My Grown-up Girl

Teaching English

That’s Emily in front of the dry erase board teaching students English! She loves teaching. Must have gotten that from her mama. wink

Moms, give your kids a hug. They won’t be leaving dirty fingerprints on your fridge or crying over math assignments for much longer. Before you know it, they will be all grown up and that page of messy handwriting that upset you today just won’t matter at all.

New Plans for Guesthollow

I finally know what I want to be when I grow up….

I’ve been homeschooling for a looooong time. I was homeschooling back when people still gave you weird looks when they found out your kid didn’t attend public school. I was homeschooling back when there was only a couple of catalogs to browse and Mary Pride’s Big Book of Home Learning was like a Bible. All this long time I’ve been focused on doing things for my kids. I’ve stayed at home the entire time and focused on them and their needs…diligently, passionately, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, every year, over and over again.

Always in the back of my mind there has been the question of what in the world I am going to do when I’m DONE. I still don’t have it all ironed out (I have 3 more years to go and being a parent never really truly ends), BUT I finally know what I want to be when I grow up. 😉
I want to be a writer, illustrator and curriculum maker.

I’d also like to find something my husband and I can do together…still working on that one, lol. Anyone have a job like that that makes lots of money and has good insurance, just let me know, lol!

Anyway, you do not know how good it feels to have in mind something more concrete and actually taking the steps to DO it. I’ve been scraping together Amazon gift cards from my birthday and Christmas and so on to save up for some of the tools I need. I was finally able to get the saved up for pièce de résistance – a tablet monitor you can draw directly on. Now I feel like a carpenter who finally has a hammer, lol.

I started my first project because I actually have a little time to work on it now that I am homeschooling one instead of three. I’m working on the first of a series of science books for children with homeschooled siblings as the main characters (the youngest is an adopted toddler). The books will be very visual and best suited for 2nd through 6th graders (but I learned a thing or two researching the first one myself, lol). They are going to be wholesome and also incorporate my faith, but not in a way that secular families can’t benefit or enjoy the books. I figure for those families (if they are interested) it will be like when we skip over stuff in many books that doesn’t mesh with our beliefs because the main content itself is worth it.

Each book will have a packet of juicy downloads to accompany it that will be sold on my website with a variety of resources for different learning styles. I’m thinking about things like handwriting booklets, comprehension questions, Greek & Latin root activities, language arts & math printables, crafts and maybe even printable playsets so kids can play with the characters and expand on the stories with their own imaginations. Everything will be tied to the books.

Once I’ve created enough of the books, I will probably make a FREE schedule for them (and other appropriate books & resources / activities) and offer it online like I do all of the other stuff currently on my website.

The books are going to be published in both a print and Kindle format.

Anyway, I’m enjoying working on all of this. It’s a lot of work and I don’t expect to make a lot of $, but I feel like I’m finally getting to be ME instead of MOM. Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom…but I love where this is taking me too.

Here’s a screenshot of one of the illustrations (which isn’t in it’s final format). The dog’s name is Beowulf. 🙂


Stay tuned to my blog for project updates! It will be awhile, but when I’m finished with the first book, there will be a free copy give-away for reviewers!

Site News

The big news is that I’ve moved from OurLosBanos to Guesthollow. I didn’t want Los Banos to be forever associated with my work and as the site became more and more popular, that’s just exactly what was happening! My husband bought me this domain name last year, but I’ve been too busy to make the switch. I was also trying to learn CSS so I could design this site the way I want to. I still haven’t finished my online class at on CSS and so I made the decision to move everything over with the old graphics and some Los Banos artifacts left on most of the pages. It’s going to take awhile to change everything, but for now it’s nice to move the site over to the new name and get started.

My main banner at the top is also not finished, but it will do for now. At some point, when I have lots more time, I’ll play around with it and make some changes. I’d like it to change depending on the season and time of day. I also want it to reflect the different parts of the site. That is so not happening right now though! LOL! And yeah…I know the links at the top don’t line up. That’s because there is another one that is going to be added in the future. 😉

In other news, I’ve received a lot of requests for a 2nd year to follow my current American history program. I had planned on using a different program in the future when we were due to hit American history again, but I decided I didn’t like all of the books when it finally came out. Because of that and because I’ve had so many moms ask me to pleeeeeeeeease make a 2nd year, I decided to go ahead and take the plunge. It will be offered for free like everything else here. I really see this as a ministry to other homeschooling moms. It’s slated for a fall release – hopefully in August or September. I’d like to personally thank a fellow homeschooling mom Kim for all her encouragement and enthusiasm. She’s the one who tipped the scales in favor of me working on the program!

Moving our site from

There won’t be much going on here for awhile because we are moving our entire homeschool section of to its own new and separate site!
I’m very excited about this, but it’s going to mean a LOT of work because I want to totally overhaul the graphics, etc.

I’ll continue to update my blog, but the rest of the site is going to be “frozen”.

I’ll post a few little tidbits of what’s going on from time to time so be sure and check back for updates.

In other news, we recently finished studying Switzerland and the Netherlands. Dad bought the kids some Swiss chocolate. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm….
Every week they are now asking me, “What are we going to eat this week for school?”.