A Growing Time with Charlotte Mason is the latest in a series of calendar-journals from Sonya Shafer.
The cover, with its winding bluebell path through a spring wood, invites you to slow down, take time to think and contemplate, pause for a moment of rest and reflection. Inside the cover, after an overview page with a year-at-a-glance calendar and room for “Journal Notes,” are twelve tabbed sections, one for each month.
The first page for each month provides room for “Gentle Reminders,” prayer requests, and a list of books that you’re currently reading. Next comes a two-page month-at-a-glance calendar with major holidays noted. A two-page essay follows (more on these in a moment), and then the journal pages, with two pages devoted to each week, and a fairly generous space for each day’s recording. It’s perfect for briefly noting the day’s high points, or keep a record of prayer, or your children’s progress – or your own. Each week starts with a quotation from Charlotte Mason’s writings, reflecting the overarching theme of growth. A final blank page rounds out each month, and a few extra pages are added at the end of the year for general jottings.
Reading each of the twelve essays is a little like sitting down with a homeschooling mom for a quiet, encouraging talk. The author brings us into her confidence with personal anecdotes and musings that reflect a homeschooling mom’s hopes, experiences, and goals. The theme of this book is growth: ours, and our children’s. Sonya Shafer’s ponderings, mingled with Charlotte Mason’s words of wisdom, provide profound food for thought, encouraging and challenging by turns.
As well as a personal calendar-journal for one’s own use, A Growing Time would make a lovely gift.