How to Make Fire with a Magnifying Glass

how to make fire with a leaf and a magnifying glass

Look closely. You can see the giant burn hole in the leaf.

Last weekend we were enjoying a leisurely weekend of letting the kids play in the backyard while we visited with family. Caleb, who loves all things science-related, asked Alan if he could show him how to use the sun’s light and a magnifying glass to make fire.

Deep down, I guess we are all like cave-men because every one of us was full of joy to watch this happen.

how-to-make-fire with a leaf and a magnifying glass

I had never actually seen this done before. The sun was shining, so conditions were perfect. Alan hunted down a magnifying glass and grabbed a dry leaf from the yard.

Now this is where it gets complicated:

Oh wait,no, it doesn’t. Literally, all we did was let the sun shine through the magnifying glass onto the leaf, and smoke appeared rather quickly.

how to make fire with a leaf and a magnifying glass

In this photo, the one side of the leaf is mostly burned away, and they’d started on the second half.

how to make fire with a leaf and a magnifying glass


how to make fire with a leaf and a magnifying glass

Everyone had to take a turn burning the leaf.

Well, folks, that’s all there is to it. This may be my shortest blog post of all time, eh?

You don’t have to be a home school family to do fun science projects at home. These are the kinds of activities your kids won’t soon forget.

Want to know the science behind all this? I googled it for ya. I must confess that I did not find the science behind it interesting at all, but this site did the best job of holding my attention: Just click on that link there.

Okay, I guess I should go back to being an involved parent or tidying up or something. Hope you are all having a great week!


Newly Revised Pros and Cons List for Home Vs. Public Vs. Private School

old house in America

There are just a few blog posts that I’ve written that have front page authority on Google. If you want to know how to make a school supply cake, they will send you to me, page 1, top slot.

If you want a long list of pros and cons for school choices, you will find this old post in your Google search results. Some days it gets more hits than the new things that I post.

I am not anti-public, anti-private, or anti-home school. It was a list that I made while trying to reach my decision two years ago.

I kept cringing each time that I’d see this list that I made before I even tried home-schooling being read almost every day. So I dug it up and changed it. This new one is more candid and useful because I was able to speak with more experience. I hope you’ll give it a read-through. Thanks!

Home School Vs. Public Vs. Christian School: Pros and Cons


Stories of Our Boys’ Top 10 Posts of 2015

2015 was a happy year here, full of it’s own challenges, triumphs, and best of all, adventures. I put together this look back at my 10 most popular posts from the year. By popular, I mean that these are the posts that were read by the largest number of people.

First, a few stats from our past year at Stories of Our Boys:

You might have read all 156 blog posts.

You are reading this from 120 different countries. was the #1 commenter, followed by McMom. I LOVE my commenters! You add so much to the discussion.

Nonna was my #1 voter and promoter.

Most of you came to my blog via Google or Facebook.

This cute little blog started to make money. Then the home school year took over, and I have been turning away work ever since.

But the greatest thing in the world you give me is when one of you dear friends says, “I like what you said about….” or “I enjoy reading your blog,” or “Your post inspired me to….”

Thank you so much!!!

Biggest observation: The most popular posts are the informational ones. My stories…which are my personal favorite….are much less widely read. Ah, well.

As a blogger, you are who I aim to please. If I were only writing for myself, I’d have a journal, not a blog, so I value your feedback. I’d love to hear what types of posts are your faves.

Now onto this year’s….

Top 10 of 2015


#10 Four Things to Learn From the Duggars That They Didn’t Mean to Teach 


#9. What’s a Jamberry Anyway?


#8. One Simple Lesson That Brought Joy Back to My Life (One of my faves as well!)

#7. Breastfeeding Babies, Strangers, and Airplanes. My, Oh My, Oh My

(So random. I wrote that one in 2013, but it was still my 7th most popular article for 2015.)


how to build a family schedule that works

#6. How to Build a Family Schedule That Works

This is the only thing I’ve ever written that was a Pinterest hit.


Classical Conversations Cycle 1 and Brain Pop Jr.

#5. Classical Conversations Cycle 1: Week By Week with Brain Pop Jr.

…because who doesn’t love BrainPop??

Home School Vs. Christian School Vs Public School Pros and Cons

#4. Home School Vs. Public School Vs. Private School: Pros and Cons List

I so need to update this post. I wrote this one in 2014, before I ever tried the home school thing.

Montessori at Home

 #3. Montessori at Home: Brainy Kit Review


How to Build a School Supply Cake

#2. How to Make a School Supply Cake

This was published in 2014. According to Google, is the #1 authority in school supply cake building on the internet. Pretty funny when you realize that I almost never “craft”!

Making Over My Morning Like a Night Owl

#1. Making Over My Morning, Like a Night Owl

…because anything that appears on is going to get a thousand times more traffic than my norm.



Here’s to the New Year! We’re excited to see what 2016 will bring. I hope it’s a great one for all of you!



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