Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – September 2020 September 29, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 3:30 pm

What I’m Reading:

Wool & Shift by Hugh Howey – These books belong to a friend and I have a final book in the trilogy to go. It’s one of those post-apocalyptic series about people living underground in silos after a nuclear explosion made the outside world unsafe. It’s been a while since I’ve read any science fiction. I’ll be intrigued to see how the series ends.

Blueprint Homeschooling by Amy Knepper – Another friend recommendation, this books breaks down planning for your whole homeschool year.

Introverted Mom by Jamie C. Martin* – I read this book a few years ago and thought that it would apply more if I was a homeschool mom since the author is a homeschool mom. Well, now I’m homeschool mom, so I thought I would give it a re-read. It was a good reminder of how I am wired and how I need to take care of myself so I can take care of my family.

Rhythms of Renewal by Rebekah Lyons – This author is new to me, but my mom bought a copy of the book and asked if I’d like to read it. Just like Introverted Mom, this book spoke to lessons I’ve already wrestled with, but also that I deeply value. It was a refreshing reminder.

The Motive by Patrick Lencioni – This book is a staff read that Jeremy came home with. I’m not a huge fan of business books, but I’m always curious about what our church staff will be processing together. This book was about servant leadership and I appreciated that it was a quick and direct read.

Marilla of Green Gables by Sarah McCoy* – I’m slowly re-reading my entire home library. I’m especially looking for books that I’ve only read once and might want a chance to ponder again. This prequel obviously wasn’t written by L.M. Montgomery, it’s interesting to see how another author envisioned the beginning of Anne of Green Gables.

Love Finds You in Martha’s Vineyard, MA, Love Finds You in Sisters, OR, Love Finds You in Pendleton, OR by Melody Carlson* – As you know from previous posts, I read Love Finds You books like I watch Hallmark movies. They are simple, sweet, and a good way to relax.

Love Finds You in Victory Heights, WA by Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss* – I enjoy reading local stories. This novel takes place in Seattle during WWII.

Call of the Wild + Free by Ainsley Arment – This was a recommendation from a friend and I had to wait to get a copy from the library. While I might be a bit structured for this movement, I did find this book to be inspirational and encouraging. My boys certainly have a wild + free lifestyle right now.

Welcome Home: A Cozy Minimalist Guide to Decorating and Hosting All Year Round by Myquillyn Smith – I don’t read a ton on home décor, but if I do, Myquillyn is my favorite author. I enjoyed this seasonal approach to decorating and hosting. I will reference this book in future seasons!

*Books I’ve read before, but not for over a year.

What I’m Loving This Month:

Between the start of homeschooling and over a week stuck inside due to poor air quality, this month as been quieter. The things that I’ve been enjoying this month are my tried and true favorites.

Victoria – I watched all three seasons as they aired, so I thought I would revisit them. I love British, period dramas, so one episode of Victoria most days is a favorite way to relax!

New Books – While I did re-read books from my home library, I also read more new books than usual this month! I love borrowing from friends and the library. In the case of Welcome Home, I love adding a new book to my home library from time to time.

Journaling – I completed a journal this month and started a new one. A fresh journal is always so inspiring! My new journal was a gift and on each page is has a Bible verse with my name inserted into the sentence to make the verse personalized to me.

Baking – As I mentioned last month, I love the arrival of all the pumpkin goodies. I’ve made pumpkin bread and pumpkin muffins this month. I’ve also been creating other autumn treats as well. I’ve made candy corn blondies and seasonal sugar cookies. I don’t love how my frosted pumpkins turned out, but I learned from trial and error. I’m confident for better results in the future.

 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – August 2020 August 31, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 7:00 am

What I’m Reading:

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  • The Love Comes Softly Series by Janette Oke* – (Love’s Unending Legacy, Love’s Unfolding Dream, Love Takes Wing, Love Finds a Home) I finished the second half of the series this month. These books are an easy read that help me relax.
  • The Prairie Legacy Series by Janette Oke* – (The Tender Years, A Searching Heart, A Quiet Strength, Like Gold Refined) This series is a follow-up to The Love Comes Softly Series. When I first read theses I was disappointed, but that was years ago, so I thought I would give them another try. This often happens to me, I like something the second time I read/watch it. I’m always more judgmental on my first time through, especially if it’s something I’m greatly anticipating.
  • The Dearly Beloved by Cara Wall – (Not pictured: I returned it to the library and forgot to snap a picture, oops) A story about two ministers and their wives as they co-pastor a church in New York City. This book wasn’t necessarily a Christian book, so it was interesting to see how ministry and faith were portrayed.

*Books I’ve read before, just not in the last year.

What I’m Loving:

Apples – We picked up a box of apples on our way home from Yellowstone. I’ve been finding all sorts of yummy uses for them! Apple crisp, apple cinnamon pancakes, blappleberry pie! Yum!

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Love this apple peeler and corer! I feel so 1950’s domestic when I use it!

Downton Abbey – Over July and August, I re-watched all of Downton Abbey. I wrapped up the series at the end of this month. It was bittersweet to part with the characters, but I greatly enjoyed visiting the Abbey again!

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Wrapping up the series with hot chocolate during quiet time!

Fall Scents & Decor – The autumn decor and smells have arrived at our home! The last weekend of August is always a transition time for our household decor. I also ordered fall Scenty bars to make things extra cozy! Currently melting in my house: First Day of Fall!

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Flowers – Around the middle of July, I stopped keeping fresh flowers in the house. We were travelling more, so it made no sense to have flowers that weren’t getting enjoyed. Now that we are settling into more time at home, it seemed like the perfect time to bring back the fresh flowers.

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The Return of Pumpkin Goodies – Jeremy got his first PSL at Starbucks and I got my first pumpkin scone! I even shared with Graham since he loves all things pumpkin and cinnamon. The return of the pumpkin scone is a gateway to a season of pumpkin bread, pancakes, cookies, pie, doughnuts, and more! Bring on all the flavors of fall!

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100 Books – I reached my 100 book goal for 2020 (with time to spare)! I can thank COVID-19 with a little extra time at home and a relaxed schedule for extra reading. I am curious to see what my total for the whole year will be since I reached my goal sooner than expected.

 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – July 2020 July 31, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 8:30 am

What I’m Reading:

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  • Honey For A Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt – A great book that inspires reading aloud with your family.
  • For The Children’s Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay – A summery of Charlotte Mason principles for education along with Macaulay’s personal experience applying them with her family.
  • Answer for Homeschooling by Israel Wayne – 25 questions about homeschooling answered with practical insight.
  • Education: Does God have an opinion? by Israel Wayne – While I didn’t completely agree with Wayne, I did a appreciate his perspective and research.
  • Beyond Survival by Diana Waring – This was the final book that I read about homeschooling so I was a bit done with the topic by the time I finished the book. I appreciated her emphasis on unit studies and her focus on addressing how your child learns and how you, as a parent, teach.
  • The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom* – My mom had me read this book as either a middle school or high school student. Truthfully, I wasn’t interested in reading it and mostly skimmed the pages. After reading so many books about reading with your family and having this book be recommend for older children, I decided that I wanted to read it again for myself.
  • The Love Comes Softly Series by Janette Oke* – Love Comes Softly, Love’s Enduing Promise, Love’s Long Journey, Love’s Abiding Joy – I’m half way through this series that I have read many times.  These sweet, simple stories are what I needed to wind down and relax after surgery. They were also a great break from contemplating education.

*Books I have read before, but not in the last calendar year.

What I’m Loving:

  • Television – It took me until July and surgery recovery to finally succumb to television as a way to relax. Here are a few of the programs I’ve enjoyed this month:
    • Anne of Green Gables & Anne of Green Gables – The Sequel (I grew up knowing it as Anne of Avonlea)
    • Hamilton – I will admit to watching this musical three times in the span of a week. It took me two viewings to decide I liked the musical and then I wanted to share it with Jeremy.
    • Beauty and The Beast – the live action Disney version
    • Cinderella – the live action Disney version
    • TV Shows – Counting On, House Hunters, and Downton Abbey
  • The Library – Our local library is open for pick up! After reading so many books in the last month about reading with your kids, I’ve been excited to introduce my boys to the Tales of Peter Rabbit and the original Winnie the Pooh.
  • New Books from Favorite Series – Through Owen’s school we were introduced to Pete the Cat, Biscuit, and Gerald & Piggie. Between the library and Costco book sets, we’ve been able to enjoy these favorites once again. I was excited to find the book sets at Costco and add to our home library.
  • Camping – I covered this adventure in my last post, but I can’t express just how wonderful it was to get away for a few days. While camping isn’t my ideal vacation, I’ve been in a need a change of pace and location. This trip was just what our family needed!
 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – June 2020 June 29, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 8:47 am

What I’m Reading This Month:

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  • Mistress Pat by LM Montgomery* – On my Kindle, this is the second half of the Pat of Silver Bush series. It was a timely read because Pat is obsessed with her childhood home and can’t bear the thought of leaving it. I can relate to Pat loving home and fearing change.
  • Todd & Christy: The College Years by Robin Jones Gunn* – Until Tomorrow, As You Wish, I Promise – I started reading these books in high school. You can see how worn they are on the top of my pile. Until Tomorrow is 20 years old! Last month was a RJG heavy reading month and June continued the theme!
  • The Katie Weldon Series by Robin Jones Gunn* – Peculiar Treasures, On A Whim, Coming Attractions, Finally & Forever – Christy’s best friend, Katie, picks up the story right after Christy & Todd get married.
  • Todd & Christy: The Married Years by Robin Jones Gunn* Forever With You, Home of Our Hearts, One More Wish – These books are on my Kindle so I haven’t re-read them until now. I wish I would have spent the extra money has gotten in paperback form.
  • Todd & Christy: The Baby Years by Robin Jones Gunn* – Sandy Toes, Salty Kisses, Sunset Lullaby – Again, this series is on my Kindle so it was only my second time reading these stories. Visiting Todd and Christy is like visiting childhood friends!
  • Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakable Peace by Sarah Mackenzie – I asked a close friend if she would share some of her homeschool resources with me as I contemplate school this fall. This was the first book that she told me to read because it would help me realize that no matter what I do, I won’t screw up my children by homeschooling them. There is a lot of stress that can go into homeschooling – am I doing the right thing? Are my kids on track? Did I pick the right curriculum? I enjoyed the perspective of peace and rest when it comes to homeschooling.
  • The Read-Aloud Family: Making Meaningful and Lasting Connections with Your Kids by Sarah Mackenzie – My friend also recommended this book. It’s not really a homeschooling book, but it’s a compelling case for reading aloud with your kids even after they have learned to read for themselves.

What I’m Loving This Month:

  • Homeschool Resources – My friend let me borrow a box full of homeschooling books. Some books are curriculum and some are about the philosophy of homeschooling. While our family is still on the fence about homeschooling this fall, I greatly enjoy learning new things. I don’t want to wait until August to formulate a plan for the fall. I’ve been reading curriculum reviews and watching YouTube videos to show me inside curriculum.  I now have a fairly good idea of what curriculum I might use if I decide to homeschool.
  • The Pioneer Women – Her most recent episodes are filmed from home with her kids as her camera crew. The episodes are hilarious and the recipes are fairly simple since she assumes people are shopping less and staying home more. Jeremy and I have tested out a few of her recipes recently and they were quite tasty. We made her French Toast Roll-Ups and Hashbrown Pizza. Yum!
  • My People! – Birthday celebrations, Father’s Day Weekend, Play Dates, Family Fridays – I’ve been able to see a few of my core people in-person this month. This is a cause for celebration and joy! As much as I love being home in my own little world, I’m glad that my circle of in-person people has widened slightly!
  • Switchfoot Concert – For the last seven years, I have tried to see Switchfoot in concert. It’s never worked out and I’ve always been sad about that. When Switchfoot decided to offer an online concert, I couldn’t pass it up. I went to many SF concerts in my high school years and I have so many good memories of this band. I was thrilled for the opportunity to make a new memory with them!

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Watching a concert from my couch fits the grown-up version of me. I was comfy for the show and then went right to bed afterwards with no late drive home. It was also really fun to introduce Jeremy to a Switchfoot concert! Seeing this band in concert was a huge part of my teen years, so I loved being able to share this piece of my story with my hubby! 

 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – May 2020 May 27, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 8:30 am

What I’m Reading

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  • The Glenbrooke Series by Robin Jones Gunn* – It was very RJG month for me. The Glenbrooke Series takes place in a fictitious, small town in Oregon. The characters are endearing and after many years of reading these books, each page is like visiting an old friend.
  • Love Finds You in Sunset Beach, HI, Cottage By the Sea & Canary Island Song by Robin Jones Gunn* – I fell in Love with RJG has a young teen through her Christy Miller books. Many of her other works cross paths with characters from this original Christy series. These books are all a part of a connected web of stories.
  • Becoming Known by Robin Jones Gunn – (Not pictured because I forgot to grab it for the photo – oops) This was a new release and the first new book that I had read in a while. A new story was a breath of fresh air! Again, this story is connected to Christy, but she isn’t the main character. The Heaven Makers series is one that I will eagerly await each new release as it follows the lives of five women making space for friendship and authenticity in their lives.
  • The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins – It’s no secret that I am Hunger Games fan. I’ve been waiting for this new release on pins and needles. The book takes place around the 10th Annual Hunger Games. It offers a new perspective on the post-war Capitol and what went into forming President Snow. Very intriguing, well-written, and kept me on the edge of my seat to the end.
  • Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire by Jen Hatmaker – This book was authentic; full of wisdom and insight. I am drawn to Jen’s love of Jesus and people. She is cares about her audience and wants to bring them into the fullest life possible. This book was heavier than her others with slightly less humor than I was expecting. But it was real and honest and that is powerful.
  • Kilmeny of the Orchid and Pat of Silver Bush* – (Not pictured because they are on my Kindle app) Yet again, L.M. Montgomery whisks me off to Prince Edward Island and I am in my happy place. Comfort reading at its finest!

*Books that I’ve read before but not in the last year so they qualify for my book list. (I’m up to 65 total, so I might actually achieve that goal of reading 100 books in 2020.)

What I’m loving 

New books! – While I deeply enjoy reading my home library, it’s been such fun to have three new books from some of my favorite authors. I eagerly awaited each ones arrival in the mail. Each was a treasured gift!

New Movies! – Jeremy was a good sport this month and rented I Still Believe and Emma. to watch with me. Those were two movies that I was curious about but wouldn’t have gone to the theater to see. I enjoyed being able to watch them in my home sooner than I had expected. We also rented Little Women, but I believe that was in April. My internal calendar is a bit blurry. Seriously, though, my hubby is the best at watching things that interest me, but probably aren’t his first choice. (Jeremy’s top entertainment picks would be Star Wars or Marvel movies.)

 

When I was thinking about the things that I loved most in May, I realized that I didn’t have a lot of new things to share with you. May was a month filled with lots of reading, baking, and time spent with family. While it wasn’t flashy, it was definitely a good month. Through deliveries, drive-by hellos, and technology, I seen the faces and heard the voices of so many people I dearly love. I am thankful that even in a time of distance, I have still felt connected to community. Toward the end of the month, I’ve been thankful that some “normal” things have returned as options. Jeremy and his family went golfing and Jeremy took the boys fishing! It’s funny because I have the option of going “out” now,  but most of my favorite things are here at home. I will happily continue to lay low with my books, baked goods, and the occasional movie. As an introverted, homebody I might be truly living my best life right now!

 

 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – April 2020 April 27, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 8:00 am

What I’m Reading:

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Comfort Reading Month: all novels from my home library

  • The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis – Sometimes you need to need to escape to Narnia. Now is one of those times.
  • Love Finds You in Bridal Veil, OR – Sundance, WY – Last Chance, CA by Miralee Ferrell – Simple, sweet love stories for the win.
  • A Tangled Web by L.M. Montgomery – Take me away to Prince Edward Island!
  • Becoming Us by Robin Jones Gunn – The next book in this series comes out tomorrow, so I wanted to refresh myself on the plot before diving into the next installment.

What I’m Loving:

Deliveries – We’ve made a few deliveries to friends and family this month. For Easter, we delivered flowers to the grandparents. April events, like a baby shower and a birthday party, were canceled so we made deliveries to friends to drop off gifts. It’s so strange to stand in my friends’ driveways wanting to chat, but also feeling like I need to leave as quickly as possible. Who knew the tension that social distancing would bring? Despite the weirdness, seeing the faces of my friends has been a positive spot in my month. We received a delivery from Owen’s teacher last week with all of his items from school. We used this time to make an exchange. We gave his teacher her end of the year/teacher appreciation gift. I’m grateful for the chance to honor her. Saying good-bye in person brought a sense of closure to the abrupt ending of school.

Flowers – I’ve had the dream/goal/hope of keeping flowers on my counter during these continual days at home. It’s worked out well that one set of flowers starts to fade right around the time that Jeremy ventures out to the store. He has been very kind in replacing the flowers for me while he is out shopping. Flowers make me happy and they bring cheerfulness to my day. Finding beauty in small ways goes a long way with my soul! I am thankful for a hubby who keeps making my dreams come true!

 

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Healthy Habits – I’ve been battling headaches throughout this quarantine period.  While there are probably many factors that play into these headaches, I’ve been working to maintain healthy habits so I can feel my best. Here are some of the habits I’m actively working on:

  • Going to bed early – These days have been surprisingly tiring for me. I’ve been trying to go to bed before 10:00pm most nights. I’ve been using my Fitbit to track my sleep scores and I can see a difference when I intentionally go to bed early.
  • Moving my body everyday – Again, thanks to my Fitbit, I’m tracking my steps and making sure I exercise. Most days I take a 20-30 minute walk. One of my MOPS friends has been sharing Zumba routines that I hope to try during nap time this week!
  • Spiritual & Mental Health – I’m reading my Bible daily and writing in my prayer journal often. I pause throughout the day to invite God into the moment with me, especially when I feel anxiety rising. I’m also practicing gratitude and thankfulness. When it comes to mental health, I enjoy reading or watching a show while the kids sleep. I also love video messaging with my close friends to fight feelings of isolation
  • Limiting Screen Time & Blue Light Reducing Glasses – I’m doing my best to keep my screen time on my phone under two hours a day. I find myself using my computer more so I don’t end up mindlessly scrolling on my phone. I’m more direct and on-task when I hop on to my computer. When I’m on my phone, computer, or watching TV before bed, I try to use these blue light reducing glasses to help eye strain which might lead to headaches. I got these glasses super cheap on Amazon and they are quite the fashion statement. I don’t love the nerdy look, but I’m willing to try something new if leads to better health.

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Curly Hair – You’ll notice in my photos over the last month, I’ve been wearing my hair naturally curly these days. Right when everything shut down, I decided to give my hair a break from heat styling. It took me a few weeks to adjust back to my natural curls, but I’m loving how quickly I can get ready in the mornings. I now let my hair air dry and then pin it away from my face. I’m enjoying the relaxed pace to my mornings these days. No early alarms, quick and easy morning routine, plenty of time at home to wear my comfy clothes. These are good days!

 

What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – March 2020 March 30, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Simply Me,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 3:19 pm

What I’m Reading

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  • It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way by Lysa TerKeurst –  This was a good read; filled with lots of powerful reminders from my own seasons where I felt things were turning out all wrong.
  • Leveling the Praying Field by Donna Barrett – I had the chance to meet Donna in person. I’ve been inspired by her leadership in our fellowship (Assemblies of God). My husband was gifted a copy of her book at a prayer meeting. It was a good reminder that prayer is not an elite few, but for everyone.
  • Like Ice Cream by Keith Ferrin* –  This book is about sharing a love of God’s word with the next generation. It’s a quick read, but it’s packed full of information, resources, and inspiration.
  • A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks* – I read this book in high school and it’s been a book find myself revisiting throughout the years. It’s a sweet love story.
  • Party Girl by Rachel Hollis – I’ve read two of Rachel Hollis’ books so I decided to give her fiction a try. This book was a based off her party planning experience in LA. It was entertaining and interesting.
  • Finding Alice by Melody Carlson* – This novel follows Alice has she develops schizophrenia. The book is from Alice’s perspective and gives a fascinating look at genetics, homelessness, and recovery.
  • Return to the Canadian West Series by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan This three book series is the inspiration for Hallmark’s When Calls the Heart. I’ve read a few of Janette Oke’s books series and I watch When Call the Heart, so I figured this would be a good pick.
  • The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins* – Once the world started falling apart, I figured I could use a reminder that things could be worse.
  • Christy by Catherine Marshall (Not Pictured) – I read a digital copy of this book from the library.  It took me a while to get into it, but eventually I found a good flow and got intrigued to see how the story would end.

* Books that I have read before, just not in the last year.

Things I’m Loving

Flowers – I kept one flower from the wedding bouquet. The bouquet was all white so when this flower started to bloom pink, I had to give it a chance to blossom! I love keeping flowers in the kitchen as a small reminder of beauty throughout the day. More than ever, I need small visuals that bring joy.

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Church at Home –  I’ve been loving church at home. Jeremy is able to sit with us through the whole gathering. Owen sings along to the worship songs and it makes me almost cry. We get ready with enough time to eat a sit-down breakfast together. After years of getting the boys ready by myself, grabbing a quick bite, and rushing out the door, I am thankful for a change of pace and extra time as a family.

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Communion at home – apple grape juice and oyster crackers.

Marco Polo – I’m relatively new to the app. It works like a walkie-talkie with video messaging. I record a message to a friend and when they have time, they reply with their own video. In a season where I am not seeing friends face-to-face, I’m thankful for a chance to see my friends through a screen and keep up-to-date with their daily lives. Seeing a face right now feels like a deeper connection than just a text message.

UP Faith & Family Free Trial – I signed for the two week free trial of UP Faith & Family. I used to watch Bringing Up Bates on UP when I had satellite years ago. I decided to get the two week free trial to watch the most recent season of the Bates.

Reasons to Celebrate – March has been full of reasons to celebrate. They build excitement so that each day isn’t just like the last. We’ve been able to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, the first day of spring, Jeremy’s birthday, and tomorrow will be the second anniversary of moving into our home.

Walking – My fitbit loves me! I’ve been walking everyday and getting my steps in. When possible, I walk our long driveway. When it’s rainy, I pretend I’m in a Jane Austen novel and take a turn about the room – aka I walk laps around my living room.

Baking – I’ve been keeping our family well supplied with baked goods during our time at home. Over the last two weeks, I’ve made cinnamon rolls, scones, brownies, a cherry dump cake and oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. It’s a good thing I’m taking walks daily to counterbalance all the sugar!

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What I’m Reading & What I’m Loving – February 2020 February 24, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Simply Me,What I'm Loving — Amy Scott @ 3:13 pm

Here we are! The last week of February! And it’s a Leap Year! Do you have any special plans for your February 29th? Since the end of the month is in sight, let’s talk books and things I’m loving from February 2020!

Books

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  • You Are A Writer (So Start Acting Like One) by Jeff Goins – a fast but practical read that was recommended to me by an author friend.
  • Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend * – I’m currently working on this book, but should have it finished by the end of the month, so I included it. I’ve owned this book for years and I am re-reading it as a refresher on the principles.
  • Love Finds You in Prince Edward Island by Susan Page Davis * – You’ll find that I love anything PEI. This is a lovely story about when Prince Albert visited the island.
  • For the Love by Jen Hatmaker * – I read this book when I was pregnant with Graham and I remember laughing so hard while reading it. I figured it was time to revisit it.
  • Royal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory –  This book and the next one on the list came recommended by an author I follow on social media. Both books were a little too steamy and had too much language for me to recommend them to others. I’m fairly conservative when it comes to entertainment and these books were a little too PG-13 for my personal taste.
  • Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes –  see my description of Royal Holiday.
  • The Anne of Green Gables Series (minus Anne of Windy Poplars) by L.M. Montgomery * – As you can tell, I love re-reading my home library. It had been a while since read the Anne books. When I read the Anne books it’s like visiting an old friend, a kindred spirit. I’ve decided that Anne of the Island is my favorite because Anne realizes she loves Gilbert and they get engaged at the end. Anne of Windy Poplars fills in the three years between her engagement and her marriage. The plot line doesn’t move forward in this book, so I skip it!

* Books that I’ve read before; just not in the last year.

Things I’m Loving

Keepsake Quilts from Nana – I’ve been in the process of pairing down baby items in my house over the last year or so. I had this idea for making keepsake quilts out of the receiving blankets the boys used. We had SO many! My mother-in-law is a quilter and she took up the task for me. The boys got a sneak preview of their quilts about a week ago and the finished products were delivered to them yesterday. These quilts are such a precious way to preserve a part of their baby days. Graham’s blue blanket has pieces from blankets that Jeremy and his brothers used as babies. Nana even went the extra mile and made the boys matching pillows to go with them!

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 A New Planner – I was gifted this new planner by an author friend to help me on my journey of planning and writing this year. I’m currently using it to keep track of my editing schedule. It’s a dream planner so it has spaces to dream for the year and it also breaks things down into quarterly goals. I learned very quickly when I started to use it that I should write in pencil and not pen. Plans change!

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Girl Scout Cookies – It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  I have a wonderful Girl Scout in my class of Wednesday night girls and I am happy to support her desire to go to summer camp by buying as many cookies as Jeremy will let me!

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Samoas are my favorite Girl Scout cookie! Do you have a favorite?

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I love adding Thin Mints to my brownies! Such a good combination! 

Honorable Mention:

  • Unsellable Houses on HGTV – One of my close friends knows the twins who host this show. They actually helped her family buy and sell their house a few years ago. I love watching home shows that feature the PNW. And I’ve got Jeremy watching it with me, so that is a bonus as well!
  • Doctor On Demand – I was very pleased with my experience this last month using Doctor On Demand for my sinus infection. I loved that I could video chat with a doctor from the comfort of my home during nap time. As someone who never takes time to go to the doctor, this app is a game changer!

Now for some photos from the last week:

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Grandpa met Owen at the bus stop last week and gave him a ride home on the lawn mower. Such a fun treat!

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Poor Graham has been under the weather this last week!

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Owen and I tagged along on an adventure to help Grandpa buy a new truck. Owen loved being included in the process. 

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Watching space videos while resting in a giant pile of stuffed animals. 

 

Starting Something New January 29, 2020

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 9:40 am

I’m going to start something new on this blog. For the last post of each month, I want to share the books that I read and things that I loved that month. I almost set a goal of trying to read 100 books in 2020, but then I realized that if I made it a mission it might take the fun out of reading. So, I’m possibly shooting to read 100 books this year, but no extra pressure. Right? We’ll see how that goes.

Before I jump into my list, I thought I would share with you how I am able to read so much. The main reason I am able to read so much is that I don’t watch a lot of television. I did the math this week and I watch about 3-4 hours of TV a week. I usually watch one movie and one to two shows a week. I read during nap time which is still a thing in my household. I also read after the kids are in bed at night. I read during down time with my family. The kids might be playing together or watching a movie, I sit down in the middle of the chaos and read a book. I do get interrupted and sometimes it’s hard to focus, but I want to set the example of reading for my kids. I want them to see me doing something I value. They often ask me what I’m reading and it sparks good conversation. On a random note, Graham also really enjoys sniffing my books. The final reason I was able to read so much this month was canceled plans due to sickness. If you can’t leave the house, might as well read!

Books for January 2020:

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  1. The Enneagram Type 1: The Moral Perfectionist by Beth McCord I follow Beth on Instagram and I love learning more about my personality type. While I’ve read most of this content before, I appreciated the journal format for processing.
  2. Emboldened: A Vision for Empowering Women in Ministry by Tara Beth Leach Tara Beth will be the speaker at a conference I’m attending in March. I heard good things about this book and decided I needed to know for myself. An excellent book for women in ministry!
  3. Never Say No: Raising Big-Picture Kids by Mark & Jan Foreman* – The title of this book might seem controversial, but it’s not about letting your kids have whatever they want, it’s about saying yes to being present with them and walking alongside them as they develop into their God given passions and dreams. As the parents of Jon & Tim Foreman from Switchfoot, I love reading about how they raised their influential sons.
  4. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Borrows* – I loved the Netflix movie and it inspired me to read the book. Such an eye opening look into the occupied channel islands during WWII.
  5. Love Finds You in Annapolis, Maryland by Roseanna White* – This is the equivalent of reading a Hallmark movie but set in 1784. Perfect sick day restful reading.
  6. Jane of Lantern Hill by L.M. Montgomery* – I just added this book to my collection, I’ve had it as an ebook for years, but I wanted to own a physical copy for my bookshelf.
  7. The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery* – Quite possibly my favorite work by L.M. Montgomery. Her heroine, Valancy, is my one of my favorite literary characters!
  8. Lucy Maud Montgomery: The Gift of Wings by Mary Henley Rubio – This biography was 600 pages long. I feel like it should count as two books. It was in-depth and thought provoking. I’ve found biographies/autobiographies fascinating in the last year. People lives are interesting and their stories matter.
  9. [Not Pictured] Rethink Communication: A Playbook to Clarify and Communicate Everything in Your Church by Phil Bowdle (my husband is borrowing my copy) – This was a staff read for our church. It was a good reminder that we are living in a digital age and we can use technology to advance the kingdom of God. I also love the reminder to keep things simple. There is a definite balance of not over-communicating so you get tuned out and under-communicating so no one has enough information.
  10. [Not Pictured] The Next Right Thing: A Simple Soulful Practice for Making Life Decisions by Emily P. Freeman (read as an ebook) – I will admit that the title of this book made me think of Anna from Frozen II and that might be why I read it. I also like Emily P. Freeman as an author. Since I’m not making a major life decision at the moment, most of the information I read will be stored away for later, but there was lots of useful takeaways for everyday living as well.

Books with an * mean that I have read them before. I have a system for keeping track of the books I read each year. If I haven’t read the book in the last calendar year then it can be included in my yearly reading list. I re-read many books because they are my favorites and I feel like we are friends. I also re-read books for a refresher on useful information and inspiration.

And with that, I’ve taken up my allotted time for today. I’ll have to make another post soon with the things that I loved this month (other than books, of course).

What did you read this month?

 

Hello November November 2, 2018

Filed under: Amy's Bookshelf,Children's Ministry,Usborne Books & More — Amy Scott @ 2:52 pm

And now we find ourselves in November. Let me fill you in on how October ended and November has begun.

The last week of October is always a big one in our household. Jeremy has Fall Fest every October 31st and lots of prep goes into that event. Now that I’m leading MOPS & MOMSnext, I have a bake sale that happens during Fall Fest. While this last week was a big work week for Jeremy, it was a big MOPS & MOMSnext week for me. Monday, I baked and assembled my goodies for sale. Tuesday, I had 70 card boxes delivered to my house. Our group just did a Cards for a Cause fundraiser. The boxes had to be sorted and labeled and repackaged for distribution. Wednesday, I had my final eye doctor appointment which ends a year of visiting PCLI every few months. Praise the Lord it’s behind me. I still struggle with dry eyes, but I am more informed now and know  ways to help improve my eye comfort. The good thing is my eyes aren’t inflamed any more. After that early morning appoint (I mean who even make 8:00am appointments?!?), I ran a Fall Fest errand for Jeremy and then picked up Graham from the church. Wednesday night, the kids excitedly got to spend the evening playing games, gathering candy and hanging with the men in their life (Daddy, Papa & Grandpa) while I worked the bake sale.

Jeremy had an out of town meeting on Thursday, so I was on preschool drop off and pick up… It’s been spirit week at Owen’s school and Thursday was pajama day. It seemed fitting after a late night to come to school in jammies. I went through Starbucks hoping that it was red cup day to validate my being out of the house in my exhausted state, but alas, no red cup. Then I learned that it was today.

Red cup day remains one of my favorite days of the year – even if the cups aren’t all red. I’m not hung up on the details, I’m just madly in love with all things seasonal and festive. Starbucks was giving away reusable cups with holiday drink orders, so Jeremy took one for the team and got two gingerbread lattes so we’d each have our own reusable cup. After getting our festive drinks, we did shopping for Operation Christmas Child and then went to Carter’s for Christmas pajamas. I’m all about getting as much use as possible out of Christmas pajamas. We came home and Jeremy put on Christmas music and started working on Christmas lights. Usually, we wait a few more weekends before getting lights on the house, but this weekend seems to be the freest, so Jeremy is seizing the day and getting things done.

When I’m not fundraising, keeping the kids alive or celebrating the season, I’ve been reading. I don’t post often enough about what I’ve been reading, so I thought I would share my recent autumn readings. I went a year and a half with my books in storage, so I am loving my home library with a deeper sense of appreciation. I re-read The Chronicles of Narnia and The Love Comes Softly series. Novels are my love language. Give me a novel and free time (and preferably a blanket) and I am the happiest girl on earth. I’ve also been seeing a lot about the Enneagram (a type personality assessment) and I decided to do some personal research. I got Self to Lose, Self to Find through a friend recommendation and I have a coffee date set up to discuss my thoughts with her. I love personality assessments and when my bloggers and friends start throwing around terms I don’t know – I’m going to do some research! In case you’re wondering (because you know the Enneagram) – I think I’ve determined that my primary type is 1 and that my wing type is 2 and under stress I am a 6. It’s interesting stuff! Now I’m on to Looking for Lovely by Annie F. Downs. She was a really compelling speaker at MOPS & MOMSnext last year and while the book is about really hard stuff, I love discovering a new author.

My nap time window for blogging is about to come to a close. I hope your November is off to a great start. If it isn’t then I highly recommend a peppermint hot chocolate and a good book to make things better.

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Bake Sale Prep

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Just a few boxes to sort… Gotta love two fundraisers back to back. 

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My boys – ready for Halloween! 

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My costume game is not strong… 

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Chehalis MOPS & MOMSnext Bake Sale

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Chehalis MOPS & MOMSnext Bake Sale

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Even Grandpa got in on the construction them for Fall Fest! 

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Pajama day

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Red Cup Day 

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Operation Christmas Child boxes are packed and ready to go! 

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Nothing like a good book!