Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

What I’ve Been Reading – March 2023 March 31, 2023

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf — Amy Scott @ 3:58 pm

Bookish Thoughts for March

My pace of life changed in March and my reading life reflects that. While I was still able to read quite a bit, my total books read is lower than previous months. It doesn’t matter to me how many books I read as much as it does what books I read. Were they good books? Did I learn something? Did I support a favorite author or add to my home library? The answer to those questions was a resounding yes. And so, it was a good reading month, indeed.

I started the month with Royal Gone Rogue by Emma St. Clair. The release of this book had been delayed for months and I was thrilled to finally read it. I was nervous the wait would heighten my anticipation and then it would let me down – but it did not! It had Prince & Me, Return to Me, and Cinderella vibes. All of which I loved! The side characters were fantastic and it left me anxious for the next installment in the series. If I had a choice for runner up on top fiction pick, this book would be it.

I read All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr after having so many friends read it. I’ll often select a book just to see what the hype is about. I liked it, but true to most wartime historical fiction I read, it wasn’t quite the ending I hoped for. Modern Parens, Vintage Values was a wonderful parenting resource. I love these authors out of Daystar Counseling Ministries. They give parents such practical tools with heart and wisdom behind them. My mom let me borrow her copy of Beth Moore’s memoir, All My Knotted-Up Life, and I dove into it quickly. This is my third memoir this year and I’m finding this genre so fascinating. People are so layered and their life experiences so much deeper than the surface we often see. Even though I knew pieces of Beth’s story, it was so much more than I expected.

Jeremy offered to take the boys to Powell’s Books so they could select their April books in-person instead of online. Our family has come to love the Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing. It’s not the iconic downtown location, but we enjoy the store layout and selection. We comb the store and always come away with treasures. For me, it was God Has a Name by John Mark Comer. For Owen, a Boxcar Children book and the first book in The Hardy Boys series. Graham, an Animal Crossing guidebook and a collection of Frog and Toad stories. Jeremy found a Hidden Pictures book to use at church for the kids who arrive early. ThriftBooks also surprised me with a free book so I selected Loveology by John Mark Comer and Eat More Dessert by Jenny Keller (two books, so I could get free shipping… the slippery slope… one free books leads to buying another).

I sat down this week and made a list of new releases coming out between April and September. I have 8 books that I’m looking forward to and only July is missing a new release. I’m sure many happy reading days are ahead and I’m positive I’ll find something to look forward to reading in July. I’ve got time to stumble on a good a read!

March additions to the home library!
We love our local library! It’s helping me research summer vacation plans!
The book haul from Powells! So many thoughts about this photo… First Graham wouldn’t stand up straight so he looks extra short… Don’t judge our mismatch pajama lifestyle. Sometimes Mama just wants a quick photo and this is as good as it gets. Ha!

Top Picks for March

Non-Fiction: Undistracted: Capture Your Purpose. Rediscover Your Joy. by Bob Goff. The title of the book sums it up well. Undistracted is about living your life on purpose, finding joy and meaning in everyday. Bob Goff has a very signature style of writing. There is no one quite like him on this earth. While Bob and I might quite different personalities, he never fails to inspire me and make me laugh out loud. His real life examples make me marvel at the life he leads. Bob Goff is one of my go-to author. If he writes it, I will read it.
Fiction: The Librarian Spy by Madeline Martin. This is the second WWII book I’ve read by this author. The other was The Last Bookshop in London. While I enjoyed the first book, this second one moved me in a deeper way. The story focuses on two brave women. One an American librarian in Lisbon and the other operates a Resistance printing press in Lyon. Their stories overlap over the course of the book. I found myself thinking of both women long after I finished the book. The American librarian was particularly interesting to me because of her role in cataloging important information was new to me. Learning something new is a sign of a good book.

Book List for March
1 Star = I did not like it. 2 stars = It was okay. 3 stars = I liked it. 4 stars = I really liked it. 5 stars = It was amazing.


  • Modern Parents, Vintage Values, Revised and Updated: Instilling Character in Today’s Kids by Sissy Goff and Melissa Trevathan – 4 stars
  • Undistracted: Capture Your Purpose. Rediscover Your Joy. by Bob Goff – 4 stars
  • All My Knotted-Up Life: A Memoir by Beth Moore – 4 stars


  • Royal Gone Rogue by Emma St. Clair – 4 stars
  • Cruise(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 3 stars
  • The Librarian Spy by Madeline Martin – 4 stars
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr – 4 stars
  • Betting on the Boy Next Door by Melanie Jacobson – 3 stars
  • Second Time Around by Melody Carlson – 3 stars
  • The Winter Princess by Keira Dominguez – 3 stars
  • Love at First Note by Jenny Proctor – 3 stars


  • That Time I Kissed My Brother’s Best Friend by Julie Christianson – 3 stars
  • A Little in Love with You by Jenny Proctor – 3 stars

A Little March Madness… March 23, 2023

Filed under: Family Time,Travels,Women in Ministry — Amy Scott @ 2:48 pm

The title of this blog has a double meaning. Yes, we do the whole March Madness thing around here. Jeremy and I select our own brackets. This year the boys are sharing a bracket. Owen, especially, takes the brackets seriously. We have them printed on the counter with a yellow and red highlighter to mark wins and losses. As someone who doesn’t follow basketball at all, it never shocks me when my bracket is a bust. But it’s fun to guess and see how the cookie crumbles…

The other madness of March is not sports related. St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday my kids love to celebrate. I’ve tried to make it less of a “thing” this year, but some traditions have taken deep root. Leprechaun traps were made. Some minor mystical shenanigans ensued… Owen tried a Shamrock Shake from McDonald’s for the first time. He is my mint kid so I wanted to see his thoughts. He didn’t love it but he was fascinated with the color. I, on the other hand, had no problem sucking my green drink down in a matter of minutes. (Side note: Shamrock Shakes are as close as you’ll get me to a “green drink.” Don’t follow my blog for nutritional value.)

St. Patrick’s Day also coincided with a women’s conference I was invited to attend in Tacoma. I spent Friday morning with my family before adventuring off with my forever friend, Christa. We checked into our hotel, grabbed an early dinner at The Cheesecake Factory, and took a walk around a lake at a local park. It was a beautiful day in the PNW and it was lovely to be outside. It was a treat to find little piece of nature in the city to take a walk. The food, walking, and talking are some of my highlights of our time together. It’s a trifecta when you get a good friend, tasty food, and a beautiful day all at the same time! Another dear friend of mine was the conference organizer so part of attending the conference was to cheer her on and see the fruit of her labor. The sessions we attended were fantastic and I’m so proud of my friend for pouring her heart into so many women. Watching her shine (and seeing shine Jesus through her) was a joy!

An unforeseen thing happened Friday evening which changed my conference plans. Jeremy texted saying that my uncle was bringing my grandma down to visit on Saturday (technically, to visit my dad, but since we’re neighbors, it pretty much the same thing). It had been too long since I seen my sweet grandma. In fact, Friday morning I told my mom I was trying find a time to visit her soon. The chance to see GG in my neck of the woods was good to pass up. Christa completely understood and graciously allowed me to cut our conference time short so I could get home to my family. I arrived home with enough time to tidy up after my bachelor boys and then invite my family over a visit. My aunt and cousin joined the road trip as well and it was my first time for my aunt to visit our house. We love giving the house tour and sharing our space with others. It was a fun surprise! My only sadness was missing part of the conference. Maybe next year I’ll shoot for perfect attendance. You never know with life, though. Plans find a way of changing. Am, I right? Overall it was a great mix of friendship and family with a dash of holiday cheer all in one weekend.

Then things went a little haywire… Last week, after Graham’s weekend flu, Jeremy went down with the same bug. After 5+ days of being symptom-free, I thought Owen and I were in the clear. Apparently, we came into contact with something similar at church on Sunday, because on Monday evening, it was Owen and I’s turn to go down with the flu. Now all four of us have had it. Such a bummer! The good news is, apart from missing co-op, we’ve had a quiet week to rest and recover. It was no problem to catch up on up on the missed day of school. Our fun weekend plans are still on because we are back to our normal selves. It’s sad that it happened, but it happened at the “best” time possible.

Now that we’ve said good-bye to the March flu, we are excited to dive into Jeremy’s birthday weekend! Lots of fun plans and celebrations are ahead of us. We are excited to honor our favorite guy and give him the attention he deserves. Birthdays are a big deal in our household, so we can’t wait for birthday weekend to officially begin. Time to party!

Some holiday baking!
Played a game of Wingspan before leaving on St. Patrick’s Day. I used only green eggs to be on theme.
So fun to getaway with my forever friend, Christa!
Loving a bit of nature on a beautiful PNW day
Conference vibes!
Christa’s friendship is such a treasure! She was a fabulous conference buddy!

March Moments March 13, 2023

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 2:53 pm

It seems like a lot has happened since I last sat down to blog. Nothing major, but all the ups and downs of everyday life. Let’s dive into the all little moments that have made up the last week and a half. I have so many things to share!

On Friday, March 3rd, Jeremy decided to clean up a hand-me-down fish tank in hopes of upgrading our kitchen counter fish experience. Owen’s betta, Sunny, relocated to Owen’s room to make space for the larger fish tank. On Saturday, Jeremy and the boys went on a fish finding quest. They each came home with a fish and the grand fish adventure began. We prepared the boys for the fish might not to survive the experience. We knew acclimating to a new tank can be difficult. This was true for Sunset, the fish Owen picked. (Did his name possibly lead to his demise?!)

On Friday, March 10th, we went on another fish finding outing and came home with four elephant ear guppies (which I wanted to name after the sugary fair treat). It turns out Barry, Graham’s fish from the week before, thought the guppies were a tasty snack. (Could it be their name, like Sunset, got them in trouble? Elephant Ear – seems possible). Since Barry was too aggressive, we had to let him go. At this point, two of the four guppies have passed. We blame Barry-related trauma. This leaves us now with three fish in the tank – Jeremy’s fish (Sharky) and two guppies (Cinnamon & Sugar). We knew acclimating fish to a new tank and finding good tankmates was a challenging process. Our losses haven’t been a surprise. Our hope is slowly to get our tank to around 7-10 happy fish. I wonder how long that will take at the rate we’re going?

The fish situation has had it’s highs and lows. Co-op was a bright spot last week with a pajama movie party. We also enjoyed a playdate with co-op friends and a dinner/game time with family. This weekend was a mix of moments. Some good, some not so good. On Friday, we postponed plans with friends because they were a little under the weather. Turns out, Graham would have had us canceling those plans anyway. By Friday evening, it was clear that Graham had a tummy bug. Usually, he sleeps off tummy troubles and they last less than 24 hours, but this flu held on! On top of that, Thursday into Friday we had a windstorm that knocked out power in the night and disruppted our sleep… Then Graham’s tummy troubles had us up in the night multiple nights in a row… And then add daylight savings! Our sleep has been so off!!! Thankfully, Graham perked up yesterday afternoon and is now 24 hour symptom free and back to his normal self.

Even with an unexpected illness this weekend, Jeremy and I tag-teammed some fun into Saturday. I got up early on Saturday to meet a friend for a cookie adventure. There is a local cookie shop only open on Saturdays and it’s hugely poplar – like long lines outside the shop until they sell out for the day. A friend and I have both been waiting for the hype to quiet down before trying Sweet Dough Cookie Co. It seems that isn’t happening so we decided to brave the line together. We got warm drinks and chatted while waiting. Our diligence paid off and we were fourth into the building! I was able to get seven delicious cookies that were a bright spot in a rougher-than-expected weekend. When I got home from my morning cookie adventure, Jeremy took off for an afternoon of golf with his family. We certainly felt bad for Graham, but we were glad that our weekend plans didn’t completely change. Mom and Dad need to have fun with friends/family every now and again!

Okay, that was a lot! So many little moments to share, but when added together make for an adventurous March! We are staring down the second half of the month and it promises to be full of epic moments. I have a conference coming up this weekend and then the following weekend is Jeremy’s birthday. The next few weeks will be our normal, somewhat quiet weekday routine so that way we can spend our energy on big weekends. I’m always trying to find a strike a balance with good margin. Calm weeks is a good trade off crazy weekends!

Selecting Sunset
Transporting precious cargo!
Our new kitchen counter display!
Graham’s pinecone bird feeder!
Acclimating the guppies while Barry lurks below waiting for a snack!
Visiting Sweet Dough Cookie Co. with a sweet friend!
These cookies were a bright spot and special treat this weekend!

A Few Snowy Days March 3, 2023

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 10:00 am

The last week or so has been filled with snowflakes. Some stick, some don’t. Sometimes we get a dusting. Sometimes we get a few inches. While I always welcome snow, I wish these brushes with snow could have consolidated into one good dump of snow. We have yet to reach my desired depth – the grass completely covered! Jeremy joked he should have mowed the grass so it was short and my dream would have come true. Ha! It probably would have worked. There is just something about little pieces of grass poking out that ruin the visual effect for me. Despite it not being blizzard conditions here, the snow has been fun. I love snow on trees and in February we made three snowman. Jeremy helped with the last one. It’s a giant snowman and even though it was made on Monday, it’s still standing today (Friday).

Other than snow days, we’ve been out and about with church, co-op, dinners with friends, and playdates. March will be a social month with more playdates and dinners on the calendar. I’m attending a conference with a friend this month and it’s also Jeremy’s birthday month. The winter hibernation is coming to an end. Spring is near! As much as I’ve enjoyed the cozy, inside vibes, I’m also ready for more time outside. Walks in the sunshine. Kids catching tadpoles. Longer days. Each season has it’s simple pleasures. I chuckle as I type this because there is a dusting of snow outside my window. I might be getting ahead of myself!

Below is a collection of our snowy day pictures and a few others from around the house. In my last post, I mentioned that February had Groundhog’s Day vibes. A lot of the same over and over again. It seems fitting that most of my photos from February are snow days with just a couple inches of snow… on repeat. Enjoy!

Our February 22nd Snow – the boys got some “sledding” in before church!
Our February 22nd Snow – the boys got some “sledding” in before church!
Our February 26th Snow
Our February 26th Snow
Meet Snowen – named after Owen! Ha!
One of my favorite views!
When Daddy helps make a snowman with day old snow!
Owen’s Savannah Grasslands Biome Project
The March Books of Choice
Our backyard on Wednesday. The shade really keeps the snow!
Our backyard this morning! The snowy days keep on coming…

What I’ve Been Reading – February 2023 February 28, 2023

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf — Amy Scott @ 8:00 am

Bookish Thoughts for February

I thought I would take some time this month to talk about my obsession with the sweet romantic comedy genre. I often give them 3 star ratings, so why do I keep binge reading them? So many reasons! A friend once said, “Don’t underestimate a 3 star book.” When she wrote those words, I wasn’t actively keeping track of star ratings and I didn’t quite understand. Now, I do. 3 star books are good books. I enjoy them. They are not life-changing (for me, personally), but they are good. Nothing wrong with a good book.

I’m a sucker for a series (which most of these books come in). Give me multiple books set in the same town with the same group of friends/family and I will read them all. I love getting to know a place and becoming deeper friends with characters over the course of multiple books. I also love binging by author. You’ll see certain names on repeat in my book list. Once I’ve read one book by an author, I’m curious about their others.

In the sweet romcom world, most of these authors are independently published. I’ve seen behind the curtain, through their Instagram feeds and email newsletters, how much work they do themselves to get their books published. It’s admirable. They also advocate for each other. They are always sharing new releases and recommendations of each other’s books. You sense they are a community and they have each other’s backs. I love that!

Another reason I love sweet romcoms is they are great escape fiction. I can walk a mile in some else’s shoes. I can explore a new city – fictional or not – doesn’t matter. I love getting swept away in a story, especially a love story. Happily ever afters make my heart happy. These stories are “sweet” which means they are closed door. I don’t want to read about spicy bedroom scenes. When it comes to romance, I want to keep things PG. When I see the words “sweet romcom” and “closed door” I know what kind of book I’m starting.

My standard 3 star rating also follows me into quite a few of my historical fiction reads – however, I am more apt to give 4 stars to historical fiction if I feel it does a moving job of illuminating history. I’m more likely to give 4 or 5 stars to non-fiction because of the author’s vulnerability or knowledge of the content.

When I first got Goodreads in 2012, I entered as many book as I could and gave them star ratings (and then I walked away from my account for almost a decade). I’m realizing I was much freer with 4 and 5 star ratings in the past. My reading has diversified and my volume of reading has increased with time. It’s changed how I feel about books. It’s harder for me to fall in love with a book, but that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the many books that cross my path. So, don’t look down on 3 star books. They are good books and I’m glad I’ve read them!

Top Picks for February

Non-Fiction: Garden City: Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human. by John Mark Comer. This is the third book I’ve read by John Mark Comer. The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry is still my favorite, but Garden City is second now! By focusing on Genesis 1-3 and Revelation 21-22, this book shares the goodness of work, the blessing of rest, and humanities purpose. While the content wasn’t new to me, this book was so encouraging! The scriptural truths shared in these pages were empowering and impactful, not only for day-to-day life, but also eternity.  I highly recommend this read!
Fiction: My Phony Valentine by Courtney Walsh. I love seasonal books! The Valentine vibes added a fun and lighthearted touch to this story. I liked that this book didn’t have some great miscommunication or falling out of the main characters toward the end of the book. It kept the angst of the story minimal. Both main characters have difficult pasts they’ve overcome and have to decide to be vulnerable about. There is also the small-town girl and big-city boy tension. Every story needs some struggle or it would be dull. The struggle in this book was just enough to not overpower the plot. It was sweet, joyful, and a seasonal treat.

Book List for February
1 Star = I did not like it. 2 stars = It was okay. 3 stars = I liked it. 4 stars = I really liked it. 5 stars = It was amazing.


  • Find Your People: Find Your People: Building Deep Community in a Lonely World by Jennie Allen – 4 stars
  • Garden City: Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human. by John Mark Comer – 5 stars
  • Becoming Free Indeed: My Story of Disentangling Faith from Fear by Jinger Duggar Vuolo – 4 stars
  • Good Boundaries and Goodbyes: Loving Others Without Losing the Best of Who You Are by Lysa TerKeurst – 4 stars


  • First to Fall by Jenny B. Jones – 3 stars
  • Merritt and Her Childhood Crush by Emma St. Clair and Jenny Proctor – 3 stars
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare – 3 stars
  • Censor(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 3 stars
  • Doctor(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 3 stars
  • My Phony Valentine by Courtney Walsh – 4 stars
  • The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordan Taylor – 3 stars
  • I’m Not Charlotte Lucas by Kasey Stockton – 3 stars
  • Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio – 3 stars
  • So Not My Thing by Melanie Jacobson – 3 stars
  • Here For It by Melanie Jacobson – 3 stars
  • Maybe I Will by Melanie Jacobson – 3 stars
  • Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry – 3 stars


  • Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan – 3 stars
  • Jill Came Tumbling by Julie Christianson – 3 stars
  • His Third Second Chance by Julie Christianson (short story) – 3 stars
  • Court(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 4 stars
  • Passion or Penalty by Leah Brunner – 3 stars
  • Love Beginning by Jenny Proctor – 4 stars

The Quiet of Winter February 22, 2023

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Bible,Family Time,Homeschool Adventures,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:28 pm

At the risk of sounding like a hermit, I’ve felt the pull toward hibernation in these winter months. Let’s just say, the damp weather and lack of daylight make outdoor adventures less appealing this time of year… Thanks to inflation, indoor adventures are also less enticing. Gas prices mixed with raised admission costs have kept me from pursuing new experiences. Instead, I’ve felt a strong desire to snuggle in and be cozy at home. We’ve kept soup stocked in our fridge and baked goods on the countertop. I’ve struggled with “blog-able” content because I usually share what neat things we’ve been up to over the course of a week. It would seem that our whole month has felt a bit like Groundhog’s Day. A lot of the same, over and over and over again. I’m not complaining about it! I’m a big fan of routine and margin on the calendar, but it’s not glamorous, that’s for sure.

When thinking about what to share with you, I decided to write about some of my daily things. My ordinary, day-in-and-out moments. My personality is all about self-discipline and I find that I quietly slip into certain tasks everyday, almost as if on auto-pilot. I’m always intrigued to hear what are the non-negotiables on other people’s calendars. What do they prioritize? It’s the little and sometimes mundane moments that snowball into how we live our lives. If you were to study a day in the life of Amy Scott, here are a few things you would see on repeat.

  • Making the bed – It’s how I start everyday. The science of starting your day with a productive win works for me.
  • Getting 10,000 steps – in the warmer months, I strive for 13,000+ steps, but walking the extra 3,000 steps is harder in the colder, darker months. If it’s dry, you’ll find me walking up and down my driveway – often talking with my mom or boys. If it’s wet, you’ll see me walking laps around my kitchen/dining/living room as my family plays or watches TV. If I need space or quiet, you might find me on the treadmill in the garage. How I walk is optional, but walking is not! If I’m walking alone, For King & Country, Switchfoot, or the Hamilton soundtrack are often playing (and I’m singing along). I also use walking time to listen to friends and respond on Marco Polo.
  • Reading my Bible – I’m not a morning person, so this doesn’t happen in the wee, dark hours of the morning before my family wakes up. It often happens at the dining room table while I sit by a boy working on a homeschool assignment or during quiet time or after the kids have gone to bed. For the last decade, I’ve used the YouVersion app on my phone for their Bible reading plans. I’m about a month away from finishing a Whole Bible in Two Years plan and then I’m going to switch back to reading a physical, print Bible. My sons might read their Bibles on devices as technology advances, but I want them to have childhood memories of their mom with her Bible open.
  • Journaling – I might not write in my journal every day, but I would say I do most days. My journaling has taken on a variety of forms over the years. I started actively journaling as a middle schooler and it’s a habit that stuck. Not only that, I’ve kept all of those journals. They are in a box in my garage. I thought I would share them with my future daughters, which I did not end up with… so what to do with them… Maybe my future granddaughters will read them. Honestly, they aren’t brilliant – especially the middle school years where I gushed about my crush on JT from N’SYNC. Nowadays, I write about what we’ve been up and how I’m feeling about things. Sometimes it’s just facts, sometimes it’s emotions. I process my world best through the written word. It’s why I love this blog. It’s like therapy for me.
  • Chores – I’m a tidy person by nature. I do at least one load of laundry a day. I’ll run the Roomba during quiet time or when we are out of the house. You’ll often find me indulging my OCD by wiping down the counters 4 times a day, if not more. I also compulsively fluff pillows. Once I week I have a “house cleaning” day, but I clean as a go throughout the week. I’m not a fan of clutter and I’m a huge believer in every item having a home it returns to after use.
  • The Fun Stuff – Reading, baking, playing games, soaking in the hot tub! Reading is my favorite hobby and I make time for it daily. Baking happens at least once a week, if not more. Board games on free evenings are a family favorite (right now Wingspan is the game of choice). Also on free evenings, you’ll find our family soaking in our inflatable hot tub before bedtime. Oh! Jeremy and I are re-watching an episode of Once Upon a Time each evening after the kids go to bed. It’s been fun to revisit our favorite show.

Not every day is same old, same old. We love getting out of the house for church and co-op. This last week was book club for me. It’s a highlight of my month. These women have become my village and I love bonding over a shared love of books. We had a snowy start to Valentine’s Day and the kids had a blast at their co-op party. Jeremy and Owen picked up a Heartbreaker pizza and tulips for our family to celebrate. We had a windstorm this week that knocked out our power for four hours in the middle of the night. Some adventures find you even when you aren’t looking for them.

Our calendar has been a bit on the quieter side, but I’m savoring the slow before we head into a busy spring. March will shift our pace of life so don’t be surprised if I cozy on in and enjoy the winter hibernation vibes just a little bit longer. The quiet, slow, and ordinary days can be a beautiful masterpiece. They showcase faithfulness – faithfulness to family, home, community, education, and faith. As my favorite Eugene Peterson quote says, “A long obedience in the same direction.” Oh, how that resonates with me!

My favorite way to celebrate Valentine’s Day! Pretty cookies!
A snowy start to Valentine’s Day! It melted quickly, so I’m glad I let the kids play before school.
Owen has graduated to playing Wingspan by himself! No more partnering with a parent.
On a lazy Saturday, I don’t mind slipping back into bed to read. Graham join me. I guess I’m passing on a love of reading while being comfy to the next generation.
We just keep flirting with snow… still waiting for a “good” snow. My personal standard is the grass being completely covered!

February Fun and Games! February 11, 2023

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 5:35 pm

It looks like February is going to be a sporadic blogging month for me. Sorry! As I mentioned in my last post, we spent January focused on getting back into routine after the holidays. It would seem that February is following in January’s footsteps (that is, if month’s had feet). We’ve been plodding away with our usual scheduled programing… all good things, but nothing too out of the ordinary.

Last weekend, we cheered on two of my nephews at an indoor soccer game. Let me tell you, I am a fan indoor sports! Especially in February! Nothing like being warm and dry while watching sports in the PNW. It was a pretty sweet deal. The boys had a blast cheering for their cousins and we were all excited their team won. While we were out and about on Saturday, we had a special pizza lunch with Nana and Papa. After the soccer game, we took the kids to Crumbl Cookies. Okay, Crumbl was really for Jeremy and I. Graham usually finds a cookie he enjoys each time, but Owen not so much. His cookie palette is limited to Safeway Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Last week, Jeremy and I started playing Wingspan in our free time. We purchased the original board game and also added the Oceania expansion set. We played a few games on our own before adding the boys into the mix. We have friends and family who love this game… and I am so bad at it! Jeremy and I decided to add it to our home collection so I could practice. I do believe I’m improving. I’ve won the last four games we’ve played!!! Since I’m terrible at board games, this feel like a major victory!

It’s been a big baking week for us. Owen helped me make a double batch of butter cookies on Monday. We froze them with plans to decorate them and give them out as Valentine’s gifts. I delivered a meal to a friend with a new baby. I made some brownies and cinnamon rolls (a double batch so we could keep one pan for ourselves) to include with the meal. I’m not a great cook so my “meal” consisted of frozen lasagna that I baked before delivery, a bag of salad, a bag of dinner rolls, brownies for dessert, cinnamon rolls for breakfast the following day, and a bottle of sparkling cider. Nothing fancy, but gifted with love and excitement. Graham helped Jeremy bake lemon bars today with lemons from his greenhouse. They made the kitchen smell so good! I plan to make another batch of brownies tonight – this time for the Super Bowl tomorrow.

Highlights of this weekend will be going over to my parent’s house for waffles soon. The boys will bring our Switch and collaborate with Grandpa & Grandma over all things Animal Crossing. Tomorrow we’ll watch the Super Bowl with Jeremy’s parents. Nana asked Owen if he would perform one of the piano songs they’ve been practicing together. Valentine’s Day is also right around the corner, so we’ll be decorating those butter cookies and preparing to share treats with our co-op friends. Since Valentine’s Day falls on a co-op day, the kids plan to exchange valentines, have a class party, and practice their square dancing in their Sunday best. Should be a hoot!

The cheering section!
Bottle flip challenge! These cousins always have a good time together!
Every week with Crumbl is a good week!
Our new family past time
Added some hearts to the snowflakes! I’ll keep them up through February. This is how we decorate our “classroom.”
When life gives you lemons, make lemon bars!

Hello February! February 2, 2023

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 3:54 pm

Happy Groundhog’s Day! I’ve been informed that good, old Phil saw his shadow today and there will be six more weeks of winter. If “winter” could resemble this last week’s weather, I would happily accept. We’ve had a rare dry stretch here in the PNW. It’s been cold, but it’s been sunny! Something about January (and now February) sunshine feels like a gift. Despite the chill, I’ve done my best to get a walk in the brisk, fresh air everyday it’s clear. Gotta get that Vitamin D! It helps stave off my desire to hibernate during these winter weeks.

My blog posts have been sporadic this past month. I like to write weekly, but something about January… It’s kind of a slow month. We definitely keep busy, but not in the most interesting ways. January feels like a return to ordinary, to routine after the holidays. It’s back to school and the usual commitments that took a break in December. It’s also my birthday month… which means, lots of book shopping… and book reading. The quiet is appreciated. The return to routine is grounding. Not super exciting to write about, but very good in a simple kind of way.

So, what to share? Last week our family gave a presentation at our homeschool co-op about the national parks we’ve visited. Each week at co-op a different family gives a 3-5 minute presentation. The inspiration for this activity was to give the kids in our group a chance to practice public speaking. The day of our family presentation, we also took our drama class on a field trip to the main stage in our church. We talked about the sound board and the lighting. Jeremy came down to help me turn everything on. We talked about stage positions and showed them backstage. This class has been surprisingly fun to teach. While I don’t have professional drama experience, it’s been neat to watch the kids latch on to acting and sharing stories. The kids are greatly enjoying themselves and it’s a huge relief to me that we are pulling this off! I’m so thankful a dear friend is co-teaching with me as well. It’s been quite the experience for us all.

While the younger kids are learning drama, the older class is learning Shakespeare. I sit in on this class as the parent helper. I will happily admit I’m learning just as much as the students. The group is doing an adapted version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. I purchased my own copy of the play and I’ve almost finished it! This is the first time I’ve read Shakespeare since high school and the first time I’ve ever done it voluntarily. I love that our homeschool co-op is growing and challenging me as well as my kids.

The other co-op related highlight was our field trip to the fire station this week. We visited the fire station numerous times during our preschool years thanks to MOPS. This was the first time the kids have visited as elementary students. As we were driving to the station, we passed an aid car from the fire station. Then we came upon a fender bender were one of the cars had caught fire. The fire truck was there with the hose out. It had just put the fire out before we drove by. I explained to the boys that the firefighters might be too busy with this call to have us visit. The firefighters were slightly late, but they arrived at the station ready to give us a tour and answer our questions. The boys got to see all the equipment and sit inside the truck. They haven’t outgrown the age of fire trucks being cool. I appreciate having a group of families to do activities like this with. Our co-op has been a huge blessing to our homeschool journey.

What to say that’s not co-op related? We’ve had quite a bit of time around the house as we’ve settled back into routine. Lots of time for board games, books, and baking. The boys are into playing Animal Crossing on the Nintendo Switch. This game has sparked an interest in fish and bugs since they collect them on their island, Sunny Pear. I’ve picked up some new reference books (book club recommendations) and I love seeing the boys pouring through them – identifying creatures and sharing facts. The new thing to build with LEGOs is the variety of fish they can catch on Animal Crossing. While I’m not a huge fan of video games, I can get behind something that sparks their interest in the natural world.

I’m not sure if February will mimic January in its chill vibes. Apparently, Phil thinks so. I won’t mind if it does. I enjoy these winter days – snuggled inside, warm, cozy. It’s a good mix of commitments and down time. A quiet balance. As the weather improves, our calendar fills up. We’ve had lots of calendar talks recently (anyone else feel like their spring/summer is booked? Just me?). I know busy days are coming. Our calendar tends to ebb and flow. I can appreciate this slower season knowing it prepares for me what lies around the bend.

Sharing our love of national parks at co-op!
Don’t let those smiles fool you! They are ruthless Sorry players!
My baking buddy! Graham is a fan of sugar and spice!
Fire station fun!
February books! I learned about Ocean Anatomy and Nature Anatomy at book club. I hope to add more of these pretty reference books to our home library.


What I’ve Been Reading – January 2023 January 31, 2023

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf — Amy Scott @ 6:30 pm

Bookish Thoughts for January

January is a fun book month! Birthday money equals book money! I enjoyed adding lots of books to my home library this month. Some are new, some are used. Some are books I’ve already read and some are books I hope to read soon. You’ll notice in the photo below that I purchased quite a few Roseanna M. White books this month. She has become a go-to author for me and I’ve already re-read many of her works. Her British historical fiction is a favorite of mine. Her January release, Yesterday’s Tides, is my top fiction pick of the month! Other January books of note, I picked up Spare by Prince Harry. The library had over 300 holds on it and I didn’t want to wait that long. I was super excited to find a used copy of Garden City by John Mark Comer at Powell’s for a great price. It’s been on my “To Be Read” list for a while. I ordered A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Shakespeare to read along with the older students at our homeschool co-op. I haven’t read Shakespeare since high school so this is certainly a stretch for me. Holy Hygee was a book club influence. At least four of us in the group now own copies! Book club often influences my book purchases. I’m also quick to buy books from trusted authors. I went back through my Goodreads account to see what books I’ve given high ratings. This helps refresh my memory on books I might like to own. While I do make good use of my local library and Kindle Unlimited, it’s also nice to own books. It’s like inviting friends to move in and stay a while!

The January Book Haul!

Top Picks for January

Non-Fiction: More Than Your Number: A Christ-Centered Enneagram Approach to Becoming AWARE of Your Internal World by Beth & Jeff McCord – If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you are know I love the Enneagram. It’s such a powerful tool for understanding myself and others. I appreciated the unique take on the Enneagram in this book. Instead of focusing on just your one type, the McCords dial into the fact that many types influence our thinking. This is often why we can feel at odds with ourselves. The second half of the book is very nuts and bolts – super practical. As a Type One, it was interesting to lean into how the Type Two, Four, Seven, and Nine all influence my thinking. I am more than my number!
Fiction: Yesterday’s Day by Roseanna M. White – I briefly touched on this book in my birthday post. Not only did my signed copy arrive before it’s release day, I finished it on my birthday and it was such a perfect way to wrap up my special day. I don’t often give 5 stars so this book is something special. I enjoyed the dual timeline (WWI and WWII) set in the same location. You can tell some of the characters overlap, but it’s puzzle figuring out who and how. I also mentioned before that White wrote in cameo appearances from quite a few of her other WWI characters. “Bumping” into them was a delight. I also appreciate how White touched on racial injustice while highlighting strong female characters. This book was so good! I loved it!!!

Book List of January
1 Star = I did not like it. 2 stars = It was okay. 3 stars = I liked it. 4 stars = I really liked it. 5 stars = It was amazing.


  • More Than Your Number: A Christ-Centered Enneagram Approach to Becoming AWARE of Your Internal World by Beth & Jeff McCord – 4 stars
  • A Burning in My Bones: The Authorized Biography of Eugene H. Peterson, Translator of The Message by Winn Collier – 4 stars
  • Spare by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex – 3 stars
  • Holy Hygge: Creating a Place for People to Gather and the Gospel to Grow by Jamie Erickson – 4 starts


  • Check Mate by Leah Brunner – 4 stars
  • Cabin Mate by Leach Brunner – 3 stars
  • House Rules by Jodi Picoult – 3 stars
  • Compared by Kortney Keisel – 4 stars
  • Complex by Kortney Keisel – 4 stars
  • Complete by Kortney Keisel – 4 stars
  • Commit by Kortney Keisel (novella) – 4 stars
  • Yesterday’s Tides by Roseanna M. White – 5 stars
  • The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman – 2 stars
  • One Day in December by Josie Silver – 2 stars
  • No More Bad Dates by Kate O’Keeffe – 3 stars
  • Friend(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 3 stars
  • Battle(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 3 stars
  • Town(shipped) by Savannah Scott – 4 stars
  • The Borrowers Afield by Mary Norton – 3 stars
  • The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery – 5 stars


January Celebrations! January 23, 2023

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 3:34 pm

January can be a bleak month for some after the joy of holiday celebrations in December. My January birthday makes the festive and fun vibes continue on even after the Christmas season has passed and we’ve welcomed a New Year. I’m all for making my birthday into a celebration that goes beyond the actual date of January 14th. Not only my birthday, but January itself affords many other moments of celebration. It’s the small, simple joys that add up. They add some confetti to the middle-of-winter atmosphere.

We finished our 18th week of school on Thursday. We are officially halfway through our school year!!! Since we don’t have teacher conferences to reward the kids for positive feedback, we developed a reward system of our own. At the end of the 1st & 3rd quarter, the boys can select a $10 reward. At the end of the 2nd & 4th quarter, they receive a $20 reward. It’s essentially our version of paying for good grades. Making the “grade” isn’t really the focus, though. It’s a reward system based on completion of work and the general attitude of the quarter. I’m thankful my kiddos enjoy being students. It makes being their teacher rewarding and I want to honor the effort they have made.

This weekend was a fun one! The perfect mix of productivity, rest, and socializing. Friday was my weekly “clean the house” day. I do a list of chores once a week to get the house to its base level of clean (bathrooms, floors, dusting). Housecleaning day depends on our plans (and if the house should be tidy for company). Cleaning never takes a full day so there was time to rest before a late night out at book club. The post-Christmas book club is special because we all have new books to share.

Saturday, we had my forever friend, Maggie, and her family over for the the day. The kids happily played with toys while the adults played Wingspan and watched the Chiefs play the Jaguars. Maggie and I share a birthday month with our birthdays only a couple weeks apart. This last weekend was in the middle of our two birthdays so we took a moment to celebrate 37 with brownies, candles, and a song.

Sunday morning was church and then a quiet afternoon/evening. It was also Lunar New Year which our kids latched on to celebrating a few years ago. It has turned into a low-key tradition for us. Our version of Lunar New Year consists of red envelopes with a small amount of money and then Chinese food for dinner. We certainly don’t go all out, but it’s fun to make the day a little extra.

One last highlight of the week was finding a new quilt for our bedroom. Our comforter set has been showing its age for a while, but I’m so picky when it comes to bedding. The stress of finding the right bedding almost paralyzes me. In my opinion, the bed is a huge focal point of our room and I want it to look put together. Too many throw pillows or throw blankets or added layers start to overwhelm me, though. After a long search, Jeremy and I settled on a navy quilt with a herringbone pattern to it. It works well with the sheet set and throw pillows we already have. Jeremy was the one who suggested we move from gray bedding to navy and it certainly makes the bed pop on the gray wall. I’ve enjoyed seeing our color palette of blues, grays, and creamy whites expand throughout the house.

That sums up the January celebrations for now. Small things, but definitely bright spots in the midst of the cold wintertime. The holidays might be over, but the time for celebrating is not!

Wrapping up his unit on the rainforest biome!
Couldn’t help but chuckle! Apparently the rainforest spread to our coffee table!
Graham was so excited for this Animal Crossing stuffy as a part of his quarter reward!
Thankful the bedding search is finished!
Surprise snow on Saturday! It didn’t accumulate but it was fun to watch!
Birthday buddies!