I love Jesus, but I cuss a little...

I love Jesus, but I cuss a little...

... you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.... (Romans 6:16-17; partial)


I have become obedient, from the heart, to the calling before me- the righteous standard of a perfect and holy God. Or have I? I was listening to In His Image by Jen Wilkin last night, and she gave a metaphor that crushed my toes. She said, "When we are faithful to God in smaller temptations, we build strength to face the bigger ones. No one indulges an explosive fit of anger, who has not first indulged a thousand smaller aggressions. If we habitually flee from the temptation to commit minor sins of anger and selfishness, we are less likely to fall for temptation in greater sins of anger and selfishness."

Essentially, she likens our propensity to go all in with our sins to weightlifting. We are incapable of lifting those huge sins if we haven't been training with the smaller ones all along.

Ouch.

This immediately convicted me in the areas of anger and profanity in my own life.

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Top Preschool Books For Fall (AND an AWESOME Fall Printable!)

Top Preschool Books For Fall (AND an AWESOME Fall Printable!)

Our entire educational endeavors surround two things in our home- nature and books. We spend our days either outside or with little ones in a lap, perusing our latest library haul. Fall is a fantastic time to make a sweet connection between those two loves. What better than a stack of books that speak to the changing of the seasons- from miserably hot to crisp and cool. Fall brings a much needed change here, after a long, humid summer and begins to usher in the excitement of the holiday seasons.

I have two things to share today. First, the book recommendations. Some are favorites in our home and others were highly recommended by Life, Abundantly readers on Facebook.

Down below the book recommendations though, you’ll find a DELIGHTFUL FREE download that includes 11 pages of super sweet, really adorably worksheets created for the K3-1st Grade crowd.

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I am Using a Living Books Science Curriculum with my Dyslexic Daughter

I am Using a Living Books Science Curriculum with my Dyslexic Daughter

I am so excited to get to share about the Beautiful Feet Books' HISTORY OF SCIENCE program! If you're like me, you never really entertained the notion of a science program from the perspective of history. When I first ran across it, I thought that it might not be very hands-on (meaning all books, no experiments) or that it wouldn't be "thorough enough" since it's not specific to one area of science--like biology, chemistry, botany. 

Oh my, how I was wrong! I received this curriculum to use with my 6th grader for my honest review. She is a very hands-on kinesthetic learner, who- despite being dyslexic- learns best through real, living stories. When she is involved in a story line, she will remember every single detail of that person's life. Living books are hands-down the best way to get lasting knowledge and true education into her heart and mind forever. You do NOT have to avoid living books for a dyslexic student! 

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Getting Started: Join the Jesus in. Joy out. Challenge! (Oct 1-28)

Getting Started: Join the Jesus in. Joy out. Challenge! (Oct 1-28)

The word "joy" alone evokes a warmth in the core of my very being. Sometimes just stopping to think about the concept of joy can turn a grumpy day around. I'm like every other Mama out there who may read this post and want to join this challenge- I want joy. I crave joy. I need joy in my life.

In the good times and bad.

In chaos and in peace.

In times of new life and times of loss.

In the daily "get it all done, 1 million things on my plate" craziness of it all. 

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The Beauty of Tapestry of Grace in the Rhetoric Years (a very detailed review)

The Beauty of Tapestry of Grace in the Rhetoric Years (a very detailed review)

Homeschooling high school was always something that I looked ahead to with both excitement and fear. When my children were in elementary grades, I felt confident teaching according to a classical model, but as they grew into the middle and high school years, I felt intimidated by the challenging literature and history and by my own lack of knowledge in these areas.

I was excited to learn alongside my kids, but also afraid that I would not be qualified to teach upper level courses. I knew I would need a curriculum that could guide me as I redeemed my own education.

A dear friend had been telling me for a few years how much her family loved Tapestry of Grace, and I could see the results in her son. He was able to carry on deep discussions about topics in history, literature, philosophy, and government with such thoughtfulness and a depth of understanding that I wanted for my children and myself. I had looked at so many other classical courses for high school, but I kept feeling called back to Tapestry of Grace.

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Make Your Own Home Organization Wall {On a Budget!}

Make Your Own Home Organization Wall {On a Budget!}

I llooooooveeeee organization. I will also quickly admit that I’m not the best at “maintaining” said organization, but I am a PRO at setting it up. I have learned, over the years, with a lot of failure, that simple works best. I’ve also learned that no organizational systems matters a lick if you don’t have the self-discipline to utilize the system. Being a self-proclaimed scatterbrain AND perfectionist, wrapped all into one, creates a very interesting dichotomy that I’m confident my family total loves (not at all).

As we approached this school year, I had a vision in mind for bringing the spreadsheet system I’ve used for years into a real life, adjustable, very visible, attractive wall system. (If you’re curious about how I use a spreadsheet and generally plan our days, check out this detailed post and free spreadsheet.) I am probably the most “out of sight, out of mind” person you’ve ever met. It frustrates me immensely, but I also just accommodate this insufficiency with various tools, like my phone alarm and calendar.

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Slllowww Ebook Release- Introduction

Slllowww Ebook Release- Introduction

Last year, I felt led to begin writing a book. I shared the introduction online and was encouraged to keep going. I then went on to write the first chapter. I actually was typing up the last words to that chapter as my mom was (unknown to me) gaining her wings. So this whole book has a tender, hard, challenging raw place in my heart.

The moment I finished chapter one, I cried. I had some weirdly spiritual moment as I finished it that I could NOT explain. In the following weeks, God would use the words I wrote as my Mama was leaving this earth to bring me immeasurable comfort and certainty.

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A Review of Claritas Publishing Memory Work

A Review of Claritas Publishing Memory Work

Over the past eight years of homeschooling, we have used a variety of resources for memory work. We spent five years as part a of classical, memory work focused co-op- first as participants in Classical Conversations, then in a classical co-op, which Erin founded. During those years, my oldest two children memorized amazing amounts of information about history, science, Latin, math, geography, English grammar, and world history. Now that they are in middle school and high school, I can see how all the seeds that were planted during the grammar years are producing much fruit.

As my children got older and my younger two joined us at the homeschool table, I felt that being involved in a co-op was not the best use of our time. Dedicating a full day to a co-op made it hard to complete all their other school work in the remaining four days. Despite making the difficult decision to leave our co-op, I didn’t want to leave memory work out of our curriculum. I wanted to ensure that my two younger children would have the same foundation in memory work their older siblings received.

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Collecting Nature and Encountering Our Creator (GIANT FREEBIE)

Collecting Nature and Encountering Our Creator (GIANT FREEBIE)

My Instagram feed is filled with gorgeous nature tables, muddy rainboots, and wild and free children. This speaks to my heart in an unimaginable way. While I may often get too busy to truly spend the hours out of doors that I would like... and sometimes the complaints about the heat just wear me down (we live near Satan's armpit), I know deep in my soul that being surrounded and immersed in God's creation is as close as we can get to touching him on this earth. 

When I first began reading Charlotte Mason's own personal work (and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THAT, start here), I was slightly put off. I almost felt as if she worshipped nature. But I knew I had to be missing something important, so I pressed further in. Through prayer, I realized that Charlotte was passionate about nature because she was passionate about the Creator of nature. She knew that being immersed in Creation was a sneak peak into eternity and into the heart of our Father in Heaven. Our task as mothers is to simply help our children become thoroughly acquainted with Creation, capable of truly SEEING it with clear observation.

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My Favorite Things: "Keeping Toddlers Busy" Edition

My Favorite Things: "Keeping Toddlers Busy" Edition

My sweet little boys keep life very interesting, especially as I try to homeschool a high school freshman and 6th grader with dyslexia. It's basically my mission in life to keep my boys engaged in fruitful activity throughout the day in order that I might have small chunks of silence to engage with my girls in as much of their schoolwork as possible.

I want to share a few ideas and several "go-to" items that I keep handy at all times, as well as my process for both planning and engaging my boys each day. It's not perfect, but it works well enough that we march through our homeschool day with some learning accomplished and with (arguably) half my sanity left!

Here are my current FAVORITE things for keeping my boys (currently 3 and 20 months) busy while I work in our home and teach their older sisters:

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