Yesterday I got to start celebrating my birthday, one day early. My long-time girlfriends took me out for coffee Friday morning. Aren’t lifetime friends wonderful? I’ve known Cathy since college days, almost 30 years ago. I met Susan when I was newly married and I watched her 2 sons in the nursery, over 25 years ago. Rebecca and I met when we started homeschooling in the late 1990′s.
I wish I had a photo to share…but they might not like that because I had 2 conditions.
1. No Gifts
2. No makeup
In the afternoon, my parents dropped off some furniture and gave me a mini-cake. Finally, my sister, Jennifer, drove down from Ft Worth and spent the night.
This morning, Steve brought home hot Shipley’s donuts. If you’ve never had melt-in-your-mouth Shipleys, you haven’t had the best donut in the world – even better than Krispy Kreme & Dunkin Donuts.
Tonight my kids are fixing our dinner, including a triple chocolate cheesecake. I’ll post it on the blog tomorrow.
Besides writing this email, I am taking it easy…reading The Help (so I can watch the movie) and digital scrapbooking.
So you’re wondering about your gift???
I have a freebie on my blog (see below)
Actually, I’d like to turn the tables & see if you could give me a simple birthday gift today.
If the freebies/gifts or my new website/blog has been helpful to you, would you post a comment on one of my blog posts. I’ve recently shared my first free printable (Valentine Word Problems), as well as started a series on “love of learning”. I wanted to relate my blog posts to love & Valentine’s Day.
Choose a post that means something to you & post a comment.
Or, share that link with your friends on facebook, twitter, linked in or your own blog.
Talk to you tomorrow about our next Gift
Just checking in to see if you have moved to our new blog
We would love for you to join us. This week we are having a Blog Candy Contest…enter to win one of our 5 copies of “Keeping Kids Busy”. Just post a comment here:
Later in the month, we’ll have other Blog Candy Contests & giveaways. We’ll also be hosting a facebook or twitter party with some very special guests.
I also have some special articles on God’s mission for homeschool moms & love of learning (for Valentines Week)
C’mon…. join us!
I am so excited because our new website is finally here.
Since last fall, we’ve been in the process of moving everything to this site.
Join in on all the fun…14 Days of February Freebies, starting today (Wed, Feb 1) All you have to do to get all 14 Freebies is register on our home page. We will send you a daily email with that day’s freebie/gift from one of our homeschool partners.
Our first freebie is our brand new ebook, 83 Ways to Celebrate Valentines Day.
- Top 10 Our Family Celebrates Valentines Day
- History of Valentines Day & Homeschool Activities
- Special Celebration Ideas
- Valentine Cards
- Crafts & Games
- Valentines Day Around the World
Grab your copy on our new site.
You can also enter to win our Blog Candy Contest. Just post a comment on how you integrate your family passion into your homeschool.
BTW…I will no longer be using this blog on a regular basis. Instead I will be posting our upcoming articles & Blog Candy Contests on our new blog. Take a look
If you like what you see, please tell your friends about our new site. You’ll find lots of blog buttons to post on fb or your blog
Last time Patriots played Giants, I made this 7 layer dip. I used a cake decorating tip with sour cream to decorate. The x’s & o’s are black olives. Pretzel sticks for the goal posts
Layers under the guacamole, from the bottom up:
I have some good news…
Sir Cumference has a new book in its series & I wanted you to know.
The new book is Sir Cumference & The Viking Map.
What’s it all about?
Xaxon Yellowbearyd was the fiercest Viking warrior of his time. Now a map to his hidden treasure lies in Radius’s and Per’s hands. Together the cousins must decode the strange numbered grid on the map-and figure out the secret of the Viking’s X and Y axes. As bungling bandits pursue them, Radius and Per use coordinate geometry in their quest for “treasure of the greatest measure”.
The Viking Map will be available in February, so I am taking pre-orders. If you grab a copy in January, you can get 20% discount on Sir Cumference & The Viking Map, as well as any other Sir Cumference title.
Click here to grab Sir Cumference & The Viking Map
We will ship your order as soon as we get the new books in stock, probably mid-February
Other Math Story Books on sale this week…
What should you do today?
1. Read the story of MLK so your kids become aware of his movement
2. Discuss the definition of prejudice. Brainstorm ways you can dvelop friends & learn from people of different races or political persuasions.
3. Discuss your dreams and goals for your family. Use these quotes:
If you can dream it, you can do it. ~ Walt Disney
Nothing much happens without a dream. For something really great to happen, it takes a really great dream. ~ Robert Greenleaf
Without a vision, the people perish. ~ Proverbs 29!8
4. Check out books from the library. This week, learn about cultures of children from different nationalities.
5. Attend a local event.
Before Christmas I started using a strategy to organize my home. Each afternoon I set the timer for 15 minutes and started working on a project.
- Why 15 minutes?
- Why in the afternoon?
I am often tired in the afternoon and don’t have the “thinking” capacity to work or create. So, the afternoon is a perfect time to do some mindless activity…like organize a room, clean a closet, sort through stacks of papers.
When I get a chance, I set the kitchen timer for 15 minutes and head to my project. By setting the time, I have a deadline and work as quickly as possible to finish my task.
What have I done in 15 minutes?
What can “you” get done in 15 minutes?
- Organized a guest bedroom, clearing out all boxes and putting all stacks of paper in its proper place
- Organize & wrap Christmas gifts
- Clean the kitchen counters
- Clean my desk
- Unload the dishwasher, Reload the dishwasher
- Fold the laundry
- Clean the shelf above our staircase
- Organize my fabric by color-into rubbermaid boxes
- Organize stacks of magazines around the house into crates. I found empty crates in our garage & put them in our extra room upstairs. I have baskets & stacks of old magazines & sorted through them, keeping some & giving away others to our public library.
- Clean a bathroom
- Put the loose books around my house back on the right bookshelf
- Iron 2 shirts
- Iron napkins, placemats
- Reorganize my cloth napkins & tablecloths
- Move all my old videos into an old dresser in our TV room (Yes, I still have a VCR so I can watch some old videos)
- Collect all cassettes & videos we need to take to Half Price Books
- Clean the drawer under the kitchen telephone…we all have that drawer
- Put all my ribbon rolls on a dowel and hang
- Organize my kid books so I can loan them to young homeschooling moms
- Organize old curriculum that I’m saving for my kids or can loan
- Dust all picture frames
- Dust living room & dining room
- Collect all single sheets of scrapbooking paper and put in file according to color
- Clean desk drawer and use silverware tray to put back everything
- Collect office supplies and put in rubbermaid box with label of what’s inside.
- Collect all miscellaneous candles and put in rubbermaid boxes according to size or color
- Organize drawer of kitchen towels, washcloths &/or hot mitts
- Organize kitchen cabinets of cups, glasses, mugs
- Organize kitchen cabinet of party serving dishes
- Clean my bedroom dresser top (yes, mine is the messiest in our room)
- Clean Steve’s dresser & bedside tables
- Clean my closet shelves
- Organize my shoes
- Find all clothes hanging in my closet that I haven’t worn the last year. Put in bag to donate.
- Put clean sheets on all beds
- Organize all video games
What project can you do in 15 minutes?
Share as a comment & let us all find something we can do in 15 minutes.
Thanks for everyone that shared their one-word for 2012. I loved it. Hope you did too!
Since we got so many cool words to consider for 2012, I am trying to convert all the words into a printable. Give me a few days & hopefully I will have a printable for 2012 One Words
Oh yeah…Lisa is our winner. Lisa’s word is “reclaim”…striving to reclaim:
- my enthusiasm
- the wasted time
- my faith
- the goals I haven’t met
Lisa will win a copy of my ebook, Let’s Get Organized. Congrats to Lisa…watch your email for your book.
Remember to check our blog this week. You’ll find:
- 4 part series on Setting Goals for Homeschool Moms in 2012
- Over 35 words to contemplate in 2012
- 15 Minute Tip for Organizing Your Home in 2012 – Coming Soon
Tradition has it that this celebration of the arrival of the wise men brought an abundance of food & hospitality. This is the first year that all our kids are gone for a Feast of Epiphany. In the past, we have celebrated Epiphany for several years with a special meal. I found an article about the Epiphany feast and the symbolism used in the past, so I’ve followed their menu. It’s an Italian meal with cheese appetizers, pasta & sausage dishes, as well as oranges & cenci for dessert. I’ve used this menu for most of our feasts.
Oranges are a symbol of sunlight which reminds us of the Star of Bethlehem, the light that guided the Wise Men to our Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ. Epiphany is the holiday of light when the Star of Bethlehem led the Magi to Christ!
Why celebrate Epiphany or the Arrival of the Magi?
Epiphany means to “show” or “reveal”. The wise men were the first ones to worship Jesus as King & Lord. They were Gentiles recognizing Jesus Christ as King, the first ones to reveal Jesus to a wider world as incarnate Christ (from CRI)
Matthew 2 can be read at your dinner table tonight.
Another tradition I found:
The custom of the Star Singers, reminiscent of the travel of the Three Kings is still very much alive in Bavaria and Austria. Beginning with New Years and through January 6, children dressed as the kings, and holding up a large star, go from door to door, caroling and singing a Three Kings’ song. For this they receive money or sweets. Formerly the collected donations went to unemployed craftsmen and veterans, today they go to charities of the church or the Third World. (from 3 Kings Day)