I recently discovered the Christian band, Future of Forestry (the name comes from a poem by C.S. Lewis) via a link to from Jennifer's Favorite Links. I found a lot of songs that I really like (and a few that just aren't my thing), including this one, called Close Your Eyes...
Another of my favorites is Slow Your Breath Down...
And speaking of slowing down, I've been working hard to slow down a bit - simplify my life and my commitments and it's not easy, but I can definitely see it making a difference in many ways and that it's something I've REALLY been needing to do.
I know I'm always saying that I'm getting rid of stuff, but I really did make an extra big dent in the last few weeks, especially with books, but other stuff too. Sometimes I just have to make myself pretend that I never happened to find it at a rummage sale or whatever because it looks really interesting, but I don't really need it and in the end it's just getting in the way.
We've also been busy with lots of painting projects - inside and out. There's nothing quite like paint to give your house a new outlook on life. ;)
Ria is doing very well at TAC and seems very happy. I can't believe that she's been gone a month already! It's funny how her departure made us start looking at everything in a new way again. It was definitely an impetus behind my simplifying of things around here, both because her departure reminded me of how quickly everything goes (it's not long, really, before other kids are ready to test their wings) and how much time I want to spend with my other kids right now both because of that and because of what we have left to do together before they're ready to go.
We eased our way into school a bit this year by giving ourselves a week and a half (or so) of part-time school before diving in more fully. On our first day of part-time school, I made a list of things for the kids to do, including "spend 15 minutes observing something outside". Well, this first day also happened to be our homeschool park day, so we decided to do our observing at the park. Late in the spring, at the same park, we got to watch a turtle laying eggs in a hole in the grass. We went home to look up when the eggs would hatch, but it was a wide range (9-18 weeks, I think), so we didn't hold up much hope for observing things on the other side. As it turned out, that first day of school, there were some new hatchlings nosing around in the hole and one that had escaped but had fallen down into the curb of the street where it was stuck on the wrong side from the river. Terri rescued it with a leaf and carried it down to the river. She set it down on the bank where we all got to watch it leap in (and it was a tiny thing!) and wriggle around happily in the water. So nice to spend time whenever we like in the greatest classroom in the world. :)