Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Reading Lately (Q1 2021)


It has been a while since I recorded these! I lost one of my notes full of books, then made some new ones which are still inside a cupboard door, then I stopped recording what I read, then pretty much stopped reading books at all (2020). But! In January I taped up a piece of paper next to my goal sheet on my door, and having that up helped me remember each day that this is important to me and something I love and want to do.  It has been great to be reading again! (And there's a good mix of reading-with-kids-for-school-time books and reading on own books here :)

School Days According to Humphrey

    Read this with Porter and it was happy and fun.

The Julian Chapters

    Read this with Ellie and Owen after finishing Wonder -  I love these books :)

Pride and Prejudice

    Re-read this at the beginning of the year as part of my goal to get back to reading, and loved it again!

The Witch of Blackbird Pond

   I love Elizabeth George Speare and I liked this too! 


   A funny fractured fairy tale of the Snow White story from one of the dwarves perspectives

Steal Like an Artist

    Great little reminders and encouragement

To Kill a Mockingbird

    I had recommended this to Landon several times when he needed something to read, but then when I re-read it I was kind of glad he hadn't really gotten into it... Parts of it I loved and felt like were so valuable. The Boo Radley parts were just a bit too unsettling for me. 

Patterns of Grace

    This was an 'I need something to read, what's available on Libby?' choice, but I actually really enjoyed it. I haven't read any of the authors other books, but these little thoughts were really nice.

The Resistance

    The kids read another book by this author with Grammie and Grandpa so I tried this one and liked it - it was a little rougher than the one they read (A Night Divided, which I loved) so not one I'd recommend to them right now, but it was a new perspective that I really enjoyed. 

Show Your Work

    More great reminders and encouragement

Everyday Sacred

    I loved this. One thought that has stuck with me was of the begging bowls and 'just enough' -- am keeping that image in mind as we get ready to venture back into the real world again...

Goose Girl

    I made a goal this month to read a book at night instead of anything on a screen. Started with this re-read because I knew I'd enjoy it and I did :)

Don't Overthink It

   Some good reminders and ideas from the author of Modern Mrs. Darcy

Big Dreams, Daily Joys

    After watching (via instagram) the process of Elise writing this, I was so excited to pre-order and have this book arrive! Then it sat by my bed for a year... finally felt ready for these great ideas on big dreams and daily joys and enjoyed it very much! :)

My Side of the Mountain

    Had fun reading this with Owen. We were both a bit incredulous about a young teenager just deciding to go live in the mountains and his parents being fine with it! 

Walk Two Moons

    Loved re-reading this favorite with Ellie!

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

St. George


We're in our last week here in St. George! We thought we might have to leave early to miss a snowstorm on the way home, but we made arrangements to stay till after the storm so now it feels like we have these wonderful extra bonus days! Jordan and the kids are about to head out on a long hike for Wednesday adventure day. Yesterday after school we went swimming and played tennis. Tomorrow afternoon the kids are excited to return to the natural mountain biking park they found earlier in our trip. 

What a blessing it has been to spend these winter days in this beautiful sun-shining place!

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

This time last year...

Orchestra rehearsal January 2020

 I was looking for a picture on my phone from an activity last winter, and happened to see a group shot of our lego robotics team and was hit by a wave of --- I'm not sure, homesickness? But, instead of for home, just regular life?

This has been (for nearly everyone in the world) a different kind of year. I couldn't have imagined at this time last year what was to come and the changes that our family would make.  But mostly, I've been fine. And many parts of this year have been even really wonderful. But I think maybe I've kind of forgotten how nice it feels to be with other people... 

One day in the Spring, I sat at the roundabout with a friend and talked, and as I felt myself filled up with such a simple conversation I  realized I've missed this.

We made plans with a few other COVID homeschooling friends to meet once a week and give our kids a chance to play and be together, and I soon found that I was looking forward to those Tuesday afternoon visits even more than the kids were. 

One day in the Fall a friend texted, "I miss YOU!" and I still can't quite find the right way to say it, but it mattered to hear that. 

A few times this year we've been able to get together with family (with some very careful quarantines), and it has felt so nice to be together

Seeing that Lego Robotics club picture feels like another lifetime - did we really do things like that? was that really our life once upon a time? And all the everyday photos surrounding that one felt so special, important somehow... a dinner out, a big group of Ellie's friends all gathered in close for a picture at her birthday party, rollerskating at the Fun Park, a visit with my sister and her family, company and kids' friends at our house, orchestra rehearsal (above), iceskating on hot chocolate club day, a recital, a trip to Disneyland (!), Lego Robotics meetings, bowling with the kids, a winter scout campout for Landon, a trip to SLC with Ellie's orchestra group... what a lot of regular life that very soon after turned into not-so-regular life! 

Next month, I should be able to get a vaccine (!) and we'll start transitioning back into... our old life? regular life? a new, new-normal life? I'm so grateful for the miraculous speed that this has been developed and for the hope it has given us throughout this year, and I'm also a little nervous somehow (sometimes for me change can be hard even when it's really good change). 

I think I've kind of gotten used to the life we've lived this past year. Some things are still challenging, and my heart aches for the difficult times my kids have faced.  And I am also so grateful for all the sweet and wonderful times we have had.  When I found the right RA medications and started to feel so much better, I remember thinking so often something like, "I had forgotten I could feel this good" and I wonder if that might just be how we feel being with others again in everyday life. 

Our Desert Adventure

We have just a couple of weeks left of our desert adventure here in St. George, and I'm just really grateful for the time we've had! Our default activity has been exploring Snow Canyon (still so many new interesting places to see!) The sunshine and blue skies through January and February have filled me up, and every morning I've loved heading out the door on a beautiful morning walk. (One morning I stepped outside and came back in to leave my coat. All through my walk that day I kept thinking 'it's February 3, and I left my coat at home!')  Besides our regular school time routines, we've been swimming, biking, hiking, running, walking, rollerblading, scootering...and even one day of snowman/snow wall building. So much fun adventuring and sunshine enjoying! Visits from Nathan, Rachel & Monty and Kathie & Winslow made the time here even happier. What a blessing to enjoy this beautiful place while we're working/schooling remotely!