Unapologetically Mom

Unpolished Parenting from a Straightforward Mom

September 2017 Resource Roundup (Pirate Themed!)

 

International Talk Like a Pirate Day is September 19th so this month’s resource roundup is Pirate Themed!  These resources are free for you to help you catch pirate fever in your homeschool, or just have some fun learning something new with the kids. So raise the Jolly Roger, strap on that eye patch, and have fun checking out these awesome links!

 

Talk Like a Pirate - Today I Found Out

Preschool Pirate Pack - Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk

Preschool Pirate Pack - Over the Big Moon

Color and Write Pirate Journaling Pages - Ben and Me

 

Color by Sight Word Pirate Activity Pages - A Dab of Glue Will Do

 

Pirate Themed Brain Breaks and Yoga - Pink Oatmeal

 

Most Comprehensive Collection of Pirate and Nautical Information on the Web - The Pirate King

 

Pirate Unit Study - David Tomlin - Scholastic

 

Island Conquer Area & Perimeter Math Game - Corkboard Connections

 

Pirate Literacy - Cassidy’s Kind of Classroom

 

A Bad Case of Mommy Brain

Some days we moms are the heroes of our little castles.  You rocked both kid’s doctor appointments while wearing pants made of something other than a jersey knit and STILL managed to get the lawn mowed while dinner chugged away in the crockpot.  And bathtime?  Not only did all the kids get their baths before bed, but the dog too (and you didn’t even have to throw it in with the kids)!  You owned the day like you had every Ryan Gosling meme smoothly cheering you on.  You were awesome!

Frustratingly, not every day can go so smoothly.  

There are the average days when your child tells you they have no clothes to wear, only for you to realize that they put the clothes you spent 2 hours folding (while your toddler...helped), straight back into the laundry after the stack was knocked off the dresser in the Great Lincoln Log Debacle of 2017.  Or when you take them to buy some new pants, only to realize they aren’t wearing any underwear.  When questioned about this odd fashion choice, you find out that all their underwear have mysteriously vanished: possibly stolen by two-toed extra terrestrials who use them as foot warmers.

Then there are THOSE days.  You know what I mean.  The days that by the end, you are nothing but a mummified shell of a human trying to decide whether to ensconce yourself on the couch with an entire bottle of wine (and you don’t even drink), or burrow under your blankets and call it quits; the days where you have a serious case of Mommy Brain.

 

I came down with a serious case of Mommy Brain the other day.  It was rough.  As with most cases, it started with mild confusion: did I really just put the milk in the cereal cabinet?  It then quickly escalated to nearly destroying a pan when I forgot I set water on to boil, and culminated in the most frustrating and embarrassing phone call I’ve had in a long time.  

I had apparently forgotten to write down the date for my daughter’s next doctor appointment and the little card the office gave me six months ago had long since decided to walk its own path to who knows where.  I knew it should be coming up soon though, so I called the doctor’s office to get the time and date.  

The receptionist was in a huge rush, but I understand, it’s a big multi-doctor office, and she’s probably fielding calls from other moms who can’t remember to write things down.  She asks me for my child’s birth date to confirm the name.  I tell her.  A moment later she tells me that is incorrect. No such child exists. Oh no.  I give her another date.  Still wrong!  I’m starting to panic, how can I forget my own child's birthday?  

The receptionist lets me know she’s going to put me on hold.  Ok then, she clearly thinks I’m a crazy person.  So I take a deep breath and try to calm down to the sounds of smooth jazz clearly being played by a tape recorder someone recorded onto a voicemail system.  I can do this.

 

Just as the receptionist comes back on the line, the little one whose birthday is in question starts pulling on my arm trying to get on the phone.  She wants to say hi to Daddy.  I try to tell her that it’s not Daddy on the phone.  The person actually on the phone would like to know if I have the birth date yet.  At that moment, there is a loud crash as a tower of some 15 play-doh containers comes crashing down in the dining area, and I give the wrong date AGAIN!  Now the receptionist is starting to get angry frustrated.  

By this point, I am apologizing profusely and trying to grab play-doh jars before the dog can run off with one.  I practically shout the birth date at her.  She looks it up and gives me the appointment date and time.  I make her repeat twice while I write it down.  I don’t think anyone has ever said, “Have a nice day” to me that fast before.  She disconnected that call faster than Han Solo made the Kessel Run.

By the time my husband got home that evening I was nearly in tears holding a bag of chicken breasts that I had forgotten to set out to thaw for dinner.  Let’s just say we had pizza for dinner and leave it at that.

 

Positive takeaway?  Not every day is like that one.  That’s it.  There’s no secret to getting through the rough Mommy Brain days of motherhood.  Say a prayer, take a deep breath, and hold out until tomorrow.  Just like the days when you rock the mom-thing, you’ve got this day too.  



August 2017 Resource Roundup

Okay moms and dads: we all know what time of year it is.  Children are mourning the end of summer vacation or maybe they've already started back to school like mine.  Teachers are meeting their new students at open house night and homeschooling moms are unboxing curriculum and putting holds on library books like they're going to run out.  

 

So whether your kids are headed back to the classroom, or opening their books at the kitchen table, there are numerous resources available to make the most of your school and family time. 

This month I rounded up 10 FREE resources to help make this school year more interesting and fun.

 

First Day of School Printable - Paper Trail Design

In the Kitchen Printable Pack - Proverbial Homemaker

Patriotic Mazes - The Crafty Classroom

Preschool Money Maze - Creative Homeschool

Star Wars Preschool Pack - Creative Homeschool

Learning State Capitals 10 at a Time - Ridgetop Farm and Garden

    Week 1Week 2Week 3Week 4

Star Wars Math: Addition and Multiplication Printable Pack - Royal, Baloo, and Logi-Bear Too!

Dictionary Detectives Worksheets - 123 Homeschool 4 Me

Animal Classification Lapbook - Life of a Homeschool Mom

 My Book Report Poster - Squarehead Teachers

Our Homeschool Curriculum Choices for the 2017-2018 School Year

Like many homeschooling parents, I spend hours browsing curriculum websites, reviews, and discussing different learning styles and teaching styles with my fellow homeschoolers. I’m always interested in hearing what other families are using or trying out for the first time.

In our homeschool, we lean towards a mostly traditional education with a lot of wiggle room. Having a lesson by lesson workbook works well for my daughter when it comes to language, math, and spelling; but when it comes to history and science, she found textbooks and workbooks to be frustrating and tedious. A few years ago someone suggested I look into lap booking and living books for those subjects. It took some time and research, but we have managed to find a good balance of reading, researching, and building lap books, combined with experiments, projects, and field trips that keep her engaged in learning without feeling monotonous.

 

Here are our curriculum choices for the 2017-2018 4th grade school year:

 

For Language Arts, we are using ABeka Language A. We've been using ABeka since Kindergarten and I really like their phonics based approach to language.

 

I decided to make a change for Spelling this year so we are giving Spelling Workout a shot. Spelling is probably my daughter's least favorite subject so we also subscribed to SpellingCity.com for extra practice that is a bit more fun.

We no longer do daily cursive writing practice because she already writes cursive consistently, but we do have occasional practice, usually in the form of copy work that I print based on what we are working on in other subjects or to focus on a letter that I notice her having trouble on.

 

 

 

My daughter really enjoyed using reading units from Confessions of a Homeschooler last year, and I’ve decided to keep going with those for this year as well. They are well laid out and easy for us to stay on track with.

 

 

 

 

 We are giving Teaching Textbooks a go this year. I love that the program both teaches the lessons and keeps track of the grades for me. One less thing for me to do, and she get's some time learning from someone who isn't her mom.

 

 I decided to go with Story of the World for our history this year. I was able to get the Volume 1 set with activity pages and audio book from another homeschool mom and save a bit of money. I like the story format and the list of projects for each chapter give me plenty of options to keep things interesting.

 

 For Science, we have fun with lap books, living books, and experiments. I haven't decided what we will study first this year since we are doing history for the first 9 weeks, but we will have a lot of focus on how to research and find information, as well as how to present it in both written and oral projects.

 

 

 

I do teach Bible in our homeschool, though I don't use a formal curriculum. I stick with reading Bible stories and having a weekly memory verse. I've found a great free resource at Calvary Curriculum: coloring sheets, worksheets, and puzzles. And of course, Pinterest is full of free resources that I dip into often.

 

 

 

Every homeschool is different, and ours even changes from year to year as we find new things that work or don't work.  I would love to hear what your plans are for the school year. Drop me a comment or if you have any questions about any of our curriculum and I'll do my best to answer!

Make a Squeezable Applesauce Holder from a Travel Soap Case

As a mom, there is one thing I feel like I am constantly fighting wherever I go.  The Mess!  You know what I’m talking about.  I love these kids, but wow, they are messy!  And when I leave the house, I feel like I’m just taking the mess with me, so I’m always looking for ways to either prevent or contain the inevitable messes.  

 One unavoidable mess comes in the form of whatever snack I offer my toddler each day.  Bananas are excitedly squished, goldfish swim their way into my couch cushions, and granola bars are crumbled like Hansel and Gretel got lost on their way to the table.  One of my girl’s most loved snacks is applesauce in the squeezable pouch. I love that the pouches are easy to toss in the diaper bag and keep in the cupboard.  Unfortunately, my toddler squeezes them all over herself the moment I hand it to her.  Then I have to clean applesauce off of her, the floor or car seat, and clean up all the tears when her snack is gone before it even gets to her mouth.


I needed something to put the packet in so she couldn’t squeeze it.  I spotted these travel soap containers at the store and knew they would fit perfectly.  They are less than a dollar each. A little adjustment and it has worked so well!  

 

Overall this took about 10 minutes to make two of the holders and it was totally worth the effort.  No more applesauce everywhere, and no more tears (applesauce related tears, anyway).