A Mosaic in the Making


Nicki Black  June 16 2010 02:18:49 AM
Written 11/14/2008

Gads. The clock said it was way too early to get out of my nice warm bed, yet DS was enthusiastically laying on his back in his crib demanding our attention, slamming his feet against the wall with each weary blink of my eyes. DH was only half awake, murmuring "Go back to bed, {DS}" between light snores. The light was barely visible through the thick curtains in the bedroom. Only from the steady sound of the traffic at our curb did I know that it was morning and rush hour had begun with the usual parade of cars, semi-trucks, parents walking their brood to school, and buses outside our door.


I rolled over and turned on my phone, which displayed "7:23 AM". For a bleak instant, I almost rallied myself out of bed. Thoughts of what I would wear played in my head as my feet mentally greeted a pile of clothes ready for the wash near the bathroom door, intermixed with random hangers of all colors and sizes that Max had been playing with the night before. I looked again to the window and saw that it was a rainy, dreary, and cold fall morning. Not the kind of morning that I especially wanted to embrace with my uncovered head, as the last of our umbrellas bit the dust sometime this past spring.

And then. There it was. A remembrance so lovely that all the clouds vanished from my mind and I looked to the rain-soaked window with a "thank you" instead. I pulled my favorite fuzzy brown blanket up to my chin. We homeschool. Ha! Come rain, come snow! Come sleet, come traffic! We homeschool! Grin.

No baking 40+ cupcakes for a classroom the night before they are due, because DD "forgot" to mention it and she lost the letter that came home about the class party 2 weeks prior. No standing watch in the lunchroom, mopping up sticky tables and picking up garbage because I had been forcibly assigned to "volunteer" at the school, whether I had work deadlines or not. No sitting in hot carlines for an hour after school in August and September, because my car doesn't idle well and when the A/C is turned off, and the heat climbs to over 90 degrees inside. No arguing with a 10-going-on-16 year old daughter while trying to get out the door, who thinks wearing the same pair of socks 3 days running is "fine". No lost textbooks. No ridiculous 1 hour field trips to museums that require at least a whole day's time to see anything "real". No parent-teacher conferences. No bullies. No glares or guilt trips from a "self-appointed party committee" of over zealous soccer moms to chip in $40 bucks (from each family) to buy a classroom of 6 year olds useless craft materials (that got thrown under the bed as soon as she got home), a teepee rental, and a full turkey buffet for a Thanksgiving party ala Martha Stewart style (this is a true story of what happened to us when DD was in kindergarten).

No. None of that. Do you see my crazy, tick-free smile?

Our typical day is as flexible as dental floss. We wake when our bodies tell us to wake. We make DS his bottle of milk. He gleefully slurps it down while we flip on the Today Show, or listen to the radio and discuss our day. We play with DS on the bed for a bit, as he explores his toes and belly button, and points to all the parts of his body that he wants us to name - repeatedly. We make it downstairs eventually, after DH sings DD awake with renditions of "Hello Dolly" (only he inserts DD's name instead). Or he mimics an old Bugs Bunny alarm clock he used to have, which is truly annoying and would rouse even the most sound of sleepers. Brunch, check email, watch the birds, make some coffee, see if the History Channel has anything interesting listed for the day's lineup, read the news.. and then, easing into school at our own pace. This week DH had a light work schedule, so DD attended Daddy's Math & Science Academy for the week, while I took the week off from teaching. Instead, I used this cherished time to brush up on my music, do laundry, touch base with a few friends, work, read a few magazines, daydream about how I would remodel my kitchen, learn how to make homemade bread, and attempt to pick up all those hangers DS loves to play 52 card pickup with. After lunch, DS will take his long afternoon nap, and school will taper off sometime around 3 or 4 or 5.. whenever DD finishes up her assignments between drawing pictures for all her friends and family, or writing more chapters in her original book series. We're easy like that. We're done when we're done. No schedules. I believe many call this "unschooling". And yeah. I like it. I like it a lot. DD's test scores in the very top percentile nationwide is proof pudding that it's all good.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving. Let's not forget to thank our Lord for His grace and mercies, no matter what the economy or political climate looks like.
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