Friday, March 30, 2007

Thankful Thursday

Okay, so technically I am late and it is Thankful Friday. But don't you think "Thankful Thursday" sounds better? ;) Anywho I am so thankful for:

My Savior Jesus Christ!

My dear husband, Robin. I prayed a long time for God to give me a wonderful godly husband!!

Great children...I prayed a long time to be blessed with them as well!

Yay! God!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Homestretch and Gearing Up

It's the home stretch of our 2006/2007 school year! I feel confident that everyone is ready to enter the next grade level! YAY! We finish our school year officially on May 25th, Lord willing!

I keep reminding the children that their diligence now guarantees a May finish and a long summer. This is the last year I am promising to be done in May. Next year I have scheduled out the year to be done at the end of the first week in June. That is still quite ambitious.

Summer is sooo important to me. When you live in Maine, you must enjoy every warm day to the fullest! My dad used to say that there are two seasons in Maine: winter and the 4th of July! Some years he is not far from wrong!

I have officially ordered all my books for the next school year. This is definitely a record for me! After all, I just ordered the remainder of THIS years books about a month ago. To have next years all ordered is major! Praise the LORD! Now I am working hard at Class Schedules/Lesson Plans. My goal is to have next year planned before this year is over so that I have the summer to read some of the books and just have time off!!

Here is what I have ordered and what we are doing:

For Rachel and Christian, 4th and 5th grade respectively:

Math: Mathusee, Delta for Rachel and Epsilon for Christian
Vocabulary: Wordly Wise 3000 Book 1
(They will complete the second half of Winston Grammar too which we already have.)
Cursive Writing: Handwriting without Tears Grade 5
Writing Skills: Institute for Excellence in Writing
Language Arts: Alpha Omega that I insert what I want to prevent gaps. (Yep, I am that paranoid!!)
Science: Apologia Elementary, "Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day."
Health: "Blood and Guts: A Working Guide to Your Own Insides"
Bible, History, Reading, Literature: Tapestry of Grace, Year 1 redesigned Upper Grammar, and the books that go with it.
Greek: "Hey Andrew Teach me Some Greek", Level 2
Art: Art books we already have plus library stuff.
Music: Drum Lessons for Christian and Piano lessons for Rachel.
Phys Ed: Soccer for Christian year round and Dance for Rachel year round.

For Tyler, 9th Grade (EEK!)

Math: MUS Algebra I
Vocabulary: Vocabulary from Classical Roots
Grammar: Advanced Winston
Writing Skills: Institute for Excellence in Writing, Level C Continuation Program
Language Arts: Alpha Omega choices for any gaps.)
Science: Apologia Biology 2nd Edition with Labs
Bible, History, Literature, Reading: Tapestry of Grace, Year 1 Redesigned, Rhetoric with some Dialectic.
Greek: "Hey Andrew Teach me Some Greek" Level 2
Music: Guitar Lessons
Phys. Ed: Year round Soccer, with Baseball in the Spring
(We decided to wait for Spanish and may utilize the Community College for that Tyler's Junior Year)

Monday, March 26, 2007

What's on the Menu?

Here is our menu for this week. I am trying hard to be organized in my planning. We are coming on a busy time of year and if I don't plan well we eat out waaay too much!


Monday: Baked Ham, Home Fries, Spinach, Corn

Tuesday: Boneless Breast of Chicken sauteed in Italian Dressing, Face Down Baked Potatoes, Broccoli

Wednesday: Roasted Chicken, Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Corn

Thursday: Baked Lasagna and Bread

Friday: Leftovers!

Lunches include sandwiches, soups, mac and cheese, cheese ravioli with tomato sauce, and homemade pizza.

Breakfasts include bagels and cream cheese, cereal, scrambled eggs, waffles, french toast, granola bars and oatmeal.

Snacks include apples, oranges, bananas, pretzels, and popcorn popped on the stove.

Till the weekend!

(Graphic from

Marvelous Monday!

I hope everyone reading here today is having a wonderful day! You know what is great about Mondays? Mondays represent hope to me. Hope that I can do better, better than I did last week!
My hope is from Jesus Christ. Jesus gives me a sure hope of eternal life and a sure hope that He will help through my day and I will continue to grow and become more like him! Isn't that exciting?
Here is my cheerful thoughts for today:
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" 2 Cor. 5:17
And before that,
"Therefore we do not lost heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is seen is eternal." 2 Cor. 4:16-18
Now, this morning I was not feeling all these lovely feelings. I was tired and my house was a mess and we were starting back into our school work after being on vacation for a week. Ever had a day like that? But, despite our feelings, we dove in. We got through our schoolwork and we cleaned up the house. It is not perfect but I feel oh so much better!! God is good!! By His grace we walk the path He prepared for us day by day.
In the house we:
Tidied throughout.
Folded and put away 3 loads of laundry.
Vacuumed the playroom and kitchen.
Washed kitchen floor.
Dusted in the living room, play room and dining room.
The children cleaned their bedrooms.'s getting better and will be even better that that tomorrow!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Thankful Thursday!

We had a wonderful day yesterday on Thursday. First of all, it was 62 degrees F.! Oh, it felt so good. The snow is melting and though I can't see my lawn yet but I know I will soon.

In the afternoon we headed out to buy Robin clothes for work. He never buys clothes for himself so this was quite an event! We went to Kohls. They were having a great sale! I got a dress winter coat for Rachel for next year for $8.00! This was a beautiful $80.00 coat! I got Christian's winter coat for next year for $10.00; it would've been $100.00 at full price!! Then a few t-shirts for the kids ranging from $2-$8 and a pair of shorts for Tyler. Tyler was excited because he got a really nice UNC shirt for $8.00. Oh what a day!! Socks 2 for 1, Robin found lots of nice clothes and we headed off.

Next we went to Home Depot. Well, we were looking for table legs which they no longer carry but they had free popcorn for the kids so there was their snack. Robin is going to build a vanity for Rachel as we are working on a makeover on her bedroom. I can't find a vanity I like so he is making one. He is very handy that way and I am so thankful!! I want one big enough for her and a friend to sit at and he will make a bench for it too. I will make the cushion for the bench. Exciting!!

We all went to Rachel's dance classes together since it was in the same town we were shopping in. Robin took the boys to the library across the street and then we had Subway sandwiches during Rachel's break. Then home to discover our Netflix came in: "Everybody's Hero." We are going to watch it today.

What a great day! God is good and we are blessed and it is just nice to be together on a beautiful spring day! There is much in life to be thankful for, isn't there?

Thursday, March 22, 2007

What's to Eat?

(Print from

This week I decided to poll the troops to see what they would like for meals. We are at that point in the year where it is not time to pull out the gas grill but we are all ready for summer cooking!! So, this week I decided to have every pick a meal and we would just take turns with our favorites!

Here are the results:

Tyler's Top Picks:

Breakfast: Muffins Lunch: Cheese Ravioli with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese (we buy Rosa's all natural ravioli from the frozen food section and add our own sauce and cheese). Supper: Beef tip stew.

Christian's Top Picks:

Breakfast: Cinnamon swirl cereal Lunch: Spaghetti soup Supper: Yankee Pot Roast with rice and green beans.

Rachel's Top Picks:

Breakfast: Granola bars Lunch: Kraft mac and cheese, the orange kind please (ewww) Supper: Steak strips, mashed potatoes, corn

Robin's Top Picks:

Breakfast: omelets Lunch: Wraps and rice and peas and various leftovers to put in wraps. Supper: Baked haddock, rice (or anything that is not a potato! ;) ), any veggie.

My Top Picks:

Breakfast: oatmeal (exciting, aren't I?) and fruit Lunch: Lean Quisines Supper: Breast of chicken, face down baked potatoes, spinach.

We also had a request for pizza bagels so we will do that too. :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Boston's Freedom Trail

FIELD TRIP!!! Robin is on a *one week* vacation this week so we moved our school spring break up from April to March. We had thought about a historical trip to Boston. But, Rachel was sick with a cold and I have been battling a mild flu so I just wasn't sure. I hadn't really made much of a plan but when Rachel perked up at about 10 a.m. and I felt like I could do it too we jumped in the car and headed to Boston. I thought, "Let's just head to Boston and I am sure there will be signs to tell us where to go." You know, I do like to be spontaneous! So about 2 hours later we are heading into signs do we see as we head through Boston into South Boston. With our tiny map in hand, we head up and down the streets of S. Boston. After about an hour, it becomes clear that we have NO IDEA what we are doing!! So we stopped and asked for directions (dawn breaks.... ;) ).

Lo and behold we find the USS Constitution and we are back in action! Now I would love to tell you that we had this beautiful early spring walk through Boston enjoying the Historical sites and basking in the culmination of our 2 year study of America History. And I could probably convince you of such because we do actually have nice pictures. But to tell you the was FREEZING cold in Boston with the winds, Rachel really did not feel good, the walk felt very long in the cold, we walked right by Paul Revere's house only to walk back and find it close 30 min. before, and when asked in the car, "Did you like that trip?", the kids cheerfully yelled in unison, "NO!"

Fortunately our humor was still intact and we had a blast cracking jokes about mom's spontaneous field trip alllll the way home!! LOL! Add to that a really nice supper at Appleby's and it wasn't a total loss...well until we got home and found the basement had flooded because somehow our outdoor water spicket spontaneously came on and the water backed into the basement and pumped about 50 gallons into the basement!! Well, on the bright side, now it will be easier to declutter since most things are ruined! :)

Nevertheless, here are our photos! If you forget everything I just said, you can look at the photos and think what a nice trip this would be...just don't do it in March and have a plan before you go...oh yeah, and directions too!! HAHA!! At the very least, I learned again that my kids are good sports and really love me in spite of myself!!

Here are the kids in front of the USS Constitution right before we got in trouble for letting them sit on that stuff!!


The Old North Church..."one if by land, two if by sea..." BTW, this is still a functioning church. (Robin says, "One if by land, two if by sea, I'm lost in Boston, can someone find me?" LOL!)

We liked this statue outside the church because we recognized it from the movie "National Treasure."

Paul Revere's Square. Hey Paul, nice park! Much easier to find than your house!! HAHA!

Paul himself on his trusty steed!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


I am on a shopping spree!! Well, really it's just school books... Oh it is scary thing for me to "lay the money down!" Actually the two purchases that scare me the most are History and Literature. I have always used curriculum that is heavy on the history and literature. I worry if we will be able to get through allllll the books I am buying. I want the children to know their history and be well read, but I don't need to bury them. There are other subjects they need to study as well!

The past few years I have tried to buy the first half the year's books and then buy again later when I can better gauge what we can get through. But things happen and I never have the money I need at those times. I know, I know, Dave Ramsey would be so ashamed of me!! I oughta be able to put the money away and have it there when I am ready to buy. I have tried for 3 years and it hasn't worked.

So, this year I am buying it all now and praying we can utilize it all. Well at least with Tyler's books I know the youngers will use them someday. With the youngers I could spend two years on what I bought it I need to.

Oh, here is my one blessing...Apologia's Elementary Science does not plan a full 180 days. It is more like 160 or 150. They account for field trips and unexpected events. This really tipped the scale to my choosing it! I know we have one subject, at least for my younger two that will not be a relay race!! Thanks Apologia!!!

So, if you struggle like I do you are not alone!!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Terrific Tuesday

Happy Terrific Tuesday!! It is in the afternoon in Maine as I write and the temperatures outside are a whopping 10 degrees F.! The children have no idea how fortunate they are not to have to wait outside for a bus to take them to school. We are all cozy warm inside!

I had a terrific shock when I woke up today. I stumbled out of bed at 6:45 a.m. and Christian was at his desk already hard at work on his schooling!! This is a Twombly Christian Academy first!! I have been homeschooling for 9 years and this is the FIRST time such a thing has happened. You see, yesterday Christian was lamenting over a TV program he was dying to watch at 9 a.m. but could not due to school. So I said, "Well you have the option to start your work when you get up instead of waiting for 8 a.m." Sure enough, he did!!

What a difference this made in my day. I could help him early and then help the next shift of students starting at 8!

Everyone did well and we were all done with school by 1:15 p.m. Pretty good, especially for my dear 8th grader! Now they are on a break and we will resume at 3 and do our cleaning chores. Today we will focus on the kitchen, on laundry and tidying.

Tonight I have a Homeschool Support Group meeting. I am the librarian. I have been busy checking in donated books at home. Tonight Robin will come long enough to bring in those heavy books and then load more donated books to take home for checking in. It is so much easier on my back to do them at home. Then I only need to shelve them.

Tonight we are having Yankee Pot Roast for dinner. I actually precooked it last night. So today I am just putting it in to heat up. Then I can just make the sides quickly tonight. It feels good to have a plan and have it started early!

Here are some pics of my "sweet chicks" hard at work today! Have a wonderful day, dear readers!

Science Studies

The kids are working hard these days. I have started take more pictures so that we will have plenty to choose from for their portfolios. In these, they are working on Science projects. Tyler is doing "Apologia Physical Science." Christian and Rachel are doing "Apologia Astronomy" for Elementary Students. Tyler was studying friction while the youngers were making the Solar System with balloons. Don't they just look so studious??

Friday, March 02, 2007

"Treasures" by Edgar Guest

Some folks I know, when friends drop in
To visit for awhile and chin,
Just lead them round the rooms and halls
And show them pictures on their walls,
And point to rugs and tapestries
The works of men across the seas;
Their loving cups they show with pride,
To eyes that soon are stretching wide
With wonder at the treasures rare
That have been bought and gathered there.
But when folks come to call on me,
I've no such things for them to see.
No picture on my walls is great;
I have no ancient family plate;
No tapestry of rare design
Or costly woven rugs are mine;
I have no loving cup to show,
Or strange and valued curio;
But if my treasures they would see,
I bid them softly follow me.
And then I lead them up the stairs
Through trains of cars and Teddy bears,
And to a little room we creep
Where both my youngsters lie asleep,
Close locked in one another's arms.
I let them gaze upon their charms,
I let them see the legs of brown
Curled up beneath a sleeping gown,
And whisper in my happiness:"Behold the treasures I possess."

I'm a Happy Camper!

(Photograph is a scene in Maine from It reminds me of running and playing across the rocks at the beach growing up! :) )

I am a happy camper today. I need to read this next year in January! January is such a hard month to homeschool it seems. Everyone is tired from the holidays and the end of the school year seems sooooo far away. But I need to remember that something magical always happens in February.

In February I start looking at curriculum. I start ordering for the next year. I start realizing there is only a few months left and we better work hard to get everything done in time. I replot our the rest of the school year. I think about fun projects to get everyone motivated. Sure enough, it works and we put our heads down and plow ahead!!!

This week has gone so well!! First we bought the children all a desk. All these years we have worked at the dining room table and it has been good. But it was time. They are getting older and need their own space. Well, this has really been a great change. Everyone is getting organized and working hard. This week has shown me that they really are ready for the next grade level.

Phew! January was so tough. I was very discouraged. But February was a lot better and I have very high hopes for March!! We are setting the bar higher and the children are meeting the challenge! Praise the Lord!!