Looking back at October and Ahead to November

It’s hard for me to believe that we are almost to the end of 2022. Here we are in November already! It’s crazy to me. This year has flown by for me.

October was a fairly busy month for us with a lot of errands and activities. Little Miss also turned eight in October.

Many of those activities during the month tried to or did interrupt school days and we had to make up our lessons on other days. I am not sure what November will bring but hopefully, there won’t be as many activities during the week. We did start to get into the homeschooling groove in October though I always feel like I am not doing enough. Little Miss and I are plowing through her Reading book, which is actually a book we are finishing from last year. We are winding up our first-grade math so we can jump into second-grade math. She is a second grader this year and the curriculum we are using doesn’t actually say which grade it is for, but I think it is still first-grade math. We’ve started skipping some lessons because Little Miss already knows it and it’s become repetitive for her.

The Boy and I are reading a classic, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and he says it is boring but he says that about everything so he’ll just have to suffer through.

The days and nights became a bit cooler with a couple nights of frost. The leaves fell off the trees faster than I would have liked but first, it was only around our house. There were still a lot of leaves on the hills in other areas the county next to us. T

Then this past Sunday I noticed that the hills around my parents’ house were completely bare and brown looking. This, of course, usually means that winter will be here soon, which I am not looking forward to much this year for a variety of reasons. Sometimes life seems dark and gloomy on its own. It doesn’t need the weather to add to it.

I do like that winter means slower days where we don’t often have to rush off to an activity or I don’t feel as guilty if I don’t get the kids outside into the sunshine.

Little Miss spent many of her days jumping on the neighbor’s trampoline, which we are really going to miss this winter. It’s brought us a lot of fun.

We took a couple of mini-hikes of excursions involving nature during the month of October as well.

Erin from Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs and I finished up our Spooky Season Cinema Monday and are looking forward to a Christmas Season Cinema (not sure that will be the official name or not) starting the week before Thanksgiving.

For reading in October, I finished a couple of books, including two with Little Miss (Paddington At Work and The Year of Miss Agnes).

For me, I read: The Do Over by Sharon M. Peterson, The Uncertainty of Fire by Stephanie Daniels, A Quilters Holiday by Jennifer Chiaverini, and started a couple I didn’t finish, one of which I may never finish at this point.

For November I hope to do a No News November or an Almost No News November by reducing my news intake since most of the national news isn’t news anymore anyhow, but political propaganda.

We have three birthdays to celebrate, my son’s, my aunt’s and my husband’s and of course Thanksgiving. Other than those celebrations, I don’t have anything super exciting planned for November. I will be editing Shores of Mercy to get it ready to release on January 31 and will also be working on another book for National Novel Writing Month, thought I don’t plan to finish that book.

So how was your October and what are your plans for November? Anything exciting? Let me know in the comments. I love catching up with you all.

Sunday Bookends: House selling, snowstorms and rediscovering art

Last week our house went up for sale and we prepared ourselves for a long wait before someone asked for a showing, even though we were hoping for a quick sale because we have a house we want to buy closer to my husband’s new job (and the purchase is contingent on the sale of the one we currently live in). Our house is a cozy, well-lived in house perfect for our little family, but it’s also a fixer-upper, so we didn’t expect people to rush to buy it. Imagine our surprise, and panic, when someone asked for a showing two days after the house went online. We were given seven days to repair a few, minor issues we thought we’d have at least a month, if not longer, to repair. As of now, we are down to four of those days with the majority of the repairs made, but a few still needed – including cleaning out my very full bedroom closet.

Of course, just because we’ve had a request for a showing doesn’t mean the people will be interested or buy it. This could be a long process and we know that. Our challenge next week will be getting the kids and the cat and dog out of the house at the same time. We don’t have friends or family near us so we’ve decided the kids will go to the library and I’ll wait in the parking lot with the animals in the van (since I have no plan to try to shove our cat into that little carrier again. The last time was for a trip to the vet a few months ago and my skin is still healing from some of the gashes she sliced across my skin.) I’m sort of hoping this process isn’t too drawn out since I don’t relish the idea of dragging the animals and all of us out of the house each time someone wants to look and see if our house can become their house.

The contents of that very full closet in my room have left me crying almost daily as I work through it, tossing scrapbooks into containers, photos of people who are now gone or no longer speak to us falling out of them. Then there are the journals, which I no longer look at because they contain too many cans of worms I prefer not to open. A couple interesting items I did find were old sketchbooks from college that contained images I took hours and hours to create but usually didn’t finish. Art was such a stress reliever back then but now I don’t seem to have the patience for it. Maybe I’ll get some patience back during the social media break I’m doing during December.


I remember working on this project, which is made up of thousands of tiny dots made with an ink pen (a process called stippling) as a stress reliever but also as a way to focus better during college lectures. I find I can focus on sermons and lectures better when I can doodle of have something to do with my hands. I know there is science behind that but I don’t really want to research it and explain it here, so we will address that in another blog post.

Anyhow, I was working on this piece of artwork during a sociology lecture when the professor, walking up and down the aisle, pontificating about something sociology related, stopped and suggested I should be taking notes, not working on art. But then he said “So, can you listen to me better while you’re doing that?” I said I could. He looked at it again and said “That’s quite good. Carry on.” and then continued to walk up the aisle, rambling away.


I need to finish that picture now that I’ve found it again. It would be a nice distraction, dotting away on a piece of paper, while the stresses of life (house selling, family and friend losses) swirl around me.

I should also finish this pen and ink sketch I started of The Beatles, I think.


Our first snowstorm of the winter looks like it may hit us today and tomorrow, complete with a couple layers of ice and then up to 12 inches of snow. It even has a name- Snowstorm Ezekiel. At this point, we are just waiting to see what it actually brings in terms of snow or ice versus what the forecasters are saying. The big blob of pink and purple has been moving toward us but I haven’t seen much outside yet.

The snow will keep us inside but that’s a good thing considering we still have quite a few repairs to make and cleaning up to do before the showing.

So, how about you? What are you all up to or what have you been up to? How is the weather where you are? Cold? Warm? Let me know in the comments!

I’ll leave you with a verse from the book of Ezekiel in honor of Storm Ezekiel.

Ezekiel 37: 9-14 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’” 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.

11 Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. 14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.’”