In my life this week… We are celebrating birthdays and getting back into routine. Both kids have birthdays within 5 days of each other. My daughter turned 9 on Saturday and my son turned 14 yesterday. All activities started back on regular schedule this week too. Violin……….Ballet…………Awana……..Upward……..and we’re adding Community Children’s Chorale to the mix. In our homeschool this week… And we’re back in school after a much needed break. We were all very glad to be back to co-op on Monday this week. We were ready to see our friends and, at least somewhat ready, to get back into our classes. Leah is very excited about her literature class this semester. Her class is reading through Pilgrim’s Progress and this semester, they will be doing a play reenacting a portion of the book. Wyatt is back to it with Economics this semester, taught by a dad of one of our co-op families. I am inspired by… The many blogs that are sharing their “word of the year” for 2013. My word is diligent and I wrote about it HERE. Places we’ve been… Since it’s been months since I blogged about our homeschooling, there are several places I’d like to highlight. November ~ We took a family trip to the Colonial Triangle in VA, went to see Christ Tomlin in concert, and Leah and I went on a field trip with her SC History class to Ft. Sumter and Boone Hall Plantation in Charleston. December ~ We attended my nephew’s graduation from the University of South Carolina, Wyatt and I volunteered at one of the Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Distribution Centers for a day, spent the day with dear friends, and had the joy and privilege of seeing friends and family over the holidays. My favorite thing this week was… Being back on schedule. I realize this may seem crazy but I have found that having a routine helps me to stay focused and accomplish more. Questions/thoughts I have… How do you keep your kids focused on their school work? Mine do fine for a bit and then everything seems to be a distraction. What’s working/not working for us… Being early risers. I’ve finally resolved that it’s okay that we don’t begin our school day very early. We may go later in the afternoon with our assignments, but it works for us. Things I’m working on… Being more DILIGENT in many areas. Also, I started making Ruffle Scarves. On a whim, I asked a friend for a lesson in making them and then I made several to give as gifts for Christmas. Here are just a few that I’ve made: I’m reading … Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst. I’m not very far into it but I already have found great encouragement in her words and I expect to be blessed. I’m cooking… Or at least trying to cook healthier and more frequently. I’m grateful for… My family! I’m praying for… Friends and family facing difficult situations in the next few weeks. Photos, video, link, to share… My kids. The photo was taken by my sweet friend Olivia. She has recently started a photography business and so I decided it was time to have the kids picture made. Besides, it was a great excuse to go visit and to spend the day with her family. Thanks again for joining me on my homeschool journey. I’m linked up with The Homeschool Mother’s Journal over at iHomeschool Network. Joy to You!