Endless Gifts from beginning August

…found these waiting in my drafts…posting because I don’t want to ever forget….

Endless Gifts

Pachelbel’s Canon being worked out on the piano- O, peace; O, beauty!

playing dolls with my little one and chatting about this and that

finger knitting madness

a wee pink octopus (knitted) on my night stand

purple and white mini carnations for love and beauty

Chrysaline on a drive with my boy-on an absolutely beautiful day, and lemonades, and an invigorating Super – Walmart (home of the above carnations,favorite whip cream(s), and marvelous fruit)

his steak on the grill

a garden step-stone, wee bird house, and tiny fairy garden house placed carefully by three small girls








Homeschooling High School: PA Homeschoolers Online

This post is long. It is a ramble through part of my journey. I am sharing it because if you are homeschooling high school- there is a wonderful, reputable online option for Advanced Placement courses. These classes are credentialed College Board Advanced Placement classes and this place has a stellar reputation. The College Board provides statistics and students consistently receive 4’s and 5’s on the AP exams who take classes from this online provider.  AP classes translate into a rigorous transcript…and college credit if you attain the appropriate score on the exam. Some colleges accept 3’s on the exam for credit. Pennsylvania Homeschoolers AP Online– for homeschooled students ALL over the world!   – more below. 🙂

It is hard to believe but my first born son will be entering his final year of high school in the fall. Senior Year. It is almost upon us! And already, we have begun prepartions and many plans for this final year.

I am choked with emotions when I try to consider all the things I feel in this season.

I am so grateful for online writers who have gone before me- especially homeschooling sons- because their words have been a help, a community, and a support to me when I have not had an IRL one.

The best advice I received (from online writers 🙂 ) was to seek outside accountability for sons in high school. Yes. This has been so true and helpful for me. Next year, I will have three sons in high school. It definitely helps our relationship and enhances their success to have tutors other than just me. I have also found this is the perfect time for small group class settings. Performing labs with several other students and engaging in strong literature discussions with other students has been great for our sons. I am interested to see how this dynamic will flow in our new venture next year as Micah studies two classes that are asynchronous. More on that later.

I have found that maintaining accountability, support, and guidance counseling to be my important role. Also, providing motivation, support, and the continued call toward excellence is important.

In a season that has, in many ways, been very hard-I want to share that God has been faithful. He has been faithful with every step of the journey and this life. Homeschooling.

A few months ago, I stepped out of my car and onto the pavement of our academic co-op. Actually, I think it was right before Christmas break. My mind was swirling with many different academic thoughts. I was receiving direction to consider AP classes for Micah next year and my mind was spinning these thoughts around.

This was like nothing I had ever done or experienced. 

And then- this thought-

This whole journey has been like nothing you ever did or experienced. Why should this next step be any different?

And, like a soft sigh, a peace settled over me. AP it would be.

I homeschooled Micah from grade 1 until mid-year grade 7 in North Carolina.

We began high school in Maryland. When we lived in North Carolina, I had a possible plan all laid out in my mind. Maryland turned that plan, and many other things!, absolutely upside down and inside out and sometimes, most times I didn’t understand- but I did know I was supposed to walk by faith and I kept making faith-filled decisions even when they didn’t make sense- and especially when they didn’t flow with what other families, other Maryland families, were choosing.

We started utilizing an Academic Co-Op in tenth grade. This was a terrific (even though sometimes hard) decision for us, for sons. We did not and have not utilized the local Community College because other decisions made that choice null and void.

I worried about this. I did and I have. I will not pretend.

Then, this year, around January, vistas started to open before me and the Lord, quite literally, put options for AP classes before me.  And very clearly showed me that my son was ready to take certain subjects and skills to a next, new level.

And so, He has provided a way for Micah to earn college credit, to maintain a rigorous transcript, to be competitive for a selective school (that doesn’t accept all community college courses but will accept these AP courses),  and maybe most importantly, to stretch even further and advance his writing, reading, analytical, and historical skills. He is definitely ready. And so am I. And I am hopeful that, maybe, just maybe, there will be some community there. There will definitely be active minds.

I trust that now is the right time and this is the day and He has worked everything out according to His purpose. I do the best I can with what I have. And I leave everything in His Hands. The provision is for now. The direction is for now. Look forward. Not back.

And Advanced Placement is more than I ever had.

I am still praying my way through the rest of his courses.

-For the Journey!


Christmas Ponderings

Here is a little posy, a ribbon wrapped offering

of Christmas- tide treasures:

A sweet and simple Advent reading schedule – I am enjoying this! The Jesus Storybook Bible is poetic and lyrical and wholeheartedly focused on Christ. There is creative license taken with some stories (in my opinion). This free download contains scheduled readings all mapped out and beautiful artwork. I cuddled a sweet girlie on my lap today and we enjoyed this so much.

Golden Hours– This is a delicious blog published entirely in honor of Advent season and Christmas time. It is beyond lovely. So beautiful. Perfect for stolen moments with a steaming mug and some quiet. I have been reading Lanier’s words for many years, now. Her home blog is a treasure. This joint endeavor, a delight. This is a favorite! from Golden Hours: Advent Meditations 1

Sally Clarkson and Kristen Kill on Christmas Traditions – Lovely line-up of books at the bottom of the blog post and a podcast link, too!

Ishtar’s Odyssey: A Family Story for Advent– this series has been an exciting part of our holiday season for many years, now…and Ishtar is new this year! This is a Daddy read aloud and it is challenging to find the time. But..we are doing the best we can.. I was delighted when several children eagerly asked if we were going to be reading these books again this year.

Poems we are enjoying:

In the Bleak MidWinter

Christmas Bells

Stopping by Woods

The Coming

An offering of beauty, my friends! As I started to write, the ideas and books just kept coming… trying to keep this small and simple.

Blessed Advent!



The Things They Say

Aymee, running to and fro… suddenly, standing still:

She gasps- “Melodee, I need to take a rest for my heart! It’s beeping! My heart, it’s beeping!”

She is breathless, with her hands crossed across her belly. Her heart is beeping.

Another day… the new bunny is at the water bottle and

“He’s drinking!! He’s so cute! He drinks!” Everything a wonder and an excited squeal.

The things they say.



This year, my girl was almost vibrating with anticipation for her special day. I am happy to say that I think she felt loved and appreciated in all the ways I hoped.

A Birthday Interview when Twelve

1.) Favorite color- Dark Green

2.) Favorite animal(s)-Golden retriever, goldfinch,cardinal, bluebird

3.) Favorite food- Chicken Nugget gallery (her words- our big family spread with nuggets, tenders, fries, etc…all the fixins’)

4.) Favorite Song- Restart by the Newsboys

5.)Favorite Hymn- O For A Thousand Tongues to Sing

6.)Favorite Scriptures- John 3:16 and Psalm 23

7.)Favorite places she’s been- North Carolina and Pennsylvania- Ama’s

8.)Favorites things- Photographing birds, building Legos

9.)Favorite School Subject- Personal Reading

10.)Favorite Books- Beloved Rascals, Robby, Cricket in Times Square

11.)Favorite Day of the Week- Saturday

12.) Favorite flowers- roses and rhodendron

Bonus one to grow…

13.) Something special she loves…- Daddy’s Brunches

Happiest birthday, my daughter!

2 Peter 1:2

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.


My baby girl is …..Three!


I paused for a bit in heart and mind… surrounding her birthday. It felt a bit surreal. This is the very first time I have ever had a three year old and not had a new baby or one on the way. The closest I have been on this road…was the year Joshua turned three and the twins were expected soon. I took some time to contemplate.

She had a lovely day. Full of sunshine, fun, gifts, delight.

Three things about my darling Norah- with one to grow.

1.) Favorite f00d- cupcakes and ketchup (not together 😉 )

2.) Favorite color- Purple

3.) Favorite toy- her answer: stuffed “bambis”- (my interpretation- her plush baby deer)

One to grow..

4.) Favorite song- every word of her answer- distinct: Jesus Loves Me

Blessed birthday sweet girl!


A young man in our house turned ten just as February almost turned March.

What a delight he is!

There were home-made cinnamon rolls to start his day! A special treat for 10! I usually make a quick and easy cinnamon roll biscuit on birthdays.


Ten Things plus 1 about Jonah

1.) His favorite color is yellow (sunny just like his temperament! 🙂 )

2.)His favorite breakfast is waffles

3.) His favorite food is cinnamon rolls

4.) His favorite drink is lemonade

5.) His favorite music is: Newsboys “Restart” and TobyMac’s “Me without You”

6.) His favorite book is Redwall

7.)His favorite instrument is viola

8.)His favorite time of year is Christmas

9.) His favorite hymn is Amazing Grace

10.) His favorite poem is Stopping by Woods on A Snowy Evening

11.) 0ne to grow! His favorite day of the week is: Sunday

Blessed birthday, my son!