And just like that, the month of November is almost gone, Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and now school really is winding down with just two more weeks of classes after the Thanksgiving break for the girls. And we are all excited about that.
A couple of weeks ago, I went down to Orlando for a quick district meeting. My Florida geography is rather poor, and I thought I was going to the coast. What’s such a big city doing in the middle of the state? It was a good trip, though way too quick, but I met some new pastors and visited with some that I’d met before.
We’ve already seen signs of a rather cold winter. We’ve hit 18° twice this month. In the past, it hasn’t dropped below 20° until December. Brrrr.
Lauren and Rebekah visit the orthodontist on Thursday. They are really excited about that.
We are reading through Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol between now and Christmas. We’d love for some of you to join us in this. If you want, you can also join us to discuss it as I’ll be writing about it every day between now and Christmas here.
And speaking of writing, Jenna and I are doing NaNoWriMo this month. If you aren’t sure what that is, click on the link. Jenna is caught up; I’m behind by a few thousand words. She had an idea; I’m just winging it.
Fall is here, finally. It is about two weeks later than normal from the warm fall we’ve had. And the colors are little subdued in most places, but it is still so much fun to drive around this time of year.
It has been a fairly mild fall so far, but nice. The rain has finally stopped—well the incessant rain has finally stopped. October was the first month since last November that we haven’t had at least four inches of rain. It only rained a little over an inch for the month.
We had our first freeze last week, and I cut the last of the peppers the night before. Stuffing them tonight with cheese and bacon:
So the garden is officially over for the year.
We are 2/3 of the way finished with the school semester. Already counting down the days until Christmas break.
We had a great time at the wedding last weekend. It was good to see family, even if it was for a short time.
And in the random information category: We all like to look for license plates whenever we take a trip. We print out maps of the U.S. and the girls color in what they find. The record is 46, twice. This trip to Texas in back, we found a little over 40 spending close to 30 hours in the car. We live in a fairly touristy area. Plus we are very close to two other states, and there are lots of people who live here part of the year. So it is normal to see license plates from several different states on a trip to town or in the Wal-Mart parking lot. But as a comparison to our road trip to Texas, I took Jenna to town on Tuesday for a high school girls Bible study. On the short trip there and back, I saw license plates from 13 different states: NC, FL, GA, TN, VA, MI, WI, UT, IL, OH, CT, LA, & MS.
Fall colors have been a little slower than normal this year. Maybe it is because it has been a warmer fall than usual. Still no 30s yet, much less a freeze. The hill across the way is starting to turn, slowly. After some rain the last couple of days, it is supposed to cool off some more. Maybe that will help things along a little.
Two of the girls’ favorite musical artists are Sara Groves
and Andrew Peterson
A few months ago, we found out they were going to be in concert together along with Bebo Norman.
So we took a half day off from school and headed north. We were planning on spending some time at a used book store called McCay’s, but delays due to construction on I-75 changed those plans. But the girls were wanting some good Mexican food, so we headed to Abuelo’s and they immediately turned to the Tex-Mex page in the menu.
The concert was great. And on the way home, I saw my first bear. We were driving through the Ocoee gorge and a baby bear was sitting on the side of the road. Don’t know where mama was, but he ambled off pretty quick. We didn’t get home until after midnight. Wonder what school will be like today.
Last Sunday we held church just over the hill at the Carringers’ pool and had a baptism and picnic afterward. We baptized seven people. Really a fun morning despite the water being a little cool—it was 52° that morning when I got up.
Fall is beginning to creep in. Wonder what things will be like this year compared to the last couple with all the rain we’ve had. Not sure what lots of rain does to fall color. Should find out soon.
Lauren had a couple of concerts last weekend, including their first paid concert. They had not played in a while, but they’ve had some more offers.
We are looking forward to the big wedding next weekend. Can’t wait to see everyone again.
While all the girls really started school back in August, Rebekah’s Classical Conversations classes didn’t start until this week.
So we are officially back to full time status for everyone—well, almost. We still haven’t found what we’re looking for to help us with Spanish for Jenna. But it’s not like she isn’t doing enough. But it is a different year for her. Instead of lots of little assignments due every week, she has several large ones due every five weeks or so. The first round of those is upon her. This year is also a transition as her and her classmates take turns leading the discussion in both the philosophy class and the Shakespeare class. They have all done a nice job so far.
While it has been cool and humid all summer, a real change blew through last night. There’s a cool, dry breeze today, lots of blue skies, and it is supposed to be in the low 50s tonight.
We are a month away from getting to see family again when we celebrate Morgan’s and Thomas’s wedding. Dana and I decided it was time for a new suit since the only one I have is the same one I wore when I interviewed for my first job back in 1992. It still fits (barely), but Morgan was two then, so maybe it is time for a new one.
The girls are working again on Saturdays taking money at the gate and working the concession stand at the soccer games. I think they’re making $7 something an hour. And Jenna has been commissioned to try her hand at making a device out of yarn that would be a deterrent for someone sucking their thumb. Think of it as a glove without the four fingers. So if it works—we’ll post pictures if it does—and you know anyone looking for something like that. Let us know, and she’ll sell you one.
I don’t know how it got to be three weeks since we’ve posted anything. Must have something to do with school starting. The girls are in the thick of it, writing papers, reading, researching, and math—always math. But the year has gone well so far. Jenna has a new girl in her class, making four now. She is one of three other families that drive from Franklin (about an hour away) on Tuesdays for Classical Conversations. I’m glad we don’t have that far to go.
This morning we passed 60″ of rain for the year. August was another wet, wet month. We had just shy of 9″ of rain and an average high of only 83° for the month. The record for a year is 82″ Not sure if we’ll get there, but if things continue like they have been, it will be close.
We ordered propane this week to get ready for winter. But when we looked at the receipt after he left, he put almost twice what we ordered in the tank. Seeing how we already paid for our order, I’m not quite sure what they will do. Can you take propane out of a tank? Did we get some free heat? The lady I talked to on the phone said she’d have to wait until the delivery order was put in the system. I guess they’ll call us if they need to.
We are looking forward to heading back to Texas in a month and a half for the wedding. Won’t be long now.
The fog rolled in last night so no meteors. Good hike this morning with a friend just across the border in Tennessee. Most of the hike followed a creek through the Cherokee National Forest. And along the way there were a couple of falls.
After the hike, we drove up to Buck Bald for lunch. Thankfully the rain held off this morning.
While I was gone, some of the blackberries from yesterday turned into a cobbler.
And we’ve been waiting on this to turn yellow for quite some time.
Jenna’s and my Classical Conversations class starts tomorrow. Was hoping to get the yard mowed this afternoon, but now it is raining again—for the fifth day in a row. We’ve surpassed 54 inches for the year.