Just in case

This isn’t really a meaningful blog post, more of a public service announcement.

As I’ve been going through my blog, I have found some really weird links a hacker put in some of my posts. They’re all different and link to products. If you read something that isn’t normal for my writing or there’s an obvious link that doesn’t belong, feel free to let me know via comment or email.

I am working to find all the links, and I’m pretty sure the hacker no longer has access.  But there were a lot of links stuck in my posts. And I apologize if there’s anything super inappropriate… haven’t come across anything yet, but wouldn’t put it past them!

—- have a blessed day!

 

 

Roar Like a Lion Family Devotional- enter to win!

You know our family loves a good devotional- every night at bedtime we read from the Bible, and/or a devotional, and often we read a from a book as well. The last few weeks we have been using Roar Like a Lion, from Tommy Nelson.

Roar like a Lion 90 Day Family Devotional

This 90 day devotional features eye catching art that isn’t too crazy or busy, with fascinating stories, Bible verses, and prayers to read aloud. Of course children can read it to themselves too, but it is so sweet to read as a family. =) Each devotion offers simple action steps for dealing with a problem with God’s help. Families will find prayers and idea that help them talk to God, grow a stronger  relationship with Him, and learn to walk closer with the Lord.

My children have enjoyed reading from this so far, and I find them talking about it later, even days later they will mention something we read or  prayed for together. I love that each devotional shows children of God’s faithfulness and love for his children.

What I really like? The topics are relevant to today’s kids in a BIG way. Manny of the popular phrases children see and hear are debunked as worldly sayings that don’t really fit in a Christian’s life- ex: you do you- They authors have taken that phrase and shown how that’s not how we are called to live as Christians. Just because it is popular doesn’t make it right.

Truth! I love that the truths are relevant to things children today deal with, but it’s done Biblically with everything pointing back to scripture and God.

Topics covered include:

  • facing fears in life
  • dealing with peer pressure
  • bullying
  • handling new challenges
  • dealing with disappointments
  • moving through grief
  • trying new things
  • courage
  • understanding that we do fit into God’s story, and how

This devotional is simple and sweet, but impactful. It has blessed our family and hopefully it will bless yours as well! Order yours now!

Many thanks to Thomas Nelson for providing this product/product information for review.  Opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive the product in exchange for this review and post.

If you would like to enter to win a physical copy for your family, or a family you love, leave a comment below with your family’s favorite times spent together! This giveaway is limited to US winners only

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Vindication Season 2, Streaming on Pure Flix Now!

Vindication Season 2 is now streaming on Pure Flix! If you haven’t already checked it out, Vindication is the fan favorite, faith based police drama starring Sergeant Travis. I really enjoyed season 1, and season 2 is turning out to be just as binge worthy.

Vindication is a great show for adults and teens. Each episode focuses on a storyline that always points back to God; a real life struggle leads right back to the Lord, and having a relationship with Him. I love that the police in this show are able to show God’s love though their job and how they relate to the victims and offenders. We see those struggling with their faith, those without faith at all come to the Lord, and Christians who grow further in their faith.

Season 2, episode 1 Precincts and Prisoners, is no exception to the great story lines and we saw in Season 1. Pure Flix released installments of the 10-episode season week by week, as this season dives a little deeper into the personal lives of our favorite characters, while introducing new storylines each episode. In this 31 minute first episode of Season 2, Srgt. Travis and his wife adapt to new roles in life as he investigates strange circumstances on a single mother’s property. We watch as the Sergeant and his team work to prove this young mother isn’t crazy, while showing the love of Christ when others only judge and ridicule her.

I love that we see the Lord working in real life situation through those who love Him.

Vindication stars Todd Terry as Gary Travis, Venus Monique as Detective Kris Tanner, and Peggy Schott as Becky Travis. There are a few other familiar faces in the episodes as well. New to the series for season 2 is T.C. Stallings, from films such as “War Room” and “Courageous.” Stallings portrays Detective Tre Millwood!

If you don’t already have Pure Flix, look into it so you can start streaming family- friendly shows, today!

There’s something for everyone in the family- No more searching for something everyone will enjoy.

Giveaway- enter for a chance to win 6 months of Pure Flix FREE! Simply leave a comment of a time the Lord showed up in an every day situation in your life, or the life of a loved on. Or feel free to leave the name of your favorite worship song right now.

Vindication Season 2

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Homeschool Math-All Grades-with CTCMath

 Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

CTCMath Homeschool Online Math Parent Dashboard

Many homeschool families are looking for an easy to use, online math program for their children. CTCMath is a full online math program, covering all grades, kindergarten through 12th, including calculus. We know there will come a day when my children may need more help than their math books and I can give them, and CTCMath will be a great option at that time. (I have blurred out names and email address in the images below).

CTCMath Homeschool Online Math Parent Dashboard

After logging in, families will find pre-recorded video tutorials with directions explaining step by step each math concept. They are easily accessed any time, anywhere via your account. I found these lessons to be clear and easy to follow along, making it like sitting in class listening to a teacher.

In the parent dashboard, parents can add each student, selecting their grade level and where to begin on lessons. From there, students can login, complete their lesson, and take a quiz over what they just learned. A lesson summary can also be downloaded for each lesson. I love this because we enjoy making math notebooks with concepts my children may need to revisit. It helps make it hands on, too.

CTCMath Homeschool Online Math Parent Dashboard

CTCMath Homeschool Online Math program

Topics may have multiple lessons, which are all in order for the student to follow. The quiz questions on each lesson can be read to the student by clicking the speak button next to the questions; this is a great option for early readers, or students who better comprehend by listening. Weekly revision sets help consolidate learning and identify areas of struggle. In the CTCMath parent dashboard, you can find extensive reports making tracking easy for parents and record keeping.

Parents can set tasks, view results, and see the history of what students have been working on.

There are also some really fun games found at the bottom of the screen: speed skills, times tables, and swap pieces. I have to be honest and say these are a lot of fun, and will definitely help your kids find motivation to do some extra math learning. These are a great rewards for having completed math lessons for the day or week.

CTCMath Homeschool Online Math Parent Dashboard

CTCMath Quiz grade 5 Homeschool Online Math program

Maybe one of the best parts- CTCMath offers a 12 month guarantee- I don’t know any math curriculum that backs their program with such confidence! Overall, this program is definitely going to help improve math learning for students. If you family is looking for an online, video based learning option, CTCMath is where it’s at! Between the easy to follow lessons, simple tracking, and fun games, kids and parents will both enjoy this math.

Connect with CTCMath

 

Read more  CTC Math reviews from the Crew:

Online Homeschool Math with CTCMath

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Friday on the Farm {LGD getting comfortable}

LGD on the Farm

After losing Huck, we decided to bring Bear out of the goat pen and into the yard with the family and chickens. At first he just hung around the gate to the goats, and slept under the chicken coop.

But after about 2 weeks he really started feeling at home. And by week 3, Bear is a pro at protecting all things chicken and child. His bark at night is so reassuring, and he loves the kids. He follows along on my walks each day, and is such a sweet boy.

We are thankful for having kept 2 of Huck’s puppies, and it sure has me wanting to have some more!

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Retained Placenta in Cows Wordless Wednesday {with a few words}

You may have seen the picture on our social media- This is what homeschooling with 5 kids on a farm looks like some days. This is Dolly, headed to the vet for a retained placenta. This was my first time driving a trailer, but it went okay, since I didn’t have to back up. ? I did come home and practice after we unloaded Dolly.

Retained Placenta in Cows

 

The vet cleaned her out, which was really crazy. Cows have a *lot* of placenta, and goo that comes along with it. Much more than people or goats. Anyway, because Dolly’s cervix had begun losing, the vet could only get her fingers in to hook around the tissue, she couldn’t reach in. But, with constant pressure and time, she got everything out. Then she bolused Dolly, and we came home.

She is doing good, enjoying the pasture with her calf, Huey.

There are several different schools of thought on retained placenta- the most common is that it is caused by a lack of minerals needed during pregnancy. We didn’t have these cows then, so we don’t know exactly what access they had to minerals. But they were very well cared for, so I’m sure minerals were offered.

The vet suggested this as well, after day 3 you can tie a jug about 1/4 way full of water to the hanging placenta tissue. This creates constant pressure/pulling, which helps the placenta eventually all come out. When you find the jug on the ground you can tell if it has the whole placenta, or if cleaning out is needed. This is essentially what the vet did with her hand-a constant, gentler, slow pressure. The difference is your risk introducing infection every time you go into the cow, but that is also a low risk if you sanitize properly.

hopefully we will have a head gate set up soon, so we can do more of this on our own on the farm. I did enjoy learning from our vet, she is really great. We are blessed to have her and her team so close by.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Simple Benefits to Homesteading

We love our homesteading lifestyle; it is a *lot* of work, and during certain seasons (shun, right after having a baby) we are a little less self reliant than others. A popular belief is that homesteading means living without the luxuries of modern day … This isn’t really true; living on a farm is not always the same as going totally off-grid.  You still find plenty of modern home comforts on a homestead!

With this in mind, I thought I’d write a short post about the wonderful benefits of living on a farm. Who knows, it might convince you to ditch city life, or invest in the homesteading lifestyle.

Image Link – CC0 License

More self-sufficient

I love living on a farm because it allows our family to be more self-sufficient. This can be cost efficient, saving lots of money, when you’re willing to put in the work. Instead grocery shopping every few days, or even every week, we are able to grow a lot of our produce. Add some hens to lay eggs, plant different vegetables in the garden, and you’re well in your way to being more self sufficient. It’s amazing how much food you can provide for a family on a farm. It lowers our monthly food bill and also ensures we  have fresh food free from harmful chemicals.

 

The farm animals can contribute to the garden via composting. Make sure to grow plenty of extra veggies for the chickens and goats (check the poisonous plants list first).

We use our goat milk for yogurt, keifer, and giving back to the animals. We can, freeze, and eat our produce. We buy ingredients in bulk so we don’t have to go to  town as often for other groceries; this saves time and gas.

Usually more affordable

Depending on what part of the country you live in, buying a home in the country can cost less than in a suburb-and you get more space outdoors. Starting out it may even be best to just buy land and live off grid for a while (click here to calculate a mortgage, and see the difference between the country and city homes in your area). But typically you can get more land for your money than house- land with a modest home is a great way to start homesteading. 

A lot quieter

Living on a farm means you won’t have a lot of noise around. (Well, depending on how many cows and goats you have ?) All the people in town create a lot of noise- cars moving past your window, train tracks, people walking outside. In the country, you only have the noises of your farm – and a few distant neighbors. You’re not entirely cut off from the world, but you do have more peace and quiet.

 

Out here, we can enjoy the peacefulness of outside-the breeze, the chickens clucking about, birds chirping, and the trees rustling. In the evenings, after all the chores are done (emu, the animals have been fed) it is so peaceful.

Beautiful scenery

Finally, living on a farm means you have loads of beautiful scenery every single day. You can become one with nature and marvel at the gorgeous fields, trees, and animals nearby. It’s a stark contrast to city dwellings where the only view is the road and the houses opposite your own!

Getting outside barefoot, even in the cold weather, has proven to have health benefits. Walking into the woods and just breathing provides a huge boost of energy and sense of calm.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that farm life is boring. It really isn’t, and it can be highly beneficial. The next time you move house, perhaps it’s time to consider some of the countryside properties with space for a little homesteading farm. 

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Easy Kid Approved Pasta Meals {food allergy friendly}

Kid approved pasta meals (allergy friendly)(Photo by sheri silver on Unsplash)

 

When it comes to feeding hungry families, pasta never goes out of style or favor. I think kids eat more when summer is in full swing, than other seasons. As families with full lives, keeping the dinner rotation fresh can be hard–especially on a budget. Beyond that, balancing nutritional needs can be challenging.

Fortunately, pasta is one of the most versatile dishes you can cook up and serve to loved ones. Mix and match different shapes of noodles, add meat, veggies, and various cheeses into the rotation and voila–you have dinner. Today, I’m going to share some of our favorite pasta dishes that will make your kids’ tummies happy, and your weekly grocery budget.

Ramen noodles with miso pesto

Who knew that a college kid staple would ever make it your dinner table? Despite the exotic name, this dish is simple to make and approved by my family’s tummies. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 cups of baby spinach
  • 2 cups of cilantro (I skip cilantro because I’m a super taster)
  • 1 tbsp. White miso (I sometimes don’t have this on hand and it still turns our wonderfully)
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • ½ cup of sunflower, grapeseed, or olive oil
  • 1 tsp. Toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. Fresh lemon juice
  • Dash of kosher salt
  • 2 (5 oz.) packages of ramen noodles- I like to use konjac noodles because they’re low in carbs, full of protein, and easy to make. Plus they’re gluten free for our family’s needs
  • 1 tbsp. Unsalted butter, diced
  • (bone broth to stretch)

While bringing a medium pot of water to a boil, blend the garlic, cilantro, spinach, oils, miso and lemon juice until uniformly smooth and very, very green—season with salt after blending. Once the noodles are done, drain them and add the pesto sauce. Mix in the butter and gently toss until smooth and melted. After that, serve up the noodles and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top to taste.  Add some italian chicken meatballs to give this dish a protein boost.

If you need to stretch this meal for a large family like ours, add in some bone broth to thin the sauce/make a soup.

Pizza pasta salad

The best of three worlds come together in this easy-to-make summer dish. Their portability makes them perfect for barbecues and picnics, and the recipe is a lovely nutritional upgrade of the traditional pasta salad (despite having ‘pizza’ in the title).  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 9 oz. uncooked pasta- we go gluten free
  • ½ cup of cherry tomatoes
  • 2 oz. of cheese- we use goat cheese due to allergies
  • 2 oz. of pepperoni or salami- salami is our fav
  • 20 oz. of pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 green onion
  • ½ tbsp. of olive oil (more to taste)
  • ½ tbsp. of red wine vinegar (more to taste)
  • 1 tsp. Oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook and drain the pasta as usual-chill in the fridge so the pasta doesn’t absorb all the dressing. once chilled (about 2 hours) toss in the oil, white wine vinegar, and oregano for a nice punch of flavor. After that, you can pretty much “decorate” your pizza pasta salad however you want. While the ingredients listed above are the standard measurements, you can add, omit, or adjust certain ingredients to create the pizza pasta salad of your dreams. Opt for local summer veggies, like zucchini and cucumber, for added nutritional value.

Pool season is the perfect time to give these kid-approved pasta recipes a try–they’re guaranteed home runs.

Thanks for reading and bon appetit!

 

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Encouraging and Supporting Your Child’s Education

Whether we homeschool, public school, online school, or private school, we all want our children to succeed in education- that means more than just checking the boxes.

It means exposing them to some of the best thinkers, artists, writers, and all that nature has to offer. It means academics, building a love for learning, and a love for each other. But sometimes they need more help than parents or teachers can offer, alone. When a learning difference comes into play, or a struggle with certain subjects, we may need to support our kids through occupational and physical therapies, find online resources that support their needs, or even a tutor that can help both our kids, and us better understand what they’re learning.

 

Supporting Our Children's EducationSource Link – CC0 Licence

Ensure They Have All They Need

Part of a successful education, whether homeschooling or public/private schooling, is making sure our children have everything they need to succeed-or they are able to find what they need. They will need the obvious papers, pencils, are rulers. As they get older we have to think about the fancy calculator, science/lab equipment, and maybe ACT/SAT/ GED prep books.

Hire Special Tutors

Sometimes students struggle in a classroom setting because they need more support than a teacher is able to give them. Some of use need more help and 1:1 time, and there is nothing wrong with that! So hiring a special tutor for a child that needs more support than the teacher or working parents are able to give, is one of the best things we can do. It will allow them to get that extra help from someone who knows what they are doing and help them to concentrate on the areas where they struggle. These tutors can also be utilize to help parents along side their children, to better understand. This way we as parents can continue helping our children.

Talk to your child to explain what is happening, and allow them to have a voice in setting goals. We don’t want them to think they aren’t doing enough, thus punishing them with more work; we want them to know the decision comes from a place of love and encouragement.

Be There To Support Them

Finally, the best thing we can do to support our child’s education is to be there for them, offer lots of play time when they are young, and lots of of our  undivided attention. Knowing they can go to their parents for help is important to children of all ages. When we can make time to foster our child’s education, it boosts their confidence, and helps them learn to have empathy and time for others.

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Creating Memories with Young Children

Kids grow up so fast, so it’s vital to make the most of those early months and years before they’re a thing of the past. These are some of our favorite ways to make memories while the kids are little. These bonding experiences are a lot of fun for you and for them.

Cook Together

Cooking together is something that’s a lot of fun, even when they’re just old enough to sit on the counter and watch (an taste!). They enjoy the tactile nature of handling food and baking cakes. It can be a lot of fun, while also taking the first steps towards passing on a skill that’ll be vital for them later in life. It is sooo nice when they are old enou0gh to really help work and clean up in the kitchen, too 😉

 

Travel as a Family

If you get the opportunity to, exploring the world with children is so healthy for everyone. Getting out there as a family and seeing new things and doing activities that are outside the norm can be very rewarding. It doesn’t have to involve going far, or spending a lot of money, but having these experiences as a family while children are young is worth it!

 

Image Source – CC0 License

 

Get Creative

Being creative with your kids might be messy but it’s also fun. There’s nothing quite like the unrestrained creative energy of a child, and as a parent. As a parent I try to encourage that creativity, even though it isn’t always my favorite thing. It’s enjoyable for them, so finding lots of ways to be creative, including with nature, music and dance, art, and getting dirty is proven to be healthy for our kids.

 

Have Group Portraits Taken

It’s important to do things that will remain meaningful for your family for a long time to come. That’s why taking photos is a great option, because it gives you something to look back on later; it immortalizes those early years with your child. We found a great local photographer for our family last year. We missed portraits with her this year but plan to do it again! Independent photographers like Michael Kormos can help you with getting family portraits made professionally. You won’t regret having these kinds of photos taken. Im sad we didn’t do them this year.

 

Read Together Consistently

If you want to establish good habits that will benefit your kids for a long time to come, it’s definitely a good idea to read together often. You can read to them from a very early age, we start as babies, and then gradually encourage them to take part in the reading as they become old enough to do so. It is proven children that being read to as a child is a marker for college readiness, (ehum, not test scores).

Listen to the Read Aloud Revival Podcast, for more info on the benefits of reading aloud as a family!

 

While children are young, making the most of each day and being intentional with time as a family is what will determine relationships and future success in life. There are so many things to do to show love to, and make memories with our kids.  

What are your family’s favorite ways to have fun together?

 

 

 

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

error: Content is protected !!