Balanced by Tricia Goyer, a Review

 Book Reviews, Faith, family, Homekeeping, homeschooling  Comments Off on Balanced by Tricia Goyer, a Review
Mar 112014
 

In accordance with the FTC, I was given a copy of Balanced by Tricia Goyer for review as part of her launch team. All opinions are mine and mine alone, no other compensation was received.

I am a stay at home mom. My days are spent homeschooling the girls, keeping up the house and wondering how in the world it is the end of the day already and it seems I have gotten nothing accomplished. I have dreams of several big projects that have been swimming in my head for several years now. This blog being one of them. Yet, it seems that when I sit and work on my dreams, the house falls apart, the girls need something right that minute, and the doubts come creeping in that maybe my dreams really don’t matter. Then things seem to settle down in our lives (can we say the last year and a half has been super chaotic at times?) and I make plans to start working on my dreams and another surprise comes down the pike at full speed.

Tricia Goyer wrote Balanced to show that it is possible to live out the dreams that God has placed in your life while being a mom (and homeschooling), a wife, volunteer and living the life we are called to. She makes no bones about it being easy, but lays out the foundations for us women who work at home in any capacity to show us that with the proper attitude and priority we can get more done. This book is centered on faith and being grounded in God and how everything else stems from there.

Be encouraged, you can work from home successfully as a super busy wife and mother. It isn’t some elusive dream that is unattainable until you finally drop your last child off at college. My girls are 7 and 6 now, they are in the super hands-on stage of homeschooling for me, I have a house to take care of, meals to cook, groceries to buy, and in October a new baby to add to the mix. I know the journey towards the fulfillment of the dreams God has given me will never be easy. It will always be easier to just put it off until later. But later never comes. Balanced has given me the hope that even though life keeps happening, there is still time for dreams I have in my heart.

Grab yourself a copy of this book if you are wondering how in the world you can get anything done with your life. You will be so glad you did. This book blessed me beyond words and it will do the same for you.

Homeschooling Mommy Encouragement Giveaway!

 family, Giveaways, homeschooling  Comments Off on Homeschooling Mommy Encouragement Giveaway!
Feb 112014
 

Being a homeschooling mom can be tough. For example, this morning the Bugs didn’t want to do the entirety of her math assignment. She tried convincing me that she only needed to do the front page of her work, or she would be doing two lessons. There was crying, wailing and gnashing of teeth on her part. This afternoon is also her turn to go to Grandma’s house to hang out (on Tuesdays, Grandma comes and takes one of the girls typically out to eat and over to her house to hang out). So, she was told that unless she did all of her assigned work, and stopped carrying on, she would have to call Grandma and tell her that Beans was going to be going to with her today instead so she could stay home and finish her assignments. Her math work was done in record time, no more complaining and it was all done correctly instead of her usual “I was in a hurry” mistakes. Yeah, homeschooling is just like parenting is, it isn’t for wimps, but it is so worth it.

The Ultimate Homeschooling Mommy Encouragement Giveaway!

How would you like to win a prize package full of encouragement just for you? This giveaway is brought to you by the Great Waters Press Launch team for Hal and Melanie Young’s wonderful new book, My Beloved and My Friend! (Created for Home is not affiliated with any of the providers of these prizes). All you have to do is go to the Rafflecopter form (if it isn’t automatically showing up, click the hyperlink for it) and fill it out! Simple as that!

While you are here, what is the best resource that you have found to gain encouragement as a homeschooling mom?

For this giveaway, we have a sweet collection of prizes sure to inspire and rejuvenate Homeschooling Moms!

Molly Green Membership from The Old Schoolhouse
Schoolhouse Expo Ticket from The Old Schoolhouse
2014 Annual Print Edition of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine from The Old Schoolhouse
Your Child’s Profession of Faith from Grace and Truth Books
31 Days in Psalm 37 form Doorposts
Seasons At Home Magazine One Year Subscription from A Joyous Home
Training and Correcting Hearts with Scripture from The Character Corner
Learning to Treasure God’s Word: A study of Psalm 119 from The Character Corner

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Reading Eggs, a Mosaics Review!

 homeschooling, Reviews  Comments Off on Reading Eggs, a Mosaics Review!
Feb 042014
 

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I have two very different ¬†children. One who fights me on phonics work. And I mean it can be a knock out, dragged kicking and screaming fight some days. I think part of the issues we have is because I let myself get pressured into trying to teach her how to read when she was still a toddler and wasn’t ready for it. Me pushing her to fast has come back and bitten us in the rear end numerous times. She has herself convinced she can’t read, so if she doesn’t get something right the first time, she gives up.

My other child is very laid back towards reading. She likes things to be fun. At least her version of fun. She loves computer games and movies.

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I was very excited to get to try Reading Eggs with both of my children. And they were both super excited to try a fun computer game. Reading Eggs was designed for children ages 3-13.

I had them each take the placement test so they could start where they were ready. I do need to warn you, the youngest didn’t want to take the placement test, so she did purposefully miss enough to get it over with. She was started on a level about 15/20 below where she should have been. She was claimed she was bored taking the test and wanted to go play (she’s 5). She then breezed through many levels of Reading Eggs in one day and is now to where it is starting to be a bit more of a challenge. The eldest started at about where she really is in her phonics journey due to test placement. She didn’t try to get it over with like her sister did.

They both enjoy playing the games on Reading Eggs. It presents new concepts in a fun and playful way, and at the end of each lesson (various activities through each stop on the map) they get a new character to hatch who says a rhyme. They get so excited to see who is being hatched next.

Since we started with our trial of Reading Eggs, I have noticed both girls just reading things in public way more than they used to. In fact, it is more organic with their reading signs, boxes at the grocery store, seeing random things out in public. They just blurt out the words they see and think nothing of their new skill. When asked how they knew what it was they just blurted out, they say amazed, I just read that! They don’t even realize they are reading things, just going ahead and doing it (which is a HUGE thing for my eldest who always even resisted trying to read things because she knew she would fail. She just is doing it now without the pressure she was putting on herself, and the transformation has been wonderful.)

I like how fun they think Reading Eggs is. I also like how after we got through the very simple assessment, and after I sat with them for a few lessons to make sure they understood what to do, I can walk off and make a cup of tea or work on another subject with the child not on the computer. It has helped me to balance my time between the girls and their very different educational needs. And I will also admit, having them do some school work online has also allowed me to get the housework done a bit better through the day (dusting in the living room, quickly cleaning the toilet) as I do not have to sit there coaching them through the whole process. It has given me some time for other tasks (even taking a shower, which us homeschool moms know can be quite a treat to get during the day) while not ignoring their education. I’m not advocating leaving them to their devices on this, but it doesn’t take as much supervision to use this program after they get acclimated so you can get a few other things done, yet still being available to help. It is fostering their independence which is a big thing, especially for our youngest.

I love how it emails me with a child report after a child gets through certain markers in the program so I know where each child is in their learning without having to go digging around in the program itself.

Reading Eggs Read to Cure Challenge Badge

Right now, Reading Eggs is partnering with the National Children’s Cancer Society for a Read to a Cure. Each person who signs up for a free trial of Reading Eggs (a 5 week trial) will have a dollar donated to the NCCS. The trial is risk-free and you don’t need a payment method for it either, so you have nothing to lose if you want to try it. Children can also earn prizes during the Read to a Cure event. Check it out!¬†¬†(new customers only for the trial)

You can find Reading Eggs on their:

Website

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

PINTEREST

YOUTUBE

and their BLOG

To see what others had to say about their experience with Reading Eggs, check out the REVIEWS at Home and School Mosaics!

Typecrush-A Mosaics Review

 curriculum, family, homeschooling, MosaicReviews  Comments Off on Typecrush-A Mosaics Review
Aug 092013
 

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My husband and I love word games. When we got married we would have tournaments involving a popular word board game and come up with all sorts of themes, rules and variations to play.

Then we were blessed with two vibrant active children and our game times were all but eliminated. We just didn’t have the time to drag out a game board and spend a few hours playing together like we used to. And when we do have the time, we were too exhausted to put forth the effort.

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Recently, we heard about Typecrush. Typecrush is a word game like none other. Each letter is color coded according to it’s frequency of use in the English language. The tiles are circular and there is no game board. Pretty much the only rule is that whomever solves the word gets to lay down the next word. Someone decides on a word, lays it out upside down and the opponent guesses what the word is, the color of the tiles helps to determine what letters were used. The rest of the game is totally up to the players.

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Aimed for ages about 7 and up, but you can easily adapt it for younger children. And what is even better, is that you can play with however many people you want. Giant fun game hangman style? Do it! (that will really get the kids going!) Want to keep score? Figure out your own scoring system. When HubbaHubba and I played we scored it like a game of golf in reverse. Length of word was what you could score, each wrong letter guess got a point taken off. If you guessed the word with letters yet to be flipped, those were worth two points each. You can score it any way you want if you are into that sort of thing yourself. Or even use pennies to keep track of score, or small candies.

HubbaHubba and I also chose a few themes that we had to base our words on when we played. One night it was all words that you could associate with marriage. You can choose any theme you want, or no theme at all. What about going through and using it to reinforce your childrens’ spelling or vocabulary words? The options are as limited as your ideas.

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I am so looking forward to using Typecrush in our homeschool this year. It will add a fun new dimension to our spelling lessons! Very hands-on, great for the kinestetic learner in your group. Who said spelling is only boring repetitious drills? It isn’t with Typecrush!

I absolutely love how adaptable this game is for different playing styles, educationally, and even for different abled individuals. I have never seen such an open ended, full of possibilities game as this before. It is an extremely welcome addition not just for our school, but also for fun family game nights, and time spent laughing with HubbaHubba after our two little sweetums are tucked into bed. Each time we’ve played it, we’ve played it differently. I am normally a rules oriented person (gee, I’m not a first born am I?) but I have found the fun in chucking the “rules” when playing this game.

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You can find Typecrush at their WEBSITE, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM, and PINTEREST. The game can be purchased online from Typecrush for $25.00 currently with free shipping. You can’t go to a movie as a family for that price anymore, and this will bring way more long term fun and enjoyment.

To see what others had to say about Typecrush, go visit Mosaic Reviews and read what they did with the game!

Leap Frog Stationary Products, a Mosaics Review

 homeschooling, MosaicReviews, Reviews  Comments Off on Leap Frog Stationary Products, a Mosaics Review
Aug 062013
 

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The Beans hates to work on her math. I am probably safe to say that math is her absolute least favorite subject at this point. At the end of last school year, she would start to cry when it was math time.

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Imagine my utter shock and surprise when she started asking to do her math with the Leap Frog products that are now available from Mega Brands America.

The new Leap Frog products by Mega Brands America are what Beans needed to not be terrified of math apparently. We received the workbooks for the K/1st age range, and these were right at where she was in math at the end of last year. The work book is engaging and has short segments per page, the flash cards are easy to use (and notched on one corner so you know which side you’ve done), they have a great rewards chart system that you can totally customize with the goals you set for your wee learner and what child in the kindergarten age can resist write off dry erase work? I couldn’t pry the math and the handwriting dry erase boards out of the Beans’ hands for days after our package arrived in the mail. In fact, she took them with her everywhere, so proud she was of her “homework.” We lost the first dry erase marker and did have to go out and buy another set. After I replaced the markers, it was several more days before she would put her homework down.

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Mega Brands America produces stationary such as this geared to reinforce what your child is learning and makes it fun. You can find the Leap Frog products in with the stationary and writing utensils at many mass retailers (Wal-Mart, Target, JoAnns, OfficeMax, Michaels and Toys R Us) with a recommended MSRP of .99 to 24.99 for ages three and up, so you will be able to find something in your price range for your little scholar. To see what other’s had to say about this product, go visit Mosaic Reviews!

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