So long March

Although I’ve always known we’d be on the path to homeschooling, this year we really got down to business and made a commitment to this way of life and we’re so glad we did! Our kids Luca (age 7), Rose (age 5) and Remi (age 3) explore life and learn every day through reading, imagination, play, and time spent together and with our community. We are documenting our experience here. Enjoy!

In March we were all about Egypt! Ancient Egyptian games, weapons, attire, stories and enough bits and pieces to make it feel like something substantial without losing the spark.  And speaking of the spark…

I’ve discovered a few homeschooling mothers/pioneers that I just adore: The Homeschool Sisters and Julie Bogart. I’ve been listening to their podcasts and down-to-earth advice and guidance while fixing dinner or during our afternoon quiet time.  Listening to these women talk about their own journeys, the magic of childhood and the trials and joys of raising children has been incredibly helpful for me in these past few months of full days with three energetic children and one on the way.  Today I am especially inspired by Julie Bogart and what she calls “Enchanted Education” – which basically is this: giving our children space and pause in which to cultivate magic.  That learning does not necessarily fit into a box or need to look like education.  Following the magic, the enchanted path with your kids is all you really need.  As Julie says, “Sometimes the most sacred moments in our days with our children show no outward educational value.”

This video and live conversation about Enchanted Education is really wonderful!! The video clip has a bit of an introduction while she sets up and says hello, but when she gets going I absolutely LOVE her insights.

Watch it here

And so on to March…

Here is the gang painting away on arm bands and other Egyptian weaponry

I maybe had the most fun with the necklaces, getting lost in all those dots and dashes!

Luca’s arm bands

Rose modeling the necklace

Rose’s Egyptian eyes, which she decided she didn’t like at all and went instead for the pink princess look further below

A Remi Bat!

Luca with his god of the dead jackal mask and rose with her cat mask.

Luca painting his jackal mask – it really turned out great!

Luca always loves making swords, shields and anything having to do with armor.  I remember him saying that the Egyptian armor is “awesome!” and that it might be his favorite.

Rose coloring an Egyptian princess

One of our favorite books this month was a great find at the thrift store called “Temple Cat” by Andrew Clements

Playing the ancient game of Senet!

Senet was a lot more fun than even I had imagined it would be! So we decided to make our own board with Star Wars characters (of course!), but it is still in the works as I write this…

Library Friends is always a good time – one week in March was all about maple sugaring and the native names for syrup, tree and house.  The kids made a beautiful sugar bush forest with wee sap buckets!

Outdoor Adventures – this month the kids were able to join a nature mentor and a bunch of their buddies on the land of a good friend – exploring the forest, building a fire and generally having a wonderful time in the woods!

Bird watching from our window

Time to plant seeds!

They are up!

We love our weekly Art Hive afternoon! Free form art exploration and general playing (usually involving forts under the table) are always a great way to finish off the week!

Checking out the cool clear tape people at Art Hive

Luca is really enjoying the piano app

It is great to see them helping out each other on a sleepy morning

Nothing like a pop-up band and march thru the house!

Don’t ever throw out rubber bands or cardboard! They become so many creations complex and simple

Sandy and Rose adding in the little letters to our alphabet poster

Remi using the ipad to match letters on the poster

More color wheels happened!

We were invited to a friend’s house for a Literary Lunch! We were asked to pick a book and bring food corresponding to that story.  We chose one of the Little House books and packed a picnic of bread, butter, cheese and hard boiled eggs. But of course we had to imprint patterns on our butter just like Ma does! The kids found lots of great little bits and pieces to pattern with – mostly Lego!

R2D2 face plants

Rose’s pizza box drawing that I just can’t part with – pizza grease stains and all!

Going out to the compost bins

Rose’s Art

Poetry Teatime with Lazy Dazy Cake and poems about teapots

Playing a very looong game of Risk – can you see how tired we are! But the kids loved it!

All about the enchanted play…








February is more than it seems

Although I’ve always known we’d be on the path to homeschooling, this year we really got down to business and made a commitment to this way of life. Our kids Luca (age 7), Rose (age 5) , Remi (age 3) and a wee one in the oven (due in July 2017) explore life and learn every day through reading, imagination, play, and time spent together and with our community. We are documenting our experience here. Enjoy!


As I write this it is March and life in winter (in Canada) is looking up! March has that calendar date that says “First Day of Spring”, there is March break to look forward to when we get to see Sandy all day every day for a whole week, seed catalogues to dream through and hopefully some real warm weather before too long! But back in the midst of February we were all feeling a little like a ship lost at sea. The kids were bouncing off the walls or walking around like zombies repeating over and over “I’m bored, I’m bored, I’m bored… “. I on the other hand felt deflated, uninspired and unmotivated to get us going on anything.  As a homeschooling mother this is a pretty hard place to be in.  We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to help our children be productive, to nurture their emotional state, to help them accomplish something worthwhile every day.  As homeschooling parents, we are accountable for not only the health, happiness and well-being of our children, but for their education as well.  We knew from the beginning that this was what we were signing up for and made that choice with a happy heart! But living with this choice on a day-to-day existence can be a pretty big weight to carry. I especially feel that weight if I’m feeling uninspired myself.  That in turn seems to easily transfes to my kids and our household.  When I’m in that place I try and remember that the hours upon hours of unstructured time are incredibly beneficial for the kids and that their free play is a huge part of their education of becoming a human.  The key (I think!) is attempting to maintain balance, while not beating yourself up for “unproductive” time.  This so called unproductive time may instead be a time of ideas germinating, ideas bubbling under the surface and a pause before the next flurry of production – and all of this is good and needed in our lives.  From these pictures I realize that we did more in Feb than I thought we did and I want to honor those those moments that felt so hard at the time.  We didn’t do much math, we didn’t do much writing or spelling in Feb, but we did plays games, make things and had many hours of freedom. It was a good month.


Here is Remi trying out the interior of our Shadow Puppet Theatre. We led the Library Friends program for a week in February – our theme was Ground Hog Day.  We created this little box theatre at home, took it into the library and had a wonderful time making shadow puppets together.  All of the kids seemed really into it and it felt magical to turn off the lights and light up the little theatre and see their creations come alive. These are the moments that feel right.  There wasn’t a lot of direction (the kids were choosing body/animals parts for their puppet, adding extra arms or accessories, gluing them together on popsicle sticks and then heading across the room to check out their creations in the theater.  I’m always trying to find creative thinking projects for the kids that aren’t all about following directions and creating a cookie cutter experience.  This project seemed to be just right for creativity to flow.


Here is Rose painting the Stage Right door

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Remi exploring the paint!


Adding some column detail

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Whoa! They both fit inside!


Trying out the puppets!


Valentine’s Day crafting!


We wove some Danish Hearts

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We also made Danish Heart Baskets with fabric


And attempted paper roses… I had a vision of gathering a bunch of branches and decorating a table tree with the paper roses, but they were pretty delicate and rolled out of their shape easily.  Hopefully we will do this for another celebration – when I was little I remember making lots of these centerpiece trees celebrating birthdays or holidays.


The kids and I made a fabulous snow fort in the back yard


We played lots of games! This is the all time favorite Labyrinth 

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Rush Hour is one of our newest additions and Luca has already zoomed through all of the levels!


Set was one of my childhood favorites and it is still wonderful!


Just like his Papa, Luca is a Monopoly master


Winter at the cottage was a highlight!

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Snowball fight in short sleeves!

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Always building Lego!

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Here the kids are putting their Sky Quilts together. For about nine days Luca and Rose documented the color of the winter sky and wrote it down in their journals.  We then found fabric to match their colors and made quilts out of their observations! I loved how there were lots of different levels to this projects – being outside and observing our winter skies, deciding on colors, writing down their findings, cutting and pinning together fabric and learning to use our sewing machine!

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