New Years Resolutions

As I'm making these seemingly ridiculous lists of resolutions for the coming year, I'm realizing that many of these things have already been set as intention and are beginning to become a part of my reality.

So, this (extremely detailed) list is not meant to hold me to some impossible new standard of living beginning tomorrow, full force, but to put into the universe the energy of intention and focus within myself to grow and develop these things gently and lovingly in their own time.

And actually, all of the things listed here could probably be summed up with one simple phrase:



Play with the kids
Do a daily activity (craft, game, lessons, science experiments, cooking, etc.)
Have specified responsibility charts for everyone in the family
Have a relaxed but reliable daily routine
Institute a reasonable bedtime for the kids
Spend some quality alone time with my husband every night
Read with the kids every day and at bedtime
Drink Kombucha
Drink Kefir
Drink herbal tea
Prepare & eat healthful meals for our family
Meditate/practice yoga morning and night
Watch or read the news every day
Go for a walk morning and evening
Look at the sky, day and night (preferably sunrise and sunset)


Completely clean the house (sweep, mop, vacuum, bathrooms, etc)
Have a date night with my hubby
Have a dedicated family day together
Have a movie night in
Have a family game night
Have an educational or fun outing (park, museum, library)
Have in home play dates with friends
Call my parents
Visit a farmers market


Celebrate new moon and full moon
Spend a day at the spa
Have a manicure and pedicure
Have a full body massage
Have a potluck dinner party with friends
Go on a weekend camping trip


Purge the house of no longer needed items
Research holiday traditions and create new and meaningful family celebrations
Fully learn, explore, experience, and appreciate each season
Visit with out of town family


For me:
Remember to trust my instincts
Get more organized
Learn to make Kombucha and Kefir
Learn to make naturally fermented veggies
Learn to make homemade breads and cheeses
Grow our own food & herbs
Move forward with Photography & Crafting, from hobbies to income
Get better at keeping up with things!!!

With Steve:
Learn new and better communication skills
Be more compassionate
Be more patient & understanding
Be more loving & caring
Be more romantic! ;)

With Trinity:
Cook our way through The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook
Take her to a farm to milk a cow
Become a better listener
Talk to her more
Sing with her

With JaJa:
Take her to a dance class
Get better at gently loving her through her meltdowns
Model a calm and peaceful attitude to be a better example for her
Talk to her more often
Dance with her

It's pretty clear that my focus for the year is on building a healthy family and home life, getting more in touch with each other, nature, and self.

Happy New Year!

One of the (many) things I want to focus on in this coming year is creating meaningful holiday & family traditions for my children. Not only to provide them with warm and fuzzy childhood memories, but also to give them a sense of meaning throughout their lives, for the things that we celebrate, and the reasons why...
Ritual is an important part of creating meaning in life, but ritual without an understanding of the meaning behind it, is just a pointless and superficial performance of some of our most time honored traditions.

When I was a kid, we always had a bonfire, sometimes burning the Christmas Tree, and did fireworks all hours of the night. And on New Years Day, my mom always cooked black eyed peas and cabbage, but I never really knew why.

So, starting with the New Year, I did a little research to see how different cultures and traditions are ringing in the New Year around the world and throughout the ages.

Here are some interesting links, hope you find something fun for your family to celebrate!

A Brief History of the New Year Holiday

New Year Traditions Around the World

Saying "Happy New Year" in other languages

Snopes List of New Years Superstitions

World's Strangest New Years Traditions

The Rose Parade

The Rose Bowl

Lucky Foods for the New Year

The History of "Auld Lang Syne"

"Auld Lang Syne" Lyrics:

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne.

CHORUS: For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We'll tak a cup of kindness yet,
For auld lang syne!

And surely ye'll be your pint-stowp,
And surely I'll be mine,
And we'll tak a cup o kindness yet,
For auld lang syne!

We twa hae run about the braes,
And pou'd the gowans fine,
But we've wander'd monie a weary fit,
Sin auld lang syne.

We twa hae paidl'd in the burn,
Frae morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid hae roar'd
Sin auld lang syne.

And there's a hand my trusty fiere,
And gie's a hand o thine,
And we'll tak a right guid-willie waught,
For auld lang syne.

(No wonder people just mutter through until they get to 'auld lang syne')

A couple other small article summaries:
English Zone

And finally, a wikipedia article or two for good measure:
Wikipedia/New Year's Eve
Wikipedia/New Year's Day

Happy New Year Everyone!


Winter Solstice Total Lunar Eclipse

The Lunar Eclipse tonight provides a great learning opportunity for us homeschoolers, since we can sleep all day tomorrow if we so choose, we can stay up all night (or get up in the middle of the night) to let the kids witness first hand this cool event!

I know we are planning to be up for this tonight, with camera at the ready hopefully to get some cool pictures.

Here are some links to some interesting info about tonight's eclipse, and general eclipse info:

Article: Lunar eclipse could boost underdog meteor shower

How to Watch the Dec. 20 Total Lunar Eclipse

Top 10 Lunar Eclipse Facts

The Best Leonid Meteor Shower Photos



Facebook Badge

I just learned to make a facebook badge!
It's for my husbands fan page, and facebook actually did all the hard stuff,
but maybe one day I'll learn to make my own badge, or some lovely volunteer with make one for me??? ;)

Simple-Needs Home Repair (Dallas, TX)

Promote Your Page Too


why i love three year olds

she comes over to me and says, "i'm gonna dress up as a human"...

so a little later, she comes downstairs, with a tutu on, and invites me to come eat at their restaurant. when i get there, she asks me, "how did you know it was us?"

as if that wasn't funny enough...

i 'devoured' the felt cookies and chocolate dipped strawberries cookie monster style, and as i threw them, she picked them all up, then when i set down the empty bowl, she looked at me perplexed, and asked indignantly, "did you eat the fork?"


three year olds are funny!


I'm THAT mom

I'm that mom who enjoys the idea that 'normal' people think we're weird, because i think it's just weird to want to be so damned normal.

I'm that mom who sometimes forgets that our lifestyle is not considered 'normal', because to me, it seems like the most normal and natural thing on the planet to follow the instincts to love, protect, and nurture your children.

I'm that mom who believes that childhood is precious, fleeting, and worth protecting, and that the world we live in deeply undermines and devalues the hearts and minds of our children.

I'm that mom who makes statements like the one above without the slightest bit of religious fundamentalism as the basis for those beliefs, but with the deepest and most sincere motivation of supporting the 'natural' order of things.

I'm that mom that believes there is wonder and knowledge all around us, and it is our natural desire to take in those things that fill us with understanding and appreciation of our world.

I'm that mom who is appreciating this exercise because it reminds me of the kind of mom that i am, and sometimes i need to be reminded.

I'm also that mom who believes it is equally valuable to share our failings with each other, as well as with our children, so as not to build an illusion of perfect ideology that is impossible to live up to.

So, I'm that mom that is still just a human being, with limits, and flaws, and quirks, and old wounds.

And I'm that mom who believes in apologizing to my children when said limits are breached and I react from a place that is other than respectful or loving to my children.

I'm that mom who believes there is opportunity for learning and growth in all things, especially our failings.

And I'm both that mom that I always wanted to be, and the one that I never wanted to be, sometimes within 5 minutes of each other.

But I'm always that mom who deeply loves and adores the preciousness of my children.

And I'll always be that mom who seeks the path to becoming a better mom, because i believe if you think you've got it all figured out, you're probably really missing the point!

*inspired by this spontaneous blog carnival (leave it to the unschoolers) which was originally inspired by this post which was then followed up by this post
*and specifically inspired by my friend Vicki's post
*and this one, written by another friend and fellow unschooling mom, Lisa Russell, really sums up our 'crazy' point of view pretty well, and she's funny!

You might also like:




Children and Nature Network has designated April "Children & Nature Awareness Month".
April 2010 is the third annual Children & Nature Awareness Month.

This year, C&NN has two goals:
*First, to encourage parents to form their own Nature Clubs for Families.
*And, second, to invite grandparents and older outdoor enthusiasts to do their part to reconnect children and nature.

We're In, or should I say Out? ;)



Our family participated in this program last summer, and the email just came in again today, so I signed us up again, because even though we didn't use it as often as we would've liked to, it was still nice knowing we had it.

Bowling would be a great rainy summer day activity, or it's over 110 degrees outside kind of activity also!

I just realized this would probably be a pretty good thing to share with other unschoolers/homeschoolers out there, so feel free to pass along the link to your friends and groups that might enjoy it!


This link will take you to the US Map page where you can just click on your state, then select a city near you, and it will take you to the registration form. Just that simple, and the coupons come to your email weekly where you can print them out or just ignore them if you're not up for bowling that week. Very simple, and FREE stuff is good!

You also have the option to sign up for a family membership for the summer for about 25 bucks, and then you can play with the kids too, 2 free games per day all summer. Nobody bowls that much!



We are always looking for new IDEAS on how to CELEBRATE the HOLIDAYS and SEASONS. After all, celebrating LIFE is the best way to LIVE, right?

We are specifically trying to focus our holiday TRADITIONS towards a more NATURE-based approach, and away from a mass consumerism mentality.

Of course, because I LOVE doing kid focused CRAFTS, that's usually what's going on around here; so I'll SHARE a fun how-to that we did yesterday!

First draw a sketch (or have your daughter draw one ;) on a piece of paper to make a pattern:

Cut out:

Pin in place to two pieces of craft felt, wrong sides facing:

Or, if you forget to do a double thickness, like I did, just cut out the first one, flip the pattern over, and pin to the other piece:

After both pieces are cut, sew them together using a blanket stitch:

Add details, and attach to a hair clippie, and voila:

I'd LOVE to hear how you and your FAMILY mark the blossoming of SPRINGTIME.



We just discovered these videos last week and fell in love with them.

Lisa at 5 Orange Potatoes said it best, "They are so cute, witty, and the perfect blend of nature and animation, we can’t get enough of them!"

Word of warning: there are more than 50 of these on youtube, so you could get sucked in for hours! (i happen to know this)

But... if you have no plans for the day, or happen to be rained in, have a sit with the kiddos and enjoy!

Catapult Grasshopper

The Big Race




that we 'moms' will stop buying an item at the grocery store just because we are the only ones who like it?

the kids dont stop asking for candy or toys just because they are the only ones who want it...

dads wont hesitate to buy beer when they want it just because they are the only ones who drink it...

So, I say...


Stand Up Ladies!

...buy mushrooms, or makeup, or durian fruit!

JUST BECAUSE you are the only one who likes it!

(then you don't even have to share!)




"I have spent a long time and have not yet finished, in order to learn this, ...that one can learn nothing. There is, so I believe, in the essence of everything, something that we cannot call learning. There is my friend, only a knowledge- that is everywhere, ...that is in me and you and in every creature, and I am beginning to believe that this knowledge has no worse enemy than the man of knowledge, than learning."
- from Siddhartha, written by Herman Hesse


mii family

our family has been a bit reclusive in the last several months, not socializing much, (online or irl), but here is a little tidbit of what we've been up to:

we have surrounded ourselves with our family...

even if they are just virtual reality, they are there with us in spirit while we play, and that makes us happy!