Have you jumped on the record bandwagon these last few years? I love records! I still had a few in storage that I never got rid of from when I was young!
We bought an inexpensive record player a few years ago and have been getting so much use out of it! We have such an unusual collection of records at the moment though!
We have my old ones from storage that include Michael Jackson and George Michael.. There are some that we got at thrift stores and the record store in the next city over that include The Beatles and Johnny Cash. There are some new ones like Lauren Daigle and Guardians of the Galaxy soundtracks. Oh, and I got Jeffy some for Christmas that were Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong.
Jeffy and I love hanging out and listening to them with a drink. We both can’t wait until our remodel is finished so we don’t have to sit at the table though. It would be great to have a nice comfy chair our couch…
I just love the sound that a record has when it is playing. There is nothing like it. And for some reason we have been LOVING the old music, jazz and even stuff from the 40s lately. I guess we are getting old, lol.
Are you on the record bandwagon with us? 🙂 What is your favorite kind of music?
I forgot to really talk much about our 11th grade school year!
We had to start our new school year a week after ending our last school year, so I didn’t have a ton of time to get things as ready as I usually do! But I am pretty happy with how the year is going so far!
Of course we are sticking with Notgrass because I love it so much. This year we are doing Government and next year we will do economics. I know most people just do one semester of each in the same year.
We will be doing Notgrass the first semester and then we are going to use something from Critical Thinking Co. about the Bill of Rights that I thought looked great for the second semester. It basically lists a bunch of cases and you have to apply the Bill of Rights to them and judge how they should turn out. Figuring it kind of ties in to our first semester and making it more ‘real’!
For the rest of the subjects we are using curriculum from Build Your Library. Well, except math. I’ll talk about that in a minute. But the grade 11 curriculum includes credit for Art, English, Chemistry, History, Poetry, and History of the English Language.
This is a secular curriculum and it is definitely secular. Some of the book choices have things in it that we normally wouldn’t be talking about. I try and skip over these if I see them in time. Our differences definitely show up with this, ha!
But I do like the emphasis on all of the book reading and English language/Poetry and just everything. There is just the right amount of homework. Granted, with the Notgrass mixed in, there is a lot more than what they are used to, but I figure with that being just one semester it will be ok.
They are now doing college classes three times a week, so they really have to learn to keep track of their time and their homework. It is only two classes though.
For math, we started out continuing with what we did last year, but I think they got burned out. So, as I was asked to review a new program for us, I am going to let them do that for 20 minutes a day. I think it will be a great break for them, but still do math each day.
So, it’s only been a few weeks, but I am looking forward to how the school year will play out. If we can avoid taking huge breaks we might just end at a decent time this year rather than dragging it out until the end of December! Let’s hope!
I enjoy the new year because it is still winter and still exciting.. But then I think it is just a downhill trip to summer. I just don’t look forward to summer at all..
Other than that, I think that 2019 is going to be an interesting year!
January is half over and honestly, I am not sure what happened.
We started our new school year quite suddenly and are still trying to get into the groove of that. Something new this year is hoping to not do school on the weekends. Typically we did school on Sundays to finish any projects or tests, or whatever else needed to be done.
I wanted everyone to have their weekends back, so we all came up with a plan to just get everything done during the week. The first week went great… The second week…not so much.
I know they have one college course that started already and their other one will be starting in a bit, so I am hoping that everything will get it’s own groove by the time that one starts.
The architect is almost done with our plans for the remodel so that we can take them to the bank to talk about loans. Hooray! I can NOT wait to get this thing actually started! We had hoped that we could be starting the actual remodel this month or next, but now we aren’t sure when it will happen.
There are just a lot of things going on this year, and I am hoping that it doesn’t go too awful fast. (Even though I love the fall so much and can’t wait for it every year…)
What are you looking forward to the most in 2019? How is your January going? A lot of people think that January sets the tone for the whole year. I don’t know, I think every day is a new day!
Happy New Year!! Our internet was all sorts of wonky the last month or so. I had a hard time checking emails, much less updating blogs and such! It is still pretty bad, but we keep hearing of a new internet company coming in the spring. We are already on their list, so I hope it is a great thing! Even though I am combining two months, I really didn’t read a ton. Do you read a lot during the holidays? Here is what I read in November and December
If Only by Jennifer Gilmore – Before:
When Bridget imagined her life at sixteen, it didn’t look like this. She didn’t think that her boyfriend would dump her for another girl. And she certainly didn’t think that she would be pregnant. With just a few months until she gives birth, Bridget must envision an entirely new future—one for her baby. But as she sifts through the many paths and the many people who want to parent her child, she can’t help but feel that there is no right decision.
Ivy doesn’t know much about her birth mother. She knows that she is now the same age Bridget was when she placed Ivy for adoption. She knows that Bridget was the one who named her. And she knows that fifteen years ago Bridget disappeared from Ivy’s and her adoptive moms’ lives. Ivy wants to discover more about herself, but as she goes to find Bridget, she can’t help but feel that the risks might far outweigh the benefits of knowing where she comes from and why her birth mother chose to walk away.
What I thought: This was told from two different viewpoints. I liked the story well enough, but something about it just didn’t mesh well. I am sure it is just something I didn’t like, but I am sure other people wouldn’t mind it. I don’t even know what it is!
Her Pretty Face by Robyn Harding –
Frances Metcalfe is struggling to stay afloat.
A stay-at-home mom whose troubled son is her full-time job, she thought that the day he got accepted into the elite Forrester Academy would be the day she started living her life. Overweight, insecure, and lonely, she is desperate to fit into Forrester’s world. But after a disturbing incident at the school leads the other children and their families to ostracize the Metcalfes, she feels more alone than ever before.
Until she meets Kate Randolph.
Kate is everything Frances is not: beautiful, wealthy, powerful, and confident. And for some reason, she’s not interested in being friends with any of the other Forrester moms—only Frances. As the two bond over their disdain of the Forrester snobs and the fierce love they have for their sons, a startling secret threatens to tear them apart…because one of these women is not who she seems. Her real name is Amber Kunick. And she’s a murderer.
In her masterful follow-up to The Party, Robyn Harding spins a web of lies, deceit, and betrayal, asking the question: Can people ever change? And even if they can, is it possible to forgive the past?
What I thought: I think this book had a good story, but it was kind of…predictable. I still enjoyed the book…
The Giver by Lois Lowry – Twelve-year-old Jonas lives in a seemingly ideal world. Not until he is given his life assignment as the Receiver does he begin to understand the dark secrets behind this fragile community.
What I thought: Ok, I don’t know what happened, but I had sworn that I had read this book already! I know we saw the movie, so that must have been where I was confused. I enjoyed this book! I ended up getting the set for Lauren for Christmas…and I might have to read the rest of the books as well. 😉
The Child Finder by Rene Denfeld – A haunting, richly atmospheric, and deeply suspenseful novel from the acclaimed author of The Enchanted about an investigator who must use her unique insights to find a missing little girl.
“Where are you, Madison Culver? Flying with the angels, a silver speck on a wing? Are you dreaming, buried under snow? Or—is it possible—you are still alive?”
Three years ago, Madison Culver disappeared when her family was choosing a Christmas tree in Oregon’s Skookum National Forest. She would be eight-years-old now—if she has survived. Desperate to find their beloved daughter, certain someone took her, the Culvers turn to Naomi, a private investigator with an uncanny talent for locating the lost and missing. Known to the police and a select group of parents as “the Child Finder,” Naomi is their last hope.
Naomi’s methodical search takes her deep into the icy, mysterious forest in the Pacific Northwest, and into her own fragmented past. She understands children like Madison because once upon a time, she was a lost girl, too.
As Naomi relentlessly pursues and slowly uncovers the truth behind Madison’s disappearance, shards of a dark dream pierce the defenses that have protected her, reminding her of a terrible loss she feels but cannot remember. If she finds Madison, will Naomi ultimately unlock the secrets of her own life?
Told in the alternating voices of Naomi and a deeply imaginative child, The Child Finder is a breathtaking, exquisitely rendered literary page-turner about redemption, the line between reality and memories and dreams, and the human capacity to survive.
What I thought: I thought this book was well done and I enjoyed reading it. I am always fascinated that my book choices seem to follow a theme for a while, even if they aren’t totally noticeable to other people. I could feel myself in this storyline just with the descriptions of everything.
The Fall of Innocence by Jenny Torres Sanchez – For the past eight years, sixteen-year-old Emilia DeJesus has done her best to move on from the traumatic attack she suffered in the woods behind her elementary school. She’s forced down the memories–the feeling of the twigs cracking beneath her, choking on her own blood, unable to scream. Most of all, she’s tried to forget about Jeremy Lance, the boy responsible, the boy who caused her such pain. Emilia believes that the crows who watched over her that day, who helped her survive, are still on her side, encouraging her to live fully. And with the love and support of her mother, brother, and her caring boyfriend, Emilia is doing just that.
But when a startling discovery about her attacker’s identity comes to light, and the memories of that day break through the mental box in which she’d shut them away, Emilia is forced to confront her new reality and make sense of shifting truths about her past, her family, and herself.
What I thought: I enjoyed this book, the imagery was done well. Some of it was more….poetic than story I guess? Just the way it was told…It was still a good book though!
All of these books I rated as three stars or higher. I have a hard time rating anything five stars because I think I might make a mistake and read something even better and then it will throw off my whole rating scale, lol.
But this was what I read in November and December. Did you read anything wonderful over the holidays? Let me know!
Some of my favorite Biblical things that we use in our house are made especially for teen girls or young women. We recently received Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women from Zondervan. I would definitely suggest this for teens and older. And really, I am thoroughly enjoying reading it myself!
I have skimmed through a lot of the book to see the content included and there is so much covered. Many different women are mentioned, which, if you are just reading the Bible from beginning to end, you may not realize how many women are mentioned in it. I like that this points out different women throughout the Bible. 60 of them in fact!
The book itself is small in size, but is pretty thick. It is hard cover, so very sturdy. There is a devotion on each page.
One of the things I appreciate about the way it is set up is that it starts with Day 1. So, you can jump right in and not worry about skipping a day and trying to catch up.
Since there are 365 days, you will still cover a year, but it isn’t necessary to feel stressed if you aren’t able to do each day in the year. You may want to wait and start on January 1st, but isn’t nice that you don’t have to.
Each page lists the day number at the top, then the Bible verse, and then a commentary about the Bible verse. There is also some lines at the bottom that you can use for journaling or making notes, which is super nice! Although for people like me that write with large letters, it’s not a ton of room, but I can see writing words that stuck out to me.
What we did was start drawing something from the days reading. Day 3 for example was Proverbs 31:10. “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.” I think that will also help with understanding the verse, commentary, and the story that it is written along with.
Every day may not have something as easy to draw as a ruby, but it may be an emotion or just a word. We do a lot of art each day and it just ties in with our homeschool, so it just is something we look forward to doing. The devotions start out pretty mild, but they get more involved the further along the book you go. I wanted to check it out first before Lauren started to read it.
It definitely covers some things that us moms have felt or different relationships and situations we have been in. Friendships, husbands, children… It also goes into trials that you may be going through. It’s not all rainbows and butterflies, which is what a good devotional should be, in my opinion!
Since it does cover so many things, I can see reading this book more than once. Keeping it for years and even if you don’t read one every day, there will be something that will be relevant for you every time you read.
The book itself is pink with flowers, but it isn’t too girly, if you know what I mean. It is beautiful, in my opinion. It’s a glossy cover and the flowers and the beloved word are metallic. It would be a wonderful gift if you were looking for something like this!
I am looking forward to reading this and I know Lauren is too. It has a ribbon page marker so that we can keep track of the page we are on, which is nice.
If you want to read what others thought about their Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women, feel free to click the banner below! I always like seeing what other people do with books like these! Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women
A few years ago, I noticed a huge show of people doing the Bible art journaling. I thought it was so beautiful! While I admired it so much, I realized that it was all overwhelming and I didn’t know how to start something like that! In that time, I have noticed that it has kind of morphed into its own little thing and there isn’t just one correct way to do it! Ahhh, much less stressful! I was happy to get these Ellie Claire Art Journals to help me along the way!
All of these books are different, but really, they complement each other by teaching you different aspects of journaling! I will go through each one and point out different features of them.
The Illustrated Word – An Illuminated Bible Coloring Journal.
Just as medieval monks brought Scripture to life through intricate handwritten and illustrated manuscripts hundreds of years ago, you can now create your own keepsake to be treasured for years to come. Forty illustrations have been recreated as line drawings to color. Full-color illustrations from the archives of the Museum of the Bible make this journal a true masterpiece.
This journal is unique… There are a lot of pages included, with plenty of room to write on all of the pages.
Every other page spread looks like this one. A coloring page on the right and then a small cut out print of it on the left side. It gives you ideas on how you can color it from the original. It also mentions what illustration it is from. This particular one is from The Church of England Book of Common Prayer, 1662.
The variety throughout the book is such that you will definitely find something that will have you wanting to get out your markers. There are pages with animals, people, plants, designs..
On the spreads that don’t have this set up, there is just one small image on one corner and it is usually the full scale color image from the coloring page, or something to do with it. I love how it all ties in together!
This book is just a very easy casual coloring type book that you can journal in!
Illuminate Your Story – Journal.
Illuminated letters once adorned the pages of books and Bibles giving them rich color and gliding that made the text come alive. Today, illuminated letters are enjoying a renaissance, encouraging beautiful illustration in planners, journals, and personal art.
Illuminate Your Story features easy-to-follow instructions, inspiring quotes, and practice space to help you create amazing letters, flourishes, and more. Whether you draw in your jornal, Bible, or elsewhere, this how-to guide will help you develop gorgeous images that add beauty to your story.
This book fascinated me right from the first page. There was a nice introduction that explained about illuminated manuscript and over the next few pages it goes over the different styles of letters. Then there is a section called The Process about the lettering and another page on the supplies you need to create your own and how to use the journal.
The rest of the book is so full of details! I am hoping that I can give it justice by my explanations!
Each letter gets two full spreads of how to’s on how to make that letter. There is also a spread with journaling pages and at the top of one page is a quote that starts with that letter! In between are also some spreads on how to do certain designs. There are animals, but most of them are just different design features.
I will say that some of the letters that fall later in the alphabet only have one spread, etc,. That makes sense as they just aren’t used as often as the other letters.
But wait, there’s more! 🙂 The details on the back of the book are great too! There is a ribbon page marker to keep your spot, an elastic to keep the book closed, AND an elastic pen holder on the spine!
Like I said, this one is just full of all the small details…
Faith & Lettering journal.
Reignite your devotional time, imprint Scripture on your heart, and dig deep into the Word of God through the art of lettering. Expert tips will help you pursue a deeper faith by expressing your God-given creativity.
This book has a more modern feel to it than the last one. The colors and layout just make a happy book.
The first page has a presented to page that you can fill in. There are a couple pages of introduction that also include a how to use, which if there is one in anything I am doing, I always make sure to read it.
Also included are a lot of different pages in this book that help in your lettering. There are pages just like the one above with different Bible verses. They are all different, and with different colors, but all of them use these bright colors. They are so pretty!
Of course there are journaling pages too, as you can see in the picture.. Then, throughout the book are some practice pages. They have the lettered Bible verse and then another one that is fainter for you to trace. A few more sections for you to do it on your own are also on the page.
Another thing that is interspersed through the book are pro tips. It could be flourishes or banners, or whatever.. But there is a tip and then plenty of room for you to practice the mentioned item.
The colors in this book are so pretty and happy! This book also has an elastic on the spine to keep a pen.
All three of these books are so helpful and unique! But like I mentioned, they all kind of work together with different things taught! They all will lay flat when you set them down so that you don’t have to hold them open and the pages are thicker to help with bleeding from pens. The price is good as well, just being a few dollars range from each other.
Depending on what you are looking for when it comes to learning journaling, you could get any one of these, or get all three! Make sure to check out the website for Ellie Claire Art Journals too!
I was provided these journals to review and these are all my opinions. In fact, I don’t think I could pick a favorite!
So, I thought that we were done traveling for the year. But then I get an email from the airline. If I just spend a couple hundred more dollars and get a few more flight segments in before the end of the year, I can bump up to Gold. Dang airline status…
Now we have to go on a few more trips, because I would rather fly somewhere than buy miles. I mean, it’s more fun, right?
I am thinking they will mostly just be overnight trips since Jeffy has to go to New York once a month anyway.
There really isn’t anything I need to see there until they are decorated for Christmas, so I think that they will be somewhat relaxing trips, minus the holiday travel that is always busier than usual.
I am looking forward to when they are done remodeling the airport. We go to Laguardia and it has been ages already and I know that there is still a ton left to do.
Are you traveling for the holidays or before the end of the year?
Welll, I haven’t read much at all lately. We had a lot of travel days and one of the books I had with me just wasn’t a good plane book, if you know what I mean.. Here is what I read in October. Hopefully you read more than I did, lol.
Messy Beautiful Friendship by Christine Hoover – Women long for deep and lasting friendships but often find them challenging to make. The private angst they feel regarding friendship often translates into their own insecurity and isolation. Christine Hoover offers women a fresh, biblical vision for friendship that allows for the messiness of our lives and the realities of our schedules. She shows women
– what’s holding them back from developing satisfying friendships
– how to make and deepen friendships
– how to overcome insecurity, self-imposed isolation, and past hurts
– how to embrace the people God has already placed in their lives as potential friends
– and how to revel in the beauty and joy of everyday friendship
With stories of real friendships and guidance drawn from Scripture, Hoover encourages women to intentionally and purposefully invest in one of the most rewarding relationships God has given us.
What I thought: Some of this book had me nodding right along, like, yes…this is me! And then I got lost in the shuffle.. But all in all I think it was a good book!
Room by Emma Donoghue – To five-year-old-Jack, Room is the world. . . . It’s where he was born, it’s where he and his Ma eat and sleep and play and learn. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.
Room is home to Jack, but to Ma it’s the prison where she has been held for seven years. Through her fierce love for her son, she has created a life for him in this eleven-by-eleven-foot space. But with Jack’s curiosity building alongside her own desperation, she knows that Room cannot contain either much longer.
Room is a tale at once shocking, riveting, exhilarating–a story of unconquerable love in harrowing circumstances, and of the diamond-hard bond between a mother and her child.
What I thought – I loved this book! I kind of guessed about how certain things would go, but it was still nicely done! I am kind of wondering how the movie was, as I have not seen it. It was the book that I finished quicker than the other one this month as it was fiction and I tend to read those faster. I enjoyed it!
That’s it…that’s all I read for the whole month! Let me know if you read anything that you loved!
I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time getting things done by my deadlines. Well, they almost always get done on time, but I always wait until the last minute. It’s my own fault too! I was interested in checking out Balancing Diapers and Deadlines by Lisa Tanner Writing .
I don’t have any kids in diapers, and it’s been ages since they HAVE been in diapers, but I think this course applies anyway!
Now my kids have jobs and are looking at college options all while we are still homeschooling.
I have obligations that all have deadlines and doing the home stuff too, you know, like most moms out there!
As you log on, you can see a very easy to navigate menu. It is pretty self explanatory, just click on the first Unit and go from there!
Each unit has an introduction and then some lessons. These lessons are all different. Some give you things to think about, some give you ideas to implement, but they all go towards the same goal.
As you go through each section you can then mark it complete. That way you know where you left off. Or what I did in a couple spots was NOT mark it complete so that I could go back to that section again.
So far, this is the Unit that speaks to me the most!
I have the WORST time making decisions. What do I want for lunch? I don’t know. It’s the story of my life.
This unit reminds me of that meme that went around a while back, about the mind being like a computer with too many tabs open and the music playing, etc.
How many of us feel like that often? I know I do!
A lot of the suggestions mentioned in this section are so very good! Of course, some don’t really apply to me, and that’s ok, they may apply to you! It is just due to my kids ages mostly. So, if your kids are younger, this will be perfect!
I still like how she narrows down different ideas for your time. It’s just so simple. But to see it written down, with a plan, that makes it so much easier for me!
Like right now, I have quite a few things due. But you know what? I am also on a little vacation type thing. I want to go out and explore and see places that I have been wanting to see again for a long time…
But I also have these obligations and deadlines. And also the plus of fast internet, I mean, hello…definitely need to take advantage of that!
So the last few days have been like a game of tug of war. Yesterday I didn’t get much done because of jet lag and I pulled something in my shoulder area so I was just sore. But things must still get done!
Anyway! Another section that I need help with is chores. I have a great system down for the kids. It works out so well! When they do them….teens. But I wish I had this in place years ago!
She gives you ideas on chores around the house, laundry, all the good stuff. I am pretty proud of the system I have set up for the kids, but um…I kind of need a system for me! She mentions what she does and I am excited to figure this all out when I get home again!
We do get chores done, and it is usually pretty even for Jeffy and I, but some of the things sneak up on us. Mostly it is the chores that only need doing once a month. It would be nice to have something made up that would organize what we need to do daily, monthly, etc.
I am going to get on that asap!
Another area that I want help in is for meals. Lately we have been having the same things every week. I love these things, but they are getting old. This past week we threw in two meals that we haven’t had in a while and it definitely made a difference!
I would like to look more into meal planning, and I think this section will be great for me. I haven’t had a chance to look at it thoroughly as I think I need to be home with all of my recipes and such around me.
But you can bet next week when I am back home, I will be sitting down and going through this Unit carefully!
There is so much that people can get out of this course. Even if all of it doesn’t apply to you, there is definitely help here! I mean, I don’t have a business and I don’t have kids in diapers. But I have already gotten so much information and the way it is written out just makes sense to me!
We are off on another trip tomorrow! This one is tricky. We are doing a quick trip up to New York and then we are off to California!
You know how long it has been since we have seen palm trees?
I am looking forward to being done in NYC and going on to San Diego. There is just more room, is’t more relaxing, and we are excited to see the changes since the last time we were there!
We were trying to figure out when the last time we were there was and we just can’t do it! We used to go all the time, back when we were first married and then even when the kids were little. It was just a 5-6 hour drive which isn’t all that bad.
Now that we live on the East Coast, we never thought we would be back on the opposite coast any time soon.
There are so many things that we want to see, but almost more importantly, so many places we want to eat!
In-N-Out, Rubios, real Mexican food… Gah…just thinking about it all makes me realize I am going to gain ten pounds…hahaha!
Well, I better get packing. It’s going to be interesting because of the two different climates. It’s also going to be chilly when we get back home. I am definitely going to bring a jacket, but hopefully just a squishy one that can be shoved in my carry-on or something..