Monday, August 31, 2009

Me, Myself and God - a retreat

So my husband offered for me to go up to the trailer by myself on Friday and Saturday...   I went with Bible, journal and books... planning to spend time with God and catching up on some reading.


Here's a little summary of the days.


ME, MYSELF AND...



  • God obviously!

  • the worship songs from Vineyard which moved me while I was driving

  • the upside-down pizza - no comments

  • the giant radishes - the Fraggles would have like them

  • Max Lucado - I finished reading his latest book Fearless

  • the Robot Wars - another book I needed to read to review

  • prayer

  • journalling

  • getting encouraged by Amanda Bennett, the Lamberts (Five in a row), Terri Johnson (Knowledge Quest/Bramley Books), Malia Russel (Homemaking 911) and Cheryl Allin (TOS) from an e-book of TOS

  • the rain falling.... (Saturday)

  • the Word

  • the cry of the owl on Friday night - Oh I wish I could have seen it

  • exploring the book Heart of Wisdom sample document

  • discovering my homeschool planner that I had just bought - The Well-Planned Day - I love it!

  • the reminder to expect the unexpected

  • putting me, the kids and our homeschool in God's hands

  • an Xanadu (the movie)

  • the drive back home in the rain because I couldn't go walk in the woods... well I guess I could have done it but honestly I didn't feel like being wet.


I had a good time but I want to go back when the leaves ar changing colors....

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A new homeschooling year...

2009-2010 is definetively a busy year for me.   This year I will have a 3rd grader, a SK and a JK as well as a very curious toddler who is demanding.   But doing homeschooling is still something I feel God as called me to.


The past year I got introduced to wonderful new products in homeschooling and I am excited to use them more this year.   I have a feeling that there might be too much on our shoulders but I will see as the weeks are going by.


This past week was pretty good (apart from Monday that is).   Not sure if it was the stress or something else but my baby girl was a difficult on Monday.   I gave her crayons - no, wooden things to put on a lace - okay for a little while then no, hard wood puzzle - no...   I was stressing out... and wasn't very patient I must admit.   But then nap time came and I was able to catch up a bit with my oldest.   I think it's great that he can work by himself if I need too.


My SK and JK both go grab their little workbooks when they see their older brother doing his work.   So cute!   I'm so glad I took a book for my JK - it's not much but he learns logic and recognition of sounds and so on.   My SK is working on writing his alphabet while my 3rd grader has completed his writing in cursive for the alphabet.   He also started his Gamma book on Math U See.   So far so good...  we are going on with the flow.   I need to get in a more schedule morning but I need also to remind that flexibility is important too. 


Being flexible is what we did yesterday as I woke up not in my plate.   So after an hour or so of schoolwork, we jump on the opportunity to ride with daddy to go pick up his server for the business where is was on co-location.   Daddy also ask our oldest to help with various things related to the business as well like verifying updates on the server and so on.   He is getting quite good at it.   8 years old and he knows how to update a PC.   Nuts!


My 3rd grader is also reading the series Guardians of Ga'Hoole and even though book 1 and 2 were harder to read for him, he is zooming through 3, 4 and 5 at an incredible speed.  I guess the story started to pick up.   I have read book 1 and I really enjoyed it.   Daddy is reading right now and he likes it too.   I really need to catch up on my son so I can talk about the story with him!   A movie is in the making for this series.   Pretty neat!


Well - I should get back at organizing the school room.   I heard there was a contest about it somewhere so I need to clean up a bit before taking pictures...  *grin*

Saturday, August 8, 2009

A breath of fresh air with a bit of paint smell....

These past two days, hubby and I attended the Leadership Summit at a church in the area.   It was indeed a breath of fresh air for us.   We needed to be lift up and encourage.   We needed to be mentored by various leaders both in the church and business side of things.   It was a great two days with some speakers I liked more than others.

For example, there is that young entrepreneur who created a website so that people can give loans to people who can't have some from the bank.   Entrepreneurs who want to do better for their families in countries where poverty is rampant.  The site is KIVA.ORG .  It's worth looking into it.

The other speaker I really liked was Harvey Carey who is the pastor at the Citadel of Faith Covenant Church in Detroit, MI.   He pastors a church in the poorest zip code, in the poorest city, in the poorest state of the US (according to him).   Anyhow, this guy predicted that he would be our expresso with no sugar or milk and honestly he was.   WoW!  So much energy.   The story that impressed me the most is when he told about getting his congregation together to go camping and eat smores in from of crack houses.   They did it multiple times and the crack houses are now close...   *grin*   Obviously people didn't went to buy drugs when you had a bunch of people singing Kumbala and eating smores in front of it...  Or the three white ladies from the suburbs who drove to go in the are at 1 am to minister to prostitutes.   WoW!   One thing for sure - if we ever go spend some time in Detroit, I plan to visit his church.   Thanks Harvey!

I really like the brothers Chip and Dan Heath who spoke about their upcoming book Switch.   I had printed the introduction to their previous book Made to Stick.   I'm impressed by what I read and heard that I want to get their books.  

Bono was once again part of the group.   Returning after 3 years.   He shook the church by his interview back in 2006 and many churches stood up and did something for the poor.  He was impressed saying "I didn't think it would wake up the sleeping giant and that the giant would run so fast."  Still Bono is not attached to a specific church so pray that he will find is fit somewhere...

Wess Stafford - president of Compassion International...  What can I say about him?   He moved me to tears and I cried while he told his story.  Mostly he was talking about pain.  And many didn't know the abuse he experienced when he was young.   Someone would think the abuse was from his parents but no.... it wasn't.   His family didn't know about it for many years...   He even didn't talk about it for decades before opening up.   All the participants receive a copy of his book Too Small To Ignore.   I am quite excited to read it.

Also on site,World Vision was there.   We got a Poverty and Justice Bible where more than 2000 verses in it are marked.  Verses speaking about poverty and justice.   It's an interesting concept.   Also in it, there is a special section where you can find Poverty and Justice in 3-D.  They are devotional on specific verses with discovery about an issue, time to think about it and taking action as well.   I intend to do some with the kids during the school year.

These were my highlights from the Leadership Summit.   There were other good ones but these people touched me in way I wouldn't have expected.   We also got a DVD about FIRING, HIRING AND BOARD MELTDOWNS.   Since we have both a business and a church we thought it would be good to go through it.

I feel refreshed indeed in my soul.

As for the smell of paint... well when arrive on Thursday - the dining room and hall-way had a first coat of paint.  Yesterday the dining room was completed.   So it smell paint in the house...  And we are not done.   More to come!   Like the hallway and kitchen today.  

I'm blessed.   I have the greatest in-laws in the whole wide world.   Sorry guys!  They are mine.   And all their children are married....
Saturday, August 1, 2009

Pondering....

We are back in town.   We had a good time in Niagara Falls and discovered neat things to do.   We had mostly good weather and we are blessed by this since we heard that in town it was rain, rain and more rain almost all of July.


Since hubby left with Alexandre on Thursday, I am wondering if we are doing the best choice for school.   Yep!   I am in my yearly doubting myself and being stressed and distressed.   I just want to give up and cry because I feel so useless.   I'm not sure it is in the best interest of the kids anymore.   Well, I know that school is probably not in the best interest either so why not a Christian school instead.   I don't know where to go to get encouragement and honestly I am not sure I care.    I'm in the pit of self-pity I guess.


The easyest solution would be to bring the kids to school.   It's not easy to school with a toddler and a 3 year old, a 5 year old who sighed everytime I asked him to do something.   My eldest is not so bad...  He is pretty much independant.  I can give him some pages to do and he would do it.   It's the younger ones who drain me.   I partly wish that I could separate myself in 4 and give as much attention to all of them.  


An idea has been mentioned to put the 3 year old in junior kindergarten for a year (his birthday would be in November which means he would be one of the youngest in the class).   But two days ago, I decided to sit him down and make him practice his name writing.   It went well.   And he needed the attention.  My 5 year old was practicing his writing for the letter of the alphabet from a book - so he was somewhat independent.   I realized that send ing the 3 year old at school where he would be a number among 20-25 other little ones - wasn't for his best interest.


So why am I so discouraged today?   Probably doesn't help that I am sick and that Jasmine - my toddler - is sick too.   The energy I had this morning is partly gone.   I'm tired and just want to go to bed.   Darn sinuses!


So here I am pouring out my heart to you - whoever who will read this - and knowing deep down that it isn't that bad.  But I have a short vision today.   Will I be able to school a 3rd grader, a kindergarten and a junior kindergarten this year?  And taking care of a toddler?  


Part of me wants me time... but after a month of being alone during the day I would be bored to death.  


I think I will ask my husband to care for the kids once a week so I can have time for myself to do what interest me like scrapbooking, card making or drawing.    I need some time and space for recuperate from the business of homeschool.   As soon as he comes back I will talk to him.  

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Personal blog of a homeschool family. We love to travel with our RV when we can. Fishing, discovering new places, photography are some of our favourite activities!

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