Keepin’ it Real – The Tuesday Edition

It would be lovely if I could share with you tonight great words of wisdom and inspiration. I could probably make a really good attempt at faking a perfect portrait of homeschool bliss.

Now, I won’t lie. I love my life. I love that I have the opportunity to homeschool my children. Twenty years from now, I will not regret this time devoted to my children.

But let’s be real. Today, while trying to do math with Hannah, Martha was in a fussy, clingy, mommy is all mine mood. So as we were trying to go over math, Martha wiggled her way in between us and laid on top of the math book.

At some point, my house became very ill and threw up all over my dining room floor. Legos, books, papers and dirty socks were everywhere.

“Fear not, for I am with you.

Be not dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you,

Yes, I will help you,

I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

I discovered that someone hasn’t been keeping up with her school assignments. Which means that I haven’t been checking in the way I should. Ahem.

I still haven’t located my desk. If you find it, please let me know.

Yet another pencil sharpener has bit the dust.

And Sarah, adorable as she is, was not in the mood to practice her reading today. I called it a review lesson and cut it short. I did not have the mental clarity to push through today.

I wasn’t alone. A certain someone didn’t have the mental clarity to complete a math lesson but the doodling on the paper is most outstanding. Coming soon to a gallery near you. Sure.

Fellow homeschool mom… not grow weary. There are going to be new mercies in the morning. Math will there tomorrow, too. And that laundry? Yeah, it is waiting, too. Let’s rejoice in those new mercies and tell the laundry who is boss.

I have a plan for tomorrow. I’m going to read “just one more chapter”, I’m going to let our nature walk last five minutes longer and I’m going to pass the chocolate while we conquer fractions.

“being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1: 6

Secret Mission ~ Ice Cream Edition

Eddie and I have been married for 17 years. In all those years, the man has never turned down ice cream. If the ice cream is homemade, well, just hand the man a spoon and get out of his way! Almost every year he has mentioned wanting to get an ice cream maker. For various reasons, we have never purchased one. Crazy, right?

Well, Eddie’s birthday falls at the perfect time of year for buying an ice cream maker: summertime! It just so happens that we are blessed with some wonderful children. Bekah remembered days before his birthday that Eddie would love an ice cream maker. She called a tribal meeting with her siblings and they all pooled their resources to purchase one. There was just one small glitch….

The two closest Walmart stores did not have the one they wanted in stock. They had researched and read reviews and did not want to settle for anything other than the Rival Wooden Ice Cream Maker. With just a few days to go, there was no time to order online. What to do!?!??!?!

*insert proper secret mission music*

I called another Walmart, that while not nearby, was not unreasonable far away. They had ONE in stock. One, people! The day before his birthday was our only chance due to his work schedule. Mary and I woke early and headed out while Eddie was still asleep. We drove a good bit and arrived bright and early at Walmart. It was quite impressive to see the parking lot empty. We went directly to the ice cream makers and grabbed it.

We arrived back home and Eddie was still snoozing away and Bekah had the others busy and quiet. Hee hee, mission accomplished.

Eddie’s birthday arrived and he had a busy day of work ahead. The kiddos begged him to open his gift before he left. We had several close calls with a little one spilling the beans! He was thrilled, excited and thoroughly surprised!! He is very hard to surprise. I loved it! And amazingly, he did not work late. Giggle.

That evening we made two batches of ice cream: mint chocolate chip and vanilla. Yum, yum. Served alongside Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake. Mmmhmmmm.

I think we all benefited from this birthday gift!




Meal Planning….by Sarah

I must warn you that this post will not be as life changing as the post I just deleted. Accidentally. Lovely. Now to try to re-create my masterpiece. Snort.

Menu planning. It is the item on my to do list that causes me to weep and hide in a corner. Perhaps my dramatic side is coming out but having to plan out meals really is a difficulty. I am not sure why. I buy the groceries, I know what people prefer to eat and I am the main cook. It should be a fairly simple and straightforward task.

I decided to do what any smart wife and mother would do…I delegated. To my five year old. Sarah is doing an amazing job.  Ok. I don’t hate menu planning that badly but I did start training Sarah for the task.

It was a slightly hot afternoon. No one really wanted to go outside. My older ones were occupied with reading or knitting. The youngest two were napping away. Then there was Sarah. She just couldn’t seem to find a task that would hold her interest.  I’m always happy to help fight boredom!

I gave her the local grocery store sales ad that had arrived that day, scissors and glue. A few instructions on selecting some foods that would make a yummy dinner and she was off.  Happy. Occupied. Learning.

Sarah had a lovely variety. I did have to strongly encourage her to put some meat on her paper.  For her guests, you know. If she was happy with cucumber, carrots, apples and cheese, that is wonderful. Her mother, however, would like a bit of meat. Thank you.

She also had some chocolate for dessert. I really appreciated having some salad dressing and ketchup. Sarah even included Kool Aid although she had no clue what it was. I think she might have been thirsty and it looked more appealing than PediaSure. Paper products were included to make meal clean up a snap.

While it might appear as just a way to keep your bored 5 year old busy, the learning was happening. Fine motor skills and scissor skills were being strengthened.  She was thinking through a meal and all the items needed to complete it.  Sarah was thinking of others, showing kindness, as she made sure she had something that everyone in the family would enjoy.

The learning opportunities could be a bit more structured. If you do a nutrition study, you could use your local sales ad as a means to “test” your child’s knowledge of selecting healthy foods.  Perhaps do it before and after the unit study to see how much they learned. For older children, give them an amount and see how they can “budget” it with the sales ad and what meals they can make from it. Then if you are able, let them cook their meal!

What have your little ones been learning lately?