When I was fourteen, my dad decided to sponsor a child through Compassion International, an organization that aims to release children from poverty and to enable them to become responsible and fulfilled Christian adults. Actually, my dad chose to sponsor three children so that my two sisters and I could each be paired with a child, writing letters to update and encourage each other every few months. My child--a girl from the Philippines--I and corresponded through my college years and into my early married years until she grew up. Now I sponsor another Filipina girl, Angielyn, and it's been a delight to watch her grow through annual photos and bi-monthly letters.Read More
This past spring I shared about a typical day in our French homeschooling life and a reader (merci, Shannon!) told me about Math By Hand, a Waldorf-inspired curriculum created by Marin Lipowitz here in the USA. I was intrigued by the idea of math learning kits that revolve around crafts and activities--aren't you? My children and I tried out the initial kit for first grade and here's what we found:Read More
Last March I completed my first half-marathon. It was simple, thankfully—a fresh morning race alongside the Columbia River with ample wildlife and enough other runners to keep it interesting. The next day I pinpointed a few other upcoming races to keep me motivated to stay fit, but to my great disappointment, I haven’t run since that half-marathon. Not once.
It’s not because I don’t enjoy running. Distance running has always been an enjoyable challenge for me, and even more so now that I can listen to podcasts and audiobooks along the way. Learning AND getting time alone? My INTJ brain type thrives on this!
But . . .Read More
My husband gave me an iPad mini for Christmas several years ago, and the first apps I downloaded to it were games in French for my four-year-old. That daughter is now seven, and she and her four-year-old brother love any opportunity to play on our iPad. They only get iPad time once or twice per month for an hour or so, but of course they can't take their eyes off it when they get the chance to play these games! The following are their top five favorite French game apps. These apps are designed for children who already have a decent grasp of French, though four of these apps are available in English as noted. (The prices are listed in dollars but will be in Euros if you buy from the French iTunes store.)Read More
This is our second year of homeschooling if you consider that my oldest child is now seven, but our "education at home" lifestyle has been gaining momentum since that daughter was young and we first decided to take this path. This year we've found a definite rhythm, but that's not to say that we follow a set schedule. With my children's young ages and with my belief in the importance of play at this stage, certain days are far less orderly than others--but here's a typical homeschooling day for us:Read More
Bonjour! Oh my, it's been too long since I've posted here, and I'm sorry. Even when I'm not writing, I'm constantly thinking about what I can share with you next--resources that would be helpful, thoughts to help us sort out family life together in this messy world . . . so merci for staying with me through the quieter periods. Today's post simply has some fun and informative weekend links, but I'll be back next week with more about homeschooling in French (along with some of the English resources my family uses too). I'll also be posting some of my children's favorite French iPad apps. In the meantime, read on:
Bonjour! How was your weekend? On Saturday we celebrated my daughter's seventh birthday by going ice skating, then warmed up with steaming bowls of pho (beef noodle soup) at a nearby Vietnamese restaurant. (Birthdays in our family always seem to be accompanied by pho--usually homemade!) Speaking of food, I want to share my weekly meal planning routine with you because this is such a fast, practical, and fun method. I usually do this on Saturdays so I can relax on Sundays & honor the Sabbath. Ready? Here it goes:Read More
Bonjour! The rain is pouring down, but spring is whispering from around the corner here in Oregon--there are little purple crocuses blooming in our front yard and yellow forsythia blossoms beckoning from the backyard. Nonetheless, today I'm taking you back to our summer travels in France to share about the library books my children enjoyed during our stay there. (I'll link to them on Amazon so you can obtain them if you're in the U.S. or Canada.) We visited libraries everywhere we traveled in France, and we were thrilled to obtain a library card in Lyon during the last two months of our France stay. (I simply needed to sign a form swearing to our address in France, however temporary it was.)Read More