Rising Tide

Dear Sisters,

I hope this post finds you feeling refreshed from a fabulous farmgirl filled summer and ready to tackle the back to school season.  I’ll admit, I’m in complete denial that school has already started (or is just about too) in most areas. After all, the BEST of summer weather is yet to come! Here on the shorelines that means clear blue skies, no humidity and the anticipation of stealing away for a few more boat rides on less crowded waters. There’s no turning back now. It’s time to trim the sails and head for more structured shores. I’m cruising into this school year on the incoming tide with high hopes for smooth sailing ahead! However, my nautical chart tells me that with two teens in high school ( one still home, the other in school ) the chances for some variable weather and high seas are almost certain in Cape Cod Bay. It’s bye-bye BEACH and back to school for this HOMESCHOOL marm. Land Ahoy!


 My always homeschooled baby girl is a freshmen in high school this year! She’ll be attending a local public Charter School. Today was open house for the high school grades. The school hosted a BBQ luncheon meet and great! She was quiet on the car ride there. I sensed that her nerves were trying to get the best of her but once we arrived and got settled in she recognized a few familiar faces. She began to relax a little and so did I. Whew! I always knew this day would come because my girl is always looking out for the next new discovery! That’s just ONE of many things I love about her. She’s ready to learn the ropes of being in school and excited to make new friends. I know she’ll meet the many challenges of having to be at the bus stop by 6:45 am, tackling two hours of nightly homework plus piano practice in true ‘ farmgirl fashion’. One thing is for certain. Her brother and I will miss being witness to her daily composing sessions around the ole’ homestead.

We were blessed to have so many’ life learning’ years together at home. Homeschooling was perfect for her when she was younger because like a lot of children she could dream up something to do with her hands in a flash! She bathed in the luxury of many FREE PLAY DAYS as she explored various creative mediums inside and out. Once she had set course on an idea she was good to go for hours and the outcome was usually quite remarkable. At least to my encouraging motherly eyes!

Here’s a peek at some of ‘ her ‘ handiwork from our homeschooling years!

Like all farmgirls, she loved finding things to do outside. She was in her fairy phase during this surge of creativity which included woodworking, stone work, nature crafts  and architecture. She made the bench with scrap wood, twigs and tree stumps.

What little girl doesn’t believe in fairies?

I know she believed the longest out of all of her friends. She made this flower fairy crown from thorny rose bush stems and creeping phlox flowers. I see why she didn’t wear it now! OUCH! I even ‘ fairied up’ a bedside table for her room which she all two quickly outgrew in exchange for a hip beach themed ‘ tween’ room complete with wall to wall Justin Bieber posters.

Nothing made her happier than to get lost in the outskirts of our backyard where she could get her hands dirty and have something to show for it!

When the weather became too cold (oh wait, there was that igloo she tried to build) for her to use the yard as her creative canvas a new wave of creativity would wash over her and she’d be up to her elbows in scrap paper, yarn, knitting needles, glitter glue, buttons, paint, pencils and whatever else she could find in the art supplies cabinet. Remember making dioramas in school for history or science class?


* Moms, don’t be too hasty in tossing out your back to school shoe boxes… They come in very handy when a creative wind blows through your house!


One day, she and I were talking about how fun it would be to have a workshop or art studio of our very own where we could create to our hearts content, make messes and just play! She went right to work and created this mock up in an afternoon (wood floors and all) as our inspiration room!

I love the little black buttons she used for wheels on the chairs but my favorite part of her design is the sign that set the tone for our dream creative space!

She and I eventually made that dream a reality ‘ down below ‘ in an unused part of our basement.

One of the first things we did was create an inspiration board! We included some of our drawings, magazine clippings and a color wheel just in case we decided to follow the ‘ how to use the color wheel rules ‘. Don’t worry, we didn’t! I painted the frame and hung a wire on the back then we pinned our drawings right to the wall!

While I got our supplies organized she and a friend painted stools for the studio!

Here’s the art table ready and waiting for someone to take the helm!

She made this box so people could slip her a note on the sly! ( obvi before texting came into our lives)

She’s still a force to be reckoned with when it comes to paper and a hot- glue gun! We’ve had many fun days in the studio together. That creative wave came and went leaving us both with some wonderful memories.

I moved on to feverishly painting furniture (and blogging ) and she took up knitting!  A friend showed her the basics and we picked up a book for more ideas. She made those cute little pocket purses as Christmas gifts one year.

And so it goes with my girl. She continues to hone her creative voice. Trying her hand at most anything. These days she’s learning guitar, writing music and lyrics. Is she the next Taylor Swift? Who knows? Will she take the world by storm? That’s uncertain too but she stole my heart the day she was born and she’ll always be my shining star.

One of her first original notated compositions:

As a teenager she’s bound to go off course, sail into uncharted waters and have to ride out some rough seas.  Most teenagers do. As for me? I’ll be on shore shining my light out to sea guiding her back to the safe harbor.

Look out RISING TIDE here she comes!

Go get em sis!!!

Until our next shoreline visit~

BEACH BLESSINGS and a smooth back to school entry to all my school marm sisters out there!

Lot’s of love,

Deb # 1199

P.S. To be continued: Join me next time for Live and Learn~ homeschooling the teen years.

  1. Joan says:

    Oh what wonderful times/memories y’all have and now a whole new life to make more. So proud of you doing the home schooling – it is a huge undertaking but you know how to do it correctly. My grandchildren have been back to school for 3 weeks now, which means I too am back to school – well 3 afternoons a week – that’s about all this ole lady can keep up with. My youngest is in 2nd grade – wheweee they are busy little people but the teacher – a nice young man is getting them rounded in – he really is a very good teacher in may ways. Again thanks for sharing – happy holiday.

    Hi Joan! Good Grammy you are for looking after your grandchildren. My mom did a lot of that for us too when our two were little! Enjoy and don’t let’m wear you out too bad! Happy Labor Day! xo Deb

  2. Teri says:

    Thanks for sharing your fabulous memories! How wonderful to have had so many years to watch Nicolette create along with you! I know she will blossom in high school, although it may be hard at first (for both of you!). You have certainly given her a phenomenal foundation to grow from, which is the most important thing!

    Much love from the West Coast! Cousin Teri

    Hi cousin Teri! Great to hear from you here! 🙂 Thanks so much for the kind words…and remember to keep those shoe boxes on hand! You never know what your kids are going to find fun to ‘ play with ‘! Lots of love from the east and hugs to all! Deb

  3. WOW Deb, I see the next Mary Jane in that cute young lady. We will all be clicking on her webpage to see what she has done new. I saw in Sheri’s blog where you are looking for a Shasta 61′, I will keep my eyes peeled and let you know. We are taking ours on its first trip in another week or so, out to the OBX. We were going to Boston but decided maybe not so far on the first trip. Will let you know how it goes. Be Blessed. neta

    Hi Neta,

    I think you might be right! Boston? If you ever travel that far north look us up… We are on the way! thanks for keeping your eyes peeled for me.  Happy trails and you know I want the full story when you get back ya hear? xo and blessings to you!


  4. Laura says:

    Thanks for sharing! Next Mary Jane, indeed! Such farmgirl creativity, I see lots of fulfillment and happiness in that for your daughter (and you!).
    It is inspiring for the rest of us too….

    You’re welcome Laura! My girl has been a great source of inspiration to me in so many ways…. She shines brightly for sure! 🙂 Glad you enjoyed and thanks so much for the note! xo Deb

  5. Shery says:

    What a blessed young lady. She’ll have the best of both worlds…having been properly and thoroughly prepared for the latter by you. I love the music composition page. She HAS TO have music in her soul … to be called to write what she hears inside :o) You’re a 10 on the momma scale and you’ll be blessed many times over in the future due to your investment in your children…and so will they.

    Such kind words my dear Shery…:) brought tear and a smile as I read them. It’s been the joy ride of all time to homeschool our kids for sure and a blessing beyond words really…She possitootly DOES have music in her soul…she sang before she talked!  thank for stopping by my friend! xo Deb

  6. donna robinette says:

    great story……..homeschool can be so wonderful..my g-daughter does the original stuff with nature..and she wasn’t even homeschooled..just artistic..my g-son is starting cyber school at home for 8th grade..looking forward to it..

    I love it…cyber school!!! Thanks for the note Donna!

    xo Deb

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