A Quick Trip Home

When I think of home, I think of my husband’s childhood home back in our hometown. His family moved into the house when he was in middle school. I love waking up in his old room. I should add here that shortly after my husband and I got married, my mother-in-law redecorated my husband’s and his brother’s old bedrooms. I’m fairly certain she did this so I, Atlantis, and future grandchildren would feel more comfortable and welcome in her house. The reason I’m certain of this is because she asked for and then used my all of my opinions on how to decorate the rooms. Now that I have known her longer, I realize the colors I picked out are some of her least favorite. My husband’s old room is for grown ups and his brother’s old room is set up for the kids. So, to set the seen for you at waking up in my mother-in-laws house…

The house is located on the Little River (actual name of the river) which¬†whines¬†through our little hometown. On the other side of the river is farm land and the river’s bank has several large, old trees. As I wake up in the morning the sunlight dances through the lace curtains in only the way light can dance off water and through lush tree leaves. I’m in a room that has been loving decorated to make me comfortable by the sweetest women in the world. The lace curtains came over with my husband’s family from Germany. Although we didn’t know each other at the time, my husband and I grew up in the same area of Germany, so the curtains add another touch of sentimental value. If I look out the window, I see the back yard and the river. If I stand up, I can see over the trees to the acres of farm land. If it’s a Saturday, my mother-in-law has been up for a few hours before my kids, my husband, or I decide to climb out of bed and we will do so to the smells of her making breakfast. Maybe it’s becoming clear to you exactly why I think of this when I think about home.

This trip only lasted 4 short days, but we were able to pack plenty into that time. Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley are not far away, along with Ft. Campbell Army base, Nashville, a zillion caves, and a ton of fun (and educational) things to do. We spent a day at the lakes and a day on Ft. Campbell.

The view from the pic-nic shelter where we stopped to eat lunch

The recycled glass counter top inside the planetarium. The planetarium at the lakes runs shows for only $2 a person on the hour, every hour. Because of it’s rural location and frequency of shows, it’s very easy to be the only ones in the¬†auditorium¬†for a show. When this has happened in the past, the person giving the show has always asked if there is any certain show we would like to see. He is also¬†extremely¬†happy to answer any and every question I’ve seen the many kids through the years throw at him. I’m not sure if there is more than one person that runs the projector, but it has always been the same man when I have gone.

Daffodils also known as buttercups to many Kentuckians. We picked these on the way home for both grandmas.

A creek the girls played in and got water for the daffodils from.

A photo I snapped on the way back from the lakes. If you look into the water, you can see a little crescent shaped island. As a kid, my dad would take me camping on that island. We would head out on a little boat and set up camp for a night or weekend.

At the lakes we also went through the¬†antelope and bison reserve. We went just after lunch time, which we already knew to be the worst time of day to go. The best times are morning and dusk. Animals sleep during the warmest parts of the day¬†and head to the areas of the reserve that humans can’t see. So we were only able to a few antelope and they just weren’t in good spots to get a good photo of. We saw many horse back riders at the lake and had to promise Petra that on our next trip to Kentucky she would get to ride. John has actually never been riding. Not exactly sure how one grows up in Kentucky and never rides a horse, but somehow it happened.

John’s father worked on helicopters when he was in the Army, so no trip to Ft. Campbell would be ¬†complete without viewing at least a few air craft.

This amazing drawing Atlantis did is of a friend that she has known for many, many years. The friend lives a few houses down from John’s mom.

All of us began this month with some icky respiratory crude which quickly turned into pneumonia and RSV for Troy, Bronchitis for John and me, and a sinus infection for Petra and me. The warm southern air was just what we all needed to clear out the last bits of what was lingering in our lungs.


Read More

How We Roll, Err… Our Homeschool Style

My very first year of homeschooling I was given a small tidbit of advise from a veteran homeschooling momma,

‚ÄúFocus on math and reading and the rest will fall into place.‚ÄĚ

Ok, at the time, I thought she was a nut job and didn‚Äôt take the advice at all. I was new to this experience and wanted stone solid answers on curriculum, schedules, and running the home like a school. I had spent nearly a decade working in public schools or pre-schools and gosh darn it, I was good at it. At some point I realized that if I thought the way regular school is done was the right choice for my kids, shouldn‚Äôt I just send them there. So, what we do now is focus on math and reading and let the rest fall into place. If someone would have just told me… oh wait, they did.

We like to get in as many trips as possible. Hence the name of the blog. Days that we are out and about (generally one to three times a week) we also try to get in math, reading, and spelling. I try to be a stickler about getting these 3 in everyday, no matter what. If it’s a long trip to our destination the kids watch a documentary on the way. My theory on this is not to let book work get in the way of an educational opportunity. How much can you remember about your 2nd grade social studies book? What about the trips you took?

The day after a field trip we throw in a ¬†journal about the outing. We¬†get in most of the remaining subjects with projects. My kids always have something they want to know more about or an idea they want to¬†execute. ¬†If someone is under the weather, it’s documentary day.



Read More