easels. But those things are around $80 for ONE. And I mean one easel per kid. There was no way I could allow myself to spend that kind of money on it. 

I have been doing a lot of thinking since re-opening my home kidcare/preschool about what I could do with the back yard to make it more fun. I have been "window" shopping again online and in books. I found those easels again and my longing to have them increased. But as I looked them over I began to think in a whole new direction...

I can make those, or more precisely, my husband can help me make those. I printed out pictures of what I wanted, one of the single and one of the double just to see what we might need. I put the measurements on the paper so we could estimate how big they should be. Then off to Home*Depot we went.  

First thing we needed to look for was the backing to use for the boards. We were intending to make double easels. We found a large sheet of white panel board. John measured it and figured we could cut the board into four equal pieces and they would be long enough for three children to use per sheet. We asked the man that worked there to cut it. He was thrilled to do it. He actually ended up helping us come up with the things to hold it to the fence instead of having to make holes and finding hooks that would work. He found us large green clamps to put on each end and one in the middle. Plus right next to those were the small ones to hang the paper with. I was thrilled, they matched. 

We are able to use small sheets of paper or the larger ones. I have been so blessed because friends have saved used paper for me and we use the side that hasn't been used. This is one way we help save the resources God provides, our own way of recycling paper. 

We looked all over the place for something to use that would hold the paint while the children painted and had a really hard time. I had purchased these wire racks at Dollar*Tree a few years ago and thought we might be able to make them work. My husband was able to make it so easily. And they lift right off when it is time to bring everything inside.  

I found the Melissa & Doug Easel Accessory Set through Amazon* for under $27/each. They come with the four buckets for paint, four brushes, four bottles of paint, chalk pencil set (can be used on paper, or sidewalk, or chalk board), a large roll of drawing/paint paper, one dry erase marker and a dry erase eraser. I need to get more dry erase markers and will have to replace the paint as we use it. I purchased one for each easel. I got some cheap Artist Aprons to use until I can replace them with better quality. 

The shorter fence is perfect for younger children. The older children use the higher fence. These store very easily, too. They aren't bulky because the racks come off and stack on top of each other. The boards are stored standing up against the wall. I keep the clamps in a bag. My paints are stored on a shelf in the garage with other art supplies and outside toys. 

The kids love dry erase boards so this works out GREAT. No marker stink INSIDE the house and they get to have fun. They can draw pictures or even play Hangman, which is something the older kids love to do. 

Here is our supply list:

1-Thrifty White Panel Board (cut into 4 equal parts) $11.97
12-2"Spring Clamp Metal Heavy Duty (3 per board) $11.88
24-Mini Spring Clamp (6 per board, 2 per child) $8.88
4 wire baskets (1 per board) $4.00
Nuts and Bolts to attach the baskets with (he had them already)

Cost to make four easels for up to 12 children to use $36.73 plus tax (I saved myself OVER $900)

Here is another quick project I did. I took a oil pan and used Command Strips to stick it to my front door. We can use any magnets we want on the board. They make numbers and letters and even animals. We will be using this board for a lot of different projects with the kids.

The board itself I found at a auto supply store for $10. I had the Command Strips already. You can use Velcro strips if you have them. I just used what was available and I knew would work. 

Most magnetic boards that big are well over $25, if not closer to $40. So I saved quite a bit on that project, too. There are no sharp edges on it so it is totally safe for children to use. I got this idea (minus the way I hung it) from that great pin board! 

Until next time...blessings to you.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Community Gardening Class/Field Trip

Here are some fun photo's of our field trip to Veteran's Park. We had a good time even though we were working. So proud of the kids and their hard work. 

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That is our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Home Based Group Valentine Party

Our group continues to grow. We had about 30 kids for our Valentine party. We had lots of goodies to eat, cupcakes to decorate, plus a game and craft. The kids were very involved in all of them. 

The girls (and boys) were given lots of papers and things to make cards or bookmarks. They really had fun of with all the fun paper. They even made some for their friends right then. 

One of Jenni's friends had a funny sense of humor and cut a piece of paper and wrote book-mark on it instead of decorating  it like a bookmark. 

Most of the boys decided to make a family crest. They turned our really cool. JC ran out of time and had to finish his at home. It is still waiting for him on my desk.

We had a wide range of ages, preschoolers to teens. They all seemed to have a great time working and visiting with each other. 

We had a fun game of Valentine Conversation Heart Bingo. We brought dollar store prizes for the winners. Then we went and ate all the goodies, some sweets and some veggies and fruit plates. 

I can honestly say that this group has been a highlight in our lives this year even more than before. We have done some really fun stuff. Plus the kids have made friends with LOTS of other homeschool kids their age. 

That is our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Questions, Questions, So Many Questions

The Riddler (BF).jpg
The Riddler isn't my favorite villain but he is definitely an interesting one. When I thought of a title for this post and "questions" came to mind it automatically formed into his mantra from the movie. Just a little humor in a somewhat heavy post.

Do you ever find yourself questioning yourself or even God? That is where I am at right now. I have been there many times over the past 46 years of my life, maybe not so much in the first years but certainly once I was old enough to understand the harder things in life. I learned some of those at the very early age of four years old.

Life isn't fair and it doesn't always make sense. Why is that? Because it is full of human beings who don't always make the right choices. And who's to say the right choice for them is the right one for you? But so many lives and decisions affect others. 

Over the summer and in the early days of fall my questions centered around the "why did the doors close for us to serve overseas?" We have yet to understand that one. We were willing. We did all the training. But the doors didn't stay open. I have dealt with that for the most part. At times it shows its ugly head and I try to shove it away as quickly as it appeared. Bitterness and doubt have no place in my life. God is in control and He knows what is best for me and my family. He also knows the perfect time for all things. 

What are my questions now, you are wondering? I am wondering if I was wrong to start up my kidcare business again. Or if I "heard" God wrong or thought I heard Him. Why am I asking that question? Because I have worked so hard to get things together, purchased the needed supplies to make my centers again, rearranged the house to accommodate the school and it looks awesome. I have my license  I have been putting the word out to all of my friends. I have signed up on multiple boards to advertise my business. I have my website where I made my own banner (and it looks great) and a fb page for my business. I even had the signs on my car that my daughter was driving until it died. I have great business cards that I have handed out.  BUT  I have gotten ZERO phone calls from prospective parents. Not a one. I have been advertising the start up for months. I have had my website since October. 

Did I do the wrong thing? I honestly don't know at this point. I know I am excited to have this adventure begin. I need it to happen to help pay our bills. I want my husband to be able to take a job with fewer hours closer to home even if it means less pay. I didn't want to take a job outside the home because I homeschool my children and LOVE it. I don't want to give that up. But there are bills to be paid and this is something that I love doing and can make the money I need to pay those bills and get things paid off if I am careful about my spending and where it goes. I can't do any of those things until the phone rings and parents start bringing their children for me to teach.

I am also wondering why after years of putting in applications at other places my husband is still working at a job that is a long drive and long hours away from his family. We found out that the second shift supervisor is quitting and that will leave him to help cover that shift which means more long hours. I am already struggling with the lack of time he is able to devote to time with God and our family because of the mental draining that goes on all day at work. I really don't understand why God isn't opening a door for him closer to home with less stress.

I am wondering how we are going to manage with only one car between the three of us, our oldest lives here and my cheap little car died. With longer hours for my husband it will make sharing a car even more stressful. I wish that old car would have held out a few more months. I am thankful it lasted six months. That was six months she was able to get to work. But what now? It just makes things even more of a strain with all the other things going on. 

What should I do now? As I type this a still small voice whispers:

"Be still and know that I AM God. Be patient and wait upon the ME. MY timing is perfect. I know the plans I have for you, good plans." 

I will keep working on things in my life that need work and keep praying that God will send the kids HE wants me to teach. I will keep praying He provides a different job for my husband. I will keep praying He provides a car for my daughter so she can get to work and church. And I trust HIM to provide for our needs, as I know HE will, without a doubt. 

It's OK when those times in your life you start to question God. Do you know why? Because He is big enough to handle it. He understands how you feel. He wants you to come to Him even with questions and doubts. He loves you so much. He just wants you to come to Him. He can give you peace and assurance. He will answer you. Maybe not the way you thought He would. But He will answer. And He promised to supply all of our NEEDS. Again, maybe not how we thought it should happen. He knows best and sees the outcome of all things. 

Thanks for letting me share this. Writing always helps put things into perspective and I was able to hear God speaking to me as I was quiet and listening for that Word from Him. I know the answer lies in spending more time with Him in the Word and in prayer. Only He can give me the peace I need to live each day as it comes and make the best of each one. 

Until next time...blessings to you.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Four Keys To Success

I am reading a great book by Candace Cameron Bure. You might remember her on Full House as DJ Tanner. She has written a great book called Reshaping It All: Motivation for Physical and Spiritual Fitness. This is one of the things I am using to help me keep the right frame of mind about my whole weight loss journey. 

The chapter I am on right now is called Unlock Your Freedom. It talks about the keys to success. I know I want success in this adventure. And I want to keep it off for good. I don't want to travel down this road again over and over again anymore. I have done that all of my adult life. 

So the first key is Willpower. We can't just want to do something, we have to put action behind  it. We can strengthen our willpower through positive thoughts. That makes sense, doesn't it? Negative thoughts sure don't make it easier to accomplish something. We have to keep our thoughts positive in order to accomplish weight loss. Plus willpower is what it takes to push on even when obstacles get in our way, including stress.

The next key is Belief. What we believe will be our outcome. We need to choose to believe we can succeed. We need to believe that our bodies were created to be a certain way and through healthy eating we can live a more abundant life. We have a choice to believe negative thoughts or positive ones. I want to be a positive person and believe I can succeed.

The third key is Decision. Each small decision we make builds to make a bigger picture. Every time we say no to something we shouldn't eat that takes that want a little farther away. I have successfully cut out soda again. It was really easy this time because I had given it up four years ago and only just started having a few here and there this past year. I am limiting sweets to a bare minimal. Not because I have to, because I choose to. I have a goal in mind, a purpose. I don't want to weigh this anymore. So even though saying no to one candy bar might seem small, it really isn't. I was able to purchase one for my husband on Saturday and didn't even think about buying one for myself. The desire wasn't even there. That is progress, especially for a chocoholic like myself. 

The fourth key is Action. Nothing will happen without action.You have to put action to your decisions, belief and willpower. We can want something all day long but without action we aren't going to get it. If we need to set aside a certain time to workout then we better do it. Then when that time comes around don't hesitate but jump in there and get it done. I know I feel so much better after I have worked out, even when it was at 6 in the morning. I was proud of myself for getting up and working out. I knew I had done something to move forward in what I wanted. 

We have to put all four together to succeed. We can't just rely on one or the other. They work together. I know I don't have as much to go as some, but to me, it seems like a great deal. I have gotten down to 150 pounds before but I really need to reach a much lower amount on the scales. For my height I should weigh between 120 and 130. I was 120 pounds for a long time before I had children. I would like to try working all the fat off my body and toning as best I can and see what that looks like on the scales. I could weigh more because muscle weighs more than fat. I didn't have much muscle on my body back then even though I was 120 pounds. I plan to have a toned body and will be fine if that looks like more on the scales. 

Some key thoughts: I have been putting my goals into action. I have been watching portion control and counting my calories since the beginning of December. I have been working out almost daily for the past three weeks. I have been taking care of my face daily like I should. It is my desire to have overall better health. 

What goals are you going to put the four keys into practice to accomplish?

Changing my life a day at a time.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Field Trip: George Washington Exhibit

Before Christmas we finished a unit on the American Revolution and George Washington's life. There just happened to be an exhibit at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History on George Washington. How exciting for us. We were thrilled that our friends, Cindy and Ryan, have season passes and were able to invite us to go. It really made all we learned come alive and we learned even more.

I hope you enjoy our slide show. This didn't include the whole exhibit but I got what I could.

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What is your favorite field trip your family has done?

That is our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by. 

Monday, January 9, 2012

Freezer Cooking

Vintage CookingI am not sure if everyone knows about "freezer cooking" or "once a month cooking" or other names people call it. Whatever name you use, it's the same concept: you cook a bunch of stuff once a month and stick it in the freezer then pull it out at dinner time each night without all the prep work that goes into putting it together. It takes a bit of extra time one day a month. A lot of people choose a Saturday because they can enlist the aid of their entire family for it. The size of your family will determine how much time it will take. I have five people that live in my home right now. If you have 8 or 10 then you would make twice as much as I would. Make sense? You know your family and the size meals they eat. So when you plan out your cooking just do what you always do and allow for that many mouths. 

A very helpful website I found is Life As Mom. She has a whole list of helpful blog posts. It tells you step by step her plan for doing this. There are lists of how to pack things, what the time limit is on freezing things, even breakfast freezing. 

freezer cooking

Also, I found another great site, Fabulessly Frugal. She has a thing called Fabuless Freezer Cooking. She has the plan, how to get a "group" of friends together to do it with you so you all save money and lots of recipes. 

It is going to take me a bit of time to sort through these sites and decide what will work for me. But it is my hope that I can start this next week. We get paid once a month so cooking once a month sounds great. I can get everything I need at the store for my freezer cooking and pick a day to cook. Then have my dinner in the freezer for each day. That sounds GREAT for those days when I am just worn out and don't have the energy to think about what to make for dinner or to even turn on the stove. We all have those days. Plus the breakfast in the freezer cooking sounds wonderful. It would be great to offer my family a nice hot meal for breakfast instead of cereal or poptarts. That is a much healthier start to the day.

I will post recipes and updates as I figure it all out. And share what works for me and what doesn't. Everything has to be made to fit your life because we are all different and one thing doesn't always work for another.  

Until next time...blessings to you.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Our Progress

August - December 2011
The first half of this school year has been wonderful. The reason I put a castle for my picture was to represent all the places we have traveled through stories and movies of the year, and the many others we will visit in the years to come. I have managed to blog about most of the really fun and interesting things we have done. We started the school year off in August by finishing up three units from last year's curriculum that we weren't able to finish because of all the preparation for our trip to Kenya in June. We went right into this years material without a pause. We completed two of those units. That makes five units for the first half of our year. 

We had some great projects with our homeschool groups. We did a Dolphin Tale study  and went to the movie on opening day for Home School Day. We made a lap book for Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs. The kids played soccer with one of our groups and I was the coach. We had a super missions day for our AAHE October meeting. We had one field trip, to the public library. Because we are part of two groups we are able to do more. Our last group activity of 2011 was our Christmas party, which was a huge success and loads of fun. 

We did a major field trip to Kenya in June/July. That was an experience that our family will never forget. We spent three weeks there. We were on 9 airplanes and it took over 30 hours to reach our final destination each way. Even though that wasn't "during the school year" we felt it was a huge part of our educational experience.  

I rearranged the "school room" twice. This last time was to accommodate the re-opening of our kidcare and preschool.  We have involved the front room and the dinning room. It really looks nice and we have all of our resources readily available when we need them. 

January - May 2012
We started back to school on January 2. We had three weeks off of school in December and were ready to jump back into it. We have some huge plans for this half of the school year. We will do two more units before taking our Spring Break. Then we will do two more units and finish school mid May. They will finish this years Math by spring break. They will be given the option of starting next years math. I purchased their math for the next several years at the book fair last year. 

We are planning a very special Spring Break for the kids to show them we are proud of all their hard work in school this year. We want to make it a tradition each year to do something special, fun and different. They have no idea what we have planned. 

We hope to do a few more field trips for the year. There is an exhibit on George Washington at the local museum that we are going to see next week. They have a special website to go along with the exhibit and enhance your learning experience. We will do more book/movie studies. Our next one will be War Horse. We will read the book, do the study and see the movie in January. 

That is just a glimpse of the next five months. I can't wait to blog the pictures from all the adventures we will have. 

That's our progress report for today. Thanks for stopping by.