Not to sound so darn cliche, but I can't believe it's Christmas Eve. Even though we've been inundated with the white stuff, somehow I still don't get that Christmas feeling, even though we are so on top of this gig. I think part of it stems from not watching TV or being heavily engaged in pop/consumer culture. We've been listening to a lot of radio, however, and the Christmas buying spirit is alive and well. Whatever be the case, the kids are thrilled to pieces.
In fact, even though I'm cynical about it at times, the Christmas spirit is alive and well in our house, and I'm glad. Children should have magic in their lives, and as parents it's within our powers to help that along, even if I find the whole Santa Claus thing a little complex to deal with. If your kids are reasonably astute, they must see through the whole charade since there are so many holes in the story. It is impressive how the whole legend and mystique of Santa Claus has been formed and promoted through the years.
We spent most of the day inside yesterday because temps were hovering around -10 degrees, if you can believe that. I had to go out and finish some stuff, but the kids decided to hang out inside and play with Legos and read books. It was an awesome day, and once again, they behaved well. We made chocolate chip cookies and I think we've figured out (sort of) the problem with burning the darn things-something that really irks me. We seem to burn a tray or two of them, and it ruins my day. The solution? Move the racks up higher to they're further removed from the heat. Duh! One solution would be to bake one tray at a time and place it on the highest rack, but that would take more time and be less energy efficient. Either way, we achieve pretty good results and we're happy with it.
My wife has been working furiously on her grant, but will stay home the next couple of days, so it'll be nice having family time at home. We got a nice message from A telling us that C misses the kids and that they've been too busy to come over. The reason this is key is because A called her two days ago and has been waiting with bated breath to hear from her. They are busy people, and she never heard from them. She's good about it, but I could tell it bummed her out. How else can you feel when your best friend doesn't call back?
Either way, it was nice of her to let us know, and she says that she's vowed to spend more time at home so the kids can play, but in the end, you do what you gotta do.
I'm still feeling my way through the homeschool gig, but one thing I love about it is when things click and you somehow feel vindicated-not that this is a requirement. First of all, N has become increasingly interested in learning, and yesterday he even wanted to do more work just for the sake of doing it. How cool is that? He's really coming along, and he works hard and feels pride in a job well done. A is amazing, she really loves to learn. The math and english are pretty straightforward, it's the history and government that are truly challenging. We've been chipping away at health and science is very accessible, and just yesterday we touched on government as a way to segue into history/social studies. Again, I have no clue what I'm doing, but that often leads to the best result. The key I've found is to take it slowly and spark interest in the subject. We'll see how it goes.
One great thing that makes me look at the kids in awe is that they're really showing interest in music. I can't even begin to tell you how happy this makes me. N picks up his guitar every day and strums it, as does A, but to a lesser degree. A's thing is the keyboard, and it really stokes me when she sits and tries to figure out songs, and she's good. Very patient. I think the keyboard is good in that way, straightforward with immediate gratification and less pain. I hope they stick with it, and it inspires me to pick up my guitar and play, as well.
Just wanted to take a moment to say thanks for Susan for her supportive words and to Gary for being my mentor.
There's so much to say, but so little time. I've resolved to write more to AC in the hopes of making some pocket change to finance rock climbing, bowling, and ice skating for the kids. It ain't much, but it's something, and it is writing.
Until the next time, thanks for reading.