Is this year really over?

Wow, I cannot believe how fast this year has flown by.  It seems like it just started.  I always think in January and February the year is going by so slowly, but then all of a sudden December is here!  We had a fun filled year this year.
In January, we went to the North Carolina Outer Banks.   We visited the aquarium and the Wright Brothers Memorial.  It was a little chilly and my oldest got car sick, but we had a fun day.

We also visited our state’s capitol in January.

February, my oldest son turned 10 years old the day after Valentine’s Day!

It started getting warmer outside in March and we celebrated my youngest daughter’s first birthday!  The daffodils bloom in March and are so pretty,

In April we visited the park and the boys dug for some fossils.  In May and June, we went strawberry and blueberry picking.

The rest of the summer months were filled with a trip to the beach, celebrating my youngest son’s 9th birthday, a trip to the Marble’s Museum in Raleigh, and a trip to Fort Macon to start off the school year.

The fall months came and we were able to go on a camping trip and to the NC Zoo for my oldest daughter’s 7th birthday.

In November, we celebrated Veteran’s Day by going to a parade in our town.

And now, this year is over and we will start new adventures in 2013.  The kids will all turn one year older.  We will visit many different places.  We will make new memories.  Happy New Year!

Take a look at how other crew members remembered 2012!


What if...

If Facebook had been around 2,000 years ago...  


My Pastor

My Pastor was diagnosed with cancer over 3 years ago.  We as a church were devastated to hear the news and began to be in constant prayer for our leader.  He went through surgery to remove the cancer and also went through radiation and chemo.  He was doing great.  After a while, he even started preaching again.  He hardly took any time off and the deacons had to make him take a vacation.  He loved his church so much.

Earlier this year, he was diagnosed with MDS (leukemia).  He traveled to MD Anderson in Houston, TX after the Dr.'s told him here in NC there was nothing that could be done to help him.  The doctors in Houston told him they would be willing to give him a bone marrow transplant.  He had to wait until a donor was found and they actually found two donors!  The bone marrow transplant was to take place on November 21.

On November 4, my Pastor preached a wonderful message to his church family.  He had faith that God would heal him and he would be able to finish his ministry strong.

On November 21, the transplant was done and now it was a time of waiting to see if it would take.  He became very ill on December 1 and was in a medical coma for over a week.  He woke up on December 10 and everyone had hope and we just knew he would get better.  God had different plans.  Pastor became very ill again on December 12 and his family (that were not there with him) were called.  He was able to communicate with his family when they got there on Friday.  They spent the entire day on Saturday just praising God and praying he would remain here on earth.  Again, God had different plans.  Today, December 17, my pastor went Home to be with his Lord and Savior.

He was a great man of God and will be missed.  But, it is only temporary.  We know we will see him again some day.  His message on November 4th did come true- he received the ultimate healing and his ministry did finish strong.


SchoolhouseTeachers.com Review



Have you heard about SchoolhouseTeachers.com yet?  It is a website developed by The Old Schoolhouse Magazine.  There is so much great stuff packed into this site!


My favorite feature on the site is the list of dailies.  Some of the activities listed here are grammar, math, spelling, games, and so much more. I especially love the spelling lists for the younger grades.  My 2nd grade daughter loved how the spelling lists were set up.  It was easy for her to learn the words by the end of the week.  
There is even a monthly menu provided in this section.  Here are some of the yummy recipes for this month: Homemade hot chocolate, buckeyes, cranberry fluff, and ham and pineapple dish.  I am looking forward to trying out some of these recipes for the holidays!

My second favorite feature on this site are the Schoolhouse Planners.  With a paid subscription to the site, you will have access to five different planners!  You can save (to your computer) and print what you need.  

I also really love the Library section.  It is filled with crafts, homemaking, archives, and games.  I know I will be using this section a lot in the coming months.

Last, but certainly not least, there is an abundance of different subjects listed for each grade starting with Pre-K and going all the way to high school.   Subjects like art, literature, and French for the Pre-K/Elementary age.  Chemistry, mock trial, and classic-based writing for middle school.  And for the high school student, economics, film making, and worldviews.

Take a look at the samples page to see all of the wonderful things this site has to offer.

The cost to subscribe to SchoolhouseTeachers.com is only $1.00 for your first month and $5.95 each month after that!  It is very affordable for how much information and resources you are getting.

Take a look at what other crew members have to say about SchoolhouseTeachers.com by clicking the banner below.


Disclaimer: The product featured in this review was provided to me in exchange for an honest review.  The opinions expressed are my own.  There are affiliate links in the post.


30 Days of Thanks- Days 28-30

As I close out the month, I am thankful for the blessings God has allowed into my life.  He has given me a great church family and great friends.

Coming up next week- My first TOS Homeschool Crew Review!!


30 Days of Thanks Days 21-27

As we celebrated Thanksgiving Day, we went around the table and each of us said something we are thankful for this year.  My oldest son said he was thankful for salvation.  My younger son said he was thankful for God.  My oldest daughter said she was thankful for her family.  My younger daughter, who is only 20 months, said she was thankful for mommy.  It was a great day! I am thankful for everything God has provided and will provide for us.


30 Days of Thanks- Days 17-20

Photo courtesy of: http://www.freestockphotos.biz/

I am thankful for the many blessings God has bestowed upon me and my family.  I know there have been many times where I didn't know where our next meal would come from, but God provided.  He has always provided for us and has kept our bellies full and a roof over our head.


30 Days of Thanks- Days 13-16 and Journal

This week, I am thankful that God has allowed me to stay home and homeschool my children for the past 9 years.

Homeschool Mother's Journal
In my life this week...
~This has been a tough week, but I have managed to get everything back on track.

In our homeschool this week...
~The kids have been learning about the election process as we wait to hear the results for our LT Governor race in NC.

Places we're going...
We went to a Veteran's Day parade on Saturday.


30 Days of Thanks- Days 9-12

So keeping up and trying to write a short post is not working out for me right now.  I have decided to just write a thankful post every few days.

I am thankful for the men and women of our country who have fought and are fighting for us to keep our freedom.


Free Christmas Printable

***If sharing, please link back to my blog. It did take me some time to make this and I would like the credit. Thanks***


30 Days of Thanks- Day 8

Today, day 8, I am thankful that God has allowed me to stay here on Earth and be with my family.  One year ago today, a friend, who was my same age, passed on to Heaven.  She left behind a husband and a son who is the same age as my oldest son.  Please pray for them as it has been a difficult year.


30 Days of Thanks- day 7

Today, day 7, I am thankful that I do not need to worry about tomorrow (or today).  Jesus is still King of all.


30 Days of Thanks- Day 6

Today, day 6, I am thankful to live in a country where I can vote for the candidate that best fits my values.


30 Days of Thanks- Day 5

Today, day 5, I am thankful to have a house with heat and food to eat.  There are a lot of people, who only a week ago had the same, but now do not have anything.


30 Days of Thanks- Day 4

Today, day 4, I am thankful to have such a wonderful church family.  Our Pastor has had cancer for a few years, but most recently has been diagnosed with MDS (leukemia) and has not been able to preach because of treatments.  Tonight, he was able to preach a great message and we had a wonderful evening service.  He has a bone marrow transplant scheduled for November 21.  Anyone who is reading this, please pray for him during this time.  Thanks.


30 Days of Thanks- Day 3

Today I am thankful that God allowed me to be a mom to 5 children, 1 in heaven and 4 here on earth.

NC Zoo


Great Homeschool Resource!

I have found a great homeschool resource for everyone! Angie McFarren, a homeschool mom and a Homeschool Consultant, has written this great eBook.  The eBook has all the information you need to homeschool and more.  You will find it is your "go to resource" when you have homeschool questions. I am actually in the process of reading the book right now and will post my full review once I have finished it, but I wanted to let you all know about a great deal on this book. H.O.P.E. Home School Consulting is offering November savings on the Educate the Home Educator Crash Course eBook. The eBook has all the information you need to homeschool and more.

Here is a free sample lesson from the crash course.  You can also sign up for free homeschool tips.

Use this coupon code EHCCNOV12 and link before November 30 to order your eBook.

Please note: There are affiliate links in this post.

30 Days of Thanks- Day 2

Today, day 2, I am thankful for the wonderful husband God picked out for me.  We have been married 12 years and have definitely had our ups and downs, but we have managed to keep our focus on God.


30 Days of Thanks- Day 1

November begins a month of Thankfulness.  I am going to try to get up a post about what I am thankful for each day this month.

Today, day 1, I am thankful for God sending His son to die on the cross for my sins.  I am thankful that one day I will spend eternity with Him in Heaven.



Last week, we took a mini vacation for our daughter's 7th birthday.  We started out at the state fair and ended with camping.  We had such a great time and the weather was so beautiful and perfect.

We went to the state fair on Thursday and everyone enjoyed themselves.  After spending some time at the fair we went to Pullen Park and rode the train and carousel.  The kids also enjoyed playing.

We spent the evening with my husband's brother.  The next morning, we headed out to the NC Zoo.  We arrived at the zoo around lunch time, so we had our picnic lunch before going in.  We had a great time walking all over and seeing all of the animals.

After the zoo, we headed to Badin Lake and camped out for the night.  It was kind of primitive as they did not have electricity at the sites, but they did have hot showers and flush toilets near the campsites.  It was beautiful.  Our site was right on the lake.  The kids loved building a fire that night and sleeping in the tent.

The birthday girl also lost a tooth while on vacation!  Overall, we had a great vacation and can't wait to do it again!


See the Light Review & Giveaway!!

Magento Commerce

I have been looking for an art curriculum to use in our homeschool this year.  I did find one that I thought would work.  I ordered it, but me, not being an artist myself, has found it difficult to teach my children art out of a book.  I was given the chance to do a review for See the Light.  I love this art curriculum since it is a DVD and I do not have to know art myself.  
I also love that this program is for younger children as well and starts with the basics.  My children are 10, 9, and 7. My 7 year old was having trouble being able to draw and do the other art curriculum I had purchased.  She was getting discouraged with the other curriculum because she couldn't do the drawings her brothers could do.   When I put this DVD in for them to watch, she loved it.  It starts with the basics in a way younger children can understand.  She was able to do the lessons very easily.

Here is an overview of See the Light:

See the Light art is taught by Master Artist, Pat Knepley.  The supplies needed for this program are very simple: a #2 pencil, a white eraser or gray kneaded eraser, blank paper, and a pencil sharpener.  There are other supplies needed, but most of the supplies are things you already have around the house such as apples, a sharpie marker, glue sticks, and leaves.  You can check out the detailed list here.

What I like about these DVD's:
~ The lessons are not long.  They are simple and short that will keep your child's attention the entire time.
~ The lessons focus on one topic at a time.
~ Pat has a love for God and the Bible.  She has a Biblical focus at each lesson.
~ Each lesson builds on what was learned during the previous lesson.
~ You learn about different famous artists in the lessons.

Check out the first lesson:

You can purchase a complete one year set of DVD's for $99.99.  Single DVD's are $14.99 each.

One more thing- each DVD has a special bonus lesson included.  The bonus lesson for the DVD I reviewed was an easy chalk art lesson.  My 10 year old loves art and was so excited to learn how to do chalk art.

Now, what you all have been waiting for, the giveaway!  See the Light has graciously offered to send one lucky person an Art Class, Volume 1 DVD.  To enter, please use the Rafflecopter form below (you may have to wait for it to load).

I received a copy of See the Light DVD in exchange for the review.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Non Fiction Book Report Form

My son needed a non-fiction book report form to do a book report.  I was having trouble finding a free one.  I created this one for him and my other kids to use.  Feel free to use it yourself.

Click here for the Non Fiction Book Report Form.


Coming soon...

I have a couple of reviews I am working on to be posted in the next couple of weeks.  I also have a giveaway coming up soon of a great product to use for homeschooling.  Keep watching!

For now, I will leave you with this verse:


Homemade Laundry Detergent

After seeing something on Pinterest about making your own laundry detergent, I decided I would give it a try.  I am constantly doing laundry for our family of six and laundry detergent is expensive.

I went to the store and bought all the supplies:
~5 gallon bucket with lid
~Arm & Hammer Washing Soap
~Fels Naptha soap

I followed the Duggars recipe for making laundry detergent.  It was really easy to make.  I have already used it and it works great!  It make so much for a low cost.  It will be even cheaper the next batch I make since I have leftover washing soda and borax.  I will only need to buy one Fels Naptha bar soap.



We were recently blessed by some friends with clothes (8 garbage bags and one tote full) for our daughters.  I had some clothes from when my boys were little that I was just going to give to Goodwill.  I have a friend who has a little boy that is a perfect size for the clothes.  The Lord laid it on my heart to ask her if she needed some winter clothes.  She said, "Yes! My husband has a temporary layoff from work and we are behind and was wondering how you were going to get our son some clothes."  I am so happy to have received a blessing and then be able to turn around and be a blessing.

Matthew 7:12- Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. (KJV)


Ricky the Remarkable Raccoon Book Review

Ricky the Remarkable Raccoon by Peggy Roger-Carey is a story about a raccoon who lives near the sea and wonders where the "grand houses" go to everyday.   He is also homeless and alone and wants to be a part of a family.  He sees a boat full of people and He decides he is going to get on the boat.  The people on the boat trap him and stick him in a cage.  While at sea, a seal named Mr. Whiskers sees him in the cage and rescues him.  Mr. Whiskers takes Ricky to live with him and his family.
This book has beautiful illustrations and I love that the story focuses on adoption.  I would recommend this book to everyone, not only those who have adopted or fostered children.  This book is for all children especially those who feel like they don't belong.  The author is trying to convey a message of belonging and she did a great job.  I really enjoyed reading it to my children and they enjoyed hearing about Ricky and his new home.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookCrash.com book review program, which requires an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.



Autumn has started to become my favorite time of the year.  I love the cooler nights.  I love being able to open the windows and let some fresh air in to the house.  I love apples and pumpkins.  I love the leaves changing colors.


I love being able to get outside and play with the kids.  I love wearing sweaters.  I love going on hikes in the woods.  I love going to the fair.  I will miss the long daylight hours from the summer, but I will not miss the heat and humidity.  


"You are worthy, O Lord to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created."  ~Revelation 4:11 NKJV


Homeschool Mother's Journal

In my life this week...
We have had a busy week this week.  My husband usually works out of the house, but has been taking some classes for work 45 min away from home and it has really thrown our schedule off.  He had to leave at 6 AM and did not get home until 6 PM.  My 18 month old has been missing him since she is so use to having him home all the time.

In our homeschool this week...
We have taken part of the week off.  We did have a field trip on Monday.  I gave the kids some work to do on Tuesday and Wednesday, but we have taken Thursday and Friday off from school.  It was time for a little break.  We have been doing school work since the beginning of August.

I'm reading... 
For a book review:
The Reason, William Sirls

I'm cooking:..

Egg custard pie.  Recipe can be found here.

I'm praying for...
Some friends and for my great nephew who was born 6 weeks early.

A photo to share... 
I took this photo in 2010 while we were at the beach one day.  It never did storm, but it sure looks like it was going to.  I added a Bible verse to the picture.



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