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Monday, August 14, 2017

Check out Colony House

Hey, so I've been checking out a band Called Colony House. I thought you'd like to check them out, too. Bassist Parke Cotrell was homeschooled through 8th grade.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

I've Got a Secret!

I just got some exciting news! I can't wait to tell you, but it will have to wait. Now that I am only four years out from finishing this homeschool gig, I am looking to change up direction a little bit. I don't plan to completely lose my homeschool focus, but I do plan to change up a few things. Stay tuned!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Oh my goodness! Tomorrow is August!


I don't know about you, but I think it's crazy how quickly the summer is going! I mean, I know it happens every year, and every year I try to brace myself for it, but somehow it still amazes me how fast the time flies!

It seems like school starts and then suddenly it's fall, Halloween comes, then Thanksgiving, then Christmas, then it's a new year. I feel like this one just got started!

I have a confession to make. I haven't even started to think about the new school year. I mean, this is my 22nd year, so I'm not exactly a noob or anything, but I might want to get going on that. Oh, and I still haven't done my summer cleaning. I always look forward to summer so I can catch up on housework, and I always fail. We've been on vacation too much this summer. Two one-week vacations are like six weeks of lost work time. Yes, it takes me a whole week to get ready to leave and another to recover. I'm seriously probably the only person to complain about too much vacation. LOL

We keep talking about moving. I really dread the thought. I mean, if packing for vacation seems overwhelming, packing up a whole house really seems overwhelming. I guess it will force me to declutter and get rid of stuff, so maybe I'll just put it all off until then. LOL

So, anyway, even though I never follow through, I am going to post my August goals.

Here they are:

1. Plan for school. (I kinda have to do this one!)
2. Organize school stuff and shelves.
3. Love myself anyway, even though I don't get much done. LOL

There ya go! That sounds doable. I'd love to hear anyone else's grand plans.

Have a great rest of the summer!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

New Review! Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit

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Review Crew

ACTÍVA Products

Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit

About the product/service: As part of the Homeschool Review Crew, I received a free Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit from ACTÍVA Products. This is actually a paper mache craft kit that uses Rigid Wrap rather than newspaper and CelluClay instead of that flour and water goop you've probably used in the past. It also comes with access to a free e-book with additional fun projects to try. This kit is for smaller projects, but once you try it there are all kinds of clay materials that you can buy.(They sell both air dry and kiln dry clays.) The possibilities are endless.  Oh, and it can be used for younger kids for sure, but even advanced artists will enjoy working with this kit. 

Check out the e-book of project ideas:  ACTÍVA Products' Favorite Sculpture KIDS CRAFTS. 

The project kit includes:
  • 2 - 4" rolls of Rigid Wrap
  • 8 oz. of CelluClay
  • Complete instructions for 12 projects

What are the pros of this product?
  • There isn't a lot of prep involved.
  • It's quite easy to use.
  • You can do just about anything with it, from simple to very complex.
  • It's great for all ages and skill levels.
  • It's fun!
  • Like all ACTÍVA Products, the Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Clay is 100% Wheat & Gluten Free, Non-Toxic & Non-Carcinogenic. 

What's not to like?
I really couldn't think of a con. Even the price is reasonable!

The Crazy Mom take:

I gave this kit to my 16-year-old daughter, Bear, to try. She chose to make the small candy dish. I'm always excited to try any kind of art projects. It's especially nice when there isn't a lot of prep involved. I really like it when we get to review things like this during summer when we have a little more time on our hands. 

First, I think it was a bit easier to get started with this project than it is with regular paper mache. The rigid wrap is really cool because the paste is already in the wrap. (Technically, it's plaster coated gauze.) Bear was making a bowl, so to do that she took a bowl that we already owned, wrapped it in plastic wrap, and then used that as a cast. (Oh boy, that's that's the right word, I hope.) Anyway, she took strips of the wrap and then layered it over the outside of the bowl. When she wet it, it "activated" the clay and she was able to mold it around the bowl. I hope I am making sense here! It's really quite a simple process. LOL Anyway, after it dried long enough, she was able to remove the original bowl and plastic wrap and she was left with a little candy bowl! She simply painted it a solid blue and isn't sure if she actually wants to add more detail, but it's really awesome how simple it was to make.Very cool, indeed. 

It's been quite hectic around here with all the vacationing we've been doing. We've had to really get creative to fit in all the review products around here. This is one of those reviews that I'd have liked to do myself, but I just didn't have the time. However, we have plenty of materials left, so I just might come up with an idea of my own! I would recommend this product to anyone. 

What's the bottom line? $11.90

I am going to give  Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit 5 out of 5 smileys!!! :)  :)  :)  :)  :)  

Check it out!

Social Media Links: 

See what my fellow TOS Crew members have to say @ 

Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit {ACTÍVA Products Reviews}

*The Smiley System:

:) I can't really recommend this product.

:)  :) I doubt this product would be helpful to many people.

:)  :)  :) This is a good product, but it isn't right for everyone.

:)  :)  :)  :) Most homeschool moms will find this useful.

:)  :)  :)  :)  :) This is great, and I would recommend it to anyone!!!

Crew Disclaimer

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Just a Quick Heads Up About Kevin Max's new Album: Serve Somebody

I'm so excited that Kevin Max has a new album out. It's called Serve Somebody. Remind you of a song by Bob Dylan? Well, it should, because Kevin covers the song on this album, twice actually, along with six other tracks by a diverse range of artists including U2, Rich Mullins, and Larry Norman.

Who is Kevin Max? Well, first, how could you not know? lol He's one of the three amazingly talented guys who made up dc Talk, only the greatest Christian music trio ever. (I might be a little biased.) Anyway, if you've heard the band at all, you'll probably remember one voice that stood out. That guy, the one with all that amazing vibrato, is the one and only Kevin Max. Oh, and he also happens to be a homeschool dad. :)

Now, I'm just giving a heads up here. I haven't even heard the whole album yet, though I've heard bits and pieces. I must say, as a huge fan of early U2, he does incredible justice to Pride (In the Name of Love.) Everything else sounds great, too. I mean, it's Kevin Max, ya'll. 

Of course, you can check it out just about anywhere, so do yourself a favor and do so! I plan to buy it later today, but I wanted to get this post out ASAP.

Get it pretty much anywhere you buy or listen to music. Find it on iTunes here

Happy Listening!

Crazy Mom :) 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Movie and Book Review! The Trust Fund and Love Was Near

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Review Crew

Mapelle Films

Trust Fund Movie

Love Was Near Book

About the product/service: As part of the Homeschool Review Crew, I received a free copy of the movie Trust Fund and a copy of the book Love Was Near from Mapelle Films so we could check them out and let you know what we think.

The movie is based on the story of the prodigal son from the Bible, but in this case, the story is contemporary and the prodigal is a daughter. A young girl discovers she has been left millions, but her father hasn't told her. She finds a way to transfer the money into her own account and takes off to Italy. Of course, things go wrong. The book was inspired by the movie. Watch the movie trailer here

What are the pros of this product?

Well, y'all know how much I like to promote homeschooling and homeschoolers. The filmmaker behind this movie, Isaac Alongi, was homeschooled in grades 1-12. I think that is totally cool. His wife, Sandra, wrote and directed the film. He credits homeschooling for giving him the time to pursue his dreams of becoming a photographer and filmmaker. Read about Isaac here

This is a well-done movie. The film quality itself is good. (Ugh, so many Chrisitan movies as so low-budget that the quality just suffers.) Also, the music score is good, and the story is well-written. It's quality work. Now, honestly, I'd say it was more like a TV movie than something you'd see in a theater, but it was definitely done well. 

I love the fact that there are actually good Christian movies out there that I can watch without feeling like I am compromising my faith. It's better yet when the film actually teaches biblical truth. 

Love Was Near, as I stated above, is based on the movie. It actually goes back and gives a lot of the back story that isn't in the film. It's more than just a novel, however. It's written from the perspective of Reese, the main character, in the for of a diary.It actually has questions after each chapter and is almost more like a devotional. In other words, the questions aren't about characters, settings, or points in the plot, but they are designed to get you thinking about the story and relating it to your own life. I have never seen a movie and book combination set up quite like this. I liked it!

What's not to like? I really found nothing objectionable in the movie. My daughter had no issues with the book. She liked the way it was set up and she enjoyed getting more of the story after watching the movie. 

The Crazy Mom take:
I watched this movie with my 16-year-old daughter, Bear. It's well done enough, that even my teenage boys stopped to check it out as they walked through the living room. I liked that it was the prodigal son story, but with a twist. I've actually seen several films based on the story, but this is the best I've seen. While it is based on the parable, it is unique enough that you don't end up knowing every point in the plot ahead of time. 

I would recommend Trust Fund to anyone, and since it's not really preachy, it's something you could easily watch with unsaved friends without them feeling like you're "trying to shove your religion down their throats." That being said, it could easily be used as a springboard for a discussion of God's love for us and His willingness to forgive us now matter how far we stray.  

What's the bottom line?
Trust Fund $14.99
Love Was Near $12.99

I am going to give The Trust Fund 5 out of 5 hearts!!! <3 font="">💜💜💜💜💜

I am going to give Love Was Near 5 out of 5 hearts!!! <3 font="" nbsp="">💜💜💜💜💜

Check it out!

Social Media Links:
See what my fellow TOS Crew members have to say @

Trust Fund Movie {Mapelle Films Reviews}

Crew Disclaimer

Monday, July 10, 2017

New Goals Update

I just thought I'd pop on here for a quick second to let you all who are dying to know how my laundry is coming along, that I am making some real progress! So now I can take all that clean laundry, pack it into our motor home, and then bring it all back dirty in a week! Oh, such joy. LOL On the bright side, packing usually takes much longer because we have to make sure we have enough clean clothes. At least this time it should go a little better. My hope is that we can stay somewhere that has a place to do laundry. That makes a huge difference in how behind we are when we get home.

I hope everyone is making and keeping some summer goals!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

New Review! Lightening Lit and Comp from Hewitt Homeschool!

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Review Crew

Hewitt Homeschooling

 Lightning Literature and Composition Pack
British: Early to Mid 19th Century

About the product/service: As part of the Homeschool Review Crew, I received a free copy of the Lightning Literature and Composition Pack
British: Early to Mid 19th Century by Michael G. Gaunt from Hewitt Homeschooling so that we can use it in our homeschool and let you know what we think. This pack normally contains a study guide, a teacher's guide, and the four books you or your student will need to finish the course. (Reviewers did not receive the four books.) 

This curriculum is intended for students in grades 10-12. (Not sure why the info below says 9-12, but it does say 10-12 on the website.) There is an introduction followed by four units with two lessons in each unit. Each lesson has four parts: an introduction, comprehension questions, literary lessons, and writing exercises. The teacher's guide also includes an introduction, grading tips, sample schedules for both one semester and a year, answers to the comprehension questions, and the writing assignments. The main book, as stated below, is perfect bound (kind of a strange description, and honestly new to me!) but the teacher's guide is simply a stapled stack of copy paper. The books are paperback. According to the website, these books are more or less mid-range in difficulty. They are more challenging than, for example, the American Literature packs, but not quite as challenging as others such as the Shakespear packs. 

The four books studied in this pack are:
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Charlotte Bronte by Jane Eyre 

There are also some other texts and poetry included in the guide.

Grade Level: 9-12
Author: Michael G. Gaunt
Publisher: Hewitt Homeschooling Resources
Publish Date: 2011, 3rd Edition
Binding: Perfect Bound
Dimensions: 8 1/2 by 11 inches
Number of Pages: 254
Item ID: 3442 A4A  ISBN: 978-1-57896-242-6

What are the pros of this product? I have to be honest and say that I don't really have a lot of experience with this type of curriculum, but it seems quite comprehensive to me. I like that it is so thorough and well organized. The book selections, as well as the selections that are printed in the book, seem to be rather well-rounded. I have read many books out loud to my children, and we have informally discussed them, but we really haven't done a lot of the more formal literature study. This seems like the perfect book for a family like ours.

What's not to like? I really like the teacher's guide, but I know that for someone like me, I'd prefer an actual book as opposed to a stapled pack of paper. It won't hold up as long as a book around here for sure! LOL

The Crazy Mom take: I am having my daughter, Bear, go through this curriculum. She's an avid reader, though she isn't much into studying books as she prefers to read for pleasure. This was actually addressed in the introduction as the author realizes that even he sometimes would rather read for pleasure than to study or, in his case, create a study. Bear is also not a fan of poetry or writing, but she is a good kid and always eager to help with a review.

So far, she feels this is a good curriculum. Would she do it for fun? No. However, she doesn't mind doing it for school and when fall comes, she will pick this back up and do it for credit. We'll continue to take it slowly, and will follow the year schedule. We didn't get through as much as we'd have liked to during the review period as she was gone for a week to camp and then I was gone a few days, but she did at least finish the introduction and most of the first unit, and she read all of Pride and Prejudice. She definitely preferred the Pride and Prejudice lesson better than the first lesson which focused on the poetry of William Blake because, as I said earlier, she prefers prose to poetry. 

I read through the introduction and found it very informative as it gives a brief overview of the basics of literature and writing. I also found the teacher's guide quite helpful and the grading helps are great. I consider myself a writer, but it's never been easy for me to critique or grade another's work beyond just correcting grammar and spelling. I mean, I know good writing when I read it, but it's nice to be able to really break it down and give more specific feedback. 

All in all, I feel this is a great curriculum and I look forward to picking it back up in the fall!

What's the bottom line? $53.73

I am going to give Lightning Literature and Composition Pack
British: Early to Mid 19th Century 5 out of 5 smileys!!! :) :) :) :) :) 

Check it out!

Social Media Links:

See what my fellow TOS Crew members have to say @

Hewitt Homeschooling {Reviews}

*The Smiley System:

:) I can't really recommend this product.

:)  :) I doubt this product would be helpful to many people.

:)  :)  :) This is a good product, but it isn't right for everyone.

:)  :)  :)  :) Most homeschool moms will find this useful.

:)  :)  :)  :)  :) This is great, and I would recommend it to anyone!!!

Crew Disclaimer

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Crazy Mom Strikes Again

I never cease to amaze myself.

So, the other day I went into the laundry room to switch over the load and start another. I tried to start the dryer and it wouldn't turn on. We've had some trouble with it, and I wasn't too happy because it wasn't a great time for it to break down, I mean, as if there ever is a great time for it to break down, right? I checked the plug, and I checked the fuse, and it all seemed good. Then I noticed that the door is wide open! I kid you not. LOL So, I closed the door and, wouldn't you know, it worked!

Then I went over to the washer and realized I hadn't even finished taking all the wet clothes out! No wonder I hadn't shut the dryer door. Ugh. I don't even know how I got distracted in the middle of that process, but I did. I guess I will never change. So I opened the door to the dryer back up and put in rest of the clothes. Of course, I shut it this time!

Sometimes I wonder how I have ever gotten this far in life. LOL

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

More Goals

I know I keep writing about goals and never seem to meet them. LOL I am here, once again, to try to make another list of goals and actually keep them. I actually still haven't done anything on my original list! It's terrible! I did, however, just make a huge dent in the laundry. I did a ton before vacation and I'm hoping to actually get caught up by the end of next week. You, know, I think that's enough of a goal. I'll stop there!

Goal list:
1. Catch up with laundry

Okay, that's it! LOL

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