Summer Fun

Most of our summers have been spent on some big adventure or another: One year it was the Little House on the Prairie; the next, I think, was South America Incas, Mayans and the Aztecs; yet another was the Shakespeare summer. All in all we’ve had some fun times over the years. Last year I took a much needed break. This year, the same. Home schooling for the older ages takes it out of me. Either that, or I’m getting old! For many reasons, I feel tired. The last couple of years have taken their toll. I’d love to recreate the older one’s experience of summer for the younger ones, but I am tired.

I am hoping a break over August will help me get my mojo back in time for the new school year. Next year will prove to be just as busy as this year has, as I work along side Lillie to help her graduate our little homeschool.

I have lots of news to share on all the courses and exams the older three took at the end of June, but we are still awaiting two GCSE results, and I want to write about them all together!

Charlotte took her maths exam a couple of weeks ago, after which the twins flew over to Northern Ireland by themselves – their first time on a plane that they can remember, and all by themselves! They managed it fine and are thoroughly enjoying being spoilt by their Grand Parents and seeing all their aunts, uncles and cousins.

Thomas is, as usual, working hard and playing hard. I hardly see him anymore as he is so busy living his life. He is missing his sisters like crazy and is looking forward to them returning in a week’s time. I have to say, it is very quiet and tidy without them 🙂

My main goal this summer, apart from relaxing, is to help my younger two fall in love with reading. I can not believe I have two children who don’t LOVE reading. In this cottage which is held up by books, it is obligatory to enjoy the art of being transported into a new world each day.

So I had the girls make up their summer reading challenge board. Try not to be too critical of the car which is clearly reversing its way around the track. Becs made it facing the wrong way! I collected all some of the books I could find which would suit their age group

So far I have read eight books aloud to them. By far our favourite has been The Box Car Children. It has inspired hours of play outside as the girls have tried to recreate their own ‘Box Car’ home in the old Little Prairie house:

Our Ratty Tatty Box Car
Washing Up
Home Sweet Home
Seeds sown
More washing up

Amongst all the resting (and binge watching House!) I have also been school planning for next year. Lillie is my primary concern as she is taking five GCSEs in Human Biology, Psychology, Chemistry, Maths and Sociology. She already has two in English and Art and Design plus one A Level in Photography, but she needs these five to do Children’s Nursing. I have her time table and work planned for the whole year, as well as revision notes for the first term in Psychology and Sociology. I still have an enormous amount to do if I want to avoid the silly hours I worked this past six months with Charlotte. I have also school planned the littles Science and English for next term. So I’m doing fairly well.

I hoping to get back to posting here daily as I have lots of posts covering work I did with the littles last term. I also will be answering your emails (thank you for all your love and support) and posting on those topics requested by some of you (Latin, Classics, Christmas presents, Maps and Bible time – see, I haven’t forgotten!)

Oh, and just before I go, here are some of the veg the littles and I have been growing:

Everything tastes just amazing compared with what you get in the shops!

I hope you all are having some wonderful summer fun!


  1. So nice to hear from you.. I hope you have a restful August. I think raising teens while homeschooling them is a treasure beyond measure…but very, very exhausting.
    Blessings, Dawn

    1. A treasure beyond measure…! I love that! I am finding that they need me in every way – educationally and emotionally far more than they did when they were younger. So, so much fun to be had though!

  2. So nice to see you back, Claire. My thoughts and prayers have been with y’all this last month. I hope all are healing well.

    1. Aww, thank you Tara. We have moved on, although the court case is in November – I am hoping it will all be settled before it goes to court. Thank you for your thoughts and your prayers. I hope you are all having a wonderful summer break?

  3. Glad to see you’re taking a well earned break Mrs!!! I didn’t realise that Lillie was having to do another 5 GCSEs but I’m sure you’ll both cope fine!! Remind me to show you some GCSE resources I might be able to help you with xx

    1. I have binge watched House and have a rather peculiar attraction to Hugh Laurie now!! I shall trey to remind you re the resources – but I’m not promising anything! You know me…If I can forget I surely will!

  4. I found as my kids got older we moved more and more away from schooling year round as I needed my summers to rest and get my mind set on the next school year. I have often wondered how that makes schooling for my youngest so much different from his older brothers but that’s OK as his whole life is a completely different experience from theirs. Sounds like it will be a busy year with 5 GCSE’s!

    1. You are quite right. Just because the younger’s school is different it doesn’t mean it is worse.
      Please could you leave me you blog address? I’d love to visit again but I can’t find it anywhere! It’s been ages since I’ve visited other homeschool blogs but it is my goal this year to get involved in blogland again!

    1. I’m hoping it will change. I can not believe I have someone who doesn’t enjoy reading – our cottage is held up by books! They are going to miss out on so much.

  5. I know your younger daughters love science, so maybe some interesting science-oriented books might help them catch the reading bug. We are working our way through John Hudson Tiner’s “Exploring” series (Exploring Biology, Exploring The History of Medicine, Exploring Chemistry, Exploring Physics, Exploring the World of Mathematics). They are excellent, and full of all the esoteric information that children love to collect. The author likes to talk about Christian scientists and how their religion contributed to their work ethic, discipline, etc. Our daughter is STEM-obsessed too, and she absolutely loves these books.

  6. Glad to see you back!

    I’m finding older kids are tiring in a completely different way from younger kids, and mine aren’t as old as yours. They’re wonderful, but it can be tiring and stressful to figure out how to best parent and teach them.

    1. It definitely requires very different skills from what is needed during their younger years. Probably listening to them and making sure they know they are heard is the most important thing to do, al least with my crew.

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