"Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
I like the image of Cousin Summer leaving with his knapsack, and Uncle Fall coming in with his books. But the weather is now muggy in addition to being hot, and we cannot expect it to feel like fall in the middle of August.
The school year has begun, nonetheless.
Declaring ourselves "unschoolers" does not free us from the dictates of the school calendar. Daddy is bound to it as a schoolteacher, and therefore we are influenced by it, too.
At church today we had our Sunday School "kickoff" -- an exciting, rather chaotic start to what I hope simply continues to create a love in my children's hearts for the Lord, His Word, His people, and our place of worship.
Tomorrow, local schoolbuses will barrel down our street at 7 a.m., dropping off kids who begin their day with breakfast at school, and stay until homework is done and parents are off work.
Even the public pool has officially declared summer over -- and I can tell you, I am not thrilled about this, since I promised to take the boys and was hoping to go this week.
But after this very busy, fun, messy summer, I have been craving routine and order, even structure. I've been seeking a map to follow to bring peace and quiet and comfort back to our days.
I've read blogs, considered resources, and stared at the mess of magnets on my fridge, trying to figure out how to fit everything in and simplify at the same time.
Fortunately, I remembered exactly where I needed to look first before making any decisions.
Somehow I fell out of our usual sanity-keeping routine. My energy level has improved, but my habits have scrambled to keep up. It's time to start the day with prayer, the Bible, and a shower. Seriously, it's that simple.
While I was contemplating a more structured approach to our learning activities at home, the boys were busy learning without any plans or schooling by me (besides sitting down and reading what they asked me to, or listening to them read what they asked to read).
Over the course of the last week, they "studied" math, phonics, astronomy, history, Bible, poetry and nature study, among other things.
Their "curriculum" sources included Starfall.com, library books, National Geographic channel, Mommy's brain, the front yard, the backyard, Daddy's brain, Usborne Sticker Math, and each other.
Littlest spent several hours two days in a row learning his letters and sounds on Starfall.com. He can now spell "cow."
Eldest and Middlest worked on double-digit addition, and single-digit multiplication via stickers, and then tested each other on the finer points of spelling according the many differing rules of English phonics I've explained along the way.
This is while I was trying to decide whether to sit down and do math and language arts on Tuesdays, Thursdays, or both.
I so appreciate what this blogger has to say about the whole learning thing. And I love the daily priorities she has set for her family.
The truth is, I am a Charlotte Mason-loving unschooler in philosophy. And in temperament, I need routine and rhythm, and a sense of direction guided by Someone bigger than myself.
And so I will continue to gather, and explore, and strew, and make plans, and cancel them. I will aim for Masterly Inactivity. And hopefully get a shower when I need it. Which is definitely every day.
I will follow Jesus as closely as I can, and love my children with all the strength He gives me.