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I have taken a small break from writing here lately to work on other projects. First off, I had an article due for Home School Enrichment. The article I submitted for the Jul/Aug issue is on choosing picture books and early readers for your child. This is a topic I receive numerous questions on, so I tried to help you “go fishing” at your local library and bargain bookstore. Let me know when it comes out if some of these ideas help.
As an aside, a great friend recently alerted me that Ruth Beechick reviewed my first article, “What to Teach Before You Begin Teaching. ” Her encouraging comments on rearing preschool-aged children were in the February 10 issue of TOS “Homeschool Minute” (scroll down to “It’s Just Common Sense”). I am so humbled and gratified by Dr. Beechick’s acknowledgement. And thank you so much, my dear friends, for your encouraging words! I never would have written this year if it weren’t for you.
Secondly, an interesting go-along with the article is a new online list of picture books and readers I am posting here. Sometimes we all enjoy a good book recommendation. I have benefitted greatly from gifts, lists, and suggestions mothers have passed along to me; I wanted to begin cataloging these in a usable format for my friends, too. This will be an ongoing project, as you continue to pass along your favorites and the Garfias family keeps reading, too. Be looking for the Book Lists to go public June 1st.
Thirdly, I began a Facebook group: Home Education. Here I will post my latest articles and links, as well as finds from around Facebook and the web. I thought most of my readers would enjoy a “one stop” place to chat, encourage one another, and catch up on news regarding rearing our children for Christ. Please join and invite your friends.
Finally, I wanted to leave you with a poem my children are memorizing this month. It is a favorite from my childhood, too. Here, the author reminds us of the far-reaching impact of what we do each day on the shape of tomorrow, the course of our lives, the glory of God, and the ease of our fellows. I hope you find it a blessing, too.
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Psalm of Life
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
TELL me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream ! —
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real ! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal ;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way ;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle !
Be a hero in the strife !
Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant !
Let the dead Past bury its dead !
Act,— act in the living Present !
Heart within, and God o’erhead !
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time ;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate ;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.