Tag Archives: Family

Box Day! Our 2017-2018 Homeschool Curriculum

What we are using for our 2017-2018 Homeschool Year

It’s Box Day! Our 2017-2018 homeschool curriculum has arrived!  The kids, or maybe it’s just me, have been excited awaiting the arrival of the last of our books for next year. This next year is going to be completely different, because the triplets start. I’m not going to lie, it scares the crap out of me, but we’re going to do. We’re getting ready, they’re excited, and we’re moving forward.

It took me a while to figure out just WHAT we were going to do this year. There’s not many blogs out there chronicling the antics of homeschooling triplets, especially not from the start. Most of the homeschooling families that I know of with triplets started once their kids already knew their numbers and letters.

Being that I’m not sure of the HOW of homeschooling triplets I really didn’t want to overwhelm myself and be setup for failure. I really wanted this first year to get our feet under us and figure what homeschooling triplets looks like. That said I wasn’t sure I wanted to move on to the next core (which would be D) in Sonlight.

I’m taking a different approach.

When I officially started homeschooling Avelyn (the year she turned 6) she already knew her letters and numbers, thanks to ABCMouse.com; the triplets aren’t there yet. They just turned 5 in December, so they wouldn’t even be beginning Kindergarten until the Fall, so I’m not concerned that they’re behind.

I decided that wouldn’t be progressing to Core D; we’re actually going to go backwards. Avelyn has already done Core B and C (Ave has always been on the young range for the recommended ages for each core), but she never did Core A. Some of the books we already had and some we still needed to order.

Our Homeschool Curriculum with Triplets

Here’s the breakdown or our homeschool curriculum

Math

Avelyn will continue on with Math-U-See, she will be in Beta after this year. The triplets are actually going to start in Horizon K; the reason for this is that they have no connection between visual numbers (1, 2, 3, etc) and actual quantities. They know how to count and they know quantities, but the actual numbers are arbitrary. Math-U-See Primer is just a bit beyond them. Horizon K looked like it gave them a good foundation for learning the number associations.

Science

Avelyn loved Science A last year and B this year from Sonlight, but we never did any of the science experiments…I’d like to talk to a parent that actually does the experiments on a regular basis. I still haven’t quite figured out what I’m doing with science yet. A friend of mine is interested in doing a science co-op so I might just supplement that with other books that we’ve found. Whatever we do, all the kids will be doing the same thing.

History

All of the kids will be doing Sonlight’s Core A, which is an Introduction to World Cultures and History. Yes, Avelyn has done Core B and C, which were more in depth, but I don’t think she’ll be hurting for History. The wonderful thing about Sonlight is all of the FANTASTIC read-alouds and books that are included. We have quite a few from the last two cores that we haven’t managed to finish (they include so many more books than can be read in a year).

Reading and Writing

These will each be done on their individual levels. Avelyn will continue with Explode the Code and A Reason for Handwriting, the triplets will begin with Before the Code and A Reason for Handwriting K. I am planning on adding in whatever things we need, such as ABCMouse.com. Also, we have a ton of Beginning Readers books for all of the kids to work through.

Bible

Sonlight does a great job of incorporating Bible readings, theology, and studies in their curriculum! Unfortunately, I do a REALLY bad job of keeping on top of these things as they’re dictated in the Instructor’s Guides. Really bad. Now before you’re ready to throw me under the bus, we do some of our own storybook bibles and devotionals. Right now though, I have an EXTENSIVE collection of books that I want to work through with the kids. I’d much rather save my money and use what we already have.

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Most of our curriculum is from Sonlight, the rest of it I purchase through CBD.com (Christian Book Distributor) or directly through the program (ie Math-U-See). I think we’ve done well with Sonlight and have enjoyed their structure as well as the books they use. I don’t have endless hours to pull together curriculum and plan everything out myself. I give those who do a TON of credit. I just can’t.

Our Homeschool Curriculum

This year I was trying to save money. I ended up spending $350 on what we purchased through Sonlight (the picture on the left above), and an additional $250 from CBD (on the right) for our Explode the Code and math books.  I still need to purchase Avie’s math and handwriting. I will wait until the fall to do that, but it shouldn’t be more than another $75.

For this year, I’m significantly under what we spent last year with purchasing a full prepackaged curriculum. Since I wasn’t buying a Core from Sonlight I was able to save quite a bit of money by only purchasing the books that I couldn’t get cheaper elsewhere. Some of the books we already had, some of them were significantly less buying them used. It worked out well.

Where are you in your homeschool journey?

Hope for Each Day {a Review}

My kids are in the great in between now…they’re not preschoolers there not tweens. There kind of in the middle, which means that a lot of things are either too mature or too babyish for them. We’ve very much loved our beginner’s devotionals, but the story lines are for preschoolers.IMG_5870

When I was looking at the books I could review from BookLookBloggers.com I saw that there was a new one from Billy Graham, called Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids. It piqued my interest. It came a few days later in the mail and we all ripped it open, ready to evaluate whether this was worth it’s weight.

It’s great! We read the entry for today (February 25) and it right away grabbed Avelyn. It talked about how glass is made, transforming something something gritty (sand) into something beautiful, and how God can transform us. We skimmed through a few more and we all agreed, this was going to be a good read. It was immediately placed in the seat of honor, the window by the kitchen table.

While there aren’t any pictures to engage the youngest readers, the text and verses are more than interesting to older kids who can handle 3 minutes of a devotional without a picture. All in all, it looks like it’s going to be a great little addition to our Bible time!

*I received this book for free through the BookLookBloggers program; the opinions expressed are entirely my own. You can read my disclosure policy here. This post does contain affiliate links, which means I get a small percentage of the sale, at no additional cost to you.

Happy Birthday, Laura!
Sharing a Love of Laura Ingalls Widler with Your Little Ones

Today marks the 150th birthday of my first literary love, Laura Ingalls Wilder. I can’t tell you the definitive moment that I met Laura or fell in love with her spunky ways, because she has always been there. Before I was born my mom was already introducing me to Laura, through the Little House on the Prairie TV Show. It was a staple in our house; Matthew just bought me the complete series on AppleTV for Christmas.

sharing a love of laura ingalls wilder with my little ones has always been important.

Once we had moved to our own little house in the big woods of upstate New York she became even more real to me. Our winters were spent being warmed by the wood stove, the harsh realities of having to chip through ice and trudge through snow to keep ourselves and animals fed and warm. One of my absolute most favorite memories from my childhood is cozying up on the couch with my mom, hearing the storms raging outside, the fire glowing and having her read Little House on the Prairie to us.

My first “dress like your favorite author day” consisted of my donning the longest dress I had, an apron, my (very in-style) ankle books, and a saffron yellow bonnet. I still have that bonnet: My own Laura and Mary play with it now.

Sharing a Love of Laura Ingalls Wilder with your little ones

I could harp on about all the reason why Laura is stilled loved after so many years, how her story harkens to a “simpler time” in American history, but those things have all been said before. For me, it’s quite simply the story of a little girl who had a love for life and a taste for adventure.

Sharing a Love of Laura Ingalls Wilder with your little ones

She wasn’t perfect, she tried to do what she was supposed, but sometimes that just wasn’t easy or even possible. She had a fierce love for her Pa and her sisters, a tender love for her Ma and home, and such a passionate, self-giving love for Almonzo. She was brave. She was self-sufficient. She was willing to do the hard work. She embodied everything I wanted to be as I was growing up.

Sharing a Love of Laura with Your Little Ones

(The following does contain affiliate links, which means that I get a small commission off any purchases made through the link, at no extra cost to you. You can read my disclosure policy here.)

Avelyn has been fully indoctrinated into the world of Little House, and it was because of some fantastic books. I had wanted to start reading the books once she turned 5, but she had no desire to sit through lengthy pages with very few pictures. While searching for home school books a few years ago I happened to stumble across another series of books called My First Little House Books.Sharing a Love of Laura Ingalls Wilder with your little ones

They are picture books based on Laura’s own stories and illustrated in the exact style of Garth Williams. They have become some of our favorites to read. There are even a couple of stories about Almonzo, which we particularly love since he was born and raised in New York.

Another way to introduce your little ones is through the television series based on the books. What’s wonderful about them is that there isn’t anything in them that you need to shield your children from. There’s no surprises or inappropriate content, and it’s a show that almost everyone will love (my husband usually falls asleep during them).

While I’ve heard it mentioned in several podcasts, I’ve never looked into the audiobooks read by Cherry Jones. The experts say they’re fantastic and the best part is today the first two books about Laura (books 1 and 3) are marked down to $9.18 each.  You can be sure that I’ve added them to my amazon shopping cart.

The absolute best way to share Laura and her family with anyone is to simply read to them. Read the stories in whatever way you can that your children enjoy. The stories will stick with them and forever be something they remember, if only because you spent time with them.

 

 

Happy New Year!

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year! Our’s was crazy-busy (there’s a reason I’ve disappeared for almost a full month!). Just before Christmas we had had the triplets fifth birthday, then Christmas, then New Years, and then we all got a lovely stomach bug that has been making it’s rounds. The last man standing was Matthew and he finally succumbed last weekend.

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There’s so much I want to be sharing with you, but I know I can’t just rush and throw it all out there. There’s the triplets Growing Up post, Peter’s 19 month post (yea, I know those are more for me than anyone else). We started finishing some major home renovation projects that I’m really excited about. Our iPhone 5C exploded and caught fire (no one was hurt). One child, he who shall not be named, decided to try and close my laptop with Legos in it (the Legos won). Needless to say my computer time has become severely limited.

I have been reading so many good books that I can’t wait to share with you in the next few weeks, as well as some of my really fun Christmas gifts. One of my friends has a fantastic new book that just came out, that I have yet to read and am so looking forward to. I started a Moms Group at our church, which is a whole other ride. It’s been crazy!

How have you been? How were your holidays? How are your families?

I hope everyone is well and I’m really looking forward, and hoping, to getting back to my space in the ether!

Henry, James, and Elanor – 5 Years Old

It was emotionally having these three turn 5. So many thoughts and memories of what it was like to find out we would have three babies at once. So much remembering doctors appointments and their births. We just got a copy of their birth records and to read them it’s awe-inspiring; Ellie’s APGAR at birth was 1.  Reading her reports you start to realize just how close she was to not making it in those first few minutes.

We’ve always known how incredibly blessed we were with their pregnancy, birth, and everything else, but sometimes it HITS you just how blessed we are. As crazy as it is having triplets, I wouldn’t change any of them or it for the world. I think about that doctor who wanted me to abort one or more of them and I think, “How could I? Who would we be without?” I can’t imagine being without any of them.

HenryIMG_4591

  • Weighing 49lbs
  • Standing 3′ 8.8″
  • Absolute Lego FIEND….not kidding this kid is obsessed with Legos. He’s just started being able to put legos together on his own via the instructions, but builds crazy elaborate things from his imagination. He’s content to just play Legos quietly for such a long time.
  • Way skinnier than he looks (he’s got that adorable chubby baby face)
  • Acts like a crazy boy and can’t make a normal face in a picture
  • LOVES his baby brother (and all babies)
  • Loves playing rough, but only if it’s on his terms
  • Is a total momma’s boy…he’s very content to stay home with me, rather than go to anyone’s house, especially overnight
  • Struggles with when things don’t go his way or his lego creations break
  • Loves getting snuggled on the couch with lots of blankies to watch movies
  • He very much internalizes any sort of correction, he has a very gentle soul…it’s a struggle to correct him without his shutting down or becoming defensive

 

JamesIMG_4592

  • Weighing 56 lbs
  • Standing 4′
  • He’s a BEAST! An absolute beast on every single level…he’s physically huge, emotionally huge, intelligence huge…just huge.
  • He thinks he’s in charge…which gets him into quite a bit of trouble. He doesn’t think twice about telling me (or other adults) what we should be doing or not doing
  • He likes Legos, but nowhere near the way Henry does
  • Really enjoys books…he’ll sit down on his own and just look at the pictures and pretend he’s reading (there’s a video on instagram of him reading Where the Wild Things Are)
  • Has a temper like you wouldn’t believe, and thinks nothing of hauling off and whacking me (fortunately he doesn’t do it with his siblings…for the most part).
  • He loves playing with Avie
  • He’s fantastic with Peter and such a big help with getting him from upstairs (only Avie is big enough to do that, besides James…he’s only an 1″ shorter than her)
  • Despite all of his temper and aggression about things, he really is such a loving and compassionate boy. He’s very aware of taking care of me…refilling my glass of water is a big one.
  • Has his first loose tooth (lost it on 1/21/17)

 

ElanorIMG_4590

  • Weighing 41lbs
  • Standing 3′ 7″
  • She rules the roost!
  • She’s still the peanut, even though she’s really not that tiny (she’s 63% for height!)
  • LOVES Barbies….Avie likes them too, but Ellie takes it to the EXTREME
  • She loves being snuggled and cozied in my or Matthew’s lap (having her Oma blanket is an absolute MUST)
  • She’s becoming a fantastic artist…she loves painting and coloring (still on my walls!)
  • Elanor has a very sneaky and deceptive streak…she will say she didn’t do something that you KNOW she did, then give the hugest sigh and says “I did it”…so much drama
  • SO MUCH DRAMA!
  • Being the littlest, before Peter, we weren’t sure how things would go down between the two of them, but she absolutely LOVES her little brother. She loves when I will hold both of them and say that I have my two babies.
  • She loves hearing about how she’s always been in the middle between Henry and James…whether it was in my tummy (she was originally baby B) or in cribs (when she was released from the NICU she was still struggling with maintaining her body temperature, so she was always nestled between them to keep her warm).

HJE at 5

In Their Own Words

Henry

1. What is your favorite color? Blue
2. What is your favorite toy? Legos
3. Favorite thing to play? Play on mommy’s iphone because it’s blue
4. What is your favorite fruit? Pasta
5. What is your favorite TV show? Ninjago
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Eggie Sandwich (scrambled egg on toast, with avocado and pepper jack cheese) – He said Crepes.
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Mack-y-doodle (mac n cheese)
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Meatballs and Pizza
9. What is your favorite snack? Strawberries
10. What is your favorite outfit? Pajamas
11. What is your favorite computer game? Lego Ninjago
12. What is your favorite game? Shoot guns with Daddy (Nerf)
13. What is your favorite snack? Chips and dip
14. What is your favorite animal? Sheep
15. What is your favorite song? Can’t Stop the Feeling and Schlaf Kind
16. What is your favorite book? Lego Ninjago Stickers
17. Who is your best friend? Roran
18. What is your favorite cereal? Mommy’s cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Going on the swings when you swing me
20. What is your favorite drink? Water and milk
21. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas and Birthday
22. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? Uncle Brian’s cuz they have cool legos
23. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My oma blankie and georgie
24. What do you want to be when you grow up? Luke Skywalker! Because he has a blue light saber
25. Favorite place to visit? Roran’s House
26.  Least favorite family rule? You don’t let me go on devices whenever I want
27. Favorite thing about our family? Because we get Legos

James

1. What is your favorite color? Orange
2. What is your favorite toy? Optimus Prime Transformer
3. Favorite thing to play? Spiderman on LeapTV
4. What is your favorite fruit? Mangos
5. What is your favorite TV show? Care Bears and Cousins
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Dippin’ Egg
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Turkey and avocado with mayo on rye
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Breakfast Dinner
9. What is your favorite snack? Mango Smoothie
10. What is your favorite outfit? Sweatshirt and pants
11. What is your favorite computer game? Ninjago Legos and ABC Mouse
12. What is your favorite game? Shoot guns with Daddy (Nerf)
13. What is your favorite snack? Creamy cheese dip
14. What is your favorite animal? Giraffe and Penguins
15. What is your favorite song? Jesus Loves Me and Hush Little Baby
16. What is your favorite book? Where the Wild Things Are
17. Who is your best friend? Abby
18. What is your favorite cereal? I don’t like cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play and watch superhero
20. What is your favorite drink? Apple Cider
21. What is your favorite holiday? Easter, cause I get candy.
22. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? Hershey Park
23. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Croc (his pillow Pet)
24. What do you want to be when you grow up? a pilot and (Not a doctor) be a ninja
25. Favorite place to visit? North Carolina
26. Least favorite family rule? Not getting him what he wants (a video game)
27. Favorite thing about our family? All of us snuggling together in mommy and daddy’s bed

Elanor

1. What is your favorite color? Pink
2. What is your favorite toy? Barbie
3. Favorite thing to play? Barbies
4. What is your favorite fruit? Apples
5. What is your favorite TV show? Night at the Museum
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Pancakes
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Mack-y-doodle (mac n cheese)
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Mushrooms and Pasta
9. What is your favorite snack? Carrots
10. What is your favorite outfit? Pretty comfy clothes
11. What is your favorite computer game? The Wild Kratts
12. What is your favorite game? Duck Duck Goose
13. What is your favorite animal? Dragon
14. What is your favorite song? Ariel
15. What is your favorite book? Dragons Love Tacos
16. Who is your best friend? Clare Bear
17. What is your favorite cereal? Mommy’s Cereal (crispix)
18. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Swing with Mommy
19. What is your favorite drink? Pineapple Juice
20. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
21. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? North Carolina
22. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Oma blanket and stuffed animals
23. What do you want to be when you grow up? A mermaid fairy princess
24. Favorite place to visit? Esther’s house
25. Least favorite family rule? No jumping on the couch
26. Favorite thing about our family? My baby brother

(At some point I’ll upload their videos)