Golden Tones of Late Summer (with kids crying in the background)

The loveliness of the Shenandoah Valley welcomes the change of season a little more each day; days of late summer mixed in with days of early fall. Katelyn and I have been enjoying the scenery on the drive to and from the farm where she and Ethan work on a butchering crew.  So we took a drive out that way the other day, to try to capture some of it on her camera. Yellows and golds are some of my favorite color tones, both inside my home and outside of it. Goldenrod may be Continue reading “Golden Tones of Late Summer (with kids crying in the background)”

Getting started, and two delightful books

And we’re off. Another school year is underway. The getting-ready phase is always a crunch and a scramble, a holding-of-breath type of phase, and then when we actually arrive at the first day it’s like a sigh of relief. It’s like we can breathe Continue reading “Getting started, and two delightful books”

Making Bread, in Pictures, with Recipe

This little nip of fall in the air puts me in the mood for baking. One of the great things about starting school this coming week is that homemade bread is part of our daily school routine. We made some bread the other day, and subsequently realized how much we had missed it over the summer.baked loavesOne of the unavoidable little details about raising a family Continue reading “Making Bread, in Pictures, with Recipe”

Sandals for the School Year

{photos by Ethan Hall}

Here we go…. setting out on another year of schooling. Preparations at our house just got bumped into super-speed mode. Due to scheduling changes in two of my older children’s work on a local farm’s butchering crew, we are having to start school a week earlier than we had planned. (Hopefully you can’t hear the panic in my voice as I say that.)
Continue reading “Sandals for the School Year”

God of the Very Small

{I wrote this several years ago. The photos were taken by Katelyn during a family day at the Blue Ridge Parkway, although not the same day referenced in this article.}

“Look at this, Mom!” My daughter ran up and handed me a lacy green fern leaf. We both gazed at it for a moment, a delicate and detailed specimen.

Our family was enjoying a day together with friends on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We had just gazed Continue reading “God of the Very Small”

Teaching Beginning Reading in the Homeschool

Toby and I had a fun year last year. I use the word “fun” carefully. Of course we had plenty of chaotic and crazy moments. It was stressful at times. But it was also a pleasant experience, as I watched him learn and worked with him for about an hour every day.  Teaching Toby to begin to read last year in “kindergarten” was one of the highlights of my homeschooling experience thus far. I ended up really liking the approach that we took. I have tried various things over the years, and kind of landed here last year. So let’s just get practical! I do love talking philosophy and theory, but there is a time to say, “What did you actually DO?”
Continue reading “Teaching Beginning Reading in the Homeschool”

Dear Young Ministry Wife- Part 1

Dear Young Ministry Wife,

You have embarked on an adventure with your husband, serving in Christian ministry side-by-side. Like any adventure, there will be victories, challenges, disappointments, unexpected twists and turns, and no doubt you will both gain wisdom and experience along the way. It’s not a journey for the faint of heart.

You may feel nervous. Excited. Wondering if you will be able to be a “good” ministry wife. Maybe you are dreaming of the possibilities Continue reading “Dear Young Ministry Wife- Part 1”

Lessons of the Field, part 2 (Parable of the Seed)

Once there was a little seed. It was a beautiful seed, black and shiny, and it thought of itself very highly. It wanted to be set in a prominent place where it could be admired by all who passed by. It took great care for its image and comfort at all times, and despised the thought Continue reading “Lessons of the Field, part 2 (Parable of the Seed)”