February 2016 - xoxo Rebecca

THAT FRIDAY BLOG HOP


Happy Friday everyone! Thanks for joining us again for That Friday Blog Hop which goes live every Thursday evening at 10pm EST. So join us each week & link up your blogs, social media outlets, or anything you'd love to share. If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please fill out this form

That Friday Blog Hop: Join Us Every Thursday Evening

While there are no rules, we would love it if you would :::
- Stop by the hosts & co-hosts blog and follow along
- Say hi to new bloggers and leave a wonderful comment
- Grab the button and/or tweet about the blog hop as well
- Come back every Thursday evening to join in the party

xoxo Rebecca

THAT FRIDAY BLOG HOP


Happy Friday everyone! Thanks for joining us again for That Friday Blog Hop which goes live every Thursday evening at 10pm EST. So join us each week & link up your blogs, social media outlets, or anything you'd love to share. If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please fill out this form

That Friday Blog Hop: Join Us Every Thursday Evening

While there are no rules, we would love it if you would :::
- Stop by the hosts & co-hosts blog and follow along
- Say hi to new bloggers and leave a wonderful comment
- Grab the button and/or tweet about the blog hop as well
- Come back every Thursday evening to join in the party

xoxo Rebecca

Hello From The Other Side

Ok, so I absolutely cannot stand that song. However, HELLO!!!!!

I feel like I haven't blogged in forever. It feels that way to me. I've been so consumed lately with my new business, that I have no time for anything else it seems like at the moment. All day, all night... I'm a working mess trying to do everything I can to keep up. I feel like I'm falling behind in a lot of other things.

You know what's hard? To have a balance. Yup, finding a balance in everything we have going on. It's not easy I tell ya. Not at all. I find myself on nights I can actually lay down, up on the computer because my brain won't shut off working mode. When I can sleep, I find myself having dreams about working and my business...it's consuming my life!

That's not a bad thing. I just wish there were more hours during the day for everything. Because of everything going on, we decided that we would try out Time4Learning for school this week and see how that goes. I thought I would be happier with my daughter being a more independent learner.

Today was day two and I found out I am not comfortable with my daughter being an independent learner. As much as I need her to be for every reason right now, I need to be her teacher, not the program. I just feel I know exactly what she is learning and we are set on track with our lessons and I think this is stressing me out jumping in the middle of the year with all new stuff. It makes me feel I'm wasting money on all the curriculum I bought that we were using. That we need to just finish with what we have because it does work for us.

The only reason I needed her to be more independent with learning is because my younger ones require so much attention. School was so stressful for all of us with me having to be everywhere at once for everyone and how demanding the little ones are for me, which I love that they are... but still. It's hard to focus on school when another is screaming for me.

I don't know. I'm trapped in the middle on this. 85% of me just says STOP and go back to our old way because we had a system. But that last little bit says it will work out and be helpful and work out. I have no idea... ugh I'm just stressed and confused. I just see her sitting there reading the stuff on the screen and not absorbing it nor understanding it. I wish it read it more to her. She learns much better when she hears it rather than reading it. If that ,makes any sense. But with Time4Learning, she is just reading it and then telling me she doesn't get it. Where when I was sitting with every lesson with her, I read it all and had her read a little and we talked about it. Or I would stop and ask if she's understanding what they are saying.

She's a very bright girl. In many subjects, she is ahead a grade or two. But for some reason, she's not good at being an independent learner and I don't know if this program that I heard praises about is going to be the right fit for us now as much as I need and want it to be.

If anyone else has used this, does it get better? Is it workable for a busy mom to not have to sit with her child and they still understand everything? Or is this program not what I hoped for? I feel I'm ranting on but I just feel so stressed out on what to do. 
xoxo Rebecca

THAT FRIDAY BLOG HOP


Happy Friday everyone! Thanks for joining us again for That Friday Blog Hop which goes live every Thursday evening at 10pm EST. So join us each week & link up your blogs, social media outlets, or anything you'd love to share. If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please fill out this form

That Friday Blog Hop: Join Us Every Thursday Evening

While there are no rules, we would love it if you would :::
- Stop by the hosts & co-hosts blog and follow along
- Say hi to new bloggers and leave a wonderful comment
- Grab the button and/or tweet about the blog hop as well
- Come back every Thursday evening to join in the party

xoxo Rebecca

Keeping Up With The Busy Life #DataAndAMovie

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and Walmart Family Mobile. All opinions are mine alone. #DataAndAMovie #CollectiveBias

Being a mom is not an easy job. We are always on the go. From the early morning til the wee hours of the night. And yet, our job is never done. Even when the day is over. I know how hectic life can get. I have three children myself and they are always needing and wanting my attention. I'm constantly being pulled in every direction you can think of.

I'm not only a mom though, I'm a blogger, run my own business, and I homeschool my children. There's a lot of superpowers I would say to all of that. So what does a busy mom like me do on the go or to keep up with everyone's schedules? Go to Walmart of course!

I know you will think I'm crazy when I tell you this, but I do not own a cell phone. That is right! I don't and haven't for almost five years. And it's because my husband and I just couldn't afford it. Cell phone prices are just too much out of our budget and have been for many years. When we used to have cell phones, we were paying $210 a month for two lines for unlimited everything. Not to mention the phones themselves were around $400 each. 

So we got rid of them and said it wasn't worth it. Until now that is, thanks to Walmart and their new Walmart Family Mobile PLUS plan which is only $49.88 a month per line. This plan offers Unlimited Talk, Text, & Data, which includes up to 10GB of 4G LTE data. 


The most data I have used in a month at one time was around 12GB but I was streaming movies all day everyday. So that really can eat up a data plan. Walmart's Family Mobile Plus plan is perfect for anyone who uses a ton of data like that and so much more affordable. You can also add lines and save $5 each month per line added. If that isn't enough to impress you, they also give you a free movie on VUDU every month  ($7 value), per line.

With unlimited data, I am able to keep up with my busy life and schedule on the go. Something I was never able to do before. I love that it is no contract and that you are charged at the end of each month, not the beginning. This way I can finally have a cell phone for an affordable price at home, or on the go.

So I purchased the Samsung Galaxy Core Prime at Walmart for only $79.92, which is on rollback from $99.92. This phone is very nice. It's lightweight, and holds a lot of apps. I have found that the download time is quick and a breeze. Not to mention, it has a nice camera on it. I take a million photos a day and I can't stand a bad camera. This one has me really happy with the quality.

If the kids and I left the house to meet up with someone, I was never able to know if they were running late, changed their mind, or even lost trying to find their way because I could never receive a text or call from them, or even a message on Facebook. And I can't tell you how frustrating that can be when you make plans and sit and wait and wait and wait for them and they never show up and you can't get the message why. But now that won't be an issue because I can get updates from people while out of the house.

Also, there is so much more I can do with unlimited data when I need it and not being worried about the limitation of using up my data. And being that we are homeschoolers, we love to go out and explore and take on the day. But sometimes, we never know what the weather may be. Now we can no matter where we are.

I can check the weather app no matter where I am to make sure our plans are good for that day. Or if we have to reschedule and plan around the weather. And one thing I would hate is when I would forget to check before we left the house. Now, that doesn't have to worry me. I can always stay on track.


Another reason to love unlimited data is that I'm the mother of a violinist. My nine year old is very talented and plays the violin. So we are always headed off to lessons, recitals, concerts, and group sessions. Always on the go with violin. It's nice to have a data plan that allows me to use the GPS to get us where we need to be without using up all my data, and so much easier than using a printed map. A GPS is really useful for a mom on the go. It has been a huge help in our lives.


As a working woman, running my own business as well, this phone plan helps me stay on top of things. I can get business updates and stay in touch with my clients and my assistants faster and easier. It sure helps a lot to be able to be more available to them with the touch of a button. Now, no matter where I am, I can still run my business from my fingertips. Whether it be 9 o'clock in the morning and I'm out at the grocery store, or 9 o'clock at night sitting at home. That makes working a lot easier. It keeps the flow going without hours passing and not being able to check my messages or emails and have people waiting on me to get back with them.



Also, since I'm so addicted to Instagram, I'm able to snap photos and upload them with ease. I don't know why, but I feel Instagram gives me a little escape. I just love sharing and scrolling through my feed. And I don't have to worry about how many photos I take and share on Instagram with this data plan. It makes it great to be worry free while grabbing some time to myself in the day. And with the great camera, I can take great looking photos every time.



And it's also great for when my daughter needs to take a break from her school work to catch up on her favorite Youtube videos. It also gives me a break for a few minutes to catch up on what I need to start doing next. Thirty minutes of putting the busy day on hold to catch up on your newest subscriber videos is just what we need some days....according to her.



And at the end of a long day, sometimes I just want to sit around with my children and watch a movie to relax into the evening. As I mentioned earlier, the Walmart Family Mobile Plus plan gives you a free movie of your choice every month on VUDU. Now we can all enjoy a nice family movie night without spending a dime.

There are so many choices to choose from. And one of the best parts about this is that you are able to stream the movie to any compatible device such as a Smart TV. That is what we use and it's great so that we can all enjoy the movie on a big screen where everyone can see it.

And sometimes, when I can get some "me" time and in the mood for a movie that interests me, I'm able to grab a glass of wine, some nail polish and get to watching VUDU. Usually this time on my laptop since I can take it in the bedroom with me and use headphones. It's a nice perk to this phone plan. And who can say no to a free movie? Not I!



So that is how I stay on top of a busy life with the Walmart Family Mobile PLUS plan. What do you think? Have you heard of the Walmart Mobile plans or do you currently use them? I would love to hear your opinions and how you keep up with life using your mobile device.

Disclaimer: All prices for phones and plans included in this post are accurate as of the date of posting; however, these prices are subject to change. Please refer to http://cbi.as/28aqc or your local Walmart for current pricing. 

xoxo Rebecca

$50 Amazon Gift Card | Falls River Soap Gift Basket Giveaway


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Established in 2004, Falls River Soap Company is a family-owned business that has been creating one-of-a-kind handmade soaps using the finest, all-natural ingredients available for over a decade.  Fresh goat milk, olive oil, shea and cocoa butter, coconut, and avocado oil are just a few of the natural ingredients you will find in their earth-friendly soaps and vibrant colors and exotic scents give you a refreshing clean you won't soon forget.
 Unlike mass-produced commercial soaps, it takes some extra time and care for Falls River Soap Company to create a handmade soap. The soap artists work in small batches, using a unique, low temperature soap making method, using organic and high quality natural essential oils, herbs and botanicals sourced from all over the world.

By aging the soaps to preserve the natural glycerin, Falls River Soap Company is able to produce the most luxurious, pure and gentle moisturizing soap imaginable. 
Many people choose all-natural soaps and shampoos to help deal with sensitive skin issues.  Some have been using all-natural products for as long as they can remember, while others want quality handmade products that are 100% vegetarian and never tested on animals.  If you are just now discovering natural skin care for your family and you will love the amazing variety of soaps offered by Falls River Soap Company!
Falls River Soap Company is having great specials on their products right now, plus you will receive free samples with every order!  Be sure to also take advantage of Free Shipping on orders $35+!

Thank you for taking the time to learn about Falls River Soap Company and their products. To show their appreciation, Falls River Soap Company is offering this awesome giveaway! Enter below for your chance to win a $50 Amazon Gift Certificate and an awesome Gift Basket from Falls River Soap Company! #MomBuzz #ValentinesGift

GOOD LUCK!

Disclaimer: Falls River Soap Company is responsible for prize fulfillment.  One winner will be chosen at random and contacted via email by Mom Buzz Media.  This winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email, otherwise forfeiting their prize.  If the original winner does not respond in the timeframe given, a new winner will be chosen. All winning entries will be confirmed.  This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or any other form of social media and is Facebook compliant.  This giveaway will end at 11:59 pm CST on 2/12/16.  US Residents only please.
xoxo Rebecca

THAT FRIDAY BLOG HOP


Happy Friday everyone! Thanks for joining us again for That Friday Blog Hop which goes live every Thursday evening at 10pm EST. So join us each week & link up your blogs, social media outlets, or anything you'd love to share. If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please fill out this form

That Friday Blog Hop: Join Us Every Thursday Evening

While there are no rules, we would love it if you would :::
- Stop by the hosts & co-hosts blog and follow along
- Say hi to new bloggers and leave a wonderful comment
- Grab the button and/or tweet about the blog hop as well
- Come back every Thursday evening to join in the party

xoxo Rebecca

Why I Suck At Homeschooling


Have you ever tried to homeschool? If you have, you know it's pure, hard-core dedication. It's not easy nor is it stress-free! Homeschooling is far from easy going. I know first hand... I'm a homeschooling mom.

While I was making the graphic for this blog post, I asked my oldest what she thought of the title. I had two different ones. She laughed and said, "The one that says suck.....but why would you even write this?"

I laughed back and told her that it's because of how the issues have gone lately with our homeschool method and it's more to be funny... though the facts I'm about to state below, are indeed true.

It's true... I suck at homeschooling according to many of my peers. When we first began our homeschooling journey, I was alone. I had no one to talk to or ask advice on things. I just did all the research myself and spent countless searching on how to homeschool, what curriculum resources should I use, what my state laws were so I knew I was doing everything correctly.... and the list can go on and on.

It wasn't until a few months later I had it finally click in my head that I could resort to using Facebook as a resource for homeschooling. I knew there had to be local groups out there that we could join and meet up with to do activities with and to just become friends with. I then discovered there were lots of homeschool groups to join around the world.

This was the best thing I thought. So many resources and people with advice all at my fingertips. What could possibly go wrong? This was the best thing I thought that could happen to our homeschool days.

I soon discovered it was far from that. Though I have found some amazing deals and free resources I never knew existed, as well as some really great friends.....there seemed to be more bullies and meanies {is that a word?} in these groups then I expected.

I thought as homeschoolers, we were all in this together. But it seems like I was so wrong. I did not realize all the different types of homeschooling there was out there. I had already known about traditional homeschooling and unschooling. But there are literally tons of different homeschooling ways. And I soon found out that if you don't do it their way, you are not considered a homeschooler in their eyes and that is when the claws and hateful words come out.

So these are the reasons I suck at homeschooling according to my peers. 

1. My Child Is Learning Too Much
Yes, that is right. Apparently I was told by several women that I should be ashamed of how we homeschool because my daughter is learning too much in a day and that is known as child abuse. Their exact words and that I should be reported for such things. Homeschooling is not supposed to be cramming lots of education into a single day.

These comments came after I had commented on another moms' post about her child's work day. She asked what subjects do we all teach a day and for how long. Not even thinking anything of it, I decided to share my daily learning schedule I have my daughter do. That is when the poop hit the fan and I was being attacked left and right by several ladies telling me how I'm abusing my child by teaching too much.

I didn't know knowledge was child abuse but I guess that it is now. I did comment back that we are only doing the same amount of work that she would be doing in public school daily... they didn't like that comment any better. Which brings me to ....

2. Traditional Homeschooling Is Not Homeschooling
Yes, there are a lot of wars out there in the homeschool world of how if you are doing a traditional school method, then you really cannot call yourself a homeschooler. I got attacked first hand on this one when we decided to meet up with a local homeschool group. They were not happy with how we school and therefore were not very welcoming to myself nor my daughter.

The fact is, they said that if we were going to just do "school" at home, she might as well just be in public school and why waste my time calling myself a homeschooler. No matter how much I argued that a traditional school method at home works better for us and keeps us on schedule, they were not willing to budge on the fact I was not a homeschooler in their eyes.

3. Teaching What Your Child Doesn't Want To Learn Is Wrong
While I know so many people approach homeschool is a variety of ways and it works for them, I decided what method worked well for us. Since we do traditional school, I do push to cover all subjects and topics regardless if my daughter finds them boring or says she doesn't want to learn about such and such. I always tell her the same thing.... "You don't have to like it, you just have to know it."

And while yes, not everyone agrees with me, I do not think it is right to tell me I am wrong and a horrible parent for wanting my child to know what certain facts are even if she doesn't want to. Just because the War of 1812 really isn't appealing. Even for me to teach, it's honestly kind of boring and I LOVE history... I feel it's my job to make sure she is aware of certain things. I don't want her to be engaged in a conversation one day and the subject is brought up and when she's asked about it and asks, "what's that?" I don't want anyone making fun of her or saying how stupid homeschooled kids are.

This could be me being paranoid but right now, I feel like my number one job is to make sure she knows the boring as well as the fun stuff.

4. I Must Be Lying About What I Teach
I have heard this more times than I can count. As a homeschooler, I ask so many of my peers what they are teaching about and doing with their kids so I can get an idea of what I may be lacking in or didn't even think about. Since we are still new to this, I love engaging in conversations on what other kids my daughter's age are learning about. It gives me ideas of what I could do as well.

However, there have been several occasions where the conversation starts off good and then when they start listing what they teach and I start listing what I do....I am told that either I am really exaggerating on the subjects taught or that I really am just lying. I always give the same look every time. Why on earth would I be lying about this? It's what we do...we aren't going above and beyond. I feel if anything, we are sometimes not doing enough. But I hear so much that there is no way we are doing all that each and every day.

Why do people really care? I don't know. If I teach my child one subject or teach her forty subjects a day... that's not what is supposed to be the focus here. It's supposed to be the actual teaching itself. What we can share with each other and talk about that can inspire us to try out with our child.

5. My Child Is Not An Independent Learner
This one is hard because as any homeschool mom knows is that, some days it is hard to just sit down and work straight through with your child without you being able to get up at all. This is really hard for me because I also have two toddlers running around screaming for attention.

If I have to get up to attend to the little ones' needs, then my oldest stops her work. She just plain refuses to do it without me there to watch her work the entire time. While I feel the best part of homeschooling is that One-On-One teacher/student ratio we have going on, sometimes I wish I knew how to get her to be a little more independent when it comes to working on her own. 

Now I do not expect nor want to step away when we are learning a new subject or anything like that. But when she knows her multiplication and all she has are a few worksheets to complete, it does get hard to balance the little ones and her because all three are screaming for my attention. And I get more frustrated at my daughter because I know she does not need me to sit there over her shoulder while she completes the worksheets. If she were in public school, it would be the same. The teacher would have them work independently as well. So I need to figure out how to balance this with her and get her to be more of an independent worker when I am needed elsewhere.

6. I Cannot Figure Out How To Get My Little Ones Occupied During School Hours
This one always drives me crazy. I see all the time other homeschool moms bragging on how they are able to toss their little ones in a high chair, give them some toys and they are good to go for a few hours without making a sound. Or some do claim that their six month old can already read at a twelfth grade level and therefore is occupied with books all day.

I wish I knew their secret because I am clueless and stressed out to the max on how to keep my toddlers both occupied and quiet when it comes to school. No matter what I seem to do. I turn on the tv, give them the ipads, they have massive amounts of toys, they color... but all they seem to do is either fight non stop with each other or scream and cry their head off for my attention and want to destroy all our work we are doing at the moment.

I know some people are blessed with the fact their little ones take naps and that is when they can get some school work in peacefully. Not in my house. There is no nap time and I really wish there were. My little ones do not take naps to save any sanity I have left. I suck at trying to figure out how to keep them happy while homeschooling my oldest.

It seems like it takes us sixteen hours just to complete a four hour day of school because of it. I really would love to know how people do it. I need to know!

------------------------------------------

These reasons are not made to put anyone down who's homeschool style may be different than my own. I support all my homeschooling friends. I have many that do the traditional method as we do.. I have lots who unschool, car school, earth school and so on...

And I think it's great that you all have the way that works best for you and I know you respect my ways as well. But this post was to just vent about those that seem to tell you how wrong you are and everything you are doing you suck at. Which is why I suck at homeschooling according to many in the Facebook groups I am in.

But it does not matter if your child is in public school, private school, homeschooled... as long as they are happy, healthy, and their minds are growing full of knowledge, we should stop putting each other down and start picking each other up and becoming a support team. Not a competition. 
xoxo Rebecca