Thursday, January 31, 2013

How a Cooperative was Born

We live in a small town. In our case, small town equals no homeschool cooperatives. I have read many blogs with many families discussing their huge, wonderful cooperatives. I'm going to fess up here and now, I was jealous. Why can't we have an uber fabulous cooperative? Why can't we take awesome classes with other homeschool families? Well, it took prayer, great people,  a willing homeschool community, and lots of hard work - but we pulled it off. With God's help of course. I am now the co-director of a Fine Arts Cooperative serving 26 families and still growing. We actually had to turn away children this semester due to space and number of teachers. Let's back track and see how this wonderful thing called a cooperative came to fruition.

A friend and myself have worked with a group of homeschoolers over the past five years performing musicals and plays. The kids are great and everyone either enjoys spending time together or has a passion for the theatre and performing. One year ago we started toying with the idea of expanding the program to other types of classes. We have a passion for not only teaching the arts but also encouraging children to share their talents with others in God's name. Performing in the community as well as traveling to perform to spread God's love. After many meetings, emails, phone calls, and text messages we had our basic class schedule and name, Creative Christian Cooperative. Our first semester found us with 40 students taking part in drama, choir, art, and puppetry art. At the end of the semester we had a drama performance, recitals, and art gallery showing. We settled on 30-50 dollars a month in fees depending on the family size and this price would cover all classes that were offered along with a small supply fee for art classes. It was very important to us to keep the cooperative affordable in these tough economic times. Our only expenses are rent for space and liability insurance. The first semester found us renting a huge event room with stage while the second semester has found us back at my church. The teachers are not paid but are allowed free classes for their children in lieu of payment. Second semester we have grown to 55 students. We continue to teach two drama and choir classes (elementary and high school), three art classes, and a Learning with Legos class. In the fall we already have parents willing to teach classes in photography, videography, poetry, and so much more. This is an exciting time for all that are involved and we are looking forward to what God puts in our paths.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

New Read Alouds

We finally finished The Mark of Athena today. It was a great book. We both love The Percy Jackson Series and The Heroes of Olympus Series. Can't wait until the new book comes out this fall. I could almost believe that I love them more than Grace. So this moves us on to a new read aloud book. Only I couldn't really decide. I wanted to go with something classic or older. Last year I became a member of the Lamplighter book club and receive one of their high quality book every month. Because I could not decide between the two I thought we could do both. This means on Monday, Wednesday and Friday we will read from A Peep Behind the Scenes written in 1877. On Tuesday and Thursday we will read True Stories of Great Americans for Young Americans written in 1898. Great Americans contains short biographies on:
  • George Washington
  • John Paul Jones
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Patrick Henry
  • Abraham Lincoln
  • Ulysses S. Grant
  • Robert E. Lee
  • William McKinley
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Robert Fulton
  • George Peabody
  • James A. Garfield
  • Cyrus W. Field
  • Thomas A. Edison
  • George Dewey
  • Richmond Pearson Hobson
  • Mary Ball
  • "Dolly" Madison
  • Louisa May Alcott
  • Lucretia Mott
  • Eliza Ballou
  • Mary A. Livermore
  • Frances Willard
  • Nancy Allison
The summary below came from the Lamplighter Publishing website about A Peep Behind the Scenes.

Behind many smiling faces there hides a hurting heart, and for what may appear to be glamorous, there is usually a high price to pay. Mrs. Walton gives us a glimpse into the life of a disillusioned young actress. In her fabricated world of glamour and glitz, Rosalie finds solace in the words of a gentle old man who gives her a picture of a Shepherd who loves and cares for her. Her travels take on new meaning as she shares with the "down-and-outers" about this wonderful Shepherd who loves them, too. This profound century-old story is still relevant in today's entertainment-enmeshed culture. A Peep Behind the Scenes out sold The Scarlet Letter by over two million copies in the 1800s.

I love Lamplighter Publishing. We haven't read a book yet that we didn't love. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Bake Sale

Today at church three of the girls in 4:12 Ministries held a bake sale to raise funds for our group. The funds will enable the group to chose different types of services to perform where we might need to purchase items or need gas money for the parent drivers. The sale was a great success raising 161.00 for the group. This coming from a church congregation of about 100. They were so generous and we are so thankful for them.

Grace Has Been Creating Again

Actually I should say that she never stops creating. Constantly drawing - even up to 6 hours a day. Here is some of her newest creations, I think all three were created since yesterday.

Virtual Refridgerator

What Our School Day Looks Like

Every day is the same. One of our cats, Fernando, is always trying to participate in anything we are doing. School work always consists of him laying on books, rubbing on your face with his body while you are trying to write, and simply causing distractions.

Next in line is puppy. Yes her name is puppy. Well, if I were to be honest, her real name is Angel, but puppy stuck and now four years later that is her name. Puppy requires lots of attention. She always wants to be in on what is happening and will nose you to death on the leg until you pick her up. Then she will lick you to death in the face and waits until you are talking or not paying attention to give you kisses in the mouth. She is a real character and I consider her my third child. School days are not complete without these two around.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Homeschooling Around the World - Last Post

Okay this is the last post in this series. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading how other families in the world are homeschooling their children. Everyone go take a hop over to the Schoolhouse Review Crew Blog and see how they do it in the Philippines.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Homeschooling Around The World - Part 5

Okay I have to admit to everyone that I love all things British. Especially UK television, the accent, etc. So now we can find out what it is like to homeschool in the United Kingdom. I am loving this series. Hop over to the School House Review Crew Blog to check it out.


Weekly Wrap Up - The One With Ice in the Forecast

Another busy week under our belt. This week we finished up some materials and started new ones. The one I am most excited about is Apologia's Who Am I? And What Am I Doing Here?. We absolutely loved the first one. I was lucky enough to pick up the second volume with all the other materials that go with it used from a fellow homeschooler. We started it yesterday and just love all of it. Matter of fact my mom saw the first volume on my dining room table one day and asked to read it after we were finished, so now it is at her home being enjoyed for devotions by another person. Well let's get down to the nitty gritty of what went on this week:

Sunday morning we attended worship service then headed over to my mom's for lunch to celebrate her birthday. Baked Ziti, salad, bread and a great chocolate cake. Great to see everyone, especially Travis. I had not seen him in about a week and just miss him so much. After the party my sister came home with me and we went on a long walk. This is the first walk I had been on in maybe three months due to weather, surgery, and illness. Of course I have been going to Zumba classes and using the Wii here at home for exercise. The point I am getting to is that the walk made my shin splints act up. Weird that I Zumba like four times a week with no shin issues but the first walk I take aggravates them.

School took place in the morning. Some topics we are learning and discussing this week consist of: whales and ocean life, fertile crescent, early farmers and hunters and gatherers. Review of perimeter, circumference, diameter, and problem solving with each. Grace attended Acts of Faith practice which was moved from last week due to inclement weather. While Grace was practicing I went to a Zumba class by a much loved instructor.

Did some school again in the morning, but Tuesday is Cooperative day and takes up a lot of our time. I had to arrive early to copy some cds of music for Aladdin. Grace attended her normal classes of drama, choir, and art history. In my art class the students learned about Norman Rockwell and his work with the Saturday Evening Post. I had the students create their own magazine and create a cover to illustrate just like he did. After cooperative hubby met us for dinner at Zaxbys. Once dinner was over I rushed home to watch a webinar from How To Home School My Child. Did a little reading before bed then crashed.

Again we had school in the morning - do you see a trend here? Grace watched an Imax movie about the deep sea for a review we are doing and also read some from America the Beautiful. We attended our Youth Service meeting and finally decided on a service that would work for everyone. The students decided to throw a Valentine's party for an assisted living home in our community. We will be meeting again for them to practice some music they will be presenting as well as making some cards to hand out and play some games. In the evening after dinner me and Grace has a 45 minute dance off with Wii Just Dance 4 for exercise.

More school. Grace attended her Beginner Essay Writing class in the afternoon and her art class. She is writing an expository paper about the Japanese internment camps in the 1940s. I attended another Zumba class in the evening after dinner and Grace skyped with some friends for 2 1/2 hours. They are discussing all things MoMo Con. Grace has finally found friends with the same interests in anime/manga. Currently they are discussing what costumes to make for cosplay at the convention. This will be happening in March so they have to hurry and get all their details together.

This brings us back to today. This morning was to be Electricity Class but the weather is getting in our way. In our area in the Northeast Georgia Mountains we are expecting about 1/4 inch of freezing rain so all classes have been cancelled. I let Grace sleep in this morning and we will do some school work after lunch. Hope everyone has a great weekend.

For more Weekly Wrap Ups please go and visit Kris at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers.

I have also started linking this to 'It's a Wrap" over at Hammock Tracks. Be sure to go check it out.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Homeschooling Around the World Part 4

A place I have always wanted to visit, Australia. Please take a hop over to the School House Review Crew to see what it is like to home school in Australia.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Homeschooling Around the World Part 3

Today's post over at the School House Review Crew will take you to Canada. Please be sure to follow the link and find out what homeschooling in Canada is like.

High School

Do those words scare you? Two small words that entail so much. Especially if you are schooling your child at home. I go through phases. Today high school doesn't worry me, we will just keep doing what we are doing and progress in difficulty a little each year. Other days I wonder if we can make through all the higher math and science that needs to be accomplished if Grace decides to go to college. Currently she has no desires to go to college. Grace wants to hit the ground running when finished with school. Academics are not her thing, never have been her thing and I don't see that changing anytime soon. Grace loves to draw, create, and perform. Yes I know she can go to college for these passions. But guess what she doesn't want to wait that long. She wants to create a career in art immediately. Matter of fact her and hubby are hoping to participate in two art festivals this year to get her feet wet. We have even talked some about in her apprenticing at an art studio in a couple of years. I know that many people will gasp at the thought of not encouraging your child to go to college, but guess what, all these kids that are graduating from college now have a boat load of debt and no employment prospects. If our fine arts cooperative continues to grow she can teach classes with the cooperative and maybe handle some of the administrative duties to earn some money as well as a part time job. I have learned over the years earning a big salary does not make you happy. Getting to wake up every morning and do what you love and are passionate about does make you happy. Over the past couple of weeks my husband has told Grace that his goal for her is to not have a job when she becomes an adult. That may sound completely foreign to many folks, but he basically wants to get the point across to her that she has talent and if creating art makes her happy, go out and create. Find a way to make your dream happen.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Another Homeschooling Around the World Post


Here is another great post from the School House Review Crew. Follow this link to read how a family homeschools in Germany.

Monday, January 21, 2013

What We Are Reading

On my desk at the moment is a lot of reading material that may or may not get finished, with the exception of the review books that have to be finished.

The 10 Things You Need to Eat: And More Than 100 Easy and Delicious Ways to Prepare Them    Heinerman's Encyclopedia of Healing Juices

Amish Values for Your Family: What We Can Learn from the Simple Life  Seed Sowers: Gospel-Planting Adventures

About to finish up our read aloud and move on to something else.

The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus, Book 3)

Grace is reading:

Maximum Ride: The Manga, Vol. 3  The City of Ember (Books of Ember)

Happy Reading!!!!!

Homeschooling Around The World


The School House Review Crew is sharing some special posts that many homeschooling families will find interesting. The first post is up. Homeschooling in China. Be sure to take a hop over to Homeschooling Around The World at the Crew's Blog and check out how one family homeschools in China. I am looking forward to the other posts too.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Truly a Simple Lovely Day

Today is one of those days you are just happy to be alive. So many little things that added up to a really great day.

  • Church was wonderful this morning. Guest speaker delivered a simple thought provoking message. 
  • After church we celebrated my mother's birthday with great food and cake. 
  • Travis came to mom's birthday party. I haven't seen him in over a week. I really love this kid and miss him bunches.
  • My sister came home with me and we went on a long walk. 
  • Beautiful day after really nasty weather for the past 10 days. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Weekly Wrap Up - The One With Volunteer Meeting

This week for us has been jam packed with activity, school work, and exercise. I decided this week to keep a small journal page of what we did because it never fails when I still down to do this weekly wrap up my mind draws a blank.

Saturday saw us traveling 1 1/2 hours away for a volunteer meeting. This meeting was for promoting, staging, and planning the state wide home school conference for GHEA. I am very excited about being a part of the GHEA Convention. We have traveled the last five years down for the convention and enjoy every minute of it. This year I will be assisting the Vendor Hall Coordinator for Wednesday - Saturday of the conference. I will go in to all my responsibilities in a later post after I actually learn them all. Hubby and Grace did some shopping during my 2 1/2 hour meeting. They visited a big book store (us homeschoolers - just can't keep us out of a good book store), a comic book store (looking for age appropriate Anime to read - I don't really think there is any) and out to lunch. Once we got back home rested for 1-2 hours then headed over to a friends house for vegan pizza and games. Apples to Apples was the game of choice.

Sunday morning we attended church and went out to lunch afterwards. I used my Zumb Wii game in the afternoon for exercise then we went to to the funeral home in the evening for visitation. A very sweet elderly neighbor passed away this week.

Monday was lots of school, Zumba class for me and Just Dance for Grace's exercise.

Tuesday was more school plus cooperative. We are focusing a lot on Science because quite frankly we haven't studied any science in about two months. Currently we are reading a book from the library and Grace is notebooking her information.

This second week of cooperative went much smoother than the last. All classes went on like clockwork. I would say my favorite class to teach right now is Learning with Legos. The challenge this week was to build something that flies. I told them there were no limits to what they could create. They are so creative. They built: flying creatures, air planes, hot air balloons, and so much more. 

The cast list was also sent out for Aladdin and I am thrilled to report that Grace has won the role of the Genie. She is super excited.

Wednesday morning we headed out to run some errands and lunch out with a promise from Grace to go straight to work once we got home. We ate the kid meals from McDonalds and decided to splurge with each of us eating a McFlurry. This was a biggy for us because of being on Weight Watchers, etc. It tasted wonderful. Of course we won't make it a habit, just a once in a while treat. Again I used my Zumba Wii game for exercise in the afternoon and Grace used her Just Dance.

In the morning we did more Science (a new review that we are working on) and History. After lunch Grace went to her Beginner Essay Writing class with her very favorite teacher in the world and also attended the art class that follows. I don't mind her calling Ms. Christy her favorite teacher because I would think the same thing. A very fun teacher that makes learning fun. Acts of Faith practice got cancelled because of the possibility of inclement weather that never came to be. I went on to a Zumba class and Grace did whatever it is she does in her free time after dinner.

This leads us back to today. Grace got to attend her first Electricity class with another of her favorite teachers, Ms. Shannon. This Electricity class is a simulation where a Fudge Factory loses electricity and through puzzles, riddles, and investigation the students find out what went wrong then repair it to bring the power back on.

Grace has been working a lot on her art this week to get pieces ready to be juried for a festival in October. So I would say her favorite thing she used this week is her special markers made by Copic.

Be sure to visit Kris at Weekly Wrap Up to see what her family and others have done this week with their home school.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Rain, Rain Go Away

Okay, enough is enough. Here in the South it seems it is feast or famine as far as the rain goes. We go weeks with nothing and then day after day after day of rain. My poor chickens are miserable. The backyard/chicken yard is a mud hole. I MEAN A REAL MUD HOLE! All the coops need cleaning out but not let up in the rain for probably 7 days. Today was the worst. Tonight the temps are falling dramatically and maybe an inch of snow will fall. All I want is some sunshine. If it was still Christmas I would be putting it at the top of my Santa list. I need waders to go in the backyard and deal with the chickens. Of course I don't own waders. Maybe that also needs to be added to the list. Looking forward to hopefully some sunshine this weekend so I can go out and do a real heavy duty cleaning. I try to look on the bright side..... at least the well is getting nice and full.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Sprouting Seeds for Chickens

What to do for greens during the winter. This is our backyard. Very wooded lot that in the summer is completely covered with shade and nothing but a lot of red Georgia clay. Not very conducive to growing grass, not that the chickens would let the seed stay on the ground long enough to grow. In the spring and summer it is not that big of a deal because I supplement them with extra greens from the garden. As you can see in the first two pics rain has descended upon us and will stay until Friday. This creates a mud hole and very miserable chickens.

As you can see that thought I was going to bring some more treats so they all came out of their hiding places to greet me while I took a couple of photos.

My answer to no grass in the backyard in the winter (or anytime for that matter) is sprouting seeds a couple of times a week to share with the chickens. I had some leftover seed that we currently weren't partaking in and decided the poor chickens could use it.

I purchased this seed sprouter last year and it works great.
All together I can sprout three trays at a time. Just put this together so I don't have a picture to share of the grown sprouts. In about 5-7 days I will have some very happy chickens.

Youth Service Ideas

Readers I need your help. Looking for some great youth service project ideas. My brain is mush these days and could use some ideas. Just leave them in the comment section.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Virtual Refrigerator Link Up

Be Sure to take a look over to A Glimpse of Our Life and visit Virtual Refrigerator. Join up if you are interested in sharing art, art lessons, etc. 
Virtual Refridgerator

Weekly Wrap up - First Week of Cooperative

School - This was our first full week of school after the Christmas holidays. We did a couple of days last week to get back in the swing of things. In Bible we are finishing devotions from Journeys of Faithfulness and currently reading about Ruth and Naomi. This week we finished up both the Greek Mythology and World War I units. Still continuing the Mark of Athena book for read aloud time. Hoping to finish that up in the next 10 days. Today we started a new unit on Ancient History with task cards that were purchased from Creek Edge Press. I am loving them. I wasn't lucky enough to be on the Review Crew when they reviewed them last year but snagged a set for myself in the past couple  of months. The first task card has Grace researching archaeology and genealogy and she is recording her information through note booking. Math this week consisted of perimeter, radius, diameter, and chord study as well as some triangle review thrown in. For Science we started using a book I checked out from the library, I Wish I Knew That Science, and again we are note booking the information. Grace attended her first essay class of the year and another art class.

Health and Exercise - Grace continues to use 30 minutes of Just Dance a day for her exercise but I will be asking her to do some other choices to mix it up more. I am still a Zumba freak, with my new Wii game and taking class outside of the home. Weight Watchers has kind of fallen by the wayside over the past couple of weeks. We need to get back on the ball with that. I am not going crazy with my eating but definitely need to start counting points again. So far my surgery was a success and am currently with no further problems. Thank goodness, that was a long 6-8 weeks.

Extras - Grace is currently creating art pieces to be juried for an art festival coming up at the end of the year. The cooperative started back this week and it was crazy. Lots of classes and kids. Now we start preparing and practicing for Aladdin to be performed in May as well as recitals for the choirs, elementary drama class, and art showings. We also had a youth service group meeting this week and we are planning to hold a food drive to collect food for my church's food pantry. Also working on some fundraising activities so we will have money available for other services we wish to perform in the future.

Be sure to go and visit Kris at Weird Unsocialized Home Schoolers to see what other families did this week.

Our Home School Downfall - Science

I will be the first to admit that we are weakest in the area of Science. Neither me or Grace is very interested in the topics that fall under Science. In her younger years I thought she would be more interested in nature study and journaling, but she never was, which translates to not much getting done. We did do the Apologia series for elementary students (Zoology 1, Zoology 3, and Anatomy) and we are currently waiting on Zoology 2 for a review for the Crew. So far this year we did a small study on volcanoes, weather, and its and bits of topics that I felt she needed to know. Though I bet she doesn't remember any of it. Today was to be the start of a class on electricity with a friend of mine but enough kids didn't sign up so it got canceled. That made me frantically yesterday start looking for something interesting she could do. I actually found some interesting stuff.

I Wish I Knew That: Science: Cool Stuff You Need to KnowThe Manga Guide to Molecular Biology

Archimedes and the Door of Science (Living History Library)The Mystery of the Periodic Table (Living History Library)

I have zeroed in on the four above books. As you can see we are not in to using textbooks for our subjects. We would rather read a good book and put our information that is learned down into note booking or art journaling pages. Today we are starting with I Wish I Knew Science with atoms and some chemistry information. The manga guide has all sorts of titles (physics, chemistry, electricity, and so many more) which made it hard to choose. Of course Grace is still crazy about all things manga/anime so I am hoping that one will appeal to her the most. Getting through these four books will probably take us the better part of 6-8 months along with any science review materials we need to review for the Review Crew. I know there are at least two more science reviews that are coming up this year we can try to be a part of.

I will post soon some of the note booking pages we create with the above books.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

First Day of Cooperative

Yesterday was our first day of this semester's cooperative. Very chaotic and lots of new families on board. We have about 50-55 students this go around. Classes include Elementary and High School Choir, Elementary and High School Drama, Learning with Legos, and Elementary and High School Art. Each class is averaging around 22 - 26 students. In the above picture is my Learning with Legos class. Yesterday I had a good friend come in as a guest speaker. He actually has a dream job. He walked away from a career in ministry or education to be able to stay home (home schooling his children) with his family and do what he loves. Currently he runs a laser tag business for parties and creates his own Lego designs that sell on Ebay. Believe it or not there are tons of people around the world that have him create items that Lego doesn't. Remember in years past when trains set up in people's basements was popular, well now you have people setting up all kinds of Lego towns, etc. This is where he gets most of his business. At my church he is known by Mr. Dan. He is a great story teller and works wonders with kids. The kids really enjoyed his presentation yesterday and are looking forward to a semester filled with Lego building.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

I Must Be Crazy

Yesterday I received an email from our state home school organization (GHEA - Georgia Home Educators Association) that they were needing volunteers for the upcoming yearly state wide conference. The past five years me and my family have traveled down to Atlanta (about 1 1/2 hours away) to attend the conference. Some years we go just for one day and other years we decide to make a small vacation of it by staying 2-3 days. A lot depends on who the main speakers will be and what kind of classes are offered. If it is something really good we plan on staying longer if nothing really excites me then I just go to see the vendors and the used book sale. Anyway, I kind of got off track. The email stated that the conference had about 6 positions open up that needed filled to make the conference happen. Me and Scott have talked often about the fact that once Grace is grown and graduated we still want to stay connected with the home school community and what to help other families get started with the same lifestyle. Sort of pass on the knowledge and support. I figured this might be a good way to get my feet wet and open some doors to head in that direction. One of the positions needing filled is assistant to the conference coordinator. I emailed the head of volunteering with my desire to help and she emailed me back tonight. She was thrilled to get my email and wants me to attend the coordinator meeting this Saturday. Another boost is that the conference has been moved closer to where we live this year with only a 55 minute drive to attend. Of course if I am required to be present all three days I will book a room and stay. This is exciting for me, but is also adding a lot to my already full plate. This type of volunteering is right up my alley because I am a list maker, a organizational freak so to speak. Give me a list and I will work till every item is crossed off. See my spiritual gift is organization and management. I have fought this gift all my life because I am good at it but sometimes it gets me pulled into lots of stuff and heading up lots of committees, etc. I look at it this way though, the conference is in May. Once the conference is over my part is done until next January if I decide to continue to volunteer. I believe in home schooling with every fiber of my being and wish to be on the forefront of promoting it and letting families know there is an alternative to public education. So I guess, pray for me. Pray I don't get overwhelmed with lots of work. Pray I have the wisdom to juggle all my plates in the air without dropping any.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Weekly Wrap Up - Starting Back Up

School - Well this week we started back to school on Wednesday. Grace doesn't do well with a lot of unscheduled time on her hands. We took off about 1 1/2 weeks for Christmas and had a wonderful time, even with me recovering from surgery and battling a nasty cold. In math we picked back up with our geometry book from Math Essentials. Grace and myself have had some trouble with the pages on triangles and will need to go back to review that some more while the new pages about perimeter are easy peasy. Some things we are working on and hope to finish in the next week or so are the World War I and Greek Mythology units. Trying to decide what I want to do next. I picked up a great old living book about the French Revolution that looks interesting or a unit I have about ancient history from Creek Edge Press. Also hoping to finish up our read aloud of Mark of Athena soon and pick something new to read. Although we really love Mark of Athena and will miss Percy Jackson's world. Just found out though that Percy Jackson Sea of Monsters movie will be out in August of 2013. So looking forward to that.

Health and Exercise - This is actually still going really well even though we both took a break from counting for Weight Watchers through the holidays. Neither of us gained we actually lost a couple of pounds. We broke down and bought a Wii with some of our Christmas money. The Zumba game is fab and Grace is loving Just Dance. I also got to go back to Zumba classes and am loving it. Currently I am just 4 pounds from my first 20 pound goal and Grace is 8 pounds from her 20 pound goal. At that point I will decide if I want to lose more, but Grace doesn't need to lose anymore after the 20 just maintain.

Extras - Not much going on in this department. All extra classes were on hold during the holidays and everything will start back up next week. We have auditions for Aladdin, essay class, new art class, and a new simulation science class starting all next week with a youth service meeting to boot. I am ready though. The past 2 1/2 weeks of rest have me ready to go back to it.

Art - Hubby has joined up with two more galleries to show his work which brings the total to 5 now. We will be traveling to North Carolina tomorrow to visit one of the new galleries and take some of his work to them. I am sure there will be lots of pics to share in a future post.

Since school just started up this week I will say that Zumba Wii game and Just Dance Wii games have been our favorite item this week with recommitting ourselves to more exercise in the new year.

Be sure to visit Kris over at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers to see what other families have done this week.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Winner of the Exercise DVD Giveaway

Winner of the exercise dvd giveaway is Jennifer at a Glimpse of our Life.  Congrats to Jennifer.

Back to the Daily Grind

Today we start back with our regular schedule. Mostly just school work. Next week actually starts all of our activities back. Grace seems very agreeable to getting back to business. We start getting bored with ourselves without some type of scheduled stuff going on. I caught up on a lot of TV watching while on break, especially since a good portion of the last two weeks were spent recovering from minor surgery then an awful respiratory infection. The Christmas holidays were good and everyone feels well rested. I am ready for the new year to begin in earnest. Looking forward to the Review Crew work to start back up also. Should receive my first product within the next week. On the exercise and weigh loss front, everything is going well. Grace has currently lost 12 pounds with only really about 8 more to reach her goal. I have lost 15 1/2 with only about 5 more to go. As a family we purchased a WII with some Christmas money and it has been a great purchase for us. I mostly wanted it for exercise. The Zumba game is a great workout and Grace is getting in a lot of her exercise time in with Just Dance. She really wants to schedule a Just Dance party with her friends in the next month or so. Maybe a sleepover/Just Dance Party with a house full of girls.

As I have mentioned before one of our favorite book series to read aloud is Percy Jackson and the new Olympian series. I just read yesterday that the next Percy Jackson movie, Sea of Monsters will be out August 2013. We are so excited. I think I might even love the series a wee bit more than Grace. One of my other fav series is Mortal Instruments and their first movie will come out in August of 2013 too. That will be a big month for me. We still haven't gone to see The Hobbit because of me not feeling well for two weeks. Really need to get that taken care of. Hubby is off Monday and Tuesday of next week, might need to try then.

Well I have rambled enough. Time to get started with the day. Hope everyone has a great 2nd day of the New Year. I will be drawing the winner of my giveaway this afternoon so be looking for the winner's name.