Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Meet our West Coast Reps

Today we're introducing our new West Coast representatives. You can meet these ladies at the CFS Expo, CHEA Anaheim, the Great Homeschool Convention, and at CHEA Modesto.

Samantha Lam
Sam has written several entries for our blog (read them herehere, and here) exploring her homeschooling journey. She teaches her three boys at home and has used our curricula for two years and has been homeschooling for four years. Her sons Josh and Jordan are finishing 3rd grade and are about to turn 9. Josh has had some special needs including autism, ADHD, and dyslexia. Her youngest, Jacob, will be five this summer and has started his kindergarten curriculum. Of homeschooling she says, "I am grateful every day that I get to be with them and their teacher." She is passionate about education and had jumped into her role as a rep with both feet! She also helps lead children's ministry at her church and loves to read and quilt in her free time. Oh, and she's a great baker! 

She had this to say about the retreat:
Photo by Lisa Sulewski
"What a wonderful time we all had at our retreat just 3 weeks ago. It’s always a wonderful time to be able to sit and listen to one who has had more than 30 years’ experience homeschooling multiple types of children successfully. What a joy it is to be able to glean nuggets of experience from Rea, but also being able to spend the weekend in the company of other woman who not only homeschool, but have the same passion for the Charlotte Mason method of teaching. Although I have been homeschooling for four years and was fortunate enough to begin at the beginning with my boys, in kindergarten, we switched from a classical method to a Charlotte Mason method just two years ago, and I find there are still little areas of my educating that have been forgot to be attended to in a CM way. I get so easily entangled in colorful curriculum that looks “fun” that I forget to take a true minute to examine and see if the method really supports my new philosophy. But I guess that is part of growing a new philosophy, that it doesn’t happen overnight, and does take time to grow into my own personal philosophy of learning and teaching and living and being. I am so grateful for a few days to be able to ponder these and deeper thoughts, and also have tons of time to laugh and sing and play. What a wonderful weekend it was."

Karyn Chung
Karyn was born and raised in Los Angeles and has been married to her amazing husband for 14 years! They have two boys, Nathan (12) and Shane (8 1/2) who she calls her "warriors". During our weekend together I was struck with her passion for character education and formation in her sons. She loves discovering used bookstores and finding treasures there to read while sipping tea (often from one of the china tea cups she's collected). Her eye to detail and experience in interior design and event planning came through as she added sweet touches to our table at mealtimes. She enjoys gardening and time together with girlfriends laughing while they decide who gets the latest book find. Karyn is such a calm presence to be around and is a wealth of information on finding and sticking to the best educational methods for your family. Here are her reflections on the weekend:
How beautiful it was to spend a weekend surrounded by women who share the same desire to gift their children with a love for great books!  There’s something extraordinary in exchanging with another mom an experience we’ve had watching our children light up when they’ve read a story that prompts their minds to think about what they’ve read, and compare it to their own process of thinking or life choices.  What continually stands out the most from this weekend is, “there’s power in story”.  Over and over again, this theme rang through all of our conversations.  It’s this truth that inspired me the most, a truth I hope to instill in my two young warriors.  Thank you, Beautiful Feet Books, for your heart-felt desire to deposit something incredibly special into the lives of our family!    
Karyn also shared about her homeschooling experience on our blog and you can read that here.

Vanessa Hill
Vanessa and her husband are the founders of an amazing ministry that provides mentorship and support to fatherless boys. She also homeschools her nephew and daughter and has shared how homeschooling has brought her family closer together and forged connections and fostered love. You can read more about Vanessa's story here. Here are her thoughts on the retreat:
I had such a glorious, refreshing, and magical time with all of you. I am convinced that Beautiful Feet Books are not only the most fun and adventurous time of the day, but it’s our opportunity to bond and connect to each other and the human heart. I am so grateful that God has led me too this.  I loved hearing everyone share their stories over laughter, and delicious beautifully arranged meals. The Nicoise salad was just fabulous. Kathy’s passion and quiet yet fiery spirit about her convictions just brought delight to my soul. I along with her, am assured that I want to do every curriculum that is out there with my children or by myself if they are unable to. These amazing stories teach my children, along with myself, the essence of compassion, forgiveness, redemption, and that they too, are part of a great story. I will be shouting “Beautiful Feet” from the roof tops until I am old and gray. I have stumbled upon treasure and look forward to seeing how many more families are impacted. It’s so beautiful to witness the hearts being evoked through history and great stories through literature. I had such a memorable and warm time."
Lisa Sulewski

Lisa was first introduced on our blog here and I know many of you enjoyed looking at the pictures of her children's notebook work. She was born in Arizona but has called California home for the last 25 years, following her move here to help plant a church with 30 people. That church has grown to have hundreds of members and Lisa is still a part of it! She's been married to her renaissance man husband for 18 years and homeschools their daughter and son. She loves photography and is working on building her family photography business. She also has become an expert on the location of the best used bookstores throughout southern California! She is in love with books and has passed that love on to her children. Never one to be at a loss for words, Lisa had this to say about our weekend together:
Photo by Lisa Sulewski
I had the privilege and  most extreme pleasure in being able to participate in a marvelous and inspiring retreat with Beautiful Feet Book’s Rea Berg, Rebecca Manor, Josh Berg, and a group of passionate moms!  So lucky was I!! The Beautiful Feet Book’s family is zealous about passing on the legacy of history and literature!! It was an honor to learn from their intensity and grow and pass it on. I loved loved learning from Rea and her reinforcing that my ministry is influencing my children and what better way than through stories that lead to empathy. It is not about just mechanically reading a story but molding my children’s heart through them. Of course, this only happens with the best books and I am always and will be forever inspired by their desire to feed children’s minds and hearts with excellence. They are constantly trying to find new ways of doing this with their ideas of more literary guides of heroes for boys and girls. It was amazing to hear from Rebecca and her love and knowledge for history through her new Medieval guide. I am excited about my children learning from her! Their hearts to meet all of our needs was displayed through their teaching, hanging with family, food and fun! I am so grateful to learn from and pass on all that I have gotten from Beautiful Feet Books!!
All of these ladies are so inspiring and we're excited for our west coast customers to be able to meet them. Here's their schedule so far:

CFS Expo in Escondido, CA May 9-10.

CHEA in Anaheim, CA, May 29-31.

Great Homeschool Convention in Ontario, CA June 12-14. If you register through this link, a $5.00 donation will be made to the Patty Pollatos Fund.

Valley Home Educator Convention in Modesto, CA July 25-26th

We would love to hear what you think! Chime in below in the comments section and share your thoughts. Don't forget to check out our Facebook and Pinterest pages.  To learn more about Beautiful Feet Books, click here.
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1 comment:

  1. Loved hearing from all of you and seeing your lovely faces again! So excited about all the opportunities we'll have to work together this year!