May 16, 2016 by Courtney
It’s been a little while since I’ve posted on here. I have been taking a break and journaling personally as I worked through some things. I can say right now that I am feeling much better with my anxiety, and my hyperventilation syndrome is under control (for now). I’m “holding my breath” because I know it can come back. I really feel that the medicine that the doctor put me on has made a huge difference because it stopped after about a week of being on the meds (over the course of a few days). I also think all of the processing and working through things has made a huge difference (and talking through homeschool things with a friend here who has been homeschooling a long time).
We decided to go ahead and start summer. When I first started homeschooling I just *knew* I would homeschool year around and just take breaks as we needed. But it came more and more clear as we were going along that Ethan was struggling. He was becoming more and more frustrated. I decided to move him back to level 1 of the reading that we were doing and he was even struggling with that. I knew at that moment that it was time. He needs a break. So, I called it. I have been going back and forth, but the decision has been made. We might start school early, though (July). We’ll see.
The kids have been through so much this year. We moved 6 1/2 hours away from what they have known as home for many years. We started homeschooling last summer and stopped because I decided they needed a break. I went through a severe bout of depression, and I’m sure they felt it. I ended up putting them in school because of this depression. I now regret that decision, but that was the best I could do at the time. I think, now, that putting them in school actually made Ethan slip further behind. His reading is not near where it was this time last year. I don’t know for sure. I could be wrong. I don’t have any other explantation, though.
My plan for the summer is to start out with them just reading 20 minutes per day, then I might add in some math fact practice over time. I’m going to keep it light, but I don’t want them to lose any skills. Today went really well and they each read to their stuffed animal. It was fun. Ethan didn’t even complain much. He chose the books and he actually seem to read them better than the reading book with the curriculum. Levi read so well. He read 3 books with ease that I thought would be too hard for him. Oh, and we have a subscription to ABC Mouse, and they enjoy that! Karis is reading her favorite book series again. I guess I can’t complain. She reads all the time. And if it’s the same series over and over, she’s still reading. Plus, it improves fluency and comprehension to read over and over again.
They play outside the majority of the day. It’s so beautiful right now so it is perfect. We have to keep them with-in our yard (because of some poor decisions on their part), but they seem to find plenty to do with-in their boundaries (we have a large yard with no fence). Right now they are mixing dirt and water to make “cement” and Ethan is using it to make a “road.” Ethan and Levi love playing with their cars in the dirt and mud. They’re a mess, but they’re being kids. It’s perfect.
When they do play inside, I am learning to embrace the mess that they leave behind. I am learning a balance with this. I can’t handle a mess all the time. So. They play and make a mess, then they take 10-15 minutes to clean it up. It works well.
We will probably spend a lot of time at my parents’ this summer. It’s nice and relaxing there and the kids can swim in their pool all they want. It’s also a great way to get away from the craziness of camp during the summer. We love it here, but it can be a bit much sometimes.
Summer has officially started here, with the summer staff moving in yesterday. We had a blast last night welcoming them with dinner, speaking, worship, and introductions of the full time staff and their families. I don’t know how much I can be involved because of the kids, but I will do my best. We will be a part of something call a HAF (home-away-from) home. A group of students will come here to have a meal that isn’t a dining hall meal. It’s real fun! We got to know some summer staff last summer that are back this year. It’ll be good to see them as well. Karis and Ethan will be going to camp the first week of camps and they are so excited this year. Last year they were super scared and nervous, but this year they can’t wait!
Well I keep trying to upload some pictures and wordpress won’t let me. If you’ve read this far, thanks for reading! This is just a little update of what’s been going on around here.