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New Posts! Milwaukee LifeWays
 "Embrace the Hand that Feeds You" 
By Jeremy Bucher
"FREE to be ME!" 
By Jennifer Sullivan

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Additional Resources 
on our topic
pie making
Baking with Toddlers
blog by Faith Collins

"This is the Way We Wash A Day"
Song book and CD by Mary Schunemann

Two Tall Trees
LifeWays-inspired products.
Closing SALE!

"How Kids Benefit from Chores"

blog by Laura Grace Weldon

blog by Natural Parents Network

Autumn Verses

"We must eradicate from the soul all fear and terror of what comes to meet us from the future.  We must look forward with absolute equanimity to whatever comes and we must think only that whatever comes is given us by a world direction full of wisdom; it is part of what we must learn in this age, namely to act out of pure trust in the ever-present help of spiritual worlds.  Truly, nothing else will do if our courage is not to fail us.  Let us discipline our will and let us seek the awakening from within ourselves, every morning and every evening."  

~ Rudolf Steiner


"Brave and true will I be, Each good deed sets me free, Each kind word makes me strong, I will fight for the right and conquer the wrong."


~ Apples & Stars ~
Take and apple round and red, Don't slice down Slice through instead. Right inside it you will see, A star as pretty as can be. 
A special star for you 
and me!

A Treat for you!
Everyone loves pumpkin spice everything this time of year. But it's not always the best for you. So here's a "better for you" version of your favorite treat!



1 cup strong brewed coffee or espresso
1 cup half & half
1/4 cup pureed pumpkin
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp all spice
1 dash of nutmeg

-Whipped cream


Steam your milk/pumpkin/spices in a small saucepan leaving coffee or espresso out.
Whisk until frothy.
Add coffee or espresso. (makes 2 cups or 1 big I deserve it cup)
Top with whipped cream and add a few nutmeg or cinnamon sprinkles.



lantern walk

This newsletter theme is one of my favorites. I am just finishing three months of living with my eldest son and daughter-in-law to help with the care of my granddaughter while her mommy went back to work part-time. It has been such a healthy reminder to me of how differently daily life unfolds when living with small children. It reminded me how simplicity in living is a gift to everyone, not just the child, but the adults as well.  


It has also brought back memories of myself as a young mother and how, in the midst of what could be chaos at times, it was the care and tending of the home that provided an anchor and sense of well-being. Even back then I had a daily/weekly task list that gently held my hand and reminded me of what came next when I was too tired to think. Somehow having that list helped to make room for spontaneity and emotional reality.  Both joy and sadness were given space in my mind because my "list" held the practical necessities of life for me. Whether in turmoil or in glee, it would quietly remind me, "Do this now and life will continue to function."


As you will read in the articles below, the beauty of it all is that in doing our meaningful work we are surrounding the children in our care with a rich content out of which to play themselves into their growing bodies. Perhaps it is the one clear life situation where doing what needs to be done in one arena also serves the purpose of doing what needs to be done in a completely different arena.  

Cleaning, caring, tending and offering loving focused attention to our life tasks provides the marvelous side effect of providing our growing children with what they need as well, a life worthy of playful imitation.  


Perhaps we need to do a fund raiser where we could buy multiple billboards (artistic ones, of course) in every city stating "Life itself is the enrichment program for your children!" Imagine what it would be like if, instead of investing multiple hundreds of dollars every year in enrichment classes for little ones, we purchased really good household tools that lifted daily tasks into joyfully anticipated experiences! How well I remember the first time I sliced vegetables with a truly sharp knife! Or perhaps you remember when you purchased a vacuum cleaner that really got the job done!  When the tools of the task support the task doer, life is good! When our children see us doing our work with delight, their lives are truly enriched.


May you be inspired by the newsletter stories.  Many thanks to all who contributed.


Blessings on your work and play,


Cynthia Aldinger is Founder and Director of

LifeWays North America 

Doing our Good Work:
Including Children in our Everyday Tasks

Lydia doing her "good work" by folding the laundry at school.

"Homemaking is surely in reality the most important work in the world. What do ships, railways, mines, cars, government, etc. exist for except that people may be fed, warmed, and safe in their own homes? The homemaker's job is one for which all others exist." 
- C.S. Lewis

Greetings everyone! 
Our topic of exploration in this edition is "Doing our Good Work: Including Children in Everyday Tasks." Does that sound impossible? Challenging? It certainly can be--but also rewarding! We've included some truly wonderful articles in this newsletter about the importance of doing adult tasks around children and some great tips on how to get them (and also keep them) engaged. I hope you find inspiration in them!

Blessings on your day!
Amy Gerassimoff, Editor 
 Life Work with a

 by Cynthia Aldinger, 

 Director of LifeWays

 North America 

"Did you hear that?" my daughter-in-law and I queried one another. "It sounds like she is saying 'Thank you.'" Such are the fantasies of a mommy and gramma of a newly-one-year-old.   But hey! It might actually be true. Maybe my one-year-old granddaughter's first words were "thank you," translated something like "da do." That would be pretty cool, considering that gratitude is the moral quality we hope to awaken in the young child.


And how do we do that? By dunking them daily into a pool of delightful life-rhythmical, simple, artful, practical, levity-lifted life. These fresh-from-heaven folk come to us with their own bucket list for their three stages of childhood. According to the tenants of Waldorf education, when they are little, they unconsciously expect a life filled with goodness.    

Read More  


Real Work for a Healthy Will

by Rachel Baier, Cottontail Nursery School


The willful child can be a handful, right? Sometimes I have to take a deep breath and remind myself that it's wonderful that my toddler has "spirit." Of course we don't want our children to be passive, timid, or without at least some spark of independence. But yes, the "spirited" two-year-old can wear even a very patient parent or teacher down after awhile.  


I've been practicing a strategy for working with the feistier children in my home and preschool program that I'm hoping to share with other nurturers. You're probably doing it already, but this is a reminder of how valuable including children in work can be. Instead of viewing willfulness and other challenging behaviors as a problem, we can direct a child's energy into real, productive work for a positive sense of self and a foundation of respect...

Read More  


Pitching In: 
Toddler Helping with Household Tasks
by Faith Collins,

The first time I taught my Tele-Class, Joyful Days with Toddlers and Pre- schoolers, I spent the first call talking about all of the benefits of involving children in household tasks, inspired by my own experiences working with children in my LifeWays program.  I fired up everyone with enthusiasm, and sent them off with the assignment to invite their children to participate.   



The next week they all called in again, and I asked everyone how it had gone.  There was a long silence, and then one mom bravely shared, "Faith, I loved the idea, but when I tried to sweep with my toddler he spent the whole time sweeping apart the piles that I made.  It didn't work at all."  Another woman chimed in, "Yeah, I tried to wash dishes with my three-year-old, but while we were doing it the baby woke up.  I got her as quickly as I could, but when I came back there was water and soap everywhere."  One by one, they shared how their efforts had gone awry, from children throwing laundry wildly around the living room, to not being interested in helping at all (the woman with the wild laundry throwers declared her experience a success, because at least her kids weren't fighting while they did it). Read more.


Practical Activities with the Young Child 
by Stephen Spitalny, Chamakanda 

The task of the kindergarten teacher is to adjust the work taken from daily life so that it becomes suitable for the children's play activities. The whole point...is to give young children the opportunity to imitate life in a simple and wholesome way.
-Rudolf Steiner, April 1923

Imitation is the natural learning mode for the young child. Rudolf Steiner described it as a sort of bodily religion arising from a sense of joy and wonder with all experiences and sensation. The young child, so recently arrived into a physical body from the spiritual world, loves all he or she meets in the world. The adult, caregiver, kindergarten teacher, parent, etc...has therefore a huge responsibility since the child is molding itself out of its experiences, out of what and who is imitated.....   Read more.

Related Titles and New Releases from the LifeWays Online Store
CD or Download of a Workshop by Cynthia Aldinger


What young children really need can be provided through the Living Arts-domestic activity, nurturing care, creative exploration and social ability. Learn how the LifeWays approach takes home as the model and life as the curriculum to transform your experience with young children.


Audio Recording (CD or MP3), $12.50

Learn more.  



"Joyful Days with Toddlers and Preschoolers: Using Life as the Curriculum"  

DVD by Faith Collins


This delightful and informative DVD by Faith Collins can transform your life with young children, whether as a parent, childcare provider or early childhood teacher.  Faith points out that activities of everyday life-what LifeWays calls "The Living Arts"-have the advantage that we don't have to manufacture them.  They happen all the time!


Video (DVD or Download), $14.95

Learn more. 


New Book Release, Spanish Translation


This book is free as a download in Spanish, made available to LifeWays from the Research Institute for Waldorf Education and the Online Waldorf Library.  Click to  learn more.  



Una Segunda Casa (Spanish Edition of Home Away from Home By Cynthia Aldinger and Mary O'Connell) 




Una Segunda Casa (Edición en español de LifeWays:  Un Hogar Fuera de Casa. LifeWays Cuidado de Niños y Familias)

Un enfoque innovador, pero refrescantemente simple y sano para cuidado infantil basado en Steiner, escrito por dos especialistas en el campo. El enfoque LifeWays se centra en cálido y cariñosa relaciones entre niños y los adultos que cuidan de ellos... algo tan esencial pero gravemente en riesgo en la guardería moderna. Este libro es recomendable para todo aquel que vive y trabaja con niños pequeños, especialmente proveedores de cuidado infantil o aquellos considerando abrir su propio negocio de cuidado de niños.

Este libro es gratis gracias a una donación generosa para la traducción hecha a LifeWays por el Research Institute for Waldorf Education y el Online Waldorf Library.  Haga clic para DESCARGAR. 


LifeWays Training Courses

We have new trainings starting in 2015 in Colorado, Pennsylvania, California (Sierra Foothills, Oceanside, and SF Bay Area), Alaska, Wisconsin, Oregon, and Texas!
  • Are you interested in a natural, holistic approach to child care?  
  • Are you looking for innovative, groundbreaking ideas on how to care for children-your own or others? 
  • Do you want to create your own home-based preschool or a parent education program? 
  • Are you seeking personal growth through artistic expression, music, handcrafting and meaningful practical skills? 
COME TO LIFEWAYS! Trainings meet part-time over the course of a year, supplemented by independent study and work with a mentor between sessions to help you gain:
  • A comprehensive understanding of the developing human being
  • A deepening experience of personal growth
  • Guidance in establishing a successful program
  • A sense of being grounded in practical, artistic, and nurturing skills
The LifeWays training is based on the human development research of Rudolf Steiner (founder of Waldorf education) and contemporary researchers. It is designed to engage you as a whole person, not only intellectually. It is a very hands-on approach that will refresh and rejuvenate you. Put joy back into the center of your work and parenting!

Chinyelu Kunz, Student Services Director
610-933-3635 X109

Faith Collins, Student Services Director
Learn more or request an information packet!

Anchorage, AK
May 2015 - June 2016
Lori Berrigan, Student Services Director
Email Lori or call her at 907-315-4030.

 Learn more or request an information packet!

Oceanside, CA,
July 2015-July 2016
Bianca Lara, Student Services Director. Email Bianca or call her at 760-525-8569.
Learn more  or request an information packet!

Sierra Foothills, CA (Applegate, near Sacto)
July 2015-July 2016
Marianne Alsop, Director
Email Marianne or call her at
Learn more  or request an
information packet!

Portland, OR 
July 2015-June 2016
Anne Kollender, Student Services
Director.  Email Anne at

Learn more or request an information packet! 

Milwaukee, WI 
Oct 2015-Aug 2016 
Mary O'Connell, Director
Email Mary or call her at
(414) 218-8558

 Learn more or request an
information packet!

Boulder Training
Austin, TX 
October 2015-Oct 2016 

Kelli Hoisington, Student Services Director
Email Kelli or call her at

Learn more or request an

LifeWays offers a variety of Workshops 
for parents and professionals, on topics such as Storytelling and Puppetry, Nurturing and Nourishing, and Parenting Seminars. 


Suzanne Down

Portland, OR 

October 28 - 30, 2014

For information & registration contact:

Mary O'Connell, 414-218-8558 




In this hands-on course, you'll learn how to care for your family at home with natural home health care techniques, such as wraps, poultices, massages, and inhalations for common childhood illnesses and fevers.


Asheville, NC 

November 10 - 11, 2014, 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

For information & registration contact:

Ashley Masters, 828-989-9189 


Click here for details.  




Cynthia and Child NEW!



with Cynthia Aldinger

Founder and Director of LifeWays North America


Friday evening, January 9, 2015

and Saturday, January 10


At Good Earth Day School in the Cedar Park area of Austin, Texas


Check the website as information is posted or contact

Kelli Hoisington to be sent more information. 

LifeWays News  


From Graduates:


Faith Collins, founder of Joyful Toddlers! and Student Services Director for the next LifeWays training in Boulder, is again offering her popular teleclasses, "Joyful Days with Toddlers and Pre-
  The series of six weekly sessions just started October 19th, and will start again in the new year.  It's packed full of information and inspiration, including live conference calls, video footage of Faith with the children, readings, clips of her favorite songs & games, and a private discussion space for participants to share their journeys and ask questions.

For more information Click here. 






Kahlil Apuzen-Ito, a LifeWays graduate who lives in Honolulu, sent pictures of a puppetry workshop led by fellow LifeWays graduate Serena Syn in the Philippines. Kahlil and her family are just returning from living with her relatives in the Philippines where she has been working with the NGO, Foundations of Agrarian Reform Cooperative in Mindanao, Inc. (FARMCOOP) on the "Pageno" project.  Pageno means "to awaken" in the indigenous Bagobo Tagabawa language.  Among many other activities promoting holistic farming practices and cultural health, they have offered workshops to over a hundred people on family health, well-being and the Nurturing Arts.





"Mumbuto and the White Bird," 



a puppet play written by Kerry Brokaw,   is a transformative tale for young children recently performed by her at the LifeWays Training in Maine.  In this article, Kerry has shared the write-up of her project, including the script of this delightful puppet play. Thank you, Kerry!!


Kerry is a LifeWays student who lives in Ketchum, Idaho. She and a colleague have created Mountain Moon Puppetry, offering puppet plays to schools. libraries, birthdays and events...     Read More 





Fall Activities at "Lively Children" Child Care Center, by Molly Cannon  


Molly is a LifeWays graduate and founder/director of Lively Children in Louisville, KY


Read More








Job Opportunities:




Prairie Hill Waldorf School, Pewaukee WI

Now Hiring: Afternoon Kindergarten Assistant 


For more information: Visit our website

Featured Progam
Seaside Playgarden's Forest Kindergarten, in Jacksonville, FL
By Lynn Coalson 



Greetings from sunny Northeast Florida, home to Seaside Playgarden, a LifeWays Representative Site, and the first in Florida. The Seaside Playgarden, located just two blocks from the Atlantic Ocean, is a perfect place for children to explore, grow and create. We focus on the whole child: head, heart and hands and offer 2-, 3-, and 5-day programs for children ages 2-1/2 to 6 years of age, weekly Parent/Child Classes and Playgroup twice a month.


Our programs encompass the nurturing arts, domestic arts, the development of deep relationships, social and emotional development, imagination and creativity, and a life-affirming connection with nature...all through Warmth, Rhythm, and Respect.We are very excited to begin our new Forest Kindergarten program, the first in the Southeast USA!


Read More and see lots of photos!


* Roasted Butternut Squash Soup *

1 medium butternut squash or 1/2 large can of cannellini beans

1 onion diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
cup of kale, chopped


Cut the squash in half, scoop out seeds and coat with oil. Roast on a sheet pan at 400 till fork tender. Sauté the onion until slightly caramelized add garlic sauté for 2 min add the squash. Add the beans with the liquid. Add three cups water, bring to a boil, turn down heat and allow simmering with the lid on for about 15 min. In a blender puree all contents together. Add soup back to the pot and add the chopped kale. Cook for another 5-7 min. 

This recipe was created through many trials, with many errors. If anyone
has a gluten free baking flour that they love, I would like to know. This
recipe makes one loaf plus six muffins, or two and a half dozen
muffins...or a basket full of mini muffins.

From: Korrin Rogers



* Fruit-Sweetened Banana Bread *
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup almond flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
i teaspoon each of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger
3 really ripe bananas
3 eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup melted butter or coconut oil
1/2 cup chopped nuts, we like to chop pecans and hazelnuts with a mortar
and pestle

Mix the wet ingredients well, add in the dry and lastly, stir in the nuts.
Grease your loaf pan or muffin tins well.
Bake at 350 for 60-70 minutes until the top is golden brown and springy.

* Overnight Applesauce *
We love to make our applesauce in the crockpot overnight. Pick as many
organic apples as you can and peel them using one of those wonderful
peeler/coring/slicing gadgets.  Children of all ages, as young as a 18
months can carefully turn the handle around and watch the long strand of
the peel come off. Compost the core and put the rest of the apple in a
crockpot covered on low. Besides having yummy warm applesauce ready for your breakfast cereal, your house smells amazing when you wake up.

From: Kerry Ingram at The Little Red Schoolhouse