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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Issue #6 April 1, 2000


Nurturing our children in the freedom of Christ
#6, April 10, 2000
Sr. Editor & Publisher: Elissa Wahl
Assistant Editor: Teri Brown
Contributing Editor: Patricia Moon


1. Welcome from the Editor
2. We are an unschooling family. Beth in Colorado
3. Book Review by Teri Brown:
Homeschooling on a Shoe String
Melissa L. Morgan
Judith Waite Allee
4.Contest: Win Homeschooling on a Shoe String !
5. Countdown to Easter
6. Easter Story Cookies
7. Easter Links
8. DisneyWorld Day for homeschoolers
9. Closing letter from the editor
10. Subscription Information
11. Reprint Information

1. Welcome from the editor

Hi all, hope this newsletter is received in the manner it was love and through God!!

Viva Las Vegas! Yes, we are finally here. Life is getting back on track. We spent a week unloading, then were all hit with a nasty stomach bug, but now we are all in fine health. We have even hit the pool a few times!

So, as a family we attended Wednesday night service, in our new home church, Calvary Chapel East, Las Vegas (I love Calvary Chapels). The Bible reading was from Exodus chapter 12, all about the Passover. The pastor mentioned the Seder and it struck me that I am not clear on that word. Hence the following!

Exodus 12

1 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron in Egypt,
2 "This month is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year.
3 Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb [1] for his family, one for each household.
4 If any household is too small for a whole lamb, they must share one with their nearest neighbor, having taken into account the number of people there are. You are to determine the amount of lamb needed in accordance with what each person will eat.
5 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats.
6 Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.
7 Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.

The rest of the chapter goes on to talk God's passing and taking of the male first-born, the Exodus from Egypt, and Passover Restrictions .

Onto the Seder...the word itself denotes a Jewish service, which includes a ceremonial meal. It is to be held on the first or the first and second evenings of Passover in commemoration of the Exodus from Egypt.

Seder means "order". The ceremony has very precise steps, from the laying of the table, to the meal itself, to games played, to the service. Below are the steps as listed by Dennis Bratcher,

Copyright € © 2000 Christian Resource Institute.

Bedikat Chametz : Search for leaven
Hadlakat Ha-Nerot : Lighting of the Passover candles
Kaddesh : Sanctifying blessing and first cup of wine
Urchatz : First hand washing
Karpas : Green Vegetable dipped in salt water and blessing
Yachatz : Breaking the middle Matzah and hiding the Afikomen
Maggid : Telling the story of Passover and the second cup of wine
Rachtzah : Second hand washing and blessing
Motzi/Matsah : Blessing for the bread and eating of Matzah
Maror : Eating of the bitter herbs
Korech : Eating of sandwich of Maror and Matzah
Shulchan Orech : The festival meal
Tzafun : Eating the Afikomen
Barech : After meal blessing, the third cup, welcoming Elijah
Hallel : Songs of praise
Nirtzah : Fourth cup and completion of the Seder

I think the Exodus is a very important thing to commemorate. As Christians, it bespeaks of the relationship God had with us and the future giving of His son, Jesus, the unblemished Lamb.

Here are some Seder links for you all to follow up on if you like. There are symbolic Seders that are not as complicated as the full ceremony.

Introduction to a Christian Seder
Messiah In The Passover
Christian Observance of the Old Testament Passover
Jesus Christ in the Jewish Passover Seder
Virtual Seder Plate

Read on and be blessed!

2.We are an unschooling family.
Beth in Colorado

We are an unschooling family.

How did this happen??

What is unschooling??

To us unschooling is letting the kids follow their passions and pursue their education as a part of life. It is all one big experience. There is no yelling and howling about sitting down and doing those textbooks (although we do occasionally use text books.)

I have been reading a book called Punished by Rewards, by Alfie Kohn. This book describes our lifestyle and how we learn. My kids see a value in what they are learning. They chose it and feel empowered by the control they have in their lives. They are not trapped in a place where they feel helpless and forced to do things that have no interest for them. My hub and I are the facilitators for them, not their teachers although we do spend time helping them with any questions. I am not at all against finding them a tutor or teacher for things they seriously want to explore.

I hear the argument all the time that kids will do nothing but watch TV and play video games unless they are made to learn. I see kids all the time with such a repulsion to anything remotely "educational" that I know we are doing the right thing.

A year ago we went to Washington D.C. where my hub had a job interview. The kids and I went to the Smithsonian Institute. We were in the Flight Museum and I was struck with the difference between my kids and the majority of the kids there. My kids were so interested in what was going on. They did not have to play like they were having fun learning. The other kids seemed like they had to have an attitude of learning. Like, "here we are learning something, isn't this supposed to be winter break??"

We love to travel and visiting National Parks is the best part of it all. We've spent many hours at the beginning of the Snake River where it flows from Jackson Lake in Grand Teton National Park. The ospreys there catch trout and fly off with them. We saw a family of five otters walk within 20 feet of us and then hit the water where they all had caught fish in minutes. There is a bald eagle nesting area a little farther downstream that you can see close-up while floating down the river. It is a totally amazing experience.

Our lives seem to be connected with amazing experiences. Last week our next door neighbor's horse gave birth. We were there to watch. We had been checking on her for weeks and the vigilance paid off. We saw the labor, the birth, the Mom eat the placenta, (bleck at 2am) and the little filly stand up and take her first steps. Seeing an animal that big give birth is one amazing experience. It was eerily similar to human birth but there was no hub there to be threatened with bodily harm.

This past weekend my son qualified for Fencing Nationals in the 14 and Under Sabre event that will be held in Austin, Texas this summer. He has been fencing his guts out for a while now and his passion has paid off. My daughter is also a Sabre fencer and will also be going.

My son has a huge interest in blacksmithing, we are working on buying him the tools. He spends hours in my studio working on assorted strange things made from metal flashing, wood and glue guns. He is SO creative, has all kinds of interesting ideas. He is a specialist on ancient weaponry and studies strategies and statistics which I believe really helps him in those fencing matches.

My daughter is a chess child. She saw the movie, Searching For Bobby Fisher and decided that chess looks very interesting. She has been playing with Seniors at the rec center and is in a chess club on Monday nights at a local Barnes and Nobel. She is the kid that can stay up very late because she does not have to worry about school the next day.

One of the guys on Monday night asked her where she goes to school. She told him she was homeschooled, he said, "You are homeschooled very well." I really believe that she would not be able to achieve what she does if she were in school. She would be second guessing herself and her thought process would be altered. She would have had to change her learning style. We have been able to find out what really works for her and help her maintain her sense of self.

Kids are so much happier and able to function when they have control over their destiny. My kids have two parents who are doing what they really want to do and provide a good picture of how they can:
-find an occupation they love
-teach themselves an art form or how to play chess
-learn whatever they need no matter how many people insist they have
to learn in a school building.

Home education is wonderful for us, but our house is messy....

Beth in Colorado

3.Book Review by Teri Brown:
Homeschooling on a Shoe String
Melissa L. Morgan
Judith Waite Allee

The majority of families who homeschool are surviving on one income and this book not only understands that, but celebrates it. It also give plenty of tips on how to do it. I like that in a book.

It is geared for both those who are wondering how to pare down to one budget in order to homeschool and those of us who are already doing so and would like workable ways to save money. Some of the chapters included in the book are, Homeschoolers with a Home Business, Computing on a Shoestring: Cheapskate Technology Has Arrived, The Frugal and Wise Homeschool Budget and, my favorite, Enrichment For a Song: The Arts, Physical Fitness and Sports.

"Unless Ed McMahon comes knocking, most of us do not have a choice whether we want to homeschool with a lot of money or with a little. Our own choice-and probably yours-is between homeschooling on a shoestring and not homeschooling at all. We have good news, though. The cost of educational materials need not keep you from homeschooling. If necessary, you could provide an outstanding education for your child with little more than a library card."

It's comforting when a book begins knowing right where most of us are at. They outline simple budget tips and discuss the costly spending habits many of us have without even thinking about them. Every chapter gives advice and tips in little sidebars and tables that make for quick reference. For instance, "The Frugal Home Library and it's Many Branches," chapter tells you how to build a home library economically by utilizing used book shops, college bookstores and college campus bulletin boards. It also gives good advice on choosing used books that will last.

For an unschooler I found the chapter on curriculum unnecessary, but they will be of great help for those who do use a curriculum or put together their own. But the other chapters are well worth reading.

Perhaps the most enjoyable part of this book is browsing through the wonderful resources and appendixes. I found many places that I wanted to write for more information. It's a virtual treasure trove of resources. Even if the rest of the chapters weren't as helpful as they are, I would buy it for the resources section alone. This is a book that deserves a special place on every homeschooler's bookshelf and a perfect gift for those who are thinking of homeschooling, but are dubious of living on one income.

Dreams on a shoestring

4.Contest:Win this book!

This months contest can reward all of us with money saving ideas and the lucky winner will be sent a copy of "Homeschooling on a Shoestring!". Just send us your best money saving tip by June 1st. The winner and several of the tips will be included in the June issue of Seedling. Happy Saving:)

5. Countdown To Easter:

Using 12 plastic eggs that can be opened and filled, either you give a basket with all 12 eggs (label each with the number of the day, i.e. Day 12, Day 11) or give one egg each day to be opened. (Day 1 is "Easter Day", so start 11 days before Easter with "Day 12")

Day 12 = Place a cracker or small piece of cracker inside the first egg with a slip of paper explaining how this symbolizes the bread & wine of the Last Supper. (Putting in the appropriate Bible verse/verses for the contents of each egg would REALLY be neat and SUCH a reinforcing learning tool", too!)

Day 11 = Place 3 dimes to symbolize the "30 pieces of silver" that Judas received to betray Jesus.

Day 10 = Place a toy soldier or picture of a soldier to symbolize the soldier who arrested Jesus.

Day 9 = Place a "feather" to symbolize the cock rooster that crowed 3 times.

Day 8 = Place a die or a couple of dice to symbolize the "lots that were cast" for Jesus' clothing.

Day 7 = Place a "thorn" in to symbolize the "crown of thorns" that Jesus wore. (taken off a rose bush is fine)

Day 6 = Place a "sponge" in to symbolize the sponge that was dipped in vinegar when Jesus said, "I thirst".

Day 5 = Place a "piece of cloth" in to symbolize the cloth that Joseph wrapped the body of Jesus in.

Day 4 = Place a "piece of black paper or black cloth" into the egg to symbolize the "shadow of darkness" that covered the Earth.

Day 3 = Place a "cross" inside to symbolize the cross on which Jesus was crucified.

Day 2 = Place a "rock" inside the egg to symbolize the stone that was rolled away.

Day 1 = EASTER MORNING! This egg will be "empty" to symbolize the tomb that was empty, that Jesus was "risen" !! ..

Be sure to write the symbolization description and appropriate Bible verses on slips of paper to go into each of the eggs.

Day1 - small cracker pieces (represent the Last Supper) Mark14:22
Day2 - feather (represents the Rooster ) Matt 26:33
Day3 - Three silver dimes (30 pieces of silver) Matt26:14-15
Day4 - Thorns (crown of thorns) Mark 15:17 (I used the thorn of a rose stem)
Day5 - Nail (nails on the cross) Matt27:31
Day6 - a small metal or paper cross (the cross) John19:17-18
Day7 - Dice (casting lots) John 19:23-24
Day8 - Toothpick (spear) John 19:34
Day9 - White cloth (linen burial cloth) Matt 27:57-60
Day10- Cinnamon Sticks (burial spices) Mark 16:1
Day11 - Stone (over the mouth of the tomb) Matt 27:62-65
Day12- Empty Egg (the empty tomb) Mark16:5-6

6."Easter Story Cookies"

You will need the following ingredients:
1 cup whole pecans
1 teaspoon vinegar
3 egg whites
A pinch salt
1 cup sugar
A zipper baggie
A wooden spoon
Your children

Preheat oven to 300 F. Place pecans in zipper baggie and let children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Explain that after Jesus was arrested He was beaten by the Roman soldiers. Read John 19:1-3.

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon of vinegar into mixing bowl. Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross, He was given vinegar to drink. Read John 19:28-30.

Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life. Read John 10:10-11.

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin. Read Luke 23:27.

So far the ingredients are not very appetizing.

Add 1 cup sugar. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him. Read Psalms 34:8 and John 3:16.

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3.

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto wax paper covered cookie sheet. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid. Read Matthew 27:57-60.

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF. Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door. Explain that Jesus' tomb was sealed. Read Matthew 27:65-66.

GO TO BED! Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed. Read John 16:20 and 22.

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first Easter Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty. Read Matthew 28:1-9.


7. Easter Links

Easter on the Net Has the Story of Easter, and links to all sorts of fun stuff...coloring pages and recipes!

Easter eCards from Blue Mountain

Billy Bear's Happy Easter ClipArt, Games, BillyBear sites just RULE!!

DLTK's Easter Crafts for Kids

The Season for Lent Reasons for Ashes on Ash Wed.

Answers in Action

Easter in Cyber Space This looks to be a very nice & full web site on enjoying a christian Easter season.

8. Disney World Homeschool Event in Orlando, FL in September

Note that all orders must be received by Harvest no later than July 31,2000 for you to get this special pricing. There will also be a homeschool day at Disneyland in CA on September 22, 2000. Disney is a bit different from other theme parks in that they do not do private parties and they never close. So what you have here is special pricing for all homeschoolers, but expect to see other people in the parks as well, especially since the concert is an annual event for Disney World. This is event is for ALL homeschoolers, if you are not
interested in the concert, you could still come to Disney World on either Sat or Sun night, ride the rides from 4-8pm, then leave when the concert begins and then use the full day ticket at whichever theme park you have picked in advance. This package price is available for any homeschooler. Additionally, if a homeschooler would like to invite fellow members of their church to attend the concert and participate in this event, the church member can also get in on this package deal by including their church name with their request, even if they are not homeschoolers. Any questions should be directed to the address listed below. Their website is at:

Original Notice

NIGHT OF JOY Disney World's Annual Celebration of Contemporary Christian Music Home School Days @ Disney World on September 7th, 8th, and 9th ! Two Events Two Days One Admission Fee * Great Music! * Great family fun day!

1. You choose the date you would like to attend Night of Joy. Pick either Saturday, Sept. 8th, or Sunday, Sept. 9th.
Plus 2. You get an additional ticket to attend the park of your choice. This ticket will be used to enjoy one of the four theme parks on Fri., Sat., or Sunday ,the 7th, 8th, or 9th.
Pick either EPCOT, Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, or Disney-MGM

Join CeCe Winans, the Newsboys, Jaci Velasquez, Raze, Out of Eden, and Plumb for an evening of blessings and joy! Choose which day you will attend Night of Joy at Disney€ '²s Magic Kingdom - Saturday, Sept. 8th, entering the park at 4:00 PM, enjoying the rides and attractions in the Magic Kingdom until the concerts begin at 8:00 PM, or Sunday, Sept. 9th entering at 4:00 PM and staying until the concerts begin at 8:00 PM. Both days' concerts end at 1:00 am. Your extra ticket may be used at any of the four other parks on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. You choose! We would like to recommend that you consider Epcot for the exceptional Millennium Celebration. This exhibit is not only spectacular but truly a wonderful educational experience! This two-
day package has a special Home School rate of only $68.00 per person, any age. This is a great savings compared to the regular admission price! Please include your preference of date, either Sept. 8th or Sept. 9th, for your Night of Joy tickets. Your extra tickets will be good for Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. Please make your check or money order payable to Harvest Home Educators and mail to Harvest Home Educators, PO Box 1551, Clarkwebsite @ or email us at
We're still waiting on another dollar off from Disney in California before we post it! Trying real hard to save us money!!

9. Closing Letter

Busy, busy time in all of our lives I'm sure..when do we get a break???!!! These Easter activities look so inviting though, and the cookies look like a MUST! Hope you all have a blessed Passover!!

Don't forget to periodically check out our website located at, and also Teri's great new site, Unschooling-Suite101 She has many great
articles on unschooling up!

We need article submissions DESPERATELY!! Please, write on anything, from a great day you had and would like to share, to a Christian parenting standpoint that you would like to raise. An issue I'd like to discuss would be sheltering of our children..if anyone wants to go with that topic, feel free!!

Until next time,
Be blessed you all!

Elissa Wahl
Teri Brown
Patricia Moon

10. Subscription Information

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11. Reprint Information

Individual authors herein retain their own copyrights. You may freely copy this entire newsletter or material from this newsletter in other nonprofit publications (unless otherwise marked in the article), but you MUST include the author's name and this entire notice:

"Reprinted with permission of Elissa Wahl from Seedling, a Christian Unschooling E-Zine. For a free subscription, send any e-mail message to or visit URL:"

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