family field trip friday!

after sleeping in a bit this morning and sarah ann taking her spelling test, we loaded up the van and hopped on the interstate towards north carolina for our family field trip friday! sarah ann and reece completed their school work in the car, and carson was happy that i packed him his own little work folder too. we stopped for lunch at jason’s deli in spartanburg! yum! and then finished the trek to sky top apple orchard for our fifth annual visit!

it was an absolutely beautiful afternoon at the orchard! the kids headed straight for the playground to get some of their energy out, and then off to pick apples we went! today we picked macintosh (jeffrey’s favorite), cortland, and golden delicious (the ones that reecey wanted). after being in the sun for a while, we headed back to get some apple slushies and take go on the hay ride! we got to see more areas of the orchard, including seeing the animals and the bamboo. the kids were then ready to head back to the playground, and they even had the whole thing to themselves for a while! it was such a quiet and peaceful afternoon at the orchard! we love going on fridays!

once we were finished at sky top, we went north to pick up granny and take her to dinner. we decided to visit downtown hendersonville and eat dinner at mezzaluna, a delicious brick oven pizza and italian restaurant! the evening was beautiful, so we decided to stroll around town a bit before heading back to ardenwoods. granny treated us to some ice cream when we got back to her house, and then we put on our pajamas for the trip back to columbia!

the boys crashed on the way home, while our little night owl princess hung in for the whole ride home. it was a sweet and calm ride home after a full day and thankful hearts for a wonderful family field trip friday! and now it’s time for jeffrey and i to crash too! goodnight!




Sarah Ann has been watching the calendar very closely, because she couldn’t wait for Awana to start back! She had such a wonderful year last year, and she has been looking forward to Reece joining her upstairs this year for Sparks! Reece has been super excited too, but he’s also a little more hesitant about new things, so he was very happy to find out that he and Sarah Ann were both going to be on the yellow team this year! I couldn’t wait to pick them up and hear all about it. They had an absolute blast, especially during game time! Sarah Ann received her new Spark book and Reece got his new t-shirt tonight! Their teacher said that Sarah Ann and Reece were so sweet together, and that Sarah Ann was a preciousĀ big sister for helping Reece work on his verse. We are really looking forward to diving into the stories and memorizing our verses!

While the big kids were upstairs, Carson was also at his very first Puggles class downstairs with Nanny! He was so happy to be going to Awana just like his big brother and big sister and wanted to carry his very own bag all by himself. Where did my baby go? He had a great time coloring, eating goldfish, playing on the playground, singing songs, and listening to the Bible story. When I asked him what they learned about, he said, “Me not talk. Nanny talk.” He also couldn’t wait to get home and show Daddy the picture he made!

And since all of our kiddos were at Awana together for the first time ever, I actually went to Target all by myself and then Jeffrey and I got to enjoy a dinner date at Myabi Junior! I can see that quickly becoming our new routine.

It has been a wonderful, wonderful day, I’m thinking we’re all definitely going to like Wednesday evenings around here! Thank you, Jesus, for Awana and date night!

weekend wonders



sleeping in. not setting the alarm. slow mornings with lots of cuddles and snuggles and cartoons. pulling out all of the toys. naps in the afternoon. swimming and grilling out with nanny and pops. game night and appetizers with friends. playing tennis and spending lots of time outside. sunday mornings at church. reece going to the “new church” because he moved to the elementary school building. cleaning up and cleaning out. playing in the rain. sunday evenings are for grilling. family movie nights in the living room. ice cream before bed. preparing our hearts for another week.

oh, weekends, you are such a treat! thank you for always coming at just the right time, allowing us to slow down, rest, recharge and enjoy these sweet wonders as a family!

“a more intentional life purposely slows down enough to enjoy the very process of living more intentionally.” ~tsh oxenreider



Broadwell Academy, Weeks 1 and 2

We now have our first two weeks of school under our belt. I feel like we have settled into a pretty good routine, but we’re also still enjoying sleeping in a bit too!

The kids have been getting up around 9, and then we have breakfast and get started on school. In the mornings, Sarah Ann does her spelling and English work while Reece has been doing letter review before we move onto his reading curriculum. Sarah Ann also does 20 minutes of independent reading while I read to the boys. We also do our math at some point before nap and quiet time. Reece really likes all of the hands on activities he has gotten to do for math, and Sarah Ann is already flying through her new curriculum. And she has been doing awesome on her timed fact sheets! Some days we go straight from reading to math. On other days we have gone out the library and lunch or spent time with friends at the pool or splash pad, and then do our calendar time and math right before the kiddos head to their rooms. It is definitely a treat to get out of the house a little bit each morning! We love the flexibility of making our own schedule.

The afternoons have been pretty laid back so far. We have enjoyed doing some PE activities like having a dance party, doing circuit workouts, hitting tennis balls, jumping on the trampoline, running laps around the house, or playing at the park. And we have also really loved our new science kit from the Magic School Bus. Each month we receive a new kit in the mail. This month we have been learning about acids and bases. The kids have their own lab notebooks, and we have really enjoyed doing the experiments. We have tasted things to see if they are sour, used red cabbage juice, litmus paper and pH paper to test for acids and bases, and soaked a penny in coke to see how the acid cleaned the penny. The big kids have learned many of the characteristics of acids and bases, and we are looking forward to one more week of experiments before we start a new kit!

I am so grateful for such an awesome start to the school year! We are enjoying these sweet days together–it is so fun to be a big part of their learning, playing, growing and training! Now bring on week 3 and a field trip too!



Ten years ago today, after a day at Folly Beach, walking around downtown Charleston, and an anxious dinner at Wild Wings, this curly haired guy said “I love you” for the first time when he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him at Waterfront Park, and he gave me my Nanny’s diamond ring with “I love you” inscribed on the inside. I am so very thankful for that sweet and special first “I love you,” and I am so thankful for all of the “I love yous” since then. I am thankful that he asked me to be his wife, and I think he’s pretty glad that I said yes too! There is no way that we could have ever fathomed all that the Lord has done since that day ten years ago. We have loved and learned, been challenged and stretched, walked in faith, rested in the sovereignty of God, and been blessed beyond measure! Thank you, Jesus, for the “Yes!” and for all of the “I love yous.” And here’s to many, many, many more….

A Peak into Broadwell Academy, Part 1


Over the course of this school year, I want to blog a bit more about the who, what, where, when and why’s of our homeschooling. I enjoyed blogging about our school year last year, plus it was great for documentation, but I also want to share more than just the day to day plans and activities. I wan to share more of our heart into why we chose to homeschool, and how we do it in our home.

So, first up, here is Broadwell Academy’s Mission Statement/Verse for this school year…

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And a second one is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
~Matthew 22:37-39~

This year our focus is on LOVE…

Loving the Lord with all our heart and soul…

By honoring Him with our choices and actions, obeying our parents the first time, loving our siblings, always striving to do our best, as we pray that the Lord would draw our babies to Himself and that they would come to know him as their Lord and Savior…

Loving the Lord with all our mind…

By working hard and diligently on our school work, memorizing Scripture in Awana, reading the Bible together, and learning something new every day…

Loving our neighbors…

By building friendships through co-op, dance, and karate, and showing love by serving others that we come into contact with, whether it be our siblings, friends, community helpers or people we don’t know.

There is a big task before us and a whole school year ahead, and I am so thankful for this sweet calling, where we can all learn and grow together day in and day out. Thank you, Jesus! We are expecting great things this year!

More to come…

sweet and silly sleepers

Who needs a bed when you can fall asleep flat on the floor?


And who needs sheets and blankets when you can sleep in a sleeping bag every night for at least 8 months?


But this girl will stick to her comfy mattress with her covers, as long as her “loney” (lovey) is always right besideĀ her face!


Oh, those sweet and silly sleepers, I sure do love them! And I’m pretty sure I’ll watch them sleep until they move out of the house! Goodnight and sweet dreams!

Friday Faithfulness

This evening I was able to hug the neck of my dear friend whose Daddy is now in Heaven. And while we rejoice that he is now pain free and made new with the Lord, it also reminds us that we are not promised tomorrow. So, today and everyday, I want to remember the Lord’s faithfulness and see the blessings in each day that we are given.

We finished our first week of school today! The kids have worked so hard and we’re all finding our groove. I loved seeing Sarah Ann’s excitement over making a 100 on her first spelling test and watching Reece enjoy doing math, especially when it involves money! Being their Mommy and teacher is such a blessing!



And this sweet boy has totally rocked potty training this week! He has been so proud of wearing “big boy undies” and today he really began telling me when he needed to go potty. I know it is still a work in progress, but he has done awesome! My baby isn’t a baby anymore!


Jeffrey took a half day off of work today, so we enjoyed an afternoon at the zoo! The kids were so excited to show Daddy the new bear and river otter exhibits. It was a beautiful afternoon of seeing the animals, climbing the rock wall, riding the carousel and train, enjoying icees, and spending sweet quality time together! These days are such sweet blessings to our family!





This evening after going to the funeral home, Jeffrey and I got to enjoy a date night together! I am so thankful that date nights our high on our priority list, and I love how the kids get excited about our date nights. They want to pick where we go eat or what we do and talk about how kissing is gross! Ha! Plus, date nights mean they get to spend time with Nanny and Pops! So tonight while we went to Antai, Target, and rented a Redbox movie, the kiddos got to eat lasagna, play in the play room, go swimming and sleep in their new pajamas! What a perfect ending to a wonderful day!



He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way. All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies. ~Psalm 25:9-10~

Love Where You Live!

This past Saturday we finally made a late morning trip down to Soda City on Main Street. We really enjoyed walking downtown, checking out all of the vendors, getting some yummy fruits and veggies to eat, and having some delicious lemonade and snow cones under the Carolina sun! The kids had so much fun and can’t wait to go back! And after our trip to Soda City we headed down to the Vista for lunch at Wild Wings, one of Jeffrey’s favorites! It was such a fun morning with my favorite people! We love where we live, and we are so thankful for new experiences and sweet Saturdays together in Columbia!








First Day of School!

Broadwell Academy is officially back in session, and we had a great first day!

The kids enjoyed a slow morning of eating breakfast and playing while I got ready and started the laundry, and then it was time to begin our first day of school! Sarah Ann and Reece wanted to wear their pajamas for school, so that’s exactly what we did! Just another perk of homeschooling!


We all did the calendar and weather together, and then Sarah Ann got started on her English and spelling work. She just moves right along and totally rocked spelling by correctly spelling all the words on the pre-test! The boys played while SA did her work, and then it was time for Reece to do his letter activities. He did great! We then set the timer for Sarah Ann to do her independent reading time while I read to Reece and Carson jumped all over the furniture. Sarah Ann has been very into the Magic Tree House books since we went to the exhibit, and she’s also reading “Descendants.” Reece found a Nancy Drew mystery that we are reading right now, and as long as he has something to do with his hands he can listen to me read all day long.




And for some crazy reason, since I knew we would be staying at home more with school beginning, I thought it would also be a perfect day to start potty training Carson. Have I completely lost my mind? Ha! He actually did really well! He was super excited to wear “undies” and get a piece of candy every time he sat on the potty. All in all today he went to the potty 8 times and had 3 accidents. We’re going to keep working on it this week, and I must admit, he does look super adorable in his “big boy undies!”


After a break time to play upstairs for a little while, we took turns doing our math lessons and then got ready to head out for a bit to celebrate our first day of school. And yes, I did in fact wait to take their first day pictures once everyone was dressed and ready for the day!


The kids picked pizza for lunch, so we decided to go to Cici’s with their summer reading coupons! Who knew three little kids could eat so many pieces of pizza! After lunched we headed to Seven Oaks Park to enjoy the beautiful weather! There was a nice breeze, and we are so thankful that it was a bit cooler today than it has been! Plus, it was great to run out all our energy after focusing on school all morning!




After nap time and quiet time, we cuddled up in the living room with our snacks to read some back to school books that I got from the library. Luckily my crew doesn’t think I am the “teacher from the black lagoon!” Sarah Ann and Reece also filled out a “first day of school” questionnaire that we will get to keep and compare with the same questions at the end of the year!



I am so thankful for such a great first day of school! I know that it will take some time to get into our routine and get some of the kinks worked out, like keeping my wild man busy and occupied, but we are all in this together and it’s going to be an awesome adventure! One day down, 179 to go!