The breath of peace.  How Jesus came to his disciples so flawed and vulnerable and fearful–and breathed into them his spirit, courage, hope, life.  I thought how what he said must have comforted them so, must have worked on the formation of the men they would become.

And that led me to wonder about the power of our words and about the influence of memory and the deep roots it has in a man.

The awesome responsibility of leadership as an abbot or novice master or parent.  How much it matters how we nurture and shelter the ones entrusted to our care.

–Penelope Wilcock in The Breath of Peace

GWS :: forty-two

IMG_2127The kinds of standardized tests we have are not much good.  They tell us very little about what the student knows, and they don’t tell us anything at all about what we should do about it.  The kinds of tests we need, and hope to have in our schools by the year 2000 (!!!), are the kinds of tests that will do exactly what almost all homeschooling parents are doing right now.

Tests tailored to the individual.  Tests growing out of what students are actually learning.  Tests that enable the students to express all they know.  Tests that will give teachers useful information.

In short, exactly the kind of information that homeschooling parents get from their children everyday.

–John Holt in Growing Without Schooling

Issue 44 archived here

Posted in GWS

a little something for *you*


Screenshot 2014-07-19 at 6.16.13 AMfor the past few weeks i’ve been taking two wonderful classes–the Project Based Homeschooling Master Class and How Writers Write Poetry.  i’ve also been getting ready to turn 40.  i knew i wanted to make something to give away to friends to celebrate this birthday, but what?  well, how about a zine!  from the PBH class i heard about a neat website linking illustrators + writers called Storybird, and thanks to the poetry class i’ve been writing.

the image above is just a preview.  i haven’t settled on the art work i want to use and i hope to keep adding poems.

i’d love to share a zine with you.  just send me an email (onedeepdrawer{at}yahoo{dot}com) with your address or leave a comment on this post, and i’ll send you a neat little book of poems in a few weeks!

gws :: forty-two

For years I had been saying, “Someday, when I get less busy, I really want to work on the cello and see how far I can go toward becoming a good player…someday I want to help other people play stringed instruments.

But I never did get less busy and this “someday” kept disappearing into the future.

I decided that this had gone on long enough and that I had to start turning someday into today.

This means that I must plan and organize my life.

–John Holt in Growing Without Schooling

Issue #43 archived here.

youtube the amazing

AP found this beauty yesterday.  it’s amazing how familiar these images are.  80 years after this film was made, i rode up the river in dugout canoes and watched as the men hauled the boats up over the rocks.  i washed with a calabash + helped make cassava bread. one note–the film uses the term “Djuka” for all of the Suriname maroons.  watch to the end; there’s dancing.



vbs :: 2014

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last week we spent every warm afternoon at Vacation Bible School with our friends from Peninsula Baptist Church.

we sang and learned about Jonah, memorized scripture, played, games, made model boats and t-shirts, listened to missionary stories and shared good food.

this week is always a high point in our summer!

sabbath rest

4845594689_b6f042db2c_ofor as the rain and snow come down from heaven, and do not return there until they have watered the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out of my mouth; it shall not return to me empty but it shall accomplish that which i purpose, and succeed in the thing for which i sent it.

for you shall go out in joy, and be led back in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall burst into song, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall be to the Lord a memorial, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.

Isaiah 55.10-13

so you want to write 300 blog posts…

july 09 151well, i made it!  i hit my goal of writing 300 blog posts before my birthday…and then i stopped posting.  not really, but almost!  it just happened to be a very busy week: VBS every afternoon and three (!) classes running concurrently for me.  add in summer temperatures that are getting warmer every day, and my mornings have been quite full.  but i wanted to write a bit about what i learned this year.

  • give yourself margin.  my goal was to write 300 posts in a year, not to write every day.  i had a day off every week plus some sick days built in.  that made it feel a lot more spacious and a lot less like work.
  • write a series.  i wrote two–one about keeping advent and one about celebrating the 50 days of Easter.  a series offers focus for the writing.  it also relieves the tedium of always reporting what’s happening in our days because there’s not all that much variation: we went to the library!  we took a walk!  read this neat article!  and when you’ve got the long year still in front of you, it feels so good to map out a few days or weeks of writing and maybe even write a few posts early and schedule them to appear on the appointed day.  there’s nothing like waking up and already having a post up!
  • participate online.  of course there are the few sites you always visit, but what about throwing your net a little wider?  this year i joined twitter.  i know!  but it’s become a great way for me to find new people outside my normal homeschool mama blog universe.  i also went deeper.  also for the first time this year i participated in a MOOC.  again, it’s something good to write about, something a little outside my normal byways to think about.  i wasn’t taking the classes to improve my blogging, but all the writing and thinking spilled over and made this place richer.
  • write for 31 days.   i also linked my Advent series with The Nester’s 31 Days series.  serious bump in traffic there!  i don’t know how many of you are still reading all these months later, but i’m happy to have you!  the series gives you a smaller canvas to work on and helps build momentum.  it’s really my #1 piece of advice.  the convergence of ModPo and 31 Days last October made it easy for me to write nearly every day.
  • lower your standards.  William Stafford says that when you’re writing and you get stuck, you should lower your standards and keep going.  what passes as a blog post certainly got a bit looser this year!  i started posting more pictures, more quotes.  and every week i had two mini-series–one called Sabbath Rest, a simple image and quote from the lectionary for that day, and one featuring a quote from the archives of the homeschooling magazine called Growing Without Schooling.  these posts were restorative to me.  i got to spend time reading, pondering, looking.  i hope they were of use to you too!

so those are my five bullet points of advice.  go forth and write!  i can’t wait to see what *you* make!