Category Archives: Plans for our Dream Life

Simplifying in 2011

One of my New Year’s plans is to simplify things.  This is a tough one for me, because I have so many interests and I love diversification… but I have decided that one of my simplifications will be moving this blog over to Blogspot, as I have a few others over there as well.  Having everything together in one place will be easier on me, I hope, and I hope that it won’t be too much trouble for you, either.  🙂

In the meantime, I may post a few more things here, and this site will remain up for some time, but please check us out at Making Our Dream Life Happen over at the new site.  There are some exciting changes coming up this year for us, so I hope to see you there!

As always, I enjoy hearing from you, so please check us out, and I hope to see you there!!!

I’m also going to post a quick list of blogs that I have.  Some of these are new, and some have been around but quiet for a while.  I have plans to keep these blogs going, and a plan for regular updates on them.  Please feel free to check them out as well, and drop me a quick line, letting me know that you found me.  🙂

My photography blog.

My photography website.

Inked in the South.

As I said, I’m pretty sure I’ll be back by within a couple of weeks, so feel free to leave me a comment here, but I’ll be checking the new blog daily.  🙂

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Filed under Education, Free Stuff I find, My Writing, Our Businesses, Parenting, Plans for our Dream Life, Trips, Uncategorized

What we’ve been up to

OK, so basketball and NaNoWriMo (for me) has had us pretty silent for a few weeks.

I’ve already tooted my own horn everywhere else, so I’ve got to do it here.  I WON NaNoWriMo this year!!!  To understand what a major accomplishment I am, see my post titled Finally Someone Understands Me.  🙂  Then check out the graph below.  I hit two plateaus, but managed to push through them, which is the big accomplishment part.  I’m still working on finishing the book (still have a chapter to go), then I’ll have a major round of editing to do on it, and it’ll be ready for first readers.  This is the first novel I’ve (nearly) finished, so it’s very exciting for me.

Then, Chris has been playing basketball.  We average 3 games per week, so that keeps us pretty busy.  They’ve been doing GREAT, and have a 7-2 record so far.  Coach just enrolled them for the state tournament in February in Frisco, and we’re all really excited about that, too.  They have a ton of games between now and then, though, so we’re keeping focused on December games.

The twins are still working on copy books, their letters, numbers, reasoning (i.e., which pictures are smallest, which are largest, etc.).

Chris has hit a small snag with his schoolwork.  Our computer has a file that’s corrupted, so he’s not able to do math, science & bible at the moment.  So we’re concentrating on English, Grammar, Spelling, Vocabulary, and History, and we’ll have to get it fixed so he can get caught up on the three he’s missing.

We’re all doing a unit study on Alaska, which includes reading aloud from a book about Alaska (reading, grammar), watching videos of the Alaska Highway being built, the Alaska Pipeline being built (both History), and tomorrow, I’m going to pick up a video about the Aurora Borealis (Science).  We also have geography cards that the boys look at and look up where we’re reading about as we read our books.  I’ve included a travel guide for Chris, so he can look up the city we’re reading about, and see what all there is to see in Alaska in that area.  We look up the weather patterns in Alaska, highs and lows, talk about earthquakes, snowfall, etc. for Science.  We map and try to figure out distances from one place to another for Math, and look up information online.  This has been one of our first full unit studies, the first I’ve put together on my own, so it’s been fun to try to figure out how to include all subjects based around a unit.

In other news, Chris (14) is going through that phase where he would rather hang out with adults than children, which is very typical of this age.  But he still is seriously lacking in manners and etiquette.  A lot of this was realized at Thanksgiving, so I’m looking for a good secular book on manners and etiquette for boys.  We’ve come a long way on his table manners, and he no longer tries to talk to people about how much money they make or have (grin), and mostly about not talking about religion and politics to anyone he encounters, but I’m still missing some of the basics, such as:  a) not interrupting.  When he walks into a room, he pays no attention as to who else is talking, but just starts;  b) not bugging adults to play with him.  He loves basketball.  This is great, but he pesters adults to play with him when there’s a bunch of people here;  c) sensing someone’s mood.  He has no idea when it’s alright to joke and when it’s best if he doesn’t.  His dad and I will be having an intense discussion about something that’s upsetting to us for one reason or another, and he feels it’s perfectly okay and appropriate to pipe in with a joke.  There are others, but these are the most frequent.  I have tried giving him examples, and I continue to try to correct him when it happens, but sometimes I’m not sure how to explain it to him.  So I’m putting this out there, wondering if you’ve heard of anything that would help with this.  🙂

Other than that, hubby and I are both still looking for jobs.  We haven’t decided how we’re going to handle schooling once we get them, but I guess we’ll decide when/if we get to a point where we are both working, or both have the opportunity to work.  Construction is still really really tight around here, so my options are looking better than his right now.  Maybe he’ll be a homeschooling dad for a while, while I work.  We’ve always been a pretty non-traditional family, so that’s a definite option.  I keep telling myself that no matter what, it’s all steps towards our dream life.  In the meantime, even families with big dreams need to eat!  🙂

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Filed under Education, My Writing, Parenting, Plans for our Dream Life

Chris’s new business

Chris (our 13-year-old) has started making and selling The Disciple’s Cross.  He’s been really excited about making them, and finding them new homes.  🙂  We’re working on fixing his Facebook account (don’t know what’s wrong with it, but he no longer has access to it), and getting him set up with his own page, but for now, I wanted to give everyone ordering information.  He’s excited about sharing his ministry and his business.  If you know someone who might be interested, please share this post!

Here’s a sample:

Individual orders are $9.99 each, with discounts for multiple crosses ordered at once.  Each cross comes packaged with a tag explaining the significance of each of the elements that make up the cross, and packaged in a bag for easy gift giving.  They are easily shipped ($5.00 S & H for one, $1.00 Handling each and actual shipping for multiple crosses) and can be ordered to your choice of colors, or can be picked up in Victoria, TX to avoid the charge.

If you’d like to order a Disciple’s Cross from Chris, please feel free to leave a comment here with your email address, and Chris will send you an order form.  He accepts checks and money orders in person or by mail, or I can send you an invoice through PayPal, where you can pay via credit card, PayPal funds, or e-check.

I’ll do another post soon, listing colors available.  All orders are shipped within 3 business days of receipt.

With the holidays right around the corner, you can get a jump start on your shopping!  =)

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Filed under Our Businesses, Parenting, Plans for our Dream Life

Our Dream Life that others are living :)

Some of these websites I’ve visited quite a bit.  If you take bits and pieces of each of them, you’ll find families that are living my “Dream Life”.

This was the first blog I found… ever… that matched what we want to do almost perfectly. 🙂

Here’s another great family living life on the road.  What I really like about this one is that she pulls no punches.  She tells you just how tough life on the road can be.  My hubby’s not a pipeliner, but if we actually did this, he’d be doing shut-downs (he’s an electrician), and so our life would be very very similar, I’m sure.  Road Mommy:  Adventures of a mom on the road.

Here’s a really neat site.  She’s gone tons of photos, and it’s beautiful!  Walk Slowly… Live Wildly.

Another is Poor Pitiful Pearl.  I found her button, so I’m including it:

Photobucket
Alternative Name

I’ve included this family at another blog in my sidebar, but wanted to post their new blog here.  It’s just getting started, but it’s another great blog!  We Live Creatively.

That’s it for today.  I know our “DREAM LIFE” is still years away… today it seems farther away than other days.  Until our finances get back up to speed, and we’ve leveled out some…   But it’s so cool to see others who are living the way I want to live.  That it can be done, that it’s not for everyone, but it might just be for us…

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Filed under Free Stuff I find, Plans for our Dream Life

It’s official – homeschooling mom-teacher of three

our homeschoolers

After MUCH debate, and several conversations with each child and each other, Hubby and I made a monumental decision this weekend.  We are homeschooling all three children now.

I’m terrified and excited.  I know it will be good for us, both as a family and individually.  This is one step closer to our dream life.  I always wanted to be a teacher, and now I’ll be teaching my children, each in the way that they learn best.  I’ve done the research, I’ve paid careful attention.  I can do this!  We can do this!!

But I have concerns, too.  What if I can’t do as good of a job with the littles?  What if I find I don’t have the patience?  The fortitude?  The whatever-it-takes to get it done?  What if we really need me to go back to work?  I’m finding there’s a lot more nerves there than I thought there would be.  A lot more questions than answers.  But I’m also confident that it’s the right choice.  With Hubby working out of town, the responsibilities to get the kiddos where they each need to be falls on me.  I’ve already taught Kyle how to read, and Kody is well on his way.  Kyle will continue to have more doctor’s appointments than most kiddos his age, due to his allergies.  And with Daddy being out of town, it’s tougher to stick to a school schedule.  Taking all of those things into consideration, we decided that the uncertainty is worth the plunge.

If I am low on patience, then I’ll schedule more mommy-time when I can get it.  I’ll spend more time visiting family, and getting out and about to museums, the zoo, and other activities that will keep the littles occupied and still be learning activities.  I’ll also be better able to participate in some of the homeschool days activities.  If we get desperate for a second income, then I’ll find something on the night shift.  (I prefer that anyways).  I’ll still continue with my freelancing, and my other businesses to create income when and how I can that way (Avon, anyone? Barefoot Books? There’s another one in the works, but until it’s a done deal, I won’t advertise it.)  I’ve learned a lot about blogging in the last few months, and will be putting some of what I’ve learned to use there, too.  I have a book and a couple of short stories in the works.  We’ll be working together as a family to submit those and learn about the publishing process (rejection letters can be learned from, too).  We will adopt even more frugal attitudes and involve the whole family in those activities (I made laundry soap a couple of weeks ago.  We were lacking the buckets to put it in, but I’ll be trying again soon… I’m also looking to take some “refresher course” on sewing… with my mom if she’ll do it (LOL) or a course from someone local… if you know anyone in/near Victoria, please drop me a line in the comments).

Tomorrow I’ll officially withdraw the littles from school and send off our letter to the administration.  I’ll have their curriculum completed by then, a la The Well Trained Mind.

Eeeeeeeeeekkkkkk!!!!  What have I gotten myself into????  LOL!!!  {Breathe, Kim… it’s going to be okay!}

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Filed under Education, Our Businesses, Parenting, Plans for our Dream Life

Do you blogfrog? Join me!

So I’ve been working on setting up a community over at the blogfrog for anyone who might be interested.  Unfortunately, WordPress.com blogs don’t like the blogfrog (which you might notice, if you see some javascript instead of a button or badge over on the right of this post).

I thought I’d provide a link here for anyone who’s interested.  Here’s where we’ll talk about Making Our Dream Life Happen.  My dream life is gypsy-like, in that I hope to homeschool my children, writing and photographing my way across the U.S.  in an RV with my family.  We think our dream life is about 5 years out, but I’m always planning for it.  🙂

I’ve just started to live a life of voluntary simplicity.  Actually, that’s not completely correct, because I’m still transitioning from having wayyyyyy too much stuff to that voluntary simplicity.  So we’ll talk about that some there, too.

Basically, it’s a community where you can just talk about whatever comes to mind, and we can support each other to begin living our dreams.

Join me, won’t you?  🙂

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Filed under Free Stuff I find, My Writing, Plans for our Dream Life

This post is about MY plans

So, as the title says, this post is me thinking out loud, basically.  My plans for the future, for trying to find my “dream life”.  I started school last September, but decided with the end of this last term (and some poor results) that it was time to take a break.  Maybe I’ll go back after a short break.  Maybe I won’t.  I’m not sure at this point, and I’m trying to not let that bother me.

I’ve talked about this recently, so I’ll try not to belabor the point… and if it begins to bore you, please feel free to skip ahead.  😀  But I’ve always kind of felt like there was this part of me missing.  Like I was being irresponsible by not choosing a career and sticking with it.  Like there was something wrong with me, that I was 30, 35, 37 and still didn’t “know what I wanted to be when I grew up”.  My parents gave me every opportunity to get an education when I was a teenager.  I chose to start work and then a very short time later, to become a mother and raise my family.  It still continued to haunt me, this one thing that I am supposed to do with my life.  I’d like to say until recently, but to be honest, it’s still pretty ingrained.  I’m trying to change my mind, to be more accepting of myself… it’s liberating, when I can remind myself that this is the way I am.  But in the meantime, I am trying to continue reading Barbara Sher’s books, and work through the steps she outlines to discover my “passion”.  😀

My top three list for this year (things I want to learn) includes:  to get more technical with my photography skills (to learn more), to have more faith in and explore my writing skills, and to get back into theatre (we have a local community theatre, so I’ll start there).  I’d also like to learn to draw.  I feel like there’s this artist underneath my skin… whether I prove to have more innate talent with words, drawing, or photography, I don’t know yet… but I’m trying to dig the artist out and shake her up.  😀  My husband has immense raw talent, and I definitely don’t have that.  But if I have enough talent that if I study it a bit and work at it, maybe I can become a decent artist.  😀  I’d also like to learn to make jewelry, learn to bellydance, learn to sew, and re-learn to crochet, so those are in there somewhere, too.  Not sure where any of that will land me, but those are what I want to learn.  So in the next few months, while I’m undecided about school, I’m going to pursue whatever winds up in my top three list for this year.  I’ll do some research (my forte), hopefully find some classes, groups, and hopefully become more skilled.

In the meantime, I’ve been really working to spread the word about my freelance services.  I’ve recently completed one project, and am being considered for another one.  I’ve been researching government needs for freelancers, as well.  Anyone out there freelance?  What do you find you have the best luck in landing freelance assignments?

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Filed under My Writing, Plans for our Dream Life