Lessons from the Sixth Week

We lost somebody to cancer this week – an acquaintance from Romania, who was actually married to my sister’s sister-in-law. He suffered from a rare and aggressive form of cancer. Tragically, he went from diagnosis to death in three months. Only 52 years of age, he left behind his wife, now a widow at 49. An avid hiker, he loved nature and traveling in general.

Walker Sister's Cabin Sign

They loved this hike to the Walker Sisters’ Cabin.

When we hiked to the Walker Sisters’ Cabin for our weekly meet-up with the Wild and Free Great Smoky Mountains group, we thought of him. He loved mountains, hiking, and the great outdoors. A citizen of the world, he had traveled from Iceland to Japan and to many countries in between. May he rest in peace.

The lesson, my friends, stares us in the face: Carpe Diem. In other words, seize the day. Live like you were dying because, guess what? You are.

Girl peeking out of cabin

My daugher peeking out of the Walker Sisters’ Cabin

Do you have a secret dream or wish for your homeschool? Something that would require time and not so much money, but you are too afraid to get away from the books? Consider this your call to do it. Don’t put it off any longer.



As you know, children learn much by doing, by walking in nature, by experiencing a new location, by simply immersing in an activity. Worksheets and books do not an education constitute. I love to read to my kids and with my kids. And I love the comfort and security worksheets provide.

Boy peeking out of cabin

My son peeking out from the top floor

However, I have learned, in my seven years of homeschooling two very different learners, that field trips and time in nature teach the kids a lot of things. For instance, by visiting the Walker Sisters’ Cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, we learned about history, science, plus we exercised and produced vitamin D in the sunshine.

Last but not least, the second biggest lesson for the week was that I need “me” time, which makes me a better mom and teacher. I went to see the Downton Abbey movie on the 12th. It was lovely, though I enjoyed the side stories more than the main plot.

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