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Home Schooling

I am a proud home school mom I love the opportunity to educate my children to not only be academically bright amazing people but also moral God loving productive members of society and community.  Following will be crafts and activities as well as resource for free curriculum I hope you enjoy all of these resources as much as I do!!

Twelve Encouraging Bible Verses For Homeschooling Mom

  1. I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.–Psalm 121:1-2 (NIV)
  2. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. –Galatians 6:9 (NIV)
  3. Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. –Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)
  4. Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans. –Proverbs 16:3 (NIV)
  5. Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. –Hebrews 13:20-21 (NIV)
  6. Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken. –Psalm 55:22 (NIV)
  7. For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. –Isaiah 41:13 (NIV)
  8. For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. –Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
  9. For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs. –Zephaniah 3:17 (NLT)
  10. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. –Philippians 4:13 (NIV)
  11. Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. –Psalm 127:1 (NIV)
  12. Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him. –Psalm 127:3 (NIV)

If you have a budding musician this is a great reference point

Amazing Link to Lapbook list!  Click on picture!

OOBLECK. This stuff is amazing. Mix 2 cups of cornstarch and 1 cup water in a bowl. To color oobleck, add a few drops of food coloring to the water before adding to the cornstarch. Takes some effort to mix the water and cornstarch. Oobleck defies Newton’s third law of motion–for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. If you quickly smack oobleck with your hand it immediately turns into a solid, instead of splashing or moving. If you slowly move oobleck it reacts like a liquid.

10 MINUTE MARKER CADDYCategory: organizing


I was using permanent markers to work on a project over the weekend (more on that later). Over the course of the afternoon I got so fed up with hunting for markers in various drawers and old coffee cups (you know the ones), that I halted the project for ten minutes to create a marker caddy.

I know, sounds nerdy. Marker Caddy. But it's actually pretty handy.

To make it, I just took an empty shoe box and some toilet paper tubes cut to the same height as the box, then stuck them into the box together standing up. No glue, no nothing. They stay up fine on their own and I like that they can move a little to accommodate the pens, pencils and markers that will be coming in and out over the years to come.


Anything that is quick, affordable and makes beautiful things is a craft winner for me.  But…I often find myself uninspired for something new and different.

I’ve found it in air dried porcelain (aka Porcelana Fria).

What will someone make with

  • 3 cups of white glue (PVA)
  • 3 cups of cornstarch (Corn flour)
  • one tablespoon of white vinegar
  • one tablespoon of glycerin (health food or hobby shop), and
  • 2 tablespoons of canola oil?

The beautiful mouse and necklace pictured (compliments of Espirit) is the answer! There’s more fantastic ideas on the site of the woman who’s recipe I have used: Libreria Andrea

Amazingly simple and a GREAT school holiday project, get the kids into the kitchen to cook up some home made, air dried, porcelain.

Let’s make it:

In a mixing bowl (or non-stick pan) mix 3 cups of white glue and 3 cups of cornstarch. Add one tablespoon of white vinegar, one tablespoon of glycerin, 2 tablespoons of canola oil. Blend thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Heat in a microwave oven or in a saucepan on the stove.

For microwave heating: Cook in a microwave-compatible recipient for 2 to 3 minutes on high (for a 800W oven; longer for a less powerful oven). Stop every 30 seconds to mix. During the last 30 seconds, stop every 10 seconds to check the consistency of the mixture. As soon as the dough becomes thick and lumpy (like ricotta cheese), remove from the oven.

Stove top: Cook in a saucepan over low heat for about 15 minutes. Stir with a wooden spoon. As soon as the dough becomes thick and lumpy (like ricotta cheese) and starts to pull away from the side of the pan, remove from heat.

Cooking is the only tricky step to making cold porcelain. You need to cook just long enough to thicken the dough but not too long, otherwise it will be too hard and impossible to work with.

Coat your working surface and your hands with cold cream or hand cream. Knead the dough until it has cooled. It can be quite hot to begin with, so take care. The dough is sticky and lumpy at first, but as you knead it, it becomes smooth and supple. Make a large ball and store it in an airtight container for 24

DIY: Bubbles | Refill Container
 This bubble recipe is so super easy to make and so frugal!
I found this at Come Together Kids

 Items Used:
Refill container $6.00 at Wal-Mart
2 1/2  cups water and 1/2 cup light corn syrup
mix in a bowl together and microwave four minutes
Gently mix 1/2 cup dish liquid
(I was told Dawn is the best)
I made the letters myself with my Cricut and used Mod Podge to adhere them.

And that is it and it works!
I made four batches to go in this container.

Reused Items:
I saved bubble wands from old bubble containers
Saved yogurt cups to reuse for something     
Everything else was already on hand except the container!           

Yay! for recycling and saving money!

 And what kid does not like bubbles?!
And the fact that it's a DIY dispenser! 


You know what question Kate and I get a lot?  “How do you girls do it it all??”  Our schedules are full, just as many of yours are, and it comes with the constant struggle of balancing Mom-life with work-life.  And like most other Mothers out there, when it comes down to it and one has to take priority, the Mom gig wins- no contest.  If something has to fall through the cracks it’s not Mom thing; it’s usually the doing-laundry, cleaning-bathrooms, or showering-before-noon thing.  So to answer the question, how do we do it all?  Ha!  We don’t!  Those of you joining us at TOFW get to hear all about how we don’t do it all.  In fact, most times sometimes we barely keep it together!  The past few weeks have felt like that for me.  I’ve been traveling a lot, and working on some huge projects (we finished our book!), so when I got home the other day after spending the weekend in PA (SO much fun- thank you East Coasters for a great time!) the last thing I wanted to do was pull out my big camera and cook.  And then edit photos.  And then write a big recipe post for today.  What I did want to do?  Play with my kids.  Be goofy, be silly, be loud and crazy and do whatever they wanted to do.  I asked them what they wanted to do, and lucky for me (and you) they picked something that I thought would actually be fun to share with you!  So ironically, my intentions of turning off my blog brain back-fired, but it worked out in the end.  I got to play with my kids, and you get a fun kitchen craft.  Or something to entertain friends at the office when you’re tired of working.  Since I had no intentions of making a big ol’ photography project out of this fun little activity, I just snapped some quick photos on my Nokia Lumia 900Windows Phone  and edited them right on my phone too, with the Thumba app.  Come next Monday I’ll have my brain fully functioning again and I’ll bust out my big camera have an amazingrecipe for you!  Until then, let’s just play :)  This is sort of awesome.

We call these “Soap Clouds.”  Where are all of our chemical engineers?  I need to know why every awesome science project involving soap, hinges on the use of Ivory soap.  Thoughts?  Are there magical ingredients in there?  I’ve always wondered that.  I bet whoever came up with the original recipe never expected that so many science experiments would ensue with its use!  I think the same thing about Elmer’s glue.  Anyway, grab a bar of Ivory soap.  It’s cheap, but don’t worry, you can even use it as soap when we’re done here so we’re not being wasteful.  So you don’t need to write us lengthy emails about being earth-hating-soap-haters.

Place a piece of waxed paper, parchment, plastic wrap, or paper towel in your microwave.  Just don’t use foil, or we’ll have issues on our hands that are much bigger than  your next burrito tasting slightly like a fresh mountain spring.  This really doesn’t make a mess, so don’t be scared.

Start your microwave for a couple of minutes on high power.  You don’t need to let it run that whole length of time, but you can just stop it when you need to.  Want to see what happens??  It’s a little hard to see through my microwave door, but check it out (and ignore me when I say you need to turn your microwave turntable off, that’s for if you’re trying to video this experience:))

Ten bonus points for anyone who can reference my children’s ramblings about “the great devourer.”

I don’t know how it does it- but it starts growing!  Sometimes the “clouds” are seriously HUGE, and other times they are sort of wimpy.  I’ve noticed generally, the fresher the soap (as in the more recent I have purchased it) the bigger the result.  We’ve done this a million times and my kids still get a kick out of it.

It looks like it should be foamy and wet, but it’s not.  You can actually pick up the whole big chunk.

If you smash it, it will break into pieces and you’ll end up with soap dust everywhere, so be careful with little hands who like to smash things :)

It’s the weirdest looking thing.  I love how it’s different every time.

Now.  You have a giant blob of dried soap fluff and your kids were entertained for a total of 3.5 minutes.  That’s a start!  Sometimes I let my kids just take the whole darn thing in the bath tub and have at it.  It’s one way to make sure they actually get cleaned in there.  Or sometimes I hold it up over them in the tub and let it “snow” by smashing it and letting it sprinkle down like little snow flakes.  Or, you can let them make their own little soaps.  First, put the fluff in a bowl and let them do what they’ve probably been trying to do already- smash it to smithereens. It just kind of falls apart, so it’s actually kind of fun.  And if it gets all over your counter, take my advice and sweep or vacuum it up first, then wipe it down.  Otherwise you’ll end up with a big soapy mess.

Then, either in a bowl with a spoon, or with an electric beater, or in a food processor, like I’m using, add warm water, just until it comes together.  Just like pie crust, folks!  This is why I love kitchen crafts.  To test it, grab some with your hands and hold it in your fist.  If it holds together in a ball, it’s ready.

Take the mold-able mixture and let kids press it into cookie cutters.  Make sure kids are old enough to know it’s not food, or they are likely to attempt to eat it!

These photos below are from a batch I made a while back, (and photographed with my regular camera) and I let my kids add just a couple of drops of food coloring to make colored soaps.  After the soaps are molded, but still wet, you can gently push them out of the molds.  Let them sit in a cool, dry place for a few days and soon you will have little soaps to wash (or play!) with.

Funny how my kids are always very interested in getting extra clean when it’s with soap they’ve made themselves.

Now go have some fun with your own kiddos today!  Or, just grab some soap and have fun in your office break room at lunch.  C’mon- you know you want to.

Brought to you by the new AT&T Nokia Lumia 900.
Tasks. Joys. Simply Faster.

Most photos and all video in this post were taken with the Nokia Lumia 900Windows Phone.  We are happy to partner with wonderful sponsors, but note sponsors do not provide our content, they provide products, tools and inspiration.  We were compensated for our participation in this campaign.

Teach your kids the lost art of letter writing with this really neat pen pal site.

Abstract Art

 C just recently finished a piece of abstract art for my husband's birthday
and she had so much fun,
 all 3 of us decided to work on one together!

The girls started off by dripping and brushing rubber cement all over a canvas
When the rubber cement was dry
 I placed a few coffee filters on the canvas
we dripped food coloring onto the filters
then sprayed them with water until the edges began to fall
(It doesn't take much water for that to happen)
When the coffee filters are dry their edges will be pulled off the canvas
and they should be easily removed.
If not, then they're probably still a little damp.
 Start the process all over again layering more coffee filters over the canvas
Repeat until you have an amazing design that you love!
We did it 3 times

This was such a fun process, with beautiful results!
I was thinking that maybe we didn't really need the rubber cement resist
but when we rubbed it all off we found lovely brush strokes where a bit of the coloring bled through
The layering of the coffee filters really added nice depth to the picture as well as creating neat little lines of mixed colors
 Here's our finished piece of work,
Since we used the same food coloring that was used to create the other piece
they go together nicely
I see an abstract flower on the right side, do you?
 And as a bonus, we now have dyed coffee filters to use for another project!

MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2012
15 Ways to Have Fun Outside- In The Dark

We love playing outside and the fun shouldn't end just because the sun went down! So today I thought I'd share fifteen ways to have fun outside.. in the dark. 

  1. Flashlights are fun! Give the kids flashlights and take a look around. Much fun can be had by simply exploring with a flashlight. What looks different at night? What does my mouth look like with the flashlight? My fingers?
  2. Flashlight tag. Tag players using the beam of light, or simply play tag with flashlights to guide the way.
  3. Flashlight limbo. How low can you go? Two people, holding flashlights, face each other and make a steady beam of light for others to limbo under.
  4. Catch the light. My son absolutely loves chasing after the ever-moving beam of light. I shine it around and just when he thinks he's caught it, I move it again. He has so much fun and this really tires him out. He also enjoys reversing the play and watching me scurry after the light. 
  5. Catching shadows. We've also had a lot of fun chasing each other's shadows. The object is to catch the other person's shadow by chasing after it and jumping on it. All you need is a porch light that shines out into your yard and you're ready for some fun. 
  6. Shadow puppets. Shine a light onto the side of your house or fence to set the stage for an evening of puppet shows. 
  7. Catch lightening bugs.
  8. Put a spin on some classic games. How much fun is "Red Light, Green Light" or "Duck, Duck, Goose" in the dark? Lots, actually.
  9. Glow in the dark dancing. Put on shows for one another, or simply rock out with glow sticks. 
  10. Hide and seek with glow sticks. One person hides a glow stick and then all of the others try to find it. The person that finds it first gets to hide it again.
  11. Hunt for glow sticks. Hide a bunch of glow sticks all throughout the yard and let the kids hunt for them. 
  12. Flashlight hunt. One player hides an object, like a rubber duck, and the others try to find it using their flashlights.
  13. Build a campfire. Listen to music. Play cards. Cuddle. Make s'mores. 
  14. Tell spooky stories. But maybe not too spooky.
  15. Tell stories with constellations. Show your children a few constellations and then ask them if they can find any pictures in the stars. Ask them to tell you more about the object they see. Can they make up a story about it? Can you?
More Tips:

  • Regular flashlights are great fun, but a child-size headlamp can make the night extra special and some of the games a bit easier. 
  • Make sure your yard and area of play is safe before playing. As with anything, supervise your children and use caution and your best judgement. 
  • Set a timer to let everyone know when the play must come to an end to transition smoothly into bedtime routines.