Getting back to “normal”

Whew, finally the morning sickness has mostly calmed down, although I am still on some medication to keep it at bay. I will be 14 weeks along tomorrow and this is by far the earliest that I have ever been this close to normal! Thank God for this miracle!

Lots has been going on while I have been ignoring my blog. Most importantly, Paisley and James are heading off to school in the fall! Wonders shall never cease! We found a charter school that focuses on Classical education and are really excited about it. It covers 7th-12th grades, so that is why both children are about to go. Paisley will be a freshman this year (9th grade) and James will be in 7th grade. The school is quite far away from our home, so transportation will be an issue. But hopefully we have found some answers for that.

That means that next year I will only have Posy and Ben (4th and 2nd grades) to teach at home, plus Tessa and halfway through the year a new baby. I am so relieved at having to only teach two grades. I hope that we can have a lot of fun this year!

Can I just tell you that I have an amazing husband? He has single handedly kept food on the table, a reasonably clean house (well, it wasn’t fodder for the health department as it could have been!) ferried children back and forth to baseball games and gymnastics, and still worked full time out in the Arizona heat. He is truly my hero. (Although he is now very relieved at the parts I can take over again a little bit at a time!)

Springing Back

What a school year! It has been quite a ride, and it’s not over yet. Looking back to the beginning of the year, I can see how much progress we have made. Reading abilities have improved, study skills are becoming more ingrained, and math facts are becoming more natural to all involved. Even the kids are starting to notice that learning is coming a little easier to them these days.

I still have so many days where I fantasize about sending them off to school, doing my house work, a little studying or scrapbooking, then fixing a snack and greeting them with a smile when they come home from school. But then I remember that this is really just a fantasy, and most days wouldn’t be like that anyway. Besides, I would really miss them.

Spring is a time that homeschooling really meshes with our family culture and stops being a way of studying. we have spent several months working really hard, but now there are things around the house that we have neglected, and yet there is still studying to do. In order to balance the two we have to kind of squish them together. The result is a day of housework here and there punctuated by reading, math, and quite a bit of play.

Lately James and Posy have been reading “Archemedes and the Door of Science” aloud to me. So I decided to just follow along on that train of thought and added in some Greek Myths (which Ben has enjoyed listening to as well) and some projects. Last week James and Posy spent a whole morning making a cardboard Labrynth for our guinea pig “Minotaurs” to run through. Tessa got a hold of it, though, before any pictures could be taken, and pulled it to pieces.

Paisley is working her way through Key to Algebra, slowly and in spurts. She has really been concentrating on History this year and the writing assignments that have gone along with it. Her writing skills have really taken off this year! She has also just begun working through C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity and we are discussing that.

Posy is learning her division facts now. She is really getting fast with them. Her math book, Rod and Staff grade 3 only goes up through the 6s, but we will cover the rest this summer.

Ben’s reading abilities continue to amaze me. Yesterday I started having him read to me from McGuffey’s Third Reader. He struggled just a little bit, but overall he did better than I expected. He has been devouring Magic Tree House books like crazy, going through 3-4 of them a week!

Tessa and I have been doing a few activities in Slow and Steady Get Me Ready. She really enjoys working one on one and loves to be read to as well. Some of her favorite books are Corduroy, Goodnight Moon, and Elephants Never Forget. She loves hearing nursery rhymes and is starting to be able to fill in the blanks if I leave out a word and wait for her to say it. But she gets tired of that game pretty fast and after the first two or three times will just say, “I don’t know.”