Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Balancing Act


Unless you have a maid, driver, personal shopper, and personal chef, you probably have more responsibilities than just as a home schooling mother.  Sometimes it can be hard to balance all of these things.   I know I feel overwhelmed at times.
With all that you do, it is important to have some quiet time for yourself.  I am not a morning person by nature, I am one by habit.  I have to make an effort to wake up before the kids or I feel like I am running behind the rest of the day.  I do a daily devotional, pray and have a cup of coffee.  Then I start breakfast.

There are other things that help me stay somewhat organized. 


Cleaning

If you are more interested in a printable version Motivated Moms is an excellent way to physically check off the daily activities.  They also have an option to have schedule Bible reading.  They also have a new android and apple app.   Motivated Moms spreads out the tasks so it isn’t overwhelmed but your house is guest ready.
Click here to visit Motivated Moms.

Cooking  
For meal planning, I cook many meals in the slow cooker.  I try to make extra so I can freeze half and have a meal ready to go later on.

I also made a reverse meal schedule.  I wrote down what everything I made for dinner for a month. I wrote meal on an index card and put it into an index card box.  When I finished my month, I had thirty dinners I knew my family liked and I knew how to cook.  I use these meals also the framework for my next month.  I reserved a day a week to try something new.  If my family likes it, I put it in the box.  Now my index card box is full of things my family loves.  I get new inspiration from cookbooks from the library, websites, blogs, and food network.

Monday, October 22, 2012

NOEO Science Sale

My favorite science curriculum is on sale for the first time ever.  For one week only everything will be an additional 10% off.  To get the discount, you have to use the code "Add10" at checkout.  I wish they have this sale in the summer!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Life Happens

 
I have a wonderful schedule created on home school tracker. It fits perfectly with holidays and birthdays and our evenly spaced breaks.

Then everyone gets sick. Not just sniffling but with a stomach virus. For the last week and a half, I have had at least own warm damp body sleeping on my sofa during the day. They don't beg for a snack or to go out and play. They don't even argue with one another. They have been sick, really sick.

So much for perfect schedules, I try to remind myself that we are not behind.  That my best case scenario schedule wasn’t perfect because I can’t see ahead.  I can’t see the next minor emergency but God can.  I need to not be so upset that my plan isn’t working and to allow life to happen.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

My Favorite Free Preschool Resources


The cost of preschool can be as high or low as you want it to be. There are plenty of at home preschool kits where you can easily spend hundreds of dollars for just a few months. There are also many great free resources online. Here are just a few of my favorites.

1 Plus 1 Plus 1 Equals 1 is a site packed full of Montessori rich activities. There are activities like "Tot Trays" designed to inspire hands on learning and exploration. There are tons of free printables to help preschoolers learn the basics. Many include popular cartoon characters like Disney's Doc McStuffins or Nick's "Octonauts." The site is not only inspiring but doable as well.

Starfall is another great free resource. It is computer based, so you might need to help your little with navigating the site. The site helps little ones learn the alphabet and the sounds the make. It helps older children learn how to read and how to become more fluent. Starfall is both educational and entertaining. The original site remains free but they have expanded to include "More Starfall" which is not free.

Letter of a Week is a valuable resource at no cost. There "curriculum" can be used from birth all the way up to 11 years old. The lower levels place the focus on reading to your infant or toddler. The lesson plans include Literature recommendations, nursery rhymes, music, exercise, French, and speech. The lessons are simple and designed to create a love of learning and literature.

Counting Coconuts is a unique blog that has many ideas to use for your preschooler. It has brilliant recommendations for Montessori activities and resources. The blog has gorgeous and inspiring photographs that are sure to give you some great ideas and motivate your preschool. There are free printables and themed activities to keep you as busy as you want to be.

DLTK Kids is a must visit site for non-crafty moms. It contains many crafts sorted by ABC's, 123's, Books, Shapes, Animal Crafts, Bible Crafts, Different Cultures, and holidays to name a few. The crafts require simple house hold items. The instructions state what age the craft is appropriate for. You can print the templates right at home. The site also contains songs, coloring sheets, and printables.

These sites help you create a rich learning environment in your home. They provide low stress activities at no cost, so you can spend more time and money on other things. What are some of your favorite free preschool sites?