Monday, October 29, 2012

WEEK 11 Challenge A
Last weeks Challenge A Class

What an incredible week of Classical Christian Education with Classical Conversations.  I am thrilled to share with you stories of comparing and contrasting, respectful arguments, outstanding research, and so much more that took place in our classroom today. 
My heart is so tender for how the Lord is moving on the hearts of these amazing kids.  Please read on to see how each student is truly getting and embracing the dialectic stage of the trivium!
Today we started our Research (Science) thread off with the topic, Birds Of Prey!  We had three species that were repeated:
Barn Owls (Sophie Mullins & Joseph Doto)
Vultures  (Noah Geers & Terry Thames)
Falcolns (Bethie White & Moriah Williams)
Here is where it gets GOOD! 
When we had repeat topics we would stop and ask each of the researchers what they learned from their peers report that they hadn't caught in their own research.  I absolutely LOVED how they jumped in and shared freely!  They were comparing and then contrasting what was the same and what was different.
One of the skills we work on during the dialectic phase is learning how to ask good questions!  Many times these questions lead to deep discussions, sometimes those deep discussions lead to differences of opinions.
Today one of those differences of opinions revolved around VULTURES!   Sage Hazlett asked a most excellent question, "Why would a vulture be a bird of prey and not a scavenger"?  After all, vultures eat dead meat.  I loved this question and thus began an intense discussion amongst our class. 
This lead into another skill set we are working on, "Learning how to be humble learners".   Learning how to be willing to pause, step back, possibly be wrong, for the sake of pursuing truth!
Our goal was to go home and dig deeper but one of our most excellent researchers, Terry Thames was able to give us our answer because he had researched vultures himself.  We found that they truly are birds of PREY.  Because even though the meal is "dead", it is still labeled and considered prey.
Dialectic Skills Learned:  Comparing & Contrasting, Respectful Arguing, Asking Great Questions, Humble Learning!
We are walking through Europe in 5 Stages:
1-  Nordic Countries
2-  Central Europe
3- Eastern Europe
4- Western & Southern Europe
5- Southeastern Europe
You will see in the picture above how we have labeled each Country.    This is the new way we have been doing geography in class.  every student will write each country and capital next to it's assigned number on one side of the paper, then flip it over and sketch Europe by heart.  Finally, they go back and place the corresponding number so that it lines up accurately with it's location.  Our system was put together by our very own fabulous Bethie White. 
This format allows the parents and peers to check the papers more easily and also allows the student to focus on really grasping and connecting the countries and capitals to their locations on the map.
Joseph Doto, modeled this weeks assignment on our white board.

Important!  Please Note a CHANGE:  Your Challenge A Guide schedules lesson 23.  Malcolm Williams bravely raised his hand high and requested that we do lesson 22 instead.  He very eloquently pointed out that the objectives are the same, but the topic in 22 is so much more fascinating.  Plagues!  The rest of the class quickly concurred.  Please remember that You ultimately get to make all final decisions.
I.E.W. Bible Based Writing Highlights

I wanted to post with examples of our student's work from BBW! 
It sounded as if ten furious lions were loudly roaring inside Jesus' empty stomach. ~ Ciarra Conisgny
Lovely and exquisite, heavenly and holy, beautifully and artistically, strange and stunning, quietly and quickly, ~  Alliterations & Connectors ~ Moriah Williams
"Yeah sure" Adam replied.  As he bit into the fruit, a gargantuan voice boomed...... ~ Joseph Doto
Pranced, prowled, padded and plotted!!!  ~Sophie

The sleek lithe deer nibbled on the juicy grass that coated the emerald hills.  ~Sophie

 I am preparing my heart tonight to go back tomorrow and dig into week 12!  I simply cannot convey how much I LOVE walking through this year with my Colton.  I am storing up forever memories!


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Finding Faith In The Midst Of Fear!

This past Friday I had to have two surgical procedures in my doctors office that seemed scary.  The first was a hysteroscopy and the other was a D&C. 

In the past these procedures have been done while under general anesthesia in the hospital, but doctors offices are now starting to offer them in their own private offices. 

The PRO'S are that the risk is greatly decreased because you are not being put under with general anesthesia.  The recovery time is faster.  The expenses are greatly decreased. 

The CON'S are that you are awake. (grin)  Though they do try to make you comfortable.  Let me share what my medication schedule looked like:

At exactly 10:15 I had to take 10mg of Valium.

10:30  Percocet.

10:45 10 more mg of Valium.


One shot of Toradol!

In the midst of this I noticed something very, VERY interesting:

I noticed that there were exactly 11 leaves in all the groupings on the wallpaper.  It was consistently like that through the whole waiting room. (grin)

Next came the waiting.  They wanted the medication to be fully in place before beginning the procedure.  Scotty and I had a BLAST while waiting.  We sang, I Wish I Was An Oscar Myer Weiner,  My bologna has a first name, Armour Hotdogs, and I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony!  

Next came the posing for pictures.  You probably should never give a patient access to a camera and facebook when they are on that much medication..... 

Just as I was starting to forget what we were there for the nurse came in to carry (I mean to walk me back) to the surgical room.  It had the wonderfully sterile feel and smell to everything, and I noticed there were LOTS of needles and probes.  All of a sudden all the medication didn't seem to make one bit of difference.  I wanted to RUN in the opposite direction!

I am so thankful that the Lord rescued me from myself.  Just as I was about to go down the road of fear, Christ poured out HIS perfect LOVE!

I kid you not!  I was nervous but that paralyzing, fist-tightening, knuckle-whitening fear was G.O.N.E.

Mary, you have no obligation whatsoever to do what your sinful nature is urging you to do. (freak out) If you keep on following it you will perish. (I would have been a wreck!) BUT if through the power of the HOLY SPIRIT you turn from it (and to to HIM) you will LIVE!  Romans 8:12:-14  Aaaahhhhh......FREEDOM!

 I have the BEST doctor in the whole world.  She began talking with me about anything and everything but what she was doing.  When it began to hurt intensely she walked me through a refresher lamaze course and encouraged me that it would be over soon.  She kept telling me how well I was doing and reminded me that I could do this!  Oh How I love Dr. Delgado!

I barely remember the drive home, (Scott drove) but I do remember looking at Instagram and seeing this picture: 

My girlfriend Christa had posted this picture on facebook stating that she was wearing hoops in honor of her sweet friend who was having a very uncomfortable procedure.  Next thing I know another friend (Brenda Sain) was wearing her hoops to show her support as well.  

I am so thankful for the incredible people who prayed, I could feel them saturating me.  I received precious texts and emails of encouragement, and even had two yummy dinners over the weekend! 

 Thank you, Lynn Doto!  

 These Pumpkin Whoopie Pies were to DIE for! 

Mrs. Mullins has a tradition of making us her world-famous, homemade chicken pot pie.  Between she and Lynn, I think the boys would like me to go have more surgeries, LOL!


I caught Scott eating the last of one of the pies and thought his face was so cute.  I HAD to capture the expression!  I love this man of mine who makes my life so complete!  

Thank you to every one that prayed.  If you didn't know about this, please know that I never got to send out a big email, as my grandmother had a major medical crisis the day before this surgery and it thew me off.  I know you love me!  Praise the Lord for the incredible friends and family HE gives to us.  We never have to walk alone!

Finding Faith In The Midst Of Fear can only come from God!


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Support Manager Training "2012"!

Inspiring Life From A Heart Of Humility!

Our Theme for 2012/13

 Classical Conversations is more than's community, caring, discipleship, mentorship, Classical Education, & More!

This week all of the Florida Support Managers gathered in Orlando for an exciting and inspirational 28 hours of renewing our vision and refreshing our hearts.  We were blessed to have our Regional and Area Managers humbly pouring their hearts into ours.  

It was wonderful being reminded of the most important part of our job!  Simply seeking the Lord and then serving our families from a heart filled up and overflowing with Christ!

Mary Alph's is our jet-setting, hard-working, Jesus-loving, National Manager.  It was a blessing seeing her for the first few hours of our training.  (She flew out later that day)  She painted a beautiful picture of what God has been doing in our organization this past year.  

Joys of being a Support Manager!

This beautiful poster is filled with the praises of the Support Managers and what they have loved most about serving in their new roles the past several months.  

Jackie B, is our integrity inspiring Regional Manager!  One of my greatest joys was getting to know Jackie better this weekend.  I LOVED seeing her strong gift of administration in action!  She helped us understand the heart and purpose behind the policy and procedures Classical Conversations has in place.  It always comes back to honoring the Lord and our families.

Lynn Doto is a dear and precious friend, mentor, and my personal Area Manager.  I have learned so much from her this past year, as I've allowed the Lord to help me go back to the drawing room (after 15 years of homeschooling) to learn new things!  I am so thankful for the vision she has poured into my heart.   Lynn, has renewed my first love of home education!  I dearly love this woman and her ability to paint a picture of Classical Christian Education like nobody I've ever met!  My boys are basking in the blessing of her being in my life! Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire!  

Lynn C, is my soul sista'.......I love this woman!  Her love for Jesus inspires me to keep my eyes on HIM.  Lynn is a beautiful Area Manger in our Central Florida region.  We were ALL invigorated and renewed this week as she shared the testimony of what God can do when we let go and trust HIM!  She closed our training with tears, as she humbly shared how God can take any situation and breath restoration into it.  He truly is attracted to our weakness.  It just magnifies HIS Strength! 

Christie C, is our South Florida Area Manager!  Her strong gift of communication, mingled with her tender-hearted love for her Savior, motivated each of us to stay connected to the ONE who knows us best and loves us most!  (John 15:5) What I loved most about her portion of the training was the way she beautifully weaved the constant reminder that it always comes back to Jesus!  



Beautiful handcrafted, one-of-a-kind gifts from Mary Alph's sister, who is a professional artist!  In addition to the training, updates, and meetings, we felt very loved on and appreciated.  I wish all the Directors could have been there as well, because it was truly about how we work together with each other to bring HIM glory!  I had so much fun bragging on the incredible directors that I get to work with personally.  I look forward to loving on them at our annual Director Business Training in March! 

Jackie & Lynn With The Gulf Coast Support Managers 


For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.~ Ephesians 2:10

"My grace is all you need.  My power works best in weakness.  So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the POWER OF JESUS CHRIST can work through me.  That's why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ.  For when I am weak, than I am strong"! ~ 2 Corinthians 12:9-10