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Philippians 2 Bible Study by Doorposts
Beginning on Friday, November 1st, Pam from Doorposts will be hosting another month long Bible study. This one will be on Philippians 2.

If you haven't joined in, you need to. Pam teaches you how to study the Bible inductively. If you are a subscriber to her newsletter, each day's study will be delivered to your inbox. You can also find the daily assignments via her blog or by joining the Facebook group.

With the daily assignments, Pam also includes activities to do with your children. These “Thirty Days of Bible Study for Busy Busy Mamas” are purposely made short so that they fit easily into your day.

I have enjoyed and benefited greatly from doing these studies. I hope you will join us.

As preparation for the study, I formatted Philippians 2 so that I can print it and mark it up with my color pencils. You are more than welcome to use it. It is in the King James Version.

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Book Binding
Going on four years with the RC curriculum, I haven't tried binding a book yet until this week.

And you know what? It is F-U-N! I only did two, but I am looking forward to doing more.

Usually I try to find the book at used bookstores, thrift stores, etc. If I can't find it that way, I will print it and put it in a small binder.

I like the binding SO much better.

Robinson Curriculum Book Binding

The first two I did were Do and Dare, and Bob, Son of Battle. I followed the instructions at this website.

I made the spines and covers and reinforced them with packing tape.

Robinson Curriculum Book Binding

Yip, I am proud of my work. Now to bind some more!

Book Binding





Waterfall by Lisa T Bergren

We started a new audio book this past month. We only listen to it once a week for about 2 hours, during our drive to Grandma's place, so it will last us a while. It makes the drive go by quicker. So far, we are enjoying it. 🙂

I decided to try something  different from what we were use to. We have been doing more Christian based audios with Knights of Arrethtrae, The Kingdom Series, and the A.D. Chronicles. We listened to the Knights of Arrethtrae, including The Kingdom Series twice and the A.D. Chronicles had twelve books! Ten of which were in audio format. Oh, and we listened to The Berenfell Prophesies, which had a Christian twist to it also.

This story is filed under Christian fiction for teens. I think it is more for it being clean.

This one is set in Medieval Italy. The young girl, 16 if I remember correctly, is transported into the past. This is her story on trying to get back home and how she copes with being in a new time period. She is very learned, being able to speak Italian and read Latin. She also knows how to 'wield the sword' and ride bare back on a horse.  All this helps her out in medieval Italy. We are looking forward to continuing the story. As always, one factor in choosing this audio was that it was from Oasis Audio. The reader, Pam Turlow, did a wonderful job with the voices.

The pdf file includes discussion questions that can be used after the novel has been read.

What is your current audiobook?



We received the issue of Clubhouse Magazine where MaryEllen's drawing is being published. It was so exciting for her. She very slowly turned each page anticipating when she would see her drawing.

When the page finally came up, we were very pleased with its placement. She got a nice big spot. 🙂

Here are the two pictures she sent in for consideration. I couldn't post them the time I told you about her being chosen because I forgot to scan them before we sent them in. They have returned them to us, so now I can share.



And, here is the picture she drew for them for the magazine. They actually told her what to draw so that it would match the story she was illustrating.

Here is her drawing in the magazine with the story.


Isn't that just wonderful? They sent her $10 and a few issues to giveaway. This has been a wonderful experience for MaryEllen.

Proud Mamma,

Donnie's ReadingList

Donnie will, like MaryEllen, read down the list this year, one book at a time. I am not sure if this will work for him because his attention span is shorter. He might like reading about a few different topics. We will try it and see how he likes it.

I just noticed that Donnie's pattern is textbook, literature, biography instead of textbook, biography, literature like I did MaryEllen's booklist. 🙂

I found some nice biographies at our local used bookshop. They are easy reads, but I wanted them more for the Godly example in these men and women.

Donnie's 7th Grade Reading List



The Story of Liberty - Finish Charles Coffin
Robin Hood J. Walker McSpadden
The Pilgrim Who Made Progress William Deal
Sweet Land of Liberty Charles Coffin
The Jungle Book Rudyard Kipling
A Man Sent of God Merle McClurkan Heath
A Beka Geography
The Prince and the Pauper Mark Twain
Air Adventures Graeme Cook
Notgrass World History Volume 1
The Case For Christ For Teens Strobel
The Case For a Creator For Teens Strobel
The Case For Faith For Teens Strobel
White Fang Jack London
Frontier of the Heart Reverend Ralph W. Beiting
God Can Move Mountains Reverend Ralph W. Beiting
Notgrass World History Volume 2
The Impossible Journey of Sir Ernest Shackleton William Bixby
A Beka Biology
Carry On Mr. Bowditch Jean Lee Latham
The Call of the Wild Jack London
Harriet Beecher Stowe Jean Fritz

Donnie's list is also long, but whatever he doesn't finish will also be rolled over either to the summer or next years booklist.

What is your 7th grader reading?



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Well, it is that time of year once again, planning the next years curriculum. Here is a breakdown of what we will be doing.

Our style is the Robinson Curriculum (RC). I love the RC because of its simplicity, the 3r's.

I will start with Bible. Bible isn't part of RC, but most users add it in. This year we will use Student of the Word (SOW) for Bible. Like many others, I like how SOW has the student do different types of studies each day. They start by writing a prayer letter. Then each day they either do an outline, a topical study, character study, vocabulary or word study, setting, and commentary. This is actually the Language Arts of the SOW curriculum.


That isn't to say that we will not do other Bible Studies. We will actually begin the year with Because You Are Strong by Daniel Forster. I plan on doing Beauty and the Pig by Pam Forster too.

Because You Are Strong Bible Study

Next comes math. The kids have been having success with Saxon, so they will continue using Saxon. They will continue with Saxon Algebra 1/2.

After math, comes writing. Along with writing, we include vocabulary. The kids will continue with English From the Roots Up Volume 2 and also begin SAT: And College Preparation Course for the Christian Student, one lesson a week. I like this because it has it all. In the beginning, it gives a list of vocabulary words, but then it has the student build their vocabulary by the books they read, noting words that they do not know the meaning of. It also has them defining words in context. There are also writing and essay assignments. They start out simple and get harder as the student progresses through the book. There are also reading comprehension assignments. Each lesson starts out with Scripture reading and applying it to everyday life. The author recommends doing a daily devotional, which he provides an outline for and Scripture selections to get you started. Even if my kids aren't college bound, I think this book will benefit them.


SOW has a nice creative writing section, so I am going to include the assignments for the kids daily writing along with their Bible and SAT.

This year they will begin writing a current events paper every two weeks. We subscribe to World, Answers by Answers In Genesis, the local newspaper, Top Story from World, and other news magazines that they can utilize for their current events.

Book summaries will also be required during writing time. After they finish a book, not including a textbook, they will write up a book summary.

During writing, they will also answer the chapter Bible questions from Notgrass World History, answer the SOW Bible related science questions for A Beka Biology, and do the mapping from A Beka World Geography.

Reading follows writing. They will read for 1 1/2 hours. Within that time, they will read history, science, geography, (auto)biographies, and literature. They are also working their way through the Bible, so they read a couple chapters of that too.

History will be Nograss World History, Science will be A Beka Biology, and geography will be A Beka's World Geography.

They never did get much typing in last year, so this year NEEDS to be the year. I am planning on giving incentives when they reach certain speeds. $$ always works. 🙂

We will continue with our evening story hour. During this time, I am hoping to implement Getting Started With Latin. This will be our second attempt at a Latin program, so I am hoping we have success with this one. I know that once we finish, we will need to find another program that will go further, but at least we will have a foot in the door so to speak and we can decide if we want to pursue it further. I do think it would be beneficial, I guess I am not very confident that we will get to it. I should change my outlook, okay, my attitude, and give us more credit.

Getting Started With Latin

I think that about covers the basics with academics. June has been hit or miss with studies. They got a few lessons of math in and some reading, but not much else. I am looking forward to getting back into a routine. I say routine loosely, because it seems like we are always trying to get into a routine. lol!

So how is your yearly planning going? Are you trying something new this year or sticking with what you are use to or what is working? For us, RC works. I tried adding things or going another route, but we always come back to RC, so it is where we are staying. It is not a comfort zone, just what is working.

Happy planning,




Last week MaryEllen got a letter from Focus on the Family letting her know that she was chosen to illustrate a story in their Clubhouse Magazine. 🙂 This will be their annual subscriber's magazine where all the content is from kids. We are very proud of her!

I did not scan the sample she sent in, so I am showcasing some of her recent work. You can see her drawing for the magazine when it comes out in August. I will also post it here in August.

You can click on the pictures to see them larger.

This one she actually drew in January for her cousin.

She loves carousels! This cat and the horse below are samples of her carousel pictures. I like the elephant peeking out.
Cat Carousel - MaryEllen
Carousel Horse - MaryEllen

This picture at first sight reminded me of Toothless and Hiccup. Before it was colored, I actually thought it was them until I noticed the dragon's ears and tail and the boy had both his legs. 🙂
Dragon and Boy - MaryEllen
Toothless and Hiccup

We are on to fantasy now. She also likes to draw dragons. She finished The Chronicles of Narnia a few months back and started drawing centaurs.
Centaur - MaryEllen

This one she made for her Uncle Joe. I like the colors.
Flying Dragon - MaryEllen

This one has a horn like a unicorn. Look at the eyes, looks ghostly.
Flying Dragon - MaryEllen

This one is pretty neat with his rider.
Dragon and Boy - MaryEllen

This is a cute one, parent and child. Maybe the kid dragon is learning to fly.
Parent and Child Dragon - MaryEllen

Okay, this one looks mean. I wouldn't want to meet him in a dark alley. 🙂
Dragon - MaryEllen

This one looks more friendly.
Dragon - MaryEllen

I like when she colors them. I like the colors she chose on this one. I think she drew this one for her sister.
Dragon - MaryEllen

A serpent type dragon. Very creative.
Serpent Dragon - MaryEllen

Last, but not least, a pretty flower dragon...I guess. This is one of my favorites for some reason. Must be the girliness, if that is a word. 🙂
Flower Dragon - MaryEllen

So, which is your favorite?




It has been a while since I shared a favorite recipe.

I am not sure if my son would consider this a favorite since he does not like kielbasa. 🙂 MaryEllen and I are the ones who enjoy it the most, so it is one of our favorites.

This is another tried and true recipe that has made it to my 'keep' folder. We've been enjoying it for many years now. I only make it once in a while because the kielbasa I buy has sodium nitrates in it and I try to limit the nitrates.

I like it too because it is a fast meal, done in 30 minutes or less. The times I put in the recipe below are approximates, but I consider it a 30 minute dish.

Polynesian Supper

Polynesian Supper
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
  • 1 pound fully cooked smoked sausage, cut into ½ inch slices
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • ½ cup beef broth
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can (20 oz.) unsweetened pineapple chunks
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • Hot cooked rice
  1. Cook the sausage, onion and green pepper until the sausage is lightly browned.
  2. Add tomatoes, broth, brown sugar, garlic powder and pepper.
  3. Drain pineapple, reserving juice
  4. Stir pineapple into sausage mixture.
  5. Bring to a boil; cook uncovered for 5 minutes.
  6. Combine cornstarch and reserved pineapple juice until smooth.
  7. Gradually add to sausage mixture.
  8. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
  9. Serve over rice.

Since I am trying my best to eliminate grains from my diet, I had this the other day with quinoa. It was pretty good. The family had rice, but maybe next time they will try it with quinoa...Donnie had cereal. LOL!

Polynesian Supper


It is almost three weeks since we set up our Tower Garden. It is going great! Look at how nicely it is growing.

Tower Garden

Tower Garden

I added the tomatoes to the bottom. They are doing great.

I haven't had any problem with bugs other than a few spiders trying to take up residence. Oh, and some dark colored lady-bug type critter. Don says they are stink bugs. Ugh! I have been flicking them off because I am not sure if they are good or bad for my plants.

I've been meaning to look them up to find out, but procrastinator Cynthia hasn't gotten around to it yet. 🙂

Tower Garden

Lettuce Green Crisp

Basil, Magenta

Tower Garden

Tower Garden

Tower Garden

Needless to say I am excited! I love the green look.

I check the ph twice a week and adjust it if necessary. It is very minimal upkeep. Next week, I will clean the tank and check the filter.

We do plan to garden tomatoes and cucumber outside of the tower too. I was hoping to do carrots, but it doesn't look like we will get them in the ground this year.

How is your garden coming along?




8 least for me! For our anniversary, Don got me this neato tower garden. It is the coolest thing!! I've had my eye on it for about two years. You can read about it here.

It uses what is called aeroponics. There is no soil! Water from the reservoir goes up the middle tube and showers down on the plants. The water is full of nutrients that you add.

Right now in our tower there is kale, celery, spring mix, argula, green beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, dill, parsley, cilantro, squash, bell pepper, romaine, and a few others I cannot think of on the top of my head.

I can't wait until they are ready to harvest.

The very bottom empty slots are for our tomatoes once they get big enough to go into the tower. That should be any day now.

Tower GardenHere I am with my new tower garden. I am one happy gardener. 😉

Tower GardenThe basic tower comes with five tiers. I bough the extension so I could plant more. 🙂

Tower GardenYip, I cannot wait until they are taking over the tower. I love the look of green plants.

Tower Garden

Don has already said that if this works out we will have to invest in another one next year. 🙂

This would be great for small areas or patios. I am thinking of my sister in California.

We are still going to do a garden bed although we are running a little late. 😉 I want to grow carrots and other root vegetables. The tower doesn't grow root vegetables for obvious reasons.

Happy Gardening,