Monday, August 31, 2009

Our School Year '09-'10~Curriculum

Did you know school can be as fun as skipping rocks??

Ah, yes, just count it as physical education, social-science, physics, and nature study all wrapped into one fun afternoon together!


Mystery of History~Creation to Resurrection
Covers a variety of subjects including, but not limited to...
ancient history, geography, map & graphing skills, creative arts, fine arts, and Biblical history.

Drawn Into the Heart of Reading~
(a multi-level reading program)
Genre studies, Godly Character traits, vocabulary strategies, scripture memorization, emphasizes story elements, and encourages literature discussions.

Nick...algebra (continuing previous years program to boost understanding)
TJ... fractions/percents/decimals
Katie... focus is on addition/subtraction w/ fun side lessons for times tables.

Language Arts~
Easy Grammar/Daily grams~TJ, review for Nick
WordSmart~vocabulary builder for Nick, SAT friendly
McGraw Hill~spelling, grammar, reading workbooks for Katie

CompleteWritingProgram ~
an easy multi-level writing program; creative, yet simple.

nature study by way of explorative field trips (from beaches to mountains to forests to backyard adventures!)
Painless Life Science (book)
...continued study of periodic table, one element researched per week.
1 simple science experiments per week.

Physical Education~
soccer (need I say more?)
daily treadmill and basic military workout encouraged.

Nick- sketching/drawing
TJ- whittling
Katie- embroidery


ABC Jesus Loves Me (*note: logo on left)

notimeforflashcards (for quick, fun projects)
childcareland (simple art projects)
starfall (interactive, also has great print out worksheets) also has great alphabet activities!
(THESE SITES ARE ALL FREE... how could you NOT do preschool?)

**admittedly I have endless resources I could share related to early childhood education. I spent many of our previous homeschool years also running a daycare/preschool. Now my own Littles are reaping the benefits ;^)

For an idea of how we homeschool, feel free to read here.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

We Love Soccer....

I am a soccer mom.

I first heard about soccer moms during some presidential election...what it really means I am not so sure, but I am pretty confident that I am probably the poster picture of it.

This ball has had some mileage on it... it is broken in, and is a favorite.

My boys have some awesome footwork...

it is quite entertaining to watch in person!
They were taught by one of the best... their DAD!

...and what would soccer season be without this
popular refreshment!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Following the narrow path...of blogging.

As it is getting towards the end of summer 'round here, life seems to get busier...
Labor Day plans, school starting up, sports beginning again...
Another notable observation is fellow "bloggers" that are re-evaluating their purpose. A great post about that very thing is
Tammy. This got me thinking about why I blog. Frankly, I have no interest in being a "successful" blogger in the terms of followers, blog rolls, awards...naive of me that I even know what those are.
"Come follow me" that you may know Him. The path that we follow is narrow... but our joy is abundant!!
Reasons I ever started to blog, and continue to do so:
#1) as a personal journal. To share tidbits of life, difficulties and blessings alike. A place to reflect back on photos and feelings. I am a busy mom, guilt ridden by the lack of organizing any family photos... this blog is our family album.
#2) a place where friends and family can drop by to see how we are doing. I post when something stirs my heart, so the frequency of posts are random.
#3) a tool of encouragement. Life is hard, but God is faithful! We live by the "this too shall pass" during times of trials. We are always looking for the blessings that surround us on a daily basis, even if it is just a whisper of the moment!

This is also how I choose what blogs to read. I enjoy my minimal time to read, I enjoy a good feed of encouragement, I enjoy friends who are willing to share their journey also; these are the blogs that let me do just those things:
Tonia (the writer/poet)
Tammy (the "I can totally relate to" person)
Elaine (a lovely southern gal)
Dorothy (an urban blessing)
Katherine (a military witness)**blessings to you, your kids, and your husband!
These are ladies with different cultures, backgrounds, and interests, but ALL are of encouragement to me. They are real and down-to-earth, and it has been a blessing to meet them!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Our school year begins... '09-'10

Living life is our education;

The world is our play-ground;

God is our authority;
Dad is the principal;

Grandma is the recess aid;

Auntie Chanelle is our school counselor;

I am the teacher;

Nick is a junior;

TJ is in 7th grade;

Katie is entering 2nd grade;

Andrew is our pre-k student;

and Bryson loves TOT school.

May God bless, guide, and protect our up-coming school year, and all the events that we may participate in... in Him we give thanks!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

"The Move" part 2

Exploring the woods...

See... we can play hide-n-go seek anywhere.
What I want to know is how Dad talked Andrew into sharing his "S" hat??

Reptile Zoo...
(share more later)...

Yes, that would be our TJ with both a soccer ball AND a football during a family hike...

Grandma Hollinger... How lovely it is to see her more!


Our hometown is a pleasant place to raise a family. Most areas of interest are within walking distance. Traffic is minimal, parking lot spaces always available, and there is ALWAYS someone to say "hello" to at the store. Crime, although there, is not dominant. It is easy to get to know your neighbors, and I am pleased to get positive reports when they say "oh, I saw your son at the...." I love the people in our little town!

Big move means bigger changes for our children:
~More gang behavior observed.
~a bigger awareness of the homeless
~observations of drugs
~exposed to what a 'workin' girl' behaves like
~the amount of 'adult' stores available
~we discuss how sin brings about more sin when describing casinos, which seem to be everywhere. Gambling brings about drinking that brings about sexual immorality... and so on...
Big city offers bigger opportunities...
the up side to our move is there is more to do, thus the lack of complaints about our new transition.
~Within city limits we have a huge library, ice rink, parks, beaches, petting zoo, childrens museum, indoor soccer; just to name a few of our interests.
~Near by, we have access to endless interests in the Seattle area. Our favorites would include the Seahawks, the Sounders, the Mariners, the Washington Park Zoo, the Science Museum, Children's museum, Space Needle, Farmers Markets, Train rides, and an occasional Ferry ride.

My conclusion is that home is where our family is... and we look forward to meeting some nice people in our big city!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

"The Move" part 1

These are the things we do while adjusting to a new life...

Dad has been working grayeyard shift all summer.... and well, the kids still want to play .... so there you have it! ;^)

It is a house....
It has been my dear m.i.l. house and home for the past 12 years.
These unstable economic times have left 'mom' without a job. She was an escrow officer for 30 plus years. Obviously, the crashing housing market makes her face new possibilities, to look past what she knows best, and explore new ideas.
My dear s.i.l. (Chanelle) has now just purchased this house; it too is also her home. Back from a decade long hiatus in Ireland; with endless travels, hikes, and site-seeing around many parts of the world! It is a newer experience for her to be tied down to one spot ;^D My hopes is that she may still embrace the freedom to face more new horizons (like who could stop her), while enjoying the stability of family connections.
As for "us", we are blessed that my husband's company has the workload to expand to the Seattle region. We are blessed to assist in finances during this transition.
The house is small. A quaint 3 bedroom rambler, 2 bath, single garage, w/ a petite fenced side yard. Transition of the move has not been easy, but surprisingly, it is not due to the size of the home.
*'Mom' still gets her master bedroom, bath, and 2 closets; we are hoping that she will use that as her escape oasis when she needs it.
*Chanelle (bless her heart) has no room... yep, owner of the house, but no bedroom lol. She sleeps on the couch, although many of my children would trade her spots if they could. Her clothes and belongings reside in "the room" that Fred and I sleep in (I think we went from king sz bed to double??), along w/ Andrew and Baby bryson in comfy make-shift beds on our floor. Honestly, they have always ended up in our bed anyways, so this is nothing new for us.
*The 3rd room has the bunk bed w/ a trundle tucked under it for Nick, TJ, and Katie to sleep in. The closet is not available for use, but they have plenty of room for our computer (yay), a few toys, and a game system... they are content enough with that.
Space is not much of an issue for us as a family. Sure, it is more fun to play hide-n-go seek in a bigger home, but even in our old much bigger house, we tended to congregate together in one room. We like each other, lol, and I suppose that is a good thing.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

coming back soon

We finally have our internet up and running, so now I am off and running to prep and plan our school year that is starting officially Aug. 10th.! Yikes! Summer is flying by... we will soon share what we have been up to... check back in a few days to see how us Hollinger's have been doing so far this summer....