Monday, November 24, 2008

Think! Challenge - Catalog structure

The Think Challenge from here was: Put one catalog on the table and tell your students to make a structure that is as tall, wide and deep as possible. They may not use any other materials except the catalog. No scissors. No tape. Nothing!

Monkeet's structure:

He had a bit of trouble at first thinking of what to do... until I reminded him that he is very good at making paper airplanes and even knows how to make paper boxes so certainly he could use his paper folding skills in some way.  (That was probably too much info to give for a Think Challenge- but I didn't want him to give up either.)  At first he had the boxes set up just like bricks but then realized that he could get columns to stand up if he put them inside the boxes.  He was pleased with how tall he made it - and so was I :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Educational Website

My new favorite educational website is  They've got all subject areas with lots of fun games (we like Paintball Punctuation, playing with the maps, and the Math facts games) and especially good activities for critical thinking like programming 'botz' and creating contraptions or 'widgets' (which is what Monkeet would do non stop if I didn't limit his computer time!)  Haven't even discovered all the great things there yet since there is so much!  (and we just did the free membership - not the pay subscription)

... enjoy!

Monday, November 10, 2008

To the Glory of God

I was reading in my little "Our Daily Bread" devotional this morning and was struck by the appropriateness of the topic I read today (since I'm not actually keeping up with the actual dates they have listed.)  The writer, Bill Crowder, says,
In the Bible we see that God consistently used people who were far less than perfect.  That shouldn't surprise us.  God is glorified by showing Himself strong through our weaknesses.  It shows us that He desires to work through our lives not because we are perfect but because He is.  He uses those of us who are flawed and frail, so that He can show His strength and grace.  He wants those with a willing and available heart.
Given that my great weakness is that I can't seem to be good at more than one thing at a time (if I'm the good homeschooler, then my housework goes downhill - or if I'm being crafty and making cards then everything else suffers etc...)  I thought it was appropriate to find this message the morning after deciding that I was going to try much harder this week to figure out some sort of schedule or something to stay on track with housework and homeschooling together.  So, here I am, God, flawed for sure, but hoping that in all things I can give You glory!

Reminds me of that David Meece song - ok, going way, way back in the memory banks here - I think it was called "To The Glory of God"...... ah yes... here are the lyrics :)
For awhile it was fine
Hearing the roar of the crowd
For awhile it was mine
Flying up over the clouds

But then the sun melted my wings
Now I'm on my knees

To the glory of God
Next time I fly it will be
To the glory of God
I want me life just to be
To the glory of God

Once I used to ride off to war
There was glory to win
Thought I knew what it was for
But most of the battles were mine
Now so is the pain

To the glory of God
Next time I fight it will be
To the glory of God
I want me life just to be
To the glory of God

They say the man that finds
His life will lose it
Mine was slipping away
But oh the man that has the
Faith to lose it
Will find that his life is saved

To the glory of God
Next time I fly it will be
To the glory of God
I want me life just to be
To the glory of God.

So, with that in mind - 
Next time I clean it will be to the Glory of God!
Next time I teach it will be to the Glory of God!

And thanks to a friend for reminding me of The Create in Me a Clean Heart Devotional which I had forgotten about :)  Find it here and her other stuff here at

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Think Challenge - Candy

This week's Think Challenge - make an animal with candy :)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Two Peas in a Pod

Monkeet - Oct 2001 - almost 9 months
Froggy - Oct 2008 - 7 months

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Think! Challenge

I ran across a great blog which presents a challenge each week to get your kids thinking.  We participated this week in this challenge.  I know that Monkeet will get even better at this with a bit more exposure.  I'm quite proud of him.
We didn't have any eggs  on hand, so I grabbed an Easter egg and put a bouncy ball inside of it to add weight and so it would be a bit off-balanced like a raw egg too.  At first I provided him with blue painter's tape - but that wasn't really working - so I got out the scotch tape for him to finish with.  Mainly he just made "layers" of straws going different directions.  At first he put them together in flat little rafts.  Then he discovered that by cutting the tape lengthwise he could have pieces that acted more like string to tie the straws into little squares using 4 cut pieces.  Without this discovery he would have most certainly run out of tape.  I liked his idea of the bendy part of the straws being there to cradle the egg - he just made them a bit too far apart to actually do the job.  Regardless, he was finally able to get the egg balanced on top :) He wanted to do it again after having the experience and seeing other's solutions here but we didn't have 12 more extra straws laying around.  

I think these challenges will be great for him!  Many thanks to Think! for taking the time to publish them.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Back to School

As you might have guessed by my absence here - school has begun :)  and my time on the computer has taken a necessary hit!   I had hoped to come back and post here our wonderful schedule and what not - but instead I have realized that my schedule is no where near what I would like it to be.  I think I planned TOO MUCH for us to do considering Monkeet is only 7.  I want to figure out how to keep the variety without sacrificing his time for free-learning/playing.  I also underestimated what a distraction baby can be :)  Froggy seems to have decided to completely change his schedule the very moment that I had started to rely on it LOL so the unpredictability has thrown me for a bit of a loop - but a joyful loop here and there isn't bad - just unpredictable.  So our school journey continues .... with or without a beautifully arranged schedule LOL.  (If only you knew how I could get drawing boxes and looking for the perfect font in Microsoft publisher.)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Schedules and Routines Step 1

I've been needing to rethink the flow of things in our household a bit - not just because school will be starting, but that is one reason. One thing that I had already tried to add back into my life was reading a bit from the Bible each morning (which I've been doing most some days after I nurse the baby.) Anyhow - was thinking about the whole routine thing this morning and then read:

"Let us wake in the morning filled with Your love and sing and be happy all our days." Psalm 90:14
I know that what I need to do is wake up each morning full of love - not stress, or worry, or grumpiness (I'm not much of a morning person) - but LOVE. The rest of the routine - well, I need to think about this first step for a bit - the rest will have to wait for my next post.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Finger Knitting

How to keep a 7 year old busy and happy...

After reading this post on Gypsy Caravan blog, I decided to give finger knitting some further investigation in hopes of finishing off our day better than it started. Monkeet happily agreed to give it a try after watching a few youtube videos like this one.

I'm not exactly sure what we will do with all the long strands of tiny scarves that we will have in the next few weeks (any ideas are appreciated!) - but I happily say, "It doesn't matter - if he's happy and busy then I am happy (and able to stay busy on my school planning which I haven't finished yet!)

thanks for the idea!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Two Peas in a Pod

This is the first in what I hope to be an ongoing series here - periodically taking a pic of Froggy and matching it up with a pic from when Monkeet was that age. It's funny, because to me they look even more alike than this photo shows - I guess facial expressions make all the difference! Next time I'll have to do it the other way around and find a pic of Monkeet that I like and then purposely take a pic of Froggy to match :)
So here we go... Froggy and Monkeet: Two Peas in a Pod - Take 1

Friday, August 15, 2008

Baby Hands and Feet

In my opinion, there is nothing as cute as baby hands and baby feet (except baby talk and baby giggles which I have a hard time getting photos to show!)

And I have to admit that baby chomping on his sweet feet is my favorite thing that babies do (except for the baby talk and giggling of course.) So I was delighted this week to see that Froggy discovered his toes.

Why Onduli?

Starting with a fresh blog. Hoping this new blogging platform will make posting pictures etc. easier for me. Besides, there's nothing like a fresh, clean slate.

Why Onduli?
In searching for a username at one point, my dear husband came upon a website with translations for the language Kwanyama. My favorite animal is the giraffe - or onduli in Kwanyama. An online identity is born :) . In many homeschooling communities I go by the username JudyJz - so in this blog I combine the two. Life As Onduli - JudyJz's homeschooling Journey.
My old blog - unless they delete it.