Vintage Homeschool Moms

Methods of Homeschooling – Homeschool Mom’s Quiz

methods of HomeschoolingMethods of Homeschooling — Homeschool Mom Quiz – Episode 284

There are many methods of homeschooling. Are you ready for a homeschool mom quiz to determine the strengths you possess to educate your children? Like most of us, you may question whether you have the skill set to dive into the homeschool year, or you may have questions or reservations about what method to use when homeschooling your children. In this episode of Vintage Homeschool Moms, Felice will share her sage advice after logging in over 32 years of homeschooling her five children.

Thanks to our sponsor –  Homeschool Planners! The Well Planned Gal – check them out just in time to keep you organized.

People often have mixed opinions about quiz’s — either you like them or you don’t. In this episode, we will explore how this Homeschool Mom Quiz can help you with your homeschool year – no matter what time of the year you listen.

Methods of Homeschooling

In the many years of homeschooling, I’ve heard it all. The mom’s that have it together and need no advice and the mom’s that struggle to get through each day. I think I’ve been a mix of those moms and hopefully, at the end of this show, you’ll be able to figure out the best way to approach homeschooling for you and your family.  None of us set out to fail, in fact, we hope to do the best we can each and every day. We start out with great expectations and end up somewhere in where the wild things. If you are a homeschool mom, you’ve caught the analogy to two books, Great Expectations and Where the Wild Things Are … if it bothers you that the previous title ends in “are” you are a bonafide homeschool mom!

When we think of how we want to educate our children, we have to consider ourselves as well. This short podcast is not the place for and all-encompassing seminar in the home to homeschool, however, I think some of these ideas will help you.

Some of us enjoy learning alongside our children, others like to give the child an option of learning through play or give the child a book and have them learn what interests them. In looking at these approaches there are many things to consider. The goal, after all, is in the retention of the information?

As I ask you these questions consider the answers:

  1. Are you interested in the big picture of learning or in the facts?
  2. Are you focused on the outcome so that someday your kids can go to a traditional or private school?
  3. Are you interested in teaching via the classics or the importance of Latin for vocabulary and grammar?
  4. Do you think kids learn better through play or experiential learning with a focus on what interests them?
  5. Or are you a combination of different techniques and methods?

These are important questions and ones that can really help you figure out how you want to conduct your homeschool program.

Another important series of questions is how you learn and as you are considering this – think about how your children learn best? When they are younger it may take some observation to figure it out, but as they get older you will quickly identify what type of learner that they are. As with any list, you can see some crossovers.

  1. Kinesthetic/Tactile Hands-on — learn by doing, hard time sitting still, good at sports,
  2. Auditory: Listening – the person who doesn’t need to take notes and remembers, easily distracted, good listener, reading aloud work well
  3. Visual: You learn by seeing – if you hear the information you are the person who wants to write it down to remember it, you draw all over your notes or papers, study with flash cars
  4. Reading and Writing: You prefer to read your own information and learn it yourself. Make lists rewrite the information in your own words

Knowing how you learn best as well as your child will help you in gearing a curriculum that works well.

This quiz is only as good as the answers you give. I promise it will help you gain some clarity in the process of homeschooling along with some good information to help you decide on the best method or curriculum for your children.

Homeschool Moms Test

Listen to this podcast to hear the questions as well as the test results!

Teaching Creation Geology

teaching creation geologyTeaching Creation Geology to Your Kids!

Teaching creation geology to your children is often accompanied by excited cries because rocks are so much fun! In this episode of Vintage Homeschool Moms, Felice Gerwitz interviews Patrick Nurre from Northwest Treasures, Geology. The Nurre’s have been longtime friends of Media Angels, Inc. and customers for many years.

Thanks to today’s sponsor!

Northwest Treasures, Geology

Find them on social media here:

Facebook – Geology by Northwest Treasurers 

Pinterest – Geology by Northwest Treasurers

Geology is not boring! Teaching geology to your kids should be fun and hands on. The owners of Northwest Treasures, Geology know what that means and for years have paired my unit study Creation Geology: A Study of Fossils, The Flood, and Formations with their rock kits.

    1.  How did you come to be a creationist?
  • Patrick grew up in Montana and it was a fossil and rock gold mind.
  • Loved studying rocks and researching geology, paleontology, rocks, and minerals
  • Convinced that evolution was the answer and Bible was a collection of myths
  • Senior year Patrick became a believer in Jesus — but not sure about “Creation.”
  • Began really reading the Scriptures. One main part of the consequences of the “Flood” story became interesting.
  • The Flood is the turning point of geological earth history — were all laid down by The Flood
  • Geology was a doorway, rocks formation, and identification etc.
  • As a family that was homeschooling was teaching was the “Catechism” of Creation. Kids did not know how to apply that information.
  • Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, etc. They didn’t know how to fit it into Biblical Creation
  • While they believed the “Bible story” they believed the evolutionary perspective.
  • Patrick believed they needed both parts — confidence and experience to interpret landforms as Biblical Creationists
  • Built Geology Kits with the specimens  — over 100 kits available here What does having a creation worldview have to do with geology? Why is it important?2.
    2. What are some of the things that you do to help support this message?
  • Two views of earth history — 4.5 Billion years ago an developed through long ages — evolutionary processes OR the earth was created a short time ago by an Intelligent Being, out of nothing, and the earth was Flooded due to sin.
  • Is it scientific, was it observed, was it recorded, philosophy, consensus — it is passed off as “science fact” but it is not — evolution is a “guess” or a hypothesis
  • The Bible is a historical recorded story. There are things that can be checked against other sources. In contrast with the modern view of earth history – uses a framework of what is seen today and projected into the past. Much about modern geology is not science at all — it is guesses or predictions.
    3. So how would you suggest we teach creation geology to our kids?
  • Two big of a subject to tackle in one grade or another. Cover it in smaller chunks more often.
  • Patrick has authored books on teaching creation geology
  • Children need to learn a Christian worldview and the Scriptures
  • Field experience — hands-on
  • This is not an academic subject. Schools treat “earth science” as another academic subject. It is a world-view in Patrick’s opinion.
  • Genesis 7:11 — one of the most significant Scripture that deals with geology.
  • Geology for Kids – 4-8 a lab book accompanies it — kids need to study the samples.
  • Confidence that the children can develop through the years.
    4. What are some of the things that you do to help support this message?
  • Patrick teaches various field trips in various location.
  • Patrick speaks at various homeschool conferences and works with parents to build a worldview
  • Textbooks that teach in a clear as possible – visit 
    5. Yellowstone National Park is important to you as you teach families. Share more information about this.
  • Yellowstone is our Nation’s first National Park
  • It serves as the model and icon of evolutionary geology.
  • It is a lab to study the Biblical historical framework of earth history
  • It changes people’s lives and perspectives on the Bible and geology.
  • Dinosaur Dig: Eastern Montana — to look for dinosaur bones!

Last thoughts;

  1. Spend time in Genesis, especially the first 11 chapters of the Bible. Master those Scriptures.
  2. Hands-on learning is best! Spend time in the field.


Learn Something New

learn something new

    • Let’s Learn Something New – Episode 282

      Summertime (or anytime) is the perfect time to learn something new. In this episode, Felice Gerwitz and Meredith Curtis discuss the importance of learning new things.

      Thanks to our sponsor the Well Planned Gal, planners! Check out the latest the Prayer Planners.

      Try out some of our other podcasts:

      Weddings on the Cheap — using homemade to make wonderful memories

      1. Arts and Crafts

      • crafts for gifts
      • flower arrangements
      • crafts for parties
      • fun crafts
      • sewing

2. Building

  • build something simple
  • create a shelf for your room
  • create gifts


  • 3. Sports
    • Fun sports
      • Tennis, archery, soccer, football
    • Training

4. Renew your faith

  • Read a Christian topic book as a family
  • Family mission trip
  • Local mission trip

5. Teaching Argumentation

  • Art of disagreeing
  • Different world-view and positions
  • Understanding the times
  • Learning how to respond with grace

Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor – Well Planned Gal

Rebecca from the Well Planned Gal understands the challenges of working within a budget, managing multiple children, and trying to keep up with a variety of information. That is why she created popular planner bundles!

Combine organizational tools with year long encouragement by bundling Well Planned Day planners with the popular Family Magazine. For a limited time, Save 30% with one of her popular planner bundles. Each bundle contains 2 planner products with a one-year subscription to Family Magazine.

Click Here to Go to Well Planned Gal

Best Summertime Day Trips

day tripsBest Summertime Day Trips — Episode 281

Planning for summertime day trips or day trip is easy, fast and fun! It was the only vacation my family took for many years. With both my husband and myself, self-employed the business did not run if we were not here. Being the ever-resourceful couple, we decided to ditch our car and buy a conversion van, and the fun began! Our journeys started close to home. Museums, state parks, and the planetarium. We asked the big question — is this a day drive? If not, we planned a week-end trip.

Out of our day-trip journeys, we soon found a love for nature and purchased our first pop-up tent in 1998. It was brand new and the camping trips began. It was small enough to fit behind our now, SUV and the best news was that it fit our entire family of five kids and two adults. Recently our pop-up was infested with critters that tore it up, but it lasted twenty years!

Supply list for summertime day trips:

Things to bring:

  1. Backpack
  2. Binoculars
  3. Fishing pole
  4. Portable chairs
  5. Picnic lunch
  6. Bug spray
  7. Sunscreen
  8. Water – plenty!
  9. First-aid kit
  10. Umbrella


Places to visit or things to do for summertime day trips:

  1. State park – hiking, backpacking, picnic, field trips.
  2. Museums – local displays, rotating or traveling exhibits
  3. Local culture – car show, horse shows, boat racing, sand sculptures, etc.
  4. Visit a farm / you pick
  5. Go to a fair – state fairs are in abundance in the summer
  6. Rodeo – a bit of culture for the cowboy or cowgirl in each of us
  7. Pet Store – just visit! Some stores feature exotic animals
  8. Flea Market – local culture at its best.
  9. Create an adventure
    1. Do something different, ride a roller coaster
    2. Taste exotic foods
    3. Visit interesting restaurants or cook these foods at home
  10. Horseback riding


Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor – Well Planned Gal

Rebecca from the Well Planned Gal understands the challenges of working within a budget, managing multiple children, and trying to keep up with a variety of information. That is why she created popular planner bundles!

Combine organizational tools with year long encouragement by bundling Well Planned Day planners with the popular Family Magazine. For a limited time, Save 30% with one of her popular planner bundles. Each bundle contains 2 planner products with a one-year subscription to Family Magazine.

Click Here to Go to Well Planned Gal

Summertime Parties On The Cheap

summertime partiesSummertime Parties On The Cheap – Episode 281

Summertime parties can cost a small fortune. In this podcast, we discuss yummy foods and ideas to keep your party within budget. Fun times can be had by all!

Thanks so much to our sponsor Rebecca Farris and the Well Planned Gal Planners.  Please visit our sponsors and thank them for their participation!

Summertime can mean trips but it can also include DIY parties at home. When planning a summertime party you may want to consider the theme, which will help you decide on the food as well as the games or activities for the kids and adults.

Are you a member of the Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network? If so, you will receive immediate printable downloads! One is a printable for parties.

DIY Summertime Parties On The Cheap:

Party Themes:

  1. Backyard Country Fair
  • Darts or bow and arrows (supervise of course!0
  • Create Fair Games

2. Cowboys or Western Theme

  • Dress up clothes for kids
  • Cowboy hats
  • Badges for boys or girls
  • Boots
  • Jeans
  • Stick for pretend horses (for relays)

3.  Princess or Tea Parties

  • Dress up clothes for the kids
  • Tierra for girls and crowns for boys (DIY with construction paper)
  • Teacups – ask guests to bring their own or give for party gifts

4. Pirates or Adventurer

  • Pirate hats (DIY with construction paper)
  • Eye patches
  • Boots and jeans
  • Treasuer hunt

5. Fun Hats

  • Everyone wears a hat (or cap) (DIY with construction paper)
  • Scarfs

6. Sports

  • Headgear — or caps  from the sport
  • Jersey or t-shirts that are sports-focused
  • Sports gear for games

7. Water Themed Party

  • Attire: bathing suits/ cover ups/shorts and shirts
  • Slip and slide
  • Sprinklers
  • Water guns
  • Water balloons

Game Ideas can be adapted to any of the themes:

  • Use old soda or juice bottles and use plastic rings to create a fun game
  • Relay races
  • Darts
  • Bow and arrows
  • Slip and slide
  • Treasure hunt
  • Frisbee
  • A fishing game with a magnet at the end of the pole (paper clip “fish”)
  • Balls, footballs, balloons, etc.
  • Watercolor table. Paints, brushes, water and paper!
  • Balloons. Playing with balloons is always fun.
  • Water balloons. Play catch!
  • Water gun tag
  • Freeze tag

Kid-friendly Foods:

Summertime Healthy Snacks – More Info Here

  1. Hotdogs
  2. Cheese – Grilled Cheese
  3. Burgers (beef, turkey, veggie, etc.)
  4. Sloppy Joes
  5. Pulled pork
  6. Baked beans
  7. Chips
  8. Skewers of meats and veggies
  9. Skewers of fruit
  10. Cheese and crackers
  11. Watermelon
  12. Cookies
  13. Lemonade
  14. Water with fruit slices (lemon or lime)
  15. Sheet cakes – purchase or make

Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor – Well Planned Gal

Rebecca from the Well Planned Gal understands the challenges of working within a budget, managing multiple children, and trying to keep up with a variety of information. That is why she created popular planner bundles!

Combine organizational tools with year long encouragement by bundling Well Planned Day planners with the popular Family Magazine. For a limited time, Save 30% with one of her popular planner bundles. Each bundle contains 2 planner products with a one-year subscription to Family Magazine.

Click Here to Go to Well Planned Gal

Summertime Healthy Snacks

Summer Time SnacksTop Summertime Healthy Snacks Episode 279

Summertime Healthy snacks do not have to taste like cardboard or break the bank. In this episode, of Vintage Homeschool Moms, I will share some yummy snacks with you that are crowd pleasers and even the kids will love them–promise!

Thanks to our sponsor…The Well Planned Gal and her amazing planners! Visit the Well Planned Gal Planners to learn more.

There are so many healthy snacks that appeal to kids! However, I’ve learned that my kids will eat different things when they help in the prep! Teach kids some safety rules.

  1. Wash hands before preparing any food to eat.
  2. Use care with knives. Don’t put your hands by the blade.
  3. Use a cutting board when slicing fruit or vegetables.

Listen to the audio to learn about many more! 

Summertime Healthy Snacks

  1. Cucumber sandwich – you can use two slices of cucumber, sharp cheese, and sliced meat.
  2. Crackers and peanut butter.
  3. Frozen yogurt
  4. Hard boiled eggs.
  5. Cucumber and tomato salad. Drizzle olive oil.
  6. Smoothies – use your child’s favorite fruit and blend with ice.
  7.  Banana and peanut butter popsicles. Blend bananas and peanut butter until creamy. 2 large bananas or 3 small bananas – ripe work best plus 2-3 Tablespoons of peanut butter (or your favorite nut butter). Nutella works well.
  8. Apple muffins are always a favorite. Use grain-free alternatives if needed for gluten-free.
  9. Ketogenic – high fat, low-carb. Shakes as well as various snacks such as coconut balls. See recipe here.
  10. Chocolate peanut butter: Mix 1 tablespoon of peanut butter with 5-10 chocolate chips, eat with a tiny spoon
  11. Melt peanut butter with coconut oil – unless you live in FL like I do and coconut oil is liquid here, stir in the cocoa and add the sugar. Take it off from the heat and mix in the van. extract. Pour it into a candy mold – or simply line a cookie pan – lipped with wax paper and pour it in, cut into tiny squares or break once it is cooled. You may need to put it in the frig to Harden.
  12. Use mixed nuts and place in a shallow pan, toast them in the oven and sprinkle’ with sea salt. Drizzle with melted chocolate and refrigerate until set. Store in a mason jar and enjoy
  13. Kale chips – wash and place leaves on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sea salt and drizzle with olive oils – be sure to watch carefully and bake until toasty – break up into chunks, cool and eat. Very low cal and yummy. Great rainy day activity.
  14. Homemade Applesauce – Wash apples in vinegar to take off waxy polish sometimes on the skin. Core the apples and place whole in boiling water until mushy. Take out and process in a food processor or remove the skin and mash with a fork. Sprinkle with cinnamon and enjoy!
  15. Roll banana in peanut butter and then roll in crunchy cereal
  16. Snack tray — pretzels, applesauce, banana chips, raisins, nuts, cereal
  17. Yogurt and fruit parfait. Try instant pot recipes for yogurt – super yummy!
  18.  Yogurt bark. Spread yogurt on parchment paper, top with fruit such as blueberries or strawberries. Freeze. Break into chunks once froze. A family favorite.
  19. Frozen banana pops. Cut bananas in half, thread popsicle stick in banana. Dip the banana in melted chocolate. Place on wax paper lined cookie sheets and freeze.
  20. Pinwheels: take a soft, tortilla and use a spread such as mayo or mustard. Layer your meats or cheeses, add lettuce, tomato, roll up and slice. Have the children add their favorites.
  21.  Melted chocolate. Use fresh fruit to dip!
  22. Frozen grapes. Try them, they are a yummy snack!
  23. Homemade trail mix – add your favorites.
  24. Fruit and veggie platters. Use favorite salad dressing for a dip.
  25. Scooped chips filled with fresh salsa.

This list of twenty five snacks will help to jump start your own ideas. What did I leave out? Leave your favorites with me!

Summertime Rainy Day Activities

rainy day activitiesBest Summertime Rainy Day Activities

Episode 278

Are you ready for some fun rainy day activities? Unless you live in a frigid place there will be a time that rainy day activities will come in handy. I guess it if is winter change it to “snow day” activities! Here we have some fun ideas that will help you entertain children with the least amount of tears!

Thanks to our sponsor the Well Planned Gal, Rebecca Farris! She has various planners for every homeschool need and the Prayer Journal is brand new. In just a few minutes I can’t wait to tell you more about them…

This month it is all about making memories and keeping some last minute plans in place for those unexpected events is so helpful. In my early years as a mom and homeschooler, I subscribed to different mailed sets – one was a kit to do with your kids and it involved crafts and things to build. However, I found that while some of the ideas were great many were not anything that interested my children. So I started and proceeded to lose lists! Sound familiar.

Rainy Day Activities

Now that I’m so much older I have a wealth of experience and information at fingertips! I know what works and what does not, and it is amazing how these old ideas still work well. I’m happy to share my ideas with you—and you can keep these handy and we plan for your own rainy day activities.

I know, I know – kids are all different, and what makes one kid excited can leave the rest yawning, so I add a few little ideas to the list of my favorites and that enforcing good character qualities in our children through every-day events.

My children all struggle, we all struggle with different things such as patience, sharing “our” things, waiting for others who are slower, perfectionism, doing things we don’t want to do.

At times I would plan out fun things to do only to have kids say they don’t want to participate! Talk about a fun-damper, right? So… instead we want to set up the kids for success and keep our sanity by planning out even their reactions!

Before we do anything, especially with little children I remind them of the rules.

  1. We are thankful for everything and everyone.
  2. We will be grateful
  3. We will share and be happy for others
  4. We won’t touch anything until given permission

Quick opinion on rules: I grew up as a teacher in the era of coloring without lines and classrooms without walls – this permissive atmosphere cause kids to be confused about what was expected and certainly did not encourage the creativity and “free thinking” it was meant to instill and allow. Yet, I continued to use this type of methodology in my parenting. It made parenting at times very difficult because I had little kids that were “exploring” and loving their surrounds but certainly not listening to anything I had to say. I learned to change my methods and teach them some rules of what I expected and wonder of wonders, they learned to obey and listen! Life was much happier.

An overview of rules allows kids to know what is expected when we played games or before we left the house – even in the car, I made sure to go over what I expected. I didn’t want to be embarrassed on our outings and my kids were sure to get excited when they saw friends or shelves full of fun things to pull off in the store! I think shopping carts are probably an invention by a mom to keep kids contained while shopping!

Kids will still enjoy themselves and believe me rules will not starve creativity! I met a lady recently who works with parents, she is a parenting expert and helps moms and dads learn how to parent — there is even a certification for this! For many of us this is probably not surprising and I’m sure it is much needed.

So, as we look forward to rainy day activities be sure to let the kids know – we will have fun, but we do have some rules we want to follow.

Are you ready for these tried and true ideas for 10 fun rainy day activites?

  1. Reading
    1. Books saved particularly for rainy days – read aloud – get the pop corn out and erect a tent!
    2. Books kids want to read on their own – again save special books for a special occasion.
  2. Crafts
    1. T-shirts – use fabric makers or paint
    2. Clay
    3. Mason Jar terrariums
      1. Use soil and small plants – poke holes in lid and keep an eye on the soil moisture
      2. Use sand and shells for a great beach memory craft and something to do with those shells the kids like to collect
  • Use for rock collections or any type of “nature walk” collections the kids bring home.
  1. Paints
    1. Use ink pens – draw a picture and color it with watercolors
    2. Make a mural – use large pieces of paper (packing paper – keep it!)
  • Use fingers to make prints and create fingerprint creatures
  1. Balsa wood – models, etc.
  2. Mini-marshmallows and toothpicks – build!
  3. Ready made kits
    1. Beads
    2. models
  4. Games
    1. Board games with Play offs
    2. Video games
    3. Active games
      1. Charades
      2. Hide and Seek
  • Don’t step on … avoid different areas.
  1. Learn a new dance
  2. Games that are interactive
  3. Inflate balloons and allow the kids to play games with them!
  1. Movie marathon
    1. Series of movies to watch
    2. Short movies and then act them out
  2. Indoor tents or forts
    1. Set up a pop up tent
    2. Use sheets and blankets and chairs
  3. Puppet show / Plays
    1. Use an box as the puppet stage
    2. Make hand puppets
    3. Act out a movie, or characters from a book
  4. Indoor Scavenger hunt
    1. Monthly printable for June – subscribers only
    2. Go to the place where you enter the home – there you will find the next clue
    3. Be sure to set up your rules first
  5. Baking cookies or bread
    1. Be sure to have ingredients on hand
    2. Create a dough that requires rolling out and cut outs for added fun
    3. Learn to braid bread
    4. Make cinnamon rolls or other breakfast breads
  6. Learn something new
    1. Learn simple vocabulary for a new language – Spanish, French, Italian learn how to say hello, please, thank-you, etc.
    2. Learn how to eat with chop-sticks
    3. Learn to juggle
    4. Learn to paint
  7. Activities
    1. Ice or roller skating
    2. Sock skating indoors
    3. Make and fly paper airplanes
    4. Create slime
    5. Exercise
    6. Give the kids a bag of recyclables and ask them to create something – have contests to see who wins.

Remember, whatever you do –do it with fun in mind! Have some activities ready for when the rains come, and you will create a fun atmosphere without resorting to placing the children in front of the TV!

Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor – Well Planned Gal

Rebecca from the Well Planned Gal understands the challenges of working within a budget, managing multiple children, and trying to keep up with a variety of information. That is why she created popular planner bundles!

Combine organizational tools with year long encouragement by bundling Well Planned Day planners with the popular Family Magazine. For a limited time, Save 30% with one of her  popular planner bundles. Each bundle contains 2 planner products with a one-year subscription to Family Magazine.  

Click Here to Go to Well Planned Gal


Summertime Making Family Memories

creating family memoriesSummertime – Making Family Memories

Episode 277

Making family memories is one of the most important things you will ever do as a family. As homeschool parents, we naturally make memories with our children each day, but in this episode, we explore making positive memories!

Thanks to our sponsor – Media Angels Membership. For your curriculum needs on a budget visit the website to learn how to receive all the books and classes I’ve created to give your children a Christian worldview!

I was at a homeschool conference once where the customer asked if I could come and teach her child the subject, of course, we both laughed. But, in one of the bundles you will find classes where I teach your children the content in my study guides – visit for more information – and we will learn more a bit later on!

The topic of making family memories is very important to me, and I recall my own parents trying very hard with a meager budget to create memorable events for us each summer. There were eight siblings and they all pitched in to buy a house in upstate New York. I remember the house being very small but most of what I remembered was the stream with running water that ran across the property and we happily played in, the baths outside in a big steaming metal tub, and the huge play balls we enjoyed with my cousins. The food was delicious, the fresh watermelon and barbeque chicken on the grill.

This was a family adventure and we spent time there every summer up until I was in the third grade. One of my uncles was part owner of this house and when he aged and retired to Florida, he and my aunt were frequent visitors to our home and family events. He would smile as he surveyed the table, the decorations or the big homemade cake and his comments resonated with me, he would say that no matter what we do with our children each day, making memories is the most important.

I recently heard the same quote at a business meeting – and that seemed like the Lord’s confirmation that this is something so many of us need to hear. The quote was something like this, “People will forget what you say, what you do, but they will not forget how you make them feel.”

This is the basis for so many successful businesses. How do you feel when you walk into a coffee house, or a small mom and pop business where people say hello when you walk in the door? There are several brands that focus on the user experience – and that is the key to their success. Another brand continually updates their food, their product line because they listen to the customers and again they want to make the customer welcome and a “regular.”

Applying business principals to our families seems rather cold, but in reality, it is a good way to look at things through a different set of filters. I know what it is like to be sleep deprived and wake up early to see my husband off to work, then stay up late with a little one who just would not go to sleep! There was nothing special I thought I was doing during those years, but I was wrong. Spending time with your children is so important – listening to your children is another aspect of parenting often overlooked.

When I discussed this podcast with my husband I asked him for his input and this is what he said was important and foundational for him:

  1. Sharing the children’s interests
  2. Learning about their passions
  3. Making an effort to listen and be involved

Making memories with your children takes into consideration so many different aspects of raising kids. It’s those little things that the kids will remember and believe me, the strangest things you’ve done as a family stand out. When I asked one of my kids what they enjoyed the most about their week, they said helping Daddy paint! I have to admit it was a bit of a messier proposition than my husband had hoped and of course, it took longer but my son remembered that as the fun activity of the week.

Top 10 Activities to Make Memories with your family 

  1. Faith building events
    1. Retreats
    2. Camps – as a family
    3. Bible studies
    4. One day events
  2. Camping
    1. Slowly build up your camping gear
    2. Look for sales
    3. Ask around or borrow
  3. Campfire Stories
    1. Begin with a topic
    2. Each person adds to a story
    3. One person shares a made up story
  4. Cooking together
    1. Use a boxed set of ingredients
    2. Try something new
    3. Use skewers
  5. Work on a project together
    1. Painting
    2. Planting a garden
    3. Set up swing set
  6. Pets
    1. Visit pet store
    2. Think about pet sitting
    3. Think about purchasing a pet
  7. Road trips/traveling
    1. Day trips – upcoming podcast
    2. DIY trips – here and here
    3. Visit friends or family on the cheap
  8. Volunteer work as a family
    1. Habitat for Humanity homes
    2. Soup kitchen
    3. Ask at your local church, adopt a family
  9. Backyard or neighborhood stargazing
    1. Learn about the stars
    2. Invest in good binoculars
    3. Go to the planetarium or local nature center
  10. Collections – rocks, shells, antiques, etc.
    1. Decide on a collection
    2. Figure out storage – box under the bed or shelves, etc.
    3. Go on trips to collect

Is Free Curriculum Really Free

free curriculumDo you love to get free curriculum? Is free curriculum really free? I love freebies, but sometimes it costs so much more than it is worth. In this podcast, we discuss the real cost of free and how you can organize your freebies and really get the most out of them.

Homeschooling on one income means learning to be frugal and cut corners. It also means that you look for sales and bargains and freebies and printables fit that niche. Many times you can find freebies on a composite website or post, where many different freebies are listed and often in the blogger is nice–sorted into grade-specific or topic-specific categories. With little time and organization, you can get some wonderful printables for your kids.

Do you have a plan for your homeschool, for example, specific subjects you are teaching and the time of the year this is taking place? This is very important, so you can make your freebie work for you. If you are teaching classical music in December, this is a good time to use a freebie on the composers. You can use a one month calendar and list your themes or topics that you will study.

Even if you use a boxed curriculum, you can use a

Is Free Curriculum Really Free?

Episode #275

Pro’s of Free Curriculum

  1. You don’t have to pay for it.
  2. Innovative freebies and printables.
  3. Something for every grade and subject
  4. Don’t have to leave home
  5. Use it for multiple kids

Con’s of Free Curriculum

  1. You don’t know how it use it.
  2. You have to print it out.
  3. Printing is expensive.
  4. There is too much of it!
  5. It is not very good, or it is not complete

How to make free curriculum work for you:

  1. Make a list of what you have downloaded. Use a spreadsheet to keep track, it is easier to search on a spreadsheet. If you do not have a word processing program use google docs or some other free program. You can download the document as a PDF and print it out or search the document.
  2. Before you print the document, look through it and see if you can use all or part of the printable.
  3. Organize your freebie in grade levels or topics.
  4. Decide how the printable will work with your existing plan.
  5. If you can’t use the printable now, write down when you can use it. If you have your printables organized you can put down a date, or start a new page (on the spreadsheet) with the year, and place the printable name there.
  6. Do not print out the printable until you need it — that saves on storage, and you may change your mind.

If you have a money saving idea or ways to make freebies work for you that is helpful, please share your idea with us!


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DIY Travel On The Cheap

DIY Travel On The CheapHow about DIY travel on the cheap with your hosts, Felice Gerwitz and Meredith Curtis? Many people would like to travel but feel they can’t afford the cost. That’s exactly right, but in this podcast, we share some top secret tips!

Visit Meredith Curtis here: and her podcast Finish Well with great family podcasts here.

Visit Felice Gerwitz here:

And Felice on her website and

Episode 274 with Felice Gerwitz and Meredith Curtis

Research for DIY Travel on the cheap!

  • Where do you want to go?
    • Must see vs. I’d like to see if we have time
  • Look online, DK Travel Guides
  • Keep a folder on Pinterest

Look For Deals

  • TravelZoo
  • Goupon
  • Living Social
  • SkyScanner

What do you want to see?

  • List of must-sees
  • List of  what you’d like to see, but only if time

Saving money can be done with little know tips such as packing snacks, renting condos or homes outside of bigger cities or famous attractions, and being prepared to fly instead of drive if the airfare is cheaper — yes, it often is… I can fly from Fort Myers to BWI (Baltimore/ Maryland) for less than $100 round trip! Gas to get there is more, as well as wear-and-tear on the car! Look for deals for DIY travel on the cheap tips.

Where will you stay?

  • Hotels
  • Rental homes
  • Rental condos
  • With a friend

Where will you eat?

  • Restaurants
  • Bring food, nonperishables
  • Take water on the plane if you fly (must buy it after security point) or bring an empty water bottle and fill it at the airport for free
  • Roadside kiosks (depending on where you visit, this may be an inexpensive option).
  • Buy food to cook.


  • Plan your itinerary. Where will you go first?
  • Plan transportation if you are taking the bus or train
  • Costs – be sure to account for the cost of travel

Check the Weather

  • When you have a travel date look at the weather
  • Plan indoor activities if the weather is bad
  • Layer clothing, it is better than taking big, bulky clothing