Is that not the prettiest cookie you have ever seen???

I bet you didn’t even realize that it was a cookie!

My sweet supervisor had left it in the office for me when I went to work on Saturday – what a fun surprise!

She is sooo talented (and her cookies taste as great as they look 🙂 )!

*** Click on the picture below to see some of Kate’s AMAZING designs:

Kooking in Kate's Kitchen


I shared some of Katie and Paul’s story last year – you can click here to read about their struggles with infertility.  They continue to hope for a baby and are saving for another procedure.  I’d love to support Katie and Paul by sending some cookie orders their way!

If you are interested in placing an order, please contact Kate at



So after a fun Thanksgiving break, we have gotten back into the swing of things.

Ryan and I learned about sponges yesterday and worms today as we continue to study invertebrates.  We even”tried” to dissect an earthworm…that’s hard to do on such a skinny specimen – LOL!  We’ll be conducting an experiment on LIVE worms tomorrow, so stay tuned 😉 !

Ryan is up to James 1:22 for his memory work!  We’ll be practicing a lot over the next two weeks because he’ll be reciting these verses on December 10th for his oral presentation.

Ryan has also been working on grammar, cursive, reviewing the books of the Bible and alphabetical order, grammar, history, math, and spelling.  He wrote a personal narrative and will be starting a new paper in the next few days.   Ryan has also been making ornaments to hand out when we go Christmas caroling at a local nursing home in two weeks.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


I don’t have any pictures of Brendan to share, but he is doing well too –  I’ll try to sneak a few pics tomorrow 🙂 .  I’ll also be sharing about how our family keeps Christ in Christmas.  It’s hard to believe that it’s only 23 days away!


I am so excited to finally be studying Jamestown and the first settlers!  Ryan doesn’t quite share the same amount of enthusiasm, but I think he’s enjoying it more than he lets on 😉 .  We are sooooo blessed to live in Virginia and will be taking lots of field trips this year as we study US history.  Our first trip will be this Thursday to…….wait for it…….Jamestown 🙂 !  It’s so cool to actually see, touch, and experience the places and subjects that we’re studying!

For example, today Ryan had to read about and build a model of a wigwam…

IMG_3317IMG_3320IMG_3322IMG_3321IMG_3323   …and on Thursday we’ll actually get to go inside of life-sized replica!


We have added more verses to our scripture memory in James:



  We’ve also been learning about King James and how he commissioned the King James Bible in 1611.  Ryan had fun reading from the KJV and I think it helped him appreciate the fact that we use the New International Version instead 🙂 !IMG_3309IMG_3314_________________________________________________

We also learned about the Lost Colony and Ryan wrote a short newspaper article about what he thinks may have happened to the settlers (he had fun drawing his “bloody” picture):

IMG_3315IMG_3316               ______________________________________________________________

Here are a few other things we worked on:



Brendan started Spanish and Physical Science today.  He only has 5 students in his Spanish class and about 10 in his Science class and he really likes both of his teachers.  I didn’t want to embarrass him by taking a picture of going into the building, so I was a good mom and waited until he got home – LOL!



I was even able to snap a few quick shots yesterday:

IMG_3306IMG_3311IMG_3312      _________________________________________________________

A little note of encouragement:


No Pain, No Gain (?):

Yesterday was a little bit rough coming off of Spring Break – none of us felt very motivated, but thankfully today was much better. We are learning about the Ancient Mayans for history and the kids have been fascinated by some of their strange customs including body modifications like molding infants’ heads to a pointy shape, filing their teeth to look like fangs, piercings, and tattooing (OUCH!!!).

I don’t think it was much fun trying to look “beautiful” in the ancient Mayan culture 🙂 .

Mesoamerican tooth filing and skull stretching



Ryan is working his way through his Astronomy notebook, which includes excellent cursive practice!



We are also working on MORE grammar review (will it ever end??? – LOL).



The boys are still using to complete their spelling assignments.  I take their words from Spelling Power each week, give them four assignments to practice the words, and then a weekly test.



Our first Latin root word for the week is facio/factum which means do or make.


Brendan is excited to have started his first high school level  programming class, Java Programming by Homeschool Programming, Inc.


REMINDER: Don’t forget that I will be giving away a 2014 HEAV Convention Registration ($69 value) next Friday, May 2nd. For each comment that you leave on posts between April 14th and May 2nd, your name is entered into the drawing!!!

Tomorrow, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite convention tips and tricks 🙂 !!!!!



Can you believe that it’s Wednesday already ?!?!? I can’t!

I also can’t believe that we have snow on the ground AGAIN 😦 ! I am soooooo ready for Spring!


We’ve been busy finishing up our grammar lapbooks, mapping, learning more Latin roots, reading through Philippians, studying the moon, working on projects, practicing taking notes, and writing.

We are also reviewing some really cool products – I LOVE being part of the 2014 Old Schoolhouse Review Crew! It has been a HUGE blessing to receive and try out different products that I normally wouldn’t have the chance to use! It has been fun branching out and learning about topics that I didn’t originally plan to cover. The boys will definitely have a more well-rounded education now! My next round of reviews will be out the first week in April.

Here’s a quick slideshow of what we’ve been up to this week:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Feeling Lost?

Ryan and I got to build a homemade compass this afternoon for one of his astronomy lessons.  It was super easy and to our surprise,  it actually worked!

Talking about compasses, direction, and getting lost got me thinking…

Have you ever felt lost or unsure of which direction you should take?  I know that I have and it’s not a good feeling.  Did you know that there’s a book that can point you to the right path?  Yep, you guessed it…the Bible!

Here are just a few verses that tell us how God leads us:

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.  Psalm 119:105

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.  Psalm 32:8

And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.  Isaiah 30:21

Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.  Psalm 25:4-5

God’s “compass” is amazing!!!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.