College lessons {Thankful Thursday}

College lessons

Photo taken by Olivier Aumage.

Today is a gorgeous day, most likely the last hurrah of summer.  The sun is shining, a few puffy clouds drift are studying across the sky, and it is currently 75 degrees.  Medeina, my puppy, is frolicking in the yard chasing leaves, and the cat tries to chase the leash.  It is a time to just be.  I get to sit outside and write this post on my phone.  What better weather could I have for Thankful Thursday?  And to top it off, A’s teacher just called to tell me that she is having the best day she has had all year (after calling yesterday to say that she had been uncharacteristically difficult this week). Continue reading “College lessons {Thankful Thursday}”

My calendar organization {Thankful Thursday}

If you know me at all, you know I am not super organized, despite all my desire to be.  You also know that I have a ton of stuff to keep track of.  I am down to four kids still at home, but they are active, so I need some way to manage my time.  Today for Thankful Thursday I want to share my gratitude for Flylady’s calendar.  No, I do not receive anything for this post.  I just love this tool and want you to know about the freedom it has given me. Continue reading “My calendar organization {Thankful Thursday}”

School has started {Thankful Thursday}

School has started

All across the country, school is back in session.  This is often a bittersweet time for families.  Children are ending their summer leisure time, but will reunite with friends they may not have seen for a few months.  Parents are losing the extra time with their children, but gaining more quiet time to work on goals that may benefit from the solitude.  As with any major change, it is a time of both endings and beginnings.

Quiet

I work from home.  This allows me to be a homemaker and a full-time mother while still earning an income.  My primary income is from sewing, but my sewing always takes a back seat to my kids.  I also love to write this blog, and that is also easier when it is nice and quiet.  Over the summer, I tended to stay up way past my bedtime so I could write in the quiet after everyone had gone to bed.  Now that school is in session, I can go to bed at a decent hour and get my writing done while they are at school.

Two to three hour blocks

This is the first year I have not had children at home during at least half of the school day.  Until 2010, I homeschooled, then that year my children began public school.  I had one in high school, one in middle school, two in elementary, one in preschool, and one in the oven.  My day was chopped up into short blocks according to the bus schedule.   Anything I needed to do had to fit within a three hour time block.

  • 6:00 Get up and start the day with C
  • 6:40 C gets on the high school bus
  • 7:20 M gets on the middle school bus
  • 8:00 Put L and R on the elementary bus, then free time
  • 11:15 Put E on the preschool bus, then free time
  • 2:15 C gets home from high school
  • 2:45 M gets home from middle school
  • 3:15 L,R, and E come home from elementary/preschool
  • 5:30 (in theory) Dinner time
  • 7:30 Begin putting children to bed

Free time

This year, my youngest is in full day kindergarten.  I get a full 7 hours each and every school day to accomplish great things.  Or at least make some headway on cleaning the house or sewing up a beautiful dress or quilt.  I have 7 hours of quiet, with just the tick of the clock to keep me company.  An occasional buzz of the dryer or beep of the dishwasher lets me know they are done.  This quiet has done wonders for my sanity.  I would love to figure out how to store it up in a bottle for vacation days.

Educational access

I would be remiss to ignore the fact that I live in an industrialized nation, where free education is available for all.  I am very blessed in being able to send my children to school and know that they are safe there.  My daughters do not have to miss school every month due to their cycle.  My children have access to sports, clubs, and extra-curricular activities that broaden their horizons, sharpen their skills, and build a sense of community.

Two of my children have/had Individual Education Plans (IEPs).  This gives them access to the extra resources they need to succeed, at no extra cost to me.  It levels the playing field, so to speak.  One child in fact made so much progress that they no longer need the IEP.  I fully expect the other one to make similar strides.

I love my children dearly with all my heart, but I need quiet to balance out their loud, raucous kid energy.  And so, I am thankful for the peace and quiet that accompanies the beginning of school.  I am thankful for the community that supports them at school and gives them a sense of belonging and achievement.

Your turn

Do you have kids in school?  Is September a happy, sad, or ambivalent time for you?

 

Standing Rock Water Protectors {Thankful Thursday}

Standing Rock Water Protectors

Photo courtesy of Tony Webster via Flickr.

I am not an activist.  I don’t attend rallies, call my congressmen, or stump for causes or candidates.  It isn’t that I don’t feel strongly about things.  I do.  My energy is better directed through other methods, though.  I have a family to take care of on a daily basis.  My teenagers are passionate about justice, so I think I am doing something right.  As much as I would love to pack up and head out west to join the thousands in North Dakota, I can’t.  It is my job to raise the next generation instead.  Since I can’t go there, I am so glad that there are others who can and do.  I am thankful for our water protectors. Continue reading “Standing Rock Water Protectors {Thankful Thursday}”

New Beginnings {Thankful Thursday}

New Beginnings

Some weeks it is really easy to find things to be grateful for.  Other weeks I spend waiting for inspiration to strike with that one Wow! moment that just screams to be shared.  I end up on Wednesday night thinking, ‘I know I have lots to be grateful for, so why can’t I write anything?’  This is one of those latter weeks.  I could ooh and ahh over the beautiful sunsets, or the fact that I have actually been getting enough sleep this week for a change.  I could gush about school being back in session or about more personal things that I’m just not ready to share publicly yet.  So here I am on Wednesday night racking my brain to come up with something to be truly and deeply grateful for. Continue reading “New Beginnings {Thankful Thursday}”

Travelling with Technology {Thankful Thursday}

travelling with technology

I love Thankful Thursdays.  I enjoy the opportunity to get really deeply thankful and appreciative for something in my life.  Today I am grateful for technology.  In some ways I sympathize with the Luddites.  I do believe we have become a bit disconnected from our real lives by becoming too absorbed in our virtual lives.  But in other ways, I am hugely grateful for the vast array of wonderful technology just waiting to enhance our real lives. Continue reading “Travelling with Technology {Thankful Thursday}”