Ninjas and Camping

My boys dressed up as Ninjas for Halloween.  Here they are outside the co-op party we had.  I kept teasing them to smile.

Here they are while we were camping.  I think it’s funny because the background looks fake!

This was definitely the most fun we’ve had on a Halloween camping trip.  Chad’s dad and several friends were there.  Many wonderful memories made there.

We shone the Light of Jesus with our sign Chad made, and also with tagged suckers and tracts.  Fun times.

Grace by Max Lucado


Grace. It’s God’s greatest idea.
It truly is more than I deserve. And it’s greater than I can imagine.

Let me say that I’m so very thankful I chose this book to review. Truly one I know was picked out, if not written just for me. It arrived right before we left for Virginia Beach. I never could read anything while traveling, but I read this entire book while on the road. Maybe it’s because I’m getting old. Or maybe because it was that good!

I think Chad heard two-thirds of the book because I repeated about everything I read. Max Lucado has a unique style of writing. He is very relaxed in his writing. It’s as if he and I were having a conversation over a cup of hot tea.

So grace. Did I really understand it? I don’t think I did quite like this. I’m not sure I still quite understand it all. But I accept it, and I have been changed by it. I’m changed every day by God’s grace. Although I could quote the whole book, here’s one example in the chapter “Heaven:Guaranteed”. Jesus is speaking to His disciples on the night before he died. This is Lucado’s translation:
Your fall will be great, buy my grace will be greater. Stumble, I will catch you. Scatter, I will gather you. Turn away from me, I will turn toward you. You’ll find me waiting for you in Galilee. (Matt. 26:31-32).
And this one because I had written “wow” beside it:
To live as God’s child is to know, at this very instant, that you are loved by Your Maker not because you try to please Him and succeed, or fail to please Him and apologize, but because He wants to be your Father. Nothing more. All your efforts to win His affection are unnecessary. All your fears of losing His affection are needless. You can no more make Him want you than you can convince Him to abandon you. The adoption is irreversible. You have a place at His table.

So yes, it’s a book you need to get and read. Today!

This book was provided to me free of charge from Booksneeze In exchange for an honest review.

Callaway Gardens


After Virginia Beach and Alabama, we headed to Pine Mountain, Georgia. We stayed at the beautiful Callaway Gardens Lodge & Spa.  We had another gorgeous view from our balcony.  We did a lot of swimming there.  We also enjoyed the gardens.  We watched a “Birds of Prey” show that was really neat, hiked, fed all kinds of water creatures, and visited the Butterfly Center.  What a nice place that was!

2012-2013 School Year

This post was started…oh, way back in early September.  I just don’t find the time to do much blogging lately.  I wanted to attach links to all this stuff, but that probably doesn’t matter anyway!

School is off to a good start!  We have our moments of frustration trying to get back into things, but all and all it has been a blessing.

Here’s a run down of what we are doing:

Andrew – 4th Grade

Math – Horizons 4
First Language Lessons
A Reason for Spelling
Reading Comprehension
The Story of the USA and many supplements with this.  We are having a lot of fun with this so far!
Awana T and T
Piano Lessons

Ethan – 2nd Grade

Horizons Math 2
A Reason for Spelling
First Language Lessons
Awana Sparks
Piano Lessons

Samuel – Kindergarten

Horizons Math K
Shapes Builder
The Reading Lesson / Phonics Pathways
Awana Sparks
Time with mommy while the other two are at piano!

We have started our co-op again this year.  We are such a close family.  I really enjoy it, and my boys do even more.  We are doing Apologia’s Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day this year.  Last year was Flying Creatures.

Reading and iPad apps add to all of the above, as well as miscellaneous unit studies we do throughout the year.

In the evenings we are going through “The Dig” as part of our family devotional time.  It’s so neat to see these boys grow in the Lord.  We have some fantastic discussions!

Our school area looks like this, although I didn’t get a picture of Samuel’s little school desk…


Virginia Beach

We had such a fun time at Virginia Beach.  We were very blessed to take another trip out there, thanks to the company Chad works for!  We did a lot of driving.  Our first 13 hour trip was here where we stayed right on the beach…the same place as last year.  Heaven!  Chad and I enjoyed three mornings of gorgeous sunrise.  I have a bazillion pictures of that!

The best benefit, though, about going out there is visiting with a good friend and her children.  We spent the entire day on the beach, only to take a break for lunch.  We even saw Air Force One fly closely over our heads!    We stayed a night at their house on the end of our trip there.  I love them so much!