Monday, February 27, 2012

Menu Plan for the Week of February 27th

Trying to get back to posting my menus.  I make them out every two weeks.  But I will just put a week at a time up here at the blog.  Of course, I am linking up with Organizing Junkie and her Menu Plan Mondays!

Monday- Stromboli with a side salad
Tuesday- Tex-Mex Beef Casserole and hominy
Wednesday- Daddy's Pancakes and Scrambled Eggs
Thursday- Jambalaya
Friday- Parmesan Chicken, Roasted Potatoes, and Green Beans
Saturday- Brown Beans and Cornbread
Sunday- Soft Tacos

For snacks this week we are having:

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
High Fiber Cereal Crunch

Cereal Crunch

2 cups wheat cereal squares
2 cups rice cereal squares
2 cups corn cereal squares
2 cups oat cereal squares
2 cups flaked coconut
1 cup silvered almonds
1 cup pecan pieces
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup butter
1 cup pure honey

Line two shallow rimmed baking pans with aluminum foil or parchment paper; spray well with cooking spray. Mix together all the ingredients except the butter and honey in a large bowl.  Split the cereal mixture between the two pans.  In a glass measuring cup, microwave butter on high for 1 minute or until melted. Measure honey in same glass measure; whisk to combine.  Drizzle half of the butter mixture over each pan of cereal mixture; gently stir with spoon to coat cereal.  Bake at 325* for 30-35 minutes, or until coconut turns light golden brown, stirring every 10 minutes.  Cool pans of crunch snack mix on wire racks. Break apart large pieces and store in an air tight container. Makes about 14 cups.

Have a great week eating!


Sunday, February 26, 2012

"Who Am I?"

This is by far the best review product to date. I couldn't be more excited to look through, teach through, and personally work through this particular curriculum.  Apologia had once again hit the ball out of the park.

Photobucket"Who Am I?" is the second volume in the new series, "What We Believe". The series is written by John Hay and David Webb. Each volume is written to be a student directed course, guiding your child to have a biblical worldview.  In this volume, the student is using the Scriptures as the lens to view Self-Image.

I have not began using this volume with my kids, solely because I want to take them through volume on, "Who Is God?", first.  But going through the book myself, I am in awe. Such clear cut writing, thought provoking questions, and real life application are just some of the reasons we will be using this curriculum.  From the textbook, to the amazing journal, and even the coloring book for younger children, each are a resource we can use individually and as a family corporately. 

Please visit Apologia to look through the three courses, and make a point to start this series.  As a family of 10 on one salary, it is a little difficult sometimes to purchase new curriculum, but this is well worth the price, and sacrifice to add to our families training and education.


I received this product for the purpose of review. All opinions expressed are mine, and mine alone. For other reviews, please check out The Homeschool Crew Blog.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012



What is ALEKS? ALEKS stands for Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces. ALEKS is an online program that acts like a math tutor for children in grades 3-12. ALEKS uses artificial intelligence to adapt the questions to discover what a student knows and doesn't know. ALEKS then has a starting point in which to use to perfectly adapt math lessons for each individual student. As a student spends time on the ALEKS site, they will be periodically reassessed to make sure they are retaining what they've previously learned.

Once your child goes through the initial assessment, you can see something ALEKS calls "My Pie." It is divided up into sections and you can see the concepts your child already knows and the concepts they need to learn. From here you can click on the topics and work through the lessons.

This is a pretty decent online math supplement program.  However, it is not one that fits well with our family.  We just do not use online school programs well.  That being said, I could see how this would be a good product for families that need extra support in math, or for a student that needs extra practice.  It could also help find weaknesses in your child's current math curriculum, or gaps that they may have.

ALEKS is offering a two month trial offer so you can see for yourself if it is a program that matches your families needs!


I received a free trial of this product for the sole purpose of review. All opinions are mine.  For other reviews, please check out the Homeschool Crew Blog

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Valentine for you.

So, does anyone out there, NOT know it is Valentine's Day?  Today there isn't any sappy stories here. Obviously I am madly in love with my husband of 15 years, and our 8 precious blessings.  It is clear that my love for my parents runs deep and true.  And it's no secret that I fiercely love all whom I call family.  So what am I doing writing a post about this day of love?

Today, it is all about the homeschooling.  When we first started homeschooling 4 years ago, we were unsteady on our feet, and shaking with fear. While our convictions were strong, putting that faith to action was hard.  And the moment I "came out" and told my small little blogging world we were homeschooling, I was immediately welcomed into a family that acted like they were waiting just for me. 

There are days when I don't think I can manage another second. And within moments of posting my distress, I have multiple caped crusading friends flying in to encourage, support, and sometimes just laugh with (or is that at?) me.  Then there are the days that I am able to offer up suggestions to someone else. And they are accepted with thanks and grace.  It really is a wonderful community and family.  And I now have the joy of writing with a tremendous group of women as we share in our triumphs and tragedies that we call our life!

So today I send you a Valentine.  One that is heartfelt, prayed over, and given with multitudes of thanks. 

Oh, and eat a piece of chocolate for me, K?


Friday, February 3, 2012


Our four year old has been "playing" piano since she was two.  She is not your typical toddler player either. She doesn't just bang the keys. She gets out her siblings piano music, sits at the piano, and patiently "plays" each piece.  She watches the bigs play, then mimics their motions. She also already knows what sounds good together. There are often times that we think our first year player is practicing, to find out it is actually Paulee.  Here is a video of when she first started playing.

She cannot wait until she is big enough for piano lessons.  And then came an opportunity to look at KinderBach.  We have been able to review it, and she has enjoyed it, as well as our five year old. 

KinderBach - company logo
I have been impressed with what it teaches. Having four older children that have been taking lessons, I have a slim knowledge of things that are taught. And the program hits right on track with most all that the olders have been learning. And it made the littles excited to know they knew the same thing the bigs know.

KinderBach - sample worksheet
They have wonderful worksheets and pages for the kids. However, I am not a fan of having to print of worksheets for them.  Mostly because I get overwhelmed with the paper accumulation around here. With 7 children working on different levels of school work, we get tons of paper, so adding more is a draw back to me.  And it can be difficult running from the computer to the piano.  Paulee would prefer to listen to the instructor and play all at once. But, KinderBach has an Ipad app, so if you have and Ipad, I could see how that would be well worth the money! 

I think the prices are reasonable.  You can get a day pass for $5.95, and access all 240 of their lessons. If you pay by the month, it is $19.99 for the program.  We pay $40 a month per child for the bigs to take piano lessons. If you pay for the entire year, it is a one time payment of $95.88. That works out to only $7.99 a month! 

Is it the perfect program?  Maybe not, but I think it is worth the money!

KinderBach is a great and affordable way to get music lessons in at home and all of us busy home educating families know how great it is to be home and not have one more lesson, activity, or errand to run out and do. And it is even more affordable right now, when you use the coupon code TOScrew2012 which will get you 30% off through February 2, 2013!


I was given a copy of the product for the purpose of review. All opinions stated are mine alone.  For other reviews, check out other reviews at The Homeschool Crew Blog.