My favorite essential oils resource!

Heritage Essential OilsHeritage Essential Oils is by far my favorite resource for essential oils. The gal that runs it, Linda, is a Christian homeschooling mama with a daughter who has Ds. She has graciously posted here what she uses for her daughter, in an effort to help those of us who have children with Down syndrome. Her oils are VERY high quality, the prices are reasonable, and shipping is VERY fast! If I order on Monday, it is in my mailbox in ALASKA on Friday!

I would recommend buying the travel kit first! For $75 you get 16 trial size oils you can try as well as a nice carrying case. I refill the little bottles and keep the kit in the diaper bag! We almost ALWAYS wind up using it. Along with that, I recommend purchasing a big bottle (as big as you can afford) of peppermint AND lavender. We use those the most. I also recommend buying a nice Whisper diffuser when you can fit it into your budget.

“Why I Would Never Use Chemo for Cancer”

chemo cancer

An interesting blog post about the use of chemo for cancer.

Here’s an excerpt:

“#1 The oncologists don’t use chemo

Did you know that the Journal of American Medical Association reported that in 2001 the average oncologist made a 75% or 253, 000 dollars profit on chemotherapy drugs administered in his office? It is interesting to note that according to Los Angeles Times and the McGill Cancer Center in Montreal, a survey of oncologists showed that 75% to 91% of the oncologists would not use chemotherapy as a treatment for their families or themselves. They said  chemotherapy is not effective and it is too toxic. At the same time 75% of cancer patients are told to take chemo by their oncologists. (Natural News)

So I’m supposed to use chemo if I’m diagnosed with cancer while most oncologists don’t? Hm, I don’t think so.

Cancer is at least a 100 billion industry and the chemotherapy part of it was 8,5 billion dollars back in 1995. That’s a lot of money to lose if they would confirm a cure for cancer.”

Interesting take on High School

Delight Directed High School

May 3rd, 2012

Curiousity is easy to find in younger children. All too often though  in older students it seems to have disappeared. This has been the case  for my 14 year old daughter. Since about 6th grade she has been asking  me to just give her some assignments so that she could get them  finished. That was the extent of her schooling during that time. Just  finish. Sure, she took in some information during that time, but she  also became less and less satisfied with the idea of learning. Sadly,  this is happening to kids in schools everywhere. Kids are physically  there, but meaningful learning and retention is limited by a lack of  interest in topics.

I want better for my kids. I want them to love to learn. I don’t want  school to be a bad word in their minds. This is why I believe in  letting them lead in choosing the topic of study.

I have had a major problem with this concept this year though. My  oldest was starting highschool (We started a few classes during her 8th  grade year).  I have struggled desperately over doing high school like  the public schools. Not that we have done anything like the public  schools yet, but I felt like as we approached the years when transcripts  were really required, I would have to suck it up and ‘play their game’  so to speak if college was in her future.

There are some areas that I think I will still have to do just that.  But I have seen the light in some other areas as to how we can still be  delight directed.

This week I am focusing on the Geography class. We started out with a  textbook format, but after only 2 weeks she was bored to death with it.  Face it. Textbooks are less than interesting when they only present  small chunks of information. Now I am all for exposure of a wide variety  of material, but if we can make the learning more meaningful, then why  not?

So the plan is this. She is going to work through each continent over  the summer. We went to the library yesterday and I helped her choose  and check out books on 5 European countries: France, Russia, Italy,  Spain, and Germany.  (This is just the start).  The books came from the  older children’s section. They have lots of pictures and still lots of  information.They are not overwhelming… or dull. They cover all of the  important details as far as landmarks, government, flags, people, foods,  clothes, language, culture, holidays, and more. This summer she will  focus on several of these books from our great library, but she will add  to it continually for the next few years. She will add to each country  accordingly as she encounters it in the setting of a novel she reads or a  movie she sees. She can also add things like art and music that she  finds. By the end of high school, I believe she will have a proper  education in this way.

Last week we began working on her English I course.  She is an avid  reader, so that part was easy. I had her write down the books she could  remember reading this year.  Hunger Games, Harry Potter series, The  Giver, A Wrinkle in Time, Seeking the Heavens, and Pride and Prejudice. I  still have to do some work to put together this entire course, but can  you see how the subjects are beginning to intertwine? Some of these  books (along with the short stories, poetry, dramas, and nonfiction  readings) have real life settings, and from them she has, or will have, a  better understanding of life in that place.

How does this relate to delight directed learning? I am not choosing  her books or her topics. Guiding her? Definitely. Letting her follow her  interest? Yep. And it is working. For a kid that just wanted her  assignments so that she could hurry up and finish. A few months back,  she picked up and read a book called Prada and Prejudice. It is a play  on Pride and Prejudice, which I mentioned to her, and she proceeded to  get that one and read it too. It was not enough. She had to watch the  movie and then read all about the author, Jane Austin. Being the fashion  guru that she is, she researched the clothing of Jane Austin’s time  period. All of this was on her own. Not a school assignment at all.

Do other kids do this? You bet they do. If we give them the time,  space, and fuel to do it. I am looking forward to finding all of the  classes that I can to teach, no, to to gently guide her through, because  it works. It is how passions are developed and how preschoolers and  adults learn. Why change that in the middle?

Ordering food from Amazon!

I have started ordering food from Amazon, a little at a time.  I like their “Subscribe and Save” prices and the best part is that the shipping is FREE which is a HUGE deal here in Alaska!  The kid thought it was hilarious that I was picking up Raisin Bran from the Post Office, but at $1.98/box, who can pass that up??!?

They regularly have sales, especially on Kellogs cereal, so it is really fun to add a new product to my subscriptions.  Here are just a couple of our favorites so far:

Raisin Bran
Raisin Bran Crunch

I looked at getting diapers this way too (Huggies Size 4), but it was the same price as Costco, and I was headed there anyway, so I just bought them at Costco.  If I’m not going to Anchorage anyway next though, I’ll just have them mailed to me!

Just thought I would share one way I am saving a little money on “fun” stuff!

Movie Review: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

The Voyage Of the Dawn Treader is a movie clearly designed more to capture the hearts of new fans than to satisfy the desires of those familiar with Lewis’ classic series. The movie heavily changes the story, more so even than in the previous two films. There were many changes, both good and bad. Combining Deathwater Isle and Dragon Island, for example, makes perfect sense in a cinematographic setting – it reduces elements unnecessary and unwanted in a film without sacrificing any of the cohesiveness or point of those narratives. Other changes were less warranted, such as the desperate grasping towards a love subplot, evident both at the beginning of the movie, where Lucy flirts with Caspian, and at the end, where Edmund and Caspian flirt with the daughter of the star. Other changes are arguable – was it really necessary for the star’s father to be present, or could he be dropped without compromising the story? I would argue for the former, but it is a decision that could be supported either way.

It seemed at times that the screenwriter was afraid of Lewis’ story – changing the emphasis from a very heavy one on redemption to one more focused on avoiding temptation; making up the main element of the story (the green mist), with no precedent in Lewis; removing elements from the story such as the corrupt governor of the Lone Islands whom Caspian confronted; retaining and furthering the plot line, utterly foreign to Lewis, of Caspian’s love for Susan; and other strange changes which broke both continuity and the suspension of disbelief. This may have been because I am familiar with the book, indeed, it is my favorite of Lewis’ works.

In technical terms, the movie was excellent, aside from one major flaw. The acting was extremely poor at times, a break from the first two movies. This was to the point where lines designed to be serious became comedic, breaking the mood of the movie. This was primarily present in the actors for Caspian and Edmund. It was particularly odd considering the first two movies, where there were few moments of bad acting. The special effects, cinematography, and other technical elements were very well done, however.

It was an enjoyable movie. There is no question as to that point. It was not, however, as enjoyable as the second, and much less so than the first. This was primarily due to the freedom the screenwriter took with Lewis’ text, which soured many of my favorite parts of the book. A simple abridgment would have been perfectly acceptable and understandable. Even slight changes would have been fine. My objection is rather to the break in the primary focus and storyline of Lewis’ text. Remedy this, and retain the quality of filming you have attained, and you will have my undivided support.

This DVD was provided to me courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment and for the purpose of review. No other compensation was provided. My opinions are my own.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook – May 11, 2009

May 11, 2009…

 Outside my window...

it is sunny and beautiful, and the birds are chirping!  I am loving this gorgeous spring that we have been having and praying that it sticks around through the summer.  Last summer was so wet and cold, we Alaskans are ready for a beautiful one!

I am thinking…
that I wish these contractions would just get regular and get labor over with!  We are all so anxious to meet the new little man.

I am thankful for…
my husband who has been so supportive of me, and has helped me to think clearly and come up with great ideas to make the next couple of weeks much nicer for my tired, aching, pregnant body!
From the learning rooms…
We are finishing up our main school for the year.  The older boys are almost finished with science and math.  The younger two are almost finished with math, spelling, and Latin.  We are all ready for summer vacation to start.  We will still be doing Russian, the older two will keep up with their Omnibus reading, and the two younger ones will have some summer reading assignments.  Also, we will be taking lots of field trips and doing science outdoors.

 From the kitchen…

My husband informed me that we will be grilling outside all summer and using paper plates!  He doesn’t want us "wasting" time in the kitchen cooking and doing clean-up, so we will be utilizing our new grill every night!  I am so excited!   Hotdogs and chili are on the menu for tonight, with shish-ka-bobs and BBQ chicken also on the menu for the week.
One of my favorite things...
watching my two youngest boys play together.  They are SO cute!

I am wearing…
My favorite, comfy, grey, maternity pants and a slightly fitted blue shirt.

I am going…
to try to stay home most of the week and conserve my energy for what I know lies ahead soon!
I am reading… 
Hmm…I haven’t been doing much in this area.  I read a book about George Mueller that was really good!  I read a couple of short books last week, one on Eisenhower, and one on Stradivarius.  I have a Grace Livingston Hill book that I keep meaning to get into, but just haven’t yet.

 I am hoping…
to have this baby soon, but that he doesn’t come when my hubby is out of town on Wednesday!
I am hearing…
the kids playing downstairs and hubby listening to a conference that he REALLY wanted to attend in person but stayed home because I am due soon!  What a guy!

A few plans for the rest of the week:
I have to go to Anchorage on Thursday to take my oldest to an ophthamologist.  He may have a condition called amblyopia.  Amblyopia develops in childhood, when the connections between the eyes and the brain are developing. The brain must learn how to put together information sent from two eyes and make one picture. If the image from one eye is clear and the other blurry, or if the eyes are misaligned and send two different pictures, the brain will ignore the picture sent from one eye. Amblyopia results when the brain consistently ignores the information from the one eye. The appearance of the affected eye may be perfectly normal, yet its vision will be abnormal. Using the analogy of the eye as a camera and the brain as the photo-processing machinery, the problem causing amblyopia is not that the camera (eye) is defective, but that the photo processor (brain) is not properly developing the "film" it receives.  With early detection and treatment, visual loss from amblyopia can be minimized or even completely reversed.

A photo I would like to share…

My oldest met the Lt. Governor during his week at TeenPact!  He is in the middle with a white shirt and glasses on.  The Lt. Governor is on the far left.  This was only about 1/4th of the class too.

Would you like to start your own daybook? Check out this website.