Gathering my Thoughts

::noticing God's glory: 

The tips of the leaves are already changing color. This is early for Virginia. I read yesterday that The Farmer's Almanac is predicting an exceptionally cold winter. I believe it. I'm taking inventory of boots, coats, and gloves and stocking now. The child whom we call "Super," who happened to be born just after his father touched down upon return from a Super Bowl production turns 15 the day of the Super Bowl this year. He's already planning a party. There's a mighty storm predicted.

::listening to 

Sleepover girls eating French toast and making plans for the day. Last sleepover of the summer... 

::clothing myself in 

Fleece. It's chilly this morning but I know I'll shed layers as I go.

::talking with my children about these books

The other day, I saw the reading list for a high school. There were eight books across the curriculum, outside of textbooks. That's eight books for four years! So we've been talking about "don't miss" high school books. What are your suggestions?

::thinking and thinking

About how to explain the Middle East to kids. And how my father really did try to explain it to me. It's inexplicable really. Pray.

::pondering prayerfully


Romans 15:13

::carefully cultivating rhythm

Sigh. We made some major decisions, left two beloved teams with longtime, very close friends, and made our radius much, much smaller

I've reconstructed the master calendar for the next term. It's busy, but it's definitely do-able. I'm taking this week to think through every detail of rhythm and make sure that it's all intentional.

::creating by hand

I've pushed aside the "for me" blouse for the time being. Instead, I have a little birthday sewing to do for a friend of ours and I have some delicious fabric on its way for some very fun gift sewing that has spent too long in my brain. And there's a length of fabric stretched across my dining room table that is destined to be curtains for the dance studio. And then, there are fourteen more headbands that still need to happen...

::learning lessons in

finding my way around the county. I've done so much driving in other towns that I really don't know my way around my own backyard. At least I didn't until last week. After a very poor beginning in which I made my husband lost and late for work, I spent the rest of the week acquainting myself with all the (beautiful) fields all over Loudoun County as Nick and stephen had practice every day, sometimes twice a day. It was busy, but it was good, and now I have my grocery shopping, errand running mapped out for when the regular school year rhythm begins.

::encouraging learning 

You asked about this screen shot:


It's the Homeschool Helper app for iPad. Aimee uses it and I admit that this app was what pushed me to acquire an iPad. So far, I've really loved it. I'm nearly finished planning. The caveat, of course, is that I haven't actually used it yet day-to-day.

Speaking of the iPad, stay tuned for a guest post full of educational apps. Very soon!

::begging prayers

There's this private {all good} intention close to my heart. Could you send a prayer up for this intention? One day, I'll tell you all about it.

::living the liturgy

Today is the Feast of St. Monica. She's pretty special. Beautiful prayer and icon here.

::keeping house

We're making slow progress in the basement. Christian's room and bathroom have been thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. I think the kids see the potential now. Hopefully, they will be more active participants in working the rest of it. This week, I'm all about getting the house really well kept so that we begin the school year from a place of peace.

::crafting in the kitchen 


I've been stocking the freezer with the bounty of the Farmer's Market.

::loving the moments


when tough decisions are affirmed. Nick's new team played his old team in a tournament last weekend. It was good to see old friends and we all felt very loved. The new team beat the old team in the semi-finals. One dear family stuck around to watch the finals with us. It's a gesture I will long treasure. When you've spent all weekend at the Soccerplex with two different kids playing and they're both finished and you really can go home and have half a Sunday, it's a big deal to stay and watch one more game. Turns out this game went to overtime and then penalty kicks. Nick was in goal for the PKs, made some great saves, and won the championship. It was a very sweet moment. Throughout the course of the day, the dear friend who made it all work for me last year, told me all about her decision to send her kids to school. It's the right decision for their family. Just as an aside, that decision would have mean that our plan would have come crumbling down had we not moved the boys closer. All good.

::giving thanks 

for peace as the new term approaches.

For some special people who sent Christian off with more love than I could have imagined. They chose the verse for Christian, but I've been carrying it around and considering it in my own heart a great deal since that night. 

::planning for the week ahead

I need to take Mary Beth to get her driver's license. Feel free to pray for that.

The rest of the week is all about preparing for the school year.

We have a great deal of activity coming our way this weekend. Nick has a tournament in Maryland. Patrick plays Friday night and Monday in Charlottesville. Tuesday is our "official" first day of school. I think I see apple picking on the agenda that day.