Living Dangerously


(But it’s just a little brown snake, it isn’t a super close-up shot, and it’s actually a sweet photo…)


Another possible title might have been, “Homeschooling is my life.”  I don’t mean that in a “hardcore homeschooling” sort of way, more of a “this is my current reality,” way.

It has taken me seven years to figure out that homeschooling is actually a full time job.  I think that maybe I have been in denial these past few years.  Admittedly, adding a once per week homeschooling co op to the schedule has definitely upped the time commitment factor.  My kids are really enjoying it, well, most of them are.  After our second week, Seth told me that he doesn’t totally hate it, and that is actually a big compliment and a huge improvement over the first week.  There have been many complaints from my three older boys over the past month, all centered on this co-op that we joined last minute.  The consensus amongst them was that they would be wasting a “whole entire day.”  I didn’t waste much time trying to convince them that they would actually probably really enjoy learning from some adults other than Jonny and me and getting to hang out with other kids all day.  I figured that they would realize that themselves after the first week or two, and yeah, I think I was right.  My girls are completely thrilled with the whole scene, and Silas seems to be having a good time.  Job is a bit of a handful to manage, but the co op is well organized and I have lots of help with him. I’m hoping that with time Job will become more accepting of other people holding him while I am with the preschool.  Anyway, I’m just so glad that I did this.  It’s good for me, it’s good for my kids.  Thank you, Sarah. 

Jonny and the boys are working to tame our crazy overgrown property.  I haven’t been spending much time outdoors at all, but I know I should at least try to.  I think it will help to have it cleared out a bit.  The baby bunny incident in June, combined with our lawnmower breaking, resulted in our yard becoming a very wild place over the past couple of months.  I’m not quite ready for the wild again yet.  I want mowed paths so I can see what’s ahead, and see where I’m stepping.  I was on my own for awhile this evening, so I took a little walk, just to see what’s blooming, what’s changing out there.  Our cat, Grace, punctuated my entire walk with her complaining cries for attention.  I was grateful for the noise.

I’m almost finished reading Running for My Life, and I needed something to read on my Kindle this evening while Job was nursing.  I typically don’t search for something to read this way, but scrolled through the popular recommendations and landed on Take Me With You.  It was free to borrow it on my Kindle, so no risk, and it has lots of five star reviews.  I made it through the first few chapters, and I’m interested in the story so far.  I feel very up and coming reading something published just a few months ago, so not typical for me.  I also bought crazy bright magenta trail-walking shoes yesterday, not me at all.  Watch out!  I’m finding ways to live dangerously.

p.s.  If you missed the post about the Small Things snake photo warning system, and want to make sense of those first two asterisks, that post is here.  If you are afraid of snakes, but went ahead and looked at the second photo today despite the warning, consider yourself living dangerously too.


  1. I forgot what the asterisks were for and totally didn’t see them. Not that I mind snakes or any reptiles or insects…love the snapshots of the cat, too. 😀

  2. fishdogfarm says:

    We have started the Regina Caeli Academy this year with our oldest. It is a hybrid home school program where he goes to the academy twice a week and the other three days he stays home. He loves it. It is a classical completely Catholic education. I’m so thrilled to be a part of it I share it with just about everyone I meet! It is a close knit community of families, all working towards the same goal.

  3. It was so thoughtful of you to remember the asterisks Ginny! Very much appreciated.

  4. oh my gosh! your cat is so funny! We go to a co-op three days a week! My kids are older (my daughter is in 10th grade) and it seems that as they get older, my days are more full. I remember just a few short years ago, I stayed home most of the time. And I was able to actually read blogs most days. Now, it’s just really busy!

  5. I LOVE the cat pictures!!! That’s exactly what one of ours does as I walk around the farm. “I gotta go wiiith you, but you gotta waaaiiitttt uuup for me!”

  6. i got on to your blog from my husband. he sent me a link to your page about your friend. it made me read more about you and your family. i love reading about your everyday life and know that i am not the only one going threw the same things. i am a 35 year old mother of nine. i have four boys and five girls. i homeschool them and use to do a co-op too but with schooling 6 this year i thought it would be better if i was home more. my kids loved it tho and miss their friends they made and had in the co-op. even tho some days are hard and busy i chose this life and would not change any of it. 🙂

  7. Oh, I forgot! I thought the asterisks told us how long the snake was, not which picture! So, I thought that was more than a ** snake.

  8. I love the tea cups lined up next to the world map–wish my kids would drink tea with me! Your cat is hilarious. So glad Sarah continues to move throughout your life. xx

  9. Hi Ginny,

    I’m new to reading Small Things and I wanted to take a minute to tell you how much I look forward to your posts. You bring such truth and beauty to this space. I’ve read some of your past posts and find myself giggling with such pleasure at your delightful sense of humor. And your knitting, oh my…I’m completely smitten with all that you knit. Your photography is absolutely breathtaking…it’s all just so lovely. Being a “when the mood strikes” blogger, I know how much time and dedication it takes to run a blog. I greatly appreciate the time you give to this space, it makes my day to see a new post of yours show up on my Feedly. Thanks again for being such a source of inspiration and wonderful stories (and knitting envy ;).

  10. Oh my gosh – the pictures if your cat are cracking me up!!! So funny! Thank you for the laugh. And oh my, how sweet is that picture of Seth and Silas? As always, thank you for sharing.

  11. The expressions and actions of your cats never cease to amaze me!
    I have never been a cat lover, but somehow I just think I could absolutely
    love your cats!

  12. I looked, but I didn’t want to. A snake is a snake is a snake! BUT, you kind of made up for it with the adorable pics of kitty Grace! Wonder what she thought of the snake??? 🙂

    So glad you are teaching pre-school and honoring your friend Sarah.

  13. I too have recently come to the same conclusion that homeschooling is and should be treated like a full time job. No wonder I can’t keep up with everything else! Now we are trying to figure out how that should look. Ya know what I mean? We also joined a one day a week homeschool co-op last fall and at first I was a little leery but now I think this is a really good thing for us.
    And can I say all of Grace’s “complaining” photos totally cracked me up and I can hear her all the way here in Northern Nevada!

  14. I have to say I love your photos of the many things that happen on your kitchen table I love the gathering, the learning, and the togetherness they portray. We have not quite reached the point of a co-op in my area yet, but with the exodus to home schooling I think it is just a matter of time. We will have to decide, too, whether to embrace the commitment. Home school is life.

  15. Yes, 7 days a week. I just realized this last week. It has been helpful in planning out of the house events rather than me saying ‘yes’ to everything, as I usually do. I love those photos of your cat! I had a vole incident with the lawn mower a few weeks ago. Blah. The turkey vultures were VERY interested and provided wildlife tv for a few hours!

  16. Love the cat pictures. She looks like she’s singing her heart out as she enjoys a stroll through the wildflowers. And the two kids with the snake–reminds me so much of when my kids were little and loved to pick up garter snakes. I wish I’d been able to grab the camera fast enough the day my sons (now 24 & 21) were playing in the yard while DH push mowed. A big garter snake ‘ran away’ from the mower and youngest son–about 14 months old– grabbed it by the tail. He held it upside down, as long as he was tall and kept saying “Nake! Nake!” as he showed off his find. 🙂

  17. I just bought some pink and purple trail shoes! Enjoy

  18. Haha- I love that you got magenta shoes 🙂

  19. I live dangerously when I change tea brands 😉 You sound so happy and I hope you get the paths you want throughout your property so you can stroll easily!

  20. Your cat is a stitch. She looks like a big baby crying with her eyes closed! Someone should write a nursery rhyme about her. 🙂

  21. Your photos always make me happy – love the pic of the children in the kitchen x

  22. loved this post and all the pictures!! Cats are so funny and lovely all at the same time! I think it is great, the coop … and good for your kids too… yes, I think homeschooling would be quite full time… God be with you! I am going to light a candle for you and your family; we still pray for Sarah’s family daily here also; much love and may the Mother of God surround you with her comforting veil.

  23. those photos of the cat cracked me up. our cat follows us on walks and meows the whole darn time! LOL

  24. Yes! Loved seeing the snake “code” return 🙂

  25. It is sweet of you to do the snake warning system for those who dislike snakes. It’s an adorable photo. One that will be treasured by all in the years to come. Must agree with Andee in that some fiber animals would clear things out a treat. (No, No. I’m definitely not lobbying for an alpaca or six of my own with a llama for defense. )

  26. Maybe you can just fence in your yard and I’ll bring you down a few alpacas to help with the grass. Who needs a mower when you have alpacas??!!! Also their poop will do wonders for the garden 🙂 I’m glad to hear the co op is going well. I can sense the positive vibe in this post and yes I totally braved the snake. It it was a worm I would have run away.
    ps- the alpacas also would produce some beautiful fiber. they are good like that.

  27. The real danger is in not living. That is definitely not something you are guilty of. Seven lovely children, teaching them, sacrificing yourself every day for your family… that is living and living well.

  28. beth lehman says:

    i hope you enjoy me before you… i did, but even more loved another of hers… the girl you left behind. completely different. the snake warning system totally cracks me up!

  29. the return of the snake warning system is making me smile 🙂

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