Tuesday, February 3, 2015

February 2015 Newsletter


Upcoming Events:

DHSA Valentine's Day Party

February 6th from 1:30-2:30 at the Lake Hazel Library

Valentine's Day

Come for some fun Valentine themed activities and crafts! We need a couple more helpers to run activities or bring cookies, so please sign up at the following link. See you then!

BSU STEM Exploration Day

Saturday, Feburary 7, 9AM to 4PM

STEM 2015


STEM Exploration is a FREE event for all ages with a wide variety of engaging activities designed for K-12 students and their family.
Register online or at the door on February 7th (the new Registration is to help count the attendees). For more information please see our website: http://coen.boisestate.edu/STEMExploration/

Free one-day bus passes will be available for this event.  Call 258-2702 or email mcarnopis@valleyregionaltransit.org to request bus pass(es) no later than Tuesday, February 3rd.  Passes will be mailed to requestors.  Please indicate the number of passes needed.


Cabin Fever Reliever 2015 at Karcher Mall, Nampa

All Day, Feb 7, 2015

Cabin Fever Reliever

Come and play! Join us for an adventurous day!
Are the kids bored and tired of being stuck inside? We have a solution for you and your family. A fun filled, indoor outdoor activity day.

Kids First Cast, Inc.will be hosting its annual "Cabin Fever Reliever" at Karcher Mall in Nampa on Saturday, February 7th, 2015, from 10:00am to 5:00pm. We would like to invite everyone to attend our Community event. We have something fun for all outdoor enthusiasts of any age; kids, parents, grandparents, outdoor and fishing adventurers, and shoppers! So gather up your family and friends and neighbors, get out of the house and come spend the day with us.

This year we will have some favorites and some new exhibits to teach kids outdoor activities. Kids will have fun learning to cast a fishing line, shooting archery bows, jet ski simulator, and an inflatable pellet range. Great prizes for the kids will be given away throughout the day by vendors. Professionals will be on hand with information on fishing, archery and conservation. Ford will be showcasing new vehicles throughout the Mall.

Community partners, vendors, and a variety of outdoor organizations will teach and inspire kids of all ages about how to enjoy the vast and wondrous adventures available in our great Idaho and Oregon outdoors. Clean, Healthy, Outdoor Activities!

Cost: FREE
Phone: (208) 422-8836
Event url:


DHSA Mothers’ Meeting: Keeping Love Alive: Happy Marriages make for Happy Homeschool!

Thursday, Feb. 12th 7 PM

at Kami Hymas’ home:

13178 W. Buttercup Ct. in Boise

Love, marriage, romance, and chocolate!

Melissa               happy couple

Our very own Melissa Wolfe will be speaking about how to strengthen marriage and relationships. Her talks are insightful, uplifting, and real!

Melissa has given workshops and talks on marriage and relationships since 2000. Melissa earned her Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Counseling in 2005. She has created her own marriage and parenting workshops, and loves helping others create healthier, vibrant relationships. Melissa currently homeschools her four daughters, directs a local dance performing group, serves on the board of a local homeschool co-op, and runs the family dances for DHSA. She is always excited when she has the opportunity to talk about relationships. 

Roslyn   Definition of Love logo

Roslyn Graham, from www.definitionoflove.com will come to talk with us about the importance of dating our husbands and will bring free, fun “date kits” for us!

Last, but certainly not least, Ruth Hansen of Hansen’s Chocolates is bringing treats for us! She says:  Hansen Chocolates:  We are a local homeschooling family who recently started a small business making delicious gourmet chocolates that we love…and want to share!  It began as a hobby and evolved into a passion.  We love to involve our kids in the creation process and they are proud to call themselves chocolatiers.  We are located in Nampa and if you are in the area, come on by for a sample.  www.hansenchocolates.com

Hansen Chocolates


Teen Activity: Homemade Pizza Party

February 21st (Saturday) from 6-9 pm

Ruth Hansen's home in Nampa: 3321 S. Rock Springs Way

Pizza Party

Pizza Party, Games, & Friends
You will be the chefs that night so bring your favorite pizza topping and your crazy pizza making skills!

Questions? Call Ruth (208) 466-0667


New Date for:

Homeschooling Women’s Evening Retreat: Calm the Chaos, Restore the Magic!

  Friday, February 27th, 5-9 PM OR Saturday, February 28, 5-9 PM


believe in yourself

“You can achieve what you believe you can. Trust and believe and have faith.”—President Thomas S. Monson, “Living the Abundant Life”, Ensign, January 2012

Are you looking to develop more vision and direction for your homeschool? Need ideas for time/household management? Need some motivation to keep on keepin’ on? This evening retreat is designed to help you discover (or refine!) YOUR vision and motivation o reach YOUR goals for your homeschool in 2015!

When: Choose your session:  Friday, February 27th, 5-9 PM OR Saturday, February 28, 5-9 PM

Where: Stacey Lytle’s Home

1298 N. Cambrick Dr.

Kuna, Idaho 83634

Registration fee: $25.00 per person, includes dinner and materials.

Please note each session is limited to 20 attendees, so register early!

To register, please contact Stacey Lytle at lytlemomma@gmail.com or 208-453-2945


DHSA is run entirely by volunteers, busy homeschooling moms just like you! We work to provide beautiful, meaningful social and educational experiences for our members, one another, and for our families…doing our best, giving what we can, sharing our triumphs and our struggles, and in all of this, building lasting friendships--and we’d love to have you join us!

I’d like to share what serving in DHSA has meant to me and the blessings I have received from doing so. For the past 19 years, I have worked very closely with, or on the Board, serving as President several times and in many other incredibly fun positions. Not once have I regretted the time volunteered…my life has been richly blessed by the friendships I have made here, we have an amazing group of ladies who bring so much to the table. At the conclusion of this school year, I will be stepping down as President, so that another Mom can enjoy all that comes with this position. Your heart will grow 3 sizes as you serve and work with the beautiful families we have within DHSA.

Our election meeting is not your typical “election.” It is driven by the Spirit and by the desire to serve. When you come to the meeting, you will be able to feel how and in what capacity you are prompted serve, the Spirit will whisper to you, it always has for me!  We have a few months…please consider if this position or any of the others on the board is something you are prompted to do…there is training and a set of by-laws that make the work run smoothly. All you need is a heart that is able to love others, a listening ear, an occasional shoulder, and the willingness to share thoughts and ideas with other homeschool moms and dads.  Please take a moment to look at the positions and duties within the DHSA board as you consider how you might serve.

Love, Stacey


1.  Conduct at monthly Mothers’ Meetings and select opening and closing prayers.                     

2.  Write a monthly President’s Message for the newsletter and e-mail it to the Newsletter Editor by the 15th of each month.

3.  Be a contact person available for inquiries, concerns and questions    

     regarding homeschooling and the Association.

4.  Create, call, and attend Board meetings as needed.

5.  Ask for approval and input from all past Presidents in the event that                                                                                          there is a need or desire to change the DHSA By-Laws.


1.  Assist the President in planning Opening/Closing Socials, and any         other activities.

2.  Assist the President in planning locations of Mothers’ Meetings, and help assign a topic for each meeting.

3.  Attend Mothers’ Meetings.

4.  Attend Board Meetings.


1.  Keep an accounting of the financial records of the group.  Reimburse members from the General Fund for expenses approved by the Board.

2.  Prepare and give Treasurer’s Report at designated Mothers’ Meetings.

3.  Attend Mothers’ Meetings.

4.  Attend Board Meetings.

Membership/Newsletter Coordinator:                  

1.  Maintain and update membership/family contact information (add new

     people, delete old people, record info. changes).

2.  Set a deadline for receiving materials and articles submitted for the

newsletter, as well as a deadline for sending out the newsletter. Collect information and compile the newsletter.

3.  Send the newsletter/announcements out each month and other

     communications to the group as necessary.

4.  Attend Board Meetings.


1.  Take minutes at Mothers’ Meetings.  Submit notes for newsletter.

2. Assist Membership/Newsletter Coordinator with content of newsletter and membership updates.

3. Attend Mothers’ Meetings.

4. Attend Board Meetings.

Field Trip Coordinators:

1. Coordinate monthly field trips and submit dates, field trip and

directions to the newsletter.                                      

2.   Attend Board Meetings.

Party Planner/Committee:

1. Plan and execute parties and socials as directed by the presidency. Past events have included Opening and Closing Socials, Halloween, Christmas, Mid-winter, and Valentine’s Day parties.

2. Assist with other events as directed by by the presidency.

3. Write up advertisements for events to include in the newsletter.

4. Attend Board Meetings.

Fair Coordinators:

1. Plan and execute History, Science, and Literary Fairs as directed by the presidency.

2. Write up advertisements for Fairs to included in the newsletter.

3. Attend Board Meetings.

Other Positions as needed: Play group/Park Days Coordinator, PE Coordinator, Teen Activity Coordinators, Community Resource Guide, etc.


Classes, Co-ops and Learning Opportunities:

Rhythm Dancers Jr.


Girls 6-10 years old

Tuesdays 1:30pm

$25 a month

Jazz and colorguard performance opportunities throughout the year!

Learn dance technique and be part of a fun group.

Beginners and more experienced dancers welcome.

For more information contact Melissa Wolfe rdjazzer@yahoo.com

Rhythm Dancers

Girls ages 10 to 18.

Tuesdays 4:30pm

$25 a month

We offer opportunities for girls to participate in dance and develop sportsmanship and character. We participate throughout the year in jazz dance performances and color guard/parade performances. We work on basic dance technique every time we meet for class. Beginners and experienced dancers are welcome.

For more information contact Melissa Wolfe rdjazzer@yahoo.com

Educational Websites and Apps compiled by DHSA Treasurer, Janet Cox:

Here is my list of favorite websites and apps. They are either free or ones I would be willing to pay the regular price for. Have a great day!


Favorite Websites and Apps***


http://allinonehomeschool.com/ Easy Peasy complete, free online curriculum-- can choose just one subject or all of them.

http://discoveryk12.com/dk12/ free, full online curriculum. New, haven't used in depth yet.

http://oldfashionededucation.com/ another free, online curriculum using mostly older classic materials

http://www.amblesideonline.org/ Free Charlotte Mason curriculum-- love the reading lists here

https://www.udacity.com/ Free college level classes-- we have loved these

https://www.coursera.org/ another site with free college level classes

http://education-portal.com/academy/course/index.html great starting point for finding high school and college level classes


https://sites.google.com/site/kidsonlineacademy/ Brainpop $30, Reading Eggs $20!!! These are some of my favorite programs. Put Janet Cox as your referral and it helps me too. :)

https://www.homeschoolbuyersco-op.org/ Has group deals. Better than retail, but you have to check regularly or get their emails.

***Apps Gone Free Showcases several free apps per day, some of which would have cost up to $50


https://www.lds.org/children/videos/scripture-stories?lang=eng We love the radio programs under scripture stories. My younger kids use these as their personal scripture study

***LDS Gospel Videos and LDS Scripture Videos Free lite version, but has links to online videos by topic. We use these almost every day as part of devotional.

***LDS Children's Sing-a-long and LDS Hymn Sing-a-long Free lite version. Also used with devotional or kids learning to read. Has the bouncing ball moving across words with music, voices, and pictures. Also works great at night for kids to fall asleep to.


www.readingeggs.com My FAVORITE reading program. Use kidsonlineacademy above to get it for $20. They have a free trial.

www.starfall.com online phonics readers, games, can buy workbooks cheap or print

http://www.letteroftheweek.com/ free preschool program



***Letter School

***Cursive Writing Wizard


https://www.khanacademy.org/ math and more!!!

http://www.mathusee.com/e-learning/worksheets/ Drill Pages that can be customized

http://www.fun4thebrain.com/ flashcards disguised as games :)

www.sumdog.com math practice disguised as games. :)

***Dragonbox LOVE this app. Teaches algebra concepts in a game format! 12+ moves faster and goes a little further.

***Dragonbox Elements which teaches Geometry concepts in a game format.


I use spellingcity.com which is free. I make a customized list for each kid using Rebecca Sitton's top 1200 words (also free online). I label then Tyler Level 1, Tyler level 1b, etc. Each list has 15-20 words and sometimes I will let them add words they choose or add words they miss from their writing. They do the test and teach "game" everyday. The first day on a new list takes awhile because they have to get each word right or it keeps practicing it with them, but then it gets faster. They have to get 100% two days in a row, then move on to the next list. It has been awesome because they are only practicing words they don't know. Rebecca's list is the words most frequently used in writing, so it is the words they really need/use. And it's not super time consuming for me and they think it's fun. win/win. I only use the free version, but if you want more games, it is $5 though kidonlineacademy (above).


http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/web_games.htm games to learn states and capitals

http://earth.google.com/ aerial photos of whole world

***Stack the States and Stack the Countries teaches facts about states/countries in a game format.

***Presidents vs. Aliens Learn facts about the Presidents in a game


www.brainpop.com short videos on many subjects. Some are free. A full subscription is $30 for a family through kidsonlineacademy (above)

***Monster Physics fun game that teaches physics concepts


Teen Classic Book Club

Come join us monthly to discuss the great classics!

February 20th, 10:30am Comedy of Errors by Shakespeare.

Contact Melissa Wolfe rdjazzer@yahoo.com or 208-968-3998 for address.


Spelling Bee and Poetry Bee

Hosted by Leadership Connections Homeschool Co-op

Who: All Local Homeschool Families are welcome!

When: 12:30 pm, March 5th, 2015 (Thursday)

Where: 7211 Colonial STREET Boise, Id 83709 (just off Cole Rd., enter on the north side of the building)

Cost: $5 per child pays for participation in both bees, capped at $20 per family.

RSVP: Please contact Melissa Wolfe at rdjazzer@yahoo.com or 208-968-3998 so that we know how many to prepare for.

Spelling Bee

Students participate in levels, rather than grades. We have 4 different levels: level 1, level 2, level 2 ¾, and level 3. Please contact us to get a list of the words to study for each level. We ask that once you have won a level, you study for the next level the next time you participate. Please feel free to participate in the level that you will feel challenged, but not overwhelmed. This bee is judged on accuracy.

Poetry Bee
We use the book Poetry Bee by Emmalene Beck for our Poetry Bee. It is available on kindle or you may purchase directly from the author. Study the level you want to compete in. During the bee, you may be asked to recite any of the poems from your level. This bee is judged on accuracy.


Treasure Valley Commonwealth and Missoula Children’s Theatre presents a production of The Princess and the Pea.

Treasure Valley Commonwealth  Missoula Children's Theatre


Monday February 9 - Saturday February 14


The Journey Church, 9105 W Overland Road, Boise ID 83709


$2 to Audition

$50 for cast members

Approximately 50-60 students will be cast in the show. There is no guarantee that everyone who auditions will be cast.

Register to Audition by filling out this form



Fundraising opportunities will be available to help - it will be possible to raise the funds needed to cover your registration fee. Please contact me to get started with fundraising.


Monday February 9th

: 10

Audition: 10:30

Audition is 2 hours.

Parents need to remain on site for the audition, they may watch depending on room available, or sit in playroom with younger children. Parents will not need to remain for all the practices, but are welcome to remain if they wish.

At the end of the audition those that have received parts will be notified and handed out a schedule for the rest of the week.

Monday Practice

1pm - 3pm

This practice will only be for a few of the older participants.

Approximate Practice Schedule

Monday - Friday

10 - 12:30

Snack Break, everyone must remain onsite

1:30 - 3:30

Not all participants need to be at every rehearsal, detailed schedule handed out at the audition. You must be available for all rehearsals.


Friday Evening - TBD

Saturday February 14th

Plan to spend all day for dress rehearsal and 2 performances. Exact times to be announced.


Box Tops for Education:

Box Tops

You know those little pink tags on top of cereal, huggies, ziplocs, and hundreds of other items that say "10 cents for your school?" DHSA collects them and uses them to fund our Opening and Closing Socials and to subsidize other activities, such as our parties, science, history, and literary fairs, keeping them free or low cost!  You can bring them to any Mother's Meeting or most activities and pass them on to President Stacey Lytle or Treasurer Janet Cox. If each family collects just a few, it adds up quickly.In 2011, we earned$236 for our organization through box tops!!!

Box tops 2

Collecting them is easy. I pointed them out to my kids and they keep an eye out for them on packages before they throw things in the trash. I have a ziploc bag taped to the inside of a cupboard that they drop them into. You can also ask grandparents or friends to save them for us. Stores, like Albertsons, also sometimes offer Bonus Box Tops which print at the register, like a receipt from the catalina machine. These have a bonus code that you can register online and are often worth $5. You can register and enter them yourself and designate the money to go to DHSA. (List your school as Deseret Home School Association in Nampa, Idaho—that is how our organization is registered.) You can also turn them in at Mother's Meetings and we will enter them, but be aware that these often have expiration dates that come faster than regular box tops.

For those who would like to support DHSA, but find that they don’t use Box Tops for Education products, monetary donations in any amount are humbly and gratefully accepted!

Thank you for supporting the Deseret Homeschool Association!

President’s Message:

February is the month of LOVE!

LOVE, Love, love…what a beautiful word!

Let’s go with a little twist on this and ponder how we are living our lives. Do you LOVE what you are doing? How about your kids? Together, are you enjoying your days and growing closer? Does excitement fill your home? Is the desire to learn, to explore, and to uncover new things alive and thriving?


There are times in our homeschooling career that we may have to take a step back and do a little reevaluating; the need may arise to undergo a major overhaul from time to time. The blessing is that WE CAN! If YOU, as mom, don’t feel energized and excited about the direction you are going with your family…walk down a different path…change things up a bit…bring things in that shake it up and leave you and your kiddos anticipating the amazing things that might happen the next day!

road less traveled

Ladies and gentlemen, we are in the driver’s seat! If the scenery is not doing it for you, it may very well be time to take the scenic route…don’t worry about the final destination so much, I promise you will get there! Think of the tremendous example you are to your kids, show them that there is more than one way to accomplish the same goal. Stop off and smell the roses, kneel on all fours and watch the ants, take the time to lay on the grass and just see, really see the wonders that surround you. Give the gift to your children that this life is all about the journey and what we make of it. That LOVING what we do and who we are with is what it’s all about…it’s not a race to the finish line…we’d miss so much if our eyes were simply fixed on the ending.


Trust yourself, you’ve got this and taking a few extra stops that bring the possibility of immense joy is always worth it!

Wishing you a month filled with LOVE and WONDER and EXCITEMENT!