Tag Archives: dreams

Be Starting a Radical Sabbatical

Our Radical Sabbatical – Chapter Two

And it begins… THIS IS day one! Truly, we really started two months ago when we rode away from school.  We rode away from a structured school system with times and schedules that often aren’t in the best interest of our children.  We rode away from preconceived notions of a 9 to 5 daily life.  We also rode into a life of the unknown, a life of exploring, a life where every day of the week can be similar or wildly different.  A new and familiar way.

Finding our rhythm.

Exploring new places.

Learning about our boys.

Closer to nature.

Closer together.

Our radical sabbatical.

As we stepped away from school, the first step was to find a distributed learning school that would meet the needs of each of our boys.  I phoned and emailed many schools. There were some that would send you weekly assignments and others where you could decide exactly what you could do with no teacher direction.  There is even “unschooling” where you don’t follow any curriculum and don’t work with a teacher. We chose something in the middle, partnering with the school that I used to work for before becoming an ‘accidental entrepeneur’ with the nutritional company that changed my life and I chose to partner with.  I am a trained teacher, but I know where I want my focus to be: Coaching my people to their best life and supporting my boys. The teacher we have the privilege of working with was my vice principal when I worked with as a Homeschool teacher and is also a very good friend.  Once we decided on the school, the teacher and I created a student learning plan for each of the boys.  These are individualized plans where myself, Sexy Neck and each of our boys would sit together and talk about our goals, and what are the strengths and needs of each of them.  It was rich!

Sabbatical schooling.

Personal goals.

Individualised plans.

Rich conversations.

Dreaming big.

Keeping things simple.

One wants a Youtube channel.

Another wants to complete a standing back flip.

And our youngest just wants to play with Lego.

Every child will be heard.

Every one of our son’s will get opportunities to lead.

We will get the opportunity to learn.

More about our boys.

More about their ways.

More about what fires them up.

More about what slows them down.

Sabbatical schooling.

Once we created a plan around schooling, we knew the next step was to find renters for our home so that we could live in a smaller space, closer to Sexy Neck’s work without having to worry about being away from a house for long periods of time.  We knew we were ready to live in our two room 900 square foot ski condo.  Imagine a hotel with two adjoining rooms, one with beds and a bathroom and another room with a kitchen and hide-a-bed. Eh viola, you have exactly the picture of what we would be living in.   We divinely found renters for our home through an old friend who reached out and said, “Hey, do you know anyone who is looking to rent out their home, my daughters are coming to university?”  Oh ya, we do!  We have know these daughters since they were wee ones and we knew that they were the perfect fit for our home!

The right people.

The right timing.

The right place.

Everything falling into place.

Unfolding effortlessly.

Without worry.

Without stress.

Walking out our dreams.

With this radical sabbatical.

In this small space.

With big dream.

Our radical sabbatical.

Once we had the school chosen and the house rented, it was time to declutter and start planning. And oh the decluttering we did. Following Dave Ramsey’s sage financial advice, we proceeded to sell more than $1,000 in clothes, toys and even a bed we weren’t using. I went through every single storage box in the basement and every cupboard and closet in the house. It was freeing! Stuff entangles me! Lastly, I went through all of my teaching boxes and found the resources that I knew I wanted to use. Four boxes widdled down to two boxes of treasures that I knew would help my boys learn.

Simplicity.

Freedom.

From stuff.

From clutter.

From chaos around us.

Freeing.

Simple.

As our radical sabbatical begun, the only thing left to ponder and pray about was what would we do to start the first day of school! We decided that a 1766 kilometres round trip road trip was in order. We visited two very special cabins for two nights each and ended up stepping into the 1800’s in Barkerville for the first day of school.

Stagecoaches.

Gold panning.

Old fashioned candy.

Cowboy boots.

Large hats.

Heavy guns.

Singing in the street.

King House B & B.

Three happy boys starting this first day of school in grades three, five and seven.

The Radical Sabbatical has begun!

Boys living their best lives.

Happy Mama.

Smiling Dada.

Dreams do come true.

Hold your visions.

As I hold mine.

Dream again if you haven’t recently.

Tell a friend.

And ask them to hold yours.

Radical Sabbatical.

Ahhhhhhhhhhh!

Be Taking a Radical Sabbatical with us!

Our Radical Sabbatical – Chapter One

Imagine biking away from school on June 28th knowing that you would not be returning to that industrial looking school building and schedule for over a year?  Imagine being able to design your learning, travel the world and live at a ski hill with the foundational goal of skiing every single day of the ski season? Imagine moving into a nine hundred square foot home with five people and no dishwasher nor in suite laundry?

Imagine.

What would your radical sabbatical look like?

This imagining above is the reality we are creating and that I will be writing about during our radical sabbatical. Our family of five is riding our bikes away from grades two, four and six and walking into grades three, five and seven as homeschoolers living in a two room condominium, overlooking the ski hill.  With the addition of two trips, one month long trip to Europe and one two week vacation in the spring, you now have the big picture of what is going to unfold over the next twelve months and corresponding chapters of this book about our life yet to be written.   

Could you imagine?  

Would you ever step out, take a time out and shake up your reality to press pause on life? 

Stopping all activities except skiing and gymnastics.

Withdrawing from all volunteer positions on boards and activities in our community.Renting out our main house and only bringing the bare essentials into our small living space.

Inspired by the gift of grief given to us by my beautiful mama over five years ago.

Fanned by the gift of grief given to us this year by Sexy Neck’s mama, grandma, grandpa, my aunt and our Labrador, Summer.

Walked out first and foremost, by Joanne Kraft when her family took a year off from activities outside of school. Her book, “Just Too Busy: Taking your Family on a Radical Sabbatical”jumped off the library shelf last winter and cemented this idea in my mind.

Watered and lovingly supported by our friends who live our freedom and growth lifestyle.

Practically supported by our teacher friends and the school that we will work with to educate our boys over the next twelve months.

Divinely inspired by our Father in heaven who knows our hearts and allowed everything to seamlessly and truly effortlessly unfold.

Now, we create space for us to live in a nine hundred square feet condominium.

Building a learning space for three creative and hardworking eight, ten and twelve year old boys.

Building a triple bunk bed so that we have more space to play.

A radical sabbatical.

Twelve months to pause and change our routine.

New rhythm.

New schedule.

New space.

Finding our rhythm.

Our schedule.

Our space.

So, I sit here and ask again: What would a radical sabbatical look like for you? It doesn’t have to be as extreme as what we have done, but maybe it’s something as simple as eating dinner together every night or what Joanne Kraft did and taking a break from extracurricular activities. Whatever speaks to you as you share our journey with us, may it be meaningful to you and light up your life!

These are exciting times my friends. Truly exciting!

xoxo Joanna

#befree

#momofboys

#isalife

<Note: Joanna is currently seeking a publisher to partner with to publish her book as she helps people be free on their own journey as she shares her radical sabbatical with others.>

Be a Super Nova 

One more peruse of facebook as I lay my head down on the pillow.  

One scroll. 

One glimpse. 

With shock and awe I read this incredible comment from Jodi who has just finished my book.  She told me she had to share this quote as it reminded her of me: 

  
For any fellow human being to take the time to send me a quote, I am honoured. 

I have had three beautiful peeps forward “word love” my way this week! 

The greatest gift we can give each other is time.  

Time to shine light.  

Time to share inspiration. 

Time to share words. 

Time to be our sparkly star-shaped selves. 

Time to pray and sit holding space with each other. 

Time to embrace our ridiculous awesomeness. 

Time to shine like a freaking supernova. 

Love a duck! 

A supernova. 

Me? 

Gotta love the “facebook love” as you lay your head down to sleep. 

life, 

Be a Dream Car

I fell in love with a car!

Way back in 2001.

I had the great privilege to commute with an amazing group of human beings to a small outlying “VIlle” to teach.  I taught  thirty-three grade six and seven students and had a third of the school in my class, even though there were 6 teachers on staff.  The school was declining in size!  I was fortunate to learn many new things, fall in love with my students and the staff and find my dream car.

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Is it weird that I had never had a dream car before?

Is is strange that my dream was a van?

Perhaps, God knew about the brood of boys that were coming into our life six years later.

I have fallen in love with how he prepares me for “events” in my life.

Day by day.

Person by person.

Story by story.

In 2001, we commuted in a brand, spanking new 2001 grey Honda Odyssey.   On those 5:45am pick-ups, this vehicle was luxury.  With its captain seats and personal water bottles, I thought that I had it made! And that was how my dream was created.

One day.

Some how.

I would own a 2001 Honda Odyssey.

Ten years later, in 2011, we decided to look for a Honda Odyssey as we awaited the birth of our third and three car seats would not fit in the back of our current vehicle.

Enter stage left, a beautiful grey 2001 Honda Odyssey that we could pay cash for and enjoy every day until last Friday.

She decided to stop on the side of the highway.

Just like that!   She sat there for three days while we pondered and prayed and wandered and wondered.

A few friends sat together in our wonderings.

And we are so grateful!

This van taught me how to dream, about cars.

Now she is reminding me how to dream in others ways.

Perhaps our life is meant to be with one car?

I wonder what will happen in the next weeks so that we could pay cash for a new car?

I am excited.

I am leaning in with anticipation.

I am dreaming.

I am so grateful for this dream car!

 

Be Waiting not ONE single moment more…

16 weeks ago I begin a challenge.

The basics were take “before” photos, “after” photos, write an essay when you are done and put some products of your choice into your body using the business that I partner with.

My choice.

No other rules.

No checklists.

No counting.

Just me, my dreams, my goals and making daily choices.

I uploaded a quote from Ann Voskamp onto my phone:  

 I made a decision to move my body every day, except on rest days.  I ate in moderation and I used the scale and measurements to monitor my process.

Thank you to everyone who supported me, accepted my new “routines”, joined me on the journey and coached me along the way.  This is life changing stuff…

Pour into myself.

Pour out to others.

One relationship.

One day.

One beautiful imperfect life.

Me!

  How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. —Anne Frank

Be Keeping your EYE on your Dreams

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My heart and mind overflow with hope.

Dreams are energetic and flow through our family daily.

My vision for my life is unfolding before my eyes.

Can you see the excitement?

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(This photo was taken right after a friend shared a “freedom”moment with me!) 

Time + freedom.

Time with my boys and other people that I LOVE.

Freedom to be me.

I don’t know exactly how my dreams are going to “practically” workout, but I know that they will.

I am no longer practical.

I listen to my heart, God, people that love me, those that are doing what I would like to do.

If you see me wander by, give me a high five and know that I am just following my dreams!

Be Clickety Clacking with Vision

Clickety clack.

The pieces are all falling into place.

Snap.

Press.

Thunk.

The dreams of my mind are coming true in more ways than one right now.

Every day, I live in awe of how life events are unfolding, how my thoughts and reality are becoming woven together.

In the spring, I was thinking about a club that our family could join to create community for our boys, reinforce skills that we learn in our family that would be reinforced within this community as well as a place to have fun.  Only one week later, a friend invited us to a Paddle Centre where our family could pay a membership fee to go on Stand-Up Paddle boards, kayaks or surfskis and have our own beachfront property to use without the taxes.  A week after the open house, we were members and our family is experiencing a rich time of being a part of a caring and athletic community.

Click.

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At end of June, our family create a list of what we wanted to do together this summer.  It is only mid-July and we have done almost half of the things on our wishlist.  Everyone is tremendously happy and we are enjoying being together and everything we are doing: Skateboard park, waterslides, reading together, swim parties, birthday party…

Clack.

Last fall, I had hoped for a water feature with running water in our backyard.  This summer, every day, I enjoy our wonderful fish pond.

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Click clack.

One morning a while ago, I got up and had a thought that I would love it if my husband would dance with me.  Later that afternoon, my husband was fixing something in the bathroom, I went to take a look and wouldn’t you know it, but he grabbed me and started dancing.

Clickety clack.

Just like that.

Positive visions, thoughts, intentions, creating moments in life that inspire and encourage me.

Lastly, my eight year old, snapped a photo of me at the one place I spend early mornings and late evenings for the foreseeable future, teaching families online who school at home, connecting with people, reading and writing.   I am taking hold of my time and my vision.  The five rituals that I am creating in my life every day are: Connecting with Sexy Neck (my husband), cuddling my boys, reading, writing and exercising.

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Clickety Clack.

Just like that!!

I leave you with two quotes from one of my favourite motivation speakers, now deceased, Jim Rohn says:

  • “Failure is a few errors in judgment repeated every day.”
  • “Success is a few simple disciplines practiced every day.”

What dreams could you create with a few simple disciplines practiced every day?

With discipline and vision, dreams do come true every day. I am proof!

Be ‘Success’ful

I am not sure who to credit this photo or these words with, but I believe that this is the definition of success for me. I saw this on facebook and it struck a chord deep within me.  I heard a loud ‘gong’!

I believe I need to embrace all these words below the iceberg to be ‘Success’ful.


Hard work.

Risk.

Late nights.

Struggles.

Failures.

Persistence.

Action.

Discipline.

Courage.

Doubts.

Changes.

Criticisms.

Disappointments

Adversity.

Rejections.

Sacrifices.


For the first time in my life I am living outside my comfort zones EVERY DAY. I know my dreams and freedoms live OUTSIDE OF MY COMFORT ZONE.

Did you know I was afraid of horses?  My heart skipped a beat today as I lead this large animal with my son on his back.  I was afraid.  Did that stop me?

Absolutely not!

Success for my son.

Being ‘success’ful outside of my comfort zone.