If You Really Loved It Then It Wouldn’t Be on the Floor

If You Really Loved It Then It Wouldn’t Be on the Floor

I have apparently gotten some kind of bug.  Not the sneezing or stomach ache kind, but the kind that drives your family insane from your a constant need to organize and clean.

Today, unfortunately for my younger boys, I will be cracking the whip on the Lego situation.  I have had it up.to.here as we say in the south.  You don’t need to even show where “here” is.  It’s understood to be too high to even reach anyway.

Last week we emptied their loft bedroom of everything except the beds and gave the room a fresh coat of paint.  Then we built shelves to hold the Legos and I picked up some storage boxes at IKEA while I was in Houston.  The boys tried to convince me that it would take way too long to organize all of the Legos, but they are out of their league when it comes to convincing.  Once I get a notion in my brain to straighten something it can’t be unconvinced no matter how many car washes you offer me.  Resistance is futile; you will be assimilated.

I think they don’t want me in their room because they know that I can get a little aggressive with the trash bag.  I would never throw away a Lego (mainly because they cost more than all of my jewelry combined) but I wouldn’t think twice about tossing the cereal boxes they like to save to build tiny forts with or any craft projects.  One of my boys has a thing for using pencils that no one else wants because they are too short to go in the sharpener.  So he sharpens it with his pocket knife and does his schoolwork with these nubs.

But my motto is, “If you really loved it then it wouldn’t be on the floor.”  #TRASH

Cleaning the Lego room -- The Pennington Point

After I get that done I plan to keep the momentum going by cleaning out what used to be a study room for the kids and making it into an office for myself.  I’m not trying to hog the space, but they really never study in there. Instead they sprawl across the couch or front porch to do their work.  I can’t let a perfectly good 6′x10′ space go to waste.  Especially when I am working from a recliner in my bedroom with no desk or flat surface of any kind.  I just balance my computer on my knees while typing.  It works OK, but a desk and real chair are appealing.

Plus, if I had an office I might actually get something done besides sitting down to work then instead Googling everything that pops into my head.  I wonder about things….like the age of various celebrities or where to buy baby chicks.  I am hoping that being in a big-girl space will encourage me to focus like a real business woman.  Or at least enough to get over this cleaning bug.  Before my family has had it up.to.here with me.

Well, back to work.  Have a great weekend!

Essential Oils for Homeschooling

Essential Oils for Homeschooling

I’m combining passions today.   Homeschooling and essential oils.   Like chocolate and peanut butter….so, so good together.

What oils are great for helping with focus and concentration in your school!  -- The Pennington Point

I don’t know if any of you have this issue in your homeschool….but sometimes my kids can have trouble concentrating.  They stare out the window and start playing with their pencil and when I ask if they are finished with their work they look surprised, as if they didn’t have any idea that half an hour had passed.  Then they may start to cry for no reason or maybe I start to cry….good times.

My essential oils have helped me so much with my moods and mental clarity that I knew they would help for school time too.  So I started to experiment with them.  I got some that are specifically blended for helping focus and concentration.  I put some on the kids directly and some in the diffuser.  It has made a HUGE difference.

Literally….night and day.  I mean, I haven’t cried over school for at least 6 weeks.

(Of course….these will work for any school or learning.  It’s not exclusive to homeschoolers!  I even used these same oils for my husband while he was studying for the Bar Exam last month.)

These are the oils I use the most: Brain Power, Clarity and Common Sense

oils-for-homeschool01

I have noticed that my boys focus much better when I am diffusing Clarity and I like to also add rosemary if they are really struggling. Rosemary is said to restore mental alertness.  Yes, please.

Another oil that I have heard is great for helping kids’ calm down and focus is called Vetiver.  I haven’t tried it, but I’ve heard so many great things about it that I’m adding it to my next order.  I’ve read that it has really helped kids with ADD/ADHD.

So here’s exactly what I do….

1. I start the diffuser a few minutes before getting school going.
2. I add Clarity and sometimes rosemary.
3. I will often add something else like Purification (if we’ve been closed up a lot and need “fresh” air), peppermint (if we need a perk-me-up) or basil (to wake us up).  It just depends on what seems right.  You can’t really mess up, that’s what is so great about using the oils.
4. Then I apply diluted Brain Power and Common Sense to the backs of their necks and across their foreheads.  They all really like it when I apply the oils because I give them a quick massage to go with it.

Then we’re ready to start school.  We take a long, deep breath and dig into the day’s subjects.  Less stress, more focus.  That’s what I’m talkin’ about.

If you have been thinking about getting started using essential oils CLICK HERE to sign up and also see links to my other posts about these amazing oils.  And feel free to ask me questions….I love sharing more about what has our family so much!

If you like learning about oils, follow me on Instagram where I share what I use throughout the day!

By the way, I am not a doctor.  These are just my experiences and not intended for diagnosis or treatment.

One Year Adventure Novel Review and Special Deal

One Year Adventure Novel Review and Special Deal

This being Homeschool Month here at the Point….I will be sharing our favorite curriculum choices.  This one, One Year Adventure Novel, HAD to be my first recommendation.  I didn’t even have to think about it.  Nope.  It’s our #1.

OYAN.....a great homeschool writing curriculum!!!

We started using it 5 years ago and all of my high school kids have gone through it.  My oldest daughter was already finished with school when we got it, so she volunteered to oversee the lessons (but really she just wanted to take the class).  Since she was taking care of it for me, I thought I would use that time to work with the younger kids, but we all found ourselves watching every video lesson and practicing our own writing right alongside the “official” students in the class.

One Year Adventure Novel is a DVD-based high school fiction writing curriculum through which the kids write an entire novel by the end of the year.  How cool is that?!  It’s entertaining, stretching, educational, adventurous and exciting.  No really.  My kids love it so much that I make it the last class of the day.  It’s their reward for doing the rest of their school.

We enjoyed it so much the first year that we followed with Other Worlds (their science fiction & fantasy expansion) and now we are using Cover Story with my junior high and early high school kids (they write a magazine instead of a novel!).

I know what you’re thinking, “Lisa, you can’t do everything they do.  If One Year Adventure Novel jumped off a cliff would you do it too?”  Yep.  I probably would.

But back to the subject.  More things I love about this high school writing curriculum.

1. My kids have learned so much about creative writing.  My older kids have written novels and even though they aren’t all publishable, they have that accomplishment which built their confidence.
2. It stirs up their sense of adventure, creativity and pushes them to think outside of their box.
3. You are getting so much more than just a writing program….with your box comes a code that you can use to join the forums, a student novel writing contest and lots of extras!
4.  Friendships.  My kids have made many friends through the forums and the Summer Workshop.
5. Oh yeah!  The Summer Workshop.  This will be our third year to attend and it.is.amazing.  To prove it to you, my kids save all year to pay their own way completely.  They gain so much knowledge, fellowship and enthusiasm for writing there.  It really is worth the sacrifice.  (AND you can still get the early bird prices through the end of March!)

And the folks at OYAN are constantly working to improve and add to their products, so they have made a new and improved 2nd edition!  It has more depth covering the book, “The Prisoner of Zenda,” expanded information in the DVDs and better quality (although I have no complaints about the first one).  It will be available on April 1 for $239.

AND I am excited to share a deal with y’all!  Through the month of March (or until supplies last) you can get the 1st edition for $179 (regularly $199) PLUS free shipping PLUS a free Runt the Brave book. 

My favorite high school writing curriculum.  Don't miss the chance to get a great deal on it!

CLICK HERE to get this special deal!!

(OK I have to add, Runt the Brave is one of our family’s favorite books and I have given it away so many time here on the blog that it’s borderline obnoxious.  But I know how hard it is to find a good book for your kids, so I can’t help myself.  I promise I don’t own stock in this company.  I just love their work and the way they feed into the future of our country by loving our kids.)

This post contains affiliate links.

A Little Makeover & Other Stuff

A Little Makeover & Other Stuff

There’s been a lot going on around here in the past week.  I have things to say.  Important things like the fact that I have a headache from jump starting my diet again.

I was on the plateau from you-know-where for the whole month of February.  I figured when it lasted more than a week that I needed to do a little jump start, so I went back to the beginning on Monday.  I am watching my food more carefully and not veering one bit.  Apparently I have been eating little cheats that I didn’t realize ‘cuz I’ve already lost a pound and I’m climbing the walls wishing for a snack.

I have to keep reminding myself that it will pass.

The good news is I figured out how to maintain without trying.  The bad news is I still want to lose about 25 more pounds, so I need to cut the snacking out.

Did I tell you that I am doing a 5K at the end of this month.  I know, it’s crazy huh?!

Speaking of short marathons, last week while James was in California the kids and I worked out some big surprises for him.  We gave the front of his office a budget makeover.

His office is a garage that we enclosed a long time ago.  It was in desperate need of some TLC.  I mean it was sad folks.  So sad.  I’d walk out there every day and wonder how he could stand it.  But he’s a guy.  He didn’t think much of it.  Sooo maybe the makeover was more for me.  I’m starting to see that now.

Before:

a little budget makeover

We built a deck across the front with old lumber and made a small awning for above the door.  We painted the door and touched up the wall, cleaned everything and added accessories.  It was such fun to work on it all together!

After:
a little budget makeover

Oh, and we made him a new sign.  The whole thing was a graduation gift for finishing law school.

a little budget makeover

He was so surprised when he got home.  I managed to miraculously keep it all hidden for the whole week.  I had to hold back complaints, questions and my general excitement at doing this project without his help.

I am a pretty good secret keeper, except from him.  Him I tell everything.  Even when his eyes start to glaze over I just keeeeeep talkin’.

Thanks for listening.  Have a great week!

Using Essential Oils for Your Teen

Using Essential Oils for Your Teen

You may not have noticed, but the teens years can be a little….well…..difficult.

It’s such a rough time in many ways.  New feelings emerging, more responsibility, pimples, the mystery of the future….really.  I wouldn’t want to go back to that.

In my house we give each other room to grow and learn and make mistakes.  But also, we expect the kids to treat each other with kindness and love.  It’s not always easy when hormones are raging.

First: Bible.  Knowing God’s Word and what it says about how we should treat one another is numero uno in managing teen struggles.  Just because you feel like punching something doesn’t mean you get to be rude to everyone.

Second: Pray.  Praying with and for your teens is crucial.  These years are fragile.  Handle with prayer.

Third: Essential Oils.  We use a variety of oils that we have found to really help when one of us is feeling off.  Here are a few that we love with a capitol L.

Using Essential Oils for Your Teen - The Pennington Point

1. Valor -  My personal fave.  It helps when you feel “off” and teenagers feel off a lot.
2. Peace & Calming – Need I say more?
3. Frankincense – This oil is great for skin!  I mix it with jojoba oil and my teens use it on their face.  And while we’re at it frankincense also relieves stress.
4. Lavender – Growing pains….this is what you need.  Rub it right on their legs where the pain is and it will help them sleep.
5. Joy – Some days your poor teen can really struggle with a lack of joy.  A little of this rubbed over their heart will help them feel better about life.
6. Peppermint – It just lifts your mood plus it’s great for bad breath.  Sometimes teens have that.  I’m not naming names, I’m just sayin’.
7. Dragon Time – OK I said it.  There are certain days of the month when my daughters have more trouble than others.  This oil blend is specifically made for those hormone filled days.
8. Melrose – Let’s face it, teens can occasionally smell bad.  This oil is great for dispelling odors.  But it’s such a good one because it also helps with mental fatigue and difficult emotions.
9. Common Sense – Yep, I keep this one close at hand.  There are just some days when it feels like I need to make a room spray with it and just walk around spritzing it on people.
10. Brain Power – This one is more expensive, but you will love how well it helps your test taking, essay writing, fact memorizing teen focus.

The first 7 of these are included in the Premium Kit so if you have that you are armed for the job.  The rest I collected over time.  If you have friends with teens, you could split the cost of a bottle and dilute it like I show in this post.  And be sure to teach your teens how and why to use the oils.  They like having control over their choices and this is a great way to help them manage their own needs.

If you are interested in getting started with Young Living Oils just it’s so easy….just start HERE.

“Every Day a Blessing” Giveaway

“Every Day a Blessing” Giveaway

This contains affiliate links.

Last week I shared our teen devotional and today I get to tell you about the one we are using for the younger kids.  It’s called “Every Day a Blessing: A Year of God’s Love” and it’s precious.

Each day there is a Bible verse and a small story to read.  Very short and simple.  Then it ends with a prompt like, “What can you pray for today?” or “Which is your favorite ocean animal?” and leads to sweet discussions.  We have had some doozies already!

I hope you’re spending a few minutes each day reading Bible verses with your kids and discussing how they fit into our lives.  It is so, so good for your kids! (and you too!)

Go get yourself a new devotional to get you started!

And I’m giving away one of these to one of you!  Just enter below….

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2 Things You Need to wash Your Car

2 Things You Need to wash Your Car

I’m getting ready to go to the Homeschool Moms’ Winter Summit this weekend in Oklahoma.  I always clean my car before I travel and when I went out I was struck by the magnitude of the dirt on my van.

So I grabbed 2 things: my AutoRight Easy Wash Stick and my 14 year old son.

And I put him to work.

Now my van is shiny clean and ready to travel.  And he loved using the Easy Wash Stick !  Afterward he said to me, “That was fun Mom!  I’ll wash your van anytime.” (plus I paid him $5)

AND hooray!  The awesome folks at AutoRight are letting me give one of you an Easy-Wash Stick!  I’m sorry I can’t give you a 14 year old boy to go with it.

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This post is sponsored by HomeRight and it contains affiliate links.

Bringing Home a Surprise

Bringing Home a Surprise

Last week is a blur.  Between sleeping more than the average bear and trying to get my suitcase put away I was spent.

I had planned to get some small projects done when I got home from all of my travels, but instead I mostly listened to my kids tell me stories they made up and ask me if I know where their toothpaste went.

It’s questions like these that make me realize that kids really think their parents aren’t human.  I know they think I have the power to know where the toothpaste is despite being gone for 5 days, but the sad truth is that I can’t even find my own toothpaste so we’re all out of luck.

If you haven’t guessed, no projects got done, unless you count that I actually did get my suitcase unloaded and put away in less than 5 days, which might be a new record.  I am pretty good about the unpacking, mostly because I need the stuff that’s in there.  But actually tucking the suitcase back where it belongs can be a long, drawn out process.  It creeps from the bedroom, to outside the bedroom door, where it stays for a couple of weeks.  Then I ask a kid to take it to the kitchen, where it waits for me to notice it again and then, maybe in a few weeks, gets put away.  Typically a 6 week process.

But somehow despite my extreme laziness the suitcase was out of sight before the weekend.  I may have to celebrate this victory with a nap.

This week I think I may actually get a few of those unfinished projects done.  I bought myself some “leave-Mom-alone” time yesterday by bringing home a ping pong table.

Fun mom blog!

I was in the nearby super-center and they were putting out the table they had used as display for half price.  We’ve been wanting one, so I snatched it.  Of course, I was driving my minivan and no, it wouldn’t fit inside.

The nice young man that was helping me agreed to put it on top of my van for me while I went back in to purchase some twine.  When I came back out he had it up there in a weird way, but I was too polite to say anything about it.  So I drove through town at 12 miles per hour while men were flagging me down and saying things like it was tied up there wrong and “How far do you have to drive like that?” and that I needed to stop and fix it.

It was pretty scary actually.  At one point the table nearly slid off the van and into oncoming traffic.  I pulled over and tied it up some more until there were more knots than were probably necessary.  Clearly I was never a scout.

Fun mom blog!

I am not gifted in the area of tying things to my car.  My husband cringes.

But I made it home with the table still strapped up there and the kids are so thrilled to have a ping pong table they they will be playing it all week and not notice that I am ignoring them, so it was worth the harrowing drive home.

They love it so much that the three youngest boys begged to sleep under it last night.  They lined their blankets all in a row and acted like it was the most comfortable place they have been since we let them sleep on the trampoline one night last summer.

This I do not understand.  If you ever need to torture me for information, just tell me I will have to sleep on the floor under the ping pong table and I will spill all my secrets.

This week, in addition to those projects, I will be planning my Thanksgiving meal and trying to figure out how to fit all of my guests around the ping pong table which is now in my dining room.

The good news is if we don’t have enough places for people to sleep….we can put some of them under it.

Have a great week!

 

How to Paint Your Floor

How to Paint Your Floor

A couple of weeks ago I showed you my updated boys’ bathroom.  We worked on so many small details in there that I couldn’t give you the nitty gritty information.  So today I’m getting down low and telling you what we did on the floor.

It started as a plain cement sub floor.  I had never done anything with it since it’s the boys’ bathroom and they tend to be a bit….um…messy.

I have a done a lot of painted floors over the years (click here to see more of my painted floors) and I always start with paint that is specifically made for floors.  It’s called porch/floor paint.  You can have it mixed any color you want which is great because that means you can change the look of the floor whenever you want for less than $50.  Cool!

I had half a can of floor paint leftover from my bathroom (which is also a painted floor) so I just used that.  It’s a teal blue which isn’t the color I was using in the boys’ bathroom, but I was planning to turn it into plaid so I didn’t mind what color the first coat was.  First we primed it, then we painted it with the teal.

Now here is my first warning: You will finish the first coat of paint and it will look so pretty and you may be tempted to leave it like that.  Don’t.  A solid floor shows every tiny thing.  You will hate it.  You don’t have to do plaid, of course, but do some kind of pattern over it.

Now that you have the foundation for the paint you are ready for the fun part.  You can use pretty much any water based paint over it. Craft paint, old interior wall paint, anything.

I sat down with the girls and we planned out the order of the colors and widths for the stripes.  Then we started taping.  We used FrogTape and my quilting ruler and drew pencil lines then taped them and painted with little foam brushes.  We’d tape off the stripes going one direction, wait for it to dry (which took about half an hour) then tape off the same color stripes going the other direction.  We did one color at a time.

We used the same strips of tape over and over.  Here are my girls working on the fourth layer of stripes.

As you can see some of the paint came off with the tape.  We just went back at the end and touched it up.  It was quick and easy.

Here are the types of paint we used: Black-craft paint, gray-bathroom wall paint (it’s goo to use the wall color to tie it all together), white-wall paint from another room, red-craft paint

Once we painted all of the colored stripes I thought it needed a final detail….a teeny stripe.  So we took a black Sharpie and made thin lines across the top using the ruler.  That took just a few minutes.

Now, here’s my second word of wisdom: Do a wash of brown over the entire floor.  It adds just a small touch that keeps all of the hairs and dirt from showing.  Trust me here….you will want to skip this step because your new floor looks so shiny and sparkly.  You will start doing the wash and think, “No! This is ruining it!”  Then at the end when you’re finished you will realize how smart I am and send me thank you letters.

To do the brown wash I just mix some brown craft paint with water about 50/50.  Then we rub it on the floor with a circle lotion using an old rag.  This is a very light effect, not too dark.  It’s dry in seconds and look great!

Now the last thing to do is to put several coats of polycrylic over the whole thing.  Some people use polyurethane, but I have found that it yellows too much so I like the polycrylic.  You can find it in the same place you buy the polyurethane.  We did 5 coats of the polycrylic allowing a few hours between coats.

My last warning: Stay off the floor for at least 24 hours.  Your new floor needs to cure.  Paint gets harder with time and especially the floor needs this process.

There.  Done.  BAM!

I hope you’re following me on Instagram for my month long #everydayfaves challenge! 

I’m sharing all of my favorite things and I’ll be doing a giveaway at the end of the month!

Nature Bible Giveaway

Nature Bible Giveaway

Do each of your kids have their own Bible?  Most of mine do and my 10 year old, Elijah, had been asking if he could get his own so he didn’t have to borrow one whenever he needed to look things up.  He’s also a reader and likes to sneak away by himself to read and I wanted to be sure he had a Bible that he could grab whenever the mood struck.

So I gave him this adorable Nature Bible.  It’s perfect for a boy who likes to be outside as much as possible!

He loves the zipper closure.  He’s so proud to have his own special Bible.

And you can win a Nature Bible for the outdoor loving kids in your life!

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This post contains affiliate links.