Eggs and Hearts

My four-year-old boy KJ is fun! He is rough and smart and… destructive. He often leaves a trail of broken toys, trinkets, and household items in his wake. He breaks things for different reasons. To see how they are made. Out of frustration or retaliation. Even just to see what the consequence will be.

I am trying to raise kind, compassionate, mindful children which meant I needed to address this issue. I needed to teach my son that not only was this action unappreciative it was also unkind and hurtful. These actions could have unforeseen consequences for both himself and others. While praying for wisdom concerning this manner God answered my prayer in the form of an idea.

So I went to work soft boiling a half dozen eggs. I wanted the eggs to be messy when broken but cooked enough so the kids wouldn’t get sick if ingested. I handed KJ one cooked egg and said,

“This egg is mine, it is very important to me. Please take care of it. If you break it there will be consequences. I don’t want it to get hurt so please be careful.”

The first egg broke within fifteen minutes. I explained that this was my egg and I was sad that it was broken. He cleaned up his mess, then he was put in time out for 3 minutes. I gave him a new egg and repeated the speech.

“This egg is mine, it is very important to me. Please take care of it. If you break it there will be consequences. I don’t want it to get hurt so please be careful.”

The next time around he lasted 30 minutes and this time when the egg broke it made a huge mess and left a trail of egg in his wake. He came to me crying (by now he understood the consequence that came with the broken egg. He tried to explain but I stopped him, reminding him that the egg was in his care and it was really important that he protect it. I told him,

“When we break other peoples things sometimes it affects other people too. Your sisters can not walk over here until we get this cleaned up, no one can sit in the chair we just cleaned until it dries. Our decisions sometimes have unforeseen circumstances.”

The time after that he held on to the egg for an hour. Each time he took more and more care of my egg. By bedtime, he held the egg close carefully aware of AR (19 mos.) and SJ (6). He was learning his lesson. So was I. See peoples hearts are like these soft-boiled eggs.

Wither in friendship or romance when one opens their heart they are saying,

“This heart is mine, it is very important to me. Please take care of it. If you break it there will be consequences. I don’t want it to get hurt so please be careful.”

I am so proud of my little guy and I pray that I am as careful with hearts as he has learned to be with soft-boiled eggs.

The Great Homeschool Convention Review

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This year I had the pleasure of going to the Great Homeschooling Convention in Texas. It was amazing! There are so many things I want to share, so I’m going to break it up by days.

Day 1

On Thursday the 15th my mom and I get to the convention center and start to set up. I have to be honest I was overwhelmed. I did not realize how many vendors would be there. I also did not realize how elaborate some of these booths would be. They were amazing! Some booths had a setup that allowed you to walk into the convention center and look up and see their advertisements or displays right away.

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I was feeling a little anxious and inadequate. So we dropped all of our boxes off with our product and run to the Dollar Tree to find stuff to pretty up my vendor table. The doors open and they one of this convention there are so many people. The very first hour is young white kid about 16 years old comes over to our table grabs one of our shirts explain to us what the one drop rule is historically and then dives into Acts 17:26.

I was so impressed by this kid and his parents who have homeschooled him because they are awesome! Of course, he ends up buying a shirt later on in the convention but this was just an example of the bright future of homeschooling.

 

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Running a booth was a little intimidating because I’m not really a salesperson, so it was hard to deal with some people avoiding the booth altogether because they don’t want to be sold anything and then other people being weary, wondering what we’re about and gauging whether or not my brand represented what they believed or who they are. I wanted to yell, “Hey guys! I’m nice I promise.” Thankfully most of the interactions at my booth were positive. However, going forward I will be a much nicer, engaging, consumer to booth owners when I am just an attendee at these kinds of things.

Day 2

I came into the convention center on Friday the 16th feeling really confident. I knew what to expect from the types of people that were at the homeschooling convention and I was really excited to engage with people again. This is also the day where I caught my first class called Integrating Cultural Diversity using Homeschool Curriculum you Already Have.

This class was so much fun! We didn’t have a huge turnout but I really felt like there were the exact people there that God wanted in that class. The presentation part of the class was about 45 minutes. During the last 15 minutes of the class, we made some activities that I will add to the site this week. During the craft time we discussed race, multiracial families, resources for different cultures, and exploring different cultures; it was a whole lot of fun.

I will be creating cultural book list and posting them to this blog in the upcoming weeks just to share some of the books that we have read and some of the books I plan to integrate into our library this year.

Day 2 I sold out of all of my books! I was really nervous but thank God I was next to a booth with an established author Aaron and Joyce Kook. They’d run into this issue before in their many years of writing and selling books and simply encouraged me to set up a form and allow people to direct order the books.

I follow their advice and continued to sell books throughout the day. I learned that support can be found anywhere. Those women in my class on Cultural Diversity really connected with me. I felt like they were rooting for me and that gave me a lot of confidence and a great feeling of support. They inspired the creation of this shirt.

Day 3

My mom and I got into the convention center and right away we had people at our table asking questions about our book. Since I’d sold out of the book I converted half my table into an activity station so children could recreate the activities we made in the cultural awareness class.

We got a lot of great feedback and interaction at our booth and at 11:30 that morning I went and taught my class titled Emotional Intelligence for Teens. This class had a great turnout. You can check the class out here.

The feedback I received from the class really warmed my heart. People felt like they’d received tools, to help them strengthen their emotional resolve, improve their communication skills, and live a more fulfilled life. I had people find me after the class to talk to me about the things they’d learned and I had people in tears, come and talk to me about how just what they’d read in the first part of my book, touched them. You can pick up your copy of the book here.

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All in all, it was an amazing experience I cannot wait to go to the Great Homeschooling Convention in Ontario this June. If you are in the area I highly recommend you get tickets the classes the curriculum vendors, the wealth of information will be well worth it.

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H & M and Our response

 

Every so often, too often, headlines break as the world is in shock and horror because someone allowed a racially insensitive ad to go into publication. It got through at the very least hundreds of people without being successfully flagged or called out for racial insensitivity.

We’ve heard it once, we’ve heard it a thousand times. The company is really sorry and they mean no harm. The solution to there not being enough representation in the first place to stop these shenanigans is for black people to create and sell their own products. We need to be our own voice and stop being surprised when different voices misrepresent us.

With that being said, we turned this upset into an opportunity. We want to teach our kids to see the world differently and one way we do that is by giving them some control over the narrative of their lives. So we created a shirt for our brand. This sentiment is true for my babies and it is something we are all proud of.

We used teespring.com to design our shirts. I like teespring.com because it is really easy to use. I even told the kids I would post their ideas or artwork for sale so they can share it with our huge family. The campaigns are short but this is a great way to introduce your children to e-commerce and to encourage them to create media rather than follow it.

Check out our shirts they will be available until Monday 1/15/18. If we get enough feedback we will continue to make them available for purchase. I hope you like them and if you make one of your own drop the link below so we can support. Let’s not count on others to represent us, let’s represent ourselves.

Much love!

Waterbead Experiment

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Have you heard about water beads? These things grow about 20 times their size and they are seriously addictive. Well, I got some, for the kids, and turned it into a learning experience. The word of the day was “absorb” watch our video below then read through our critical thinking questions.

 

Questions

  1. What does absorb mean?
  2. What do you think will happen to the dry water bead once we add water?
  3. *Remove bead from water at 4, 6, and 8 hours
  4. Which bead is biggest? Why?
  5. Which bead is smallest? Why?
  6. Put the beads in order from the least amount of water held to the most amount of water held.
  7. Name three things that absorb.
  8. Name three things that do not absorb.

This is an experiment we will visit again as the kids get older it would be a great way to teach permeation! Let us know how it goes!

Primary Color Lab

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My kid’s favorite way to learn is through touch. They love to build, create, and destroy so this lab was a great way to teach them about primary colors and how they are used to create other colors. So I grabbed some red, yellow, and blue craft paint some paper and a brush. We headed outside and got to painting. You can watch the video below and get some critical thinking questions for your littles.

Questions

  1. What are primary colors?
  2. What do red and yellow make?
  3. Red and blue?
  4. Yellow and blue?
  5. What are secondary colors
  6. Create a secondary color formula ___+_____=

If you try this activity let us know below!

6 Steps to Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy

Every now and then I go through these spells where I feel completely inadequate. I feel my job as a mom is not enough and I get the itch to find gratification outside of my home. This isn’t a bad thing in and of itself except when it causes me to lose sleep, act grouchy and be an all-around buzz kill. I compare myself to the perfect mom in my dreams, I water my weeds as they choke the life out of me.

I’m human, I feel things but I don’t stay there. How do I get through this?

  1. Identify the Trigger – For me, the trigger usually changes or rather uncertainty. The anticipation of change but the uncertainty of time. Basically, planning something big but not knowing when it will happen and not being able to stop it. 2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!
  2. Honesty- I am honest with myself and at least one other person about how I feel. Usually, I have to talk through my feelings so I do it with someone that allows me to backtrack and overexplain all while asking probing questions. Ephesians 4:25 25 Therefore, putting away lying, Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,”[a] for we are members of one another.
  3. Forgiveness – I have made decisions that I wish I’d hadn’t. Maybe I should have taken that class, maybe I shouldn’t have. Either way, I have to forgive myself realizing I made the best choice I could at the time. Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,[a] who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
  4. Action- Forgiveness does not mean without consequence. There are natural consequences of our actions and we should handle them with grace. If there is something I can do I do it! Can I change the situation or make strides in the right direction? If so I do what I can. We can also remove ourselves from any temptations so we don’t repeat our mistakes. Matthew 5:29-30 If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body is thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body goes into hell.
  5. Acceptance – I can’t fix it all. This means having to accept that some things are simply out of my control. Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
  6. Gratitude- This is the most important one and it’s pretty easy to do. Look back at old pictures, make a list, take a walk, whatever it takes to remember all that was overcome. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Recognizing this pattern and following these steps helps me keep bad days, from becoming bad weeks. I hope this helps.

The Mystery Blogger Award

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I am grateful and honored to have been recognized for this award! I want to thank The Crowning Glory for the nomination! She is a great lifestyle blogger sharing her adventures with the world.

Here are three things you may not know about me…

I am sensitive I hate to admit it but sometimes my feelings get hurt. I hate feeling pushed to the side so I retreat slowly and it can take a long time for people to notice. I’m working on it.

I am living my dream.  I always wanted to stay home and homeschool my kids, live close to my family and run a business.

I love to cook. Okay, you probably knew that one. I want to learn all things food. Yum!

Questions from The Crowning Glory

  1. What is your greatest strength? My compassion. It’s easy for me to put my feelings aside for others.
  2. If you had to describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be? Loving, confident, HIS
  3. What is your favorite kind of music and why? I love worship music. It takes you to another place. It’s like an armor for my soul.
  4. Who in your life do you admire the most? My grandfather. He is taking care of my grandmother who has Alzheimer’s. After 50+years of marriage and despite her diagnosis he still tries to sweep her off her feet.
  5. Who was your childhood celebrity crush? Vin Diesel (until I realized he was old enough to be my father).

Here is a link to my favorite post so far. The Nurturing Of Weeds

The Rules:

Feature the award logo/image on your post
List the rules
Thank the blogger who nominated you
Tell the readers 3 things about yourself
Answer the questions provided
Nominate 6 to 10 bloggers and notify them by commenting on their blog
Ask the nominees 5 questions of your choice with one weird/funny question (specify)
Share a link to your best post

My Questions

  1. Why do you blog?
  2. Whats the last book you read?
  3. Whats your favorite kind of food?
  4. Favorite artist (any medium)
  5. Who is your biggest fan?

I nominate

littlecrunchy.com

rumiskitchen.blogspot.com 

mysterhow.blogspot.com

bestreviewguru

jdeducational.com

yukonmamaof4.com

myownkindofbeautiful.com

howtomarryamillionaire.fr/

My Favorite Vegan Sandwich

I love to eat! Food is delicious and comforting and there is nothing quite like a good sandwich. If you are looking for a bite with texture, depth of flavor and picture worthiness this is the hot sandwich for you.

Favorite Vegan Sandwich

Ingredients

Bun (Check the ingredients to exclude milk or eggs)

Easy Peasy (Vegan) Pesto

Baby portabello mushrooms (Enough to fit on one hand)

1/4 Zucchini sliced longways

1/4 red bell pepper sliced into strips

1 small white onion

2 tbs Vegan Butter (cut in half)

1 tbs of Olive oil

1 tsp garlic powder

Sea salt and pepper to season

To Prepare

In a hot cast iron skillet add 1 tbs vegan butter and olive oil. Sautee all the veggies until the edges are caramelized. While veggies are cooking butter the potato buns. Add garlic powder, salt, and pepper to the veggies, stir then remove veggies from heat. Place buns on the hot skillet and toast.

Assembly

  • On the bottom bun, spread Easy Peasy (Vegan) Pesto Sauce.
  • Top with your cooked veggies.
  • On the top bun spread hummus and add chopped olives (they will stick to the hummus).
  • Put the top bun on the veggies and enjoy!

It will be messy but worth EVERY bite. K loves this sandwich even though he is a carnivore. How do you like it?

Alkaline, Acid, Base

This weeks theme is color. Naturally, we will be doing some cool color based experiments. First up was “Alkaline, Acid, Base.” This experiment called for everyday things you likely have in your kitchen or can easily pick up. Purple grape juice, lemon juice, and baking soda. Grape juice is an indicator liquid meaning it is a neutral liquid that changes color when its acid level or alkaline level is increased.

Set up is easy. Take two glasses and put about 1/4 cup of grape juice in each. In one glass add the juice of one lemon. Note the change. The color of the juice should change from purple to red. In the next glass add about 1/2 tablespoon of baking soda and stir. The grape juice will bubble and change to dark greenish blue color.

If you add lemon juice to the blue liquid the color will change back to purple. If you add baking soda to the red liquid it will also go back to purple. If you want to add another component to this experiment include ph test strips and add the lemon juice or baking soda using .5ml droppers measuring the ph after each addition.

Here is a video of us doing the experiment. Below are some questions to ask your student.

Alkaline, Acid, Base Experiment Video.
How do we use color to give us information? (Traffic lights, cooking, fashion ect.)

What color is the grape juice?

What do you think will happen if you add lemon juice? Baking soda?

What happened when you added the lemon juice? Baking soda?

How can we turn the lemon juice mixture back to its original color?

What is the ph of the grape juice?

What is the ph of the juice after .5ml of lemon juice?

How many ml of lemon juice did it take for you to notice a change in the color of the liquid?

What is the ph of the juice after .5ml of baking soda?

How many ml of baking soda did it take for you to notice a change in the liquid’s color?

This was a fun experiment for the kids and they really enjoyed watching the colors change.

 

 

Teaching Phonics to STEM Kids

Last year I tried to teach Summer to read. She hated it! “She will read when she is ready.” “Just keep reading to her, she will eventually like it.” None of these tips worked and despite the reassurance, I was sure my kinder who seemed to excel at math would NEVER learn to read.

Over the summer I was gifted a wealth of elementary curriculum and materials among them was a phonics program written by a former teacher. As Summer and I are working our way through the program her reading ability particularly her ability to sound out words has greatly increased. The foundation of the program is teaching the student onsets and rimes. By learning these parts of words students are able to use this information to sound out words. For a brain that likes to decode this is awesome!

“What in the world is an onset,” you say?

An onset is the first part of a word. So if we look at the word spot. SP would be an onset and OT would be a rime. Learning these common sounds allows students to be able to effectively sound out words like spring, SP-R-ING. SP is an onset, R is also an onset your student will learn and ING is a rime. Teaching students to spell this way allows them to decode the word using a formula they already know. I quiz Summer on onsets and rimes on a weekly basis.

I quiz Summer on onsets and rimes on a weekly basis. Usually giving her sounds to spell out while she eating breakfast or a snack. She thinks its funny as I try to “trick” her with new sounds. I typically work off of a list of common words alongside the program I was given but here is a list of common onsets and rimes here.

 

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