I Am Not Attached to Anything…

We looked into buying the rental we are currently living in from the landlords.  We thought we had a price negotiated but then they wanted more right before the contract was inked.

We wouldn’t budge.  Because the house is not exactly what we are looking for.

So we’re looking for a house to buy again.

I have been a transient most of my adult life.  I have lived in 5 countries and visited many, many more.  I have lived in dorms, apartments, campers, and houses.

We did own a house once.  For 7 years we owned that house.  It was okay.  But it wasn’t what we wanted.

Still, when it was taken from us in foreclosure, it was hard to let it go.  But not too hard. And not because it wasn’t what we wanted.

It wasn’t hard because by that point we had lost all of our vehicles (4 or so because it was my husband’s business that caused the bankruptcy) and all of our toys (four-wheelers, motocycles, and snowmobiles).  So, why not the house?  After all, they’ve taken everything else.

When you’ve had everything taken away from you, you tend to not get attached to things.

Realtors count on people “falling in love with a house” and then paying more that they were originally intending to pay for it–merely because there’s emotion involved.  So do car salesmen.  Hence, the test drive.

Not with this mama.  Sorry.

I’m ready to walk anytime.  I can find a new “home” to live in.  Why?  Because it’s not “home”.  Home is heaven.  Earth is merely a transient walk I am taking.

With one caveat:  my family.  I, of course, need my family.  But as long as I have them (and this includes my two mangy old dogs who need their mama), I’m good.

And God of course.

But He goes without saying.  For me anyways.  Because He’s in my heart.  Where I go, He goes.  Always and forever.

There will be sunrises over our new home like this:

And rainbows outside our window like this:

My husband doesn’t want to move again (who does?).  But God wants us to.  Just like He did all those other times.  So here we go again.

I can say this because I’m not attached to any material thing in this world.

My question is:  Are you?

Goddess Girls

My two girls (ages 8 and 7) have been devouring these books ever since we saw them at a Book Fair.

The Goddess Girls series by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams chronicles the adventures of four Greek Goddesses (Artemis, Athena, Aphrodite, and Persephone) while they are pre-teens at Mount Olympus Academy (MOA).  And of course, the “godboys” are fixtures as well (Ares, Apollo, Hephaestus, Hercules, Hades, Actaeon, Poseidon, etc.)

It goes through first crushes, being the new girl (Athena who didn’t know she was a goddess before), loyalty to friends, helping others, etc.

I like these books because they are true to the original Greek myths. For example, Persephone falls for Hades.  Well, in the Greek myth, Hades kidnaps Persephone and makes her live with him in the Underworld.  Artemis is Goddess of the Hunt so she’s proficient with a bow and arrow and keeps animals as pets (as she is also Goddess of Animals).  Aphrodite is the match-maker of the group, fittingly since she’s the Goddess of Love.

A temple is built in Ephesus for Artemis and does become one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World (mentioned in Artemis the Brave or the Loyal–I can’t remember which).  So they are historically accurate as well as great reads.

These books intertwine social situations and ancient history and myths (with all your favorite mythical characters and creatures such as Hercules’ Tasks and Pygmalion).

Good, wholesome books sure to entertain as well as educate!

The Queen Who Couldn’t Bake Gingerbread

A great adaptation of a German folk tale by Dorothy Van Woerkom.  In this tale, a king seeks a queen but she must be able to bake gingerbread.  The king cannot find a queen who can bake gingerbread so he settles on a queen who is seeking a king who must be able to play the slide trombone (which the king can’t).  They agree to set aside these demands and marry anyways.

All is well until a fight ensues and each is mad at the other for not being able to cook gingerbread and play the slide trombone.  They go to separate parts of the castle, sulking.

Finally, each realizes they are not being very wise and kind and both in turn decide to teach themselves how to bake gingerbread and play the trombone.

I loved the lesson:  if you want something, do it yourself.  If you want gingerbread, learn to bake it.  If you want to play the trombone, learn to play it.

This is great for marriages as well.  You can’t count on your spouse doing something for you if you are the one who wants it done.  You gotta do it for yourself.

In the end, each are “never disappointed” from unrealistic expectations being put upon others.

This book is from 1975 which I got from the library so it may be hard to find in print.

Any One Else Tired of Reading Homeschool Reviews?

This is me….debating.

I know I am….

I just spent the last 3 days ordering my curriculum, which I agonize over every year (future post forthcoming for my selections).  I debate and wonder if it’s a good investment or not.  Repeatedly.

What prompted this posting is my agony over Bible curriculum.  We are doing Bible Study Fellowship’s Genesis but I also like to do a bit more especially since my girls are not too thrilled about this study since they know every story in Genesis (in our church experience the kids’ programs do tend to emphasize the well-known Bible stories a lot).  However, I did tell them BSF was different and I’m sure they will glean much more out of this.

Last year, we did Anne Elliott’s Foundations series (forthcoming review as well).  We didn’t finish it due to BSF.  My criticism here is Book 1, which covers the Old Testament, tried to cram the OT into one year and it skipped around a lot and the girls are like me–chronological please.  The favorite part of this was the Bible Drills.  Well, I can do Bible Drills myself to be honest.

So, I’m looking into Apologia’s What We Believe? series.  It looks fabulous–but it’s pricey for my book ($39 textbook and a student book at $24 (times two since I have two kids), which pushes $100).

Naturally, I scour the Internet for reviews.  And in this instance all I find are glowing reviews from those who received a free copy to review.  Now, I’m sorry, but I have yet to read a negative review from someone who received a free copy (in this instance there is one on Amazon from a gal who received a free copy but she seems to be nit-picking the book–see that thread here–more than criticizing its content).

I reviewed Strong Fundamentals by Susan Wise Bauer on my website and recently received a comment, saying how I must not have implemented the program correctly if I criticized it’s lack of meat and my child must be gifted. (see post HERE).  Well, this is my honest opinion and I’m gonna tell you the good, the bad, and the ugly. You can take it or leave it.

Anyways, back to my dilemma.

Nothing useful was said about Who Am I? (the book in the series I am considering)–only how wonderful it is and how Apologia the company is great.

This is frustrating.  I’d rather not read these type of reviews (waste of my time) and I wish the companies didn’t give out free copies to such individuals.  Something about being free does make one feel obliged to say nice things (after all, it was free and we want more free stuff, right?).

In homeschooling, every penny counts.  The government doesn’t give me thousands of dollars per child like it does the public schools so I have to be prudent (by the way, this is an unabashed request if the Federal Government is reading this!).

Sigh.  Moan.  Groan.

So, here I am.  Left on my best judgment and fervent prayerful guidance.

I’m leaning towards waiting.  Seeing how the study of Genesis goes and finishing last year’s curriculum.  Then I may just invest in the textbook only as my kids do enough journaling and writing in every thing else they do.

Then I’ll do a review.  An honest, no strings attached review.  To do my best to help others find the right fit for them without wasting precious dollars in this economy.

Would you expect anything else from me?

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory


I led a deprived childhood.

I readily acknowledge this.

Luckily, I get another chance with my children.

I just finished reading the delightful tale of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory out loud to my kids.  In case you didn’t know, this is the tale of Charlie Bucket, a boy who is exceedingly poor, lives in a shack with his mother, father, and both sets of grandparents right next to a chocolate factory, owned by Willy Wonka.

The factory has been closed to outsiders since Mr. Wonka discovered some were sneaking his secrets out.

One day, Mr. Wonka announces a contest for 5 children to tour his factory and learn his secrets.  These kids will be chosen by finding a Golden Ticket, which is the inside wrapping of his candy bars.

Naturally, this sparks an all-out buying frenzy, where every child wants to find these.

Charlie Bucket finds the last ticket.  He is whisked away for tons of crazy adventures as the other children inevitably succumb to their greedy desires.  Charlie is the last child standing and so is selected by Mr. Wonka to take over his factory when he is older.  He wants to train a child since a grownup “won’t listen to me; he won’t learn.  He will try to do things his own way and not mine.”  (So true, isn’t it?)

I loved the poem the Oompa-Loompas (the workers in the factory) sing about the evils of TV, how it “rots the senses in the head and kills imagination dead!” and how one should read books instead.  Ingenious!

This book had my kids laughing and begging to continue.  They loved the other kids falling to their doom and Charlie winning out in the end–simply by being good.

I loved the Grandparents who commented on every single kid who won the tickets based on the newspaper reports.  Grandma Josephine says one “needs a real good spanking” and calls another “beastly”.  The funny part is that this is the truth about these kids behavior and it is so refreshing to read before the advent of political correctness.

It’s easy to see why Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl is an enduring classic that every child must read.  And finally I get to read it too!