Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Homeschool Series - A Peek at Our Homeschool Day

This is going to wrap up The Homeschool Series. I hope you have enjoyed seeing a little peek at how we do things.

I am very thankful that I have this wonderful opportunity to teach my children.

I decided to film bits and pieces of our day instead of taking still pictures. I don't think I mentioned in the video, but this is a typical Monday. It is the ONLY day that is this laid back, so it was the easiest day to film.

At the beginning of the year we were heading out the door first thing Monday morning to attend an Omnifit class. I finally realized that it was really throwing our day off. I am hoping that we can eventually add it back in, but for now I am going to enjoy the slower day.

I don't like to admit it, but we still haven't found our groove quite yet. We usually fall into a good groove before now, but I know we will get there.

All of our days do not got this smoothly. All of our school days do not end at lunch time. Some days we take school to the library or park to change it up. Some days no one wants to do school and I'm the mean Mama. Some days I am the one that doesn't want to do school. Some days we do a fun project. Some days we keep our nose in the books.

Please don't compare your day to ours and think that one of us is doing it all wrong. ;)

I hope you enjoy seeing a little bit of our day.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Meal Plan #22

Sunday Lunch
Ham and Cheese Panini - french bread and cheese from this week's grocery haul, ham from freezer
Chipsthis week's grocery haul

Sunday Dinner
Ham and Cheese Omelets - eggs and veggies on hand, cheese from this week's grocery haul
Toast - this week's grocery haul

Spaghetti w/Meat Sauce - last week's grocery haul
Salad - on hand
Garlic Bread - this week's grocery haul

Steak and Bean Nachos - all on hand from freezer and pantry

Sauteed Chicken Thighs - this week's grocery haul
Rice - this week's grocery haul
Broccoli - this week's grocery haul



Something easy, not sure of plans just yet

Check out my grocery haul from Friday.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The Homeschool Series - Our Bag and Binder System

This week I am sharing how we organize our binders and bags. Since we don't have a dedicated school room, I wanted to have an easy way to transport our school from room to room.

At the beginning of each week I pull all of the worksheets that we will need and put them in binders.

Henry's binder is divided into sections by day of the week.

Cade has a separate binder for Math and Language. They are both divided into "this week's lessons", "rules to reference", and "loose leaf paper".  At the end of the week I pull all of the worksheets and file them. If the worksheet went over a new concept that we may need to reference, I just move it to that section of the binder. I have been using this system for years and it is still working really well for us.

We each have a bag to keep all of our current books and binders in. These particular bags are from Thirty-One Gifts. I have wire file boxes in each one to add some structure to the bags. This makes it easy for us to move everything we need for the day from the homeschool closet to the dining room for school. It's also nice to have everything together so that we can easily pack up and head to the park or the library if we want a change of scenery.

Do you want to get a peek into the bags and binders? Head over to my YouTube Channel. I will walk you through it all.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Meal Plan #21

Sunday Lunch
Popeye's Chicken - picked up on the way home from lunch
Mac N Cheese - pantry
Corn on the Cob - freezer - put up this Summer

Sunday Dinner
Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Sandwiches - Bacon - freezer, eggs - on hand, cheese - this week's grocery haul, bread - this week's grocery haul

Alice Springs Chicken - all from freezer or pantry
Baked Potatoes - pantry
Salad - last week's grocery haul

Loaded Calzones - Meat and veggies from freezer, cheese - this week's grocery haul, pizza crust - this week's grocery haul

Chicken & Rice Casserole - all on hand - freezer and pantry
Peas - freezer

Seafood Nachos - this week's grocery haul


? not sure yet  


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Homeschool Series - Homeschool Closet Tour

I'm excited to share our Homeschool Closet with you you. This closet was a coat closet when we moved in. We took the clothing rod out and added wire shelves. We did this initially so that my husband could use this closet to hold all of his stuff. A little over a year ago we rearranged and flip flopped several rooms in our home. This made it so that my husband had his own room for an office and I got this closet back.

It is perfect for holding all of our homeschool essentials. We only keep art supplies and our school supplies for the current year in this closet. My husband had an extra bookcase that was not being used in his office that houses all of our extra curriculum.

My initial plan when I filmed the tour, was to have details and a lot of still pictures here on the blog for you to reference. Unfortunately, the lighting did not cooperate.  It was too dark trying to get pictures inside the closet.

Please head to my YouTube channel so that you can get the full tour. I do explain in the video what is stored where.

You can check out the rest of the posts in this series HERE.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A Simple Painted Project - Picture Frame Turned Chalkboard

This project will look new to a lot of you, but some of you that followed my old blog will recognize this chalkboard. When I started blogging here at Carry Grace earlier this year, I planned to move my posts over. It hasn't happened yet. I needed a little nudge.

One of my favorite YouTube friends Terri, from Homemaker on the Homefront, was looking through my archives and found this project. This was the nudge I needed to get my stuff moved! It won't happen all at once, but you will start to see them sprinkled in over the next few weeks.

I don't know when Terri is planning to post her project on her YouTube Channel, so go subscribe so that you don't miss it. I may have seen a little sneak peek. You really don't want to miss it.


Today we are going to talk chalkboards. I was intimidated by them for a little while, but they are so simple. I have made many different ones over the years. I have always used Krylon's Spray Chalkboard Paint for painting on glass, and have had great results with it each time.
image via Krylon

This frame started out like this. It was leftover from a friends yard sale a few years ago. The size and shape of the frame were perfect for a small, awkward wall in my kitchen. I simply removed the backing and the glass. I sprayed the chalkboard paint directly to the front of the glass. It took 3 coats to get the nice even coverage I was looking for.

I have moved things around and am no longer using this as a chalkboard, but when I did, I used it for seasonal chalkboard art.  Do you have any chalkboards in your home? Have you used the spray chalkboard paint?

Monday, September 14, 2015

Meal Plan #20

I am participating in a Fall Collab on YouTube today that is hosted by crafTEAmom. We are talking about making Fall memories with our families. You can check that video out HERE.

Since we have busy evenings this week, I am cooking twice and we are eating leftovers twice. I will use my dutch over for the roast b/c it can cook while we are at swim practice and turn off, and the chili will be done in the slow cooker.

Sunday Lunch
Homemade Biscuits - basics on hand
Sausage Gravy - sausage from freezer
Scrambled Eggs - on hand

Sunday Dinner 
Frozen Pizza - this week's grocery haul

Pioneer Woman's Perfect Pot Roast - this week's grocery haul
Potatoes - this week's grocery haul
Carrots - this week's grocery haul

Chili - meat from freezer, everything else from this week's grocery haul




Not sure what our plans are yet

You can check out this week's grocery haul below.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Easy Smoked Sausage Pasta Bake

This is one of those meals that our whole family enjoys. I like it because I usually have these ingredients on hand and I can throw it together fast.

1 jar of regular pasta sauce
1 jar of alfredo sauce
1 pound of pasta  - your choice
1 lb of smoked sausage - any kind - beef, deer, turkey
8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese

Garlic powder and oregano are optional. If you want them, just sprinkle a little on the sausage while it is cooking.

Cook pasta according to the directions on the box in a large pot.
Slice the sausage into small pieces and then brown in a pan. Drain on a paper towel.
Once pasta is done, drain, and return to large pot.
Add both jars of pasta sauce to the pasta and stir until incorporated.
Add sausage and stir.
Pour pasta mixture into a 9 x 13 casserole dish and cover with mozzarella cheese.
Bake at 350 degrees our until cheese is nice and melted.

We usually eat half one night and then eat the leftovers, but it would be easy to make in two 8x8 pans and stick one in the freezer for a later date.

Want to watch me make it? You can see it right here.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Organize It- Kitchen Junk Drawer & Desk Drawer

We have 2 drawers in our home that seem to get messy more frequently than all of the other organized spaces in our home.

The kitchen junk drawer and my desk drawer.

Jen from iHeartOrganizing issued a mini challenge recently to organize 4 drawers in 4 days. I didn't have 4 drawers that needed to be tackled right now, but this was the perfect time to get these 2 drawers checked off of my list.


The kitchen junk drawer started out looking pretty rough. I found expired coupons, lots of random screws and hardware, scissors that didn't work, and a bunch of things that needed to be put back in my sewing caddy. It was a mess, but it didn't take long at all to whip it back into shape. I didn't purchase anything new for this. The coupon folder was updated with one that I was going to use for something else and never did.

It looks so much better and you can easily tell where things go now. It's hard to tell, but the drawer was already lined with the blue and white quatrefoil paper. It was a TjMaxx find several years ago.

I made the places more defined this time and didn't leave any empty bins begging to be filled with random stuff.

I feel like this is the best the drawer has been so far. It's like everything else in our home. I am constantly tweaking and improving our systems.

Since I added the new dry erase boards in the dining room, the dry erase marks got moved from my desk drawer to the kitchen drawer.


Next up is my desk drawer. There were only a few things that didn't belong, and several things that I decided I really didn't need. I was surprised at how much I ended up tossing out of this drawer.

The surface of my desk isn't very large. It's nice that my planners can be tucked away in the drawer when I am working on my laptop.

I finally feel like there aren't any unnecessary items in my desk. I use the zipper pouch for pens and stickers when I need to pack up my planner for on the go. The notepads are used when I am making our meal plans for the week. I usually scribble out several things before I get it all finalized and transferred to my planner. Everything else is just basic office supplies.

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I organized these 2 drawers in our home.

The complete tour is on my YouTube Channel.

Linking this post to: iHeartOrganizing - 4drawers4days mini challenge

*This post is not sponsored. All opinions are genuinely my own as always.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

The Homeschool Series - Homeschool Room Tour

We don't have a dedicated homeschool room. We could easily convert our extra living area or the playroom into one, but it hasn't felt like a necessary thing for us. I really like that at the end of the day, all of the school things are put away and out of sight.

 We did turn one of our closets into a dedicated homeschool closet. (I will be showing this later in the series.)

We each have a school bag (a thirty-one organizing utility tote with a wire file box from Target) that we bring to the table each day that contains all of the notebooks, books, and other supplies we need for the day. (I will be sharing more details about how we do this in a future post.)

 We have stored the most used art supplies in many different ways over the years, but one single caddy seems to work the best. I picked this one up from Target for $3 from the Dollar Spot.

Before the day is over you can barely see the top of the table, but it doesn't take long to clean up and put away when we are done.

We do Spelling, Language, Math, and Writing at the dining room table, but spread out to the living room and den when we are doing Bible, History and Science. It's just more cozy when we have a lot to read. Sometimes Henry and I will sit on the couch in the den to work on letters and phonics when Cade is working independently so that we don't disturb him. If we are being too loud, he'll take his stuff upstairs.

 I originally added the large chalk board with then intention of using it for school, but it is too messy. I still really like it, but only use it for seasonal decorating. I will eventually get it framed once I find a buffet that I like.

 I still wanted a place to be able to display things they are learning or memorizing, so I a turned 2 large frames into white boards. I cut a piece of poster board down to size and added it behind the glass. Now I can write their memory verses on the glass with a dry erase marker.

We don't entertain often, but when we do, it will be easy to change the front of these to say anything we want. We can display menus or whatever else seems to fit.

 Want to see more? You can see this room in action on my YouTube Channel.

 I hope you have enjoyed seeing our "Homeschool Room" Tour! Come back next week to tour our Homeschool Closet.