Showing posts from 2013

Goals for 2014

Below are my career, financial, spiritual, physical, intellectual, familial, and social goals for this coming new year. Career-  Blog again- I have found my old blog posts really helpful lately, especially for home school purposes. My blog works like a file cabinet and it allows me to go back in time and see what I was using when my oldest child was younger. That serves to remind me what I can do with my younger children now.  So I think keeping a record of what we're doing will help me in the distant future in much the same way.  Complete another professional, fitness certification- In 2013, I gained my basic AFAA Group Fitness certification and I started teaching cardio and muscle classes at a local gym.  I'd like to pursue another, more specialized certification this year, perhaps a Bodypump certification through Les Mills. This particular certification is a tough one to attain, but barbell classes choreographed to music are my favorite workout to do


My husband has gotten into the habit of reading out loud to our family almost every night.  He's been doing it for about a year now and he has taken us through several books in that time.  Right now, we happen to be reading through The Hobbit. Last night, as he was reading a portion of the story, he was changing his voice to fit each character and it occurred to me how much his dramatic skill has improved over the year.  With constant practice, he's gotten significantly better at reading out loud.   From the beginning, it was a pleasure to listen to him read. But now, it's even more of a pleasure somehow. And that lead me to thinking how true that is in so many areas of this man's life.  He's better today than he was a year ago in so many things.  And that lead me to thinking how glad I am that I married him young, really young.  Neither one of us were finished with college when we said, "I do." We were still children in many ways.  But it's been the

Because of Love

The other day my daughter asked, "Why am I home schooled?" "Because I love you,"  was my answer. But as soon as the words came out of my mouth, I regretted them. I realized that if my daughter followed my logic to its end, she might believe that the parents who love their children home school and then assume that parents who don't love their children, don't home school. Yikes.  So I had to backtrack. "Norah, if I didn't know how to teach you at home, would it be loving to keep you out of school?"  "No." "If you were suffering lack, going without things you need, and I could go to work and provide those things, wouldn't it be loving for me to do that?" "Yes." "So I stay home and use my gifts here out of love. Another mom with different gifts sends her kids to school because she loves them. And another mom, out of love, goes to work and provides for her family. So parents can make opposit

Scrambled Eggs and Provolone Over Spinach

You will need: 1 Tablespoon of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil Fresh spinach (At least 3 ounces) One egg A slice of provolone 1. Pour a tablespoon of olive oil into a deep skillet and turn the heat on medium-high. Fill the skillet with spinach, really pile it in there because spinach shrinks a lot as it wilts. 2. Stir the spinach on and off as it wilts. When it's wilted, transfer it to a plate.  3. Keep the pan off the burner and let the pan cool off for half a minute.  Turn the heat down to low then crack an egg in the skillet and scramble it as it cooks.  4. Bunch the egg together and put a slice of provolone on just until it melts.  Then transfer the eggs and cheese to your bed of greens.    5. Salt it to taste and enjoy!

Our "Whys" Make All the Difference

This picture is going around Facebook and I've had conflicting feelings about it. At first, this mom appeared to me to be reinforcing negative cultural messages like being heavy should be avoided at all costs, that being pretty or worse, sexy, is power and influence women should strive for, that people aren't worthy of love unless they are perfect, that aging is bad, etc. I think all the fashion magazines at the checkout and advertisements on television have put me on the defense.  But, on the other hand, I see how this picture can be inspiring.  Children should see parents modeling good choices and healthy lifestyles and they need to know that real life won't always be accommodating to their goals, even their most worthy ones.  You have to work for what you want wherever and whenever you find the opportunity, even if it's on the middle of your living room floor. My daughters watch me work out because they are always with me.  My four year old has a little base

My Thoughts Upon Rereading The Core by Leigh Bortins

I just reread The Core by Leigh Bortins.  I had to reread it because I didn't glean much from my first time through the book.  But, this time, I came back to it with "a different brain,"as Bortins would say. I had a better understanding of the book because I had been reading and listening to classical educators talk about classical education for several months, so, quite naturally, I was able to glean more this time through. And actually, this illustrates the classical model of learning that Bortins explains in The Core. She says we all go through three stages as we learn anything new.  First, we memorize the vocabulary and rules about a new topic, the basics. This is what Bortins calls the grammar stage of learning.  This may take place over years or just a few days, depending on how much we work at it.  If we are really interested in something, mastering the grammar of that topic may only take days.  Next, we begin to understand the topic logically and make all sorts

Happy Easter 2013

We lived out of suitcases for the entire month of February and now that we are home again, I keep finding myself overwhelmed, even anxious, by all the stuff we have in our house. I think I'm a productive person. I keep myself and the kids on a strict schedule that allows us to get all the beds made, do the laundry, take care of the pets, keep the whole house clean, neat and organized almost all of the time while we also home school and I nurse and nurture the baby.  I cook three healthy meals a day from scratch and empty the sink and re-clean the counters, table and floor after each of those meals.  I read to my kids, talk to them, play with them, supervise their play and work.  And, in my free time, I exercise and read through several books at once.  So I have no reason to be ashamed about how I use my time.    Yet, when I walk by shelves of so many books, I see the ones I haven't read to the kids yet and I feel guilty. When I walk by all our board games, I see t
Dwayne: "Mom isn't on a diet. She's changed the way she eats, the way we eat."   Norah: "You mean this is FOREVER??!"
I've found a healthier chili recipe.  Note: I use only organic products, whenever possible.  Beef Chili 1 lb. grass-fed ground beef One 28 oz. can of whole, organic tomatoes 3-4 cups of V8 Juice One medium-sized onion, chopped Three cans of kidney beans, drained and rinsed well One tablespoon dried Italian seasoning Two teaspoons chili powder After opening the can, carefully chop each tomato before adding it to the pot. Pour in the remaining tomato juice from the can and the V8.  Add the onions, drained beans and spices. Let this begin to simmer, stirring occasionally. In the meantime, brown the beef in a skillet then drain it and add it to the pot.  Simmer chili for thirty minutes, stirring occasionally. Enjoy!