The Revolutionary War with Winter Promise



Winter Promise American Crossing Unit 3 Wrap Up   Revolutionary War with Winter Promise

It has been a fabulous unit learning more about The Revolutionary War with Winter Promise and their American Crossing curriculum!  Though these last weeks have been especially busy for our household, Winter Promise’s premade schedule is easily adaptable to our needs.  This unit saw us do more reading and less hands on.



Winter Promise American Crossing schedule


Spanning the French & Indian War, Stamp Act, Continental Congress, Boston happenings, Battles in New York, Women in the War, Battles at Seas and finally ending with the birth of a New Nation!

Learn more about The Revolutionary War with Winter Promise


Our History and Literature reading included Regina Silsby, America in the Time of George Washington, Fever 1793 and the US Constitution.  (I substituted my favorite Constitution resource.)


We went back to our Art Curriculum and enjoyed studying various painters and then trying our hand at recreating them for this unit.


Winter Promise American Crossing Art


For character studies, we learned more about early American heroes, Ethan Allen, George Washington, Marquis de Lafayette, Nathaniel Greene, Deborah Sampson with the traits of Boldness, Integrity, Sacrifice, Dedication and Commitment.

Winter Promise American Crossing Bible





Continuing our states study, we added North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, South Carolina and Georgia to our United States Notebook.


Winter Promise American Crossing State1


Winter Promise American Crossing


And now to the hands-on goodies through Time Travelers cd-roms

American Crossing Winter Promise


My kids tried their hand at living during the Pre-Revolutionary War times with a game of Taxation Frustration!



Winter Promise American Crossing Taxation Frustration 1




Winter Promise American Crossing Taxation Frustration 2


The game lived up to its’ name.  We were all definitely frustrated at the amount of tax we had to pay!



Winter Promise American Crossing Taxation Frustration 3


Facts about the Liberty Bell!


Winter Promise American Crossing Liberty Bell



Winter Promise American Crossing Liberty Bell2


In addition to making yummy recipes for Applejack Cookies and Potato Soup, we also made One Snip Stars and Secret Messages!


Be sure to read about our other adventures with Winter Promise!


Join us next time as life slows down and we return to doing more hands on projects in Unit 4 and The Early 19th Century!


Tales of a Homeschool Family Disclosure



Green Scene Mom Winter Award Giveaway


It’s time for another amazing giveaway from Green Scene Mom worth $750!  Enter today!


We are excited to work with Green Scene Mom for another awesome giveaway! Each of these items received a Green Scene Mom Award, celebrating Eco-friendly product design and creative innovation. This fabulous Winter Awards Giveaway is sponsored by the winning brands, and one lucky mom will win them all!

Winter Green Scene Mom Award Winners

Winter Awards Details »

Enter to Win this Amazing Gift Set, valued at $750!

FunBites Cutter of winner’s choice – $12.99 Essential Travel Bib – $15
BabyHome Side Light Bed Rail – $99
Pure Care Home 4-in-1 Megacare Kit – $39.99
Buttons Diapers 2 packs of Flannel or Velour Wipes – $14
Konfidence Babywarma Swimsuit – $29.99
Wristy Buddy Teething Wristband – $15
Beautiful Earth Baby Box – $59
Pack ‘n Potty – $39.99
Bebe au Lait Organic Nursing Cover – $40
PacaPod Napier Diaper Bag – $170
Pacific Baby Natural Feeding Bowl & Cup – $10.99
MAM Anti-Colic Bottle – $6.99
OTO Ice Cream Truck Playhouse – $59
Yummi Pouch Reusable Food Pouches & Snack Bags – $25
Silikids $40 Assorted Gift Set
Naturalmat Fitted Organic Cotton Percale Crib Sheet – $45
Ava Anderson Baby Powder & Diaper Cream – $25

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A Letter of Homeschool Encouragement From “the Future”


Hind sight is 20-20!  Looking back at our homeschool journey, if I could travel back in time here’s what I would tell “worried old me” concerning my 9 year old son and his struggle with creative writing.


A Letter of Homeschool Encouragement from the future

A Letter of Homeschool Encouragement from “the Future”

Dear Lisa:


I know you are questioning whether or not you are cut out for this job of homeschool Mom.  Let me assure you, by default, you are uniquely qualified and gifted by your Creator.


I know you are ready to pull your hair out because your almost 4th grade son can barely write a sentence on his own without crying.


This has left you feeling like a failure.  Here’s what you don’t know.  Your insistence on reading and stressing its’ importance will carry him further than you know.  In fact, it is the most valuable academic pursuit you’ve taught him.  It will show in his reasoning, communication, vocabulary and ability to be a self-directed learner.


Don’t fret about writing.  The ability to write develops at different rates for each child.  Your son’s writing skills won’t begin to blossom until FOUR years from now!


In the meantime, your son will excel in science and math.  Continue to patiently teach writing in small, manageable chunks and do not compare him to others.


In high school, your son will be  articulate and well-thought out.  He’ll be a great technical writer, tackling math and science with flourish.  With your help, guidance and prayer your son is becoming whom God has created him to be.  Steadfast, trustworthy, intelligent, kindhearted and a joy to be around.


So – Lisa 5 years younger, just relax!  Relax and enjoy the days teaching your son because these precious times are fleeting and soon he’ll be grown.



Lisa (the voice of experience)


I hope this letter speaks to some of you who are feeling that they aren’t keeping up or their kids aren’t ‘on target’ in a given area of their homeschool.  Every child develops at their own rate AND not every child is cut out to be an artist, or a journalist or a brain surgeon.  Each child is unique in their giftings.  Your job is to help your child walk in the gifts that God has given them.


On a practical note there are a few writing programs that REALLY helped my oldest when he was struggling.


An inexpensive, mom-friendly program is from Stack the Deck .  These workbooks are for 2nd grade and up.  Each chapter of this curriculum is broken down into bite sized chunks of warm-ups and ‘word play’.  Followed next by brain storming sessions with leading questions.  These really help get those creative juices flowing for the writing assignment.   When we discovered this program, my son started at a level below his ‘current grade’ and made great progress.  This is a VERY affordable program for tight budgets.  We used this program for many years until I was blessed with an opportunity to review the following program.


My next recommendation is Institute for Excellence in Writing.  It is more expensive, but, can be used for multiple years and is good for those who are really struggling in their writing.  This program is in DVD format.  You can read my review.


And for highschoolers, I also like The Power in Your Hands.  Check out my review!



The Mineral Book Review


The Mineral Book Review


The Mineral Book Review



The Mineral Book from the Wonders of Creation series was created “with an enhanced educational format and integrated with a unique color-coded, multi-skill level design to allow ease of teaching the content to three distinct levels.”  Ideal for advanced upper Elementary students on up to adult.


The Mineral Book Review Three Levels


Written with a biblical worldview and geared for homeschool, classroom or as reference The Mineral Book encompasses the basics of what is a mineral, how to identify a mineral, where they are found, uses for minerals for good or for evil, plus minerals in the Bible.


The Mineral Book Review Table of Contents


I knew this book was quality when author David McQueen made the distinction that minerals are NOT rocks, but MAKE UP rocks.  This may seem irrelevant to some, but, as a student of Geology myself, I see so many books at this level lumping the two together thinking it would only confuse children.  I believe children are more than capable of understanding this difference too!



With relevant content, a variety of vocabulary, and awesome eye-catching photography, this book is a huge wealth of information guaranteed to grow with your child!


The Mineral Book Review Halite




“Minerals continue to fascinate me.  They have such beauty, such elegance – particularly when viewed through a microscope or in their crystal phases.  And they also contain a historical message, especially when considered from a biblical creation perspective. They tell us much about the world’s origin and the timing of events mentioned in Scripture.  From minerals we can learn about creation itself, the great Flood of Noah’s day, and even details pertaining to the history of Israel.”  -John Morris, President of the Institute for Creation Research.


I too share these feelings!

Before I ever had a personal relationship with Jesus, the Lord revealed to me His hand of Creation during a college Mineralogy class.  All minerals belong to one of six mineral systems.  These systems clearly demonstrate an intricate and orderly design that could only have come from an intelligent creator.


You can read what other reviewers are saying about The Mineral Book too!

Tales of a Homeschool Family Disclosure


Is Homeschooling Possible When You and Your Children Have a Chronic Disease


Is homeschooling possible when you AND your children are dealing with a chronic disease?

I’d like to introduce you to the Heather Laurie.  She’s a homeschool mom dealing with mitrochondrial disease.  She is an inspiration to many not only as a symbol of God’s grace to one who raises children under trying circumstances but as one who raises and ministers to children who share the same health issues.
As you read Heather’s story I’m sure you will be blessed! ~Lisa

Heather Laurie Special Needs Homeschooling Is homeschooling possible when you and your children have a chronic disease

Is homeschooling possible when you AND your children have a chronic disease?


My husband and I were told that our children and I had a disease called mitochondrial disease. This is a chronic, progressive, and life shortening disease with no treatment or cure. There is nothing I can say that can truly explain how horribly bare, raw, scared, and lost that left us feeling. The only reason we didn’t completely collapse was we were able to pray for strength in the parking garage of the children’s hospital immediately after being told. Strength that was beyond us, God’s strength!

Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

A year before that horrible day my husband and I were approached by older members of our church to mentor us. We were new Christians and needed guidance. Our mentors pushed us. They expected daily reading of the Bible, memorization, and accountability/bible study as a regular part of our life. I will be forever thankful for that mentoring and firmness of teaching.

Here my husband and I sat in a minivan with 3 children and 1 on the way. Just having been told that the reason all 4 of my siblings died as stillbirths or early infancy was the same thing that had taken our precious Sarah, a stillbirth. Worse, the odds of a child being diagnosed before the age of 3 meant they were not likely to live through their teen years. We were able to fall back on our faith and Lord to survive that terrible moment.

What is mitochondrial disease? What is this monster that lurks in our family tree? Mitochondria are the batteries of most cells in the body. The mitochondrial create 90% of the energy you use to think, eat, digest, walk, for your heart to beat, and breathing. We only have about 9-29% of that ability to create energy. The major energy organs in the body begin to fail because cells die from lack of energy. The brain, heart, muscles, digestive system, and liver are usually the first to show distress.

Try running all the lights, heating/cooling, and appliances in your kitchen on 2 9-volt batteries. Some items won’t run at all. My digestive system is shut down completely. I get medications through a tube in my stomach. I get other medications and food through a port in my chest that goes directly to my heart. Myself and 3 of my children have had at least 1 stroke. The medical trials go on and on. There is nowhere for us to hide. Yet we choose not to focus on this storm in our lives.

My husband and I have used this time of trial to reach out to other families in intense and extreme situations. The Lord has used these storms to strengthen our foundations as a marriage and family. We are blessed to be called on to assist others. The Lord has as He promised always kept us protected and cared for.

I would love if you would join me in prayers for healing. I want you to know that my husband and I trust the Lord so completely that if we further the Lord’s kingdom through our difficulties then we will continue to pray our way through each and every storm. If you could pray that we preserve through whatever the Lord has planned for our family we would greatly appreciate it.

Hebrews 10:36

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

Thank you and God bless.

You can find us at .


FREE! Not Just Tacos Cookbook!


Affiliate Disclosure www.talesofhomeschoolfamily.taberstruths.comNot Just Tacos Cookbook

I haven’t left my home, but, I’m on vacation right now.  Yes, as we speak I’ve been transported to Central and South America and The Caribbean via Not Just Tacos – A Journey Into the World of Authentic Latin American Cuisine.
Not Just Tacos Cookbook

Author Shirley Solis invites us into her world to sit and dine with her family while engaging us in geography, culture, customs and of course fabulous recipes!

Along with getting a flavor for each country, Not Just Tacos is filled with wonderful photographs that are guaranteed to make you feel like you are actually visiting that particular country.

  • Mexico
  • El Salvador
  • Honduras
  • Cuba
  • Puerto Rico
  • Dominican Republic, Haiti
  • Guatemala
  • Nicaragua
  • Costa Rica
  • Panama
  • Venezuela
  • French Guiana
  • Brazil
  • Columbia
  • Ecuador
  • Peru
  • Bolivia
  • Paraguay
  • Chile
  • Uruguay
  • Argentina


Not Just Tacos Cookbook Geography
I had my kids looking over my shoulder while I was leisurely perusing this culinary delight.  Though I thought this would make a perfect unit study for the summer, I was quickly overruled.  My kids have decided that we need to use this cookbook now with our first dish Columbo de Poulet from French Guiana.  Sounds good to me!
Columbo de Poulet Not Just Tacos
Add this culinary gem to your bookshelf and get more than just recipes!
Tales of a Homeschool Family Disclosure

Motivate Your Child Review!


Affiliate Disclosure


In parenting circles, there’s a lot of information about behavior modification. Personally I’ve used MANY different behavior modification systems.  And you know what I found?  With each sticker, card, and ticket positive change does occur…but it does not last!  How exhausting!


The key to changing bad behavior is to get at the heart.  The heart of your child that is.


Motivate Your Child


Motivate Your Child Review



If your looking for an easy, light-hearted “I’m ok, you’re ok” read to help with child rearing, Motivate Your Child is NOT for you!


However, if you’re willing to roll up your sleeves, whole heartedly read and digest Biblical truths to inspire moral and spiritual development in your children, this book has your name on it!


“Moral and spiritual development increase internal motivation.  Amazing thing happen when you teach and train your child in those two areas.  Specific parenting strategies will adjust common relating patterns, and you’ll watch the changes take place in your child’s heart.”


Motivate Your Child‘s heart-based approach consists of 21 chapters that instruct you on how to move your child through three levels of thinking:  themselves, other people and considering God and His word. The ultimate goal is to develop the conscious to do what’s right because it IS right over the gain of a physical reward.


Motivate Your Child Chapter 1

Motivate Your Child Chapter 2


“Why do you do what’s right?”,  what is the typical response?  Most children will say, “So I don’t get in trouble.”


“Behavior modification requires that you give a reward that’s greater than the desire to do something different.  You’re simply compensating a child for doing something she’d rather not do using something she wants.”


“Children who are internally motivated tend to do things for different reasons.  Instead of getting something out of their actions, they ask the question, “What’s the right thing to do?”  That kind of motivation comes through a different parenting approach.  We call it a heart-based approach to parenting.  It teaches internal motivation of children and takes advantage of the work of the conscience and the Holy Spirit.”


In addition to identifying poor behaviors, practical real life family situations are presented.  I appreciated reading these as it made the ideal of a heart-based change seem attainable.


“The conscience gives four promptings:  do what’s right, deal with wrongs, be honest, and care about others.”



“A trained conscience feeds off of the Scriptures.”


The section on correction also instructs parents on the goal of having their children not fear correction, but embrace it!  That may seem a bit contradictory, but looking at the process of restoration it makes sense.


First Question:  Confession “What did you do wrong?”
Second Question:  Getting to the Heart, “Why was that wrong?”
Third Question: What are you going to do differently next time?
End discipline times with hope


It’s easy to see this model of training seeks to restore and edify the child instead of knocking them down.


This leads into the next topic of honesty and how it builds “The Integrity Package.”  (I wonder how many adults even have this!)  Plus honor, compassion, initiative (without yelling)….and that’s only the FIRST part of the book!


The second half of the book will guide and help you “encourage and stimulate spiritual development in your children….as you build relationships, share scripture and practice faith”.


Authors Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN also encourage intentional, weekly family time and share example from three VERY different families.  I relate so well to the family with the wide age gaps!


“Always remember that your job isn’t to produce results.  It’s to be faithful and allow God to produce the fruit.  You want to have a clear conscience before God in your own life regarding your parenting.  Where you’ve failed, ask forgiveness from God and from your children.”



Our experience:

I have to admit that this book has been a godsend in this season of life. There’s a tremendous amount of information to sort through in each chapter.  I found myself needing to move slowly to absorb each nugget and prayerfully apply it to my family.  Due to this fact, I feel it’s best to have my husband read this book too.  Since we are on the same page spiritually, we plan on going through it chapter by chapter to present a unified front in the journey of parenting.


You can also order Motivate Your Child from Amazon!



The National Center for Biblical Parenting was birthed in the early 90s in the hearts of Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN. Their families worked together in church ministry but it because clear that they had a powerful message that reached the hearts of families. Although they had no idea how big the ministry would develop,they knew that their heart-based, practical, biblical approach was strategic for helping Christian familes reach their full potential.





My Mary Kay Facial


It’s been a long time since I’ve gone out of the way to pamper myself.  Life is just plain busy and it isn’t something I consciously think about.


One of those pampering items on that list is makeup.  I get around to wearing it once a week for church and for the occasional holiday.  Because of that, my eclectic makeup bag is filled with “whatever’s on sale”.


One day Mary Kay consultant, Cheli Sigler,  put out a call for a wide variety of models.  Reading through the list, I saw ” green-eyed model”.  Since I fit that bill, I jumped at the chance to do something for myself.



Mary Kay Facial http://www.marykay.comcsigler Review on


My Mary Kay Facial


Picking an afternoon, Cheli and I sat down for a facial with plenty of “mom talk” and laughter.  Time just flew by as she demonstrated Mary Kay’s hand and facial products and I got to try them for myself.


I should mention that long ago (19 years!) I did use Mary Kay products.  Since that time, Mary Kay has a condensed version of their skin care line with their main product now being a 3-in-1 cleanser/toner/scrub.  Less bottles, less work — how easy is that?


The end result was my face felt fabulous!  Cheli then picked out some neutral colors for lipstick, eye shadow and blush.  I loved the resulting natural and non-made up look.  My skin had an even glow to it without the usual uneven redness.  Best of all, my face didn’t feel heavy and overloaded with concealer screaming to be washed off.  When I got home, my kids even noticed how fresh I looked.


That night, I did a total no-no.  I fell asleep with makeup on.  Now, normally I would have woke up to my face being broken out. (Acne on an older lady? YES!) While I did need to wash my face in the morning, there was not any blemish issues. I’d say that’s quite impressive!


Since I had used Mary Kay in the past, I remembered about how much the makeup cost at that time. Being penny conscious, I kept thinking that in 19 years Mary Kay MUST be considerably more expensive.  I was absolutely shocked to learn that the makeup really had not risen much in price!


I’m so glad I gave Mary Kay another try!  If you don’t have a Mary Kay representative, visit Cheli Sigler at her website, Facebook or Twitter.  You’ll be glad you did!


Tales of a Homeschool Family Disclosure


The Electrifying Nervous System Review


The Electrifying Nervous System is the first of nine books in the God’s Wondrous Machine series by Master Books and geared towards lower and upper elementary levels.


The Electirfying Nervous System Review God's Wondrous Machine


Author and homeschool mom, Dr. Lainna Callentine states:

“This book was a culmination of two reinforcing factors in my life:  my passion for the life sciences and my desire to see those same sciences presented in a technical but biblically accurate way.  Some may feel that the Bible has no bearing on science and only serves to dilute or confuse our understanding of it.  This book does not present science apart from the Bible but in light of it.  Others may feel that science, especially anatomy and biology, have much more to say about God and the bible than this book offers.  I believe indeed it does.  This would require a much broader investigation across multiple disciplines to fully develop.”

The Electrifying Nervous System Review


Starting with a color-coded tri-level vocabulary and pronunciation list, we start our journey of the brain literally at the beginning.  1700 BC and one of the earliest mentions of brain injury!


The Electrifying Nervous System Review God's Wondrous Machine 1 www.talesofahomeschoolfamily.taberstruths


Subsequent fact packed chapters include:


  • Seeing is Believing
  • The Basics of the Nervous System
  • Anatomy & Physiology:  The Brick & Mortar of the Nervous System
  • The Developing Brain
  • A Case for the Brain
  • The Gate Keeper:  The Blood Brain Barrier
  • The Great Stabilizer:  The Backbone
  • It’s Simply Automatic
  • Take Good Care:  Health Facts
  • Facts:  The Wacky, the Weird, and Wow



In reading over this book, my kids and I were amazed at the real life account of Phineas Gage, the intricacies of the brain and nervous system, and the functions each area of the brain controls.


“History tells the story of the past.  Over time, we have learned a great many things about how the brain works.  Our knowledge of the inner workings of the brain continues to grow.”


Also included:


Development of brain from birth to adulthood


The backbone and its function


Fight or flight response and other reflexes


The importance of sleep


Foods that help the brain function


Careers in Neuroscience and more!


The Electrifying Nervous System Review God's Wonderous Machine 2


This 78 pages book is packed with eye catching photos, graphics and information all from a Biblical Worldview.  This is one series I’ll be keeping an eye on!


In addition to the text, a parent lesson planner is available that contains worksheets and tests.


Check out what other Moms of Master Books reviewers are saying about The Electrifying Nervous System.


Tales of a Homeschool Family Disclosure


Planning your own Homeschool Elementary Science Co-op


Planning your own Homeschool Elementary Science Co-op

Science labs are one of the most neglected areas in homeschooling.  Fortunately, with a little planning this can be overcome by starting your own homeschool science co-op!

How to Start your own Homeschool Elementary Science Co-op


You will need:

  • a group of 2-3 families to start.  Obviously the number of children involved will have some bearing on the number of families to include
  • a home to meet in or a plan to rotate homes
  • a calendar to schedule your meetings every two weeks for approximately 2 hours at a time
  • a mutally agreeable curriculum


I’m sure you could do this with other science curriculum.  But, since I have the most experience with Apologia, I will be using that as my example.


Apologia offers some great hands-on, Charlotte Mason approached, Creation based sciences geared for homeschool use that are easily doable in a co-op setting.


For the homeschool elementary aged crowd, choose from Astronomy, Botany, Flying Creatures, Swimming Creatures, Land Animals, Physics/Chemistry or Anatomy.


Once you’ve decided on which book to do and where to meet, it’s time to consider the actual labs.  You have one of two choices.  You can either do a sign up sheet for needed items between families OR save yourself time and purchase a pre-made kit.  Rainbow Resources is one retailer that sells these kits.


Now you are ready to get started!


Over the course of the next two weeks, have your child read the chapter, or in the case of younger children, read to them and work through the journaling questions and activities.


Another nice option is to use Apologia’s notebooks for journaling, drawing, review, copywork and lab sheets in conjuction with the text.  Again, this isn’t necessary, but it is nice.   This notebook also makes a very nice portfolio for those families that do an end of the school year review to send to their respective school district.


When you come together as a group for the labs, appoint one Mom to take the lead.  Spend a few minutes orally reviewing the chapter.  Next, either tackle the mini-book from the notebook or the experiment(s).   This is easier than it sounds.  All the steps involved with the labs are clearly written and easily executed.   When you do the labs, allow enough time (and help) for everyone to fill out their lab sheet.  This helps with skills the student will definitely need when they get to middle and high school.


Co-oping your science is a great way to ensure you don’t skip those experiments, loose track and focus in your homeschool…and it’s just plain FUN!

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