Friday, April 11, 2014

Signs of Spring

The grass is getting greener, the sun is out longer, the daffodils are growing, the flowers are blooming, and short sleeves are making a come-back.  

"Sunlight, sunlight in my soul today, 
Sunlight, sunlight all along the way;
Since the savior found me,
took away my sin,
I have had the sunlight of His love within!"

Such a fitting Hymn for this time of year!  Do you know the tune? If not, I found this for you!  Even if you do, watch and sing along :) 

Love Hymns like I do? Visit my Hymn Study Pinterest Board.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Raindrops and Poetry


The rain is raining all around,
It falls on field and tree,
It rains on the umbrella here,
And on the ships at sea.

Robert Louis Stevenson

All this rain we have been having reminded me of this poem.  Just short and sweet, the way I like my poetry :)

When a little free time presents itself, I like to get in a little felt crafting for my Etsy shop.  It was a quick, fun project.  The silver 'sprinkles' were a nice addition to the blue raindrops, and a colorful umbrella is always welcome this time of year! 

I love crafting with felt because of its user-friendliness. I wax eloquent about my obsession with felt in this post here.  If you get a chance pop on over to my Etsy shop Sunshine by Channon.

Are you looking for some fun Spring activities to do with your children? Visit my Spring Crafts and Activities Pinterest Board for ideas.

Enjoy the season!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

How I Organize Our Homeschool

I often get asked the question, "How do you do it all?"  The answer is truthfully, "I don't!" :)  We all have our strengths and weaknesses.  As homeschooling mom's (really moms in general) we all have ways that we keep our little castle humming along.

With 7 children we try to use up all available nooks and crannies.  We don't have a room just for 'school'.  But we have a cozy dining room that gets a ton of use.  This is the main hub of our supplies and curriculum.  I thought I would give a mini tour for those of you who want to take a peek.

1. The top shelf tends to become a home for all the things that the Bigs don't want the Littles to touch.  Things like science experiments, model boats and cars, and Lego creations.  This, too is the shelf least dusted :)

2. This shelf is used to hold current read alouds and an overflow area for library books.

3. This is our Science and Nature Study shelf.  I have recently begun collecting books on these subjects to use as reference.  The green and pink binders are my print offs from Handbook of Nature Study and other things I have copied.  They are organized by Month and Season.  The white binders on this shelf are the kids work.

4. Library book shelf.

5. These two last shelves are our books: poetry, devotionals, history and craft books.

6. The bottom shelf holds my "To Do Later" stuff.  I have one blue binder for each season.  The other binders and small hanging file folders hold future unit studies and kids crafts.

7.  This shelf holds all of our Arch Bible story books.  The little container with drawers holds all of our blank notebooking pages and bible paper dolls.  I also have a binder with Bible crafts for my older sons to use with the Littles.

8. This shelf holds our books that the children read, coloring books and blank spiral notebooks to draw in.

9.  I keep our artists and composer resources here.  My binder is the pink one and contains all of our artists and composers to be studied through the year.  The other binders are for Andrew and Parker.

10.  The shelf I hide the markers from my littlest.

11.  I purchased some inexpensive clear containers from Walmart a while ago, and they have been a huge help.  The kids can see exactly whats in them, and we can put lids on them to keep out the younger ones if needed.  They hold craft supplies, magnetic letters, fancy scissors, etc.  The baskets hold all the things that I want the children to forget they exist until we need them :) Things like permanent markers, beads, yarn, also easily lost items like plastic needles.

12.  This shelf holds crayons, washable markers, colored pencils, glue sticks, etc.

I ordered the posters from Rod and Staff. I don't have a link here.  I ordered it from my catalog.  They are wonderful, and I would eventually like to have them framed.  I added them to the back of the shelves to lighten them up, and I just liked them.

Well, there we have it.  We have a few more spaces that I squirrel things away, but I really like that we can all see things at a glance. Out of sight, out of mind.

I still look for motivation on better ways to do things.  Any ideas? I would love to hear how you organize your home school!  Here is a link to my Homeschool Rooms on Pinterest.  I am always amazed at what great spaces you all create! Amazing.

To see our daily schedule and a little bit more about our curriculum click here: Homeschooling Page

Monday, March 31, 2014

Spring Felt Wreath how-to

After the winter's browns, tans, blacks and gray gloomy clouds....some color is in order!

I made the wreath below, actually two of them, for the doors in my kitchen.  It was one of those decorating moments where you want to make something, but it's cold and you have a house full of little people and school to do.   I dug through the stash and came up with a couple of straw wreaths, some burlap and my ever-so-versatile felt supply.  Add a glue gun and we were in business!

They turned out cute and were just the burst of color I needed.  But, Winter is gone and Spring is here! So, instead of just tossing it into the attic, along with the other outdated crafts, I decided to do a little upgrading. Super simple!

I put together a little step by step for you, so you can make your own.  You don't have to do exactly what I did, play around and have fun.  Felt can be cut into any shape, and the colors available are endless.  Here goes:

Here are the two wreaths, cut out circles, leaves and small strips of my chosen felt.

Felt flowers are easy. I cut out four circles in one color, and the smallest circle in a complimentary color.  I put a dab of hot glue in the middle of the circle and press down just in the center.  Repeat until all the circles for that flower are glued together. By only gluing the centers, it allows you to move the 'petals' a bit.

To make the rosebuds just cut felt into small strips.  I did about 3/4 inches wide and 5 inches long, making them wavy not straight.  Start rolling and dab glue here and there as you go.  Make sure the end is secure.  If your rosebud is too big just snip through the whole roll for the right size.

Here are the finished flowers, leaves and rosebuds.  Now just place them on the wreath and glue down just the centers. 

That's all there is too it! You could do holiday or seasonal shapes (Fall leaves, holly and ivy, fireworks and American flags, etc).  Whatever you can dream up. 

This post includes links to Amazon.  I am an affiliate and receive a small amount when you purchase through this blog.  Thank you!

Practicing Hospitality

The real things haven't changed....

it is still best to be honest and truthful;
to make the most of what we have;
to be happy with simple pleasures;
and have courage when things go wrong.

Laura Ingalls Wilder

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Spring Is Here....Almost

Winds of March

Winds of March, we welcome you,
There is work for you to do.
Work and play and blow all day
Blow the winter cold away.

Shannon Martin

I don't know about you, but I am ready for warmer weather.  Yes....I say that every year about this time.  I can't help myself.  The little flowers peak out and the buds are forming on the trees.  I think it is the anticipation we all feel....we know the warmer weather is coming! We just aren't sure when.

I was looking through pictures the other day and noticed the one above.  It was taken a few years ago, but I love the look on Annie's face.  Pure joy!  No stress, no problems or worries, no inhibitions.  Just enjoying the moment.

As adults wouldn't it be great to have just a little bit of that joy?  A little bit of freedom from our everyday worries and cares?

Luke 12:6-7

Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.

Guess what?  We can.  God will never leave us nor forsake us.

Enjoy the season.  It won't be long that we're whining that its too hot :)

Friday, May 17, 2013