Yes, I have a blog on the internet; and I’ve learned a few things about attaching links to text and photos.  For this post, I even learned how to take a screen shot of a web page.  Needless to say, my skills are extremely limited and I feel like I am nearly technologically illiterate.  Therefore, I’m not comfortable teaching computer anything to my children.  I’m grateful there are now computer courses for younger children available from Phyllis Wheeler, the Computer Lady at Motherboard Books.

 

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My Schoolhouse Review Crew mates and I recently had the opportunity to review two products from Motherboard Books:  Logo Adventures a full-year, homeschool computer science curriculum using MicroWorlds Logo language developed at MIT; and the concise, short-term project e-book, Let’s Make a Web Page.

Logo Adventures is designed as a weekly lesson for 8 – 12 year olds, teaching students to read and write code, think logically, and strengthen their reasoning skills; as Ms. Wheeler walks them through the basic steps of starting to program while laying the foundation for understanding what it means to program.

 

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Logo Adventures Curriculum is a self-study book and answer key, plus MicroWorlds EX software for $129.99.  You can check out the Logo Adventures website for a sample chapter, and a Gallery page of student work.  I’m interested in reading the Crew Reviews for this one, because I didn’t have personal access to it.

A couple of my children used the 60-page tutorial e-book, Let’s Make a Web Page It is also written for children 8 – 12 years of age, but was easily adaptable for someone older, meUsing free trial software – CoffeeCup Visual Site Designer, this e-book will show you or your child how to make a Web page.  It’s just $19.95, and it includes an Introduction for Parents, 10 step-by-step lessons — from download, set up, add text and photos, to sound, links, and post your work; with an  Appendix:  How to Upload to the Internet. 

 

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Let’s Make a Web Page is easy to read and my kids found the instructions simple to understand and follow.  One of the first things Ms. Wheeler does is coach the student through an interview process to determine who and what their web page will be about.  Neither of my children had any prior experience building a web page.  They talked to me, and I explained the types of things I wanted our web page to contain;  while leaving the entire design and layout up to them.  I told them I wanted it to be about our family.  A place where we could scan and share pictures, stories, drawings, music; and more.

 

Webpage Screen Shot

 

Granted, the name isn’t the most creative, but the layout looks like they understood what I was looking for, and I like it!  We learned what HTML is and how it works; and they learned how to link text and pictures to other sites.  They had to do a little research, and were given important tips on how to safely browse the internet.  I think this is especially valuable information and I appreciate that it is included in the course.  My young web designers liked how Ms. Wheeler showed a graphic of the window they should see if they are following her directions and are on the correct page.  This was useful for comparison, reassuring to them that they were understanding the material; and a confidence builder as they worked. They were not as fond of a learn-by-error teaching technique that was used several times.  She would direct them a certain way, purposefully wrong, have them acknowledge that it didn’t work; and then redirect them in a way that would successfully accomplish the task.  Although it was effective, they felt it was a waste of time.  They prefer the do this>go here>see the positive result approach.  Overall, though, it wasn’t a deterrent; because Let’s Make a Web Page took away the fear of the unknown, eased concerns of difficulty and failure, and sparked a desire to learn more about computer programming and web design.

We haven’t published our web page, yet.  As suggested by Ms. Wheeler, I’m going to have my kids design another page or two and have a family vote to determine our favorite.  Then, I think we’ll find a free domain and publish it, so we can all keep up more easily with each other’s activities.  I’ll post an update here when we’ve settled on our final design.

My Crew mates have written more than 50 reviews of these Motherboard Books products.  Please, click the banner below and follow the link to read a few of their opinions.

 

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Blessings,

pk_siggy-red1

Disclaimer*   I received the e-book, Let’s Make a Web Page, in exchange for my honest review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

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Thank you for your comments.  I enjoy hearing from you!

 

Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

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Jun
07

Math Mammoth ~ A TOS Review

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This is a review of Math Mammoth — multiple math options and resources for your child — created by Maria Miller.  She has compiled hundred of pages of text and worksheets, organized as a complete curriculum, available for grades 1-6; or as worktexts/worksheets, by topic or grade level through grade 8/9 and including Algebra 1.

 

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Maria has spent more than 10 years developing these comprehensive math resources for Math Mammoth.  She has continued to make improvements to them too, adding new books over the years, and offering them not just in print form, but on CD; and as PDF downloads as well.  She has free tests on the website that can be used as basic math diagnostic tests.  I find these especially useful in determining any topic gaps or weak areas in my child’s math education to date.  In addition, Maria is more than willing to assist you with reading the test results and choosing grade level or topic placement.

Contact ~ Maria Miller – www.mathmammoth.com/contact.php

There are also more than 350 free worksheets and sample pages from Math Mammoth products and from Make It Real Learning activity workbooks, available on the Math Mammoth website.  My Schoolhouse Review Crew mates have used and reviewed the various products offered by Math Mammoth.  You can read their reviews when you click on the banner below and follow the link.

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I have been using the Light Blue Seriesfor 3rd grade, with my daughter.  The Light Blue Series complete curriculum resources include a Student Worktext A and B, along with answer keys, cumulative reviews; and tests for each specified grade level.

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The Student Worktexts are the most important part of the curriculum.  In each worktext you find the lesson material, a thorough explanation of concepts; and exercises.  We read the topic introduction together and then I answer any questions my daughter might have.  There is no prep work for me.  In all honesty, the text practically teaches itself, because Maria Miller is very clear and concise in her direction.  She has visualized how she would teach and tried to transpose that to the Student Worktext.  I usually watch my daughter work a couple of problems, and if she seems to grasp the concept then I assign some of the exercises for practice and reinforcement.  There are 163 pages in the Grade 3-A Worktext, and 158 in 3-B.  They are divided into ten chapters covering:  Addition & Subtraction, Multiplication Concept, Multiplication Tables, Telling Time, Money, Place Value with Thousands, Geometry, Measuring, Division; and Fractions.  Each chapter lists numerous internet websites that can be used to supplement book work as desired.  During the week, we choose 2 or 3 online games or worksheets that she can do for fun and added practice.  Maria’s tried to think of everything, and as I said previously, she’s always making improvements.  “The PDF files in the download or CD are enabled for annotating. This means that the student can actually complete the PDF file on the computer, using the typewriter and drawing tools available in Acrobat Reader version 9 or higher, or on a tablet device such as an iPad, using a PDF app that has annotating tools.”  The downloadable version of the curriculum includes a Worksheet Maker for extra worksheets, and conveniently there is a separate PDF file for each chapter cumulative review and test.  Many of the lessons have been completed in a day, but several have had to be spread out over 2 or 3 days.  In general, we spend an hour to an hour and a half each day on this course.

The main difference we have noticed while using Math Mammoth – Light Blue Series is that it spends concentrated, in-depth time on a topic, as opposed to skipping or jumping from topic to topic within a lesson; giving ample time and practice for mastery.  It doesn’t rely on drills & memorization as much as understanding & knowledge gained.  Maria encourages one to “plan your mathematics school year as a set of certain topics, instead of a certain book or certain pages from a book.”  I haven’t worked our math curriculum in this manner before now, but it seems to make sense and is working very well for my daughter.  A single topic, like fractions, can be mastered much quicker than the entire 3rd year math book, and she gains confidence each time she “conquers” a specific topic.  Her ability is affirmed more often and her desire to tackle the subject is evident when she enthusiastically asks, “May I do my math, now.”

There are a few manipulatives needed for the Grade 3 Curriculum:  an analog clock, a ruler, a measuring tape, measuring cups; and kitchen scales.  Other than these items, the curriculum is complete.  The full set download is $34.00, a CD is $39.00; and printed material is $45.95.  There are obvious added printing costs with the purchase of the download or the CD, but I still feel like it’s a good value.

I plan to read the reviews of the Blue Series, because it is worktexts for various topics, with each book covering 2-3 grade levels.  I expect that it is as well written as the Light Blue Series, and I’ll be able to use it to review and bridge some gaps with a couple of my older children.  Would your child benefit from using Math Mammoth?

 

Blessings,

pk_siggy-lime1

 

Disclaimer*   I received Light Blue Series – Grade 3, full set curriculum download, in exchange for my honest review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

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 Thank you for your comments.  I enjoy hearing from you!

Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

 

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May
26

Fall On Your Knees

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Puddle Jumping - KneeDeep

 

I wrote the song, Fall On Your Knees,  in 2007.  I have an audio recording of it, but this is the first video recording I’ve done.  Actually, it’s the first time I’ve played guitar with it! It’s not the best sound, but I think you can hear it well enough; and I hope it blesses you.

A special note of thanks to my mom for her constant encouragement, and genuine gratitude to my brother for playing back up guitar with me.  I’m continuing to step out of my comfort zone!  God is good, and all the glory is His!

 

 

Lyrics:

Every day I look around I don’t see what I want to see.
Our whole world is crashing down and so rapidly.
People are just givin’ up, they don’t think there’s a chance,
To save these souls; but they don’t know our wondrous Father’s plans.

CHORUS:
Fall on your knees.  Lift your prayers up to heaven, we’re a new generation; 
We’re gonna rock this world. 
Fall on your knees.  Lift your prayers up to heaven, we’re a new generation;
We’re gonna rock this world.  We’re gonna rock this world!

All across this lonely earth, people are reaching out for love,
To chase away the fear and hurt they hold inside their heart.
Though there’s sin and selfishness, hope will not be drowned.
Through this pain and suffering, faith will find it’s ground.

CHORUS

It’s time to, call on His Holy Name.  It’s time to, call in the cavalry. 
We’re gonna rock it.  We’re gonna rock it.
It’s time to, share the love of Christ and
It’s time to, show the world what’s right.
We’re gonna rock it.  We’re gonna rock it.

Fall on your knees.  Lift your prayers up to heaven, we’re a new generation.
We’re gonna rock this world.
Fall on your knees.  Lift your prayers up to heaven, we’re a new generation.
We’re gonna rock this world.  We’re gonna rock this world!

Warmly,

Sarah E.

 

*Contents of this blog are copyrighted; they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace, and may not be used without permission.

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      High School Prep Genius is from the same author as              College Prep GeniusJean Burk; and her daughter, Judah Burk.

 

In November of 2011, I had the opportunity to review the College Prep Genius DVD Set.  I highly recommended it, as it is designed to increase standardized test scores; secure scholarships and gain financial assistance for college.  We continue to appreciate its value; therefore, I was excited to hear about High School Prep Genius, An Academic Guide to Excellence.

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I knew I was out of my depth properly preparing my children for college, but I didn’t realize all I didn’t know until I read High School Prep Genius.  It is an outstanding guidebook to navigating high school and preparing for college.  It is a hefty, 7″ x 10″ soft-cover book, with 440 pages.  If the truth be told, the first 88 pages, the Introduction, with month-by-month timelines for goals, testing, applications and such, had me over-whelmed, distressed and disheartened with my lack of knowledge and pre-planning.  Honestly, I cried; and then I repented for my lack of initiative or laziness.  I persevered, and dug in; and the more I read on, the more the authors have been able to instruct, motivate; and encourage me.  They say, “Whether you are just starting your high school journey or nearing the end of the voyage, this book can be your compass.”  The situation is not hopeless!  Thanks to the Burk’s, “I have a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path.”

I read the entire Introduction (Part I), and browsed the rest of the book before I presented it to my teenage son, for the two of us to read together.  The first thing we did was set up a 2 1/2″ binder with pocket dividers as his College and Career Notebook.  There are step-by-step instructions for this, with detailed forms to copy for accurate record keeping of:  Subjects, Credits, Goals, Extracurricular Activities, Awards Earned, a Student Profile; and Etc.  

The authors believe it is never too early to start thinking about college and career choices.  This is a mind set I haven’t had, but agree I must adopt in order to prepare my children for a successful future.  When our children reach middle school and high school age, it is our responsibility as parents to teach them how to make important decisions on their own; and weigh the consequences or benefits of those decisions.  High School Prep Genius walks us through how we might accomplish this task.

Each chapter of this book is written to the student, but it is suggested that you read it together, taking about an hour and covering one chapter a week.  After the content, there are several Think About It questions for the student.  I chose to type these and print them as worksheets that can be put into the student College and Career Notebook, as they are completed.  Our time, usually closer to two hours, consists of reading aloud together, my son answering the thought-provoking questions; and then discussion.  I appreciate the question prompts that often give me further insight into my son’s heart and mind.  There is also a section specifically for parents, aptly titled, Parent’s Homework.  Here I find information and suggested activities that help me assist my child in reaching his chapter goals.  The chapter we’re starting this week is Your Financial Independence.  My Homework leads me to discuss the importance of financial planning and budgeting.  Suggestions for how revenue should be allotted are included, as are book titles that could be helpful.

Chapters 1 – 6 are in the Foundation for Personal Success (Part II), and that’s where we’ve spent most of our time thus far.  “The key to success in life begins with a strong sense of self,” writes the author.  The student discovers and explores who they are or who they want to be through chapters on:  their personal development and interests, owning their beliefs, being healthy, gaining financial independence; and building a strong support system.

The next section, Part III, is the Foundation for Academic Success.  Chapters 7 – 12 are included here, and I’ve glanced ahead at the subjects we’ll be discussing:  Academic Development, Effective Studying, Tests and Papers; and more.

The fourth section (Part IV), chapters 13 – 18, is the Foundation for Future Success.  There are chapters covering: Standardized Test Prep, College Applications, and College Essentials, among others.  The authors remind us that, “High school is only a stepping stone to greater things; therefore, having a solid high school experience can lead to a productive future.”

At the back of the book, there are 39 pages of additional resources —

  • Appendix A:  How to Build a Homeschool Transcript
  • Appendix B:  Talent Searches
  • Appendix C:  Great Books to Get You Started
  • Appendix D:  Reduce Test Anxiety Through Relaxation Techniques
  • Appendix E:  Admissions Terminology

Today is the day to begin!  24 billion dollars are awarded in college scholarships, and with a little planning and prep work there’s no reason your child or mine can’t be a recipient of some of these funds.  You can purchase High School Prep Genius, An Academic Guide to Excellence for $29.95, and I think it’s a worthwhile investment.  You don’t have to read my opinion of this book only, though.  You can read more than 50 of my Crew mates reviews when you click on the banner and follow the link below.

 

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Blessings,

pk_siggy-red1

 

Disclaimer*   I received a copy of High School Prep Genius, in exchange for my honest review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

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Thank you for your comments.  I enjoy hearing from you!

 

Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

 

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May
15

Spanish for You! ~ A TOS Review

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One more time, I have the opportunity to learn, and to teach my children Spanish.  Let me just tell you now that I think this program might actually work for us!

 

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Spanish for You!  is a full-year Spanish curriculum built around a theme, instead of grade levels.  It’s actually designed in a way that I can use it with all of my children at the same time.  Created by Spanish teacher and author, Debbie Annett, for grades 3 – 8, it is concise and simple to use.  Currently, there are two themes available:  Fiestas – Celebrations, and Estaciones – Seasons.  Another theme, Viajes – Travels, is expected this summer.  Our study is based on Estaciones Seasons.  We enjoy each of the four seasons, the outdoors, and the dramatic weather changes we sometimes experience; so this seemed a perfect place for us to begin!

 

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 Curriculum includes:

Soft-bound text, Parent/Teacher Guide

Lesson Guides for Grades 3 – 8 in PDF format

MP3 audio download for each Lesson

Printable worksheets in PDF format

Flashcards, to download and print

and

Audio download of the entire book, recorded by a native speaker

Spanish for You Curriculum

 

This course is set up for 30 minutes or less a day, 4 days a week, consistently; and most importantly, following the specified order of the lessons.  However, the author encourages you to have fun, don’t stress, and modify your schedule if needed.  The Lesson Guides include clear instructions and a complete plan for the entire curriculum.

There really isn’t a lot of prep work for Estaciones.  I downloaded the files for the audio, worksheets, etc. and then I read a few pages of the text and Lesson Guides to familiarize myself with the course.  The Lesson Guides tell you what audio you’ll need to listen to, what worksheets you’ll need to print;  and which flashcards to use for each lesson.  I chose to print mine all at one time and put them in folders.  I also printed all of the flashcards.

The flashcards are not my favorite.  Ms. Annett even says that you might want to “use your computer to make cool flashcards.”  I haven’t figured out how to do that, yet; so I used the flashcards she includes with the curriculum.  Making my own flashcards in this way was time consuming.  Each sheet of flashcards must be printed and cut apart.  They’re black and white sketches, so we decided to color them.  Then we glued them to 3″x 5″ cards, giving me a place to write the Spanish/English words that correspond to each drawing.  The biggest issue for me is that, since I don’t already speak Spanish, it seems to take forever and a day to write the phonetic pronunciation of the word; so I know whether or not my student is pronouncing it correctly.  I’m sure I’ll get quicker as I learn, but presently I have to refer to the guide numerous times for each word.  I’d like to be able to print the flashcards in color, and I’d like the Spanish word and pronunciation set up to print on the reverse side; or separately, so I could cut it out and glue it to the back of the card.

 

Spanish for You flashcards

 

Our first week we followed the Lesson Guides as they are set up.  We moved along, but didn’t feel like we retained much by the end of the week; so we chose to use the author’s modified schedule suggestion.  Our Day 1 is covered on Monday and Tuesday.  Day 2 on Wednesday and Thursday; and Friday we review.  Day 3 is covered Monday and Tuesday of the second week, with Day 4 on Wednesday and Thursday.  Again, Friday is a great day for review and testing.  The Audio files are an invaluable assistance.  The Teacher’s Text includes Ideas for Using Flashcards, and a variety of Games and Activities that we use for lessons and review.  Playing Charades is one of our favorites!  Flashcards are mixed up and stacked in a pile.  A card is chosen from the top of the stack, and acted out.  The correct word or phrase must be shouted in Spanish to win!  It’s noisy, but great fun!  So, we are spreading one week’s worth of instruction over two weeks of time; but I think we’re getting it and keeping it.  It is the easiest Spanish curriculum I’ve ever used!

 

We are still in Lesson 1, but we have covered a lot of material —

  • The Months of the Year
  • The Days of the Week
  • Commands:  Look, Write; Draw
  • Weather Conditions:  Cold, Hot, Windy, etc.
  • Verb Conjugation
  • and Grammar

We are learning to speak, hear, read and write Spanish!

 

A complete packaged curriculum for all grades, 3 – 8 can be purchased for $64.95.  Complete, select packages for grades 3-4, 5-6, and 7-8 are $39.95 each.  You can find all of the available themes on the Spanish for You! website, under the Purchase Curriculum tab on the left.  If you’re still not sure if this curriculum will work for your family, please take some time to read the reviews written by my Crew mates.  Just click on the banner and follow the link below.

 

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Bendición,

pk_siggy-purple2

 

Disclaimer*   I received a complete package curriculum of Spanish for You! theme Estaciones, in exchange for my honest review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

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Thank you for your comments.  I enjoy hearing from you!

 

Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

 

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May
13

Papa’s Pearls ~ A TOS Review

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At just 5″ X 8″ and 113 pages, Papa’s Pearls is an exceptional, little paperback book; written by Diane Flynn Keith, about her father, Carol Joseph Flynn.  Mr. Flynn is Papa.  His pearls are words of wisdom he lived by and readily shared with his family and friends.  They are a legacy of love to his children, his grandchildren; and now to us.

 

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After I spent some time browsing Diane’s blog, learning more about her and her book, I couldn’t wait to read it!  The blog, by the same name, Papa’s Pearls, is a wonderful compliment to the book.  Appreciating family photographs, as I do, I love that Diane has set up a photo album of Papa.  It is a sweet connection to the man I’ve met while reading Papa’s Pearls:  A Father’s Gift of Love and Wisdom to His Children.

 

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I read the story of Carol Joseph Flynn’s life aloud to my children, in the evenings before bed.  They always wanted more!  Each of the 17 chapters is like a snapshot of time, detailing actual tidbits of fact and history; woven with personal accounts, Papa’s wit and feelings, and the lessons he learned.  He was born in 1922, in San Francisco.  He rose above a life of hard knocks, becoming a good man, a respected leader; and a well-loved father and grandfather.  Because he lived through war time and The Great Depression, just as my children’s grandparents did, there was much material for discussion.  We could contrast and compare what Diane wrote of his life with what we know of their lives.  I read aloud the Introduction, at the beginning of the book, so my kids would know that Papa had already died and his daughter was writing about the impact he had on his family’s life.  My husband’s parents, my mother; and my grandmother have all died in the past 15 years.  Nearly every time I read a chapter from Papa’s Pearls, our memories were sparked to reminisce and talk about our own family heritage.  How Grandpa did “this”, always said “that”, or looked at Grandma “just so.”  What Gramma “believed” and how she shared her faith.  Papa’s Pearls is indeed full of love and wisdom from a life well lived, but it is so much more to us.  It is a tool that stirs our own memories, and unlocks our personal heritage.  No doubt, we will read it time and again!

                             An autographed copy of Papa’s Pearls is available for $21.97, on the Papa’s Pearls website.  Diane Flynn Keith is also a homeschool coach and mentor, and you can find her at Homefires.com, and Carschooling.com.

 

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What a delight that Diane Keith could spend time with her dad, recounting memories of his nearly 90 years, before his death in December 2011.  She has written a fine tribute to him, his resilience and his positive out look on life; sharing with the world that we are loved more than we know.  Papa says:

“What’s the Worst Thing that Could Happen?”

“You gotta Use Your Street Smarts.”

“Tell Yourself You Like It.”

“It’s All about Family.”

“Be Grateful Everyday.”

and more.

“Tell Yourself You Like It,” is a prime example of Papa’s out look on life.  Being a plumber in San Francisco, Papa often had to work in the sewers.  When his young children asked him how he could stand the smell, he replied, “You just tell yourself you like it.  Then, it’s not so bad.”  Many years ago, my suburban raised husband got a job on a hog farm.  He was going to college and there was a house for our family, on the property, provided with the job.  The smell of the area was just animal-waste-ripe, and it seemed to permeate everything.  Every time we would leave the house, on our return up the driveway my husband would say, “Mmmm, smells like money!” and he’d smile.  We were just so thankful for a place to live and a dependable job!  We got through that time with genuinely grateful hearts and good attitudes.  We learned so many life lessons during that time, and some of them we didn’t even realize until we read Papa’s story.  Diane writes that her “Papa knew what research studies show.  People who have positive attitudes are winners in good times, and survivors in hard times.  You are what you think.  Tell yourself you like it.”

 

My crew mates have also written reviews of Papa’s Pearls:  A Father’s Gift of Love and Wisdom to His Children and Grandchildren, and you can find them when you click the banner and follow the link below.

 

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Blessings,

 

pk-siggy-1

 

 

 

Disclaimer*   I received an autographed copy of Papa’s Pearls, in exchange for my honest review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

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Thank you for your comments.  I enjoy hearing from you!

 

Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

 

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May
12

Mother’s Day

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Happy Mother’s Day, Momma.  I love you.

Always,

Sarah E.

 

Puddle Jumping - KneeDeep

 

 

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Here’s a little something about me.

A list of ten things I like to do, in no particular order:

 

  • Write.  That’s why I’m here on this page.  I like to write stories, poems, songs; and random blog posts!  Writing down characters, plots, and lyrics; that often weave their way through my brain, helps me focus my thoughts and make room for other things.
  • Draw.  I have been doing this for as long as I can remember.  Holding a pencil in my hand feels as natural as breathing.  I like drawing from my imagination — abstract ideas and cartoons; and I like drawing things that I see around me — people, landscapes, and still life.
  • Paint.  Watercolor is one of my favorite mediums.  I find it relaxing and challenging at the same time.  I was a color-inside-the-lines kind of kid, and painting with watercolors coaxes me outside of the box; and sort of forces me to go with the flow.

 

Watercolor by S.E.Koshiol

  • Read.  I can’t think of a genre I don’t like.  I like both fiction and non-fiction — historical, fantasy, Christian romance, mystery and thriller, short stories; and poetry.  I also like reading The Bible.  I read nearly anytime and anywhere I can!  I’m afraid I may never be able to express the endless happiness that reading gives me.
  • Spend time with my family.  I couldn’t ask for better people in my life.  My family is so much fun!  Whether we are on a Sunday drive, hiking, looking for adventure; or just hanging out, talking, laughing, and playing games — we enjoy each others company.
  • Camp.  This is another great family activity!  We generally pitch tents and sleep on the ground in sleeping bags.  We’ve camped in the summer heat and the frozen cold of a spring day that was still too close to winter’s breath.  I like the great outdoors, camp fires and s’mores, lying under the stars at night; and soaking up every wonder of God’s creation.
  • Sing.  I like to sing, but I don’t like to perform.  I like to sing spontaneously, around the house and in the car.  I like the sound of blending my voice with my mom’s and dad’s, and/or sibling’s voices, whether we’re praising God; or goofing off with our favorite tunes. 

 

As I read over this list, seeing my favorite likes in one place, I realize how thankful I am that God has allowed me to do so many things.  My family has never had a lot of money, but clearly The Lord has blessed me abundantly.

I’d love to hear what you like to do.  If you share your list in the comments below,  I’ll be sure to read them!  Thanks.

 

Warmly,

Sarah E.

 

*Contents of this blog are copyrighted; they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace, and may not be used without permission.

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Apr
27

How Does Your Garden Grow?

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It’s Spring! 

What are you planting this year? 

What are you cultivating in your heart and mind;

and in the hearts and minds of your children?

 

Great minds - Eleanor Roosevelt

 

~

 

“Keep clear of personalities in conversation.

Talk of things, objects, thoughts.

The smallest minds occupy themselves with persons.

Do not needlessly report ill of others.

As far as possible, dwell on the good side of human beings.

There are family boards where a constant process of depreciating,

assigning motives, and cutting up character, goes forward.

They are not pleasant places.

One who is healthy does not wish to dine at a dissecting table.

There is evil enough in man, God knows.

But it is not the mission of every young man and woman to detail and report it all.

Keep the atmosphere as pure as possible,

and fragrant with gentleness and charity.”

– John Hall, Pastor (1829-1898)

 

~

 

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ,

set your hearts on things above,

where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.

Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”

Colossians 3:1-2

 

~

 

“A house is no home unless it contain food and fire

for the mind as well as for the body.”

– Margaret Fulle

 

~

 

May we sow seeds of heirloom quality.

[An heirloom seed is seed from a plant

that has been passed from one generation to another,

carefully grown and saved

because it is considered valuable.]

May we grow strong and sure,

seeing a heritage of fine harvests.

 

Blessings,

pk_siggy-pale-blue1

 

*Contents of this blog are copyrighted; they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace, and may not be used without permission.

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Categories : Family, Home, Random
Comments (1)

Puddle Jumping - KneeDeep

 

When tragedies like the Boston Marathon Bombing, and the West, Texas Plant Explosion hit so close to home we are forced to face reality.  Our world is a mess.  It has been since the fall of man in The Garden of Eden, yet we are still surprised.  We shake our head at people in disbelief and dismay.  We pray and cry for the families of the wounded and dead.  We mourn the lives that are lost, but do we consider their souls?

As Christians, we do not have to fear death.  Philippians 1:21 says, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”  In other words, I believe that alive, I’m Christ’s messenger; dead, I’m His just reward.  This life versus even more life eternal — I can’t lose!  So, truly, we live.

It breaks my heart, thinking about the unsaved, eternally separated from God.  Forever in darkness and anguish.  Only God knows the heart of man, and where on the other side the souls of the dead reside.  Do their spirits now dance with Him in glory, or not?

I scold myself, thinking, if it genuinely breaks my heart why do I sit and do nothing?  Every day I should be telling someone about the gospel of Jesus Christ!  It could be their last day.  I don’t have to be in church to teach it, nor do I have to be on a mission trip to share it.  I just have to be walking-it-out, living it day-to-day, keeping it on my lips.   The free gift of eternal life, that Jesus gave me, should always be on my mind; and the good news of it should be the first thing that I want to tell people.

The truth is, I could die to protect any stranger on the street.  I know where my eternity is, but I would want to make sure they had another chance to hear about God’s love for them.  Willing to die, but not willing to approach them and speak?  In a room, I don’t think I’d be the first to talk to them.  “Why?” I ask myself.  Am I that shy?  Am I afraid of what someone will think of me?  Again, “why?”

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” [2 Timothy 1:7]  I am praying for boldness in Christ Jesus, with every expectation that God will give it to me because He wants me to have it.  In the mean time, I consciously make myself move, in spite of my timidity.  I think it is a heartless and selfish thing to not share the hope of salvation with others.  That’s not who I want to be.  I want to be like fresh water for the thirsty, not the stagnant water no one can drink.

If I were told that, for one day only , the gas station on the corner is selling gas for one cent per gallon, I would be spreading the information like crazy.  I would not hesitate to tell everyone, and they would tell everyone!   We would post it on facebookWe would tweet about it.  We might even stand on the corner and shout about it.  Friends, neighbors, and strangers.  We would be advising people to stock up, and not miss the opportunity.  A penny a gallon!  Wow.  Yet, salvation is free to each of us.  Jesus already paid the price.  Why aren’t we telling everyone to stock up on everlasting life?

 

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Granted, we are not responsible for the choices others make, but we are responsible for what we choose — whether or not we tell them about our faith and God’s gift of grace.  Salvation is the greatest deal on earth!  Yet, many still don’t know about it.  We couldn’t force anyone to pump gas for a penny, and we can’t force them to believe on The Lord, Jesus Christ, but we should at least tell them of His loving offer.

The world may continue to fall apart before our eyes.  May every heartache it throws our way be kindling to a fire inside us, that ignites a burning desire to further the Kingdom of God and see souls saved.  We must speak.

 

Warmly,

Sarah E.

 

*Contents of this blog are copyrighted; they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace, and may not be used without permission.

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