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Great Reads for a Slow Down Summer

Every year I let my family and friends know that I am going to slow down. Usually this is met with disbelief and hearty chuckles. I understand: I have good intentions, but I seldom follow through to truly slow down my cram-packed schedule. As a work-at-home, homeschooling mom, I seem to fill each day full to the brim with more tasks and activities than can be completed in an average day. I often forget to leave room for margin. Yet this year is different; I want to enjoy a slow down summer.

Savor Slow Down Summer

Our youngest daughter is turning twelve in July. How did the early childhood years pass so quickly? They did just fly right on by. I can’t help but feel the sting of regret for the many times I was so caught up in my busyness that I didn’t truly relish the days of togetherness.

Be still, and know that I am God. –Psalm 46:10

God woos us to be still. I am seldom still. It is difficult for me to slow down. Even when I rest my body, my mind is always running through my to-do lists, responsibilities, and plans. I am frequently distracted. I am painfully aware that I am missing moments in life that I can never get back.

The Lord is working on overhauling my heart and life. He is beckoning me to savor a slow down summer.

I am learning to slow down my pace. I am endeavoring to keep my family time protected, to work within boundaries, and to be fully present when I am with my loved ones. My smartphone, which is a continual distraction, sits unattended on my desk for a greater portion of the day. I am reading several books on intentionality and cherishing life. Each one has nurtured my soul in a unique way and encouraged me to slow down and relish life.

Are you looking for a few good reads that will help recharge your batteries? Here are a few that I am enjoying this summer.

Margin, Richard Swenson

Do you struggle with overload, over-commitment, or burnout in your life or homeschool? It may be that you do not have enough margin built in your days. Swenson addresses emotional energy, physical energy, time, and finances and presents a strong case for solving the stress epidemic by living life with margin.

The Mission of Motherhood, Sally Clarkson

In my sixteen-year journey of homeschooling, I have read many of Sally’s books, and they have inspired me as a wife, mother, and child of God. The Mission of Motherhood is an excellent read to refresh your vision as a mother. She exudes joy and warmth on every page. Sally eloquently unfolds God’s design for motherhood and invites mothers to gain a vision for this sacred calling.

Desperate, Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson

This book is a must-read for weary mothers everywhere. If you know what it feels to be bone-tired and desperate for the Lord’s Spirit to sustain you, this book is a balm of blessing that tackles the honest questions and challenges of motherhood.

Hands Free Mama, Rachel Macy Stafford

Life is filled with competing distractions. Hands Free Mama is a gentle (and challenging) reminder to embrace meaningful moments with family and friends while minimizing frenzied living.

Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World, Tsh Oxenrider

Travel around the world with Tsh’s family as they embrace slow living and intentionality. Tsh discusses topics in her memoir such as food, education, work, travel, entertainment, and family life. It is an inspiring reminder to cherish a simpler way of life.

Beyond Survival, Diana Waring

Diana has a way of infusing joy and humor into every aspect of life! This book is a practical and engaging guidebook for thriving in the homeschooling lifestyle.  Diana is an artistic soul that writes with a creative passion for learning. This is one of those books you can revisit each year to get geared up for a new season of homeschooling.

Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakeable Peace, Sarah Mackenzie

This short little e-book has a powerful message to deliver of resting in the Lord in all aspects of homeschooling. Sarah’s book is applicable to both brand-new and veteran homeschoolers alike.

What good books are you reading this summer? Please share the titles and authors in the comments so the rest of us can consider reading them! How are you savoring a slow down summer? We would love to hear your suggestions and ideas.

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  1. Excited to read these slow-down books! I know we can easily get frazzled and overwhelmed with all we are involved with (1 public school junior, two twin autistic homeschoolers)! Thanks for the recommendations

  2. Always fun to read a new idea list of books! These sounds like wisdom filled volumes, with reminders I need! I read Margin years ago and it was so freeing, I need to revisit it.

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