In our little home, June’s theme was really being outside. As I’ve been diving more and more into the world of Charlotte Mason (seriously….how didn’t I find her a long time ago?!), we’ve been embracing going out-of-doors more and more. Obviously not having a yard has been a huge challenge, so we have to be really intentional about it, but I think that has also been good for us. We dug out the old Kelty and have been visiting a local Audubon Society park for hikes and bird watching and pond observation and just immersing ourselves in nature. Costco had a great deal on a bike trailer and I’ve been working extra lately due to the most recent bundle sale, so we splurged on that and I think the kids enjoy it (as long as they’re in the right mood ), not to mention the fact that it allows us some mindless exercise time.
Yesterday was the 1-year mark since E was laid off. In an effort to distract ourselves from this pretty crappy anniversary, we drove up to the mountains and went camping for the first time since C was born. It was good to get away as things have just been feeling pretty bleak lately. I’d venture to say we had a good time (until the birds started their morning wake-up call at 4:30 am and a little girl decided that would be a good time for her to get up as well), and with a few alterations (another double sleeping bag, some better sleeping pads, and more firewood for freezing mornings), we’d like to do it again.
After we got to the campground, an awesomely remote National Forest installation at 10,000 feet that I’ve gone to several times since I was 16 and where we took B for his first camping trip as well, we set up the tent and B just dug in the dirt and explored the area around our site for about a half hour. Then we went on a little hike down to the stream (which is more like a small river now thanks to all the moisture we’ve gotten this year) only about 100 feet from our site. I cooked peppers and onions and bratwurst on our camp stove while we got a little sprinkle of rain, then we went for another hike around the campground. By the time he was ready for bed, B was covered in dirt.
It was awesome.
I think C enjoyed it also as she’d just take off on her own any time we set her down (which was often as she so badly wanted to explore things). She pulled up grass and flowers and brought us tiny pinecones and sticks. Aside from it being a little exhausting constantly having to keep track of her and carry her back to our campsite, it was good to see her experience all the new things.
In Humble family news…
C is still not talking much which has been a bit of a concern for her poor mama. She communicates really well with her hands and body language and various sounds she makes and babbles away to her little heart’s content, but she’s really only saying mama and dada (with an occasional “ba” for ball and “ee” for cheese or “ama” for banana or some other sound that maybe could possibly be a word? but then never says it again). I brought this up at her last pediatrician appointment and they weren’t too concerned as she has more than made up for it in motor skills, but said we’d revisit it at her 18-month appointment. Otherwise, right now she loves being read to, taking mama and dada on “walks” around the living room, bananas, and being tickled. Mama loves little girl dresses and C’s crazy hair (which I’ve been putting in pigtails!).
B is amazing, as always. He has been experiencing a lot of new things lately (thanks to his curriculum which we’ll be doing over again for another year until he starts kindergarten next fall), including growing butterflies and releasing them, all of the various birds in our area, and, with the unit we just started last week, all about the weather. He loves to draw (and this) and make up really long “words” (that are just a jumble of letters). He’s been copying a lot as well, asking E or me to write a word out for him so he can copy it, or just copying sentences straight from his books. We’ve been getting Robert McCloskey books for him lately which I really want to add to our permanent collection.
In the end of June I’m into….
I didn’t do a System Status last month and C hasn’t been going to sleep very easily (which means I have more time to listen to audiobooks while I nurse her), so I have quite a few to catch up on…
In May and June, I finished Big Little Lies (3 stars – this was for my book club and it was entertaining), Call the Midwife: Farewell to the East End (4 stars – so sad this series is done!),
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks (4 stars – so sad but incredibly interesting and glad I didn’t abandon this one due to not liking the narrator), The Girl Who Chased the Moon (3 stars – this was really cheesy but I needed some fluff after Henrietta Lacks), The Light Between Oceans (4 stars – so, so, so sad but really well written), Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore (4 stars – I was surprised I liked this one, but as it was about old books and computers, it was kind of perfect for me), and A God in Ruins (3 stars – I didn’t like it nearly as much as Life After Life).
I’m currently reading The Night Circus (for my book club), For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School (all about Charlotte Mason – I’m loving it), Home Education, Glimpses of Grace, and Your One-Year-Old.
All of our shows ended in May, so we switched our Hulu subscription over to Netflix and have been partaking in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (which SO MANY people recommended) and Broadchurch. The jury is still out on Kimmy, but Broadchurch had us hooked on the first episode.
Since we’ve run out of shows to watch, we’ve been catching up on movies. We’ve managed to finish off (in two nights or less), Citizenfour (which was incredibly interesting and made me want to move to Antarctica), The Wind Rises (I love Miyazaki’s animation, but the stories of the last few movies have been just kind of….weird), Big Hero 6 (because who doesn’t love giant, kind, squeezable robots?), Interstellar (really good), Captain Phillips (intense but a little cheesy at parts), and The World’s End which was something we threw in there because we needed a laugh (it delivered).
- The Day My Son Gave Up on Me – “My excuses may be valid and sometimes even necessary. Children need to learn patience and that sometimes something other than them must take priority. But it is my words coupled with my attitude, week after week, month after month, year after year: At some point maybe he’ll stop asking again, and it might be about something a lot more important than a glass of water and an extra hug.”
- Tell your story, then live it. – I hope my obituary sounds like hers.
- A List Worth Printing, Posting, Remembering, & Living – I keep meaning to print this out and put it on the fridge. I need all of these phrases to become regular parts of my vocabulary.
- Reading the Bible with a Red Pen – “I lost the red pen with which I used to read the Bible. I lost it somewhere in between my couch cushions, along with my party affiliations and other trappings of identity. I lost myself to my own spiritual hunger. One day I wasn’t sure which character I was supposed to be, and then it all slipped out.”
- mothers and daughters. “I’m sure there are a lot of things I’m doing wrong when it comes to raising my hazel-eyed little girl and I’m sure there are many mistakes I have yet to make but like my mother often told me in a pleading voice ‘I’m doing my best. My very, very best.'”
- notes on what we’ve learned about our son [so far] – “Someday he may read this and I want him to see, nine days after the first question, two days after the first confirmation, I love him. I love him. I love him just as he is right this very moment. I’m so proud of him. I always will be. No question marks.”
I post links throughout the month on my Facebook page also if you want to follow along in real time!
- One Ingredient Ice Cream – This is B’s favorite dessert right now.
I tend to be a last-minute curriculum planner and I decided at 10 pm last Sunday to put together this weather station for B’s curriculum. It turned out surprisingly well and he loves it, so it was an all-around win situation. It also looks very cute on our pantry door.
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