A violin and two cents

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Keats’ enthusiasm for the violin hasn’t waned since he started playing about two and a half years ago.  He’s been ready for some time to move to a full sized violin, and yesterday was his big day.  It’s been quite a birthday month for Keats!  Last night Jonny and I were sitting in bed talking close to midnight when we heard Keats playing it just one more time before he went to sleep.

The original plan was for just Keats and me to travel to Richmond, meeting his violin instructor at the violin shop.  However, the entire family ended up riding along  because Jonny got permission for the boys to metal detect a very old property outside of Richmond.  Seth had his best day ever, finding an 1864 two cent piece among other things.

I’m often asked what kind of metal detector we recommend.  My boys have tried entry level models from four of the major metal detecting companies, and we prefer Garrett metal detectors.  The Garrett ACE 250 is a great place to start if you have an older child (10 and up?) interested in getting started.  Seth is now using a Garrett AT Pro, and that is what he used to find the treasures he is sharing here today.  I am a big fan of this hobby, because while it does mean that my boys often have muddy knees and dirt under their fingernails, they are getting outdoors and learning a bit of history in a fun hands on way.


  1. good day which the price of this metal holder

  2. Wow – you are such a talented photographer! I love these pictures so much.

  3. That picture of Jonny holding the pail is great. He has a beautiful smile Ginny.

  4. Gosh, I just ‘happened’ across your lovely blog. What a beautiful family and life you have. And your photos are so beautiful and full of story and life. It feels good just being here

  5. What great treasures! Congrats to Keats on the new violin.

  6. These pics are gorgeous! It looks like ya’ll had a great time in a beautiful place.

  7. Wow!!! You live in a great area for historical artifacts! What fun!!! 🙂 My heart is warmed that in Richmond the Jonquils are up!!! We are 3 hours North and are SO ready to kiss THIS Winter goodbye!!! When our 12+” of snow melted the other day I couldn’t believe that Jonquil heads were trying hard as they might to reach through the snow for the sun!!!

  8. What a lot of interesting finds from metal detecting – I guess to there is so much opportunity for finding small historical treasures in Richmond, considering it’s history.

  9. One more time before sleep – such joy!!! Looks like a wonderful memorable trip.
    Love Leanne NZ

  10. hello there:)
    i’ve been following your blog for quite a while. i love the moss covered roof top in the picture, in fact all your pictures are always so cute! thought i’d say hello this time:)
    i also love your blended family by adoption- we are hoping to adopt our two foster boys and become a beautifully colored family too!
    blessings, deanna

  11. Thanks for the info on the metal detectors. I’ve been looking for a good idea for my son who will be turning 9. Also, love the pics of Seth. Your blog is where I first heard that name, and we named our newest little one Seth Michael ( 3 weeks ago!). Thanks for all your lovely pictures!

  12. It was violin week for us too! Though we just began the journey. My girl is not very tall but has my lanky long arms so she started with a full size. I hope she enjoys playing as much as your Keats. The treasures are AMAZING! We really must get a metal detector when we buy our someday farmhouse….

  13. That is truly hands-on history! The best way to teach kids history in my thinking! Way to go Keats! Keep fiddlin’ and diggin’! 🙂

  14. Tell Seth “thanks for sharing” his find. I would have freaked out if I had found a coin from 1864! It got me to thinking that I haven’t encountered a wheat penny in quite some time. I wonder if they’re even out there in circulation anymore… And some of the other pieces are quite interesting also. What fun.

  15. Love your post as always. Job looks like Silas in that picture with your husband. I look forward to your posts and beautiful pictures…

  16. What lovely pictures, Ginny!
    OMG! I love little Job’s expressions (SO cute!) in the pics while in the barn! He looks so much like you these days! What a little sweetie he is! Such a cute and fun age right now.

  17. I had to laugh at the photo of Jonny holding up the bucket with the nipple and Job looking shocked. You can just imagine him thinking……I don’t think so! Loved all the photos, beautiful. I so look forward to your posts!

  18. Oh heavens, I love the baby’s expression!
    My girl is now on a full sized violin too. It was a special day for her. She started on a 1/8 size, 8 years ago. It was the sweetest little thing.
    I think my kids would have an awful lot of fun with a metal detector. Hmmm…

  19. Ginny – I just love this post. I love that your kids are so actively engaged with the outdoors and good, solid hobbies versus video games (which is what most kids gravitate towards these days.) Did your son want to play the violin or did you make him start the lessons. My eight year-old wants to play, but the lessons and the instrument are expensive, and I’m not sure I want to commit to such an expensive hobby while she’s so young still. She played the piano for a little while but quickly lost interest, and I would hate for the violin to be a repeat of that.

  20. that is so exciting! so glad for you all… such nice things for your children to learn, have and find!

  21. I agree 100% with Lori Ann . ^^ The photo of Jonny with the little boys (and the girls) is beautiful. Also from that picture, I noticed that Bea’s hair is getting long. She’s growing up so fast.

    Jonny is brilliant! He deserves ‘Thanks, Dad’ hugs for both asking and getting permission to explore that property with the big boys.

  22. What a fun post! I played the violin for years. So fun for him to get his first full size! And the metal detecting…so cool! 🙂

  23. the violin is such a beautiful instrument…I hope he continues with it!
    just love all the photos of your beautiful family, Job is getting so big
    and I just love your little girls outfit with that white petticoat and
    dress and beautiful Mamma knit sweater…how gorgeous is that!
    how fun!

  24. If Seth ever wants to go to an archaeology camp, I used to work at one in Morganton, North Carolina. It’s one of the few camps where the kids actually get to do the archaeology. It’s run by the Exploring Joara Foundation who operate the Fort San Juan Site (formerly the Berry Site) that was written about in the New York Times last summer. It’s the oldest inland European fort in North America. More importantly, it’s run by skilled archaeologists who will teach him all kinds of archaeological methodology and skills. And they offer scholarships!

  25. I can still remember my parents taking me to buy a full sized violin it was a special day for me too. I still have it and played it up until my eldest was born. It has been languishing under the bed for the last nine years and when I got it out to play again recently sadly the bridge needed replacing. I picked it up from the repairers yesterday and am looking forward to playing again!

  26. Oh, I’m so jealous of those daffodils coming up! Last fall I planted so many bulbs and am so eager to see them come up. But I think I have at least another month before I see any green tips.

  27. I can’t wait to start music with our son! Thank you for the reminder!

  28. I’ve always wanted to try using a metal detector. Seth found some really neat stuff!

  29. Wow, great finds! My son (6) just got a very basic metal detector for Christmas. Daddy has had one for about three years and has found all sorts of treasure!

  30. What a great day! I love the pic of your husband with the baby in his arms and Sila on his back! So adorable – should be framed! Thanks for the info on the metal detectors too – my son (turning 12 in 2 weeks – yikes!) loves metal detectors and we always pick them up at tag sales and they break pretty quickly! Might be time for an investment! Have a wonderful (violin inspired!) weekend!

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