Weekly Wrap-up 9/26

I did several learning activities with Kelsey and Morgan, Garrett and Fiona, and Emma and Abby.

“All” of the 6 kids are doing CTC Math. Kelsey decided she was going back to the Teaching Textbook workbook. But the others are supposed to be doing CTC Math online every day. I get a report on Sundays telling me who did what. It keeps them moving along in their Math. Emma has done the most lessons.

Kelsey and Morgan have been listening to me read a book about Corrie ten Boom. We finished it last week. It was the third book we have read that took place during World War 2. We read “Lillie’s Crossing”, “Number the Stars”, and we just finished “Corrie ten Boom” by YWAM Books written by Janet and Geoff Benge. By reading these books, we have been covering World War 2 in a gentle way.


You can find the Corrie ten Boom book here on Amazon.

With Emma and Abby, I read the book, “The Dog Who Had Kittens”.




We used activity pages from 1+1+1=1. Abby did some pattern work and Emma did story sequencing. They both answered comprehension questions about the story, and they both did great!


This shows them watching the video curriculum that goes with Dolphin Tale 2. It’s available for free from Homeschool Movie Club when you register on their site. We watched the movie at the theater 2 weeks ago.


Emma and Abby have been learning a little about fractions. So when I cut the apple pie, we did a review. I cut the pie one time and asked them what each piece was now called, how much of the pie was each piece. They knew that it was a half. Then I cut across the other way and asked what the pieces were now. They counted how many pieces and knew that they were fourths. Then I cut them again both ways across and they counted the pieces again and knew they were eighths. Then we each ate an eighth of the pie! In the picture, I had already served up my slice of the pie.


And this was Story Time with Kelsey. Everybody loves Garfield. They all love comics, in general. Even I like Garfield. But I never read comics to them. I let them do that on their own.

On Thursday, we finally got out in nature. I had been wanting to go take a walk in a nice, wooded park for a long time, but it was too hot, or it was raining. Thursday was perfect, so I loaded up Garrett, Anna, Emma and Abby, and we went to Stephen F. Austin State Park about a half hour from our house. We had a wonderful time there hiking the trails. Anna ran on a different trail. She saw a bunch of deer. We saw an ARMADILLO! It was the first real, live armadillo I’ve ever seen. We heard it rustling the tall grass, and Garrett was actually able to snap some pictures of it.

Armadillo 1

Armadillo 2

Click on the pictures to enlarge, and you can see his head in one picture and his armored back in the other. Click again and you can really see him well.

Garrett took some other pictures from our nature walk.







Patrick found a turtle in one of the pools he cleaned, so he brought it home, and we’ve been taking care of it. His name is Timothy.

Patrick's turtle (1)

We had a busy week, and I was happy to get some nature study in. And to get us out in nature to study it!

I’m His Secret Garden

I went through a time a couple months ago when I knew that the Lord was trying to take me to a new level in my relationship with Him.

It felt similar to the time He was trying to tell me that He delights in me. Trying to discern His voice and what He’s saying can be difficult at times.

For instance, one evening a long time ago, I was alone in my van driving home from a teaching workshop, and I knew that God was trying to speak something specific to me. I could hear Him in my spirit saying, “I d_______ you.” I knew the middle part of the sentence started with a “D”, but I didn’t know what the word was! So I kept trying to hear or guess or understand or whatever. It took me a long time. My spiritual ears were very young, and my hearing was not acute at all. I had only recently begun to try to hear God’s voice clearly and to listen for His voice. This was when we still lived in Ohio. It must have been the year 2001 or so. I kept thinking “desire”, no that’s not it, hmmm, what other word starts with a “D” that God might be saying about me. I was trying to think of Bible verses. Finally, I knew that He was saying that He DELIGHTS in me. Then I was faced with trying to wrap my mind around what He meant by that, and why the God of the universe would delight in me?!!! It was more than I could take in. That is obviously true, because He is still trying to show me what it means.

He has been working on me for the last 13 years or so trying to convince me and show me the fullness of that revelation that He delights in me.

Well, fast forward to 5 months ago. Anna and I have been going to noon prayer almost every day Tuesday through Friday at our church. During the prayer time, I saw a waterfall. I knew that God was telling me to go to a place that had a waterfall. We have only lived here for two years, so I don’t know the area very well. I asked the Youth leaders if there was a park nearby that had a waterfall, or if they knew where a waterfall was. They told me about the parks they knew that had a river flowing through them. Anna and I went to the park and walked, and we had a nice, peaceful time, but I knew there was somewhere else that I was supposed to go.

A few days later, Anna had a Youth meeting at church, and I took her and just decided to wait there in the car. I noticed the church’s prayer garden and decided I should go check it out. I had never been inside it. It is surrounded by trees and a wrought-iron fence, so I couldn’t see exactly what was in there.



I walked over to it and checked the gate. It was unlocked. So I went in.


Guess what was in there?


A waterfall! The waterfall I needed to go to was right there on the church property.


I sat on a bench inside and gazed at the waterfall and the trees and talked to the Lord. I asked Him what He wanted to say to me.


I had been hearing two songs lately that mentioned gardens, based on Song of Solomon. One was “Where I Belong” by Cory Asbury, and the other was “Garden” by Misty Edwards.

Specific words from these songs came to me as I sat meditating and praying. From Misty’s song, I kept hearing the words, “I am a garden enclosed, a locked garden. You hedge me in with skin all around me, a garden enclosed, a locked garden. Life takes place behind the face. Here it’s You and me alone, God.” And from Cory’s song I kept hearing, “Come into Your garden, take delight in me, take delight in me.”

It suddenly struck me that I am God’s garden and He comes to me and rests in me and takes delight in me. I have always thought about going into the garden to meet with God, but I never realized that I, myself, am that garden! I pictured myself resting in Him, but I didn’t realize that God actually rests in me, too, as I spend time with Him and meditate and pray. It was a humbling revelation. It was almost as dramatic as the night He spoke to me that He delights in me. It has made a difference in the way I see myself and my relationship with God. I knew that He delighted in watching me serve Him, but I really did not understand that He delights in just spending time with me. He finds rest and refreshing to His soul from our times together. Blows. My. Mind.

When I’m spending time worshiping Him now, I invite Him into His garden and tell Him to take delight in me. It’s still new, and I still feel funny and rather presumptuous when I utter these words, but I know that He is pleased, and it’s a new level of worship and experiencing His presence.

You may want to seek the Lord for yourself about this and see if He wants to bring you up and closer to Him through this kind of experience.

He loves you so much, and is seeking intimate union with each one of us.

I hope this may help someone to draw closer to God and get to know Him better.

These are the songs that helped me reach this new understanding. I hope you enjoy them and receive the revelation that you need from them.

Dolphin Tale 2

Dolphin Tale 2 is a new movie that I can’t wait to go see. We are going to see it tomorrow or the next day.

The sequel to Dolphin Tale, a movie that is very homeschool-friendly and promotes homeschooling, is now in theaters. It is called, not surprisingly, Dolphin Tale 2.

My children and I saw Dolphin Tale in the theater 3 years ago and really enjoyed it. It was very well-made and entertaining. The girl star of the movie is homeschooled in real life and in the movie. We went to support movies that are family-friendly, homeschool-friendly and actually promote homeschooling. I like to support really good causes. We all really thought the movie was good.

Now the same cast and producers have made the sequel, and it looks like it will be just as good, if not better, than the first one.

The movie sees the return of Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, Harry Connick, Jr., Kris Kristofferson, and the two kids who played the main characters in the first film, Dolphin Tale. Both movies revolve around a real dolphin named Winter who had a tail injury and would have died if the people at an aquarium in Florida had not rescued her and taken extreme measures to invent a prosthetic tail for her.

This new movie involves finding a friend for Winter, and there is a lot of dramatic action and comedic elements throughout the film. The subtitle of the movie is Winter Has Hope.

I am sure it will be a very good movie from the reviews I have read. And if I must say so myself, I am pretty good at picking winners of movies. Just ask my husband! He has been very surprised at the quality of the movies I have chosen for us to see lately.

There is a club for homeschoolers who enjoy watching good movies as a family. They have a website and a page on Facebook. It is called The Homeschool Movie Club. They have developed a free curriculum for Dolphin Tale 2. You can find it here at this link.

To access the free curriculum, just register for free at the homeschool movie club website, and then go to the page for the free curriculum and click on the Dolphin Tale 2 tab. It is made up of informative videos about dolphins and other sea animals and the work of Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

Winter’s story is very inspirational to people, especially children, who have special needs, and many of them travel to the aquarium to see Winter and receive inspiration and encouragement from the dolphin who fought for life and learned a new way to live with a new kind of tail. The tail felt “weird” at first, but she adapted and now lives an active, full life with her adopted family.

I’ve found a blog post that gives lots of links to resources to go with Dolphin Tale 2. Here is the LINK.