Snapshots & Snippets

Snapshots & Snippets: This Week at a Glance


Welcome to “Snapshots and Snippets”where I share a bit of this and that from our week in hopes that you find something useful or inspiring. 


{Announcing the Winners of the Giveaways}

Last week was such a fun time for me with the blogwarming happening here at Hearts Homeward.  Thank you to all of you who popped by and made the week special by your presence and your comments.  I had three separate giveaways through the week and the winners are:

Handmade Beaded Cross: Barbie Swihart

Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp: Jessica G.

$20 Target Gift Card: Shannon Guerra

If you missed the blogwarming, I encourage you to visit my welcome page to get a feel for Hearts Homeward.  It will help you get familiar with everything I have set up for you here.


{Botany Class}

Every week during this Snapshots & Snippets, I plan to share a bit about what we are doing for Home Education.  It’s so near and dear to my heart to educate at home.  Maybe something we are doing will inspire you.  At the beginning of each year I get a little nervous about how the rhythm and routine will fall into place.  Each year is its own animal, so I never am quite sure how we’ll get to everything we want to do or fill all the needs my children have.  We’ve always been in a science co-op, where moms traded off the teaching of all our children together.  As those children aged, my question was, “How will I get cooperative science learning for my younger son?”  The answer came when my friend, Amy, offered to include him with her children and another family in a Botany class.  Each week we do the assigned reading from the Apologia text at home and then the children gather around Amy’s dining table for learning and some hands-on activities.  Right now we are forcing bulbs.  Our kitchen sink looks like a greenhouse with various cups full of plants from our class.  So much for the myth of home education leading to poor socialization or boredom!  Co-ops are a great way to bring learning to life and share the teaching load among more than one mom.

Botany 1 Botany 2 Botany 3


{Will You Go Out with Me?}

Saturday my husband turned to me after we had run some errands mid-day and said, “What would you think of eating out for lunch?”  I remember years of wanting a guy to ask me out, wondering which guys liked me and hoping someday someone special would choose me for life.  With all those memories being years behind me {26 years to be exact} I have given up some of the romantic dreaming and settled in.  We have had seasons of scheduling routine dates – when our sitter was like a daughter to us and she was readily available.  Life changed and we mostly stopped pursuing dating.  It wasn’t fatal.  The thing is, when you don’t intentionally set aside time for one another, you can end up being pleasantly distant or content in your status quo.  Dates stir things up a bit.  We need them.  Our date wasn’t anything super-fancy.  We just went to the Elephant Bar.  He got a burger and I got some shrimp skewers and a salad and this yummy green tea spritzer thing that I will definitely have again.  What was special was sitting with him, giving one another time and relaxing into our relationship without anything calling us away from connecting.  I think we’ll go on another date next weekend.  I kinda like him and I think he feels the same about me.


{The Book: A Little Update}

I’m living this surreal life right now.  Always loving to write, I have dreamed of publishing a book since I was a little girl.  The topics I would write about varied in my imaginings, but the dream remained.  The book is completely written.  It sits on my hard drive.  When I first typed a format that said, “Chapter One” with text beneath the chapter heading, I had this giddy feeling.  That sensation has pervaded the whole experience of writing our book.  No matter the outcome, I’ve collaborated and written a book.  Now we’re at the next step.  My co-author has had talks with Zondervan and we’re about to send off some chapters and an outline.  Words like “Talk Show” and “Publisher” are part of my weekly conversations.  I am overwhelmed at the prospect of what’s next.  I’ll keep you posted here as to what comes as we journey into this next leg of putting a cover on this manuscript and letting it out into the world.  If you want to know more about the book or be on the launch team, you can sign up on our “Help for Parents” page.  I kept all of this pretty hush-hush for two years.  I just wanted to savor the process.  I also wanted to wait to see if this was even real – as I feel like I’m dreaming.  Since it seems to be a reality {my friends and family keep telling me it is}, I’m ready to share it with you … at least I think I am.


{Goodies Around the Web}

Have you ever wondered what God’s will is for your life?  Do you get the feeling you keep missing the mark?  I read a post last week about “Have You Missed Your Life’s Calling? Probably Not,” which helped focus and refine that question while alleviating the guilt that can come from putting too much pressure on ourselves to “get it right.”  If you aren’t familiar with Art of Simple, the blog of Tsh Oxenrider, you need to be.  Tsh is a woman who lives beyond fear.  She carries out dreams, sets her sights on what matters and clears the decks to get to her goals.  The best part is she inspires and shares practical tips to help us all get there too.  Then there’s Ann.  You all must know her and a few think she’s too poetic, but many hear her heart through the weaving of words and it reminds us of Him and the real life we live as seekers and finders.  I’m talking about Ann Voskamp, author of “One Thousand Gifts” who wrote this week about her son getting diagnosed with Diabetes.  She shares with us what suffering can mean when it’s cupped in God’s loving hands.  I encourage you to read her post called, “What Happened After We Got the Diagnosis: About Brokenness, Suffering and Joining the Club.”  One gift of blogging is the many fellow bloggers we come to know along the way.  I have been in some Facebook bloggers’ groups with Zohary Ross.  She has a sweet heart and this year she birthed a vision to become more mindful and engaged in the present moment with Jesus.  She has the gift of encouragement and is inviting women to join her in Mindfulness Mondays.  Zohary will send out an email with some prompts or focus points every week when you sign up to join her in this purposeful practice of living wholeheartedly.  Yes, I signed up.  No, I don’t need another email in my inbox.  I’m choosy that way.  This seems worth my investment of time.  I’m sharing it in case it might be worth yours too.  Finally, I had to include this link to view a star cluster 8000 light years from earth.  I can’t wrap my brain around that, and that’s a good thing.  It assures me God is infinitely greater and mightier and incomprehensible than my propensity to neatly box Him up.  To say He is larger than anything that faces me or you today would diminish His greatness.  Sit in awe of Him as you watch this video and know He is able.  He loves details.  He loves beauty.  He cares for each element of His creation and He loves you with that infinite, intimate love.

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