The Castle Builder by Longfellow

Julie sent an email a few days ago and said, “This poem made me tear up. Thought I’d share it with you all [sisters], since you have boys, too.” The Castle Builder by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow A gentle boy, with soft and silken locks, A dreamy boy, with brown and tender eyes, A castle-builder, with his wooden blocks, And towers that touch imaginary skies. A fearless... Read More

Annie Had Her Baby…Shower!

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Last Saturday we threw a “Bee My Baby” Shower for Annie! She plans to use Burt’s Bees Baby products for her little boy, so we had fun planning a bee theme, with some daisies thrown in for good measure. (Click any image to view it larger. Click here to view my bee baby shower idea collection on Pinterest with links to ideas and places to buy supplies.) I had just... Read More

Bucket Lists and Checklists: Our Vacation

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As promised, I have vacation pictures for you! I blew it on the book review, though. I’m slowly learning never to promise anything to anyone in April and May; they’re by far the busiest months of the year for my family. This vacation could be called “Checklists and Bucket Lists.” My husband’s parents have had, “Take the Family on a Cruise”... Read More

A Hike Through Sonoran Desert Flowers

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Missed you all the last couple of weeks! Our family has been on vacation, and away from cell phones and computers, so I’ve had no contact at all with the blog. We live right by a mountain park in Phoenix, and I regularly hike the trails there. This is supposed to be wildflower season for us, and I thought I’d take my camera out and get a bunch of pictures. But with... Read More

An Aunt's Duty

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This is Debbie posting this Saturday. It is a well-known fact that part of one’s duty in becoming an aunt is to take lots of photos of nieces and nephews! This also applies to grandparents and, I’m sure, many other relationships. Proper etiquette in this area can be a little confusing. 😉 But I figure if I stay behind the camera and take lots of pictures, I’ll... Read More

The List: A "Typical" Homeschool Morning

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Each morning, I hand each of my kids a clipboard with a list attached to it. This list, folks, is a pipe-dream, a wild hope that they can manage to get through all of their assignments before 4:00. It rarely happens. But, after seven years of homeschooling, I still hope. And, after most-of-their-lives of homeschooling, they still react with shock and dismay to The List. Our... Read More

Homeschool Books and Materials: Singapore Math to Memoria Press

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I opened the door to my daughter’s room Friday morning, camera in hand, to tell her that she needed to help me get some pictures for my blog, and this is what I saw, just inside her door: We’re not taking dowry offers yet, so don’t even ask. Anyway, my idea was to use the blog to answer the question that I so often am asked, “What do you use for homeschool... Read More

Awaiting the Ascent

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Our family went on a rope-climbing trip on Camelback Mountain Friday afternoon, and I thought it’d be a good opportunity to introduce all of them onto the blog. This is my husband, leader of many such expeditions. He’s a world history teacher, and runs the Adventure Club at his high school. Here, he gets his harness on, ready to climb. My husband checks my oldest... Read More

Finding Life

My older sister and I have talked at random in the past several years about starting a blog together. I ended up starting this one last year, just to learn a new hobby and deal with the isolation of mountain life and early motherhood. It was only a matter of time, though, before I called and begged, “Um, Julie, is it time now?” Julie cuts straight to the heart of a matter... Read More