Showing posts from 2011


So, I haven't been blogging since our trip on Tuesday. It's because I have been having too much fun!!! We arrived at our cabin on Tuesday afternoon and we were amazed, stumped, in love, overwhelmed. It was absolutely magnificent!!! It was the picture perfect cabin that you dream about. With all the walls made from logs, wood floors, braided rugs and curtains with bears on them. And of course we had the lovely hot tub on the porch and the jacuzzi tub in the the huge master suite. The best part was the amazing views of the mountains. The cabin sits on top of a mountain ( the driveway makes you pray hard)...and you overlook the whole countryside and at night you can see the dull roar of lights from Gatlinburg from afar. It's is absolutely breathtaking.The best part is that we have enjoyed just hanging out here. We finished a 500 piece puzzle, played lots of games of checkers and cards, and just enjoyed hanging out. The whole point of being here was to decompress...and we hav…

Blogging from the Highway

Well, here we are on the road..right now in the mountains of North Carolina...headed to our beloved Tennessee. Matt hooked up the I-pad to his phone so we have had Internet access the whole trip. So, I couldn't miss out on blogging from the road (and yes, I am in the passenger seat) many opportunities do you have to do this.We woke up at three in the morning and were on the road within a half an hour...the forecast called for rain and we got plenty of it. But right before we hit NC it stopped. Matt drove the first few hours and then I drove after. It has been a great trip. The kids are watching movies...and as we hit the mountains we heard a lot of "whoa" and " look at that" and my personal favorite from William, "this is creeping me out." It feels so good to be up here. Looking forward to some much needed rest. I told Matt a few minutes ago, " I was meant to be in the mountains," and he agreed. There is something so beautiful and ma…


Spending the day getting ready for our trip to Tennessee. It's amazing to me to see how much stuff we need for a trip. Crazy! Especially when you're headed to a colder climate. Shorts and t-shirts are much easier to throw in a bag than jackets, sweaters and pants. Feeling exhausted from the busy last week before Christmas. We had a lovely day yesterday, but I feel a bit run down today. Our house is almost packed and the rest of the day will be preparing for take off. Our dogs will be taken care of nicely with our house sitter, and we are ready for a little rest. Will keep you updated.

Rejoice in His Birth

On this beautiful day, rejoice in the birth of a special baby...born to save you and me. MerryChristmas from the Reynolds Nation!

Beautiful night...

Last night the family came over and we had a beautiful bonfire outside on the property. The kids gathered sticks in the pasture and Matt's brother brought a load of firewood. Though the weather didn't cooperate (it was 82 degrees here yesterday), we still had a lovely night. The kids roasted marshmallows and we made smores. I think they each ate a ton of the lovely white creations...which they needed to keep up with their pace. Despite it being so dark out the kids ran all around the property and played with their two younger cousins. It was a relaxing evening with the family.
Afterwards, I wrapped a ton of gifts. Though we only got the kids three presents, it seemed like so much. Matt sat there and talked to was a nice time. This morning I am making our traditional homemade apple fritters and plan on having a lovely day. This is the first year that we will not be going to Grandma's on Christmas 92 she moved to Uncle Scott's house about 2 hours away. A…

All The Way...

Image Madagascar. Yes, that's where they went. Our boxes. Remember our boxes...from Operation Christmas Child. We sent out 10 boxes out into the unknown. Filled with hope. With love. And with lots of expectation. Well, yesterday we got an email saying that our boxes went all the way to Madagascar. How awesome is that? All the way to Africa. Another part of the world. Who is experiencing summer right now. Who may not know Jesus. Just to see Esther's face when I showed her where the boxes went brought joy to my face. It became real to us then. Our boxes really could make a difference. And because of our love, time, and prayers it truly will make a difference.

Busy Week

I have been missing in action busy with the holiday. Though the last few weeks have been slow and relaxing, this last week seems to be super busy. On Sunday we spent the whole afternoon with Matt's family. The kids decorated gingerbread annual event...and we hung out with the family. The weather was perfect and the kids had a great day together. Lots of swinging on the swings, running and just playing. Though my mother in law had movies set for them, they never sat still long enough to watch them. Which is a good thing, right? I would much rather have my kids play outside then sit in front of the tube. Though I am thankful for the backup plan.On Monday the kids had their homeschool Christmas at our house. They had fun making a craft and eating with friends. Once again we had a movie planned (polar express, a favorite) but the kids wanted to be outside. So they played, and played, and played...and were full of sugar from lots of cookies. On Mon…
Advent calendar #16...go o the bell ringer for the salvation army and give. No, they didn't give much, but it was in the right mindset. We want to raise our kids as givers, so you have to start somewhere. The kids were actually excited and William was talking about how the money was going to "poor people." I thought it was an overall sweet moment and one day I hope this little seed of giving grows huge and they all give above and beyond.
Please excuse my teenager Bryn for not participating. Though she wanted to come, she is bogged down with school work and is needing to get it done before the holiday!

Where is Judah?

When it is quiet in the house, always check where Judah may be. On this particular day he had set up his own craft table...and was busy with glue, scissors, and construction paper. Oh my Judah! This cute thing was full of smiles and busyness that day. He is always striving to be like his older brothers and this was one way that he could do that. After leaving a mess and a tiny lecture from me (he is prone to want to eat the glue still or cut his own hair), he still had a small unrecognizable craft. Love this boy. He brings a lot of fun (and gray hair) to this house :)



Continuing to Make Memories

Last night we had a lot of fun. It was day 12 on the advent calendar and it said to, "watch a movie and eat ice cream." Well, rather than eat plain old ice cream, I took this idea from The kids were so surprised. I kept them out of the kitchen (barely) and made this little snowman creation. They loved it. It's amazing that just a little creativity (not even my own creative skills), a little time...makes a lifetime of memories.

It's Monday...if you haven't noticed.

Well, it's Monday again. It always seems to sneak up on me. I wish the weekends would go slower...they always seem to go by so fast. It was an enjoyable weekend. After our Friday night date with the boys, we were at our local parade early the next morning. The kids look forward to it so much...I think more for the candy rather than the actual parade. I think we collected (no joke) about 25 pounds of candy. Not so good for the teeth or the it will be distributed out slowly. It was a nice time for some of the family to get together and to meet up with old friends.Then on Saturday night we met up with another family and had a yummy pizza one of my favorite pizza joints. And then we headed over to a local church who did a "Walk Through Bethlehem" production. You actually walk through the town of Bethlehem...or at least what it would have looked like. It feels so real and the kids loved it. I loved going by the temple and seeing the priests with their…

Friday Date Night

Since the girls were out of the house, spending the night at Nana's house, we were left with the "energy" of the Reynolds Nation. What to do? What to do? How can we keep them occupied with weary and tired had been a long and busy week. Nothing that a little shopping and ice cream can't cure! We had one more present to buy (for one of the girls) and I had some Kohls bucks to we headed out to Walmart and Kohls. In the end we found what we wanted online later that night, but we still had fun together. The picture snapped above is after our trip through Kohls. When we were walking around, I heard another shopper say, "those kids are talking a mile a minute." How true, how true!

Goofing off in one of the aisles. Don't they look incredibly handsome? I love Caleb's hat...he looks like one of those old guys who sits on the front porch of his house. What a fun night together. And when we got home, the kids fell asleep in minutes. The &q…

Gratitude Friday

What a beautiful time of the year. Despite the warm weather, it has been such a delightful season. I am loving this time...speckled with a few activities, but mainly just time together. Simply Delightful!
1. I am so grateful for the advent calendar that I made for us. It has forced us to slow down a bit and anticipate a fun activity to do together. It has been wonderful for our family.
2. I am thankful that the medicare season is over and Matt will be back to his regular schedule...though the financial bonus will be great, the stress level for him was way too high.
3. I am thankful for little voices that float through my house all day. They bring life to this house.
4. I am thankful for only one more week of school. So ready for a nice, long break.
5. I am so thankful for our future trip to Tennessee...just 18 days away. I can not wait.

Have a great Friday everyone. Be blessed in this beautiful season!

Dance Party Reynolds Nation Style

Day 8 of the Advent Calendar says...Play Christmas music really loud and dance around the room...I got them to stop for a second.

Swing dancers they are, I tell you.

A Bit of Loveliness

Last night we put this on our was a surprise gift from a friend who just returned from Maine and brought me a little Maine back with her. On Facebook the other day we were joking about her bringing back a Maine Christmas tree...haha...didn't think much of it. Though this New Yorker loves the smell of fresh pine and the thought of a fresh Christmas tree. Most of the trees down here seem to have traveled a million miles, so they never have that fresh smell. Anyway, yesterday I got a message asking me to pick a little gift up from this friend at work. She owns a little shop in Maine, so I figured it was a little trinket from her store. But no, it was this lovely wreath, just put together at a Christmas tree place...put together just for me. I was so overwhelmed with gratitude. She brought it all the way down from Maine, on the airplane. So sweet. She told me that she couldn't bring a tree, so this was the next best thing. I just sat there and drank in all the be…

How Lovely Are Your Branches...

Last night our tree went up. I didn't want to put it up Thanksgiving weekend (not that we had any time) because the holiday was so early this year. I truly like to keep Christmas for the month of December. So yesterday afternoon we pulled out all of our boxes and decorated the tree. The kids were so excited and loved every second. My favorite part was looking at all the kids' ornaments. Every year we get each kid an ornament for Christmas (along with one from their Nana) they have quite collection now. Bryn has almost 30 ornaments. It's fun to look at each one and talk about the memories of Christmas past. We had a great time...the house looks beautiful. And to finish off the evening we sat in the living room and enjoyed the tree...all lit up in the dark house while the Christmas music played. What a lovely way to end a Saturday night :)

Patter of Little Feet

This was our craft for yesterday...Christmas feet. The kids loved it...they said that I was tickling their feet. I painted their feet and they painted the trunk and the star. And while they waited for their turn they colored a sheet I printed out of a cute Christmas tree. They had fun doing this and they turned out really well. I got this idea from my new favorite site, ...a virtual organizer of ideas and thoughts. I love it. Everything on my boards is categorized into sections, such as...Christmas, yummy food, my style, glorious fall, etc. And when you see ideas on the main boards or a friend's board that you like, you PIN it to your specific board. It is a great way to organize your ideas. So, I had pinned this idea weeks ago and now it came to be. This works really well for homeschooling mom. I have lots of ideas that I think I will remember, but then I forget and find it way after the event happened. So, now with Christmas upon us, I just check out m…

Special Cookie Delivery

In celebration of the month of December and all it's glory I always start the month by making my family's special peanut butter balls. I only make these cookies during the Christmas season, so this is a special way to start the holidays. These cookies also happen to be the favorite cookie of my husband's boss. He talks about them all year and asks for me to make some for him...and I always respond that I can't make them until December. Yesterday, I also made these special snowflake cookies for a friend of mine who just had a baby. I delivered a yummy meal to her along with these sweet treats.

As a special surprise I stopped by one of my dearest friends house and delivered a yummy treat for her and her family. I think she was truly surprised.

Happy insurance agents they were. My husband had his boss believing that I didn't say anything about making the cookies this year. At the two o'clock hour I came with my special surprise. I must say that my sweet treat did…

Wow December!

To welcome the beautiful month of December, I was able to put together this wonderful Advent Calendar. It is to remember to take time and cherish and remember the true reason for this season. I got the idea from Emily Anderson, over there at ...check out her is simply awesome and she has wonderful crafty ideas. She got the idea from ...which is another addicting site for me. Check it out and celebrate this beautiful season!

Terrific Tuesday!!

I am sitting here next to my open windows...breathing a huge relief that the weather is picture perfect today. So tired of the warm weather. There is nothing like having your windows open...and having pandora music going with some nice worship music playing.Had a super busy day here at home. Lots of laundry washed, folded, hung up and put in drawers. School work completed, which is always a lovely thought. I then organized all the drawers of Esther's wardrobe. Every thing was quite a mess...shirts with the jammies, that kind of mess. We were able to get rid of some stuff, and reorganize. One thing I hate about Florida (and there are numerous things I hate about Florida), is when the kids drawers are shoved full of clothes needed for warm weather and cold weather...aaahhhh! It drives me crazy. You never know what the kids need each and every day. Anyway, that is completed...I was tempted to dive into the boys drawers...but I resisted since my back (which has been stressed lately) w…

Ponder for a Moment

‎" I believe in Christ like i believe in the sun- Not because i can see it, but by it i can see everything else."
- C.S. Lewis

French Connection

Look who came to school today...our French friend, Esther. Our crazy girl Esther got a beret this past weekend on a shopping trip with her Nana, and she showed up to school wearing it. Never a dull moment around here.

Turkey Exhaustion

It's Sunday afternoon and I am feeling exhausted. I feel like I need a free day to recover from the holiday. I am so tired. It has been nonstop since Tuesday. Nonstop cooking. Nonstop baking. Nonstop running. Nonstop shopping since Black Friday. I was thinking last night that I am not prepared for the school week, which I have somewhat prepared since then, but I can't believe school is starting again tomorrow. Even so, it has been a great holiday. Matt was off for five straight days...we spent lots of time with family and friends. We had fun doing crafts, baking, and all the prep work there is for the holiday. But I guess tomorrow it is back to reality. Back to real least for three more weeks...until we start our next holiday. In between that time we will be doing lots of crafts and fun stuff. This is my favorite time of the year. Is it yours?

Perfect Friday, not really Black

I must admit that I love Black Friday. I love the sales. I love the rush. I love the challenge. But I don't love the crazy people who will fight over one item. I always go with an expectation of what I want, but if I don't get it, I know that God has a different plan. I will never fist fight or wrestle over a child's toy. Crazy. Mad. So not Christ like.Matt and I headed to Walmart at nine o'clock on Thanksgiving night. No, I don't like the fact that they moved the sales to the holiday...but it really didn't matter. We had celebrated with our family all day and we just trying to stay out of our turkey coma anyways. This year instead of forming a line Walmart had you stand near your future purchases until the time chimed ten o'clock. Matt and I split up (I am so thankful he loves to shop with me, because I wouldn't have got the deals I did without him)...he headed to the bikes and I to the Legos. In my true Allison fashion, I started talking to all the o…

Establishing Traditions

Twelve Years ago during Thanksgiving Matt and I were talking about the years past of holidays in the homes that we grew up in. Matt had always gone to his Grandma's house and had the huge family dinner...lots of cousins, food and family laughter. I, on the other hand, had grown up having Thanksgiving at home...sometimes with other family or friends. But my parents had always made it a big deal. My mom made a big spread all day..chips, dip, special breads, fruit...and then we had our traditional meal. While we snacked all morning we watched the Macy's Thanksgiving parade and watched my mom prepare a huge meal. It brings back such warm feelings thinking about it.

Matt and I decided that Thanksgiving that we wanted our kids to experience something similar...the traditions started in our home...the big spread, the Macy's parade, the fun in our own home. This was a difficult decision. We were still a young couple and we knew that it would hurt some feelings. But Matt and I felt …

Hot House

Despite the very warm temperatures outside (can we say 81 degrees, yuck), my house is trying to keep up with the outside. This temperature has been practically stuck on my oven for the past two days...and it will be again tomorrow. So, if you want to know what is going on the Reynolds Nation...just take a peek in my oven. Bread, pie, pie, bread, pie and soon to be turkey. That's what's going on here. Happy baking!

Operation Christmas Child

This year we teamed up with my husband's work place and worked with them in getting boxes together for Operation Christmas Child. This was an exciting experience getting boxes together for underprivileged children around the world for Christmas. It's hard for the kids to understand how to make a difference in another child's' life. But this is an opportunity for the kids to touch what is given, to choose it and then pray for each box.

The kids after they filled each box (doesn't Judah look a bit disgruntled). It was amazing how much fit into each box. Our family gave 10 boxes and our little town collected over 700 boxes! How awesome is that!!!!

Here we all are after our shopping trip. It was a bit overwhelming having to select over a hundred items for our boxes. The little kids had a hard time understanding that the items they were choosing were not for took a bit of time to catch on. We tried to make a mixture of personal hygiene items (like toothpaste…

Gratitude Friday

My heart is overflowing today with love and thankfulness for my life. Though at times it is difficult and full of change, I am so blessed. So many out there would love to live this life. I can only have total love, joy and thankfulness for a God who gave this to me. Without writing a list this week, I can only say go love on your blessings. We are blessed.

The In-Place to Be

Yes, I have a picture of Walmart on my blog. I know totally weird and in need of explanation. This is where my family hung out (okay, not exactly hung out, but stayed briefly) last night. Our town has been waiting for a Super Walmart for years. It has been the talk for such a long time...get one...don't get one...get one...don't get one. That's what the talk was like. Years ago they voted against a piece of land to be used for it, and then turned around and put a Home Depot there. Not sure what happened there. Anyway, this has been in the works for a long time. The Walmart for our time is small. The parking lot is always full and it's crowded. This was needed.
Now to talk directly towards the anti-Walmart people. Yes, I believe in community stores first. I will always buy there long as it works good for my family. We are budget conscious. Our numbers are tight as a one income family. So, with that in mind, I will always try to buy local first. To keep jobs h…

Spontaneous Birthday Party

The crazy things that we do for our kids...seems to happen on a daily basis here at the Reynolds Nation. Yesterday, Judah woke up and said it was Barney's birthday. All the kids do this periodically. Well, Judah was very serious. And he wouldn't stop talking about it. Then he got the other kids got involved. And next thing you know they are planning a party for the afternoon. Esther made a list of things that needed to be done and Judah was getting really excited.

Next thing you know, we are taking a quick trip to our local Publix and buying a birthday cupcake for Barney (no time for baking today). And we anticipated the big moment all day. After dinner and dad was home, we had Barney's moment. Judah said it was Barney's first birthday...but actually he is 14. We have had the Barney doll for that long...handed down to each kid respectfully.
So, for a few extra dollars and a little bit of time we made a little boy happy. Once again, it is these moments that we will be …

Love Letters

I was sitting on the recliner this morning, wide awake, but feeling a bit tired. I was up at 4:30 in the morning, and I never went back to sleep. I hate mornings like that. I have noticed that the older I get the harder it is for me to have a full nights sleep. Or maybe it was Judah's knee kicking me in the back. He joined us in the early morning...which isn't that rare at this house.

Anyway, to get back to the story...William came by me with an envelope and he handed it to me and then walked away. Inside the envelope was an I Love You Mom letter. William is just starting to get comfortable with his writing...which means the letters will start. I have been through this before and I love it. I will gets lots of secret letters...hidden messages...special surprises. I have stacks of them filed away from all my kids. This is one of those little bonuses for being a mom. One day I will go through them all...when they are in their own homes...when they have their own babies giving th…

Hello Monday!

I am very ready for Monday. Yes, I know that doesn't happen often. Not really at all. I treasure my weekends. I love having Matt home. Helping me with the kids...being my team leader. I love those days. But for some reason I am ready for Monday. Maybe it's the hint of the holidays in the air. It feels pretty fantastic. My windows have been open for days. Which is quite delightful for this New Yorker. Can't stand the air conditioning pumping 24 hours a day. My kids actually complained this morning that they were cold. I laughed at them, and said, "don't worry it will be warm later."
Anyway, today we jump into Ancient Greece. I am very excited. I loved reading the Odyssey when I was younger. I loved all the excitement, and old stories. So, today we venture into that time frame. This is our last week of school before our Thanksgiving holiday. My thoughts are on menus, decorations and having Matt home for five days. And the best part is that we will take a break f…

Laugh a Little

A Sunday funny for you. Be blessed today.

Gratitude Friday

I am sitting here early in the morning...was up at five thirty...after a great night of sleep. Got to spend some time in prayer, and then move down stairs without any of the kids knowing. How delightful is that??? I like having a few minutes to doesn't happen much around here. I cracked our front windows...instead of opening them all up...because we are having our coolest morning of the season..49 degrees( quite lovely). I can't freeze the kids out. Hope you plan on having a great weekend...I do!1. I am thankful for all the service men and women who served our country to guarantee our freedom. This great country would not be the same without them. 2. I am thankful for the quiet and cold morning. 3. I had a thankful heart this morning for the ability to homeschool. How I am blessed to provide my kids a quality education...and to see their smiles and their desire to learn. To watch William, my six year old, make a Great Wall of China out of juicy fruit candy yesterday…

Pugalicious Thursday!


The Woeful Tale of Edward

This is have seen him before. He is our rescue pug who has become one of the family. We love him so much. But there is one who loves him most. That's our Esther. When we first got Edward in May, she was responsible to feed him and take him for potty brakes. Well, that was enough for him...he attached himself right to her hip. He sleeps by her...sits on the floor next to her during school...they watch television together...where ever Esther is, Edward is also.

UNTIL....Esther goes away. Then he is a lost puppy. He looks around all day for her. And now, with the cooler weather and the doors open, he sits by the door waiting for her (case in point, above). It's so sad. You want to cheer him up, but he just won't. He is full of woes...waiting for his Esther. And when she returns, he barks, spins in circles and loves on her. It is the sweetest relationship. She loves him, as much as he loves him. We love our Edward!

Precious Mountains in Homeschooling

Today was just one of those awesome school days where you are so pleased. We were finishing up everything and I was ending our unit on the planet Venus. He kids have enjoyed our work about the's always interesting and the kids are always full of questions. We had an experiment today to show about the patterns lava make when they come from a volcano. We had found out that Venus is full of volcanoes. Well, as we did this, Esther asked if there were any volcanoes in our country. Mount Saint Helen's immediately came to mind. So, I started talking about when it happened...I actually remember this event in history..and I was able to instantly pull up video and pictures of Mount Saint Helen's when it erupted in 1980. The kids were thrilled. They threw out a ton of questions...including my 14 year old who isn't doing astronomy this year, but was interested to hear what I had to say. It was an awesome, teachable moment. Which by the way, having the iPad at my finge…

Fair 2011

Our night at the fair was last night for the Reynolds Nation...and did we have fun!!! We got there when the rides opened and stayed to the end. This was the first year that William and Esther got to ride some of the bigger rides...which was good. We learned that William is not afraid easily, and loves the excitement of each ride...just like Bryn. I just strolled around with them...standing in line...holding their sweaters that they didn't need, it never got really cool :( It was a great night for all of us...I am just thankful that it is only once a year!One of the first rides of the night...and one of the first grown up rides for William and Esther. By the end, Esther was a bit tearful, but the others loved it.

One of the my favorite moments...which Judah refused to pose for...eating their foot long corn dogs. They couldn't believe they were so big!!! But that didn't stop them from eating every bite.

We had to take turns riding the little kid rides and the adult rides. W…

Sunday Happenings

Lounging in my Jammie's right now. Feeling relaxed and refreshed....despite the screams I keep on hearing from my kids. They are wrestling with their dad and having so much fun. It's amazing that the kids love such rough play..and then they come crying to me when they lose the fight. Fun times!!Had a lovely lunch with my mother-in-law and my family. It was fun to hang out, talk, laugh and eat good food. The kids were a bit rowdy...I am totally putting blame on the time change ;) Which, by the way, I love. I am such an early riser, so I appreciate the sun up early with me. One of the most hated things is to wake up in the dark. Especially when the rest of the house is still asleep. Tonight I am headed out with my sister-in-law and going to a big sale. A little shopping always makes me happy. I also keyed in on some great clearance at Walmart this weekend. Our local Walmart is closing and moving to a new super, some great buys came my way. As the mom of five, I …

A Piece of the Puzzle

Here is my girl, Bryn Elisabeth. Our oldest. Our first. Our beautiful girl. Who is in the midst of being a teenager. I am so glad that I don't have to live those days again...but we will have to walk five little arrows through those days. And this is our first journey. She is a delight. But she still is going through rough days, feelings of inadequacies, and the normal teenage stuff.
At youth group the other day, they had a puzzle out and they were talking about how each of them was a piece of the puzzle. No puzzle piece was the same. They each had their own characteristics. I love that comparison. No two are the same...just like us. But they were also emphasizing that without each piece the puzzle would not be complete. So, they suggested that each of them take a piece home and place it somewhere in their house that is visible. So they can remember that they are a piece of the puzzle...they are important...they are special. This is where Bryn put hers. To remember that she is God…

Gratitude Friday

I snapped this picture, it's not summertime....the girls are in the local indoor pool for swim team, and the boys enjoy splashing around a bit. Good times...even in November.

1. I am thankful for the unknown and's all about trusting in a God who is bigger than you.

2. I am thankful for all my provision...the Lord always goes above and beyond.

3. I am thankful for the joy he brings...even on the busy, pull your hair out days.

4. I am thankful for all the little hand prints on the windows and walls...

5. I am thankful for the breakthrough that is coming...God is good!

My Energy

Only two years apart... my bit of "energy" keeps me on my toes. They make me laugh and at times made me cry. Believing God will do mighty things with these two brothers. Here they are at their visit with Nana yesterday. I am blessed to be their mom.

How Sweet It Is!

Another successful day at school. I have such great kids when it comes to working on their school work. The are busy bees getting each subject finished. Yesterday we started a week long study on Ancient China, which they are finding fascinating. This, after a week in Ancient India and next week we will be in South America. We have been globe trotters lately. It's been a lot of fun. I learn more and more each day. And to see the kids faces when they hear new information is priceless.

Well, today we were reviewing some of our astronomy facts about Venus (we are studying astronomy for the whole year ) and I spiced it up a bit by adding an incentive!!! I threw in some yummy candies for answering questions right. And as you can see, you can tell who won...

Happy November!!!!!!

Goodbye October, See You Next Year

This is about how much we dress up around here for Halloween. Esther decided to make her own wedding dress the other night...and after a few changes and adjustments, this is what was created...from a throw blanket and a sash. Totally beautiful. This is a tradition around here at the Reynolds Nation...dress up. We have had a ton of costumes over the years and we even make our own from old t-shirts, dresses...anything you can think of.
And to go back to the Halloween thing. Matt and I originally dressed up our kids for the holiday. Didn't think to much about it. But as the years progressed, and we wanted to be more pure before the Lord and to follow his plan...we stopped the costumes for Halloween. One main thing that made us change is the desire to not duplicate what the world does. It is hard sometimes. The world has lots of desirable things. But this was just a standard that we made for our home. We try to attend local fall festivals for the kids to enjoy the season...that I think…


I tried to think of a more jazzy title, but I just couldn't think of anything. So, I will keep it plain and simple :Sunday. The weather was nice today...breezy and cooler. I can't say cool or even cold, but I can admit cooler. Was able to keep the air conditioning off all day, and that's what counts. As I sit here in my bed, I must be honest and say it is a little warm. But I know as the evening crawls by, it will be nice and brisk in my bedroom. Today, I made by first attempt at Julia Child's beef bourguignon. I saw it on a television show the other day...and I am always into trying new recipes. And the attempt was utterly SUCCESSFUL!! The recipe called for it to be served on creamy mashed potatoes. And it was so delightful. I loved every bit of it, and we have plenty for a whole other meal. And the best part is that Matt loved it. That's the true test. And to make Matt even happier, I quickly made a pumpkin pie for him. His favorite, remember? I know how to make…

Saturday Happenings

Oh, Saturday, how I love you. There is nothing like a day off from the real world. Which basically means no school and Matt is home. Not much going on here today. The weather is a bit dreary...dark clouds, high humidity and a hope for this cold front to push through. Then we may have a cool couple of days ahead of us. In contrary to the record breaking snow that is hitting New England today. They are expected to get up to 8 inches of snow...oh, I am so jealous. I will take the cold, and the snow over this weather any day.Matt and Bryn went to the annual Disney scavenger hunt last night...which entails them running around the outside of all the Disney parks, hotels and attractions looking for specific clues. They have fun doing it...and I stay home with the kiddos and relax. I don't mind skipping this crazy, full speed ahead Disney outing. So, because of the Disney hunt, Bryn and Matt are a bit ( I mean a lot) tired today. Between their tiredness and the dreary weather, they never …

Thankful Thursday

I was excited to post my Gratitude Friday post, and then it dawned on me that it was only Thursday. So, I am jumping ahead of myself and making it Thankful Thursday. I don't think you will mind, will you?

1. I am thankful for a quiet house at snug in their beds and the house so peaceful.

2. I am thankful for the noise that permeates my house all day...knowing one day it won't be like that.

3. I am thankful for homemade chocolate chip cookies...the kind that I made this week.

4. I am thankful for little kisses from my kids...the unexpected kind that warm the heart.

5. I am thankful for the love that I get from my family. I couldn't live without them.

Unsocialized Homeschooler

My friend gave me this shirt awhile back...and I love it. It reads, "warning: unsocialized homeschooler..interact or communicate at your own risk." The main reason that I think this is so funny is that homeschooling parents think that the idea that our homeschooled children are "unsocialized" is hysterical. Most homeschoolers have to turn down so many extracurricular activities because of their already full schedules. My children have never had a problem interacting with other kids or adults.

Sad to say that there are some parents out there who say they homeschool and they really aren't doing anything with their kids. Or there are also some who homeschool, but there children have so many gaps because the parents aren't thorough with their teaching. And then these kids head to school at some time and give homeschoolers a bad name. No, I am not a perfect homeschooler, but I do believe that my kids are getting a good education. But most of all they are learnin…

Unit 1 Celebration

This past week we finished up our ninth week of our new curriculum, Tapestry of Grace. After the ninth week, and completing a unit, you are supposed to have a celebration of all the work the kids have done. At first, I thought, this is just another activity I have to put together...but in the end, the kids looked so forward to showing friends and family their work. It was worth every minute of planning, and I already have new ideas for our next celebration. Here are a few snapshots for you of what we worked on.

We had spent three weeks studying Ancient Egypt, which the kids loved...especially Bryn. This is her second time doing an in-depth study of that region, and it truly started a love of history a few years ago. Esther couldn't resist making one of her Barbies into a mummy...which was one of her favorite things we studied.

For the party I made Mummy Dogs (which the kids kept on calling Mommy Dogs). The special treat was meant to look like a mummy, with their mustard eyes. I th…