The Caskey Family

Dear Aunt Molly
July 20, 2012, 9:55 am
Filed under: Info/Resources

Call me at 843-819-1332 if you would like our address (and anyone else who wants it)

Love you!!

Simple Thanks – Easy Menu and Homemade Cranberry Sauce!
November 23, 2011, 11:23 am
Filed under: family news, Info/Resources, Recipes

Psalm 105:1 says, “Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done.” May your heart be drawn to give simple thanks for the greatest gift of Jesus Christ and the uncountable lesser blessings.

Here’s our menu for Thanksgiving. . .a few more sides will be added by a friend tomorrow:
(I’ll add links as I find them)
* Herb-Brined Turkey
* Sweet Potatoes in Orange Cups
* Mashed Red Potatoes
* Gravy
* Cranberry Orange Sauce (details below)
* Green Bean Casserole using only half the butter and with homemade onion rings on top
* Pecan Pie with whipped cream
* Pumpkin Roll

I just finished making homemade cranberry sauce for the first time, and HAD to say it was SOOO easy and I will never open another can of that stuff again!

This took all of four ingredients and 20 minutes! I got the idea from this blog.

1 bag of fresh cranberries, washed and bruised ones removed
1/2 cup orange juice
3/4 cup of sugar (more or less to your taste)
a few dashes of cinnamon (til it tasted right to me)

Throw all the ingredients in a saucepan on the stove, bring to a boil and simmer and stir for 10-15 minutes.


Easy Library Reading Log
May 27, 2011, 8:07 pm
Filed under: Info/Resources | Tags: ,

I just found the most amazing feature at our library, and enabled it online. It is called a “reading history” and tracks all the books you check out of the library. This is a homeschool diamond mine!

If you are anything like me, you check out and have every intention of keeping a reading log of all the good books you’ve read, but in my rush to get out the door to the library to return them before they are due, I always seem to miss this step. So it’s the end of the school year and I don’t have a log. . .or do I?

I checked, and I DO!! God is good, and this is a little proof of that for me this week. I’m printing off the list of all the books we’ve checked out and highlighting them different colors based on subjects, so if I want to go back to find a book, at least I can sort between history, science, art, toddler, etc. The list is going into a page protector at the back of this year’s portfolio for future reference (the portfolio is nothing fancy, just a cheap three-ring-binder full of page protectors where I stash tests, random samples of work and other proof of our progress throughout the year.)

Now I have a complete list of the books we’ve read that we don’t own – the ones we own usually get marked in the lesson plans, it’s the endless library pile that never makes it into the plans!

Library reading history: just a little bit of new technology I HAD to share with the world today!

Some of our Favorite (Children’s) Movie Music

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Awesome Books are Easy to Find!

We have noticed that the quality of a book DOES determine how long ours enjoy listening. My children tend to prefer “living books” with good illustrations. I could make our favorite books list now, but it would take me days. And every family and child is different, so I thought I would post some links to some book lists that hold some of our most treasured book finds so you could peruse for yourself. I will update from time to time. We’ve not read everything on these lists, but have enjoyed many on each list. . .so we recommend them with the idea that perhaps you will find more good books here than you might find at your average grab and borrow trip to your local library.

To save money, we search online at our library, (have them delivered to the front desk so I can pop in and just pick up if we don’t have time to browse) check as many out as we can, and only buy if it is a true favorite. One would think that would keep our personal library to a minimum. No such thing in the Caskey house!

1. Five in a Row
2. Ambleside Online – for all ages, click on whichever age you are searching for
3. Sonlight’s Read-Aloud List
4. Charlotte Mason Read Around the Year List
5. Tapestry of Grace Book List generator (search by grades and time span you are studying)

Any comments or suggestions for other book lists??

One of the Best Books on Parenting (and it’s not a how-to manual!)

Jeremy and I have been reading Sacred Parenting by Gary Thomas together over the last few weeks for a class we are taking together. We will finish the last few pages today and I just can’t say how encouraging it has been to us! It was a breath of fresh air that our family needed!

The book centers around the idea that parenting is a wonderful avenue God uses to sanctify us. There are no formulas, because every family and every child is different. But it does offer some solid advice from a biblical perspective and from a dad who has grown children and sweet godly relationships with his children. He has challenged us to accept the journey of parenting and embrace the often-difficult process with joy and faith in the God who ordains every aspect of it.

Unlike other parenting books where I finish with a list of things I feel I now should be doing with my children, we finish with a greater desire to know our God better and display HIM to our children in our actions as parents.

If you are a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, friend to a parent, planning to be a parent, pregnant, a parent of grown children, READ THIS!!!

Chapter titles include:
1. Papa God
2. The Hardest Hurt of All
3. The Gold behind the Guilt
4. Seizing Heaven
5. Joy!
6. Vicious Vulnerability
7. Burning Love
8. The Glory behind the Grime
9. Walking on the Wild Side of Parenting: the Gift of Extremely Demanding Children
10. A Very Boring Chapter in the Bible (That Can Change Your Life Forever) And it did for us!
11. Xerox R Us
12. Sacrifice
13. Leaving
Epilogue: Receive Your Reward

This one makes it into our top five marriage and family books to include:
Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tripp and
Everyday Talk by Younts
Instructing a Child’s Heart (sequel to Shepherding) by Tripp and
Sacred Marriage also by Gary Thomas

*If you only ever read one chapter of a parenting book, I would suggest the chapter titled “Giving Your Children a Vision for the Glory of God” from Instructing a Child’s Heart

Child, Parent, or God-Centered Family?
March 13, 2011, 11:05 pm
Filed under: Info/Resources

I was just challenged this weekend by Mrs. Wright at a Seminary Wives’ Seminar to consider where our family falls between these three.

A child-centered home is a home where most things flex to serve the child, at the expense of other family members and even at the expense of needs the family has. Other (parent-centered) families can structure their family mainly around what mom and/or dad desire without much consideration or priority given to what may serve or be most loving for the children.

Both extremes are unbiblical, is the point Mrs. Wright (whose husband teaches here at seminary) made. We must strive to have GOD-centered homes and families. Instead of pleasing children or parents, we ask, “what pleases God?” or “what serves others,” or “what will show love to others?”

A God-centered home remembers that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, minds, souls, and strength. . .and that we are called secondly to love our neighbors as ourselves. As parents we model that to our children, and train and foster that in them also.

In evaluating what our family is centered on, I’ve asked myself few questions:

1. What things would my children say are most important to our family? (this can be determined by how we spend your time, what makes me angry or happy, etc.)
2. What phrases are most commonly said in our home? (The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart. Luke 6:48)
3. How is my time given away, and to whom and to what? (Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Cor. 10:31)
4. What do the rules or limitations or guidelines in our house say about what we are centered on?
5. Do I worship order, rules, the idea of a better-behaved or functioning family, or do I worship the God who made us, and demands that we worship no one but HIM? (all those things are not bad, our house could probably use some more, but I cannot place it in importance above God, and his priorities). (Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD AND SERVE HIM ONLY.'” Luke 4:8)

May God give us hearts of worship devoted only to him!!

My Secret Hobby

. . .is travel planning. I’ve done it for our family and even enjoy researching and planning for friends. I especially like finding deals, and now with the internet, that is quite simple.

Here are the top five travel sites I use:

1. Trip Advisor – This site has good reviews and articles about locations, attractions and places to eat when you do travel. I like to use it to find out if a motel we are staying at overnight on a trip is okay or not.

2. Travelocity – I like to use this for air travel and car rental when we need it.

3. Priceline – I bid if I am flexible with times I want to travel, or location. I’ve gotten good deals on hotels and airline tickets, and it’s the cheapest way I’ve found to rent a car.

4. Ten Best – THE site to go to if you want to hit the highlights of a particular location on your vacation – easy to use and I’ve found it very helpful.

5. Snique Away – A new site, just launched by another site I like, for discount “luxury” vacations. They sell luxury getaways/hotel/resort stays for (CHEAP!) the price of a regular nice hotel. Great for upcoming special occasions, and I found their prices on multi-room accommodations to be a good deal for those of us who have too many people to stay in some regular-size hotel rooms.

Remedies For Various Wintertime Yuckies

So, the top answer seems to be:

I love this one and do think it works for the cold symptoms! We are on the mend, but I’m going to post the top mommy recommended home (and a few over-the-counter) remedies for colds and other wintertime yuckies:

1. Vicks on the feet and chest (soothes coughs and clears sinuses)
2. Raise the head of the bed if it is a cold/sinus issue
3. Hot steamy baths
4. Teas and vaporizers with peppermint, eucalyptus, honey, lemon, tea tree oil, molasses, slippery elm to name a few
5. Orange juice and chicken soup
7. Vitamin C, Emergen-C (my children love this stuff!) and of course regular vitamins and acidophilus (they have it for children in most health food stores)
8. Ibuprofen (lasts 8 hours, so they can sleep well) and Triaminic strips (these are my fav!!)
9. Pray for AND WITH your children. God is the best healer and comforter, and these times of illness are wonderful opportunities to teach them to ask for God’s help and be quiet before the Lord. Don’t just pray for their healing, ask God to teach them to endure the discomfort and persevere with a trust in HIM to heal them. Then don’t forget to thank God when they feel better, and acknowledge that HE is the one who made them and helped their bodies heal.

One note of wisdom I got from a Dr. years ago: He told me that he has found that if mothers give the cold meds to their children and dry up the drainage while the body heals the virus they seem to be less likely to turn into sinus or lung infections.

This makes sense and has worked pretty well for me over the years. I would rather give the over-the-counter once in a while rather than have them on antibiotics too much. My goal is to rarely use antibiotics so that if we ever really need them, their body will respond well, and not be immune to them. Just my opinion. . .PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU TALK WITH YOUR HUSBAND AND YOUR DR, AND COME UP WITH WHAT IS BEST FOR YOUR FAMILY!!

Give me the Remedy!
January 30, 2011, 12:44 pm
Filed under: Info/Resources

What is your favorite or most used remedy for the normal childhood ailments? It’s winter, and we’ve been fighting coughs, fevers, regular colds and such. Preventive and treatment both, please!!