Parties, cats, and strep throat

To catch up on the rest of October, here is a very miscellaneous blog post:

At the beginning of October, we hosted my XC team at our house for an outdoor end of season party. It went great!

Jake says I’ve turned into a crazy cat lady. And he’s right. I am not sure WHY these cats bring me so much joy. But they do. Maybe God knew I would need to be a crazy cat lady this year.

Why, yes, that IS a bunch of grits I spilled all over the floor….

Good truth.

We got to celebrate Pappy’s birthday with him on Wednesday, with an impromptu outside pizza picnic at their house. It was so good to be with my whole family in one place-it doesn’t happen often!

Thursday night we took the kiddos to Golly G’s to celebrate a couple of big accomplishments for both of them. Josie shared something with her class that we were very proud of her having the courage to do. Jack finished a BIG chapter book, his first really big novel. They are good kids, and we are proud of them, and this was a good, tangible way to show them that this time. They are funny, though-neither of them got ice cream! Jack wanted an iced “sunflower” latte, and Josie wanted an iced “chunky monkey” mocha. Ha! My coffee addiction has rubbed off on them.

Everyone was feeling great in this picture. But by Friday morning, Josie had a horribly sore throat. She stayed home from school, and Jake took her to the doctor- strep throat.

Saturday morning JACK woke up with a horribly sore throat- I took him to the doctor- yep, strep throat, too. The best thing about strep throat is, though, that antibiotics work FAST. They are both totally back to normal today!

We had a wonderful, much needed VERY lazy family day yesterday. We binged watched America Ninja Warrior, ate donuts and Chinese food, and just rested together. It was life-giving for sure.

Fall Break

Fall break was relaxing and much needed. The weather was beautiful-it actually felt like fall! Perfect for relaxing under blankets, coffee drinking, sitting around fires, and smore making- and there was plenty of all of those.

We went camping at Dale Hollow Dam as normal. Normally we leave Dale Hollow halfway through the week to meet Jake’s family at a state park. But this time they were staying at Standing Stone State Park, just right up the road, so we stayed put and drove over there to meet them each day. They came to us some, too.

Not pictured, but not any less important or fun: LOTS of card playing, star gazing on the beautiful clear nights, movie watching, lots of 4 square volleyball and soccer games, bike riding, reading, SO MUCH FOOD, and of course our traditional after dark hide and go seek game!

It was a good trip, and none of us were ready to come home, even after 10 days. But home is always so nice to come back to, too.

Jack’s Cross Country Season

Jack finished up cross country season in September, too, but I thought this deserved a post all to itself.

Jack, our boy with BOUNDLESS energy, finally put all that energy to good use…..he got first place for his age group (3rd-5th grade boys-usually about 20 runners) in EVERY cross country meet this season! As a fourth grader! We are pretty impressed with our little dude for working so hard and meeting his goal. Also so, so thankful for his excellent coach, who has high standards for his runners, but also makes it fun for them-Jack never left practice without a smile on his face.

Running in a rainstorm at one of the meets

His awesome coach always gathered them up at the end of every meet to talk to them.

Loved this pic another mom sent me!

After the race at our farm

Running in first place at the championship race!

He got first place at the championship race, and also got first place overall in his division for the season!

His team actually got first place overall as well-and swept the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places in the championship race!

It’s fun watching your kid succeed at something they enjoy so much! 🙂


September has been a long, hard month for many reasons that I’m not getting into here. BUT there have also been many reasons to be thankful, and many bright spots, and I AM going to get into those here. 🙂

The first week of September brought the opening of dove season, and the inaugural dove hunt at our farm-and it went well!

Jake’s work sent me this beautiful flower bouquet! What a sweet surprise.

So, so grateful for this handsome guy.

We went back to our church (in person, we’ve been watching online) for the first time since MARCH. We celebrated with a picnic Cracker Barrel lunch afterwards!

One night I made homemade apple fritters and we had a fire and Mama Judy came over. It was the perfect night for a fire. Jack even fell asleep outside. 🙂

We had a fun outdoor BBQ with our friends on Labor Day. It was so much fun to get to hang out with all of them-it had literally been MONTHS thanks to Covid.

Our church celebrated its TENTH anniversary, and we had an outdoor picnic to celebrate. I am so thankful for this place and what it means to us as a family. It has been surreal to see something through from literally the ground up.

We love our cats, just a little bit. They are a good comfort when you are having a bad day!

Just a little golf practice on a Sunday afternoon, LOL.

A little fall crafting a decorating is always in order for September. Picking out pumpkins at Smiley’s is literally one of Josie’s favorite days of the year!

Jack got to have his first official sleepover at a friend’s house. We are still being cautious with Covid….but they are together at school and XC practice, so it seemed like a moot point. He had a blast!

More sleepovers with our friends, complete with fort building and fire making and “camping out.” (Again, we are with them at school, so moot point.)

Board game night- introducing Jack to the game “Risk.”

Another project- stools/tables for our fire pit. Jake cut these a few months ago, and they’ve been drying out. They were finally ready for him to peel the bark off and sand them down, and then I put a few coats of spar urethane on them.

Yum. We now have TWO excellent coffee shops right up the road from us!

Some good truths I’ve been resting in this month.