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Saturday, 29 October 2011
Just One Reason Why We Sponsor A Child With Compassion International
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: Compassion International

This video from Compassion International caught my eye because it features a boy from Indonesia. Indonesia is where our Somi is from.

Somi, like all of our Compassion kids, is very special to us. He, our third Compassion child, came to us on March 25, 2010. We sponsor six Compassion children from all around the world. One we financially sponsor and for five we are correspondence sponsors.

A big part of Compassion International is the relationship that you have with your children. Compassion really encourages you to write to them. Some children, however, have sponsors that either can't write to them or don't want to write to them. That's where the correspondence sponsor comes in. Correspondence sponsors develop a relationship with their children just as if they were the regular sponsor. In fact, the children don't know any different. They think that the correspondence sponsor is their regular sponsor. That really doesn't bother Sarah and I because we have already vowed that if, for some reason, one of our children's regular sponsor couldn't afford to sponsor them anymore then we would take over the payments. We don't know how we would do it, we are already stretched to the limit, but we would do something.  

Over the years that we have been sponsoring with Compassion International we have realized how important those special relationships are. I think you may get a glimpse of how critical it is through this video:

Hopefully the above video gave you some idea of how important letter writing is to a Compassion child. If you would like more information on Compassion International, just click here or on any one of the links above. Please prayerfully consider it.

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Posted by tink38570 at 10:35 PM CDT
Updated: Saturday, 29 October 2011 10:37 PM CDT
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Friday, 28 October 2011
Big South Fork Scenic Railway - A Fantastic Field Trip!
Mood:  happy
Topic: Family

October is always a special month and this October was no different. Something special is going on for three weekends in a row! A couple of weeks ago we had the great pleasure to take a ride on the Big South Fork Scenic Railway with some good friends. Words cannot express the fun that we had but, as they say, pictures say 1000 words. So, I'll let these pictures do the talking. We had great fun with family...

with great friends...


and with Grandma...

We had fun traveling into tunnels...


Over bridges...


And through a lot of really great scenery...




And we even learned some history...



A great time was had by all on the Big South Fork Scenic Railway!

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Posted by tink38570 at 4:44 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 28 October 2011 5:05 PM CDT
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Thursday, 27 October 2011
We Interrupt This Programming...
Mood:  loud
Topic: Homeschool Product Review

Alert! Alert! Warning! Warning!

Do not allow your children to watch the following mentioned video in the car while you are driving!


I repeat!

Do not allow your children to watch the following mentioned video in the car while you are driving!

That's what I did and it was a big mistake! I kept looking in the rear view mirror and almost clicking on my turn signal to pull over.


What video? The Marshall Publishing "Lots & Lots of Fire Songs & Safety Tips" video, of course! My youngest son, Jacob, had to watch it the day that we got it. Unfortunately, the day that we got it we had to make a trip to the town next to us which is about 20 minutes away. So I foolishly popped it into our van's DVD player. Every time a firetruck siren would sound off on the video, I would be looking into my rear view mirror to see if a firetruck or police car was coming up behind me.

Jacob faithfully carried around that DVD and the accompanying book - "Lots & Lots of Fire Trucks & Firefighters" - for days on end. That's how much he liked it. Which is really a tribute to Marshall Publishing because Jacob can sometimes be picky!

I'm also appreciative that Jacob liked it because this 30 min. long DVD is actually comprised of 9 or 10 short clips that present everything from fire safety to how a fire truck is built.

Jacob loved how "Fireman Joe" talked about the proper way to use 911. He learned the number one rule of fire safety. He saw how to "Stop! Drop! and Roll!". And, he was taught how we, as a family, should make a plan so that we can get out of our house safely if it should catch on fire. Those were just some of the neat things that "Lots & Lots of Fire Songs and Safety Tips" teaches with catchy songs and creative short videos.

But that's not all! Jacob also learned all about what a fireman does from how he puts on his fireman's gear to how he uses all the equipment. Then he learned why we should appreciate firemen and what they do. Finally he learned how they build fire trucks. This video is creative, fun, and very well done.


But that's still not all! Along with the DVD, we also received a companion book - "Lots & Lots of Fire Trucks and Firefighters." This large and colorful, paperback book has a lot of pictures and information about firefighters, fire trucks, fire equipment, fire safety, fire facts, fire history, fire museums...you name it! If it's about fire fighting, it's in this book. Jacob (and big brothers, Joshua and John Allen, too) loves looking at the pictures. Some of the things, like fire safety and fire equipment, we talk about as he is looking through the book. Other things, like the "Greatest Fires In History", I'll save until later when he is more emotionally ready to learn about them.

We love this DVD and book package! And, the price of $29.95 for the DVD/Book set is great. But you don't even have to pay that much! Marshall Publishing is offering a deal just for all of the great TOS Homeschool Crew blog readers. If you enter the code "TOSF1" then you will get $10.00 off of the regular price! Quick! Click here or on any one of the hi-lighted links above to get to the Marshall Publishing website. They also have educational videos like the George Washington Carver video that I'm going to review at a later time. But don't wait until my later review. Check the TOS Homeschool Crew blog to see what the other great crew members said about the Carver video and the Firetruck video by clicking here.

So, after seeing all of the great videos about firefighters and fire safety, and looking at all of the pictures of shiny fire trucks, what was Jacob's absolute favorite thing? Well I was talking to him about that today, and, you know what he said? "I really like the fire helicopters Daddy!" Well, to each his own, I guess. That must comes from his older brother, Joshua's, love of "whirlybirds" since he was even younger than Jacob is now.

Hey, that reminds me...Marshall Publishing also has a video series called "Lots & Lots of Jets and Planes". I'll bet it'll have something about helicopters on it. And, I think they have something about trains that John Allen would love. Oh, and look at what else they have...!

Happy Home Educating!

As a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew I was sent free copies of Marshall Publishing's "Lots & Lots of Fire Songs & Safety Tips" DVD and "Lots and Lots of Fire Trucks and Firefighters" book in order to use at home and give my honest review on this blog.

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Posted by tink38570 at 1:28 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 28 October 2011 12:25 AM CDT
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Wednesday, 26 October 2011
I Started to Fast Today...
Mood:  not sure
Topic: The Purple Files



I started to fast today. You know, the Biblical form of fasting where you deprive yourself of food. I haven't fasted a lot in my Christian life. Only a few times. Nor have a studied a lot about it. So I am by far not an expert.

I have, also, heard about other forms of fasting other than fasting from food. Sometimes there are other things that are important to you that mean more to you than food. Some people fast from TV, some folks fast from talking on the phone, I decided to also fast from playing any type of computer game today. Instead, when I thought about playing a video game, I would pray instead.

So, I was going to fast from food and from playing on the computer. I had good intentions and I started out well. Until, before I knew it, Sarah stopped and got McDonalds on her way home from therapy with our two youngest. I was two bites into the chicken sandwich before I remembered. Ah, well, I plan to make fasting a regular priority in my life, so, hopefully, I will remember. But I still had the computer game fast. I have managed to keep up with that.

It's amazing how, when you try to honor God, God will bless you as well, Today has been a wonderful time of prayer. The funny thing is, although I have been praying for the things that started the fast in the first place, those things have not been the priority.

God has brought many things to mind to pray for. My family. Our Compassion International children. A friend from Florida who is going through a particularly difficult time with her special needs child. Those have all been things that God has led me to pray for. It's really been a special time.

Not only has God led me to pray for specific things, but he has led me to some great devotional and thought provoking writings. Things for me to reflect on and think about. Things that go along with the things that I have been praying about.

God has been doing a lot of that lately. He's been teaching me to be discerning and to listen for his voice. I talked about it on the TOS Homeschool Crew forum a little bit the other day. There were several times that day that I began to comment about specific things on the forum when it was almost like God placed His hand over my hands. It was very clear that I wasn't to write those posts. It's a very humbling thing when God does that to you.

God still hasn't given me a specific answer to some of the prayer items that led me to fast today, but I know He will. If I must fast another day I then so be it. I like being led by the Holy Spirit. I mentioned that it was humbling, but in a way it is very refreshing as well.

How about you? Have you fasted before? Has God given you discernment in areas of your life? It's a special time. Pray about what God would have you to do. If it's not fasting it may be something else. I can tell you that times like these are special. 

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Posted by tink38570 at 12:01 AM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, 25 October 2011 10:42 PM CDT
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Tuesday, 25 October 2011
Do You Have Boys? This is for You!
Mood:  happy
Topic: Affiliates

I found out about this company a couple of months ago and I am really impressed with it. It's a company that is all about boys! Now, with three boys living in our house, this company was made for our family!

We've been looking for things that would get the kids from in front of the TV, game system or computer screens. The things on the JM Cremp's website will inspire their imagination in ways that an XBox game never could.

JM Cremp's has everything. Games, books, outside toys, clothes...you name it and they have it. And it's all for boys! No girls allowed! Oh, I guess if you have an adventurous girl then she may find some of these things interesting as well.

This company was started by a family with five boys. In fact, the name JM Cremp's comes from the initials of the parents and their sons. A family with five sons has got to know what appeals to boys.

Check out their website by clicking on the above banner. I know you won't be disappointed.

In full disclosure, I am an affiliate for JM Cremp's so, if you click on the banner and buy something I will receive a commission. I do believe in the companies that I affiliate with, though, and do not choose companies just as a way to make money.

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Posted by tink38570 at 1:15 PM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, 25 October 2011 1:26 PM CDT
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