Thursday, June 27, 2013

My little golfers...

Kate and Emily are participating in the 4h Golf challenge at First Tee Houston.  

Aren't they cute!  

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Stitches... But no laughing.

Matt has officially become the first in this Thompson Family to get stitches.

Kate and Matt were messing around and my PEABODY DUCK MUG got knocked off the counter and somehow managed to cut his foot below his ankle.

A trip to urgent care ensued..

A copay ensued.

Waiting over 2 hours ensued.

And finally three stitches ensued.

Good times.

Mostly, I am mad about the mug.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sunday Sum Up: Week 29 part -31 2012-2013 DONE!!!


We have really had a year.  In some ways I think it is our best year for awhile, and in other ways I am disappointed.  I have to say I did love Sonlight.  The kids loved, loved, loved the reading.

 I always felt behind on the questions and even after dropping some of it ---Per reading what everyone else does... I still felt BAD and GUILTY.  I hate that. 

We really as far as school work goes had our butts kicked the first half of the year... I thought it was too much.  BUT, in reality, I was 1. schooling someone else child in addition and added alot onto myself doing it (although I do not regret it). 2. needed to give myself and the kids a little break as this was the first year we had done a curriculum of this kind.  and 3. I really don't think I understood (or better said, I didn't LIKE) "independent" schooling.  I wasn't ready to let go. 

After Christmas break I told a few people.. that we were just really struggling.. I had changed up some stuff, dropped some stuff, organized some stuff and truly was about at my wits end and coming back to school in Jan. I was very discouraged.  But two weeks into the second semester.. THINGS just seemed to drop into place.  It was like a different school day...

Of course we switched the kids maths and started awhole other issue but again that has worked itself out for the most part.  The kids acclimated to the school load and to the "way" the curriculum's worked.  I don't know how smart it is to start a DIFFERENT entire curriculum next year, but I am pretty unhappy with some of Sonlights book choices and instead of "filling and changing" things I am trying a curriculum that is a  pretty even mix between~Sonlight and WHAT we have done in the past... so I am thinking I might be really happy! 

The other bonus is that ALL three kids will be on exactly the same topic!  LOVE me some themes!!!

Anyway.  We will have our summer schooling, pretty much 3 days a week, with a week off here and there, GUILT FREE is my big thing!  I will push through and make an awesome effort to stick to the schedule, but I also am planning rest, relaxation, FUN stuff, self led learning, things we want to do but don't get to, and of course time with family and friends!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Unit Study: Clouds and Water Cycle

After we finished up reptiles we decided to take a little hiatus from our ongoing science curriculum and work in a few unit studies...

Emily chose Clouds and Water Cycle!  Fun.  I have pinned and pinned and pinned.. and you shall benefit from the fruits of my hard labor (such as pinning IS)...

"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands"

– Psalm 19:1

Experiment #1- Introduction to water cycle

Supplies: large pot

 READ:  "Down Comes the Rain" by Franklyn M. Branley.

Vocabulary:  precipitation


1. boil water
2. hold pan over boiling water full of ice-- watch for condensation
3. review states of water: solid, liquid, gas
4. as the water, turned to gas, rises and hits the bottom of the pan full of ice it makes condensation.  The condensation tends to stick together and eventually gets heavy enough to "fall- rain" back into the boiling water.

Experiment # 2- Making a rain gauge

Supplies: empty water bottle

Cut the bottle 1/4 way down, take off cap, turn inside out (to make a funnel for rain)
mark sides as measuring tool

READ: The Magic School Bus in the Water Cycle by Pat Relf

Experiment #3- Seeing how a cloud works

Three Lessons on Rain from The Moveable Alphabet

Supplies: eye dropper
                cotton ball
                cup of water

Stretch the cotton ball to resemble small cloud..

Drop water droplets on cloud until eventually the "rain" starts falling out into empty bowl

wait for it to stop raining and add more droplets--- watch fall.

Show amount of "rain" that fell into empty bowl.

Experiment # 4-Watching it Rain!!!

Supplies: glass of water
                food coloring (liquid)
                shaving cream

Pour shaving cream ON top of glass of water.

-- Explain that when the cloud gets heavy with condensation it begans to rain..

Drop food coloring on top of shaving cream
Watch it rain.

A few more ideas from A Sparrow's Nest!! I simply followed her lead for her whole unit study! Amazing...

She found a few amazing sites! 
Weather Wiz Kids----Emily and I played on this for a long time, multiple days in a row!!
Cloud Index-- literally an index of clouds
Web Weather for Kids: Clouds  a great site, spent a lot of time here too!
and last but not least Scholastic-- a small study on clouds with worksheets and lapbooking stuff
Kids ZONE  Water cycle COLORING PAGE  1  2  3  4  5       and vocabulary
We looked at Amanda's Clouds in Art Showcase

Video on Clouds from Nasa Our World

We tried desperatly to find this book--- but had no luck, but if you do this unit be sure to add it!!!

We made a the Cloud Finder from Scholastic

I found this wonderful poem!!!

Experiment #5-- Fog in Jar found at Restoration Place

supplies:  large glass jar (a gallon is best)
                gallon ziplock bag full of ice
                 black paper
                 colored warm water

place warm colored water in jar
place black paper around half the jar (this helps to see better, it does not affect the experiment)
place lighted match in far and hold over water for a while
immediately place ice ziplock back over top
lift off ice bag

Types of Clouds @ Enchanted Learning

WATER CYCLE FUN song and video!!!

READ: The Little Cloud by Eric Carle

this is a video of the water cycle-- it is a little slow but it does explain it well with visuals.

Experiment #6- Dew Point and Frost

Supplies: water
                metal can
                ice cubes

Put water in can, take temperature- write it down

Add ice cubes,  stir around.

watch until condensation forms on outside...retake tempature- write it down

The water on the outside came from the air-- that tempature is the dew point!

Supplies: metal can
                crushed ice
                1/2 cup salt

When frost forms on outside of can take tempature and write it down.. that is FROST POINT

Vocabulary: sublimation

We made a YUMMY TREAT---- Sky JEllo!   I had trouble linking back to orignal source.. so I went back two sources and that is it.  :0)

I spent time in a unit called The Heavens Declared His Glory by Pearls of homeschooling
READ: It looks like Spilt Milk


We made this little page with examples of clouds... from HERE ... the link to the PDF is here.

Experiment #7-- SOAP CLOUD!

Supplies: ivory soap
                microwave safe bowl

Experiment # 9-- Mini Water Cycle

Supplies: rotisserie chicken container
                grass with dirt
                foil or container to hold water simulate water)

place in container
Place in FULL sun
Keep on on as often as possible

Vocabulary:  transpiration
                      run- off

Experiment #10- Precipitation 2  or HERE

Supplies: gallon zip lock bag
                window with lots of light

Draw water cycle on zip lock
Fill bag at bottom
tape to window
watch and observe the water cycle throughout the day

color sheet


VIDEO/ Online Example Water Cycle-- this is pretty good!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Keepers of the Faith--- Year End Ceremony 2012/2013

We wrapped up Keepers of the Home a few weeks ago and just had our ending ceremony last Saturday.

I want to say that I love this program!  I love what it is teaching, I love the "freedom" to adjust for the needs of your group, I love that it is not attached to a national organization that TELLS us what to do, I love that there is no politics! 

I have been so blessed to be in this group with Brenda this year!  I have learned a few things myself!  My goal for the kids (girls and boys) is to leave my home with skills.  The ability to run a home, sew on a button, cook a meal, be hospitable, care for others, change a tire, learn a craft, hone a talent... these are NOT very important to the outside world UNTIL a generation cant do them!  I want my kids to be productive, helpful, and competent!

I have four years left with Kate, five with Matt and 8 with Emily. I plan to make the most of them!

We got a lot done this year! We quilted, sewed, cooked, helped, learned, visited, and expanded our horizons!

We invited the grandparents to our little ceremony...

Because we were working on scrap booking badge.. we decided to scrap book our year, so each girl has a scrapbook of all the badges and activities we worked on!

Here they are in all their pinned glory!

We ended with cookies and punch and then we all went out for dinner.

Cant wait until next year!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Around the World in 180 Days-- Geography Unit. Antarctica

We are doing a geography unit over the summer... It is actually called Around the World in 180 Days--- but since we are just doing it over the summer... I used this title.

We are excited to be doing it with friends!!!


We started with Antarctica!

We ate jerky (Pemmican) and biscuits (sledding biscuits)...

We mapped and learned out explorers...

Roald Amundsen
Robert Scott
Richard Byrd
Ernest Shackleton

We went to the library and watched a movie on The Titanic to conclude learning about Antarctica...

It was very neat--- they watched the film inside this dome on its ceiling... I did not watch... My claustrophobia would not allow me to go inside!!

 The kids are leaning rivers, oceans, a few major countries on each continent, culture, religion, a little history... 

stated free to use maps for educational purposes...

I got a lot of neat worksheets/ printouts from BLAKE Education.Org

We learned about the different nations represented Antarctica and saw pictures of Little America and the United States three stations there.

Here is THE South Pole!! This picture if from Wikipedia---- it states it is in the public domain.  linked to be sure.  :0)

It's going to be a fun unit!!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Nims Island Bookclub

Our book club read Nim's Island:  the girls LOVED it!  It is such a great book and a pretty good movie too!
We had an island themed meetings... with the Buccaneer, Fred (the lizard) and plenty of islandy goodness to eat!


We learned about first aid, since Nim got hurt and didn't know what to do and each girl made her own first aid kit!

We made pearl necklaces...

Don't know why this is so blurry.. but we tried mango, papaya, pineapple, jicama and coconut!  I am so glad Dave was home to get that coconut open!!!

Here are the Island Girls!!!

Each girl got to get her picture taken with Fred of course!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Sunday Sum Up: Week 27-29 2012-2013 The Wrap up where I let you know whats going on, but in reality, shows I am ready for summer!!!


Well I had the kids do work with mom while we were gone to Austin so last week was not a complete wash.  Kaitlin even did some work there in Austin while she was on the trip.  She was able to work on science and her math.  Of course we are so far behind on her math it is not funny.    Anyhoo.   We had a NON existent Monday because we were at choir audition pretty much till after 1:30 and had to come home, get copy paper and run a few errands.  When we walked in the door at 3:00.. I laid down!  But got up and was able to get a head start on THIS

situation.   We worked some on it Monday night and got the kids up on Tuesday and really buckled down.  We of course rearrange the whole room--well not the whole room, but a lot of it!  My "idea" is to use the school room-- novel I know!  We are having such a hard time getting the kids to STAY on TASK with their school work, distractions etc that I decided we would just all do our work in the school room!   This went over well with Emily and Matt, not so much with Kaitlin (but she likes to listen to music while she works and this nixes that), but I told her if she showed progress in getting things accomplished in a timely manner we could reevaluate the arrangement again before this fall.   We got all three desks back upstairs, arranged so that the kids each have their own little area "ish" and tried to accommodate their "wants"...

 I ended up in the middle of the room, with my computer on a bookcase.. we will see how long this last. :0(  Typing is annoying.    Anyway... we didn't actually get started on any work until around 2:00.. but we hit it hard while we worked and accomplished a fair amount!  Emily has stayed on track (slightly) and her bedtime has only been pushed up to 7:30 so I guess it is a good day!  :0) Just kidding.  I was a little tough today, but we just need to get back on track and I need them to understand MAMA is not messing around.    So by the time we were finished with school it was almost 6:00.  I haven't even started a load of laundry today.  So we will have to tweak this system a little.  I think I am going to put a bell up there and IF I leave and someone is being distracted the other person can ring the bell. I am not a big TATTLE TELLER kind of mom.. but I am hoping it will help during this transition.  

Okay.  I typed this LAST Tuesday I think.  WHICH some how seems ions ago.  Dave had off Monday through Wednesday.  We had a field trip and had lunch with FAMILY!!!  Tuesday and Wednesday we got some work done, but not ENOUGH.  However, Dave did catch up Matt on his tests for Saxon and worked with him quite a bit which was good.  Thursday evening we learned a close friend had died in a car accident... Friday we ended up at my sisters to have the kids just be together.  Saturday is the lost day ( I cannot even tell you what happened!  Sunday and Monday were spent at visitation and funerals.  And that gets us to today.

See all my intentions are great.  Really, they are!

Emily finished her spelling.  I am stopping vocabulary and Latin after this week except for Kaitlin she will continue with Latin all through the summer.  I need her a certain place for the new year.

We will continue math, English for sure through the summer. 
Science the kids will be done next week.  I am not even starting Emily's insect unit.  I am just holding it. We might do it at some point in the the summer, if not we will start it next year, in less I find a curriculum I ADORE!

History.. the kids are still 4 weeks away, we are going to double up on the reading and stop reader comprehension questions... only covering the "history" questions and finish up our timeline.  So we should be done with that in under 2weeks.  I am not overly concerned because their curriculum for next year overlaps time periods... so we are good!

Bible we are done.  I have a devotion book for each child through the summer and just daily reading, but no other curriculum. 

logic- done
handwriting- done
typing- I want the kids to finish up the levels they are on and then they can do it is they want as a computer game.. but not mandatory.

Writing- will go on through the summer

I have reading lists for the kids over the summer-- plus just fun FLUFF reading!  We will pick a read aloud for the whole family. 

And sooo there is my plan, basically a lot will wrap up over the next 1-3 weeks.  Emily will only have math, English and writing... Kate and Matt will have math, English, writing and Kate will have Latin.  It will be at least 3 times a week as of right now. 

and PLAY.  Guilt free FREEDOM.  We have lots of freedom over the school year, but it is not always guilt free. 

I have June 18 as our official last day of school.  But I am redoing that.  I am counting the Teen Pact week as school, seriously.. Kate was WORKING all week and the kids worked a lot, did some school, all the "field trips" were based on sci stuff and did Friday at Teen Pact.  Not to mention that work they DID for the class in the first place.  So our NEW OFFICIAL last day of school IS..

 DRUM ROLL...Tuesday, JUNE 11!!!! 

Homemade chalk spray from Thrifty Fun


•4 Tbsp. cornstarch
•1 cup warm water
•drops of food coloring

1.In a medium bowl, combine cornstarch and water, stirring until mixture is smooth.
2.Add drops of any food coloring and mix well.
3.Pour mixture into small plastic spray bottle.
4.Shake bottle before using to break up clogs.
5.Use spray chalk to decorate sidewalks or snow. Or use it to create colorful sand sculptures at the beach.

Makes 1 cup.