Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Top 10 Posts of 2013

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Happy New Year's Eve, everyone!  It's hard to believe that it has been another year already.  I want to give a hearty THANK YOU to each of you who follow along here at Living and Learning at Home! 

The end of a year is a perfect time to look back and see which posts were the most visited.  This helps me because it shows me what YOU like and why you come visit me here.  (It looks like you mostly like resources, which I am happy to provide you with!)  It is also nice for you, because if you missed any of these posts, chances are you'll want to take a look.

Well, here we go!  Let's start with number 10 and work our way to the post you all visited the most this past year...


10 - Teach Your Child to Write - A Beginner's Writing Notebook



9 - Exodus Notebooking Pages



8 - The Classical Preschool - Read Aloud




7 - The Animal Kingdom - Science Notebooking Pages




6 - Help Your Child Capture the Story - First Grade Book Report Pages



5 - My New Favorite Tool - Simple Spiral Binding Machine




4 - American History Living Books - Free on Kindle




3 - 5 Days of the Classical Preschool




2 - Trace and Cut Pages for Preschoolers




1 - Cute Corner Bookmarks with Free Printable




Well there you have it, the top 10 posts from Living and Learning at Home in 2013!


I am looking forward to what 2014 brings and am excited to share with you all kinds of new things throughout the coming year.  You can look forward to more Trivium Tuesdays, book clubs, printables, curriculum reviews, and more!  I also hope to continue to work on organizing the site so that you can always find just what you are looking for.

Did you know that the very best way to keep up with what is going on here at Living and Learning at Home is to subscribe by email?  Even if you follow along via one of the social media outlets, you are not guaranteed to see what I share, so you are most likely missing out.  Click on the picture below to sign up to receive about one email per week recapping what has happened that week here at Living and Learning at Home.

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Happy New Year!

 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

5 Last Minute Christmas Gifts for Homeschool Moms

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This post today is going to be a bit different than my usual posts.  That is because I'm mostly writing to homeschool dads.   Moms, you might want to accidentally keep this page up for your husband to see ;)

Do you have a special homeschool mom that you are still shopping for?  Now I know that it's not because you put it off...or forgot...it's because you are searching for just the right thing!

It's December 19th as I write this.  Time is ticking if you want to get a present by Christmas Eve!  That means that you will either have to brave the roads and the stores, or maybe you have amazon Prime, otherwise you are cutting it close!

Don't sweat it, because I have 5 ideas that are sure to please any homeschool mom!  Everyone is different, but I think every homeschool mom wants similar things: encouragement, affirmation, a clean house, and a few more hours in the day! Here are a few ideas with those things in mind...




1 - I.O.U. a Date Book


I'm thinking mostly of a husband and wife here, but really this could work for friends too.  I know that I always feel so special when I know my husband has put time into thinking of something for me.  Take a few minutes and plan a month's (or year's!) worth of dates for your wife.  It doesn't have to be anything extravagant.  Just knowing that she can count on undivided time with YOU on a certain day will make her so loved.  Of course you are going to want to take care of finding childcare too, or you're just making more work for your wife =)

This could be fun for friends too!  I always have good intentions of getting together with my girlfriends, but it's so hard to actually make it happen.  How fun would it be to pre-plan some get-together times that you can both look forward throughout the year?




2 - A One-Time Deep-Clean for the House


Homeschool moms have a lot on their plate.  There is only so much time in each day, and there always seems to be more things to do than time to do them.  Something has always got to give, and unfortunately that is often the housework.  I know that I would be blessed to have someone come over and deep-clean the house to give me a fresh slate to work with!

Now, I'm going to suggest hiring a professional for this one.  Yes, you could save a buck if you have your mother come and do it, but your wife might not appreciate her mother-in-law getting up-close and personal with the dirty corners in your bathroom =)




3 - Personalized Coupon Book


This may be an old idea, but it is a good one!  My husband did this once for me and I felt to treasured that he took the time to think of all the things that would make me feel special.  Here's the thing, you can't say no when she presents you one of these coupons! You know your wife, so pick out some things that would mean a lot to her.  Here are some ideas to get you thinking:

  • Daddy makes (or brings in) dinner. (Your wife gets the night off from cooking.)
  • Foot rub pass!
  • Mom picks the TV show (game/music/activity/etc.)
  • Night out with the girls (Daddy takes care of the kids)
  • Daddy does the dishes (laundry/cleaning/etc.)
  • Date Night
  • Shopping Spree (send your wife out to buy a new outfit or something like that)

Obviously these types of things can and should happen normally in a home, but being able to say "I need to NOT do the dishes right now" is fun and freeing from time to time =)




4 - Pampering Gift Certificate


When a homeschool mom has a few extra dollars, what does she usually buy?  More books?  Clothes for the kids?  A treat for the family?  Usually the answer is not something special for herself.  Get your wife a gift certificate to a nearby salon and send her to get a massage, her nails done, her eyebrows waxed, or whatever it is she would enjoy!  My sister-in-law did this for me on my last birthday and I really appreciated it because getting a pedicure just isn't something that I would spend my money on right now when there are so many other important things that need to be bought or saved for.




5 - Tickets to a Homeschool Convention


Convention season is right around the corner and what homeschool mom couldn't use a little encouragement?  I know I am super excited to go (my sponsor) the Great Homeschool Convention this spring, and I bet your wife would love to go too!  Whether you are newer to homeschooling and need information or a homeschool vet and need encouragement, the Great Homeschool Convention will have just what you need.

The price is right (just $50 for a family pass) and you can make it a date weekend for the two of you, or you can bring the whole family (even grandparents are included!)

Click the picture below to learn all about what you'll experience at the Great Homeschool Conventions, read about the amazing link-up of speakers, and find answers to any questions you might have.







What do you think?  Were any of those ideas helpful?  Do you have any ideas to add? 

I know every mom is different, so I'm sure you can think of other great gift ideas!  You may have noticed that I would rather know that my husband thinks of me than that he went out and bought me something, but perhaps you're different =)  Maybe you like diamonds and furs....and that's ok too!  I'd love to hear any ideas you have.


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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Trivium Tuesdays - Classical Link-Up #88


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Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  For those of you who are new here today, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.




Don't forget to follow all my Pinterest boards that are a part of the All Things Classical List!

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Also, please remember to only link up posts that have to do with homeschooling using the classical model of education.  Thank you for understanding this link-up's theme.



Featured Posts from Last Week



Christmas must be on everyone's mind!  I've got two posts that were clicked the most last week and they are both Christmas related.  First up is my friend, Jessica, sharing a neat tradition she has started with her little ones.  If you missed it, check it out to see what is in all those packages! 




The next one is a list of great educational gifts for kids from Highhill Homeschool.  There are some really neat items on Julie's list, so if you still needing a few more items for your Christmas shopping, check it out!





This Week's Link-Up


Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please place my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) on your blog post so others can learn about this link-up!
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!


I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         

If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)



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Monday, December 16, 2013

Preschool Piano with Music for Little Mozarts

Pin ItThis post contains affiliate links for a product I use and love! 

A few months ago my family bought a piano.  Growing up, playing the piano was a regular part of life, so I was anxious to have a piano in our home for the sake of my children (well, for me too!)  I was so excited to finally get a piano and I couldn't wait to start teaching my children how to play!  The problem was, while I know how to play, I honestly didn't know where to start for teaching how to play.  So, I started to look online for good resources for teaching young children.

My children are 3 and 5 years old, so obviously I didn't want anything that was too rigorous.  After a little looking around, I came across a neat series, called Music for Little Mozarts, geared for preschool age children.  It looked so perfect that I emailed the company and asked if I could review it.  I was thrilled when they sent me the books to try out!

Read my review of Music for Little Mozarts and enter to win your own Deluxe Starter Set (worth $199!) over at The Curriculum Choice! (giveaway over)



Take a look inside some of the books from Music for Little Mozarts.  Click on each picture to enlarge it...




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Friday, December 13, 2013

Classical Mamas Read - Teaching the Trivium - Introduction and Giveaway!

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I am so excited to announce that we are starting back up the Classical Mamas Read series, and that our new book will be Teaching the Trivium by Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn.

This is a book that has been on my 'must-read' list for a while now, and NOW is the time to finally dive in!


What is Teaching the Trivium About?



Teaching the Trivium seeks to answer the following questions:

  • How can you give your children the tools they need to teach themselves?
  • Can you homeschool in a classical style without compromising your Christian principles?
  •  Can you homeschool in a classical style without buckling under the burden?
  • Is homeschooling about renewing family vision?


And from the preface:

In this book, we lay down a spiritual and philosophical foundation and a practical program for Christian Homeschooling in a classical style.  We can't fill in all of the details to satisfy every situation.  Instead, we give our principles and suggestions, and we guide to the sources.  Our emphasis is communicating the picture and encouraging the practice.


How many of you have read this book?  

 

How many of you would like to read along with me?  

 

How many of you would like to win your very own copy of Teaching the Trivium?





The Bluedorns have graciously provided me with FIVE copies of Teaching the Trivium to give to YOU so that you can participate in this book club!  Yeah!





 
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Thursday, December 12, 2013

$400 Stocking Stuffer Giveaway!

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Can you believe it is Christmas already?!  Seriously, I am in denial.  I remember the times before I had kids when time went by nice and slowly and there was time to get ready for everything =)  Ok, maybe my memory is a little hazy, but that's how I think it was...


Here's where I'm at this year:

Advent...missed that one.

Christmas tree...started the process yesterday.

Christmas cards...they are sitting here on the desk next to me.

Gifts...DONE!  (Thank you Black Friday online deals!)



At least one thing is done!  Maybe you have one thing done too, but it's different than my one thing.  Then boy is this the right place for you!

Today, 40 bloggers from the iHomeschool Network are giving away TWO $400 prizes! You can choose from an Amazon card or Paypal cash.  So whether you have gifts to buy or bills to pay, please enter and let us bless you this holiday season!

Merry Christmas!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Trivium Tuesdays - Classical Link-Up #87


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Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  For those of you who are new here today, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.





Don't forget to follow all my Pinterest boards that are a part of the All Things Classical List!

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Featured Posts from Last Week




I really enjoyed reading last week's post from Paige over at Elemental Blogging.  She does a great job of explaining all about what a grammar stage science curriculum should look like.  I found it very helpful as science is something that we have yet to jump into with both feet.







Most Clicked on Post from Last Week


I think everyone always needs a little inspiration for keeping organized, which if why I'm not surprised that A Well Planned Homeschool from Aspired Living was the number one clicked from last week!





This Week's Link-Up


Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please place my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) on your blog post so others can learn about this link-up!
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!


I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         

If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)



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