Tag Archives: Field Trip

Sunset At The Beach

Have you ever watched the setting of the sun at the beach?

It is such a beautiful site.

We spent a November evening on a North Carolina beach watching the sun go down.

The Fall air was cool and crisp, but we didn’t let that hinder our joy.

There is something very special and exciting about being at the water’s edge.

The colors in the sky were beautiful!

The smell of the ocean and the sensation of breathing in the salty air is a completely different experience than our day to day experience.  If feels energizing, like it is renewing something inside the body and the mind.

I could watch the ocean and sky for hours and never get tired of the view.

The sand feels amazing and was cool to the touch.  We collected some seashells along the beach.

We saw a flock of pelicans flying above us.

Even though it was chilly, we decided to get our feet wet.

We tried to catch the waves coming into the shore.

The waves and the pull of the under tow current were quite powerful and knocked us off our feet several times.

One fella didn’t want to get wet.  He said it was too cold.

But the rest of the group was eager to get wet from head to toe even though we only agreed to get our “feet” wet.

Even though the water was cold and the current was strong, I enjoyed getting my feet in the water too.  The waves kept a constant rhythm with perfect timing.

It felt so peaceful.

We enjoyed an evening walk on the beach and walked to a fishing peer not far from where we played.

The sun set was stunning behind the peer.

It gave the appearance of a glowing fire off in the distance.

The fishing peer went out so far and then was blocked at the end.  It seemed as if the peer would have gone further, but perhaps had been lost in a storm.

Even though a major hurricane, Hurricane Matthew, had come through days earlier,  the rest of the peer was still in good standing and many folks were using it for fishing and enjoying the evening.

I loved the contrast of the peer and the evening sky and ocean waves.

You could sense the determination of this peer to withstand whatever the elements of nature could beat it with.

The structure seemed to rebel against the constant waves, the salty air, and the gusts of wind.

The setting sun was gorgeous!  It peered through the dark clouds sandwiched between the sky and the water.

This experience reminds us of what it might of been like at the beginning. The bible talks about the beginning.

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.

And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.

And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so. God called the dry ground “land,” and the gathered waters he called “seas.” And God saw that it was good.”

Genesis 1:1-10

Looking away from the sun, in the opposite direction, the sky and the water seemed to be a reflection of each other, a matching blue that seemed to go on forever.

But looking towards the sunset, the colors were vibrant and seemed layered like a rainbow that had been deconstructed.


Sitting above the waves, felts as if we were sitting on them.   Resting on the benches of the peer was a special experience. 

The peer puts you out on the water, away from the shore.

Though you are sitting still, everything around you is in motion and has a rhythm of it’s own.  Everything is moving with a beat, the water, the sky, the salty air on your face, and the sound it all makes has a nourishing rhythm that feeds the soul.

All your senses are enhanced and focused on the beat, the soothing sound of the moving water and the amazing colors of the sky.


After we watched the sun set, we walked up the beach a little bit further for some food.  Later we came back outside to watch the beach in the darkness.

We sat on the steps of a small gazebo looking out over the water.  It was so peaceful.

A long way out, there was a small twinkle of light from ships on the water. 

We could also see the lights of the fishing peer reflect on the water.

But otherwise, we could no longer depend on our eyes to understand our environment.  We could not see the sky, and we could not see the water, we could only sense they were still there in the darkness.

Instead of using our eyes, we tuned our ears to the sounds of the night.  All we could hear was the familiar sound of the waves hitting the beach in a soothing rhythm.  It was peaceful.

The older kids and I wanted to stay outside all night, but the younger kids and daddy were getting sleepy, so it was time to head inside.  Bedtime seemed to come too quickly, yet we welcomed the end of this day feeling relaxed and renewed.

We definitely want to experience the sun setting on the beach again soon.

Please share.

Creation Museum, A Visit Back In Time

My family had a great time when we took a trip back in time and visited the Creation Museum in Kentucky.

IMG_1248

The Creation Museum experience is like walking through biblical history. It is a great experience for both kids and adults.  It covers the 6 days of creation, plus many more historical people’s lives from the bible like Noah, Paul, Jesus, etc. and the history comes to life in a hands on way at the museum.  There are life size exhibits and a planetarium too.  Visiting the museum was one of the best decisions we have made for teaching our family about who God is and his amazing creation called earth and the animals and people.  Seeing the bible come to life right before your eyes is an amazing experience and it strengthened our faith.

Map

To plan our trip, we watched for a discounted ticket opportunity and went when they ran a special for children ages 12 and under to get in free with the paid admission ticket of an adult.  It was a great savings.   So we loaded up the family and took a road trip to Kentucky.  The museum is about an hour and a half drive South from where we used to live in Richmond, IN (and only 7 hours north of where we used to live in NC).  The drive through Indiana’s mini-mountains in South-eastern Indiana is absolutely beautiful! It was even more beautiful as we sang praise songs and listened to Nest Family Audio Bible stories all the way there and was a great way to travel as it keeps the kids attention and they learn so much.

IMG_1246

Besides the beautiful scenery, there are some fun places to stop and visit along the way including two reservoir lakes and several historical towns.  There is the Whitewater Reservoir, and also a much larger reservoir called Brookville Lake. The towns of Brookville and Liberty Indiana remind me so much of the historical town of Hendersonville, NC and are set up beautifully for tourists.  There are lots of little shops to see and great history to explore in these small towns with beautiful historic courthouses too.  We also crossed the huge Ohio river, that borders three states and with breath taking views.  The river is huge and divides southern Indiana from southern Ohio and northern Kentucky.  You can clearly see God’s handiwork in creation when you look at the changing landscape and the river. It is all designed beautifully.

The kids were so excited to get there.  You know how it goes: “Are we there yet?  When will be there?  I got to go to the bathroom!  I wish we were there!  Do you know how to get there?  How much longer?  Are we there yet?”  Ha! Ha!  You just got to love traveling with kids!

IMG_1247

At the museum, there is a large 70,000 square foot building with a huge bronze dinosaur outside, surrounded by beautiful gardens and landscape, ponds, wooden bridges,  wrought iron and stone fences, and a tall fort with a zip line that crosses the entire museum grounds.  It is a very family friendly place.  The zip line costs extra and we did not buy a ticket for it on this day.  But someday we hope to be able to take the zip-line and explore the museum gardens from the tree tops as it looks like a lot of fun.

IMG_1256

The first thing we did was snap a picture with the dinosaur outside.  It had just rained and suddenly the sun was shinning really bright and we couldn’t hardly see at all.  It is funny how sometimes light can get so bright that your eyes cannot focus your eyes.  But once we got inside the museum, the lighting was perfect and there was so much to see.

IMG_1259

Archaeology is just one of their specialties at the museum, and they have lots of artifacts from biblical times. They have lots of fossils and a life size example of just about every kind of dinosaur.

IMG_1272

They have a replica of earth from the beginning, separating layers of the heavens, creating the stars, day and night, the Garden of Eden, the creation of Adam, and animals, and Eve.

IMG_1262

There is so much detail put into this museum that I bet you could go a hundred times and see something new each time that you didn’t notice before.  Actually they expect that you will need more time to see it all, and when you buy a ticket it is good for admission for two days in a row. Many visitors stay overnight nearby and come back the following day to explore some more.

IMG_1265

The museum is a combination of exhibits about science, history, astronomy, engineering, chemistry, Hebrew culture, our Christian roots, and so much more all rolled into one experience.

DSC01759 DSC01760

Each room of exploration leads you into the next phase of creation and history designed by an amazing God who loves us and his handiwork is so obvious. Nothing is by chance! Everything was authored by our creator.

DSC01763 DSC01764 DSC01765 DSC01766

This is such a fun way to walk through history!

DSC01767 DSC01768 DSC01771

If you remember the story of creation, there is a tree that Adam was instructed to never eat from called the Tree Of Knowledge of Good and Evil.

DSC01769

There is a deceptive serpent hiding in the garden who convinces Eve to eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

DSC01770

Eve tells Adam and he also believes the serpent’s lies and eats of the fruit, even though God had specifically told them not to eat of the fruit of this tree.

DSC01776

Evil becomes the ruler of the earth through Adam and Eve’s sin against God.

DSC01782

They disobeyed God, and once they realized what they had done, they tried to hide their sin from God.  But God called them out on what they had done, and he forced them to leave the Garden of Eden.  From that point forward mankind must make a blood sacrifice to ask God for forgiveness of sin in their life.

DSC01784

From this point forward, life becomes a struggle to survive. Later in the museum we return to the issue of man’s separation from God, and that he sent his son Jesus to reconcile us back to God through his own sacrifice. From that point forward, man no longer needs to offer a blood sacrifice for his sin because God sent his son Jesus who paid the price for us all who will believe in him and ask for forgiveness.

DSC01788

As the world becomes populated, people and fallen angels do evil and wicked things.  God tells one righteous man, a prophet named Noah, his plan to flood the earth and wipe out wickedness.  He instructs Noah to build a large boat called an ark and preach to the thousands of people who will listen to board this boat to survive.  But everyone mocks Noah and won’t listen to him.  God instructs Noah to bring his family (including his wife, three sons and their three wives) and also 2 of every unclean animal, and 7 of every clean animal,  plus supplies, and to board the boat.

DSC01792

Noah obeyed God and does all that he was instructed to do.

DSC01794

After the ark is completed, Noah and his family board the boat with the animals and God shuts the door.  It rains for 40 days and 40 nights and floods the whole earth.  It takes almost a year for the water to recede.  Eventually the boat comes to rest on Mount Ararat.   Later one of the birds Noah sends out brings back a branch with a leaf and Noah knows that is safe to release the animals and his family from the ark.

DSC01796

The museum has a lifesize interactive display of Noah and the ark.  You can hear the men talking and see them working as they build the ark.   The museum also owns a bible based theme park about an hour down the road from the museum.  They are building several life size recreations from the bible for the theme park.  One of those is called The Ark Encounter and it includes a life size ark, another museum and restaurant inside the ark, and a zoo.  We went to see it while it was under construction, and we plan to make trip soon now that it is open to the public.

Check out this short video we made of the awesome dinosaurs we saw!  The kids really enjoyed this entire trip and the highlight for them was seeing the dinosaurs.

And if you get hungry during your visit, the museum offers a jungle cafe to eat in and there are many picnic spots outside around the gardens and ponds.

IMG_1260

I encourage every family I meet to put this wonderful adventure on their to do list.  It is definitely worth the trip!

Be blessed!

Please share.

Field Trip To Jimmy Johns

Jimmy John’s Field Trip

We set out to find out if Jimmy Johns was as good or better than Subway or other sandwich shops we have tried.  Was it as good as everyone says?  How does a restaurant like this become so successful?

Our stop at Jimmy Johns was a new experience for us.  The shop has a fun atmosphere and special names for every submarine sandwich.

IMG_3418

For example, one sandwich is called The Gut Buster.  The sandwiches have a fixed description, and that is what is in the sandwich.  You don’t really customize them, but you can add additional meat.  This is the real secret to how fast you are served, no one is standing around deciding what fixings are going in their sandwich.  Instead you choose the sandwich design from the menu that best fits your taste buds.

IMG_3421

We let the children choose their sandwich, and choice of chips, and we all had waters to drink. The bread is very soft and fresh.

IMG_3422

The room is decorated with signs on the walls with words of wisdom for life.  My older boys laughed all the way through the meal while reading these signs.

IMG_3424

For example, one sign was titled Rules of Life I have learned, and here are two of them “Under any circumstance, never take a sleeping pill and a laxative before going to bed” and many more that my kids laughed the whole way through the meal reading.  They had funny signs and there was probably about 20 different signs posted around the room.

Jimmy Johns

Field Trip: New restrurant experience. We took a trip to Ohio and stopped at a Jimmy Johns sandwich shop because we had never been before.

There were pamphlets on the wall encouraging those who would like to open a franchise to fill it out and contact Jimmy Johns.  The kids decided we would pretend to open our own Jimmy Johns shop when we got back home.  I will share more about this in a future post.

This field trip was a fun learning experience and the food tasted delicious.  The kids got to figure out what all the hype was about and connected the dots from the funny videos they watched on youtube.

Once we got home, we looked up more information about opening a sandwich shop and the kids learned about opening a franchise, customer service, creating the ultimate sandwich, etc. We made our own versions of sub sandwiches.  We researched Jimmy Johns specifically and found out lots of interesting facts.  He has his own race team.  The first Jimmy Johns was started in 1985 with a $25,000 loan.  Now he own restaurants in 49 states across the country.

We are thankful we live in America where people can work hard and reach their goals. The kids are even more excited about what the future hold and are looking forward to our next great adventure!

Please share.

Field Trip Journal Review

Our family has always made field trips a priority in educating our kids.  We want to take them on adventures to inspire, explore, inquire, and gain knowledge from first hand experience and hands on explorations.  Apologia Educational Ministries has a new resource to help your kids capture their field trip experiences, thoughts, and fun memories in the Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal.   We were sent one for review a few weeks ago. We were excited about trying out this scrapbook-journal method for creating a memory book of our fun learning adventures.

Screenshot (32)

Apologia is one of our favorite homeschool curriculum companies.  They have a wonderful variety of high quality products, and we were pleased with this new addition to our homeschool.

Field Trip Journal

Field Trip Journal

For Kids of all ages.
Spiral Bound
Heavy duty
64 colorful pages printed on card stock
Retails for $22

Encourages kids to write about their field trip experience in creative ways.

Table of Contents

  • Prepare a field trip (with helpful tips like check lists for planning, before, during, and after).
  • Over 100 Field Trip Ideas
  • Places I have explored maps (for your state, country, and world).
  • How to use Specific Trip Pages
  • Field Trip Pages (for 10 field trips)
  • How to use My Special Spot pages
  • My Special Spot Pages  (a special spot is a 20 x 20 spot you sit and draw what you see 4 times a year, 1 time during each season, and notice how things change with the seasons).
  • How to use As I See It pages
  • As I See It (pages at the back of the journal can be used for illustrating what you see).

How We Used This In Our Home

I was really excited to receive the Field Trip Journal from Apologia for review and I was hopeful this would give us motivation to start creating a memory book of our fun learning adventures. I take hundreds of pictures of everything we do, daily, but seldom print them off my computer other than to create a yearbook page or mail to family because printer ink is expensive.   Most of the time, pictures just stay in digital format and get posted on social media or on this website.  But I realize that isn’t always the best thing.  Kids like to look over pictures too, and I hope this Field Trip Journal will get us int the habit of printing a few of our pictures, and writing down what we learned.

Working in his Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal.

Working in his Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal.

For each field trip, my son included a small map to show the location, and one picture (we tried to use two to three pictures per page) as well as a description of the field trip and any books you read, and what he did and what he wants to remember about it.  I was thrilled that he was motivated to use the journal.  He plans to use every section of the journal from cover to cover.  He did say he wished there was room to record more than 10 field trips, because we do so many, but I told him if we need to, we can convert other pages at the back of the book.

Here are four of our recent field trips completed during this reivew and recorded in his journal:

Nature Study Field Trip

Field trip to explore nature and small waterfall along the creek.
Field trip to explore nature and small waterfall along the creek.

Hueston Woods State Park Field Trip

The way I see it, kids need to experience life hands on, and they can’t experience much in an 8am-3pm classroom sitting at a desk.  Kids were made to move, explore, touch, run, laugh, and learn through play and hands on explorations.

IMG_7075

We have dumbed kids down both mentally and physically in the USA, by locking them into an 8 hour a day public education system that restricts physical movement.  This can causes childrens growing spines to become disfigured and grown in an S shape instead of a J shape.  Sitting in classrooms all day leads to week core muscles from a lack of activity, even though some kids play sports, the majority of kids have weak bones, week muscles, and a week spine.

Observing wild geese at the lake at Hueston Woods State Park.

Observing wild geese at the lake at Hueston Woods State Park.

Many kids are medicated to force them to sit still and be quiet in class.   Besides making them more prone to to back pain, joint pains, and serious health concerns, many children end up with a life long battle with meditations to try and fix the lack of physical freedom they experienced in childhood.

IMG_7058

Field trip to the Lake. It was such a beautiful day.

I would encourage families to explore the option of taking family field trips, and homeschooling and all the wonderful learning opportunities and physically freeing opportunities homeschooling offers for developing bodies and minds.

IMG_7065

Investigating the water’s edge at the lake.

I remember school days being so boring growing up. I enjoyed after school activities, and a few electives like music and track, but classroom time was usually a snooze!  I would literally stare at the clock watching the seconds and minutes pass by in most of my classes.  It was torture to have to sit still all day!  We only took a school field trip once or twice a year and had a field day once a year.  What kind of life is that for a kid?  Forget that!  I am forging ahead and excited about the next adventure.

Jimmy John’s Field Trip

We set out to find out if Jimmy Johns was as good or better than Subway.  Was it as good as everyone says?  How does a restruant like this become so successful?

Our stop at Jimmy Johns was a new experience for us.  The shop has a fun atmosphere and special names for every submarine sandwich.

IMG_3418

The sandwiches have a fixed description, and that is what is in the sandwich.  This is the real secret to how fast you are served, no one is standing around deciding what fixings are going in their sandwich.  Instead you choose the sandwich design from the menu that best fist your tastebuds.

IMG_3422

We let the children choose their sandwich, and choice of chips, and we all had waters to drink. The bread is very soft and fresh.

Jimmy Johns

Field Trip: New restrurant experience. We took a trip to Ohio and stopped at a Jimmy Johns sandwich shop because we had never been before.

I have another post for you to read more about this fun field trip to Jimmy John’s and all we learned.

Loveland Ohio Castle Chatue Laroche Field Trip

Castle Field Trip

Field Trip to Loveland Ohio to see the Castle.

My kids go on field trips at least 3 to 4 times a month!  It is a regular part of our school learning. They know they can look forward to going somewhere each week.  So they work hard on their school work and projects early in the week and prepare to go on some kind of adventure towards the end.  Sometimes we go on Fridays, but most of the time, we go on the weekend so we can include Dad in our learning adventures too.

IMG_6180

Overlooking the river from the castle balcony.

The Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal has helped us keep up with a scrapbook style journal of our recent outings.   We usually keep what they want from our trips (brochures, pictures, postcards, etc) in their portfolio.   But now with this journal, they have a fun place to record their memories too.

IMG_6198

Castle Field Trip: standing beside a knight inside the castle.

The way I see it, kids need to experience life hands on, and they can’t experience much in an 8-3pm classroom.

IMG_6207

Castle Field Trip: playing old fashion games.

Check back soon to read the post about our field trip to the castle.

I would recommend school aged kids everywhere keep a fun journal of their learning adventures.  This will be a great way to look back on your year and be reminded of the wonderful time you had and all you learned about.

Social Media

Be sure to follow Apologia social media links for all the latest information and product updates.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/apologiaworld/timeline
Twitter: https://twitter.com/apologiaworld
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/apologia/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/105053356034237782125

Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal Review

Be sure to check out what other homeschool families on the TOS Review Crew had to say about using the Field Trip Journal in their home.

Crew Disclaimer

Please share.