Monday, February 11, 2019

{This and That}

This week was Exam Week for Term 2. My husband was also out of the country all week, so by the time we got to Friday, I was done. But all in all, things went well!

I decided I needed to add some activities to keep myself sane. Here's what we did without involving any screens...

did a toy rotation (I always keep some toys packed away for this purpose!)
caught up on science demonstrations (worked through some questions my kids had about planetary orbits)
organized bedrooms and moved around downstairs furniture
went for daily walks (in between the rain showers that lasted all week)
played lots and lots of music (folk song for the win!)
cleaned out school cubbies and refilled school supplies (like we always do during exam week)
did some baking and played board games
added branch/bud observations to our nature journals
blew up balloons to play with (I always keep a stash for times like these)

It actually helped quite a bit that it was Exam Week because I allotted one hour of each day's two-hour naptime to take down exam narrations and then set aside the other hour for rest. I usually do most of our lessons during naptime and don't get a chance to rest much until late afternoon, but with my husband gone and our schedule a bit off, I knew I would need that mid-day break. I still finished every day super tired. I am so glad my husband doesn't travel very often!

My highlight of the week was reading through their exam answers on Thursday evening. I just love the insight it gives me into each one of them and the fresh ideas it inspires in me for the term ahead.

We are waiting on our formal Exam Celebration until the end of the school year since my husband wasn't available to join us. Instead, we did a smaller event with recitations, snacks, and some fun treats to congratulate ourselves on a term well done.

our first set of snap circuits
a 12-pack of embroidery hoops for our next group project
more post-it flags (we uses these for marking passages we want to add to our commonplace books)
Boesch's The Cross in the West
Heller's Up, Up, and Away: A Book about Adverbs
Our Big World
Elizabeth Yates' With Pipe, Paddle, and Song
Robertson's Marguerite Makes a Book
Box Turtle at Silver Pond Lake and Dolphin's First Day from the Smithsonian Nature Collection

As usual, these are all thrifted finds that relate in some way to our studies from this term. :)

Just 12 weeks left in our school year and I feel so good about how things have gone.


My husband came in the door at 9pm on Friday and I left first thing Saturday morning for the Mater Dei Homeschool Retreat. It was held a couple hours from me, so I had plenty of downtime during the drive to recover from introvert overload that a week alone with the kids brings!

rainy day road trip!

the generous organizers: Sarah, Lauren, and Ruby

thanks to Lena for the photos!

This retreat was a rich and refreshing event. Friendly and faith-filled mothers, prayer, a lovely luncheon. I spoke about End-of-Term Reflection (a version of a talk I have available as part of the 2018 CMEC Retreat Package!) and brought a whole carload of sample notebooks, chore charts, and more for those that asked to see them. So much fun "talking shop." And then I went home and spent Sunday catching up with my husband!

(Do you know about Gobble? Every now and then when we want a date night in, we'll order some meals from Gobble. We have been using it off and on for several years now. Such a fun and fancy alternative to going out during seasons when we don't have a babysitter! That's what we did for this weekend and it was such a treat after a long week. Want to try Gobble? Sign up through my promo code to earn a discount for you and me. ;))


Guess what arrived in my mailbox last week?!

A sneak peek at some of my contributions...

The first issue of Common Place Quarterly is wonderful. I had seen the digital version but to hold it in my hands is a joy. The second issue is available for pre-order -- or subscribe for the whole year and get some extra goodies!


A reminder: Motherwell is coming up in just a couple months! If you have been thinking about registering, now is the time! Amy and I confirmed the talks we will be giving with the retreat team -- you can read titles and descriptions on the site as well as see the rest of the agenda.

We also talked over the schedule with the organizers and the days are going to be so wonderfully arranged. I can't wait to visit Charlottesville, which I hear has THE most charming downtown? So the Virginians tell me. :) If you're going to be there, let me know in the comments!


Cate turned TEN a couple weeks ago. Hard to believe I now have three in double digits!

She got some fun little things for her birthday...

A Child's Treasury of Seaside Verse (for my aspiring poet who loves the beach!)
Goudge's The Little White Horse (illustrated and in hardcover with a sweet ribbon bookmark)
a pretty notebook (comes in a three-pack)
StaedtlerTriplex Fineliner marker set (but ours came in this cute case, which I can't find on Amazon)
floral wrap headbands (they come in a four-pack, but I'm saving the other two for Gianna's Easter basket ;))
and Charlotte the Fox made by mama :)

I hope you have been enjoying the Getting Started with Handicrafts series! I have another post ready to go for later this week, this time on paper cutting. And I'd appreciate your prayers for CM West, coming up next week. Thanks, friends!


  1. I haven't gotten my issue of CPQ yet (I am in Canada, which likely explains it) but I am eagerly awaiting it!

  2. You MADE Charlotte the Fox?! She is adorable! Will you be sharing how to make that in your handicraft series?

    1. I made it with a kit that I got for Christmas last year: It was so fun and I am working on her pair, Felix Fox right now! Hoping to get it finished for my 8yo's son birthday in April. :)