Wulf the Saxon {Review}

Y’all know how much I love the audio dramas from Heirloom Audio Productions. Every time they come out with a new story I can’t wait to listen to it! This latest one is Wulf the Saxon.


Just look at that cover art!! And the story lives up to the art!

I have not been able to get into the typical audio book readings. Everyone says that I should listen to books since I like to read so much, I just can’t do it.. But y’all…these are not your typical audio books! These are pretty much like watching a movie in the theater but blindfolded.

There is plenty of action for those action lovers out there.. and yes, there is a lovely story line for the other ones to enjoy..hehehe..

This story starts out around the year 1065. The main character, Wulf is 16 and has gotten himself into a little bit of trouble. Things work themselves out with that, but that’s when all of the interesting stuff begins!

Wulf finds himself working for Earl Harold Godwinson. They are on a boat when it crashes and they are shipwrecked. This starts out the action and really, it doesn’t stop much after that!

This is also where we meet other characters in the story, Beorn, Guy, and Lady Agnes. Beorn and Wulf escape and wait for the return of Harold and his men, as they are being kept in the dungeon.  Lady Agnes keeps Beorn and Wulf company while they wait.

A little later in the story, there is a battle. Guy, the son of Baron de Burg, loses an arm.. And ok..if you have watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail, you will appreciate that he says “‘Tis but a scratch”, haha! I appreciated that little bit in that particular scene…

There are wars, invasions, the shipwreck…there is plenty of action in the story, like I mentioned.. There is also a little bit of love as well… Sure, there is love between the male characters in the story, but also with a character named Edith. It’s a different sort of love, love of country perhaps? Also, we find Wulf and Agnes on friendly terms as well..

Alas, I don’t want to give too much away, but even if I told you everything that happens in the story, it would still be like listening to it fresh because the acting, the sound effects, everything..is just so good.

Normally with the Heirloom Audio Productions items we get some bonuses that are included in the Live the Adventure Club. Unfortunately, the items for Wulf the Saxon weren’t ready yet at the time. They do have a one month trial offer going on right now, so if you already aren’t a member, I would definitely check that out! All of their stories are done so well, you could pick any of them and be more than happy!

We love doing extra things with these stories, so we researched a bit about the battles during that time, the weapons, the clothing. It is all quite fascinating and we read way  more than I had originally intended because we kept finding more and more!

Wulf the Saxon

Of course if you follow us at all, you know we like to draw whenever we can.. So we found different images online and copied them.

This story really has it all, something for everyone! I love that they are historically correct and really want you to learn more about what is going on!

We always love these stories, but feel free to read what others had to say about Wulf the Saxon as well! Click on the banner below!

Wulf the Saxon {Heirloom Audio Productions Reviews}

Wulf the Saxon


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Thursday Things

Woah, starting school last week really got me a little frazzled! I think we have it down now, so we should be back on track! I haven’t done one in a while so I figured it was time for a Thursday Things!

If you don’t know what it is, it is where I mention things that I enjoyed about the previous week. It could be an actual product, something that happened, whatever! Even if you don’t have a blog to do it, I highly recommend taking some time at the end of the week to think about what you liked about your week!

Let’s do this!

Thursday Things

We will start off with something yummy.. These Core Meal Walnut Banana bars are pretty tasty! They are quite filling too! I will tend to have one of these if I have had a bigger lunch and am not quite hungry for dinner. A little carby, is that a word, but that is ok for a light dinner for me.

Thursday Things pencils

The start of school means new pencils.. These Ticonderoga black pencils are my favorite to use for school stuff. Mostly because they are all mine! The kids prefer mechanical pencils, gag… We draw something every day and these just work out really well!

Thursday Things olympics

The Olympics! I love when it is time for the Olympics! We don’t watch all of the sports, but we definitely try to watch the ice skating and some of the snowboarding and skiing. There are some random sports that we catch as well. We always love watching the opening ceremonies though!

Thursday Things dog food

I know people say that all commercial dog food is bad…but you do what you have to do. One of our dogs has like…one tooth, so we make sure she has some wet food every morning. We found Merrick dog food to be the best for the dogs. There are veggies in a lot of the flavors, some of the chicken ones have chicken thighs in them. They seem a lot more real than some others on the market! The dogs love the flavors too…

Train Song by Mandolin Orange. Gah, I love live music, I really need to do a concert soon or something.. A restaurant with live music? I know where to go in AZ for that, what about here? hmm…

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Our Homeschool Curriculum for 10th grade

Our Homeschool Curriculum for 10th grade

Our school year started today! It’s been a little wonky of a beginning but I think we are working it out just fine. Kyle and Lauren have been doing the same work forever now so I figured we would just keep them in the same grade! Here is our homeschool curriculum for 10th grade!


For Art, we are doing a few things! Our choices will probably change to something more thorough after we get through the first book which is pretty small.

  • Learn to Draw by Notgrass – This is a pretty basic book, and probably meant for younger kids, but it is what I wanted. We have done some harder stuff in the past that has been fantastic, but I wanted to get some basic stuff down in a non-structured way.
  • Draw to Learn The Life of Jesus by Nograss – We did the Draw to Learn Acts last year and it was great going through the whole book of Acts with drawings! Looking forward to this year!
  • Mapping the World With Art – This kind of goes in with Geography, which everyone needs help with, but I included it with Art since that’s what the book deals with as well.


Our History also covers English and Bible, which is nice!

  • Exploring America by Notgrass – We enjoyed using Notgrass for elementary grades but we love it more in the high school grades! Last year we used the World History and I learned a lot! Looking forward to the American History this year! Like I mentioned, it also covers English and Bible, so it takes up a good portion of our school time. There are a lot of books to read throughout the year as well. I like that they can choose from different projects to do each week, that it isn’t always a paper or report.


We are pretty book heavy in our learning.. Last year we used the English 2 book – Literature and Composition from Excellence in Literature. This was fantastic! I had planned to go the next book since it was dealing with American Literature and we were dealing with with American History, but due to our wonky beginning, we are doing something else.


This is a hard one. We have tried so many things. The one that Kyle likes is UnLock Math $300 for one year and that just isn’t in the budget for two kids. They have used Teaching Textbooks, which worked out…ok…I will save it for another time or something? Lauren went through the No-Nonsense Algebra book last year and that was wonderful for her. I was stumped this year…

  • Thinkwell Homeschool – This was a new one for us, I only heard about it at the last minute. The teacher seems to explain things well, which is great! And it was half the price of the UnLock Math. Hoping that it really helps in the math department this year!


Went through it once already with Ryan and I know what I’m in for…ha!

  • Exploring Creation with Biology from Apologia – This is definitely going to be interesting this year. Ryan did his lab science with Chemistry last year…Kyle and Lauren will be surprised when it is time for dissecting. Ha!

That’s pretty much it for the typical school year stuff. I will always be bringing in new things throughout the year for us to try and review here on the blog. It gets more interesting as the kids get older to find new things for them, or adapt younger things for their ages.

Let me know what you are using! I am always open for suggestions because I know I haven’t heard of a lot of stuff out there!


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Five Minute Friday – Agree

All week long I have thought that it was Saturday. Every day was my own personal Groundhog day. And look, today really is Groundhog day and yet it’s still not Saturday. Tomorrow is Saturday, what day will I think it is then?

So, imagine my shock when I realized it was time for another Five Minute Friday! I don’t even know. The theme for this week is Agree. If you don’t know the deal about Five Minute Friday, check out one of my blog posts here that talks about it!

Basically, you write for five minutes, only five minutes and don’t worry about it when you are done. Signed, sealed, delivered.



I wasn’t sure what to write about for this weeks prompt. It is such a basic word! But I have been reading Katie Davis Majors’ book Daring to Hope and there has been so much goodness in her words!

Then I came across this quote:

God already knows what we’re made of, but perhaps He wants us to learn what we’re made of. I think we would all agree that we learn more from our tough times than from our easy times. John Bytheway

That is what I have been reading so far in her book. How easy it is to live life when everything is going right.. But how much harder it is when the days start going wrong.

You do learn more about yourself, about God. I know our pastor at our church has said many times that when things are going well…just wait. Just wait. It won’t stay like that, something WILL happen, the other shoe will drop.

That’s when you find out what you are made of. That’s when you come closer to, or back to, God.

So, yes, I do agree that we learn more from our tough times than from our easy times. It just makes sense…


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What I read in January 2018

A new year and a new Goodreads reading challenge!! Woohoo! Who else is doing the reading challenge this year? I set my goal at 65 this year, which is a few more than last year. This year seems like it could be a little wonky, so we will see hat happens! This is what I read in January 2018!

What I read in January 2018

Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory – Teddy Telemachus is a charming con man with a gift for sleight of hand and some shady underground associates. In need of cash, he tricks his way into a classified government study about telekinesis and its possible role in intelligence gathering. There he meets Maureen McKinnon, and it’s not just her piercing blue eyes that leave Teddy forever charmed, but her mind—Maureen is a genuine psychic of immense and mysterious power. After a whirlwind courtship, they marry, have three gifted children, and become the Amazing Telemachus Family, performing astounding feats across the country. Irene is a human lie detector. Frankie can move objects with his mind. And Buddy, the youngest, can see the future. Then one night tragedy leaves the family shattered.

Decades later, the Telemachuses are not so amazing. Irene is a single mom whose ear for truth makes it hard to hold down a job, much less hold together a relationship. Frankie’s in serious debt to his dad’s old mob associates. Buddy has completely withdrawn into himself and inexplicably begun digging a hole in the backyard. To make matters worse, the CIA has come knocking, looking to see if there’s any magic left in the Telemachus clan. And there is: Irene’s son Matty has just had his first out-of-body experience. But he hasn’t told anyone, even though his newfound talent might just be what his family needs to save themselves—if it doesn’t tear them apart in the process.

Harnessing the imaginative powers that have made him a master storyteller, Daryl Gregory delivers a stunning, laugh-out-loud new novel about a family of gifted dreamers and the invisible forces that bind us all.

What I thought: I appreciated the unique story that Spoonbenders was. There were many different characters and story lines, but they all intertwined together so that you got the whole story. I appreciate that! I liked this book!!

What I read in 2018

Hanna Who Fell From the Sky by Christopher Meades – Hanna has never been outside her secluded community of Clearhaven. She has never questioned why her father has four wives or why she has fourteen brothers and sisters. And in only one week, on her eighteenth birthday, Hanna will follow tradition and become the fifth wife of a man more than twice her age.

But just days before the wedding, Hanna meets Daniel, an enigmatic stranger who challenges her to question her fate and to follow her own will. Then her mother tells her a secret–one that could grant Hanna the freedom she’s known only in her dreams. As her world unravels around her, Hanna must decide whether she was really meant for something greater than the claustrophobic world of Clearhaven. But can she abandon her beloved younger sister and the only home she’s ever known? Or is there another option–one too fantastical to believe?

With lush, evocative prose, Christopher Meades takes readers on an emotional journey into a fascinating, unknown world–and, along the way, brilliantly illuminates complexities of faith, identity and how our origins shape who we are.

What I thought: This was an interesting book to me! I imagine it to be similar to other ‘cult’ type stories out there from what you hear on the news and such. I liked the main character and how you could feel like you knew her. I liked this book!

What I read in January 2018

The Thing with Feathers by McCall Hoyle – Emilie Day believes in playing it safe: she’s homeschooled, her best friend is her seizure dog, and she’s probably the only girl on the Outer Banks of North Carolina who can’t swim.

Then Emilie’s mom enrolls her in public school, and Emilie goes from studying at home in her pj’s to halls full of strangers. To make matters worse, Emilie is paired with starting point guard Chatham York for a major research project on Emily Dickinson. She should be ecstatic when Chatham shows interest, but she has a problem. She hasn’t told anyone about her epilepsy.

Emilie lives in fear her recently adjusted meds will fail and she’ll seize at school. Eventually, the worst happens, and she must decide whether to withdraw to safety or follow a dead poet’s advice and “dwell in possibility.”

What I thought: I’m sure I have read similar books, but I enjoyed the characters in this story a lot. Maybe it’s the whole homeschool thing, lol. I did appreciate the storyline though, even if it seemed done…I liked this book!

What I read in January 2018

The Chalk Artist by Allegra Goodman – This is a compelling love story between two very different young people: Collin, a disarming chalk artist who thinks nothing of erasing his dazzling work, and Nina, an idealistic teacher who struggles every day to make a lasting impact on her students. Wanting Collin to realize his full talent, Nina warily introduces him to her powerful father, who owns the most cutting edge virtual reality game company in the world. Add to this a brilliant but unstable pupil of Nina’s who is gaming obsessed, and you have contemporary life caught in the crosshairs by one of our most charming and socially astute literary voices.

What I thought: Gah, I have been reading some good books lately! I liked this one, I think more for just the simpleness of the story. I liked the back and forth and the different stories within a story.. It did jump around a bit, but it wasn’t annoying. I liked this book!

What I read in January 2018

The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand – Nantucket is only two and a half hours away from Martha’s Vineyard by ferry. But the two islands might as well be worlds apart for a set of identical twin sisters who have been at odds for years. When a family crisis forces them to band together — or at least appear to — the twins slowly come to realize that the special bond that they share is more important than the sibling rivalry that’s driven them apart for the better part of their lives. A touching depiction of all the pleasures and annoyances of the sibling relationship, Elin Hilderbrand’s next New York Times bestseller, THE IDENTICALS proves once and for all that just because twins look exactly the same doesn’t mean they’re anything alike.

What I thought: I don’t know what it is, but I have always been drawn to books involving twins. This book didn’t disappoint. I liked that they were separated and then came together and there was just a tad bit of twin fun in there. It was a good story!

So, that is what I read in January 2018! Five books down, 60 to go!

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The cats are chilly

It’s been pretty cold here lately! The snow is slowly melting.. It’s crazy that just a little further south down the road there is hardly any snow left and we still have a lot. We got these little room heaters for the homeschool room and where Jeffy works all day as they tend to get the draftiest. The cats are chilly and it shows!

The cats are chilly

The cats are chilly

Now, you won’t ever see more than one cat there at the same time, but I find it amusing that they will sleep so close to it. I know it helps with the wood floors, we all tend to wear socks or slippers around the house in the winter.

I am looking forward to remodeling, or moving, or whatever happens, just for the sake of changing out our windows and helping retain some of the heat. Or in the summer, the cold, lol.

More about remodeling or moving in another blog. It is a thorn in our side right now. :sigh:


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Five Minute Friday: Intentional

I can’t believe it is Friday already! I had so many things planned for this week, and then the snow came! All the more reason to take it easy, right? The prompt for this weeks Five Minute Friday: Intentional.

If you don’t know what Five Minute Friday is, feel free to check what I wrote about it on this post.

Here we go!



However many years ago, I participated in the Word of the Year thing that seems to be coming back even stronger this year.

I think my word had something to do with being intentional. I don’t think that was my word, but I think it was along the same lines.

There are two ways that you can take the word Intentional. The dictionary defines it as something done on purpose, or deliberate.

I would like to think that people gravitate towards the good of this word, rather than the bad.

I know back when I was younger, I accidentally on purpose tripped someone.. How does that work you wonder? I stuck out my foot when they were running by, not thinking they would actually trip. I felt awful! My intent wasn’t to actually trip them, but it was to make them think I was going to trip them. Still not the greatest.

Seems like nowadays there are so many people that want the definition of intentional to look on the dark side of things. Name calling, he said/she said, stuff based on hate and misunderstanding…

That’s exhausting!

Why can’t intentional be more about helping and love and understanding?

That’s how I want to be. That’s how I will live as much as I can the rest of my life, not just for a year. I want people to know that my ‘something done on purpose’ is based out of love. That I am deliberate in my actions.

That I am acting intentional.



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Some serious snow!

The other day we saw on the weather app that we use that we were due for some snow on Wednesday. Cool, we always love snow! News reports were calling for two to three inches in our area, which is about typical. Um…no. We got some serious snow!

Some serious snow

This is the morning after it started. That’s a lake, in case you didn’t know. I look at it now and it almost looks like a street!

It snowed all day, just kept on snowing. I went out and started making a sledding path which was exhausting because I kept getting pelted in the face by snow falling. Jeffy had cleared a large area on our property that just happened to be on a hill, we were excited!

I stuck a ruler on one of our front steps because the snow just kept on rising. Definitely over the 2-3 inches that was suggested!

Some serious snow

Looking at the ruler later we were very much surprised! And this was only on the front step, the yard was definitely deeper!

It’s been fun seeing so much snow! Thankfully Ryan had days off so he didn’t have to drive in it! And at least he has the 4wd for when he does have to drive.

I was out fixing the sled path that I had made because it had snowed over what I had already done. Again, we weren’t expecting all that extra snow!

Our internet and phone line both went out, so we decided that we had to get to somewhere that we could access our cell phones at least, since we don’t get service at the house. We contacted the company and they said they would be working on it as soon as they could.

Some serious snow

The driveway is on a little bit of a hill, and the snow was so deep that we couldn’t get the Suburban out. We really didn’t want to have to get the Durango.. So, Jeffy went and got the tractor and cleared as much of a path as he could. Of course the tractor got stuck at one point, so that was even more fun.

We both got quite a workout over the course of a couple days due to some serious snow! Looking forward to just hanging out and being lazy, dragging out some board games, and just enjoying the day!


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It’s week two for the Five Minute Friday dealio and I am still going strong! Well, not sure if I’m going strong.. I should be on an airplane headed home but our flight got canceled. If you aren’t sure what Five Minute Friday is, last Friday’s post explains it a little bit.

Today’s word prompt is: Simplify



I am having a hard time with this word prompt.

By nature, I am a pretty simple person. I don’t need much to be happy, to enjoy life, whatever.

I guess I could work on simplifying ‘stuff’. I do have a hard time with getting rid of stuff. I know the big trend right now is to just get rid of everything and be happy with hardly anything.

Memories are huge for me more than anything. I hate getting rid of something that I may want later on.. I realize that I could definitely get rid of some stuff.

A lot of that has to do with time though. Time to go through everything. I probably should have done that during our school break. I say that every year.. But once our school break comes I am dealing with yearbook pictures for our homeschool group, the holidays…and then I just kind of zonk out.

Priorities, y’all. I have a hard time arranging that…as is evidenced by last weeks word, lol.


Well, that’s my five minutes! Are you going to join me every Friday for this Five Minute Friday? 🙂

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Our family trip to PA and NYC

Now that we have a vehicle that fits our family better, we decided to take a road trip! Jeffy had some things to do in PA and so we just piggy backed on his business trip! We haven’t really had a vacation since we moved to NC…we have done a couple night stays at various places, but no real vacations. Here is a little about our family trip to PA and NYC.

Our family trip to PA and NYC

We started out in good spirits. It doesn’t happen that we all go very many places together anymore, with Ryan’s crazy work schedule and just the mere busyness of life. It was nice to be all together!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

This isn’t the best pic, but the first night we stayed in Pittsburgh. Jeffy had a work thing so the kids and I drove to a few places. I wanted to see the city at night since it was our only night there, so I looked up a place to go. We went to this park and it was definitely a great view of the city!

There were quite a few different people there and a random dog that was walking around that seemed to be owned by a few different people, or nobody, it was hard to tell.. The view was so great though! There was a game that night so that is what that big blob of light is.

Our family trip to PA and NYCOur family trip to PA and NYC

The next day we went to the Duqesne Incline. We parked across the street and went up, across, and over to get to this building on the other side.

It was a very inexpensive ticket and you go up on these tracks. It was the craziest thing, but it worked!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

Here was the view from the top. Pretty similar to the view that we had the night before, just in the daytime! I would like to spend more time in Pittsburgh sometime!

After a night in the city we were on our way to Mount Gretna, PA. It is almost in the middle of the state. Thankfully I had a friend who is from that area and she gave me a lot of suggestions on things to do, and what kind of potato chips to buy! That was a crazy hunt for those things, lol.

Our family trip to PA and NYC

We had to stop in Hershey! Hershey’s Chocolate World was calling me.. It was a very bad weather day, rain, rain, and more rain.. But we did ok. It was definitely not a day for the amusement park, but the tour and all was good anyway, and they give you a chocolate at the end.

If you couldn’t find the Hershey merchandise that you wanted here, then there would definitely be something wrong, because they had it all! That little Kiss in the pic up there is pretty much what I looked like walking around all that chocolate…just sayin’.

Our family trip to PA and NYC

My friend told me about Julius Sturgis and how they give tours and such. It was such an informative tour and they have you fold a pretzel and hey, you get a certificate when you are done! 😉

You get a small bag at the end of the tour. The pretzels were different than what we were used to, I found them quite tasty! I love the history of places like this.

Our family trip to PA and NYC

We stayed a couple days in Mount Gretna. So this allowed us to explore more. Penn’s Cave was something that looked interesting! It had snowed there recently so I was curious how cold it was going to be.

What is cool is that the cave is pretty much 52 degrees year round, so it was actually warmer in the cave than it was outside! It is also one of the only caves that you can tour all by boat!

I only had my phone for photos, so I didn’t get many great ones, but they have them lit so well it was pretty dang cool. There were stalagmites and stalactites and we all got dripped on by the water that was coming through.

Towards the end they took a quick ride out onto the lake on the other side where we could see some of the animals on the property, mostly deer, that sort of thing. They have a petting zoo and actually a lot more to do, but it was so cold and rainy, they weren’t offering much that day, and really, nobody wanted to do them anyway…

Our family trip to PA and NYC

This was the AirBnB that we stayed in.. I totally recommend it if you are in the area! They had the heat going before we got there so it was nice and toasty. This was us on the way out getting rained on.. Brr… And then we were on our way to NYC!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

This is me, with Ryan in the background, on the subway. It was so cold, I just wanted some gloves! We stopped in Lucky and got me the scarf, which totally helped. It was so warm!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

We stayed in Hell’s Kitchen, within walking distance of Times Square. Our place was on the 38th story, which gave us plenty of beautiful views!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

We did the boat ride to see the statue of liberty.. It was so, so cold…so we stayed on the inside of the boat the whole time. Hey, they had the heat going!

For a long time I have also been on the hunt for the best eclair. Previously, I had to say it was this place in MA that Jeffy and I went to.. There is a chance though that this one beat it. A taste test might have to occur. I mean, to be fair and all, right?

Our family trip to PA and NYC

Yup, we got rained on… But I couldn’t skip getting the pics on the red stairs in Times Square!

Our family trip to PA and NYC

After a couple days in NYC we were off again, heading to Philadelphia! And this is pretty much what we did. The boys had their own room and us and Lauren had our room. With all of our comings and goings, not to mention packing and unpacking, we were all tired.

It was the day before Thanksgiving and we left the hotel room at 8:30 in the morning. What should have taken maybe 6 hours to get home took a lot longer…with all of our stops trying to find a turkey, construction traffic, holiday traffic, all that good stuff…we didn’t get home until 8:30 at night. It was such a long day of driving!

Thankfully we got home safely and everything was well and good at the house. Our animals are cared for by someone while we are gone too, which is a relief.

We did more than I listed, but I realize this post was getting extremely long, so I narrowed things down a bit. You get the general idea though.



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