Monday, September 27, 2010


I opened up an email with the subject line "Personal Development Insights #27"....and the content was blank.  I laughed and thought how appropriate it was!  I was expecting another long, wordy email sprinkled with cliches and anecdotes.  But, due to a little glitch in my server at the time, I got a blank email.  It reminded me that the only 'Personal Development Insight' will not be found in someone else's words, but in my own life.    Of course, I knew's just so fun to be reminded of it with little gifts from the Universe, even over the internet.

The original email did eventually appear another time when I was scrolling through my inbox....but I didn't read it,  I just smiled and remembered how strong I am.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Post Conference Glow..

I am still in such a happy place after the conference!  I feel so full of gratitude and peace and love.  I just love hanging out with other families who value connection with each other and respect for all.  I love that they see as much value in a conversation with a 5 year old as with an adult.

I know I keep blogging about how much I love it here in this area...I feel like I can't say it enough....sometimes I feel like I'm bursting with joy!

I came across a few other recent photos I thought I'd share...

Summer walking a labyrinth we drew on the sand.  She has some trekking poles with her as we've been experimenting with pole / nordic walking.  The poles came in handy to draw the labyrinth and they actually do help give a better workout during a walk.  I guess it's a little like cross-country skiing without the snow.

The view from my hammock.

Nicholas and his girlfriend, hanging out enjoying a snack.  She is 2.5 years older than him and the reason he gave up nursing last year.  He declared that he was old enough for a girlfriend, therefore he was too old for "oobie".

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Unschooling Conference...

Wow...what an amazing 5 days!
The first Australian Unschooling Conference was held 1/2 mile from our house at the Tourist park that we used to camp at.  Over 100 free spirited families gathered together to share ideas and build community.

The talks happened in a large marquee with other large tents for kids activities and one for teens.  Dayna Martin was a featured speaker..she is here with her family and it's nice having another family from the USA to hang out with for a while.  People who we get and who get us when they or we are talking about  life in the USA.  And they are just such a fun and loving family that it is an absolute joy to get to know them all better.  There were other speakers covering different angles of unschooling, non-violent communication, highly sensitive people, a kids panel, a grandmother, and a family in their second generation of Natural Learning, with 5 out of their 6 children living in their own homes on the family farm.

                                    "Free to Live, Free to Learn, Free to Be Me"

There was a ton of fun things for the kids to do including facepainting (Summer loved to help with that),  a treasure hunt (held in the evening when they hunted for glow-sticks), volleyball, swimming, a blacksmithing workshop, clay, dance, music, henna, games, beading, a family bush dance, and a talent show. 

AJ showed his confidence and comedy as he did a magic act for the group, with a little help from his new friend Tiffany.

This Dad and his son had one of the best seats in the house to view the talks!

Post conference ... kids hanging out on the edge of the creek. 
I'm glad that there are quite a few families hanging around for some extra time to chill and share and bask in the community that was built.  It helps to process some of the points raised during the conference and to keep the connection going for as long as possible.

I enjoyed the main talks, but I got as much or more out of the couple of micro sessions I attended with small groups.  Throughout it all, there was such a strong feeling of acceptance and joy and support and encouragement and love.

 I feel so blessed to have such strong, committed support groups around me, and to have made some beautiful new friends from other areas in Australia and New Zealand.  I live in this amazing area.  My family is happy and free.  My cup is full!

A few recent activities...

We seem to have been super busy lately, and I've been rather slack about posting photos.  Cary is back in the USA at the moment for a month or so.  I don't know if that will give me more or less time to catch up on this kind of thing.  Anyway...

Kids and Gypsy at the beach.  Gypsy loves the beach!  Especially chasing seagulls and digging, and meeting other doggies.

I love having this so close to us!

One of the local homeschool groups we are in holds a sports day once a year.  The kids were thrilled to participate and win some little medals:

That same group also has a monthly activity at the local PCYC when the kids can try a variety of sports.
Nicholas and his buddy had a great time with the boxing!

I do have to mention the outfit that Nicholas is wearing.  He wore that same outfit for two months straight.  He did sometimes agree to wear pj's to bed so that I could wash his clothes and have them ready for him the next day.  When we went to the beach he would sometimes put some shorts on so that he didn't get sandy pockets in his favourite jeans.  There was another shirt he wore for the first month (a hooded sweatshirt usually worn with the hood up, as in the pic at the top right hand side of this blog)  before switching to the bony one.  When he started out, the jeans were like new.  Slowly the holes appeared in the knees but it didn't phase him one bit.  It was only when the bum started wearing out that he decided to retire them. There was no way he was showing his butt to the world!

Our local group held a felting day and we all made wet felted water bottle holders.  I will aim to remember to get some photos of the finished products.  It was so neat to hang out and do craft with a big bunch of friends.  We held the activity at one of the local parks so we had the use of the picnic shelter and running water and the kids that didn't want to participate, or that wanted a break in between all of the rubbing and rolling, could go off and play.