Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Math-U-See {Even through High School!}

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Math-U-See {Even through High School!}

I’m so excited to share this review with you! This is the ONE curriculum that I have never once been tempted to stop using! I tend to get my head turned by shiny, new homeschool curriculum. It’s so much fun to try new things, and there are always new products coming out that I can’t wait to check out. But not when it comes to math.

When I first started homeschooling, one of my mentors gave me some great advice. I was sharing with her how I worried that I wouldn’t be able to give my kids a strong math education because I had struggled so much with math in school. Her advice was to find a program that had a good reputation, that suited my teaching style, and that my kids didn’t hate, and then stick with it all the way through. Her reasoning was that the best way to avoid gaps in math knowledge is to use one program from beginning to end...

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How to Homeschool Preschool {with no regrets!}

How to Homeschool Preschool {with no regrets!}

There's nothing as delightful (and challenging!) as educating our little ones at home. Some of us homeschool preschool and intend to be "long haul" homeschoolers. Others may plan to send their child to school later, but want to make the most of their days with their sweet babes. As a Mama of 4 with 2 toddlers underfoot, I've had some experience in preschool and "toddler school". I've made many mistakes, but I've also learned some valuable lessons that help me approach educating my two little ones with a "no regrets" mentality.

Here are 5 tips to approach those early years that you won't regret!

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The REAL Reason Behind Your Homeschool Slump

The REAL Reason Behind Your Homeschool Slump

It's  January... which means we are all on a downhill slide. The busyness and craziness and fun of Christmas has all been quieted, and we are left to our own devices (often trapped inside from the frigid temps). If you're like me, this anticlimactic time following the depths of winter as we roll past the New Year can usher in boredom, exhaustion, and cabin fever. We oftentimes enter what's now commonly referred to as a "slump" in our homeschool year.

But why? Is it fully triggered by gloomy weather and post-holiday blues? I suspect there's something else lurking beneath this battle almost every homeschool Mama faces each year...

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What happened when I stopped being "on fire" for God...

What happened when I stopped being "on fire" for God...

I came to slowly know Christ just over a decade ago. He came to me in the darkest period in my marriage and let me know that despite having failed in every way imaginable, that I was still loved. He humbled me and brought me into his fold where I have safely and confidently resided ever since. Since my marriage to Christ, we've been in a sweet honeymoon period- for literally a decade. Jesus saved me from myself and let me know I was loved without fail when I was absolutely unlovable. He changed my heart, my mind, my priorities, my perspective, my marriage, my parenting- literally almost every ounce of me has been made new in Christ (except my potty-mouth, but he's still working).

I have passionately loved him for it and pursued him with fervor- most of the time. Some of the time, I have not. Some of the time, I am overly confident that I can handle things on my own. Some of the time, I feel like everything is going fine, and I don't need him quite as much. Some of the time, I forget just how sinful I truly am.

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Win 6 Best Sellers + A Guided Prayer Journal {GIVEAWAY TIME!!!} Ends Valentine's Day!

Win 6 Best Sellers + A Guided Prayer Journal {GIVEAWAY TIME!!!} Ends Valentine's Day!

SQUEALLLLL! I'm that excited... and I don't often squeal! I've been planning and praying over doing a big giveaway for over a month to bless the mess out of one luck reader, and it's FINALLY HERE!

I absolutely LOVE books. I love a book that leads me to the Cross, reminds me of God's abundant grace, convicts me of unrecognized sin, and helps me love my husband or children better. God's Word is my go-to for all of those things, but there's nothing like hearing experiences and lessons from other people, just like me. (Here's my very favorite note-taking Bible by the way. I'm an ESV girl.) 

So, I prayed hard, and identified 6 books (and a journal) that have been extremely influential in my life. I wanted to give you a quick rundown of each of them here, so you can know WHY I love them so much!

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How I Taught My Profoundly Dyslexic Daughter to Read {on Grade Level}

How I Taught My Profoundly Dyslexic Daughter to Read {on Grade Level}

There's little that strikes more fear into a homeschool mom's heart than the idea of teaching their child to read. It seems that every aspect of their child's future success is hinged upon this necessary, often ominous, skill. I know some homeschool parents that send their children to school for kindergarten and first grade, just to skip the stress of it! So, for a new homeschool mom to be greeted with a child whom she is doing everything "by the book" for and nothing seems to be sticking... well, it honestly feels like their deepest fears of inadequacy are coming to fruition. 

You can feel like you must be the biggest homeschool failure in the world when you've been working diligently to teach your child phonics for over a year, and they still know less than a handful of sounds. You can be certain you've ruined your child's future when they are 7, and despite working to identify letter NAMES since they were 4, they still visibly struggle to name each letter. You can feel like pulling your hair out when you child sounds out CCCCC-AAAAAA-TTTTTT on one page, then sees it again 8 more times in the SAME book (seconds apart) and STILL has to sound it out like she's never seen the word in her life every single time...

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Restoring + Redeeming Your Marriage

Restoring + Redeeming Your Marriage

I love my husband. We've been married for over 15 years and together nearly 25 at the ripe old age of 36. He's literally sewn into my existence. We are like peas and cornbread- absolutely inseparable. Except back when we were separable- back when we were making our own rules, following our own feelings, and generally doing life (including marriage) our own way.

Way back when, we were stuck together but we both had some strong moments of being ready for that to not be the case. I'll never forget those days. Those long nights of fights and tears- when he finally decided enough was enough. Those are raw, unshakeable memories for two reasons. Obviously for the unshakeable pain entrenched in them for both of us, but even more so for the unspeakable redemption and joy that came out of it all. 

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Stuff I Love Too Much {January}

Stuff I Love Too Much {January}

I tend to be a passionate sharer. Like, when I LOVE something, everyone around me hears about it. Relentlessly. My husband loves this about me. I want everyone else to love it like I love it because I love to share a love of something with someone (that's a whole lot of love).

So in that spirit, I want to share "Stuff I Love Too Much" for January with you. This will always be an incredibly odd collaboration. I will also reign myself in and stick to 6 or fewer things (pinky swear).

First up. I have 2 current book obsessions...

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Your 2018 Prayer Guide {tips for time with God}

Your 2018 Prayer Guide {tips for time with God}

New years are beautiful and also kind of dreadful. I love the "fresh start" mentality, but I also immediately begin to dread the upcoming failure of 99.9% of my resolutions- which is why I stopped making them a few years ago. Can't fail if you don't try, right? 

But then I looked at God's creation. We are constantly greeted with opportunities for new. We get new days, new seasons, new years, new mercies. We are new creations in Christ. God loves creation and new beginnings. He even gives people new names. I love that about him! And I love that he endowed me with that same zeal for beginnings, do-overs, and fresh starts. 

So, rather than resolutions, I choose a word and a few goals. Nothing special or new, but this year, I want to be really intentional about TRACKING my prayers and having deeply focused prayer covering every area of my life. I am believing God for some really big things this year, and I don't want to FORGET that I asked for it in the first place.

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3 Questions to Ask When You Want to Quit Homeschooling {Part 3}

3 Questions to Ask When You Want to Quit Homeschooling {Part 3}

In part 1 and part 2 of this series (definitely go back and read those first if you haven't) we tackled the big question of evaluating our REASON for homeschooling in the first place and then used some worksheets to curate a homeschool vision. 

Our big question # 2 is this: Are you being REALISTIC with your expectations for homeschooling based on your personality, the abilities of your child, the availability of your husband, and the number of hours in the day? In other words, are your expectations appropriate or even reasonable?

Hear me first on this, mama: When you homeschool, you are NOT a "stay at home mom". You are a work from home mom. You are a TEACHER who works at home- degree or not. You are wholly responsible for your child's education (which is BOTH terrifying and a huge honor.) 

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