Monday, May 12, 2014

Recent Faves

A few things we have been enjoying in "our" little corner of the world!

  • Did you know Sandra McCracken writes children's music? I didn't either!  The kids and I have been loving these CD's recently!  Rich words and theology matched with great vocals and music is a delight to listen to throughout our days.  Thank you to my dear friend Jamie of Where the Yellow Bird Nests for her recommendation!

  • Do you have young children? Are you a mom or soon to be mother?  If so, I can not recommend "Educating the Wholehearted Child" by Clarkson enough!  Even if you don't plan to homeschool, I think it is well worth your time (and if you do plan to homeschool, it is a must)!  This book was encouraging, beautifully written and hugely inspiring. Children need so much more than discipline.  They need discipleship!  It is a long read, but well worth the time.  I would love to hear your feedback and dialogue with you more if you decide to read it!  A huge thank you to my sister in love, Kaitlyn for the great Christmas gift!  It is one of my new favorite books.
  • Our SCBC Community Garden!  
I was (and still am!) a little hesitant about taking this on....with all we have going on and our filled to the brim weeks, how are we ever going to have time to garden?!  But so far, the walks to/from the garden and the time spent out there has been really refreshing for us.  The kids absolutely LOVE it and beg not to leave, I enjoy the connection point with them and the time outside and it will be fun to get some food out of it...If we succeed, that is! So far, we have planted potatoes, carrots, onions, lettuce, thyme, sweet peppers and summer squash. The tomatoes, sweet potatoes, basil and cilantro will go in next week.  Here goes nothing....and a whole lot of fun and dirt!

  • Caleb and I are loving "Before Five in a Row!"  Despite his desire to learn, I am very hesitant to jump into "homeschool" too early or try to push a lot of early learning....I'm not sure I agree with starting kids at a very young age. I think under 5-6 years old should be outside running around, enjoying plenty of free play, using their imaginations, listening to great music, being read the Bible, and being read great literature but I don't think it is the best time for formal learning, early phonics and reading, or regular pencil and seat work.  It seems that pushing it too early can cause more tension and frustration down the road, plus kids can never get this time of free play, imagination and learning through play back why rush it and hurry it away with formal learning and school?  It seems a lot of learning takes place during this vital developmental playtime, why cut it short?  All that to say, I love the emphasis "Before Five in a Row" and "Five in a Row" has on just simple togetherness time with your children, reading excellent literature, and learning through reading and every day life activities.  It gives us a little bit of focused time together during Evelyn Grace's nap time and has been a wonderful way of connecting, enjoying one another and reading, without the pressure of "schooling." Essentially, it is a book list of tried and true classic children's literature with ideas for parents to interact over the various readings and incorporate it into your day, drawing further upon the texts.  

  • SLEEP!  Evelyn's sleeping through the night for 13+ hours and taking two great naps a day.....I had a sleepless first year with her but she has settled into some fantastic sleep ever since January!  Looking back, I am really happy with the approach we took - we didn't force sleep through lots of crying it out and leaving her in her crib, instead we patiently worked it through and I feel like (in hindsight) the effort and time was well spent (and really not that long in the grand scheme of things).  In the end she has settled into some great sleep habits that we feel good about and the nighttime bonding was precious time well spent. It seems like the older she gets, the better both her naptime and bedtime sleep is getting. If there are any sleep deprived moms out there, take heart!  It gets easier, they do learn and in hindsight it is a short time in your life to spend some extra special time loving your little one.

  • My newest nephew, Jason Christopher!  Isn't he sweet?  I *wish* we were enjoying him on THIS side of the world but alas, we admire from a distance....such is the sadness of living far from family!

  • Green Smoothies!  Thanks to Evelyn working on her molars and not wanting to eat/chew much food we have gotten back into smoothies and are really enjoying green smoothies.  Our favorite recipe is to blend some of our favorite "greens" with water and then add mango, banana, blueberries and chia seeds.  

What are some of your recent favorites?  Post a comment! Share your blog!  I enjoy learning about new resources, fun finds and good recipes!


  1. Sounds like you are learning more & more each new day God brings you. I'm so glad I decided to check your blog this morning. :o) I love the picture of my sweet lil' niece & nephew checking out the garden. I miss you all incredibly. I love you all lots & lots & oodles & oodles!! ! My prayers continue for each of you daily. Love, aunt nj

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