Tuesday, November 29, 2016

We've Been Busy

I haven't blogged in a few weeks, and it's been a nice break! We have been really busy lately. I'll try to recap our past few weeks in a few paragraphs...

Silas and Eli were in their first karate tournament a few weeks ago. We traveled to Shreveport, which is about 3 hours from our house. My mom went with us, and we stayed in a hotel for two nights. My mom's mom lives in Shreveport, as does her sister and brother and their families. We got to visit with them, which was nice! We also went to Sci-Port, a huge science museum, and the Boardwalk, where the three little ones got to build a stuffed animal at Build-a-Bear. Silas brought home two medals and Eli brought home a third and second place trophy! I was so proud of them for entering.
{All of the boys who participated in the tournament from our dojo}

{The boys and their trophies and medals}
We started a new "school year" for Mikaela and Eli. They started the 7th and 9th grade! Wow! We are going a very, very different route for them this time. I ordered the Bob Jones University Distance Learning {DVD} full-grade kits for them! It has been an adjustment - their days went from 3 hours to 5 or 6 hours long. The workload is much heavier, but, honestly, it's what they needed! They start around 8 or 8:30 and have been finished before 2:00 each day. The challenge has been good for them. I have quite a bit of grading and work-checking to do, but it's a relief not to worry about what curriculum to use, what projects to do, and if I am teaching them the right way! They each have five subjects. Mikaela has Algebra 1, Physical Science, Cultural Geography, Writing and Grammar, and Bible. Halfway through the year, Writing and Grammar will turn in Literature. Eli has Fundamentals of Math, Life Science, World Studies, Bible, and Writing and Grammar {which will also turn into Literature halfway through}. The DVD's are anywhere from 15-30 minutes a day, with 10-30 minutes of work afterward. The teachers on the DVD's are great and make the kids laugh quite a bit.  They each have a portable DVD player with a 14 inch screen to watch their videos on {with earbuds}.
{Eli watching Mrs. Vick, his grammar and life science teacher}

I also decided not to rejoin the Homeschool Review Crew next year. With Mikaela and Eli using the DVDs, it would be too much for them to add anything to their day. I also will enjoy freedom on my blog to blog when I want to! The Crew was great, and I had a lot of fun, but it was for the best to say my farewells for now.

Mercie has been using Abeka history and science for a week or so. I only ordered the student books for her. She reads a little each day aloud, we talk about it and answer the questions orally. She has been doing well with her cursive since I created her own cursive book. Being left-handed is quite a challenge sometimes, especially when copying work. Her hand would cover what she was supposed to be copying, and she would get so frustrated. I took a cheap handwriting tablet  and wrote her words to copy on the right side of the page, so she can see them as she writes them. She has improved so much and has started writing everything in cursive {which is great!} She's been learning multiplication in math and is still using Learning Language Arts Through Literature. She has shown a deeper interest in reading lately, which is amazing. She reads for 20 minutes a day {required by me}, but I often find her reading beyond that time. She has about ten weeks left of 3rd grade, which mainly means I'll just buy her a 4th grade language arts and math book when it's time.

Silas is still using R.E.A.D. curriculum from the Kindergarten Mom. He is reading many word families and 15 or so sight words. He completes several lessons a day in math. He can count to 100 without much help, can count by 10's, and can recognize numbers from 1-99 pretty easily. He loves addition and will often get the dice out just to roll them and add them together! His handwriting is really improving, and he has been working in an interactive language arts journal twice a week.

Titus is using the Bible ABC curriculum from the Preschool Mom, and has learned A-G so far. We are going to take a week off next week to review these letters. He can recognize the numbers 1-6 and can count to ten without help. He can easily count items and can recognize the numbers on the dice by sight {we play a lot of Yahtzee!} I found some preschool math workbooks in my storage building this week, so I plan to up his math lessons to ten minutes a day instead of five. He will also be using a handwriting book soon. I have the All About Reading pre-reading level ready for him to use as soon as he finishes this ABC curriculum.

We started using Elemental Science's Intro to Science with Silas and Titus. We learned about solids and liquids last week. We melted broken crayons in muffin tins and made cookie crayons! We felt ice as it melted and talked about things that freeze and things that melt.
{The kids coloring with their cookie crayons!}

Eli killed his first deer this week! He was so excited. We have so much deer meat in our deep freezers, plus we butchered a cow, so we have hundreds of packages of fresh burger, roasts, and steaks.

{Eli with the traditional bloody face from his first deer}

{Rod and Eli after he killed the doe}
Mikaela turned 14 on the 23rd of November. My mom, Mercie, Mikaela and I went to the mall for some shopping, and then we had a cake on Thanksgiving at my mom's house.
{Mikaela on the left, and her best friend on the right, taking selfies on the way to church}

How have you been?


  1. We'll miss you on the Crew but so glad you found exactly the things that are working for your family. Can't wait to keep up through your blogging. Congrats on the deer kill!

  2. So funny; just this morning as I was washing my hair and face I thought... Hmm.. I haven't read the My Full Hands and Heart Blog in awhile...

    1. Just wanted to tell you that once my youngest got bored with rolling dice and adding dots he moved onto playing with dominoes... still lots of dots to add up but the numbers went higher than six. He'd often drop two at a time and add up ALL the dots. Just thought your son might like that too.

    2. That's a great idea! We have a set of domino's, so I'll pull them out for him soon!

  3. Wow, you all are busy and congrats on Eli's first dear. I've never tasted dear meat.

    I used Bob Jones for three years with Josh. He really liked it.

    1. Oh, Linda, you dont know what you're missing! I need to bring you some meat!! Wish I could.

    2. Me too. I've always wondered what it taste like. I tried lamb once at a restaurant. It was different :)

  4. I'm so happy your new changes are working out for you! It looks like your family is having so much fun outside of school too! Cultural Geography looks interesting. I've thumbed through it before. I bet she's learning a lot :)

  5. I can understand the busy! I haven't been able to put into blogging the time that I was. It's been a nice break, but I do miss blogging and I miss visiting others.

    I hope that you and your family have a very Merry Christmas!