Tears Cresting and Falling – Moved by Literature and Theatre

So, tears come easily perhaps. And the pain others put into story form, to allow others to see into their world, see what their challenges and struggles were, see what they rose up from, what brought them to their knees – I feel these things deeply. Continue reading Tears Cresting and Falling – Moved by Literature and Theatre

Muzzles, Snouts or Beaks

  Yesterday, on the way to music lessons, there was a lively conversation in the car between my six-year old and my nine-year old about whether the word muzzle and snout could be used interchangeably. Ben is a huge reader, and he was saying that a writer will use muzzle instead of snout sometimes, and then other times talk about a snout. At first I … Continue reading Muzzles, Snouts or Beaks

Books, Bookshelves, Gluttony, Desire, and Breakdowns

Yesterday, I shared this update on my personal Facebook page: I have a problem. I am not a civilized reader. I read like a glutton or a hoodlum – gobbling what I can from as many books as I can all at the same time. It’s a disaster. It is not calm. It is not ladylike. I’m a depraved book junkie. It is hopeless, I’m … Continue reading Books, Bookshelves, Gluttony, Desire, and Breakdowns

Lesson Plan Hijack – for all the Right Reasons

Normally, the boys get to sleep in on weekends. But today, we are meeting family for breakfast out at Patty’s Diner in Gold Hill, for the best Chicken Fried Steaks in the world. It is important to get there early to get a table. As Ben was still groggy, and just barely waking up, he said, “Hey Mom, have you ever wondered who invented writing? … Continue reading Lesson Plan Hijack – for all the Right Reasons

Loving Language Right Down to the Shape of the Letters

Eloquence in words, and turns of phrase, must start with a reverence for the letters themselves; then the words, the sounds, the rhythms and rhymes, the haunting juxtapositions, the intertwining of heart within the lines. All this begins, I believe, with learning the tools, holding them each separately, seeing their singular beauty, and then learning to pair them together beautifully. * * * * * Tracing … Continue reading Loving Language Right Down to the Shape of the Letters

Leaning Towards Fear

Lately, Ben has been wanting to be scared, and scary. This morning, I stumbled onto Neil Gaiman’s Official Website for Young Readers, called MouseCircus.com. There are a couple of stories there that I think Ben may be interested in reading, and getting himself all freaked out about in the process. I am not one to enjoy being afraid. If I see a scary movie, I … Continue reading Leaning Towards Fear

“Turn thou Hitherward” – Weekly Wrap-up

Our first week in to this Old-School Homeschool style has been a total blast. We are completely focused on art projects, and giving Ben something to do with his hands while we tuck the actual educational necessities around the edges. I even created a little weekly overview worksheet for lesson planning – with the giant Art Circle in the center to help me stay tuned … Continue reading “Turn thou Hitherward” – Weekly Wrap-up

I want to Stand on a Coffee Table and Sing at the Top of my Lungs that I’ve Totally GOT This!

We were watching The Voice after the kids went to bed, so that might be influencing my flair for dramatics tonight, but honestly – sometimes, as moms, we just have one of those days! Days when we feel like we are making a dent, like we are making sense, and making memories, like our work is flourishing into joyful kids. And we want to shout from a … Continue reading I want to Stand on a Coffee Table and Sing at the Top of my Lungs that I’ve Totally GOT This!

Between the Two World Wars

T.S. Eliot is another one of my favorite poets. The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock, perhaps, being one of the most haunting and beautiful poems I have ever read. He has a way of speaking that is lilting, and ominous at the same time. This morning, I read East Coker, one of the poems in the book, Four Quartets, by T.S. Eliot. Here is a … Continue reading Between the Two World Wars

Art Mash-Up with Puzzles and Skulls

The other day, I was reading Billy Collins poetry and he started one with the Paul Cézanne quote, “With an apple I want to astonish Paris.” It only took a quick Google search to find that he did a lot of still-life paintings of apples, baskets of apples, apples and wine bottles, apples with skulls, and this pile of skulls. My boys love skulls and … Continue reading Art Mash-Up with Puzzles and Skulls

Spatial Relationships on a Flat Surface

Just thinking of the word Perspective tweaks my brain a tad. There are so many points to consider. Last night, my boys and I worked on the idea of a Vanishing Point in art. We looked at some YouTube videos of learning to draw a scene based on a single vanishing point, and all the lines you should draw across the scene to make sure … Continue reading Spatial Relationships on a Flat Surface

Planting Seeds of Hope: in Hums and Laughter and Poetry

Another night. Another gift. Dinner was amazing – homemade hot-dog buns, homemade mayonnaise, homemade relish, homemade potato chips. Big, honkin’ Hot-dogs. Delicious. Then while Bean was humming sweetly to himself in the tub, Scott and Ben were imitating one another sprawled out on the floor in front of the wood-burning stove. They were both exhausted from a long day of work, for Scott, and school, for Ben. Both … Continue reading Planting Seeds of Hope: in Hums and Laughter and Poetry

Quiet Night in a House of Boys – Some Secrets for Sanity

Sometimes I forget how civilized my boys are actually. I forget amid the mud and noise, bruises, scraps and yelling. Then I take a little trip to the Library on my lunch break, bring home a pile of books about motorcycles, airplanes and wild animals, and Voila, They are happily contained all through dinner prep! This morning, on the way to work, I heard a … Continue reading Quiet Night in a House of Boys – Some Secrets for Sanity