Friday, December 13, 2013

Merry Christmas!

My loves!





Yep, this about sums up the shoot.  :)
It took us two days, and lots of pictures.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Halloween 2013

Here is a family picture from a party we attended yesterday.  Probably the only group picture we'll get this year.  :)  The kids picked our theme... Angry Birds (phone game, for those of you who don't know!):  Dad - Black Bomb Bird, Meredith - Pink Star Wars Bird, Michael - Big Red Bird, Jonathan - Yellow Bird, Mom - Pig (the "bad guys"), Benjamin - Little Light Blue Bird.

(Click for larger picture)

Monday, September 16, 2013

Why We Want to Homeschool...

I just love this article I found about why this family homeschools... I think it's pretty accurate for us as well.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

First Day of School 2013-2014

September 2, 2013

All 4 kids facing the camera!  Just ignore the dirt, lol.

Benjamin - Just excited to be in a picture!  :)

Jonathan - Pre-school/Pre-Kindy

Michael - 2nd Grade

Meredith - 1st Grade


Meredith's kindergarten graduation card.  :)  It's a little late, but I'm mailing them out in the next week or so.  

Stationery Card
View the entire collection of cards.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Mini Update

Yay!  Soccer camp is over!  We've survived a couple of crazy weeks and are NOT leaving the house this week.  The kids really enjoyed the camp, but I am exhausted.  :)  Our focus this week is on resting and resetting our schedule.  School is back in session, chores are back on schedule, sleep schedules are being reset... Mommy is happy.
Picasa is updated (except for my phone pictures, which I just remembered - grrr).

Meredith and Coach Sophie

Michael and Coach Jordan

Jonathan - very sad he isn't old enough to participate

Benjamin - happily mooching food and trying not to overheat

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Creek Photoshoot


Well, despite homeschooling year-round, we seem to have fallen into a traditional summer schedule.  I truly do not know how families maintain this level of busy for any length of time.  The kids and I are rapidly spiraling into insanity, lol.

Let's see, so far we have gone strawberry picking and made strawberry jam; made yogurt, and strawberry yogurt; made lard, sauteed pork belly, made cracklings, and have pork skin in the freezer ready to made into pork rinds.  Meanwhile, we're still, mostly, keeping up with school and the kids are spending lots of time playing with the neighbor kids.

Last week we visited Grandpa & Grandma in York while we planned for Katie's wedding.  The kids had tons of fun playing in the lake... I think they're all part fish!

This week Michael and Meredith are participating in a soccer camp.  The camp is very well-run and organized and the kids are having a blast and learning a lot!  Jonathan is quite upset that he is not old enough to play.  We've also got several afternoon activities this week that just makes it even more hectic.

Chris & I are following a Paleo/Primal diet now, which we really like.  So I've been learning to cook some new things too.  We tried jicama this week and tonight we're having a turnip mash (as a potato substitute).  My Pinterest "Yummy" board is full of the new things we've been eating, or planning to try.  For more questions as to why we've chosen this diet, feel free to contact Chris, haha!

The rest of the summer includes a visit from Granddaddy & Grandma Hall, Meredith's 5th (!!!) birthday, a trip to Florida to visit Great-grandparents and the beach, birthday parties with friends, blueberry picking with subsequent blueberry cooking, a whole host of playdates, and who knows what else will be added later!

School schedule:  Meredith is in the last quarter of Kindergarten, so the plan is to be finished before her birthday.  Jonathan is very excited to do "school stuff" during our lessons, so he's been working with the pattern blocks, farm animal counting/sorting/etc shapes, and now has some cool new alphabet bean bags.  The older two have been teaching him letters, shapes, and numbers every chance they get!  Michael is doing 1st grade review and summer bridge activities until Meredith finishes.  I am looking forward to having them on the same schedule soon.  Michael will also be formally enrolling in our cover school this year.

Pictures - Picasa might be updated soon, or not, lol.  It's definitely on my list though!  I'm going to post some pictures in a separate post from our creek photo shoot last month.  :)

Love to you all!  And thanks for putting up with the sporadic nature of my posting.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Happy Birthday, Michael!

My little baby is growing up!!!  I cannot believe how quickly Michael has grown.  I am so proud and blessed to be his Mom.  
Michael decided that he didn't want a party this year and would rather go out to dinner as a family.  So, we decided to let him have an entire day of fun... 
We went to a small farm (where this picture was taken).  They got to see goats, baby goats, sheep, baby sheep, and chicks.  They were able to pet the chicks and one of the adult goats.  The babies were mostly afraid of all the children, but one baby goat was bottle-fed, so was used to people.  The owners let the kids feed the baby, which was very cool!  
After the farm, Michael got to choose where we went for lunch.  He decided on Mei-Wei, an Asian place, where they got "chicken and rice."  Which is sesame chicken, carrots, broccoli, and brown rice.  
Next it was time to head home for naps for the babies.  Michael decided he would like to spend nap time playing Super Mario on the Nintendo with Dad.  So, they did that for about 2 hours.  (Meredith and Mom got to spend the time out front pulling weeds and riding bikes; we also enjoyed that!)
Once the boys woke up, it was time to decide on dinner... The Peanut Place (Logan's) won a closely debated contest.  
Back home again for presents and cake.  All-in-all, Michael decided that he had a great time, but next year, would like to have a party, "with all of my friends."  

In other news, I finally updated the rest of the Picasa albums, with the exception of this weekend's pictures, which are still on the camera/phone.  
Michael did finish 1st Grade, so he's on his end-of-year break... can't really call it a Summer Break, since we'll probably be starting back sometime beginning of summer.  :P  

Thursday, April 4, 2013


So, Benjamin is definitely walking and running now.  :)  He hardly ever crawls anymore, which is great, but also a little sad.  He has 4 teeth now and is working on several more.
Jonathan is learning words like crazy.  He can talk super well and is getting better every day.  He's actually working on counting... apparently Michael and Meredith have been teaching him when I'm not looking because Chris and I heard him count, accurately, to 12!!!  Now, he can't do that every time or anything, but it was pretty exciting that day.  :)
Meredith is over a quarter through official Kindergarten (she's been calling her Pre-K, kindergarten) and is doing quite well too.  She can read anything with short vowels and most silent-e and "oo" words.  She has her addition facts through 5 memorized as well.
Michael finishes First Grade this week (wow, did I really just say that?!?!).  I am super pleased with how he's doing.  We'll be taking a pretty long break before starting 2nd... I did not push memorizing his math facts enough, so we'll be doing a review session and lots of flash cards.  He's also going to be re-reading the books he read this year both as practice and as a demonstration to himself as to how much he's improved.

If anyone is interested, here's a link to the curriculum company we use... Memoria Press.  I absolutely love it and the kids are doing so well with it.  Feel free to click through it to see what we're doing each year!  Note that we have not done their Pre-K package as it just came out, but we've used parts of it and are quite likely to use it with Jonathan/Benjamin.

Picasa has been updated for Michael, Meredith, and the All Kids folders.  Still working on Jonathan and Benjamin.  I think Picasa has changed to Google+, but it should still work the same.  Let me know if you run into any problems!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

He did it!

Benjamin took his first steps tonight!  Out of nowhere, he just started walking toward me.  First try = 1 step, Second try = 3 steps, Third try = about 6 steps.  :)  Then he quit, haha!  Super excited for him since we thought he wouldn't walk before his birthday as he hasn't shown much interested in trying before tonight.

Sorry about the blurry picture... trying to find a recent one and this phone one from a few days ago is the best I've got for now.  Uploading new pics to Picasa is on my list for this week/weekend; we'll see if it happens.  :)