Monday, February 26, 2007

News and Nods

Sometimes there is just no other way of sharing what is happening without making a hodge podge entry. So here it is!

Jay Ryan, of Classical Astronomy fame, is sharing some exciting cosmic news. Bookmark that man's blog and keep a sharp eye out for the total eclipse (nope, not "of the heart" you 80's readers) but of the MOON. :+) There is for real stuff happening up there that you will not want to miss with your smallish homeschoolers. He also has a biblical astronomy book coming out in the spring! I really look forward to seeing it. Turn around bright eyes...er, I mean, remember--a total eclipse! :+)

For those of you who have been holding out on ordering a subscription to The Old Schoolhouse Magazine until you could find a great deal, now is the time to do it!  They are offering one-year subscriptions for only $19.95 and giving away the 19 free homeschooling gifts! A free Winter 2007 issue (or another issue of your choice if you are renewing) is also included in this special sale.


There is also a writing contest that the publishers are having--for chocolate! I cannot enter due to my affiliation, but oh, it is so tempting. :+) Here are all the details.  If you submit a terrific one you may just be chosen as the winner (and then promptly asked to join the review team!) I am the judge so I hope to see some great writing!


See, I told you it would be hodge podge! I hope something here was worth your stop. Thanks for coming by! :+)

Friday, February 23, 2007

Modesty - What is your take?

Well the young men at The Rebelution had a lot to say about it! They did a Modesty Survey with many many people (young men and women answering) and there is a lot to check out and some great food for thought.


The link I gave you above is only a portion of the survey, but it is the portion where the men are responding to specific questions. The one I thought was most helpful for mothers of young ladies or for young ladies themselves is this one, "If you could say one thing to your sisters in Christ about modesty, what would it be?" That is why I linked to it. I hope some of you find this information helpful.


We are waging a war out there for the minds and hearts of our children--in the church and out of it. May God give us parents the wisdom to do what is right.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Literary News and Views

If you have not heard already, let me be the first to tell you! Jen Ig and I are heading up the HSB Literary Club! This means we are going to read some very meaningful books and chat about them with (hopefully) you! You don't have to be an HSB blogger as all are welcome. Our first book will be the Lamplighter, Ishmael. I hope you consider joining us!


We finished our recent read-aloud, A Father's Promise. This was such a very beautiful book of faith in an incredibly difficult time. The book is set in Poland as Hitler takes over Warsaw. It is the story of a Christian Jewish family that is struggling to stay alive. It is the story of faith and belief in God's faithfulness to us. We really enjoyed this book.

In my personal reading time I have been plowing through Grimm's Fairy Tales. I realized that I had not finished it upon discovering it underneath a pile of papers in the kitchen. I am now almost ready to be done with it except that my inner book lover forbids me from putting down a book until I have finished it. I am loyal to a fault with my reads! It is seriously one of the strangest and most fascinating books I have ever read because so many of the stories are just so odd! It is like a train wreck in a way, that you just have to keep watching. It is not a bad book, just such a strange one. Many of these fairy tales are not made for children and many of them are quite similiar to the next one. I am glad I am reading it, but I am sure why. :+) Have you ever read anything like that? 


I have still to finish Plato, but I think I will be ready for him once I have finished the wild world of fairy tales. :+) Then I will be starting Ishmael! What are you reading? 

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Update on Aprons for Adoption!

In September of last year I shared a neat opportunity to bless a family trying to adopt a baby. I have an update on their situation and wanted to share it below. I also wanted to encourage you who may still want to participate in either promoting this on your blog with the graphic on the left or buying an apron to still do so! The graphic is free for the taking and you can link it to www.unitstudies.com


Adoption Update
February 16, 2007

Dear Friends and Family,

Many of you have been faithfully praying for and supporting our adoption so we wanted to send out a short update to let you know where we are at in the process. Our journey began last July when we officially decided to step out in faith and move forward with adopting from South Korea. Since then it has been amazing to watch as the Lord has provided for our every need.

For those of you who don’t know, it appears pretty likely that Holt Korea will assign us a boy, about 9 to 11 months old. In South Korea, they use “bloodline documents” instead of birth certificates, which display your ancestry back several generations. When the child of a single mom is born, they have no bloodline, which is quite negative from a cultural perspective. Because a girl will eventually marry and be integrated into her husband’s bloodline, girls are predominantly adopted domestically in South Korea, leaving a larger number of boys who are placed for international adoption. So while we are happy with either, we’re expecting to bring home Spencer Daniel Klein this fall. :+)

Last fall, Cacey’s mom, Jennifer Steward, came up with the wonderful idea to start a fundraiser called Aprons for Adoption. She posted the aprons on her web site and through the generous help of a home school friend, Kate Kessler, who put a link on her blog, the word began circling the Internet. Since then we have had a steady stream of orders flowing in from people all across the country. At Christmas time, we had so many orders that we were sewing and shipping them out as fast as we could! It has been a huge blessing to our adoption fund and a great encouragement as we have received many kind notes, e-mails and stories from others who have adopted or are also in the process.

Our Timeline

* July 2006: We sent in our application and began the process

* September 2006: We had a social worker visit our home for “home study” interviews

* October 2006: Our home study was officially completed and sent to Holt Korea for referral

* Currently: Still waiting for our referral, when we will be officially assigned a specific baby and receive a photograph and medical records. Our adoption agency predicts that will occur between June and August 2007.

* This Fall: We hope to travel to Seoul, South Korea and bring Spencer home!

Fundraising Status

Aprons for Adoption has sold 101 aprons so far, and because many folks have sent additional donations above and beyond the suggested one, it has raised $2,000!

* We applied for a grant through Shaohannah’s Hope, an adoption organization founded by Steven Curtis Chapman. Our grant application is currently being reviewed and we will know the outcome in March.

* With the help of our families and our own savings, we’ve raised a total of $12,727 – 63% of the way there!

Thank you for your continued prayers and support as we get our fundraising to 100%! We look forward to keeping you updated as we get closer to traveling to Korea and bringing Spencer home.

Aaron and Cacey

Thank you for your help in making this a reality for this precious family!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Showing their quality...

Books that is... I have found some of the best quality books for our children! I love our library and I love Amazon. I just love good books! What do you mean you don't think wall to wall bookshelves are high fashion?! :+)


Ever since I saw this book, Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot, in a homeschool catalog I have been interested in checking it out. It is the true story of a gracious and compassionate pilot who dropped candy for children in bombed out West Berlin following World War II.


From the School Library Journal:
This outstanding picture book depicts one of the lesser-known aspects of the Berlin Airlift following World War II as seen through the eyes of a seven-year-old girl. Operation Little Vittles was run by Lt. Gail Halvorsen who, out of the goodness of his heart, began dropping candy in parachutes made from handkerchiefs to the children of West Berlin. This heartwarming story provides not only the historical context, but an epilogue as well.

I can tell you that I could barely finish the epilogue out loud because I had tears streaming down my face. Here is sit with all my healthy children, certainly not lacking for sweets, and thinking of what it would have been like for them. Any story that involves little ones almost always does that to me, but this story was especially sweet as it is true and the little girl, Mercedes, later meets the pilot as an adult. The pilot was truly a hero. It is hartwarming and precious and went right to my heart! It comes to us from the folks at Sleeping Bear Press who also have other books I just love like The Scarlet Stocking Spy.


The Scarlet Stocking Spyis a powerful book of sibling devotion and the cost of the Revolutionary War. I reviewed this book for the winter issue of the magazine and it is up as a prize for those of you who count the apples found throughout the publication. It is a gorgously illustrated book with a precious and potent story. I really appreciate good quality children's picture books and have found some more at our local library. Some of them will become ones we purchase due to their high quality.


I don't know about you, but I really love Jan Brett's illustrations. Whenever I see a book she has done I snap it up and take it home (if I can, of course!) I found this one, Beauty and the Beast. Wow, talk about gorgeous illustrations! The story is also pure and does not have any of the Disney "enhancements." She is a lovely and devoted daughter and her father was not a nincompoop.


The Gingerbread Manis well-illustrated with detailed interesting characters and is completely fun to read to the children. Run! Run! As fast as he can, he doesn't get away with his naughty taunting behavior! This is an excellent object lesson for little ones.


We also found a delightfully sweet book in The Snow Globe Family. This is just a darling story of two families--one inside a snow globe and one living in the house that owns the snow globe. It is just a cute little story my little children just loved. Ahh, I love good quality books. Don't you?


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Love is a many splendid thing...

And I bet you thought I was going to wax eloquently about my dear husband of 14 years. No, the day that would be Valentine's Day is now exclusively devoted to Abigail's birth!


It has been ten years since I went shopping in a Christian bookstore looking for a CD for my husband (two weeks overdue with our second little bumpkin!) She was to present herself just a few hours later. Arriving in a rather hurried style, she seems to have kept that persona! She is full of life, excited to be here, and just a lovely young lady. We are so very blessed by her happiness, her inquisitive nature, and her love for us all. She is a true gift from God and we are forever grateful. Abigail means "joy to the father" or "the father is joyful" and she is has brought this to our lives and more. Happy 10th birthday our little Valentine!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Eight on Eight


There is little in this family that gets us all as excited as a birthday! Today is John Henry's 8th birthday. It is hard to believe that eight years ago this early AM I was struggling to bring him into the world. He came forth red with rage and screaming, but oh, how we loved him and love him still. He grows more delightful as he ages and we rejoice that the Lord gave him to us. In a household of lovely ladies, he is a rare and funny treat. We pray that he will grow up into a godly young man who will honor his sisters (as he strives to do now) and who will love his wife with a tender understanding that came from growing up surrounded by the "X" chromosome. We pray for it, anyway! :+) We appreciate his perspective and love this little man more and more every day.

          Happy Birthday, John Henry!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

A proud mama here!

My eldest daughter submitted some of her writing to the following publication and it was accepted! She is thrilled and I am so proud of her! God has gifted her in this area (and it had nothing to do with me!) If you have daughters between the ages of 10-18, they can submit something for possible publication too! here are all the details:

The Girlhood Home Companion is looking for girls who would like to minister to other girls through the written word. Does your daughter have a hobby, craft or activity that she would like to share with our audience? We are taking submissions from girls who would like to write fiction or non-fiction for girls. If you have a daughter (age 10-18 ) who just loves to write, send samples of her writing to Submissions for the GHC.

Mrs. Jill Novak
for The Girlhood Home Companion
Remembrance Press