Monday, October 1, 2007

What's This???!!! I didn't plan for this!

Oh, how life takes such interesting twists and turns! Of course, if we could chose they would all be pleasant and fun- but life rarely works that way! God knows, we won't grow if we are secluded from pain, embarrassment, humility, and many other negative traits we'd rather not have to deal with in life.

When I was diagnosed with breast cancer last month, it was literally like stepping out on a street and being runover by a semi truck that you never saw or heard. And we've been through every possible emotion since then! From fear, terror, and anxiety all the way to joy, gladness and yes! praise!

The huge shock came from not expecting it at all! I had no idea! How could that be? How could I be young (34), healthy, energetic (well, somewhat!), feel great and have CANCER??? The reality of it all just knocked us over. And then we had to get up... or let me say- we were helped up, because even amongst the worst of the news, there was joy or reason to celebrate- God just keeps showing Himself to us again and again and we are truly thankful.

Two of the hardest things to do in all of this: 1) Tell my little beautiful boys....2) Answer those questions that little boys will ask! OK- it's also been extremely hard to see my husband in so much agony over something he can't do anything about! Mr. Fix-it can't fix this and it about killed him! But he is growing in his faith- and that is no small thing! Again I say- I am Thankful!

God is good to us, even in this. I want my children to know and understand that and carry that with them in their life experiences.

I have felt so surrounded by prayer since being diagnosed and it is a wonderous feeling- and undeserving feeling even. My wish is to tell others that may not be aware that breast cancer can strike even young women and we need to be more diligent in our health care. I've always been busy enough just trying to keep the boys healthy and then nursing them to health with their bouts of colds, flu and bronchitis. The time for myself always seemed to be the last thing on my mind. We can be busy moms- whether schooling from home or working or whatever the situation- but we have to realize our importance and start taking care of ourselves!

Please take time to get your check ups! Please encourage those busy moms around you- offer to take their children, make them accountable to you for setting an appointment, or make it a mom's out day! Whatever you have to do, do it!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

NOT a friend!!

This is the Black Widow we found last night while watering our plants on the porch. My son was pouring the water in and as it hit the web- the BW went crazy!!! She was in a frenzie! The boys watched her running all over her web trying to attack whatever had caused the disturbance and it was really something to see! I'd never seen one trying to attack yet. (And we've seen many, many Black Widows since being in Texas!) I went and grabbed my camera, took about two shots of her and she went nuts again after seeing my shadow. That was enough observation for us!
Posted by Picasa


OK!! This was fascinating- but kind of gross at the same time!!!
This is a mass of web worms we found on our neighbor's Pecan tree.
We hadn't even noticed them- we were actually looking at the webs high in the branches of
the tree and checking the destruction of the leaves- when one my littles
said he had a discovery! This group of worms was near the bottom of the
tree and the caterpillars were then climbing and making their way
all over the tree!!!
Posted by Picasa

Our Butterfly!!

Our Swallowtail emerged after 2 weeks in the chrysalis. The boys were so happy to it and it was truly a very beautiful butterfly. We took a few minutes to sketch it in our Nature Notebooks and then it was time to let it go. They are so good about wanting to "free" any creatures we have.
Posted by Picasa


My boys gathered our back yard neighbors around to release our Swallowtail butterfly. It was so large and beautiful!! They all said their "goodbyes" and after holding the lid open for about a minute, the butterfly finally took off as they all cheered her on. What a wonderful experience and a beautiful sight!
Posted by Picasa

Tree Frog!

We found this little green tree frog right outside our door in a potted tree!! He was so cool! The boys loved watching him and after a few hours we released him. I'm glad the boys are so observant!! They make the most incredible finds- lots of them in our back yard!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Latest critter

This is the swallowtail caterpillar. He had just attached to the container and soon after was hanging. It's been about a week now and he hasn't emerged yet...but should be out very soon!
Posted by Picasa

Detective hat...

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

looking for the positive...

One of the *good* things about the drenching Texas rains we've been getting... What an awesome sight in the middle of the day!
Posted by Picasa

Letter Writing

My oldest son writes a letter (or more) each week for his copy work. He likes keeping in touch with his friends and grandparents that live far away and he LOVES getting mail. Lately he's been asking to write to all kinds of different people... so one letter went off to Derek Jeter from the New York Yankees and another is going to his favorite author this week. Letter writing is so rewarding in so many ways that it is perfect for a homeschooling family to incorporate into the daily schedule of seat work.
Posted by Picasa

My little "Edward Scissorhands!"

My middle son LOVES to craft things and is constantly drawing, coloring, sketching, cutting, glueing and taping...!!!! He made this really neat giraffe one morning before the rest of the family was even up and going! Every shape was individually cut out and then positioned together. He's so clever! These creations make me smile and smile!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Releasing Butterfly

Our monarch came out beautifully and we decided to release her in our rose bush. The boys loved it! She didn't stay around our place though, and flew up, up and away as soon as we let her go. It's so much fun to watch a caterpillar become a butterfly!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 8, 2007


My oldest son had this volcano kit given to him on his birthday so we thought it would be fun to do on this hot, stormy week! His brothers had a ball gathering around and watching him *explode* it over and over!! We have also made volcanoes from water bottles before too. Just mix the vinegar with some red food coloring and add it to the baking soda- stand back and watch the reaction! Such fun!
Posted by Picasa


This is our newest 'pet'- Chris the Caterpillar. We found him a few weeks ago on some milkweed around the lake and brought him home to watch him become a Monarch. We haven't done this for 2 years, so the boys are all very excited! My middle son, at 6, is especially concerned about the caterpillar and makes sure he is well cared for and is anxious to collect the milkweed and check on him.

Chris grew very rapidly! I waited to take his picture until after he was much bigger. We could barely see him when we first found him. He has now gone into his chrysalis and we are patiently waiting for him to emerge as a monarch!
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

"Tree of Life: The World of the African Baobab"

This was a great picture book about the African Baobab tree. It's written by Barbara Bash (who is also the author of "Desert Giant: The World of the Saguaro Cactus") and is packed full of information. I love these books that focus on one particular tree and show the entire life cycle of the tree and how it can affect the land, animals, and humans and how God in His infinite wisdom has created everything in such perfect harmony! A great read when you can't be *out* in nature!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Poetry Notebook

This year my oldest son will be keeping a poetry notebook. I am doing this to encourage his love of the creativity of poetry, to give him something meaningful to copy, and to have something to look back on fondly and remember this time in his education.

He will be reading from three poets this year- a different one each term- and we will take turns reciting one poem each day. Then on Friday's he will pick his favorite poem of the week and copy it in his nicest handwriting and he may also wish to make a drawing to go along with it, which we will collect in a simple folder. This will be the poem he will then work on memorizing for the next week and will be able to recite it on the following Friday. At the end of the year (next spring) he will have a notebook full of 36 handwritten poems - and possibly illustrations- and will be able to recite from memory many of them!

**This will be more meaningful than just having the copies off the internet and my son will love to have the visual accomplishment of his work.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

New Beginnings!

We are marking the end of a school year/beginning of the next here this week. It is going to be a big change for *MOM* since I am starting my middle son on Year 1 and my oldest will be doing his Year 3...and of course, we have baby brother at 3 1/2, who will cause major disarray in the meantime!!LOL!

I am going to post our curriculums on the side bar if anyone is interested in our plan for the year. I am very optimistic that it will be a challenging and exciting year for us and I am so ready to get started!!! We will get our first break in 6 weeks for a family reunion and then we will be able to finish our first term by the end of summer. It is very important (and necessary) for us to be able to take the month of December off and just gear up for the holidays and enjoy our family! That is one big factor of keeping us on track.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Nature finds

Some butterflies viewed this week at the Botanical gardens. What a perfect week for nature and enjoying God's world!!!
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, May 13, 2007


From Story of the World, vol. 2; Making Monk's cross necklaces from air drying clay. The boys just thought this was Great!!! After letting them dry, we painted them and then put the string in. Very neat craft!
Posted by Picasa

Got Mud????

It's been very rainy/stormy in the DFW area lately and parts of our yard are complete mud pits, plus we have a creek/runoff area too.... the boys are in HEAVEN!!! LOL!!! They have made mud pies, had mud fights, painted the playset guessed it- mud!!! They have also been finding the greatest things- slugs, snails, snakes, caterpillars! We love it! It's made for great nature experiences!!
Posted by Picasa

Magnolia Tree

Isn't this bloom just gorgeous? The Magnolia trees in Texas are in bloom...and with the huge white flowers and the shiny green leaves, I don't know if there is a prettier sight!! I love nature!!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, May 5, 2007

The *S* Word....

Here's a great article on socialization.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

My bird watchers!

My boys LOVE their bird watching!!! This is something that I don't believe would *ever* have been developed, had it not been for the year long readings of Burgess Bird Book in Ambleside's Year 1 program. I am soooo thankful! The boys have learned more than I could have ever hoped and they are so passionate about the birds. They care deeply for them- and to think, I'll be doing it again in a couple of years with my youngest!!! Yeay!!! As you can see in the picture, he already gets right in there...looks his birds up, id's them, listens to their calls...what a connection with God we have created by simply learning more about creation around us! I wish that every child had the opportunity to develop a slow and deep relationship with nature. Is there anything more important? They see God at work through His marvelous world and they are so thankful and so in AWE of His power and perfection.
Posted by Picasa

some AZ beauty!

There wasn't a lot in bloom, but what there was - wow! beautiful!!! These are some of my favorites!
Posted by Picasa

Bird Watching in AZ

Oh what heaven to a bird loving family!!! The boys *loved* this aviary at the Sonoma Desert Museum!! I didn't know if I would be able to get my oldest (shown here) to leave! It was the highlight!!!
Posted by Picasa