Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Read our Christmas Letter!!

Check out our Christmas Letter (see the menu bar above, or click here
to read a recap of this past year! Merry Christmas to all!

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

An Usborne adventure!

Last summer, a friend hosted an online Usborne Books & More party.
I had heard of the books, but never taken the time to look at them closely.
I started searching the online catalog, found several titles that would be helpful for homeschooling, and bought them.

I fell in love with these books.
They are educational, colorful and fun.
They are sturdy and well-made.
My kids love them. There really has not been an Usborne book that they have not adored, poured over again and again, and worn out.
The Finnlings especially enjoy the sticker books...and the Illustrated Stories...
and the non-fiction books. I could just go on and on.

In July, Usborne had a special offer on the consultant kit.
After weighing the advantages of becoming a consultant against the requirements
(there are none), I bought a kit.

See my excitement?

These are all the books inside my kit!! Hooray for more books!!

The Finnlings are hard at work on their sticker and wipe-clean books!

I promise not to bog down my blog promoting Usborne all the time.
However, these are great books and I would LOVE to tell you more about them.
You can check them out online at
or stop by my house and I can show you in person.
Christmas isn't far away, and books make wonderful gifts for the children in your lives!

The joys of Cookout

In early August we had lunch after church on Sunday and conversation turned to milkshakes (I don't know why). We then learned that our friends had never had Cookout. 

So we parted ways for an afternoon nap then met back up later for milkshakes. We drove down to Raleigh to get the shakes and then relished the lovely weather outside at Lafayette Village where the kids played after enjoying their own milkshakes. 

Though they are playing it cool, these cuties really like each other a lot.

Finnling #3 loved running around the lawn, and she was pretty precious in her little tutu outfit.

She could be a model for Cookout shakes.
E makes me want to buy her lots of them...
but I know about the sugar crash that follows

It was fun to introduce Libby and her husband Josh to the joys of Cookout!

Date taken: August 3, 2014

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Attack of the Giant Winged Thing

Each fall, there is a cookout for new students that faculty are encouraged to attend. We eat outside, hang out with students and friends, and have a good time.

This year, Moe's catered the event. 
It was exciting because the Finnlings like tacos, so I thought they might eat it for once.
The folks serving us got a little carried away with my helping of sour cream and guacamole.
As in, my plate was swimming with sour cream and guac.
I love both, but it was a little much...
which was confirmed when a giant winged creature landed on my plate
and couldn't. move. off. 
A BUG got stuck in the goop on my plate, people!
It was disgusting.

So of course I took a picture (click below to enlarge)

Then I had to show it off, naturally (Nathan had killed the bug by this time, though I think it was mostly suffocation by sour cream).
BQ2 decided it looked like extra protein!
The things we do for funny pictures :-)

Memories. Good times. Tacos and bugs. Sounds perfect, right?

Date taken: August 15, 2014

Diet Coke and Mentos, frame by frame

For our first Science/Art Project day,
Terra Jones started off with a bang--
Diet Coke and Mentos!

To say it was a big hit would be an understatement.

First Field Trip of 2014

This year, my friends and I decided to form a 'low involvement' homeschool co-op for our children.
Our goal: one field trip a month, one science/art project day a month
Very easy, very low key, very little prep work involved
It is an opportunity for interaction and 'educational exploration' for our children,
and hopefully some good conversations with the mommas:-)

This fall we are visiting the many free museums in Raleigh!

Our first field trip was to the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science

The whale skeletons are always impressive!

Three handsome boys just cheesin' for the camera

The Discovery Room at the museum is a wonderful place for children to experience hands- on learning! We could have spent much longer in that room:-)

Meet the animals is always a fun activity--
we saw a Madagascar hissing cockroach, 
a black milk snake, and a caiman (which is a small crocodilian)

Four families, twelve children--trying to fit everyone in was quite the task!

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Back to school interviews with the Finnlings

My First Day of Second Grade
Georgia Finn

I am 51.25 inches tall and weigh 61.8 pounds.
My best friend's name is: Lydia W. and Grace S.
My favorite thing to play: dolls.
My favorite color: blue
My favorite book: the Laura series (Little House on the Prairie)
My favorite TV show: The Lego Movie
My favorite food: Pizza
When I grow up, I want to: be a nurse
Something I really like: is to dance
Something I really don't like: being annoyed
My favorite thing about myself: is reading
Something I want to do this year: sewing

My First Day of Kindergarten
Baxter Finn

I am 47 inches tall and weigh 48 pounds
My best friend's name is: Benjamin.
My favorite thing to play: Battleship  & Legos.
My favorite color: blue
My favorite book: Special Forces
My favorite TV show: The Lego Movie
My favorite food: Pizza
When I grow up, I want to: be a builder
Something I really like: Emmett (Lego Movie)
Something I really don't like: Wyldstyle (Lego Movie)
My favorite thing about myself: Master Lego builder
Something I want to do this year: draw

My First Day of Preschool
Eleanor Finn

I am 39.5 inches tall and weigh 32.6 pounds.
My best friend's name is: Russell
My favorite thing to play: babies
My favorite color: blue
My favorite book: Daddy Hugs
My favorite TV show: Lego Avengers
My favorite food: Pancakes
When I grow up, I want to: build
Something I really like: to watch something
Something I really don't like: hitting
My favorite thing about myself: building
Something I want to do this year: build Legos

First day of Clapham Academy, 2014-2015

August 18 was our first day of school for Clapham Academy. It was also the same day that SEBTS students returned to classes--it is a lot of fun for Daddy's first day of class to be the same as the Finnlings' first day.

Since my kids do not go to public school, we do not HAVE to have backpacks or school supplies...
but who doesn't love school supplies?
Each kid (minus Fuller) received a 'school kit' with some fun items like new crayons, tape, and scissors

I attempted to make pancakes in the shape of their grades.
That's 2nd grade, Kindergarten and Preschool...
sort of :-)

Obligatory pictures--the kids wanted to hold our sign!
My favorite part of the picture below: Baxter has stashed his weapon for quick use after the picture:-)

My two school aged kiddos:

My big girl is a second grader!

The crazy one is in Kindergarten

Showing his ninja skills and making a "K" with his body

The preschooler

Every school needs a mascot! 

Because we are trying to sell our house, the plan is to homeschool out of this--keep everything I need in here so we can pick it up quickly. We shall see if this works...