Wednesday, October 21, 2009


My dad, myself and my grandma

October 16, 1913 was the date that my grandmother was born in Mulberry, AR. She just celebrated her 96th birthday. Grandma has always been a spunky active person always laughing at something. Over the past few years, her health has slowed her down greatly. She can no longer garden or do anything active. She still enjoys company but gets tired very easily. It has been difficult for her to deal with her declining health but she seemed to thoroughly enjoy her birthday and all of the attention that it brought her way.

Friday, October 02, 2009


At the end of July we went to Nashville to visit our daughter. While we were there we did a bit of sight seeing, a bit of relaxing and a bit of visiting with extended family. I have a great aunt that lives in the area and a great uncle that lives in Arkansas who was up visiting at the same time we were there and so we had a mini reunion. It was so wonderful to see them both and extended cousins too. I hadn't seen my uncle in 10 years and it had been longer since I had seen my aunt so the mini family reunion was a joy. We also drove up to Kentucky and went to Mammoth Caves and also to the National Corvette Museum. I hadn't planned well enough for the Caves and so I was disappointed with the tour we ended up with, the ones I wanted were at times we weren't going to be in the area. As car enthusiasts, we enjoyed the Corvette Museum immensely. We went to the Opryland Hotel twice, once at night and once during the day. I have always wanted to visit a Southern Plantation and thus we went to see the Hermitage. It was the home of President Andrew Jackson. Guitar boy had written a report on Andrew Jackson and so that was a great way to culminate that study. We also visited the Parthenon in Nashville, relaxed at the hotel and also with our daughter and her friends at their home. We chose to be in Nashville over our daughter's birthday and so we got to have a birthday BBQ with her and her friends. This vacation was a good combination of busyness and relaxation.

The top photo is of the Parthenon, located in downtown Nashville. It is a full scale replica of the greek parthenon and was built in the late 1800s for an exposition that they had. It is the only remaining building from the exposition. Inside is a small art gallery that also contains drawings of the other and then inside upstairs is the full scale replica of the Goddess Athena that was in the original Parthenon.

This above photo is of the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky.

Football boy with his favorite style Corvette.

Guitar Boy with his favorite item in the Corvette Museum.

Mustang man and myself in the Opryland Hotel. This hotel is awesome, it is like a world unto itself with gardens and shops and even a canal with a boat ride.
One of the Gazebos in the Opryland hotel. It is gorgeous in the hotel at night with lights everywhere.

Life in the Yellow House . . . 8 Months

How do you go about summarizing 8 months in the life of a family. I don't think you can do it justice and you miss many of the details but I am going to try anyway.

Football boy completed drivers education classes. He is currently trying to get in his required hours so that he can take the drivers test in December as soon as he turns 16. He also went to bible camp for a week (his first time) and had an incredible time.

We participated in Walk4Water to help raise funds to build wells in underprivileged areas of the world. We had great fun and fellowship with our fellow walkers along with raising the funds.

Sailor graduated from our homeschool in May. We had a graduation/going away party for him and he entered Navy Boot camp June 30th and graduated August 28th. He stayed determined and positive and did well.

Guitar boy, football boy and I went on a field trip to the Woodland Park Zoo with my sister, nurse to be, two of her children and her nephew.

In early July, we stayed at Great Wolf Lodge for Guitar boy and cousin Bella's 13th Birthday. It was fun for all!

We travelled on a family vacation to Nashville, TN to visit our daughter and do some sight seeing. We had a wonderful trip, albeit too short. We also got to see some extended family while we there and that was a nice treat.

Mustang man and I celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary. I really love that guy!

Football Boy, Guitar boy and I travelled to eastern Washington with friends to see some sights to prepare for our upcoming study of Washington State history. We had a wonderful time!

Our family went camping in North Cascades National Park with some dear friends and had great weather and fun.

Mustang man and I met our daughter in the Chicago area to see Sailor graduate from boot camp. The ceremony was awesome and we had a good weekend with our older children!

Unfortunately, I brought home a sore throat from Chicago and ended up being sick for almost two solid weeks and Mustang Man was sick for one week. Because of the illnesses, school got off to a slow start, but now things are going pretty good.

Once we got going with school we took a field trip to Tacoma and went to the Washington State History Museum with my sister and two of her children. That was a great day. We have also taken a spur of the moment field trip to Whidbey Island. We took the ferry over and drove up the island and then across the Deception Pass bridge and back home. It was a busy day, but great fun.

We have been going to football games just about every week since school began. Go Football Boy and MP!

As you can see, just the highlights of our summer were filled with fun and busy activities.

In Retrospect . . .

My blog has been idle for many, many months and I debated about whether or not to even keep it up. After an active summer, I decided to give it a go once more. I am not sure if anyone is still out there in blog land that would be interested in the happenings of our family.

We had a rough year emotionally with one of our children and that caused me to take another look at my preconceived ideas of what parenting and homeschooling should look like and at the results I expected from it. The conclusion I have come to is that every person is an individual and has an individual will that they will exercise. Although we have made many mistakes as parents, we have done the best with the tools that we had. Do we see room for improvement, YES! But do we own all the guilt for the actions of our children, NO! After all, God was the PERFECT parent and Adam and Eve sinned. The results of our year in the fire is that we have good relationships with all of our children and for that we are truly grateful!

Our oldest child, our daughter moved away to the other side of the country almost a year ago. She has had many adventures living that far from home, done a lot of sightseeing and enjoyed her friends. Now she feels that it is time to come back home and start a new chapter in her life. We are glad that she had her adventure but are even happier that she is returning home. We have missed her greatly.

Our second child, after many bumps in the road, finished his homeschooling career and graduated from our homeschool. Last fall, he enlisted in the Delayed Entry Program with the Navy and worked toward full enlistment, which he accomplished the end of June. He graduated from boot camp the end of August and now is attending classes to prepare for his career in the Navy. His chosen career is Advanced Electronics and Computer Program (AECF) with the rate of Fire Controlman (FC). Sailors in that position work on the weapons systems and radar. We are very proud of him!

Our third child, Football boy, is almost 16 and is in his second year of high school classes. He plays football for the local high school and he loves it. He had been working hard on his school and keeps pretty busy with it and all the football practices. He is growing up and becoming quite a young man.

Our fourth child, guitar boy, has found a new love - the electric guitar. He has been teaching himself to play and seems to have an ear for music. Of course, he loves it loud. It is great to see him find something that is "his" thing that he has much fun doing.

Mustang Man is still working on restoring his 1965 mustang coupe in his spare time. It has turned out to be a very long project but he is getting close to paint time and the will be the turning point in the project. He still works at the local aircraft manufacturer and has avoided all of the lay offs there. We are truly thankful for that as well.

I keep very busy with homeschooling football and guitar boys and helping my mom, who lives near by. I don't know where my time goes sometimes, but I keep plugging away. Anyhow, that is where we are as a family currently.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


One thing I need to work on is having a consistent morning and evening routine. It helps the day to run much smoother. Here is a basic routine that, if followed, helps my days to go well.

Morning Routine

Feed Cats

Quiet Time



Make Bed


Cat box

Start laundry

Evening Routine

Pick up downstairs

Kitchen check & clean if needed

Set up coffee pot


Check calendar & menu

Catch up checkbook

Get to bed by 11 pm

Menu Plan Monday - Jan 19 Edition

One of my goals for the new year is to use my time more wisely. I am hoping that planning menus will help me to accomplish this goal.

Monday: Martin Luther King Jr., Bday – No school/Plan School Day
Jake works 7 – 12
Tuna Noodle Casserole/peas

Tuesday: Inauguration – Take cats to vet
Italian Dressing Chicken, Boiled Potatoes, Carrots

Wednesday: Take mom Shopping
Jake Works 7 – 12?
Spanish Rice/green beans
Life Group

Thursday: Josh/Ben - Dentist
Go visit Grandma
Oven Fried Chicken, baked potatoes, carrots
(Turkey Tetrazzini for dinner @ grandmas)

Friday: Baked Ziti, Salad, Garlic toast

Saturday: Cook Breakfast or have Jake cook
Pancakes, sausage, applesauce

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Out with the Old in with the New - 2009

Reading several blogs and chatting with my daughter and friends has caused me to consider my goals for the new year. I have not firmed them up yet, but here is a partial list of what I hope to accomplish in the new year.

- Grow to know Jesus in a deeper fuller way. - Unfortunately this one is hard to measure but I plan to do this by having more consistent bible study and prayer time. I started by reading one of the gospels and am now reading through the gospel accounts as presented in the Chronological Bible - NIV. I hope to gain a new perspective of Jesus through some of the books I read as well. I will also start a new prayer journal to keep track of how my prayers are answered.

-Use my time more productively by establishing a better morning routine and evening routine.

- Read at least 6 worthwhile books this year. The Headmistress of The Common Room is challenging herself to read 12 worthwhile books this year - you can read about her challenge here. I haven't figured out all of the books I would like to read but here are the first few on my list. My list may not measure up as worthwhile in other peoples minds, but I see something worthwhile in them for me:

The Jesus I Never Knew by Philip Yancey

The Last Sin Eater by Francine River

Paradise Lost & Paradise Regained by John Milton

Great ExpectionsGreat Expectations by Charles Dickens

- Gain some sense of Health - both Physical and Spiritual

On the physical side I plan to start by moving my body each day and drinking more water each day and I spoke to the Spiritual side on the first goal I listed above.

- I want to declutter my house this year. Coffeemama at Our Blue Castle has blogged about her goal in this area here and I want to come up with a similar plan to divide up my house into bite sized pieces to accomplish this goal.

I actually started this post the first week in January and am just now getting back to it. I have been following through on some of my goals and need to work more on others. I will post on my progress in a later post.