But that is okay, as long as I sort of keep up, you know… like make sure my people are fed and clean and have fat souls. It’s the date that gives me trouble. Tonight we were writing letters to prison inmates, a ministry our church tries to help with about once a month. I dated my first letter August 19, which I discovered was just a few days wrong.
August 19 was actually the day we started back to school in this household. Just like that, the days are chock-full, the summer “over” in the sense of carefree, go-swimming-any-old-time, sleep-late-if-you-wish, etc. I am actually grateful for the more disciplined schedule. With Gabe’s work schedule being all over the place, days and nights all mixed up from week to week, it felt like we were all just flying by the seat of our collective pants this summer. I can handle that for a while, but I like it better to have some firmly established routines. Nothing like school to sober us all up at bedtime and getting up time.
We always do a party when we start back up in the fall, but this past Monday found me totally unprepared, so I told the children we will shoot for more of a Grand Opening party, like stores do when they have the kinks worked out of a new system. The DVDs are working all right for the boys. I like to hear them doing math drills while I am teaching Olivia. I have never met a homeschool mom who loved doing math drills. It is a bit of a problem when you don’t have the competition of a class to force you into being speedy. Gregory was in tears the first morning because he couldn’t keep up with his class. I still spend the entire morning with the students, monitoring, checking, fielding questions, teaching Livvy, keeping the little girls busy, etc. I won’t be twiddling my thumbs anytime soon! And when I do, I will know what else I could be doing.
Last week was crammed, the chief event a delightful campout at a nearby park with my brother and his family. It was so relaxing, after all the frantic packing lists and hauling of ice chests and setting up campsites, to sit and watch a fire and let the kids get thoroughly acquainted with the local variety of dirt.
Nate and Becca. I made them lean in like teenagers do, but you can see, they aren’t quite young enough to pull it off.
“I can do it myself!” Addy’s favorite phrase these days. Here Gabe is rescuing her from her independent efforts to swim.
Funny title to read when camping, huh? They couldn’t all see, so I was interrupted about seventeen times as they shifted heads and bodies and craned necks, complaining.
Cousins, making a book of baby animals. These two stuck together like cheese and crackers.
Gabe and I attempted a selfie. Something we are, apparently, also a little too old to do well. At least, I don’t think it is particularly flattering. But I like the hilarity of the picture, as it captures the general air of relaxation and togetherness of those camping days.
I did laundry for two days, solid, when we got home again. On Friday I turned 1/2 bushel of tomatoes into sauce and the next day I froze 23 quarts of corn, then the next day I took the children to church without Gabe because he had to work. That afternoon I spent hours catching up with a little girl I used to babysit. Only now she is all grown up and going into nursing school. (Somebody pinch me.) Which brought me to Monday morning, school starting and no party. The children were very understanding. We hope to do our Grand Opening on Friday. Because this… this choice to do school at home is a bit engrossing. Everything changes for 9 months. I think we deserve a party.