Thursday, September 27, 2018

Grace-Full Assessment

As part of my role in CC team leadership, I had the opportunity to help host a workshop this past weekend on how we assess our students.

Going in to this, I have had to admit to myself that assessment in our house has become something that my children dread. One of my weaknesses as a finisher with a high standard is to focus on the things we haven't finished or what isn't complete rather than celebrating what has been accomplished and all the things that are improving.

The title of this seminar was so compelling to me especially in thinking about assessing with grace.

As we approach the HS years of homeschooling, I'd love to hear from those of you who have homeschooled through High School. Specifically, I'd love to hear how you assess work that may not be as black and white as Math let's say.

Math is relatively easy to grade, you look at how many problems there are and how many were correct and come up with a grade. But what about studying current events, looking at the heart and attitude and taking into account the ability of each child?

These are the kinds of questions I've been thinking about and we got a ton of great info at this workshop. Since I didn't come up with the information, I don't know if I can just type it all out and share it here but I took almost twelve pages of notes in my journal. The time together was refreshing and encouraging, it was challenging and opened up some new ideas of thinking. We spent time in the Word and looked at how Jesus taught and assessed even the disciples.

Have you ever thought about grace-full assessment? What would that look like to you?

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Slow Day

Slow Day when Mama has a headache again. Sigh. I'm feeling much better now but last week was a hard week!

Also. Why is it that a pot of beans simmering on the stove is so comforting?

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

A Beauty Moment

Sunday evening, I downloaded the pictures on my camera and came across this gem. It may not seem that exciting in some ways but I see the beauty in it because it is not a picture I took and I wasn't even home when this situation happened.

It may be too long of a story but Rachel likes lemon flavored things and Emily and I found a lemon chip jarred cookie mix that we gave Rachel for her birthday in July. This past week, I pulled the mix out and suggested that Rachel make it that afternoon.

She exclaimed over the jar and how cute it was and made the cookies all on her own with no assistance. Then to find this photo on my camera and see that she had fixed herself a little cookie and milk treat and made a beauty moment for herself.

I can't tell you how much I love that!

A year or so ago, I read something a friend wrote and she mentioned how if we want to know what we sound like just to listen to how our kids talk to each other and I got very discouraged because of what I frequently hear from my children. It was discouraging to me and I was disheartened in myself that there are things I've failed in especially in regards to my tongue.

But seeing this is an encouragement and lightens my heart. One of the things my girls especially have caught is the joy and delight in creating a beauty moment. They have blessed me with beauty moments after hard days or on a day I wasn't feeling good.

I love the thought of them being grown and in their own homes setting out a dish with a cookie in it and a cute glass of milk just to enjoy for themselves and those they love. 

Monday, September 24, 2018

The Joy of Concert Tickets

It has been several years I guess, since I first heard a Skillet song. I think one of the first songs Emily liked was called Monster and it immediately put me back in High School when I liked DC Talk.

I remember writing my Mom a note with the lyrics asking her for reconsideration to listen to their music. She must've granted it because I went to see them in concert at least once if not more than once along with Newsboys and more.

The point is, I remember music being important when I was a teenager. Music is still important, but as I confessed to a friend over the weekend - in a noisy life, it can sometimes feel like more noise so I frequently turn it off.

David, however, has really nurtured a love for and enjoyment of great Christian music with our kids. It is something they enjoy doing with him and this summer on our road trip {without him} they wanted to make lists of songs they heard on the radio to share with Daddy! Love that this is a special thing they do with him!

Emily's love of Skillet is not a new thing but has been around for at least a few years. I think it was last year for her birthday that I ordered the above t-shirt for her after not finding a concert within reasonable distance but wanting her to know that I noticed what she was interested in and support it.

This summer I began thinking about her birthday coming up in November and started looking up Skillet concerts again. The closest options to us were Charlotte, NC and Orlando, FL - so David and I talked about it and bought tickets for him to take her for an early birthday celebration.

They went this past Saturday to Carowinds in Charlotte and I just can't tell you how it has moved my heart and eyes to tears several times in thinking about how happy this made her.

"Which of you, if his son asks for bread will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!" ~ Matthew 7:9-11

I remember feeling this way when we took our kids to Disney World each for the 5th birthday. Emotion swelled from within me at the idea that we could celebrate them in a big way that felt special and meaningful.

After they got home in the early hours of the morning and fell right into bed, I talked to Emily when she woke up about all the details of the concert and their day together. I asked if it was everything she hoped it would be and she replied, "oh yes and more!" That made my day. Maybe even my year in my relationship with her.

God is giving me a desire again and again lately to soften towards my children, to love on them more and to just be a joy to them. I will need His help to do it as I've proved over and over I can be a task master who is focused on completing things and trying to maintain order in situations. But I do want His help and strength to fulfill these desires He's giving.

My time with them is so limited in years considering how many have already passed by and how quickly they are growing up.

All this to say, I am encouraged and rejoicing in the idea God gave to get these concert tickets. Buying tickets to a concert may not seem a big deal but when it invests in the hearts of my children - I say it is a big deal. It can bring joy and delight!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Thrifty: At-Home Pedicures

Sometimes I just get that feeling that I want my feet pampered and think about how nice a pedicure would be! And, they are! But when I'm trying to be frugal and thrifty, there is a great option to do sort of a mini pedicure at home.

We did this at my mom's this summer and then Rachel and I had a repeat this weekend - it was so nice!

Rachel asked me to describe a "real" pedicure to her and it made me realize how many of those things we can do at home. For our version, we trimmed nails, filed, did Satin Hands on our feet and then polished nails. It was fun and girly and didn't cost a penny!

What is your favorite way to enjoy thrifty fun at home?

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Slow Day

Art Project Links:
Star Wars Characters
Fall Girl, Trees and Woodland Critters

On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness {this sounds strange and I wasn't sure at first, but it is a great read and we can't wait to read the rest of the series!}

*Affiliate links for books above.