Celebrating Every Day

School Days

On Michaelmas, we started a fresh school year.  We started off slowly and have now fallen into a nice rhythm again.  It has been a welcome occupation for everyone.  In slackening off out of consideration of our two Bulgarians, we lost our direction, became rudderless.  In the end, the lack of routine wasn’t actually doing any good for the two we were trying to help.  Live and learn, I suppose. 

The night before, we prepared first day of school gifts and laid them out so that the children would find them in their places in the morning.  We filled some silver lunchboxes with school supplies and a couple of treats.

After breakfast, Brian gave a blessing for our school year, as he always does.  How lovely it is to have a resident deacon!

It was a bit disappointing to have to use the dining room as our learning space again this year,  It makes it so much more difficult to be ready to welcome guests.  Ah, well…  It’s authentically us, right where we are today.  Come on in anyway.

We start each day with the daily readings from the Mass and incense, then right on to our main lesson.  After twenty years of homeschooling, I have abandoned clever ‘circle time’ poems and embraced a style of gathering that is more in-keeping with our faith.  It has freed me, and relieved my anxiety. 

And this year, I think that I have finally settled into a (self-designed) curriculum that will see us through the next 15 years or so.  It was conceived in such a way that I can teach all of my kids, regardless of developmental level, using largely the same material and at the same time.  It is a huge time and sanity saver.  I’ll spend the next three years putting it to paper as we go, and then, perhaps, I’ll share it.

More than anything, I cherish watching my children work together, help each other, love each other.  What a magnificent gift to be the mother of so many. 

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois


 How is your school year going?


Our family is growing again!  This time to include a new son.  Our oldest daughter is engaged to be married to a wonderful young man whom we have known for many years.  We are so blessed to be granted the grace of watching them plan a holy marriage together.  We hope that it will also be one blessed with strength and joy.

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa Gadbois

©Nissa GadboisBrian blesses the newly engaged couple.

A Sprig with its Flower

In the dooryard fronting an old farm-house near the white-wash’d palings, Stands the lilac-bush tall-growing with heart-shaped leaves of rich green, with many a pointed blossom rising delicate, with the perfume strong I love, With every leaf a miracle – and from this bush in the dooryard, With delicate-color’d blossoms and heart-shaped leaves of rich green, A sprig with its flower I break. – Walt Whitman
Watercolour Lilacs | ©Nissa Gadbois
I have always loved lilacs.  I lament that they don’t last longer.  But perhaps if they did, they wouldn’t be so precious. 

Please see the fundraiser in our sidebar, and contribute if you are able.  If you click through, you can share our fundraising campaign with your friends and family, too.  We have been surprised by gifts from people we don’t know – such a blessing to bring strangers together for a common cause.

Reach for the Stars

We sit in the mud… and reach for the stars. – Ivan Turgenev
mud pies
In the hands of a child, ordinary dirt and water become a fantastical bakery for royalty, or for fairies, or to feed the poor and hungry.  Or all of those all at once.  Would that we adults could remember.  And dream dreams, imagine worlds, that are improbable but not impossible.  Oh, the wonders we could work.

Happy. Holy. Home.


“Like happiness, holiness is always tied to little gestures. These little gestures are those we learn at home, in the family; they get lost amid all the other things we do, yet they do make each day different. They are the quiet things done by mothers and grandmothers, by fathers and grandfathers, by children, by siblings. They are little signs of tenderness, affection and compassion. Like the warm supper we look forward to at night, the early lunch awaiting someone who gets up early to go to work. Homely gestures. Like a blessing before we go to bed, or a hug after we return from a hard day’s work. “ – Pope Francis








%d bloggers like this: