Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Harvest Mouse

Mia and I are on our second Animal Block in the grade four Waldorf curriculum. Today we learned about the harvest mouse, from Charles Kovak's wonderful book, The Human Being and the Animal World. What a fascinating little creature! Measuring only 2.5 inches long and weighing less than a postal letter (at a mere 1/5th oz), the little mouse is a skillful climber and nest builder. Their nests are little works of art. The little mouse weaves a sphere of grasses and stalks, hanging about a foot off the ground, among the tall grasses. They use their tails as monkeys do, climbing among the tall stalks. Kovak speaks of their nature with such delight, I long for a little animal friend such as this one.

Another inspiring book has been Learning About The World Through Modelling by Arthur Auer. Arthur demonstrates how to use model animals and human forms from a ball of clay, without adding the parts but instead shaping the whole to the parts. He did not give examples for a mouse, but we had this nice mousy pencil holder to inspire us.

main lesson book work (summary and illustration)

With gratitude for all things great and small...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring Equinox

I am so grateful for having a sweet community of home schooling friends to share the seasons with. Today we came together for an egg hunt and free play in honor of vernal equinox. Hurray for Spring!

Spring, the sweet spring, is the year's pleasant king;

                                             Then blooms each thing, then maids dance in a ring,

Cold doth not sting, the pretty birds do sing.

Cuckoo, jug-jug, pu-we, to-witta-woo!
by Thomas Nashe 1600

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

Having Irish heritage on my father's side of the family, I love this special holiday. I don't go wild with green food coloring, but I do appreciate the association with green, being this time of year! I am thirsty for it! Our yard is still looking rather muddy and most plants are masking their inner activity with brittle brown shades. I know that the expansion of everything green is just around the corner! And I can't wait to witness it!

Vivienne's little green fairy

My favorite shade of green yarn. Shaba green from Peace Fleece.

This dainty little satchel was found in our garden this morning. Filled with little candy mints wrapped in gold foil. Just the perfect size for a jolly little leprechaun. Favorite music for the day?  The Secret of Roan Inish soundtrack.

My favorite Irish Blessing sung by Snatam Kaur.

May the Long Time Sun Shine upon You.
All Love surround you.
And the pure light within you
Guide your way home.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Giving thanks to friendship, good food, a weekend of rejuvenating the spirit... such a gift!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Spring Has Sprung!

One place that I look to see if spring is on it's way is in my garden. Meandering through and over paths, the lovely, chipper chickweed is here! Yes, some may regard it as a weed and dutifully yank it out of the beds, but this is one beneficial weed. It is one of the early spring healthful, wild greens. Delicious in salad mixes, made into pesto and spread on toast, and also a nice addition to smoothies. Today, my recipe was one banana, 1.5 cups frozen raspberries, 1 cup frozen blueberries, a dollop of frozen lemonade concentrate, a cup or so of water, one ripe banana and a heaping handful of chickweed. Here is a useful website that describes it's uses and qualities.* I would recommend asking an herbalist or other trusted expert to confirm the identification before eating any wild edible.* Susun Weed also has a wonderful article on chickweed, as well as a longer essay  in her book, Healing Wise. Another interesting video  shows the flowering chickweed.

What are your favorite flavors of spring?

mirror, mirror...

I always find it is interesting to photograph a person in relationship to their mirror image. Vivienne was having fun with her own company this morning so I documented it.
What do you see when you look in the mirror?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Egg Decorating

Over the busy weekend, the handwork group gathered at my house to make beautiful eggs. I gathered my kistkas, beewax and dyes, as well as other basics  for making ukrainian eggs. Another popular technique was to design with permanent marker and then dye the egg. First, I used my wonderful blas fix tool to blow out five dozen eggs. Vivienne enjoyed helping me in this task.

Some inspiring books, The Easter Craft book (thanks, Rae!) and The Kids Guide to Decorating Easter Eggs. I love looking at Tasha Tudor's illustrations for inspiration, too. Another good source is this website.

Despite the snow falling out of my window, I know that spring is soon on its way!

Memory Lane

With the reminiscence of the first ten years of motherhood at the birthday of my oldest daughter, I began to look in my old photo albums. Before the days of digital. I used my digital camera to photograph these pictures, so the quality is somewhat diminished. Here are a few of my favorites from Mia's early years.

And here she is today, at ten years old.
Seems like the blink of an eye.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Ten Years...

How the days fly! My sweet baby, my Mia Belle is ten years old, the golden age of childhood! I am still trying to wrap myself around this truth! It feels like yesterday that I was becoming a mother for the first time. We have forged new territory together, and I am so grateful for Mia. I have grown and learned so much in the past decade, alongside my children. I feel immensely blessed.

Mia wanted a woodland party this year. I found the cutest toadstool cupcake toppers, gnome candle and other goodies at Bake it Pretty. Amanda also has a super cute blog here. We picked up some delicious raspbberry poundcake cupcakes from Short Street Cakes, yum. These are a new favorite.

We came up with some fun projects. Mia collected bits of tree bark that she wanted to drill holes into and string necklaces. These came out so nicely, every girl had a different look for their necklace. We also made mason jar terrariums and added little fimo clay toadstools.  Such fun.

Mia, my courageous, heartful, creative, loving, musical daughter, my first, my pioneer...
Happy Birthday, sweet love.