Tuesday, November 14, 2017

It's Time...

I started this blog back in 2011 to help me keep track of the kid's homeschooling.  We did a lot through the years and now that they have become independent learners, I have decided that Its Time to say goodbye to this blog.

I will 'close the door' on this blog December 31st.  This will give me time to save a few posts/pictures and to reminisce the past.

Thank you to all that followed this blog through the years.  I appreciated the comments and enjoyed reading your blogs posts as well.

May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Season :)

Thursday, October 26, 2017

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry ~ Review

(Picture from Amazon.com)

"Elsa is seven years old and different.  Her grandmother is seventy-seven years old and crazy - as in standing-on-the-balcony-firing-paintball-guns-at-strangers crazy.  She is also Elsa's best, and only, friend.  At night, Elsa takes refuge in her grandmother's stories, in the Land-of-Almost-Awake and the Kingdom of Miamas, where everybody is different and nobody needs to be normal. 
When Elsa's grandmother dies and leaves behind a series of letters apologizing to people she has wronged, Elsa's greatest adventure begins. Her grandmother's instructions lead her to an apartment building full of misfits, monsters, attack dogs, and old crones, but also to the truth about fairy tales and kingdoms and a grandmother like no other."  (taken from the back cover of the book)

"My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry" is full of wit, strength, courage and above all...superheroes.  The main character, Elsa, is sent on an adventure to deliver letters to people that were helped by her grandmother in the past.  As the story develops, you find out that these people are also characters in the Land-of-Almost-Awake. 

This is the first book I have read by Fredrik Backman.  His story-telling is engaging and witty.  I do have to say that the first half of the book was a bit slow-going for me, but then the pace picked up and I couldn't put the book down.  I highly recommend to all.

(Disclaimer:  I purchased this book for my own personal library. I did not receive any compensation from the author or publisher for my opinion)

Sunday, October 15, 2017


"...Remember, to be carnally-minded is death, and to be Spiritually-Minded Is Life Eternal." ~ 2 Nephi 9:39

Monday, October 2, 2017

A Bit Silent...

Wow, it has been a while since my last post.  That was not intentional, or perhaps it was.  I haven't found much to blog about and life has been a bit busy:  Lessons, Girls Camp, Birthdays, Work, House Work, etc. 

I have been pondering about whether I should hang up on the blog thing or tweak a few things.  The kids are basically independent in their studies/lessons and doing their own things. So posting about lessons has been quite infrequent. Samantha has her own blogs that she tries to keep up with and is busy finishing up her third book and working on her fourth book to be self published.  Nickolas is busy with playing video games and reading at times.  Having two teenagers in the house has changed the dynamic a bit as well.  The kids are on their 'sabbath week' of school (6 weeks lessons, 1 week off) and are finding ways to keep busy...they do have a few major chores that need to get done this week and I am hoping the work gets done.

The work on the house is coming along and there might be a slight chance that we will be moving in the 'new digs' sometime in the near future...before Thanksgiving?!?!?  We shall see...

Other than the above updates, things are pretty good.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


"For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope." ~ Romans 15:4

Thursday, June 29, 2017

George Washington's Secret Six ~ Review

(photo from Amazon.com)

"When George Washington beat a hasty retreat from New York City in August 1776, many thought the American Revolution might soon be over. Instead, Washington rallied - thanks in large part to a little-known, top-secret group called the Culper Spy Ring.  He realized that he couldn't defeat the British with military might, so he recruited a sophisticated and deeply secretive intelligence network to infiltrate New York..." ~ taken from the back cover of the book.

What an amazing story of intrigue and adventure of six amazing, ordinary people. I had a difficult time putting the book down at the office...(yup, I read at work).  I enjoy reading about history and this book was not a disappointment.  It never occurred to me that there were spies that helped General George Washington.  I should have.   

Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger did a wonderful job of researching papers, journals, and letters to bring this story to life.  If you enjoy reading and learning about the American Revolution, this book is for you!

(Disclaimer:  I purchased this book for my own personal library.  The authors did not ask me nor did they compensate me for my opinion)

Sunday, June 25, 2017

It's Been Quiet...

If you follow this blog, you have noticed that it's been a bit quiet for the last couple of months.  Trying to come up with things to write about has been challenging.  Probably because I have not had the urge to actually sit down and write.  With that said, here is an update of what we have been doing:

The kids ended their 2016/2017 year in April and have had the last couple of months off.  They are aching to start the 2017/2018 year.  This will happen the first week of July. If we were to start public school, we would have a 9th and 7th grader this year. 

The construction of our house is coming along and it looks like we will be moving in by the end of September of this year!  It has been a long 9 years of building and we are all excited to see it completed.  The kids have helped a little bit with painting their bedrooms and with the wiring.  We still need to do a few more things (heat, plumbing, paint the other rooms, carpeting and other flooring) before the official moving in...or I should say moving up.

Work is rather quiet right now.  A lot of down time during the summer months, which is a welcome reprieve from all the deadlines that need to be met between September and May.

 That's about it with the updates...I'm sure I've left a few things out, but that would be for another post.


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." ~ Proverbs 22:6

Monday, June 12, 2017

Sounds of the Season

During this time of year, late spring/early summer, there are many sounds that are heard throughout the day and night....


Blue Jays

June Bugs




Wind through the leaves

Running brooks/rivers


Air Conditioners

Lawn Mowers


Monday, May 15, 2017

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

"It is the summer of 1950 ~ and at the once-grand mansion of Buckshaw, young Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison, is intrigued by a series of inexplicable events: A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak.  Then, hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him as he take his dying breath.  For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw." ~ taken from the back cover of the book.

I read this book as part of The Reading Gateway facebook reading challenge for the month of May.  The theme for May is mystery and The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie fit the theme.  Young Flavia, 11 years old to be exact, is full of sophistication and smarts when it comes to solving the mysterious death of a stranger.

There were some slow spots in the book, especially when it came to the relationship between Flavia and her older sisters.  I am not sure if the author just wanted the reader to understand the background of the main character or just add a subplot to the mix.  All in all, I enjoyed reading this book and would let my 11 year old daughter read this book as it was not too scary but it did have adventure and intrigue.

(Disclaimer:  I was not asked to give my opinion on this book nor was I compensated in any way.)

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations." ~ Psalm 100

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace." ~ Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

This verse has been on my mind all day.  Yesterday was my sister's 34th wedding anniversary...a time to love, dance and laugh. Yesterday, my Aunt Barbara (my dad's sister-in-law) and Aunt Georgia (my dad's sister) passed away...a time to weep, mourn and a time of peace.  I know that my aunt's are having a wonderful reunion in heaven.  They will be missed by all that love them.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not parish, but have everlasting life." ~ John 3:16

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." ~ Exodus 14:14

Sunday, March 19, 2017

2017 Reading Challenge ~ March

This month's reading challenge theme is Encouragement...choose a book to read that is inspirational, a self-help, or a religious book.  I chose "More than the Tattooed Mormon" by Al Carraway.

This is actually my second time reading this book.  The first time I read this book, I read it very quickly because my kids wanted to read it and I wanted to be able to have a conversation with them should they have any questions.
This second reading was slower and I enjoyed Al's story even more.  Al's story is about her conversion to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and more.  It's a story of faith, courage, strength and prayer.  I agree with Brad Wilcox, PhD..."Al shares her story with frankness and passion.  She fills each chapter with memorable insights and true wisdom.  But this book isn't really about Al.  It is about God and you! It is about the transformation that is possible for all of us through the Atonement of Jesus Christ."

I highly recommend this book to my friends and family.

(Disclaimer:  I purchased this book in 2016 for my personal reading.  The author did not ask me to review this book and I did not get any compensation for my review.)

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sunday Inspiration...

My friend shared this video on Facebook and I wanted to share it here...Enjoy!

Saturday, March 11, 2017

5 Things Friday - Random Favorites

This is a little late as I have been sick these past few days and I realized that today is now Saturday.  So in no particular order...here are my five favorite random things:

1)  Chocolate!  Need I say more :)

2)  Autumn...the colored leaves are spectacular in New England and the high humidity is gone.

3)  Gettysburg National Park...standing on hallowed grounds and realizing that men died where I stood was one of the most overwhelming experiences I have ever had.

4)  Cows...my favorite farm animal. 

5)  Puzzles...I could spend all day putting together a puzzle. 

What are your random favorites?

Come join the fun and link your post to 5 Things Friday over at Quiet Pandemonium...come join the fun!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"If ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you." ~ Alma 32:27

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Pi(e) Night

Tonight was Pi(e) Night for our ward.  It's a fun night of pizza, pies and fun science experiments.  Watching the excitement in the eyes of the younger kids makes the night enjoyable.  Our kids helped out with some of the activities and also had fun visiting with their friends.

Don't forget...Pi day is 3/14  :)

Saturday, February 25, 2017

The Orphan Keeper ~ review

"Seven-year-old Chellamuthu's life is forever changed when he is kidnapped from his village in India, sold to a Christian orphanage, and then adopted by an unsuspecting couple in the United States.  It takes months before the boy can speak enough English to tell his parents that he already has a family back in India.  Horrified, they try their best to track down his Indian family, but all avenues lead to dead ends.
Meanwhile, they simply love him, change his name to Taj, enroll him in school, and make him part of their family.  And his story might have ended there had it not been for the persistent questions in his head:  Who am I? Why was I taken?  How do I get home?  
More than a decade later, Taj meets Priya, a girl from southern India with surprising ties to his past.  Is she the key to unveil the secrets of his childhood or is it too late?  And if he does make it back to India, how will he find his family with so few clues?" (this portion taken from the inside of the jacket cover)

The Orphan Keeper by Cameron Wright is a novel based on a true story.  I became interested in the book when I watched this short documentary over a month ago:

I enjoyed reading this book and found it to be very moving.  From watching the documentary, I knew some of the back story and knew that reading the book was going to be different because it is a novel.  If you want to go on a journey of finding oneself, this story is for you.  An interesting fact:  Taj and I went to the same High School and we are from the graduating class of 1990.  I didn't know Taj very well in school, but I do know that he was popular among all the students. 

(Disclaimer:  I was not asked to give an opinion of this book by the author.  The opinions are my own and I was not compensated by anyone.)

Thursday, February 16, 2017

What are you reading?

This year I am participating in a reading challenge and this month's book is Persuasion by Jane Austin.  Well...I have not been able to get a copy from our library and so I decided to read something different...

I am currently reading God, Guns, Grits and Gravy by Mike Huckabee.  So far, so good :)

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Snow, Snow, Snow

It's snowing!!!
It has been a long time since we had a good snow storm...and today, we finally have one.  This is going to be wonderful for the wells around here...

If only I had a picture to show you what it looks like outside...lots of fluffy white snow :)

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"And I will also be your light in the wilderness; and I will prepare the way before you, if it so be that ye shall keep my commandments; wherefore, inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments ye shall be led towards the promised land; and ye shall know that it is by me that ye are led."~ 1 Nephi 17:13

Legend by Eric Blehm ~ Review

Portion from the back cover ~ "On May 2, 1968, a twelve-man Special Forces team was covertly inserted into a small clearing in the jungle of neutral Cambodia.  What the team didn't know was that this section of jungle concealed a major enemy base.  Soon they found themselves surrounded by hundreds of North Vietnamese Army soldiers.
Special Forces staff sergeant Roy Benavidez, hearing the distress call, jumped aboard the next helicopter bound for the combat zone.
What followed would become the stuff of legend in the Special Operations community.  Flown into the foray of battle by the courageous pilots and crew of the 240th Assault Helicopter Company, Benavidez jumped from the hovering aircraft and ran through withering enemy fire to orchestrate an extraordinary defense and rescue of the nearly decimated team.  During the hours-long battle, he was bayoneted, shot, and hit by grenade shrapnel, yet he persevered in his efforts until every survivor was out of harm's way."

My thoughts ~ This is an incredible story of bravery and heroism.  Reading the detailed accounts that took place on May 2, 1968 opened my eyes to what took place in Vietnam.  Just reading about that one battle, I have a greater admiration for our soldiers and what they went through.  Thank you to Eric Blehm for this amazing true story of Roy Benavidez.  Thank you Roy Benavidez for your service and sacrifice. 

If you want to get a glimpse of what happened in Vietnam, I highly recommend Legend: The Incredible Story of Green Beret Sergeant Roy Benavidez's Heroic Mission to Rescue a Special Forces Team Caught Behind Enemy Lines. 

(Disclaimer:  I purchased this book and the opinion I gave was not asked of me by the author)

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Beautiful Timp

How I miss seeing this mountain in person.  Growing up, I would see this beautiful mountain every single day.  One of many things I miss about Utah.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

A Busy Month

January was a busy month, especially with work.  A lot of prep work for the town budget, warrant and town report. Oh yeah and prepping the W2's and 1099's.  Seems like everything hits all at once.

I was actually ahead of the game this time until I came down with a pretty darn good cold that knocked me off my feet for about 3 days. Thankfully I was able to meet all the deadlines for January!!!

I am looking forward to catching up on other work related items during this month...prepping for the annual audit, finishing up the retirement audit and helping with finalizing the town report. 

January was also a little busy for the kids.  They started their lessons after a long Christmas break.  Nick studied and learned about WWI (his choice) and Sam tried a bit of unschooling.  They both kept up with their daily reading, scripture reading, vocabulary and science (world of chemistry for Nick and researching sharks for Sam). 

We had several piddly snow storms throughout the month of January which triggered calls for Scott to help plow for the Town.  The extra income helps, especially this time of the year...heating fuel bills.

That about wraps up the happenings of January...busy and productive :)

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." ~ Romans 8:28

Friday, January 20, 2017

Down and Out

A couple of days ago I posted that I was feeling like I was going to be able to beat this cold. Well, I spoke too soon!  This one literally knocked me off my feet and I was down and out most of yesterday and part of today. 
My kids were a bit surprised that this cold did me in.  To be honest, I was too.  The last time I was this sick, my kids were not born yet.  The old saying..."Mom's don't have time to get sick" is mostly true...but this time, not so much.
Stay healthy everyone...you don't want this cold.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Hack Hack Hacking

No, not the computer kind...the coughing kind. 
There is a nasty cold going around and I think I caught part of it...the part that is making me hack hack hack.  I am trying so hard to fight this cold and so far, I feel I am winning. 

If you do catch this cold, stay warm, drink a lot of fluids and stay positive :)

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Conversation with Nick

Last night, right before bed, Nick said that he wanted to go grocery shopping with me today.  If you know my son, he is not one to go out and do things...

Here is the conversation from last night:

Nick: Mom, I want to go grocery shopping with you tomorrow.

Mom:  Ok.  Did you want to go to go any other store in particular?

Nick:  No, I just want to make sure you get a lot of food this time.  I'd like to help fill the cart.

I guess his teenager metabolism has kicked in :)

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

4H ~ Bats

Last night, I took the kids to 4H and we learned about Bats.  We found out that there are currently 8 different species of Bats that live in the New England area.  Of those 8, 6 are deemed endangered or near extinction.  The two species that are currently thriving are the Little Brown Bat and Big Brown Bat.

Little Brown Bat

A few things that we learned:

  • Bats are nocturnal and use echolocation to communicate and to find food.
  • Bats hibernate from October to April and usually hibernate in caves.
  • Bats eat insects and are good to have around
  • Rabies in Bats is rare.
  • Baby Bats are called pups.
  • Bats hang upside down because of their legs.  The legs of a bat are small and too weak to be able to fly from a standing position.  Bats drop from their perch to fly.
  • Bats migrate south for about 6 months and back to their winter home to hibernate
  • Bats in New England are dying at an alarming rate due to White Nose Syndrome.  
Next month at 4H, the kids will be making Bat Houses for the moms and pups :)

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Scripture Sunday

"Now, verily I say unto you, that through the redemption which is made for you is brought to pass the resurrection from the dead.  And the spirit and the body are the soul of man.  And the resurrection from the dead is the redemption of the soul." ~ D&C 88:14-16

Friday, January 6, 2017

Reading Scriptures

Everyday I take time to read my scriptures.  I usually read my scriptures at night and before I read anything else...like my current book that I am reading for the 2017 Reading Challenge that I am participating in.

I have a routine when I read scriptures and I thought I would share it here...

Before I start reading, I say a small prayer. This helps me to get focused on the words that I will be reading.

The first thing I read is a daily devotional from:

This book is full of 365 devotionals...one a day for an entire year.  I started reading this over a month ago and I have to say that the devotionals are thought provoking and inspiring.  There are scripture references at the end of each devotional that I read from the KJV Bible.

I then read a couple of chapters from the Old Testament of the KJV Bible.

I am currently reading 1 Chronicles and working my way through the Old Testament.

Finally, I read from the Book of Mormon/Doctrine and Covenants/Pearl of Great Price.

I just completed Doctrine and Covenants and will be starting Pearl of Great Price.

Do I take notes on my reading?  In a way I do.  I underline scriptures that 'pop out' at me and I will write a few words in the margins to remind me why they 'popped'.

This is what I do on a daily basis.  On Sundays I do a little bit more as I like to revisit any scriptures that were discussed or mentioned/referenced during church services (Sacrament, Sunday School, Relief Society).

Do you study scriptures?  If so, what is your routine?

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Critters in the Neighborhood

Living in the woods, you tend to share your surroundings with wild critters.  Each year I like to keep track of the many visitors that roam in our yard.  Yesterday we had our first visitor of the year...a bobcat.  This bobcat is more than likely the same one that visited us a couple of months ago.  I saw it then...just a side view and he/she was beautiful, even though it got some of our birds for dinner.

Fast forward to yesterday...This guy/gal (bobcat) was a bit hungry and decided to help itself to our birds and ducks.  He/She got one of each.   Our bird count is down to 13...1 duck, 1 rooster, and 11 hens.

Living in the woods and raising chickens/ducks, you are bound to lose a few birds.  Our kids are learning about life and death and how to cope with loss. 

What kind of critters do you see in your yard?

Monday, January 2, 2017

2017 Reading Challenge - January

This year I decided to participate in a reading challenge.  This challenge was put together by a facebook friend and I am hoping that I will be able to be more open minded with books and challenged (pun intended) with some of the categories that were chosen.

This month's challenge is to read something on my bookshelf that I have been intending to read or have started to read and never finished.  I have several books that I have collected over the years that have been holding onto dust bunnies for a while.  After some careful thought and consideration, I have decided to read "Legend" by Eric Blehm

Stay tuned for a review...

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year - Scripture Sunday

"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." ~ Philippians 4:13