Recent Posts by Tera Bare

How to Use Your Vacation To Sneak In Fun Summer Learning

Think a vacation is just a vacation? What about using it to slip in some serious learning fun and gain a few extra school days at the same time?

I love vacations!  They are the best.  They’re relaxing, casual, lazy, crazy and educational.  Yes, I said educational.  Think I’m crazy?  It was so funny when my kids were younger and my friends heard that I counted trips to the aquarium, and the battleship as school days while we were on vacation.  Why not?  I was able to in them at a homeschool discount and they were having a great time and learning.  So, I counted them as homeschool days, even though we were on vacation.

But then, more of my friends started to do it.  Matter of fact, we found out that a veteran homeschool family, had been doing it every summer for years.  Every summer they packed up their RV and traveled!  They loved it and had the most special memories.  The dad even spoke about it at one of our support group meetings.  Don’t fret if you don’t have an RV, I don’t have one either, but you can still make some great summer vacation memories and clock in some insane learning!

There are several ways to get in some fun summer learning that you can count as school days.  You can go to a destination vacation overseas and visit a foreign country.  There would be museums to see, cultural experiences, and lots of history.  Your child could try out speaking a foreign language that they are learning.  The possibilities are endless!

Take a destination trip to somewhere like Colonial Williamsburg.  Every state has historic sites.  Really take some time to experience them.  But don’t think of just history, think science, math and art, too.  You could make these trips really immersive, or just a casual visit.  You want to have fun as a family.  The trick to summer learning is that it’s not forced learning on vacations, it’s casual and memorable because the whole family is having fun.

Don’t forget about National and State parks!  They have all kinds of things going on and lots of learning opportunities besides camping.  Have your kids make a photo journal of plants and trees on a nature hike.  Learn about local wildlife.  Learn about the terrain, geology and any history.

Take short day trips to local sites near you.  I live in place that is surrounded by history from colonial to modern.  I’ve lived here my whole life and there are tons of things that I haven’t even seen, or heard of that are within an hour of my house.  Think of trips like that.  Take off and go to the zoo for the day.  Maybe do a civil war trail in your town.  Go see a reenactment of a battle.

Here’s a really easy idea!  Have your kids, or teens interview people who you know, about their life.  Let them tell them what it was like during a war, or living during a particular time period.  It doesn’t have to be a serious Q & A, just a nice sit down chat.  What about your own backyard?  Take a walk in a park and look at tadpoles.  Get creative!

And don’t forget about those amazing summer nights under the stars.  Start the day at a planetarium.  Then, when it gets dark out, break out the telescope!  Spend the night under that stars and fun looking for planets.

There are tons of ways to sneak in summer learning while on vacation, besides a kid’s camp;  whether you travel, or stay home. Just don’t make it forced, your kids need a little break from homeschool and so do you.  Don’t forget to check with places that you visit and ask if they offer discounts to homeschool teachers and students.  Lots of places do.  There are even homeschool travel agents out there to help you plan a perfect trip!

Blog Signature

Movies For School

Movies are a great way to spark interest in a subject, book or time period for school…

They also make a great reward for completing a book.  We are huge movie buffs at our house and I use a lot of movies, documentaries or TV specials to break up the monotony or as a reward or in place of a book if we’re short on time or I really just want them to get to know the story.  Sometimes a movie can give you a better understanding of the time period or subject.  Here are some of the movies we used over the years.  I hope to get it organized by age and time period and with a review of each movie.  This isn’t a complete list, but it’s a great starting point!  Keep checking back, I’m sure to be adding more titles!

I recommend for anything over PG that you watch it first and make sure of what you want your kids to see.  Sometimes, the TV version is better than the full DVD version.  For example, I love Braveheart but I’d only watched it on TV and when I got the DVD I was surprised to find out that they moon the English army and there was nothing under their kilts and it’s a lot bloodier than what I’d seen on TV.  So use your judgment and not mine.

Just click on the picture to be taken to a description of the movie and preview clips if available.

Elementary and maybe Middle School

  

  

 

  

 

  

Ancient History/Mythology

   

 

  

Middle Ages

  

 

Exploration up to early 1900’s

  

 

  

  

  

  

   

  

 

   

  

Modern

  

  

  

 

  

  

  

   

  

 

Good Books!

      

Thanksgiving/Christmas

   

Biblical

    

Documentaries

 

Blog Signature

Girl Talk Time: Hysterectomy

Time to talk about some girly issues for a moment and something very personal to me, a hysterectomy…

As I’m writing this all kinds of emotions are flooding me, anger, hurt, disappointment, fear and even some depression. I have found out that I’m going to have to have a hysterectomy. I should be throwing a party, right? Who doesn’t want to get rid of having their periods? They’re a pain, literally and that bloating, month after month. So why am I so hesitant and having all of these emotions while my friends are just like, “Yank that thing out!” “What’s the big deal?” I’m not really sure, if I was a little younger and thought that there was a possibility that I might want more children, then I would definitely understand what the big deal was. But I’ve been done having kids for quite some time now and I’ve come to learn that for myself, even after having problems since the very first visit from my little friend, and wishing that this would all go away, that maybe, I’m not as ready now that it’s a reality like I thought.

First of all, let me point out, I’m in no way a doctor and I can not and will not take the place of your doctor. Ok, disclaimer done!

There are so many emotions that have hit me when I found out that I was going to have to have one and to my surprise joy wasn’t one of them. I have been diagnosed with Adenomyosis. It’s like Endometriosis, but inside the muscle wall of your uterus. Yuck! And very painful. I have learned that a lot of what I’ve been suffering through for years (since my 20’s), lower back pain and painful, heavy periods was not normal. I thought it was normal. Aren’t we taught that periods are uncomfortable? It’s just a part of life, right? Apparently not.

I guess I just got used to it. I was busy with babies, and then kids, homeschool, teens and now young adults. I didn’t have time to think about it. Again, I just thought my periods were normal and I didn’t find out till recently that it wasn’t. If you have painful periods, or heavy periods, talk to your doctor. It may not be normal. We girls don’t take our girly health seriously at all. I went for years without going to an ob/gyn after my last daughter was born; I think probably about 10 years. So now, I’m experiencing all kinds of emotions like fear.

Fear is an easy one to start with. I’m fearful of having major surgery and yes, I know that makes me a bit of a wimp, but I don’t care. Fear of the recovery process and how much pain I might be in, but knowing I actually might be feeling better than I have in while. By the way, how am I supposed to finish up homeschooling this year when I’m stuck in bed? Ugh! I feel angry because, I’m mad that I must have surgery. Angry that my body has betrayed me. Anger that my husband doesn’t talk to me about my surgery except to ask when I’m going to schedule it (Please note, he’s a great husband, but he’s a man and sometimes they don’t understand girly stuff). Anger that I can’t bring myself to schedule a date. I’m angry because my daughter and I just got on a roll with homeschool again because she has to deal with EDS and it’s her senior year and I wanted it to be perfect.

I’m disappointed with myself, although none of this is my fault, personally. I hurt physically and emotionally. Although I have all the children I want, it’s the finality of it. I will NEVER be able to have kids again. And I’m totally frustrated because now I have to get everything together in advance to finish out homeschool this year and now everything else I wanted to do is shot. Like gardening, I wanted to have a garden this year. That’s shot! And I wanted to work on our addition and for me that’s shot! There are so many emotions and I wasn’t prepared for them. I’m still dealing with them and will be for quite some time.

I did find out that I’m not the only one that feels like this. I found Hystersisters.com an online support and information group for women going through a hysterectomy. I was so surprised by how many women grieve over it, like me and that it’s not being crazy, it’s natural. It is a process and I will get through it. Have you been through this? Have you had a hysterectomy? I will probably be blogging about my experience, as a way of helping myself, but hopefully it will encourage other women to get to their doctors and take their own girly health seriously. We can’t be supermom, if we’re in pain or sick. We have to take care of ourselves so we can take care of our families and it’s part of setting a good example for own daughters.Blog Signature

 

Dipped Rice Krispies Treats

Want to get fancy with your rice krispies treats?  Try this easy how to…

Emily and I made these for my great-niece’s first birthday party.  They were a huge hit, especially with the adults; because we’re all just kids at heart!  They are so much fun to make and go great for any occasion, holiday, or any day.  Not to mention, they’re super quick to make.  Maybe I’ll make some today!

Start with any rice krispy treat recipe that you like.  I prefer the original recipe here.  You need a semi-thick recipe because if it’s too soft, it won’t maintain it’s shape, and if it’s too dense then it’s just really hard to eat.  That’s why I prefer the original recipe; it’s the perfect consistency.  Feel free to use your favorite, just remember you may need to cut back on the butter a bit if it’s too soft.

Once treats have cooled, flip out onto a cutting board and using a cookie cutter, cut into your favorite shape.  I just did squares using a chef’s knife.  Be creative and have fun!

Melt chocolate for dipping.  Any chocolate will work.  I used Wilton’s Candy Melts in pink and purple.  Follow the directions on the package for melting the chocolate or candy melts.

Dip treats into chocolate!  That’s it!  Place on wax paper to dry.  Unless that’s as much decorating as you want, or you want to add sprinkles now, then do so while it’s still tacky so they’ll stick!  But if you want to add more color keep reading!

Next comes the decorating part!  We melted purple and used a spoon to drizzle it on the treats.  You can be really creative here and use multiple colors or add sprinkles, chocolate chips or candies.  Really anything your heart desires, so have fun and get the kids involved!

Need some more inspiration?  Check out these links below:

Spring Rice Krispie Pops from Glorious Treats

Birthday Cake Rice Krispie Treats from Celebrating Sweets

4th of July Rice Krispie Treats from Dreaming in DIY

Rice Krispie Treat Hearts from Intimate Weddings

First birthday Rice Krispie Treats from Pretty My Party

Blog Signature

Get a Head Start on Homeschool Supplies!

Wanna get great homeschool products, curriculum and even online classes at great prices?  You have to go to CurrClick’s Summer Sale!

You can get my products, and tons of other publishers, including my new Daily Homeschool Life 2017-2018 planner at 30% off!  Just click the picture below to view the main sale.

I must disclose that I’m an affiliate and publisher on CurrClick, but more than that, I have bought and used products from other publishers in my own homeschool.  They are quality products at amazing prices.  You have to check them out!

To go to my publisher page just click here!CurrClick Summer Sale

Blog Signature

If you are a homeschooler and you haven’t used CurrClick yet, what are you waiting for?

Disclaimer:  I am an affiliate of CurrClick and I am publisher.

But more than that, I am a mom that has used CurrClick for years.  They offer great homeschool products and online classes at amazing prices.  You have to check them out!  Starting June 5th – 12th, they are having a huge 30% off Summer Sale.  Tons of publishers, including yours truly, Creative Girl Publishing, will have their products on sale.  This is a great time to get what you need for summer classes, or next school year.  Go check them out!

New Homeschool Planner Designs Coming Soon!

I’m so excited! New homeschool planner designs are coming your way soon…

It’s going to get really busy around here, at least around my desk.  I’ve got all these amazing design ideas for new homeschool planners and accessories.  I can’t wait to get started!  I’m even going to be revamping my older planners so that they will no longer be year specific and you can use them from year to year.

I’m also going to be giving my books major upgrades.  I’m really into crisp, clean and minimalist.  But that doesn’t mean they won’t be pretty!  Of course, they will pretty and girly.

Stay tuned!  I’ve got to get to work!Blog Signature

 

 

The Fitness Journey Begins…Again

Fitness is a journey, it doesn’t magically happen no matter how much we wish for it.  It takes work and I’m starting my fitness journey again.

I’m starting all over with my fitness journey.  I have a goal and it’s simple, well sort of.  We are going to the beach in September, and I want to be able to be in a bathing suit and be comfortable with myself.  I also want to lose 50 pounds.  So I’m going to use my blog to help me hold myself accountable.  Don’t worry, I’m not posting pictures of me in bathing suit or workout clothes any time soon, if ever.  Not sure I’d ever be comfortable with that.  But, maybe some pictures in regular clothes as I journey down the road.

Here’s how I’ve done so far.  I started back in March, with simple things like:  drinking water and not reaching for the sweet tea all day.  I started saving sweet tea for meals.  I’m also trying really hard to cut back on soda.  I’ve enlisted the help of my daughter, Emily, to remind me when we’re out to drink water instead of grabbing a soda.  So, when we’re standing in a checkout line and we’re thirsty, she grabs me a water.  I still drink sweet tea, or soda at restaurants, for now.  I’m a Southern girl after all, and I can’t just go cold turkey!

Next, I’ve started trying to make better food choices when I can, as much as I can.  At home, this is pretty easy, but it’s not always easy when we’re out.  Sometimes a salad at a restaurant can be worse than an actual meal.  I’m learning what the healthy options are at the restaurants we frequent, or at least I’m trying to.  I try to stay around 300-400 calories per meal and try to keep the fat grams for each meal under 14.  Having the app My Fitness Pal helps so much!  The main problem I have at home is hearing, “not chicken again!”.

I have started working out, or at least trying to.  I found out that my knees, don’t appreciate workouts anymore. I started trying to work out three weeks ago, doing some light cardio and my knees hurt so badly and wouldn’t do what I wanted them to do, that I couldn’t do any of the workout.  I couldn’t even do a lunge without feeling extreme pulling and popping and pain.  I called my hubby crying, from pain and frustration.  The next phone call was to our orthopedist to get a visit.  After discussing some options,  we decided to try hydrocortisone shots to both knees.  OMG!  I thought I was going to die later that afternoon.  But, after a few days, everything started to settle down and I was able to begin walking.

I walked 2 miles with no swelling!  The pain from the shots will be so worth it, if I am able to begin working out and head off surgery for a bit.  We’ll see.  My follow-up is in June, here’s hoping!  In the meantime, my daughter and I found a great place to walk at the research park near our house.  It has color coded paths so you know exactly how many miles you’re walking, or riding your bike.  The area is so pretty and that helps with motivation.  Also seeing other people running, jogging, biking and walking helps.  I forgot how much I love walking.

The other thing I’m using for motivation is a free health coach through our insurance.  They’ve sent me some cool things to use to workout with, like stretchy bands and a workbook and some other stuff.  They also help me set goals and check in on me once a month.  It helps me with accountability and getting myself in gear knowing that I have to set a goal and answer to someone other than myself.

I also went out and bought some new workout shorts and tanks,  I didn’t realize it had been so long since I bought any that I honestly didn’t have anything to wear to workout in. Even most of my t-shirts had paint on them!  What did I do?  I took my Mother’s Day present from my hubby (he gave me cold, hard cash) and when shopping.  But it turned out to be a reward!  Just the little bit I’ve done has resulted in 5 pounds gone and never coming back!  I’m so excited!

Now to keep this up!  I’m actually starting to feel motivated and a little excited.  How about you?   Do you have any fitness goals that you are working on?  Share your tips and what you’re doing with me!

Blog Signature

Pretty in Pink First Birthday Party

A very simple and pretty in pink first birthday party that’s so sweet…

My great-niece turned one and my girls and I got the honor of decorating and baking for it.  I’m not supposed to be old enough to have great-nieces yet!  Where did the time go?  But she is so sweet and I think she liked what we did for her.  The best part?  The decorations are very simple and easy to do.

For a Pretty in Pink First Birthday for Hope, we made vanilla cupcakes and a vanilla smash cake with Rice Krispy treats.  The cupcakes in the shape of the one are so easy to do.  Start with a row of two cupcakes and go from there until you get the shape you want. We used one sheet of foam board with 24 cupcakes and we tinted buttercream with one drop of pink gel color.

Tip:  Ice the cupcakes when you have them in the shape you want.  We had to transport our cupcakes, and it just made it so much easier to assemble since they weren’t iced yet.  We used a huge open star icing tip.  It makes icing cupcakes so fast and you get just the right amount of icing.Pretty in Pink First Birthday

 

For the smash cake, I used a 6″ cake pan with really tall sides and baked two layers.  When they were cooled, I sliced the two layers each in half so that I had four layers.  I stacked each layer with buttercream between each and iced the cake as smooth as I could get it. It helps to crumb coat the cake first.  If you’re not sure what crumb coating is, it’s just putting a thin coat of icing on the cake and then refrigerating it till it gets good and cold.  It makes icing the cake so much easier and you don’t pick up crumbs from the cake!  I then used a shell tip for the border on top and bottom.  I think by the time we got to take pictures, some little fingers had been sampling the bottom border!  Didn’t even get a chance to put on tulle for the bottom of the cake.  Oh, well, it’s pretty anyway!   Then we just topped it off with large sprinkles.  Isn’t it cute!!

I made the “Hope is One” topper using my Cricut.  I made it 5″ tall by 5″ wide and I used Chopin Font.  Adjust the size of the topper to the size of your cake.  Since my cake was 6″ across I went with 5″ so the topper would fit nicely and not be bigger than the cake.

To make the topper you will need:

Poster board

Glitter cardstock (we used purple)

Clear glue

Tiny paintbrush

Cricut

Candy stick

First size and choose the font you like.  I learned the swirlier (Is that a word?  It is now!) the font, the more fragile it is to work with.  Cut out at least 3 from the poster board and 1 from the cardstock.  Use the clear glue applied with a tiny paintbrush to layer each of the cutouts ending with the glitter cardstock on top.  Allow each layer to dry a few minutes before adding the next layer.  Once everything is good and dry, use the same glue to attach the stick in the back.  That’s it!  Super easy!

For the sweet centerpieces I used the leftover tulle from the tutu to make pompoms and hot glued them to sticks.  I also used my  Cricut to cut out the 1’s and hot glued them to sticks also, using the same purple glitter cardstock.  We used a variety of glass jars; two different sized mason jars and one Starbucks glass jar.  They turned out so cute!

The My First Birthday keepsake I made using Canva.  I got the idea from Pinterest.  The monogrammed canvas with the flowers was made by my daughter Emily.  It is part of a gift for Hope.  She also made a beautiful floral chandelier/mobile for her.  I’ll link to it as soon as she gets her post ready.

Pretty in Pink First Birthday

 

To make the rice krispies, that my nephew Brandon, couldn’t stop eating click here.  They were so yummy!

Pretty in Pink First Birthday

Every princess needs a tutu!  This one is light and delicate.  I wish the colors would have shown up better, but we didn’t bring my daughter’s lighting kit to the party.  Not a good idea with little ones running around.  It was made with pink, green and lavender tulle and gold ribbon.  She loved it and couldn’t stop playing with it!  The best part is, when she’s ready for to wear it, all she has to do is adjust the ribbon and tie.  Princess perfection! For the DIY click here.

Pretty in Pink First Birthday

I couldn’t resist a picture of those sweet hands in her smash cake.  I think it might be my favorite picture.  First birthdays are so sweet and precious.  We wanted to make her’s just as sweet and delicate as she is.  Happy 1st birthday Hope!Blog Signature

 

Oil Cleansers

If you haven’t heard about oil cleansers yet, you will soon!  Here’s my experience trying one out…

I was scrolling through Pinterest one day and came about this pin, 6 Facial Oil Cleansers Dermatologists Swear By  as a new thing to try.  You should read it.  I gives great info about oil cleansers, what they are and the different types.  I took the bait and went to the article all about the new rage for cleaning your face.  I was so curious after reading the article that I actually went out for the sole purpose of buying an oil cleanser to try.  But what is an oil cleanser?  Well, for the most part, it’s exactly what it sounds like.  You are using an oil like, Camellia, Argan, Coconut and Grapeseed oil to clean your face.  They also have vitamins, fatty acids and the oils that can have anti-inflammatory properties.  Sounds weird right?

That’s what I thought at first, but then I remembered how during the winter, when my skin is screaming because it’s so dry, that I sometimes grab olive oil and dab it on; instant relief.  But how does it clean?  You would think it would be messy and greasy and leave a film on your skin.  I decided to try Simple’s Hydrating Cleansing Oil.  Their product is  free of tree nuts, which I have to avoid due to allergies and the price was great at $10 and it won a 2016 O-Award for Beauty.   Sounded like a good choice and I could just run to Walmart to get it.

Just to let you know, my skin is dry and I have a lot pink because of it.  I was even breaking out due to an allergy and it was overly irritated by the dryness. The first time I tried it, I didn’t have on any makeup.  It was really easy, just rub it on your face, then add a little water and lather and rinse off with warm water.  It was amazing!  My skin was so soft afterwards.  I even made my hubby touch my skin.  It felt soothed and soft.

I went to bed thinking that I would probably wake up feeling greasy and with a film on my face, but no, just soft skin.  I’ve been trying it for a few months now and there’s a nice difference in my skin.  It’s smoother, softer and more hydrated and the best part?  No greasy, oily residue.  I’ve used it to remove my makeup and honestly, it does a great job of removing even waterproof mascara.  The pink areas and the breakouts have toned down a good bit, too.  I give this product 5 stars!  You should definitely try it out. I love this stuff!  I’m definitely going to be using oil cleansers from now on.  There are tons of oil cleansers out there, find one with an oil that you like and try it and tell me what you think.Blog Signature

Recent Comments by Tera Bare