Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year

I am really not sure what exactly happened to 2016 it went by faster than any year I can remember. It has been really an amazing year for our family as we navigate life in a new country. England has treated us well. We have really been enjoying our time here. 

Some quick family updates. Noah has finished up with community college in San Diego and is ready to transfer into University. He has applied to a few of them so we are waiting to here back as to where he will go on to next. He is getting a degree in Archaeology. Liam just completed his first semester of University he is going to school to be a lawyer. Both boys have great grades and are doing really well as a parent you couldn't ask for more. It really has been so wonderful to see the outcome of all the homeschooling we did. In the process of homeschooling especially teenagers I just remember all the time asking myself while schooling the boys have I done enough. Have I covered everything that they need. I am sure most parents homeschooling or not ask these same questions as their children grow. But it truly is an amazing thing to see them out work their upbringing and their faith out in the real world as they navigate life as young adults.

Anna is in her sophmore year of highschool, in America we say 10th grade. She has really impressed me this year with being more diligent with her schoolwork. Her artistic skills continue to flourish and astound me. We are still homeschooling and loving it. She misses all her farm animals that we had back in California so we surprised her at Christmas with a pet Hamster. We tried to be really sneaky about it and had it's cage hidden in our room but she heard the little guy spinning on it's wheel and was on to us right away hahaha. Can't get anything by her. Not quite the same as having a goat, horse and chickens but as an animal lover at heart we knew it would bless her and she loves having an extra furry friend around.

It has really been an amazing year with many answered prayers and much blessing. We are entering 2017 feeling really loved and really grateful for all that God has done and continues to do for us.
Happy New Year!!


Monday, August 22, 2016

Hit the ground running...


I feel like I woke up in 2016 jumped out of bed ...and literally hit the ground running. The year has just flown by. I started off needing major surgery so I took some time off to just recover and be. 

Over the last year our family has really embraced life in England. We are all enjoying our time here. So much so we decided to sell our house in California and just wing-it for awhile. Well I say that jokingly of course we all know there is no winging it as Christians obviously God has a plans for us. But we are doing our part to make sure there is nothing that we are doing to hinder or stand in the way of where God wants us to be.


The kids are all doing great. The boys now both graduated from home-school are coming and going back and forth to college and university. Anna my last homeschooling child is getting ready to start 10th grade. And to think just a few years ago I said I would never home-school during the teenage years especially through high-school. It just seemed like to overwhelming of a task and responsibility. But God is really amazing this is where we see Him most in those areas where we are weak. So here we are getting ready to start yet another year of homeschooling. 


I think it would literally take me forever to catch this blog up on all the adventures our family has been on thus far so I think we will just leave at... its been good, and carry on. 






Monday, February 15, 2016

the best bits...

here are some bits of last week....
  1. river flooded again
  2. thatched roofs
  3. winter walks
  4. winter blooms
  5. winter birthdays 
  6. favourite food!! getting plenty of Vitamin D when the suns not out...  mushrooms:) 
  7. mail 
  8. wool 
  9. feeling accomplished ...spin, ply, knit repeat









and another random pic of a future diy I want to make!! we have a vintage fair coming around soon to Oxford and I am hoping to find a suitcase or 2 there and try this out!! Are these cute or what?? 


What have you been up to?? 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Storybook

There are so many things here in England that you will randomly see that really make you feel like you stepped into a fairy tale. Like this gate that I saw while on a walk. So beautiful and organic. A little bit of art and nature combined. 
I can't wait to see spring time and summer when everything is in bloom!


If you have a garden and a library you have everything you need. 
~Marcus Tullius Cicero

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Cheviot...Changes and Pancakes (Life)

I purchased some really beautiful British roving to work with. This is my first time spinning up wool from here. This type of wool comes from a sheep called Cheviot. It has been really nice to spin. The funny thing about purchasing hand painted or dyed rovings is if the person does not do it right it almost felts the wool and trying to spin from that is really not fun. You would not believe how much science goes into the whole process from sheep to yarn. I could listen for hours to the women back in my spin class in California talk about how they dyed their wool and the process involved depending on what type of dye you use. 

Here is a little info about Cheviot. They are so cute I would like a few in my back yard. Just don't tell my husband ok hehehe. 


The South Country Cheviot is a white faced hill sheep from the Scottish Borders. 
The Cheviot ewe can be found up to 3000 feet and is expected to live off the hill throughout the year. 
 The ewe has fine hard white hair on her face, over the crown and on her legs which should have a fine, flat quality bone. The fleece should be dense and firm with no kemp or coloured hair. The rams can have horns.





This week my middle son turns 18 and this year my oldest will be 20. I can hardly believe that they have grown up. Part of me has been struggling a little bit getting used to my children being grown even though they are turning into these fabulous adults. When we moved to England my oldest stayed behind to continue attending college. And pretty soon my middle son will be heading off to college as well. 

It's been a while since I have blogged about my kids so here is a long over due update on them. Noah has been attending community college and plans to get into the tag program that California has so he can transfer next year up to UC Davis and he is still planning on being an Equine Vet. He has had good grades and is adjusting really well to college life. 

Liam is almost graduated from Homeschool he has literally a few weeks left. He got accepted to Oklahoma Wesleyan University and is going for Criminal Justice. His plan is to get a masters and then join the Police Academy he would like to be a detective but then would also like to advance through the ranks. He has dreams he would like to achieve.

Anna just stated 9th grade and we are homeschooling and enjoying it still. I remember when I thought homeschooling high school was something I could never do. And here I am homeschooling these kids through high school and they are doing great. She has not decided what she wants to be yet when she grows up. She loves art and she loves animals so it will be interesting to see what direction she goes in. 
 

I am still adjusting to being here in England. I mean seriously just the other day I was about to tell my husband book me a plane ticket I want to go back to California. Normally I am pretty flexible especially with how my husbands job has had us moving over the years. I think though at this season in my life change is hitting me hard from every direction and really just has me feeling completely out of sorts. Thankfully though as soon as I feel frustrated magically the voice of my friends back in Florida seems to instantly pop into my head. And I remember her laughing and saying in a funny voice "You can't go back to Egypt" While remembering her saying this makes me laugh it also makes me recognise the truth of that statement. I wonder how often we think that in order for us to move forward we need to go back? 


I love this bible verse it has been a great encouragement to me in this season of change as well as Jeremiah 29:11. When ever I go through change it makes think about the plan or purpose for my life. I am a list writer, calendar organised planning sort of girl. And sometimes when life throws me a curve ball and doesn't look how I thought it should on paper I get all out of sorts. 

Its so good to remember that the plan, the will, the purpose, the destiny for my life is already who I in Christ. It's not a place I will end up at it is the place I am in. The purpose is not so much related to what you do as it is who you are meant to be.  

Salt of the earth, city on a hill, lamp not to be hidden kind of life. That's what I am talking about. 
so this week I am remembering not to leave off the S from the word plan in Jeremiah 29:11 but that God has planssssss! Not just one plan or direction marked off on my calendar or in my journal but that He has plans and there are a few more yet to come for me I am sure. 


My family took full advantage of Shrove Tuesday today and had pancakes. Here in England it is a much participated event. I was raised as a Catholic and attended Catholic school as a child. So of course I really looked forward to the day the Moms showed up to school with their griddles and cooked us giant pancakes. It is so much better than doing math. 

Even though I am an evangelical Christian now I do still enjoy traditions and symbolism and I still wanted to share that great feeling with my kids of having your Mom hand you a giant warm pancake with some melted butter and syrup! It just stirs in you a warm gratitude and thankfulness for life. And as a Christian a deep overwhelming gratitude for our Saviour as we near Resurrection Sunday.  Who knew some pancakes could do all that right?? You probably want my recipe now.
~Hope you have Blessed week~ 







Friday, February 5, 2016

A few of my favourite things...

I spent many years living in the drought of Southern California where everything was some shade of dry dirty sandy brown. So can you blame me that it seems everything in my life leans toward the colour of green. Here are some of my favourites right now. Fancy hair plaits, green smoothies, my home spun yarn, and lots of roasted veggies. 








Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that's the stuff life is made of!!
~Benjamin Franklin 

Green Smoothie Recipe 
1/2 cup of soaked oats (gluten free)
1 banana 
1 cup of unsweetened almond milk 
1 chopped up apple
1 packet of amazing grass super food
2 handfuls of spinach
1 scoop of protein ( I use Raw Protein)
fill the rest up with cold water 
and blend on high 

*this is vegan and gluten free 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Winter wanderings... Capturing Contentment


When we first arrived it rained constantly and there was flooding through England all the way up to Scotland. But the last 2 weeks it has been rather mild so we have been taking advantage of this weather and going for walks in the afternoon. The sun feels great and you forget how cooped up you get in the winter until you actually get outside and take some nice deep breaths and stretch your legs.


The Thames river is right behind our cottage and we follow a footpath that goes through our village and past some old ruins of an ancient nunnery and then back along the river again. 
This is really a fulfilling walk you get old trees, and pretty views. On the other side of the river is a huge pasture where the local horses live and you can walk around in there and visit with them.





I remember fondly spending hours outside in the winter playing when I was a child. This week I am thankful I remembered to act like a child again and throw on some extra layers and explore without a destination.  And guess what I  remembered how to romp around in the woods, find that perfect walking stick, get a little muddy and forget about the time for a little bit. 

~Albert Camus