The obvious answers are that I love the lifestyle. I love the fresh veggies. I love the fresh meat and knowing where my food comes from. I love the sweat and tears. I love the animals. I love the time that I spend with my family while we are working on different projects.
But one answer that I give more than ever it that I love the people who I meet and those who follow a similar lifestyle. My friends Gary and Susan are prime examples of people who I ADORE. This morning, (At 6am, no joke) I message Susan if she had any quail eggs that I could buy from her. I needed to add back to my quail line. My feathered crew is not laying real well right now. And guess what? Not only did she have some, but she gifted them to us and then brought this mama a care package of dried herbs from their garden!! (and she was online too at 6am) They are the most generous people. I LOVE their dry herb gift too!!!! OH MY! My winter teas are going to be so tasty!!
If you are planning on dehydrating herbs (or any other fruits and veggies) the Excalibur Dehydrator is my dehydrator of choice. Check out the links below or visit our amazon store for more items that are choice for our homestead.
Throughout our lives as homesteaders, I wanted to make sure that my family were able to know all about the animals that we have, both large and small stock. Last night, we were honored to be a part of a local jackpot show. We are proud members of the Chino Valley FFA Pals group for all of my younger kids. The 4 youngest participated in the show with their rabbits or chickens.We only brought small stock critters with us. Although they need more practice answering questions with the judges, overall they did great.
This was Trystan’s first back to the grind after being in a behavioral hospital for the last year+. He did AWESOME in the junior division! He scored 3rd place on his barred Bantam Cochin hen (I think that he named her Amy, but don’t quote this mama on that) for showman ship and 2nd place for confirmation.
Grayson is in PeeWee division still until next year. She got 1st in showmanship for her lop, Tyler.
Rowan got 4th in showmanship and second in confirmation for her lionhead rabbit, Snickers.
Berlyn got 5th in showmanship for his lionhead rabbit, Cookie Dough.
Well, we have some work to do this next month to brush up on showing and the judge questions before the fair next month. I am sure that I will write something into our homeschool program for animal science for that. 😉
And a special shout-out to Rosie Darby and her family for putting on this AMAZING show for the youth in our community at their home.
After 16 full years of homeschooling up to 8 children at a time, this mama knows what she is looking for and that is normally the easy button. The site GuestHallow has some amazing year long curriculum available to purchase. They are full everything I needed to teach my children including a weekly schedule, list of books and other supplies that I will need for the entire class. And it was created by a homeschool family!!! I love supporting other homeschoolers! I am seriously impressed. The best part is that both of my high schoolers are excited about taking this class with me They like hands on science and conducting experiments. (And to be honest, I am just as excited as they are. Physics was one of my favorite science classes in high school!!)
It is that time of the year. The summer for public school kids in our area is coming to a close. I love that we have a bit of freedom in our homeschooling. We have a handful of projects to still get worked on our homestead for this summer season
Our aquaponics system is being put back up. In this process, we are researching a solar power system to save on the moneys that we spend on this. Our power bill is already OUTRAGES at over $400/month. Thanks APS (Northern Arizona Power Company) for upping your prices again. So, our goal is to find a “do it yourself” solar panel system to get our water system back up and running to help save some money and not tap into the power grid. Fresh produce year round for this family is ideal. For now too, we are planning on putting in just goldfish, but eventually will put back in tilapia.
We are taking out annual family photos early this year. My AMAZING nephew Brent is leaving for the ARMY next week. So our photos for our Christmas cards/calendars and gifts to my sister and parents are going to be created early. We normally don’t take them until November… so a bit of a change. This year, Trystan will be back in them and we have a new family member, Michael. 🙂
We have 7 goats and 10 kunekune pigs to sell. That would cut down on our feed bill immensely. So hopefully we can find some home for these babies. But, if not, we will have some full freezers in December.
We have the county fair coming up in about 5 weeks. We can not wait! My kids love to go and see animals, compete in the showmanship and ride the rides. I can not wait to have some fair food. I have lost over 50 pounds so far this year and having fair food will be mom’s special treat!
We start back up with homeschooling in about 2 weeks. I am still gathering our curriculum and writing our daily schedules. We have picked up a few books to fill in the gap and will be starting out with the comic book writing projects.
Working on 3 new books from our homestead. One is a collaboration with the kiddoes. And has been in the works for a while. It is an Advent projects, ideas and scripture book. Another one (actually a 3 book series) about Haka. This one is about complete. Missing some artwork. We had been so terribly busy with traveling to see Trystan in Phoenix that now that he is back home again, I have an extra day each week to be able to complete these tasks. And the 3rd is a book project (fiction) that I have been working on for a while.
Here in Arizona, summer rains are a welcome sight. Along with that can come harsh wind, thunder and lightning and flash floods (Yes, it does rain that much at times). Trystan and Grayson absolutely love the trampoline. Warm summer rain + trampoline = summer afternoon fun until lightning is spotted. So enjoy this slow-motion video! I hope that you are able to take off your shoes and go outside to be a kid in the rain.
As a homeschooling family, I try to think outside the box. I have 4 who are ages 9-13 and several are special needs. We have a great little chunk of land, many animals, homesteading, cooking from scratch. But how do I tap those needs in a different way, OUTSIDE the BOX?
We are taking a different approach this year. For part of our English/writing, each kid is going to make their own COMIC BOOK! This year long project will consist not only of writing and art to draw the characters, but also problem solving, brainstorming and more. Stan Lee would be proud!
What are some homeschooling “out of the box” ideas that you have! Post in the comments.
Check out this contest on Education.com. We are very excited to share this with you. As a homeschooler, we love finding scholarships that our kids can apply for. And this is open to Kindergarten through 5th grade in the 2019-2020 school year. My Grayson Ella will be trying out for this as well!! 🙂
Win $500 for college plus $1000 for a school or library.
When you love learning, there’s no limit to what you can achieve! Apply to the Limitless Learners Contest to win money for college, plus a donation for your elementary school or local library.Apply now
Six (6) students will be selected to win the following:
$500 to contribute to future education expenses.
$1000 donation for their school or local library.
Premium lifetime membership to Education.com for their educator.
Applicants for the Limitless Learners Contest must:
Be students in kindergarten to 5th grade as of the 2019–2020 school year.
Have the written consent of a parent or legal guardian (see form here).
Be legal residents of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia.
How to apply
Students will need to do the following by October 31, 2019 to apply:
Obtain a completed consent form signed by the applicant’s parent or legal guardian.
Respond to the following prompt in the appropriate format (listed below): Describe a time when you were having so much fun, you didn’t realize you were learning something new!
Kindergarten students: Create a piece of art (e.g. draw or paint a picture) and write about what is happening, or ask an adult to write a sentence or two describing your picture.
1st grade students: Create a piece of art (e.g. draw or paint a picture) and write 1–3 sentences about it.
2nd grade students: Write a short story (5–8 sentences) and create at least one picture to illustrate it.
3rd grade: Write a short story, journal entry, or comic strip.
4th grade: Write a short story, journal entry, poem, or comic strip.
5th grade: Write a personal narrative, short story, poem, or comic strip.
We recently picked up a new “board game” by Rather Dashing Games. This game is a GREAT quality, with heavy duty pieces and box so it is bound to last with the many hands in our family. You build your board while you are playing gathering points and stealing points with your archaeologist and mummy. The artwork on the game is awesome (however hard for Larry to differentiate between some of the colors being that he is color blind.)
Our family loves playing odd and unusual games. This one included. It allowed the kids to keep their interest in this strategy game that will be different every time that you play it because the pieces change every play. It does take 30+ minutes and is for ages 10+.