Tuesday, September 19, 2017

More pics from Vermont #2

We were not expecting good weather in Vermont. This was not an ideal time of year to go, but it was the only time we could make it work with our schedules. But it turned out, it was the best week of summer that they had. The weather was marvelous -- still a tad too cold to do major swimming but good enough to get in and have a ton of fun. 

The kids had a TON of fun on the water. It was so fun to watch them all playing so hard in the water. Last year Isaac did his normal rock collecting, but didn't want to spend much time in the water. But this year he was right there with the other kids.

And Sidge is amazing on the kayak and on the paddle board. He really has a gift with the outdoors and nature. It's just in him.

Joan's lake neighbors, Lee and her boyfriend Jim came over to see us. We LOVE Lee and her boyfriend was equally WONDERFUL!

Hannah having a conversation with Lee.

Check out this series of pictures below which shows how the kids work together to go under the dock. It was so fun to watch them do this:

Monday, September 18, 2017

Review: Barbour Publishing

IMAGINE... The Great Flood I'm constantly looking for books for my children to read, especially my third grade boys. They love to read, but they are at a point that they complain if the book isn't something that meets their expectations. I want to find books that will allow them to enjoy reading while learning and getting some adventure at the same time. That's why I was especially excited to have the opportunity for them to read: Imagine . . . .The Great Flood by Matt Koceich from Barbour Publishing. What was even better is that this was a Bible Adventure!

This 112-page paperback Christian kids book is geared toward older elementary or middle school children. It feels so nice to open up a book and hand it to your children knowing there won't be anything that you don't approve of in the pages.

I would personally give this book the age range of 7-13. (The age listed on the back of the book is 8-12.) My boys are 8 and 9, and they were able to read it in just two days (approximately 30-60 minutes in 2-3 sittings) with no difficulty. They didn't need any guidance from me whatsoever while reading.

Barbour PublishingIn addition, the even GREATER bit of information was that neither boy complained about reading this book. They actually said they liked it and that they would give it at least 4 out of 5 stars.

I am working with Isaac and Sidge on comprehension and being able to remember and discuss what they read. We are just starting book reports. I asked them to provide me with just a sentence or two after they read summarizing the book. Here is what they came up with:

Isaac (9): "This book is about Corey who goes back in time. He sees Noah and the ark and the flood before he gets to go back home."

Sidge (8): "The Great Flood was about a kid named Corey who goes back in time and goes to the time of Noah and the Ark. He almost dies a couple of times!"

They both summarized this pretty accurately. A modern day boy is sucked back in time and gets to experience the flood! How cool is that?! This book met my expectations precisely. It was exactly what you would expect it to be: a Christian book that was clean and presented Biblical history for my newly reading children.

One of the things that we spent a lot of time discussing after my boys finished reading was the idea of historical fiction. Some of it is not true. There are liberties taken to bring the story to life. How does that work? What is okay to include? What is not okay to include? How do we know what is historically accurate and what is made up for the sake of the story?

Priced at under $5.00, this book is incredibly affordable and a wonderful inclusion to your library -- whether you be a homeschool parent or not. As always, please don't hesitate to contact me at wkitsteiner@gmail.com for more information on this book.

You can find out more information about Imagine . . . .The Great Flood by Matt Koceich from Barbour Publishing by visiting Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube

Imagine. . .The Great Flood by Matt Koceich {Barbour Publishing}

Crew Disclaimer

Vermont 2017: Post #1

Our family just returned from a week at our favorite place to vacation: Joan and Roy's cabin in Vermont. 

This is actually the sixth summer that some portion of our family has spent on the lake. 
We absolutely love this time together as a family. I don't know how to properly write it and share how good this place is for our family any more than I have. It is so peaceful, there are so many birds for JB, we are mostly unplugged, the water is beautiful, the noise is non-existent ... I could go on and on.

Joan, as always, took a ton of pictures. I will be sharing some of my favorites in the coming days. We play a lot of ping pong, take a bunch of naps, lay around, read outside, and the kids especially play in the water. Isaac loves to collect rocks, but this year he really joined his other siblings for a lot of water sports.

We thought this would be a cold week, and that we wouldn't be able to get in the water much. It was the only week we had to go so we went anyway. But it turned out to be one of their most beautiful summer (nearly fall!) weeks and we were able to spend quite a bit of time on the water.

For now, we are home. Our farm is equally peaceful but in very different ways. We hope that we can continue going to Vermont in the summer for many years to come.

Here's just the start of a few days of pictures.