Sunday, June 24, 2012

Summertime, Summertime, Sum, Sum, Summertime!

It has been HOT on the East Coast this week.
Hotter than blue blazes.
Hot and humid.
Over 100 degrees hot.
I'm possibly going to suffer spontaneous human combustion.
I hate it.

Unless I am on the beach or in a pool, I would prefer the 70s.  Grumble, grumble.  Being hot makes me testy. I'll just look at the picture below to take my mind off the heat.  Ahhhhh...

My post really isn't about the weather.  I wanted to tell you about a great business I found for custom-made swimsets, Modest Swimwear and Activewear by: Cori. I discovered Cori's site a few years back when I was searching for modest swimwear for an upcoming beach trip.  I ordered two sets from her then and loved them, so now that I've dropped a couple pounds, I thought I'd get me a new set and one for Julianna.

Being able to customize pretty much everything is a definite advantage.  You can choose from sets (top/skort, top/skirt) or separates, adult and girl's sizes. To order, the first thing you do is pick the fabric and sports style you want (you have four styles to choose from and many different fabrics - I chose Sports Style 2 and a tie dye print and Julianna chose #3 and peace signs).  Next, contact Cori with the info and she'll have you do some measurements (standard measurements, plus sleeve length, skirt and shirt lengths, length of shorts under skirt (if you choose to get them), etc.  Payments are made through PayPal.  Cori's turnaround time is pretty quick (3-4 weeks), but  if you need it by a certain time, order early...especially in the summer months.

Here's Julianna modeling her's:

I'm not brave enough to post my picture, but I really love my new set too.

I cannot recommend Cori and Modest Swimwear and Activewear high enough.  She also does ski bib skirts for Winter fun.
Ahh, snow.  178 days until Winter!

Check her out, friends!

Monday, June 18, 2012

TOS Review: Creation Illustrated Magazine

Creation Illustrated is a magazine that celebrates the beauty of our Creator and his creations.  Started in 1983, by homeschoolers, Tom and Jennifer Ish, CI has both beautiful pictures and a high quality feel.  As they tout on their website, "The Christian answer to National Geographic."  

Their Mission Statement:

Our purpose is to share the wonders of God's creation. By revealing fresh insights of His infinite wisdom, gentle touch, undeniable justice, redeeming love, and flawless design, pure truth shall bring renewed peace. Each part of this publication is offered as a reprieve from the daily rigors of life so that all can look to the future with unbridled gratitude and hope.  
Each edition is divided into three sections - Creation Illustrated in Nature, in Scripture and in Living.  There is also an Instructional Guide in the back that provides ideas and activities for further study - questions about articles, field trip ideas or supplemental activities, etc.  

My musings:  

I had heard of Creation Illustrated through advertisements, but had never had the opportunity to see one in person.  I was very pleasantly surprised at the quality.  Most magazine pages are so thin, but these are printed on heavy, high gloss paper.  It's definitely a magazine that you keep, rather than toss each month. Each article and feature celebrates the wonder of nature and our amazing God behind it all.  Julianna has been hoping to see a hummingbird this summer (I guess I should get a hummingbird feeder to aid in the process.), so we were excited to see an article in one of the magazines we received about hummingbirds. (Did you know that they beat their wings 70 times per second and up to 200 times per second in flight?  Amazing little creatures.)  

Because Creation Illustrated believes that you, my friends, are groovy, they are offering you a FREE introductory issue.  Subscriptions are $19.95 for 4 quarterly issues.

You can read what the other Crewmates thought of the magazine here.

* Disclaimer:  As a  member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I received 4 issues of Creation Illustrated in exchange for my honest review.  No other compensation was given. *

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

TOS Review - Rainbow Sentences App for the iPad

This is the first time I have had the  opportunity of reviewing an app.  Since my iPad and me (and Julianna - she wants to use it almost as much as I do) are joined at the hip, I was excited to give this new program a try.  Rainbow Sentences is the newest educational app offered by Mobile Educational Store.  
Rainbow Sentences is designed to help students improve their ability to construct grammatically correct sentences by using color coded visual cues. The who, what, where, and why parts of sentences are color coded to help students recognize and understand how combinations of these parts create basic sentence structure.

My musings:
Rainbow Sentences is simple to use and the color coding makes it easy to identify the who, what, where, why of the sentence. We've lightly touched grammar this year: nouns, verbs, etc. (mostly by completing Mad Libs - Ha!), but haven't focused on sentence structure. This app was a good way for Julianna to get exposure to building correct sentences without knowing she was doing it. Plus, the sentences (and pictures that went with them) were usually silly (i.e. "The bear is reading" that went along with a picture of a bear drinking coffee and reading the newspaper.  Of course, she recording it as, "The bear is drinking icky, stinky coffee and reading."), so she enjoyed that. With each correct sentence created, the student earns a puzzle piece that, when completed, is an animated picture. This was not motivating to Julianna at all. Some type of game would have been better. You have the option to record (and save) the student reading the sentences for playback. She loved this. Of course, if she read the sentence correctly (which she sometimes did, with her own vocal characters added), but most of the time she made up her own narration to go along with the silly picture. We didn't make it through many levels, but it's definitely an app we'll continue to explore.

Julianna's musings:
"I think the pictures are kinda silly and I like to record whatever I want."

Details:  Rainbow Sentences can be downloaded from iTunes for $7.99.

Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I received a copy of the Rainbow Sentences app for the iPad in exchange for my honest review.  No other compensation was received.