Routine. We thrive on it here on Frank Corner. After being “out of school” for over two weeks in observance of Christmas Vacation, I realized something: Children do not need two weeks off of school. They just don’t. (I can almost hear my inner child scream at this betrayal.) This was true of my oldest son who attends a local private school, and of my three youngest children whom I endeavor to educate at home.
For two weeks, we simply weren’t sure what to put our hands and minds to. Seriously, how much Netflix can one family watch? Sleeping in has its occasional place in our lives, but it gets awkward to have to explain to Daddy daily why we’re all still in our pajamas when he gets home from work. And it was uncommonly cold here in Indiana, so playing outside was simply not an option.
Once we were back to the dining room table to do lessons on January 9th (yeah, my oldest didn’t go back to school until the month was nearly half over! What gives, Emmanuel Christian School?!), the children looked at me like I was a monster when I explained that we had to do Math, and Reading, and Spelling all in the same morning. This, already after they had practiced their instruments? Mean Mommy. But once it was finally over, and we put all our books and worksheets away in our crates, we called it a good day. (“Good” in this instance refers to any homeschool day when only two children cry and Mommy doesn’t.)
It was then that I realized how hard a break in the routine is for my children…and for me. I do enjoy a season of rest to celebrate with loved ones or to catch up on sleep or reading or Netflix originals. But “just enough” is always better than “too much”. Now that we’re back in the swing of things, I sense a satisfying peace in our home. Our routine gives us a greater sense of boundaries, a standard for accomplishment, and appropriate parameters for rest and relaxation.
And so, today starts a new routine. A new way to accomplish what I said I would accomplish before homeschooling consumed my life. We’ll call it: Mondays at Modoc’s. I hope this one hour break on Monday afternoons while two of my children are at their piano lesson will allow me to accomplish one of my goals for 2017- blog for the adoring masses. Well, the masses anyway. Or is it the adoring few? Or is just my mom? Regardless, for the cost of a regular coffee and a steamed milk for my daughter my joy, I purchase one hour dedicated to the blog every week. Worth it.
And to you, (Mom, I assume) thank you for allowing me the hiatus for homeschooling, a break from writing that was much needed. I hope you’ll continue to read every week, month, or every so often. Life certainly never slows down here on Frank Corner. Well..unless we’re watching Netflix, of course.