I am not sure that I could capture well all that has happened in the last two weeks, friends, but I do hope to document the highlights over the last 1-2 weeks. After all, this blog is the chronicles of our family.
The older two were drafted volunteered to help our church children’s ministry with the annual Christmas play, and the associated practices taken up every weekend we have right up until the weekend after Thanksgiving. Parade season is also fast approaching, as is the beginning of the competition season, so dance has consumed the time that isn’t spent on school and church. I am quickly finding myself in the very position that I don’t like to be in at this time of year—too busy with the season to reflect on the Reason. I refuse, however, to give up that reflective time, and will be saying “no, thanks” to some opportunities that sound, at least on the outside, like great opportunities.
This week finds us unexpectedly on the road. My dear husband was asked to take a trip for week—on the same week as Thanksgiving, no less—and we chose to tag along. Writing while riding takes me back several years to when we traveled like this regularly, before job transfers and job changes. In fact, I’ve seen all but one region of Texas in my 20+ years of living here, thanks to the hubby’s jobs. Some prefer a plane ride (though nowadays that means you enjoy being felt up by strangers), but I love the freedom of the car—plenty of time to kick my shoes off, read, blog 🙂 , or just to sight-see when it’s my turn to drive. We were laughing on yesterday about our earliest work/ family trips when we began homeschooling. The children were small then, and I had to be very creative with meal times as the reality of quitting my full-time job began to settle on us both. I can remember going to vegsource.com and finding recipes like potatoes with chic peas and green onions. It wasn’t fancy, but it was filling, tasty, and most of all, inexpensive. I also recall being stunned at the difference in our lifestyle, and a bit apprehensive about whether the changes were really worth it, but we held hands with all the excitement of fear of brand new homeschoolers. Looking back now, it seems silly to fret so, but I’m so glad that we never gave in to all the uncertainties.
The kids are excited about this week as well, and the fact that I relaxed the schedule a bit, given the trip. They are only responsible for math and reading this week, with a reading day planned for the trip home. Speaking of school, we only have three weeks left in the semester after this one. With the end of the semester approaching, it is always appropriate to assess where we are and whether we are moving in the right path.
The youngest is performing well enough in reading that I’m trying to make a decision as to whether or not to spend money on more formal curriculum to build her reading skills. When I read Bob Jones’ scope and sequence for the 3rd grade reading workbook, there are some areas that she’s not learned—formally. Is it worth it? I think not, but I’m also having to evaluate, for myself, what’s really bothering me about the hole that a lack of formal studies in this area creates. I’m convinced that .what really bugs me—and it’s the same feeling I get watching my son—is that the kids have more free time than I’m comfortable with. That wouldn’t be so bad if they both used the time in productive ways. I’ll sort that out at another time.
The other quandary is what to do with her science studies. She asked to learn about the human body, and I thought it was so convenient that Apologia published a brand new anatomy and physiology text. As my dear friend Kysha says, this was not a good fit for our family. The text is way over the little one’s head, and she now says, “I didn’t know it’d be so gross!” So in trying to get direction from a child, I now realize that I should have followed my first mind, saved my money, and begun with either Zoology or Botany. So, as if I didn’t get enough the first time, I explained to her what I thought about our predicament. She says, “Well, Mom, can we just do two sciences?” Oh, boy.
I pray the Lord is blessing your week(s) as well. More to say, but I’ll stop for now. All the way here, we felt this shake that gradually grew worse. We found out 30 miles outside of town that our mud flap had cut into a tire, causing a slow leak. BUT, we made it, Praise God. He is sooooooo good.