Friday, August 17, 2012


So as you read in my last post, we decided this year to homeschool for the very first time ever!
I spent this last spring into the early summer researching different curriculum to find the options that seem like they will be the best fit for our family.  There are SO many great programs out there to choose from that at first it was quite a bit overwhelming.  We did manage to narrow it down pretty quickly considering I am not the fastest decision maker out there.  Everything arrived at our house over the last two weeks and now I am having a hard time keeping myself from just diving right into all of it.

Here is a list of what we chose for the year:

Sonlight Core F - Eastern Hemisphere.
This covers History/Social Studies, Language Arts, Reading, and Bible Study.  We will be learning all about China, Japan, India, the Middle East, Australia, Africa, Antarctica, and Russia.  We will be reading A LOT of historical fiction this year and she will learn how to research, and map, and all of that good stuff.

Saxon Math 6/5.
This program is very repetitive, making sure that you truly grasp whatever it is that you are learning at the time before moving on.  Exactly what Alyssa needs.  It's more of a 5th grade level, but from what I have seen is a bit advanced from what she learned in public school last year.  Math is a subject that I would like to continue to work with her on year round, so maybe we can jump into 7/6 before the beginning of next year.  We will see how it goes.

Handwriting without Tears.
This program teaches cursive writing, something that they don't spend much time on in school anymore as they break away from traditional handwriting into more of a computer based education.  It also teaches grammar and a few other writing concepts.

Sonlight Science F.
All about the inner and outer workings of the human body.  She will also learn about food and nutrition, and a bit about survival.

An online typing course.

Mark Kistler's Draw Squad.
It's basically an art program that teaches you how to draw.  This is SO right up Alyssa's alley!  Plus there are a few other art projects that we will be working on as well.

We are really considering enrolling her in the homeschool PE program at the YMCA.  Because you have to sign up for the program, she would be with the same kids every week, twice a week, and could potentially build some friendships there as well.

She will also be participating in her old school district's elementary choir and school sports.  She will still be active in Girl Scouts and she also landed a spot playing select softball for Stealth this year!  So plenty to keep her busy and definitely NOT hidden away from the world.

This evening and all day tomorrow I will be taking my qualifying course so that way I am "legally" able to homeschool in the state of WA.  Funny how the day our children are born, we become their teachers, but once they are old enough to enter the public schooling system... we all of a sudden are no longer "qualified".  ???  Anyway, I am really thankful though that I live in a state that makes it relatively easy to homeschool your child.  After all, I could live in California.  There, you have to actually be a licensed teacher in order to homeschool.  Again... ???

So many people have asked me over the last few months why I made this decision...
It's not really hard for me to answer if you have an hour or two of your time to give me. :)  I realize though that most people do not want to listen to me go on and on and so it seems that I end up giving everyone a different reason.  And really that's just it, I have no reason NOT to homeschool.  Since I started playing around with the idea, reasons to do it started surfacing left and right, and honestly, my reasons are all over the map.  Because of that, I know I am making the right decision.  And even better... I am so totally excited about it!!  I cant wait to see what this year does for Alyssa.  And I am really just excited to be a part of her learning experience and that I get to spend extra time with my daughter, learning more about her.

By the way... We start "school" this coming Monday! :)

Alyssa and all of her school year goodies :)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

School... an end, a beginning.

Tomorrow marks the last day that Alyssa will spend inside of an actual classroom at what has been her school for the last 6 years.  That's right, with one year left of elementary school, we have finally decided to start homeschooling.  While I am perfectly content with our decision, have most of our curriculum picked out for next year, and am really excited for this new journey, I must also admit I am feeling a bit sentimental... there is much that will be missed, and many memories that will always be treasured.

Here's to new beginnings, endless possibilities, and knowing that this decision is one of the very best I could make for my daughter.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

I really hate days like today.  Days where feeling thankful leaves you feeling guilty.  I know that God has a plan for each one of our lives, but still... ugh, it's hard.

Today is the anniversary of Jason's car accident.  Twelve years ago today, Jason lost a very good friend in this accident and almost lost his own life as well.  If you listened to his list of injuries from that day, you would honestly be surprised that anyone could recover so well.  He still has complications... and then there are the scars, both physical and emotional. 
There was really nothing that could have prevented it from happening.  No one was drinking, no one was speeding.  They were simply kids, traveling on an extremely icy highway in January.

But today, I AM thankful, even if it does leave me feeling guilty and sounds extremely selfish.  I am thankful for the opportunity to live this life with such a good man.  I am thankful for the love he gives me on a daily basis.  I know that if the events of that horrible, horrible day had been altered in any way for him, life as I know it would be much different.