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Posts Tagged ‘gratitude’

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Here’s a peak at what we got into the first couple weeks of February. Making candles came first right at Candlemas. Candlemas is the time of year where we make as many candles as possible and bless them for the year. There is something special about this ritual that is like no other. We have alway Loved to use beeswax candles, lighting them for school and during meals. It never gets old. This year we made little votive candles with xoxo’s, hearts, cupid hearts with arrows, and even one with a bunny. Red, pink and white. It really was the first time that I have cut out shapes and letters from pressed beeswax to decorate the outside of the candles. So, even after years of homeschooling and living within the realm of Waldorf — I still found something new to do.

Next up I began embroidering the little heart pouch pictured above. I have found one of my favorite types of handwork is indeed embroidery. My grandmother taught me around the ages of 7-9 years old. I would sit and embroider little birds and flowers on hankerchiefs and pillow cases, while we watched Little House on the Prairie. I will always hold those memories dear.

Lastly, we made our little gnome couple. It was the first time I had made a peg person with hair, so again each year and each season I am spiraling forward and creating dimension in the handwork I do. There’s something comforting about that. Knowing each day, and each season that what I do not accomplish or get done, I can always work towards the next year.

Well, my time as Happy Hedgehog Brand Rep has come to an end. The three months went by pretty quickly, and it I am so blessed to have had the opportunity. Thank you for following along on my posts here and on IG.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you and yours. I love celebrating love and gratitude. It doesn’t matter if society dedicates one day, as the commercial holiday. Love is definitely meant to be celebrated.

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Hi friends!

Life is busy!  Busier than we have ever experienced.  With our own small business and three boys time can fly if we don’t watch it.  I love living out in the country, with less distraction, because it gives me the opportunity to slow it all down and live life as quality as possible.  Slow living has gotten a little harder this year as we now have two older boys with one interest each.  Our oldest has resumed drama class, which will come with extra practices around the time of the play. Our middle guy plays violin going on 8 months.  To be a student of Ms. Amy, one has to attend group violin lessons and private individual lessons.  We are okay with this, because the group lessons are a lot of fun.  Group is only every other Monday, so that works for us.  Private lessons are weekly.  Drama is weekly. Thankfully, both of those lessons fall on the same day, so we visit my mother, nephew and niece in between drama and violin.  However, we do have to drive to two different cities to make this all happen.  It is what it is.  The people and teachers we need to see are where we have to drive.  It’s not always convenient.

As a new mother over 10 years ago we were living in Boone, NC.  I was very isolated, but kept another little boy similar to my son’s age.  Close to his first birthday we moved back to KY and found out we had our second son on the way. We were definitely isolated after the birth of Little Fox.  Country living was our choice.  I didn’t know tons of people, even though Central KY was my hometown area.  Everybody had moved, changed, had their own kids and such.  Eventually, I found out about homeschooling.  I had NEVER heard of homeschooling before then.  I am convinced my Little Fox brought with him the spiritual energy I NEEDED to figure that path was going to be ours. I did tons of research.  TOO MUCH.  I fell down a few rabbit holes with my eagerness to learn. Eventually, I got out of my head and came into my body.  I became Present.  Then, I found Waldorf. My path was aligning with my higher purpose.  I did spend time growing and learning through becoming a doula, then a death midwife for a bit and into a spiritual midwife.  As time went on though I kept purification at the forefront of living.  Purifying our space, our home, purifying my thoughts and intentions. Everything Always came back to me being a mama.  A teacher.  Our children’s first teacher.

I had a lot of doubts.  Especially when the boys became school aged, around 5. Somehow I held us. I held the space.  It felt more right and more like our path of peace to stay home with them, than it did to send them off.  I didn’t know how hard it was going to be.  I don’t think Creator intends for us to Know these things ahead of time for good reason, but to put each foot one in front of the other. This path is all about inner work.  I surrender daily!  I have days where I yell more than I should, because I didn’t get enough sleep.  Mostly I go to sleep and wake when the kid do.

I have days where I used to doubt the fact that I needed to be home teaching our boys, but not anymore. Without a doubt, and beyond the judgement of others, I know this is where I belong.  No one can teach our children better than me.  I have dedicated the last 10 years of my life to becoming the teacher I am.  Bit by bit.

We are 22 weeks into our school year.  Math has started and Norse Myths for 4th are complete!!  We have a couple more entries in the MLB (Main Lesson Book – Portfolio for each subject) to discuss, but otherwise we have heard the stories. Handwork has been woodworking and toolmaking.  Little Wolf has made knives, with wood and metal blades, axes and swords.  Every other Friday he goes with Papa Bear to the wood shop and learns so much.  Papa still works, but Little Wolf goes out with him on calls with clients and hangs around the shop.  It has been the best thing for us all.

Now, we are getting into fractions.  I have enjoyed putting the lessons on the board and Little Wolf is building his confidence up around our beginning work. We are using Key To Fractions, based on a recommendation by some other Waldorf mama’s. I know it will get harder soon, and that will challenge him, but that is a part of it.  We have finally reached a place in our schooling where we can look back and reflect.  Little Wolf can look back at his MLB’s and see how learning is a process. Bit by bit. We must build the foundation for his future, but it is done Now. Each day. Things were difficult in the beginning, because my guy is a choleric and he’s precocious.  He’s mature and immature at the same time.  He is awakened in so many ways compared to his peers, but he is still 10.  It became imperative that I must protect him.  He’s so smart, and acts like he can handle so much, but he needs me to be his sacred container.  His home.  When you parent a child that is choleric (fire-y) you must be like the earth.  I act as his container. I am earth and stone that exists around his fire-y spirit.  I get burned.  It’s hard parenting. But I hold steady and firm.  He knows it too.  No matter what we come up against he knows I love him unconditionally.  Also, the element of water is very helpful to us.  So, baths or swimming time help balance us out.

Little Wolf is coming along with reading.  I had him read his latest book to me yesterday, Robin’s Country by Monica Furlong.  It’s the biggest book he has read. He’s a little slow, but I think the words are big.  And, we have had some learning difficulties early-on that slowed us down.  BUT, that is okay.  Progress is being made, day by day.  Patience happens when opportunity is provided (usually by Creator!!)

Little Fox!  I can’t say how much he has grown.  He is a playful and kind kit.  He loves violin.  He loves going to the shop with Papa.  He’s doing well in school. Great penmanship, patience and a sharp mind.  In fact, he is more in his mind than not.  But, I have worked hard to get him movement and into his body to balance that out.  He reminds me of me in many ways.  Every morning he walks the baby out to feed the French Angora rabbit.  He is SO good with the baby. Both big boys are good with Little Bear.  They feed Ayla Bear, who is now 14 years old, and our Elder dog in case you didn’t know.  Dyna the cat gets fed, then we do this all over again in the evening.  I have been doing this with the boys ever since they were 5 and 3.  Before that Papa bear or I did it on our own for the most part.  We had chickens till last year, but they were consumed by predators.  I hope to get more as soon as my husband can repair the coop.  We need to rebuild the coop yard area and work to make it safer for the chickies.  We had some design flaws to begin with, but it all worked for 5 years.  Nature happens.

Anyway, Little Fox has completed his Language Arts – Saints and Fables.  We are still talking about some of the Saints though, like Michaelmas, which is today!  We had celebration around it, learned verses, wrote in our MLB’s, made recipes, and heard the St. George and the Dragon story. Even though I had told this story before it is amazing how they hear it with new ears each year. Little Fox loved fables, and so did I as a child.  We are now focusing on math, and the four processes.  Both boys did math review during their circle time each day when we were heavily focused on Language Arts, but now Math is our Main Lesson.

Today we did several story problems. I love that we are tackling reading and math at the same time for this.  When Little Fox reviews I have him toss a bean bag with Little Wolf and they say the multiplication table.  Then, Little Fox calls out division flashcards with Little Wolf for review.  They actually love it.  I do intend to check a book out of the library, so that we can find some more math games though.  Games should be a fun way to keep the practice going.  We are not worksheet people around here.  I write and draw a lot on the board and the boys take the notes down in their practice books.  Then, the last day of the week they translate that into their MLB’s.  The lesson there is to take the notes down correctly, so I must check to see they do.  Little Fox is reading pretty well.  I am pleased.  He read all the Bob books, and a pack of Clifford books.  Now we are reading My First Little House books.  Deer in the Woods now, and The County Fair next.  All in right-timing with the season.  We have some Little Bear books and those will come next.  Little Fox is still knitting, and has to finish up a wash cloth for Grandma’s birthday soon.

Modeling beeswax has not been something we have followed through with as much.  At first it was harder to manipulate, but when our body warms the wax cool things can be made.  Both boys created St. George knights and other characters from our stories.  I am tempted to make a batch myself, but we shall see if time allows, or if it is more conducive to buy.  It is definitely expensive.  I have plenty of beeswax if I can make the time though.

We are not doing much painting at the moment.  Earlier in the year we did a block, about 8 weeks, based around medicinal plants.  We enjoyed Herb Fairy stories and then finding the plants out in our environment.  I try to point out the plants in all stages year round if possible.  We have done this with the trees as well.  Dover has great coloring books for trees, medicinal plants, mushrooms, birds, etc.  We have several of them.  In the front or back of the book there are colored examples for each plant/tree/mushroom.  I also belong to plant identification, insect identification, mushroom ID, and Arachnid Facebook groups. I learn so much daily!

Geography teachings are ongoing.  History teachings happen through stories in our Language Arts, but also through our books we read outside of “school,” as well as Geography.  Writing lessons happen within Language Arts, not separately from our stories.  When the boys hear a story they draw, then summarize it in their own words.  This is where we identify nouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, punctuation, contractions, compound words and so on.

Form drawing continues and has gotten harder and more complex.  4th grade knot drawings are very cool.  Our most recent forms have been the serpent and crow. 2nd grade forms are running forms at the moment, and Little Fox is improving his skills.  I have proved that Form Drawing has strengthened their brain and eye muscles.  This year at the eye doctor we were informed my oldest is completely recovered from a convergence issue.  The doctor could not tell he had any issues at all. Knitting is another remedy, but Little Wolf has had less patience for knitting.  He loves drawing and other crossing midline activities though! And when given the opportunity he is not ashamed to tell others he can knit.

Waldorf is great because of the depth through which each subject is taught.  This education is very dimensional.  I look online at other curriculums and it all seems so boring.  So flat.  Without spirit.  Without feeling at all really.  Our education is so infused with art that feeds the soul.  I know my boys do not know any other way of learning, but I sure hope they appreciate it.  I know I do.

Lastly, the time came to receive a new puppy.  This is something Papa Bear and I had to meditate on.  For a long while after Kiva died I was going through a process where I just didn’t want any new animals.  I didn’t want the responsibility, or the heartbreak.  Then, one day in August I just felt it was time. Occasionally I would do an internet search.  Finally, I found our potential pup. We knew it would be “right” if she was available, but not for two weeks after we found her. We were going to travel out-of-town and needed the two weeks to prepare. Thankfully, she was held for us.  We had to provide pictures of our home area and living conditions, which I had never had to do before. And, it was an unusual circumstance when we picked her up, but we have slowly found over the last couple weeks that she is indeed a perfect fit for us.  Eva Two Socks.  That’s her name.  She’s black like Ayla, but thinner like Kiva had been.  She just went to the vet today and all is well.  The boys have been very active with her training. We outlined our expectations beforehand.  She is potty trained! She is sweet!  And when we aren’t looking, her and Ayla play.  Ayla is getting her chance as an Alpha after all these years.

Gratitude and Blessings to you and yours this Harvest season!

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There have been a lot of posts going around on the internet lately about young girls dressing modestly.  Mostly I feel dressing modestly is not a terrible thing, and all people have a right to dress how they want.  This is not the case in other countries where women do not have any or many rights though.  But here in the Western world much of anything goes it seems.  In the past, I have spent my time wearing bikinis and crop tops.  I do see the body as a gift.  A temple.  A holy place that houses my spirit.  Am I a bit different now as a woman than I was as a child? Yes. I have riden the wave of confidence and shame.

Mostly, I want to address what it is like for me to raise boys, to meditate on the sacred masculine and the sacred feminine in these times we are living.  After I began having children, boys in particular it became apparent that I have a huge responsibility.  I have chosen to look at history, to listen to the Ancestors and to learn from many cultures.  To me this is the proper way to assess the world that we live in today.  I do not Just want to take from that which is around me, because I know full well there is so much more out there.  I want to be Awake and live multi-dimensionally.

It has taken me some time to learn about the power I possess as a woman, and to learn about sacred union, men and boys and family culture.  What I will not teach my boys is that girls and how they dress are stumbling blocks for their soul and development.  Do I love what the stores are selling to young girls and women.  No, I do not.  If I had a girl child would I dress her in the clothes that these popular stores are selling.  No.  This is in line with how I dress my boys.  I prefer non-brand or non-logo clothing.  Do I believe in self-expression.  Yes, I do.  I allow for freedom, but I am also a guide and protector of my children’s senses till they have developed their thinking brains more fully.

Here is what I will teach my boys.  I will teach them they have the power within them for all things.  I will teach them that the way a woman or a girl dresses is not a stumbling block for their behavior and how they may treat women.  I do not believe Jesus created women as stumbling blocks for men. And if you do not know what I mean about stumbling blocks, I mean lust.  We all have lust in us, at the basest parts of our souls.  At the most primitive, Kundalini depths lust lies.  It is in teaching my boys to raise that vibration from low and baser vibrations to higher soulful love will they understand their power.  There are different types of love, but this is not a post for that topic.

Teaching our young men and women that Christ or G-d thinks these things about them is taking their power away.  Too many times I have been in spiritual communities where I have been taught things and I allowed those teachings to drain my power.  I gave my Power away.  By power I mean my medicine.  My gifts. Gifts and wisdom I bring to this world that G-d endowed me with when I passed from the Spirit realm to this physical world.

I will not allow my children to grow up to misunderstand and I will also leave a place for wonder and for them to form their own thoughts.  It is not religion that I have a problem with, it is the language and interpreters that are miscommunicating to The People.  I Love and embrace many cultures.  I learn from the many cultures a more whole perspective.  It was through the Native American tradition that I came to better understand many things, we are living on Turtle Island after all.  The Ancestors that dwelled on these lands were indigenous, civilized, loving, respectful people.  I do chose however to walk the walk of the Christian model and to teach my children this language as well and those ways.  It is nice to have a model to help us form the formless that comes from within us, and to also have some time to take the form and allow it to flow formlessly. Transformation.  Transmutation.  I feel it and I can see it, there are pictures in my heart.

There is such a practice as Prayerful Parenting.  Am I a Master at Prayerful Parenting?  No, not even close.  Do I pray on my knees often and then open myself up to what comes?  A lot.  Am I prayerful while I am living the mundane life that we are walking day-to-day.  I do try to keep it in mind and heart.  When I wash dishes, when I am changing the baby’s diaper, when I am engaging on Facebook with friends or my home school community.  Prayerful Living has helped to guide me through the Great Mystery of home educating my children.  As hard and rewarding as it is I Love teaching my boys at home.  And I believe they love it too. Do we have fights, yell, miscommunicate?  Yes, it does happen.  But, I am positive it also happens to many other families walking all the other different paths.

My path is raising boys.  Three of them.  They are beautiful, unique, clever, introverted, extroverted, sensory seeking, sensory avoiding, creative, loud, dirty, loving, wild and quiet.  They are exactly what this world needs. They came here in this time and so did I because we were needed.  I will not teach my boys what it takes to avoid lust and that it is a girls fault if he has lusty thoughts.  No, I will teach him that his power comes from within, where G-d lives.  I will not take his power away from him.  I will be with him, guide him and love him fiercely.

What will happen in the future?  Will my boys grow up perfectly and not make mistakes?  No and yes.  They are perfectly imperfect as am I.  And I wish I knew all of this when I was struggling to raise two boys 21 months apart years ago.  I did not realize I was an introvert by nature those few years ago, or that might have helped me in my daily journey.  Nor did I know I was an empath, or highly sensitive.  Nor did I know about temperaments.  Nor did I know much about the brain and the body and how it is all So connected.  But I do now.  I don’t know it all, and never will.  I just know my Path.  I know I spent much of my time alone, cursing myself, or living like a melancholic.  It was easier for me to point out all of my personal mistakes in parenting, even though I didn’t know any better, than it was to point out to myself that I was a good, and loving mother.  It is Much harder to love ourselves and to love each other than it is to let go of the all the hard and messy relations in life.

I know now that Mother/Father G-d has plans for me as he/she has had all along. It is easy to be distracted in this modern world, and busy, or extroverted is honored a little more than slow living.  But, for now we try our best to live a little slower, more intentional.  We fail though on a daily basis, but this brings us closer to each other, it teaches us unconditional love, it helps us understand our higher potential.

So I will say it a different way here. To say that girls or women are dressing in a way that is a stumbling block for boys and men is to say that males do not need to do their inner work and that it is the outer world that determines all. No, I do not think so.  This belief is taking their power away.  It is saying, no you don’t need to do your inner work first.  It is saying others are responsible for your actions.  That is Not how the world works.  It is time we take our power and responsiblity back as parents and teach our boys they also have the same power.  We can be weak as humans and I do believe I need G-d, but G-d is within me.  It is up to me to meet with G-d as often as I can and honestly I do not believe I am separate from G-d ever.  I believe the spiritual and the physical realms co-exist.

Source Loves Us.  Sources does not intend for us to be stumbling blocks for each other, but this outer experience happens all the time.  For example, have I allowed media to get in the way of me parenting, perhaps and yes.  Should I get off this blog and go be with my children.  Maybe.  Do I need to write and express myself to feed my soul?  Yes I do.  Not because I am feeding my Ego, as I have been told by people I trust, but to contribute my form of art to The People.  Even though it may only reach 40 people.  Numbers do not matter.

Planting seeds in others hearts is work for G-d, not me.  When things outside of myself tend to get in the way a little more than I care to admit, I hear the quiet whisperings of Creator beckon me to a place.  A place of peace. A place I have created while living and that was created before I came along, Within myself.  This “place” is where I swim in Love.  It is a place where I am nurtured, and then I take that nurturing and give it to others.  We all have what we need.  But sometimes we need to give it away to others as well, because our cup is full.  There is balance here.  The giving and the receiving. The Elders call it Reciprocity.

I will not tell you all my spiritual name, nor will I tell you my children’s or husbands spiritual name, although I use nicknames on the blog.  But I will tell you my middle given name I go by.  Nichole.  This name is no coincidence.  It means Victorious Heart.  There was a time in Ceremony a few years ago that I felt and saw G-d cleanse my heart and drop one tear on me.  I felt that tear from G-d and what an honor it was to receive.  My heart was replaced then. Renewed.  I allowed my self to step more fully into my heart, and to honor why we have Ego to begin with as well, because I also believe the Ego is greatly misunderstood.

Despite what others think, I am teachable.  So if you have something for me, I will listen.  I am not set on this view forever.  Some new truth may alter or shine light where there is darkness.  I am open.

So to tie up all these threads into a garment I want to say thank you for following this story.  I need to get off of here and get back to raising boys. There is Gratitude and Trust that I am being led.  I am writing this for myself and for whoever decides to read it.  It is an offering that I leave on the table.  If this offering speaks to you, please take it as a gift.  If it does not speak to you, then leave it for someone else.

 

 

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Welcome to Nurturing Spirit.  My name is Nichole and I am a 36 year old mother of three boys.  I live in rural Kentucky, on four acres of sacred pasture.  We have mostly homeschooled and enjoy learning in an environment that takes us all into consideration.  Light, touch, feel, hear, smell…it all matters to us.  Being present and meeting myself where I am is prevelant to all of us walking in a good way.  Atmosphere is conducive to learning.  We all have filters and storylines, but somehow you’ve led yourself to this blog post.  If you are new to homeschooling I want to say to you, save yourself.  Save yourself from worry.  Invoke your Maker and Angels to guide you.  Have faith.  Don’t worry, each day if you wake and engage your will and rhythm you will make it to the end of the day and you might just feel a sense of purpose, accomplishment and contentment.  If you are not new to this lifestyle I’ll say it’s possible you understand the spiritual mundane.  Or maybe you haven’t made the connection yet.  God is present in every moment.  Or that is what I choose to believe.  So if that is the case, then I am being guided and I do not need to worry.  It’s me here in this earthly experience gathering materials to make a birthday crown.  It’s creator coming through to make a chalk drawing of a fairy tale.  It’s Nichole who nurses the baby and breathes and listens to the sounds of the house.  This is where I am.  Right now.

Some of my dreams, I have a few, are being illuminated to me by the dew on the web of life, by the light of the moon.  I want to learn to storytell.  I want to become one who draws.  I want to knit our own wash rags.  I want to become a Master Teacher to my children.  I want the days to carry me with the momentum of my own sweat and struggle and stretch and happiness.  For me to do this I invoke the medicine of turtle.  Slow and steady.  It’s ok. Don’t worry.  Today make your soup Woman.  Wash your sheets.  Feed and play with the baby.  Love your man.  Grab a moment to read a chapter of the book your are studying Mama.  Be right there with your priorities.  Time has changed so much since I became a Mother.  Do your work now for later also.  Plant those seeds when it’s the season to do so.  Tend each day those dream seeds.  Harvest and Rest.  Then spring forth again.

Meet yourself where you are in life.

Give yourself permission to do things in a good way.  Find the path of peace.  Work hard everyday, rest well, eat enough and love deeply.  Make connections.  Hug often.  Light candles for your meals.  See the changes of those trees each year and how they change and grow.  Then look in the mirror occasionally and See yourself do the same.

I came to waldorf more fully when my kids were entering Kindy, although I had the seed planted in my heart a few years earlier.  You see?  So it is new for me to have a newborn with all the thoughts and considerations of this lifestyle and more mature, healed Self.  Things in many ways are easier, and there are new challenges.  I know I have been doing the work.  I meet myself everyday.  Each day I give new permission to Be who I am and that is settling.  Grounding.  Accepting.

The future seems exciting and full of possibility.  Reality is sometimes different from how I imagine things going, but I hold so much love for my family and my path, that Gratitude prevails.  I believe in being postive.  I believe in intention.  I believe we manifest what we think over and over.  I belive in comedy!

Well, for now I am happy to be writing.  That is where I am meeting myself on this good day, with my baby straddled across my lap trying to delete my draft.  I’ve got to do this for myself.  Occasionally paint pictures of my life with words and feeling.  It’s who I am.  It is who Creator wants to reflect to you.

What is your Creation story?

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