Off and Running

Thursday, August 28, 2014

 Everly doing her school with Ms. Mary Ann practicing sitting up.

Well, today marks the 191st day of us being a family of five! Continuously counting our blessings, continuously being mindful of what is important. Our thankfulness is never far from our minds and is said aloud at every family prayer. We have made the most of every single day we have had thus far and plan to continue.

Much like everyone else in the country, we are getting geared up for a new school year. We will "begin" on Tuesday but we really school year-round and take breaks or go on field trips as we need to. However, the new curriculum (remember the excitement over the boxes this summer??) will be christened next week!

 Working on neck strength during tummy time.

Of course, this school year will be unlike any other and will come with its own challenges. The biggest being trying to balance everyone's needs simultaneously and getting everything done on a daily basis. But I've already figured it out, I'm happy to say. I can't. Just can't. I will not be able to take care of them each simultaneously and will not be able to check off each scribbled "to do" off my list by dusk each day. So, the way I see it is that if I already know these things, then anything above and beyond said expectations makes me a winner.

Sweet love

In all seriousness, though, I do have a plan. As my boys are well aware of one of my favorite phrases, "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail." I LOVE that saying. A LOT. While my plan may have "escape routes" written in, having a general idea of the path is all that matters right now. Many people have asked me the specifics of how I homeschool a now 3rd grader and a now 10th grader with Everly and all her needs. So, I'll lay it out for you as best I can...allowing for the occasional off day thrown in here or there.

  • Outsourcing: Co-op classes for both boys, 2 online academy classes for Garren, the rest with me
  • Planning: My favorite motto is "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail."
  • My dad: He's the key to it all. He transports, supervises, plays with, you name and he does it!
  • Flexibility: So, with our new sister in the mix, we've learned that school can happen anytime and anywhere.
Kendan's first time carrying baby sister! He was so excited!

I have learned that I can school from the floor while letting Everly have some tummy time or working on rolling over. I am able to read out spelling words while feeding the baby and massaging her feetsies. I can correct papers with a baby in my lap. The boys can work with little sister doing her own "school" in the office alongside them. It is possible to read literature with the boys while the baby is wrapped in the Moby wrap.

Big brother love

I think most importantly I've learned that our school isn't just about what we're learning in books. While it is valuable and we do certainly attend to that, I know that our focus should be so much more. We are actively working on creating a lifetime of memories, making bonds with each other and being present in the moment, no matter how crazy or chaotic it might be.

Book learning will always be, but what we have now may not.

With love and appreciation,


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