Drama, Drama, Some More Stuff, and More Drama….

Kei eats, sleeps and breathes theatre.† She has loved it since she could walk and talk.† We try to take advantage of everything our semi-small town offers.† She has been in 9 plays and is about to audition for the 10th.† We are doing Annie right now.

Last week was Camp Princess.† She had such a blast.† It is a week long theatre camp with the show on Friday night.† This is her second year to attend.† Every day she I dropped her off at the theatre she was just giddy.† When I take pictures of her onstage, her face just glows.† I don’t think I have ever loved an activity that way.

Headed to Camp Princess
The Performance
See the Joy?

On stage they did several exercises they did at Camp.† This one was “open your mouth as wide as you can”. :)

The Entire Cast

After the show she posed with Brian.† He is the director of the entire Bethel University Theatre Program.† She told him to remember her name because she would be there in 7 years.† [only 7 years????!!!]

Kei and Brian

Kei was so happy that Livvy was able to come.

Kei and Liv

And of course her BIGGEST fan!

Kei and Mom

It was an amazing experience for her.

So you wonder what to do with extra tomatoes?† Try this..Tomato Pie.† I promise it is so yummy you will almost faint!

Tomato Pie

4 tomatoes, peeled and sliced

10 fresh basil leaves, chopped

1/2 cup chopped green onion

1 (9-inch) prebaked deep dish pie shell

1 cup grated mozzarella

1 cup grated cheddar

1 cup mayonnaise

Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the tomatoes in a colander in the sink in 1 layer. Sprinkle with salt and allow to drain for 10 minutes.

Layer the tomato slices, basil, and onion in pie shell. Season with salt and pepper. Combine the grated cheeses and mayonnaise together. Spread mixture on top of the tomatoes and bake for 30 minutes or until lightly browned.

To serve, cut into slices and serve warm.

Tomato Pie

†Kei found time this week to catch minnows in the creek…

Work on learning a hand stand.

Playing Frisbee with Nomad.† Look at his face!!!!

Going to see Harry Potter! [Bring tissues!]

Kei and Hermione

Kei will never know a world without Harry Potter.† When she was 7 she dressed up for the final book release as Hermione and won 1st place!

Of course in the midst of our busy week she still had “Annie” practice!

Annie Practice
Giggly moments..
Learning the dances...

WHEW!!!† What a week.† I am so in awe of you Moms with more than one child.†

Homeschooling Rocks!


If you really want to help the American theater, don’t be an actress, dahling. Be an audience. ~Tallulah Bankhead


Caves Are Scary Places…[to me]

I have a small case of claustrophobia.† It isn’t so much the ‘size’ of a place but the fact that I can’t get out of it quickly enough.† My Mother had claustrophobia big time.† She was in nursing college and got stuck in an elevator for 6 hours in the middle of the night.† My entire life I knew this about her.† She would not ride elevators unless she absolutely had to.† She would make me prop the† bathroom door opened when we had to stop at a gas station on a trip.†

The first time I was ever made aware that I too have this is when I was about 25.† I was married at the time and we went to Ruby Falls in Chattanooga.† We paid the money and rode down the elevator.† The ceiling was about 6″ above my head.† All of a sudden I got very shaky.† I asked the guide how long the tour was and he said about 2 hours.† To my way of thinking that was 1 hour in and 1 hour out.† So I would be, at the most, an hour from air.† I couldn’t do it.† We had my niece with us and they went ahead and took the tour while I rode the elevator back up.† The lady told me it happened several times a day.† I remember laying in bed that night and getting so upset.† Would I never be able to fly?† Ride a subway?† Take a cruise?† I fly fine.† The first time I was a little scared but it wasn’t a big deal.† My first flight was a 6 hour flight!† I have ridden a subway, no big.† Never taken a cruise but I don’t think it would really bother me.

Fast forward to yesterday.† My sister in law and niece and nephew are at the beach.† My brother wanted to take Kei and I somewhere.† He wanted to take us to Cathedral Caverns.† He assured me it was a huge cave, although it isn’t really the size that freaks me out.† Kei was so excited so I said sure.† The closer we got the the place the more nervous I was.†† I used to be very ‘to myself’ about my claustrophobia, now I tell anyone who will listen.† I have found that when you share something, it helps tremendously.† I told the guide that I was a little claustrophobic.† I explained to her that I wanted her to understand if I started screaming and running. :)† We paid and started the tour.† I was fine, a little nervous, but fine.† The further we got from the entrance the more I was actually ok.† But it was there, it the back of my mind like these things seem to do.† Then, about 20 minutes in, the power went out.† Dark as..well dark as a cave!† The guide had a flashlight and one little boy was wearing a miner’s hat but neither provided much light.† I pulled out my iPhone and used my flashlight app but I kept accidentally shining it in people’s eyes!† Then a guy pulled up on a golf cart and said there was a horrible thunderstorm and the power was out!† I mean really!!! What were the odds?† She asked if anyone wanted to go back as she looked at me.† I decided I did want to go.† I just wasn’t happy about another 1 1/2 hours in the dark!† Eddie said he would take Kei, so I handed him my camera and jumped in.† The guy was really nice and said that caves freaked a lot of people out.† I was dissappointed for Kei.† Her first cave and I missed 80% of it.

I sat up on the porch and talked to a lovely lady from Florida.† She and her 3 kids were there to go to Space Camp and they decided to stop by the Caverns for awhile.† They canceled all tours until the lights came back on.† An 1 1/2 later Eddie and Kei were about to leave the tour the lights came back on.† So Eddie went back in with Kei to take more pictures.† He said that it was no where near as cool with no lights.

Kei's Shadow

When they came out Kei was very excited but she said, “It would have† been more fun with you but I understand Mom”† Argh..† The thing is, if my claustrophobia is a direct result of my Mom, then am I doing the same thing to Kei?† Although that is the first time anything has ever happened that prevented me from doing anything.† I close and lock the bathroom door with no problems and we love riding elevators.† I just feel like I let her down somehow.

Kei and I at The Trading Post

Homeschooling Rocks!



“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”
~Frank Herbert, Dune – Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear

Pretty Girls, Silly Girls, Giving, Caring Girls….

What an incredible start to July we have had.† So far, July has been all about photo ‘shoot’s, fireworks, girls spending the night and volunteering.

Our lives are not always perfect.† At times there is too little money, too many bills, not enough to go around.† But one thing we always have is love and laughter.† It is hard at times being a single Mommy, but my journey as a Mommy is the best thing that has ever happened to me.

The past few days I took lots of pictures of my girl.† She is just so dang photogenic!

Just Right...
My Girl..
Picture Perfect...

Our yard is full of squirrels, birds, chipmunks and bunnies.† We sit outside and just watch them come and go all the time.† Kei has named all of them.† She also was trying to catch one with a basket until my Daddy told her that Seth [my nephew] did that one time and the squirrel had a heart attack and died!!!† It is so not funny but it is so funny.

Melonhead the Squirrel

Another thing we did this week was go to Tent City.† This is a really big ‘city’ under the interstate where homeless people live their lives.† We spent 4 hours there, grilled for them and brought lots of food and staples.† People brought guitars and drums and sang songs.† So many of the men wanted to hear old time Gospel songs.† It was so moving.

Mark Making CrossesTent City
Kei and Brit meeting lovely people..
Making Music
Food, Food, Food...
Kei and Brit

They have their own band called “Burn Barrel Band”

Burn Barrel Band

This is one of the coolest things.† They have a homemade chess set.† Isn’t this amazing?

Homemade Chess Set
Karen, Kei, Gina, Bobby, Britney, Cody

I was thinking about all the times that we volunteer.† I want Kei to just be a volunteer, a part of her; like dancing and acting.† Just who she is.† Thinking back over the years, we have done so much volunteering.† It is the one thing I always wanted when she was younger and we are so blessed to have all the opportunities† we have with our church.

Brit spent the night with Kei and they lit some sparklers for a pre-4th of July celebration.

"K and B" from sparklers

The next day Kei and I spent at The Spirit of America Festival volunteering in the children’s play area.† We had a blast but it was very hot.


Kei found a dog to play with which I swear she would do in the middle of nowhere.† She can spot a doggie a mile away!

Kei and the Dog
Girls and Dog..
Happy 4th!

Livvy spent the night with us that night.† There was more fireworks and sparklers and giggles.

The Pose...
Best Friends..

The next two weeks are so busy for us.† Kei has Camp Princess [acting camp] next week and the following week is their production of Annie! The week after that we are starting school back full time and I am so EXCITED!

Happy week all!


I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.
Mahatma Gandhi

Another Repost…HEY It’s Summer, It’s too HOT to Think!


I wrote this one afternoon while Kei was sitting outside reading in the sunshine.† It was such a wonderful moment.† I realized how incredibly blessed we are to be able to homeschool.† We have so many of those moments. Now don’t get me wrong; we have moments that I could just about pull her cute little hair out, but those moments are few and far between.† We have more magical moments, moments that the world seems to pause and smile.† Moments that I would not take anything for.† Moments to cherish….


April 27th, 2009

I could send her to school,

And from 8:00-3:00 have no clueÖ

How many times she laughed,

How many times she learned,

How many times she questioned,

How many times she understood,

How many times she wanted more information,

How many times she bounced in her chair from excitement,

How many times she was proud of something she did.

I could send her to school and she could get her exercise and sunshine,

In 20 minute doses, ifÖshe had on the right shoes, and no one misbehaved and everyone was quiet.

I could send her to school

And let her eat the processed high fat, low nutrition fare they feed millions of children a day,

if she had enough time to eat and didnít talk too loud and if no one grabbed her food.


I could homeschool her.


This I wrote when we had returned from Sugar Creek.† Some of you are familiar with one of our favorite places in the world.† I wish I could just scoop up all my online friends and whisk you all away for a day at Sugar Creek.

Reason #101

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

Warm spring breezes, Sun beating down.
We travel in a caravan, down winding roads through the countryside.

We pass a school; poor children, trapped inside with their rules and bathroom passes, and cookie cutter education.

We arrive.
It is a beautiful day.
Moms sitting on blankets. No one asks each other, ìDid your child get invited to that party Fridayî? “Has your child asked for those $150 jeans yet?”† There is laughter and caring and love. A group of women who want the best possible education for their children.

Kids everywhere, splashing in the water, riding boats down the current, finding geodes and creepy crawlies and fish and crawdads.
Squeals of delight coming from all directions. One loses a shoe, one a boat, someone sees a snake. When they are tired they come to throw their cold bodies over mommy, when they are hungry they eat.

After lunch costumes are donned and all a sudden, princesses and knights and magicians and ninjas are everywhere. There is even a chicken and a horse! Imaginations abound and worlds are created. Is there anything more wonderful than children in costumes under a grove of trees?

We reluctantly load tired kids and gear into the car.
Did we turn left here or right?
I donít remember seeing that silo? Did you see those goats before?
Finally arriving home.
What a magical day.
This is why I homeschool my child.

I love everything about homeschooling.† I have said this so many times….It is the best thing I have ever done.

Homeschooling Rocks!


“We don’t need no education.† We don’t need no thought control.† Hey teacher leave the kids alone.” ~ Pink Floyd

In The Beginning [Repost]

When I first started homeschooling over 4 years ago I had NO clue what I was doing.† The post below is something I wrote early on in our homeschooling experience.† I wanted to share.


A few months ago I decided to homeschool my 2nd grader. This journey has been a strange trip. Like Alice, I feel like we fell into the rabbit hole and have been running around crazy down here ever since.

The choices are endless! What to teach? What curriculum to use? How long each day? Every subject every day? How long for each subject? Do it all before lunch? Take a break every hour? Do I make her sit at the table? In her bedroom? Upside down from the ceiling fan?

Ideas? With the help of what I have quickly discovered are the most creative, intelligent people on earth; homeschool moms; I have lesson plans, books lists, science experiments, plays, math games, lapbooks, notebooks, timelines, nature journals, interactive sites, spelling lists, scavenger huntsÖthe list is endless!

I have discovered I rock at planning and gathering information. My excel spreadsheets have enough ideas, plans, websites to get us through high school! It is the implementation that needs work. But I am getting thereÖ..slowly. As my best friend is so fond of saying, ìThank goodness 2nd grade is a review year!î

I have decided we are not a ìbuy a curriculum and go through it lessonbylessonî kinda girls. SoÖ some days we do only math, with jelly beans. Or just planets using amazing videos on Ted.com, or we build fairy houses. We build ëburrowsí with blankets like prairie dogs. [Of course ours are complete with tea in china cups and cookies!] We may homeschool under a tree on a blanket with a Little House book, or on the stairs. She makes ëinventionsí with Tubers and Zots. She designs a city on Pluto with domes over everything so people can breath. She makes a town out of paper. We try to go an entire day with no electricity or running water like they did during Colonial times. [This is harder than it sounds we quickly found out!]

We are winging it day by day. And I am loving it. It is the best thing I have ever done. And who knowsÖone day, I may even know what I am doing!!! Even Alice eventually made it out!

Karen 2007


Now over 4 years later, looking back even though I didn’t know ‘how’ exactly I wanted to homeschool, I know that the first year and every year since we have had unbelievable experiences that we would have NEVER had if I had left Kei in Public School.† Homeschooling is the best thing I have ever done.† EVER.


Kei's 1st Pony Ride...
Wild Swims...
Nature Walks

Amazing Field Trips



So for anyone considering this and feeling unsure my advice is: Go for it!† Do it!† It will change your life.† Your relationship with your children will grow and blossom.† It is a marvelous, life changing thing!

Homeschooling Rocks!


“In the end, the secret to learning is so simple: Think only about whatever you love. Follow it, do it, dream about it…and it will hit you: learning was there all the time, happening by itself.” ~Grace Llewellyn

Days of Summer…

Lovely days of summer,


reading under the trees,

building fairy houses…..Kei has quite the village going, here is her Fruit Stand.† See how the bowls are acorn tops? Isn’t this adorable?

Livvy and Kei have spent the night with each other several times.† There is always silliness when those two get together!

There has been painting….

and lots of Mommy/Kei time….

And today was a great day!† We went with some of our best friends to another friend’s house.† She has a perfect house for kids.† Goats, a calf, chickens, a koi pond, a huge garden and more.† We felt like such farm girls.

Koi Pond
Kei and the Goats
Girls and "Chuck"
Kei and Brit
Some of my bestest friends...
Our Awesome Kids...

I can’t believe that June is winding to a close.† We have had such a good time so far.† And there is more to come.† Because of my friend Jessica’s post Kei and I are planning to head to Amish Country in Tennessee soon.† We† are so looking forward to that.† There are more plans in the works.† “It’s summertime and the livings easy”.

Happy days,


What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade.† ~Gertrude Jekyll

“Life’s a journey not a destination” Aerosmith

Teresa at Three Thinking Mothers wrote a wonderful post today about transitioning from school to home.† It is a must read!

She talks about how she considered homeschooling before her girls even started school.† I did too.† I always wanted to homeschool Kei.† She thrived in public school.† There was no bad times, nobody mean to her, no one thing that made me say, “That is it, I am homeschooling you.”† One of the main problems I had with it was I wasn’t crazy about how ‘boy crazy’ the kindergarten girls seemed to be. It was unbelievable to me.† I mean I had boys I liked in K but they took it to extremes.† Thankfully Kei was never really like that.† She still isn’t. This may be due to the fact that she is marrying Johnny Depp and that is that! :)

But it was always there.† I had tons of information, sites bookmarked, lesson plans, books.† I was very worried that I couldn’t do it.† “What if I ruined her?”.† Looking back it was so silly.† I mean who could teach her better?† Me, who knew her inside out and had just her all day long or a teacher, full of a room of kids, overcrowded, overworked, worrying about discipline and test scores.† She had a wonderful year in Kindergarten, was the teacher’s pet, loved everything about it.† 1st grade was much the same but still the thought niggled at the back of my brain constantly.

Kei was in her first play at age 6 and I met a family that homeschooled.† I quizzed and questioned that poor Mom every time I saw her.† She had 4 kids and they were amazing children.† They acted, sang and danced and played instruments…all the things Kei loved to do.† I begin to think more seriously about it.† I had a friend whose sister homeschooled.† I would call her and ask her all sorts of crazy questions.

Kei started 2nd grade.† It was the first Monday after school had started on Tuesday.† Her teacher didn’t seem as dedicated this year,† she had just gotten married and seemed more interested in her new life.† There were more kids in her class.† She was bored and doing the other kids work for them when she was done.† One of my favorite stories was when she was helping a little girl count M&M’s for charting and she told me, “Mom she kept eating the M&M’s”.

I picked her up on Monday and said, “How would you like to be homeschooled?” And she said, “Oh please, I would love it”.† Next day, I went to the school and unenrolled her.† Just like that.† No clue..no plans..no cover school. :)† I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do.† I loved the idea of unschooling and still find myself very drawn to it.† I love Charlotte Mason, love Unit Studies, love Well Trained Mind.

I found out very early that we were not a ‘buy a curriculum and go’ kinda girls.† I loved spending time searching for lesson plans and ideas.† I still love that so much.† Yes it is time consuming but it is so worth it. Aren’t homeschool Mom’s the BEST?? Anytime I try to search for a certain lesson plan I type in, ‘Ancient Greece homeschool” because I KNOW I will find the greatest things that way.† Everything didn’t work. I LOVE the idea of lapbooks.† Loved the way all the completed lapbooks looked but I felt like we were spending all our time cutting and gluing instead of learning.† I still love them and have to make myself NOT buy them.† We did several but Kei never fell in love with them.

One thing we did the first week was go to a Homeschool event.† I had heard about how great our local HS group was and we went to an inside playground.† This is the best advice anyone can give you.† FIND A GROUP.† The women I met were amazing! I was full of questions and they answered all of them.† In fact the first few women I met ended up being my very best friends.† We have a great HS group but we have a core group of about 7 Moms and 13 kids that we spend tons of time with.† It makes all the difference.† The thing I love about HS Moms is they are all so invested in their kids learning.† Not that they have the right clothes or get invited to the right parties or watch the right TV shows, just that their kids are the best they can be.† These are Moms who make time to talk and laugh and bond.† They are not dropping off their kids and running to work/home/gym.† The ones I have met are such ‘stop and smell the roses’ kind of people.† I love that!

I an an observer of people. I watch the kids at homeschool events and get togethers.† They honestly seem kinder, more willing to help each other, to have each others back.† I love the way they play together, all ages not dividing up by gender and age.† They seem more laid back, not so stressed about life.† Their play seems more complex, they are interested in so many things.† I think it is that they are allowed to be their true self.† They don’t have to pretend not to like something because someone will think they aren’t ‘cool’.

Kei’s K and 1st grade teachers both told me the same thing, that she was one of the most confident kids they had seen.† I wanted her to keep that confidence and she has.† She has thrived and learned so much.† The things she learns she remembers.† I love that she learns for life not for a test.

This is a journey, just like Theresa said.† A wonderful, beautiful, amazing journey.† Every day is different, there are few things written in rock.† Plans change and we change with the days.† We laugh and love and learn, always learn.† Seriously, what could be greater than that?



A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us. ~John Steinbeck

“A child miseducated is a child lost.” ~ John F. Kennedy

Fairy Houses, Puppy Love and Aqua [Latin Origin]..

What a laid back, bask in the sun, no where to be sort of week we have had.

We were able to get passes this summer for our local wave pool.† This is something we haven’t been able to do the last few years. Kei loves swimming, she is like a fish in water. It renews her, delights her, makes her dance with glee.† I am so glad to be able to just run to the pool for a couple of hours and not worry about staying all day.† Since it is $18 each to get in!! It is a wave pool, Olympic pool, kiddie play area, beach and deck and water slides but still! That is so expensive for us.† They run a special for ONE day in March where the passes are $50 each.† Yay us!

I love this picture of Kei and Nomad.† He is much improved from the “I am so crazy I think something is wrong with me” self that he was a few months ago.† Still kinda wild, but better.

Kei has been building Fairy Houses since she was old enough to walk. She LOVES this.† She can spend hours working on her houses.† She has been busy this week on her newest Fairy Mansion.

There was also a lot of playing outside, riding on the huge spool I snagged at Home Depot, jumping and more.



One of our favorite things we did was the Greek/Latin cards we have.† We sat outside while Kei worked on her Fairy Houses and I would hold up each card and have her guess the origin and the meaning.† After she had gotten about 12 right it finally dawned on me that the Greek cards were GREEN and the Latin were RED.† She was just laughing her head off and so was I.† I really thought she was just that good at guessing!† To me this is homeschooling at its best….a girl playing in mud while learning about word origins, and laughing…always laughing.

Today she joined a Webkinz chat on Facebook.† She was so excited because she asked a question and they answered it and typed her name.† :)

She also made a really yummy snack.† It was very quick and easy.† The recipe is here.

We are reading a lot together.† Fabre and Turtle in Paradise and Kei is still reading her book and I am reading Guerrilla Learning [which is one of my favorite HSing books].† We have 2 more chapters in SOTW and a couple more in Zoology 3 and then I am ready to start back! 6th GRADE.† How is that possible?

Kei also made a mailbox which we hung on the wall.† You never know what is going to show up in there!

Lovely giggly days….Is there anything better?

Happy weekend!


[E]very time a child says, “I don’t believe in fairies,” there is a fairy somewhere that falls down dead.† ~James Matthew Barrie, Peter Pan

Nothing can be truer than fairy wisdom.† It is as true as sunbeams.† ~Douglas Jerrold

Slow down, you move too fast….

My sweet girl will be going into 6th grade in August. This beautiful child who has shown me that being a Mommy is the best thing in the entire world and who has taught me more in 11 years than I have learned my whole life, would be going into middle school if she was in Public School. I thank God daily that she is not.

Middle school youth are engaging in sexual intercourse as early as age 12, according to a study by researchers at The University of Texas School of Public Health.

Almost 20% of 14-year-olds say they’ve been drunk at least once, according to a U.S. Surgeon General report, and one-fourth of 8th graders have reported being drunk, according to the Monitoring the Future Survey. Another study, by RAND Health, found that three-quarters of 7th graders had used alcohol.

Nearly one in five 7th graders and 15 percent of kids in 6th grade are having sexual intercourse.

One in five (19.9%) students reported being bullied on school property during the past year.

The most common reasons youth receive mental health services are feeling depressed (50%), problems at home/family (28.8%), breaking rules or ìacting outî (25.1%), and suicidal thoughts or attempts (20.2%).

The Adolescent Substance Abuse Knowledge Base reports that right around 30% of teens are offered drugs in middle school and high school.

The Kaiser Foundation reports that about 50% of teenagers feel pressured with regard to sex in relationships.

Thirty percent (30%) of U.S. students in grades six through ten are involved in moderate or frequent bullying ó as bullies, as victims, or as both ó according to the results of the first national survey on this subject.

1 out of 4 kids are Bullied.† The American Justice Department says that this month 1 out of every 4 kids will be abused by another youth.

Surveys Show That† 77%† of students are bullied mentally, verbally, & physically.

100,000 students carry a gun to school.

Playground statistics – Every 7 minutes a child is bullied. Adult intervention – 4%. Peer intervention – 11%. No intervention – 85%.



As for us, we have NO time for such thingsÖ

There is:

Science to learn

History to explore

Doggies to play with

Fairy houses to build

Dandelions to blow

Rain to dance in

Ice cream to be bought

Silly faces to make

Fireflies to catch

Songs to be sung

Books to read

Chocolate to eat

Swimming to be done

Picnics to be taken

Walks to take

Birthdays to celebrate

Playgrounds to play on

Stories to write

Pretending to be done

Country roads to travel down

Woods to explore

Dreams to dream

Recipes to make

Giggles to be giggled

Tire swings to be swung on

Dances to be danced

Knitting to be done

Art to be drawn

Snow People to make

Friends to hug

Gardens to be gardened

Best friends to whisper to

Plays to be performed in

Cartwheels to be turned

Prayers to be prayed


Pictures to be taken

Frogs to catch

Places to explore

Volunteering to be done

Games to play

Trees to climb

Flowers to be smelled

Dressing up to do

Swinging to be swung

Webkinz to play with

Clay to be molded

Experiments to make

Sewing to be sewn

Clover crowns to make

And so very much more…

Every day I thank God that I am able to homeschool Kei. As a single Mom it is hard at times, but with Godís grace we are able do this wonderful thing.† We try to never forget to count our blessings.


I guess when it comes down to it
Being grown up isn’t half as fun as growing up
These are the best days of our lives
The only thing that matters is just following your heart
And eventually you’ll finally get it right.- The Ataris

Too many of today’s children have straight teeth and crooked morals.† ~Unknown high school principal



TShirts, Birthdays, BBQ’s and Sugar Creek…

We have had an amazing few days. We have gone and gone and gone. And had a blast. All around us schools are still in session. They had to go longer this year because of so many weather days. Thankfully they did not have to make up the Tornado days. If the area is declared a National Disaster, school does not have to be made up.

We headed out on Friday to Cullman to a T Shirt sale. Our friend Gretta had Facebooked that her church was having a huge sale with $1 T shirts. I didn’t think too much about it until she posted pictures of the shirts she got. They were AWESOME! Sanctify shirts, shirts from the 80’s and all sorts of cool things.† So I contacted Gretta for the address not knowing that Gina did the same.† We decided to ride with them to go T Shirt shopping!† We always have a blast with the Lackeys!!

A Shopping We Will Go!!!


When we got there I could not believe the great shirts! I was in HEAVEN!† We scored big time.† Kei and I bought 31 shirts for $31.† After the shopping binge, we went to Gretta and David’s house and had such a fun time hanging out with them.† This is their first year homeschooling her 3 kids and I loved hearing her HSing stories.† She also GAVE me a LifePac Spanish 1 course.† I had JUST told Kei that morning that I wanted her to take Spanish for next year and I hoped I could find something I could afford.† I just love how God works things out.† She also told us their tornado story and it just brought tears to my eyes. God truly held them in His embrace.

Here are our T Shirts! Jealous much?





Livvy spent the night with us Friday night and Saturday we went out meandering. I just love that word…meander… I love the defintion: To move aimlessly and idly without fixed direction.† I live so much of my life like that. Aren’t I lucky? :)

We went to the boat docks and picked out the boat of our dreams.† We also picked our favorite name which we all agreed was Pier Pressure.† Isn’t that great?





Then we heard the ice cream truck so of course…it was ICE CREAM time!!




Sunday we went to church and our church had sent some crews to Joplin, Missouri to help with clean up.† Our church has a live service online and they were watching along with a church in Joplin.† It was a very moving experience.† They lost so many people in the tornado that struck their town and there was so much destruction.

Monday was Memorial Day and we started off the day early at my brother’s house. It was my niece Katherine’s 14th birthday and we ate grilled hamburgers and cake.† My Dad and Marlene were there and Heather’s Mom and Dad.



Happy Birthday Katherine!



Then Kei and I came home to get started on our BBQ.† Laura and Livvy were coming over.† We had grilled hamburgers, hot dots, baked beans, chips, and homemade brownies and ice cream.† Laura brought some yummy macaroni salad.† We had a blast.† The girls played in the sprinkler afterwards and we sat on the patio and talked and talked and talked.

There were cartwheels…





and water….

Friends and Water...



A great Memorial Day with our friends and family!

Tuesday we were going to Sugar Creek.† Sugar Creek is one of our favorite places in the world.† It is this wonderful creek filled with fish and a rope swing and geodes and a old swinging bridge.† There is a church and a cemetery nearby.† We always go in a huge caravan and we spend the day.† There are blankets and chairs everywhere, floats and boats, kids laughing, Mom’s and Dad’s laughing, food galore.† It is a magical place.

Just floating...
Sugar Creek
Kei and Chan checking out their Geodes
Shaking the Geode
Lovely places...
Our Amazing Kids...
Photo by Heather Woods


It was such a great day.† Chan came home with us for a couple of days and her and Kei are having a blast as usual.† Kei was a wee bit tired from her day and had to chillax with Nomad for a bit.

A Girl and her Dog..


What a wonderful start to our summer! I hope your summer [or winter if you are one of my Aussie friends] is magical and full of delight…

Colored scents that fill the air as drowsy insects hum around in the meadow is the place of secret magic where nature alone renews itself.† ~ Kate Bergquist



"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” ― A.A. Milne