It's the most wonderful time of the year, part one

I really love the Christmas season: pageants and ballets, music and lights, Christmas trees, hot chocolate (or peppermint mocha's), white elephants, parties, friends and family, and of course for the Douglass family, a little thing called Christmas break…

astound: to impress strongly by what is unexpected or unusual

Most of you know my husband, Mark. If you haven't met him, the truth is you might not notice him if you were in a room together. In spite of his good looks and charming wit (I did once refer to him as winsome), there is a quietness and humility…

confessional stories from a mother of three

This post is for the women who question their ability to parent: you are not alone. And for any of you who have commented about me "always having it together," this 16 hour period should prove otherwise.   Part One: (Sunday evening)…

little words

me: Do you want to color? Liam: Yeah, that would be great! Let's color in this book. me: No, let's color these pages here. Liam: No mom, if you want to color, these are your choices. ------------------------------------------------------------------ Liam:…

please understand me!

                    This book is about personalities. What do I think about it? Let’s just say that I have been reading, rereading, thinking about, and internalizing this book for the last year. I know -- it’s a little…

my 29th birthday and dinner with the president

Well, sort of. Thursday was my 29th birthday. Mostly, it was a normal day -- nice, but normal. I worked at the writing center in the morning and spent the afternoon hanging out with my family (the boys picked flowers for me). Sam (Mark's dad)…

little words

Burke: I don't like cats. Bethany: Why don't you like cats, Burke? Burke: They want to poop in my sandbox. --------------------------------------------------------------------- (Mark is correcting Liam and poking his finger into Liam's chest.) Mark:…

In effort to simplify

“Our life is frittered away by detail…Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” -Henry David Thoreau Walden  By nature, I am not a simple person. I love details, even the ones that simply remain imaginative, and can easily involve myself…


Cloistered Away is a lifestyle blog, focused on simple, purposeful family living, written by Bethany Douglass.


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