Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Living Christ

Discover The Scriptures offers a free download to help you memorize The Living Christ. The boys have been working really hard at memorizing this. It's broken down into 12 weeks. The boys want to recite it with their cousins at a family Christmas party that we have coming up. They are doing AMAZING! I didn't think it was possible to memorize something so long in such a short time, but even Mason has been keeping up. Now me on the other hand... I've been trying, but I just can't get it all. These kiddos young minds are just amazing to me. This download has really helped. It has print-outs, copywork, pictures, etc. I even made little cue-card books on a binder ring and laminated them for each of the boys.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Curriculum- Old Testament Study

Discover The Scriptures is my favorite resource for scripture study materials. I really wanted to start the boys on a 4 year course of study that was on the same schedule as seminary so it would be easy to transition to the seminary program when they hit 9th grade. This is definitely the program for that (for us, at least). They have workbooks for grades 1-3 and then 4th and up. The younger book has them use the illustrated children's stories that can be purchased through Distribution Services. The older grades use their scriptures. They learn about the stories of the Old Testament as well as memorize scriptures. They work with maps and have fun activities in them. I really, really love these! Last year we were studying the Doctrine & Covenants and used their Hand-On Church History. The only downfall was that they only had volume 1. Volume 2 and 3 are going to be released soon. If you want a more in-depth look at their products follow a link from this page. We will definitely be using The New Testament studies next year.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christmas Spirit

'Tis The Season

This year I've had a really hard time mustering up any Christmas spirit. We've been sick, money's tight, and I'm tired of looking at all the holiday decor that's been up since Halloween. Blah! Well, since the kids seem to think we should carry on the tradition, I've tried to get into a better frame of mind. I sat down, took a deep breath, and remembered what we are really celebrating. Now come on- the birth of our Savior should be something we can all get excited about! This year we are focusing on Christ. I always say we are going to, and sometimes we do better than others. This year I'm serious- we have so much to be grateful for and we owe it all to the Savior. Our children need to "know" that. They need to "feel" that. I want my family to be grateful, compassionate, loving, and humble. This year we are doing a Christmas unit-study that we found on Discover The Scriptures. This is what it promises:
Discover Christmas will help your family put Christ at the center of your Christmas celebration. It will take your family on an adventure through the symbols and customs of Christmas, teaching you the meaning behind the symbols to help you focus your celebration on Christ. Each day from December 1 - 25, discover the story behind our holiday customs and how it relates to the birth of Christ.
So far we are really enjoying it! We are also trying to focus more on others. We picked an "angel" off of our ward's giving tree, donated gently used books and toys for an Eagle Scout project, donated video games to Primary Children's Hospital, and still have some quilts to make and a donation to make to a Sub-for-Santa family. It feels good to help others. It's an opportunity to forget about our own worries and stresses. It brings an added measure of peace and harmony into our lives. Christmas is also a time to think about family and spend time together. We are going to spend a little less time studying and a lot more time baking cookies, decorating, visiting Temple Square, walking through Christmas village, playing board games, listening to Christmas carols, and watching Christmas specials on TV. Hopefully, this will help us remember the true meaning of Christmas and worry a little bit less about the commercialism of it all.

Another Month Has Come And Gone...

Wow! I can't believe that another month has gone by so quickly. My weekly updates have turned into monthly ones :) We spent a lot of November sick, and December is already looking the same. We had to miss the field trip to the art museum because we were all home in bed. We did take another trip to Salt Lake, though. We went to Kingsbury Hall on the U of U campus to see a play. It was the 7 dragons. The boys were excited that there was finally one without the "girlie" theme they call it. Mason was entranced the whole time. He loved it! Nate the skeptic, was preoccupied about the dragons not really looking like dragons and the water not really looking like water, etc. It did lead to a great discussion on the difference between plays and movies, though. He was still not impressed. Hopefully he can at least gain an appreciation for the arts, if not a love for them. Lexii has been studying hard and will finish up her finals this week. She definitely is ready for a break, even if it's only 3 weeks. It's holiday time, so she will probably pick up a lot of hours at work until Christmas is over with. The other day she made the comment that "it sucks to be an adult". Yes, yes it does. I've been trying to tell her that for years, but for some reason they still always want to grow up too fast.