Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

Autumn at It’s Best October 15, 2020

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures,Parenthood,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:04 pm

October is autumn at it’s best (in my humble opinion). In October, the chill is a novelty and I bundle up in layers and with blankets. In October, the rainy days are a welcome excuse to snuggle in and be cozy at home. October leaves are brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and red. While leaves are actively falling, the trees aren’t bare yet. October sunshine is my favorite of all. It washes the world in warm light, but doesn’t carry the heat of summer. October activities are some of my favorite traditions. October foods are some of my favorite flavors. October is simply the best. In the words of Anne of Green Gables – “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” Overquoted, yes. True, also yes.

We had a minor wind event this weekend. We lost power briefly on Sunday night. This happened about 15 minutes after we put the boys to bed, so of course, the power outage completely derailed the boys’ ability to fall asleep. Graham was scared, despite having a lantern light up his bedroom. We moved him into Owen’s room for the buddy system approach, but that also led to extra excitement. The power outage became a grand adventure at that point. The power returned around 10:15pm. The kiddos were still awake at that point. Needless to say, no one fell asleep early on Sunday night.

Monday morning was a tired one. We did a pajama day for school (which is becoming a tradition on nights when we go to bed late the day before). Instead of going to forest school on Monday, both kids took long afternoon naps. My biggest hardship with forest school is Monday is marathon day. Between school in the morning, forest school in the afternoon, and MOPS & MOMSnext in the evening, it’s a big day. I’m finding that I would prefer Mondays to a mellow transition back into our weekday routine, instead of a marathon. When the kids asked for rest on Monday, I listened and we made it a mellow Monday. To make up for missing forest school, we took a family walk on the property behind our house (we have permission to explore this land). We followed our favorite trail to the local beaver dam and explored animal dens looking for signs of activity. We talked about the sights, sounds, and smells as we wondered in the woods. It was a lovely day for exploration as the cool, crisp sunshine filtered through the half-bare trees.

Our family is keeping busy with the Fall Family Scavenger Hunt with our church. One of the challenges we completed this week was to visit a local state park – Rainbow Falls. The boys had never been there, so it was fun to let them run and explore a new place. Our family has a thing for waterfalls which made this outing even better. The drive out to the falls was beautiful. Blue sky, sunshine, fall color all around. The boys loved seeing a new waterfall and throwing rocks into the river. We rounded out the outing by following a trail by the river for a short walk.

I know at some point the weather will turn and we’ll feel “stuck” inside. I know at some point all the leaves will fall and the trees will be bare. I know at some point pumpkin season will be over. But we aren’t there yet. I intend to revel in every blue sky, every crisp walk, every seasonal treat. My joy for this season is amplified as I share my favorite things with my family and see them enjoy them too. This is autumn at it’s best!

Another weekend, another birthday celebration. The boys got to have dinner with my side of the family.
Uncle Andrew came through for us when we needed a real sword for a scavenger hunt challenge. Auntie April also let us photograph her VCR and record player!
Supporting the Seahawks (for a challenge)
Puddle jumping (another challenge)
Checking out one of the many beaver dams
Woodland Wandering
Exploring Rainbow Falls State Park
Rainbow Falls
Always ready to follow a new trail. Also, this picture is blurry because it was an “action” shot.
 

Owen turns 7! October 9, 2020

Filed under: Family Time,Homeschool Adventures,Parenthood,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 2:21 pm

Yesterday, our oldest son, Owen, turned 7! My youngest, Graham, will be 5 in a little over a week and I’m truly shocked to have “big” kids these days. It seems like the days of little “littles” are behind us. Each year I love to see who they are becoming. Every new season of development comes with so much joy and excitement.

For Owen’s 7th birthday, we had an epic day full of adventure and celebration. Our day started at Top Golf (which was first for all us, but Jeremy). It was fun to get out of the area and try something new. We had a special lunch at The Cheesecake Factory before exploring the historic waterfall highway at the Columbia Gorge. The whole day was full of yummy treats and awesome adventures. It’s been a long time since we had a full day of outings away from home. We are all super tired today after the big celebration, but we all had such a great time yesterday. It was worth it!

What can I say about Owen to document this moment in his childhood? The first thing that comes to mind is that he loves science. It’s the first subject he decides to do at school everyday. He is always asking me if we can do extra science experiments. He loves space, geology, nature, and geography. His birthday gifts this year included LEGO sets, STEM kits, and a globe.

Owen is creative and imaginative. He is often drawing pictures or diagrams and explaining them to us. He loves to keep tabs on the weather and is often updating us on the forecast – even if it’s for a city in Alaska or Iceland. He is getting old enough that he is requesting more independence. It might be with a chore, a school lesson, or assembling a LEGO set – he wants the chance to do it on his own.

One of my biggest blessings right now is extra time with Owen during his first grade year. I never set out to be a homeschool mom, but now I find myself sitting at the table with him each morning working through our schoolwork. I love learning/teaching alongside him. I love getting to see what makes him excited. He is growing up so much, but he also still brings stuffed animals to snuggle at the table during school or on a drive into town. He also still calls me for extra snuggles at bedtime. He is getting so tall! The taller he grows, the more comical our snuggles become, but I am thankful for all the snuggles I can get!

Owen is a big brother who includes Graham in his play and the two of them are often running wild together. My boys are blessed with a father who includes them in his hobbies. The boys are often outside with Jeremy doing activities such as golfing, hunting, or gardening. On rainy days, you might find them inside playing LEGO video games together for a minutes. I love this little family of ours and for the friendship that we share.

Some of Owen’s favorite things include: Papa Murphy’s cheese pizza, Swedish fish, and the color yellow. He is the reason we are always buying a gallon of milk at the store. He would wear pajamas all day, everyday if we let him. We love this 7 year old so much and we can’t to see what the next year ahead holds for him!

The official birthday morning photograph
Top Golf gave Owen this super yummy sundae with a special birthday message!
Special memories at Top Golf
Chocolate cake at The Cheesecake Factory
A visit to Multnomah Falls
Jumping from rock to rock at Horse Tail Falls
Right up next to Latourell Falls
 

Welcoming October October 4, 2020

We are always excited for the arrival of October. It’s birthday month for my boys and it’s fun to make it a month long celebration. October is also prime-time for my favorite autumn activities! Our church is doing a Family Scavenger Hunt through an app for the entire month of October. The app features missions with all kinds of challenges and activities – many of them are seasonal as well. We’ve had a blast working our way through the missions. This game will be a highlight for our family all month long!

As we continue to find our homeschooling groove, I’m loving the routine that we’ve created. We had forest school on Monday. We learned how to make outdoor shelters. Monday night, we had a fantastic guest speaker at MOPS & MOMSnext. I’ve been nervous to see how MOPS & MOMSnext would pan out this year, so this meeting was a boost in confidence. Tuesday, we dropped of a meal for a MOPS family recovering from surgery and then we picked up a brand new trampoline for the boys. This newer, bigger, upgraded trampoline was a combined birthday present for the boys from my parents and Jeremy & I. The boys are thrilled with more bouncing space!

Friday was our field trip to the corn maze. It was neat to see Owen following the map of the maze closely and tracking our movements. Saturday morning, I joined my mom to watch a conference via Zoom for our church ladies. It was an amazing time to see ladies online, worship, and hear a great message. Saturday afternoon, we had a small, family-only gathering to celebrate the boys’ birthdays. The kids ran wild, outside in the sunshine playing with their cousins. This is our 5th year of joint birthday parties and the theme was space. I always enjoy making a theme come to life. Today has been a combination of working on scavenger hunt challenges and playing with new toys. I’ve spent a good portion of my day assembling LEGO creations for Graham. Owen would prefer to build his own creations without assistance.

October is off to a great start and we have so many exciting adventures still ahead this month. The next big adventure this coming week is the celebration of Owen officially turning seven! It’s crazy how fast he is growing up. I’m so thankful that during this homeschool season, I get a little extra time to watch this super cool kid grow!

Monday Forest School: This week we learned how to make shelters!
Upgraded to a bigger trampoline since we now have big kids!
Friday Field Trip: The Corn Maze
It’s always an adventure following these boys through a corn maze. Every year I’m pleasantly surprised we make it out as quickly as we do. This is probably because my boys (Jeremy included) follow the map. I just follow my gut which means when I’m wondering the maze, we get extra quality time in it!
Conference zooming with my mom
Celebrating these two boys with an out of this world birthday party!
Some of the pictures we’ve collected during the Fall Family Scavenger Hunt!
LEGO Time!
 

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.

 

On to Autumn September 26, 2020

Filed under: Coronavirus Chronicles,Homeschool Adventures,Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:36 pm

We are officially done with summer and on to autumn. While I eagerly anticipate this transition every year, I found myself slightly sad at it’s arrival. The official arrival of autumn was a mile marker – 6 months of this new world. Two entire seasons spent completely differently than I would have planned and now on to a third. We are adjusting well to our new homeschool schedule, but there are times where I’m walking on the driveway and the lighting reminds me of walking to meet Owen at the school bus. Small moments of remembering “this time last year” make me pause. While I might have been slightly less anxious for autumn this year, I am still glad that it is here.

This last week the bad air fully cleared out and we were able to enjoy what I would call our most “normal” week of homeschool yet. This week was more along the lines of what I envisioned our homeschool experience would look like. On Monday, we joined a few homeschool families for “Forest School – an outdoor learning experience. We learned about apples and made apple cider. On Tuesday, the boys got to join Jeremy for an evening hunting experience. They chased elk in the wilderness and had a blast being a part of the hunting crew. Wednesday, was a quieter day after a late night out, so we declared it a pajama day and put a fake fireplace on the TV while it rained outside. Wednesday was all of about quiet and cozy. Friday, we visited our local children’s museum for the first time since January.

I love that were able to connect outdoors with other homeschool families. I appreciate that I am not teaching forest school, so my boys are learning for other adults in our community. I love that the boys got to spend time with Jeremy doing something that he loves. The boys were able to stay out late on Tuesday and have the flexibility on Wednesday to be extra restful. We were able to do a family outing on Friday and enjoy hands on learning . These experiences are what I hoped for when we committed to a different school year.

The beginning of autumn as been beautiful and adventurous! Autumn is season full of traditions and celebrations. I am so excited for all that lies ahead – the corn maze, birthdays, pumpkin patch, all the goodies and treats! Autumn is full of so many good things!

Forest School – Apple Day
A beautiful first day of autumn! So thankful for blue skies and fresh air!
A cozy, fake fireplace on a quiet, rainy morning
Pajama day and learning about light wavelengths
Friday Field Trip: Hands on Children’s Museum
Friday Field Trip: Hands on Children’s Museum
Friday Field Trip: Hands on Children’s Museum
Friday Field Trip: Hands on Children’s Museum
 

Hazy Days September 17, 2020

Filed under: Coronavirus Chronicles,Family Time,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 2:26 pm

The last week has a memorable one! Washington state has been socked in by smoke thanks to fires burning across the west. One of the main reasons we’ve handle staying home due to COVID-19 so well is our property. The boys can run amok outdoors. They have plenty of space to play. The smoke this week has made the air hazardous. Being outside has not been an option. We have been trapped indoors and we are feeling a little crazy as a result.

To combat the bad air, we’ve been running box fans around our house with air filters attached to them. You can literally see that they are working has they’ve slowly changed color over the last week. I’m sensitive to air quality and have felt quite yucky all week as a result.

Our plans for the week shifted as a result of the smoke. Jeremy wasn’t able to go hunting due to fire danger. The land reopened on Tuesday and he went out for a short period of time. He decided to not go out the next day because the smoke was too bad. The boys and I planned to start “Forest School” with some friends on Monday afternoon, but the bad air quality had me feeling too poor to participate. MOPS & MOMSnext kicked off on Monday night and I was the guest speaker for the evening. I knew that if I was out and about on Monday afternoon, I would feel even worse. It was hard to miss the first forest school gathering, but it was the right decision.

While the smoke dominated the landscape of our week, I am happy to report some non-smoke related news. MOPS & MOMSnext had a great kick off. We had 16 ladies attend which was more than I expected. I had fairly low expectations so it was nice to be pleasantly surprised. We have a great guest speaker lined up for our next meeting, so I’m hopeful that we keep the positive forward motion.

This week was our first “full” week of school. Due to Labor Day weekend, we’ve had two weeks of school with just three days. This week we did a full four days for the first time. (We accomplish 5 days of schoolwork in 4 days.) It felt good to do a full week, but I am thankful for the change of pace tomorrow. I’m glad it will coincide with the smoke clearing. I’m thinking we might head outdoors for our own version of forest school to make up for missing Monday. Each week of homeschooling establishes our our new normal. I’m enjoying the feeling that comes with settling down and finding our groove.

And on a completely lighthearted note, we found my favorite pumpkin bread mix at Costco. I’ve already started to eat my weight in pumpkin treats this season. Jeremy also harvested his little pumpkins last night and I’m reveling in their cuteness.

It has been a challenging week, but there have been many good and wonderful moments to keep me going. I am eagerly awaiting the clearing of the air. Until we are back to good air quality, you will find me sitting in front of a box fan with an air filter taped to it waiting for the orange haze to disappear. These are strange times!

Wii night with Nana & Papa helped distract us from being stuck inside.
Jeremy wasn’t able to hunt on Saturday, so he took over the kitchen to make himself a s’mores pie.
Church with my train engineers
The day I find this bread mix in Costco is practically a holiday in my book!
I wish that was just fog… I kept trying to pretend it was fog…
Teaching Owen an important life skill – how to make paper clip chains.
Learning about balance with paper clips, straws, and pictures of weather/space.
A new distraction was worth the big mess!
Jack Be Littles might be my favorite pumpkins on the planet! So adorable!
 

Finding Our Groove September 11, 2020

Filed under: Coronavirus Chronicles,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 3:35 pm

We’ve wrapped up two weeks of homeschooling now! We have found our groove with the school schedule. Now I’m looking at my life as a whole and trying to fine-tune the rest of my time beyond school. But first, let’s chat about homeschooling! There is a lot that is working well for us with this new school year.

The school day starts with a discussion of the date and weather. We say the Pledge of Allegiance before separating. Graham goes to play and Owen goes to the table. I figure since Owen is a grade school student, he should go first. When Owen is finished with his daily lessons, we move on to reading and art with Graham. Graham has his preschool lesson after art. We are doing structured school Monday through Thursday mornings. Fridays will be flexible for outings, projects, and catch-up assignments. Since Jeremy’s day off is Friday this allows us to include him in our more hands-on school days.

I’ve enjoyed the pace of our school days and the curriculum we are using. Like pieces of a puzzle all coming together, it’s been fun to watch our school days unfold. After all the research and determining what direction we will go with for school, it’s rewarding to see it come to life successfully.

Being an introverted, homeschool mom in the midst of a pandemic has it’s struggles. The biggest struggle being the lack of solitude. I strive to have healthy habits. I’m investing in my faith, my health, my community, and my family. I do all of these things with a low to high level of chaos in the background. While I prefer structure, most of my solitude is spontaneous. This week that looked like a bubble bath before a big meeting, the boys drawing with chalk at Grandma’s house while I made dinner, and returning a book to the library by myself. I have to seize the quiet moments when they come my way!

I also realize that I’m using some new muscles or rusty ones (mentally that is). School is going well, but it is still new territory for me. I’m adjusting to the energy output. MOPS & MOMSnext is also launching this month. I’m active on Facebook and I’m Zooming again for this group. The summer was a nice break and now I’m finding my way leading an online group that was never intended to be entirely virtual. These things take up more brain space right now. Lord willing, these activities will eventually quiet down and become more familiar, which should mean less energy needed.

Right now I’m celebrating that homeschooling is doable. I am looking forward to launching MOPS & MOMSnext. I’m also praying for all these fires in the PNW to cease and for the smoke to clear so that the air can be healthy. My husband is hoping for the fire danger to go down so he can safely participate in hunting season. September is often a month of adjustment. Back to school, back to MOPS & MOMSnext, hunting season – these things happen every year. While I appreciate the predictability of their recurrence, it still takes time to find our groove.

We have a new hobby in the Scott household! Rock tumbling!
Friday fun! We kicked off Labor Day Weekend by hiking up Mt. Rainier (again). This time we made it to Panorama Point and a bit beyond. This hike is listed as strenuous and is probably not one I will repeat in my lifetime, but I followed my boys up the mountainside to make their dream come true.
A little ways above Panorama Point with the Tatoosh Range in the background.
Eventually the hike up to Panorama Point leads you beyond the tree line, but right here – this is one of my favorite parts of the hike! The alpine flowers smelled so good!
Mt. Rainier gets more impressive the closer you get!
Not a bad view!
Life with Graham!
Lamby and Benny got ready for fall!
Apple Stamping
Jeremy helped me up my Zoom lighting game with a flood light from the garage. I might have been seeing spots by the end of my meeting!
My flowers were starting to fade so I made a smaller arrangement. Just as pretty!
Fall crafting!
A moment of self-care! Getting a treat while running errands kid-free!
 

The Great Homeschool Adventure Begins September 3, 2020

Filed under: Coronavirus Chronicles,Homeschool Adventures — Amy Scott @ 12:10 pm

If you’ve been following my blog throughout the pandemic, you know that education has been on the forefront of my mind. I’ve spent months reading books about homeschooling. I asked homeschool friends for their opinions and recommendations. I’ve watched YouTube videos to look inside curriculum. I was contemplating homeschooling for the 2020-2021 school year and I wanted to be prepared. Jeremy and I agreed that we wouldn’t make a decision until we heard the final plan from our school district. Patience isn’t easy for me and it was a long wait before we heard from the school district on what the official plan for the school year would be.

The fateful day arrived the day before our Yellowstone vacation. We heard the distance learning plan from our school district and decided that it wasn’t for us. I love our school district. I’ve had nothing but positive experiences with the staff and teachers. No matter what option we decided for schooling this year, our boys would have been in good hands. I believe that. I hope that our kids will return to our school district in the future. When it comes down to it, I’m not a fan of digital learning for primary grades. Owen would have been issued a Chromebook with apps he needed loaded. He would have had a daily Zoom schedule. He would have been watching recorded lessons from his teacher. I applaud our the district for doing the best they can with what they’ve got. I know that teachers are working harder than ever this year. But it’s still not what I would prefer for learning. If my kiddos are going to be home with me during the day, I want flexibility over their schedule. Homeschooling allows us to move at our own pace and have outings whenever they fit best with our schedule.

Once we made the decision to homeschool Owen, it made sense that we would do the same for Graham. I’ve loved the years that our kids have spent at the Bethel Kids Learning Center. They both learned and grew so much through their time there. We’ve kept our social circles small and the idea of introducing Graham to a classroom full of kids didn’t sit well with me. Let’s be honest, daycare centers and preschools are germ factories. New procedures are in place to keep families healthy, but it still wasn’t enough for me (I say “me” because I am much more germophobic than Jeremy, but he does a wonderful job of listening and supporting my preferences).  Graham has gone through 6 months of preschool at BKLC and by the end of January he will have worked through 4 different preschool/pre-k workbooks. If he has the concepts masters, I am hopeful we can start him on a gentle kindergarten program for the second half of the school year. Again, this is the bonus that homeschooling brings. We can be flexible and work at the pace that is best for each student.

After all the pro/con lists, all the research, all the prayers, we are officially homeschooling! Monday was an introduction to school day. I laid out all the school books on the counter so the kids could flip through them. We talked about our new schedule and school expectations (no pajamas being the biggest change). We did a craft and read a magazine. We took school pictures. It was a simple start to the school year. Tuesday began the official school year with textbooks open and pencils to paper. The first day went well. It was super encouraging to my soul. We can do this! The rest of the week was just as great as the first day.  My confidence in this decision is growing! I am thankful for such a positive start and I am optimistic for our school year!

This school year was going to be different no matter what decision we made. I am still mourning the fact that my kids won’t have the pre-k and first grade years I would have hoped for them. I am excited about new possibilities, though. I’ve always wondered about homeschooling. Doing school from home this spring went so well that it gave me the courage to do it for this school year. Without a pandemic, I would have never tried this option. I am thankful for the ability to be home with my kids. I will admit that I have doubts and fears, but I also know that no matter what this year looked like I would have been nervous at the start. Change always makes me nervous. My nerves are a reminder to trust God. He’s got this! I believe with God’s help we will find our groove. Soon we will be established in our new normal. I will keep you posted as the great homeschool adventure unfolds!

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Homeschool introduction day on Monday!

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First Day of Pre-k

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First Day of First Grade

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I needed a blindfold for a game. It turns out face masks make great blindfolds!

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Learning right alongside my kids! These are my doggie doodles!

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Cotton Candy Sunset

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Excited to add these new UBAM books to our school resources!

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Finally ironed on their Junior Ranger badges on to their Junior Ranger shirts from Yellowstone! So official!

 

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.

 

Wrapping Up Summer August 30, 2020

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 10:41 am

This last month has been filled with adventures. However, there have been plenty of quiet days around the house even still. The boys have enjoyed time to play and be creative. The quiet days have been welcome especially after the excitement of Yellowstone. This last week in particular was a purposeful quiet. It was the week between Yellowstone and the start of school.  We are preparing for a new season and recovering from a big adventure. It wasn’t a thrilling last week of summer, but it was a good way to wrap things up.

We did have one last adventure to say farewell to summer. Yesterday, we took the boys to the beach. Jeremy and I spent a day at the beach for our anniversary in July, but the kids were with Nana & Papa. I got to spend a weekend at the beach at the beginning of this month. It just didn’t seem right to let the boys have a summer without a trip to the beach. It was great to pack up the minivan for one last hurrah! We spent the morning playing in the ocean at Seaview, WA and then we spent the afternoon exploring Cape Disappointment State Park. We crossed over the bridge to Astoria, OR for dinner at Pig’N’Pancake. It was the perfect way to wrap up our summer vacation!

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The things Owen creates with paper!

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Summer workbook done!

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I always look forward to Jeremy’s sunflowers opening.

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A cousin play date before we left for Yellowstone!

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Getting the playroom wall ready for fall. I had a lot of fun printing the apple number cards! 

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After our vacation, the boys have been thrilled to reunite with their toys! There has been so much creativity (and mess) around the house.

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It’s not too soon for Halloween costumes, right? These boys are super into space, so we couldn’t pass up a chance for them to be astronauts at home!

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Nothing like running in the ocean on a sunny Saturday morning!

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This is Owen’s happy place. He could have stayed in the water all day!

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Hanging out on the jetty at Cape Disappointment

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Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. The trail to the lighthouse was closed, so that was disappointing.

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Climbing on the rocks at Beards Hollow