Making the most of the summer.

I wrote this week about the end of the school year and making the most of it, but can I confess something?

Summer always throws me for a loop.

I start out with big plans.

(I refuse to call my plans a “bucket list” because by definition it is only a bucket list if you are dying or if you literally organize things by putting slips of paper in a bucket.)

But by mid-summer, I realize we aren’t keeping pace with my ideas.

By August 1, I am already thinking about the upcoming homeschool year and just trying to fit in the biggies: swim lessons, an outdoor movie and a few more s’mores.

Am I the only one who feels like summer is gone in a blink?

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So this year, I decided to start getting organized a little earlier, and my job was made 100,000 times earlier when I received the At-Home Summer Nature Camp Curriculum from A Natural Nester.

This 8-week program focuses on time together in nature, and offers fun theme weeks to help make it happen.

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Liz at A Natural Nester and some of her friends (who happen to be some of the most creative mamas out there) have put together unit study ideas covering everything from making nature journals, to art projects, to recipes (like “Pondscum Smoothies!”) and many other invitations to learn and play together.

If you’re looking for a bit of direction, lots of ideas and assistance but little pressure, this curriculum is a great fit.

I am so excited to start it with my 7- and 10-year-olds.

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I think my very favorite part is that each weekly unit has book suggestions for bringing the lesson home. (That’s the homeschool nerd in me speaking — I love when everything comes together!)

Summer goes by so darn fast. I’m always left feeling like if I had just been a little more organized, we would have gotten to do so much more.

So I can’t wait to get started with this great program.

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If you’re interested in learning more about A Natural Nester’s At-Home Summer Camp Curriculum or other great e-courses and guides, you can learn more here.

I’m curious to know if summers go by really fast at your house too? What are some of your favorite summer activities and traditions?

And my little disclaimer: I have partnered together with A Natural Nester to bring you this review. I was given a copy of this program for free, but my opinion is entirely my own! Thanks!!

How to ROCK the last few weeks of your homeschool year

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I love the beginning of a new school year.

I love sharpened pencils and brand new crayons and lists of books.

Dreaming.

I love beginning again after a holiday break — when things seem fresh and new again. We always change course a little during the school year, and find a new way.

And, I love the end of the school year, when we get to celebrate accomplishments big and small; stuff we learned and the little peeks into who my kids are becoming.

I’m talking about how to ROCK the last few weeks of your homeschool year today over at Simple Homeschool. You can read all about it right here. :)

Some days aren’t perfect, and that’s OK.

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Some days are better than others.

When we choose to spend our days with our children, some days are much, much better than others.

Some days we want to yell, or cry.

Some days we don’t want to end at all. We tuck them in at night and rub their little heads. We smell their hair and the scent of the wind on their skin.

“Don’t grow up too fast,” we say, holding them as they fall asleep.

Some years are meant for making the dye from beets and blueberries and spinach.

Some years, we ask the grocer for onion skins and he raises a brow, “You know they have kits for that, right?”

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And so some years are for pulling out all the art supplies and buying the store kits, and decorating eggs for 3 hours on a Thursday, while a chicken stands by.

Some years are for spinning woolen eggs, hiding tiny animals inside.

Some years are for sidewalk chalk and bubbles.

And all are OK.

We have a way when we get older of blending all the days and years together anyway.

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Sometimes you feel like you must do it all. You feel the crushing pressure of making memories, of knowing that time is short.

Sometimes, something happens, and it becomes very clear that no toy or treat could mean as much as a day spent slowly, together.

Sometimes the world can say “rush,” and “more” and we can choose to ignore it.

We can choose “slow” and “less” instead.

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Today, I won’t worry about imperfect eggs or the things I didn’t have time to make.

I’m learning that I have a choice — I can try to do it all and fail, or I can choose to give my kids my all — my focus, my attention, my love.

I can choose that moment to moment, and so sometimes, I can get it right.

I want to give my kids perfection. I get caught up in that. I do.

But I’ll never be perfect, not on a holiday. Not any day.

Instead, I can grab perfect moments in average days.

Some days, I wonder how I got so lucky.

Every day, I know love is enough.

Happy Easter.

Love,

Kara