Friday, February 29, 2008

Green Hour Challenge #2 my friends!

We met up with another family for a great trail adventure. We went to Clear Creek Trail This is the very area I grew up in.

On this outing, we began our journey at marker 4(see map)near the water front. This brought back wonderful memories for me from when I was in Kindergarten and 1st grade. My school was about 4 blocks up from the waterfront and we were able to take beach walks a lot back then! It was such a small town, and small school.... I have fond memories of fact... I couldnt stop talking baout it! *Ü*

The kids had a ball! From climbing up on drift wood, to lifting rocks and combing the beach for any goodie we could find. Here are some pictures we took. I tired to use different ones form Tinas, so it would be new for ya!

The 2 things the kids focused on happened to be what I made a big deal out of. Oops*Ü* I couldn’t help it....I love Limpets and Pussy Willows. Remember I couldn’t be quiet about those childhood memories?? *Ü*

RyLee chose not to draw in her journal this time, although she did draw, just not for her journal. Christian and I did.

Christian and RyLee are using Sketch books for their first journal. I am using an actual journal I bought at the beginning of the year, when I intended to begin our nature study. (blushing)

We have decided to keep our journals a lot like Lewis and Clark did. *Ü* Keeping samples, drawings and journaling inside. We will probably throw a few pictures in now and again. We will keep our assignments in them as we accomplish them, or dont. *Ü* What sparked the idea was a journal entry from a 14 year old boy in the HNS (page 14) then after discussing it, my husband mentioned Lewis and Clark and the traveling trunk we used for our study then. Most men had journals... especially Lewis and Clark. They have, I think some of the most famous Nature Journals ever! *Ü*

What I would like to see us add to our journals for each entry would be a lot like Lewis and Clarks journals and the page I linked above. Some of it would be what number outing it was, the date and who we went with. I would like it if we could write a sentence or 2 or 3 about the outing. I really want to try and keep it simple although I want a lot! Our notebooks are our notebooks and we will draw and write as we please. I will try not to interfere. *Ü* I really want to encourage ownership. Christian really liked my notebook so I hope it can secretly encourage her to do the same. *Ü* we shall see.

As far as the assignment goes, we were instructed to use words to describe.... So this is what we have to share. *Ü*

One word to describe something she heard: Swishing
Two words for something she saw: small waves
Three words for something she felt: Soothing, gentle wind

One word to describe something she heard: woosh
Two words for something she saw: Big tree
Three words for something she felt: Little white flowers

One word to describe something I heard:Lapping
Two words for something I saw:hiding limpets
Three words for something I felt:Tiny, fuzzy Pussy Willow (Im saying Pussy Willow is one word *Ü*)

I chose not to read over the assignment before we went for our journey. It worked out fine. *Ü* My hope was to not make the trip like school, but just for the joy of it with friends. I can see that reading the assignment before and or waiting till after can work, but knowing a little before hand what I should have encourage would have been helpful. Luckily Tina knew. *Ü* although I still didn’t really instruct my made for good conversation later. *Ü*

Here is a great link with a simple information about the American Pussy Willow

I enjoyed reading this little bit of information. I was surprised to learn that Willows contain salicin. What is that you ask? Well, salicin is closly related to asprin... and you will find it in all Willow barks... Salicin is used by Native Americans as a pain killer.... who knew?

Here is one for limpets

Well this was our journey... and we are sticking to it! See you next week!

PS. Here is where I found the traveling trunk.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Leap Year Day....

Do ever wonder "why" we have leap year? I found a site for my kids today and wanted to share. Have fun!

Why Leap Years are used

You can also google Leap Year and many resources will pop up. *Ü*

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

What's on your desk?

Oh... the Horror of it all! *Ü* Well... Im willing to let it all hang out... see me at my organizational worst!! LOL I didnt touch my desk... and you will quickly agree I didnt!

I was tagged by Brittney from King Alfred Academy

Patricia from Classical Education our Way


Michelle at Our Trio of Children

RULES: You can tell a lot about a person by the state of their desk and what they keep on it. So, share what's on your desk. You can take pictures, take an inventory, or do both. Don't have a desk? That's okay, just give us a glimpse into the space where you pay bills, write letters, grade papers, study, or work on the computer.

When you've finished your photos or inventory, post it on your blog and tag five more people to do the same. Don't forget to share the rules with those you tag and ask them to share their posts with you when they are done.

Lets start with the mess shall we... *Ü*

The stack of paper with a baggie on top (to the left) are all my scribble notes to people I have speaking on the phone with for some folks. *Ü* Underneath that stack, is a Program RyLee and I are doing together called "The young Peace makers" ( I love it, and used it with Shawn and Christian years ago) The baggie is filled with Ms. Rys goodies from our Nature walk this week!!

The book just above that is by Beth Moore called, " Get out of that pit" A cd on top of the book is what I am listening too while I’m on the pc sometimes... its called Mothers and Daughters by Carolyn Mahaney... awesome! I bought it from Tapestry of Grace. My camera and other clutter above that....

To the center is my mouse pad... that we dont use, because RyLee now has a Webkinz mouse pad! hehehe... you will also see tags and tag covers from her webkinz.... to the right.. My router and modem... my tiffany style lamp that a friend bought me from Cali... Thanks Shannon!

The stack of folded papers under the picture of Christian is all the claims from the insurance company relating to my sons car accident... my copy paper on top of my bread Longaberger basket I now use to hold my pencils and pens... note pads etc... whew… that’s a mess hu?

Ok... that’s my desk in all its glory! Now you all know I only have 2 more wake ups to clean this office up for my Feb challenge.... I guess I should get cracking hu? lol and last month I did so well too...

Thanks for the Tag…..although I just completely embarrassed myself...

So the 5 peeps Im going to challenge are....

Katherine at Cornerstone Classical

Jenny at Home is where you start from

Marsha at Williams Academy

Cynthia at Life is good

Jennefer at Smooth Stones Academy

Weblink Wednesday

This is a great link if you are studying Presidents. RyLee is making President cards for her notebook this year using this site! I love it! Its called Home of Heroes. You will find a lot more than just information on presidents!

Here is the direct link to the presidents. Presidents of the United States of America.

Inagural adresses of the United States Presidents.

As RyLee has came across Presidents in our Tapestry of Grace year 3 studies... I give her a template that I have in my year plan and she cuts it down to fit inside a library pocket. I have added a few things to her template, but basically its all the "facts" about the president and a few famous quotes they said and what people quoted about them....

Here is one RyLee did of Gerorge Washingotn:

Head on over to SoCalVal's, Homeschooling With Encouragement and check out more great links. Bring a cup of coffe or tea and have fun!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Sleeping beauty... I removed the pillow case... can you see why?? She was in a ballet and the woman who put makeup on these little girls went a tad overboard... ya think?? lol *Ü* Oh she loved to dance!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sketch Tuesday: Your State of Mind

This week's assignment for Sketch Tuesday was to draw something that represents the state you live in. Well my husband had a fun time with this one!*Ü* although its not what you might expect.... it is what represents 'his" State. *Ü* He wouldn’t let any of us see what he was sketching till he was done!

This weeks sketches are done by Dan the dreamer, Christian the little tree hugger and RyLee our little sleepy head! This is the State they live in I guess... each one was so different!

This has been fun... although this week I didn’t participate. *Ü* I still enjoyed the process....

Ms. RyLee

Ms. Christian

Mr. Dan... surfer Dan to some

Please visit The Heart of Harmony site to see more Sketch Tuesday artists!

Menu Plan Monday

Ok, I have been a menu plan drop out lately! Its time I get back on the horse.... My goals for this week are healthy eating, lots of water and continue exercise!

Today we are going for a nature walk in town today (yup, a nature walk in town! I love where we live!) and when we come home the plan is to finish up school and make a few meals for this week. I intended to do this yesterday, but we had a potluck/talent show at church and got home way to late.

So here I go…

Monday meals:

Breakfast is to hard for us to pin down. The kids are old enough that they can make thier own breakfast so all week it could be...

oatmeal, eggs, chicken sausage, breakfast burritos, yougurt, fruit and cheese.

Monday lunch and dinner

Tuna melts on 12 grain bread. Opened faced with tomatoes, lettuce and cheese slice…. Fruit on the side.

BBQ chicken, asparagus and little red potatoes

Tuesday lunch and dinner

Avacado supreme sandwich... yummm

Grilled Salmon, wild rice, mixed grilled vegies.

Wednesday lunch and dinner

Tomatoe soup and 1/2 grilled cheese for me whole for girls.

Thursday lunch and dinner ( Lost is on!!!! )

(This is a recipe from Tami at Ambleside Classical)

Wild and brown rice salad
mac and cheese for ry! *Ü*

Homemade fish tacos, mango salsa and peas on the side.

Friday lunch and dinner

Left overs......

To visit other participants, please visit Im an organizing junkie for more meal plans and recipes!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Washington State Native Plant Society

My friend Patricia over at Classical Education our way posted her green hour challenge yesterday. In part of her post she had a few pictures of tree cones and asked if anyone knew what kind they were.

A few responded and let her know they were Douglas fir tree Cones This brought back a few memories...

It made me think back to my my 6th grade year...each year, at the end of the year, the entire 6th grade went up to Fort Flagler Washington to camp. The main point for going up was to reward our hard work all year, but also the teachers planned a 4 day weekend to teach us about the outdoors.

On one of our outings, we were learning how to identify trees and some of us were collecting different types of cones. One of the teachers told us a story about the Douglas fir cones and how they look the way they do. Seeing the cones on Patricia’s site brought that faded memory back.... it was sweet....

I wanted to share the story, but not sure I could remember it correctly....6th grade was a long time ago... ehhem...*Ü* anyway... here is the story.. Its called The Mouse, Douglas Fir, and the great forest fire. I’m only linking it, I don’t know if the story is copyrighted... and the site I found had a few cool pictures to boot.

The Mouse, Douglas Fir, and the great forest fire

If you are from Washington State and are a part of the Green Hour Challenge that Barb is hosting over at The Heart of Harmony these sites might be of great use for you.

Washington Native Plant Society

Washington State Nature Guide

Bird Web

Mammals of Washington

Reptiles of Washington

Amphibians of Washington

Fossils of Washingotn State

Plants of Washington State

Fish of Puget Sound

Geology of Washington State

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Heart of the Matter Weekly Meme

This week over at The heart of the matter, the meme is what is your favorite home school product! Its been very fun to look and see what everyone treasures are! So if you have a few... try to stop by and take a look!

Now for my favorite product/s *Ü*

Tapestry of Grace
is my all time favorite home school product!
It is everything I love about different curriculum's in one! I have been able to teach all 3 of my children on the same topic each week, using a literature/unit study approach. TOG follows the classic model, recognizing children learn in different stages like the grammar levels, dialect also called logic and rhetoric. I can take TOG light, or heavy and also in between. The work has been done for me, I just decide how we want to proceed and what books to choose...I love this curriculum!

Now right along with Tapestry of Grace... I love page protectors!! I love to write and take notes, so I place every page (yup every) in a page protector so if I want to, I can write and note till my hearts content!

My next favorite is RyLees Spanish! Its called La Clase Divertida level 1. Besides math, this has become RyLees favorite part of the day. She is able to do this independent of me as well and loves it! She watches a dvd, has a work book to fill out each week, vocabulary, crafts and recipes to make for every lesson. This has been a big hit with her and she cant wait to move on to the next box! Level 2. This will be soon.

I have a new magnetic white board in my dining room... and it gets used a lot... but I have something I love even more! Its an expandable chart stand with paper! I bought it from Discount School Supply Store online. Its been the best! All the vocabulary all the examples of writing.... mini timeline with history.. you name it... I don't erase things any more and re write! I just flip the page! I love it.... I never would have thought about buying one... seriously, but my friend Jessica over at Trivium Academy had one... and well... you know... I had to have one too! *Ü*

My last, but not least favorite is Accountable kids.
This has been a plus with Rylee. Its a chore chart, but also rewards accomplished tasks. I became a cheerleader and not the nag with this one. I'm not sure why I couldn't use my old chore chart this way with her and get the same results.... but it has been a blessing... It put the responsibility to accomplish school, chores or what ever task I assign that day... squarely on her shoulders. No one is to blame but herself if it doesn't get done.... Its been a great aid and visual help with chores, accountability and character in doing a job well done.

Live and Learns products have been fantastic this year and fit nicely in our science and history studies...I could go on and on... but I guess I need to stop at some point right. Sorry I couldn't choose one!

Don't forget, many others are participating today! Stop by The Heart of The Matter and take a look! Its been fun!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Green Hour Challenge

The Koinonia Academy green hour challenge actually started with just RyLee. She went hiking with some friends on Saturday. She didnt take many pictures, ok actually she took 3! Here are the 2 that we can show.

The Olympics Mountains and a view of the Hood Canal.

MT. Rainier

They went hiking about 5 minutes or so from our house called Green Mountain trail head. I have yet to walk it. This will be another outing for another green hour challenge.

Yesterday, RyLee and I went for a walk in the late afternoon. We only went around our property and down our drive way.

Here are the pictures RyLee took

Rhododendron from the Greek: rhodos, "rose", and dendron, "tree"(Washington State flower and flowerless at the moment)

Bear claw marked territory near our driveway RyLee wanted to share this *Ü*

A few I took

Ms Ry

As far as we can tell, this is called Bracket Fungi. We are still trying to decide what one though.

Bear mark

We are not sure. Still looking.... I love the colors though.

Our Lunar Eclipse

So this was our first green challenge. Next week we will hit Clear Creek trail. This is about 25 minute drive from our home, but its a great trail!

Visit more Green Hour Posts here at the Green Hour Challenge

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Weblink Wednesday

Im new to this one! This can prove to be a good one for sure! I was visiting Daisys blog at Lesser Road Academy an it looked fun!

The weblink I want to share.... is called Homeschooling for free. Please visit Homeschooling with encouragments blog to visit other blogs with helpful links...


Today at Heart of The Matter I posted a little about when my kids were younger...sigh.... back in the day... I talked a bit about habits w/ young ones...
Come by and take a peak... not just my post, but whats been going on at The Heart of The Matter.

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, February 18, 2008

Homeschool Giveaway --Lyrical Earth Science

MamaArcher is having a great blog giveaway! She is giving away the Lyrical Life Science cd kit and extra book!


1. Included is the complete kit plus an extra workbook.
2. The final day for entries is March 15.
3. Please place a post about the giveaway on your blog.
4. Return here and leave a comment with the URL of your blog post.
5. This post will remain listed in the sticky link above the daily postings for easy access.

Its easy! Go head on over to MamaArchers Blog and check it out! I found this contest over at The Home School Lounge! They have a few others that might interest you too!

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Heart of the Matter Weekly Meme

The heart of the matter has Friday Memes. This week they have a question for us. Where Do You Homeschool? Please feel free to join us! This will be fun and encouraging! Visit THOTM online and add your link!

Grab a cup of coffe or tea, and step into Koinonia Academy!
Welcome to my home/school. *Ü*

For us, we have always done the majority of school at the kitchen/dining room table. We have never had a school room and after 13 years of this, I dont think I would like it. Maybe I would feel different if I had one. For now, I cant imagine it.

We have never had a large home before, although the home we are in is the biggest yet. We have a dining romm/living room/ Kitchen combo. Its a very open floor plan and I can see and be with the kids while doing laundry, dishes, cooking... what ever.... Im just a step away from them.

Below is a link to a short video of RyLee singing her spanish. *Ü* You can see from it the kitchen bar she likes to sit at and do school and then the living room behind her. Los vocales

I have turned our mud room, just off of our dining room into a bit of a school supply/book room. This is where I have the years resources, craft kits, science kits, microscope, books and many other things stored, so I dont have to go for to get something. Neither do the kids.

I have mentioned before how we store our notebooks. We have notebooks and my teachers books in baskets close by and also a bin for the girls textbooks or workbook type books. You can visit that post here A day in the life

If you would like to see where others homeschool and feel inspired! Come visit over at the Heart of the Matter today!

Where do you homeschool?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

E for Excellent and Blogging with a Purpose

My kindred Spirit friend Jessica at Trivium Academy gave me this award last month! Thank you for thinking of me.
1. Awarded parties must nominate five people who have not received the award.
2. The blogs that receive the award must serve some purpose.
3. In their post about the award they need to link back to this entry.
4. Awarded parties must post the award banner on their site. The banner must remain linked to this site.

This is hard to only choose 5 people and in fact, its down right discouraging to only choose 5. But...

Now my new friend and blog buddy Amy at The Allen Academy gave my the E, Excellent award! Thank you so much and Im sorry to Jessica and Amy for taking so long to post that.

Im not sure of the rules on this one! lol So Im giving this E award to........
I have so many more blogs I would like to give this too. These are only a few of the blogs I visit. Maybe I should be like Darcy and give these awards to everyone on my sode bar lists? lol Yeah!