Two week update


We have now been home for two weeks and find ourselves fully entrenched in routine and reality. The after vacation glow is but a sweet memory as we jump into the school year with both feet. Our days are filled with the usual demands on a family’s time: school work, home care, meals, dishes and laundry. There are phone calls to return, lessons to prepare, orthodontist appointments, lessons, and holiday preparations.

We are officially back to reality. 🙂

Here is a peek of what we have been doing with our time…

We have been returning phone calls and sorting mail.

You can imagine the stack we returned home to after a seven week absence. The pile of mail was impressive! Among the stack of bills and piles of junk mail was a fun surprise. Rusty had received a letter from Senator Robert Casey. As part of Boy Scout Camp Rusty worked on earning his Citizenship in the Nation merit badge. One of the requirements was to write a letter to a senator. Rusty was surprised and pleased to get a letter back addressing his concerns and answering his questions.img_7814-2

He also was thrilled to receive a package in the mail. It was a birthday gift from Uncle Travis, my brother. Rusty was thrilled with the gifts Travis picked out!


The kids have been working hard these past two weeks trying to submit all their assignments before the end of the first quarter which ends today at 4:00pm. They did an impressive job of keeping up during our seven week trip, despite the stops, the site seeing and the sketchy internet service along the way, but even with their diligent effort they have had to put in long hours since our arrival home to make sure their grades were where they needed to be before the quarter ended.

Ozzie will be joining the big kids in 21st Century Cyber Charter School beginning Wednesday with the start of quarter two. He is excited and I think the change will be a good fit for him. He received his school Apple computer in the mail on Friday and can’t wait to get started on this new adventure in his educational journey!


When they have had free time the kids have enjoyed playing with the toys they hadn’t seen for two months. It is like having a room full of new toys to play with:


Puzzle time!

Grace has been creative. Inspired by our trip to Disneyland she added some magical new details to the ocean scene she painted when we had our fun Bob Ross night in August. It is now a magical scene from Peter Pan with the added silhouettes of some familiar characters and a little fairy dust. Didn’t it turn out well?!


Molly has been making up for lost driving time. Needless to say, she didn’t log any time with her driving permit in the big school bus, so she has been chompin’ at the bit to get back behind the wheel. She is getting closer to being ready for her driving test in a few months.


Rusty had a fun science lesson the other day. He was the third of my kids to enjoy this fun lesson that involves receiving a package in the mail containing all sorts of yummy treats from the science teacher. These treats are then used as part of an online lesson, to learn the parts of a cell by creating delicious model cells. The reward for a job well done…a yummy after school treat!


Toby is now in Michigan for 6 weeks but before he left we managed to fit in a family night of pumpkin carving. Always a favorite tradition, the kids eagerly look forward to this activity that combines creative expression with messy fun.


The kids all came up with their own design and executed their visions brilliantly.


It is fun, now that they are all old enough to scoop and carve the pumpkins themselves, to just sit back, watch, and document the fun with photographs.


Here are their finished designs:

Rusty did a Gengar Pokémon pumpkin. Grace did Disgust from Inside Out. (Hint: Gracie’s pumpkins typically reflect our costume choices). And Molly covered her pumpkin with words she punched into it using hammer and nails.


The little boys also carved their own designs.

Ozzie jack o’ lantern face was charming!


Tyler carved Shrek. Love it!


It has been a busy two weeks but busy with wonderful things!



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