Perfect Peace

This particular verse has been popping up lately in my devotions and Bible study:

“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You.” 

Isaiah 26:3

God is gently reminding me to keep my eyes fixed on Him and to trust in His plan.  That’s where true peace comes from.

As I was thinking about this, I remembered being a child and trying to walk across a balance beam.  Have you ever tried to? You have to keep you eyes looking straight ahead…on the end goal.  If you look down, you will most likely lose your balance and fall.

This is also true as a homeschool mom and parent.  If I look down or away from the end goal, I start to slip.  I begin to compare myself and my kids to others.  I begin to doubt our decision.  I focus on our failures instead of how far we’ve come.  I get frustrated when things don’t come easily or go they way I think they should go.

 I have to force myself to stop, take a breath, and re-focus.  I have to remember to strive for the end goal:

To follow God’s will for our family (I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart Psalm 40:8).

To continue to feed Brendan and Ryan from God’s word, believing God’s promise that it will take root in their hearts.  (“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. Isaiah 55 9-11).

To work hard, do the best that I can, and leave the rest up to God (And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6).


I could use that reminder often and am so thankful that God gave me what I needed, just at the right time 🙂 !



Ryan’s first General Science experiment


Learning how liquids have different densities


Testing a rock, grape, ice cube, and cork (along with cooking oil, water, and corn syrup)



Steadily working on memorizing the 50 states


Our first memory verse of the year


Driver’s Ed flash cards


Easing Brendan into the school year – he’ll be adding Spanish and Biology next week


Sweet, encouraging notes from Justin that have gotten us through the week!

IMG_8102 IMG_8105 IMG_8108 IMG_8114 IMG_8116

One Last Hoorah!


We spent our last weekend before school started at “The Rivah” 🙂 :


We started school today and will be easing into our full schedule over the next two weeks.



Brendan is now in the 10th grade (that’s hard to believe)!  He will be studying World History and Literature from My Father’s World, Driver’s Ed (1st semester)/Logic (2nd semester), Spanish 2, Biology, Geometry, Programming, and Tennis.






Ryan is in the 7th grade and will be studying 1850 to Modern Times by My Father’s World.  He will also be using Essentials in Writing 7, All-In-One English Series, 2 Progeny Press guides, Spelling, Math 7, and General Science.  We started memorizing the Northern states this morning (I still have the song stuck in my head 🙂 !) and made corn chowder for dinner as we prepare to study/review the early colonists.









It wasn’t our best “first” day.  The kids did fine, but I’ve been fighting a sore throat for a few days and wasn’t feeling as peppy as I normally do.  We muddled through and even made it to the pool after lunch.  Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have a little bit more energy!

TWO Teenagers!!!!



As of today, I am now the mom of TWO teens…heaven help me 🙂 !!!  Ryan turns 13 today (officially at 5:00 pm).  We had his party last night and all he asked for was money (he’s saving up for a kayak).

Sounds easy enough, right?

Well, he wanted us to come up with “creative” and “fun” ways to give him the cash…

…and so we did  🙂 (thank goodness for Pinterest):

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


We also had fun making the kids “work” for their treat bags by sending them on a scavenger hunt:


HAPPY BIRTHDAY Ryan!  We love you sooooo much!


We start school on Monday…let the teenage moodiness begin 😉 !

Forced Family Fun :)

2015-08-06 17.50.39


One of the best things about camping (ok, RVing) ;), besides enjoying God’s beautiful creation, visiting different landmarks, and making memories that will last a lifetime is that being in a small, enclosed space “forces” you to spend quality time with your family. We just got back from camping at Natural Bridge and had so much fun fishing, exploring Lexington, driving our rented golf cart, eating dinner outside, playing Uno, and sitting around the campfire.

For three days and nights we practically spent every minute together….then we came home and everybody went their separate ways.

It always amazes me how quickly we get back into our “routines” and spend much less time together after our trips are over. I think it’s so important for families to be intentional about planning quality time together or as we like to call it, “forced family fun” 🙂 !

Thank you Brendan and Ryan for putting up with us, even during your teen years!  We love you guys!!!

I am so grateful for these long weekends that we get to spend together and am looking forward to another one in less than two weeks!

That’s right boys (hee,hee)…more family fun is coming!!!

20150806_151433 20150806_152944 20150806_153302 20150806_154222 20150807_110322 20150807_110353 20150807_110546 20150807_111307  20150807_113006 20150807_114320 20150807_114604 20150807_114727 20150807_114743 20150807_120126  20150807_144433 20150807_171053 20150807_171405 20150807_171409 20150808_165109 20150808_165122 20150808_180337    20150808_183651 20150809_094429 20150809_094502

2015-08-06 18.20.46


2015-08-06 15.44.29 2015-08-06 17.02.27  2015-08-06 18.20.46 2015-08-07 11.06.58 2015-08-07 11.09.16 2015-08-07 11.12.56 2015-08-07 11.17.04 2015-08-07 11.20.04 2015-08-07 11.24.04 2015-08-07 11.24.51 2015-08-07 11.38.00 2015-08-07 12.08.07