A Well-Spent Summer: The Power of Inspiration

The Power of Inspiration
What inspires you?  Me . . . chocolate, but I'm fairly easy to please.  What inspires your children?  My kids, it is definitely ever changing as the wind, or the weather in Texas (good grief it has been a boiler in North Texas this summer).  Our children have, what I would define as patterns of inspiration, certain subjects that typically captivate their individual attention.  You can almost take it to the bank that certain themes, units or subjects will inspire their hearts and minds and others just a bust.  Our Squeaker is inspired by drawing, action, sports and adventure.  The Scout is mostly inspired by science, reading, scouting and adventure.  The Bug is continually inspired by all things lady-like, French and whatever her two older sibling's says is super cool (no surprise there).  Things change.  You never know what might inspire them next.

Recently we checked out an interesting documentary and it sent the kids into an all out quest for all things da Vinci!  They simply could not get enough.  We went to the natural science and history museum for the Scout's birthday.  They flipped for the da Vinci exhibit: The Man, The Artist, The Inventor.  It was such a blessing to see them so inspired and excited over learning.  Not just learning, but being inspired by a subject that I did not "push" nor have an "agenda" for teaching.  They initiated the learning and I followed behind them just feeding their need for knowledge.  What a wonderful way to homeschool . . . especially during the summer when "mushy" brain abounds and it is traditionally difficult to get them motivated.

I say embrace what you know inspires your child, as always.  Remember to be the kind of instructor that can bend to the student's changing interests and run with the inspiration.  If it doesn't hurt them or go against God's instruction or your family's personal faith, I say give "Yes" a try and let them lead with some learning of their own!  You will be pleasantly surprised at how well they can inspire themselves and one another.

Happy Homeschooling!

Check-out these books about da Vinci that inspired us!


Wordless Wednesday: Squeaker's Funny Face

What can I say?  She is very entertaining . . . I had a report from church camp that the Squeaker won the "Tacky Tuesday" dress-up contest . . . Why am I not surprised!


FRUGAL Flip - Floppy Flowers

Greetings!  This my fist installment in a great blogging carnival called Kiddos Create: Challenge of the Week by Mama Jenn.  I was excited to find Mama Jenn's blog a couple of weeks ago.  She is an encouraging and inspiring homeschool mom (the best kind of mom if you ask me).  I have been enjoying many of her posts and am excited to participate in this fun challenge and share it with my loyal readers.

So here's the scoop . . .

The Problem: The Squeaker & the Scout get to attend 2 separate camps during the summer, leaving the Bug home alone.  She endured not going shopping for camp clothing and supplies over the last few weeks, whilst her Sissy & Bubba have received ample goods (and attention) over their camping excursions.
The Solution:  Sending the Bug off to Granny's so she can feel special too!
The Challenge: To create something special for The Bug to take along on her vacation without spending mulla . . . we need frugal here people.  Like I said, just sent kids to camp you know!
The Creation:  Flip-Floppy Flowers

1 Pair of "plain jane" Flip Flops + Scrap yarn from last month = FLIP - FLOPPY FLOWERS
ALSO = 1 Happy Bug!

A Well-Spent Summer Journal: The Week of Summer Fun

The Week of Summer Fun
Weekly Wrap-up: In pictures
This is a look back at last week here at Mac Summer School while using our frugal fun ideas from the Summer Fun Bucket.  We accomplished quite a lot before the kids headed out on vacation and church camp.  I hope that some of play fun will inspire your family in summer schooling fun, too!

The Museum Trip
This is our trip to the Science & Natural History Museum to celebrate the Scout's birthday.

The Bug and Mommy enjoy the doll display from Mexico.

Bug and Scout do a little dino construction.

Workin' at the Car Wash
The Bug started her Summer Fun Bucket activity by washing her bike and all the scooters . . . Then she moved on to the cars.

Not sure that Granny's car actually received a proper rinsing . . . 

This activity was not actually in the bucket, but was a great diversion.  Granny bought these beautiful American Girl paper dolls for The Bug.  She adores Kit and enjoyed dressing her dolls over and over again. Good job Granny!

The girls had a ton of fun rounding up the necessary clothing to build their cowgirl get ups!

Going on a Bug Hunt
The Squeaker had to go bug hunting alone.  Her little sister (whose nick name IS Bug) wanted nothing to do with the creepy crawling creatures . . . 

As this picture proves!

The Squeaker really enjoyed creating these simple paper bag puppets.  She and her sister put on a monster puppet show for Granny and myself.  They are so funny!

We will have a short break this week while The Squeaker, Scout & Bug our out of town for some summer vacation (just a few days for camp and grandparents).  We'll be back next week and catch up with some more fun summer schooling ideas for a Summer Well-Spent!

Need more inspiration for summer fun?
Try out some of these great products!




Our Scout turns 11 years old today, and as providence would have it, he is spending his first birthday away from his family!  He is also spending this birthday at Scout Camp.  This is the most appropriate place to be on your journey out of boyhood and on to being a young man.  We packed him up and shipped him out on Sunday . . . without too many tears.  No tears from him, of course, just mine *sniff*sniff*.

I am thankful to the Lord for a healthy, bright, creative and blessed young man.  He is funny, sensitive and extraordinarily kind.  He is attentive to the needs of others and is moved when others suffer . . . moved to action!  He can lean a bit toward the "nerdy" side, but look at mom!  Case closed!  The Scout is a wonderful brother, to both his older and younger sister, and is loyal to his family.  He loves the Lord and is growing in the Lord's will, daily.

I am most thankful, today, for the men in his life that have helped him to reach this amazing cross-roads.  The journey from baby to toddler was made mostly with his mother and grandmother walking along side of him.  (I was a single mother for a time in his toddler-hood * P.S. Never could have made it without his granny - Thanks Mom *)  It is safe to say, he needed some positive male role models in order to help him develop into the beginnings of the disciplined Christian young man he aspires to be today.  He has not always been compliant.  He has not always been brave.  Yet, these men have endured with my son and will continue to do so, until the day that they can shake his hand and call him a man.  It is with my whole heart that I pray that the Lord blesses each of these men with a special honor and blessing for all they have done, and continue to do, in disciplining this young man in the way he should go.  Thank you!

The "Guys"

Mr. Mac (the daily dad!)

Gipa (the great-grand dad!)

Coach Pa (the grand funny dad)

Mr. Mathews (our friend and his longtime, long-suffering Cub Master)
*see top picture in post, he is in the left hand corner, working, as always!

Brother B (the man with the candy & a passion for the Lord)

Mr. Hughes & Mr. Lustenhauer (the Scout Masters)

Uncle H.R. & Uncle Sean (my bubbas)

Uncle Gary (the great uncle)

Uncle Robert (the long distance, but involved great uncle)

The Scouts! (the many wonderful and devoted young men of the scouting program)

To the Lord be all the glory for the many blessings brought into my life, daily, through this young man.  I pray daily that the Lord will continue to be the fullest desire of his heart.  Thank you for joining me in this journey of remembering and thankfulness.

* Summer Fun series back tomorrow*

What's coming this week?
The Keepers Circle: God is your designer, Sonya's Grandma's (Healthy version) Warm Chicken Salad, Meatballs Rustica
A Well-Spent Summer: The Museum & The Car Wash

Don't forget A Summer Well-Spent is now available!
Ebook $3.99


A Well-Spent Summer: Summer Fun Bucket Tutorial

Summer Fun Bucket
 . . . easy squeezey lemon peezey!!!

1.  Start with a basic oatmeal box.  

2.  Grab a ton of scrapping supplies, buttons, sequins, beads, foam, stencils, etc.

3.  Wrap your oatmeal box is scrapping paper or wrapping paper.

4.  Now let the kiddos decorate to there little heart's content . . . Quaker oatmeal never looked better!!!

5.  Now fill the bucket with fun, frugal and educational activities for you and the kids to enjoy through out the summer!

Frugal, safe & joyful summer to you all!

A Summer Well-Spent Ebook is ready to download and go!
150 Summer activities with fun and purpose.


A Well-Spent Summer: Summer Fun for F*R*E*E*

Friday For F*R*E*E*

Frugal living and godly stewardship have always been a passion for me, especially in my writings.  It should not cost us what "they" want to charge you to raise a family, educate a child at home or just eat a meal!  To the same token it should not cost you your first born child to send your kids off to summer fun at camps, day camps, athletic camps, amusement parks and the like.  

Well, I cannot control what "they" charge and what "they" expect me to pay.  I can control where my dollar goes toward entertainment and education during the summer (Believe me, it WON'T be going toward watching the trash they throw up on the "big screen")!  With the spirit of stretching the dollar and focusing on what is truly important and necessary for a WELL-SPENT SUMMER, I proudly bring you the Friday For F*R*E*E list:

1.  Crafting is a traditional method to help control the madness of Summer Fun.  My readers know that crafting with my kids is also this mommy's favorite method to teach them and to grow their imaginations.  My children love to craft and they usually have no clue that they are learning (I told you I was sneaky)!

Here is a great little F*R*E*E* eBook that will help you craft on through the summer.  Simply click the book to go directly to the link.

Summer Crafts for Kids eBook

2.  Let's Luau!  Here are few super links on How-To throw some Luau fun!

To craft this Luau Banner, Goodie Bags, Sandal Party Favors, Invitations & Napkin Rings just click the picture below.
a hui hou!

3.  It looks like Picnic weather!  Everyone loves a picnic in the summer, especially when the breeze is blowing just the right way.  Pack your sandwiches and plenty of water, and don't forget to check your e F*R*E*E* Picnic Checklist HERE.

Check back in for more Summer Fun Fre.e.bies to enjoy with your crew.  And what the hey, say "No" to what "they" want you to pay!!!

The Frugal Lady

Support independent publishing: Buy this e-book on Lulu.

A Well-Spent Summer eBook, now available!


A Well-Spent Summer Journal: Portraits, Treasure, Poems & Hink Pinks

* Join us during our A Summer Well-Spent series *

Take a peek!
Days 2 - 3

Started each day per usual, Bible reading & devotional, Reading, Writing & Math . . . done!  Lunch with the kiddos (Wednesday we lunched at the park with friends).  Now, off to the summer fun box! (Remember: How-To tutorial coming tomorrow!)

Activity #1:  Draw a self-portrait.  Tah - Dah

The Scout

The Bug (hey, she's really good at math! lol!)

Activity #2:  Make a treasure map & have a treasure hunt.
The Scout had a great time with this one!  No surprise there, he's 10, a Boy Scout & a "piratey" adventurer! Arrgh!  This activity kept them busy and thinking for quite a time.  They kept making more maps and finding new things to hide for one another.

This is the Scout's original map.  He painstakingly took the time to age the manila paper. (tea applied, wrinkled up & burned the edges)

The Bug was happy to search for as many treasures as her bubba was willing to hide.

The Scout made this cute little pop up card for his sissy to find at the end of the treasure hunt.

Activity #3:  The Scout was is going the summer fun box alone today (The Bug is down with a croupy cough and fever of 102, but doing better as of press time).  He is reciting a poem by Shel Silverstein to entertain the family with after dinnertime this evening.  He chose The Edge of The World from Where the Sidewalk Ends. This activity was great fun for mommy too!  I am still able to recite Sarah Cynthia Silvia Stout without too many hiccups . . . I learned to recite it in the 6th grader (that would be when I was the Scout's age, uugh)!

Activity #4:  The Scout sat at the edge of his sister's sick bed and played some Hink Pinks with her.  These are great brain teaser games.  A Hink what?  A Hink Pink: A game in which players guess a rhyming phrase, given definitions or synonyms of the words (en.wiktionary.org/wiki/hink_pink).  You can find a ton of them here at Super Teacher Worksheets with lots of Hink Pinks and other brain teasers.  The Hink Pinks made the Bug smile, even though she doesn't feel super swell, and they didn't even know they were learning Language skills!  Ain't I a stinker!

Here are some Hink Pinks for you to try!

1.  A fantastic detective

2.  A frozen vehicle

3. A plump feline

4.  An artificial dessert

5.  A clean road

Enjoy the summer fun folks!

* Join us this summer for more A Summer Well-Spent series ~ Lots of summer fun and support for all you moms out there!  Be on the look out for a couple of fun giveaways too! *


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A Summer Well-Spent Ebook is ready to download and go!
150 Summer activities with fun and purpose.

* Hink Pink answers: 1) A super snooper 2) An icicle tricycle 3) A fat cat 4) A fake cake 5) A neat street *