Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Nine days and counting

It is almost here, the blessed day, the one we count down for. It's almost Christmas. I have spurts of Christmas spirit, mediated by glumness and worry. I keep telling myself that this Christmas will be different, it will be about giving for the sake of giving, not because I have to, but because I want to, but somehow it always ends up being giving because I have to.
There are people that I have bought gifts for that I do not like, I do not associate with, I do not want to use my hard earned money to purchase gifts for. There are people I want to buy for, but don't because the obligation of others has come first.
Can't one just give or not give and not be judged? We, my friends and I have a name drawing. It makes alot of sense. There are about 16 adults and 30 odd kids. Each family buys for one other couple and if they have two kids, they get two kids to buy for. Definitely simplifies things alot. So, that's the friends taken care of. Then there is our immediate family. That's easy. But then there are brothers and sisters on both sides of the family, some recipocate and some don't, but you can't leave anyone out, even if they have never sent anything for you or your kids. Those are the obligatory gifts. The ones I get the most annoyed by. Then there are parents on either side, that is also fairly easy and genuine.
But what I really want to do is sponsor a child or two or three, rather than purchase all those useless gifts. I would rather send a box of clothes to someone in need. I would rather teach my children to give, instead of get. And Christmas here is all about getting. What are you getting, what's Santa bringing you, what do you want to get? No one asks what are you giving?
Maybe we should start. Can you imagine if children were taught to give, with no strings attached, not to get something in return, but just to give. Now that would be a life changing Christmas.
My children are still young. I have time to teach them more before the standard selfishness that governs our country kicks in.
I do believe I have just made a New Years Resolution, that if contientiously applied throughout the year will dramatically change how next Christmas is perceived.
After all, Christmas is about giving, God's gift to us, with only one string, that we believe.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

December 12, 2009

Preparations for Christmas

It is mid-december and I have almost nothing done for Christmas. The lights are up outside, the bannister is decorated and there are a few snowmen about the house, but hardly any shopping or baking has been done. Christmas cards? Not this year. About the first week of November I have alot of good intentions regarding the holidays and buy wrapping paper, cards, and that sort of thing. A few gifts for Ben and Molly, but then I stop and find it very difficult as each day passes to rev my motor up again.

Maybe I have chronic fatigue syndrome...

Certainly I feel chronically fatigued. But maybe that is just part of being almost forty with two little kids running under my feet. It is so hard to even keep up with the tornado of debris that follows their running feet, let alone get on top of it. Those are the times when I question my sanity of deciding to homeschool, because at least for others, there is a reprieve, a chance to get on top of things while the children are out of the house for x number of hours every day. What bliss! But that is the only reason I would choose to send my kids to public school, so I could have a chance to clean the house. Doesn't seem very rational to me!

We are officailly on a break from homeschooling until January. Why not? We started early, do school almost daily, why not break early. We will still accomplish more than he would have learned in kindergarten and I get the joy of watching his face light up when he learns something new! This morning he came bursting into my room waving a book in his hands that he had just read all by himself. Was he ever proud!

The children are upstairs, and eerily quiet and while I love these peaceful moments, they don't last and usually it's because they are doing something they don't want me to know about. Sometimes though, the peace of these few minutes is worth the clean up that follows later. So I think I will pour myself another cup of coffee and snuggle on the couch with my pooch and a book.

Right now, i am reading "galore" by Michael Crummey. And I must say, it is quite good so far. I love Newfoundland writers that write about Newfoundland!


Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Trying to find and stick to a schedule that works is proving to be a bit difficult.
I keep reading these posts and blogs by other homeschooling moms and they can make you feel inadequate. I wonder if they really do all the things they say they do, and are their kids happy, content, learning for the fun of it?
No matter what you schedule for your day, there is no way it all can be accomplished.
We rise, have breakfast, listen to some music, dance a bit in the kitchen and then we start in on school, and I have my coffee. We are still in pajamas at lunch time, is that a bad thing?
School for my K'er is 'the ordinary parents guide to teaching reading' followed by some explode the code exercises. We are reading '100 ways to count to 100' for math. We use a calendar, but not very strictly. He loves to explore 'First Animal Encyclopedia'. And on occasion, we do bible study. But not everyday. He loved the story of Noah and the Ark and has made his own picture book to tell the story.
When I start to write down what we do, what we have done, I feel more accomplished. But, my house is not clean, there are piles of laundry that make it through the stages eventually. The dishwasher is half emptied, dirty dishes are in the sink, I am sick... and that has taken a toll on our homeschooling.
Crafts and artwork are continually produced in our house, paint brushes never get cleaned dried put away. Toys are everywhere, and the dog keep pooping out bits of playdough and various parts of plastic and wooden toys.
Did I mention the three year old girl that needs attention, loves to paint, and watches way too much tv?
We do computer time once a week because anymore makes my K'er too cranky.
We have no video games in our house and may never have them due to the somewhat addictive personality my son already shows--yeah, that's from me...