Monday, August 12, 2013

The Wedding

I finally got a slide show made of the wedding!

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Countdown To Easter

I love it when we can focus more on Jesus during Easter and Christmas. This year I found this AMAZING Easter countdown. I don't know how Cocoa finds time to do it all, but I'm glad that when she does something amazing she shares :) We've been doing this everyday during our morning devotional and the boys have really enjoyed it. We haven't had time to do the extra activities that she has listed, but what we've done has really brought the Spirit into our home. I didn't want to spend any money, so we got out one of our small Christmas trees and decorated it with plastic eggs that I bought on clearance last year. I printed the tags out on cardstock and we add one each day after we have had our devotional. I know I didn't get this posted early enough for you all to do the whole month, but you could do it for a week or even save it for next year. I hope you enjoy it!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Study of Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egypt is one of the funnest things we've ever studied. We kicked of the unit with a trip to the King Tut exhibit in Idaho Falls. It was pretty neat, but for me personally it was a little bit of a let down knowing that they were just replicas. The rest of the family didn't know that going in, so they were VERY impressed :)

Once back home, we did a lot of reading. I honestly can't remember all the books Mason read from the library. He went over to the shelf and filled up his bag with anything that had to do with Egypt, including cookbooks! Sorry to all the rest of you who were studying Egypt at the same time :) Nate read The Cat of Bubastes and Peeps at Many Lands: Ancient Egypt and wrote reports on both. These were both free downloads that I put on his Kindle. I also had him present each report orally and we discussed them. We also used Usborne's Encyclopedia of The Ancient World. I love this book and the internet links it has in it. We also used the Old Testament, From Ancient Times:Creation to Assyria- Foundations of World History, and Homeschooling in the Woods: Great Empires.

 We watched several movies and YouTube videos about the whole country, the Great Pyramids, Sphinx, King Tut, Cleopatra, Ramesses, Akhenaten, Nefertiti,and the Nile River. The library has several good movies you can check out, but you rarely find them there so you have to reserve them. Netflix is also a good resource for documentaries.

The boys each have a history notebook and this is what they added to it (behind the unit on Mesopotamia that I never got posted *sigh*) 

Maps of Ancient Egypt (This is Mason's)

Notebooking pages on: King Tut, The Great Pyramids, The Sphinx, Everyday life, Mummification, Pharaohs, Burial Traditions, and Biblical Prophets and Their Ties To Egypt.

We also joined some of our fave people, The Rodgers Family for a day learning about the geography, food, culture, etc. We ate Egyptian food, and each child did a little presentation about what they had learned about the country. Mason had to tell about Egyptian curses, and Nate was intrigued by cat worship, of course!

We also did several hands-on projects. We bought a papyrus making kit and made papyrus. It also came with several blank pieces and some with printed pictures already on them for the kids to paint.

We mummified a chicken- her name was Henrietta the Hen. This really grossed me out! She sat on our counter for 10 weeks. I was so paranoid that someone was going to get sick from doing this. When I say someone, I should just say me, because the boys didn't want to have anything to do with it after about week 1 :) It really wasn't that bad. She never really smelled and there wasn't any signs of decomposition even after sitting at room temp for all that time. She's now buried in our backyard and the boys have grandiose dreams of digging her up in a few years to see what she looks like. If you ever do this, be prepared to use lots of salt and Ziploc bags. I think we went through about 50 pounds, seriously!

We also made pyramids out of sugar cubes. We were all ready to paint them sand color until we found out that the original pyramids were white with a gold top. Kinda cool!

We spent a total of 7 weeks on this unit, but had a great time. Now we're off to study the Greeks! I'm really excited for this because we finally get to use our Heritage History CD's!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Field Trip to Wyoming

A few weeks ago, my aunt called and invited us to stay with them at their condo in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. We were so excited! The kids had never been to Jackson or Yellowstone, and Steve and I hadn't been there for a long time. My aunt and uncle have been going there for years and promised us a great sight-seeing adventure! We started out at 6:00 on a Wednesday morning. Less than 2 hours into the trip Mason declared, "This really isn't a vacation, is it? It's more like a field trip!" Ummm... yes, dear boy, a field trip it is! I think he gets tired of me turning into Ms. Frizzle and loading everyone into the "bus" for a learning experience. Nate on the other hand, loves to learn about anything at any time. It's amazing how different each child is:)

We got to the condo late morning. We had a quick lunch and then headed out to see the bison.

This is about the time Mason decided field trips might be fun after all. It was almost a little unnerving to be so close to the local wildlife :) Down the road from the bison there was a row of houses called "Mormon Row".

In the late 1800's, Brigham Young sent 5 families to the Teton Valley to establish farms. I can't imagine how hard that must of been. There is NOTHING around for miles, just sage brush and more sage brush. They have only a few months every year that it is warm enough to grow anything and the snow is 100's of inches deep and you couldn't go anywhere for months. Definitely a hard life!

We then went to the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor's Center that sits on the edge of the National Elk Refuge. You can find so much information on the Teton Valley and the animals there! Loved, loved, loved it! Mason loved the gift shop, of course :)

On our way back to the condo, we saw a moose, elk, beavers, and a bear. It's amazing how they just sit right by the side of the road.

We were so tired when our heads hit our pillows, but we were back up early and on our way to Yellowstone Park. The map said 111 miles. That's not so bad, right? Ummmm...... 111 miles on a twisty, yucky road = 3 hours and me being carsick. Blah! It was sooo worth it, though. We were able to spend the day seeing some really awesome stuff. They had the most amazing visitor's center there, too. I loved all the visitor's centers/ museums. They all had educational worksheets that you could pick up from the front desk and fill out as you explored.

On our way back to the condo, we saw another bear, elk, the beavers, a fox, and deer. Nate made the comment that maybe the wildlife isn't so wild if they come so close to people. Yeah, I wasn't ready to test that theory.

On our last day, we went into Jackson Hole to do a little shopping. Mason was excited! If the kid has a penny- it burns a hole in his pocket :)
After shopping, we went to the Rockefeller Nature and Wildlife Preserve and hiked up to a waterfall. We got all the way there- and there was no water :(   Our last stop before dark was Jenny Lake. It was beautiful! It's amazing how many lakes are hidden away in Grand Teton National Park. They are left over from the glaciers.
We packed a lot of sight-seeing into 3 days and had a great time. We learned a lot about Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. As fun as it was, we were ready to get back to our own Rocky Mountains :)

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