My Birthday Goal: Life Unplugged

Something has been pushing, molding, and brewing in my mind lately. And I just can’t help shake it. It’s like God tapping me directly on the shoulder. Reminding me that- Somethings have to change!! For the sake of his blessing and our family as a whole.

Like for instance- My mind clutter, recently.

Once there was a time where we played outdoors, climbed mountains, used books to look up information, let it be known where we were going and returning (with just a piece of paper to tell an address or a grocery list).

We had alone time with family, without the distraction of the box of doom or tablet of procrastination. Where we are together in nature or at a table and not in front of the a TV. A TV of such I find humanly degrading. We…

Okay, I could go on and on. But why? You’d stop reading after much more complaining…. So, here this. I remember the coming of technology and the soon to come- deep worrisome nature creeping inside. Worrisome, not just for my family, but families as a whole.

Which brings me to this, 6 years ago. On a similar note- a similar conversation with God- a not so gradual whim. I was a super convicted divorcee, with 3 young kids, and I finally got fed up with the junk on tv and the trash filled Internet. God was talking to me. I for once was a good obedient child of God, with no one but myself to adhere to, and I actually listened. It was a beginning of something new. Goodbye, TV, Goodbye, Internet!! Hello Freedom.

Of course, frustration sat in soon after. What do we do with all this time. There was no instant gratification or boredom buster. No plopping in front of the box on the table. No staring into the blackness of fake reality while eating.

After a while something started happening… fulfillment took over. Things started to go smoother, tempers cooled, and more things got done. How cool is that.

Then I remarried, the Man God gave to me!!

And God called on us to homeschool. We switched it all back on thinking “We need it for “school?””or “Weather?!” The result was, and is, as expected. Consumption, leaving God and family in the background.

Homeschool was the thing that was kinda going. You do this worksheet. This online lesson. This reading. This…. This… And THIS… Then you have free time. Hum.

Finally, or not so finally, but a few months ago I woke up from a deep sleep. Not only did I notice everyone was in a different room, on some device. You know… Someone was watching cable, another on an iPad watching YouTube, and yet another on Netflix., then one playing Minecraft. I was like WOW! Am I in a modern day Wall-E. Just WOW!

And I thought to myself.

I always strive to keep our living minimalized.

Less clutter, more family time, more money, more…. You name it. And at the moment the only clutter right now is HOMESCHOOL STUFF and MERRY FERN STUFF! Which is ALOT!! But the thought of technology clutter. You don’t think of it. You don’t think of technology clutter becoming an idol… That just wasn’t there, in my mind. Until I noticed… I NOTICED the house, the yard, the bills, the attitudes, the procrastination doubling. We were apart. A family going different directions. In our own worlds. In the same house. All because of distraction. laziness. I don’t know what it is. Laziness caused by a TV, the Internet, or the Phone. Hum… Laziness caused by idolatry.

Colossians chapter 3 sums up everything quite nicely. But, I’m going to refer to vs’s 23-25

23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;
24 Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.
25 But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.

How can we do right and heartily for the Lord if we are engulfed in a silent death. How are we to serve Christ sitting in front of a screen. Constantly. A screen were the culture we live in accepts acts of crudeness, nudity, vulgarity, idolizing man made idols and more stuff. A screen, a place you can use the incognito screen to hide the sin of man made passions, pornography, adultery, silent idolatry. What you don’t want others to see, you go there. Even if no human sees you… God sees you!! He see’s me and my addiction to certain tv shows or Facebook or YouTube. But I want him to see me climb above the realms of man. Striving for a better connection. Because this life it short. Why waste it on something that is a disgrace in the eyes of the Lord.

Furthermore, after much spousal conversation of auctioning off my point of view, for the umpteenth time. And the devil walkin in and putting up a fight of biblical mockery. With a little bit of bickering, convincing, praying, yelling, crying, praying, thinking of the correct words. God wins. As long as this win is in his favor.

So, after much talk and questionable attitudes on both parts, my goal for this week happened. Not how I wanted but…

Today, marking my 35 birthday, we shut off cable, Internet, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and lowered cell use.

Yes, I believe God has given US (my husband and I) the responsibility to take back our family.

With unplugging I, and we, can talk to anyone without the “Shush, we’re watching this!” Or “Go play in your room till this show is over.” Or “Let me check this “one” thing.” Before I can be in the moment.

Now, your thinking that’s extreme. Why not just unplug the thing? Okay. Your right. Then temptation dwells and you PLUG IT IN. Right?!

That’s not what I want.

I want Life back!! It’s gravely important and we are missing it.

I want simplicity! Not just from a clutter free home but a clutter less mind.

I want imagination in the minds of my children.

I want my family to strengthen there faith in God!!!

All this without the distraction of a black pit trying to suck us in.

But, hey that’s just me and my Needs and thoughts at this time. And if it takes unplugging from the world.

IT TAKES UNPLUGGING FROM THE WORLD.

With an added savings of over 120 a month.

With that said, How are we going to do it?…

•Library Days- When needed- Free internet…
•Want to watch a MOVIE- Rent it. But think is it appropriate or blaspheme God.
•Phone- My phone already shuts off from 9am till 3pm. Privacy mode is nice. So if you try to call between 9am-3pm, I’m probably not available. But, there is email or the old fashion pen and paper.
So, there you have it. AND I’m not ashamed!! I’m a 35 year old woman that wants her family to get back in touch with God, even if it means unplugging from the world.
Amen!!

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YouTube Series: How We Homeschool

Welcome, Welcome bloggie Fans!! I have a confession. I love YouTubing! I love watching videos of DIY’s and How To’s. I love learning new things. I get a lot of ideas from that and Pinterest. Youtube mostly appeals more to me because I love watching someone actually do something, rather than looking a pictures. The other day I took advantage of the DIY aspect of YouTube and posted a new series on our YouTube channel on HOW WE HOMESCHOOL. 🙂

In this informative series, I am talking about the aspects of how we as Our Family homeschool, of course.

The first one is how we organize our day by day lessons with the folder method. This method is based off of Sue Patrick’s Work Box System and the printouts came from Homeschool Creations. Such a blessing to find both of these websites!

Please Subscribe to Pious Homemaking  if you enjoy!!

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Elk River Fun

Saturday we decided to take a surprise trip to the local River. What needed fun!!

Subscribe to our channel for more videos of our adventures!!

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Pious Homemaking- Our first YouTube video

Check out Pious Homemakings FIRST YouTube video, Watermelon Fun. Super short, but hey it’s a start.
Click on the pic. 

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Spring 2016: May update

It feels like summer here in Tennessee. Warm nights, hot days, and no rain. Our back yard doesn’t need mowing because the majority of it is brown. But that’s not the best of it…. 

We have storage buckets for pools…

 
A trip to Texas… aka… Mission Trip for the oldest boys. They safe in the process of helping the Rowlett community clean up the tornado damage.

And Hot Air Balloon Festival fun….

Kate and I are in line to ride the balloon

Tuckerd’ out!

Ethan being a good big Bro!

And work to be done… On bikes?

So far a blessed spring! All I can say is God has been good and homeschooling never stops. 🙂

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Charlotte Mason: Week of 5/23

This week we are working through the Ambleville Online website. I chose to go the path the site recommends. The only thing, we had to use the books that are Ipad friendly, or shall I say, internet able. We just don’t have these books lying around. As for the books, we are limiting the times on each of these. Perhaps 15- 30 minutes a book. Then maybe a narration or dictation. I’m still trying to come up with a memorization “time” and verses and book inserts that are not to easy or hard.

Together Work:

 Music:

 Composer: 
 Antonin Dvorak (AN-toe-NEEN d-VOR-zhak; 1841-1904; Late Romantic)
This weeks lesson:Symphony 9 From the New World
Video and Types of Sheet Music
Arts:
Picture Study : Henry VIII
Drawing: Nature Study and free draw
Literature:
Shakespeare: – Much Ado About Nothing
________________________________________________________________________________
Individualized Work:
Copywork and Dictation
I chose a passage from one of this weeks books for each child.
Nature Study:
This month we are looking at Garden flowers/weeds.

I am still looking at how we should implement this. I have a couple of ideas, it will depend on how this week goes with idea #1.
Math:
Each child does the next lessons on…..
Life of Fred
  
________________________________________________________________________________
Children’s Individualized Work
Ethan:

Bible (OT):

Numbers 1-3; Psalm 56, 57; Proverbs 17:1-13

Bible (NT):
Luke 1:1-25
Saints and Heroes by George Hodges 01 Cyprian, 200-258

Literature:
Ivanhoe ch 1
Once and Future King: Book 1, Chap 1
Age of Chivalry: Preface-Part One, Chap I Introduction (half)
History of English Literature: Chap 1 In the Listening Time
Bibliography:
History:
Bede: Book I, chapter 2
Nature Study:
Citizenship:
CM’s “Ourselves” pg 1-4 The Country of Mansoul

Logic:
How To Read a Book Part 1 ch 1

Science:
Great Astronomers by R.S. Ball: Intro 1 week
Chemistry
Recitation:
Katelyn:
Recitation:
Reese:
Bible (OT):
Genesis 1-4; Psalm 1, 2; Proverbs 1:1-19
Bible (NT):
John 12:1-8; Luke 19:28-44 (“Palm Sunday and the Children”)
Biography:
Never Give In (Winston Churchill biography) pg 23-40
This came from the library. One of 2 books. Wish I could have reserved more.
History:
The Story of Mankind– Im not sure if this has the correct chapters. If it does not we will be using something else.
Trial and Triumph, by Richard Hannula
Science: 

It Couldn’t Just Happen 1. The Universe and Its Origins: Counting the stars pg 8
Mystery of the Periodic Table ch 1 The Puzzle
Einstein and The Theory of Relativity by R Cwiklik ch 1, 2 (or other Einstein bio)
Poetry:
Robert Frost poems 1-5, one poem each day
We are all praying this week works well!  But, we are trying to brainstorm other things to add. I don’t want the kids to just READ all day. Since it ‘s  NICE outside and the other “school” kids are out, they don’t want to be stuck inside reading all day. Any suggestions?
 I love this. His movements are so INTO IT! Kinda distracting though.
Preview YouTube video Gustavo Dudamel : Dvorak – Symphony no. 9 – 4th movement – Allegro con fuoco

Gustavo Dudamel : Dvorak – Symphony no. 9 – 4th movement – Allegro con fuoco
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Awaken to Knowledge: Our Weekly Homeschool Review

This week we have been extremely lazy. Not really, the kids did a lot, a little, what ever.. they did SCHOOLwork . Spelling, Reading, Science, History, Math, everything really…. I personally binged watched a few Netflix shows (The Messengers, The Lost Castles of England, (kids) Lost). And, I am currently (or not currently, but thoroughly) going through the Downton Abby seasons from the library, season 5 is in session. Not very good for homeschooling, OR IS IT? The Messengers teaches of Revelation ( maybe not to biblical but some interesting plots to consider), The Lost Castle of England teaches of, well, CASTLES!! and Downton Abby, that era, of course. 🙂 I also binged on reviews of different Homeschool Philosophies and tried to come up with a better SOMETHING than what we have going on. I need a schedule. One that I can load our workfolders with so they know what to do in each section. Like….

Our past few weeks have been mostly working through the CLE workbooks.
They are going just… okay. Not bad, not good… JUST OKAY.

I purchased the first one in all the areas I chose. After taking off in great speed, they became slammed and uninterested in the middle of the workbooks. Not what I want. So that leads me here…  Still trying to come up with a (eclectic) curriculum that will suit each individual child.

Easy? Well, I have been searching the net for ideas.

Being, I have looked into Charlotte Mason HelpAmbleside Online,  A Modern Charlotte Mason, and Ray’s Arithmetic and they have all caught my interest once and again and again. But for some reason I seem to overlook them Every-Single-Time. I just brush the thoughts away and get back on with WHAT SHOULD WE DO.  Maybe it’s the work load of… searching for all the books, purchasing the books, or not knowing where to start the children. Well, this week the thoughts came rolling back waves upon waves, is it God saying give it a try? Because, after all her method is biblical base and she uses Living Books,  Nature Studies, Literature, and more in her education approach. Or, is it me just wanting to say that’s what God is wanting. I’m so confused.

Anyhow,  we are going with a solely Eclectic Charlotte Mason approach for this next year for 2016/2017. PERIOD!! (All capitalized so I won’t get sidetracked in three weeks when this doesn’t seem to work.)

As for our individual course… and reviews of such.. over the past weeks..

  • I’m not liking the Science, so we have put it away. I’m thinking it would be better to start with a more vigorous Living Book Science. I have looked into AO Nature Studies- a schedule and some great examples of living books from Our Journey Westward.
  • Math- One is striving, two are not. A different route is due. My personal opinion, it’s important to get a more grasp on worded (Living) Math. Where they know what to do when they have to think it out. Therefore, I am looking adding Ray’s Arithmetic to our still favorite curriculum Life of Fred. We will are letting Kate do some CLE workbook and Horizon’s since she is doing well. With the added mentioned curricula.
  • Language Arts- Going good. However, we are going to follow the Charlotte Mason approach on this. (I’m not liking diagramming and I will teach them this later. Okay, truth, they know more on that than I do. I had never ever saw this until like last year and was dumbfounded. :O (That was just free!))
  • Reading.. Not, CLE but library. I’m having a time trying to come up with books they would like. I would take them all to the library. BUT I HAVE A 3YO! and end up running after him while everyone else is engorging in books. YES, I am that parent. The one that makes their kids be quiet in the library. What am I thinking!!  I’m thinking,  it’s time for a better approach on this. DUH! Again, Ambleside will be our sole Reading curricula. It allows for placement and rich literature. It will also work for Science, History..etc. THIS is all laid out for you.
  • Timeline… History- We are doing a timeline. Going to implement the living books to eras.
  • What else.. I know I’m missing something… ICK! I hate this, but oh well..moving on.

 

In the next post I will review  “The “Why’s” of why I am choosing the Charlotte Mason Approach” for our homeschool adventure next year. Please stay tuned!

 

 

 

Andrea

 

 

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Our Homeschool 2016-2017

Do you struggle with scheduling your homeschool year? I know I do! I think every year that I have scheduled our life away, it pretty much doesn’t go as planned! I always just ending up marking when we do days and pray they come out in the end. I didn’t have to worry about that in our previous state, they just wanted an estimate of the days you plan on schooling. In our new state… that is another deal. So I sat down day before yesterday for a few days and wrote out a list. And guess what?

I finally finished it!
image

This is what my coming years homeschool calendar (days of expected work) looks like. As you can see in the photo, I left it with 200 days. Tennessee only requires 180, so this gives us wiggle room if we ever need it. I guarantee those extra days will be used during the Fall/Winter. To me, those days are the blah days. As for the crazy days.. my husband is off every 5 days for a few days, so I worked around his schedule. Furthermore, I scheduled most of our days ((off)) around his 3 day off schedule.

Tootles and Pious Homemaking!

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My look into the WAY BACK. (short and simple)

Have you ever went through a photo album or notebook to see what went on in the WAY BACK? Well, I did with this blog. And this is what I found out…

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Homeschooling: Spring and Summer

Welcome to a new post of the ever so absent Pious Homemaking Blog. Today, I’m talking about our last few months, or year, of HOMESCHOOLING.

For starters, as some may know, I am an advocate for Biblical Schoolilng and Unschooling. So, we I thought we would try this educational approach called Radical Unschooling. Soon realized– it’s not for us. Regular Unschooling though. Yes! I believe a child should be in control of their learning. But, I like for my children to do something more than just watch TV or play on their iPad’s. That brings me to this….

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