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Friday, February 29, 2008

lies in textbooks

I don't know how I originally found this video, but it was SO interesting to watch. Well, let me clarify.

Brian and I sat down and watched Kent Hovind's "Lies in Textbooks" lecture. It's all about how scientifically and biblically, so many things they teach in textbooks just can't be true. It's apologetics, well, not 101 because it's pretty deep Apologetics 500! 

The MATERIAL is FASCINATING. Beyond fascinating.  He rejects various "thoughts" and "theories". He uses multimedia to show various things he's trying to get you to understand. If you're scientifically inclined, you will LOVE LOVE LOVE this!

Sadly, the man's voice is very...monotone. Very flat. He tries to inject some moments of humor, but they are also delivered in a monotonous voice. Kinda ruins the funniness?!?

But, on my "to do list" is to watch all of his lectures and take notes. I've only watched this one, which is #4 in the series. I didn't know it was #4, it's material stood alone, maybe previously referenced, but new to me! You can go out of order, or IN order... so here it is... it's LONG! Settle in with a good cup of tea!

#4: Lies in Textbooks

He's also got one on the age of the Earth "Why the Earth is not millions of Years Old"

Part 2 called The Garden of Eden (Pre-flood)

Another, Part 3, is called Dinosaurs & The Bible (and the living)

Incredible stuff!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Today we went on a field trip with Daddy!! We didn't go with a group, just as a family, it was a very nice treat! Poor Elias almost couldn't comprehend it. On the way there, he asked what time the zoo opened, and I said 10. It was close to 11 by then, and he said "Oh no! We're going to miss our tour!!"  ROFL!!!

Our poor zoo gets a bad's very small, not a lot of "big" animals, no glitz and glamour. But, it serves a purpose. It takes in a lot of abused, neglected and hurt animals. It's actually a nice little day out, if you don't go with the attitude that you're going to like the San Diego Zoo or something.

They sell cups of goat food and bird food for $1  each. I think we bought 4 or 5 cups! Feeding the birds is so much fun for a 6 yr old! They flock to you!

We had a nice time looking at the lions playing with their barrels and balls, the baby chicks just roaming free with their mommas...until we picked one up!

My husband is always goofy....he was trying to torture Elias thinking he'd eat the baby chick!

 We also saw the river otters swimming...oh, and the Chimpanzee. My husband is still laughing at me. The darn thing was such a MALE!  He was just laying on his hammock with his hand...well...Al Bundy style if you know what I mean. Then he KNOW!!!  It was like a car wreck, you don't want to look, but you do. It was so funny to see him...pulling it!!! I'm dying laughing now! My husband had to take me away laughing. He's laughing at me now writing this! It was so..funny!!! And gross! And funny!

Here's Little Lovely eating...and the birds hanging around waiting for crumbs!

And, Brian holding a new "friend". Aww, she loved him!

Here're the boys on the Elephant Statue

It was a nice day, and beautiful weather to boot! Shame, with all these birds around, that I had already defrosted a CHICKEN to roast for dinner!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, February 25, 2008


I was thinking, what can I possibly write about tonight? We had just a normal day...played outside a bit, played with our neighbor friend, went to Walmart...

And then I went to tuck in my son and he say's "Oh, wait, I need to put on my deodorant". He's 6. ROFL!!!!!!!! At Walmart today his big thing was can he please PLEASE have deodorant like brother?!?! He also uses mine on occasion...plumeria vs Old Spice...I gave in! I think it's cute.

This got me remembering our Walmart trip, which did have an...event...episode...what would one call it? Only moms will understand what I went through today, part embarrasment, part sad for my later, some laughter...

So, Elias had to poop. Ugh! I hadn't made it through the freezer section or cold section yet, so I figured we better go to the potty NOW before it becomes imperative later and ice cream will melt. SO off we go to the Family Restroom.

Where he strips off his shoes, socks and pants. Brian did the same exact thing when he was little. It drives me nuts at home, and in a public restroom it makes me want to SCREAM!!!!!!

So, he settles in,starts doing his thing...and the toilet automatically flushed. OMG. He became INSTANTLY hysterical, jumped off the pot, ran to the door screaming, wrestling to open the door. I'm fighting him to STAY IN (remember, he's naked!!!!) and he's crying/screaming and covering his ears with both hands.
I'm thinking they're going to think I'm beating him in here! I want him to stop screaming, I want him to stop being scared, AND I have to put his clothes on because his hands are covering his ears!!!

What a funny boy. He's such a mix of 150% boy, yet still so often scared by things like lightening, or ....toilets unexpectedly flushing. I guess I better cherish this time, because soon he'll be a snotty teen!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Harvard and Stanford Universities for free

Stanford announced the other day that they are waiving their tuition for qualified students.
Stanford waives tuition if income under $100,000
Stanford enhances undergraduate financial aid program

Harvard recently announced a similar program....
Harvard University: No Tuition for Low-Income Families
Harvard expands financial aid for low- and middle-income families

Of course this is great news for homeschoolers, many of whom are from single income families!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Interesting Day....

So, today was a busy but good day. Lots of interesting things going on!

My husband's work gives out trips every year to the 3 drivers who book the most hours. 2 years ago Chris won the top prize, a trip to Hawaii. It was a great trip, wrong timing!

Last year, he also won the top prize, another trip to Hawaii. Unfortunately, if we thought timing was "off" on the first trip, this trip saw us through health issues for me, and the baby, and the beginnings of a reparation of our marriage. Definitely not the best time to go away. We asked his boss if we could hold onto it for awhile, and he graciously agreed. We are scheduled to go in June, and very much looking forward to it.

Today was the "meeting" day, with announcements of who won what, this year. Now, this year, Chris has been home A LOT, but he's also still working quite a bit. It was a pleasant surprise to hear he placed 2ND!! Now, in addition to our upcoming Hawaii trip (airfare and hotel paid for), we have a trip to Puerto Vallarta!!! I've never been there, but boy oh boy are we feeling blessed today!!! What a "reward" for spending his time on better things (family & exercise) . Wow!!!!!

In other news...this is...interesting...and I understand it's not for everyone....but I'm pleased that it worked out....get to the point I know! To put it plainly, today, a local high school class got to see me "in all my glory", giving birth to Elias. The teacher was looking for realistic home videos of births, and a local mom put the call out for help...and I responded.

Very in your..substitute face for other body part... style footage. Let me tell you, that was probably the LONGEST 9 minutes of those kids lives!!!!!! 9 minutes of ALL NATURAL, no drugs, pushing a baby out of something that shouldn't be stretched that big!!

It was very realistic, not all quiet and edited. Very full of me saying "I can't do this anymore", small episiotomy, blood, etc etc. Another plus was it showed my birth plan in action. Baby placed immediately on my chest. Waiting to cut the cord. Immediate nursing. Bonding with the baby for an hour before taking him to nursery for weigh in.

I don't know why I was led to respond and allow this. I sure am not a public nudity person, didn't really want many people in the delivery room...but I guess it goes towards my beliefs....educate people on what they're getting into, show them realistically so they can make informed decisions, and advocate for kids/parents (use of birth plan, breastfeeding, etc etc). All in all, I am super pleased I was able to do it.

Can anyone guess what Elias has been watching over and over again in the ensuing day? He LOVES to watch the video of him being born. He loves The Baby Story, loves all things baby, and just loves this video. It's crazy/cool/weird/loving all at once.

I love my kids :)

But I don't want to give birth ever again. EVER. My oldest keeps laughing cause I keep saying this.

HSB Raising Arrows needs prayers

Hey all,

 Amy, over at Raising Arrows  needs our prayers.  Her baby just died. It's truly a heart-wrenching story. You can read her blog and keep updated. 

One of her friends has set up an account to help with medical expenses and funeral expenses...if we all chipped in $5, $10, $20, whatever we can come up with, it will show our support and love during this horrible time.

You can see that blog entry at HERE, or at paypal, enter the email address:

If you have a blog and want to post this information, the more people we can get it out there to, the better! Let's get together and help this family!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Swinging, Mazes and Steps

Did I tell you all that the other night the baby took 6 steps?!?!  He's amazing. He's coming so far, so fast!  He is also into mimicking sounds. Chris has a cough and baby keeps "coughing" too. It's hilarious!!!

In Elias news, he learned how to swing today!  As in, not needing a push, being able to pump himself! He was so proud!  We have a swingset in the backyard and the weather this week has just been GREAT!  He's spent hours out there! (we've been out weeding too...not as much fun)

More Elias news...he loves mazes. One day I bought him this little maze workbook at the teacher store, he did all 42 pages in ONE sitting. This is part of my philosophy of learning. I'm not going to STOP him from something he enjoys. He spent much of that day doing mazes. Sadly, it's hard to find maze BOOKS.  Well, hello Internet!  I found the coolest site tonight Printable Mazes.  I spent quite awhile printing off all the Alphabet ones. They have mazes in each letter, lower case and capitol case.  Plus many more.  They are harder than EASY but not too hard. On average they are taking 2 minutes or less, and a couple of tries.

I love watching their brains spin. You can almost follow what they are thinking.."no, not that way, it dead ends...oh, don't go that way, it stops too....oh, back up, back up,.....YESS here we go!!!!"

Brian update...he is busy fixing an old computer of ours up for a friend, who's computer is mega slow. He's putting xubuntu, a linux operating system, on it, to speed it up, and configuring it to look like Windows, as our friend is a tad computer needs to run like how she's used to! What the boy can't do!!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Our Homeschool Convention!!

So, I am in a blessed place...not only am I an Officer in our statewide political advocacy group for homeschooling (Nevada Homeschool Network), I am also co-chair for our convention.

We have just finalized the important info, time and place and are excited to announce I'll post it here in case anyone lives nearby, or wants to come to NV!!

We are pleased to announce the dates for the 2008 NHN Homeschool Convention, in Las Vegas! Please mark your calendars for June 20th and 21st.

Friday, the 20th, will feature a used curriculum sale, round-table discussions on various homeschooling topics, and a keynote address in the evening. The shopping hours are extended from last year's format...this year open from 10am-4pm with lots of good stuff for everyone!! Anyone may rent a table to sell! Start saving your items!

Saturday, the 21st, will feature the Vendor Hall, full of great curriculums and educational products and services. Vendor Hall hours will be 9am-5pm. There will also be speakers and round table discussions throughout the day.

The convention will be located at UNLV's Student Union Building, 4505 Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV

We regret that this year we are unable to provide childcare, so please start making your arrangements now so that you may attend without your children!

More detailed hours, speakers and vendors will be announced in the coming weeks, so stayed tuned!! You can keep updated via our website:

Meanwhile, please be thinking about what you can do to help make this convention a success. We need MANY volunteers. We'll be sending out more specific needs soon.
Some main needs are:

Registration person and people the day of, in shifts
On-site helpers
Goodie Bag stuffers

You can also help by pre-registering (available soon!) and helping to spread the word!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Worst Jobs Ever

Technology is a wonderful thing! Thanks to my son who is always finding cool, weird, often intriguing and sometimes introspective website and sharing them with me. Now we play this game where we Instant Message each other with cool sites.  Always learning!!

Here's my find of the day. The Worst Jobs In History

Some examples:
Medievel Times
The 13th century is boom time for the wool trade. With three sheep to every man, woman and child, wool is our biggest export. But nobody likes stiff and itchy cloth that falls to pieces, so we have several openings for fullers.

As a fuller, you are expected to walk up and down all day in huge vats of stinking stale urine. The ammonia produced by the rotten wee may make your eyes water, but it creates the softest cloth by drawing out the grease (lanolin) from the wool. If you can dance up to your knees in urine for around two hours per length of cloth, you'll succeed in closing the fibres of the wool and interlocking them to produce cloth that is kind to the skin. You will be doing your part, along with the weavers, dyers and merchants, in making it a world-beating export.

You may stink and regularly have to fight back the urge to throw up, but you are guaranteed very clean toenails.

Tudor Times:
Groom of the stool
Attention all ambitious noblemen! Following the untimely death of Sir Henry Norris, a new groom of the stool is required by Henry VIII. The primary duty of the groom is to see 'the house of easement be sweet and clear' or, more plainly, to clean the royal rear and privy.

It's always interesting to look at your own stool but imagine looking at the king's and laying it in a dish. As for wiping – with the hands: there is no toilet paper at the Tudor court – just try not to think of the meat-heavy diet of the big man.

This is a challenging position for someone looking for exciting openings, for whom no job is to too big or small. Light relief may be provided by regular enema and laxative administrations. It's a coveted position – no one else will be so often alone with His Royal Highness, so although you will be dealing with number twos, you will be number one in the privy chamber. (And, later, the eminent historian David Starkey will write about you in his doctoral thesis.)


This is one of the toughest jobs for anybody, let alone a child, to carry out. Hurriers are all about six to eight years old. You'll be equipped with a wide leather 'gurl' belt with a swivel chain attached. After harnessing yourself into this, you'll attach the free end of the chain to a sled. Then, for over a mile underground, you'll make your way through the small tight passages of the mine, so small that you can't stand up.

Once you reach the coal face, you'll have to fend for yourself among the adult miners as these tough men load your sled with chunks and slabs of coal. Then you'll have to scrabble and crawl back to the surface pulling your load. This must be completed many times during a 12-hour shift. If you're lucky, you might get an even younger child to act as your 'thruster' and shove the sled from behind.

Danger waits around every corner in this sorry and thankless endeavour.

Did you learn something new? Browse the website for even more!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Out of our control, First Aid & So Big!

You ever have one of those days where, out of your control, the "plan" changes like 3 times BEFORE 10AM?!?!  That was us today!

I had to get Brian to his First Aid certification class by 9:15. That meant we all had to be eaten, dressed, chores done etc by 9ish, because immediately upon arriving home, Elias was to be picked up by a  friend to go to Roller Skating, and at 10, Sebastian had his Physical Therapy.

In order for the baby to have his G-Tube feeding done in time, he had to start no later than 8:20, to be done by 8:50. Except the feeding pump spazzed and went into Error mode and ended up not being able to change functions!! ACHH!!!! So, the Home Health Care Company had to send someone out with a new pump. Meanwhile, I had to physically push in, S-L-O-W-L-Y, the formula.  BUT!!!  I had other kids to get ready!!  NOOO!! Oh well, so we did it.

Get out the door, drop Brian off, come home to vacuum quick before PT gets there, and in the middle of vacuuming she calls and had to cancel.  Okkkkkkk......

Waited for the new pump, which came very promptly, and the funny thing all worked out!  I ended up being able to go to Skating with the kids, had a clean house to boot, and a new pump! Wasn't how I planned it...but it worked out great!!!

Any symbolism there?!?! Of course there is!

So, Brian finished his First Aid course. Got his certification, now he can save us if we choke, or stop breathing.  I am actually very proud of him for choosing to do this class. Emergencies can happen anytime, anywhere, and the ability to KNOW what to do could prove to be lifesaving. 

He got a kick out of some parts of the class...I guess the instructor was cool...and his friends were there...Did you  know that when giving Chest Compressions, if you break a rib, you are to keep going?!?!  Things like that, as awful/funny as they sound, could be really helpful to remember if the situation arose!

Hopefully we won't have to put him to the test, but I think he'd do awesome if he had to.

Small Sebastian Update:

I'll update on his health later, but had to share...I've been working on "How big is Sebastian?!" , "So Big!!"  for weeks now. And I get a blank stare, maybe a laugh.

Today, Elias said it to him, and Seb's hands flew up in the air.  At first I thought it was coincidental, but then he did it again!! I grabbed the camera, and called Chris, screaming to him that Sebastian finally got it!!!! YEAH!! Big boy!  Here are some pics. Gosh, I love that boy!!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Today & support groups

We had our annual Valentine's Day party with one of our support groups today and had decent weather and a great time! I say one of our support groups as I belong to quite a few. This happens to be the Inclusive group that I started with 2 other friends, with activities centered on our side of town! It's member-run, very loose, very informal.

I always encourage families to join a couple of support groups....see which ones fit, and what they all offer. Two of the groups I belong to offer parents meetings. Those are sometimes nice to go to! One offers a day of teen academic classes, and the other offers a day of elementary academic classes. The 3rd group, "my group", is where we do most of our field trips and park days.

Joining more than one group can come with hazards though....overload of stuff to do, and too many commitments to help. You don't have to sign up for EVERYTHING! And, instead of being "assigned" to help somewhere, sometime, think on what your gifts are, and offer them!

My main role in all my groups is one of political liason. I let them all know what's going on, when, and where we need help! I also love being a contact for "newbies" so I lead mentoring for the 2 groups that have parent's meetings. I'm always available outside of the meetings though if anyone wants to gab homeschooling! It's my passion!

So, back to V's Day Party....nice weather, a little windy (A preview of tonight when they had to shut down our airport ...constant gustings over over 40-60 mph). All the kids brought V's day cards to exchange, lined up their baskets and went down the line dropping in their goodies. What excitement looking at all their candy and cards!

Plus, being homeschoolers, we got to do it at a park, complete with a potluck, and just enjoy the nice weather! A few hours of playing, food, and fun, and we headed home.

We have more V's Day festivities tomorrow! Tomorrow is actually going to have a few back to back events, which I generally HATE doing, but couldnt get around it without missing something.

Elias will go to speech at 12:30, be picked up at 12:50. In between there, my friend Angela will pick up Brian and drop off her daughter. Then I'll take her daughter and Sebastian to pick up Elias and go straight to gymnastics at 1pm. Gymnastics is fun, they really have a good time. Sadly, this is baby's nap time, and he's usually either left home with Daddy (who's working tomorrow) or with Brian (who will be going to Teen Bunko, which overlaps the elementary stuff, so Im running the littles, and Angela's running the Bigs.)

After gymnastics ends (2pm) we will hoof it to our other support group's V's Party (starts at 2) which will be different than todays...more games and activities, versus free play at the park.

Writing this reminds me that this is as far planned as Angela and I have gotten! Am I taking her daughter home after the party? Or am I going to take them all to the teen bunko activity?!?! Details to iron out. Luckily, I am surrounded by people that I implicitly trust my kids with. If I dont make it somewhere, she'll have them, they'll eventually get home, and they'll be AOK meanwhile! Then, after the teen party, there's ANOTHER teen activity at ice cream social. So, we'll be running around for that too.

Hopefully everyone will have fun and the few moments of running will be worth it!

Monday, February 11, 2008

A Father's Heart

Someone recently sent me this in an email, and I'm sorry to say, I let it sit and sit and sit....I'm glad I finally got around to watching it. Now I want to share it with you.

There are 3 segments, each under 10 minutes...probably some of the best 30 minutes I've ever spent.

The premise is...this conference speaker (sorry, I don't know him, but you may!) Rick Burgess, was speaking at a Christian conference when he got the news his 2 yr old son had died unexpectedly. The videos are him speaking about his drive and desire to continue speaking at that conference.  This man shows the true love of the Lord to others...I feel so humbled and wish to be so like him.

Warning, have box of tissues handy.  I also think its totally appropriate for children, especially teens! Great message

This link has the videos on it, also some text from the videos:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Hope it moves you as much as it did me.

LOL! Technical Support

note: to avoid confusion, this is a pre-blogger move post, back in the days when the blog was hosted on Homeschool Blogger. -Brian

Well, it's fixed! It skipped all my posts from Feb 3rd until this prior if you are getting this...go back and read the previous ones..there are some good ones on transcripting and diplomas, etc

UGHH on technical support

note: to avoid confusion, this is a pre-blogger move post, back in the days when the blog was hosted on Homeschool Blogger. (and it was moved for another issue with them, not this one. heheh) -Brian

Hey all,

If you have subscribed to my blog via feedburner, or RSS feed....I'M SORRY!!! Nothing has published since Feb 3rd. I've emailed HSB 2x to no avail, tried everything I know to do both here and at Feedburner, even asked for and got a response at Feedburner, but it seems to be a HSB technical difficulty.

I'm stuck. I love blogging here, where it's homeschool friendly, and for homeschoolers, but if I can't get some resolution I might have to move.

Wish HSB placed as much importance on their blog ability as they did their mag....

Sorry :(

Friday, February 8, 2008

What has been seen can't be unseen

While this picture is funny, I am a firm believer in its caption.

Thursday, February 7, 2008


So, this is a continuation of my entry on Transcripts. If you haven't read it, please do...I go over not only why you shouldn't get a GED but also how to transcript. I also talk about how different colleges may want this or that or the other thing...none are bad to have, and none should create panic in the mom! 

A common question new homeschoolers have is, "What about a Diploma?" Everyone seems to put so much stock in HAVING one, yet, have you ever had anyone ask to see it? Mine is buried deep in my filing cabinet.  Now, I have had to check mark that I have a high school diploma. That's a standard for seeing how high your education level reached.

Let me put your mind at ease with my most common phrase, "A diploma is not a legal piece of paper, it's merely a document issued by the director of the student's education."

Guess what?! That's YOU! You are the director of their education!  You get to say when they are done!  You get to issue such a certificate!  You can print one up,  or if you want to go in style, there are companies that make them!  Your homeschooled student can own a hardbound, parchment paper, calligraphied, gold leafed DIPLOMA  for a relatively small fee!  My favorite company is run by a homeschool mom, called  You can get any variation of diploma style created, you can even buy a cap and gown for a graduation ceremony.

And, yes, your child can check off  "high school graduate"...they completed THEIR course of study as prescribed by the director of their education!

Hope this helps ease you some more! Once the college or employer sees the level of dedication to the interest area, they will be blown away by the education our kids have had.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Bath Time

Baths...most often loved by small children, fraught with splishing and splashing...but it wasn't that way for Elias. Elias has ALWAYS hated baths. I have a picture of him (it's not on the computer or I'd load it here, it's SO funny - well, in hindsight...) where he is 2 mo old SCREAMING and PURPLE from screaming during a bath.

Then, to make him hate baths more, Elias was in the hospital for 6 straight weeks when he was about 1 1/2, they only let you sponge bathe he got used to that, and even tolerated it!  So, when we came home, I had to stand him at the edge of the tub and sponge bathe, simple and it worked. Except he NEVER Stepped foot IN the tub.

Fast forward till age 4 1/2. My sister-in-law and family (5 kids) moved in for 6 months while they were building their house. What a neat time that house can hold 8 kids without a problem, it was a little loud for my husband's tastes, but suited me PERFECTLY!  I can totally see myself living a communal lifestyle..everyone taking turns watching the kids, grocery shopping, cooking, it's for me!

Anyway.....her 2 youngest would always shower together  (I have a huge walk-in handicapped shower), and Elias was finally brave enough to try it. It soon became a nightly ritual for the 3 of them to shower together. What fun and what cute memories!!!

Bath time was reserved for one night a week...where they got lots of play time! Soon, Elias tried that too, and loved it!!! Finally!

Now, Elias is the Big Brother. Sebastian just started being able to sit up on his own for a sustained amount of time...long enough to try the bathtub! Unlike his brother, Sebastian LOVES water, loves slapping it, playing with toys, even getting his hair washed! So...we threw them in the tub together and watched the fun begin!

I couldn't even get a picture of a smile, he was too busy playing...but he is smiling while he plays!

To each his own...sponge baths for a few years, shower for awhile, then blossom on and be able to teach someone else how to play in the's kind of like life! Each of us moving at our own rates and eventually mastering it, and being lucky enough to model it for those under us.

Monday, February 4, 2008


So, everyone always asks me, What About a Diploma, What about a Transcript, Should we get them a GED, etc etc. I'll answer some of these questions here.

Without a doubt my standard answer is DO NOT GET A GED!  What connotations does a GED bring along with it? High school dropout!  I'm sorry, my children are NOT high school drop-outs. They are very well educated people, thriving and I do not want that "stigma" attached to them.  Further, I'm PROUD of the fact that we homeschool and hope to show colleges or employers the reality of what my sons have learned, and that won't happen with a GED. can we show colleges or employers what our children have learned, in terms they can understand? Well, most obviously, by their SAT/ACT scores. This is pretty much common place practice for college admission and will go far in showing "where they are" educationally.

Beyond that, a simple transcript can help. I like to think of applying to colleges as a game...they MIGHT ask for a diploma, they MIGHT ask for transcripts, they MIGHT ask for an essay.  I say cover all bases and be prepared, SIMPLY. Not years of teaching TO something in order to make a transcript, not spending gads of money in order to get an accredited diploma (unless this is ultra-important to you!), but very simply documenting things so that when the time comes you are prepared.

I keep records very simply...have for a long time now so that when transcripting for High School it's already right there! See my BINDERS post. There are some great books on transcripting but it really isn't that hard! I keep a binder with various things we've learned over the years.  You may also want to keep a simple log of hours . I don't. I just estimate in my head. The basic premise is....120 hours of learning = a credit.

So, if we just go once to an aquarium I would categorize that under a broad science category if indeed I had a broad category. If not, well, not everything you do will be able to fit into some category, some things you just do BECAUSE!  However, if my son was into Marine Biology and the aquarium was just one trip of many under that topic, and he was reading books on it, watching documentaries, etc and I could estimate that he did 120 hours on that topic...I'd give him a Credit for Marine Biology.

Sometimes, the accumulation of learning is also over 2 or more years. For example, last year was a Legislative year. We did a LOT of lobbying as a family, went to Carson City and toured the Legislature, Supreme Court, Governor's Office, saw the State Constitution, etc, followed bills and learned how Bills are introduced and the whole process of becoming a law. However I don't think it added up to 120 hours. In 2 more years it will again be legislative session and Brian will again be included in my Volunteer Activism. By the end of that session he will have accumulated at least 120 hours and so I will give him a credit for American Government then.

A home-made transcript can include ALL learning. At home, in the community, college classes, online courses, you can add it all up on one nice transcript. Asteric what was done at Community College, Double Asteric Online courses, or whatever marking system you choose.

Some other "basics" to know

Looking over the Course titles and descriptions can help you title your courses, and of course you can name your own course...World War 2 studies, Study of Japanese/Asian Culture, etc.

In reviewing the technology course descriptions of a local highschool, I realized my son, after 8th grade, had already not only "taken" but mastered and continues to apply principles learned in, "website science" and "computer applications" .  Our kids can use their God-given interests and talents and WE can fit them into nice boxes for their transcripts!

Here's an example of a transcript   Sample Blank Transcript  that my friend in FL made. Her kids were unschooled all the way through High School and they each gained admission to college with this transcript. Each child's transcript was  tailored to their individual interests and classes taken within the community. It's very very simple!  You can copy/paste this transcript, delete course titles, add in your own, assign grades and voila! Not much time required and certainly not much stress!

Hope this helps you in your unschooling journey!!

Sunday, February 3, 2008


It's always interesting around here. Brian's been wanting a record player (another tangent that only Brian can explain!). Folks, you heard it here first...Brian SWEARS records are "coming back in". We'll see :)

We posted the desire for a free or cheap one on Freecycle, Craigslist and our local homeschool loops. Most of the responses were older models that needed needles. Then a local homeschool mom called me from Goodwill's 50% off day and said they had one there!! She picked it up for us.

It's a Crosley, 4-in-1 player. The CD part doesn't work (who cares, we have cd players) and it needed a needle. But, the needle part # was listed in the booklet that came with it, so easy to find and buy!

The needle came in the mail yesterday (which we didn't get until today!) so we've been busy playing with the record player ever since!

I had a box of old 45's that were my moms. I LOVED them when I was little. I'd carry the box around with me with my old Fisher Price record player and listen to them over and over.

Breaking open that box today....they SMELL OLD! They smelled old when I listened to them. I love that smell!!

I made Brian listen first to the one I remember best...Dee Dee Sharp "To Know Him is to Love Him"...and I called my mom! What a trip down memory lane!!!

We have so many oldies...the original Witch Doctor, Elvis Presley, Ricky Nelson etc etc. I even had in the box some of my old books with records! What a find!

Maybe this will bring back some memories for you too!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Hannah Montana!!!! and more

While I wasn't about to brave the IRL concert, the movie sounded like an ok deal! My sis-in-law asked to take Elias with them, leaving her 2 littles with me. Worked great for everyone! Here they are after the movie with their "cool" 3-D glasses on.

Sebastian got some quality time with the cousins more his age, while the bigger kids watched the movie.

Sebastian is routinely thrilling us with his new "tricks". This week he learned to let go of us for a few seconds. Then he threw in clapping while balancing. That's the below pic. Today, he decided to be super big-boy and stand up and balance on his own, like in the middle of the floor...not holding onto anything! Wow, he'll be walking soon!  And to think, a few months ago he was sooooo sick.