March 29, 2011

Sarah's Birthday #2

Another sweet memory for us was being able to celebrate Sarah's second birthday with my family in Puerto Rico. My sister Lizzy baked her a super cake with Dora decorations and Sarah was super happy all the time. All the cousins were there too. A few months later, Sarah still mentions her birthday party and cake from time to time. ;-)

March 28, 2011

...and here are the pictures....

You can click on the screen to see the slideshow...these are pictures of my family: mom, dad, siblings, grandma, aunts and all the grandchildren. c

March 27, 2011

Christmas in Puerto Rico

This past Christmas, our family returned to Puerto Rico to spend 27 days with my family. It was a very special time for all of us.

It had been almost 3 years since last time we were there. This was Sarah's very first time to meet her aunts and uncles, cousins and grandpa.

It had been also 9 years since the last time I spent Christmas time in my hometown.

We made so many wonderful memories in this trip. Christmas in Puerto Rico is LONG and full of joy and laughter. We start festivities after Thanksgiving and end in January 6 (Epiphany or "Three Kings Day").

We spent our time in the island, going from house to house, eating lots of great food and having long chats with everyone. We also got to spend lots of time at the beach (more on that later).

For the kids, it was a great time to get to know their relatives better. For Brad and I it was a time away from the every day routine and get an extended time away with no distractions. And for me, it was a time to re-connect with my family and my heritage.

Some pictures of our family time there...

March 23, 2011

History Pockets: Life in Plymouth

Back in November, we purchased our very first History Pockets by Evan-Moor. We have enjoyed many of their resources before but never tried the "pockets". Now I can't wait to do another with the boys!
If you are not familiar with their materials check out their website.
We worked on Life in Plymouth the week before Thanksgiving. I never got around posting some pictures so here are some. The file has instructions on how to make your own pockets with construction paper and yarn but I decided to purchase these 8 pocket folders from Walmart and it worked perfect.

Each of the 8 pockets had a learning theme: the voyage, challenges in the new world, building a village, homes, jobs, schooling, clothing, lesson learned from them.
Each day includes words to know, a small booklet with information and fun activities to enhance the learning. Here's a picture of a "keep room" one of the boys made.

Some of the many fun booklets we made.

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March 21, 2011

Stylish Blogger Awards

My blog has received an award for "Stylish Blogger". How exciting!

Thank you, Marcy!

She is the super homeschool mom who gave me the award and you can read about her homeschooling adventures with her son Ben over at Ben and Me.

In order to receive the awards I must....

#1 Thank the person who gave it to me and link back to her blog. (check)

#2 Share 7 things about me. (just 7?....I'll try to keep it short)

#3 Award 15 recently discovered great bloggers (you gotta pass the love, right?)

#4 Contact them and tell them about the award.

Seven Things About Me

Well, since I have many new followers this will give you a chance to get to know me.

1. I was born in Puerto Rico, the youngest in my family. Moved to Chicago at 19. And then to Houston area almost 3 years ago. Since I was a little girl, I wanted to come to the "mainland" USA to do ministry here. Never thought I would end up making it a permanent residence.

2. I love working with children. Besides homeschooling my children, I teach music (choir) for preschoolers at church and also teach two music classes at our homeschooling co-op.

3. Before staying at home full time I worked with corporate housing and real estate development. I worked as a resident liaison and got to meet and interact with people from all over the world on a daily basis. It was a fun job and very unique opportunity to learn about other cultures while helping families assimilate to the American lifestyle.

4. At church, I have the privilege to lead worship for our Sunday services and women's events from time to time. It is a joy and very humbling experience to serve the Lord this way. And to see the hearts of His body turning toward Him in adoration. It always makes me think of heaven and the multitude of people that will gather there around the throne of Jesus to worship Him forever. It is also a great accountability tool. When your gifts are public, your character must follow along.

5. I love laughter! We have a lot of fun around our home and with family and friends. I try not to take life too seriously, unless it has eternal consequences. ;-)

6. I love cooking and learning to make new dishes. Loved trying new cuisines too. Unfortunately, I have not done very good at self-control when it comes to eating the last 3 years. So I've asked a few friends to keep me accountable and I'm praying this will be the year I go back to healthier lifestyle and loose 25 pounds by August!

7. I have a list of 8-9 "dream jobs". All self-employed big ideas. I hope at least one of them comes true one day. :)

And now for the 15 new recipients of this award....

Reaping a Harvest

The Closet Therapist

Sure Waters

Light, Liberty and Learning

Life at Rossmont

Changing of the Green Leaves

A Day in the Life of the Brown's

Training Hearts at Home

The Newsome Family

My Life as a Flores

Homeschooling on a Wing and a Prayer

Homeschooling in a Bilingual Home

Sweet Floweret

My Life on a Taffy Pull

Adventures of Noah J and Little Wy

Mom wants to blog...

We've been so busy growing, enjoying suburban life in Texas, vacationing, playing and having fun that mom has forgotten all about her blog. But this week she is on a mission to put you all up to speed on the last 4 MONTHS!

What can we say?....we keep her quite busy. But now that sister has returned to a normal nap schedule and the big brothers enjoy having a reading quite time...blogging is back!!!

For's us being silly..... :)

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March 20, 2011

Kite Capers (DNG Unit Review)

Yesterday we spent an entire afternoon flying kites with the boys. See my happy five year old? He just didn't want the kite fun to end. The boys already loved flying kites but this time around it was a little different because......
...we spent an entire week learning with Download N Go's Kite Capers!
If you read my blog, you know we just LOVE these units. Here are some reasons why....
  • Teacher/parent friendly format and instructions
  • Beautiful illustration and images that engage the children
  • Fun learning starting points that integrate ALL subjects
  • Great to use with multiple students and ages (K-4th grade)
  • Ready to download and print right after purchase
  • All the research work is done for you. The unit has an extensive list of activites, book lists, recipes, links to the internet for information pages, videos, etc. that are age appropiate.
  • Two formats to record and asses your child's learning: lapbook components you can add to a folder or notebook pages.
  • Learning is so much fun with these units!!!

The main learning objectives for Kite Capers are:

Day 1: What is a Kite?

Day 2: The History of Kite

Day 3: Kite People and Places

Day 4: Science Secrets of Kites

Day 5: Goodies and Gadgets of Kites

Here are some sample pages from our notebooks (trying to fix the crooked ones!). The sample pages show the parts of a kite, types of kites, kite design challenge (there was a daily challenge and the boys looked forward to it every time!), copywork for the Bible and biography page (we studied various famous people who used kites in their experiments).

This hands-on unit can be purchased by visiting Amanda Bennett's store. And the price for Kite Capers is only $7.95! You can also check out more sample pages at Download N Go's website.

To read what other members of the DNG Review Team thought about Kite Capers, check out the blog tour over at DNG's Blog.

Disclaimer: I was given a free copy of this unit for the purpose of trying at home and writing an honest review. No other compensation was received.