christmas 2014


It was noisy. It was chaotic. It was wonderful. And the best part? Having this little one home. Be still my heart. To have her here, with us this year, was the greatest gift we could have ever imagined. But the kids wanted toys, too For some crazy reason. Tallula got a Frozen snuggle-thing. Whose one-size-fits-all sizing is evidently for much larger kids. But with Elsa's face on the front, does it really matter? Vivienne got the Bright Eyes Kitty. There were 3 Bright Eyes designs and 4 of my girls wanted one. Lula lost. Thankfully Lula is easy-going and … [Read more...]

homeschooling: 2014-2015


I shared a post similar to this a little over a year ago, with all our curriculum choices for the year. And I posted a follow-up at the end of the year, with our thoughts on all of Dalton and Asher's curriculum. (Thoughts on Isabelle's 3rd grade curriculum choices is here.) Let's just say, we didn't end the year the same way we began. But in homeschooling, that can be a really beautiful thing. .................................... Here is precious Vivienne. Six years old and technically in first grade, but she might still have one foot in kindergarden. School … [Read more...]

out and about


It's summer. And all my babies are home. My most favorite time of year. And there is so much I want to squeeze into the time we are all together - all fun stuff, of course. But the truth is, we just don't get out a whole lot. For several reasons. 1) I am a homebody 2) "We" is a whole lot of people 3) For this mama to get this crew rolling, it has be good. And it has to be affordable So when we found out that this much-talked-about, National Historic Landmark, 20th century blast furnace was open to the public, (and free!) we were all … [Read more...]

it’s summer, continued again.


About this time last year, I posted about the curriculum I'd purchased for the 2013-2014 school year. So, as we close out the year with pictures and an end-of-the-year interview, I figured I'd toss in a quick review of the curriculum choices we made. Because I am nothing if not opinionated. But first, the year-end interview. Here is my sweet D, as he finishes up his 6th grade year - which was his first official year to be homeschooled. Let's see what he thought of it. Dalton is 5' 1" and 118 pounds. That’s up 2 inches, and 13 pounds since last … [Read more...]

a pleasant surprise


I had a photography assignment to do. One I had kinda-sorta been putting off. Because the assignment was to get a picture of me. *yeah* So, since I don't own a tripod nor a remote, I figured I'd have one of my kiddos snap the picture... you know, once I'd determined the location, chosen the settings on my camera, taken a few practice shots, given them detailed instructions on composition and then switched places with them. Simple enough, right? I gathered up the kiddos who were willing to join me on my photo-adventure, and we were off. Out to the … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: 14 from 2013


I did it last year. The year before. And even the year before that. It's sort of a thing, I suppose. And, since 2013 doesn't want to be left out, here are my favorites from the last year. Not necessarily technically my favorites, from a photography standpoint. Just from a mama's standpoint. 1. Princess Vivienne. 2. My incredibly silly pony. 3. My brave and beautiful Velvet, just days before she passed away. 4. Isabelle... being Isabelle. 5. Tallula, home one wonderful year. 6. My babies. Every one of 'em. 7. My biggest boy, the … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: ice, baby.


I've got a lazy bone. And even though I'd promised my kids I'd take them ice skating, the lazy mama in me was so not looking forward to it. Because I knew. I knew taking 6 kids - 4 of whom have never donned ice skates before - was going to be painful. Thankfully, my tickets had an expiration date. Because, even more than I am lazy, I am frugal. So we ventured out, our first official homeschool field trip this year. The girls were ecstatic. Despite the fact that they could barely let go of the side, and their feet got sore, and they were cold, … [Read more...]

a birthday and a mustache.


This was supposed to be a Sunday Snapshot. In which case it would be a few days late. Or several days early, depending on how you look at it. Either way, it's a good one. Because my baby, my last baby-by-birth, just turned 12. And that crazy business calls for a party... and a cake... and lots and lots of merriment. The party part was easy. To be honest, any time a group our size gets together for a meal under joyful circumstances it could be considered a party. The cake was easy too, thanks to my multi-talented daughter. She actually made the cake … [Read more...]

four weeks in


Not ashamed to say it. Just four weeks into the new year and homeschooling an 8th grader and a 6th grader is kicking my hiney. More specifically, an 8th grader who is taking a high-school Biology course, doesn't manage his time extremely well and can't resist a game of hide-and-seek with his sisters. And a 6th grader who never misses an opportunity to distract his brother and can usually be found shooting baskets instead of finishing his handwriting practice. The school day around here has lasted until 5 PM on more than one occasion. Mama just can't do … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: Dalton this summer


Since celebrating Poppy's 2 years home with a photo shoot, I've been taking my kids out - one by one - to capture them this summer. Given, it's almost fall now, but I'm not one to let a technicality stop me. Sophie's photos are here and Isabelle's are here. Just a few more to go. Okie-dokie. Back to Dalton. When trying to decide what "favorite thing" to bring along on his photo shoot, Dalton had to choose between the dog and the basketball. The dog won. I told y'all that my kids are even more smitten than I am. And as you can see, I wasn't … [Read more...]