Amen to this post on adoption.

{from the garden today}

{these are just the ones the kids did not eat, that I was able to set aside for Mark}

Two good books

Mark and I just spent 6 whole days away together (!) I know (!)  for our 15-year anniversary.  We went to the ocean.  I love Mark and I love the ocean, so it was pretty much perfect.

I had lots of time to read, too.  Which reminded me that I know there are some of you-- okay, well...  TWO of you:  (Hi Carolynn!  Hi Jessica O!) who actually like it when I recommend books I've read and enjoyed... so this post is for you:

Here are two books you should read:

First, this one: City of Tranquil Light

Trust me. It's SO good. A missionary story.

HT: Amy @ Hope is the Word for the recommendation.  (When she said her favorite book last year was Unbroken, (um- because YES! Mine, too!) and this one was her favorite for this year?... she had me.)

Secondly, this one: Left Neglected


I know I've linked to Amazon, but I checked them both out at the library.  You two probably already know about Charles Martin's latest, right?  Thunder and Rain.  I read it.  And.  It was my least favorite of his books, so that's why I haven't raved about it here on the blog.

Okay.  Back to the reorganization of our laundry room! 

And then, soon- I'm hoping to get back on here and post some books Ella and Isaac have enjoyed lately, too.

Blessings to you and yours,

Daybook: June 11, 2012

Outside... sunshine.  warm, beautiful sunshine.  and we're fully enjoying it today!

In the kitchen... toast, eggs, and smoothies for breakfast (today's smoothie featured frozen blueberries, strawberries, bananas, lots of spinach, yogurt, honey, carrot juice, and coconut water.  and ice.  YUM.)   leftovers for lunch.  no plans yet for dinner.  (homemade pizza, maybe?)

I am thankful for... a new (to us) swing set.  Free!  It is so much sturdier than our old one and providing hours of fun for the kids.

I am wearing... a gray floral tank top from Target, gray shorts.

I am looking forward to... going away with Mark for our 15-year anniversary.  SOON.  Can't wait!  I like him so much and am so excited to have uninterrupted time with my man. 

In the vegetable garden...  things are growing!  Strawberries are on their way, our rhubarb is flourishing and we've enjoyed rhubarb crisp several times already.  Also growing happily: butter lettuce, romaine, spinach, chard, arugula, zucchini, carrots, beans, peas and cucumbers.  Raspberries and blueberries.  Also: pumpkins and squash and lots of basil.  This morning I was able to thin some rows of lettuce, and I divvied up what I pulled between us- resulting in a bag of baby greens in the fridge, and our ducks and chickens, resulting in happy poultry!

In the flower beds... the peonies are in bloom.  I have three bouquets in my house and they make me very happy.  And the hydrangeas are happy I yanked the naughty morning glories off of them yesterday afternoon.  Now they can grow in peace.

I am reading... 1 Peter.  Still memorizing.  I finished memorizing chapter 1 and now I'm on to chapter 2.  Also in 2 Corinthians- chapter 10-- where it talks about taking "captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ".  How's that for a tall order?  I am so thankful that God is helping me to do that... that in His kindness He pulls me up and out of sinful thoughts and behaviors and sets me in the way of triumphing over sin, and choosing obedience to Christ!  

In the schoolroom...  it's perfectly quiet.  We finished testing last week and now we are truly DONE.  I've got my list going of school planning for next year, and I'm slowly checking things off.  A couple of fun things I'm looking forward to, schoolwise... I think I've decided to pair up the kids for chores next year (they're going to love that!) , and I'm going to make "bedroom mailboxes" (giant envelopes to hang on the outside of their doors) so that we can all slip in notes of encouragement to each other.  I'm waiting to unveil these ideas until we begin, and they are going to LOVE these changes.  I'm also looking forward to Ella beginning a Book of Centuries in the fall-- I've been waiting until her 5th grade year--, and I think I'm going to do one of my own, too!

A favorite quote for today... hm.  Here's one that's been on a sticky on my desktop for a long while:

"Celebrate the commonplace since days comprise more of that than anything else."

~a blogger but I forgot to make note of WHICH blogger.  but I loved this and jotted it down.

Organizing Homeschooling Ideas

I've had the opportunity lately to speak with some moms who are beginning their homeschool journey.

The whole process can feel a little daunting: there are so many resources available and it's hard to know where to begin.  

As I scoured my shelves the other day to look for some Kindergarten materials to lend out to a friend, I found an index-card box I used when we were beginning our own homeschool journey.

At that time I was doing a lot of reading: I checked out several books on homeschooling from the library and I borrowed copies of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine from a friend.  I was gathering a lot of ideas and taking notes.  Eventually I decided to organize those notes and to write the ideas down on an index card and file them by subject. I would read an article about a particular curriculum or way of teaching and I'd jot it down and file it.  I'd hear about a math game, and I'd file it in my box.  I'd hear of a book recommendation from a trusted friend and I'd write it down and file it. 

This might seem a little outdated to some of you, but I am much more a pen-and-paper kind of a girl than a computer girl, so this worked for me.  And it gave me a way to file ideas that weren't from the computer.  (Actually, I think this was before I even started reading homeschooling blogs.) 

As I pulled this out the other day I began looking through it and it was fun to see how many of these ideas I have implemented over the past four years.  Others I had forgotten, but still want to do.  And I realized that I should still be using this little box.  Often I'll be reading a homeschooling blog and come across an idea (or book or curriculum) and don't necessarily want to bookmark the whole page: I just want a single title or a name.  So I end up grabbing my journal and jotting it down there (my journal is sort of my catch-all).  But then that idea gets lost in the pages of my journal and it's hard for me to track it down later (IF I can even remember that I wrote it down!)  One of my new goals is to start using this again in order to organize homeschooling ideas.

So as I thought this week of some of you newer moms starting out, I thought this might be a good way to start organizing some of your ideas! 

Blessings to you and yours,