Friday, January 27, 2012

Being involved in your Community

As a homeschooling mother of 5 kids, you can imagine that life is busy, trying to get all the kids educated and the house cleaned and the laundry done and dinner cooked every day. Not to mention driving the kids to and from piano lessons, choir, play practice, basketball practice, and outside classes. And of course there are church responsibilities....I am the Superintendent of the K-8 Sunday school, plus teach the middle school class, and sing in the choir and participate in the book club. So it is hard to fit anymore into my schedule. But my husband and I have decided that it is also important to be involved in our small community. He is a local attorney and as such needs to be involved to get his name out there and let people know that he cares about our town. He is on the Board of the local Chamber of Commerce. He just finished a 3-year term on the Board of the local food bank. I and the kids have participated in 4 productions with our community theatre troupe. Because of my involvement with the theatre group, and because people know my husband, I was asked to be on the Board of the Arts Commission, to which I answered yes! As homeschoolers, it is so easy to insulate ourselves from the world around us and just hang out with other homeschoolers. But I think it is important for non-homeschoolers to be able to see that we do not just care about the education of our kids but also care about our community. Our communities need to see what homeschooling looks like from real people like us, not from stereotypes they hear b/c they've never met a homeschooler.

So tonight my husband and I are going to the annual Chamber of Commerce dinner, which brings up that perpetual question, "What do I wear?" As you can imagine, going to "fancy" dinners means I need to wear more than the typical jeans-and-sweater I wear in winter and shorts-and-tshirt I wear in summer. This is the third community event I've gone to in as many weeks, so I am running out of choices! I will see a lot of the same people I have seen at the other two events, so I can't re-use an outfit. Maybe I will need to go shopping to enhance my wardrobe, if I plan on being involved in my community! Just one of the many perks. :)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

How many children?

My husband and I were at an after-Christmas party with friends last week. It was good to see everyone. These are friends he's known since high school. Surprisingly, most of the couples still live in the area, though with everyone's busy schedules, it is hard to make time to see each other. At the end of the night, conversation turned towards the number of kids people have, as one of the couples present are a new aunt and uncle to his brother's 8th child. The comment was, "Man, how do you have a life [with so many kids]? Well, I REALLY wanted to say something to that, but I didn't want to start anything, and I didn't want to embarrass my husband. Here are the things that came to mind when he said that....

1) No where in the Bible does it talk about people being able to "have a life" aka have a bunch of fun in life. To the contrary, life is to be lived in service to God and others. To not have children because you "want to have a life" is such a selfish reason!

2) There are many Bible passages that talk about "being fruitful and multiplying" (Genesis 1:28) and "children being a reward from God" (Psalm 127:3) etc.

3)People today are having a lot less children than in the past and some countries are worried about extinction b/c their inhabitants won't have children.

4) It's not his business (or anyone else's) how many children a family has. That is between God and the family.

But, I didn't say anything. Maybe I should have. Would you have?

I'm sure there is more to say about this, but those were the thoughts that came to mind.

Ice Festival Ball 2012

Save Friday evening, January 13! And buy a ticket to the 1st Annual Ice Festival Ball, to benefit the Rockford Area Arts Commission. The $100/couple ticket gets you a great date night of dinner, dancing, babysitting (at Wolverine Worldwide YMCA) and good music, all at the beautiful and chic Blythefield Country Club. What fun to dress up in the middle of winter and dance the night away with your spouse! Or bring a friend and people watch. You probably don't even realize all the things that RAAC does for the city of Rockford....they sponsor the community band, choir, orchestra, and children's choir, as well as the Rogue River Community Theatre (with which I have acted) and the Rogue River Artists Association. Not to mention events like Art Capsule, Art in the Park and the Summer Arts Camp. And we need your support to continue the work! Tickets can be bought at Rockford City Hall or online at artsrockford.org. Check out the whole Ice Festival at rockfordicefestival.com.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


My oldest dd, Maiah, a freshman, was in performances of "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)" at the local public high school this week. Though we homeschool, she takes an art class at the local ps, so is eligible to be in the play. She was Juliet and did a fantastic job, though I say so myself. Everyone said so. The Lord has given her a talent and passion for acting and it will be exciting to see where it takes her. Right now, she is wanting to pursue an acting career on Broadway.....definitely theatre and not film. She is at the cast party now....a nervous thing for this mama...her first co-ed party. She is growing up fast!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

A tree and a van

What do these have in common? Cutting down the first enabled us to buy the second. Or I should say, "is enabling" b/c we haven't actually bought a van yet. I am going to look at a 12 passenger Chevy Express tomorrow with my dad. It is burgundy....so excited for that color! I know color isn't sooo important, but I've wanted a burgundy for forever! The price is great and we will even have some leftover.
Now, if you are a tree-hugger environmentalist person, please don't leave nasty comments about me cutting down trees. It was a hard decision, but one we think the Lord led us to.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Nourish Organic Market

So this is a plug for my mother-in-law's new store in West Michigan. It is basically an organic grocery store. She tries to carry as many Michigan products as possible. The grand opening is October 8. She has actually been open since the end of June, but this will be the big celebration. Come on out and support our local growers and producers. And get healthier in the process!

New school year!

So I have a goal this year of writing more on my blog. I am hoping once a week, it is mostly just getting into the habit, I think. And if I do them regularly, they don't have to be super long.
We are having a "soft opening" of school this week. Finishing up summer reading, figuring out and buying school supplies, getting everyone their books, finishing up planning, getting the last minute curriculum etc. Next Monday we start full steam ahead.
Yesterday was my oldest's birthday, she is now 14! I think she had a good day. She just got her own bedroom and wanted to re-do it, so we got her a duvet, shabby chic light blue with dark pink and rose flowers. I also found a blue table which is now her nightstand and 2 chair cushions that match perfectly, in stripes. She loves it all and had fun putting it together last night.
I no longer work at the markets for my MIL. Just got too busy, especially with school starting. And I realized I was starting to hate it and it was really affecting my mood and family and my weekends. But I have an idea for a new way to make money, which I will blog about later.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Hello again!

So, I haven't written in a while. Mostly b/c I am so dang busy homeschooling 5 kids and trying to keep up with the housecleaning, laundry, cooking, errands, etc. Though, over the summer we got an iPad, and my lovely dh got me an iPhone as a Christmas present, so today Ifinally figured out how to get a blogging app for those, so now I can blog away from my computer. So exciting. So hopefully I will write more.

Also over the summer, I was working 3 days a week at the local farmer's market, selling my MIL's locally grown, organically grown, sustainably grown food products. These are not items that she grows or makes herself, but she collects from others and re-sells it. So I worked Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, roughly 8 hours a day. I was also schooling the kids most of the summer, to prep for our October trip to Colonial Williamsburg, so it was way busy. I will not do that again....work and school. Way too hard. Not sure how it will go next summer.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tapestry of Grace - the classical, Christian homeschool curriculum for the whole family | TOG.com

We are finishing up our second year of using Tapestry of Grace. We started at the beginning with Year 1 last year and are in Year 2 Unit 3 right now. I love it so much, that I talk it up whenever the opportunity arises, so today I looked into becoming an Affiliate and have decided to do it. So I get credit if you click on one of the icons on my blog. If you decide to buy something, you can put give my code (on-line or by phone) and I will get credit for your purchases......my code is "shannonrop." If you are looking for a Christian, classical, history-based curriculum, Tapestry is what you want. When we stopped homeschooling 5 or so years ago to send my kids to public school, I had already heard about TOG and knew that if we went back to homeschooling, that is the curriculum we would use. My thoughts hadn't changed when we got back into homeschooling in the Fall of 2008. It is the best out there, as far as I am concerned.