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Monday, September 30, 2019

Weekly Meal Planning


Teacher's work day here today.  I'll be glad when my husband comes home and I'm not having to make our paycheck work between two states.. LOL   Typically, I plan my groceries to last til the weekend after the pay period, but these last few weeks, I'm having to shop ON pay day. Today was payday, so I had to make the drive to town to get the shopping done for the next two weeks. 

Garrett's birthday is tomorrow, we we decided to have a nice lunch at our favorite Indian restaurant instead of fast food.  We normally go to the restraraunt run by the two wives of the family, but today we decided to go to the one run by the two husbands as it's next to our grocery store.  We prefer the other one - the food is just as good but the ambiance is much nicer at the other one (and the service is much better.. lol).. But we enjoyed a really nice lunch and we had left overs to eat for dinner tonight. 

 Hard to believe this lil man will officially be a teenager tomorrow.


 Getting a start on the fall decorating 

Now, for the menu :)

Sunday -  Three cheese and spinach ravioli with meat sauce, salad and breadsticks

Monday -   Leftover Indian food

Tuesday -  Shake and bake pork shops, mac and cheese, salad

Wednesday -  Pumpkin Spice French Toast, Eggs, bacon and fruit

Thursday -  Salisbury Steak with Mashed Potatoes, peas and carrots

Friday -  Homemade Clam Chowder

Saturday -  Homemade Lasagna with salad

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Weekly Wrapup


It's been a difficult week for us but we've managed to get our most of our lessons done and lots of learning has been taking place in the Prince household.. 

This week for morning work, we have been reading Norse mythology and Rush Revere and the First Patriots as well as our morning Bible reading.   We also discussed and interpreted Sonnet 19 together and listened to a piece composed by Henry Purcell.


In language arts, we have continued with our literature study of Little House on the Prairie as well as worked on Week 2 of Fix It Grammar.  This week, the kids learned to identify articles (the, an, a) although this was basically a review for them.

 Garrett has been learning to play Chess (this is a review that we will be revealing very soon).. He absolutely loves it and has asked me multiple times to play.  He's quickly picking up the moves and I have no doubt he will be beyond my own knowledge of the game very quickly. .lol

Math lessons at the table..   This week we were working with place value, decimals and whole numbers.  The kids were able to each do one session of their online math.


And science with Apologia..   This week they focused on learning about using graphs to show their experiment results.




We started American history this year, so in addition to the text we are using, we are also supplementing.   We have added episodes of Liberty Kids as well as began reading Rush Revere and the First Patriots.  I've been pulling questions to use with both of these resources to use with the kids.


In addition to Liberty Kids, we also worked on Chapter 4 of our text book - How Jamestown was Settled where we discussed James I of England was originally James VI  King of Scotland who was cousin to Queen Elizabeth and that the entire area was named Virginia for Elizabeth who was known as "The Virgin Queen".   We also discussed the ships that brought the Jamestown settlers to the Americas (The Susan Constant, God Speed, and Discovery), Chief Pohawtan, Pocahontas, and John Smith (and why he wasn't the nicest of guys, especially towards Chief Pohawtan).

In Greek, Garrett has started Week Three, which has him beginning to actually learn vocabulary and begin his memory scripture.  For the next three weeks, he will be memorizing John 1:1 (In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.).  For each week, he will learn a line of the verse in addition to five vocabulary words.  

As I do not know Greek, I am learning right beside Garrett. So, in order to make sure I am teaching him properly, I have to write down the pronunciation. I do the same thing to help Ashleigh with her Latin - LOL   If/When I sell the teacher's guide for his Greek curriculum, someone will have my cliffnotes. 


Garrett's  vocabulary for the week.   We are working with Verbs (as well as verb endings)  this week. We have I hear, I see,  I have/hold, I loose or destroy, and I believe.


Ashleigh has been repeating lessons in her Latina Christiana curriculum in order to refresh her memory of the work she had already done before moving on.  This week she retackled Lesson 3 which had her reviewing the 1st Declension of nouns as well as continuing to work on memorization of the Table Blessing.

Yet Another game of Chess

Garrett has started back up with his violin, practicing with it daily..  This week, he mostly worked on correct bow placement on the A and E string.  Next week he will begin working up the scale.




We did VERY little of anything internet related this week, as we were having almost constant issues with the internet (as well as our phone service thru the same company)..  After a few different visits from the technician and a number of equipment exchanges, we finally got up and running on Friday. It was the weirdest thing - we could only get to websites run by Google and Facebook but could not access any other websites.   So, our CTC Math, art curriculum, piano curriculum and a few math programs we are reviewing did not happen.. Fingers crossed that the problem is fixed and we will be good to go.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

HiGASFY Art History (A Homeschool Crew Review)

This past summer,  we attended a local homeschool convention down in Los Angeles and while browsing the vendor hall, an art vendor caught our eye.  Well, most honestly, it caught my youngest eye.  The vendor was for an art history curriculum and their display showed a video sample of their lessons.  What caught Ashleigh's eye was that the video showed a rat, so of course, we had to go over and check it out.   We struck up a conversation with the owner, Mrs. Beth and her and Ashleigh had a nice discussion about rats, art history, an animated drop of paint and a new art curriculum -HiGASFY Art History Video Series - which stood for "Have I got a story for you".
I found the concept of HiGASFY very intriguing  and had already considered signing up after returning from the convention when we were offered a three month subscription to the HiGASFY Art History Video Series for review with the Crew.  The art series introduces students grades 1st thru 8th grade to four different periods of art history: the Renaissance series that features artists daVinci, Raphael and Michelangelo,  the Baroque period which showcases Caravaggio,  Rembrandt and Vermeer,  the Impressionist period highlighting the works of Monet, Pissaro and Degas and finally the Post-Impressionist period which introduces students to Van Gogh, Picasso and Matisse.   Each of these series contains 12 video lessons that introduce the students to the artists, their work, and interesting information in regards to the time period of that time. 


Each series consists of four parts.  The first part is a downloadable PDF curriculum guide that contain the required work for each of the 16 lessons of each series.  This curriculum guide neatly lays out which video the student should watch for that week, states the objective for the lesson, introduces vocabulary they should become familiar with, offers art projects related to the lesson and even offers critical thinking questions writing assignments suggestions, as well as geography and science projects that can be used to create a well rounded study unit.

The second component of the curriculum is the videos.. These are taught my Mrs Beth and and animated paint drop named Gasfy  (She always welcomes him with "Hi Gasfy" - get it?).  The videos are extremely well done, with Mrs Beth and Gasfy carrying on a conversation about art history and inviting the viewer to be part of the discussion.   Talking to Mrs Beth in person, it was evident that she really enjoyed being able to share art history with students, and his passion shines in the videos.  No expense was spared and the end product is professional quality videos that are both very educational and very entertaining.

GASFY receives a gift from Mrs Beth while learning about the Mona Lisa

The next component of the HiGASFY Art History Video Series is the flashcards.  These are video representations of the artwork that the students again have been introduced to.  When printed out, the name of the art piece as well as the artist is printed on the back. These can be printed out, laminated  and used throughout the course of the lessons to help reinforce the pieces studied.  Each piece of art the student has been introduced during the series is included.

The final part of the curriculum component is the "Name the Artist" slideshow game.    Upon completion of the series, the student will have been introduced to multiple pieces of artwork (the Renaissance series includes 42 pieces of art, for example).  Students can start the slideshow and will be presented with one of the pieces of art that they should by this time be familiar with, allowing them to identify the name of the piece and the artist.  Hitting the spacebar will allow them to see if they were correct.


How We Used It

We decided to start our art lesson study with the Renaissance series.. just because it's the very first of in the timeline of art history and of course, Ashleigh wanted to see the rat. Mine you, the rat is only featured in one episode in discussion about the Bubonic plague.  However, Ashleigh had to grab her rat Possum to cuddle with during the video lesson.  LOL


We found the videos to be extremely educational as well as entertaining.  Mrs Beth and GASFY present the material in a very upbeat way, really pulling Ashleigh (and myself to be honest) into the lesson.  Each video is roughly 14-20 minutes in length.  

After watching the videos, we would pick one of the art projects of Ashleigh to work on.   The first lesson, Ashleigh was asked to make a portfolio to keep her work in.   She really enjoyed decorating the outside of her portfolio to make it her own and has made sure all her work was put into it since. 


Ashleigh's Portfolio Decorations (She's not thrilled I disturbed her to take the picture.. lol)
 One of the very first lessons we did asked for Ashleigh to draw a picture using perspective.  The activity specifically mentioned a knight riding a horse away from a castle, so that's what Ashleigh decided to do.


In another lesson, we learned how Leonardo da Vinci was an apprentice to Andrea del Verrocchio and how he had completed one of Verrocchio's works.    Following the video, Ashleigh was asked to being a picture and to ask someone else to finish it.  She asked me to be the one to finish it - I am not artistically inclined haha     She drew the body and told me it was a dog so I finished the head.  Luckily, this is the only piece of my own artwork that will be shown here -  much like Verrocchio, I do believe I will never paint draw again. 



In another assignment, in discussion about da Vinci's sketches, Ash was asked to pick one of his sketches to imitate.  She opted to copy da Vinci's bear,



And on a final assignment in regards to da Vinci, she decided to do her own interpretation of the Mona Lisa. Ashleigh has been working on various computer animations/graphics lately, so this time she opted to draw on her tablet.  She even included the veil (which I had never noticed prior to the video).. While it won't hang in the Louvre anytime soon, I think she did a great job. 




We have really been enjoying the HiGASFY curriculum.  I like that while it does allow her to show her artistic side, the main focus is appreciation of the masters.  The constantly exposure to great artwork and the artists behind them in a way that Ashleigh will remember it will hopefully last a lifetime.

#hsreviews #art #arthistory #education #arteducation #renaissance #baroque #impressionist #postimpressionist #famousartist #davinci #michelangelo #rembrandt #monet #degas #vangogh #matisse #picasso #gasfy #artteacher


To find more information about HiGASFY Art History Video Series, be sure to visit their website.  You can also find more information on the followings social media platforms:



Our family has been using the Renaissance portion of the HiGASFY Art History curriculum but with four different historical periods to explore, you might want to click the banner below to see what period other members of the Crew used during this review period. 


Have I Got A Story For You Art History Video Series {HiGASFY Art History Video Series Reviews}


Sunday, September 22, 2019

Weekend Meal Planning


Another week of a separated family (one down, three to go) so that means we are still eating cheap meals..   This week, however, we are going to go to the community center on base for the "Family Strong" dinner which will serve food from Chick-fil-a so that will be very nice.  (Who doesn't love Chick-fil-a??).


Sunday - Spaghetti and meatballs with salad

Monday - Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches with Chips

Tuesday - Chicken Tortilla Soup

Wednesday - Family Strong Dinner featuring Chick-fil-a

Thursday - Garlic Chicken Skillet with salad and breadsticks

Friday - breakfast for dinner (biscuits and gravy with sausage, eggs, and fruit)

Saturday - Ravioli Soup with Salad

Friday, September 20, 2019

Weekly Wrapup - Week Three of School


The kids had a pretty easy week this week.  First, I was so exhausted on Monday from lack of sleep from Sunday that I decided to take a "teachers work day" and instead go take care of grocery shopping and other running around that needed to be down in town.  Then I was lacking a few things I needed for our science lessons this week, so I decided to put science off til next week..   Today, my internet doesn't want to cooperate and only seems to want to load facebook and websites run by Google, so the math courses they are working on were out of the question..   I warned them not to get use to it, as next week, we will be back to the same schedule we had the last two weeks (before this bad week) as well as adding Music Theory and 5th Grade Math to their lineup.. lol



Ashleigh practicing her 5 finger scales on the piano. 

Watching Episode 1 of Drive Thru History : American History after our lessons on Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci and Sir Walter Riley in our history lessons the last three weeks.

Ashleigh beginning working on a new math review for Smartick.


Garrett listening to classical music with  his Soundsory headset 




Week Three of his Architecture lessons.

Working on IEW's Fix It Grammar Week 2



Thursday, September 19, 2019

Weekend Meal Planning (Late Edition)


I'm posting this a few days late (okay, a lot of days late - as in a few minutes it will officially be Friday lol )  but Sunday was not a good day.. After waking up at 330am and driving to the Los Angeles airport, I once again put my husband on a plane and sent him off for military training.   We will be separated for yet another month (he just got back from a 6 week training in Texas back in June), having him return in mid October. 


So, while he's gone, we will again be eating fairly cheap.   While the military takes care of his hotel and even rented a car for him while he's there,  we have to pay for his meals out of pocket until we are reimbursed.  This means having to budget for twice the amount of meals.  I'm trying to keep things fairly healthy (although  I admit hot pockets don't fall into that category) but I'm sticking to very simple meals while he is away.


Sunday - Lasagna with french bread and salad

Monday - Hot Pockets with Chips (Garrett's request)

Tuesday - Tostadas with mexican rice and Salad

Wednesday - Steak Bites with mushrooms and tomatoes with Baked potato and broccoli



Thursday - Personal homemade Caprice pizza with salad  (pepperoni and cheese for kids)



Friday - lemony tuna and olive oil pasta with salad

Saturday - BBQ chicken sandwiches with chips




Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Moparty on the Blvd 2019



This year, I was honored to be asked by the Antelope Valley Mopar club to be the offically photographer for the 20th Annual Moparty on the Blvd.  Moparty is a large car show that showcases Mopar vehicles (Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep) from today and yesterday.  With nearly 200 cars, I had my work cut out for me.  Here are some of my favorite shots from the show.  























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