Weekly Wrap Up

As usual, it has been nuts around here.  School is winding down for the holiday break, which means that we are out of our rhythm.  No rhythm means increased stress for some in our crew.  In addition to the holidays, we also had snow!

Overall, we finished up “Midsummer Night’s Dream” and started a new book called, “Roses and Radicals.” (Personally, I am thinking this book is a must read for those of you with high schoolers doing US History this year.  It is pretty awesome.). Sims finished up his first semester of Geometry and is working through the break on note taking and more study skills as he moves into more advanced classes.  Sawyer is still working on Physical Science and writing through the break.  Parks is working on writing as well.

Sims also had the opportunity to go climbing this week at Rumbling Bald and Stone Mountain with some friends.


We also celebrated our winter spiral with several families and are now getting ready for the holidays!


It was beautiful!


More Monarchs!

We are a monarch loving family. Last year I planted a butterfly garden in my yard in hopes that I would attract monarchs. I was beginning to loose hope because I have not seen any this year. We have lots of other butterflies visiting but no monarchs-until yesterday! I pulled into my driveway and noticed something orange fluttering around. I went out to the garden and found monarchs bustling around the plants! What a nice surprise for us all!

Welcome Bella

Last year was a rough year at our house for pets.  We had three pets pass away-our turtle, our bird, and one of our cats.  So far, 2018 is going much better!  We welcomed a new pet to our family last week.  Bella is a blue heeler/border collie mix (we think).  Right now she is about nine weeks old.  We are having a blast-and sleep deprived!

Winter Spiral-2017

I really do wish that I could slow down the time.  I do not feel rushed, but the time seems to slip past very quickly.  I am not even sure where the time went between our November celebrations to now-our winter spiral.  The time came for us to host our spiral on Wednesday.

The air was cold.  The wind was gusty.  We had to make some last minute changes to the plan, but in the end-the lights shined beautifully.

We all sat around the fire as I read the story of the lantern prince.  Then, one by one, everyone walked the spiral to light a candle.

We ended the night indoors making cards for those who will receive the boxes of goodies that we made.

Winter Spiral-2016


We celebrated our Winter Spiral this week.  It was a bittersweet night.  The spiral and the “ceremony” blew me over with its beauty.  The fact that my kids are growing up smacked me in the face and knocked me over.  This may be our last spiral as my kids were not interested in it at all.  I, personally, love the spiral, the community gathering, and the activities.  However, my kids feel that they have outgrown it-although, they have a good time once it starts.

The night was COLD!  We had to put out blankets as we read the story and lit the spiral and light a nice fire in the fire pit for the activity (thankfully, the open fire ban in our county was lifted last week!).

We read the story, “The Lantern Prince,” from Sparkle Stories again this year.   They advertise it as a Martinmas story, but I feel that it fits perfectly with lighting the spiral.

After the spiral, we went to fill bags for a local charity with personal items such as toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant, lip balm, etc.

The night ended with the parents hanging out by the fire trying desperately to stay warm while the kids ran around in the darkness of the night.


And the winter begins!

Wacky Wednesday- Congaree National Park


We have visited quite a few mountainous areas, so this trip headed south to Congaree National Park.  We began the trip with a short tour led by Park Ranger who gave us some of the history of the park.

We then headed off on a short hike through the Pine bluff and into the flood plain.  Unfortunately, we could not hike many of the trails due to damage from Hurricane Matthew.  We did manage to see some amazingly old and large loblolly pine trees and oak trees along the way.  Hurricane Matthew also brought out quite a few mosquitoes that followed us along the trails!

After our hike and a quick bite to eat, we headed into the nature center where the kids worked on the Junior Ranger program.  We also watched the short, but highly informative, movie on the history of the area.



Since a lot of the trails were closed, we never saw a cypress tree on our hike.  Thus, we had to jump in the car and drive a little way down to the canoe drop in to find some of the old bald cypress trees.  They were beautiful!  We are going to try to make it back down in the spring to do a kayak trip.