I'm an AMI Montessori guide who was a stay at home mom with two children for 6 years and went back to work in the classroom in the fall of 2013. We all go to the same school daily and in a way I'm living my dream of being and working with my kids. This blog was started when I was at home and how we raise our kids, and incorporate the Montessori philosophy into our lives. It's heavy on gardening and cooking, but considering those are Practical Life activities, they are "essential to the development of the child".
There are 3 main aspects to this blog which are of great importance to me and how we live: Montessori, Gardening/ Cooking, and Nature. I combine gardening and cooking since to me, they relate to each other.
I prioritize Montessori since it is so much of my life. I was born into it. My mom was a Montessorian when she was 19, and has been teaching ever since on and off to stay home with each of us until we attended school alongside her. My youngest sister was fortunate to attend the Elementary program which is how I fell in love with Montessori. I watched and helped my mom when she took her Elementary training. I fell in love with the material and asked her questions about all the lessons. I spent hours as a child and then as a teen in her class packing, cleaning, and unpacking material year after year. I listened as she gave her students lessons and envied them for having my mom as a teacher, but also to have the opportunity to be in an Elementary program. I felt my education (as fantastic as it was in high school) was lacking the freedom that Montessori allowed. I was one of those children who could have benefited from being allowed to go at my own pace. I did not find flying through chapters and finishing exams on segments to be fulfilling. I guess I'm thankful we didn't have the pressure of "testing" as most children do now. I'm thankful that I have my training before I had children as it has guided me each step of the way. I also find common sense and culture, with a mix of frugality to have a significant part in our parenting. I'm also thankful that while I took my training, my husband sat in on our discussions, and took the Montessori course for parents with Dr. Silvana Montanaro even before we had children. This has enabled him to understand the philosophy and for us to approach our children's needs similarly. This blog is not about Montessori philosophy or a how to do, it is simply about what we do in our home and how it has shaped our family.
Gardening & Cooking:
I have always enjoyed cooking, even as a child. I thought I would one day attend culinary school, instead I chose the above so I would have more time with my family. So, when we moved into this house a few years ago, I wanted a garden. I felt it important that we grow our own food so we can have control of what goes into them and into our bodies. If you're going to cook good food, you need good ingredients. I also believe that children are disconnected from food (as this is now a growing movement), and providing them with everyday opportunities to learn about food and how to prepare it is vital. This blog is heavy on food, cooking, and gardening, and I can only share with you what I do. I do not speak for a movement or for a style. In many ways gardening is step out into nature and an opportunity in which children can connect in their own front/back yard.
In many ways, Nature incorporates the above two as well. Montessori was a huge proponent of children connecting to nature. I have always enjoyed being outdoors even before having children. Therefore, when we had ours, it wasn't a difficult transition to involve them. We have taken our children from a very early age on camping and hiking trips. We are not backpackers but hope to in the years to come. I would say that of all my passions this is the one that I believe runs deep in me. I'm thankful to Richard Louv's book Last Child in the Woods. With the movement it created, we have found friends who share similar passions and have found ways to connect our children with others, outdoors. I hope to share our experiences in nature and our outdoor adventures both good and bad.
In this blog, I can only share with you what I know and what I do. I can only speak of my experiences and how they influence me and my family. I am no authority or "expert" in any of these fields, instead these are merely passions which guide my life and that of my family. I hope to convey the sentiments of my heart more so than the intellect of the written word. I place great value in living life with my heart and raising my children this way. A family is from the heart and not the mind.
Thank you for reading and spending time in our humble online home!