(Not Quite)Wordless Wednesday, More Freezer Cooking!

Yesterday, “The Artist’ and I did another round of freezer meal prepping. No cooking involved, other than boiling the Penne pasta to al dente. Here is what we did (2 of each meal):

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Here are all the meals ready for the freezer:

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Here is the seasoned skin and the bones from the rotisserie chicken that we needed to shred for part of the recipes, and what I decided to do with it instead of just throwing it away!

Yep, I’m making bone broth, for the very first time! And due to a mistake in how much Penne was cooked, I’ll freeze some with pasta sauce, and maybe some with this broth. I love this system!

Linked up at:

Wordless Wednesday at Life at Rossmont
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No-Nonsense Algebra From Math Essentials: Our Review

You know, I have pretty much ALWAYS had a hate/hate relationship with math, something I have tried very hard to keep from passing on to my children. When this review came along, at first I really, really did not want it. Not at all. HOWEVER, after filling out my interest form (OK, let’s be honest, my LACK of interest form), I found out that when kids are getting ready for their ACT and SAT tests for College, it was suggested that this book is a good one for them to review Algebra, as that is something that is definitely tested. I was given to understand that the further one is away from Algebra, the less proficient they become. I also discovered that the book No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials has, in fact, been used quite successfully as a good review before taking these tests.  So, I went back and redid my interest level so that hopefully, we would be blessed enough to receive it for “The Artist” to use.
And we were indeed so blessed in that regard!

Just looking at the cover told me that this would be a no fluff curriculum. It is fairly plain, with no distracting images or colors, which I consider a plus for “The Artist.”

Another thing which I feel is helpful, especially for “The Artist,” is the access to free online video lessons, which are available for each lesson in the book. Now, at first, “The Artist” did NOT take advantage of the video lessons, saying “Mom, I don’t need them, I KNOW how to do this stuff!” Of course, he slammed into a wall pretty quick and I convinced him to give the video lessons a try. In doing this, he discovered that he learns best with a combination of viewing and hearing the lesson, along with the written lessons in the book.

Here he is, resolutely using only the book:

A little while later though, he hit another wall, when it came to working on positive and negative fractions. He was really getting upset, even with the video lesson, and I was busy writing another review, so I finally told him to set it aside for a little while then to look at it again. He did do that, without me realizing it. What happened? He screamed “I got it!” and about scared me right out of my desk chair! LOL!

Here is “The Artist” finally giving in and using the video lessons:

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One of the best things about No-Nonsense Algebra as far as “The Artist” is concerned, is that the lessons are fairly short, and the video lessons explain things quite well.

This book has 10 chapters:

  • 22 lessons on necessary tools for Algebra plus a chapter review
  • 9 lessons on Solving Equations plus a chapter review
  • 6 lessons on Graphing and Analyzing Linear Equation plus a chapter review
  • 7 lessons on solving and graphing inequalities plus a chapter review
  • 4 lessons on systems of linear equations and inequalities plus a chapter review
  • 13 lessons on Polynomials plus a chapter review
  • 10 lessons about rational expressions (algebraic fractions) plus a chapter review
  • 10 lessons on radical expressions and geometry plus a chapter review
  • 6 lessons on quadratic equations plus a chapter review
  • 8 lessons on algebra word problems plus a chapter review

Beyond this, there is a final review, a glossary, pages of important formulas, important symbols, the multiplication table, commonly used prime numbers, squares and square roots, fraction/decimal equivalents, access to the online video lessons, and the solutions section for checking the work.

I am going to recommend this book. At the price of only $28.95, this would be a good choice whether you have a student studying for his or her ACT and SAT, or you simply have a student who is ready to learn Algebra.

To read 59 other fair and honest reviews about No-Nonsense Agebra from Math Essentials from the Homeschool Review Crew Members, please click on the banner below

No-Nonsense Algebra {Math Essentials Reviews}

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Please! Vote In Your Local Elections Always!

Gregg  Hull, our Mayor and First Lady Carrie Hull are among the most giving and caring people I know. He ran for his first time on giving us “Full Time” leadership, and boy, has he ever delivered! He has done so much for our city during this, his first term, working nearly non-stop. He and his wife Carrie are among the most kind, decent people I have ever known. They even took time out of their (very) busy schedule to come visit my son in the emergency room after evening church service, during one of the times that my son was headed from the ER straight to a mental health facility. I will forever be grateful for that.

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The biggest reason I am writing this though, is because I feel a need to encourage you, whatever your political affiliation, to please, please vote in your local elections. They usually have the smallest voter turnout, and you may not realize how important they are. Everything begins at home, with the cities, first. It’s your cities which make the difference first. You don’t live in Washington DC. You don’t have the access to the President or the legislature that you think you might. But, you DO have access to your City Council and your Mayor, if you have a good one. I know that the people in my city have access to their Mayor, and that he listens, and gets things done. I have seen so much improvement here just during this first term, and I intend to vote for him for his second term. I just wish we had already moved here early enough to do so in his first campaign!

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

 

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I Can Study Acts Alone With God: KJV, My Review

 

So, there is this really neat company out there called Greek ‘n’ Stuff.

I have never tried to review anything from them until now. Why now, you ask? Because I found out the “stuff” includes Bible studies! I was blessed to receive for the purpose of this review, a copy of  I Can Study Acts Alone With God (52 week study) KJV. This is a Bible Study by Karen Mohs, and is available in both the King James Version and the New International Version. As you all know by now, I will use only the King James Version. This is what my family uses and my church uses, by conviction.

I actually asked for this study in order to be the student myself, thinking that this would get me back into the habit of reading and studying my Bible

so here is all I really need to do this study (and a pen!)

 

 

This is a very nicely made spiral bound 8 1/2 x 11 book, with sturdy, glossy finished covers.

Something I truly enjoy about this study is that it is not made into a complicated form of study. Yes, I am an adult, but I am not a “Bible Scholar.” Making it easy to understand and follow is a good thing, whether for a child or an adult.

Another thing I like is that in order to do the actual study, I must get out my own Bible and read the references given. I much prefer this to having a study where everything is already in it, and you never even have to open your own Bible!

This study is laid out to be done in 52 weeks, with each lesson taking one week.The sections of each lesson are very short, taking place on Monday through Saturday. I especially like that, because Sunday is pretty much filled for us.

Each day, I am given the following tasks:

  • Pray & ask God to help as I study
  • Read or recite the memory verse for that week
  • Answer 2 or 3 questions

There are also little sidebar sections which give questions and explanations pertaining to the subject at hand. In these, I might find additional questions, something historical, or even something to ponder about the “why” when it came to those involved.

At the end of the lesson for each week, there is a “think and pray about it” box. Here, we are asked to look at how the things we are learning can be made to apply to our present day lives.

It has been easier for me to study my Bible this way. I can do i in little chunks of time, which helps in my personal life.

At the cost of just $23.95, I can highly recommend this product. For that price, you are getting a full year of study for you or your student!

Along with  I Can Study Acts Alone With God Bible Study (52 week study)
KJV
NIV, other Homeschool Review Crew members reviewed:

To read 79 fair and honest reviews from other Homeschool Review Crew Members, please click on the banner below:

Teach Me Some Greek {Greek 'n' Stuff Reviews}

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Freezer Meal Planning in Our House

In 2016, The Homeschool review Crew explored using the  MyFreezEasy.com Freezer Meal Plan Membership from MyFreezEasy. I was not fortunate enough to be on that review, but the reviews of other crew members made me WANT it so much! So, at tax return time, my husband had me go ahead and purchase a membership.

Since then, there’s been so much happening around here that this was actually the first time I’ve done it! This past Monday, with “The Artist’s” help, we got ten slow cooker meals prepped and ready to go!

Here is what we put in the freezer:

two each of:

  • New Mexican Chicken Lettuce Wraps
  • Slow Cooker Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork
  • Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Shredded Chicken Wraps
  • Slow Cooker Lemon & Dill Salmon

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and one Slow Cooker Creamy Ranch Chicken. We only put one of those in the freezer because I set the second one in a bowl in the fridge to cook for supper on Tuesday.

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I was not home for supper on Tuesday, I was gone with one of my sons, so I asked my husband to take a photo of the plated, finished product for me.

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It was a huge success! I had changed the amount of servings per recipe from 4 to 6, and just my husband and two of my boys ate all of it except for enough for my husband to take to work for lunch on Wednesday!

Thursday, we had Dr. Pepper Pulled pork, another huge hit! This time there are enough leftovers for my husband and 2 older boys to have tonight while “The Puzzler” and I are out visiting his brother in the hospital.

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We are thus far extremely pleased that I bought this, both because it will cause us to not have to hit drive thru when we forget to plan, and also because now, when there is a need to take meals to someone in our church family, I will always be prepared. Win/win!

This is NOT an official review post, but I do encourage you to go read the reviews of those crew members who were lucky enough to have this review, and see what they thought. You can read them all at this site.

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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In The Reign of Terror From Heirloom Audio Productions: My Review

Our family has been very blessed to have had the opportunity of reviewing each new release from Heirloom Audio Productions that has come out during our time with the Homeschool Review Crew.

This time around, we have been given the wonderful opportunity to listen to and review Heirloom Audio’s newest production, In the Reign of Terror, which takes place during the French Revolution.

Prior to this, We have, during my time on the Homeschool Review Crew been very fortunate to review the following: The Dragon and The RavenWith Lee In VirginiaIn Freedom’s Cause: The  Real Story of Wallace and BruceUnder Drake’s FlagBeric the Briton, and The Cat of Bubastes.

I think that one of the things my family and I enjoy most about the Heirloom Audio Productions is that they are not simply audio books, they are actual theater! It is as if we are listening to a movie, and we very quickly become enthralled with what is happening. As I had said in one of my earlier reviews, I can remember my dad telling me about when he was a child, that they listened to exciting programs on the radio.They didn’t have television, of course. He said even my grandma used to listen to her “stories” on the radio, way before they became a staple on network television, lol!

In the Reign of Terror is, as I said, much like a film (to us) with everything except for the visual part. The voice acting is as wonderful as it has been in each and every other Heirloom Audio Production that has been released so far, and the sound effects are wonderful. But as usual, I am going to be the most effusive about the musical scoring by John Campbell, who is an Emmy Award Winning Composer. Not only do I really love great music, but when it comes to scoring, that can make or break a production as far as I am concerned!

As has been true in past productions, we begin with “Mr. George” about the “similarities” between the French Revolution and the American Revolution. This time it is an English boy named Harry. Mr. George is of course patterned on G. A. Henty, and he tells the boy the story of the French Revolution from the viewpoint of a British boy named Harry who is sent to France to teach the English language to the children of a nobleman. Harry is age 15, so this must have been an exciting sounding idea! But then, the French Revolution begins!

We learn about differences between the French Revolution and the American Revolution (or War for Independence.) In American, the people simply wanted freedom, and resisted the King and England as peacefully as they could for as long as they could, before having to fight for a hard-won independence.

In France, it was not about freedom or equality. it was a mob mentality, where those not of noble blood wanted a complete reversal of roles. It got to the point that people were arrested and killed simply from being a noble born person. I myself learned more than I ever have about the French Revolution. The family (and Harry) running from danger are believers, as were many others in France.

Below is a short video to give you an idea of what you will hear, and how well the production is put together:

I really enjoyed once again hearing the familiar voices of Brian Blessed and John Rhys-Davies, along with other very talented actors seen in the image below.

As part of our review, we were given the wonderful, downloadable study guide in pdf form. As Heirloom Audio has done each time, the study guide gives us first, short biographies of G. A. Henty,  Maximilien Robespierre, and Marie Antoinette. From there, we go into the following opportunities of further study:

  •  It is designed for parents who want help talking their younger children through the story and its lessons.
  • It can also serve as series of written assignments for older students.
  • The sets of questions begin and end as the story takes new turns, and each may cover from four to eight minutes of the audio drama.
  • Each set of questions has three parts, Listening Well, Thinking Further, and Defining Words.
    The Listening Well questions ask your child what he has heard or what he remembers. You’ll find that there are easy and not so easy questions, but they can all be answered by listening again.
  • The Thinking Further questions ask your child to think a bit—to look up something
    mentioned in the story, to draw conclusions from the characters’ actions, or to speculate about the intentions, mindset, and character of Harry and his friends and enemies. This is a great opportunity to go off on “rabbit trails” inspired by what comes out of this thinking and discussing!
  • The Defining Words section is exactly that. It will give your child the opportunity to learn new words by looking them up, thus enhancing their vocabulary through this production.

Heirloom Audio Productions also has a new section! It is called “Live The Adventure.”

In the Live The Adventure Club, you can communicate with others about the various Heirloom Audio Productions, you can listen to your CD online (and stop it after each section so as to go over the study guide for that portion), and purchase other productions. There are also tons of other fun and educational things provided! I recommend that you check it out, it’s really terrific!

To read honest and fair reviews about In the Reign of Terror from 99 of my fellow Homeschool Review Crew members, please click on the banner below:

In the Reign of Terror {Heirloom Audio Productions Reviews}

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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USA Activity Bundle From The Crafty Classroom: Our Review

We have had the fun of reviewing The USA Activity Bundle for a little while now. Because we are preparing to work through a United States study that may be more intensive soon, I thought this might be a good way to start, along with the fact that we can perhaps incorporate this into whatever we find later on our own.

 

The USA Activity Bundle was provided to us for the purpose of this review by The Crafty Classroom, Where you will find an abundance of fun things to help your children learn!

We have decided to do the states in perhaps a different way than others did. We are not doing them alphabetically, and we are not doing them in order of statehood, either. Instead, remembering that in 2012 we drove through seven states during our move from Michigan to New Mexico, we began with the states we came through, beginning with Michigan and going through to New Mexico. Below you can see the boys working on some of the pages. We already owned two different United States atlas books for kids, plus we were able to look things up on the internet as well. A favorite fact was something we had discovered shortly after moving here, that New Mexico has an official state cookie called the Biscochito. It’s really good, too! Finding it while grocery shopping right after coming here, I HAD to buy it, thereby going off my list for one of my very first times!

One of the things I appreciate about this set is that it is made very simple, so all of my boys could do it, although one of them needed some help from his brothers.

We really like the way this set was created. There is an activity page and a maze for each state, and there are art cards for 27 birds (because some states share the same bird). The mazes are each in the shape of the respective state, which is a lot of fun! After doing the states we came through on our trip when moving, I haven’t yet decided whether then to go back and do them alphabetically, in order of statehood, or simply let the boys decide in what order to do them and then put them all together in a specific order. Whatever way we do it, it is looking like it is going to be “fun schooling” around here! 🙂

Here is a picture of some of the states as completed by my boys. I could only fit these sets into the picture, but it gives you an idea of what you will be doing, and how simple it will be:

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As you can see above, I have one child (The Puzzler) who decided the Michigan Robin should look the way HE wanted it to, lol!

Once we have completed all of the states, there are a couple of cute games to print out and play. They are called Roll Across America and USA Bingo.

To read what 79 other Homeschool Review Crew members think of this and other products from The Crafty Classroom, please click on the banner below. There, you will find reviews of

Preschool products

Kindergarten

For Older kids

 

Crafty Classroom {Reviews}

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Filed under The Crafty Classroom, USA Activity Bundle, USA history, geography