Field Trip Fun!



Ryan and I spent the day with some sweet friends exploring Pamplin Park (highly recommend) and learning about the Civil War.  Our tour guides were amazing and we had a blast learning together!

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And just so you guys don’t feel sorry for Brendan ūüôā :


After his assignments, he had fun playing tennis with Pappy and cruising around the neighborhood!


Stepping Back in Time:

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We are blessed to live near many historical sites and last week Ryan and I spent two days at Colonial Williamsburg during their special homeschool days (GREAT discounts).¬† We took a class called “The Life of a Soldier” where we got to learn what it was like to fight during the Revolutionary War, toured lots of historical sites, and even enjoyed¬†an authentic lunch (hamburgers, fries, and a Coke) at Shield’s Tavern….hey, don’t knock it…you can’t get much more American than that ūüôā !!!

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I tried to get Ryan to take a selfie with me during our tour of the Capital.¬† I couldn’t get so much as a grin out of him:

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But he paid for being so serious ūüôā (hee,hee)…

Ryan looked so grumpy that our tour guide decided that¬†he would be a good “criminal” to pull out of the crowd and brand with a “T” for being a thief!

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He was a good sport!


Selfie attempt – day two (just as successful unsuccessful as the first):

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I knew there was NO WAY that Ryan would agree to the traditional Colonial Williamsburg stock picture, so I volunteered to do it myself!

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Our absolute FAVORITE activity was called “Dig! Kids, Dirt & Discovery” where we got to participate in a hands-on excavation at an 18th century cellar.

It was SO COOL!

The site had originally been excavated in 1946 in order to study the foundation of the building.  For some reason, they decided not to rebuild and dumped the dirt back on top of the foundation.  We got to work alongside real archeologists digging, sorting, and classifying the different artifacts into categories to be sent to the lab for further study.  Some of the items our group found included brick, animal bones, window glass, a marble, nails, a button, a furniture tack, pottery, and more.

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Here’s a slideshow:

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Ryan was asking the archeologist about his job and was pretty enthusiastic about it until he found out that he’d have to have get a Master’s degree and possible a Ph.D.¬† (a few too many years of school for him¬†ūüôā ).


Our last stop was the museum and while were walking through the exhibits, Ryan noticed a display showing the actual archeologist that we had worked with earlier that morning!

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What a FUN trip! 

I love being able to spend one-on-one time with both of my boys!

¬† Brendan didn’t want to go to Williamsburg because he didn’t want to get behind on his schoolwork, but not wanting him to feel left out I decided to spend a little quality time with him too….at the library , working on his first research paper ūüôā :

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Believe it or not, we actually had a good time too –

learning can be fun!!!!

Where Did This Week Go?

How can it be Friday already?!?!? 

We did take Monday off for Labor Day (because I felt like being a “cool” homeschool mom ūüôā ), so I guess that’s why it’s flying by so¬†quickly.

We’ve been working hard and are¬†now¬†finished with¬†Week 3. ¬†As usual, I don’t have any pictures of Brendan…what in the world am I going to blog about¬†when both boys are in high school and I can’t take pictures anymore?

I guess I’ll have to do more writing (I better start coming up with some ideas)!


Ryan and I learned how the invention of the Enfield Rifle enabled soldiers to load and reload their ammunition more quickly.  We watched a short video and then he got to test and compare both methods.

Don’t worry, our gun barrel was a paper towel tube (very authentic, I know)!

We tried to imagine what it must have been like to try to reload your weapon over and over during a¬†real battle ūüė¶ .


Our homemade “cartridge” made with wax paper, an index card, flour (gun powder), and an aluminum foil boll (bullet).





Our latest science experiment (learning how two substances can cause a chemical reaction):



 I had a really cool God moment earlier in the week.  I recently read a book by Jen Wilkin, called Women of the Word which gives great tips on how to dig deeper into the Bible and really study Scripture. I have feeling the need to go deeper in my studies for a while, and this book came at the perfect time!  I started researching different study Bibles, and trying to decide which one to get when I discovered that they are not cheap!

I was leaning toward an ESV translation and/or the John MacArthur Study Bible, but couldn’t decide which one would be the best fit for me.¬† I mentioned it to Justin and he said,¬†¬†“Wait!¬† I have a study Bible that I don’t use.¬† Why don’t you look at that one?”

¬† He pulled it off of the bookshelf and wouldn’t you know, it was a brand new copy of John MacArthur’s ESV Study Bible!!!

God is GOOD!!!



Workbox Wednesday:

So, most of you know that I have used workboxes since we started homeschooling in 2011.  They have been a life saver in helping us to stay organized!  I only use them with Ryan now since Brendan follows his own lesson plan and checklist.

Basically, Ryan and I cover a few subjects together such as scripture memory, Bible, history, language arts, and read alouds.  He then starts his workbox assignments, which I fill every night with his independent work.  Those assignments include things like grammar worksheets, reading, vocabulary, handwriting, special projects, and any other additional work.  I do have to help with a few things such as math and science, but everything else is mostly independent.  As he completes each assignment, he removes the number, places it back on the wall, and puts his work in the completed box.

Ryan’s workboxes today:

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Here a few more pics from our week so far:

I don’t have any pictures, but Brendan finished his first writing assignment and I am so proud! He had to write a script (since he’s reading Julius Caesar) and chose to do a play about the empty tomb.¬† Creative writing is NOT his thing and he was concerned about this assignment, but he¬†did great!

He started classes at Arete yesterday and thinks that he’s really going to enjoy his Biology teacher.¬† He has the same Spanish teacher and she is wonderful too.¬† I’m very grateful that we have this resource in our area and that God always provides just what we need!