Jeneric Jeneralities ~ by JenIG

This is truly cool.  Spunky has been hard at work putting together something VERY fun with our new friend, popular author Jane Bullivant (who also happens to be a fellow HSB member — see her blog page here!)  Check this out, 5 of YOU HomeSchoolBloggers are going to be published in an upcoming book!  Some of you always knew you were destined to be in print, and now is your chance.  Please see Spunky's blog for all the details and then ENTER. Spunky and Gena will be choosing the winners, so QUICK! go over to Spunky's page and check it out.  Kids are able to enter, too, and win a prize; I know we have about a billion kid bloggers at HSB. Is this fun or what??


Second, I know a lot of this HSB community has been wanting to get involved with the Hurricane Relief Efforts.  Our very good friend Lorrie Flem, over at Teach Magazine, has made it very easy for you to get involved.  Please see her blog page for the details, or her website to find out how to get involved wherever you may be.  She has made it very easy to help out, and we here at The Old Schoolhouse Magazine and HSB are thankful for her efforts and want to help get the word out.


That's it for now. In my next post I'll tell you all about my new neighbors.  They're nudists.  No.  I'm not kidding. I wish I were. 

September 29th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 16 Comments

September 26th, 2005
Oh Hallelujia

If I spelled Hallelujia wrong, don't tell me. i'll only forget immediately.  Anyhow, I'm breaking tradition and posting TWICE in one day because I am SOOOOOOOOO happyish.  Why? Well, I shall tell you.  It is RAINING! And it is almost very barely practically almost chilly.  There is hope for a real live FALL in Tennessee after all!!  I was beginning to become doubtful. But now, what an upper.  Now if only my husband were here….. he claims he'll be leaving CA this Saturday, thus making it a whole month that I've seen him.  But I shant complain; no, I will be thrilled that he is coming soon and I'll even make sure the house is clean.  I might even put on some lipstick and wear something other than jammies to greet him.  Actually, if i do that, he may not recognize me.  I'll have to give that one some thought.

September 26th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

September 26th, 2005
What Do You Think About This?

Somebody sent this to me today.  I get these types of emails all the time and many times they are a hoax.  Have you heard this? Is it true? :


This Pastor has guts!! Thought you might enjoy this interesting prayer given in Kansas at the opening session of their Senate. It seems prayer still upsets some people. When Minister Joe Wright was asked to open the new session of the Kansas Senate, everyone was expecting the usual generalities, but this is what they heard:

“Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says,
'Woe to those who call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.
We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice.
We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.
We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem.
We have abused power and called it politics.
We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition.
We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.

Search us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and set us free. Amen!”

The response was immediate. A number of legislators walked out during the prayer in protest. In 6 short weeks, Central Christian Church, where Rev. Wright is pastor, logged more than 5,000 phone calls with only 47 of those calls responding negatively. The church is now receiving international requests for copies of this prayer from India, Africa and Korea.

Commentator Paul Harvey aired this prayer on his radio program, “The Rest of the Story,” and received a larger response to this program than any other he has ever aired.

September 26th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

Gena, by nature, is practically a genius.  Don't get me wrong, it's by no doing of her own — it just sort of happens by accident.  Anyhow, once again I am indebted to her gena-yus.  My two year old is always bouncing off the top of my head.  I won't start in by saying that his bad behaviour is a result of the big move, or him not feeling well, or him being the youngest of six and not getting enough attention — no, I'll say it like it is: it's from my lack of consistent training.  And I know this because my other kids NEVER acted so crazy and naughty when they were two.  So anyhow, I've been making gena live with me since Geo is stuck in Cali, and the other day she looked over at the screaming little wiggly monster and reminded me, “How come you never let him just play in his room?”  WOW, i had totally forgot that was an option.  So now, Young King James spends plenty of alone time playing with his toys (gated in and unable to escape) while I get stuff done.  I can cook, I can read a chapter of Meriweather Lewis to the kids, I can talk on the phone, I can take a shower.  Amazing. I wonder what else I've forgotten.

Lastly, click here to read the funniest thing I've read all week from my new brother Disco Doug.

September 24th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

September 22nd, 2005
And The Winners Are….

There are three types of people in this world:

1) People who can count

2) People who can't


In a previous post I said I'd pick three people to win a two year subscription to The Old Schoolhouse Magazine plus $300 worth of curriculum from 19 different companies.


It was all a hoax.  Just kidding.

Without further more ado (whatever that means) Here are my three winners:


  hippiechyck (even tho she doesn't want to win– surely you know SOMEBODY who could use this, hippie!)


  MaggieHogan (send it to one of the billion people you know)



  CAgirlwithasoutherndrawl (annemarie, you're gonna have to come over here and pick it up, I aint mailing it down the street to you)


  jewls2texas (you are one weird lady my friend….)








(anybody got an extra straight jacket? this lady is one nutty banana)


  Dalyn …my disco sistah





same with you, amy beth, you gotta come over and get it


Marine Wife's aunt Cathy




so if you are one of the people listed above, email me at and send me the address (and name) you want this sent to. 

And um, er, let's not tell Gena about the number of freebies that I'm actually sending out. er, she's a very very busy publisher. um, i told her and everything, sort of, but uh… mums the word.


love, Jenefer Igarashi

September 22nd, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

September 22nd, 2005
A little bit of HSB business….

Hello my friends!  There has been a discussion swirling around HSB involving the HSB/TOS staff.  I’d like to officially post the following statement regarding where we all stand on the controversy over the book “Created to Be His Help Meet” by Debi Pearl….


Thank you to all who have expressed their opinion about the book, Created to Be His Help Meet and the review by Spunky and her husband. It is obvious that emotions are strong on this book. Thank you to Deborah Wuehler for taking the time to write a review of what Spunky said and answering some of the objections that were raised. Your time and devotion to the Lord and that task is commendable.

While it may appear to some that the
publishers of the The Old Schoolhouse , their Senior Editor and Spunky are at odds with each other, NOTHING could be further from the truth. We are united in Christ and our friendship is stronger than ever. We do not discourage honest debate of critical issues facing homeschoolers today. This book is one such example. As long as the debate remains civil and constructive we encourage all who call HomeschoolBlogger home to “study to show themselves approved unto God and rightly divide the word of truth”. And part of that means allowing the blogs to be used to challenge each one of us to look at what we believe in light of the Word of God and what it teaches.

As iron sharpens iron so one man sharpens another. We all have been sharpened by this discussion. The Publishers and Spunky stand together to provide a format for you to encourage each other and sharpen one another. And to that end we stand as one even if on particular issues there is disagreement. Our relationship is not predicated on the idea that we all must think the same way but on the truth that it is Jesus Christ who unites us. And in that you can be sure we all agree.


Thanks Spunky!  You are loved and appreciated. 


Paul and Gena Suarez

Jenefer Igarashi


Deborah Wuehler

September 22nd, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

September 19th, 2005
Weird People Are More Creative

That was a headline when I pulled up my homepage.  Maggie Hogan is one of the most creative people I've ever met.  Anyhow, I went to the posty today and just guess what was there?  A present! for me!! How I love getting presents.  Maggie Hogan sent me the perfect book — one that I can understand (written for ages 6-9) called, The Scrambled States of America.  My kids already read it (and laughed–it's funny), especially at the comments that Maggie inserted throughout.  THANKS my weird friend.  You made my day.  The other book looks loads of fun, too.  How I love getting a present.  This has inspired me to give away some presents today, too.  I have PROMO PACKS for three of you.  If you would like me to send you (or a friend of your choice) $300 of free curriculum from 19 different companies leave me a comment (and if you don't currently have a subscription to The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, I will include that as well).  How about this…. tell me about someone you love, who makes you laugh and/or who blesses you (whether it's your husband, sister, or your friend or Bill Cosby or whomever) and I'll randomly pick three in about three days or so, and then email you to get your addy and then send you your present.  You can thank Maggie for inspiring me to be so give-y today.  Bless others and Be Blessed!  And if you already got a promo packet, then still leave a comment.  If you don't want the gifts, I will send them to a friend of your choice.


September 19th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

September 16th, 2005

You know that movie, Holiday Inn, with Bing Crosby and what's-his-face plus the two Haynes sisters?  I like that movie.  Anyhow, bingy-baby sings a song halfway thru the movie that talks about falling to sleep 'counting blessings instead of sheep'.  It gets stuck in my head.  I was thinking today that as a practical application, it really does help to count your blessings.  People who are consistently whiney, complainy and who always drone on about negative things are total downers to be around.  I think being negative can be addictive; it's easy to just fall into this dumpy rut and stay there.  One year I was really stuck and just plain always mad, particularly at my poor perfect husband.  All I saw were faults and failings. Then a wise woman counseled me to sit down and write 10 things that I was thankful for about him, and it did wonders. It turned out I wasn't able to stop at ten… i couldn't stop remembering (and writing down) everything I loved about him.  This also works well with general everyday things.  So here I go, counting my blessings.  Feel free to leave some of yours, too.


1) A husband who will eventually be back home with me to stay (6 weeks is a loooong time — boy does my hat go off to military and single moms) 

2) A car that runs

3) Children whom I love

4) Food, and plenty of it

5) Friends, new and old, who love God and who encourage me

6) Plants.  I just like them.  They're pretty to look at

7) Rain.  It rained today and it was glorious

8) Fat babies (when they're not crying)

9) My sister, whom I've held hostage at my house while Geo is gone

10) Knowing the one true God of the universe.  I actually know Him — I didn't just meet Him or sort of brush up against Him at some social thing; we're actually really close.  We met about 13 years ago.  He is so dependable and does not threaten to drop me when I act like an idiot (which is quite often).  Is there a king, president, prime minister, or any other general major celebrity or powerful person on this earth who could come close in comparison?  I know people who'd go star crazy if they met Dolly Parton.  How silly that is.  My greatest blessing is knowing the Sovereign Lord of the entire universe. 

My Lord, My Saviour, My King, My Friend.  How I long to know Him more.

September 16th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

Here are a few resources I really like for homeschooling.  For phonics, the very first thing I use is a wooden ABC puzzle.  It works great for teaching ABC's.  I also like Phonics Pathways.  One of my kids has had a hard time with reading and this has been a great help.  It's put out by Dorbooks.


I also really like the readers put out by Christian Light Education.  I taught two of my kids to read with their reading program.  I've also been using their Bible and Science programs with my kids.  It is probably my favorite 'boxed' curriculum.  I also like Bob Jones Press video classes.  Those are pretty helpful. 


For grammar, the best thing I've ever used has been Easy Grammar by Wanda Phillips.  It is a really super program. 


For math, we use nothing.  Math is utterly unusable.  I hate it and I refuse to teach it.  Just kidding.  But I do hate it and I've not found any program that I've wanted to absolutely rave about.  The only math resource that I do utterly rave about is the Flashmaster.  This thing is cool.  It is the main staple in our Math curriculum.  It is a digital flashcard system that covers addition, subtraction, times and division.  Plus it records the stats on the problems the student misses.  It is the best math resource I've ever bought.  Maybe I should look into Bob Jones Video Stuff and see if  they have a math video class.  I really hate math.  A lot.


The main way we 'school' is reading books and discussing them; I guess we're turning into a Unit Study family.  This last year we picked books and then just studied related issues.  For instance we read The Witch of Blackbird Pond and studied the geography and climates of the northern eastcoast and compared it to Barbados (where the main character had come from).  We also studied life in the 1700's and the original 13 colonies.  We also talked about the legal system and about the Salem Witch Trials.  It was a cool study.  We did the same with The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe (I was NOT trying to have a 'witch' theme… just worked out like that) and also Harriet Tubman (put out by Emerald Books — their Heroes of History series) that I got from YWAM.  Presently we're reading thru Meriwether Lewis from the same series. 


One thing I'd like to add to my 'schooling' is more hands on field trips and learning real life experiences.  I'd like my kids to learn how to make soap, knit (they actually know how to do this and are getting better at it) sew and crochet and canning.  I'd like them to know more about the lost arts and about homesteading/living off the land and also about 'survival' types of things.  Maybe I should get the boys into Boy Scouts.  We're thinking about joining 4-H.


So there you have it.  This may be the longest post I've ever entered.  I'd be interested in knowing what you do to teach your kids about real life skills.  How do you teach them and what have they learned?


September 15th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

It was actually a really lovely day.  Me and Gena and our billions of kids descended upon Amy's incredibly beautiful home and got to hang out with some brand new (very fun!) friends tonight.  We even had a hayride and S'mores.  I *really* had a good time.  I hope she invites me over again soon…. actually, she'll sort of have to because I left my cell phone over there.  Yesterday was fun, too.  Me and gena drove out to South Carolina to meet with some staff.  Here is a picture of Marni's (our sporty and charming production assistant) kids with some of the Suarez / Igs 


We also got to hang out with Christi, our Customer Service Manager, whom I absolutely adore and her fun boys.  God is really nice to use such wonderful friends to brighten life.  I feel truly blessed.  And tomorrow I will go to the chiropractor.  It will be great fun if I can get my head and neck and shoulders to stop hurting so badly.   And boy oh boy am I excited to see what Maggie Hogan is sending me in the mail.  I love getting presents.  I'm one lucky whiner.  Thank you God for this very happy day.

September 14th, 2005 - Posted in Uncategorized | | 0 Comments

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