Friday, March 28, 2014

Another Reason We Homeschool

My husband's days off are not the "normal" weekends. In fact, with his work schedule, he'd hardly see our kids if they were in public school.

Today, was a day of spontaneity. It all started last night when Blessing #3 went around the house inviting everyone to go out for breakfast, with him and Daddy. From what I gather, he hadn't actually made arrangements with Dad, before inviting everyone. However, the sweetness of his offer, for everyone to join them, won us over. So, this morning, we headed out for breakfast. A late and enjoyable breakfast.

Being in good spirits, my husband continued the spontaneity, by suggesting we take the kids to the local fire house museum. I agreed, it sounded like a great idea. So we spent the early afternoon touring it and discussing it with our kids. At the end, there was an arcade game where the kids could pretend to be firemen and spray electric hoses. The nozzle was a bit heavy for Blessing #3, so I helped him aim, but he had fun.

As we were setting out, to head to the hardware store, Blessing #3 reminded me that he still needed new shoes. That meant a quick pit stop for him to get a pair. He's been growing like a weed over the past year, going from a size 3T to a size 6 in clothes!

Our trip to the hardware store, was also enjoyable, though the ride there, not so much. Blessing #4 has been breaking down into fits whenever he wants something lately. No forewarning, just complete meltdown. It's been frustrating, because I'm left clueless as to what he even wants, until he calms down enough that I can get him to *talk* to me. This time, he just wanted some water, which he was able to get at the hardware store.

One last stop for animal feed and then we headed home. There seemed to be a simple peace in our van as we drove the winding road home. No fighting, just laughing, talking, and playing.

I've been craving more moments like these and am so thankful that the ideas of my children are able to bare such fruit in our family.

Of course, everything has to come to an end, and once we were home there was stuff to tend to. Yet, as we got caught up in our own activities the lovely peace still lingered and has the rest of the day. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring is in the Air

    Winter's worst has passed. Our first "real" Michigan winter, has left me thinking, maybe moving again someday isn't such a bad idea. However, with the ground thawing and the sun's warmth penetrating stronger and stronger, I'm hopeful of the seasons ahead.

    Today, marks the day of an experiment that I hope will end well. I've gathered some eggs, to attempt incubating, to check the fertility of our rooster. Last year we were pretty sure he was shooting blanks, and every time we let a hen brood, the eggs rotted. With research, this year, it looks like there is a possibility our rooster might be hitting his mark after all, though. I sure hope so. If all goes well we should have chicks in mid April. It is a bit early, but if it works we'll let our hens sit.

    We still have an army of turkeys to attend to. I'm hoping to make as much use out of them as possible, when we do. In the mean time, I'm waiting for them to start laying and sitting for next falls batch. Last year we started a bit late so they weren't ready to meet their fate when it was time. This year, I expect things to happen earlier, since we know more.

   As for our sheep, lambing should start Easter weekend. I'm pretty excited and can't wait to see all the new life arriving on the farm. I've been trying to get in with them more this winter, since I'm not pregnant, and let them get to know me better. I'd love to milk them, if I can.

   Also working on plans for my garden. Would really like to set it up in a way that we could use it year round. I know it'll take some initial investments upfront, but in the long run it will definitely be worth it.

   Lastly the family is growing. I see my children getting older, reaching milestones. I see them learning and developing in new ways, ways I don't always think about. Some of us have decided to declutter our lives this Easter season. My oldest has chosen to cut back on sweets and tv, while I have taken the x-box and put it away from the boys. For me, I've also chosen to cut back on tv, as well as computer and phone usage. On top of that, I'm trying to eat mostly foods we make ourselves. It's not always easy, but for the most part I've succeeded. It's something I plan to continue striving for, so I don't feel like I'm "cheating" or "guilty" when I do indulge in something. The fact is, I'm doing it way less and it has certainly impacted me and my children in a good way. I'm thankful that we've been able to support each other in our choices and to lift each other up and encourage each other in the areas we felt needed work. Now for that to spread through out the whole of each of our relationships!