Category Archives: Family Choices

Our Homeschool Adventure

So this year will look a bit different than previous years.  I have always been a lover of Classical Education.  It just feels so complete and well rounded.  My tendencies lean towards a Charlotte Mason approach with the little ones.  I am coming to realize that it was totally appropriate for the age my children have been.  My oldest is now 8 (M) and my second soon to be 6 (K).  We are ramping up the level of difficulty for their education this year by joining in Classical Conversations.  I am going to save myself a lot of time by stealing borrowing ideas from Brandy on her blog: Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood since there is no point in recreating the wheel with this stuff.  I have 4 kids I’m chasing and that is way more fun!

This past year, I tried workboxes; when I saw combining that with what we are doing in CC on Brand’s blog, I am so glad to see my time spent putting that together is not a waste.

This will be my ‘thinking out loud’ spot and hopefully it will help you as you are gearing up or thinking about homeschooling.  We have a busy year planned.  We feel it a priority for our girls to study the arts and so we have them in dance & music.

  •  TDAC is a great program and they stick to the classical method so the girls aren’t just having fun dancing, they are learning a skill.  M is in Ballet 1 and she will be performing in this year’s Ballet Theater production of Little Match Girl.  Our first rehearsal is this Friday and we are both excited about it.  K is doing Combo 3 class which is combining ballet and tap and teaching her the basics of those techniques.  I like to use the combo classes the first couple years to give them some options in dance.  I want to expand on what they think they want to do and then see where they go with it once they experience it.  L will be in a creative movement this year as her introduction into an organized class environment.
  • Music- we are music lovers here so M & K will be completing the next year’s course with Pastor Bob.  We will add choir this year to see how the girls do in this area with him.  We do a lot of training at home in the area of learning new songs/hymns as part of our family worship. Pastor Bob has done a great job teaching the girls the ‘grammar’ of music.  I’ve said that it is a music theory class for children.  Once we got through a year and a half, M was able to start piano class and has done very well.  She began in January and has continued all year.  Her piano teacher has said that she is gifted in this area so I hope to press her to really get her practicing in each day.  She gets alot of enjoyment out of the music she is making.
  • CC will meet once per week and then we will work on learning the information the tutor presented over the course of the next week.  We are supplementing with 100 Easy Lessons for K’s reading, Saxon for math, and Story of the World for history, not to mention The Bible for all of the above.  I have worked hard to be sure to make The Bible is one of the most important books we use for reference so the girls will see how vital this is in our lives. We also will use a ton of library books.  Molly and I have already gone in and picked the books we want to see for the next six weeks.  The new library system will allow us to save lists under our profile and so we can go in and request those specific ones when we are ready so that we know will round out our learning. M is a great reader of historical fiction.
  • Nature Study- when we get bored or tired, we move it outside.  The little ones just run around or bring their nature notebooks to draw or trace things we look up later while.  This makes for a fun break and some great Vitamin D.

Now, what do I do with my nearly 4 year old and 16 month old during all of this? I knew you would ask that question.  Most days the way we schedule our morning, L is happy to play on her own for a bit and then by the time K is done with her reading stuff they will play together some fantasy reenactment for a good while.  This usually allows me to have some time with M to finish up her math (which is more independent this year) and grammar.  When L wants to join us at the table I have reserved some smart toys for her ‘school’ that she can do hands on at the table with us.  She feels like she is part of the class and is doing something productive with her hands.  We will include her in all of the review we do for CC this year and I will be curious to see how much she retains.  She has already memorized the Christopher Columbus history sentence and is singing it regularly for week one.  The baby wants to just sit on me and walk back and forth from me to the playroom.  She is quite happy until she is ready for a snack, meal, or bedtime so I can see she is an easy baby!  I have to be quick about meeting her needs these days or she quickly resorts to screaming.  YIKES!  Working on that.

We have been schooling officially now for about 4 weeks as I like to get an early start so I can finish early when we all get spring fever.  I look forward to a fun year learning with my girls and can’t wait to see the results of CC in our adventure.  Have fun!!


Why we eat together…

Virtue Begins with a Spoon

There are so many reasons, but some of my favorites are 

  • acquires the habit of gratitude
  • understanding what it means to be thankful
  • self-control





To Vaccine or Not to Vaccine

Well, I attended a very interesting talk last night hosted by Dr. Josh Axe.  He is a local nutritionist and wellness doctor.  He has been doing a lot of talking in our community about various aspects of our life in regards to our intake and management of our bodies.  I have listened to him on the radio and now have seen him twice in person.  I want to post some of the information that I learned here to help me remember why I will no longer be vaccinating my children.  Dr. Axe highly recommended that I research this myself and see what I come up with.  I will bookmark some of the links I am reading below based on what he stated.

* a book was recommended by Dr. Mendelsohn R. “How to Raise a Healthy child…in spite of your doctor” – a quote used from this book was “We have traded mumps and measles for cancer & lukemia.”

* comparing immunized children to non-immunized children; those immunized had almost 30% more asthma & 30% more allergies…those non-immunized had 0!!!  This article seemed to have a bunch of things summarized together pointing to this statistic, but I couldn’t find the specific one that he referenced.

*our immune system has a 2 part response system.  A TH1- kills off virus, parasite, and cancer by using our first line of defense- mucus membranes and such.  A TH2- uses white blood cells and inflammation to clean up the mess the TH1 found.  Since we are injecting these diseases directly into our blood stream we are by passing the TH1 response and all we get is our body is messed up and retrained on how to deal with infections only using the TH2 responses.

*a remark was made about Japan having the worst crib deaths until they postponed/stopped immunizations.  I found a longer article here, but this is an excerpt of what I read:

Evidence That The Age Distribution Of SIDS Is Vaccine Related

So, is any of this more than just theory?

Between the years of 1970 and 1974 in Japan, there were 37 infant deaths directly after vaccination. Because of this, a group of doctors decided to boycott vaccines and vaccination was stopped altogether for two months. After that two months, the vaccination starting age was lifted to 2 years old, meaning that no child recieved a vaccine until after their 2nd birthday. Japan jumped from 17th place in child mortality to the lowest child mortality in the world. SIDS had disappeared.

In 1988 the vaccination age was lowered to 3 months old, and the SIDS rate rose again.

Cherry et al (1988), Pediatrics 81:6 Part 11 (June 1988) Supplement pp 936-984, said he found this to be ‘instructive’, suggesting a link between the Japanese vaccination schedule and SIDS.
Interestingly, Noble et al. (1987) who spent some 2 weeks in Japan studying the acellular whooping vaccine there, wrote: “It is difficult to exclude pertussis vaccines as a causal factor even when other etiologies are suggested, particularly when the adverse events occur in close temporal association with vaccination”.

The same thing has happened in other countries when vaccination is stopped or delayed.

For instance, in the UK in 1975 and 1976, there was publicity about the whooping cough vaccine causing brain damage, so the vaccination rate fell to only 30%, and only 10% in some areas. In line with this, the infant mortality rate also fell.
By 1977, the controversy was starting to simmer down so vaccination rates began to climb up. And yes, you’ve guessed right, the infant mortality rate increased.

*Pediatric cancer has risen 1% a year since 1975.  Now taking its place as the leading cause of death in children.  He had a chart from what I thought was the CDC, but I have not been able to find it yet. Many are due to inflammatory cancers and such.

He talked a bit about the swine flu throughout.  Recognizing the need for proper nourishment and proper sanitation to avoid contamination.  He stated that this swine flu (H1N1) is no worse than the regular flu or a cold.  Vaccines in the past have been introduced to the population when the disease was nearly and naturally irradicated.  Take Typhoid and Scarlet Fever, they both were 2 of the biggest population killers, no vaccine was introduced and yet it is unheard of now.  How is that possible?

Having measles and chicken pox will enable our children to have stronger immune systems.  Another thing I thought was interesting was that the chicken pox vaccine was not introduced because children were suffering so, it was because parents were missing 1-2 weeks of work per occurrence and it cost too much.  Several people nodded their heads in agreement, it was the first time I had heard that.

* Heavy metals like to deposit themselves into fat and cholesterol = brain and spinal chord (i.e. dimensia, add, adhd, and autism can fall into these categories)

* What risks are you willing to take?  Getting Hep B or Polio is a 100,000 to 1 chance without a vaccine OR a 1 in 100 chance that your kid will end up autistic with a vaccine?

*Some things that are included in some of the vaccines given: aborted fetal tissue, animal tissue, heavy metals, etc.

*Catholics are making public statements in regards to immunizations because of what the vaccines contain.  Check out this long paper.

What TO DO:

You do not have to have vaccines even for public schools!!  You can fill out a vaccine exemption form for your state.  There are various free sites that will help you find the form for your particular state.  Here is one example.

For having a birth in a hospital facility you will run into alot of red tape as I experienced with declining some of the ‘normal’ things they wanted to do to Lucy.  I have located the following, to opt out of any immunization type procedures for my state.  A quick search on google will help you find yours.

In partner with the form, one thing that Dr. Axe really focused on throughout was God’s plan for how we live our lives.  There is also a religious exemption you can take.  Think about the Old Testament, the Egyptians used goats blood and snake skins to alleviate illness while God’s people were instructed to follow certain food laws, use proper sanitation, and trust and pray to God for health and healing.  God has created our bodies to naturally fight off infection and disease with his help.  If we give our immune system the fuel necessary we can go many days and years with no illness.  The answer is building a strong immune system.

1.  build up your nerve system strength

2.  take in the proper nutrients

3. proper sanitation and reduce toxicity

I’m sure there is alot more that I missed, but that’s what seemed to get my attention.  Hopefully if anything this will cause you to think and be informed about what we are doing to our children and be empowered to ask questions.  I am not going to look down on anyone that decides to vaccinate their children, it is each parent’s choice.  I just want people to be making informed decisions.  It seems like many things our culture here in America is that there is an imbalance of information that is shared.  Our freedom is our choice, lets use it!

A little treat from Katie’s Birthday this past weekend!