Saturday, June 11, 2016

Art Book About Color

For an art curriculum this term, we did Usborne's Art Book About Color, which has great information about art history and colors, paints and styles. Each week or so, we would cover a topic in the book, which was sometimes about a single color and had info like what it used to be made from, how artists used the color and how durable the color was over long periods of time. Other topics were about color mixing and styles like pointillism.

For the colors, we had the kids do a single-color project that sometimes included mixed media.
 some mixing of colors 
 these were a form of pointillism or using dots to create a picture. Olivia's, in the middle, was excellent. The boys were good, too, but they each only did one element of the painting in dots. Gabe's was rain and Ezra's was the leaves on the tree.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

The Reader's Nook - Olivia's Bookstore Math Project

We took a break from Math Lessons to do a 12-week project that involved Olivia creating a bookstore that she had to run. We got this from an e-book package we had purchased through Simply Charlotte Mason a while back. She was responsible for maintaining inventory, paying bills, taking orders, advertising and the bookkeeping that goes along with it. We did one "Month" per week.
 She wrote checks each month to pay her rent and utilities.
 She took orders from virtual customers.
 There were two random draws each month, one for In-Store Sales and one that had random bonuses/challenges that she would have to deal with.
At the end of each "month" she had to add up all her expenses and income and determine if she made a profit or a loss for that month as well as keep a running total for the year.

In the end, she did well. She started with $10,000 and finished with almost $16500, so a decent profit.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

VoB Family Retreat 2016

Every year, Valley of Blessing does a family retreat over Memorial Day weekend up at Higher Grounds Christian Center. Several families come up and spend 3 days hanging out, hearing some teachings, worshiping together and having a great time. 
 You can't beat the view.

 The playground is one of the old-style, death-trap playgrounds that we all survived as kids. 

 Many game of cornhole was played.
 Foggy morning down below.
 Campfire antics

 There were some really cool activities that Rebecca and Ana did for the kids. They sat and talked about God for a bit.
 Then they had a kind of tropical party.

 But the highlight was taking a nature walk and collecting things from God's wondrous creation to turn into some very cool artwork.

 And then there was this random, brightly-colored moth that we found hanging around. I had no idea they came in colors like this!
 On the way home, we swung by Mabry Mill, which is one of the most picturesque places on the Blue Ridge Parkway. 
 It's amazing that they were able to reroute creeks and streams to make things like this work. 
The views weren't too bad either. 

We're going to be back up at Higher Grounds twice more this year; first at Treasure Mountain Kids Camp in July and then again in October for Sukkot. Looking forward to both of those trips!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

John's Run 4 Kids 2016

For the 4th year straight, we entered the kids in the John's Run 4 Kids to benefit Backpack Beginnings. The difference this year is that we qualified for the "Brady Bunch" discount, so Emma could run for free if she was willing to run. Sadly, Rebecca had class this year so she wasn't able to come, so her Dad came up to help me manage the herd while I ran with each of them. 
Olivia was first up.

She ran well to start, but after going up 5 flights and back down, she took to walking here and there.
She did well on the obstacles.

Even the balance beam was no sweat for her. 

A running high-five. :)

And she finished in about 12 minutes. 
Once she was done, I had less than 2 minutes before the boys were on the go!
Ezra was quick out of the gate.
He was in the lead after the first trip over the parking deck.
Gabe wasn't far behind.
He took the hurdles like a veteran.
and Gabe was no slouch, either.

Ezra took advantage of a helping hand
But Gabe powered through...

By the time they reached the second time over the parking deck, Gabe had passed Ezra.

After all those stairs... whew!
the slide was a relief!

Gabe finished in about the same time as Olivia
and Ezra was only 10-15 seconds behind him. Once again, 2 minutes for me to rest before the next race. I just had to ask Emma if she was going to run it.
And she did!
She was a champ.
She kept running ...
all the way over the parking deck...

through the Cultural Arts Center...
Around the fountains...
over the hurdles...
under the nets...
across the balance beam...
back up the parking deck...
over the top and back down...
past her cheering section...
down the slide...
through the garden...
and across the Line! I could not have been more proud! She never complained, kept a smile the whole time and had so much fun! I can't wait to see if we can convince Irene to do it next year. :)
My racing team!