More than I ever Imagined

...that he may know the feel of wood, clay, leather, and the joy of handling tools, that is, that he may establish a due relation with materials...” “The points to be borne in mind in children’s handicrafts are: (a) that they should not be employed in making futilities such as pea and stick work, paper mats, and the like; (b) that they should be taught slowly and carefully what they are to do; (c) that slipshod work should not be allowed...”~Charlotte Mason

As I tweak the schedule for this semester, I see where the windows are opening for genuine Charlotte Mason afternoons, spent working with our hands. Yesterday was more than a little chaotic, as I scramble to tie up several loose ends before leaving town, but we managed to create, all the same. 

Kristin came over with Lucy, which meant Karoline and Sarah and I got to play dolls with a real live baby. It also meant that Kristin and I could put our creative heads together and Kristin could put her hands and her heart towards a project we both love. 


And Katie made progress sewing a shirt for Sarah. When my babies were little, I imagined that when everyone was "big," I'd have to time to quietly plug away at handcrafts. My reality is that knitting is a bag that comes along to soccer games and sewing is just as often done in the dressing room of the dance studio as in my carefully appointed "studio." Neither scenario is at all quiet;-)! In all my imaginings, I could not have conjured the comfortable companionship of Kristin and my arms full all over again. When I wondered and worried about who would be an example of young motherhood to my little girls, I did not have the scope of vision that would bring to mind their sister-in-law and a baby niece snuggled into one of many baby-wearing lovelies. These afternoons are nothing like I imagined and more than I ever hoped.

The days are intense. And sometimes the struggle takes my breath away. But for golden afternoons and the loveliness of girls gathered, I am grateful. 

I'm still listening to The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I know I could blaze through the print version in no time at all, but the audio version is such a treat, so very well done, that I am letting it linger.  I also spent some time this week previewing the printed version of  A Year of Playing Skillfully. Oh. Wow. Firstly, there's way more than enough for more than a year here. It's beautiful! And I'm a huge sucker for visual appeal. It's incredibly complete. And it makes me want a house full of preschoolers again. From Lesli Richards and Kathy Lee, both experienced mothers and teachers and the authors of The Homegrown Preschooler, comes the most complete and carefully crafted preschool curriculum you've ever wanted. I came away from my reading with a renewed sense of the wonder and joy of those early years. I'm grateful to have gotten to take a look and I'm excited to watch the community of women using these resources grow. Poke around over there a bit. You'll be glad you did.

“ object is to show that the chief function of the child—his business in the world during the first six or seven years of his life—is to find out all he can, about whatever comes under his notice, by means of his five senses...”
― Charlotte M. Mason

What about you? Sewing? Reading? Just playing babies? Tell me all about it!