Thursday, May 12, 2016

What "really" happens on a typical homeschool day.

I recently went through my pictures and couldn't help but to laugh. I took some pictures during our "school time" and man I tell you it sure does not compare to the Pinterest perfect homeschool pins. 
And that's ok! 

Here is what I visioned ( feel free to bless my hart at any time). 
We all get up in the morning in a happy mood with great attitudes and have breakfast together, while reading a devotional and sharing ideas for the day. 
We then all meet in the bonus room , where my little girl will sit by my side on the floor and does some sort of building blocks activity. A.J. Would be learning his letters and be all quiet doing i,t so I can give Zachary instructions on his lessons for this morning. 
After an hour we would all proceed to play a board game that lines up perfectly with today's lesson and even my 2 year old will love being part of rolling the dice. 

Are you smiling? Me too, well now I am after giving myself lots of reality checks, talking to other homeschool moms and praying for wisdom and guidance. 

Here is the reality. 
I should wake up before the kids but this rarely happens since I never go to bed on time. The kids wake up and usually are not so fond of a formal breakfast at the table but after lots of please and let's do it we manage to sit all together. Each of my 3 kids have a different cereals they prefer (did I create that? ). Devotional time is usually interrupted by spilled milk, getting up about 10 times, reminding kids that the chair is not a jungle gym and trying not to laugh because my daughter is making special noises with her empty cup. 
Well we do meet in the bonus room with attitudes and all. It's like the battle of attitudes. 
And all those great educational activities I had planned, well after a while they turn into modern electronic activities. "Yes dear you may have your iPad, yes even 2 year old little sister". While the little ones have their iPads for the remaining time, Zachary and I get through the more focusing part of our lessons and some days we might have to postpone them to nap time, but most days we get them done.
The board game, well you can start laughing now. 

Back to the pictures, that I browsed this morning....... I wouldn't change a thing. We learn everyday in some great way without even noticing we do until later, until questions come up.....natural curiosity and a gift to wanting to learn. Yes that is peace. Some days I have to go back to that place and be reminded of that peace, because doubts show up in form of comparisons, measurable progress that doesn't look all that progressed and questioning myself. But that PEACE it comes with reassurance, with a warm hand that holds yours and guides you back onto the path and a whisper that tells you "it is well". 

He did some letters and asked brother about every letter while I was trying to do a worksheet. In the end it was actually really interesting to watch my oldest teaching his younger brother. It's almost like I got an "on the spot" evaluation. And I got my average 3% raise. More kisses and hugs to come. 

Uhmmmm, well that happens once in a while when I loose the attitude battle and cannot take it anymore:) 

We have a birds nest in our bird house and have been following them since the bluebirds started building their nest. It doesn't get better than that. Thank you bluebirds for choosing our home. The kids love learning about you. 

And we have lots of those days where our hearts and attitudes are aligned and where Mama might have prayed a little harder than usual. 

Thank you United States of America for the freedom of homeschooling. This Mama is beyond grateful. 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Fast forward a bit.

Hello everyone, it seems almost a tradition to start my blog with "it has been a while". But that's true it has, and I didn't make time to write in my blog. I recently thought about how much I really miss writing and sharing our lives with others on the virtual web. 
So here a just the highlights since last year July. 
Fall was beautiful as always in the South. We enjoyed. Endless Pumpkin patches, Hayrides, hikes and just loved the outdoors. Our boys started to collect frogs and they spend a winter with us....and yes they came with the whole enchilada of crickets and worm feeding (yikes). 
Zachary started kindergarten, but during fall break our desire to homeschool deepened and our calling  to do so was mapped out in front of me. I was "dreaming" about homeschooling since he was 3 years old but never thought I could. Let's say God equipped me and our circumstances allow us to homeschool. Which I am beyond grateful for. 
I left for a quick visit to Germany and to check on my daddy who suffered some real bad health scares and for the first time I noticed a shift in my life. The moment when you realize you a not just a daughter but also become a bit of a decision maker for your parents and that role feels strange to me but I can see the nessecity and it is out of love for him. The visit was good we moved my dad closer to my brother. 
Winter: oh I am always so afraid of the cold month were we do life mostly inside. Chuck e cheese, Monkey Joes, indoor playgrounds and bouncy places become a reality. 
Energized kids who start bouncing of any surfaces in our house and than this happens......SNOWDAYS. This year wasn't too bad. We had two days of beautiful fresh snow and all the neighbors kids were playing outside including ours. Snowball fights, hot cocoa, sledding, tubing, snow angels and lots of laughter. 

A few weeks ago I woke up all excited because I heard birds chirping outside my window and it was the most beautiful sound. Spring is on its way. And it has. We already enjoyed hikes, endless hours of trampoline jumps, slip and slides, sand boxes, beaches at the lake and of course having meals outside.

We are looking forward to a fun filled summer making lots of memories, enjoying our family and friends