Monday, December 14, 2009
This morning I made my usual run to the post office and again left my car unlocked for my brief trip inside to check my PO box. When I walked back to the car just moments later, I noticed an older woman about to get in my car! SO funny! Poor thing was embarassed and confused as to why there was a black umbrella on her front seat. She wondered if her granddaughter had left her umbrella in the car. When I looked at her car, which was parked beside mine, it wasn't hard to see why she would get in mine. Identical in size and color, it was an easy mistake for anyone to make.
Next time I go to the post office I'll make sure to lock my car. Or maybe I'll just leave it there unlocked to fool some other unsuspecting soul!
Friday, August 21, 2009
as "Finding our niche -- Change of plans is core to homeschooling success"
As summer winds down and the start of a new school year approaches, parents hustle to finish their last minute back-to-school shopping and revamp their schedules to accommodate the schedule changes that are inevitable. Most parents will breathe a sigh of relief when the last child heads out the door to school. However, when my son gets on the bus and heads off to high school, I will be sad because his new beginning will signal the end of one of the best years of my life.
As a family new to homeschooling, we fumbled our way through our first year. My daughter took to the new routine and flexibility like a duck to water. My son, on the other hand, was just the opposite. Although he started out enthusiastic about learning at home, it didn’t take long for him to feel as though he were missing out on something, and for me to figure out that what works for one child does not necessarily work for another.
Homeschool has provided many benefits for our family that extend beyond mere academics. Our children have learned how to work through sibling conflicts, look at others less critically because we have had time to discuss their impressions of other people, and recognize that blessings come in many forms. They have learned that money doesn’t grow on trees and that it is indeed more blessed to give than receive. While most of their learning came from the textbooks and computer programs they used, they developed an appreciation for all they could learn from God’s classroom as we took nature walks and field trips.
As a parent I grew more convinced than ever that my children are special and unique. Not only did the differences in their learning styles present challenges to me as a teacher, but they also helped me understand that in order for learning to be maximized, it should be tailored to the needs of the student. In facing my own challenges, I gained a new appreciation for teachers everywhere and realized that the demands of their career are endless.
Homeschool is not for the faint of heart, nor is it for everyone. But I am absolutely convinced that if your heart leads you to educate your children at home, you should embrace the adventure and see where it will take you. We discovered along the way that our son performs better in a traditional classroom; therefore, we are sending him back to school this fall. Does this mean that we failed as a homeschool family? Not at all. We learned more about each other this year than if our children had been in a more traditional school. Part of that learning involved realizing and accepting that we each have a niche, a place in this world where we can excel and be effective as students, as parents, and as individuals.
Whether you homeschool your children or not, make it a point to truly get to know them this year. Be involved in their education and take an interest in their friends and their activities. If our children are to excel and succeed in their endeavors, whether academically, vocationally, or athletically, they will need the love and support of their parents and family. Help them find their niche and give them wings to fly.
Monday, March 9, 2009
God is good and protected us every step of the way, showing Himself particularly faithful when I had a car wreck on our last night in Orlando. Although the guy who hit me suffered some measureable body damage to his car, mine escaped any visible signs of damage, and the kids and I were not hurt. There were a couple of moments when I was afraid he might pummel me in front of my kids, since he was using profanity constantly and opened his trunk to pull out a crowbar so he could pop out his fender. He seemed determined not to call the police, and since there was no damage to my car, I didn't press the issue. I was content just to get away from him. I'm sure he woke up the next morning wishing we had at least swapped insurance info -- his car was a mess.
I know I have to hit the ground running this week as we resume our normal schedule of homeschool, allergy shots, music lessons, and such. I will miss the ocean and my siblings, but truly there is no place like home.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Favorite rides at Epcot: Mission: Earth and Test Track. (We rode both twice.)
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Last night we capped off our Hollywood Studios (formerly Disney-MGM Studios) tour by attending the American Idol Experience finale show. It was so cool! The set is like the one you see on tv and the program has a host and three judges. Ryan Seacrest makes a couple of video appearances, as do former idol winners who are there to encourage the contestants. There were seven finalists -- all of them very good singers -- selected through an audition process during the day. At the finale show, the audience got to pick the winner using a voting device mounted on the arm of our chairs. It was high-tech and fun. Favorite ride for Disney Hollywood Studios: Rock 'n Rollercoaster.
Video Clip of Chris & Joy on Primeval Whirl
Monday, March 2, 2009
Chris, Joy, and I hit the majority of major attractions at the park, including Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Pirates of the Caribbean, Jungle Cruise, etc. We really had a phenomenal time. I even rode the teacups, which I hesitate to do because of motion sickness on "spinning rides." Thought you might like to see a video of the kids having a really great time!
Tomorrow we head to Disney Animation Studios, then to Animal Kingdom on Wednesday and Epcot on Thursday (Lord willing).