Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Kev, Sarah, and Kevin (K Sam) Dec. 2005

Kev, Sarah, and K Sam Nov. 2006

K Sam, Sarah, and Kev August 2008


I am just completely overwhelmed with gratitude this week! I just have this amazing life that I am so thankful for.

Working at the coffee shop has been just the medicine for me. It gets me out of the house, socializing with people, serving people, and just being in an amazingly positive atmosphere. I love it! I work early, get home just as the kids are getting going for the day, and they don't even notice that I've been gone. It's just been so fun!

I've really been so aware at the things that people sometimes complain about that others would be so thankful for. I wake up every morning feeling safe and loved, I get into my car and have this AMAZING view of the mountains surrounding me, and I have everything I need + a whole lot more. I have these three incredible kids that just make my world go 'round. I am just SO grateful!! Funny thing is that, as far as challenging times, this has been one of the most challenging in our entire married life. We have had a rough year financially and things have not been easy but it isn't even worth comparing to all the wonderful things that surround me!

Something I've noticed this week, that makes me really sad, is this attitude in people now that the kids are back at school. I can't tell you how many people have come into the coffee shop celebrating the fact that their children are back in school. It makes me so sad that more people don't enjoy their kids. I would be so sad if my kids were going back to school. I honestly enjoy being around my kids and we have a grand time together! I don't ever feel that I wish I had my days without them, quite the opposite really. I have moments when I need alone time and that is when I retreat into my bedroom and have my alone time but I can't imagine them being gone all day long. They are often wrapped up in their own projects and games, so it's not like we are constantly interacting, but just having them near me is grand!

"Sometimes we must pause, in our pursuit of happiness, and just be happy."

Monday, August 11, 2008

Vegan Blog

So for anyone interested: I've decided to start blogging at my other blog, about being a vegetarian and my effort to adopt a more vegan lifestyle. I haven't blogged over there at all since last fall so I'm blogging once again. If you would like to stop by I would love to have you for company:) http://veganforamonth-snavleys.blogspot.com

Monday, August 04, 2008

Unschooler Blog Carnival; What does an "average" day look like for you?

Hiking the Butte, what we lovingly call the Butt.

After a looonnnngggg night of questing.

Typical Alaskan sunset. We do live in a beautiful place!!

Calista and Maija experimenting with different smoothie recipes.

Teens rocking out with Rock Band!

Tristan's building project.

What does an "average" day look like for us? That is a good question because I don't think we necessarily have an "average" day but..........................

We definitely try to leave ourselves open from day-to-day. None of my kids, with the exception of Kevin, really like to have "scheduled" activities; meaning they don't like piano lessons, organized sports, etc. My kids really just like to ride with the flow of the day. Kevin is VERY community minded and likes to be involved in community activities. He is involved with AYEA (Alaska Youth for Environmental Action), Youth Court, volunteering at the recycle center, etc. He loves to take music lessons, photography class and other scheduled things.

Tristan is the outdoorsy type so he often wakes up in the morning and heads outside and we might not see him until dinner time. He will build things, rollerblade, dig holes, and anything else you can think of. Sometimes I will take off with him on the rollerblades and we will be gone for an hour or so. He likes to do anything that involves working with his hands and likes to tinker. He is starting to take the roof off the barn, as we are going to turn it into my "yoga retreat". For several weeks he spent many hours in the afternoon doing research, online, about parrots, which led to the adoption of a Caique that we have all fell in love with. Lately he has been doing a lot of online games through X-Box live and sleeping all day.

Calista is kind of in between those two. She likes to have weekly schedule events and talks about joining basketball but likes to be outdoors with Tristan too. She tends to need lots of down time, just reading quietly, watching her favorite TV shows and cuddling with mom. She loves to have friends over too! Probably 4 out of 7 days we pick Rylee up in the afternoon and she will be here until 7 or 8 and often spends the night, or Calista will end up at her house for the night.

I'm not really sure how to answer what a typical day looks like for us. I usually get up a few hours before anyone else and answer my e-mails, drink my coffee, and just putz around. Calista is usually the first one up after me and often gets right on her computer to check up on all the games she plays and send e-mails to Maija. She has recently become interested in writing paper letters to Maija and sending them snail mail. We often will go take hikes, walk the dogs, go to the coffee shop or other such things. In the afternoon the crafts will come out, the books, questions come up and we look things up on the computer. As the boys get older things change but Calista and Tristan used to spend hours playing "bank", "store" or other dramatic play. Now it seems the bird comes out to be played with and conversations ensue in the afternoon. The afternoon seems to be more reflective than the rest of the day and our conversations end up on the computer looking up fun facts. Much of our conversations lately have been based around the Presidential Campaign and environmental issues.

We have a very lively household and usually by 4 or 5pm friends start stopping by and often I end up making dinner for a few extras. The kids will come in and start chopping and helping with dinner and usually the "extra" kids will hang out until late in the night. A couple times this summer Randall has brought out the fire poi and given us a show or we build a bonfire and just hang out. On the nights that friends aren't over we always spend a couple hours, right before bed, watching TV as a family. Our favorite shows right now are The Supper Club; a show where several guests have conversation about environmental issues and there is always a cook on the show to cook a "green" meal, Greenburg; a show about a town that got knocked out by a tornadoe and they built it back up "green", Miami Ink; self-explanatory, LA Ink; self-explanatory, Criss Angel Mindfreak; illusionist, Locked Up Abroad;about stories of real people that comitted a crime overseas and got put in jail abroad. We record lots of shows and the fun thing about it is that one of the kids will see something that is really interesting or intriguing and they will record it so we can all watch it together.

We are a very spontaneous family, because we can be with our schedules so free. The kids will find out about a book they want to read and we will just head over to the book store. Or they get an itch to go bowling or something of the sort and we will drop everything and go. Sometimes we just spend the entire day in our pajamas watching movies and we've been know to spend hours at the coffee shop too.

It really depends on weather, work, etc. as to how each day goes. Up until very recently I didn't work at all but now I'm teaching yoga and working very part-time at a coffee shop, which makes us less spontaneous than we have been in the past but we still have enough freedom to come and go as we please and we are still able to put everything down and move onto something else as things come up.

Post note: I wrote this blog yesterday so I could come back today and maybe add a few things. This morning they gave me a permanent work schedule that has me working every day from 6:30am-11:00am, maybe just until 10:00 am in a couple of months. So our typical day is changing quickly. No more slow mornings, sipping coffee and putzing around for me:) Although, I work in a coffee shop, that isn't too busy the first hour, so I get to sit around and sip coffee anyway! Martin works from home now so he takes me to work in his gas efficient car:) and stays at the coffee shop for a couple of hours working on his computer. I'm really enjoying having the extra money without the kids really noticing that I've been gone. When I move to 10:00 am they literally won't notice that I've been gone because they usually wake up between 9 and 10.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Unschooled V. Schooled Comments

I just wanted to say a HUGE thank you to all of your wonderful comments on Kev's blog about his experience with public school, after being unschooled his entire life.

He is completely BLOWN AWAY by all the positive comments, as he thought that the essay was more for me than anyone else. He had no idea that many people were going to be reading it. He is a little embarassed because he just typed it out real quick and never even read through it a second time, so there was absolutely no editing and not a lot of thought put into it.

He is working on a more in-depth essay that is well written and edited, starting from the process that he went through, to decide whether to go to school or not, to his current feelings and what he has decided to do this next year.

Stay tuned:)