The Story of US

Saturday, March 28, 2015

So we had such high hopes of keeping up with this blog. But then life happened! We are nearing the end of our first official year of running a homeschool group. How God has blessed this group has been beyond our wildest dreams! We are just starting to settle down enough to where I think we can start updating again on a regular basis, but I thought it might be fun to explore how we even became an us! So without much further ado, the story of us!

God works in mysterious, wonderful ways. My family was in Florida, very happy, and with no plans to move away! Then right before Thanksgiving 2012, my husband was called about an amazing job opportunity. The only drawback? It was in North Carolina! Now, we've been through 2 big moves since we've been married, and we've always had the courage to know that if we felt God was calling us somewhere, then we better go! So, a mere 6 weeks later, we were embarking on a new, exciting journey. Unlike Florida, we didn't know anyone, and for the first time in our married lives, would have no family nearby. Little did I know God was making us step out of our comfort zone and preparing us for something even bigger.

Now I don't know as many details on this story since it isn't officially mine! However, about a year before we were thinking of moving, God had called Beth's family to move from Wake Forest to Durham to be with family.

In our prospective homeschooling lives prior to moving to Durham, we were both very involved in different homeschooling groups, and both belonged to Classical Conversations groups. Compared to the resources we were used to, our new home was almost like the desert!

My family was very lucky, and the first church we tried became our home church. Beth's family also went to this church, which is how we met. We were in the same Connect Group. Over the next few months, we began chatting about homeschooling, and by the summer of 2013 we sat down to talk about the crazy idea of starting a small group! A lot of life happened that summer, and I won't go into the details, but suffice it to say, it's amazing we actually found the time and energy to actually go through with it!

We decided to keep it small, and that September five families with about 12 kids met around Beth's dining room table once a week, where we worked on Music, Art, and a fun science. I cannot tell you how much I loved my time around that table! Our families grew closer, and the kids had so much fun! It was absolutely amazing how our differing talents just seemed to fit together! And that leads us to last spring, 2014.

We kept praying by ourselves and with our husbands, because we both kept feeling the pull for more. We explored growing the group, meeting at a church, and becoming more than what we were! We both had a vision of groups we had seen before, and we wanted to offer those opportunities here, where there weren't any! We became official in May 2014, and began planning our debut event! We advertised on Facebook, and Spiceline, the local homeschool email loop. We prepared and bought supplies and fully expected to be sitting by ourselves for two hours eating ice cream on that hot July day.

However, God had a different plan, and we had 17 families come to the event! We were completely blown away! Out of those families, I believe we had 10 sign up to actually be members. We were on the fast track now, and in our first semester as a group and co-op we gained 22 members total. We discussed so many times if we should cap our membership, and just how much we thought we could handle. But you know what? We have been so blessed with our members! We all have been able to find the community we were longing for in the homeschooling world! I can't imagine capping that off. We want to be open to what God has planned for us and for our group, as scary as that is!

So that is our story. Today, less than a year after officially starting, we have 41 members, have an amazing church that lets us use their facilities, and have chartered a Trail Life group. We have not been without our difficulties, but that just encourages to keep moving forward toward what God wants for our group. What's next you might ask? Well, we have lots of ideas, hopes, and dreams, and it will be amazing to see what doors God opens to us!

{celebration} Thankful Feast

Thursday, November 20, 2014

We had a wonderful time celebrating Thanksgiving together after Academy on Tuesday. Everyone brought a dish to share, we played games, made crafts, and ate a lot of food! I know I am very thankful for the members of Great Endeavors!

{field trip} Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Monday, May 12, 2014

Today the kids and I enjoyed a homeschool open house at Duke Gardens today. In the classroom, they had microscopes and lots of specimen to view. The kids had a great time viewing all the different bugs and seeds up close!

Once outside, we took a stroll through the flower gardens and past the pond.

At the chicken coop, they had the kids make a biodegradable pot with newspaper and plant Zinnia seeds to bring home. They also had some worm compost for the kids to explore.

Looking forward to spending more time there in the future! There may be a picnic in our future...

American Girl History

Saturday, April 26, 2014

We went to the American Girl History program at the library today and look who we ran into...More Great Endeavor friends! Great minds think alike! I love all the fantastic friends my girl has to play with here!

{field trip} UNC TV Station

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Today we took a journey to a local TV Station for a tour. What a fun time! We were very excited to get started!

We were able to see where they actually film some local programming. There was a large studio that has movable sets.

This is a real video camera from the 1950s! That is definitely a relic!

There was also a smaller studio that had permanent sets. The kids had a LOT of fun "performing."

Then we got to tour all the behind the scenes rooms. Basically rooms upon rooms of computers! The only shocking thing was how cold all of these rooms had to be because of the hot equipment. Huh! We finished up with smiles and it is definitely somewhere we would like to go back and tour again....

{co-op} Nature Based Art

Friday, March 14, 2014

 Today for art we created art based on nature with q-tips and paint. It is always really cool to see the differences between all the different kids!

Odyssey of the Mind

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

I had the amazing opportunity this year to coach an Odyssey of the Mind team. I would love to explain this competition to you, but it is a bit abstract. It's very hard to understand until you actually do it. I will direct you to their website, if you would like to understand a little better! I coached the primary team this year, which consisted of 7 very bright and energetic Kindergarten- 2nd graders! I so enjoyed this group of kids, and I look forward to many more seasons to work together! On March 1, we participated in the Regional Competition in Chapel Hill. This age group is more of a demonstration, so we were not scored, and did not compete to move on to the State level. Here are a few snapshots of the day!
And of course we had to have a celebration afterwards!