why I moved…

If you haven’t already noticed the recent influx of posts, I decided to move our homeschooling journey from its own space back to here. I cannot give a solid reason why, other than consolidation (which I seem to do regularly), but also I realised that I haven’t even been on this blog for a rather long time. This was a sanctuary for many things, including my writing – I haven’t written much fiction recently, mostly because I have been so focused on schooling and everything else. I will definitely work on writing about things other than schooling, but as that takes up so much of my time I cannot promise anything.

I want to thank everyone who followed Desert Willow Homeschool, and say that I appreciate every single one of you who read my posts. I hope that you continue to follow along with our journey, and with my own journey through life as a mother, a writer, a photographer, and a seeker.

our week so far


TL: Vimala Alphabet Practice (mine)
TC: A little friend found outside
TR: Shoddy Advent spiral, felt and embroidery thread.
ML: Sun and Moon helped to cook dinner.
MC: Our kitty Toothless, who lives under 
the house.
MR: Autumn has finally arrived, showing in the trees during sunrise.
BL: Sun’s ML page for The Fox and the Goat.
BC: We created a game with gems and dice.
BR: The sunrise on November 30th

We have been taking it really easy since Thanksgiving – rest has been a staple that cannot be in high demand right now. I have been dealing with this health issue of mine for nearly 2.5 months, and it has taken its toll. I am drained. So, we will be finishing up the consonants for Moon tomorrow, and then we will take the rest of the month to just work on word building; Sun has finished his Animal Fables block so we will be doing some work on the Saints (Nicholas and Lucia), and trying to include their festivals into our rhythm. We are all excited for the holidays, and then for January because we get to start Math!

My Sun has taken a serious shine with the Vimala Alphabet. He is so excited to work on the letters and do his ML pages. And seriously, once we got the lined guider page printed and there was a clear expectation for what his page should look similar to, he took off and finished two pages in under thirty minutes (that is taking his time to properly form the letters and do the borders). So much of his progress and his sister’s is not measurable in worksheets or pages – it is seeing the spark in their eyes when it clicks, it is being read to, or just listening to them read to each other. It is also measurable in their willingness to do their work, regardless of the time of day, or night. It is being asked for math problems before bed, being asked for little paper booklets and a pen to write down their observations outside while they are playing. And, it is measurable in the subtle changes in their behaviour.

My little Stars are so far from where they were at the start of this journey. We still have a long road ahead of us, and so much learning for everyone, but we are strong and we have each other and we will continue learning and growing and figuring everything out as we go.

Because I am always finding new things online, and because I am constantly re-evaluating how I am bringing lessons to my children, you may witness quite a few changes through the school year. One day, we will find something for each topic that works. Until then, we will continue trying.

crafty goodness

The holidays are always busy, regardless of someone’s situation. However, here in the Sly-Emslie household, this week has been both slow and quick – slow because all three children are home, there are no lessons, and the abundance of food weighs us down; quick because there is the hustle and bustle of cooking, cleaning, serving, and eating. There is an urgency to the holidays – personally, I just want them to be over. I am not a very jolly person around this time of year, but I work incredibly hard to keep a smile on my face.

My Sun hit a milestone this week – not one that would be considered typical or even much of a milestone to anyone but me, but I am still so proud of him. He created his own carrying pouch for his block crayons. He chose the colour of felt and began sewing along the sides. When he finished, he was so excited! I decided to add my own little piece – I also made his sister and Sly’s daughter HL a pouch – to each one. Sun received a spiral sun, Moon a moon, and HL a star. The ribbons are mostly to help keep them closed, but I also think they added a bit of flare.


Because funds are running low, I decided to grab a few of each colour crayon (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, brown, and black), and Moon helped me take the paper off and break them apart in order to make her very own set of Fairy Blocks. We have a running story that the Fairies brought me and Sun our block crayons, and Moon has wanted her own set for some time. I told Sun and Moon that the Fairies agreed to let us make our own this time. They were very grateful that we received permission.

This week has left me feeling drained of all things positive and jolly. I do hope that the coming weeks work to regenerate my smiles. For now, have a wonderful rest of your week!