Instgram Has Interrupted This Blog

Have you all heard of Instagram?

You probably have. I tend to be a little slow about these things.


A friend actually introduced it to me a few years ago, but I just wasn’t interested in what I perceived to be another social media dark hole, where time and my brain are mashed into oblivion.

Recently, however  –  and interestingly, about the same time that the last post showing Chase’s mission call was put up – that very same friend who suggested I try Instagram back in 2010 said I should give it a second chance.

So I did.

And I am really enjoying it. I was wrong about my initial presumptions.

Instagram is not what I expected. I get to peer into the lives of beloved friends and family while also sharing what is happening here in a way that is – or at least feels as if it is – so very different from other social media platforms. So much so in fact, that everything I would have otherwise posted here on this blog, has been posted on Instagram over the last few months.

My Sister Kamsley and her amazing kids.


Some of my awesome cousins and my beautiful grandmother.


My boys!





While I don’t plan to shut down this blog, I’m just not sure what to do with it anymore since Instagram has come along.

So for now, if you have an Instagram account, feel free to check in with me there  http://instagram.com/shannongish  and see everything that I would have normally been posted here.

Maybe in the future, I’ll come back to Everythingish. Until then, thanks a ton for visiting here over the years.

Big Hugs.


The Land of Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu


Not only is that one of the longest city names in the world, but it is also located in the country where Chase will be spending the next two years as a full-time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Yep, his mission assignment came on Friday.

With friends and family gathered in at our home, on Skype, through phone conferencing and in spirit, Chase opened the letter he has been preparing for, hoping for and anticipating since he was younger than Gage.

Here are a few hints:

Still not sure where he is going?

Well I’ll let him tell you himself… Video of Chase opening his call (Thanks Soucy family for the video!)

A blog for staying up to date with Elder Chase Gish’s experiences will be up and running soon at http://elderchasegish.blogspot.com/.


Flag image found here

All Blacks Rugby Team found here

LDS Temple found here


Did I Mention We’re Homeschooling?


Yep. We made the leap to homeschooling Gage this year. Too long to explain why (dash me an email if you are really curious), but so far so great. 

We’ve been full throttle since the 26th of August. I am amazed at how much we can accomplish in a day with the one on one instruction.

Our daily schedule looks like this – roughly…

Gage wakes up between 7:45am or 8:00am and gets ready for the day. This is actually about the same time he would get up when he was at the elementary school.

“Classes” start at 8:30am: Piano, Seminary, Math, Spelling.

At around 10:30am we break for a snack outside.

We pick back up at 11:00 – ish with Reading Skills/Language Arts, Free Writing and DEAR time (Drop Everything And Read.)

Then we have recess & lunch - in that order (why not, right?) Together, they last about an hour. However, there are some days when Gage wants to end school early, so we shorten – or eliminate – recess for the day. Depends on his preference.

Afternoons: Science, Humanities and Piano (we start with piano and end with piano.) We’re typically done by 2:00pm each day.

The schedule is pretty much the same Monday – Thursday. Thursdays are test days for Spelling and Math.

Friday, however, is our favorite day of the week because we completely “unschool” that day.

We’re trying to come up with a catchy phrase for our fun filled Fridays. What do you think of these ideas?

Immersion Adventure,

Field Trip Friday, Or

Start a Rabbit Day. My friend Jacqueline, who home schooled one of her children for a few years, coined that rabbit phrase. It comes from the image of “starting a rabbit” and then following it as it zig-zags all over the place. On Fridays, Gage “starts” a question on any subject and then follows the answers to see where his curiosity leads. Cool, huh?

For our first Friday, Gage started the morning with questions about penguins and sharks– so, rather than just Google it, we went to the Aquarium.

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We ended up being way more interested in the seals and electric eels. 

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By the way, this is what he had for lunch that day.


A huge meatball sub from one of the venues at the Faneuil Hall Marketplace.

He ate





A week ago, we signed up for an activity with the Koviashuvik Local Living School (pronounced: Ko-Vee-AH-Shoo-Vick) at Broadturn Farm in Maine. Parents are asked to chaperone their kids during the entire day. They didn’t have to twist my arm.

Gage (and I) had a blast continuing construction on a wigwam that had been started the previous week. We also made fresh apple sauce over an open fire with logs which the kids chopped earlier.


We tossed in some elderberries we picked at the farm to give the applesauce a berry twist. imageimage 

So what did we do today?

Gage wanted to learn how to make soda. Chase mentioned we should check to see if family owned and operated Conner Bottling Works – the makers of Squamscot Soda (one of our favorite local drinks) – would let us visit their facility in order to watch how they make and bottle their homemade soda.

When I called, they were thrilled to have us come “study” their business and actually had a whole plan for us when we arrived.

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They crank out nearly 600 bottles a day on the same bottling machine the family purchased in 1930.


Did you know that CO2 - the carbonation fizzie stuff – leaks from aluminum and plastic cans more than twice as fast as it does from glass bottles? It’s True…

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…Tom – the main man at Squamscot – said that canned soda companies have to pump their drinks full of CO2 in order for their sodas to stay as bubbly as glass bottled ones.

We each got one fresh off the machine. Slainte!


So far, homeschooling has been incredible. Not sure we are going to continue beyond this year, but for now we are loving it.


If you are Interested in some of the curriculum we are using, here are a few links.

All in One Homeschooling.

Khan Academy

Home Spelling Words

LDS Seminary


ConGRADulations Chase

Exeter High School Class of 2013





We love you, Chase and are so proud of you!


Bracing My Heart…


…For Departures

A good friend has a family apartment in mid-town Manhattan and invited my clan and I, and the family of another BFF, to join her own sweet brood for the holiday.


I love NYC, but not a millioneth as much as I love this friend.


She and her family are moving to Chicago this very month. My throat gets a little balled up each time I think about it and even now as I type these words.

Bracing for their departure.

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So grateful for the time together in her “fortress of solitude.”



…With Creativity and Art. Workshop with J. Kirk Richards

The creative vibe from artists is fuel for my heart. Bracing me up, nourishing me and inspiring me to stretch, reach and push against the outer limits of my comfort zone.

Though I am remedial among these renowned people I get to call friends, everything about this workshop was worth a thousand words. 

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Thank you to Leslie and Julia for organizing it. And Kirk for coming to New England to be with us.


…For June 6th.

This Thursday will mark one year since my father passed away.

Letting loose the flood gates.

I miss him every day.

Unformed Memories

March 24, 2012 by James McGurrin

Many sweet memories
That I cling to, formed
As the songs were sung

Company for my golden years
Preserved with care
They’re all that’ll be left to me

My time is brief and they say
I’ll leave this substantial plane
Go to where the spirits dwell

Future memories for family here
Will continue recording songs that
For me remain unsung

They’ll think of me in reflection
How I would have loved the scene
That stupid joke would make me laugh

And how i will miss being right there
In the moments that are yet to be
But i won’t be entirely absent the scene

And in some new way as the event unfolds
we’re together again, just not as close
We’ll sigh at the change but gradually accept

The piece of each other we embedded within
Lets the song somehow be shared in a virtual way
A memory to form, get stored away, we recall it together
and in its replay it’s as though I was there, that day


The Parting Glass

Fill to me the parting glass
And drink a health whate’er befalls
And gently rise and softly call
Good night and joy be to you all


Love you, Dad.


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