February 12, 2017

A Recap of 2016

Wow, it's been a while! I never thought I would be one of those people who gets SO far behind on their blog. Before things get busy again with school and activities starting back up, I wanted to blog some highlights and favorite pictures from this last year.

I've heard a lot of people say how happy they are to have 2016 behind them, lamenting how terrible of a year it was. However, I think will always look back at 2016 with (mostly) fond memories.

Evie was born in the last few weeks of 2015, so 2016 was spent watching her grow from a sleepy newborn, to a curious "toddler". She's our last baby (unless God has some serious surprises for us :D), so I was determined to savor every minute of it.

We bought our first house in February, and moved to one of the cutest small towns in Michigan.

I reopened my Etsy shop in March and was blessed to be able to use my hobby to earn extra money for our family. In April I set a goal to earn enough to buy our homeschool curriculum for the year, and met it! Towards the end of the year, I hit a big milestone for me (300 sales!) and I made an ambitious goal to double it in 2017.

We enjoyed spending lots of time with my brother and his family before they moved to Oregon in June.
The oldest girls at our Peter Rabbit themed Easter party.

The kids in their Sunday best on Easter.

The girls before their Spring dance performance.

Mollie on her 7th birthday.

In May, Lincoln had his heart catheterization in preparation for his 3rd heart surgery. We made the best of it by staying in a hotel the night before, which was fun for everyone.

The morning of his cath.

We got to spend some time with my grandparents. Its always fun to show people around our town.

Lincoln had his 3rd heart surgery on May 25th. It was tough for all of us, but everything went as well as it could have.

Woohoo! Lincoln was discharged after 8 days!

Dede turned 5 in June.

I became an official pattern tester for my favorite pattern company, Violette Field Threads. Here are a few of the dresses I made from the patterns I got to test:

We enjoyed our first Summer in our new backyard!

Lincoln turned 3!

We started our third year of homeschooling, and our first year with two students. Its gone very smoothly, but it sure keeps us busy! The girls are involved with Awana, our library homeschool group, and co-op classes.

We had some very special visitors from Alaska! It was amazing to reconnect with them after three years, and three more kids between our families!

We enjoyed another beautiful Michigan Fall.

The last few months of the year seemed to fly by, with all of the holidays.

Stu was home for Thanksgiving! I'm not sure why, but that seems to be the holiday he misses the most. One of the perks of having both of our families here is having two Thanksgivings :D

Despite Stu being gone (working in North Dakota) most of December, we had a memorable first Christmas in our house.

Well, thats a wrap on 2016! I had originally titled this post "Thoughts on 2016, Plans for 2017", but its been so long since I started it, that I can't really remember what all my grand plans and resolutions were going to be, oops :D

August 22, 2016

Curriculum Picks for our 2016-2017 School Year

I actually had all of our curriculum picks for this year chosen early in the Summer, so I've felt prepared for quite some time! This will be my first year to officially have two students, since Dede is starting Kindergarten, and Mollie is in 2nd. I'm very excited about what this year will bring!

The girls will be doing history/literature/geography/Bible/and science together using Sonlight: Core A. Sonlight is a literature based program, so we have a HUGE box of books ready to dig into. I think the girls will be excited to be doing a "real" science program with experiments this year :) It helps that all of the materials came with the curriculum, so there will be no running to the store to get things we don't have.

Mollie will be using Sonlight's 2nd grade reading and language arts curriculum, Teaching Textbooks 3 for math (a computer based math curriculum. Mollie's done all of the sample lessons available on the websites and loves it!), and Handwriting Without Tears 2 (I'm predicting she will want to rush through this so that she can move onto cursive!).

Dede will be using Saxon Math K, and a combo of Bob Books and Hooked on Phonics K once she has her letter sounds totally down. I'm planning on checking out new alphabet books from the library every week, and using the LeapFrog Letter Factory dvd to help her with this. Lincoln has a lot of interest in letters, so I can see him picking up some of what Dede is learning!

We'll be participating in our library's homeschool group again, where we'll continue to work through Road Trip USA. 

Both girls will be taking classes at our co-op. Mollie will be taking musical theatre/dance, scouting club, and Lego club, and Dede will be in Jazz (dance).

So many exciting things to look forward to!

A Wrap-up of Our Homeschool Year: 2015-2016

With the new school year about to begin, I thought I'd do a recap of our 2015-2016 homeschool year. Here is a bullet list of some of the things we did:

- We used Five In A Row to learn about different cultures and time periods using unit studies based on classic children's books.

- We learned memory verses, and Dede started learning her letters using Raising Rockstars preschool curriculum.

- Mollie finished the 1st and 2nd grade Hooked on Phonics curriculum, and became very fluent in reading. She also finished Singapore math's 1st grade curriculum, and Handwriting Without Tears 1st grade workbook.

- We participated in a weekly homeschool group at our library, where we learned about the United States. Mollie got to organize a presentation and present to our group about Massachusetts in the Fall, and West Virginia in the Spring.


- The girls took classes at our homeschool co-op. Mollie took Jazz, Ballet, Guitar Lessons, and American Girl History/Literature (her favorite!).

- We did a unit study on poetry during national poetry month, and Mollie won our library's poetry contest for her age group!

- The girls both learned to sew and are now capable of using my sewing machine independently! They've made countless creations of their own, and a few projects I've lead them in.

Everything is all planned and ready for another year together! I'll share what we'll be using this year soon :)