Wednesday, November 21, 2012


We had such great weather in October this year! perfect for a fun trip to the pumpkin patch.

But that never happened.

Every time I suggested it, the kids wanted to do something else. So I waited. Big mistake! Just when I thought I had the perfect day planned, the weather turn freezing cold. And both boys came down with a nasty cold. Just my luck ;)

So the only one who carved a pumpkin this year was Megan:

 My cousin always has a party/bonfire in October. It's a huge event with people coming and going all evening long. She has a pumpkin carving station on her back porch so we stopped at Kroger on the way and grabbed one for Megan. She was the only one of our gang interested in carving at the party. The other kids wanted to wait (ugh!). You can tell the weather was still great then! It was actually the perfect night for a bonfire!

I tried to talk our kids out of trick-or-treating this year. They have so many food allergies that there wouldn't be one piece of candy they'd be able to eat. That seemed like a waste. But they really wanted to so I agreed they could go if they donated their candy. That was fine with them! That just goes to show you that it's really all about the dressing up and the fun of running door to door, not as much about the candy.

They also wanted to invite some friends along this year. I know that was part of their reason to go. Who doesn't like running door to door dressed up and WITH FRIENDS?!? Our friends came earlier in the afternoon and the kids played while I chatted with their mother (a had a friend over too!) and made treats we could actually eat :)

These girls are so cute! Fiona was a fairy and Megan was an angel :)
 The boys had a Minecraft theme going. If you have children, I'm sure you know what Minecraft is! Finn was Steve, Nick was a creeper, and Brandon was an Enderman. So fun!
 The whole gang:
They had so much fun together! The weather was lousy though, especially if your costume is made out of card board and paper ;) But they put coats on and we all went out anyway! The kids picked out their hard candy to put in their boxes for Operation Christmas Child and the chocolate is being donated to a food pantry.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Brought to You by the Number Fourteen!

Like my creative titles? heh

Anyway, after I blogged Megan's birthday I realized I hadn't blogged Brandon's yet....and his was last month. I'm a little late.

Last month (sheesh) Brandon turned fourteen! His birthday this year fell on a co-op day so he had fun all day long hearing "Happy Birthday" from all his friends! He just wanted a small family party and that's what he got. We made dairy-free chocolate fudge and, of course, opened presents!
 I love his grin as he opens the gift Kristen chose for him! I think he had a feeling as to what it was!
 Lots and lots of Legos :)
 And a Bengals Snuggie!
 Fourteen candles :)
Brandon, we are so proud of the young man you are turning into! You are helpful, kind, and smart as a whip! We are so blessed to have you as a son :)

Brought to You by the Number Eight!

Our sweet baby, the youngest of our herd, turned eight last weekend! It's unbelievable to me that eight years have gone by.

Some shots of our weekend:
 Crafting girls! They had a blast making their hand-print and foot-print turkeys! Crafting is more fun with friends, I believe :)
 They also played pin the crown on the wardrobe which I didn't get any photos of but they had fun!

Megan's friends sweetly gifted her with so many fun things! Lots of Lego Friends' sets, some stuffed animals, and a crafting set and let me tell you they are already ALL well-loved! She played with every single toy that same night! Thank you to all her friends!

 These are from her actual birthday Friday:
 I just love that girl :)
 The cake she chose was made with layered sorbet (I found one without corn syrup or egg) and covered with melted dairy-free chocolate chips. It was so good she requested the same thing to share with her friends at her birthday party! Here's a look at the "cake":
Megan, we are so blessed to have you in our lives! You are so very sweet and loving. I love watching you grow and learn new things. You always brighten my day :)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Apple Butter Day

Yesterday was cold but there was no staying in for us! The boys have had a cold lately so I've cancelled everything I can to keep them home so they can rest but Nick needed one more even to finish cubscouts so out we went!

He needed to attend a boyscout hosted event and since he bridges over to boyscouts this month we were running out of time. So thankful for Apple Butter Day! So many fun activities!

We hadn't planned on staying long so I asked the kids what they most wanted to do. Brandon and Megan picked archery, Nick picked tomahawk throwing and off we went.
 Megan was the only one I got a picture of at the archery range, the boys were too fast! She hit the target but I didn't get a shot of that.

Since the BB gun range was right beside archery, we stopped there too. Nick wasn't feeling good at that moment so he sat this one out.

 Tomahawk throwing had a huge line but since it was Nick's only request, we waited. Even he wasn't thrilled with my decision to wait but I'm so glad we did. Both boys hit the wood!

 If you cut the card you get to keep it. Brandon's souvenir:
 Nick did really weel too:

 Megan gave it a try but no wood for her.
Even though it was cold and cloudy it was a great afternoon!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Apple Picking with Dad

We've been to Lynd's twice this month and love every apple we've picked! The last time we went, we took Todd along. I was surprised to learn he'd never been with us! I guess we go during the week when it's not so crazy there, an advantage of homeschooling ;)

 Love this one:
 Nick looks like this all through the apple orchard ;)
 We picked Jonathan this time and they are so crunchy and juicy!
 It was a great fall afternoon to spend outside and we enjoyed every minute :)

Best Dad Ever!

September was a bit of insanity! It went by in a whoosh and I have all kinds of fun things I need to get on here, and I'm going to start with this:

A week ago, the kids talked Todd into camping with them in the backyard! We spent the entire evening outside enjoying the fire. It was actually a pretty cold evening so a fire was perfect. I had my doubts about them staying in the tent all night since it was so cold but they all assured me they'd be fine with Dad in there with them ;)

It ended at 2am when Todd just couldn't get Nick to settle down and go to sleep ;) They all came in (much to Brandon's disappointment and my joy!) and spent the rest of the night in their own beds :)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Living History

I've long been a believer in living history. I feel that the more you can actually experience the easier, and definitely more interesting, history is. So this is something I strive for in our school. Experiences and/or reading an account of experiences are an invaluable tool!

Last week, Megan, Nick, and I have been reading about Christopher Columbus and his desire to find a sea route to the Indies, China, and Japan. We read that he died thinking he was in the right area and never knowing he had actually landed on an entirely different continent! Sad! After reading about it I thought a field trip was in order!

We are lucky to live in an area with so many resources. We headed downtown to see a full size replica of the Santa Maria, Christopher Columbus' flagship!

We stopped on the way to get a picture here:
 We walked right past a statue of Chris himself!

Then came the main event:
 The cook stove. We learned so much about how and what they ate.
 The kids had fun helping our tour guide (who was fantastic, by the way!) with the cannon. We learned some pretty interesting things about that too like they couldn't aim had no wheels!
 Megan got to steer :)
 The view from the captain's cabin:
 Inside the captain's cabin:
When our tour was over, the sweet tour guide allowed questions and was very sweet about answering all of them.

It was a great way to wrap up our first week back to school!