Nov 222014

I can’t believe next week is Thanksgiving already!! Before you know it, Christmas will be here yet again. Why is it that time seems to fly by so fast?

I urge you this holiday season to hold tight to the ones you love, never miss an opportunity to make memories and live life to the fullest. Make every day a celebration (if you need ideas, I post wacky holidays at the beginning of every month, here’s November’s).

To help you celebrate Thanksgiving, I’m even going to give you a few free printables. Frame them. Make napkin rings. Do what you want. Just celebrate and be thankful.

Be sure to check out my review of a new Thanksgiving tradition – Countdown to Thanksgiving. Just so you know, you can jump in to the countdown and still benefit from it so don’t worry if you didn’t get to start it 14 days prior. You can do it next year.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING Be Thankful O Give Thanks


Nov 202014

Word Up Review

Want to know how to dramatically increase your vocabulary? Easy – learn Latin and Greek root words since the majority of the English words are made up by them.  Compass Classroom not only can help you learn some of those root words, they have made it fun with their Word Up! The Vocab Show. I was given the digital download of Volume 1 to review.

All of my boys (ages 8, 15 and 17) have enjoyed watching the video lessons. The “lessons” are taught by Dwane Thomas in the form of a news broadcast and are only 12 = 15 minutes long. Dwane plays all of the parts and is very entertaining. Each episode teaches two new root words and then gives you English words that are derived from those root words. With ten episodes, each teaching two root words, you will learn a total of twenty Latin and Greek root words. After a root word is discussed, then the Greek and Latin experts share at least ten English words using those root words. That means by the time you watch all of the episodes, you will have learned over two hundred new words but more importantly, you will have learned how to decipher the meaning of more words! This is an invaluable skill when it comes to taking standardized tests.

Here’s a trailer you can watch of one of the episodes.


Volume 1 of Word Up! includes the following episodes:

  1. Water – Aqua & Hydra
  2. Write – Scribo & Grapho
  3. Earth – Terra & Geo
  4. Many – Multus & Poly
  5. Place – Ponere & Thesis
  6. Time – Tempus & Chronos
  7. Good – Bonus & Eu
  8. See – Video & Skopeo
  9. Throw – Iacere & Ballein
  10. City – Urbs & Polis

I know that even my youngest son was learning because about a week after we watched the second episode, my son was playing Scribblenauts on the iPad when he had that “lightbulb moment” all homeschool moms live for – “Hey mom!! ‘Scribblenauts’…’scrib’ like that word that means to write… get it??!!” Yes, it was a very proud mommy moment.

After you watch a lesson, you can reinforce the learning using flashcards on Quizlet. You can even go ahead and download two free lessons now.

Volume 1 is available as a DVD or as a download, either for $15.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the download version of Word Up! Volume 1 in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was received and all opinions are mine. This post may contain affiliate links.



Nov 182014

growing up social review and giveaway

I have five kids, ages 8 to 25, and I can tell you it’s much more challenging raising my younger ones than it was to raise my older ones. This is largely due to the impact that electronics have on kids today. When I was offered to review Growing Up Social by Gary Chapman and Arlene Pellicane, I knew that this was a book I needed for my family.

About the Authors

Gary Chapman is the author of the highly popular The 5 Love Languages and is also a speaker and counselor. He is also the director of Marriage and Family Life Consultants, Inc.

Arlene Pellicane is also an author and speaker and has appeared on several television programs.

About the Book

This softcover book will help you overcome the battle of the digital age.  In fourteen chapters, you will be given the information to help your children develop the following A+ skills:

  • Show affection
  • Appreciate others
  • Deal with anger
  • Learn to apologize
  • Pay attention

Building these traits are something you will have to be intentional about, it will not just happen. Not only are these skills covered but also the how screen time affects your brain. Parental authority, even for single parents, is also taken into account.

This book is not just chapters to read to inform you of the dangers of too much screen time but practical ideas (what to say and not to say in an apology) that you can implement right away. There’s a screen-safe family pledge that each family member should agree to that will help protect them, physically and emotionally.

At the back of the book, there is a section that lists the ages and stages of social development for children. This starts at toddlers and goes through 4 – 6th grade. There is also a quiz to take to see if your child has too much screen time.

If you would like to use this book as a study, there are discussion questions for each chapter. These could be done on your own or in a group setting.

Check out this trailer below and be sure to visit the website.


Use this book to help build healthy relationships and show your child how to live with screen time and not for screen time. 

Would you like to win a copy for yourself? Just enter below. 

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.


 Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Nov 172014
Blue Ribbon Awards are Published

Around this time last year, a dream of mine came true. I joined the Review Crew.  I always wanted to be part of The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew. Whenever I am considering a new curriculum, I always first search to see of the Crew has already reviewed it. The reviews are always thorough and I love that there almost always are pics of the curriculum “in action”. This past year, […]

Nov 142014
Thanksgiving Countdown - A New Holiday Tradition

Many people have Christmas family traditions but overlook Thanksgiving traditions…other than the big family meal. Many times, it’s simply because it’s harder to find ideas to incorporate into traditions. Thankfully, Amy Puetz has come to help you out. She offered me a copy of her newest book, Countdown to Thanksgiving. Do you recognize Amy Puetz’s name? She is also the author of one of our favorite history curriculum!! I wished […]

Nov 112014
Snake Oil is a Hit at Family Game Night

  What does a snowman, a sponge and a diary have in common? Well, they all worked together to make some great memories during one of our family game nights. My family loves games and while we don’t have a regularly scheduled game night (we did try that route), when I break out a game, the kids all gather around to play. We have a Christmas tradition to add at […]

Nov 102014
Growing Your Blog and Making Money

I’ve been blogging for quite awhile but only recently have I realized that for as much time as I spend on my blog that I should be making a little money off of it. There are many different factors to have a successful blog – content, design, SEO, social media….just name a few. I’d like share a list of some of the books that I have found to be helpful […]

Nov 092014
IXL - Mastering Math and Language Art Skills {A Review}

  Looking for a fun and interactive way to ensure your kids know the skills they need for the two most important subjects (my opinion) – math and language arts? For the past several weeks, we have been  enjoying IXL‘s online curriculum. For this review, I will share our experience with IXL Math and IXL Language Arts. IXL helps students practice skills to achieve mastery. This is not a full […]

Nov 092014
Cream Cheese Pound Cake Recipe

I’m going to share my Cream Cheese Pound Cake recipe with you. This is my all time favorite pound cake recipe. It makes a wonderful crisp crust that we usually always fight over. I just made this today for my own birthday (on Monday). I called it my birthday cake so that I could get the extra “crispies”. Pound cakes also make great housewarming gifts. And birthday presents. And great […]

Nov 082014
Get Faster, Stronger with Group 1 Crew

  My family and I love Group 1 Crew!! They do amazing concerts and we’ve been able to see them several times and they never disappoint. Needless to say, we were all super excited when I received their latest CD, #Faster #Stronger to review from Family Christian Stores. When I’m on a health kick (which I am trying to get back on), I have a workout playlist. Group 1 Crew […]

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