Archives

Opportunities to Help Others

Helping others is one of the best things you can do to let children see the needs of others. There are organizations that you can take your children to help as well as ministries where you can send money if you are not able to go. How you go about choosing who to help can be a daunting task since the need is great.

Have a family meeting to decide who/ what comes to mind that needs help. I like to start at home and then reach out from there. Look around and see if there is a need (chores to do, a kind word or deed).  Is there an extended family member or friend that needs help with finances, an encouraging word, or yard work, babysitting, grocery shopping, etc?

If you do not have anyone with a particular need, then what about volunteering at: your church, a homeless shelter, or volunteer on the Great American Clean Up Day or contact a local agency that has a park cleanup.

Screen Shot 2018-07-16 at 8.03.11 AM

I have a worksheet to help you and your children decide what you would like to do. I think it would be great if your daughter or son is old enough to help you decide who to help or where to go.  Helping Others

Enjoy your day and post a comment if you have an idea to help others or you did something kind for someone.  A friend just wrote about someone paying for their lunch! My neighbor heard I was having a big family gathering and volunteered her folding chairs for us to use. How thoughtful is that?

~ Lisa~

Memorable Mondays

img_3031

I have been deleting photos from my phone and realized how few pictures I take! How about you? I think it might be good to have a day one a week when I just take pictures of family, friends, and events that take place around here. Oh, wait, that is Instagram! lol

Well, I don’t always remember to do that, but I do have my phone handy and it is easier for me just to download my pictures on to the computer. I will share one that I took recently with my husband when we celebrated our anniversary last week. I plan on making Memorable Mondays a regular part of my life.

What about joining me? If Monday is a bad day, pick another day, but remember to pull out your phone or camera and capture those daily moments because they all too quickly are gone. The bonus is that if you do this you will have quite a few pictures to choose when you do your portfolio review! Hey, you can even make a yearbook.

~Lisa

Road Trip Games for Families

road-tripTraveling with children in the car can sometimes be difficult and make the trip something to be dreaded instead of enjoyed.  My husband’s family lives 24 hours northwest of us and I can remember vividly one time when we had to drive there in one day. There was an emergency that made time of the essence. Our youngest son asked us on several occasions, “Are we there yet?” and once when we stopped for gas he yelled, “Yay! Daddy, you win the prize!” because he thought we had arrived. It broke my heart to tell him we were not there yet.  So, what are some activities you can do while in the car to pass the time? Almost all of these games require paper and pencil, so be sure and take them along with you.

Car/ truck tally  My mom would tell us what color and/or model of car that she wanted us to look for and we would compete against each other. The first one to spot ten wins. Our favorite was to look for Volks Wagon Beetles. 🙂

I Spy Have you ever played this game? You find something that is in the car and say, “I spy with my eye a___ and the color is _____.” Everyone in the car takes turns guessing what it is and you can determine how many guesses it will take until it is another person’s turn.

Paper and Pencil Games Bring along paper to play games such as: Tic-Tac-Toe, Hangman, Categories (explained below), Squiggles and Doodles (see below for explanation).

Scavenger Hunt Make a list of things you might see along the way. Draw pictures or help your littles ones who are not reading by calling out what is next on the list. Each person scratches off the items that they see on their list. You need a person to verify your finding so that children just check off lists and say, “I found all of them!” when they really didn’t. Here is a list of items you could use: a red car (or any other color), a barn, a body of water, a semi truck, a school bus, a restaurant sign, a gas station, a broken down car along the highway, a rest area

Categories Draw a grid on a piece of paper—a square filled with smaller squares. The number of squares can vary, depending on the attention span of your child. Down the left side, put some letters of the alphabet (for example, you could spell out a child’s name: LISA). Across the top, write categories —for example, girls’ names, boys’ names, animals, colors, cars, places. You can make this harder or easier by changing the categories. Players take turns writing in words that fit the category and start with the letter in the left-hand column. (Next to the letter L, in this example, you might have Laura, Liam, lion, lavender, Lexus and Lexington.) Give extra points for words that nobody else wrote. (Idea courtesy of Today’s Parent)

Squiggles and Doodles– This is a game that I just named! But, we always loved to play this when I was growing up. You draw a squiggle or a doodle on the page and then give it to the next person who must add another squiggle or doodle to it. Keep passing papers until you receive your original doodle. Since I grew up with artistic people I would get some pretty fun things back when we finished a round! 🙂

Password Make a list of nouns and give one item on the list to one player. This person must use one word clues to describe what the object is for the person who is guessing. For instance, the word is tree. You say: leaves, trunk, wood, bark and the person wins if they guess the word in 30 seconds. Keep on going! nouns you can use: cow, dog, cat, shoe,  beach, house, just to name a few…

I hope you enjoy these games. Have a great trip!

~Lisa

 

 

A Minute to Win It Games

I had the family over for dinner and some games afterwards. Have you ever played A Minute to Win It? I had seen these ideas on happiness is homemade . I created a spreadsheet and whoever got the best time for each activity  won that event. Our daughter-in-law was the overall winner, but I won the Cookie Face contest. 🙂 You can modify these games for your children if you would like to try them.   You can give points for completion or participation and use a smaller amount with the various games. Our special treat for the winner was a bag of Skinny Pop popcorn because everyone in my family loves popcorn!

Here is the spreadsheet I created to keep track of the games and descriptions of each of the games. If  you are interested in seeing a close-up of the document click here:  minute-to-win-it-games  I am including pictures of the fun too!

fullsizerender

 

 

fullsizerender

Hex Nut Stacker

img_2819

Cookie face

img_2823

Cookie Face- almost there!

img_2824

Stack it Up!

img_2827

Suck it Up!

img_2833

Scoop It Up

img_2836

Movin’ on Up!

img_2844

Defy Gravity

As you can see, we had a lot of fun! So, if you are looking for something fun to do with your family, why not try some of these or create your own Minute to Win It games?

~Lisa

Free Entrance Days National Parks

Biogradska_suma

With the flexibility of homeschooling we can take advantage of going on vacation in August when other families are preparing to go back to school. The National Parks are celebrating with Free Entrance Days in the National Parks! If you have a fourth grade student, there is a special offer for them to have a free annual pass. Find a park that is close to you and go and enjoy the wonderful outdoors!

Information taken from the National Parks website: The National Park Service turns 100 years old in 2016 and we want everyone to join the party! On 16 days in ’16, all National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone.

Mark your calendar for these entrance fee–free dates in 2016:

  • August 25 through 28: National Park Service Birthday
  • September 24: National Public Lands Day
  • November 11: Veterans Day

National parks are America’s Best Idea, and there are more than 400 parks available to everyone, every day. The fee-free days provide a great opportunity to visit a new place or an old favorite, especially one of the 127 national parks that normally charge an entrance fee. The others are free all of the time. Plan your visit and enjoy our country’s history and nature.

The fee waiver includes entrance fees, commercial tour fees, and transportation entrance fees. Other fees such as reservation, camping, tours, concession and fees collected by third parties are not included unless stated otherwise.

Fee-free days make parks accessible to more people. However, national parks are always economical, with entrance fees that range from $3 to $30. In addition, any fourth grade student can get a free annual pass through the Every Kid in a Park program, and active duty military and citizens with a permanent disability can also get free passes. For more information about the variety of discounted passes available, please visit the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass page.

** National Parks in Ohio are Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Wayne National Forest