I’m going to try to start writing a Weekly Wrap-Up post like the ones Kris of Weird, Socialized Unschoolers does. Hopefully, this will help me keep track of what we do and also give you a glimpse of how our life is. I also want to “keep it real” here on the blog and let you know that we don’t live perfect lives and that I struggle every single day to be the wife, mother and home educator my family needs me to be. So I’m also going to do this post “7 Quick Takes” style ala Jen of Conversion Diary. 🙂
Monday: We celebrated the Feast of the Epiphany on this day instead of Sunday, because we spent Sunday with my sister and her family before they went back to Brunei. Here’s our latest family photo, taken on New Year’s Day (can you see Anne sleeping?):
In the morning we prepared our “gifts” for the Christ Child — simple snacks to be shared with streetkids. We had a quick lunch then went to the kids’ pedia as Tim and Rysse were just getting over a cough and cold, and Anne had it too. Rysse vomited on Sunday when she was at my parents’ place, so I wanted to be sure that everything was OK with all the kids. (Am I the only panicky/praning mom who does things like that? With the current measles outbreak here in the Philippines, it’s better to be safe than sorry, right?)
After the pedia, we went to the nearest commercial area (near Gateway Mall in Cubao) and gave out our “gifts” for the Christ Child. I was so proud of the kids because normally, they would have been shy and not want to be the ones to hand out the paper bags with snacks. I really pray it was an Epiphany experience for them, as much as it was for me! We went home afterwards and had a “Three Kings Treasure Hunt.” The kids had to answer questions based on the Epiphany and got three new sets of blocks for their collection. Sometimes I wish building with blocks would count as homeschooling each and every day! Ha, ha! 🙂
On Tuesday, Anthony and I celebrated eight years of wedded bliss. He surprised me with a bouquet of flowers. 🙂 We planned to go to Mass after he came home from work but then Rysse surprised us with vomiting and LBM episodes! Whew! Anne was extra clingy too. And Anthony wasn’t feeling too good either. So we ended up not going to Mass, “schooling” with Legos, Kre-o and MegaBloks, and a few Brain Quest workbook (Grade 2) pages for Tim, though he’s technically still in Grade 1.
Thank God Rysse didn’t vomit anymore! What a unique way to spend our anniversary — caring for our sick kids! Well, we did vow to love each other in sickness and in health, right? So I guess that includes the sickness of the fruit of our marriage, i.e. our kids! Anthony wasn’t feeling too well either but was still a great trooper about everything, as I mentioned in this post about striving for perfect love, which, to me, includes servant love as a component. After all, how can we say that we love someone if we are not willing to serve him or her?
Wednesday was our official first “school day” of the year, our attempt to get back into the groove. It was a slow start but at least we got to accomplish stuff. Anne is a good crawler now, and can also stand and cruise (!!!) a bit, so it’s extra challenging to do other things like housework. I need to remember that chores can wait, but time with the kids can’t and shouldn’t. This season when they are young and depend on us a lot and need to be constantly reminded about this or that and disciplined and discipled? This, too, shall pass. I need to remember that.
We also had someone come over this day to help do a general cleaning of the house. She cooked for us, too, so I didn’t have to worry about dinner and our meals for the next day. I think I am going to get her to come in once every week, instead of the originally planned bi-weekly schedule. 🙂
Anthony still wasn’t feeling well on Thursday, so he took the day off (and ended up staying home on Friday too). Despite his not feeling well, he still helped out with some of our daily to-do’s here at home. I feel guilty about him not getting so much rest, but that’s what servant love is, right? He was able to nap while the kids and I watched some saint videos though — thank God for creative Catholics who come up with such things! 😉
Tim learned about the Morning Offering (several versions of which you can find here) and I was reminded of my need to do the same thing every morning — to offer my days (and nights) to Jesus.
Friday was a dramatic day for all of us. We had a “bad” morning where I ended up saying things I totally regret now, particularly to one child. Thank God Anthony was home and helped “diffuse” the situation. Like I told you before here and elsewhere, I am totally not a perfect mom. So I had to start all over again on my “Orange Rhino” goal the next day, Saturday. *sigh* I was tired, yes, but it’s no excuse, right? I need to be more selfless when it comes to my kids, and my husband, too.
Going back to our homeschooling, well, we were able to do some formal work in the afternoon. One of my homeschoolers made an announcement on this day, too: “I quit lessons!” Eek. Does that mean I’m doing things wrong? *sigh* So I started doubting (again!) if homeschooling is what’s best for our family and then came across this video on my social network feeds:
Totally put everything back into perspective! 😉 The more seasoned homeschoolers I know said that the “I quit lessons” phase and the “Let’s do our lessons so I can get it over with” phase are exactly that — phases! (Let’s hope and pray.)
Speaking of selflessness and servant love, this post by Matt Walsh about how your life is over when you have kids is a must-read, in my humble opinion. Here’s an excerpt:
“So I get it. My kids aren’t my life. But I’m not my life, either. I was at one time, or I thought I was, but not anymore. And their lives are eternally tied to mine, and mine to their, and every decision that I make will have an impact on them, for better or for worse. This is a responsibility that I must always keep in mind, all of the time, no matter what.
It’s not my life. It’s hers, it’s his, it’s theirs, it’s ours. Ultimately, it’s His, and He has given it to them. So my life — MY life — is over.
This is true. This is beautiful. This is why parenting is a high calling.”
You HAVE to read Matt’s post, people! Especially if you’re a parent. Seriously. I love how he can write about issues in a practical, down-to-earth way, expressing his Catholic beliefs without being explicit about them. (Yes, he’s a devout Catholic, as he says in this interview.)
Saturday found us busy with stuff that was mostly for the kids — Anne’s check-up, medicine and grocery shopping. We weren’t able to bring the older kids to Kindermusik because (1) Anthony still wasn’t feeling so well, and (2) Anne wasn’t so OK either, and we didn’t want to expose her to more germs. It was another tiring day but one full of new hope, new beginnings, servant love. Although I do have a confession to make: I fell asleep last night in my pangalis clothes… you know, the clothes you wear when you go out as opposed to the clothes you wear at home?
So here I am, at the end of the week. wondering what next week has in store for us. Which is why I loved reading this post about how “I can’t do it” — it helped put things in perspective for me again. I need to be grateful for these busy, blessed days with little kids. And thank God every day for them.
To end, I just want to share one of the highlights of this week: I have started including the kids in meal preparation, and they’re slowly learning how to cook! 🙂 Yey!
So how was your week, friends? Come share!