Nicole Davies

Hello! My name is Nicole and I am a Marine spouse and mother of three daughters, ages 16, 10, and 7. I have been a stay-at-home mom most of their lives while also pursuing my Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. In the past I have worked as a social worker for child welfare in the state of Pennsylvania. I have also taught preschool for ages 2.5 - 4. During my master’s program I interned as a therapist at an inpatient psychiatric hospital working with adults, teens, and kids. My ultimate goal is to become an independently licensed therapist. Our family has lived in Onslow County for 10 of the last 15 years, which has given my children a stability that is rare among military families. While NC has been my home for several years now, I am still a Yankee at heart! I will always choose a Philly cheesesteak over a pulled-pork sandwich. In addition to taking care of my family and my educational pursuits, I enjoy traveling to destinations near and far; a novel in which I can get lost; and chatting with friends over a good cup of coffee.

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Summer Routines

School’s out, summer is here.  So are the longer days, the hotter temperatures, and freedom from school-year schedules.

For most of us, the end of the school year also means the end of extracurricular activities that often coincide with school schedules.  Being out for summer means our kids often have much more time on their hands.  My teen does not yet have a part-time job, so longer days at my house mean longer days of the kids all being home complaining they are bored.

During the school year my kids have responsibilities and chores to complete around our usual busy weekday schedule of activities.  More time at home not only means more time …

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Katie’s Adventures Way Up North

Selfie around the bonfire. Three ladies I totally love!

From the text messages I have been receiving back here at home, it sounds like Katie continues to have fun on her “tour of relatives.”  As I type, she and my sister Kristen are in my dad’s van, heading from my sister, Anne’s, house in northern Michigan back to my parent’s in southeastern Michigan.  I think they are tired out from a very fun weekend up north.

It’s been a long time since Katie had any time up at Anne’s house.  It’s a hike to get there, on top of the hike to get to my parents’ house, so there’s …

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Harder Than It Is

I have often sighed with relief at the stage of parenting I’m in currently.  I have a rising high school senior, a middle schooler, and an elementary schooler.  Long gone are the days of sleepless nights, crying babies, breastfeeding, bottle-warming, diaper-changing, and baby-proofing.  I can actually run to the store for a carton of milk without having to load them all in the car; unload them and cart them around the store for one item, then load them back in the car to go home.

Life has gotten easier in many ways.

I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything, but I also wouldn’t go back for any amount of money.  It was survival …

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Relative Hopping, Phase III

Headed for adventures in Michigan!


If you’ve been following my blog posts, you know by now that Katie has embarked on an odyssey this summer, visiting various relatives for a period of about a month and a half.  Last week, we got a chance to spend a few days with her at Cloudland Canyon State Park at Marks’s family’s annual gathering.
Mark’s family is famous for taking in other families as in-laws are added, so it’s really no big surprise that the gathering has included my parents and sisters for several years now.  As the weekend ended and we all went our …
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Unattended Parents

Didn't have a picture of us on our way all by ourselves so I chose this pretty one of Lexie on a hike in the canyon during our stay!


It was the very first time in 21 years that Mark and I loaded the car and headed out all by ourselves for his annual family gathering.  Wow.  The last time it happened was the year I was expecting Lexie.  I’d just recently found out we were going to be having a baby and I was completely unaware of the crazy adventure in parenting we were beginning.
This year, Katie was …
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The Order of Things

Now that my daughter has finished her junior year of high school, as well as taken both the ACT and the SAT, the next step is college applications.  My daughter has narrowed down her possible choices of colleges to five or six.  She has visited a couple of school already but still needs to schedule visits to the others. 

My question is: in what order should the college search be done?  Should we make a point of visiting all the colleges on her list prior to applying?  Or should she complete the …

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25 Years of Fandango Fun

This year we celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Holder-McConnell Fandango.  It started as a camping trip including Mark’s parents and their offspring (Holders) and his sister’s husband’s family and their offspring (McConnells).  They camped in tents and trailers and even cars.  And they did a little water-skiing and biking. 
Over the years the Fandango migrated to the lake house Mark’s parents bought and then to the cabins at state parks in Georgia.  And it gathered in my family after I married Mark.  And at some point in the lake house days it became a themed …

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Graduation

I don’t know about you,  but graduation time has always made me a bit sad and nostalgic.  It is such a bittersweet time. 

On one hand, the ending of so many good things; saying goodbye to familiar places and faces; moving on; change.  On the other hand, an exciting time when the future is wide open and the possibilities seem endless; a new adventure ready to begin.  I was never big on change.  I liked things to stay the same.  Change to me …

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Teen Bargain Hunter

Pretty good bargain shopping!


I love a bargain.  Most times, before I make a purchase, I’ve compared prices.  I love to use a coupon on a purchase and really, really love when I am able to “stack” coupons and discounts to get a good deal.  I have embraced modern technology and they ability to pull up a coupon on my smart phone and have it scanned at the register, straight from my phone.  And I am not too shy to ask for an even better deal when I think I can get one.  I have a cheap …
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Testing, Testing…

My high schooler recently took the SAT.  She took it as a seventh grader through the Duke TIP program and has taken the ACT at school as a Junior, but this was the first time the SAT would actually “count”.

My daughter did not do as well on the ACT as she had hoped, so she is really hoping her SAT scores will be better.  She did practice tests and  got a good night’s sleep.  Afterwards, she said she felt pretty confident that she did well.

So now we wait.

Ideally, we would like to visit some more college campuses this summer so she can narrow down her top choices and start applying in …

 

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Whole Grains in the Teen Diet

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