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Circe Thread People: Teaching from Rest ebook is out!


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Sarah Mackenzie (www.amongstlovelythings.com) got the ebook out ahead of schedule!

Oh my gosh - I am only a few pages in and already this book has me in tears and nodding my head and just in awe.

I promise I have no affiliation with her at all - I just stumbled upon her blog thanks to the moms here that were discussing this on the huge Circe thread. 

Her blog is amazing.  Truly it is. 

I am devouring everything on Circe, Classical Academic Press, all of the books, blogs and audio that I can find.  I think we are going to go into our 5th year of homeschooling with a totally different approach.  And I can't wait :)

 

Anyway, for those of you who were waiting - it is available to purchase on her blog.

 

 

 

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Ordered it last night, even though I STILL haven't managed to listen to the teaching from a state of rest lectures.  I am much more likely to read than watch/listen, so as soon as I saw the ebook, I grabbed it!  I have also (violating everything I just typed, lol) been listening and loving her Read Aloud Revival podcast.  It's the only podcast I've ever listened to, and I LOVED the first one.  I'm about halfway through the second... they are long! 

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Is this the educational philosophy where the kids do their schoolwork while I take a nap? ;) j/k 

 

I have been listening to a lot of CAP podcasts and am very interested in this. Whether I'll be able to get my head and hands around it and make it practical, idk. I hope I do better with it than I did Charlotte Mason stuff (which Laying Down the Rails is the only practical thing I've found to use of hers). Guess I need check boxes and plans. I figure if I keep plugging on with all this teacher education, by the time I get to hsing the baby, he'll get an amazing classical education. Sigh.

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Whether I'll be able to get my head and hands around it and make it practical, idk.

 

 

Disclaimer: I am a friend of Sarah's, and I did the design on the TFR project. I have been trying to stay away from leaving reviews/comments, but I really wanted to address what momacacia said.

 

THIS BOOK is what you need. The beauty of the book is that it does allow you to get your head and hands around all of Kern's and Perrin's lofty language and apply it practically in your home. So often I listen to these things and nod my head in agreement and then moan when it is over that now I need to know what to do next! And teaching from rest doesn't mean not having a plan. In fact, I highly recommend getting the Companion and listening to the Brandy Vencel interview first. They talk about that topic in there.

 

The Kindle version, and the pdf companion?

 

Hunter, I am totally and completely biased, but the PDF version is SO much nicer than the Kindle version. (And I have already been paid -- I don't make any more if you get the PDF.  ;) ) 

 

Ok, I am going back into the woodwork. I do have a printable of the aspirations from the prayer chapter available for download on my blog. Would love to share those with you. I have them taped to my mirror and am using them as a bookmark. It is already helping me to be more mindful as I go about my day. 

 

Pam

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What are you all buying?

 

The Kindle version, and the pdf companion?

 

I got the kindle because I need adjustable text size for my eyes (or if not NEED, it is a HUGE help for me) but may go back and get the audio package later that she sells separately on her website. 

 

The original Teaching From a State of Rest lectures are on the CIRCE website here.  Sarah's book was originally meant to be a companion guide to the lectures, but I asked in her comments section and she said the book is "stand alone"- no need to pre-watch the lectures, though it's probably good to do it all! 

 

Answer me this:  Is CIRCE and CAP the same organization? 

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Can you tell me where to find the teaching from a state of rest lectures?

 

ETA:  Nevermind. I see you already posted this.  Thanks!

Ordered it last night, even though I STILL haven't managed to listen to the teaching from a state of rest lectures.  I am much more likely to read than watch/listen, so as soon as I saw the ebook, I grabbed it!  I have also (violating everything I just typed, lol) been listening and loving her Read Aloud Revival podcast.  It's the only podcast I've ever listened to, and I LOVED the first one.  I'm about halfway through the second... they are long! 

 

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I've read some online reviews, but still can't tell if this is something that would be worth buying for me right now.   (Please, don't just say that everybody needs it.   ;) )  

 

This was helpful, from Pam:

 

"There is practical information about simplifying the schedule and the curriculum, how to run a successful morning time (and why you should), and even about prayer."

 

What if someone is doing reasonably okay with the above, but needs inspiration and advice for other things -- e.g., simplifying books and supplies; teaching art, music, and foreign languages; making choices about the use of electronics; and spending more time outdoors while still getting chores done?   Is there much along any of those lines?  

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I haven't gotten far enought to write a review, but part one totally contradicts The Artist's Way. :lol:

 

Books all sound so good when we are reading them, but then when we try to apply them to our lives and what we have already accepted as "truth", it all gets so messy and we are no farther ahead than before we read the book.

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Totally subbing to come back to this. Right now I am on a 15-20 minute brain break from actually working on processing my inbox(es) (laundry baskets :blush:) ala Getting Things Done and the thread on here about organizing with it. I cannot afford any cells to think about anything else right now.

 

:bigear:

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I haven't gotten far enought to write a review, but part one totally contradicts The Artist's Way. :lol:.

Do you mind expanding a bit? The Artist's Way is on my to-read list, and I'm curious how this contradicts it :bigear:.

 

Of course, I've been reading the sample and her blog series, and getting hung up on theological differences :lol:. So close and yet so far - it doesn't help that my reading this weekend was on a very pertinent-to-the-book theological concept, and so it's already on the forefront of my mind. It's odd, because I'm pretty confident I have a *lot* of theological differences with The Artist's Way ;), and yet that wouldn't prevent me from setting them aside and gleaning the good. Idk, there's something about almost agreeing yet not entirely that makes the differences so *glaring*.

 

Eta: I really hate learning via video/audio (I'm a transcript gal ;)), but I'm just about ready to watch/listen to over 5 hours of Kern talking about teaching from a state of rest, just because he's from the same theological background as I am, and I'm intensely curious as to how much of what this blogger says is her spin versus what Kern said.

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Well, I just finished up Kern's series. I looked at the book, and then at the workbook to go with it, and as the companion would totally destroy my state of rest I don't think it would be something I would go for.

 

I'd like to comment on what Hunter said about how books sound good, and then when we try to apply them, somehow that just doesn't work out. I might be wrong, but I think it might well be because we try to apply the books or the ideas like formulas. Kern (or SWB, or CM) says this, so if I just do this, it will be like this. It helps me most to listen or read, and then to just think for a while. Then come back and listen or read again. And think some more. No pressure to try to implement, or to understand, or to try to make some kind of curriculum choice or schedule change based on it. Just think for a while. Then, hopefully, when I apply, it will be my ideas I own and use, and not trying to plug in somebody else's idea of how things should be.

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Part one is all about surrender and how people are more important than tasks and your "real life", but to me--who is oversensitive in this area--it felt a little too much about mom always coming last. Later on, though, the chapter "Be Who You Are" is all about mom needing to be happy and healthy and to teach with HER strengths, so there is balance in the work as a whole, that is not in part one.

 

The Artist's Way focuses on "crazymakers" taking over your life and preventing you from having a life of your own, by turning you into an appendage or battery.

 

The conclusion of the book is a Robinson like daily schedule but with Mom reading aloud instead of the children reading to themselves. But previously the author says SHE teaches Latin. And then she adds and links to Cindy Rollins 31 days series on Morning Time. And lists some non homeschooling books on time management and religion. And very briefly discusses loop scheduling for the read alouds.

 

It's a nice little inspirational book, but for the time and cash strapped mom, it can be skipped. There is not much there that is not discussed by one of the oldschoolers here on a regular basis.

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Answer me this:  Is CIRCE and CAP the same organization? 

 

I'm about 99% sure they are not. What I see is that Christopher Perrin (owner? publisher and content generator of Classical Academic Press, a publishing company in Pennsylvania) does guest lectures for CiRCE (a nonprofit advocate for classical Christian education, headed up by Andrew Kern, based in North Carolina) and talks at the CiRCE sponsored conferences; both Perrin and Kern are on the board of directors for the Society for Classical Learning (a professional society for classical Christian educators, based in Virginia). Clear as mud, LOL?!

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For the cash-strapped mom who needs an overhaul, these free methods are even more helpful than this new book.

 

Write Your Mission Statement

http://harvestministry.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/TWGHW2-CH1-FINDING_YOUR_MISSION.pdf

 

Crisis Planning Method

link to video below

 

1. Fold a large piece of paper into 16 squares.

 

2. Label the first 12 squares 1-12 for each of the 12 months. Start with the first month of your school year.

 

3. Write important events in the square for each month–holidays, birthdays, vacations, events in nature, and any other disruptions to the schedule.

 

4. Write each student's name in the remaining blocks. Go onto the back if necessary. Write the priorities of the year for each student, and any weaknesses that need to be focused on.

 

5. Take out the curricula you will be using and write the main topics that will be covered into each month's square. Try to divide topics into units that fit neatly into each month.

 

6. On the back of the paper, label 12 squares–one for each month. Write any major expenses in each month. Schedule purchases, buying resources about 2 months before they are needed.

 

7. Plan a month ahead to create the weekly lesson plans, on another piece of paper, or in notebook. Create a schedule for reserving library books.

 

8. Do daily planning the Sunday before. Begin preparing the copywork for the week. Reserve books from the library.

 

9. Each morning prepare the final lesson plans. Finish preparing any unprepared copywork.

 

10. If you will be reteaching this material to younger siblings or other students, keep all copywork and notes in a notebook labeled with the grade.

 

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I bought the kindle edition and probably won't make it past 20 percent finished. I can't get past her thinking on people entering your day because God put them there to slow you down.

Author has obviously never had a neighbor with severe boundary issues.

I can't get on board with her line of thinking.

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I bought the kindle edition and probably won't make it past 20 percent finished. I can't get past her thinking on people entering your day because God put them there to slow you down.

Author has obviously never had a neighbor with severe boundary issues.

I can't get on board with her line of thinking.

 

I believe she meant your children. :) Though, I also do believe that "all things come to us not by chance but from the will of our Father in Heaven," (a reformed/Calvinist catechism answer, not Catholic. Sarah is Catholic). So, yes, your neighbor is there by God's providence for your good -- doesn't mean you have to give her all the time she wants, but you'll grow by the experience of having to work out life with that situation. Sarah's point is that we are wrong (and stressed) when we railroad people with our own agendas and to-do lists. (Says the mom very in favor of daily and weekly to do lists - they are tools, not masters.)

 

Disclaimer: I am friends with Sarah and did help her with the book. :) I am also not of the same theological persuasion (in fact, I'm of the theological persuasion that started the whole Protestant split with Catholicism!) Still, Sarah gets grace. And the only part that started to suggest Catholicism was the aspiration prayers, but only because Catholics have a word for it whereas most Protestants don't - yet, what Christian disagrees with crying out a short Scriptural prayer to God in the midst of the crazy chaos? Maybe the theological difference is on the Eastern Orthodoxy side, though? I think that's where Kern lands. I am into theology and I think the perspective Sarah offers in this book is rock solid basics: trust God (it's the only way to stop stressing), it's not our works that save us, and work out of love and trust rather than fear and envy. 

 

If you like Kern and can't wade through the whole rest series on CiRCE, the interview Sarah did with him is really the best and most understandable Kern I've heard yet (and I listen to all I can get my hands on – I've been getting the conference recordings for four years). If you're concerned about the Catholic take, start with the audio companion, because Cindy & Brandy are both super experienced and reformed Protestant moms. Perrin is Protestant, though I don't know what flavor (usually classical day schools lean reformed). I think, but I don't know for sure, that Kern is EO. Yet this topic they were all able to speak with agreement on. 

 

Sarah collaborated with both Perrin and Kern in the writing and publicizing of the book. Perrin wrote the foreword for her (which you can read for free on the Amazon page) and both CAP & CiRCE are talking with her about publishing a print version. She's not stealing anyone else's message, but taking it on from a homeschool mom perspective with their blessing and endorsement. 

 

CAP is Classical Academic Press that publishes LFC and other things. CiRCE does consulting to pay the bills. They are completely separate, but Perrin and Kern are friends and do things together. :)

 

I *loved* the book, and I think if you are suffering from mom-guilt made worse by homeschool-guilt and you never feel like you're good enough though you keep trying, then this book will help immensely.  Her Teaching from Rest series is still on her blog. It started as a series and then she realized she was writing a book. You can see if you like or need her message by reading the blog series: http://amongstlovelythings.com/category/teaching-from-a-state-of-rest/

 

It's not a nitty-gritty how-to book (but she does link to some resources along those lines, and she talks more about that side of things in the interview with Brandy Vencel). It's about helping you look up and see the big picture and gain clarity and relief if you're bogged down and can't see the forest for the trees anymore.  It is also definitely for Christians who believe the Bible and believe God is personally involved in our lives. If you don't believe that, then the book won't make sense to you. If you do believe that, Sarah shows you how incredibly and completely that impacts the way we do education.

 

I highly recommend this book and would be happy to answer any questions if you are still trying to decide if it's for you. I read it three times for proofreading and editing purposes, so I am pretty familiar with it now. :)

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Just reading part one, without reading the WHOLE book, and never having read other books on boundary setting could be a little unbalanced. I recommend reading the WHOLE book, and maybe The Artist's Way or a Christian book on boundary setting before whole heartedly changing your life according to part one.

 

I did not find the book Catholic, just very conservative.

 

I do not think the book is NECESSARY for a busy and cash-strapped mom, but it is a NICE book. I recommend it to a mom with a little extra cash and time, head and shoulders over other unnecessary books.

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I decided to buy the PDF version after Pam strongly suggested it (as did Sarah, on her blog).  She had a link to instructions from Amazon on how to email a PDF to my kindle, so I can still read it there.  I had no idea I could do that!  This is opening up a whole new PDF world for me! LOL Still have to finish my current book first, but I did buy it, and I'm excited. 

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So is he EO? Or something else? I've often wondered and would love to know!!

His background is LCMS Lutheran - went to one of our universities and everything. (People forget that Lutherans, though Protestant, are still very much sacramental Christians, which I mention, because CiRCE is so very rooted in a sacramental view of Christianity.) I don't know if he still is or not, though.
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I bought the kindle edition and probably won't make it past 20 percent finished. I can't get past her thinking on people entering your day because God put them there to slow you down.

Author has obviously never had a neighbor with severe boundary issues.

I can't get on board with her line of thinking.

:lol:

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His background is LCMS Lutheran - went to one of our universities and everything. (People forget that Lutherans, though Protestant, are still very much sacramental Christians, which I mention, because CiRCE is so very rooted in a sacramental view of Christianity.) I don't know if he still is or not, though.

He is an Orthodox Christian now, I believe.

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Okay, you guys have totally derailed my day. Maybe that's a good thing, though. I've not paid any attention to the previous Circe threads, but the "teaching from rest" concept has my attention. I'm hoping some of the teaching is easy to listen to as I go throughout my day, but I have a feeling I'll be sitting down and contemplating a lot! 

 

 

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If you are listening to the lectures, I would suggest listening after the work is done for the day, and taking a day or so to digest before going on. When I started to listen, I figured I'd polish it off in a week (only six lectures after all!) but it has taken me about three weeks to get through them all. I found that I needed to listen, and then spend some time thinking in between.

It is more of an educational and personal philosophy than a road-map, for sure. That's why I'm pretty sure that seeing someone else's plan might be interesting, but it might not be helpful in that I would tend to simply follow, box-checking all the way, and not think about how *I* need to implement the idea.

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For the past month I've Circe-ing and schole-ing our homeshool and it's been so freeing and wonderful, so I quickly ordered the entire kit and caboodle from Sarah. I've barely started reading the book, but the audio lectures are FANTASTIC!!! (ETA: I'm referring to the audio interviews/lectures that Sarah includes with her download.) I've listened to all of them about two times while taking notes the second time through.

 

FWIW, I am not Catholic, EO, or any other liturgical/sacramental Christian group, but I still find it all inspiring. I don't think that Circe, nor its principles are liturgical or sacramental specific. i think they are things that all people strive for in their life and for their children.

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I'm feeling no more restful after having read what I have read.

 

At the thought of finishing any more of the reading, listening, journaling, I'm feeling  :willy_nilly: .

 

I'm still obsessing and skimming and scribbling and making lists. Okay the book showed me some pretty pictures out of my reach to ever make my own. The book makes some good points, but I remember when reading Amish and Mennonite stuff made me think that path would bring rest, peace, and simplicity to my life. :lol:

 

It's a nice book. But at the end of the week, I think I'm just going to add it to my other stash of simplicity and organizing books that I never pick up and look at again.

 

 

 

 

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I hope you all don't mind my popping in here. I thought I could answer some questions for you. :) Feel free to ask more if you have them and I'll check back so I can respond.

 

 

 

What if someone is doing reasonably okay with the above, but needs inspiration and advice for other things -- e.g., simplifying books and supplies; teaching art, music, and foreign languages; making choices about the use of electronics; and spending more time outdoors while still getting chores done?   Is there much along any of those lines?  

 

Not really. This book is more for the generally-overwhelmed homeschooling mama (so basically it's for me, lol). I give some overarching ideas for how to simplify the schedule and the curriculum and some principles to help guide a homeschooling mother through the planning process, but it's not a step-by-step planning book and it doesn't get into the nitty gritty of the different parts of the curriculum. It's partly a "this is what we're really doing here" inspirational message plus a "this is how to get started today, especially if you are so overwhelmed you don't know where to start in the simplifying process."

 

You can see the table of contents in the sample here. That might give a better idea of what I tackle in the book. 

 

As for questions about the theology behind the book, I am Catholic. Actually, I'm an evangelical-turned-Catholic. I interviewed four people for the audio companion (Andrew Kern, Dr. Perrin, Brandy Vencel, and Cindy Rollins)- none of whom are Catholic, but they all wholeheartedly endorse the book. As do the Catholics who have read it.

 

I tried to stick to foundational Truths, and I think the message is applicable for Christian mamas of any denomination. The book and companion are unabashedly Christian- there's no getting around that. I believe that teaching from rest comes from leaning into Him, so that's the premise of the book from start to finish. Non-Christians probably won't like it much. ;)

 

I certainly don't want anyone to buy the book and wish they hadn't! I wrote it because I wanted to bless. Shoot me an email and I'll be glad to refund your purchase, Hunter. :)

 

If anyone has any other questions, I'm happy to answer them. I hope you don't mind my ducking in here to do so!


 
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I hope you all don't mind my popping in here. I thought I could answer some questions for you. :) Feel free to ask more if you have them and I'll check back so I can respond.

 

 

 

Not really. This book is more for the generally-overwhelmed homeschooling mama (so basically it's for me, lol). I give some overarching ideas for how to simplify the schedule and the curriculum and some principles to help guide a homeschooling mother through the planning process, but it's not a step-by-step planning book and it doesn't get into the nitty gritty of the different parts of the curriculum. It's partly a "this is what we're really doing here" inspirational message plus a "this is how to get started today, especially if you are so overwhelmed you don't know where to start in the simplifying process."

 

You can see the table of contents in the sample here. That might give a better idea of what I tackle in the book. 

 

As for questions about the theology behind the book, I am Catholic. Actually, I'm an evangelical-turned-Catholic. I interviewed four people for the audio companion (Andrew Kern, Dr. Perrin, Brandy Vencel, and Cindy Rollins)- none of whom are Catholic, but they all wholeheartedly endorse the book. As do the Catholics who have read it.

 

I tried to stick to foundational Truths, and I think the message is applicable for Christian mamas of any denomination. The book and companion are unabashedly Christian- there's no getting around that. I believe that teaching from rest comes from leaning into Him, so that's the premise of the book from start to finish. Non-Christians probably won't like it much. ;)

 

I certainly don't want anyone to buy the book and wish they hadn't! I wrote it because I wanted to bless. Shoot me an email and I'll be glad to refund your purchase, Hunter. :)

 

If anyone has any other questions, I'm happy to answer them. I hope you don't mind my ducking in here to do so!

 

 

How exciting to hear of a book written by veteran homeschooling mothers who have applied these principles and reaped the reward over years! When did your elder children graduate from your homeschool? Are they planning to educate and raise their families the same way?

 

I found "teaching from a state of rest" to be fairly intuitive when my children were small. As we approach graduation with the elder boys I find that my ability to stay calm and true to myself has more to do with this nearly twenty year walk in my faith while raising my family than with any education philosophy or pedagogy. Obviously, the former influences the latter, and the latter helps to confirm the former! I'm sure you've found the same.

 

I look forward to hearing helpful advice for parents during the logic stage years. When I went through that phase with my children it was really the first time I began to have a sense of a loss of "control" over my homeschool and over their future. That's when I really needed to evaluate the BIG issues of pride (am I teaching/raising them this way so they'll reflect well on me?), control (Do I really believe that each child is an individual with his own life, dreams, and God-given plan, or am I determined to shoehorn him into my ideals?) and fear (am I trusting this process, trusting in God, or am I only content when I believe everybody is safe and well? are my children safe to tell me about the big issues, knowing I'm strong enough and am leaning on God? Will we regret this whole experiment, because right now with this 13yo is SO hard?)...

 

Anyway. Obviously you have struck a nerve in this fellow veteran homeschooler. I'm looking forward to reading the book; hopeful that I will glean some good advice to share with the younger moms that I mentor and encourage. I feel that I have managed to pursue these ideals to some successful outcome, over the decades, but I would love to learn from someone else who has BTDT *and* possesses the skill to write about it for others.

 

 

 

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How exciting to hear of a book written by veteran homeschooling mothers who have applied these principles and reaped the reward over years! When did your elder children graduate from your homeschool? Are they planning to educate and raise their families the same way?

 

 

I'm not a veteran! :) My oldest is 12 and so I'm in that logic stage that you talk about being the first time your sense of peace was really shaken. Mine has been shaken, so I sought out the peace I was quite sure I was called to live out, and I started writing for myself. That manifested itself in a blog series and then into a book. That's why I recorded the companion- I wanted the perspective of veterans (Cindy!) and those far wiser than I (all of them!) so I could dig out the message for myself.

 

I didn't write the book as an expert (oh my), I wrote it because I needed someone to write it for me. :) Your blog, Tibbie, is one of my favorites. I'm always finding great posts on Sandbox to Socrates. 

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I'm not a veteran! :) My oldest is 12 and so I'm in that logic stage that you talk about being the first time your sense of peace was really shaken. Mine has been shaken, so I sought out the peace I was quite sure I was called to live out, and I started writing for myself. That manifested itself in a blog series and then into a book. That's why I recorded the companion- I wanted the perspective of veterans (Cindy!) and those far wiser than I (all of them!) so I could dig out the message for myself.

 

I didn't write the book as an expert (oh my), I wrote it because I needed someone to write it for me. :) Your blog, Tibbie, is one of my favorites. I'm always finding great posts on Sandbox to Socrates. 

 

I misunderstood! I'm sorry! Thank you for this clarification. :) May your work bless many! (Your book and your other blogging and writing ventures.) I'm sure that it will. I look forward to hearing more from your as your children and your own experience grow. I can tell you that the blessings keep coming, even along with the graying hair...

 

Thank you for your kind comments about Sandbox to Socrates. As the homeschooling community begins to quickly expand I hope we can all be useful to the new families who are considering this grand adventure.

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I agree strongly with Tibbie on the logic-stage wrecking ball. There is nothing like giving a math-placement test and finding that your kids may have done well on the standardized test this year (oh, good) only to have completely forgotten everything about place value and borrowing in exactly three weeks (not so good) to blast you out of the nice calm water like a depth charge. :banghead:

 

I find a lot of my hand-ups come down to the big P, pride. It's a sobering and nasty thing to come to grips with the sensation that the only reason you care about whether or not your kids learn how to do math is because you are completely self-absorbed in how that reflects on your own ability to teach. Not pleasant, not nice at all, Precious. I'm having to evaluate every nasty little impulse in me that is angry, unhappy and humiliated and I don't like it one bit. It's one thing to think about the wonderful opportunity to teach from rest, and quite another to make that your choice, come hell or high-water. I think I'll better for it, but it sure isn't entirely restful getting there!

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Sarah, your book is very nice. I hope I didn't hurt your feelings. I'm known for telling people they don't NEED books. That is what I do. I don't want a refund. Your book is a welcome addition to homeschool market and one of the best I've seen published this year.

 

You are new to this forum, so are reading my comments out of context of all my other reviews and chatting and advice. It's nice to meet you. :grouphug:

 

I started homeschooling in the mid 90s and now tutor homeless, LD, ESL, and mentally ill adults. I'm self-educating what I never learned and remediating what got burnt out from too many seizures, and trying to prepare to be a useful grandmother. I'm not even homeschooling my own children right now, so not even your intended audience.

 

From ME that was a positive review. Congratulations on your new book!

:party:

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You can see the table of contents in the sample here. That might give a better idea of what I tackle in the book. 

 

Thanks, that's helpful.  

 

It's funny... I read that book by Dom Hubert Van Zeller a few times in my early years of marriage, and didn't get a good feeling from it.   And reading that quotation again, I still don't.   But now I'm starting to see why.  

 
"This is the first lesson for the Christian wife and mother today:  to let go of what may once have been - and under other circumstances might now be - a recollected self, and take on, with both hands, the plan of God. The whole business of serving God becomes simply a matter of adjusting yourself to the pressures of existing conditions.â€
 

What I've come to see is that many times, fulfilling the duties of our state in life -- "the plan of God" for mothers -- requires us to be recollected (see my signature).  Maybe not so much for the routine, Benedictine sorts of tasks Dom Van Zeller tends to emphasize in the book, like fruit picking and sewing, but certainly for responding to the children's spiritual and educational needs.   Then again, since the assumed situation (in the original 1951 version) was that the children would be at boarding school, maybe he just figured that Sister or Matron would take care of most of that.  

 

St. Madeleine Sophie Barat was "Sister."   She lived a consecrated life, but she was a true mother in the way that she worked with children and ran religious households under trying circumstances.  Here's a favorite prayer of hers.  (Note to others, it's very Catholic).   What stands out to me is that, instead of just practicing the presence of God, she's asking -- even begging -- for help in overcoming her frailty and doing what He is calling her to do.  

 

As devotions go, hers isn't as simple or direct as Dom Van Zeller's.   But we already know that the active life -- whether of a teaching sister, or of a wife and mother -- is never quite going to match up to the contemplative life of a Benedictine monk.  At the same time, we can find comfort and confidence in knowing that it's the life to which we're called.   :001_smile:

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I hope you all don't mind my popping in here. I thought I could answer some questions for you. :) Feel free to ask more if you have them and I'll check back so I can respond.

 

 

Welcome to the forums. I appreciate you taking the time to post.

 

I am still re-reading and struggling with the notion that people that interrupt our day are a representative of Christ and that interruptions in the day are an opportunity to rest. But know those are my own issues right now. The chapter "Why your daily grind is holy ground" was inspirational to me this morning and I now look forward to finishing and pondering more on this.

 

I have been reading the Circe blog and listening to his videos, listening to Dr Perrin's video on "festina lente," and such for a while now but still find myself unsettled, rushing through the day, not being at place of rest, just trying to get through the day. I have a child with a neuromuscular disorder; a year ago, we got devastating news. Our past year has been focused on therapy and keeping his mobility. To say that I haven't felt a moment "at rest" for the past year would be an understatement. Here we are, at the logic stage and barely scraping through the day, pushing him through painful and unpleasant therapy, changing course, looking at school/college accommodations while praying he doesn't need them. I probably have bigger issues than a single book could address at this time (LOL) but I look forward to reading further into the book.

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I downloaded the book and read it in one sitting. I loved it. I highlighted most of it, honestly. I am moderately obsessed with all things Circe, admittedly. I am so inspired but all of the resources there. That is the value to me - I am inspired. When I am inspired and teaching and managing our home from that place of inspiration and firmness (that is a strange adjective but that is how I feel - solid, not shaking or wavering) the goodness, truth and beauty of the gospel overflows from me into my home specifically as I teach my children.

 

This was my first year home schooling (UMS so part time really) but it was a journey. I loved reading this book because it really reflected the journey I was on this year and where I've come. I am SO excited about the deeper changes for this next year as I apply what I've learned through experience, listening to brilliant talks and reading books like this. A few moms from our UMS are going to read and discuss this book together (based on my suggestion) because it is so insightful and big-picture.

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