It’s not really a switch… sort of?

So my son and I are finishing up the 7th grade year, finally. Last year was our 2nd year homeschooling, after pulling my son out of public school at the end of 5th grade and de-schooling him over the summer. We finally found a type of curriculum that we enjoyed together, we tried a few the first year and it was HARD. I thought I was not cut out to homeschool and going back to public school was not an option with how horrible they were to him.

Just a small note- this is NOT sponsored. I am going to be telling you how I feel about the curriculum I BOUGHT with my own money, as we go through it…

So last year we used Sonlight, we enjoyed it for the most part but the science portion shocked me, (Note that I am not that religious) and I found I did not agree with WHAT they were using to teach what they considered “science” and even my friend who was on the phone with me as I read a passage from the book we were using was like “Oh no” .

For 7th grade we used, 2020’s All subject W package from Sonlight, below is what was included.


We loved the reading selection, we loved the poems, the language arts was comprehensive, the experiments were fun, and math was great but we saw areas of improvement. And that’s when I found out that sonlight also had a sister company, bookshark. And bookshark is a more secular version of sonlight, which is what I wanted. I looked through the next curriculum and decided that we did want to move over. So we get the same teaching style, with all the amazing books, but toned down a bit for our religious preferences.

So for 8th grade, bookshark the books for 2021 look like this (below)

If your child isn’t a reader, this probably wouldn’t be for you. My son LOVES to read. I showed him the book selection and he can’t wait to get them.

Now lets talk price… I know many people think a curriculum like this costs a lot, and decide to go with an online one because they THINK it will cost less… but in reality with many online ones (not all), you end up paying THE SAME COST just over the school year ….. I know I did when we did a digital / online curriculum, AND my son learned better with hands on materials.

I got a 20% discount (which seems to be the basic discount they give everyone, honestly I have not seen it change) WITH taxes AND with me adding on some extra spelling books (we need to focus on spelling and handwriting), it cost me $995 for the ENTIRE kit. Same with Sonlight, it was roughly 900$ last year as well. If you look up similar curriculums they are similar as well.

I plan to let you all know what I feel about this curriculum in the up coming months. My son will finish up his 7th grade sonlight program soon and we will take a break, I will have a baby and then we will start the school year back up again with bookshark.

If you are one of those people who wants to know the methodology of these programs here it is directly from their website: (Bookshark)

Sonlight has a similar type of statement but their website is a bit different from bookshark:

Now my son is turning 13 soon and the only issue I see us running into is … running out of curriculum with these companies… both only go up to certain levels and I am not informed if they are going to be making any more … for instance my son is on level I for book shark… BUT bookshark only has levels listed up to J… after this do I just find another curriculum or will they be expanding? I have been contimplating online high school for 9-12 grade for my son but if that doesn’t work out (if we don’t like it), then where do I go? That the issue I am seeing with these homeschool programs, many of them run out of materials… too soon for my liking.

The level J says its for ages 14-16… but I graduated at 18. And no I was not homeschooled but I feel like there should be more levels… anyways I am looking into that now so that it doesn’t come back to bite me in the butt in a year or 2.

I do know of other programs we could use, I just need to prepare myself. Sonlight and bookshark are not the only homeschool curriculums I have seen do this… I have noticed a lacking of actual high school materials. My son does better hands on with his materials so online school kind of bugs me. But we will see where things go in the future.

22 Week 6 day baby update

Greetings! If you follow me on Twitter this will be old, but lets blog about it! Today I went to the Perinatologist (maternal fetal medicine doctor). I went LAST week but they measured my cervix and it was measuring short, so they scheduled me for a check up this week. And the ultrasound tech said they would get some shots of the baby this week as well before I went home.

And I got to see baby girl’s face more clearly today than I have been able to so far! Exciting right? Yeah oh and my cervix measurements came back great! They said I don’t need to worry right now. A cervix measuring short could mean preterm labor, but thankfully mine second scan was better than the last.

I don’t really get nervous going to these appointments since being high risk is not new to me. These doctors are just here for more frequent check ups on the baby and me.

What do they do in these appointments? Well they weigh me, check my vitals, I do a spirometry test (this is new, and I think bc of COVID), I then get to do an internal ultrasound and external ultrasound. If the doctor wants more tests, blood, cardiac echo, they order those. For higher risk women you may get more scans than me, or more blood work. I just get an echo about once or twice a month currently. Why am I high risk? I have had preeclampsia TWICE… and have given birth early due to preeclampsia in both of my previous pregnancies. I also had preterm labor with my first baby and I am over the age of 35…so that also makes you high risk.

My doctors are amazing and explain everything to me. They got me on my inhaler and a new one last week and I have been doing better with my breathing. Apparently my pregnancy has made my asthma worse…so bad that I actually HAVE to take my inhaler… I was waking up out of breath and feeling very very sick before. But now that I have been on both of my inhalers for more than a week now, I feel so much better. Go figure.

me – double masking at the hospital

I have been feeling more out of breath and tired now that I am half way through this pregnancy. I want to start going for walks in the evening with my family, but I need to be careful since I am swelling in my hands and feet now. But I also need to watch what I am eating because now that I am not sick all the time with morning sickness I tend to eat all the fun things I like… and then I gain all the extra weight… yes yes I am pregnant but only a certain amount is healthy and I know my body and how much is too much 🙂 So I NEED to eat healthier.

Oh and Happy Late Easter! My family did celebrate….sort of. We aren’t really religious… or Christian.. so we do the Easter fun with the kids but and we did see my in laws in the front yard of my house. We opted to NOT go to a family get together since not everyone is vaccinated yet, and I am high risk. I am vaccinated but my husband isn’t. We wanted to play it safe for now. We can see family once more people are protected.

Other than this update, not much else is new. My husband is having tooth pain from a possible cracked tooth, which sucks so we are dealing with that at the dentist office. So glad we got a stimulus check to pay for all our dental work. I have been buying the baby stuff of my list on Amazon/Target because I wanted to make sure I got certain things I needed. I still haven’t planned a baby sprinkle or anything yet, no I will not be doing an in person one. It will be online only. We aren’t risking anything at this point.

I just need a few things anyways, we are pretty set on clothes for this baby since I saved all my daughter’s clothes 3 years ago. I am so lucky because it will save us so much money. We switched my daughter over to a big girl bed! So now the crib is freed up! We had ZERO issues moving Lily over to the new bed, she is in LOVE with it and is so excited to be a big sister soon.

Homeschooling is going well, we are almost done with the year. I am buying the new curriculum this coming week or so. Another thing our stimulus money can go towards.

I am so thankful for my friends on twitter / online. You all have been so amazing and supportive of me this last year. I feel you all are why I was able to function during the pandemic. ❤

It’s SPRING time!

Time to open some windows, plant some flowers and go outside! Yes you can still garden and have fun during a pandemic. I am teaching my toddler that she can grow her own little garden this year. She was really interested in watering plants last year but this year I thought it would be fun for her to grow her own tomatoes and herbs.

So far we got some cheap (recycled) containers from our food from Costco and we planted some seeds! Here is how they look after about3-4 weeks of growth.

Yeah I know it looks messy, because I let a toddler water them. Give me a break. BUT they are growing! (Note: If they do not grow to be big enough to transplant properly we will buy some pre-grown ones) I just wanted my daughter to see that she CAN grow food. I also think it’s important for her to know where her food comes from.

These two are keeping me busy lately. I am slowly introducing my daughter into school work. She is 3 and normally at this age I would have introduced her into daycare/pre-k but with COVID I am taking on the roll of teacher more. Most of Prek is play right now anyways but I am working on introducing more fine motor skills with things we have around the house. I am also looking at a preschool curriculum to follow. That way I know shes on track, because even though I homeschool my oldest (for non COVID reasons), my younger child seems more like she would be successful in public school, so we are thinking of giving it a try. We can always pull back and homeschool if needed. But I would like to give her a chance since she is very social.

I don’t have a pre-school curriculum picked out yet for my daughter, I am still looking at which one would fit my daughter best. There are so many, and I am looking for one based on play. I want one I can buy that is prepared for me so I don’t have to run around trying to get materials for stuff.

Don’t worry I still have a few months to prep. I just like to get this stuff bought though in advance so I am not rushing. My son’s curriculum is pretty much already picked out for next year and we set the money aside for it since it will cost us around $1,000 for the entire thing, books, science kit, etc. It comes with EVERYTHING. And later this year I will be selling his old curriculum once we are done with it.

I have already started to box up most of his books, we are officially done with science and reading. He is almost done with language arts, writing and math. We are working at his pace.

I am trying to find another Spanish learning program OR some other language. My son just isn’t picking it up. And Spanish may not be for everyone. I personally enjoyed learning German, but the spelling may really confuse him. Anyways I tried Rosetta stone and duo-lingo. I need more of a classroom setting type of learning, so I may have to pay for another program. Those other programs are great for adults and teens but my 12 year old just doesn’t retain the information.

Anyways, I have a few months to pick out a system, so we are good. It’s spring! I am going to not worry too much about it, since learning a second language isn’t too important, I just wanted to give him the chance to learn something different. Sadly he just isn’t picking it up. Maybe I should look into videos for my daughter while she is young…. hmmm. Things to think about….

It’s been quite a year…(TW pandemic)

One year ago, we went into lock down. I found that I could do something to help some people, by making masks. I made my kids masks because, why not? But also this is their first time out with me IN LOCK DOWN, because my son needed to go to urgent care. It’s been a crazy year… since the start I have lost a grandmother to COVID, I have created close bonds with family online, made some amazing friends on Twitter, and I have gotten pregnant with my last baby. The last one was planned. We can’t stop living forever.

I actually need to pull out my sewing machine to make a few new fabric masks. I have KN95 and N95 masks now that they are more available, but we use the double mask method. We use our fabric over the medical masks and I now can make these masks with ear loops! Getting materials when this first started SUCKED, getting stuff mailed took MONTHS, all the local stores were OUT of stuff and for a short while, the sewing stores weren’t considered important so they were closed!

This photo was taken a few days before New Mexico went INTO lock down.

The first time I knew this pandemic was finally getting serious here in my state was when I went to get toilet paper. And this was what I saw…

To make things clear, I knew it was going to get bad, but it hit fast and hard at our local stores. You never know how unprepared these stores are for a disaster or a pandemic until it hits. I had been watching the news in China and across seas for a few months at the time and saw how bad it was there but we were still not prepared for this. Yes I got the LAST pack of toilet paper too on this trip. I was scared someone would take it from me, but I think with a toddler in cart people were a little nicer. I remember getting out as soon as I could, found there was little to no soap left and got some before I left, there was no bleach ALREADY. We had to make what we had last…and I ordered stuff online that took over a month to get to me.

A year ago, my husband and I decided to do something for the kids that we kept putting off for years. We finally tore out the rose garden to make a backyard play area. This was the start…after I ripped out about 20 rose bushes. It was hard work but It was worth it.

My husband started working from home a year ago as well. He is still working from home right now, and we don’t know how much longer he will continue to. But we are enjoying this time, since my daughter grew up with her dad at home the last year, she visits him when he isn’t in meetings. He gets to see how much I go through in the day. He’s home to eat lunch with us. And I am happy and so thankful we both kept our jobs during these times. YES, I did lose hours but I still have my career so I am so thankful.

So much has changed in a year…going to the vet with your dog is now like waiting for a delivery…. they come out to your car…get your dog and go inside with out you. Which… might be okay for me from now on. Because my dog seems less nervous about going in with a stranger… she stopped fighting me on going into the vet, once I hand them the leash, she just goes in now… the first two times, she fought me.

To EVERYONE who supported me, by making donations or fabric for masks. THANK YOU. This is what I ran into A LOT at the stores. EMPTY. Together we made OVER 1000 masks. After 1000, I stopped counting. I literally couldn’t anymore.

I am thankful now…that a year later I have gotten both of my Moderna shots. My mother is getting hers THIS WEEK. My oldest sister is scheduled for hers as well this week. My BIL should be getting his. I know my husband’s aunt and uncle have gotten parts of their shots. I am seeing some hope and am feeling better lately. I know it isn’t over but it’s a start. We lost my grandma Inez to COVID back in November… a few days before I found out I was pregnant with my last baby. It was heart breaking because we still haven’t been able to have a funeral. No one could really see her, we were actually IN a lock down in my state at the time of her death.

Getting to see more friends and family get their shot is helping me. I don’t really care if family can see my baby when it’s born but knowing more people are vaccinated makes me feel safer. I will have a new baby and if my husband goes to the store and more people are vaccinated, hopefully we will see the #s drop. So far the numbers in my state are dropping again… I am so thankful. But we are still on alert.

Now to leave you all with this.

I am so thankful for you all. I had such an amazing support system during the pandemic. I had a platform to chat, to complain, to listen… yes I got depressed, yes at times I felt hopeless. I don’t forget that. But to my friends on Twitter and FB. To the tribe that helped me this last year, thank you. You have done so much for me and my family. You have helped me be a better person through this last year and continue to support me.

I hope you all stay healthy. I hope you get the vaccine if you want it. I hope you are not struggling and if you are, I am here. I try to follow, and respond, sometimes Twitter hides tweets from me, but reach out to me if you need support. I’m here.

We are going through this life together. Don’t suffer alone. Especially if talking to someone can help you.

ps. If you’re new here and noticed I didn’t mention being affected by homeschooling my child…or digital schooling my child… it’s actually because a year before the pandemic hit, we started homeschooling. So we weren’t affected in that manner. I am so thankful we were displaced BEFORE the pandemic, instead of during. We chose to homeschool because my son has ADHD and other issues that the school couldn’t deal with. We personally like homeschooling. But I do admit, a ton of resources did appear during the pandemic, so we did benefit during this time as well. We found more free stuff, and better programs, so we are thankful for those resources.

COVID-19 vaccine, 2nd dose

So, I am 19 weeks pregnant and received my 2nd dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine yesterday. I will be very honest with you, I felt sick. So, my Dr. and the person administering my shot both said I would probably feel pretty crumby after my 2nd shot, #1 because I am under the age of 65 and #2 I am pregnant. So my immune system is just on high alert.


Anyways, with my 1st shot, I felt really sick, head ache, body aches, joint pains, and chills. The symptoms popped up with in 2 hours of the shot and only got worse. I took Tylenol because that is what I am allowed to take as a pregnant woman. This second shot was a little different, my arm hurt and for the first 6-8 hours that is all. But then I started to experience joint pain and body aches along with chills at night time. My hip hurt AGAIN like last time, so it hurt to walk. It hurt to lay on my arm that I got the shot on and over all I just felt like I was coming down with something.

Eventually after 1 am, I fell asleep. I woke up feeling A LOT better. I feel great now at 2 pm the day after the shot. So the symptoms only seem to last 24 hours for me. My baby has been kicking and moving normally, so there are no concerns. I see my OBGYN on Wednesday, so I will hear her heart beat then again. Over all, I know people are concerned for us pregnant women who decide to get the shot during pregnancy, but I would like you to think about the women who GET covid during pregnancy and lose the baby or die . It’s a very personal choice, but my husband and I made an educated decision together. And yes I will update you all on how my baby is doing AFTER she is born.

I will remind you all that I am a high risk pregnancy, due to my age and medical history of Pre-eclampsia. So I could go into labor early and have a premature baby, AGAIN. I would not blame that on the vaccine at all. I have had that happen TWICE in the past. I am being monitored by two amazing doctors during this pregnancy.

Also, if you don’t feel comfortable getting the vaccine during pregnancy, you are NOT ALONE. A lot of us soon to be moms discuss this online and it’s a valid reason to be worried. You care not only about your own health but your unborn child’s. I did my research online and my husband and I made the decision together. I don’t regret getting it, even though I felt really sick for a day afterwards. But don’t let anyone push you into doing something you don’t want to do. You can get the shot after you give birth if you are more comfortable with that.

I am getting really excited because more of my family are getting their shots . So by the time I have my baby this summer, I am hoping that my family has a line of protection for our little girl. A wall of defense would be great.

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