Updates from the Homestead

The last two or three weeks has been kind of busy and lots has happened. Tests taken, milestones reached, and changes in our household have all been the cause of the busyness.

My daughter Emily went to visit friends in California for a few weeks. She really needed the break and also had an opportunity to do a little volunteering in an art center and for the local city hall there in Cali. She is having a great time.. but it has also provided her the opportunity to focus on the last 9 credits of her degree. Hopefully very soon she will be done with the last of her online classes! In the meantime Jacob immediately claimed her bedroom while she was gone! LOL.. I told Em that she would have to work that one out with him when she got back home. While I know she is having a super trip, she has sure been missed here at home…

My daughter Leanne took her drivers test yesterday and passed!! We were both so excited!! She is now a licensed driver. That makes 5 children I have taught to drive and 3 to go.. ~smile~

If you have been a reader of my blog for awhile then you probably remember me whining about the job of teaching my kids to drive. I really dislike the process.. mostly because getting a new driver behind the wheel and heading into town at 55 miles an hour through twisty curvy highway is one of those “white knuckle” types of experiences I honestly could do without. Once we arrive at our destination I feel like getting on my knees, praising the Lord, kissing the ground and grabbing the keys back from that child and taking over.. haa..haa… But eventually we get beyond that and before I know it they are driving into the big city and all over the place without issue.

I still rank teaching my kids to drive as the most difficult parenthood job there is.. 18 years of diapers was easier.. :) So yesterday when Leanne passed that test.. well let me tell you, it was like I passed it too and we both celebrated by getting an iced coffee at Starbucks for the drive home.. Now on to teaching Jacob..

I am super proud of my son Jacob. He is now officially done with homeschooling!! He took his 5 GED tests and has passed them all with great scores. Now he will be working on his college education. He has decided he would like a degree in criminal justice. He will get his first year CLEP’s done and then will be joining College Plus! He has also just started drivers ed in town (see paragraph above for my opinion on this.. ;) In between testing, bus rides into town to go to drivers ed and helping hubby with a few projects he has been working the hay season. He says he is getting real good at keeping his balance while riding on the top of several bales of hay as the truck and trailer move on down the field.. As a mother I try not make this a real vivid picture in my mind.. LOL..

Also this month we celebrated my hubby’s birthday! It was a lot of fun. His brother and wife came along with my oldest son and his wife and even my kids invited friends! We barbequed salmon and I made potato salad, coleslaw and my father in law brought some pizza, which was a big hit with the kids. The pic is of Jacob and Tobin.

Leanne made Tobin two of the most delicious cheesecakes for dessert (one was a cherry cheesecake and the other was a chocolate marble cheesecake). Everyone kept saying how professional they looked and how wonderful the tasted. She decided after that day that she was going to start making more cheesecakes.. lucky us!!! :) I will post the links to the websites she got the recipes from and the changes she made in the next blog post.

In between getting kids to testing and jobs as well as the grocery shopping I have been keeping the wheels in the home turning. Sierra and Isaac have been a real help with household chores and cooking. And on the quiet, warm afternoons you can usually find me working in my garden, swimming in the pond and enjoying the sun.

That is all the updates from my homestead for now.. hope you are all having a great week! :)


  1. Fun and eventful days for your family! I agree with you on the teaching your kids to drive...NOT my favorite parts of being a parent. I have one that I'm teaching now, one that will start in November and one more to go. My oldest son learned a couple of years ago. Having them back to back is SUPER hard on a mamma and her nerves for sure! :-)

  2. Had 3 in row with the driving..Tried it and couldn't do it. Hubby did all the teaching..That is one thing I had no part of..I am not a good passenger in a car..I have to have control of the wheel. So I do all the driving..I have been known to grab the wheel as a passanger..My hubby will attest to that while we were dating..All 3 took drivers ed..which I am very thankful for..All took the course in the winter and they taught them how to drive in the snow..Best thing that ever happened...

    Sounds like a very busy time for you...May your day be filled with many Blessings..

  3. Hi Crystal!

    I just have to tell you- it's *business* not 'busyness'.


  4. Can't wait for Jacob to join us at CollegePlus! It must be exciting for you as you launch him.



  5. Anon. in Crystal's case it busy-ness :)

  6. Hi Anonymous.. I meant 'busyness' as in:

    busy·ness n.
    Synonyms: busy, industrious, diligent,
    These adjectives suggest active or sustained effort to accomplish something. Busy, the most general, sometimes indicates constant and customary work or activity: a busy lawyer; a busy day.

    and not business... as in:
    busi·ness (bzns)
    1. The occupation, work, or trade in which a person is engaged
    (that was from thefreedictionary.com)

  7. Hi Caitlin! We are super excited about Jacob starting CollegePlus.. hopefully this fall!! :)

  8. Wow..you really have been busy!!! I didn't realize you that many kids. I think my uncle has you beat with 9 kids...but they're all out of the house now.

    Congrats on teaching 5 , so far, to learn how to drive. That is quite an accomplishment!!! Oh, my birthday, can I have it at your house? the way you described all the food, sounded so good...and it sounds like the entire family had a great time. What a blessing that is :) :)

    Have a great rest of the week. Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

  9. I also do not like driver's training. In Michigan, the kids must take driver's training first at a class for two hours each day for three weeks (24 hours). During that time they also drive with the instructor after (or before the class) for 6 hours. Then they have to drive with a parent for 50 hours--ten of which is night time driving and the rest daylight. That takes about a year. Then they take a road test with a certified tester that takes about an hour and most kids fail that the first time because it's a way for these companies to make big bucks! After they pass that they can get their licenses!


  10. Hi Crystal, Love visiting your blog and your monthly newsletters. Your garden is beautiful. Isn't it amazin' how quickly the days go by!!!
    God bless you. Cynthia

  11. Hey, I just heard from someone that there is a way to do drivers education on line... and you only have to go take tests or something. :) Sounds like you all have been busy!!

  12. So funny, about the driving lessons! I agree totally, but I always ranked it up there with potty training! LOL ! Elly Mae


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