October Book Review

It’s already November, but I wanted to make sure that I put together my October reading list! I had some books this month that were rather long and arduous to plough through. They weren’t necessarily boring, but certainly not fast-paced novels.

I read five books and quit one.

Side note. This past year I have given myself the freedom to quit books halfway through. Suzanne from a year or two ago would have never done that. Now I just ask myself if this book is wasting my time, and if it is, I quit it. I will list the reasons that I didn’t like the book here, but I won’t give it a rating, because that doesn’t seem fair.

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October Life Lately

October was a PACKED month for us, somehow. It seems like we had so many appointments, guests and lots of fun events on the calendar! I am exhausted, but I’m thankful for all the memories we did make this past month. And I think I’m even more excited for a slow November.

The first weekend of October was homecoming weekend at Cedarville, and although it was pretty last minute, I managed to take the kids to see the cardboard canoe race (engineering freshman have to make a cardboard canoe that will carry two riders across the lake without collapsing- it’s the only time people are “allowed” in the lake. Oh, and when a man gets engaged, he gets thrown into the lake). Anyways, its always fun to watch and see who floats and who sinks. My kiddos had ZERO interest in it. They could not figure out what was happening, so we walked around campus and I just let them play!

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Green Kids Box

Listen, you guys.

You need to know something.

I am passionate about educating children. I am so excited about homeschooling my kids. I am good at all things teaching- reading books, capturing children’s attention, thinking of a new way to teach them, getting stuff done.

But I’m terrible at crafts.


I don’t know why that is- it seems it should just be a matter of looking up a craft, getting out the supplies and then making the craft, right? Well, somehow it never works that way for me.

And then as I was doing my initial research on homeschooling, I discovered that there are craft subscription boxes.

Game. Changer.

Yes, the crafts get sent directly to me- with ALL the supplies, and all I have to do is guide the kiddos through the craft! It takes so much work and stress out of the equation for me!

So today I wanted to introduce you to Green Kid Crafts!

Our box was STUFFED with three activities and ALL the supplies needed for them. When I say all, I mean all- including the scissors and watercolor paints!

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Alternatives to Christmas Gifts

I cannot believe that I’m writing this post in October, but I know that many people are starting to think about “it”, so I thought I would conform to society and get this post written!

So what exactly is “it”?

Well, Christmas of course!

Yes, I, Suzanne Hines, just spoke of Christmas in October.

Pigs might actually be flying today. (I’m a totally self-proclaimed Christmas grinch who thinks that every holiday should have it’s own time in the spotlight, so therefore Christmas starts the day after Thanksgiving. Listen, it’s not my fault Thanksgiving falls so late in the year and close to Christmas!)


I thought that to go along with my posts last week on simplicity (HERE and HERE), I would throw out some of our ideas for alternatives to all those material gifts that start showing up this time of year. I mentioned in one of my tips for simplifying, that it does help to get rid of some stuff.

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7 Tips on How to Live Simply

Earlier this week, I published a post on our journey towards simplicity. At the beginning of our marriage, it was a complete necessity to live as simply as possible. Then, when we started bringing in a little more income it started to become more of a choice.

I also talked about the fact that we are not a minimalists, and we don’t plan to head that direction. But we are becoming “simplists” and we love it!

Over on Instagram, someone asked me for advice on how to start this journey, and I was a bit stumped on how to answer that. However, I have been thinking it over for days now, and I thought I would compile a little list here in this blog post. Remember, I am a beginner, too….I don’t have this all figured out. And every family will look so different in how they decide to pursue simplicity.

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