Revisiting Plans & Priorities

 

I have to remind myself of goals and priorities constantly so I don’t forget. In January, I set out to make a list of plans & priorities for the year. Now that it is spring and no longer winter, I thought I should revisit and see how things are going for me so far. This is not a checklist of things I have to mark to validate me as a person but a guide for the type of life I want to create this year.

My categories where Faith, Family, Home, Homeschool, Mother Culture, Art, Writing/Blogging and I just wanted to check in on these things for growth and accountability. Blog friends or Real Life friends I encourage you to ask me how these things are going, I am encouraged when others take interest and likewise take interest in the progress your friends that set priorities this year.

So I’ll go down the list (with excerpts from the Plans and Priorities Post):

Faith

“This is a primary priority because without Faith I am hopeless. 2013 was a year that God helped me begin to unravel from depression and hopelessness and show me to delight in my circumstances, so 2014 will be even more so a testament to what He is doing. I will continue to study and trust more. I want to be more thankful as well this year.”

I have been trying to study more and trust more and grow in contentment and joy. I can say it isn’t an easy battle when a history of depression rears it’s head and you forget truth, but it isn’t my fight really, I am trying to remember to give it up. I just pray I continue to do so. I have been reading a few things for personal study, I read “Keep a Quiet Heart” by Elisabeth Eliott which is helping me to examine my heart. I also stick with my old steady “Morning & Evening” by Charles Spurgeon. I learn so much from this beautiful and encouraging devotion and Spurgeon has a way of putting things to my brain that are equal parts inspiringly truthful, achingly beautiful, and simply revelatory.

We are also very happy to be in a church home for the past year after a very long church search that lasted almost a year prior to that. It is a sweet community of believers and biblical learning that we are happy to take part in.  I am very thankful for the teaching that is really good and encourages me in Faith, this is a recent sermon that blew my mind: Behold I see the Heavens Opened. I encourage you if you live in Augusta, Ga and do not have a church home to join us this Week for our Easter Series.

Family

“Instead of busy-ness, instead of this activity or that event, instead of every kind of distraction I want my family to be a priority and for us to find peacefulness in our home and with each other. This means we will continue in traditions like Sunday Radio Day, no media except music or talk radio. Also, we will make more intentional time together and less sitting around the tv.”

On the busy-ness front this is an ongoing battle that I am hitting with full force daily. It is so easy for our Yeses to become full schedules and stress inducing weeks. I’m not for that. I am not saying this is hermit time for us, -even though sometimes I think I’d like that- I mean that is time to be intentional with our time. Say maybe in your mind, evaluate and answer back with a definite “yes” or “no” when it comes to events that draw you from the home. We have succeeded in doing Sunday Radio Day and trying to reduce the media intake on school days, so I think we are getting somewhere. I can tell the difference between the character of my six year old that plays outside all day versus a little six year old that watches tv all day. We are definitely not an anti-tv house, just trying to reign it in.

We are also being more intentional with family devotions and going through this book together at night time storytime. I wrote a review this month and highly recommend it.

Home

“This is related to the care and cultivating of the home. I want my home to be simple, beautiful and help my family to thrive, so I am making an effort to make it so through the simplest of measures.”

Soooo…. this has been a big struggle for me, for like, always. I am learning to enjoy the day to day maintenance that comes with making a happy home, knowing that real life looks most days like this and it’s ok as long as I am helping my family to thrive and be happy…also coffee….coffee is my new friend.

Homeschool

“The past ten months we’ve had a new baby in the house and now that that new baby is somewhat an old baby we have gotten into better rhythms at home, especially in regards to school for Emma. As long as she’s learning truth, beauty, and goodness through her schooling we are doing something right.”

We are back on track with school and even though we are a bit behind on the schedule we are trucking through and happily making education a priority again. Emma ( our almost seven year old) is enjoying school time and I am loving this time together, sometimes school is interrupted by Alice’s (our 1 year old) needs  and that’s ok we resign to Mom’s bed to put Alice asleep while I read aloud from “Little House in the Big Woods”.

Mother Culture

“Mother Culture (Self Care and Interests ex. staying healthy-eating healthy, gym time and reading for pleasure and knowledge)- It is helping me to think of getting healthy as a thing I am doing to help myself and my children in the context of being a Mother opposed to some arbitrary goal I set for myself. My goal for this is more health, more wisdom.”

I’ve had a slow start and have started back working out and eating healthier. Thankful that one of my gifts recently was a Fitbit so I can track steps and progress. I am continuing to read and am always adding to my “to-read” list.

Art

“I never completed art school and I am down on myself a lot about it, in 2013 both Kenny started actively pursuing Art making more in our lives and this year I want that to ripen even more. Whether it’s photography or printmaking, I want to see more art making this year. I’ve started making plans based on this and am just praying for the occasional quiet times to work on these.”

I’m getting there, it’s hard to be motivated to make art after a long day of kid wrangling but I just need to be intentional with the time I do have.

Writing/Blogging

“I want to be more consistent with my writing and blogging without being overly ambitious. One plan that I am thinking of is setting a manageable schedule for me to work on this. Something easy-like twice a week, just to write out some of the things I have rolling around in my head.”

I haven’t done much writing lately but have been trying to post frequently and this is something I want to make a priority. It helps to sometimes get mangled thoughts on to “paper”.

I guess to some all of these things up the key word is Intentionality and just being mindful of the details.

So how are you doing with your plans & priorities this year?  Do you need encouragement for plans ahead? I hope to revisit this often and please share what you have going on in your lives.

A Formidable List of Attainments for a Child of Six

There are so many lists out there of what children to should be doing at this age. Some of them are just plain silly, there is no reason a child should be doing algebra or able to read novels on their own at this age. We know through common sense and research that learning comes through play before this time. Here is the research: naeyc.org. This is why I love this list from Charlotte Mason because these are attainable and practical expectations for a child of six, who has just started formal learning.  Some of these we have mastered in our house already (like pressing flowers, printing from hand, adding and subtracting etc.), some we are working on organically, with little to no pressure, just through conversations. This is a great guide for those that would like a guide even if you do not follow Charlotte Mason, but do not need or want a list of common core standards to follow. Plus, these are much more fun than most lists I’ve seen. I just love this old style of learning in a gentle art, a way that creates interesting and curious children. I guarantee your six year old can already do a lot of these things and helps us to breathe a sigh of relief that we are not “screwing our kids up” if they don’t compare to all the other opinion noise out there.

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Download the above Free PDF here

 

A  Formidable List of Attainments for a Child of Six (with my notes added)

1. To recite, beautifully, 6 easy poems and hymns

2. to recite, perfectly and beautifully, a parable and a psalm

3. to add and subtract numbers up to 10, with dominoes or counters

4. to read–what and how much, will depend on what we are told of the child

5. to copy in print-hand from a book

6. to know the points of the compass with relation to their own home, where the sun rises and sets, and the way the wind blows

7. to describe the boundaries of their own home

8. to describe any lake, river, pond, island etc. within easy reach

9. to tell quite accurately 3 stories from Bible history, 3 from early English (or Early American), and 3 from early Roman history (length is not important)

10. to be able to describe 3 walks and 3 views

11. to mount in a scrap book a dozen common wildflowers, with leaves (one every week); to name these, describe them in their own words, and say where they found them

12. to do the same with leaves and flowers of 6 forest trees

13. to know 6 birds by song, colour and shape

14. to send in certain Kindergarten or other handiwork, as directed

15. to tell three stories about their own “pets” –rabbit, dog or cat

16. to name 20 common objects in French (or Spanish), and say a dozen little sentences

17. to sing one hymn, one French (or Spanish), and one English song 18. to keep a caterpillar and tell the life-story of a butterfly from his own observations

NOTE: Any mention of Early English History or French Language (substitute ex. Early American and Spanish Language) can be substituted for what you are learning, this list was specific to British Culture and may need to be different for others.

*original source: amblesideonline.org

What do you think of this list of attainments, what would you do differently, what would you add or take away? For me the one thing I am subconsciously adding to this list is for her to know and write her address and our phone numbers, I think that technically would fall under the “boundary of the home” a long time ago but not today. I’d love to hear from you.

Homeschool on the cheap (Charlotte Mason)

 

 

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Amendment to original post: We have switched to MEP for math because we like it better for a well rounded Math education. Math Mammoth is a great program still but you learn your families needs as you go. With that being said you can subtract the 16.50 from the final total.

You can homeschool on a budget, there isn’t a need to spend hundreds of dollars if you do a little research and find the best frugal options. (edit- the original curriculum post is here: Charlotte Mason First Grade) Charlotte Mason has helped with this because the resources I use are classics, we can find a lot of the books in the public domain or rather cheaply at used book stores. My number one piece of advice, is to do your research. Also, you can find free curriculum guides online at Ambleside Online and Simply Charlotte Mason. The other is an e reader or an iPad will help to condense books that are in the public domain. We invested in one last year with our tax money and it has definitely been worth the cost. Also, check your libraries, I have found most things in the Library if you plan ahead.

Earlier I posted on our homeschool curriculum for the year (1st Grade), here’s where I break down what it cost this year. I was surprised.

Bible: Free for us because we already owned it (Guide $19.99 new and Bible $29.99 new) or you can just follow a Bible plan with whatever resources you have at home, or just buy the Long Story Short Devotional, which I actually recommend not using both for simplicity but Emma likes both the devotional and the Bible so Happy with it. – Long Story Short/Gospel Story Bible.

Memory Verses: Free- Simply Charlotte Mason Memory Verses

Character: Free- Parables of Nature. We are just reading through the Parables of Nature which you can find for free in iBooks.

Literature: Free Mostly (5.00)- We are doing the Ambleside Online Literature selections, these include; the Blue Fairy Book, Aesop’s Fables, Shakespeare for young children and many others. We already owned Aesop’s Fables but there is also a free app by the Library of Congress that you can download that has all the stories as well. I found a free copy of Just So Stories for the year on iBooks but will definitely be investing in a hardcopy from our local bookstore when I can. Shakespeare’s Stories for Young Readers was my first real cost, it is 5.00 for the e-book.

Free Reads: Free- I am using the suggested reading lists from both Ambleside and Simply Charlotte Mason and the books so far are ones we already own, we purchased a really lovely copy last year because of daughter Alice being born. I started this year with Alice in Wonderland and we have since moved to Alice through the looking Glass. Next up will be Winnie the Pooh. Do not forget how valuable the Library is for these Classics.

Poetry: Free- A Children’s Garden of Verses. We own a hard copy of this book which we bought in set when Emma was a baby. You can find all the book and all the poems in the public domain with having to buy a hard copy. I would suggest it as a Library staple though for those that read it and love it. You can also find this in any Library.

Math: $34.00 for the entire year- Math Mammoth. I have only spent 16.50 so far because you can purchase the part A e-version from their site. We use an abacus I bought during Emma’s pre-K years, but you do not need one you can use anything on hand you can count with; beans, buttons, blocks, etc. So far I have no complaints about Math Mammoth and it really was the most affordable option for us that met our educational needs.

Phonics/Reading: Free-McGuffey’s Primer. We started the McGuffey’s Primer last year and we had found a free version to print and put into a notebook. We are continuing thisyear with McGuffey’s and so far so good.

Copywork: Free or $1.00- Worksheet Works or McGuffey’s Copywork Set. You can make up your own free copywork sheets to correspond with the Primer or you can use anything else you choose, a verse, sentences about the child, poetry, etc. If you don’t want to do that work there is a Copywork set that corresponds to McGuffey that costs just $1.00.

History: $15.95 but I already owned it – Beautiful Feet Books- Early American. I bought this last year with the intention of starting it in K and settled that she would get more benefit by waiting a year. So far that has been true. We check out the books from the Library so is no extra cost for us and the books are rich Living Books that fit our Charlotte Mason style nicely.

Spanish: We are using a sequence of the Gouin Series, this happens to be completely free if you can find a native speaker to translate. I translated myself and had my Mother, who is a native speaker double check the Spanish. I talk about here: http://ellieeugenia.com/2013/07/22/homeschool-this-year-first-grade/

Art, Composer, Nature, Folksong and Poetry Co-op: Free- Augusta Charlotte Mason Co-op. We started a Co-op starting in September that will use our pooled resources and knowledge to teach these subjects to our children. I am very, very excited, so is Emma.

Piano: Free because we already own it, $8.46 new– My First Piano Adventures. If you do not know how to play Piano or teach it and want your children to learn without affording a Piano tutor this is a great option. My husband plays piano but he plays from ear and that is almost impossible to teach, this way she gets real lessons in a fun way.

Handicrafts- Free- Sewing and Baking. We will just be using the things I already have here at home. She is learning hand stitching first and moving from there. Baking wise, She just helps in the kitchen, measuring and doing anything that needs doing.

Total Cost for Homeschool for us this year: $41.00

If you used this plan and had to buy a few things listed new: $64.41 or $114.39 if using the Bible sources above.

I can’t imagine doing homeschool any cheaper than this unless you just digested Living Books from the Library, which is a great option actually. Anyways, I hope this is helpful for those that are homeschooling on a budget like we are.

Please let me know if this have been helpful to you or how you have utilized this in your own home schools.

Check out other posts in the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival

Check out other posts in the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival

 

Homeschool This Year – First Grade (Charlotte Mason)

Emma reading the McGuffey's Primer

Emma reading the McGuffey’s Primer last year.

 

Added: Since this post we have done YEAR 2 //plan here// and are now in Year 3 //plan here// 

I like to share what we are doing for homeschool each year because I think it helps to dialogue with others. As many of you may know we follow a homeschool method call Charlotte Mason which is a more a way of doing life/school than it is a curriculum. It is more about atmoshpere, discipline and living examples of literature and resources (twaddle free) than it is about textbooks and dry facts. Outdoors and Nature are also a big part of the Charlotte Mason method, which can be so lovely, learning about birds and species and the natural world around us. I fell in love with Charlotte Mason’s ideas of how to instill a love a learning in children that never dies and I can already see it in work in my little six year old as she embraces things I was scared of as a child, like Math.

This year our curriculum is a hodge podge of different things, mostly Charlotte Mason friendly, some that I can make more Charlotte Mason friendly. Also, I will recommend something that we are using for scheduling and to keep track of attendance and our daily/weekly schedule. It is an ipad app called Homeschool Helper. It helps me when I am pulling from many resources for school, to keep it all organized and us on track.

We started school two weeks ago and it has already been a lot of fun for Emma who was itching to start back all summer. So far this year these are the things that we have been doing:

Bible: We are continuing forward with Long Story Short which is a 10 minute devotionals that cover all of the old testament, with a following volume that covers the new testament. The lessons are very short, they are meant to do in 10 minutes or less which fits in well with Charlotte Mason’s concept of short lessons no longer than 15 minutes. The lessons give you the corresponding verses to read in whatever version of the bible you choose. We use the ESV for the verses and read from a Children’s Bible as well to tell the story more plainly.  There is an accompanying Story Bible, that you can choose to use or not, the Gospel Story Bible, that has all the stories that you will do in Long Story Short. It is an excellent text with wonderful language and beautiful pictures that helps Emma and I really get it sometimes. I highly recommend as it is a beautiful living text that blends well with Charlotte Mason and any style really. This Bible and the Jesus Storybook Bible are two of the best illustrated Children’s Bibles I have seen.

Scripture Memory: We are using the SCM Bible memory guide at a slow pace. As soon as she has one verse down, we move to the next. They have a memory system that you can read about on this page, we are not moving fast enough right now that we have actually utilized much of it yet, but that’s what is great about CM, is that you can move at the pace of a child on purpose.

Character: Last year we did a habits training book but this year I wanted to do something more literature based to discuss with her since she is getting older and starting to grasp these concepts better. We are just reading through Parables of Nature, it uses animals to espouse certain lessons in a story formed way. For example the first story is called Lessons of Faith and it shows us a Caterpillar that learns to have Faith that they will one day become a butterfly, even though it doubts the wise Skylark that brings Her this news. Emma seems to enjoy it so far and it opens a natural dialogue for us.

Literature: We are doing the Literature portion that is lined up for Year 1 from Ambleside Online. The selections are solid classics and you really can’t go wrong with things like Aesop’s Fables, Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories and Shakespeare.

Free Reads: These are books that we read aloud daily through out the year at our own pace. Right now we are reading Alice in Wonderland and it has been a true pleasure. I am actually surprised how much my daughter will sit for considering the language isn’t common 21st century language. Ambleside Online (AO), has great recommendations for free reads as well as Simply Charlotte Mason (SCM). I am incorporating most of their suggestions and adding a few modern twaddle free contemporary selections of my own.

Poetry: Reading selections from A Children’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. We just read poetry daily and talk about it if we are up to it.

Math: Math Mammoth is cost effective and easy and encourages the use of an abacus for a tactile learning experience. Emma has exclaimed that she loves Math now and makes up her problems in her free time, so that sounds like a win for me since Math was always a struggle for me in school.

Reading/Phonics: McGuffey’s Primer, McGuffey’s Primer, McGuffey’s Primer! McGuffey’s Eclectic Primer is the only text that you need initially to teach reading. My daughter calls it the cat book because of the picture of a cat on the front of the lesson notebook. You can spend a lot of money buying reading curriculum or you can spend a little time teaching basics, phonics and occasional sight words one sentence and paragraph at a time. You can find this online for free, it is a tried and true resource for teaching children to read. Modern Day Public Schools have lost the beauty that is Primers and it would really serve them well to move back to Phonics based teaching so that children can build skills that will help them with reading their whole life. Emma gets so incredibly excited when she can read a new lesson all the way through. Here is an example of the text from lesson 2:

The cat has a rat.

The rat ran at Ann.

Ann has a cat.

The cat ran at the rat.

There happens to also be a Mcguffey’s app in the Apple app store that has the same lessons. We are going to use fridays as a slow day for reading lessons and I’ll let her do a lesson in the app for review at the end of the week for a change of pace.

Copywork: We are doing very simple copywork sheets from Classical Copywork based on our Mcguffey’s lessons. Check them out, it’s only a dollar for the set.

History: Beautiful Feet Books has one of the nicest History curriculums out there, I’ve talked about it here before when decided to push it back from K to First Grade because I thought she would get more out of it a tiny bit older than she was last year. We started back at the beginning with Vikings and Leif the Lucky and she is in love with it. The books are living books that you can find in your local library, so you can purchase the Study guide from Beautiful Feet and check out the books or if you have the finances to, you can get the guide and the books in a bundle for purchase on their site. We needed a cost effective method for our non-existent budget so we are doing the first option. I am so grateful that it is even an option and that we are able to still use this quality curriculum. This is a Charlotte Mason approach to History that I have fallen for, I expect to stay with Beautiful Feet as a resource for Emma as long as I can, which is all the way through High School if things go as expected.

Spanish: We are doing a very simple method that I read about in Charlotte Mason texts called the Gouin Series, originally used to teach French, the concept can be used for any language. You simply use dialogue and translate it into the language you are learn each phrase at a time. So far Emma has learned “My Dad is Kenny” (Mi Papi es Kenny) and is learning “He is a librarian” (El es un Bibliotecario). With the help of a native speaker, if you don’t already speak the language, you can choose any simple paragraph that would interest your child such as paragraphs about their favorite shows like Transformers or Avengers, what a great way to hold their attention and learn a language.

Read more here: Fisher Academy

Handicrafts: The plan this year is to use fridays for handicrafts and piano lessons, we have yet to start handicraft lessons but will doing sewing as our main handicraft and cooking as a secondary. We will just be going through simple stitches starting with chain stitch by hand until we are ready to move to a real sewing machine (hopefully we can get her her own for Christmas). Cooking lessons are helping in the kitchen and learning to bake simple desserts.

Piano: We are continuing with the resource, My First Piano Adventures which uses a fun illustrated workbook and audio cd with catchy songs to teach the basics of the Piano. They learn posture and technique from a host of multicultural characters that sing their instructions for the Piano. This one was a no brainer and we will continue with it as long as she doesn’t get bored with it in the higher grades. A great alternative to hiring a piano teacher.

Art, Composer, and Nature Study: This is the thing I am most excited about this year. We are starting a local Charlotte Mason co-op with local moms to do Art, Composer, and Nature Studies. We will pool resources and knowledge to teach these things in a CM friendly way and also have plenty of Masterly Inactivity and Socialization in the process. Emma and I both cannot wait for co-op to start in September.

This has already started to be a great homeschool year and we are enjoying each and every day, I hope this post can be a good resource and makes a lot of sense for those interested. Leave me feedback or let me know what you guys are doing, I’d love to know.  I’ll continue to post about the year as it progresses.

For more information about Charlotte Mason, look here:  Ambleside Online (AO) and Simply Charlotte Mason (SCM)

Check out other posts in the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival

Check out other posts in the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival

2013 Favorite Apps for iPhone

I love technology…I do. Even though I feel like we as a society may over do it with our technology addiction at times, it is a wonderful tool and I am amazed to live in a time where good technology is so accesible. When I was in middle school, we begged our parents for pagers and nintendos and that was the coolest technology we could imagine. A lot has changed since then and we couldn’t have imagined some of the amazing things we have now. Touch screens, wi-fi, smart phones, etc. I personally have an iPhone that has been an amazing tool for helping my procrastination and distraction filled self to get more organized, and also have a little enjoyment on the side. We plan in the near future to save for an ipad to help with homeschooling and general things, but  I wanted to share some of my favorite apps in this new calendar year for an iphone.

 

Productivity Apps

Fantastical

Fantastical is a calendar app that is simply, beautiful. It is smart enough to use natural language to register all that you input into a New Event and translate it into all the details of your event. This is such a time saving app and is a great app for moms who have to quickly jot down the details of something, like a doctor’s appointment, without wasting time entering each field of details. It syncs with your ical and google calendars, so you don’t have to start from scratch. I access my husbands icalendar as well through Fantastical so I know what his work schedule will look like that week. It is always different week to week, so this has been extremely helpful. There is a cost for this app, but it has been worth the money.

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Wunderlist

I’ve said it before friends, Wunderlist is wonderful. It really is. Wunderlist is a great app for your to do lists and staying on task. Send reminders to yourself or schedule when the task must be completed by. It is simple, clean and easy to use. I don’t need a lot of messy apps for staying on task, all I need is this.

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Dropbox

This is a given, dropbox fans, you are probably aware of this app, but if you are not, if you aren’t familiar with dropbox, get familiar. It is a great way to archive and share information straight from your phone or computer and being able to access and send files while on the go is priceless, so it’s nice to know this is a free app, as well.

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Google Drive

Google Drive is a stand alone  app for your google docs. Access your documents, spreadsheets, images etc. You can create new documents within this app for whatever you need it for. I haven’t used a wordprocessing program since I fell for google docs because of the ability to create documents, spreadsheets, etc. in Google Docs and save as a word document or pdf or what have you. I love being able to access my documents from anywhere, I don’t know why more people don’t use google docs/drive instead of expensive and wonky word processing software, plus this app keeps all my documents at my fingertips and I love it.

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Camera Apps

Afterglow

I have a lot of camera apps and I have finally settled on Afterglow. Being a retired photographer, I love being able to adjust exposure, temperature, brightness etc. right in my phone. It is an all in one camera app, a beautiful and seamless app which makes the powerful little camera in your iphone incredibly useful. I am able to send my edited images straight to Instagram or whatever social media app I choose from this app.

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Social Apps

Instagram

Instagram is an obvious pick. Everyone loves Instagram. It is photo microblogging done right. Share images with friends and family of what is going on throughout your day, or just keep it to yourself for memories in the future. It’s quick, easy and fun, I do wonder how new apps like Vine will affect apps like Instagram, if at all, only the future will see.

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Reading

Flipboard

Flipboard is like a selective newspaper filled with only the stuff you want to read. You input what feeds and sites you want to stay on top of and can do it here without ever opening a reader. I browse every morning from current big news events but also the funniest things that come across the web to balance it out. They are only so many boxes for content so it makes me have to be selective in what I include and I like that, because information overload is a real thing, at least for me.

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Kids

TocaBoca apps

If TocaBoca makes it, there is a guarantee that we will most likely love it. There are a variety of apps, both free and paid, by this developer and we love everything we’ve tried. There’s Toca Tailor Fairy Tale, Toca Hair Salon, Toca Band, Toca Doctor, and much more. These are well designed, kid smart apps, that parents will get a kick out of too. Emma loves to shave Santa bald and play dress up with her Fairy Tale girl, but most of all making music with the Toca Band. I highly recommend anything made by TocaBoca.

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PBS kids

I have a secret, we aren’t a TV free household, (you’d definitely know that if you follow me on any social media platform, I love good television) but all good things in moderation is a definite goal for us, especially when it comes to keeping tabs of Emma’s TV intake. No TV before homeschool and none until school and chores are done, and even then we are trying to keep these shows to educational shows and at a minimum, with the occasional super hero show thrown in (because what child doesn’t need an education in Kicking Butt Awesomeness?). I really like the PBS kids app on the iPhone and can only assume how much better it is on iPad. You can watch a large variety of clips and shows from quality PBS, also  you can customize tv times and know what your kids are watching.

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Game Apps for Grown ups

Vubu

I’m a little obsessed with this game. I like puzzle games mainly, I am not your typical iPhone gamer, and it has to be a challenge or I bore easily of it. Vubu is a great challenging puzzle game and the first that I have found that I haven’t gotten bored with. It’s not that easy and that’s why I like it. I’ve moved through the standard stages at this point and am in the advanced ones, I play a little at a time, when I can. It is true leisure play for when I’m waiting at the Doctor’s office or just trying to pass some time. I won’t explain how it works and let you figure it out for yourself, but this is my favorite game on iPhone.

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These are some of my favorite apps right this moment, I may share some more I really like in the future. The world of apps is always changing and getting better which is exciting for nerds like me. Do you agree with my list? What are some of your favorite apps?