The Perfect Toddler Evening

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Alternatively titled, Daddy found a toad and Tomas followed it...

On a rare activity-free night home as a family this week, Tim and a few of the kids headed out to finish planting the garden.  Tomas naturally followed and had quite the adventure of his own learning how to transplant a tomato.

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That alone would have been a beautiful toddler evening, but then they found the toad....

What Others Are Saying

My new book has been out for almost a month now and every day I am hearing from people who have read it and have beautiful stories to tell.  They might not know yet that their stories are beautiful, but they are.

Here are a few thoughts from other bloggers.
(Note:  I will add to this list as needed!  Feel free to leave links in the comments to this post.)

Finding Mary in Miscarriage from Not So Formulaic

Book Review- Blessed Is the Fruit of Thy Womb from Puzzled by the Pieces

Pregnancy loss, the rosary, and a book I wish I had years ago from Into Your Will.  Be sure to check out Jen's list of gifts for mom's experiencing pregnancy loss for some other great gift ideas as well!
There are also a handful of lovely reviews on Amazon.

At the end of the day, your stories of life, loss, and love were the impetus to taking a risk in writing this book.  I am so humbled and honored that you have chosen to share them with me.

Beyond Chore Training

Timecard System

Chores posts are always popular in this space .... and as a busy mom of many, I do not struggle at all to understand why!

My first line of chore defense is always to teach them properly and consistently from the very beginning.  I wrote that out in eleven more specific steps, here.  I don't, ok I try not to, pester too much and I don't offer rewards for getting the basics done.   Some things in life have to be done, no matter how unpleasant they are.

That being said, even as a stay at home mom, I have opportunities to go above and beyond my regular vocational duties and earn some extra money.   Since we don't pay our children an allowance, we give them the opportunity to earn pocket money using a timecard system.


Pre Reading Skills with I-Spy Books

Pre Reading

Look & find, or I-spy, books are a favorite around here and they have a great dual purpose of promoting visual discrimination, a key pre reading skill.  Visual discrimination, or the ability to see how two things are different or the same and how they relate to each other, is how a child eventually learns to tell the difference between an "a" and an "o" or a "p", "b", "d", and "q".

Playing more advanced levels of the traditional Montessori I-Spy games using beginning and ending sounds combines auditory and visual discrimination.  All of this can happen developmentally before kids need to be looking at the letters at all!  In fact, the more you play these games before (long before!) introducing letters and sounds the more easily your child will be able to make the jump to writing and reading.

Which teacher-geeks me out just how cool the brain really is.

It's ok if you don't get quite as excited about this stuff as I do.  You can still reap the many advantages of I-Spy without all the nerdy back information about what effect it is having on your child's brain.  Look and find books are a great way to do that.   Here are a few of our favorite collections.

5 Reasons This Homeschool Blogging Convert Wrote A Book About The Rosary

5 Reasons

As my latest writing project starts circulating in the coming weeks, I know that some people might wonder who on earth is this Heidi Indahl person anyway?  What qualifies her to talk about the rosary or pregnancy and infant loss?

On first glance, coming to this blog or following me on social media just might leave a person even more confused!

Here are five(ish) answers that question.

Two Beginner Herbal Recipes for Your Little Gatherer

Herbal Recipes Cover 

 I have wild children.  By this, I mean they would be outside in our woods all day, every day- and sometimes they are.  They love to make their own little herbal concoctions and pretend brews and once spent an entire summer stocking their fort with little remedies for every ailment they could image.

It's not just pretend play, however, and in the spring they watch carefully for some of their favorite edible and useful friends.  Dandelion, violet, chickweed (which is often a fall find around here, but occasionally they get lucky in spring so they always watch for it), and plantain are some of their favorites.   While we do make tinctures, oils, infusions, and more for our family medicine cabinet, they also enjoy making a few simple herbal treats this time of year.  Here are two that even a beginner can master.


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How many times have you seen your child try something successfully (or not so successfully) after they have observed you doing the same task many times?  Our children observe us and the Montessori method teaches us how to observe them.

Montessori methods and philosophy are beautiful tools to support your family's daily life and homeschooling.  Here at Work & Play, Day by Day we are committed to helping you on that journey.   While there are many blogs describing the method and materials of Montessori, I want this to be a place that all are welcome to see it in action (the beautiful and the messy) and figure out how to best take advantage of all the approach has to offer for your family. 

It doesn't really matter where your child goes to school, how many you have, and if you know anything about Montessori.  All you need is the genuine desire to develop your child into a capable and confident human being of character.  

I am here to help.

I have been intermittently publishing a newsletter primarily aimed at homeschooling for the past several months.  As I have built a deeper relationship with some of these subscribers, I realized that there is a huge need for a place to talk about the more practical side of raising a family with Montessori (heck, just raising a family period!) and my recent posting along those lines has been heavily influenced by their input.  I want all of you to be a part of that.  

If you are here and you are reading, your voice is important to me!

You can subscribe to our newsletter at any time in the yellow bar at the top of this website.  Enter your email and the next time I send a mailing, it will include the link to a special area of this website dedicated to providing some of my favorite resources for FREE.**  You can also sign up by clicking here.

PLUS!   I have an incentive going with my mailing list members that for every 50 new subscribers we bring in, I will add another resource to the page for up to 500 additional subscribers!  After that, I will add a new resource every 100 for another 500.  

Free stuff is good, but MORE FREE STUFF is even better, yes?!

You are already here, let's make sure you are getting everything out of the experience as you can.  Sign up today for inspiring Montessori photo quotes you can display in your home as a reminder of the beauty of childhood and for a set of Montessori-inspired games to help you get started!

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