Bible Verse of the Day:

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Our New Journey

After educating Allie at home during her 6th grade year, we were motivated and convinced to home school all of the kids beginning in 2010. Lindsay and Sarah were excited to join this adventure, as was Timothy, who has no idea he's not "old" enough to be in school yet.

The most challenging thing for me to adjust to (or from) is the idea of "school" at home. My personality would be very tempted to transport "school" into our house and call that home school. I have read and listed to many wise home educators explaining the much bigger potential and opportunities by seeing home school as a lifestyle, something that happens 24-7.

Everything we do is education and the biggest benefit, by far, is the freedom to pour God's Word into these children that He has entrusted Phil and I with. This happens in math, science, history, English, during chores, activities, disagreements, leisure time and a dozen other ways.

It's no secret that I love being outdoors. So.........I learned quickly that we could accomplish much on a picnic table at the park AND Tim and Savannah could have a fun play date. And there's just something about lots of Vitamin D!

Never wanting to be left out, I came prepared with coloring sheets and paper for these two sweet things.

Timothy loves to learn. So many times I have to limit how many pages we can work on in a day because I do have 4 other children that need me :). He knows all his letters (both upper and lower case) as well as the sounds they make. He can write the letters, numbers and several words.

Yes, he is left-handed (like Sarah and Phil). In the last couple weeks he has begun sounding out words very well and reading simple sentences!! I anticipate him reading short books by the time he turns five in February.

Planning, planning, planning. There are parts of me that love this job and other parts that make me want to pull my hair out. I keep a master schedule in this daily planner that I LOVE! Then each week (usually on Sunday as I am watching football) I transfer assignments to each of the girls' planners. They are responsible for getting all tasks done each day before they can work ahead in any given subject.

I have a huge white board hung in the basement. It's 8 x 4 ft. We use it for everything and there is even room for Tim and Savannah to write on.

We begin each morning with a Biblical worldview lesson using Apologia's curriculum. I cannot recommend this series of books highly enough, regardless if you home school. It's a perfect tool for family devotions.

Allie and Sarah working on their memory verses.

Phil will even jump in occasionally before he leaves for work.

Sarah enjoys reading to the kids....helps lighten my load as well.

Allie helps Timothy and Savannah learn their days of the week, months and seasons.

This was from one of Sarah's assignments in her Botany book. She was learning about Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and Species. She was doing a hands on project using shoes.

Ultimately our goal as parents is not that our kids go to a great college to make a lot of money, but they love and serve Christ in everything they do -- from their jobs, to their homes, to their future marriages. At times, this objective is overwhelming but at all times we have Christ's mighty power working in us as we labor to this end. (Col.1:29)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Boating with the Kuhnels

As soon as the giggly girls left our house after the sleepover, we packed our cooler and took off for an afternoon at Alcova lake. Our great friends, the Kuhnels, took us out for a relaxing day on their boat. And, yes, it is a big enough boat for their family of 6 and our family of 7!

Docked for lunch.

Life jacketed-up and ready to cruise.

The kids loved being pulled on the tube.

Sarah thought this was a pretty fun way to finish her birthday celebration.

I honestly have no idea what these too silly girls were talking about.

Notice how Avry is holding onto Savannah's strap to make sure she is safe.

I could have relaxed right here for several more hours!!!

Phil and Savannah look as relaxed as Timothy and I were.

Lizz and I had a blast on the tube with Tim and Savannah. They were totally secured the entire time, while Lizz and I were bounced, splashed and chafed!

Another August (mystery) Birthday

Sarah planned her birthday activities weeks in advance, including the details. She wanted a mystery dinner complete with fun and surprises.

If you aren't familiar with this game, each child received a sheet of paper with choices for 3 different courses. They filled out 4 choices per course. The catch: they had no idea what each item represented as to the menu.

This is the master list, which none of the kids knew as they made their choices, including Sarah.

So, if Sarah chose the words mystery, sleepover, tie dye and ice cream, she would get spaghetti, spoon, ranch and a fork. She could not keep anything for the next course.

Here are the girls making their choices.

The first course. I loved the bread, jello and ice cream together!!

Kristy using her bread as a utensil for her spaghetti.

Larissa and Allie ran the kitchen.

Happy 11th Birthday to Sarah!

Next up -- Tie-dying T-shirts.

Candice and Allie helped with this project.

After a sleepover, the girls enjoyed muffins and fruit before heading home.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Not quite school time for us..........

One benefit of educating our children at home was evident before we even started. On the first day of public school, we and several other homeschooling families ventured off to Alcova. It was still the middle of August and we weren't ready for summer to be over.

The Hilde, Kuhnel, Szymczak and Hubert families ready for a fun day on an almost deserted beach. He had the whole place to ourselves!

Lindsay, Jessi, Jaci, and Sarah content to sit and soak in some rays while Logan is goggles and ready to swim!

Look at these cute little buttons....Avry and Savannah. Zain made himself right at home in the sand and water.

Timothy mastered the climbing wall by the time we left.

This was an all day project...shall we call it art? The orange pieces on one of the castles are cheese-its.

Allie, Aly and Zain

Just the "Alyies"

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

We have a teenager!

Allie Rebekah Hubert - 13 years young on August 17, 2010!

It seems like it is just not possible that the little baby I tried for 2 years to conceive is now a teenager!! Allie has been such a blessing to our family and she is growing into a beautiful girl(inside and out). The transformation seemed to happen almost overnight.

Homeschooling, swimming, singing and babysitting keep her busy, busy, busy.

Allie chose her dinner and dessert (cheesecake) on her birthday.

A couple days later she and two friends (Maddy and Aly) went out for a fancy lunch at Fire Rock. While they sat at one table, the moms (Sarah, Brenda and I) also enjoyed a nice lunch at a nearby table.

Next stop - pedicures.

Happy Birthday, Allie. No matter how old you get, you'll always be my baby!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

5 + 6 = 11

Hubert Family kids = 5
Helm Family kids = 6 (less 1 not here plus 1 extra)
Total = 11!

Christy and I met several years ago at Bible Study. We were very sad when they moved away to Denver and then even further away to Chicago. Since they moved away, she has had 3 more children and I have had 2. That makes for a busy, noisy house-full when we all get together.

Jaylee and Lindsay reconnected quickly and disappeared until lunch time.

The youngest 5: Savannah, Tim, David and Jonathan (the twins) and Mark.

A very practical solution to messy fudgesicles!

The older girls - Allie, Sarah, Sarah and Juliane (she was the extra)

Christy and I

Friday, August 6, 2010

August 6, 2010 ~ 16 Wonderful Years

Phil and I had a great celebration of our 16th wedding anniversary. It started with breakfast compliments of the girls. They stayed up late and arose early to prepare an elegant breakfast for 2. The menu: Egg casserole, blueberry muffins, yogurt, grapes, coffee and juice! What a treat.

Later Phil and I went out for a very nice dinner, overlooking the river, then to the Ghosts baseball game and finally he surprised me with a night at a local hotel. Roses were waiting when we arrived. What a guy!!

Phil's dad and step-mom were returning Lindsay from a camping trip, so it wasn't hard to convince them to stay overnight. It might be harder next time though, since Timothy spiked a fever and poor Wayne did not get much rest. Thanks guys!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Silly and Sweet

First up: Silly.

It just doesn't get any sillier than this!! I told the kids to grab some Q-tips from the bathroom so I could clean their ears. This is how they returned. I made them freeze until I could find my camera. This picture will resurface when they are older - I promise!

Allie was more than generous with her face mask cream.

Savannah kept sneaking a peek at Sarah and laughing, not realizing she looked the exact same way.

Timothy was not part of this original makeover session, but when he saw how much fun the others were having he snuck downstairs and helped himself.

Team loyalty confusion? No. Just a fun night of Packers vs. Bears at Uncle Jim's house. P.S. Bears won.....


I never tire of capturing photos of this little princess as she plays.

Even though we have some sibling disagreements, much more of the time is marked by togetherness. The big 3 are so patient and accommodating with the little 2, and the little 2 absolutely adore the big 3....usually.