Poem: Wonder and Admire

Okay, so I wrote another cento poem (collage poem) using Charlotte Mason’s book The Outdoor Life of Children as my source text. You’re all probably getting tired of this, aren’t you?


lilyCento (collage poem)

Source Text: The Outdoor Life of Children


Wonder and admire —

Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow,

from the ploughing of the land

to the getting of the crops.

By-and-by there is fruit.

Meadow and pasture,

clover, turnip, and corn field.

Some lovely flower or gracious tree,

the movement of branches,

shadows of boughs making patterns

on the white tablecloth.

Hum of bees.

Shines forth the blushing flower

to blossom —

to germinate —

to bear fruit —

Milkwort, eyebright, rest-harrow, lady’s bedstraw,

willow-herb, every wild flower.

Break off an elder twig in the spring

— describe the leaf

— the manner of flowering

— the dangling catkins

— rough or smooth leaves

— rough or smooth bark

Stare up into a tree or down into a flower

to see

the sublime

tender and living sculpture.

Poem: The Outdoor Life of Children

The Outdoor Life of ChildrenI’ve been playing around quite a bit lately with erasure and found poetry.  Today I constructed a cento (a collage poem) made from words/phrases found in The Outdoor Life of Children by Charlotte Mason (a British educator from the last century).


The Outdoor Life of Children

A child has a natural interest in living things

Some children are born naturalists

A very prophet of nature

Communing with the larger Mother

Unbounded interest and delight

Capering about in endless ecstasy.

Drop seeds of truth into the open soul of the child

Make full use of opportunities

Watching the ways of sparrows.

Infuse into them

A seed of sympathy

A love of investigation.

The sense of beauty comes from early contact with nature

A boudoir full of shells and fossils

Flowers and seaweeds

The movements of the bird, cloud, lamb, child

Unspeakable awe and delight

He is in bliss.

The sad child-life from which bees and birds and flowers are shut out.

Let him work with things

Not with signs

The things of Nature in their own places

Meadow and hedgerow

Woods and shore.

Cherish in each child

Their capacity of being pleased.

Children are storing up memories of a happy childhood

Every hour spent in the open air is clear gain.

Special Mother’s Day eBook Give-Away!

The ebook versions of three of my recently released (or re-released) books are FREE this week!  Tell your friends! :)


41rIlTMZdiLThe Original Simple Mom’s Idea Book

Hints and hacks for home and family.  The Original Simple Mom’s Idea Book contains tips and suggestions for everything from cooking, saving money, celebrating the holidays, and just generally raising a family. If you’ve been looking for some simple ideas for life and homemaking … from someone who’s been around the block more than once or twice … look no further. Have no fear, the Original Simple Mom is here!


BookCoverImageMix-n-Match Recipes

Creative ideas for today’s busy kitchens.  Do you remember that old children’s story, Stone Soup? Everyone came along and threw a little of this and a little of that into the pot with the stone, and before their eyes, the first unofficial Mix and Match soup was born! And remember how much they all loved it? Contributing something to the finished product goes a long way toward increasing a child’s enjoyment of their meal.

Just think of Mix-n-Match cooking as an art form all its own. This book will give you the general guidelines and starting points—you take it from there and see what tasty concoctions your kitchen has hiding in the dark recesses of its shelves and drawers. To get started using this book, you won’t need to run out to the store to stock up on hard to find ingredients. Just pick from what you already have on hand.  Save time, save money, and save your sanity!


51BlGAcUHnLA Twaddle-Free Education

An introduction to Charlotte Mason’s timeless educational ideas.  Are you disappointed with dumbed-down reading material (“twaddle”) written for children? Do you wish for your children to feast their hearts and minds on noble ideas, fine art, and great literature? Are you hoping your children gain an appreciation of nature and a deep understanding of natural sciences? Most importantly, do you want your children to develop a lifetime love of learning? If you answered “yes,” you may discover a Charlotte Mason-inspired twaddle-free education is just what you’ve been looking for. In the mid-1990’s, I set up one of the first Charlotte Mason homeschooling websites and edited The Charlotte Mason Monthly ezine. I currently edit The Charlotte Mason eMagazine.


Hurry!  These special Mother’s Day offers are only good through Thursday, May 14th.  After that the ebooks return to their regular price of $2.99.  Feel free to pass this information onto your friends.

Happy Mother’s Day!