We started back to normal life and lessons and routines this past week after taking a month off for Advent and Christmas. I love being free for that month and it takes so much of the stress away from the holidays when we can focus on just living them without the weight of lessons and school also hanging over us. But it also feels good to get back into the swing of things. There were some cries and tantrums of protest at the beginning but after those were out of systems, the last few days have gone swimmingly. Or as swimmingly as possible, five little boys considered.
The mornings take my full concentration now. I have to really commit myself to being fully present to lesson times (read: no blogging or internet) for things to work with five kids. So much of this homeschool thing is really about disciplining myself sometimes. I'm going from one kid to the other to the other and back again but for the most part, it's been smooth and I like how it is, despite my tendency to want to distract myself with something else. This is my important work and I need to do it fully.
A big help in the smooth transition has been Luke really stepping up to four year old status. I love age four. I'm beginning to see glimpses of that big kid peeking through and he's very very welcome. For the next few months we get the gift of wintering and I want to live it well. We're taking a break from our little homeschool co-op this semester and I'm feeling good about that. I like the idea of just focusing on the home part of homeschool, especially as the snow falls and the air freezes. Games, projects, read alouds, organizing some parts of our home, getting into a good school groove, making memories, establishing home. Those are my hopes for this time. We've gotten a good start already.
This was another gift from the priest I mentioned in a previous post! Isn't it beautiful?
There's been a recent boom in baby girls born or soon to be around here! I've been having fun knitting up newborn hats to gift them. I found some clearanced yarn at Hobby Lobby that is a bamboo/silk blend and it is so soft and fun to knit! I started reading The Secret Garden this week to Michael and David (though John Paul and Luke will sneak in for a listen as well). This was one of my favorite stories growing up and I love sharing it with them. I had a feeling these two, especially, would love it as well. Last night as each chapter ended they begged for another proving me right and warming my mama heart.
This copy was a gift from my Godparents when I was about Michael's age and means so much to me. My Godmother died in a fire on Christmas Eve a few weeks after I had finished college. It was her favorite, too. It feels good to be able to now share it with my kids.
(If you feel moved, please say a prayer for Carol and the family she left behind?)
We finally got our first snow of the season yesterday. We had an inch or so of slushy flurries at the end of December but it melted right away. I'm actually ready for a little bit of snow, I think! Am I really saying that?? But it looks beautiful and is covering up all the mud and rain puddles, at least :)
Moon eyes and blue eyes
Love these boys.
That baby isn't officially crawling (thank you, Lord.) but he's scooting around and you can cross planking off the milestone list. He's not sitting up on his own but his core? Rock solid. Check out the one footed action.
Such a goofball. After a few weeks of one sickness merging into another round of something else, he's feeling better and I'm so grateful. He isn't, however, doing that thing the rest of the world calls sleeping.
Back at it. They'd tell you they don't want to be but I think they are really deep down appreciating the return to routine alllmost as much as I am.
Back to good, sweet, blessed, normal reality.
(Why yes, that IS Lent starting in a few weeks! Just gonna pretend I don't see that...)
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