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Weekly Wrap-up ~ Slow, Steady, Icy, Cold

In our regular life this week…

As it was a COLD week, we stayed in the house unless it was absolutely necessary to leave it! I usually love winter. But this year I am just over it. It's probably because heating our house is a challenge. I looked ahead to the 10 day forecast and see more frigid temps and precipitation. Yuck. AND it has already started to ice … so it's possible all of our weekend plans will be cancelled.

With the cold weather, we got caught up on some shows we had DVR'd, and I did some reading. Collin came for a mid-week visit. Otherwise, it was a quiet week. Except ….

when I heard the dogs outside barking yesterday (nothing new) and went out to shush them, I heard one who sounded in distress. They had gotten into my gardening area and Buck had gotten his head stuck between the chain link fence and the gate. He was trying to pull his head out and crying. The other dogs were frantic and attacking me while I tried to get him out. The gate is padlocked and we do not have the key. We never use that gate. Buck kept fighting me by bracing his feet against the fence and ground so I couldn't move his head out to free him. It was STRESSFUL! But I finally pulled his feet up and held them tight and then pushed his head down until it was almost to the ground where he had room to pull it out. It was scary for me, him, and his brothers and sister.

In our homeschool this week…

We stayed snuggled up with blankets and pushed ahead on our schoolwork, accomplishing everything in our planner. It was a slow, steady week. We have now accomplished 15 of our first 20 days of school (we have to complete a total of 60) before we get to head to sunny Florida for Spring Break. On the 20th day we have a fun day planned!

Bible - We concentrated on Psalm 23 and Proverbs 3 and 15. We learned that God is our shepherd and when we follow Him, He blesses us and protects us. We have to trust Him no matter where He leads us. That was a good reminder for me.

This also got me thinking how I would like my kids to memorize a verse from Proverbs every week for a year to total 52 memorized verses from Proverbs, the book of wisdom and knowledge. Anybody have a list of the best Proverbs for kids?

Grammar - It was Review week in Logic of English.

Handwriting - We completed another 5 lessons in Handwriting Without Tears Cursive Success.

Spelling - It was also a Review week in Soaring with Spelling.

Math - We completed Lesson 21 of Math U See and started multiple digit multiplication. The kids like doing this, and I have also seen a major improvement in their independence on word problems. Math is going well.

Writing - We worked on stories with problems and solutions. This was a good unit that everybody seemed to enjoy!

Reading - We are reading Henry and Beezus by Beverly Cleary. I am glad we are into her books now. They are fun to read.

Literature - We read Chapters 6 and 7 of Paddle to the Sea and learned about the Uses of Trees and Parts of a Sawmill.

Geography - We studied about Minnesota and Missouri this week and did more fun activities. Check back tomorrow for Study America Saturday where I tell you all about what we did.

Science - We completed another module in Science4Us.

Physical Education - We did our usual bowling, basketball, and lots of Just Dance 2014 with the whole family over the weekend.

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…

We are serious hermits around here. We are iced in tonight. And tomorrow we will be at our various sporting activities, unless they are cancelled due to the weather. And Sunday we will go to church. It's just up the street … surely we can sled there. Otherwise, we are snuggled up at home trying to keep warm.

A favorite thing this week was…

being chosen to promote Purex Mountain Breeze laundry detergent with a giveaway on my blog of coupons for free bottles. By being chosen to participate in the promotion, I will be awarded a year's supply of Purex laundry detergent! What a blessing in these tough economic times!

What's in the kitchen this week ...

My Dinner Dilemma had me change up our dinner choices for during the week. It was a successful week and a dinner schedule I am planning to continue.

For lunch on Thursday I made some homemade pepperoni pizza pinwheels. They were so easy! I just unrolled Pillsbury refrigerated pizza crust, spread on some pizza sauce, sprinkled on grated parmesan cheese and some shredded cheddar cheese, added pepperonis, rolled it all back up and cut into small pinwheels. Baked at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes. The kids LOVED them!

What we're reading ...

Mom:  The Distant Hours by Kate Morton. 

Eli: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck by Jeff Kinney (finished), George Brown, Class Clown: World's Worst Wedgie by Nancy Krulik (finished) and George Brown, Class Clown: Trouble Magnet by Nancy Krulik (Good, quality literature, I know … but they are both reading a lot these days and enjoying it, so that makes me happy. I want voracious readers, no matter what they are reading!)

Brynne: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney (finished) and Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck by Jeff Kinney.

Read Aloud: Henry and Beezus by Beverly Cleary.

Things we're working on…

An Olympics party for our 20th day Fun Day. We made Olympic Ring invitations for the kids to send to their friends.

I am also working on shaving dollars off our electric bill. With only having electric heaters to use this winter, our electric bill has been $400 for each of the past two months. That is way over our utilities budget and it is hitting hard. We are going to have to be more diligent about conserving energy whenever we can, and that will include doing more layering of our clothes and covering up in blankets when we are sitting around.

I’m grateful for …

my new bed! Rick received a small bonus from work for Christmas and he used it to buy me a new bed and mattress. For the past year and a half I have been sleeping on a full size mattress that came from my Grandma's house that I slept on when I was a little girl. It was the old, REALLY heavy thin mattress with one of the exposed springs box spring. It has to be over 60 years old. I can't really even imagine how old it really is. I had a feather mattress and two different foam mattresses on top of it just to make it bearable. I survived, but it sure is nice to have this new set! And it's a Queen instead of a Full. Thank you, honey!!!

My progress on reading through the Bible in 2014 …

I read Genesis 30-50 this week, completing Genesis. I am also reading Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst as part of my morning devotion time. I found some discussion questions online to go along with the book that I have been answering in my journal. It's another good one by this author.

Things you might have missed at Journey to Excellence this week ...

I presented a couple of opportunities for you to win some FREE Purex laundry detergent in the Get a Clean Start with Purex and Bright Washes and Bright Wishes promotions. Although the giveaway for the free coupons has expired, you can still enter the Clean Start sweepstakes and help out a wonderful cause through the Make-A-Wish Foundation with your Purex purchases in February.

I also shared my Dinner Dilemma and how I am proposing to solve it.

How do we handle an "icky" day? You can read about it on my recent post.

Money saved this week …

I did put $100 cash in my jar, out of my grocery budget, for my Weekly Savings plan. I had depleted it down to $0 for groceries this past month, so I am starting again. We are on Weeks 48 and 47 so I needed to add $95. I threw in an extra $5 for good measure. I am not optimistic it will stay there, but I will try my best.

I was successful in saving $55 out of my gas budget to go toward our trip to Florida in April.

And I added $1.90 to my change jar.

I exercised ...

I didn't exercise this week, except for some Just Dance 2014 with the kids. My back has been bothering me and, honestly, it's been so cold in the mornings I just can't get out of my warm bed and into workout clothes. I am ready for some spring temps so I can get out and walk.

What's coming up this week ...

Rick is not coming home this weekend as he has a volleyball tournament to attend for his 13 year old daughter, Amanda. So, it's just me and the kids this weekend. Brynne has a basketball game out of town tomorrow and then we will make up our bowling league games in the afternoon. After church on Sunday we will be vegging and resting. I have an emotional week coming up as the trial on my child support case is scheduled for Friday.

A photo, video, link, or quote to share (silly, serious or both!)…

Linking up at the following ...


  1. Love the new bed, Nicole! I really need to get on the ball and put together some Olympic lessons. Glad Buck is okay, how scary.

  2. I'm impressed with your savings. We have ice here his evening too. I think we are a but farther east than you. I love your new bed. I hope it is as comfy as it looks.

  3. Congrats on the laundry detergent for a year -- that's awesome! Don't you love the neat things that come out of blogging?

    The pizza pinwheels look very good, too - those are going on our lunch menu for next week!

    I always enjoy reading about your week -- it's been COLD here, too! Enjoy your weekend, and thanks for linking!

  4. Love your tasty lunch idea. Visiting from Weekly Wrap-Up :-D

  5. Your bed is so pretty!! I've missed most of my blog reading this week but will click through the links you posted. :)

  6. Oh we love Paddle to the Sea!! One of our favorites! Have fun reading it. I also pinned your pinwheels. I'll be adding it to my list to try next week. Thanks!!


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