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Sweet Hubby

My husband didn’t want me to spend any money for Father’s Day. He would rather us save it for a special California trip we hope to make soon.

Well that put a damper on my gift I was going to get my sweet hubby.

I came up with an un-Father’s Day gift because my hubby is just way to special for me not to get him something.
Happy Father's Day
A week before Father’s Day on one of our date nights, we went to Cracker Barrel for a good steak.

After we placed our order I surprised hubby with an un-Father’s Day gift. A Morroco Boar Brush and a sign from our favorite coffee shop. I also wrote a message on the ‘wrapping’ paper. Yes, I know, it’s a paper bag.

We enjoyed some medium rare steaks!
Date Night
I did enjoy a half of a biscuit. Biscuits  are one of my down-falls when it comes to low-carb eating. I eat one every other month or so, eeks! I need to find a good low-carb biscuit.

Lupe enjoyed his steak with mash potatoes. I don’t like him eating too many high carb foods but it was a special un-father’s day.

The children gave their dad the gift of a clean truck! Hubby so appreciated the kiddos cleaning it.
Father's Day
I went outside to check on the kids and what did I find? My beautiful mint plants plucked from the root!

Caleb had me laughing. Instead of clipping the plants he yanked them out! My poor plants, oh well, he wanted the truck to smell good for dad. Can’t get upset about that.
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Annette, Brent, and Caleb did the bulk of the cleaning. Joshua was trying to get school done (it was a Thursday), he did supervise and helped some.
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Caleb my plant puller.
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Brent helped with the baby too.
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Their dad was really happy to have a clean and nice smelling truck!
What a great gift the children gave their dad.

Schoolhouse Review: Veritas Press

Veritas Press Review
Last year Annette studied ancient history and really enjoyed it. She is currently  studying modern history but doesn’t want to forget what she has learned the previous year.
 
For the past 5 weeks she has been using Veritas Press. They have an online Self-Paced History course. Since she wanted an ancient history refresher she is using Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation.
 
There are five self-paced history courses to choose from:
 
1. Old Testament and Ancient Egypt
2. New Testament, Greece and Rome
3. Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation
4. Explorers to 1815
5. 1815 to Present
 
Each course is $199.00. Veritas Press offers a sibling discount of $100.00 off.
Veritas Press Review
Age Range: 2nd-6th grade
 
For this review we received: Veritas Press Self-Paced History: Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation and a set of Middle Ages, Ren. to Ref. Flashcards.
 
The flashcards and a Bible are highly recommended for the Veritas Press Self-Paced History program.
 
The flashcards has a picture and title of one of the 32 major events.
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On the back is all the information for the child to study. Including resources on the bottom of the card. This is great for those who like to dig deeper. The resources are not included but will need to be purchased separately.  
 
We actually have many of the extra books but we chose not to do the extra reading which is optional.
 
My daughter Annette is above the recommended age but really wanted to give the Self-Paced History a try. She has been using it for five weeks and really enjoys it. She looks forward to the lessons.
 
I know the reason she likes Veritas Press Self Paced History course is the way it’s presented.
 
Each lesson has two monks, Aiden and Vassel. 
Veritas Press 1 
The monks are teaching the children through conversation making learning fun. They are not lecturing but talking to each other and the student.
 
Aiden and Vassel are entertaining while teaching the struggles and ‘growing up’ of the Christian church.
 
The two monks take your child on a 32 week journey of learning (or longer if you stretch it out). Each event has five lessons for a total of 160. Of course you can go at your own pace if five lessons are too much but your children will probably ask to complete a lesson.
 
Every week there is map work. The student labels the map by dragging and dropping the names in the correct place.
Veritas Press map work
 
A history memory song.
I must admit I really thought my daughter was not going to like the song because it’s long and the voice is high.
Memory Song
You know what? Annette really liked it. She sang along everyday without complaint. I also thought to myself; she is not going to remember such a long song. But again, I was wrong. She hasn’t completely memorized it but she is on her way.
 
I have heard her tell me more than once that the song has helped her with remembering the order of events.
 
Another way that Veritas Press is very successful with having the child learn and retain the information is through games.
fun games
Before they can play the game the student has to answer questions. The more they get correct the more time they have to play the game. For incorrect answers they get time taken away.
 
There are many more activities like drag and drop, crossword puzzles, choose the picture and jigsaw puzzles.
Activities
Although the activities seem simple and one may wonder if they are really needed in the course. I have found that the activities are a good way to reinforce what Aiden and Vassel are teaching. It’s another way to help the child retain and memorize the information presented.
 
I was very pleased with all the dates and details Annette is remembering. She has many tools to help her with using Veritas Press Self-Paced History. The songs, activities, the conversation between the monks, mapwork, games, fill in the blanks, and even a little spelling is worked into the program.
 
This program is great for the visual learner (like me) it keeps the child’s attention and well prepared for the tests that are taken every fifth lesson. Throughout the week the the child is reviewing previous information as well as learning new information in a way that is not overwhelming or giving the child brain overload.
 
Each lesson is about 20-30 minutes depending on how long it takes to answer questions and such.
 
Your child will always know how far along they are in the lessons. At the bottom left corner there are numbers that shows which slide they are currently on.
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If something comes up that your child cannot complete the lesson in one sitting, they can exit the lesson and resume where they left off later.
 
Veritas Press Self-Paced History programs are to be completed in order. There is no skipping lessons which is a good thing because you don’t want your child to miss anything.
 
If the student needs a refresher from a previous lesson they can simply re-watch a lesson.
 
All virtual worksheets and test are corrected immediately. Veritas Press does require that the children are not to use any notes or the flashcards while taking the test. In other words, it’s not an open book test.
 
I believe by having the children not use any helps during the test it forces the child to really pat attention to the lessons and study their flashcards.
 
There is also a parent dashboard but I usually just pull up Annette’s and check to see where she’s at.
 
How did we use the Self-Paced History program and what did we think?
Annette used this 5 days during the school week. If she missed a day she was happy to make it up over the weekend. It really doesn’t feel like a school subject when one loves history and Veritas Press!
 
As I’ve mentioned throughout my review, Annette enjoyed using this program. She scored 90% and above on her test. She mentioned how she really liked all the reviewing that goes on in this program. She hears the dates over and over and also through the activities and games. They thoroughly equipped her with the knowledge she needed for the test. She finds that she now knows and remembers when certain events happened and in what order.
 
Before she knew about the events but wasn’t sure which came first.
 
Annette was older than the recommended age and we used it as a supplement rather than her main history program. If I were using this as her only history course then I would have required her to do some of the extra reading.
 
There are two levels to choose from.
 
Veritas Press
Since this was a supplement she chose “Finish Lesson” rather then moving onto Level 2 which provided pages of an optional book.
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Sometimes their was no required book reading but a few paragraphs that can be read from the computer screen.image
Annette has expressed that she would love to use the next few levels as well. So if you are pressed for time (what homeschooling mom isn’t!) and/or just need a break from teaching history you might want to think about giving Veritas Press Self-Paced History a try.

You can click on the banner below to read more reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew.
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Crew Disclaimer

Our First 16th Birthday

Joshua turned 16 years old in May!!!!

We like to make their birthday month special and do little things for the special birthday person throughout the birthday week.

Grandma and Grandpa Lupe always remember their birthdays and gives them a call.

The Day of his birthday.

Here is Joshua talking to his grandparents.
Joshua’s first day as a 16 year old.
Don’t you just love all our clutter?!?! Quite embarrassing.

Auntie bought him a Mocha Java Frapp.
Birthday boy
I bought him a cd of the Newsboys. He’s been wanting more of a variety of music.
I let him open one gift which was the Newsboys CD. The rest of his gifts had to wait for his birthday party.

A few weekends later we had 1 birthday party. Lance calls what we did a ‘split’ birthday. Meaning he had one birthday with his family ( grandpa, auntie and cousins, that live here in TX) and another birthday with his friends.

For his 1st birthday with family we ordered some pizzas and had cake and ice cream.
16th birthday
Joshua made his own cakes. He has been making his own cakes since he was, uh, yeah, for over 6 years now.
Birthday 2
His tank cake. I think it came out pretty good don’t you?
Cake and Ice Cream
Gifts he received
Gifts 1
Below Joshua is showing what was in that tube-like package!
gift 2
You can purchase one too at JM Cremps.
gift 3
He received some cards.
More gifts
Joshua loves Cream of Wheat but it always disappears so fast at our house, so I thought I’d give him is very own box.
Uncle Si
Ethan thought it was so funny that he gave America’s favorite Uncle to Josh.
More gifts from Mom & Dad.
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And the cake on fire.
We love you
More Party Time
(2nd part of the ‘split’ birthday Smile)
Birthday Party
I don’t really have too many pictures to post. I don't like to post pictures of children that aren't mine without the parents permission.

He made his cake again.
Battleship Cake

Moving Beyond the Page School

Yesterday’s activity: the kiddos had to pack a Haversack. They had to imagine that they were a soldier packing.
Moving Beyond the Page
They included their hardtack and molasses cookies that they had made the day before.
Here is Brent eating his hardtack.
Moving Beyond the Page L-5
I had them wear and/or take their Haversack with them all day. I thought this would kind of give them an idea of how much the Civil War soldiers had to carry. At the end of the day I asked them what they thought about carrying everything with them.

They summed it up with one word, “Heavy!”.
MBTP
The younger boys wanted to join in the soldier fun as well.

I know war is not fun and I have talked to the boys about the realities of war. Together the children and I have watched documentaries as well as reenactments.
Moving Beyond the Page Lesson 5
Here the boys at a start of a battle.
Moving Beyond the Page
Moving Beyond the Page
Moving Beyond the Page
Here’s a real treat for the soldiers: Molasses Ginger Cookies.
Moving Beyond the Page
As you can see the boys are really enjoying Moving Beyond the Page: Slavery and the Civil War unit.

Moving Beyond the Page School

This week Caleb and Brent started Moving Beyond the Page, lesson 5 of Slavery and the Civil War social studied unit.

Monday the boys made ink with berries, yesterday they had to write a letter ‘home’ using their berry ink.
Moving Beyond the Page
I had them write out in the hot weather so they could get a feel of what the soldiers had to endure.

Brent found a spot in Joshua’s fort. The boys use to have a big feather that they found on a hike one year but were unable to find it. Annette had a calligraphy pen that the boys borrowed.

We couldn’t figure out how to use it. We tried but in the end the boys used their pencils.

Today’s activity the boys are to make Molasses Ginger Cookies.
Moving Beyond the Page
This was a special treat for the soldiers. Usually they ate hardtack which the boys will make tomorrow.
Moving Beyond the Page
Caleb making brown sugar for the Molasses Cookies.

Even though the boys have to read and answer questions, they are really enjoying this unit. Especially with the fun activities (like making cookies!).

I like that the boys are having to read more. At first I was going to do most of the reading like I did with the Language Arts unit: Bull Run, but I thought this would be a good opportunity for them to practice their reading.

The boys also completed:
*Rod and Staff English
*Writing & Rhetoric
*All About Reading
*Spelling You See
*CTC Math

Caleb completed lesson 18 of Math-U-See Zeta.
Ethan School
English Lessons Through Literature we only completed half the reading. I am reading the story of Beauty and the Beast. It’s a bit long so I’ll finish reading it tomorrow and finish the lesson.

Ethan did his first Rod and Staff reading assignment which was a poem and easy enough. Hopefully this will be the practice he needs to be a good reader!
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