Happy last Monday in October! Where has the month gone? I feel like I say that every month, but this month is seems especially true. Overall, we’ve had a good month. We’ve settled into our fall home, work, and homeschooling routine quite well. Caroline has found a new volunteer activity to engage in and is enjoying that very much. (I’m purposefully vague about some aspects of our family life.)
The Long Winter and the Grand Solar Minimum
Last week we finished reading aloud The Long Winter as part of our homeschooling and moved on to Little Town on the Prairie. We’ve not read a lot with Caroline about man’s inhumanity to man, hardship and such so I think the book was eye-opening for her. Like many gifted/2e people, she and I both absorb way too much stress and negative emotions from other people, stories, news, etc. so David and I have purposefully limited her exposure to it to this point. The books have brought about some good conversations about hardship as well as faith. It also brought some perspective to our experiences this year.
Speaking of cold winters, our local meteorologist discussed the Coldest Temperature EVER so early in the season in the U.S.
The Potomac, Montana station reported a low temp of -29°F Sunday morning. This is the lowest temperature measured at an official climate site anywhere in the U.S. so early in the season in any year.
The evidence of a Grand Solar Minimum is starting to pile up. If this Grand Solar Minimum follows those of the past, the 2020s (and beyond) are going to be a very difficult time not just in the USA, but world-wide. Most people are completely unaware.
I started reading about it and watching videos about it last year. A year later, there is significantly more information available even from sites such as NASA. The only reason I haven’t done more about it in terms of making videos and such is due to not wanting to fill up this site with it.
Being Self-Employed and the Living Simply
Sometimes I feel like I talk too much about the business side of my life in these weekly posts, but it is part of my quiet simple life. I live with both the benefits and the drawbacks of depending on a home-based business. In fact, to write about living a quiet and simple life without being real about what it is actually like to be self-employed would feel fake to me.
I’ve seen too many women, in particular, extol all the wonderful benefits of owning a popular website or running an online business without revealing what kind of a toll it took on them or their families until years later. There are plenty of stories online of how popular bloggers and “influencers” ruined their health or nearly lost their marriage or nearly went bankrupt due to being self-employed.
So sometimes I write about what goes on behind the scenes because I want to be real. The idea of living simply each week encompasses all of my life.
Last week I changed email providers back to MailerLite so I could integrate my WooCommerce shop with my mailing list. There were other reasons for the switch as well, but that was the main one. That meant I had to change everything related to my mailing list (website forms, newsletter template, etc.). I also added Stripe as a payment option to my shop. So lots going on behind the scenes, but all good things.
I hope you enjoyed the look of the newsletter I sent on Friday. MailerLite gives me a lot more design toys to play with so I’m deciding how to use them.
I don’t have any big plans for this week in terms of things around the house. I have a little tidying up to do in the basement. We probably should start pulling our tax information together. We always have our tax appointment in January and we are behind where we like to be regarding recordkeeping at this point in the year.
I’d like to do one crafty thing this week no matter how small it is. I was so excited to move all of my craft things into my office once we went to separate offices, but I’ve done almost nothing with them since I got them in here. When I do get down time, I’ve been spending more time reading (which has been very good). However, I would like to do something even if it is just make a card or start a tiny cross stitch project or something.
I’m still reading through Mother Culture by Karen Andreola and still liking it. She very much describes how I have approached homeschooling with Caroline. I know I am a Charlotte Mason homeschooler at heart, but simply didn’t have the time to immerse myself in her writings and ways of doing things. I looked at the online Ambleside curriculum so many times, but it was not a good fit for Caroline when I did.
However, the spirit of what she discusses in this book is very much how I’ve homeschooled Caroline and it’s encouraging to see someone else writing the same things I’ve figured out on my own. For me the book is not so much a guide on how to do it, but an encouragement that I’m on the right path. Since homeschool mothers rarely get enough positive encouragement and reinforcement in real life, it is good to at least get it from a book written by a veteran homeschooler.
So what is going on in your home? How are you spending your last week of October? I hope you’ll leave a comment.
Artwork: “Hill Farm, Symondsbury” by Helen Allingham