Life is better with Jesus.

Life is better with Jesus.

Specifically- my life is better with Jesus. Sounds like a no brainer, but it is a powerful recognition of the truth.

This past week or two, William and I have been more purposeful with the time we put aside for God. We have been starting our days with Jesus, praying and reading some scriptures. Then, at the end of the day…we end our evenings with Him too. Plus, trying to invite God into the ordinary moments in between.

Now I have to say…God continues to astound me! Everything is better when Jesus is the center. Hear me out. I know life can still be horrible and overwhelming and heart breaking- even with Jesus in your life. However, William and I have noticed our lives feel more balanced with God leading us.

We feel God’s grace more tangibly aiding us through the day. “I could still do with lots of extra grace each day, Lord!” hehe

With God’s grace- I’ve started writing bits of my book “Strawberries and milkshakes” again- With some encouragement from my friend Paula 😉 (& my husband William). I come alive writing testimonies of His faithfulness!

Flashback photo of me writing when Haven was still young. She is almost 3 now, and we have had another baby in the mean time. 😄 I’m praying God will help me get this book written in His timing.

With Jesus as our focus, even my relationship with Will feels more special. We are both feeling more excited about life, and we are connecting with God together. I’m really grateful that we both are on the same page, and encourage each other in the things of God.

My point is that in our home, whenever we decide to connect with God or make more efforts to spend time with Him, we feel better. We cope better. We pray more. We laugh more. I dance around the house more, just to be silly. Jesus makes our hearts come alive. 😄😄😄😄

No, it’s not about striving or “doing the right thing”. I’m not saying life is better, because we are “doing better. or acting better etc”.

Sometimes, in His grace- Jesus comes to us…in our weakness and in our exhaustion. When we can only fit in a 5 minute devotions or a 2 second prayer. Jesus knows you. He loves you.

One step at a time. He won’t leave you xx

However, when you are in a place where you can seek Him… wow. I wouldn’t trade God for the world. I look forward to Heaven one day, but until then…. Jesus is enough for today. When He is near me, life is better.


I am praying that God will continue to stir my heart towards Him. I pray that you will also feel closer to God this week, and more aware of His presence in your life. Thank you Jesus, that you make our hearts come alive. Thank you Lord, that you welcome us back from the dry seasons and the exhausted seasons. That you are with us in every season. Thank you that you are my ever present help in times of need.

Love always Kelly xx

Where’s my faith gone?

In my daily life, this is a simpe reminder that “Sometimes…you have to look at things differently.”

“Where has my faith gone this past week?” I’ve been asking myself this question.

At certain points in our marriage, my husband and I have been full of faith and courage. In the past, we have trusted God in some pretty overwhelming moments and situations. God has been so kind to us, and given us a thousand testimonies of His faithfulness. In fact, He has given me enough stories to fill a book about His faithfulness.

So why is it so easy for me to forget how great God is? How have I forgotten that in my weakness, He is strong. That His grace is sufficient for me?

A perfect reminder of God’s promise. One of our friends children did this gorgeous picture.

This past week has been full of turmoil. Inner tourmoil for Will and I. We were praying and thinking about our future. Specifically about having more babies or not. We are pretty terrified, to be honest.

We told God in the past that we would trust Him in regards to our family. We know from scripture, that God can open and close the womb. I understand it sounds foolish in today’s world, but God has a different journey of faith for each person. Our story may be totally different than yours. 💜💜💜

However, when you get to a certain size as a family – it really takes a lot of faith and courage to continue to trust Him.

In each of our lives, trusting God is easy in some situations and terrifying in others. Am I right?

For us- apparently 5 children is our number that has stretched our faith. It was easy to trust God in general until now, but after 5 children… doubts creep in. Can we continue to trust God with our family size? It feels impossible.

What is your “impossible” faith journey? What impossible things is God asking you to trust in His care?

I know that I’m not alone. As Christians, we all have our moments of sheer terror. The Bible is full of stories that required tremendous faith.

My point isn’t really about our family size or family planning. We are blessed to have 5 beautiful children, and God promises to lead gently those with young children. I love this verse!

My thoughts today are really about how easy it is to forget who God is. How great God is.

One of the amazing things about God is that He has blessed us with the Holy Spirit as our helper.

How have I forgotten that I don’t need to face each day in my own strength?

How have I forgotten that God says in His word not to worry about tomorrow?

Why do my thoughts race ahead so quickly? Most days are overwhelming enough for 1 day. God was pretty wise in telling us to not worry about tomorrow, to just focus on getting through today. It’s more manageable that way.

“Jesus, please help me to remember who you are. Please remind me to invite your Holy Spirit into the challenges of my life. Help me to remember that you have never abandoned me. That you will continue to lead Will and I gently, especially when we are raising these little ones you have given us.”

“Father, please encourage my faith each day. Please forgive me when our faith seems to evaporate and disappear so quickly! Please remind me that faith comes from listening to your voice, and reading your word. “

“Help me to turn to You when my faith is shaking. Help me to run to your word and remind myself of your promises.”

“Finally, Lord please help anyone who may be reading this post. Please show each person how much you care about them. I pray that you will give each person strength to continue to put you first each day. Please help each one of us to trust that you are a loving God. Give us all more faith.”

Love always Kelly xx

Welcome back.

This photo oozes with the love from Henry’s big sisters.

Hello, welcome to my blog. It’s been a long time! I haven’t shared my stories in over a year, I think.

I wrote a few posts after my mum died, but then I felt like I lost my voice. I didn’t have anything encouraging to say and I struggled with such a huge amount of grief. Yet, some grief looks silent.

How many times can you say “I feel a little lost without my mum”? How can you describe how your heart feels when grief changes something indescribable in your heart? I’m not sure. Having said all that… I missed you! I missed writing! I missed sharing my random thoughts and my life. So here I am!

Since my last post…I think I had just found out we were expecting our first son? Our 5th child. Sounds funny to even say it out loud! “We have 5 children!” 😄😄

Well, on the 16th of January 2021 we finally welcomed our first son into the world. Little Henry. He is blessed to have 4 big sisters who adore him!

This was our first family photo. It was taken the day I got home from hospital.

Henry was a big baby at 10 pounds, 1 ounce. 😄

I was fed up being pregnant. I want to say that I was patient and glowing. I wasn’t either. I was heavy and swollen.

Yet, the reward of holding Henry in my arms the moment he was born was tremendous. The journey of the pregnancy had worn me out in many ways. However, as soon as I held Henry my heart cried out: “He was worth every moment”.

I don’t say that lightly. In fact, I honestly begged my husband in those last few weeks of pregnancy to never let me get pregnant again. To remind me if I got clucky that pregnancy is hard work! It was my hardest pregnancy.

I had no fight left in me. No resilience or determination to “hangnin there”. It was probably because my heart was worn out from the death of my mum just months before we concieved him.

There was also so many unknowns. I was happy with my 4 girls, and had never experienced a boy baby.

What would life look like with a boy?

It looks like snuggles in bed each morning with all 4 sisters eager to cuddle Henry.

Henry is 4 months old now. Since his birth we have had a massive change in our lives. We suddenly left Alice Springs in the Northern Territory to move back to South Australia to be with family. I missed my family. Will missed his family. We missed friends.

In my next post I will hopefully share some of the extraordinary things God did to take care of us in the process of moving.

We are now living in a little town called Bethany, in the Barossa Valley. In the old Lutheran Manse. Which is dedicated to the glory of God.

My prayer and hope for my life is that one day our lives will be like our home: Dedicated to the Glory of God. 💜💜💜💜

I am excited to reconnect with you all again. I’m excited to share my stories with you.

After all, life is meant to be done together.

Love always Kelly xx

My 2 favourite guys. My incredible husband William and little Henry. Gosh, they look cute!!!!

Before I knew about you….

Hello, Hello! Welcome 😊

This week has been a full week. We began our week by trying a new homeschool curriculum with our girls, which is exciting. So far, so good.

But Friday was the biggest day! Our ultrasound day!!! The day we hoped to find out the gender of our 5th baby. We have 4 little girls already- would this make a 5th daughter or 1st son? The anticipation!!! Thankfully, our scan was booked in for 8am. Our friend Debbie came with us to the scan, while my friend Katy looked after our other 4 children.

The stakes were high. Many people saying they hoped it was a boy. As if we lacked a pivotal part of the puzzle without a son. Hehe Others said it would be easier to have all girls. My husband didn’t mind either way, and he is a proud dad of our 4 girls. However, he’s always had a desire to have a son.

I have never had a real craving to have a son. I thought a son would be nice, but if we had 9 daughters…I probably wouldn’t feel disapointed. It’s funny how we are all wired different. Although, I have had some very sweet cuddles with a couple of baby boys recently that may have melted my heart a little. That – and my nephew called ‘baby’ Jamie is very cute! So I was a little boy clucky.

Ultimately though, girls are all I’ve ever known. My girls are each such precious gifts. I have never felt like I was missing out because I only had girls. My tribe of girls are the best. And I thought that whatever the gender of this bubba- I would feel excited. No doubt I would have been thrilled either way.

When we were told that this baby was a boy…we were sooo suprised! I told the ultrasound man that I didn’t believe him! Hehe

Then he told me to look at the screen. He pointed to the part on the screen where you could tell the gender. It was certainly clear. “We have NEVER seen one of those on our scans before!!!!!!” 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

The ultrasound man told us it was conclusively a boy. No doubts.

Then something happened. My heart was filled with joy and excitement!!! I felt so proud of this little baby growing inside my tummy. Who knows why! Proud of something the baby had no control in! 😆 My heart changed in that moment. Like my heart grew. The shape of my heart changed. Like how it changes when you welcome your first baby….then your second baby and every one thereafter.

So we are expecting our 1st boy. Our first Son.

A son I didn’t know I was craving in particular. In fact, maybe I would have even chosen another daughter if I had of been given a choice. It’s easier to crave what you already know and love. How can you desire something, when you feel so content with how things already are? Why change things?

Because I didn’t know…

I didn’t know we were missing anything. I didn’t know that I would feel such joy. Who knew that my heart would react so strongly? Who knew that the revelation of a son coming would change my outlook?

Suddenly, when I see boy babies in the shops I feel really blessed that we will hold our own boy in January. Suddenly, I’m part of another club: “The mother of a boy” club. Haha I’ll be part of the conversations about raising little boys. (I’m a long term member already of the raising girls club) 💜💜💜

This morning at church I felt God’s presence really strongly. It was refreshing.

I was thinking about the baby growing within me, and laughing to myself at how overly excited I feel now. Like how shocked I was when I fell in love with my husband, and became the most mushiest love struck girl out of my friends. When I had always thought that love was gross or that hanging out with my friends would be more fun.

I suddenly realised something deep and powerful. I never knew that a boy/son could add anything to my life. A boy surely couldn’t make much difference, when I had all that I craved in my girls already.

Just like us and God.

Before you come to know God or ask Him into your life- you just can’t see it.

You can’t fathom how the revelation of knowing Jesus could possibly change your life. Why would you? Your life is so full of good things already?

Or maybe bad things? Maybe you think knowing God could make things worse? Too many rules? Sundays are your sleep in day?

But on friday the 14th of August, at our ultrasound. Life changed in a monent. My future changed. I haven’t even held this baby yet or seen him with my eyes- but none of that matters. The mere knowledge of him is enough. My connection with him is enough. The promise of things to come, is enough to start with.

I pray that if you have never craved a relationship with God- that you will have a life changing moment. Like my scan, when my ears heard “It’s a boy” and my heart came alive in such an unexpected way. (But a million times better when you encounter God!)

I pray that even if you don’t ‘see the need’ to know God or feel like it would add anything to your life…that one moment could open your eyes. That you would feel a joy you never expected. Your heart would experience something entirely new!

Maybe you just don’t know about it yet…

Because you don’t know Him. You don’t know yet. But He could suprise you. Just like my little son has suprised me.

Love always Kelly xx

A Bear Called Paddington.

“Life is meant to be shared with others.”, don’t you agree?

Moments shared with another person help create memories. The little moments count too, not just the big momentous moments. Think about it, if you are married- the wedding was probably considered a pretty big day! (Regardless of whether it cost a lot, or you had many guests). However, the years that follow the actual wedding day is what creates the marriage. Deep thought, huh? 💜💜💜

If you’re married or in a relationship, you build up a life of moments that add up. Dinner together. The houses you live in. The children you have, or the pets you welcome into your home. Maybe the sports you play together or board games you play?

You get the point. Hehe A common experience connects people. I’m learning more about that now. Especially in the past year.

When my mum passed away, my brother James was there with me. My husband and children were innocently sleeping, so it was just me and James and mum. My mum was very loved, and her 3 months of illness was shared with many of her loved ones. So I have some beautiful memories with my mum and those who loved her. Ultimately though, James and I are the only ones in the whole world that have that shared experience of saying goodbye to my mum in her final moments. Saying goodbye sounds kinda cozy and sweet…it wasn’t. Not for us, her children. I’m so grateful I had James with me- and I’m pretty sure he feels the same. In the middle of our heartache and grief, we shared a common experience. We can cry together. Thankfully, both of us can also laugh at the happier memories we share as a family. Especially the years of our weekly Sunday night “family night”. Board games and too much ice cream eaten! 😂😂🍦🍧🍨

Today I want to focus on how I’m working on creating good experiences and memories with my husband and my children. 😊 Bonding moments or simply experiences that will create a family life.

Most of you know that this year I am homeschooling two of my girls. The school aged ones. So our days and weeks are together: for better or worse! 😆 We are learning how to do life together.

I have done a few blogs on how my children and I are falling in love with reading books together. We are building memories with every book we read.

Sometimes, families can bond over a good movie or because of a mutual love of a T.V series. In our situation though, my kids tend to just get grumpy after screen time..or annoyed if we have anything that interupts the movie. “Shhh!! I can’t hear it!” “Can you turn it up??” “I can’t see it!!” Hehe So I definately don’t feel super connected or mushy after family movie time. Even a good documentary can lead to tears or tantrums. We are in a unique season!

What I’ve been suprised by lately, is how much my husband and I are enjoying reading together. During the school term we *try* (sometimes unsucessfully!) to put the T.V away in the shed. To stop everyone in our house from being destracted from watching too much T.V.

With no T.V to distract us, we have started to read books out loud to each other. Sounds corny, but I’m ok with corny.

We are also expecting baby #5, so the jokes about not having a T.V are funnier than ever!!!! 😂😂😂🤣😂😂🤰💑

This fortnight, Will and I have both discovered “A Bear Called Paddington”. You know, the classic children’s book? Initially, we were proof reading it for our girls. We have gone way past proof reading now! It’s possibly the highlight of our evenings. We love it! The language used is beautiful and the characters seem so real. Anyway, I warned Will that I have to return it to the library soon & he was determined that we would finish the book before the due date. Bless him! How cute is that???????

Reading is our current highlight in our family. We are building memories with each other, via books. And secretly, it is one activity that energises my heart!

We also make memories with every swimming lesson we go to faithfully. With our love for God. The worship songs we sing together or the Bible verses we have learnt as a family. Homeschooling has given us extra time to share moments and connect us in the epic journey of learning together as a family.

We connect as a family at Dinner time, when we each share our “high-lights and low-lights” of the day.

Even the boring things in life add up, if you do them together. Chores for the kids are always painful…probably more painful for me to ensure they are done. One day though, I know that my girls will be connected even more as they talk about the chores they took turns doing.

It’s often not glamous, pleasant or pretty. There are tears, fights and days when we neither want to read aloud together or face another day of homeschooling! Most days, I wish I could do all the chores myself, because it would be way quicker!!!! But come what may, we are trying to connect as a family. We are learning how to be humble and ask for forgiveness. We are creating a lifetime of memories, one day at a time.

What things do you do to connect with your loved ones? Are you a family who walks together? Travels together? Cook together? Hunt for hand sanitizer together? 😆

Remember, that even little moments can be special. Like my husband and I reading Paddington Bear together.

So go and create a moment or a memory with someone. A shared experience or shared life together can add another level of connection with those around you. And don’t be afraid to invite God into every moment and every detail, too. He cares about our hearts and our lives. And I’m forever grateful that God has given me a lifetime of memories with Him! (With many more memories to come!)

Thanks for reading. Thanks for joining with our family and coming along for the ride!

Love always Kelly xx

Refreshed and encouraged.

Hello, I’m Kelly. If you’re new here, welcome! If you’re one of my amazing friends….welcome back and- I’m so grateful to you! Seriously, the fact that you are reading my blogs- warms my heart!

This past week has been primarily good. Mostly due to the encouraging and refreshing books I’ve been reading. I have loved reading since I was young. However, for the past few years I’ve neglected my passion to read books. After a long day tending to my children, I’m drained and the craving to read seems to have evaporated. My evenings usually disappear before I know it. I look at the time….and know that if I don’t go to bed soon, I’ll suffer for it in the morning.

That was until I started homeschooling my two oldest girls. That was until I started to read good books again! Books that refresh me and encourage my heart. Books that make me feel like life is an adventure again! Some of the books I’ve been reading have actually been books I’ve read as part of our homeschooling curriculum. Who knew! Kids books, aimed at my 8 year old daughter could give me such joy? I’m not even embarrassed. There are some good stories out there! Sometimes I’m excited for the next reading session, purely for my own pleasure. (Shh! Don’t tell my kids!) 😆

This book was recommended in a vlog that I follow. The homeschooling mum is called Angela Braniff, and she is an incredible woman! Anyway, I proof read this book for my girls originally. After reading it, I decided that my girls are too young for it currently, but it was a great book for me!!😀😀

Then, the homeschooling books were needed. As in, the books that teach me how to provide my children with a happy, and interesting homeschooling experience. Well, that’s the goal. 😀 You get credit for trying, right?

This is one of my current books. It’s so good. It’s real and has good advice. I’m also listening to Sarah Mackenzie’s book called “Teaching from Rest”, as an audiobook. (😂😂 oh look- my nails need some desperate maintenance work!!!)

These books are so needed in my life right now! I need to read books that encourage homeschooling parents. Books that remind me to focus on what’s important. Especially books that remind me to invite God into our homeschooling journey. To pray for strength and patience. I definately need help and all the homeschooling wisdom I can get!

I just made up an expression: “Kelly cannot live on homeschooling books alone.” Lol

As much as I need homeschooling books, I also need books that I can read for what I refer to as “kicks and giggles”. Haha books that I can read for fun. Books that I can read because they are interesting. This week I was blessed by my dear friend Katy, with another book that uplifts my spirit!

Rosie Boom writes fantastic books! Her series ” The Barn Chronicles” got me hooked. She is a Christian author, and homeschooling mother of 6 children. I love her stories and adventurous spirit. I love her warmth. So, when Katy gave me this book (because she knew I’d love it so much!) I was so excited.

I enjoy Rosie Boom’s books because they are just great stories. They are well written, funny and capture my attention. When I pick up this book, it isn’t “homeschooling mum homework”, it is just for the joy of learning about her childhood and her family. I love it!

In this season of my life, I need all the encouragement I can get!

  1. I’m a homeschooling mum on my “L” plates.

2. I just lost my mum.

3. I’m a mother of 4, and currently 16 weeks pregnant with our 5th bubba.

4. Well, 2020 has definately been an unpredictable year for everyone in the world! I can’t wait to stop saying “covid19” or “Coronavirus”!

Having said that…I’m so blessed! I’ve enjoyed my many books that fill up my love tank. I am so thankful for the love of my friends and family. I am increasingly overwhelmed by my close friends who tell me that they have been praying for me! I am blessed beyond measure. Most of all, I am comforted by the love that God so freely gives me. I am refreshed each day by His mercies. Each day I am able to ask God for His strength and enough courage to face the day ahead.

I pray that this week you will feel encouraged and refreshed, too. I hope that you will find things that re-energize your heart. That you will feel loved and full of hope for the day ahead.

Love always Kelly xx

Sarah Mackenzie ‘s “Rule of 6” for homeschooling.

I just wanted to share something that encouraged my heart this week. It’s specifically a homeschooling thing, but if you are creative you could use this for any family.

This is from a group I am a member of. It is called “Read Aloud Revival”, by Sarah Mackenzie. I did this activity this week and I really liked how it gets you to create a vision for your homeschooling.

A great proverb from the Bible.

The activity was to ask yourself the question: “Imagine in 20 years, a friend of your child asks them what it was like to be homeschooled. How would you like them to respond?”

If you aren’t a homeschooling family, but have children, you could rephrase the question to something like: “In 20 years from now, if a friend asks your child what their upbringing was like, how would you like them to respond?”

The next question was: “One year from now, what do you hope your children will say was the highlight of their homeschooling year?

Again, you can rephrase this question to suit your own family- even if you have grown up children or are a single couple. Every family or individual needs a vision or dream. Something to work towards. 😊

From these answers, you create a “Rule of six”. 6 things you want to do throughout the year or week to help you focus on what is valuable to you. Here is mine:

As a homeschooling mum, I need a physical reminder to help me focus on the joy of motherhood. The joy of learning in various ways. Not just bookwork and worksheets, but life learning and character development. I want to value things like faith and courage. Hard work and laughter. There is more to life and home education than math and history. So I need to take a moment occasionally to remind myself of the joy of raising my little family.

Hopefully this may encourage you too. Love always kelly xx

Lylah Bear and Haven Praise xx

The end of a very full week!

With the setting of the sun, you say goodbye to the day.

It’s Friday! Woo hoo.😄 It has been a very full week.

As a parent, there really are no weekends or weekdays usually. 😆 Sleep-ins do not exist at this stage, and your children still require a constant flow of snacks to be provided. Parents are still on active duty as a referee: judging the arguements between siblings.

Can you relate? Have you raised little ones? I’m sure most of you can empathise, or at least giggle in agreement! Parenthood is a gift, but also not for the faint hearted. (Or should I say anyone who requires 8 hours sleep. 😆)

No- weekends do not really exist for parents of little ones. Especially if you are a parent who is home all week with your “darlings”. I’m not trying to say they aren’t darlings- but that is literally what my children call all children. It’s the sweetest thing, actually! My daughter Lylah started it in our home, and now it’s what we say when referring to any child. For example: “Mum, does that lady have any darlings?”(meaning: Does she have any children? 💜)

Anyway- I’m getting off topic!

Now that I am a homeschooling mum, I do actually look forward to the weekend! Homeschooling is finished for 2 whole days!!!!! 🎉🎉🎈🎈 woo hoo!

Technically, I could say as a homeschooling mum that the “learning never stops”. This is a true statement, however, I am not on active “teacher” mode. No bookwork required. Reading is for fun, not a requirement. And my husband is home!!!!!!!!! Backup is here!!! 😆😆😆

During the week, we begin each morning with these two books, plus a chapter from our children’s novel. 😊💜

This week has been a very mixed experience between joyful experiences and exhausting days! A few of the days I begged Will (my amazing husband) to pray for me to have enough strength to get through the day! Prayer is always a good place to start when homeschooling! 💕

This photo is a victory moment photo! It looks sweet, right? Facebook worthy, maybe? Everyday each of my girls must do their chore for the day. It is usually very painful! Encouraging them to do their chores to a satisfactory standard may lead to tears or tantrums. So this photo is my celebration photo. When my beautiful Lylah (aged 6) did it with a joyful heart! 💜

Lack of sleep was another challenge this week. Our 1.5 year old daughter Haven was waking up nearly hourly most nights. We have recently just transferred her into a cot (rather than next to me in the bed) and the poor little bubba experienced a few cold nights without my body heat to warm her. We had the heater on for her in our room, but she still seemed too cold. We finally hunted for a winter baby sleeping bag to keep her extra cozy during the night. So we are hoping that tonight we will all get enough sleep!

Side note: If the cheeky monkey hadn’t of kept ninja kicking me in the head each night, we could still be sleeping side by side till this day. No matter how much I love snuggling Haven, there is a limit to the number of times I can be physically attacked by my toddler during the night! 😂😂😂

We enjoyed making cookies as a family one night this week. Another sweet moment. You know, apart from protecting the cookies from being eaten during the whole process! 😂

It has been a full week. We enjoyed a few play dates with friends, and read lots of sweet books. We learnt perseverance, and did the requirements of the week. Even when it felt really hard.

So, it was a typical family week. Full of highlights and lowlights. The girls (well, my two oldest girls) began gymnastics. That was exciting. We got to go to mainly music! Mainly music is lots of fun for my girls, and refreshing for me!

The lowlights were mostly lack of sleep. Even my mum’s dog Rosie (who’s an old woman in doggy years!) Did whatever she could to prevent us sleeping at night! Snoring and making loud noises all night. 😣😣😣

And now, the week is over. It is time for bed. A new week will begin next week. And I will celebrate being 12 weeks pregnant in the middle of the week!

Each baby is a gift. Although our days our full, as the saying goes: so are our hearts! 😍😚

I pray that you will have a refreshing weekend, whether you are working or enjoying some time off of your normal duties.

I pray that if you are a parent, that you will enjoy a weekend spent together with your children. Whatever that looks like with your own little family.

love always kelly xx

Hidden perk of homeschooling.

This may be a silly thing to write a blog about, but I have discovered a hidden perk of homeschooling!!!! The perk is that it has re-awakened my love of books. 😊

Reading to my children helps them learn, but it also re-energizes me!

As I begun planning my homeschooling journey, I read lots of blogs and watched lots of homeschooling YouTube videos. If you search for homeschooling styles, Charlotte Mason comes up fairly quickly. I still don’t know much about her, however I did learn that she loved something called “Living books”. Basically, books that draw you in and engage the reader and teach you about various topics.

I didn’t think much about books, instead I was more naturally drawn to curriculum and workbooks. I like my girls to complete workbooks, and it is an easy way to feel like I have done a good job in making sure they know enough. The catch is- it robs me (& possibly them) of joy.

That’s when I experienced my first win: Sonlight curriculum. Someone recommended “Sonlight” to me. It is mostly a book based Christian homeschool company. You purchase the pack that suits your children and receive a box of books for the year. Our family fell in love with the rich variety of books and novels they provide for each age group. (Our girls use the age 5-7 pack currently) The books teach us about other times and places, and cause my girls to think and ask questions.

The bonus is that my 4 year old is also listening to these books, and enjoying our read aloud times together. It is a time efficient means of learning aswell, as both my girls are learning and loving books at the same time.

The thing is, I had lost the desire to read to my girls. The books I was reading to them were boring children’s books. Some weren’t boring exactly, but maybe lacked any real depth. I would finish the books with the same “meh” feeling as I would after watching an average children’s cartoon episode. You know, Peppa Pig is lots of fun- but not mentally stimulating or heart warming.

The next part of my falling in love with reading GOOD books to my children happened while following a homeschool mother on her YouTube channel. The books she highlighted seemed fascinating! “How did she discover that book?”, I often wondered? The stories she recommended were so interesting and engaging that I couldn’t wait to buy them for our family! I wanted more book recommendations! I wanted to share these books with my girls and see how they cultivated empathy and compassion for others. I felt excited about them learning from books for the first time. I was hooked!

This pic is of my husband reading to my girls. This makes me laugh as they are usually crowded in my lap, or on the couches. But for daddy- apparently he gets lots of space!!!! 😆😆😆

Having said all this, I was still telling myself that great quality curriculum was my emphasis. I have lots of good resources and materials, which continues to grow. My girls do daily maths and language arts and all those other parts that need to be fulfilled. We write letters and cook etc. Registered homeschooling families must be able to fulfil certain criteria, and evidence of our progress is important.

My darling 7 year old working on her math books…
Read aloud Revival: more reading fun.

Back to my reading passion! Over this past weekend, I discovered another encouraging resource called “Read- Aloud Revival”. One of my friends called Katy introduced me to a homeschooling book called “Teaching from Rest” by Sarah Mackenzie. Read Aloud Revival is Sarah Mackenzie’s website or business I guess.

I took the leap of faith and subscribed to the monthly payment to be a member and have full access to their membership. It has encouraging videos and homeschooling tips. There are lots of podcasts and interviews with authors and illustrators of suggested books. The best bit for me is the recommendations they provide for books to read to your kids. You are asked a few questions and what style of books you like, and the age ranges you are targeting/catering for- and then about 3 suggestions come up each time. The community forum they have is great too, as it’s a page full of homeschooling parents who can share what books their family has loved.

Anyway, all of this may not be relevant to you. 😂 But I think the world should know: “There are some great books to read to your children!!!” Great books that make me feel happy. Books that I look forward to reading to them. In fact, reading aloud to my girls, and providing books that they can read themselves is the highlight and hidden perk of my homeschooling so far!

This is a glimpse into the future- of what my house may look like one day! 😂😊😄😍

Even if we ever decide to stop homeschooling our children, reading interesting books to them will remain. I want my girls to say one day: “My childhood was filled with so many interesting books!” Or “I learnt to love reading because of the engaging books that we were read”.

Adults and children: There are so many hidden gems of books that have been written! Find them. Read them! Let books become the highlight of your day. 😉

Love always kelly xx

Commit everything to God.

Psalm 32:8 “The Lord says: I will guide you along the best pathway for your life, I will advise you and watch over you.”

I love how great God is. I love that His word gives me courage, and that He promises to guide me through my life.

Hello! Firstly, I want to welcome you. 😊 It has been forever since I’ve written any posts. At first, I guess I was busy. The world felt like it was shifting so much since the outbreak of Covid19/coronavirus.

Then after having such a long break from writing a blog, I guess I was waiting to have “something worth writing about” 😆.

And actually- I do have something to share!

We are now homeschooling.

I’ll let that sink in. 😄

I think I mentioned at some point earlier this year that I wanted to homeschool? The idea is terrifying, if I’m being honest.😆😊

I have 2 school aged children currently and a 4 year old who likes to learn Preschool (Kindy) things. 💜💜💜💜

However, I don’t want to let fear or sheer terror be the reason that I don’t try things in my life. I want to take leaps of faith and be able to tell others how God helped us do impossible things. The Bible says that God has not given me a spirit of fear: so fear isn’t going to be enough to hold me back!

For those who don’t know me personally, my name is Kelly. I have an incredible husband called William, and we celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary in February. We have been blessed with 4 daughters (aged from 7 years down to 1.5 years old) And……we recently found out we are expecting baby #5!!!!!!! Woo hoo! I am 10 weeks pregnant 😄 and extremely grateful for another gift to add to our family.

I guess the biggest struggle with wanting to homeschool my girls, is that it is easy to be filled with self doubt.

“HOW can I teach my children? I am not a qualified teacher!”

“What if I don’t educate them well enough, and they fall behind the national standards?”

“How can I juggle my role as a mother and a homeschool teacher?” And the thoughts and concerns go on and on….

If you are reading this, and have a corncern about homeschooling- I bet I’ve either thought it or been asked it.

Number 1 question: “What about socialisation?”

Don’t worry, Alice Springs feels like the capital of homeschooling.😊 My girls have lots of friends and opportunities to enjoy playdates and outings. This is not just an important aspect for their development, but for my wellbeing as a mother too. 😗

Here’s what gives me encouragement and hope in my homeschooling journey: that God’s grace is sufficient for me.

God isn’t just my saviour, He is called “The Good Shepherd”. He is MY shepherd. Psalm 23 is so comforting. The words “He leads me besides still waters”, “He restores my soul” and “He is with me” are like an anchor on the weary days. God will make me lie down in green pastures (we don’t have many green pastures in Alice Springs 😂😂😂) God will teach me and guide me, and hopefully put many homeschooling veterans in my life.

I am also so grateful for the women in my life who pray for me! I have some of the best friends in the world! I am overwhelmed by the love I feel when a friend sends me a message and tells me that they have been praying for me. Prayer is the BEST gift!

There is also a powerful Christian song that is popular right now called “The Blessing” . It reminds me over and over that God is with me, and He is for me. Homeschooling and parenting is hard, but I know that I am not on my own. In my own strength, I would potentially crumple under the pressure. With God leading me, I have the best support I could imagine.

Psalm 27:11 says: “Teach me how to live, O Lord. Lead me along the right path.”

I will not be overcome by my own insecurities or fears. I will trust in the Lord. He will help me.

So- I move forward! I pray that God will enable me to raise my children well, and for his glory. I pray that I will pay attention to where God is leading our family: each day and each season.

Above all, I give God my heart and my Praise. I give Him my “Yes” and ask him to help me overcome my fears and doubts.

Whatever you are going through in this time of your life, I pray that you will know God as your Saviour. I pray that you will experience the Peace of God. If you are weary and broken, that you will feel His comfort. I pray that you will trust in God to lead you each day. That you can commit everything you do to the Lord, trust Him and see how He can help you every step of the way!

Love always Kelly xx