Tent Camping with 10 People?

If you have followed us for long then you know were are a very outdoorsy family. We love being immersed in nature’s goodness which ultimately means wrapping ourselves in God’s beautiful creation. We love to hike in the woods, camp under the stars, and dig our hands in the dirt. Camping embodies all of this. I grew up camping so it means even more to me. It is a connection to my childhood and stirs so many amazing memories within me.

Now we are the parents and want to share that with our small army. And we want to do it NOW. Not when they are “older” or when they can appreciate it or enjoy it more or when it’s easier for us. NOW. Because ultimately #nowisNOW and why wait?

We almost fell into that rabbit hole of thinking last year. We took almost an entire year off from camping, albeit I was pregnant for most of that year, but still. We were in between having our old pop up camper and dreaming toward a bit larger rig for our growing family, and we put it off. WHY? Because of indecision. We didn’t (and still don’t) know what type/size of camper to get. We didn’t (and still don’t) know how much we wanted to spend on it. We even thought about replacing the van to pull it. And in confusion of the flow chart of “what about this” we didn’t step forward in anyway to make it happen. And that sucks.

Then we snapped out of it. We decided that while we wait on our decision, our budget and God’s blessing on a (quite large) purchase we wouldn’t just stop dead in our tracks. We would enjoy camping with our family and make it AWESOME until we had a clearer picture of what we should invest in. Because, in the end, the memories aren’t dependent on what kind/size of camper we get or the features it has in it. It is ONLY dependent that we GO and make those memories together.

Who else is a camping/hiking/nature family? How do you make it work?

If you’re interested in seeing what we ended up getting to use until we decide about campers, here a video that shows how we are going to get 10 people comfortably in tents!

US History Bundle!

I am SO excited to announce that my US History Bundle is DONE! It is SO amazing and I can’t wait to hear your feedback!

My US History Bundle is a FULL year of US/American History, geared toward children K-6th, but could be adapted for older kids by adding in some deeper level novels (think Grapes of Wrath, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Red Badge of Courage, Etc.) and an overview of American History of your choosing.

It is flexibly scheduled for you and includes 30 weeks of US/American History

  • 30 weeks of lesson plans starting with Native Americans/Columbus and ending with America’s War on Terrorism (scheduled for either 2 day/week or 4 day/week)
  • Planned weekly source readings from spine books (Story of the World, The Making of America and The American Story)
  • Lots of Pinterest activities for varying ages that are sorted by week for your convenience
  • Geography/Mapping assignments
  • A large selection of books for family read alouds that are linked to which week the correspond to
  • Memory work for both US History and US Government
  • A large and leveled book list to help you find readers that tie in with history for your independent readers.
  • As a bonus I have also included 30 weeks of memory work for both Bible/Scripture and Math&English.
  • A 14 page resource guide that includes my favorite tips and tricks for making your year go amazing
  • All memory work is set up as printable flashcards labeled by week!

Click Here to see a sampling of what it includes!

For a limited time I am releasing my History Bundle for ONLY $6.99! A WHOLE YEAR of US History for less than a fancy coffee! I want every family to be able to enjoy a SIMPLE  classical/whole book approach to learning about US History!





Essential Oils and Babies

The most requested class I have is the class for using essential oils on babies.  Hands down.

I am so happy to let you know that I filmed and uploaded this class for anyone who’d like a bit of information on using essential oils on babies and small children. The first half of the class is spent talking over the safety guidelines and the later half is focused on which oils to use for what and simple recipes for your nursery.

{simple reference guides to go with the class}

If you have any questions please feel free to reach out by email (afarmhousefull(at)gmail(dot)com. I would love to chat with you and help you get started with essential oils!

If you are already to get the ball rolling in your essential oil journey you can go here and follow the steps to join as a wholesale customer!

If you’d like more information on the business side of doterra please shoot message and we will connect on FB . I hold monthly “sneak peaks” that introduce the ins and outs of the business to anyone who is considering joining doTERRA with my team! To apply for the next one fill out this form and the join this group. I will approve everyone on Sunday, May 21 and the sneak peak will go from May 22-26. No obligations, just information!

Enjoy the class!









Homeschool Year Wrap Up…. Hits and Misses

We are DONE with school for the year. Like early-done. Like totally-done. Like didn’t-have-to-leave-anything-off-done…. WHAAA????? What planet am I living on? This. NEVER. Happens. LIKE EVER. (Are you already sick of the work “like” in just the first paragraph of this blog?…I am like sorry!

So, what better time to do a wrap up on of the school year than when it’s fresh in my mind and I haven’t invaded my limited brain space to start FREAKING OUT ABOUT working on next year’s plans.

This year I taught 8th grade (using Classical Conversations Challenge A curriculum), 6th grade, 4th grade, 3rd grade, and 1st grade.

Let’s just start with what went really well!

History – I just love Story of the World. Wholeheartedly. We like the books it recommends, the short segments and the map work. The ONLY problem I have with SOTW is their 4th book… Uggggh, I am not sure what we are going to do when we get back around to that one, but I guess we will cross that bridge when we get there. We used the Homeschooling in the Woods timeline figures that I bought years ago (I use them SOOOO much and I am so glad I made the investment in the whole set!)

Science – I only did 2 books when I normally do 3 per year. It worked out really well this year and the kids still got a lot out of them. We notebooked our way through them and that is always an easy yet effective way to retain information. You get to use all the different parts of your brain doing sketch journaling and it is fun; what’s not to love.

English – Grouping Michael and Faith together has been really advantageous. It allows me to teach one thing and have both utilize it. Also, Michael struggles a bit in this area, they are only a year apart in school and there is so much repetition and review in all grades you can easily lump kids together that are close in age. Last year I did 6th grade with my 5th and 7th grader (splitting the difference).

Spelling – I think we will be continuing to use the Spelling Workout Books I really like the format and the how each year it stays the same (just harder and more words). It enforces vocabulary and by the 6th grade Maddie was spelling words that I usually rely on spellcheck to figure out, but then again, I am not a strong speller, so take that as you will.

Math – Teaching Textbooks is probably what we will be sticking with although I always fall short of drilling multiplication tables and that SHOWS!!! I really need to get better at this. Anyone have a great way of having kids memorize their math facts? Flash cards, ipad drills and repetition are all I come up with. Math fact memorization is just boring. Plain and simple. But it has to be mastered so let’s put on our big girl panties and start a flash card frenzy this summer, eh?

Classical Conversations– We really loved this program for our oldest and plan to use it for our other kids as well. I am in the middle of deciding whether or not Maddie will start Challenge A this year or next, as she will have JUST turned 12 at the beginning of the school year.  AJ learned SO much, but I am afraid Latin may be a bit much for a just turned 12 year old (AJ was 13 at the start of his Challenge A year) with NO background in Latin. If we do start her next year we will be doing a summer Latin study so she at least has a little bit of experience with it. AJ struggled hard with his Latin final, although he knows SOOOO much more than he did at the beginning of the year.  He is looking forward to Challenge B next year I am I am looking forward to starting again with a bit better feel of how Classical Conversations looks and blindly trying to figure it out as we go (but that is me to a tee… #learnasido

Things that need improvement

Writing– While I LOVE Institute for Excellence in Writing I slacked at teaching it consistently. It was the subject that I tended to leave by the wayside on the days when we had too much on our plates (remember we had a baby last year… #thebabyismyexcuse!) I am planning on starting it next year with Michael (5th) and Faith (4th) although I am not sure how that will look as, like I said before, this is where Michael struggles the most. I have thought about having him keep a summer journal just to get him used to writing more and hopefully get him enjoying it.

Typing – we fell off the typing bandwagon, but I am not horribly concerned about this as most of the kids are proficient at keyboarding skills and use a computer daily for some of their school work.

Accountability – I hoping next year I am able to be a bit more organized about checking completed work thoroughly so that I can hold the kids more accountable for certain things. Accountability for them means accountability for me and last year was a tough year to keep my eye on every ball I was juggling. I think I did very well considering we had my oldest in brand new structure, I was still homeschooling my other 4, I had 2 toddlers, a newborn baby with tongue tie as well starting my new doTERRA business. Phew…

Handwriting – I LOVED having printable, renewable and super simple handwriting sheets. I DID NOT love the fact that I didn’t just PRINT THEM ALL OUT AHEAD OF TIME! But that was partly because I wasn’t done creating them. Which let me to slapping them together the morning of school that week which took more time then I had at the moment. NOTE TO SELF: I will print out a year worth of handwriting BEFORE the school year next year. I promise.

Favorite family read aloud this year: Call it Courage

Least favorite family read aloud: Samurai Tale (we didn’t even make it halfway through)

How was your year?







Story of the World and Homeschooling the Woods Time Line Figures Resource

After I posted my video on how we notebooked in our homeschool for history and science (video below) I had so many people ask what resource I used to line them up.

I looked extensively online and couldn’t find one so I made my own for SOTW vol 2. (I reviewed both MOH and SOTW here and showed how I planned for it here if you want to check that out.)

Today I wanted to share with you my chart (click here for it: Story of the World Volume 2 figures) that lines up the History in the Woods Time Line Figures (which I LOVE) with Story of the World Volume 2. I hope this helps you coordinate your notebooks, timelines or coloring pages.

On the chapters that didn’t have coordinating figures (which were rare) I just placed a blank piece of notebook paper so they could notebook the chapter freehand.



Essential Oils Resources!

I have had so many amazing questions about oils and I thought I would take the time to compile some of the best resources for using essential oils in one neat and tidy spot. Bookmark this page and print out these pages so that you can have them on hand in case you need some guidance as you’re using your doTERRA essential oils!

To purchase doTERRA oils go here!

Top Ten Oils and Their Uses
150 Uses for the Home Essentials Kit
Getting Started EBOOK
Quick Oil Reference Guide
ShareSuccess.com: Our team resource to help you learn more about how to use your products and how to share them with others.
Official dōTERRA Product Tips Blog An excellent place to learn about product promotions, product features or product success stories.
Official dōTERRA Facebook Page The best place to connect with dōTERRA on Facebook, get product information, and connect with dōTERRA friends.
Official dōTERRA Tools Site An “all-in-one” site with downloadable Product Information Pages, Imagery, Product Presentations and more.
Official doterraeveryday.com Site A site that hosts trainings, event listings, news and information.
Official dōTERRA YouTube Channel When dōTERRA creates a new “official” video, this is often the first place it is made available.
Official dōTERRA Pinterest Page See how dōTERRA is being shared on Pinterest–get ideas on how to share dōTERRA, products, product uses and more!
Official dōTERRA.com site. Designed for anyone who is curious about dōTERRA and wants a high-level overview of the company.

My quick reference for diluting essential oils in varying sized glass bottles:










Breathe it in…

He is the most like me.

He is the one I butt heads with the most.

The one that first called me “mom”, and he’s growing up. He hangs somewhere in the midst between boy and man, lingering in each category for a while before returning to the other. Reminders of his boyhood like these sometimes catch me by surprise. I know they will become fewer and fewer. Car keys will replace small boyhood toys, a deep voice replacing his once squeaky coos. We’re in the phase of letting go. Very slowing letting go, but letting go all the same. It’s a stage I embrace and mourn at the same time. Nothing gives me greater joy than seeing him spread his wings, but the realization of how short the season of parenting is can be like a bomb inside. I’m not going to sit here and say enjoy every moment, because you won’t… and all that tends to do is make us, as mothers, feel bad about how we counted down the minutes till bedtime last night (or the last 27 nights…) BUT I will say respect the process. It is SUPPOSE to come with both waves of great relief and happiness that they are becoming more independent and also with a bittersweet tinged sadness that the baby you rocked and nursed and carried on your hip is slowly fading into a man.

And. It’s. Okay.

It’s okay to feel both. Just like it’s okay to have tough days intermixed with ones you feel like you are WINNING at this parenting gig! Life’s a great big ‘ole bowl of mess, filled with every kind of emotion and experience and effort. We were not meant to ride on a cloud of happiness and success our whole existence. This life is organic and messy; hard and beautiful; heartbreaking and soul lifting. All at once sometimes. Breathe it in. All of it. Don’t push that away. That is exactly what reminds you that you were created in God’s own image. That soul that stirs up all those thoughts and feelings and ultimately drives you back toward Him. Sometimes sending you to your knees in the process. Embrace that!




Ready to Get Started with Essential Oils?

There are 3 ways to shop:

First go to:


🍃 RETAIL – use the shop tab at the top of the page, choose your country and language and it will take you to the retail site. OR SAVE SOME MONEY AND JOIN👇🏼

🍃 WHOLESALE- use the Join & Save tab to enroll as a wholesale customer and take advantage of 25% off the retail price! Sign up for dōTERRA’s amazing LRP program and save up to 30% MORE. You can choose to purchase an enrollment kit that has our top selling oils already included (enrollment fee waived) or choose an enrollment pack ($35) and build your own kit by picking and choosing the oils you would like. No minimums.

🍃 WELLNESS ADVOCATE- join my team of amazing advocates from all over the world! I have an international team that is growing fast! As a wellness customer you get the same advantages as a wholesale customer but you’re eligible to earn commission, build a team, and gain access to amazing business support from one of the FASTED building teams in doTERRA!

💦 Whether you enroll as a wholesale customer or a wellness advocate there are options for every budget! You can purchase one of our awesome enrollment kits that include our top selling oils at a discount or pay a small fee ($35) and pick and choose the oils of your choice with no minimums💦

What is an essential oil?

Essential oils are pure extracts from plants, they are 50-70 times more powerful than herbs and are nature’s defense mechanism for plants and cells. They are highly concentrated so a little goes a very long way and when used correctly they are a safe, effective, affordable alternative to many synthetic products/remedies.

Get Started

  • Step 1: CLICK HERE, enter your country and hit continue.
  • Step 2: Select “Wholesale Customer” or “Wellness Advocate” (can share/sell doTERRA – will get a free website to share with others) and then hit continue.  
  • Step 3: Input your contact and shipping info.
  • Step 4:  Select your wholesale starter kit (click here to see all the US starter kits, Canada starter kits, AU starter kits) or scroll down.
  • Step 5: Enter in your payment information and then hit “Process Order Now and Continue”


You will receive a confirmation email from doTERRA– you can log into your account right away to manage your orders.

Within 48 hours you will receive a welcome email from me that has a TON of helpful links including my private FB groups that are for my customers and wellness advocates!

I look forward to getting to know you more!







ADHD, Homeschooling and Essential Oils

First off, let me start by saying I am NOT a medical expert. I am not a homeschooling expert. Heck, I am not even a parenting expert. I am, however, an expert in the field of MY eight (yes, you read that right – 8!) children.

I have been with them since their first breath and have been a diligent student of them ever since. They are my jam. I am in my element as a mom. Not because I am particularly awesome at it (though I try my best) but because this is where I was called to be. I never imagined I would be called to mother EIGHT kids, but thank the Good Lord that He doesn’t call the equipped; He equips the called!

God doesn’t call the equipped; He equips the called!

Also, I never thought I would be a homeschooling mom, but, again, HERE I AM. Killing it! (…sometimes literally killing it… there are days I want to throw in the towel just like every other homeschooling mom).

We have been a homeschooling family now for a decade. That makes me feel old. Like REALLY old. Anyone who has followed me long enough knows that in my family there are a large number of ADHD “cases”. I throw up the air quotes there because my first opinion on this controversial issue is that ADHD is HIGHLY over diagnosed and done so WAY TOO early. I have heard from moms all over the country over and over again they have doctors prescribing medication for THREE year olds!

Public service announcement: MOST 3 year old appear to have ADHD!

Three year olds are not suppose to sit quietly in a seat and stare at a workbook for 8 hours. Try it with most 3 year olds…Ain’t gonna end well. Trust me. Now, there are some children who are more mellow and calm by their nature. And some….well, let’s just call them …spirited…. ahem.. I know. I was one of them. One of the perks of growing up in the 80s and early 90s though was that the ADHD craze hadn’t yet settled into the rural midwest and neither had the internet. That means mothers weren’t routinely running down a list of “symptoms” on google at every occasion convinced their child had a scary, life ruining disorder.

As an ADHD adult (who has MANY adult family members with the same thing) I am here to tell you a diagnosis of ADHD isn’t all bad news. In fact, I honestly believe this is what drives me. Its like a motor inside that, while irritatingly HARD to turn off, can be channeled in the right direction and used as a WONDERFUL, God given GIFT.

BUT, as a mother to 3 “ADHD” children … I get it. I totally do. It can be ROUGH! We had always said we didn’t want to turn to medication. Some days we would scratch our heads and wonder why we decided that. Our first, AJ,  (who is now 14) has this type of personality (I say personality, not disorder, because I don’t think it’s a disorder any more than being an extrovert or introvert is a disorder… we are all just wired differently). He was shy, so the public side of it didn’t get in the way very often and most outsiders didn’t notice. His hyper focus on cars had him identifying and pointing out unmarked police cars at 2-1/2 years old because, without being taught, he learned to recognize the slight difference in these type of cars. Still now he notices and is bothered by the smallest details of items that others wouldn’t even begin to notice. His mind is on 24/7 and if he’s into something he has a hard time shutting it off to eat, sleep or anything else. You see what most without this personality don’t realize is that ADHD doesn’t mean that person has a hard time holding their attention, but that they HYPER focus on something, making focusing on anything else almost impossible.

My 3rd son is so much like his older brother it is scary. They even look alike. There is one distinct difference… Ezra has 5 older siblings and shy has never been in his vocabulary. He inherited his momma’s boldness and when you add that to his “ADHD” and a 4 year old’s lack of a verbal filter things can get interesting quickly. He has moments where he is almost outside of himself and can’t control himself. We’ve taught him to take deep breaths and it works… Sometimes.

Enter essential oils!

We have always been quite naturally minded. Because of this it wasn’t really a big leap for us to try essential oils, so it was weird how unbelievably SKEPTICAL I was about them. “So you’re telling me that I can rub this bottle of witchcraft on my skin and magically every problem goes away?” hmmmm….. Yeah, if you’re there, I get it. I was too. And I am not going to sit here and testify that there is an oil for every ailment and that will whisk every problem away like mom’s in a tub a calgon.  I WILL testify that it has helped my family TREMENDOUSLY with MANY things. The symptoms of ADHD being one of those things.

I shared a little snip bit about it on my Instagram and the response was OVERWHELMING. Mom’s out there want something safe and natural to help take the edge off their busy, smart, creative and sometimes exhausting kids. For us oils have. I can usually notices times when my son hasn’t had his “dose of oils” for a while. My 14 year old noticed a difference and asked for them after his first experience. Its a subtle difference, but that is what I was going for! I didn’t want my spunky, smart, creative boys to be sedated into drones. I wanted them to UTILIZE this gift from God to glorify Him. I wanted their beautiful diversity to shine like a light and I didn’t want that light covered or snuffed out with personality altering prescriptions.

I know every child is different. Every family is different. Every situation is different. And if you decided to medicate you child and you think it is the best for YOUR family I support our decision. Because YOU are the expert on YOUR child and I believe most moms are doing the best they can with what they’ve been given. BUT, if you’re like me and want something to help, but not change that amazingly special child I would LOVE to share the oils that helped us.

Vetiver – this was the hands down most common single oil I found in my research to aid with the symptoms of ADHD. This oils is known as a natural tranquilizer. (And not as in knock-you-out-tranquilizer, but chill-you-out). It can help not only with ADHD but also PTSD, depression and anxiety. It smells a bit smokey but when mixed with other oils has almost a manly, aftershave like scent.



Cedarwood – another oil that top uses are for ADD and ADHD, but can be used as an insect repellent and for psoriasis and eczema. To be completely honest cedarwood smells a bit like potting soil, but is covered nicely with other oil scents.


Lavendar – long known for its calming effects, lavender is not only widely used for more uses than I can list (sleep, stress, anxiety, sunburns, scars, burns to name a few), it is also one of them most economically priced oils.  Most people have an idea what lavender oil smells like as it is identical to the familiar scent of common lavender plant flower.


Frankinsence – What Christain hasn’t heard of this oil? Given to the Christ child by the Magi, it was a treasured oil of biblical times and for good reason. Oil users are often heard saying, “When in doubt, pull frankinsence out.” That saying holds true due to the many different and varied ailments that frankinsence aids with. It is an immunostimulant and anti-inflamitory. Its top uses are for tumors, seizures, Alzheimer and depression. This oil smells like an antique shop… honestly. Close your eyes and smell it – $10 says you’ll be thinking of your grandma’s attic!

The blend that we are currently using is:

If your kids are like mine and think the roller balls feel weird you can make a spray instead. I use the spray at home and the roller ball it kept in my purse so we are never without it.

If you’re interested in purchasing these oils please click here for details on how to order.