Easing In

This week we started easing in to our school routine. It went amazingly well. I’m not really sure why.

Oh, well, probably because things are still novel and interesting. I’m sure the complaining will start back up again soon.
Here were my goals for the week:

1.  Work on Sleep/Wake Routine.  I wanted to get us sticking to a
consistent bedtime and waking up time. Watching gymnastics until 11 p.m. was
not in the plans, but other than that we did pretty well.  

(I had been trying to get up before the kids to work out, because though I get really irritated at Jillian Michaels yelling at me, at least it wakes me up, and I get my irritation out on her instead of my kids. The Olympics is ruining that plan though, because I have to get to bed earlier. Maybe next week.)

 2. Try out School Schedule/Routine/Checklists – I wanted to see if the schedule I had planned was realistic.  I realized some things worked better in a different
order, so I tweaked the routine a bit. (For example, I decided to do Bible with breakfast in the kitchen and go on our walk right afterwards.)

I wanted to get the kids into their new habits.  For example, math is in the
kitchen with Mom; if it’s not your math time, you need to stay out of the

No, really, you need to stay out of the kitchen.

I know you want to see what we’re doing, yes, but it’s not your turn right now, so you seriously need to stay out of the kitchen.

Sometimes it takes a while to get the idea.

3. Discipline. The six- and eight- year old did pretty well, but we still worked on the concepts of a) listening to me when I was talking b) giving a respectful answer and c) actually doing what I asked.  They weren’t being blatantly disrespectful, they just needed some practice.

My  two-year-old, however, was being blatantly disrespectful. We worked on all kinds of
things: sitting quietly at meals and not yelling or banging his fork, not yelling
“Mommy, you’re mean!” not telling me no when I ask him to do something, and not
throwing baseballs at his brother.

He went to his pack-n-play a lot this week.

But that’s okay; it’s to be expected. He has to learn that he really does have to obey. We had lots of sweet cuddle and reading time too, but I know I have to let him know I mean what I say or the whole year will go downhill.

We’ll work on it for a few weeks, but that part should get better as he learns what to expect.


Those were my main goals. I didn’t really care if we got any school done.

But you know what? We got SO much school done! I think because I wasn’t stressed about it, and I just made sure we did our routine each day, we actually accomplished a lot. Go figure!

Also, I didn’t have a car so we were stuck at home all week.

I think this was a good thing. I wasn’t able to decide to go to the park (and take myself by Starbucks on the way) or go do whatever else because I thought it sounded like more fun. It was actually lovely.

I’m seriously considering asking my kids to hide my keys every other week so we would be forced to stay home. Or maybe my husband could hide the keys, so that I’d have hope of ever finding them again.

Anyway, it was a great week. We just sort of slowly worked through our day, stopping when we needed to for birthday parties in the hallway.

Despite Monkey’s lingering double-sprained-ankle injury, she had a lovely time.

(This is the Monkey for whom my daughter wanted to buy a rolling bin as a wheelchair. Poor Monkey has had to soldier through without it.)

All in all, a lovely week.  Now, don’t misunderstand me, we still had plenty of tears, fighting, messes and issues. But it’s getting easier as the kids get older.

(I was talking to a mom last night who will be embarking on her second year of homeschooling. She was telling how hard last year was and I told her, “Yeah, the first year is just terrible. I mean, it’s great too, but it’s so ridiculously hard. It gets easier. This year will be so much better.” So that’s what I’m saying. It gets easier.)

Here’s an example: I had a brainstorm Monday morning that maybe I could read the Bible on the kitchen couch while the kids ate their breakfast (peanut butter and jelly sandwiches). I didn’t actually expect it to work.

Last year Bible time was an exercise in frustration, people crying, fighting over who got to sit in my lap, spilled milk, and my toddler trying to fling himself backwards off the couch just for fun. It was horrible. Almost every day.

But this week, do you know what they did? They sat. They listened. (My toddler whined about wanting to read David and Goliath every day, but eventually he acquiesced.) They ate their breakfasts.

I’m still in shock.

So. There you go. I’m not sure I’m actually living in my house, and I’m not sure how long this will last, but so far, so good.




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