March 29, 2015

Responding to Triggers

Today after Mass, a friend came up to me to apologize for so much pregnancy talk at our homeschool gym class this past week.  At first I wasn't actually sure what she was talking about as I didn't recall being upset by anything at gym.  The truth is general pregnancy chatter doesn't bother me at all, unless it revolves around one of those trigger topics.  This also made me realize that it would be an incomplete picture of my grief journey, if I didn't come back to the triggers and talk about how I am learning to reduce my reactions.

March 26, 2015


Do you keep a journal?

I am an intermittent journal keeper.  I go through periods where I write almost every day, and periods where I don't write at all.

For a really long time.

I recently pulled out my journal after an almost 3 year hiatus.  The last day I journaled was August 15, 2012...just a week before Lucie was born.  I actually wrote about going to Mass later that day to celebrate the Assumption and I had just finished an Assumption Novena for "Peace regarding Lucie's birth" and "Lucie's godparents" (which had not been determined).   I wrote about my experience at that Mass on this blog, and the powerful way in which that first prayer was answered.  As for godparents, it must have been the prayers of that novena that led to the special relationship that I have developed with Lucie's godmother since then.

March 21, 2015


When Kenna died I remember other baby girls being a huge trigger for me.  I'd think I was fine and then I'd go to the grocery store and see a baby girl that would have been about her age and it would set me off right there in the produce section.  This went on for years, in fact, there are several kids we know (boys and girls) who are right around her age and I still think of her when I am with those kids. I'm not necessarily sad about it anymore, but kids (particularly girls) her age still have an impact on me.   My friend Leigh had a baby girl 6 days before Kenna was born and Eva and Kylee are the best of friends now and I often find myself with a pinch of nostalgia when I see those two together.


I expected that new babies, particularly new baby girls, would be a trigger for me again but I have been surprised to find that is not true at all.  Here are 7 things that have turned out to be triggers for me this time around.  Some are specific things other people can say or do, but others are attitudes or mindsets that I am specifically struggling against.  Some are emotional triggers, other are mental triggers.

March 19, 2015

Redefinition of Childhood

Play set building

A few weeks ago a friend asked me a question about preschool and somehow we got to the fact that while I could almost certainly walk into any preschool in the area and walk out with a job (were one available) I don't think I would want to.

The truth is, I think I might hate teaching preschool in the year 2015.

The reason I suspect I would hate such a move has nothing to do with not wanting to work with children that age or not thinking it was an important or noble profession.   It has nothing to do with preferring to be at home or any logistical concerns working would create.

I say this, because I hate what has become defined socially and politically, and ever increasingly professionally, as "good" early childhood... even in just the last 10 years.

March 18, 2015

Planning Your Language Curriculum for Next Year


Most homeschool families I know (including myself) start to think about next year's curriculum in the spring.  Conference and used curriculum sale season is upon us, we have a good sense of what we will finish this year, and we know what we loved/hated about last year's choices.

I like to go into conferences and used book sales with a solid list of titles I want for the next year.  I usually break the list down into must have/should have/would like to have because I always have more titles on my wish list than I can reasonably afford to order outright.   As someone who mixes and matches curricula, publishing companies, and even learning styles I find that a solid outline for what I need to plan in the first place is an invaluable resource.   

The following is an excerpt from my ebook, Beyond the Moveable Alphabet:  Design Your Own Elementary Language Curriculum Using Montessori Principlesthat might help you in making decisions and planning for next year.

March 17, 2015

St. Patrick's Resources


Sharing our St. Patrick's Day basket quickly!  My basket is loosely inspired by items found in the Godly Play Saints Stories.  I probably should at least have an Irish flag and/or map in the basket next year, but I always forget to put my lessons and materials together far enough in advance.  Next year, next year...