Ben’s Birthday

8 years old!

Thanks Uncle James for the awesome Lego set!

The kids all LOVE the socks Grandma Eaton knits for them.

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FOR TODAY – Happy New Year!

Looking out my window…  the bright sunshine pouring in the windows feels so good; as do the warmer temperatures getting above 0oF during the day.

I am thankful… for warm winter gear for everyone so that we could survive our outing at -20 o F to see the start of the Copper Basin 300 sled dog race last weekend.  I do think we could benefit from some of those pocket hand warmers.  So thankful Scott had some to use while standing out there overseeing the technical stuff for broadcasting the start and finish of the race.

I am wearing… a cozy, warm turquoise and blue chenille sweater.

I am hoping… we can fit in haircuts for the boys this weekend.  Their shaggy heads are long past due for a trim.

I just finished reading… Dragonflight by Anne McCaffrey. The last time I read this I was in high school.

I am hearing… 12:30 – the furnace running (really need to get the pellet stove fixed. I don’t want to think about the fuel bill for having only the furnace running during this latest cold spell), Thomas fussing about having to go downstairs to play, the swish of the broom as Lydia sweeps the floor;

In the schoolroom… Matthew started his shop class (small engines) at the high school yesterday.  Judging by the eager way he imparts every detail of class to me when he gets home, I think it’s safe to say he is thoroughly enjoying it.

His first day of class outside homeschool so I had to get a pic of him heading off to class.

In the kitchen… I’m rearranging my menu plan to reflect what ingredients I have on hand.

I am looking forward to… someday having a couch/chair upstairs where I can curl up with my cross-stitch.

Around the house… I got another ½ a box unpacked this morning. It was a small box and the half I unpacked was rags used to fill the space, but it still counts as progress, right?

A peek at my week…

The kids enjoying being outside again after the temps warmed up.


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Matthew’s Birthday

16 Years old!

He asked for a red velvet cake. The sparkler candles were the only ones to survive the trip to Alaska.

Caleb made him a pop-up starship card.

Ready to help fill the freezer.


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FOR TODAY – Happy New Year!

Looking out my window…  this morning’s overcast skies have parted to let the sun shine through with some light wind blowing. This chinook has really warmed things up outside; from -20 last week to 30 above today.

I am thankful… for a warm house, a well-stocked freezer, and friends to ring in the New Year with last night.

One of my favorite things… family game nights.

I am wearing… rocking the homeschool mom look with my jean jumper and a green shirt today.  I’m also using my new LilaRose clip.

In the schoolroom… the kids are happy to have their desktop computer set up finally.  A full-sized keyboard is so much easier to use than a laptop when practicing typing. (It also has a faster processor for gaming when they’ve finished their schoolwork.)

In the kitchen… I need to rework my meatloaf recipe.  The leanness and flavor of the caribou just isn’t quite working with the recipe I’ve been using. Not that anyone’s complaining, but the crumbliness is bugging me. I saw a meatloaf recipe this morning that uses BBQ sauce and cheese that sounds worth trying.

Around the house… I’m excited about the hallway project Scott finished over the weekend! No more towels hanging over closet rods or stuffed in corners or damp toothbrushes molding because they’ve been tucked away in ditty bags. It feels so good to be setting up house and not living out of suitcases.


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Looking out my window…  it’s dark.  We’ve been hanging out in the subzero temps for the last week. It looks like we may be warming up a bit over the weekend though and possibly getting some more snow.

I am thankful… for a good, mostly relaxing Christmas.

One of my favorite things… Christmas butter cookies.  Scott gets me a big tin of them every year which I thoroughly enjoy.

I am wearing… jeans and a blue striped, long-sleeve t-shirt.

I am reading… The Masterpiece by Francine Rivers.

I am hoping… that we can get through this succession of sicknesses quickly and easily and that Elaina will sleep through the night again. (I don’t think she slept at all Christmas eve.)

In the kitchen… time to start thinking about the next birthday cake.  Matthew said he wants a red velvet cake.

In the schoolroom… just before Christmas we were finally able to order the first of the bookshelves I have been wanting for organizing our homeschool materials and it arrived today.  This is a huge thing for me because it means unpacking and no longer homeschooling out of the boxes we’ve been using for the last year while traveling. I want to get some baskets to go in the top shelves for their pencil bags and other small stuff. (Side note: I find it humorous that Amazon will ship a bookshelf to Alaska no problem, but when I try to order a pair of tights they say it needs special handling and can’t be shipped to my location. LOL)


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Gabe’s 5th Birthday

Having our van broken into meant spending an extra day in Anchorage, so Gabe got his wish of celebrating his birthday at Chuck E Cheese.

Gabe was so excited to get a new bike helmet since he outgrew his old one; it’s required gear for skating on the ice rinks at the school.

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Looking out my window…  a pretty sunrise is edging the clouds over the mountains with pink, but the rest of the sky is clear. The temps have edged downward again although we’re still unseasonably warm being above 0o F.

I am thankful… for friends who are generous to my kids.

One of my favorite things… reading a good book.

I am wearing… a turquoise and grey sweatshirt with jeans and no makeup.  After three Christmas potlucks in a row this week I’m feeling the need to be casual today.

In the kitchen… the kids are enjoying the leftover pie and rolls that didn’t get eaten at the potlucks.

In the schoolroom… the art class Kara was taking this quarter finished and we got to see her artwork displayed at the homeschool Christmas dinner.

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Elaina’s 1st Birthday

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Lydia’s Birthday

Starting off her birthday watching our first snowfall!

Excited about the new socks Grandma knitted for her.

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Looking out my window…  an overcast day today. Fall is tenaciously hanging on here and the snow is yet to fly.  We’ve had a couple frosty mornings and seen the snow creep all the way down the mountain, but then the chinook winds blow and it all warms back up again.  Winter’s coming though; the forecast for next week is calling for the clouds to clear off some and the temps to start falling.

Caleb raking leaves

I am thankful… to be settling in to our own home and no longer in transit, for the long fall giving us time to get settled in here, to see my husband excited about going to work, for a homeschooling community to be part of, and for a good sharathon for the radio station this year.

Scott during KCAM’s sharathon

One of my favorite things… curling up with my husband at the end of a long day.

I am wearing… a striped sweater and a pair of jeans that I need to patch where my cell phone is wearing a hole in my pocket.

I am creating… lesson plans. Slowly, but surely we are adding subjects to our school schedule as we get curriculum ordered and figure out how it’s all going to work this year.

I am hoping… for good traveling weather when we go to Soldotna in a week to visit my sister’s family and pick up our suburban from my brother.

In the garden… it’s nothing fancy, but with some help from my boys we have a spot to dump kitchen compost scraps and leaves they’ve raked up from the yard. We’ve also been cleaning out some of the garden beds, prepping them for winter.  Meanwhile, Matthew has been hard at work digging up the numerous volunteer trees that were attempting to take over the yard.

In the kitchen… I’m a bit frustrated with the cooking/baking options in this kitchen (an old finicky stove top, a tiny old wall oven that can’t fit my cookie sheets, and a microwave/convection oven combo that isn’t quite on par with a traditional oven though I’m grateful for the extra baking space), but we’re figuring out how to make it work for us and hoping for the possibility to upgrade things soon.

In the nursery… she’s walking! And quite pleased with herself about it.

A look at my week: For those curious – prices on fresh produce at our local grocery store.


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