Monday, October 23, 2023

This Week's Menu

We have about three weeks of soccer left, and I'll be sad when the season ends, but not sad at the same time because it definitely takes a toll on meal planning and family dinners.  

This week we will be receiving our second Every Plate box!  We used our free trial box about a month ago, and it was a great experience!  So convenient to get to avoid the grocery store (to some extent) and just have everything ready to go.  We get the box for six, and it has easily fed all eight of us.

This week, we will use three meals from Every Plate, and the rest will be normal meals.

Friday, October 20, 2023

Stock up on these Under Armour boys tees! Less than $7 per shirt when you use code PZYUA3BS-FS to get the 3-pack.

Click HERE to get this deal.

Thursday, August 10, 2023

2023-2024 Homeschool 1st Grade Curriculum Picks

While we don't really do "grade levels" per se in our home to allow for our children to move at whatever pace they need to, I am sharing our curriculum picks for the year based on the official grade for each child.  

This year, my middle child is in first grade for his grade of record.  He is a bit ahead in math and right on target for reading.  We learn social studies (history and geography), science, and Bible as family homeschool subjects.  

For reading this year, we are using Logic of English Foundations again.  We started used Logic of English with my oldest when he was seven after trying a different reading curriculum for two year, and it was a game changer for us.  #3 started Logic of English a year and a half ago with Foundations Level A.  He is now about halfway through Foundations Level B.  We love Logic of English so much because it really is, well, logical.  I have actually learned so much through the program.  For example, I had NO idea that there are nine reasons that we could have a silent final E in English words.  Nine!

I always tell people that if I could change one thing about our homeschool journey it would be to use Logic of English as our reading curriculum from Day One.  I could list a hundred reasons that Logic of English is an amazing and ideal reading curriculum, but I'll distill it down to three for now.  

1. Logic of English uses a rational, sensical approach to phonemics.  For example, the first "letter" or phonogram that a student learns is A.  But instead of learning that A says "a" as in cat and then moving on, LOE presents all three sounds of A - the short, long, and broad sounds.  By Lesson 3, students are already reading short CVC words, which building confidence from the beginning.  

2. Logic of English incorporates physical activity.  Instead of sitting at a desk or around the dining room table to do a reading lesson, Logic of English includes planned activities that have the student get up and run around the room doing a relay race, jumping from word to word, finding hidden words around the room, etc.  If the game does involve jumping up and down or shooting a basket, it involves a board game or card game to reiterate the lesson's concepts.  I have found that all of my kids respond well to this, but the boys especially thrive with these kinds of games.  

3. The workbooks are student-focused.  The other curriculum we tried for reading had so much on every page that it was honestly overwhelming for a four, five, or six year old.  The Logic of English Foundations workbooks are perfectly set up for children learning to read.  There is enough information, but not too much information.  

We are also using Primary Mathematics for math this year.  We started using this Singapore math approach last year, and it has been great.  All of the kids, but especially the seven year old, are now ahead in math.  Primary Mathematics works well for us because it progresses at a consistent, logical pace, which facilitates a lot of independence in working through the lessons.  Each lesson has an effective number of practice problems for the learned concept, while also reviewing prior concepts.  I really like how each lesson builds on the lessons before it.

It has taken some trial-and-error to find curriculum that it effective and facilitates progress for each child throughout the year.  We evaluate curriculum each year, and even make changes in the middle of the year if needed, but these math and reading curricula have worked wonders for us for multiple children.  As I saw another mom say recently, "You would have to pry Logic of English out of my cold, dead hands" to get me to give it up.  I don't get paid to say this, I just love the Logic of English reading curriculum that much!

Friday, July 7, 2023

My favorite gift idea for the women in your life -- friends, family, mentors, etc.

Ya'll these Write the Word Journals from Cultivate What Matters are my most favorite gifts for friends and family, and they are on sale for just $10 today!  

The 11 different journals cover different books of the Bible and are a great way to dig into the Word of God.  Click here to check it out.

Did I mention that they are beautiful?

Now, go!  Run!  Run and save money, friends!

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Couscous Salad -- Our Favorite Summer Meal

Summer Couscous Salad

Summer Couscous Salad

A bright, healthy side salad or main dish. Perfect for a sunny day.

Years ago, when my MIL was vegan, she made this simple couscous salad. She doesn't even remember making it, but I loved it and figured out how to make something like it. My kiddos love this salad, and we have it about once a week in the summer. It's perfect for summer because there's no oven needed.

We always serve this with the cucumbers on the side because the leftovers don't hold up as well with the cucumber added into the salad.

Add cheesy quesadillas and call it a meal.


Serves 4 people


  • 3 T. extra version olive oil
  • 2 T. lime juice
  • 2 t. red wine vinegar
  • 1 t. cumin powder
  • 1 t. chili powder
  • Salad

  • 1 c. prepared couscous (Israeli or regular)
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1/4 c. cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 c. feta
  • 1 cucumber, chopped


  • Prepare couscous by brining 1 1/2 c. chicken broth to boil. Add 1 cup dry couscous and simmer, covered on Low for 8-10 minutes.
  • Whisk all dressing ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Chop veggies.
  • Add cooked couscous, red pepper, corn, black beans, cilantro, and feta to the bowl.
  • Mix and adjust seasoning as needed.
  • Serve with chopped cucumber!