Photo Tour

We’ve had some people asking for updated pictures now that we’ve been living in the tiny for nearly half a year. Overall we’ve found the transition more easy than we ever expected but of course it now has the “lived in” look, especially with two young boys. Here is a little photo tour:

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Business 101 in Kindergarten

As most of you know we homeschool. I’ll spare you the details of the constant ups and downs of this journey (teaching your own kiddo ain’t easy) but when we made the decision to homeschool my husband and I decided to come up with our own curriculum. We loved the idea of his education being exactly what we wanted from him as a student but also just as a person living life. We wanted lessons that would support him being a smart, kind and creative person. We wanted from day 1 to not plan for just today, or a test in a year but for his future. After we had objectives and areas outlined we would then find activities, workbooks, books, etc that met our son’s specific needs and goals for that time.

When we sat down to come up with the curriculum goals I was a little leery when my husband mentioned “business” (along with mathematics, communication, science, etc) As a former kindergarten teacher, technology I knew I could make at the kindergarten level but business was a whole other story and completely out of my comfort zone. I knew though that we were a team in creating his education though so there had to be some give and take. As the primary teacher my mind was boggled at what this would look like. Instead of worrying about in June I put in the calendar for  February and decided I’d cross that bridge when I got there :).

We have now completed February which had a focus titled “Business 101.” A couple months ago a friend was having an online Usborne party. I told the consultant that I was a homeschooling mom. I was a former kindergarten teacher and had too many books already. I was only looking for activity books and I gave her my list of themes for the remainder of the year. One being the business month. She told me she thought she had the perfect book. I researched the book, it seemed like it could meet some of our goals and I stored it away until it was time to start planning for the month.

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He created his own restaurant for a day. This lesson included math, reading, writing, art and business!

When most people overheard me or my husband talking about working on business with our son we were given weird looks but the most common response was “IN KINDERGARTEN?” pretty much the same response I gave my husband. When I started to explain what we’d done I seemed to get positive and intrigued responses so I thought I’d share a little bit of what we did for Business 101 in kindergarten.  It was simple, but effective and fun.

It started with a library search. I looked for juvenile non-fiction business books. Some of the books were too advanced but I could still scan the information and read what I knew would make sense to him. Even when reading a book on Google he came up with something he wanted to google (glowing pajamas of course). It also talked about how Google bought out YouTube and he remembered that YouTube was on our tv where we searched for videos and music. We talked about how some of these businesses made money by advertising for other businesses. We also rented a chapter book on Bill Gates that we read each day and before bed. Below is a video of what he learned about Bill Gates:

Who is Bill Gates? video

His favorite activity this month though was the “Create Your Own Pizzeria” book that I mentioned earlier. This little entrepreneurs book took him through creating a business, step by step, but completely at his level. He was able to be creative but also learn a good deal as well. Below is exactly what it entailed:

Business 101 Pizzeria video

 

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He made a pizza to sample all his toppings of choice (bacon, marshmallows, m&ms, chips, granola)

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He taste-tested each topping.

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He loved them all of course (the belly ache came later)

All in all I’m really impressed with what he was able to learn, about business, at the age of 5. He also really enjoyed everything he learned and I think he will be looking forward to what we do next year for business month, as well as what we can integrate throughout the year!

Expectation.Reality.Solution.

As most of you know we’ve started slowly moving in to the tiny house. Of course with anything we had some expectations of how everything was going to go with moving in to the tiny, living in the tiny and even just the beautiful look of the tiny. A couple weeks in to this phase-in process and we’ve hit some realities…most (ok pretty much all) revolving around our youngest son.

I know, it's hard to believe this sweet angel would give us any sort of trouble.

I know, it’s hard to believe this sweet angel would give us any sort of trouble.

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No. I don’t have a smartphone.

I’m not lying. I don’t have a smartphone. I know, it’s completely and utterly absurd. We live in a society with growing technology and most would assume that I have a smartphone. I mean…doesn’t everybody? Well I’m hear to tell you no, they don’t. I don’t. I figured it would be worthwhile to create a few lists relating to the non-smartphone user. I’ve tagged this article under “family” and “minimalism” because I truly believe it relates to both of these parts of my life.

Yep. That's my phone.

Yep. That’s my phone.

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Guess who’s back?!?

It’s almost embarrassing to say that our last blog post was January 7….yes it’s November. What can I say? Life just got crazy. Less than one week after that last post we welcomed a beautiful baby boy into our family and life has been a whirlwind since. As parents of 2 crazy boys, I can almost guarantee that our posts will not be nearly as often as they were before BUT we’re back at it!

We're a family of 4!

We’re a family of 4!

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Operation: First Service Project

Our son is 4 years old and we’ve decided to take the plunge into the homeschooling world. The past 2 years we’ve slowly transitioned into homeschooling so it won’t be a huge change for him when we hit it full-time come kindergarten. Last spring my husband and I sat down and brainstormed what we want to get out of his education. One main thing we wanted to incorporate was volunteer time, helping others and service projects.

So far he’s volunteered a couple times but we decided to start our first very own service project. The military holds a very dear place in our heart. We have very close family and friends who are in various branches and have seen up close the sacrifices they make as well as their families. One morning I just asked Gibson how he felt about maybe raising some money for our cousin who is currently deployed. We discussed that he is helping protect us and keep us safe and in doing so he and his family will be separated for Christmas. We talked about with the money we raised we could then go shopping to buy them stuff that would make them happy and send it to him and he could share it with his soldier buddies. He loved the idea and as soon as we got home we filmed this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHsOtrkj9vw

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New Year, New Beginnings

As we begin a new year I can’t help but be excited! Last year at this time we felt very anxious and hopeful. Unfortunately some of the very things we were hopeful about and excited about brought on pain and stress for our family. They were not things we could have predicted or helped or changed but within the first 2 months of 2015 we felt as if it wasn’t going to be our year and became discouraged.

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Being Thankful in November

Each year once the holiday season begins it seems to just fly by. Sometimes it seems as if we go straight from Fall and Halloween fun and dive right into Christmas. First, I want to say that I LOVE Christmas. To me it is truly a magical time and honestly one of my favorite times of the year. With that being said though I get sad when November is consumed with Christmas. Why? Because I want to embrace Thanksgiving!

Blessed & Thankful Wall- Turkey made from our son’s hand and foot prints, one color for each family member.

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Embracing the Pregnant Body

When I was pregnant with my first son, over 4 years ago, I had one rule…no bare belly pictures. As a person who isn’t completely confident in her body or “revealing” her body it was just something I didn’t feel comfortable with…at all, even pictures to be taken and seen only for the eyes of the photographer, myself and my husband.

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The floor/ceiling project

This past weekend we spent some time working on the loft floor. It may seem as a crazy step and completely out of order given we don’t have electric work done, siding, plumbing hooked up, walls, etc but we decided this was a step we wanted to take. The main reason we wanted to take this step was so our son could start exploring and enjoying his new space and getting some more time with us. When the weather was nice and we were working on the tiny he was playing outside right along our side. Now that the rain has hit and we’ve seen cooler days he’s been in our “normal sized” house while we go in frequently checking on him. With the floor in he can play in the loft or plug in his travel DVD player and veg out watching a movie (gasp… I know).

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