This is our current chore system; but it’s always changing.

 

Before breakfast:

Matt cleans the dining room

Beth cleans the living room

Grace cleans the stairs to the girls’ room

Josh cleans the boys’ room and gets the other boys to clean up their stuff in there

Hannah cleans the girls’ room

 

Before lunch in the summer or before dinner in school year the kids do their “chore packs” (Maxwell system):

Beth cleans dining room

Drew cleans living room

Josh cleans kids’ bathroom

Hannah cleans parents’ bathroom

Matt has various chores

 

In each chore pack:

a zone – a room they straighten

a chore

music practice

exercise (usually doesn’t happen!)

Scripture memory (I don’t know if that’s really happening during the schoolyear)

hug mom (often doesn’t happen!)

 

Actually, they have a whole “morning chorepack”, too, which includes:

hug everyone (usually doesn’t happen)

brush teeth

brush hair and fix (girls)

make bed

read Bible/pray

something to clean

 

After each meal, most of the kids work in the kitchen, but Beth does various vacuuming, dusting, sweeping, etc. that were things I was noticing not getting done

 

Even after all this, the house can be a wreck!!!!!  We’ve found that when we have a family over, the house gets really clean beforehand.  We haven’t done that much lately, but hopefully we can get in the swing of it again.  If you have people over a lot, the house can stay pretty clean a lot!  (of course not the only reason to have people over though, ha!!

“His B.A. Was Only $8k: Quick, Fun, College For Ages 12 to 99 Years” is now available in a paperback version as well as the ebook form on Amazon!

Screen shot 2013-07-25 at 9.30.18 PM

In His B.A. Was Only $8k I explain in detail how Micah my son received his Bachelor’s from home at the age of 16, and how you can do the same.

Here is the book description:

Using humor, interesting stories, and an off-the-wall writing style, author Kathy Cooksey describes her own son’s journey of getting an accredited bachelor’s degree from home at the tender age of 16. She explains how this method works for adult students, transfers, home schoolers, or anyone. Older students sometimes finish an entire degree with this method in only one year.

Click here to order your copy!

I emailed my good friend with questions about digestion problems I have been having, and she had some great ideas.
Q: I have been having some issues with my digestion lately, and I wondered what you recommend.  I have trouble when I eat foods high in fat, even good fat.  Also beans and sugar are giving me trouble.  Ox bile capsules?  Enzymes?  A-F betafood?
I have been taking HCL before problematic foods, but it doesn’t seem to be helping.  That used to help so much.
I just ordered some aloe vera juice, cranberry flavor.  I hope it tastes good!  :O)
Answer: Hi, Kathy!  I use Digest Gold enzymes and they really help me especially in the digestion of proteins/fats during early pregnancy.  I have also found probiotics to be extremely helpful just in general.  I notice it most in my children; if they have tummy issues we increase the yogurt (and sometimes sprinkle extra acidophilus in with it) and it really seems to help them.
When I make beans I soak them in water with a little vinegar overnight and then rinse them WELL before cooking (like 6-8 times until the rinsing water ceases to be frothy).  (If you use beans from a can, you can still rinse them well and then use them).  This seems to help with gas which can cause stomach/intestinal pain.
I hope you can find some solutions that help you!
Question:

I was wondering if you had any advice about how to get my 3 1/2 year old boy to sleep for a nap when he’s really keyed up? Like… say when he comes back from going into town (always exciting for him) or if we do anything different. Sometimes it takes him an entire hour to wind down and actually close his eyes and go to sleep. He gets *so* wound up that he is almost hyper, and nothing I do (playing soft music, rubbing his back, etc.) works to calm him down. He just plays, goofs around, talks (when I tell him to be quiet), laughs, and rolls all around in the bed.
I’ve found that he doesn’t do well without a nap, but trying to put him down to sleep for an entire hour is exhausting, and in my mind, unproductive. Yet if I let him stay up, his behavior will suffer, he’ll be especially disobedient and obnoxious, and get in all kinds of trouble. I’d like to try something else – ideas? I know that his brain is probably racing, which I can relate to if I’ve been out or done something fun, but I also know that’s also a signal that he’s overtired.
BTW – I know he’s 3 1/2, and lots of kids don’t nap at this age, but he still does. He also gets up super early (like 6 a.m. sometimes) and goes to bed as late as 9:30 or 10:00 without any behavioral issues related to being tired. I’ve tried to put him to bed earlier, but then he just wakes up earlier in the morning, even before 6:00 – like 5:00 or 5:30, and it’s just too early for us.
Do you think I should forgo his nap if he’s too wound up? Drop it altogether and put him to bed earlier every night?
I have tried skipping his naptime in the past, or going to an every-other-day thing, but he would get too exhausted after about three days of no naps and be super cranky. He is VERY VERY VERY active during the day, to the point where I”m having him go outside and run laps just to get out some of his excess energy.

Answers:

You could go on a walk with him, rock him, or read books to him until he is calmer
We have had many kids who took an hour to go to sleep for nap time.
I didn’t mind if they played, goofed around, or talked, laughed, or rolled around in bed — I only minded if they got out of bed when they weren’t supposed to.
At nighttime lately Reed has had a lot of trouble going to sleep (almost 2 years old), so I tell him about all the animals that are going night night, the people, etc.  It doesn’t really work.  Ha!
One thing that does work at night is for him to see siblings (and even parents!) wearing pajamas.  His very first sentence — about 2 weeks ago — was, “Mama, Beth jaja! (pajamas)”.  After he saw Bethany in her jaja’s, he went right to sleep.
I’m very in favor of kids getting lots of rest so they can be in great moods.  I would stick with the nap.

Q:  My son seems to always identify with Goliath instead of David.  Why does he want to play that he is a “bad guy”?

A: All of my boys have gone through that stage of being obsessed with Goliath and bad guys.  It has usually been a really long stage, I am sorry to say!  My 7-year-old is reeeeeeally into it right now.

None of my boys could understand that Goliath LOST the battle.  He was just bigger, so they liked him.

All of my boys study the Goliath page of Bible story books VERY intently forever.

I know this sounds funny, but I really wouldn’t worry about it!  It’s possible that he wants a rise out of you.  So I would not give him what he wants.  If you think that is what he wants, I would be totally uninterested, unless it gets out of hand, when he says that stuff.  Ronny says that kids love when we are like wind-up toys.  It is fun to get a rise out of us.

Even my one year old likes to shoot things.  At one time I was not going to let my kids point guns at people, but then I realized they couldn’t play cops and robbers or cowboys and Indians.

What is off-limits for you?

My 7 year old likes to play that he is a terrorist.  I don’t allow that.

He is obsessed with the Middle East, terrorism, etc.  I often quote the verse to him which i think is Phil. 4:8 about thinking on things that are true, honest, just, pure…  The same child also asks for prayer for persecuted Christians almost every Wed. night at prayer meeting.  Not sure where he heard about that.  But my point is that I don’t think that your son is any less spiritual because he is interested in these things.

Boys need to come to grips with what is wrong and what is right…  They are whistling in the dark because they are scared of those things and asking a lot of questions because they need to know how scared to be.

I think his world is expanding, and he is understanding more, so it is natural for him to be curious about things.  He is getting smarter and learning how to play games and get a rise out of people.

You can punish him for these things, but try to show no emotion.  Then it won’t be as fun for him.

I just found this article that says magnesium and vitamin E may be helpful for migraines that ladies have:

http://www.relieve-migraine-headache.com/HeadWay-menstrual-migraine.html

There are lots of other good articles about other kinds of migraines on that site, too.

This is from a friend of mine that has just had bad varicose veins during her pregnancy.

Oh, I have come to live with my varicose veins. Veins have swelled where I didn’t even know I had veins and my legs are so purple they look like an 80 year old’s. But, the Lord is good. That has really been my only problem this pregnancy so I really have nothing to complain about. I will tell you what has been the greatest blessing – and something I could not have done without this pregnancy – compression stockings. I have these super duper stockings that are so tight! Without them I could not stand for more than 30 minutes at a time. With them, I feel like super woman zipping around the house all day getting things done. They are really expensive ($115 a pair) so I had only two pair (now down to one that I’m hoping will last), but they have been well worth it.

There are various compression ratings for the stockings. So the same company that made mine also makes a very light compression stocking that falls into that price range, then I think there’s one or two more tiers (and price levels) before you get to the compression level that I needed. You can get my compression level for about $70 BUT they won’t last as long. Can you imagine putting a run in a $70 pair of pantyhose!! Yikes. So the ones I bought cost more, but they are more like tights than pantyhose and are harder to rip. My family has gotten used to me wearing them but they used to laugh at first because I seriously would break a sweat taking them on and off. But as I’ve said, they are a huge blessing!

I’ve purchased two brands. Mediven is the pair that I had all pregnancy. By the end I had two big holes in both upper thighs and they pilled horribly, but I wore them just about every day for 6 months and they did their job. I purchased their “comfort” series. The last pregnancy I purchased a pair from Sigvaris from their “select comfort” series. I didn’t wear them much last pregnancy, wore them in conjunction with the Mediven pair this pregnancy, but they gave out in the heal during my 7th month and were useless. So I think Mediven, for the same price, is a better brand.

These are the sites I have used. Both are owned, I believe, by the same company.

http://www.foryourlegs.com/

http://www.healthylegs.com/

Thank you so much to my wonderful friend who is a great writer and has given us such valuable information!!

You can get discounts if you do a search for ACE rather than purchasing it directly from School of Tomorrow, because you can order it from a warehouse, not from the publisher.  I have done that before and gotten old versions of the curriculum.  The new versions are better, though, so I might not do that again. BUT it might not matter for first grade.   It was the older grades that I didn’t like the former versions.

Christianbook.com has good deals on A.C.E. curriculum and they usually have the new versions.

Why do I like ACE?  (I only use it for math)

  • the Scripture memory built-in
  • the independent nature — the kids can do it all by themselves!
  • the really Godly approach to things like debt like in 8th grade math
  • the kids get to finish little booklets often, which keeps them motivated
  • the comics that the kids love

We all (including our 1 yr. old) take 1 teaspoon of cod liver oil every day.   Well, when I remember and make sure it all happens, which is not always!

Anyway, it has helped us so much with fighting sicknesses and other things.  I know it sounds disgusting, but I actually look forward to it now that I’m used it.  We get the lemon-flavored Nordic Naturals Arctic Cod Liver Oil, and it doesn’t taste fishy to me anymore.  Our kids are supposed to have it before breakfast every morning, but of course they often forget.  I think that even if we do get sick, we don’t get nearly as bad of a case of the sickness.

Cod Liver Oil has:

  • Vitamin A (650-1500 I.U. per tsp)
  • Vitamin D (0-20 I.U. per tsp)
  • Vitamin E (30 I.U. per tsp)
  • Omega 3’s (1260 mg per tsp) including EPA, DHA and other Omega 3’s
  • Oleic Acid or Omega 9 (600 mg per tsp)

I think it also helps me to not feel down during the rainy time here in Oregon since it has vitamin D.  Also of course you have all the benefits of omega 3’s:  help with eczema, healthy hair, ADD, back pain, healthy pregnancies, etc.

Not all cod liver oil is as amazingly good for you, though. It is all healthy, but some are not quite as outstanding.  Since artificial vitamin A can be unhealthy, many companies actually remove much of the natural vitamin A from their products. So we were glad to find Nordic Naturals, which understands the difference between hazardous artificial ingredients and healing natural ingredients.

Many of you have heard about how my son Micah got his Bachelors Degree in Social Sciences by the time he was 16. The way he did college is:

  • cheaper
  • more protected from the world
  • quicker
  • more flexible.

Micah’s entire degree only cost $8,000.  God was so good!

Now Micah is getting a Master of Arts in Theological Studies at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, all online.  It is a very conservative seminary, and we are very pleased with it so far.  Members of Southern Baptist churches can go to seminary for 1/3 – 1/2 the cost of other seminaries because the churches use offering money to help out with the tuition costs!

I have recently published an ebook that explains how we did this, called “His B.A. was Only $8k.” You can download this ebook on Amazon.  I’m so thankful God gave me this opportunity!!

The book is designed for Kindle, but if you don’t have a Kindle, just click the button on the bottom right of the screen that says “Free Kindle Reading Apps” or go to this link.

It really was so easy to write this ebook and publish it on Amazon.  Do you know that anyone can do it?  Ronny, Micah, and Hannah did much of the techie work for me because I don’t know if I ever would have understood it.  But I am excited that it is finally done!

If any of you read it, pleeeeeeeease go to the bottom of the page and click on the small grey button called “create your own review.” Apparently that is the only way to get Amazon to sell your books!  Thank you so much!!