How much love do you want?

I’m a big fan of custom artisan work. I love the creativity and beauty in the products of these artists. I adore walking through farmers markets and festivals and looking at all the work other people do. All the time and dedication in each piece. It’s incredible and inspiring. Of course artisan work is going to be more costly than the mass-produced products you find in the common department stores, but being handmade and covering costs and at least some time, it’s to be expected and should be appreciated.

One of my favorites is where I buy my custom jewelry MADE WITH LOVE BY LAURETTE
(affiliate link) Her jewelry is one of kind and truly made with love. I love browsing all of her creations because it’s magnificent how beautiful all her pieces are. They make great gifts for yourself, friends and family for any occasion. I love my bracelets from her and I wear them all the time. Every time I put them on I think about how neat they are and how much time and effort went into making them. It makes me appreciate them that much more.

She doesn’t stop at just bracelets. There are earrings, necklaces, awareness, and even cremation/memorial jewelry also. She can even make custom matching sets! Her work is just great. You can check her out at the link above or below. I’m sharing purely based on the love of her work and wanting to help make it seen because it is beautiful.

Made With Love Etsy
Made With Love Facebook

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How much love do you want?

Week 1 – 5th Grade Homeschool Lesson Plan

This is my first year homeschooling my daughter for 5th grade. I’ll be updating weekly with our Lesson Plans during the whole “school year” including anything extra and field trips.

 

Language Arts

Reasons for Writing
Reviewing & Worksheets
Homophones
Synonyms and Antonyms
Similes, Metaphors, Personifications

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Spelling

List of 18 words
(amaze, anyway, basic, brace, braid, daisy, daydream, delay, dismay, essay, faint, hasten, matriarch, nature, place, raisin, rate, wage)
Spelling Worksheets
Spelling activities
Spelling Test

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Reading

Story elements and quotations
Reading from a dialogue of 2 characters in a conversation as if we were in a play.

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Math

Place values
Billions, Millions, Thousands, Ones
Practice reading large numbers
Learning check writing

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Science

Learning about the Animal Kingdoms
Watching “Hidden Kingdoms” on Netflix and creating a quiz for her.
Learning about Phyla
Glossary Terms & Definitions
(phylum, ecosystem, habitat, population, endangered, characteristics, survival, adaptation, vertebrates, invertebrates, flatworm, segmented worm, coelenterate, cnidarian, mollusk, echinoderm, chordate, endoskeleton, exoskeleton, arthropod)
Venn Diagrams to compare animals
Classify animals

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Social Studies

European Settlers Subject
Interview Family & Summarize “What it means to be an American”
Research (Google) European Explorers
John Cabot, de La Salle, Columbus, Magellan, Balboa, Ponce de Leon, Coronado, Vespucci
Create a timeline of their voyages

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Week 1 – 5th Grade Homeschool Lesson Plan

Mod Podge Collage

I always wanted to make an extensive collage of our family photos. Today I finally just went ahead and did what I had to do to prepare to do one.

First, I ordered 186 photos from Walmart Photo Center for around $31.00. The photos are from our trips, outings and just a lot of time spent together. What I didn’t use I’m keeping to put in photo albums.

Second, I went to my mom’s to see if a frame I remembered being in her basement was still there. It was and it seemed perfect for what I wanted it for. She said I could have it and she also took the time to wipe it down with Old English and it seriously looked loads different and like new.

Once I got it home, I went through and sorted all the prints I ordered and prepped everything for starting to cut and shape them onto the frames back. That process took roughly 1 1/2 hours.

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It was frustrating and tedious getting all the pictures where I wanted them and trying not to accidentally knock them out of place. My sister graciously let me use her jar of Mod Podge to fuse these pictures together.

After about another hour I finally had it coated and finished. It was tricky keeping the pictures from sliding out of place, but I just would carefully put them back where they were. It was so worth the distress because I love the end result!

I let it dry and then I hammered 2 nails into the wall so I could go ahead and hang it. All that’s left to do is measure and go purchase glass at Lowes to put in it.

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This is mainly a collage of the last 2 years with a few from our 1st year together. Totaling the collage to be memories from the past 3 years. I adore it and the kids have been amused by it too.

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Mod Podge Collage

The Chicken Scoop

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We got our chicks when they were 5 days old. We’d never raised chickens before and honestly didn’t even know where to start but we did some online research and did the best we could. These 5 chicks are now six weeks old! They have grown so much! They are beautiful, some have timid and some have spunky personalities, but all of them are wonderful to be around.

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We built them a nice chicken coop out of an old cabinet, well my husband did – I helped, it includes laying boxes for when they lay in the future and a roost for them to perch on. We also built their run which is a decent size for just 5 chickens (hoping that all of them end up being female, but we have yet to figure it out)
Here’s a video of the chicken coop tour on my YouTube Channel.

Here’s a video of the chicken coop tour on my YouTube Channel.

Here’s a video of the chicken coop tour on my YouTube Channel.

I still need to finish painting it (ran out of spray paint) I used Rustolieum sage and black colors from a home improvement store. Since these pictures my husband has added waterproofing on the roof, so I no longer need to paint that. I’ll just paint the beams and the walls of the coop.

These are our girlies. At least so far we haven’t been able to figure out if any are not girls. They have quite the personalities and everything I read was right. They are VERY stress relieving. My husband and I love to sit down there and watch them. I already love birds and I’m fascinated with birds. To me, chickens are just a really large breed of bird that I find intriguing. It really is therapeutic to go down there and sit with them, talk to them and interact with them because they really do make me feel better.

The benefits I found in raising chickens:
1. Added more responsibility to our home, the children see and understand the cause and effect from being responsible.
2. The children love going down and seeing the chickens (which in turn could help with their own emotional distresses)
3. They are good therapy for me. I found that I feel better when I go spend time with them and I enjoy watching them. They are a huge stress reliever for me.
4. I already get outside every day at some point but this helps me have even more of a reason to go outside at different parts of the day when I normally may have stayed inside.
5. They are easy to take care of. I thought chickens were going to be the biggest messiest animals that were too much to take care of. I know they are still small, but our setup is really easy to clean and maintain.
6. They are fun to watch and if you actually take the time to handle and raise your chickens from babies, they tend to be quite fond of human interaction and are fun to be around.

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left Nugget, right Sunshine13413722_1716832041920062_6530415513530146531_n
Me and Speckles13435572_1716831525253447_5898512398897237820_n
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Me and my girl Lucky (she’s the sweetest)13428409_1716832168586716_5315460764596026892_n
Chicken Selfie

I never really thought I’d ever have Backyard Chickens, but now that I do, I couldn’t imagine not having them. They are 6 weeks old now and are so neat and full of personality. Eventually going to be generating eggs and will have a purpose other than for our entertainment and therapy.

The Chicken Scoop

Renewed table, endless play

My aunt and uncle made my little sister a table and chairs set, with mod podged Winnie the Pooh cutouts from a book, when she was young. It sat retired in my mother’s basement for over a decade. I asked her if I could have it to give it to my kids and she didn’t hesitate to say yes.

I took it out of the dusty damp basement and sprayed down all the cobwebs. I wiped them with a rag and loaded it up in my van. I had a vision for what I wanted to do with the table, but I didn’t know when I’d get around to it. For a while I left it as is and let the kids play with it in their space.

Until last night. I scraped off as much of the “Winnie the Pooh” decals I could. Finally opened the gallon of paint and started on with it. (the paint was leftover from our downstairs walls when we moved in so it didn’t cost us anything) I couldn’t get all of the images off and I’m impatient, so my job was half-ass. My husband told me I should have sanded it down first. So this project may end up having to be done a second time.

I put the first coat on last night and this morning I put on the second coat. For now (until we end up redoing it in the future) it has 2 nice clean coats of paint and it definitely revitalized it and brought it back to life. Instead of keeping it downstairs in the kids space, I moved it upstairs so I can make sure it’s not being mistreated. After all it is a part of not only my sister’s childhood, but my own as well. (I remember playing kitchen and reading books at the table with my little sister when I was young)

Here’s what it looked like before. Very dingy and stained from being in a basement.

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This is after. It looks great!

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The kids have shown more interest in it now than they did when it was downstairs. They have been playing with it non-stop for pretend tea parties, restaurant and just sitting at it chatting. I love the imaginative interaction it is giving them.

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Tea party set was a custom made set I ordered for my daughter’s 6th birthday in 2012 from Drumming Beetle. My daughter always kept it tucked away instead of playing with it and now she’s letting her younger siblings enjoy it. I’m glad to be seeing it in action once again.

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Renewed table, endless play

Disney Mural Done.

It’s been a long wait for my motivation to come back to me after I did the majority of the painting, but alas fast forward not touching it for 4 months, this week I got the last bit of painting done and granted I have a few finishing touches (because I see every flaw I made and I’m somewhat of a perfectionist sometimes)

So… TADA!!! Here’s the mural I painted in the kids living room/den/playroom.

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The void under the mural is going to be custom built cubicle shelving for books and canvas totes for the kids toys. I knew I had to finish the mural if I wanted the shelves, among other inspiration I just finally picked up the brush and finished.

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Disney Mural Done.

Sprouts and Our Growing Garden

I can’t say for sure that I’ve ever really had a green thumb per say. I have only bought slightly matured flowering plants/trees for our yard, so I’ve never started anything from seeds until our Flower Moon planting day when we sowed our seeds. I am super excited that the watermelon seeds we planted are now sprouting.

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The corn has also shown signs of rooting. I’m waiting on the cucumbers and peppers to show signs, but so far nothing. We have 4 tomato plants in the yard also and so far only 1 tomato is forming.

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We also have several berries popping up on our premature blackberry bush around the side of the house.

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I was waiting to build our raised garden until I had some success at the sowing the seeds part. I didn’t want to waste time and money on that project until I could prove to myself I could do it. I’m still not even confident enough. I really want our food garden to strive.

As far as our flowers go, they are doing great. We’ve been here a tad over a year and we have 2 mature day lily plants about to bloom for their 2nd year and a third we just bought has bloomed it’s first year and looks good. I love lily’s and we plan on planting many different color varieties from bulbs next year. I’m excited. I still need to lay weed fabric down and add mulch to the addition of this flower bed, so you can see a lot of grass around this plant for now.

We also just added rocks in a circle around out front water fountain (which is green because we need to replace the pump) and transplanted 4 Hostas (from my mother’s yard, so one of them is a little snipped from a lawn mower) in this section, it will also have weed fabric laid down and mulch added when we get a chance. The rocks in the center at the base of the fountain are positioned looking at picture North (behind fountain) South (front) West (left) and East (right), that information will help us with certain gardening aspects.

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We had to replace two of our Lavender plants on the hill the other week. Not sure what happened but out of our transfer of 6 plants, two didn’t make it. They are all looking very healthy now and growing taller and taller.

Our Flowering Pear Trees have grown about 6 inches too. They are looking great. I can’t wait to see them matured in several years. Our Pink Magnolia is looking great too. It only got one bloom on it earlier this Spring, but I’m hoping next Spring it will have many more blooms on it so I can get pictures. The yard is going to transform so much once everything is matured. We plan to have many plants that stay green all year and some that bloom in spring, summer and autumn so we have color all year round. Eventually for esthetic purposes I want a PVC picket fence across the front and on left and right of yard.

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One day we’re going to aerate the yard and put down some weed killer and grass seed because honestly about 97% of our yard is nothing but weeds.

Above, picture on the left is the part of the yard where we will most likely have the raised garden for the watermelons and the picture on the right side is where we want to build some layered raised garden beds about 1-2 feet wide down the side of the house so that we can plant strawberries and other plants in there.

I really enjoy being in the yard and gardening with my husband and our kids. Being outside is so serene for us, watching the kids play and just enjoying the fresh air. We want to create an oasis for us and a fun space for the kids to enjoy as well and so we’ll have a beautiful view all year round. Which means that there is so much we want to do, there’s just no way of knowing what we’ll do next.

Sprouts and Our Growing Garden