Today was very nearly the perfect day...and I didn't even eat any chocolate! It was just one of those days where everything seemed to finally come together in various areas of my life. If you'll indulge me, I'll share...
Lucan wakes at 4:30 a.m. (This has been roughly his first meal of the day, anytime between 4:30 and 5:30. I actually don't mind. We put him down around 8:30 or 9 p.m. and are in bed not too long afterward. I've been sleeping so soundly that by the time he's finished nursing, I'm actually rarin' to go!) I put Lucan back down (he's already asleep by now) and get ready for an early morning run. The air is moist and quite cool; I almost wish I had gloves. The sky is so clear--I can see Orion and hundreds of other stars, so many more than I ever saw in Las Vegas.
My feet pound the pavement on what has become one of my favorite routes. It's really one of the only ways I can run this early in the morning, since there are no street lights here and I rely on the lights from the little lampposts in each yard. (Phooey to those folks who leave their homes shrouded in darkness...don't they realize I'm trying to run here?!) The route is a perfect 30-minute run and gets me home in time for a good stretch while reading the newspaper, followed by a nice quiet time with some hot tea.
Now it's time for a shower. Ah, a kink in my day already--Lucan is awake again, and it's not even 7:00. I prefer for his feedings to be at least 3 to 3 1/2 hours apart, so I briefly contemplate seeing if he'll settle himself back down, but then I hear Kenna also. I dash upstairs to get her out of the crib before she wakes Charis (who often unzips her crib tent and stumbles back to her own bed to go back to sleep) and discover the reason Kenna is already awake: she soaked through her diaper, jammies, and sheets. Well, I suppose I'd wake early too. I take her and Lucan downstairs, get her cleaned up, and find that Lucan has pooped. No wonder he woke early! I should have known...he's had blowouts every morning since Saturday. Thankfully this one is contained in his diaper.
A baby DVD started for Kenna, Lucan in his bouncy seat in my bathroom, and I am ready to shower. Quickly! I don't trust Kenna for long, and Lucan may very well decide he's ready for his second breakfast after all. Sure enough, he is ready to eat again by the time I'm dressed, so I feed him as Kenna finishes her "God Made Me" movie. Then we girls have our breakfast, as has become our habit; Kenna is pretty much ready for cereal before she makes it down the stairs, so I'm pretty fortunate that she allowed me to complete my shower. It's kind of nice having breakfast with a toddler who can feed herself--she's much more interested in eating than talking, giving me a chance to eat in peace while doing the daily crossword and skimming the paper. Lucan gurgles beside me in the exersaucer and goes down for a nap after I finish eating.
At 8:00 I go to wake the older kids, who are still zonkered. They very much enjoyed chapter 2 of Red Sails to Capri that we read outside on our back deck last night and would have stayed up longer listening if we had let them, but I see now that our decision to get them to bed was wise.
After breakfast I inform the kids we're trying something a little different, a transitional approach as I try to work my way into doing workboxes--probably not the way Sue would want me to, but I must do what I need to for our family and environment. I've been googling ideas and thinking and praying about how to organize our homeschool day, and I think some version of this system is for us--I'm just not quite ready to implement it all yet. So in the meantime we're working on following instructions, working independently, and maintaining order during the morning school session! I hand out printed checklists for the kids with 8 different activities on them. I tell them that after 3 assignments are complete, they may choose a "Funvelope," a closed envelope with an activity inside. (Today the 3 funvelopes contain a spelling game, Tangrams, and headphones with instructions to watch some fun and educational videos from a great website I would set them at).
The morning progresses very smoothly. I actually find myself with time on my hands to finish my crossword! I have a good one-on-one language arts time with Arden plus check everyone's math and language work without feeling frazzled or pulled in various directions. I smile to myself when I hear an exclamation of delight upon the finding of a fun new task to do.
We finish school before 11:00, so I have time to put some ingredients in the breadmaker for a new loaf of wheat bread. (We finished the last of the bread when the kids had toast this morning.) Charis and Arden wash the empty containers for our Happy Box so we can be sure to set it out by 4 p.m. Then it's time to warm up leftovers for lunch. The kids eat while I read a book about safety regarding strangers that I checked out from the library last week. We discuss safety measures, and then we take advantage of the gorgeous weather and head outside for "PE." The kids ride bikes and run around while I chat with Debi on the phone, the first time in quite awhile that we've talked. It's good to catch up, and we visit 20-30 minutes before I take the kids inside. Tobin vacuums the kitchen floor, and then we watch the rest of a sign language DVD we got from the library. It's a pretty good one, and I'm thrilled that I learn some new signs while feeling that I remember quite a bit. The kids enjoy it, too, begging for one more session until we actually finish the program.
Kenna and I read Bible stories together, and then she's ready for her nap. Lucan goes down also, and finally the rest of us are ready for Sonlight reading. First I quickly mop the kitchen floor, and then we gather on the couch to finish up Timeline figures from Core 1 (!!!) and do readings from Bible, history, and science. Not even finished with week one and already we're in love with Core 2.
In the afternoon I talk with a neighbor friend and ask her if she will schedule a Stampin' Up! party for me. She agrees and we set the date for September 24. Woohoo! More playtime outside--I've already put together tonight's casserole, so I enjoy chatting with another neighbor while her son, who has Down's Syndrome, jumps with my boys and Kenna on the trampoline with the sprinkler going underneath.
It's been a great day. Now the kids are in bed and I'm about to nurse Lucan for the last time before bedtime (it's 8:30 now). I know not every day of homeschool or business activities will go so smoothly, so I smile and thank God for the little blessings when they do.