Just Being Us

Just Being Us
Family, where we can be real, and feel unconditional love!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Are You Ready To Enjoy Your Summer?


     When I think of Summer, I think of warm days and cool evenings.  I long to sit on my porch swing and read.  I love watching my children run and play.  Summer should be a time of rest and relaxation so we are ready to take on our next school year in the Fall.  We need time to recuperate from all our hard work.  It's okay to rest!  We don't need a Summer schedule that is so full that we can't take the time to enjoy the little things in life.  

      Here is my list of the top 10 Summer activities we should all have on our to-do lists:

  •  Grab a sheet and lay under a shade tree and read your favorite book.
  •   Take your children to the park, turn off your phones, and enjoy playing with them with no distractions. 
  •   Lay on the ground in the middle of your yard and watch the clouds roll by.  Talk about what you see in the clouds. Your kiddos will love using their imaginations.
  •   Make memories by roasting marshmallows over an open fire and talking with your children about their dreams and goals in life.
  •   Grab a telescope (borrow one if you have to) and spend an entire evening looking at the stars. God's creation is so beautiful!
  •   Take a long drive one evening.  Turn off all distractions and enjoy one another's company.
  •   Pack a picnic basket one Saturday, and go exploring. There are many fun parks that your family can enjoy together. You don't need to know where you are going, just go!
  •   Have a water balloon fight 😀
  •   Grab some nerf guns and blast away.  Your kids need to see your fun side.
  •   Get some jars and chase some fireflies.  It's okay to act like a kid sometimes 😉

     Allow your children to see you enjoying life!!! Take time and smell the roses!  Give yourself permission to laugh and have fun. Your agenda should include a good belly laugh each day.  Time is short.  Take time to appreciate the little things!  






Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Homeschool Review Crew: Our Review of The Typing Coach Online Typing Course


     I have fond memories of taking a typing class in high school.  It was fun and relaxing to me. I hadn't used a typewriter before that class, so it was all new to me. I didn't have a computer keyboard. We used a typewriter for our class.  That was back in 1989. 

     Our children today are familiar with a computer keyboard at a young age.  They use it to play games and to type messages to friends. I know our youngest was typing before she started school. When I heard of this program, I knew they would enjoy taking an online typing class to work on their typing skills.  We were happy to be able to review The Typing Coach Online Typing Course from The Typing Coach.  

     


      
     I think it is important for our children to learn to do things well, so when we can help them improve skills they may use in life, we should do our best to do so.  This program is geared to help those who type to do it more quickly and with more accuracy.  They will also be more comfortable with the keyboard at the end of this course.  So whether they are a beginner or someone who has typed for a few years, this program will be a helpful resource. It only costs $17 per year for each typing student.   

     When we started the course, I read the course introduction, watched the visual tour of the course, then printed out the student packet.  Our 12-year-old son decided he wanted to be the one to try it. I asked him how he liked the lessons and he said that he felt they taught him how to type better.  He said he isn't searching the keyboard for certain letters like he did before.  He also said he liked that the lessons were self-paced.  He likes to be able to go forward with new lessons as soon as he has mastered the one he is working on.  He is a child who doesn't like to be constrained with lessons that hold him back if he is ready to move on. 


   
      I feel this course is set up well.  With 7 lessons in all, your student will not feel overwhelmed. I think it sets realistic goals for students but also motivates them to work harder to get better and better.  All you need to get started is a computer with internet access, a printer, and your yearly subscription.  Most students over the age of 10 will be able to work independently.  Your smaller ones may need a little help.  The site is easy to navigate once you log and see how it is set up. The course uses audio, video and written instructions for their lessons, and your student can take their time until they master each one.  It's really a great program for anyone wanting to learn to type more efficiently and accurately.  

Here is a peek into what is included in this course.



     I encourage you to check out their site The Typing Coach and to take a look at their Twitter page.  We also have some more reviews for you over on the Homeschool Review Crew website.  

     Have a blessed day!!!!


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Homeschool Review Crew: Our Review of Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors


     My youngest daughter has always loved arts and crafts.  She is always looking for new DIYs to try.  When she heard that we were going to get the chance to review the Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors from The Pencil Grip, Inc, she jumped for joy.  I knew she would love these.  



      When they arrived in the mailbox, she ran out to grab them.  She opened the box and immediately got them out to see how they worked. It came with a sheet of paper that told about them and let you try them right away.  The smile on her face let me know these were soon going to be a favorite art supply that she would have to have on hand all the time.  She takes her arts and crafts seriously and is very picky about her supplies. 



      At least 3 afternoons a week, she and I sit down to work on our art projects.  I enjoy Bible journaling and painting canvases.  She also likes to work on her Bible journal, but loves painting and drawing on paper and canvases even more. I wanted to get her honest review of these paint sticks.  Here is her list of things she loves about them along with a few of mine:
  • The colors are so vibrant 
  • They are easy to use
  • They are smooth and fun to work with.
  • They dry very quickly
  • You don't have to have water to use them
  • You can use them on the go
  • They blend well
  • They work well on many surfaces like cardboard, poster board, and canvases
  • They are non-toxic {we are very conscience of what we allow in our home}
Here we used the Thin Stix to paint the flowers
 and to make the JOY.



     Hope had fun using them for a couple of my Mother's Day gifts she made for me.  This was my favorite.  I love emojis so she made a hand painted one for me on a canvas.  I have it hanging on our hallway wall so I can see it every day as I head downstairs to start our day.  


     I think art is an important subject for us to include in our homeschool schedule, but at times it can be hard to clean up.   These Thin Stix paint sticks let them express themselves without all the mess and fuss of other paints.  As a mom, who already has so much to clean up on daily basis, this makes me a happy camper.  They can be creative wherever they want with this wonderful product.  

      I encourage you to check out all their products on their website The Pencil Grip, Inc and their social media pages listed below:
     We also have some more great reviews for you to check out on the Homeschool Review Crew website.  I hope you enjoy reading about how other families used this resource.  I always like to read about a product before purchasing it for our family.  

     Have a wonderful day!!!







     


Monday, May 22, 2017

Are You Changing?


     When we give our lives to Christ, we will see changes occur in our lives.  We will want to live a life pleasing to the Lord.  We must put off our sinful nature, lay down our wants, and give our hopes and dreams to our Savior. He will change us as we seek Him.  He will renew our minds and hearts.  He will heal us from the inside out.  We will want to follow Him.  He will be our all in all.  We will long to read His Word and talk with Him each day.  

 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.~ Romans 12:2 

      Before we are saved we look to the world to satisfy our desires, but once we receive Christ as our Savior, we see that nothing the world has to offer will satisfy.  We are made to worship our King.  Everyone should see that we are different.  We are in this world but not of it.  We should be examples of Christ's love and grace.  We will stand strong in our faith, not compromising the Word of God.

      As a mom, I pray each day for the lives and souls of my children.  I am on my knees daily praying they will serve the Lord with all their hearts, minds,souls and strength.  I pray that my failures will not keep them from being the servants of the King.  I plead for the Lord to help me be a good example for them.  Being a mom is one of the hardest jobs on earth.  It doesn't end until the day we take our last breath.  Even when our children are adults, we never stop being mom.  We still pray and pray for them to seek God and follow His plan for their lives.  We pray that Satan will not overcome them and devour them. From the second we find out our child is in our womb, we pray.

    In the past 2 years, our lives have changed in many ways.  Our oldest daughter has gotten married and moved out of state, our oldest son is engaged to be married, my husband has been promoted at work and I am beginning to go through some early signs of menopause.  As I thought about all these changes occurring, I began to feel fear, but the Lord quickly reminded me that in order to grow there must be change.  Change isn't a bad thing, it is just a new thing.  I don't need to be afraid, because He is there with me through all these changes, just as He has been with me before.   We will continue to change until the day the Lord returns or calls us home.  Walking in faith isn't easy but it will give us peace.

     Are you experiencing change?  Are you leaning on God through it all?  Do you pray for change in your life?

      I am praying for you today and everyday.  Don't fear change.  Allow God to have it all!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Homeschool Review Crew: Our Review of Captain Absolutely


     
     For years our family has enjoyed the wonderful resources from Focus On The Family.  We love Adventures in Odyssey and recently we joined their Adventures in Odyssey Club.  With this membership, you receive a monthly magazine called Focus on the Family Clubhouse Magazine. It was here that we first started reading the amazing adventures of Captain Absolutely.  When we were picked to receive and review this book, my youngest son, who is 12,  was thrilled.  He couldn't wait to read it.  




      It didn't take him very long to read it. I feel this book could be read in a short time by any intermediate or experienced reader. This book is a compilation of many different comic strips that star Captain Absolutely.  I couldn't believe how this book kept Josh's focus.  He couldn't put it down.  He loves to read about superheroes and this is one hero I didn't mind him wanting to be like. 

      I asked Josh to write down who Captain Absolutely was and this is what he said:
     "Josiah King was a normal man until his friend made a reactor explode.  Josiah was saved from the explosion by hiding in a room that had a bunch of Bibles in it.  Josiah received special powers that day and his eyes were forever opened to the Word of God. He was now Captain Absolutely.  He wanted to defend the Truth.  He was willing to fight for what is right."

      Josh then went on to tell us about Captain Absolutely's sidekick Hana Lin:
     "She was a girl that was rescued by Captain Absolutely.  After he rescued her, she got saved and invented a flame suit that she could use to help him in his daily conquest to battle for truth and justice."

     After he finished the book I asked him to write down what he thought.  Here is what he had to say: 
     "The book was awesome.  It taught me a lot about the Bible.  It wasn't too long, so I enjoyed reading it and was able to read it quickly. The story was a real page-turner.  It kept my attention. It had great characters and the drawings were very detailed.  I loved the lessons it taught throughout the entire book.  I think it's a great way to teach children about the Bible and it's Truth."

     I feel that he really gave us some great knowledge of the book without revealing the storyline too much.  We wouldn' t want to ruin it for others 😊

     I am so happy that they are creating material like this for our young people.  They need more creative resources that share God's Word with our pre-teens and early teenagers.  I feel this book was just what we need in our society today.  A godly hero to look up to.  We should encourage our children to stand up for what is right and not be afraid to fight for the Truth.  

     If you would like more information about Focus On The Family or this book Captain Absolutely please visit their websites, or visit their social media pages: 

    We also have some more great reviews for this resource over on the Homeschool Review Crew web page. I hope you enjoy reading through them.

    Have a great day!!!!

  

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Homeschool Review Crew: My Review of Homeschool Rescue

     I have been homeschooling for over 19 years now, but I feel I can always be learning new techniques and ways of doing things that will keep our homeschool running smoothly.  I was excited to review Homeschool Rescue from Only Passionate Curiosity.  This course is for new or veteran homeschooling moms {or dads} that would like to learn some new ways of doing things or refresh their homeschool schedules.  



     This online e-course takes about 60 days to complete.  Whether you are struggling with day to day routines or if you would just like to learn how other homeschooling families get through their days, this course is for you.  My favorite part of this course was the section that taught you how to say no with grace.  I have always been someone who wanted to help anyone, but it was wreaking havoc into our homeschool schedules.  I was taking on too much and it was wearing me out. This would cause me to be short-tempered and downright mean some days.  I saw us getting behind, but couldn't find ways to politely say no to those asking me for help.  

      The e-course has 5 different modules that you go through at your own pace. Every module consists of 1 to 5 lessons. Each module begins with a video to introduce you to what you will be learning, and then each lesson has a video for you to watch.  You will then be completing your "homework" for that lesson. There is also a list of resources and links for each lesson.   

Here is an in-depth list of what's included:
  • Module 1 
      Lesson 1: Take Your Pulse
      Lesson 2: Looking to the Future
      Lesson 3: Triage Your Homeschool
      Lesson 4: Special Circumstances

  • Module 2
     Lesson 1: Just Say No
     Lesson 2: Take Back Your Time
     Lesson 3: Teaching the Masses
     Lesson 4: Saving Time
     Lesson 5: Organization

  • Module 3
      Lesson 1: Curriculum
      Lesson 2: Pacing Guides
      Lesson 3: Supplies
      Lesson 4: Classrooms

  • Module 4
      Lesson 1: Reward Systems
      Lesson 2: Consequences
      Lesson 3: Training Children
      Lesson 4: Master the Follow Through

  • Module 5
      Lesson 1: Teaching Teens
      Lesson 2: Study Skills
      Lesson 3: Time Management

     I absolutely loved each lesson that we went through. Heather Aliano did a great job putting this course together.  The "homework"  and worksheets for each lesson reinforces and helps you work through what has been taught.  I am someone who likes having notes on paper that I can read and go over later and this course even offers that for you.  They thought of everything. I know that you would think after 19 years, I wouldn't have anything new to learn, but I find that talking with other homeschooling moms and doing courses like this, helps me to keep things new and up to date in our homeschool.  

     If you would like to learn more about this wonderful resource you can visit their website Homeschool Rescue or you can visit their social media sites: 

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/opchomeschool
Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/OPChomeschool/
Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/onlypassionatecuriosity/
Goggle+:  https://plus.google.com/b/110290451358830656260/+OnlypassionatecuriosityHomeschool

     
     There will also be some other reviews of this online e-course over on the Homeschool Review Crew site.  I know I always enjoy seeing many perspectives of a product I am praying about buying for our homeschool.  

     Have a blessed day!!!!


 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Forgiveness in Marriage

   
     
     In marriage, we have got to learn two things right from the start.  That is to be able to admit when we are wrong, then apologize, and to be able to forgive our spouses when they say or do things that hurt us.  If we can not forgive, we will not be able to have a godly marriage.  

       Forgiveness is clearing the record of the wrongs committed against us.  This word is a powerful tool that can set people free.  It not only sets the people free who receive the  forgiveness, but also the one who forgives.  Bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness eats away at our souls, minds, and bodies.  It can make us sick physically, emotionally and spiritually.  When we hold grudges, we are holding back the very gift Jesus gave us on the cross.


 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. ~ Ephesians 4:32

     Do you know that when we fail to forgive, there are consequences?  Jesus says in  Matthew 6:14-15 ~ For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.  This means that if we do not forgive, we can not be forgiven.  SERIOUS CONSEQUENCE!   I don't know about you but that verse speaks loud and clear to me.  I am responsible for my part (forgiving) and my husband is responsible for his part.  I can not allow unforgiveness to fester in my heart.  I must forgive quickly and completely.  

      Can you think of some  issues in your marriage now or in the past, that you need to forgive?  Let's sit down today and pray about this.  We do not want to allow unforgiveness to keep us from what the Lord has for us.  We must also remember true forgiveness  disregards any thoughts of revenge.

    Okay now that we are getting unforgiveness out of our marriages, we need to get it out of our homes as well.   How do we teach this character quality to our children?  There are many times in a day, where your child will feel like he or she has been offended or hurt in some way.  Sit down with them and explain this quality of forgiveness.  Explain that Jesus forgave us even while we were sinners. Look up Romans 5:8 together. Give them examples of times you have forgiven others.  We need to make sure they understand that revenge and retaliation is wrong.  Holding a grudge is not something Jesus would have us do.  

 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. ~ Romans 12:19

I love Matthew West's song Forgiveness.  These are some powerful words.