Thursday, August 30, 2012

PEACH Kick-Off

Boy Scout Flag Ceremony
Our family has been a part of or PEACH, Plano Educational Association of Christian Homeschoolers for probably ten years. They are a support group for homeschooling families in the North Texas area.
I have served as Webmaster/Communications Director/Board for PEACH for the better part of the last seven or eight years. As such I have been responsible for the PEACH website, the PEACH Weekly Newsletter, the PEACH Yahoo Group and all promotion material. It keeps me crazy busy but I know it is a valuable tool to homeschooling families and especially newbies!
Tonight was our PEACH Kick-Off with over 500+ in attendance! We kicked off the 2012-2013 School Year with 70+ field trip sign ups, lots of homeschool friendly vendors, teen events, Drama Club, Teen Classical Book Club, Public Speakers Club, Youth Running Club, and Park Days.
For those who enjoy scouting, PEACH offers a Girl Scout cluster, along with Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, American Heritage Girls, and even a Spring Family Camp out for members!
We offer support to new (and seasoned!) home school moms with Mentoring Meetings and Mom's Night Out. Children will quickly make friends with other homeschoolers at field trips, Park Day, Library Day, and so many other activities. 
Preparation for the Kick-Off for me is huge! I'm responsible for our 300+ family member cards, and the extensive member packets, along with all the promotional material. It goes without saying that Jon, Frankie, Caleb and Abigail all do their share of folding, stuffing, coping, and laminating all the material I get credit for producing. Although my name is the only one listed on the Board of Director's page, my sweet family do a lot of the work behind the scenes!  And it doesn't hurt that I serve along side several of my sweetest friends on the Board of Directors.  We have prayed, laughed and prayed even more together!
The passage on the back of our PEACH t-shirts:
I have no greater joy than to hear
that my children are walking in the truth.
3 John 4

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Frankie turns 27 !

Frankie in 1994

Today our sweet Frankie turns 27! That is amazing to me that she could possibly be that old! She was three when we met her as a bright eyed darling in our Sunday school class. At that time she had been placed in foster care with another family.
Anyone who knows Frankie knows she is an amazing young lady! She has a very tender heart and still looks at life with amazement through those lovely green eyes! In 1990, Jon and I married and this sweet face would be the flower girl in our wedding. At the moment Uncle David said, 'You may kiss the bride,' and Mr. Jon kissed Ms. Lisa, Frankie put her hands on her hips and scowled in dis-approvement. Even she knew you don't kiss  in the church building!
The first year of marriage is always filled with changes. For Jon and I it would be the news that Frankie's foster care status had changed and they were now looking for permanent placement. Frankie was to return to the state and a new home would be found for her. The thought of Frankie leaving the church family that had wrapped their arms around her was too much! Also knowing with all this sweet child had endured in her little lifetime she would need God. Armed with those convictions, we applied to be permanent guardian of Frankie, the following week she moved in with us. Married less than six months and the parents to a now six year old. Sometimes I wonder, who thought that was a good idea?! But, God knows best and it has been quite the journey.
Frankie, Alicia & Jackie
Frankie has three beautiful biological sisters and as the girls grew up they kept in contact, had sleepovers, attended church camp together etc. Although even by the time Frankie was three she had already been in nine foster care homes, so the girls did not really spend a lot of time in the biological home together it was still very important for them to keep contact. And for Jon and I it was helpful to have friendships with parents facing the same issues that we faced.
God has placed many 'helpers' in our way as Frankie has grown up, for that we are so blessed. Some days it is easy to get weighed down with the things that Frankie is unable to accomplish, thru no fault of her own but the selfish acts of adults. But most days when I look at Frankie this is the child I see, eyes full of wonder, excitement and hope. I love our sweet Francis Marie, and wish you the happiest birthday. Tomorrow I'll post pics of gifts and this morning's fun!
Rejoice with those who rejoice
Romans 12:15

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park

Yesterday we made a quick trip to Arkansas to wish Uncle David a happy 60th birthday.  It was a fun spur of the moment trip; we loaded up the kids school work and hit the road.  After a great evening together the kids and I woke up this morning and started home.  David lives in Prairie Grove, Arkansas which is home to the Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park.  It has been nationally recognized as one of the most intact Civil War sites. The ridge looks much as they did at the time of the battle on December 7, 1862.
In addition to the visitor center the original historic stone wall, latta barn, dog trot house, blacksmith shop, sorghum mill, schoolhouse, church, smokehouse, kitchen, spring house and cellar can all be toured. The park contains 838 acres of the 3,000 acre battlefield. 

Although the battle here was a military draw Prairie Grove marked the last major Civil War engagement in northwest Arkansas.  Never again would a southern army attempt to use the area as an avenue of invasion to Missouri.

If they face war, they might change
their minds and return
Exodus 13:17

Thursday, August 23, 2012

PEACH Kick-Off

Boy Scouts presenting the colors

Most of you know that PEACH or  Plano Educational Association of Christian Homeschoolers, is the volunteer, non-profit organization serving home school families in Plano and approximately a dozen surrounding North Texas communities.  Our family have been members of PEACH for eight or nine years and I have served on the Board of Directors for the past six years.
My position on the Board is Communication Director, meaning I am the one responsible for the PEACH website, the member's only Yahoo group, the weekly newsflash and monthly newsletter for our 300+ families.  Christian education has been a priority for Jon and I, in Oklahoma Jon served on the Board of Directors for Greater Tulsa Christian Academy.  Like all volunteer work it is time consuming and very rewarding! 
Tonight was the big Kick-Off and we easily had 500+ people!  It was by far the best attended event to date, in 2011 & 2010 we had approximately 300+.  There were field trips to sign-up for, and home school friendly vendors, and reps from PEACH sponsored Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, American Heritage Girls, Drama Club, Classical Book Club, Speech and Debate Club, Running Club and more I am sure I am forgetting!  All of these activities are under the oversight of our board and it has been great to see all the growth! 
I love my homeschooling family!  The Kick-Off was just the shot in the arm I needed to embark on another year of schooling with the kids!
I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
III John 4

Saturday, August 4, 2012


Caleb & Blake
Abigail & Baylor

This Oklahoma girl loves a good musical!  One of my favorites would have to be Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma!  Since we are no longer living near Discoveryland we haven't see the play in a couple of years.  But tonight was a fantastic treat to see the play produced by a local community theater.  The best part is our sweet friend Eddy Herring was starring the play as Will! 
Meeting the Star!!!

Both Baylor and Blake were also in the musical and it was fabulous!  Several other church friends joined us in the audience to enjoy the great performance!  It was lovely and Eddy stole the show as the singing love interest of Ado Annie! 

For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land
—a land with streams and pools of water,
with springs flowing in the valleys and hills;  

a land with (waving) wheat and barley, vines and fig trees,
pomegranates, olive oil and honey;  
a land where bread will not be scarce and you will lack nothing;
a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.
Deuteronomy 8:7-9

Thursday, August 2, 2012

2011-2012 Books We Read

Summer is coming to a close so it is time to wind up the book list for the 2011-2012 School Year.  Some of the books we read together as a family, some were school book and some were just for fun!  Favorites would include the Hunger Games and the girls loved Inkheart series and Caleb had fun with Arguing with Idiots!   It is always fun to look back and see what we've read like our 2008-2009 Book List or our 2010-2011 Book List

This year we enjoyed 39 Clues 1-4, 7 Miracles that Saved America, 7 Tipping Points, 7 Wonders that will Change Your Life, Abigail, Across Five Aprils, An Acceptable Time, Arguing with Idiots, Being George Washington, Catching Fire, Catechism of the US Constitution, Celebrate Liberty!, Darke, Do Hard Things, Dragon Fire, Dragon Knight, Dragon Light, Dragon Spell, Dragons of the Valley, Dragon Quest, Ender Games, Fablehaven, Fantastical Beasts, Flyte, Holy War, How Things are Made, Hunger Games, Inheritance, Inkheart, Inkspell, Magyk, Miracle Worker, Mocking Jay, Oliver Twist, Original Argument, Physik, Queste, Quidditch thru the Ages, Rich Dad - Poor Dad, Separation of Church & State, Stone of Destiny, Syren, Theodore Bones: Abduction, Theodore Bones: Kid Lawyer, Treasure Island, Unofficial Guide to HP, Vanishing Sculpter, Winners Never Cheat, Wizard of Oz, and Wolfblade.

It's always fun to see what the next school year brings! 

And you, my son, acknowledge the God of your father,
and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind,
for the Lord searches every heart and understands
every motive behind the thoughts.
If you seek him, he will be found by you.
I Chronicles 28:9