Category Archives: Taite

New Home School Room

ED9A3746One thing that we made sure to look for when we began house hunting months ago, was a school room. This could possibly be a 5th bedroom or a den. In the case of our home, it is a den. This honestly isn’t my “first option.” Only because the room is open to one side of the house and can’t be closed off. This isn’t a big deal as far as “looks” goes… but when you have four boys in a home, while schooling an older kid, your house may be a bit to loud at times. I have debated putting in a sliding “barn style” door to close it off to the hall way that connects to our living room space… but for now its open. This room does open up to the kitchen as well, but has french doors to close it off from the kitchen if need be.

The room features beautiful bay windows. I love them. Its a tad smaller than our other house school room, but its still a great size.

Today we had our first “FULL” day of school. With the move, we kind of dabbled some here and there with some of the boys school… but held off starting officially until this week.

Next week our home school co-op group begins meeting too. So it seemed like good timing.

The day went relatively smooth. The boys are excited I think for some new curriculum. Caleb especially is stoked that we get to learn about dinosaurs this year in science using Apologia. In case you miss my post earlier this summer, here is a look at our choice of curriculum.

Below are a few more photos. A small glimpse into our day schooling.

 

 

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Toby (our cat) often hovers during school hours. Not sure why but he loves being with us, right at our feet.

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My view from the school room, looking back towards the kitchen.

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This small desk is new. I got it from Aldi for like 24 bucks. I couldn’t use our longer BLUE school table in this room. It just wouldn’t fit… so I intend to donate that table (cause it was a nice one!) to our church nursery room. Hopefully they will enjoy it as much as we did.


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Its funny, when I look at what Caleb (age 11 – 5th grade) is doing, I am like “wow… my baby is so grown, his books look so complicated now… ” Thank the Lord for DVDS that help to teach 5th grade and up… cause Lord knows I need that haha.. I can teach Owens age (grade K) with almost no guidance now. After doing it with two other kids, you almost have the lessons memorized. :) Funny how when you first start home schooling it scares you to death… I was always so fearful I was going to screw up my kindergartner… and that he would never learn to read. Thankful I stuck with it, I surprised myself and doubted for no reason.

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Trip to Riverbank Zoo

Love these #aquarium pockets #columbiazooLast Thursday we got to go to the Columbia Zoo. Its also called Riverbank Zoo. It is a 140 acre zoo here in South Carolina… and I must say, It was very nice. We had a membership to the Atlanta Zoo last year and the Riverbank Zoo has it beat. It had a good number of indoor facilities too around the park, so if you got hot, you could regroup inside. The Penguin exhibit I think was our boys favorite. It was either that or the Giraffes. Although the aquarium they had was very nice as well.

A church member gave us free passes to go. My parents even drove up to visit and came with us. So it was a nice treat.

I do believe we will go back and purchase the membership for the year. It was most def. a place I could see going lots with the boys.

I didn’t take my camera with me… but I did take my iphone… so below are a few memories from the trip. :)

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I am not sure Reed liked the Croc.

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He love the #giraffes - so friendly! #columbiazoo

The bears were so cute taking a bath.

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The boys got a kick out of the turtles fighting over a flower.

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Since we got in for free, we treated the boys to “1” activity. Older two picked rock climbing. Younger to, Carousel.

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& to end, we saw the Apes. So cool! Taites remark when we left “Mom did you see that one Ape eat his booger?” Boys :)

Their communicating. ? #columbiazoo #gorilla

Things to learn about farm life :) – Update on House

Since moving to this beautiful farm. Things I have learned very quickly.

ED9A2899There are a lot more bugs here than in the city. While we still saw roaches, crickets, spiders and ants in the city… it just wasn’t as many. Maybe having pest control people spray, really does help… :-D Either way, lots of bugs here! When you need to go fishing. Set a wheel barrel upside down and you have a huge supply of black crickets at your disposal. Leave food out, within seconds, lots and lots of ants.

One way I have repelled ants naturally while living here too, is to use Cinnamon Bark Oil and Peppermint Oil. I put it into a spray bottle with some water, shake it well and spray it around any cracks and areas ants may be coming in. The first few nights here we had issues with small black ants getting into the kids beds. Yup… They weren’t biting but they did wake you. The Cinnamon and Peppermint spray did wonders. So I do recommend that. Smells good too!

For those scared away by the huge price tag on the Cinnamon Bark. Do know that having that oil in your oil collection is worth it. I use it constantly! Its one of my go to to treat illness… and I use it in my immune strength blend I make for the kids. Because I own all the oils in the Immune Strength Oil Blend, I actually just make up my own now. Saves on cost I think. Plus I can add more or less of a certain oil depending on what I want.

ED9A2904Oh and for MOSQUITOES I am using THIS recipe. Oddly enough since living here we haven’t noticed many mosquito’s. Maybe they are to busy biting the horses to worry with us? :)

Another thing about the Country life I have learned… is that I am highly allergic to horses. Like for real allergic. Not just a small allergy. A, swell up, hives, close your throat up kind of allergy. The awesome guy who owns this land and horses, treated our boys to some horse back riding this weekend. These horses are POLICE TRAINED horses too. They’re amazing. The boys got to comb the horses… hear a little bit about their training… and then ride. I could tell pretty early on during the “barn” combing period… that my allergies were already beginning to flare up… but I figured it would be no big deal and Id be fine once I got home. Well, I decided to ride the horse for 2 minutes… and I guess that did it. Within minutes of leaving and getting home my upper lip swelled up like a balloon. Got hives all over it. My eyes swelled and got red and itchy… I then broke out in hives up and down my arms and legs!! and then my throat began to tighten. Making it hard to swallow. I was shocked at how bad I got and how fast it all happened. I took some medicine and it took a solid 3 hours before I started to feel better and the swelling went down.

So despite how beautiful horses are… I am going to keep my distance.

Another thing I have realized. My boys love dogs. This place is full of them! The owner has a former police German Shepherd named Bolow. (not sure on the spelling haha). He also has a Great pyrenees dog called Buzz. He is HUGE!! There is also a lab (I forget her name). She is so sweet and will continue to bring you a tennis ball over… and over again until you play with her. Here is a photo of Owen playing with her.

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The owner also has these two small poodles that chase our boys. They think its hilarious! So lots of furry friends out here to see. It kind of sort of makes me want a dog. However, I am allergic to them… so I’m not sure it work out. Travis really isn’t into the “hypoallergenic” dogs either. Im allergic to cats as well but Toby our cat doesn’t seem to agitate my allergies, as long as he doesn’t get in my face. So a dog may not be to bad. Still, in time. I defiantly am in no rush to own a dog.

I love the sights here… We are so thankful to have this quaint place to keep our family during this time of waiting.

It will be a place we will forever remember. Its been fun to build memories here.

Here are a few more photos from our horse riding adventure.

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ED9A2930We also have met a new friend since living here.

A few days after being on the farm I got a phone call from a friend of ours back in Atlanta. She was actually a neighbor too! Lived in our neighborhood and went to church with us. She was a home school mom of 5 as well. Her kids were all much older than mine… but I liked that. Always nice to connect with moms who are a few years older who you can learn from. Any how, she called me up and told me her Niece just moved to the same town we just moved too! That her niece just had her 2nd baby girl and that we’d get along well. So she gave me her information and she gave her Niece my info. A few days later we connected, hung out at the pool and got to know each other. We discovered they are living in a neighborhood within walkin distance to the farm! In fact her backyard backs up to the farm! Crazy coincident huh? Her girls are adorable!!! We got to see them again Sunday morning at church and invited them out to the farm to see the horses as well. My boys got to ride her 17 mo. old little girl on the horses and I must say, it made me want a 5th baby haha… was very sweet to see.

Its really cool how God brings people into your life in such a cool way. This family also CAME from the same city in Atlanta, Woodstock, that we came from. So they are familiar with our former life there…They even attended the same church we went to while there… we just never ran into each other.

We are excited to get to know them better.

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Now… Update on the house we are buying.

We had the inspection done… and it came back with some pretty big issues. 1. Termites. There were some in the front den, which had caused some rot problems in the sub floor. So the subfloor and a portion of the hard wood floors in that room have to be replaced. When we heard this, we kind of expected they’d say no to the repair and re-list house for more, fix the floors and hope to make more money off the sale… we offered 10K less than asking.. so we just weren’t sure what to expect.

There were a few other issues that needed attention… over all they’ll prob spend 3-6K fixing these problems. Roughly. We wrote up the addendum with the realtor and sent it over to the sellers agent. To our surprise they agreed to fix EVERYTHING we asked for. So that is going to be happening the next few weeks… and if all goes as planned we close on August 17th.

I have had some wavering back and forth. Wondering if we got the right house… doubting… dwelling on “what ifs” and worrying myself to death about it! Buying a house is a big deal… and when we went looking for a home I so desired one really close to the church. Since that is what we knew prior in ministry. We always lived very close. However, after looking at 30 some homes, we just realized that may not happen this time… The house we found is 16 minutes from the church. We timed it last night :) – so it really isnt THAT FAR… even tho it kind of feels like it right now. It isn’t next door… its not within walking distance… but its close enough. We also will be in a great neighborhood with beautiful large oak trees and shade. The yard is almost an acre… shaded… with grass and woods for the boys to play around. A beautiful wrap around porch… and lots of charm. Its also on a very large and nice cul-de-sac!

So it is a great home.

… and I’m having to trust the Father that if this isn’t meant to be, it wont happen… and who knows, it may happen… and we may move in 3 years to a closer house. I’m going to try really hard not to live in the “what may come” limbo phase tho… and hope that once we move in there, I can make it our own and plant some roots.

I think our history of moves has made this very hard… but it is something I greatly desire.

House-side Fishing

ED9A2868The temporary housing we are living in right now, has turned out to be such a special place. While I look forward to getting into our own home, the charm of living on a farm has been really special.

The trailer we are in is at the back of a 100 acre farm… and we are not only surrounded by horses on both sides and the front… but we also have easy access to a beautiful pond.

Saturday Travis took the boys fishing there… and while we didn’t have much luck ;-) – it was still really cool to just be able to walk there and enjoy the outdoors. One thing we are learning though, is in South Carolina, if you intend to do anything outdoors… do it before it gets to hot. Seems like before 10am here its already 90F… gets so hot, so fast.

I want to invest in some insulated water bottles for the kids too… they complain about being thirsty constantly now, and plastic water bottles just don’t stay cold long enough. I was hoping to find a bottle that had some sort of SLING for the kids to wear it across their chest? Does anyone know of something like that available for children? That way I don’t have 4 water bottles shoved into my purse… Id love for them to have something THEY can carry on their own.

Below are a few more photos from the morning :) Enjoy.

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They caught their own bait. Crickets!

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This is walking “away” from the Trailer. Towards the pond.

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This is what you see if you turn around. :) Thats our cute little trailer we are in currently.

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Here is one of the horses near the house.

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Wifi is on!

After a couple weeks without Wifi, I can honestly say, we are glad its back on. :-) While it is nice to disconnect… with a business… and little ones, it is nice to have a wifi signal. Not to mention we have used up an insane amount of data on our phones. Even just looking up houses used up like 50% of our data in a week! No bueno. So Wifi is on… and even though we will have to relocate our wifi and all that jazz in August when we move again (to the home we are buying)… it will be worth having for the time being.

SO updates.

ED9A28011. Its hot in SC. Our dash said 106! Its only July too. From what we understand August is even hotter. I think my body is in the adjustment period this week… as I broke out in a weird rash on my face. To me it looks like a heat rash. I have sensitive skin to begin with though. So it could by my face adjusting to well water (we use to be on city)… also we are living on a farm near horses. Im allergic to horses… so maybe their dander is in the air? :) who knows. All I know is I’m looking a wee rough today… and hoping that 2 days indoors out of the heat will clear things up.

2. Kids are ready to move into our new house. They have really loved being on the farm here… but living out of boxes just is not fun. We don’t know where the majority of our stuff is… our boys have very few toys left out.. so we are relying on their “kindles” for entertainment. I look forward to setting up our home school room and getting back into the routine of some actual structure for them. They need it! They also really miss their trampoline and being able to ride their bikes and scooters. You can’t ride scooters and bikes here in thick sand. Just doesn’t work. I do know when we move from this farm they will miss the great pool we have access too… and the freedom farm life allows. Its nice to be able to hose off our kids naked in the backyard without worries of anyone seeing. :) I also love the sunsets here. So beautiful.

3. Now that I have Wifi ill begin plugging my business away in the nearby cities. Its hard when you relocate a business… but I have high hopes with some extra hard work I can get busy again here like I was in Atlanta.

That’s really all the news to share.

Things are going well at the church. Travis is staying busy setting his office up… and making connections in the area. We have lots of ideas for the church and hopefully in time we can apply those. Excited to see what God does.

Below are a few photos taken on the 4th of July before our move btw. I didn’t get a chance to share them! So thought Id share them now. :)

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Letting go

The last few weeks as you all know have been a little harder than normal. Lots of changes happening… the natural trials with moving a family of 6, selling our first home… and on top of it all sickness making its way through our family and then crippling myself for over a week. Not at all ideal or the way I would have liked things to go, had I had a choice. In the midst of the sickness and settling in, my Abuela passed away (my moms mom…) she lived in Panama (central america) and the last time I saw her was about 5 years ago. Its the one thing I hated about living so far from family… you just couldn’t see each other as often as you wished. Saddness came from not knowing her more :( and of course seeing my mom loose her mom. I hated I couldn’t go with her but the timing just wasn’t what it needed to be for me to go. My mom got to Panama safe though and all is okay. Mourning will happen… and she will be very much missed. Thankful this is not our family home and we will see loved ones we miss who know the Lord, again. Throughout it all I have had to learn to press through those hard times and understand, its only a season… Throughout our struggle, no matter what it may be, we are always strengthened and God can without a doubt use it for His Glory in the end.

We still do not have wifi. Using just our cell phones is eating up data too… so I am having to be careful not to allowed the kids to watch netflix… or stream any sort of videos that will eat up our data. You don’t realize how much “wifi” you use until its gone. :) We know we need it though for my business… unloading albums with 100+images at 20MB an image, results in a lot of usage… so Wifi is on the way. However, it won’t be installed until the 20th. SO! until then, not much blogging will happen. Boo. I miss it!

I am however on instagram daily usually and updating on there. So be sure to follow me there @dreawood.

Right now the next step in our journey is to find a home. A few people have been asking me what happened with the other house we had made an offer on. Well, things happened that were not in our control and that house is no longer an option. It is what it is and like all things, you move on. No reason to dwell in what isn’t.

Im at peace with things and I know that there is a home out there that God has for our family. Even if it isn’t “my timing” like many things :) – it will all be okay in the end.

For now, I am so thankful! We have the most amazing place to stay right now.

We are living on like a 100 Acre farm! Surrounded by horses, donkey, geese and even a camel! I can’t recall if I wrote about that in the last post… so if I did, forgive the repeating. :)

This farm has a sweet 4 bedroom double wide trailer on it that the owner has graciously allowed us to live in for as long as we need. Such a blessing. He is such an evidence of generosity… I know some people who are so greedy with their possessions… their money… and to me, that is no way to live. Scripture even speaks on being givers… and blessing others with our riches. I am thankful for this awesome man who gave us this special temporary home. It has all we need… and to add awesomeness to the already beautiful surroundings, theres an in ground pool WITH SLIDE for our boys to use daily.

Our first Sunday for those curious did go very well. People embraced us and the kids had a good time too. It of course will take adjusting to. Any move like this takes time to adjust to. I had to leave so many special friends of mine back in Atlanta… ladies I am thankful via txt, Facebook, instagram and phone calls will be able to keep up… but still, you miss them… the last minute play dates, or Panera bread ladies night outs. The thrifting trips I use to go out on… and so forth.

I had someone on instagram ask me for advice on how I cope with the change and moving… and my only advice is to prepare yourself for some loneliness in the sense, you will miss parts of your “former home.” You are allowed to feel sadness and yet still know confidently that its going to be okay. One thing I often pray for during our moves, is that God would bless me with friendship. I think its important to ask these things… and reach out.

I hope this is our last move for a very long time. After 12 years of marriage… 9 moves. 4 churches… and even a change in my husbands career as a cop for almost 3 years… lets just say, I’m super ready for some roots. At least for the next decade! If not more.

Thankful for Grace during the moments im not so gracious… and so thankful the boys seem to be doing well with this transition. They are still young enough I believe that this will not hinder them the way I think it would have, had they been older and had more established friendships. I know they’ll miss their Atlanta friends and home/stomping grounds… but since moving here, I have not heard them express sadness or wanting to go back. So for that, I am thankful. Thats helped me more than they realize. :)

Travis’ first sermon (officially) went really well… I am excited to see the moving God can do in this area of SC… and for what is to come.

Thank you all for the prayers. I will include a few images in this post taken from my instagram :) – I can’t post “real camera” pictures until wifi is set up. So until then, this will do.

Blessings!

 

This is the view from the yard beside the double wide we are in. Beautiful huh?

The pool near the house. Behind this pool to the right is where we stay.

This is a walking trail behind the double wide. Goes back a longggg way! We even found a creek.

 

Sickness and Roadblocks

Thought Id type up a quick update while I had the ability. We have no internet but im using my phone as a hot spot to do a little “house hunting…” yup… you read that right. We may very well have to look for another house to buy. Out of respect for the seller of the house we wanted, im not going to get into the details… but in short, she may not want to sell.. which puts us back on the drawing board. Legally its a bit of a mess… she may have some hefty fees to pay but we arent malicious people and would never sue (even tho we’d have the right in this situation). So as of right now, we wait… and will continue to live in the temp housing we are at currently.

The temporary home we are in is awesome though. It is small, its a double wide but in good shape. Has 4 bedrooms.. so I cant complain. It is on about 100 acres!! surrounded by horses, a lake and even a camel. The owner is extremely generous. He has given us access to his in ground pool with slide too. He has two awesome dogs who patrol (one is an ex- police german shepherd). So we feel very safe here. He even allowed us to bring Toby our cat, so we feel complete her for the time being. We do not have all our furniture and we are living out of suit cases… but we have a kitchen table set up, living room furniture, our mattresses (on the floor), a desk for my computer… and a TV. Obviously a kitchen too. :) Its all you need. Im finding peace in the simplicity of it. The only snag I feel I will run in to is having to go ahead and purchase my boys school materials without having a school room set up. We will have to be flexible though and just school on our kitchen table… and keep things minimal. Main subjects… It’ll all be okay. I just don’t want to get to behind.

This week has without a doubt been very hard though. The move itself, very hard… moving with 4 kids across two states is not easy… to add even more stress, I got very sick. Thursday evening really late I spiked a high fever. Then my ear began to really hurt.. like very bad… on a sale from 1-10, 10 being labor… it was like a 7.5. I have never experienced ear pain like that. I had to go to urgent care saturday the day of our “loading the moving truck” Doc prescribed an antibiotic for me. After a week almost, no change. In fact it was worse. Yesterday I had a break down because of the constant pain I was in… that we had to go to another urgent care (this one in SC)… where the Doctor checked my ear out… still very badly infect and apparently my congestion was just not letting up. So she put me on a steroid… and drop antibiotics (just for the ear), flonase and zyrtec. I feel like a drug addict haha.. on top of it, I was in such pain I started to cry at the Doctors office… the Doc. I think had sympathy for me and asked if I wanted a shot for pain. Heck yea. haha. So I got my 1st ever shot in the butt. She then prescribed me some pain killers to manage the ear pain until it cleared up…

Today I feel a little better but I think thats due to the pain meds. My ear is still so stopped up. I cant hear hardly any… but I think with all these things, ill be better soon…

I hope :)

When it rains it pours, right?

Thank you all for the prayers. Do continue to pray for our family.