homeschool houses, diet sabotage, and my love language

Here's what we're doing every morning and afternoon these days:

School. Lots and lots of school. 

The upside of sitting in one room doing school all day? 

The kids are so busy working they can't make messes. That's a win, right there. :)

That and the whole "they're getting and education" thing too, I suppose. ;) And hey, we get to spend all day together. We like that.

We're 3 days in, and it is definitely work. Yesterday was our hardest day yet, but that could have been because my head was pounding and the baby cried most of the day. But the other days were good, even though we're averaging 6-7.5 hours doing school. I mostly sit there with them and try not to do anything else- especially housework. So the house is gradually getting messier. And I'm trying not to care. A messier house is okay at this point, right? ;) 

I'm trying to get back into a routine slowly, including grocery shopping and menu planning again. :) We had our last meal from our church friends last week {isn't that the sweetest kind of love? I think our church excels in loving- they're the essence of Christ!}, so we're back in the game, and trying not to eat out as much as we have in the past couple of months.

I spotted these at Sam's and knew exactly what I wanted to make with them! Welcome back to my life, pumpkin sauce. :D I need good, filling food to replace my ice cream habit. I've been going easy on my usual diet since the baby came, but it's time to start eating well again. :)

But Sam's Club somehow must have known about my desire to go back to semi-healthy ways, because they stuck these out in the middle of the aisle where I couldn't ignore them, and they marked them down to $3.41 each. 2 lbs. 9 ounces of double stuf goodness for $3.41?? I'm sorry, jiggly thighs. At least I'll have plenty of calories for the baby... ;)

It was like Christmas this weekend. 240 double-stuffed Oreos, and then I got this in the mail:

Can you believe my husband ordered this for me the day I posted it, and it came by Saturday? He also ordered me the earrings. That man rocks my world. I am so spoiled. :D He knows my love language is gifts. :)

He had ordered me the very same owl necklace* a while back along with a couple of others as a surprise {it's down to 60 cents with free shipping!}:

I love him.

I suppose I need to make him dinner every now and then as a thank you. ;)

So here's the plan for meals this week- I'm still keeping it simple with ready-made ingredients:

black beans + rice
fajita tacos, leftover beans/ rice
spaghetti {no meat} + salad
brisket sandwiches + sweet potato fries + corn
pizza night
grilled cheese sandwiches

beef hotdogs {they haven't had these in a while- they're so good/bad} or turkey sandwiches + fruit + carrot + chips

frosted mini wheats

baked potatoes {I can't get enough of these!}
beef fajita meat
chicken breast

Pizza night will be Saturday since I'll be at church. I have to say I'm a little nervous about this weekend- I'm speaking at my church in our first women's night:

Would you pray for me this week if you think about it- that I would be able to say what God wants me to say, and if it's His will, speak clearly and well, and not be nervous? :) And if you're in the ETX area and are free Saturday night, I'd love to see you! Email me or fb me and I'll give you the details if you promise not to laugh at me in person. ;)

What are your plans this week?

Favorite store-bought cookie?
Mine is Danish Wedding cookies {thanks to my Mom :)}- they're hard to find!

Pumpkin fan or not?
I don't like the pie but love it in cake without the spices.


  1. Is your school room a dedicated school room? If not what other functions does it serve? Dining room or kitchen table?

    1. It's an office/schoolroom. We all sit in there every day. We used to use the dining room only, but I'm so happy we switched this year so we can walk away from the books and leave it all out every day. :)

  2. I'm speaking this weekend too @ our women's retreat. We can pray for each other! ;-) Lifting you up!

  3. Praying for you as you speak this week. Praying that the Holy Spirit speaks through you and encourages those who hear His word. You are doing important work. A clean house will come when your kids grow up, for now just enjoy being with them and teaching them.

  4. Dear Mandy, just a line to say very well done, you're doing a WONDERFUL JOB :0) So blessed and encouraged by your writing and your heart for God. Blessings to you and yours, Jacqui :0) xxx

  5. Have you read the book Large Family Logistics by Kim Brenneman? Its written by a homeschool mom of like 8 or 9 kids and it is SO great! I only have 3 with our 4th due in April, but this book has blessed me so much in showing me how to manage and organize everything. Nothing is left out! You should look it up! :) God bless and thank you for your wonderful blog!

  6. Your picture reminds me of our 2011 school year, when we started just 6 weeks after my 5th baby was born. I have pictures of the older four doing school with the baby in the bouncer. :) Such great memories. :)

  7. Your husband is seriously so sweet!!

    Can't wait to hear what you do with that pumpkin! I love that stuff but really only make breads, pancakes, pies, etc! I would love something healthy!

    Question: I always want to serve oatmeal as a morning choice, but my kids really don't love it. Even with fun toppings. Should I just serve it anyway? Maybe they'll adjust?

    1. I serve oatmeal to my children almost every day, cooked in hot milk (porridge), with sugar or honey, cinnamon, banana or apple. Either with cold milk or yogurt and fresh fruit or compote. You can also prepare a jar of homemade granola: Mix oatmeal with almonds and hazelnuts, figs and dried apricots cut into small pieces, seeds if you like sesame (...) of chocolate chips or coconut powder ... You have a choice!
      Some of my children prefer the hot version and the other the cold. Anyway, children eat what there is on the table (unless it's really something that disgust, of course!)

  8. Just remember that your house is well loved, not messy :)

    I pray for you daily! You are SUCH an inspiration!

  9. You are seriously my hero! I had my fifth baby six months ago and I know how hard it is trying to jump into normal life. My kids are a little younger(6,5,3,2, baby) but I didn't feel like I could even attempt to try doing school until a month ago. :) Good luck! You're an inspiration!

  10. Oh how sweet of your husband. It's such a blessing when they do that... A kiss on the forehead. And it's ok if your house gets messier, it's a season and it shall pass. Enjoy this time!!
    Plans this week a gathering, church and family time.
    Favorite store bought cookie: Oreo double stuff birthday cake clookie
    Pumpkin fan...yes I am same here...pie is ok with tons of whip cream, love it in drinks, muffins, cakes just about any dessert.
    Your doing an awesome job mama!!

  11. I would say that if your humility and love for all things Jesus shines though your spoken words like it does your written ones, you will be golden :)

  12. Don't feel like you have to complete every worksheet/assignment for each child. Tweak your homeschool to work best for you and the precious souls you are teaching :)

  13. Oreo's are a weakness/joy/annoying temptation at times, aren't they! lol I've been indulging in Fox's Choc Chunk cookies (from the UK)... this week there were a whole lot of them on the reduced rack. Thankfully the kids and the hubs helped eat most of them so I don't have to!
    Do you use chick peas much? I grabbed a tin of them tonight to add to fried onion, mustard seeds, Cummin seeds, a light sprinkle of whole corriander seeds, and a dash of tumeric and salt (You just chuck the spices in after the onion is looking soft, and when they have heated, mixed well and are starting to smell fab, you add the tin of drained chick peas). We put them on top of steamed potato. YUM!!!

    1. P.S. I'll be praying for you. I'm pretty sure you will do great though. Each woman has her own story to tell, and it may be that what you talk about will speak volumes of the love of God right to her heart. Keep listening for His voice and let Him take your nervousness away. :)
      Be blessed!

  14. My little guy can cry during school... a lot... too! My house is also gone to the pits. Having the kids help a lot and counting it toward Home Ec, ha!

  15. I love, love, love reading and seeing your posts. This is my first year without homeschooling after 26 years. So I am living vicariously through your posts and remembering those wonderful and often - pull my hair out - busy, busy days! Plans for week - finally cleaning/organizing the homestead :) Going to be a long process! Favorite store bought cookie? Pecan Sandies - with toffee chips! (Hard to find!) And I think I will start baking some goodies for my college kids. :) Serve in church nursery Sunday - and praying for you! I encourage you all - the journey goes way to fast. I know it doesn't seem that way some days. You are giving such a gift to your children! The payoff and privilege are beyond measure. Have a blessed week!

    1. mmm! pecan sandies with toffee? I've never seen them! Thank you so much for encouraging me!!

  16. I'm with you, I don't like pumkin pie either but I do like everything else pumpkin! Pumpkin Spice Latte's from Sbux, Pumpkin Rolls, etc. Let me guess, your Love Language is gifts? MINE toO! But I only get gifts on special occasions..birthdays, anniversaries, etc. But tomorrow is iPhone 5S release day so I'm buying myself that gift ;)

  17. What is the PUMPKIN SAUCE?? When I click on the link it takes me to a weird FB page.

    1. sorry- I fixed it! Here is the link:


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