Just Being Us

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

Thursday, July 30, 2020


Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

     For years I have been trying to find an online Science curriculum, and I am so thankful that we have had the opportunity to receive and review Experience Biology: Upper Level  from Journey Homeschool Academy  I have been really impressed with the program so far.  It is informative, but not boring.  Luke and Trish Gilkerson are an amazing duo that really knows how to teach Science in a way that is fun and educational.  Luke is the teacher throughout the videos we have watched and Trish is the writer of the curriculum.  Both are an asset to the online teaching community!!! I also love that fact that is Bible-based!!!!

     Our son Josh is 15 and entering the 11th grade.  Experience Biology: Upper Level has been a perfect fit for him.  When you sign up, you will be asked to set up a profile for your student where he or she will be logging on to take the classes.  This particular class has 34 lessons ranging from What is Biology to an Introduction to Ecology.  Your student will begin with an introduction by Luke and Trish and from there on they will begin their course.  Each week they will watch videos, be encouraged to read a chapter or 2 from a book I will tell you about later, take a quiz,  answer a few research questions, and complete a lab project. So simple!!


  As a parent, you will be responsible for printing the pdf files your child will need, buying the lab supplies, and if you choose you will also buy the book The Riot and the DanceIf you do not wish to print all the materials needed you can also purchase the Student Lab Guide and Student Guidebook from their store online.  We chose to print out our books to save a little money since we have a good printer that is not expensive to print on.  

     Josh has been enjoying the classes.  He isn't one to sit still for long periods of time, so I am always apprehensive when it comes to online classes, but these are only about 30 minutes in length for each one and Luke keeps your attention, so this a great fit for Josh.  I think what Josh enjoys most is the lab sessions.  He has always learned well through hands-on activities.  


       If you are concerned about teaching upper-level Science classes like I was, and you want a great resource that will teach your child Biology in a unique way, these classes are for you!!!  Would you like to learn more about this class and more?  I would encourage you to go check out their website along with their social media pages listed below:

     We also have more reviews for this program and others over on the Homeschool Review Crew website.  Just click the link below ๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡

Experience Biology: Elementary Level, Upper Level and Experience Astronomy: Elementary {Journey Homeschool Academy Reviews}

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Homeschool Review Crew: CTCMath

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

     Good morning! Today I want to tell you all about our experience with CTCMath. We were given the one-year subscription of the 12- Month Family Membership to review this time, and as always, it is such a blessing for our family.  This is our 3rd year using CTCMath as our full-time math curriculum, and we love it!!! 

     As a homeschooling mom, I have always had anxiety when it came to teaching high school math subjects like Geometry, Calculus, Algebra 2, and Trigonometry.  With CTCMath, I don't have to worry.  They are an Australian based company that teaches math lessons through videos. Their courses range from Kindergarten to 12th grade. They provide quality lessons for our children to learn what they need to know in a way that they will remember.
Here is what they offer:
  • Video Tutorials
  • Interactive Questions
  • Worksheets and Solutions
  • Reports of the Students Progress

     We have 1 student using the program right now, but Hope will be joining him in the Fall. Josh is doing Geometry right now. He is doing very well.  He enjoys the videos and love the fact they can work at their own pace. I love that CTCMath keeps records of their classes and grades and sends me progress reports.  If you are not sure what class your child belongs in, they have diagnostic testing to help you put them right where they belong. 

Here are examples of the Progress Report and Grading Level Certificates that Josh is getting:

     This program can be done independently or you can sit with your child as they watch the videos and complete the lessons. I like that children can watch the videos over and over again until they understand the concept being taught.  After each video, they are given questions to answer.  You can print the questions and tests, but we prefer to save paper and ink, so we do what we can from looking at our computer screens only using paper to work through steps of an equation, then entering our answers into the computer where they will be graded immediately. If you miss any, you can go over them and try again.  On the teachers' side of the program, you also have the answers to pull up at any time if needed.

     I have personally sat down with Josh to see how the program works and I have to say that I have learned quite a bit from the videos.  The lessons are thorough and they make sure each concept is taught and understood before going on to a new one. 

     CTCMath has been a lifesaver for our family and we are looking forward to learning more as we continue with the lessons.  

     It has been so nice not having to argue with my kids when it's time to do the math.  Josh is no longer complaining about his lessons. Some days it was like pulling teeth to get him to do his math work, but now he is actually enjoying each session.   I have been thrilled to see his progress and his grades have been great.  Compared to other math programs we have tried, this one seems to be the best fit for our family.  I am so excited to have another free year to use it, and  I know for a fact we will continue are subscription beyond the free year.   I am no longer anxious when it comes to math class and that is a good feeling. 

     Would you like to learn more about this program? I encourage you to look over their website CTCMath or check out their social media pages: 


      We also have more reviews for you, just click on the link below

From Kindy to Calculus CTCMath 12-month Family membership {CTCMath Reviews}

Friday, July 17, 2020

Le'ts Dig Deeper into Titus

     The book of Titus is a small but very important book for believers to study.  I have read through it  a few times and each time I see new things that God is trying to teach me.  A while back I made a little study guide for me and a few women to use to help us study this book and today I want to share it with you. What I love about the S.O.A.P. method for studying the Bible is that all ages can be involved, so you can study this book with your children. 

     In these three chapters, we see the qualifications for choosing leaders in our churches.  We need to be very careful about who we put in places of leadership and these requirements mentioned here, will help us choose wisely.  We are also warned to stay away from those who are trying to deceive others and to turn towards those who are teaching sound doctrine.  

     My favorite verse is Titus 2:11, For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people.  Here we see that God's grace will bring salvation to all those who believe in Him.  As the chapter goes on, we see that God will change us as we obey Him and turn from sin.   It is such a powerful book of the Bible and one we should read often to remind ourselves of how we should live godly lives even when others are not.  

      Towards the end of chapter three, we are told that God's salvation through our faith in Him will bring us eternal life.  How awesome is that!!!   We serve such a great God who loves us and wants us to be with Him.  I want to serve Him because He loves me and my obedience to Him shows Him my love.  

     I encourage you to take your time to read through each verse and allow God to change your life as you do.  He wants to instruct us through the teachings in His Word, we just need to take time to read it everyday.  It is life changing!!!!

     Below is the link to the study guide.  I pray it is a blessing to you.


Friday, July 10, 2020

How Do You Begin Your Homeschool Day?

     How do you begin your day? Do you have a morning routine?  In our home, I have noticed that our days go much better if we begin with good habits right from the start of our day.  I think it's important to stay on track so we don't waste a lot of precious time.  

     Normally I get up around 5 or 5:30 so I can spend time with the Lord, see my husband off to work, and get some work done before getting the kids up.  I use to get my kids up early, but that wasn't working for them or for me.  They are night owls and I am an early bird. They would be grumpy when woken up too early and that would make me grouchy as well, so waiting to get them up while I get some quiet time is best for our family.  

     When I wake my kiddos up at 8, they head downstairs to eat breakfast.  After eating they begin their morning checklists.  These checklists consist of personal devotions, making beds, cleaning up their bedrooms, feeding pets, and getting ready for the day by brushing their teeth, combing their hair, and getting dressed.  After they complete these tasks we head back downstairs to start school.  It's a system that works well for our family. 

      Beginning next Monday, we are going to be changing things a bit.  Typically we begin school with Bible class, but I want to make it more than just a class.  I want to really focus on studying God's Word and praying together as a family.  I want to spend more time seeking Him and not letting it become just a part of our routine.  I believe our time with Jesus sets the atmosphere for our entire school day.  If we allow Him to lead us, everything else will fall into place.  

     Once our Bible time is finished we begin working on the rest of our agenda for the day.  It's not a rigid schedule, but instead a list of things we want to finish before the end of the school day. We try to finish before 3 or so.  

     I love being able to homeschool and spend time with my kids, but if we didn't find a groove that worked for us, our days would be very hectic. Finding a good routine is key to having a peaceful home when you are together day in and day out. Be flexible yet consistent.  

     I would love to hear from you.  How do you do things in your home?  




Thursday, July 9, 2020


Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

     Our family has been using resources from Progeny Press for a few years now.  We were so happy to be chosen to receive and review the e-guide Animal Farm Study Guide from them a few weeks ago and we have been using it to understand and discuss the book Animal Farm written by George Orwell.  


     These study guides are easy to download and print.  You can print them for all your students but are not allowed to share them with others.  This company works hard to make quality resources.  I love that they let you print copies for other students in your classroom or home.  It is more than fair.  

     The Animal Farm Study Guide is about 72 pages long. This particular guide is geared towards grades 9-12, but my daughter who is entering 8th grade soon enjoyed it.  The guide includes: 
  • About the Study Guide Author
  • Note to Instructor
  • Synopsis
  • About the Novel's Author
  • Background Information
  • Optional Prereading Activities
  • Chapter 1-2
  • Chapter 3-4
  • Chapter 5-6
  • Chapter 7
  • Chapter 8 
  • Chapter 9
  • Chapter 10
  • Overview
  • Optional Essays and Projects
  • Additional Resources
     Your purchase will also include an Answer Key in a separate download,  that will provide you as the teacher/parent with all the answers to the vocabulary, character studies, comprehension questions, and overall discussion questions. 

     In our home, we are on summer break, but we love to read and discuss books even though we are doing it informally.  We used this study guide as more of a discussion time after we read chapters of the book. We did use the vocabulary section more in-depth because I feel spelling and vocabulary are very important and there were quite a few words listed that my kiddos didn't know.  

     Our favorite part of the study guide was analogous to the characters, places, and events.  We had a good time researching and talking about each one.  One example is how Napoleon, the pig in the story, was modeled after Joseph Stalin.  Napoleon didn't like to talk much but always wanted his own way.  He not only got rid of his competition, but he also ruled as a dictator on the farm.  

     I love how this study guide and their others really bring up some interesting conversations and give us a deeper look into the book.  Progeny Press really knows how to make a book come alive.  You are learning so much as you read each book they provide study guides for.  It helps you comprehend more of the story and what the author is trying to say through his writings. 

     Would you like to learn more about Progeny Press ?  I would encourage you to check out their website and social media pages listed below:

We also have more reviews of this product and others over on the Homeschool Review Crew website.  Just click the image below๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡

Study Guides for Literature - A New Coat for Anna, In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson, My Side of the Mountain, Animal Farm & Little Women {Progeny Press Reviews}