Sunday, July 27, 2014

herb summer refreshment

Herbal Lemonade Station // HonestlyYUM


  • 4 cups lemon juice
  • 12 cups sparkling water
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup dried lavender
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup fresh thyme
  • 5 cups sugar for syrup (or 1 cup for each syrup you plan on making)
  • 5 cups water for syrup (or 1 cup for each syrup you plan on making)


Herbal Lemonade Station | HonestlyYUM

Thursday, July 24, 2014


It is so good to have tomatoes and peaches and some mango in the house .
Then get a bunch of cilantro. 


Here is one recipe for any Stone fruit. I am making it now. You let the onions
sit in lime juice for 10 -60 minutes. THAT should tell you they will soak up flavor. 

Thinking you could do the same with tomatoes. 
Add green peppers or corn or black beans. Whatever you have.

SO then there are avocados. 
DO you know how to cut it apart?
I do most of this but not getting the stone out or making a fan:

Jamie Oliver:

Easy dish here and some neat tricks.My guys would love this;

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

frogs & veils

I do sound like one. 
But I am much better. 
You can ask my sister who called today and heard me. 
 Summer cold and lost my voice but there is mending.
It gives rest and slows  time down. 
Time becomes like a monastery.

These words from The Rabbit Room are perfect for my 
"monastic " quiet these last 5 days: 

... a place I had found time and again to be what Celtic spirituality would describe as “thin”—where the veil between heaven and earth becomes so translucent, both become more luminous.

I was just at a monastery two weeks ago to see the Abbey. 
It was like this:

...the immense silence of it all. Pace yourself and breathe. Notice small things.

Spirituality that is thin is strong. It can see through the veil and things become
more luminous.  I had a moment today. This was my first day out since Saturday morning. 
I did run into a young girl who is going across the world for 2 years to be a teacher with a mission organization. We hugged from afar. I have this summer cold. You can hear it. She hugged my daughter. (She had dated one of my sons. He is married now!)

The thin veil of the Spirit.
  No mistaking the timing. 
All in Target.
( and praying  t she will not catch my summer cold even without hugging goodbye)

Belmont Abbey 
with Charlotte in the background


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

love that WInslow Homer painting

Working on next year's school plans for my class and doing 
Winslow Homer in the Spring. I adore his work. I stood in the
National Gallery in Washington , DC and just stared at his works 
in a special exhibit years ago. I was struck by beauty.

Been looking up Newberry Award books. 
Have you ever seen the list?
Look here
Read the runner ups. 
The books that got Honors. 

The library should carry all or most of them. 
I am checking on the older ones right now. 
May see if they are there but not for checking out. 










Sun out after a wet Monday

Getting to organizing books on these wet days that now have turned
into summer. Sun is out. Laundry out. This book from yesterday's 

Also if you have little ones who have a younger sister , these books 
are worth looking for by Dorothy Edwards and ilustrated by Shirley Hughes.
I first heard them read by Susan Schaeffer Macaualay at a L'Abri conference.

Monday, July 21, 2014


There's a new site up about books by Sarah Clarkson called


Check it out whether you have little ones or older ones or just read yourself.

Her main blog is good too: Thoroughly Alive.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Glory Be by Rebecca Reynolds

Glory Be (I)
Glory Be (II)

Stunning poetry , especially to prepare for the Sabbath. 


Summer cold. 
I have tried and tried to fight it. 
Today my voice is croaky and whispers are more audible. 

We did have a wonderful , wonderful birthday for Emma's 17th
on the 17th. Think I have some photos but they are on my phone.
We had company: this dear friend and her youngest daughter
( living books library and write at The Story Warren) and they 
brought homemade baguettes and chocolate croissants and
THE birthday cake which had Italian buttercream in the middle of 
a chocolate cake. We had homemade pasta from a shop and
we had 12 around the table. 

We shopped books ( used books ) and to our favorite store which 
just makes you feel better by looking at all the beautiful dresses 
and housewares and we ate at a favorite French cafe.

I am up to Lecture 6 of Jerram Barr's Children's Literature class
online free. ( think it was 2006) I have found some new books and 
authors ( Nick Butterworth was a student at L'Abri, thus knew Jerram)
and used book shopping with my friend who owns a private library
of 17,000 books has enlarged my heart and mind.

It is very cool here and we have had needed rain.
Hope all is well with you in this mid-July weekend.

From The Murmuring Cottage.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

rain and thunder and books

Lots of rain and thunder late this afternoon. 
Maybe the heat will be cleaned away like a good washing on the floor!

We have a birthday this week.
17 on the 17th:

I just read ROLLER SKATES for the first time :

Loved it and knew everywhere she skated in NYC.
Just got a beautiful copy of the sequel:

And reading this book which I might have to get :

And , my last and in this list but there are a few more books I won't put here, 
is this delightful book: 

Mice in Buckingham Palace when Queen Victoria's Jubilee is going to happen!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Tuesday on the road

Back from BOOK CLUB to visit Dori Sanders who wrote CLOVER.
It was quite a time! We sat at the peach stand and imagined her life.
What a grand storyteller and every person was important. I longed for 
my grandparents to be alive. I longed for my parents to be alive. 
Isn't that a heart response to beauty. 

We stopped by Belmont Abbey and ran into the monk who took 
my class on a tour in the Spring.  He prayed for us right there. 
Right there.

Here is Kate Rusby a new find: ( from the UK).
She is married to the guitarist. They have a 2 year old daughter, Daisy. 

Annie: ( so fun seeing the audience singing along)

Monday, July 7, 2014

sabbath singing

from yesterday:

I didn't know this song was by William Cowper.
John Piper has an excellent book on him ( The Hidden Smile of God)

 and here is an audio of  a lecture on Cowper at a conference.

I found myself copying some of the words. Maybe you know it. 
Sing it today.

Next song that caught my fancy:

How nice when melodies linger.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Beauty for Saturday

1.I found a gorgeous type called Gabriola on my emails.

I think I am in love with and want to write like it. 
It is not on my blog choices.
boo hoo.... you will have to email me to see and I may
be doing copywork with it to improve my handwriting
for letter writing. 

2. Anthology 

I got this magazine on sale at Anthropologie when this Minnesota friend was here
for the Charlotte Mason Institute Conference. ( CMI) . It is online also here.

3. Gorgeous post  at Sanctuary to walk the streets of London: 


( London in grey)

4. If you love Coldplay, here is their concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London last 
Tuesday night.  Audio. 

 I have listened to it 3 times. 
Who is counting?
My children are. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

July 3rd means July 4th

Getting ready today for a cookout and fireworks up the street 
at the golf course at dusk tomorrow. I have been to two lovely grocery
stores and one lovely store having a 20% off of sale items. 
Now it is thundering and we need rain. I love summer rain.

Have a happy and safe 4th.

                                                        Patriots Barn by Jamie Wyeth

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

what matters

Lots of reading today and here is Marilyn McEntyre on Alternatives to Organization.

In my wiser moments I know I have two practical choices: organize or simplify. And these are not only practical, but psychological and spiritual choices.

1) When you’re in a hurry, stop. For a whole minute. Shut the door and breathe deeply. Let go of what you’re clutching at; literally open your palms to receive energy and grace. Remember Ambrose Bierce’s cynical but oddly practical observation, “Few things matter very much and most things don’t matter at all.” Especially institutional drivel. Give yourself merciful permission to cut a corner, be five minutes late, leave something till tomorrow. Recite a short list of what matters most and put those things back in the center.

2) Attend to the call of the moment. The idea of “vocation” or “call” is a spiritual idea that serves me as well in thinking about the moment at hand as in thinking more largely about how to use my life. To discern what one is really “called” to do in response to any of the multiple demands a day brings involves some test questions: What is really being asked of me here? Is it appropriate? Is it proportionate? Is it important enough to lay aside other obligations? Can I respond out of peace and interest with real assent, or would my “yes” come out of guilt or fear of disapproval? If the demand passes those tests, it deserves my complete attention, not for five distracted, preoccupied minutes, but for five whole, undivided minutes.

3) “Laugh. Laughter is immeasurable.” This is one of many useful admonishments in Wendell Berry’s poem “Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front” which I reread often and recommend highly to the busy, the distracted, and the dutiful. Real laughter that starts in the belly and comes through the heart requires a healthy distance on the preoccupations of the present moment. The wisest people I know have these things in common: they’re compassionate, they can keep their peace, they can keep their own counsel, and they laugh.
These practices, I think, don’t depend on organization. They depend on giving oneself liberal permission to stay tuned to what’s up, what’s needed, where the surprises are. When I manage to remember them, the day is more like a dance than a march; priorities keep rearranging themselves, plans get reframed, and life leaves room for the unexpected. Some things don’t get done. Others get postponed. But, more often than not, what matters gets attended to.

quotes from vol. 6

- the  imagination has the property of magical expansion, the more it holds the more it will hold. ( 43)

-It is not only a child's intellect but his heart that comes to us thoroughly furnished.

-Just as in the War [WWI] the magnanimous, patriotic citizen was manifested in every man so in our schools every child has been discovered to be a person of infinite possibilities.

-"To explain the meaning of words destroys interest in the story and annoys the child. Second, that in many instances it is unnecessary. Although a child's dictionary knowledge of words is lacking it does not follow that the meaning of a sentence or paragraph is unknown to him . . . neither is the correct employment of the words beyond him in writing or narrating. Two examples of this power to sense the meaning were observed last term. There is a particular boy in Form IIB who has not hitherto been looked upon as possessing high intelligence. Classified by age he ought to be two Forms higher. Last term in taking the story of Romulus and Remus, I found that in power of narrating and degree of understanding (that is, of 'sensing' a paragraph and either translating it into his vocabulary or in using the words read to him) he stood above the others and also above the majority in the next higher Form." ( 51)
[Form IIB would be about grade 4, perhaps 12 years old.]

-Let us hear Vasari on Leonardo,––
"Possessed of a divine and marvellous intellect and being an excellent geometrician, he not only worked at sculpture . . . but also prepared many architectural plans and buildings . . . he made designs for mills and other engines to go by water; and, as painting was to be his profession . . . he studied drawing from life."
Leonardo knew nothing about Art for Art's sake, that shibboleth of yesterday, nor did our own Christopher Wren, also a great mathematician and master of much and various knowledge, to whom architecture was rather a by-the-way interest, and yet he built St. Paul's. What an irreparable loss we had when that plan of his for a beautiful and spacious London was flung aside because it would cost too much to carry it out!

                                     Josef Israel, Sunday Morning, 1880

what I had for breakfast and work on curriculum

I am reading Vol. 6 of Charlotte Mason's series AGAIN.
Hunting for Israel's Pancake Woman and found Rembrandt's version.
I found a whole board on Pinterest.  and here on Josef Israel and got distracted.
Doesn't that happen to you along the way on a walk? You see something beautiful
and stop to look.