Swap Shop coming to Elburn

1 John 3:16-18

By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.

But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.

Location: Elburn Community Center Gym,
525 N. Main Street,
Elburn, Illinois

Dates & Times
Drop off – Nov. 7, 10 am – 7 pm
Swap – Nov. 8, 9 am – 3 pm

Open to ALL!!

What is a Swap Shop ?

Swap Shop is a chance for moms to swap out things they no longer need for things they do. If you wouldn’t be ashamed to give it to a friend, then we’ll accept it.

All items not swapped will be donated to charity.

Nothing to swap? Please come anyway and be blessed with God’s provision.

Who organizes the Swap Shop ?

This event is hosted by Authentic Moms, a local Christian mom’s group.

Our desire is to follow 1 John 3:16-18

– to love with actions & truth, not just words.

Would you like to volunteer for a chance to pre-shop?

Or do you have other questions? Contact – authenticmoms@gmail.com

Items we swap include:
– Baby items
– Gently used clothes & shoes
– Children’s Toys
– Furniture
– Books, Games & School Supplies
– Household & Kitchen Accessories
ALL Items are for SWAP, not SALE

Online Math Help

Received via email:

Perfect Summer Math!  Perfect After-School Math
Our math materials are perfect for both summer and after-school programs.
Many of our titles come with free online video tutorials.
One tutorial for each lesson in the book.
Check us out at
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We also have a new online math program for grades 4 through Algebra.
It comes complete with videos, written exercises, quizzes, certificates
of completion, games & prizes,  and much more.  A dashboard tracks progress
for parents and students.
Try it free!
Have a great summer!
Don’t keep us a secret.  Tell your friends and colleagues about our award-winning math materials.
Best,
Rick Fisher

Reclaiming normal

September and October have both nearly passed between my posts here, and fortunately, life is slowly returning to some semblance of normalcy.

I know I have missed sharing about some events as these last couple months have kept me from doing much of anything outside of what needed to get done each day.

As life slows just slightly (as much as it can with 6 kids and homeschooling and working part-time), I look forward to returning here on a more regular basis and updating listings as well as sharing about current happenings for homeschoolers in the Chicago area.

If you have anything you would like to share about with fellow area homeschoolers, please shoot me an email and I will be happy to pass it along.

Thank you for your patience!

~Erin

Free Museum Day September 28, 2013

For one day you can enter a museum for free! (I know we are a little spoiled around here with all the great museums and so many with free days for us Illinoisans)

The Smithsonian Magazine hosts this event, so you can check out their site for all the details and to register.

The ticket is good for two people, and is limited to one per household, so please keep that in mind.

However, there are some great places on the list – SciTech in Aurora, Graue Mill in Oak Brook, Illinois Holocaust Museum in Skokie, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Chicago,  and more!

Check it out and please pass it along.

International Space Day

Tomorrow, May 4, is International Space Day.

Not long ago I did a review on Janet’s Planet Science program and found out about this unique “holiday” on her blog: http://janetsplanetspacelog.blogspot.com/2012/05/celebrate-space-exploration-with.html

Check out the fun ideas and resources to celebrate the day in style!

Review and Giveaway: The 5 Money Personalities

What: The 5 Money Personalities

Written by: Scott & Bethany Palmer
Available now!
Check out their homes on the web —

About The 5 Money Personalities
The hidden key to a healthy relationship is not just managing money but understanding how the other approaches money.

Every couple argues about money. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been married for 40 years or dating for 4 months, money touches every decision you make as a couple—from the $5 cup of coffee to the $50,000 car. And when the two of you don’t see eye-to-eye on how much to spend or how much to save, that’s when arguments turn into ugly toxic fights that leave both persons feeling hurt and angry. It’s why money has become the #1 cause of divorce in the U.S. Obviously, something needs to change. The reason this crisis has not been addressed is because it has never been identified, defined, or given a name. Scott and Bethany Palmer, aka “The Money Couple,” have identified and defined this problem and offer concrete solutions to fix it.

It’s not just about money management, and it’s definitely not just about overcoming debt. It is a whole new way of living that will change everything in your relationship. Tens of thousands have already been transformed. Are you ready?

My take:

Easy read. I flew through this book. Easy to read, lots of real life illustrations, engaging, entertaining, and just plain old well written. Although not a flawless book, at least the reading of it was rather enjoyable.

Unique perspective. Rather than getting hung up on the nitty gritty of money decisions, this book digs deeper into who you are when it comes to money and why that matters. Understanding who you are, and perhaps more importantly who your spouse is, in the money arena will add some enlightenment to the decisions you have made and the ones you have yet to make.

Useful tool. While you could read it straight through, it really reads best in separate sessions. Great for a bedtime book for couples, or Saturday morning coffee book. Read a quick chapter together and talk about the action points at the end.

Written by two spenders. I have to mention this because it stood out to both my husband and myself. My husband and I are one of those rare couples that find themselves in the same category — both savers, both security seekers (although to varying degrees). Reading a book by two self-proclaimed spenders I felt a bit misunderstood, and sometimes even mocked. I could’ve easily written the counter criticism for the spender, but that’s not the point, I don’t think, of recognizing money personalities. They still pour out lots of good advice, but if you read this book as a saver, know that you might feel a little defensive at times, and in my view that’s just fine. 🙂

Some personalities overlooked? I also felt like there were some other significant areas of my money personality that didn’t get addressed. Stewardship, generosity, and faith might be hard to classify, but they are a huge part of my money decisions. I don’t know how they could be worked into their paradigm, but I did feel like there were some gaps in the 5 personalities they tried to boil things down to.

Even more on the website. The website has more great tools for evaluating your money personality and how to come to greater agreement without arguing.

Significance of dreams. This drew me in right from the beginning. They really nailed it in their discussion of dreams. We do often lose our dreams over time. I think that’s kind of what the movie “Up” hovered around. The Palmers want you to know you don’t need to lose your dreams. You can chase them and recapture them again, as a couple. This book is definitely just as much about a quality marriage relationship as it is about money.

Practical tips. While a lot of the book is offering information, analysis, and perspective, it does get down to the practical before too long. Getting rid of financial infidelity, dumping, and having a money huddle are some of the practical areas that they offer very real life ideas on building or rebuilding your relationship.

This book offers great tips and perspective on overcoming money differences in your marriage relationship. None of us married our clone, so anyone can benefit from this book. As homeschoolers, living on one income, we at times feel the pinch a bit tighter than others might. I think this book can really help you come together on money issues even while retaining your unique money personality. A great read!

If you would like to enter into the giveaway to win a free copy of this book, please leave a comment on this post with an email so I can reach you if your name is drawn. You are welcome to a second entry as well by simply sharing about this giveaway somewhere else (facebook,  twitter, etc.) and returning here to leave a second comment.
The giveaway will wrap up on Tuesday night, January 15th in the evening.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

An Early Merry Christmas

The-Nativity-Star

While we take a break from our schooling, the most important learning in our house never ends.

As I have shared before, a significant part of the reason that we homeschool is to take advantage of every opportunity to live out our faith in front of our children. I don’t follow Christ flawlessly by any means, but I want my kids to grow up with no doubt about the reality of God as the sovereign, awesome Creator and Savior of this world. And that learning continues and even heightens during the holidays.

I’ll be spending most of my time in the next couple weeks away from my computer (once the rest of the grades are entered and lesson plans for the next quarter are done), and hopefully you will be doing the same.

Enjoy time with family and extra time for hugs and laughter.

Most importantly, I pray that you will have time to drink deeply of the true reason to celebrate this time of year — the coming of Jesus Christ, born to give us a second birth. We get stuck in this physical world too often and forget the eternal focus we were create to maintain.  Christ came to seek and save the lost, which applies to all of us who carry Adam’s sin nature and have no hope of heaven aside from a perfect substitution to take our punishment on Himself as Jesus did.

I pray that you know this most important reality and will bring it to mind as you celebrate the birth of Christ. If you do not understand the true significance of this season which goes far beyond the nativity scene, I pray you too will see it in a fresh, personal way this season.

See you next year.  🙂

Merry Christmas!

Open swim for homeschoolers in Elgin

While Gym and Swim is taking a break for the busy holiday season, they do still open for some homeschool  swim times at the Centre in Elgin.

Nov. 29th

Dec. 6th

Dec. 13th

Dec. 20th

Dec. 27th

Jan. 10th

From 1-3pm

Prices:

2 & under: Free

Youth (3-17):$ 2.75

Adult (18+): $3.25

For more information: The Centre of Elgin, 100 Symphony Way. Ph: (847) 531-7000

Thank you!

Just gotta say “thanks.”

When I started this site 3 years ago it grew out of a passion for homeschooling. Of course, my passion is driven in part by my faith in Jesus Christ that I do not feel could be fully passed on to my kids if I didn’t get the chance to live it out in front of them 24/7. I fail, I learn, I grow. Through it all they see that learning doesn’t quit when you graduate and homeschooling is a whole-family, whole-life endeavor.

Thank you for sharing my enthusiasm. Sharing this site with your friends, relatives, and fellow-homeschoolers at co-ops and support groups.  Thank you for sharing with the rest of us about events, activities, support groups, contact information, ideas, and more.

Looking forward to the continued growth of this site as a helpful resource for Chicago area homeschoolers, and thank you for making that possible!