Sunday, June 30, 2013

Engaging Kids in Community Service Work

One of the challenges in having five children in a wide range of ages - 21 months to 13 years in my case - is that it can be hard to find outreach and volunteer opportunities to do as a family. It is not easy to find places that will allow us to take a 21-month-old to "help" work!

Over the years we've become pretty creative in helping our children learn to reach out and contribute to the world around us and to our church. We've also learned a few things along the way…

Today I have a guest post over at A Dusty Frame - I hope you'll join me there and see some ways that our family has found to get a multitude of ages involved in volunteer and community service work. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Schoolhouse Review Crew: Beyond the Page

 Ahhh... Summer.... A time of swimming pools, picnics, playtime, and school review time. Wait, what? "School" anything and "summer" shouldn't go together, right?? Not in a homeschooling house! (And increasingly "regular"-schooling families who don't want their kids to forget everything over the course of three months' break. In our house and many homeschool families, we're taking the time to look at what we did last year, where are the gaps, and what can we improve on.

One are that we've mentioned is science for our oncoming 8th grade Maestro, and reading comprehension and speed with Bruiser. When the information for Moving Beyond the Page listed that the review material would include a science program for older students and the possibility to use a reading/literature program for a younger student, it was the perfect fit for me to shore up both areas of study in our kids.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Distilling Essential Oils for the Purest Result: Young Living's Process

Not too long ago, there was a discussion on a FaceBook group I'm part of that discusses the occasional differences found in some of Young Living's Essential Oils. While I have not ever had a problem with my oils, because others might, I decided to put the company response here on my blog. This one refers specifically to Young Living's Peppermint Oil. One thing about Young Living Peppermint is that it truly smells like mint - as in, the stuff I grow in my garden - and not like the stuff you find in a piece of candy. IF you're using another company's mint oil, take a minute and compare it to see which it smells like. If it smells like candy, you might want to reconsider your oils... 

Here is what the home office said about the Young Living Distilling Process and all that our oils go through before reaching you at home:

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Movie Review: Man of Steel - How Does it Rate for Families?

For a short housekeeping issue - I turned off the requirement to put in a Captcha image in order to leave a comment. I am bringing that back, but hope it won't stop you from adding your two cents. With it off I got more comments, most of them SPAM. Thankyewno. So it's going back on today!

I can't put the "official" Man of Steel logo, of course, because it is copyright protected - for all I know so is the movie title, but I hope they'll forgive my use of it, since it's really hard to do a review of something (even an unofficial review!) without using the name of that thing! Anyway, for Father's Day, the White Knight wanted to take the Crew to do something fun, but it was a truly hot, above-90-degree day, so Busch Gardens was NOT at the top of this Pregnant Mama's list, so we headed for the cool dark of the movie theater. 

We considered a couple of options and settled on Man of Steel (as I'm sure you've guessed by now) because it seemed most likely to appeal to the spread of ages we have going with our kids - 2, 4, 8, 11, and 13 now. The long and short of it: The movie was enjoyed by everyone, but (as other reviewers have said), sometimes it seems like they used action scenes (and long ones at that!) to replace having to focus on character or plot development. If you have seen the earlier movies from way back, and know the history line of Clark Kent in those flicks, then you'll be okay, but just jumping into this one, it can be difficult to follow.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Recipe Day: Fish Broth (and why we use it!)

I know - Fish Broth?? Why would anyone want to make fish broth?? -  but bear with me here. We are Pesci-vegetarians, and I've begun to make fish broth from home because it provides much needed minerals that help support growing bodies and growing bones. Most notably: magnesium, iodine, calcium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and other trace minerals. But why are we making fish broth? Well, these minerals can help strengthen the bones and - more importantly - teeth in our bodies. 
The veggies in the latest batch of fish broth
I have three boys now with brittle teeth - especially those four in the front at the top. They crumble away.


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