Wild Florida Spotlight: Key West

Wild Florida Spotlight: Key West

Key West – Episode 86


Travel Florida’s overseas highways to one of the most unique cities in the US. We highlight some of the interesting facts and history of Key West, FL.

Key West is like no other. It is unique, rich in history and culture. Take a road trip with us as we explore this wonderful little island in Florida.


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Break New Ground: 2020 Victory Gardens

2020 Victory Gardgens

Victory Gardens – Episode 85


We are living in interesting times.  Take a look a Victory Gardens with Suzanne. We talk about the history of the gardens and reasons your family should consider digging up  your own garden!


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Swag Bag Free

Welcome to your swag bag freebie! To access this please sign up here!

You will receive the Ultimate All-Purpose Homeschool & Character Trait Planner – a $25 Value 

  1. Forms for Mom, including household and 4-Square(TM) Planner
  2. Master Grocery List
  3. Master Cleaning List
  4. Kid’s check-off lists
  5. Yearly Planning Help
  6. Transcripts
  7. 4-Year High School Plan
  8. Gift Buying Guide
  9. Character Building Planner







Time Management with Dr. Melanie Wilson

Hey Friends!  In this episode of Soft Skills 101 we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Dr. Melanie Wilson, of Psycho With 6, a fellow podcaster on at UHPN! Melanie mentions that she lives with 6 kids 2 dogs and a husband who works from home! No stranger to distractions, she!Hey Friends!

In this episode of Soft Skills 101 we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Dr. Melanie Wilson, of Psycho With 6, a fellow podcaster on at UHPN! Melanie mentions that she lives with 6 kids 2 dogs and a husband who works from home! No stranger to distractions, she!

Psalm 57:2 “I cry out to the God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.”

Podcast Sponsor

Sometimes you just need a little help from a friend! Our Academic Advising and Career Counseling services allow you to put our years of experience and education to work for you! We’ve worked with students from around the world, who have gone on to travel, vo-tech, college, Ivy Leagues University, the military, internships and Gap years.

Please share this episode with a friend and like Soft Skills 101:Life Skills for a Digital Age podcast on iTunes.

Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads. Habakkuk 2:2

Time Management Tips from Melanie!

  1. Know your Why – create a vision board; write it down!
  2. Make Good Habits easier – define productive time. Encourage yourself. Do the thing that will help you the most.
  3. Make Bad Habits harder – develop strategies for blocking distractions
  4. Develop Time Boundaries – focus on what is in front of you. Multi-tasking doesn’t work. When your family has your full attention, it creates trust and peace in your home.

“What your family wants most from you, Mom, is your happiness!” Dr. Melanie Wilson

Distraction Management

In this episode of Soft Skills 101 we are going to talk about Distraction Management. Of course one of the best ways to manage distractions is to manage your time! We’ll cover phone, social media, emails and kid distractions!Hey Friends!

In this episode of Soft Skills 101 we are going to talk about Distraction Management. Of course one of the best ways to manage distractions is to manage your time! We’ll cover phone, social media, emails and kid distractions!

Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.

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Sometimes you just need a little help from a friend! Our live on-line classes at True North Homeschool Academy provide your student with excellent teaching, outside accountability, grading, interaction with teachers and students from around the country, and sometimes out of it! Students are exposed to various teaching styles and assessments, including tests, projects and essays. Recent guest speakers to our classes have included Paul Carette of Flagshooter, Ian Doescher of Verily New Hope, and Hillsdale College Professor Rahe.

Please share this episode with a friend and like Soft Skills 101:Life Skills for a Digital Age podcast on iTunes.

Distraction Management

With the plethora of gizmos, gadgets and tech at our fingertips, it’s so easy to get distracted! Each distraction costs us over 23 minutes; in other words, every time we are distracted, we spend 23 minutes chasing bunny trails, before we get back on track! But the reality is that distraction isn’t about technology, it’s about how we fill our time.

“Distraction, at its core, is this: confusion about what matters. Curt Stienhorst

Being distracted can have negative consequences:

  • Multitasking can lead to information getting stored in the wrong part of the brain.
  • The brain isn’t designed for multitasking; if you switch back and forth between tasks often enough, it can lead to feeling disoriented and exhausted.
  • Your brain produces more cortisol, a stress hormone, when you multi-task, and can lead to irritability, aggression and impulsive behavior.

Let’s talk about how to minimize distractions with

  • Phone
  • Email
  • Social Media
  • Baby and Toddlers while homeschooling
  • And Kids who can’t seem to sit still

Additionally, I’ll talk about 15 more things you can do to eliminate distractions! Sign up for our newsletter to have the list delivered to your inbox!


Adams Equity theory 

Pomodoro Technique

Time Management Techniques 

Winston Churchill on Success

Distraction is Not What You Think

Thank you to our Sponsor – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Movie!

Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Emmy winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love and forgiveness from America’s most beloved neighbor.

Nurturing Creativity

This week I am excited to introduce to you Katie Hornor. Listen in as Katie shares how to  nurture and teach creativity!This week I am excited to introduce you to Katie Hornor. Katie lives with her husband and 5 children in Mexico, developing curriculum, encouraging business owners, running a local coffee shop, and homeschooling.

In addition, they started the first on-line Summit for homeschooling Spanish speakers in 2018 which reached over 5000 people in 2019!

Listen in as Katie shares how to  nurture and teach creativity!

“What do you have in your hand?” Exodus 4:2

24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.” 1 Thesselonians 5:24

“The Lord always provides for what He calls you to do!” Katie Hornor

How to Nurture Creativity:

  1. Schedule time to do creative endeavors- schedule a creativity date on your calendar
  2. Find a place for you that is peaceful and restful where you can contemplate God’s creativity
  3. Be a consumer of good information
  4. Take time to process information. Take time to just “Be.”
  5. Use positive words with your kids and each other. Re-frame situations to encourage your kids to be creative and utilize their own imaginations for good.



2019 on-line Spanish Homeschool Conference!

Melk the Christmas Monkey 

Nurture Your Kids Career Dreams with our Young Professionals Series of e-pamphlets, designed to nurture and inspire!

Survive Homeschooling High School! 

Need help planning High School or with Career Counseling? Put our years of experience to work for you with our Academic Advising program! 

Art Club– live on-line bi-monthly instruction and inspiration!

Writing Club – live on-line bi-monthly instruction and inspiration!

Encouraging Creativity in Your Home!

This week I am interviewing Bj Pramman about encouraging creativity in the Home!  Get tips on how to encourage your creative kid!“Creativity takes courage.” ~ Henri Matisse

Welcome to another episode! We are going to continue our discussion on Creativity. Be sure to catch last week’s show where I listed 50 ways to nurture your creativity! And be sure to check out previous podcasts on Critical Thinking, as the two often go  hand-in-hand!

This week I am interviewing Bj Pramman, True North Homeschool Academy’s Art Club Teacher.  Bj is not only a Homeschool graduate, a homeschooling Mom, an on-line teacher, but she is also a speed painter who works with Life light ministries. Bj shares how to encourage your creative kid even if you’re not creative yourself!

Art in Evangelism by Bj Pramman

Life Light Ministries

True North Homeschool Academy Art Club

True North Homeschool Academy Writing Club

Teaching “Adulting” – MBFLP 234


Studies show that young adults are often not prepared for adult independence. Psychologists say the current generation is growing up slowly, and some even say “Twenty-five is the new fifteen”!* But if our parents and grandparents were functioning adults at 18 or 20, why can’t our kids be the same? This episode we’re talking about how to teach adult skills intentionally to our teenagers – and what to do if they graduated before you were done teaching!

Join us for a free relationship builder!

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How to Raise Children Who Love God

How to Raise Children Who Love GodIt’s easy to slip into the thinking that if we just homeschool, all will turn out fine. Our children will grow up to love God; they will be well-educated and spiritually mature, always following the Lord and living godly lives.


A quick search of the internet will prove this is simply not the case. I loved the blog post Israel Wayne posted not too long ago addressing the current trend of homeschoolers who are rejecting their parents’ faith and basically dishonoring them.

(Can I just say that I literally laughed out loud when I read this line: “I just want to say to everyone who wishes that I was writing blogs about how badly my life sucks lollipops…I’m sorry I’ve disappointed you by having a happy and satisfied life.”).

And then, of course, there’s the story of Josh Harris, who grew up a zealot of homeschooling, courtship, and so many good things, only to recently divorce his wife and leave his faith, rejecting all he supposedly once held important. What a sad time for his parents.

Oh, dear homeschoolers. Once again, we have to be reminded that life is not about a checklist. We so easily forget, don’t we? There are no secret formulas, no magic bullets. You can’t manufacture a genuine relationship. There is no amount of work you can invest that will guarantee your children will turn out fine.

Homeschooling is great. I personally think it’s the obvious best option for educating and investing time into one’s children to build strong relationships. But it’s not the secret formula and relying on that alone will only bring frustration and disappointment.

But fret not. God doesn’t want us to just throw up our hands and sing Que Sera, Sera. We can look to Scripture and look to godly examples around us to learn some ideas for helping our children grow into spiritually mature adults who love God. We cannot force them to love the Lord, but we can entice them towards a deep relationship by showing them how precious it is!

Here are some ideas:


1. Make your relationship with the Lord your top priority.

How can you expect your children to love God if you don’t love Him with all of your heart? The very best thing you can do is lead by example. Spend time with Him daily and share what He is teaching you. When your children see that God is a priority and when they hear you speak about Him, they will be drawn towards Him.

I could probably end this entire blog post with this first point because it is just that important and impactful! But I won’t… 😉


2. Start early encouraging your children to spend time with the Lord daily.

We have always made daily devotions a part of our children’s required “daily chores.” That might sound terrible, but the Bible does talk about “disciplining ourselves unto godliness.” Part of the Christian walk is self-discipline and if we want them to truly love God, then we must teach our children to be self-disciplined early. They need to learn how to “own” their faith.

When they were young, they read this Learn to Read Bible, among other Bible story books. They also enjoyed these inductive Bible studies by Kay Arthur. Korban also really loves these books. They are short and address specific sins through the eyes of a child, with Scripture references to go along with them.

Something else we did was to encourage them to pray for wisdom like Solomon did. I remember specifically having this conversation with our oldest son, Konur, and seeing the impact it made on him to think that he could have as much wisdom as he wanted simply by asking in faith!

We watched him grow spiritually even as a young child and we didn’t even have to ask how it happened. We knew he was praying for wisdom. Today, that boy spends hours in prayer and Bible reading daily and has a close walk with the Lord.


3. Have daily devotions time as a family.

Fathers are called to be the “priests of their homes,” but many households do not have regular family devotions. It is not always easy and grace is sometimes needed for difficult schedules, but it’s important to make a commitment to do something! Martin Luther is famously quoted as saying, “Work, work from early until late. In fact, I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.”

There is always time! Even if it just starts with just one song, reading a couple verses, and praying through a prayer list, if it’s a daily time together as a family, God will honor the effort and increase the desire. It is very impactful for your children to see their father leading spiritually and worshiping the God he loves.

I think it’s so important to focus on reading the Bible, but stories can also be helpful, especially for younger children. These books are a current favorite of my seven-year-old’s.


4. Make the Lord a part of everyday life, not a separate subject.

Talk about Him as you go through your day. Remember all the things He has done for you and your family and recount them to your children. (Hmmm… this sounds strangely similar to Deuteronomy 6:4-9, doesn’t it? 😉 )

In our family, we often talk about how good God has been to us by providing our homestead to us for $40,000. It’s an incredible story! We also recount other specific answers to prayer, like the time I cried out in desperation for my husband to get a different job and that very day he was let go. It might not sound like an answer, but we knew it was! And God provided a better job a short time later.

Encourage them to pray specifically and point out the times when God has answered their requests, too. God is a good Father and loves to give good gifts to His children. Once, Korban prayed for 6 inches of snow. God answered that prayer and actually gave him an inch more! We made sure to tell him what a special answer to prayer that was and how much God loves him, and he continues to bring that story up. God didn’t have to answer the request, but He delighted to do so!


5. Get to their hearts with Scripture.

When you train them, God’s Word should always be what you use to exhort and encourage. So often we focus on changing their behavior so that we can be more comfortable or so that we don’t look like bad parents. But if we want our children to love God, our focus should always be on Christ. How does their behavior make Him look?

We need to get to their hearts and focus on their motivations for doing right. What does the Bible say about their behavior? Do they truly love God and want to please Him? Do they remember all the Jesus did to pay for those sins they are committing? Do they know how much He loves them and longs to have a relationship with them?

We must always bring it back to the Gospel.

One of our favorite resources for doing this was a book called Parenting with Scripture. It’s a topical book that helps us address different kinds of behavior issues using Scripture and activities to go along with it. We also tried to have clear expectations and swift consequences for disobedience. Allowing things to slide leads to anger and nothing will harden a child quicker than parents disciplining in anger.


6. Be open and real about your faith.

Kids are perceptive. They know when you are not being real with them and teens, especially, can smell hypocrisy a mile away. When they are young, they may let it slide because you are still their hero. But when they get older, they have no qualms about calling you out on all the inconsistencies they have seen for years.

You have two choices: You can respond in humility or you can respond in pride. Pride says, “I am the parent and I am in charge. I have my reasons. Do as I say, not as I do.” Trust me, you won’t get very far with that approach and it will not draw your teens closer to Christ.

Humility, on the other hand, says, “You are right. I didn’t see that, but I need to change and I will work on it. (And, by the way, I love you, but you need to work on how you confront authority.)” That last part may or may not be necessary. 😉 But the point is, don’t let their own spiritual immaturity and hypocrisy blind you from the sin they are pointing out.

When you are humble enough to admit wrongs and share your heart about how God is teaching you, they will let down their own defenses and share their own struggles. This brings us right back around to the first point. Again, it’s about modeling what you want to see and leading by example.


Of course, when it gets right down to it, prayer is the number one, most powerful tool we have to ensure that our children grow up to love God and serve Him!

All of these practical ideas are just empty works without the power of the Holy Spirit to work in their hearts. We must always be seeking Him and asking Him to reveal to us the specific ways that we can encourage our children’s relationship with the Lord.

I hope this encourages you and gives you some practical help in raising up children who love God with all of their hearts, souls, and minds! We can’t control their hearts, but we can make a big impact if we follow the Lord’s leading and humbly walk along side them.

Also, if you’d like to actually be able to see me while you listen to this episode, be sure to watch it on my new YouTube channel!

Travel Journaling

Travel Journaling #homeschool #fieldtrips #journaling #traveljournalTravel Journaling –  Episode 76

Florida Parent Educators Association’s (FPEA) Chairwoman, Suzanne Nunn talks about Travel Journaling.

Florida Summers – a perfect time for a staycation, or even a vacation. Have you kept a travel journal? This is a great way to both learn from the experience, but also to create lasting memories. In years to come, you and your kids can look back and relive the memories you made on your trips. As they say, the days are long, but the years are short.

List in for ideas on both the why and hows of travel, or field trip, journals.

There are numerous options for field trip journals or travel journals. You can purchase pre-made journals, or you can let those creative juices flow and create your own. There are also many printables available online. Be sure to check our Pinterest boards for some ideas.


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Special Thanks to Our Network Sponsor -Overcomer Movie

Life changes overnight for coach John Harrison when his high school basketball team’s state championship dreams are crushed under the weight of unexpected news. When the largest manufacturing plant in town suddenly shuts down and hundreds of families begin moving away, John must come to grips with the challenges facing his family and his team. Urged by the school’s principal to fill-in and coach a sport he doesn’t know or like, John is frustrated and questioning his worth… until he crosses paths with a student struggling with her own journey.
Filled with a powerful mix of faith, a twist of humor, and a ton of heart, the Kendrick Brothers return to theaters with OVERCOMER, their newest feature following FACING THE GIANTS, FIREPROOF, COURAGEOUS, and the #1 box-office hit, WAR ROOM. The inspiring family film stars Alex Kendrick, Priscilla Shirer, Shari Rigby, Cameron Arnett, and introduces Aryn Wright-Thompson.

Opening nationwide on August 23, OVERCOMER dares to leave you filled with hope, inspired to dream, and asks the question: what do you allow to define you?

Click here to learn more!