Happy 2016!

I spent much of the last part of 2015 working on two quilts that were Christmas gifts (photos to come). I managed to finish them in time but I must have been crazy to put myself under such a deadline. There were several interruptions, including emergency surgery on one of my kids (she’s OK now, thank God), the purchase of a car and a broken part on my sewing machine.

The Christmas season was full of surprises, the best of them being the announcement by our daughter and son-in-law that they’re expecting their first child this summer. We are very excited about this wonderful news! This will be our third grandchild; we were blessed to spend some time over the holidays with our first two bright and gorgeous grandchildren, and they are a delight :) We Skype with them every week and love it, but there’s nothing like being there in person.

The holidays gave me an opportunity to reconnect with some old friends, which is always nice. Some were also homeschooling parents, so we have much to talk about. I continue to find it interesting that some of their kids are doing very well as adults while others continue to find their way. I mean this in terms of their faith lives, not their work or personal lives, as all seem gainfully employed and/or busy raising their own children. These things are also true of my own children. It appears to me that homeschooling creates wonderful family lives and good educational experiences, but cannot create an adult who handles everything perfectly, no matter what the speakers at homeschool conventions may tell you! That said, it’s a privilege to watch our adult children navigate the world with all of its joys and challenges.

In 2016, I hope to update Life Prep for Homeschooled Teenagers with additional projects and information. We also have a couple of eBooks in the pipeline at Cardamom that will hopefully be published this year. And of course, there will be more quilts….and a new baby to love!

Wishing you a blessed 2016,
Barb

September is…..

I can feel it in the air: it’s a little cooler in the mornings and evenings, and the bright green of the trees is starting to fade to yellow. Fall isn’t far away, and it’s back-to-school time.

Like most people, I went to school as a child, so I grew up thinking September was the time for a fresh start each year. Even after I graduated from college and began working, September was the time when everyone was back in the office after their summer vacations, ready to start work on the new sales campaigns and catalogs.

Once I had children, all of whom I homeschooled, September was still back-to-school time, even if we’d been homeschooling all summer, because the neighborhood kids went back to school and our subdivision became very quiet during the day.

Now my youngest is in his 20s, and it’s been several years since we finished homeschooling. I’d like September to become just another month. But the sign out front of the neighborhood school says “Welcome back!” and the stores are filled with displays of school supplies on sale. There’s no escaping it: even if we’re not back to school, the rest of the world is.

The Resurrection Lily

A few years back, I was at a church rummage sale where a lady was selling plants. She talked me into buying a resurrection lily, saying that it would pop up all green leaves in the spring, then before long it would look like it had died, and then it would reappear with lovely flowers a few months later.

So I planted it and it did well for a while before dying and disappearing. Then, at the end of summer, it returned in the form of a lovely flower.

This spring it was visibly larger and green. Then it died off and I forgot about it until a few weeks ago, when I found this:

IMG_20150810_184759(1)The next day it looked like this:

IMG_20150811_131053(1)And by the end of the week it looked like this:

IMG_20150814_145531When my grandchildren get a little older, this will make a great object lesson for explaining Jesus’ (and our eventual) resurrection, don’t you think? Sure wish I’d had one of these plants when my own children were young.

Happy New Year!

OK, so I’m a little late. I’ve got a good reason for that: I’ve been busy!

I’ve been quilting, writing, and reading for pleasure most of the time. Yes, I do still cook and clean and spend time with my family, but now that I’m not homeschooling, I can embrace my freedom, and I do!

So if you’re tired after a long day of working with your children, and you still have all your other tasks waiting for you, please know that your day will come: lesson plans will be just a good memory, and you’ll be able to pursue your interests. There really is light at the end of the tunnel!

P.S. Guess what? My Stages of Homeschooling eBook series can now be read for free at Amazon.com! Learn more HERE.