Martha! Martha! Martha! Martha!
Planners, to-do lists, schedules.
School, chores, activities, church, work, birthdays, baby showers.
So much to do. So little time.
As some of you may know, I really tried to incorporate a summer filled with busy activities and new ideas to keep us out of a lack-of-schedule summer rut. If you didn't catch that post, you can find it here ;). So as we kick off a new school year, I am reflecting on the summer. This summer I really learned to let go and not try to get stuck in task mode and truly enjoy these days with my kids because as Jude is approaching 7 and my baby girl is approaching 2 (fall birthdays y'all- I feel like I should mention I am not southern. Southern California and Southwest Missouri, but not a true southern), the saying, "the days are long but the years are short" is bringing tears to this Mama's eyes! I truly want to look back 20 years from now knowing that I enjoyed these years and didn't get too caught up in tasks and crazy days that might rob us of connecting and forming valuable relationships that are essential during these foundational years.
Honestly, the summer feels like a complete blur to me. I try to think back to what happened these last 3 months and only a couple key moments stick out in my mind. Praise the Lord for Instagram, am I right?! (see what I did there ;) I always say that I will never apologize for posting too many pictures on Instagram because Alzheimers and dementia run in my family and I don't seem to remember certain moments until I look at a picture, and even then it is hard to remember. Also, Instagram solved all my scrapbooking guilt problems. So thank you IG.
This summer we discovered new places, enjoyed some old favorites and while I felt like we were running non-stop and the house was always a disaster, I discovered something so much more valuable than staying in the house and making sure the laundry was folded and the dishes were put away.
Discovering new places, being outside in nature and staying connected with others in real life keeps us focused on the present, while being reminded of the promise of the future.
I am positive my house was messier this summer than it has ever been (you can verify that with my hubby) and it made me crazy at times. I am so type-A that when the house is a mess, it makes me stressed and mean. Take the good with the bad? Blah.
One word. BALANCE.
Summer was not even halfway over and I started becoming anxious trying to figure out how in the world I could keep this magic of discovery, learning, connecting and getting out of the house when we started up our homeschool routine. Martha here (that's me) has our schedule booked solid every day with all of our necessary tasks that it does not even leave room for the extra. Or the fun. And can you imagine the disaster that could unfold not even half way through our school year if I am this task-master teacher that is stressed out all the time because I am trying to figure out how to fit in all the "must-do" items.
Burnout. Tears. Damaged relationships. Have you been there? Me too. That is why I knew I needed to find a better solution.
This year we are doing #fielddayfriyay. We will go somewhere on Fridays and talk and learn and discover and it will be ok. No, it will be awesome. We will still get in our school hours, the rest of the week will have routine and consistency, but on Fridays, we are going to connect and break away from all the tasks.
Because homeschooling is not just about doing school at home. It is about connecting with the hearts of your children and building character, morals, integrity, curiosity and love.
Last Friday we enjoyed our first #fielddayfriyay and we walked our neighborhood trail to a hidden gem. We have a little place called the Missouri Institute of Natural Science about a mile from our house. Several years ago a cave was discovered and they found great pieces of artifacts and fossils from our little corner of the midwest. As we walked we talked about creation, the importance of a personal relationship with Jesus, gaining wisdom, knowledge and discernment that can only come from the Lord, the beauty of nature and of course dead bugs and dog poop. Haha, it wouldn't be a walk with small children without those kinds of conversations. We were also able to weave the things we had talked about this week for school into our walk.
It felt right. You know those moments that you just want to bottle up and repeat over and over? This was one of those. So we are making it a weekly part of our homeschool.
Will you join us? I would love to hear how you all incorporate adventure and stay connected so you do not burn out that Mom as teacher to child relationship. If you are on Instagram or Facebook, be sure to follow me and share your adventures with the hashtag #fielddayfriyay. I look forward to staying connected and encouraging each other in our homeschool journey!
"These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." — Deuteronomy 6:6-7