Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Marathon Morning and Family Harmony

Wow, we had quite the day, yesterday, almost of all of it spent in the kitchen. We managed to bake bagels, two loaves of bread, a tray of brownies (for the Kenyan orphans benefit), and some cornbread casserole for supper. The bread stuff is what kills you, all that kneading. I made a point of having the kids help out so that they get their hands on something meant to help people in need, because at their age it's all so abstract, but just getting a sense of how other people live is still a good experience. This is where travel really makes a big impression.

The kids are always so willing to help out in the kitchen, and though it makes things challenging at times, I really like the idea of them having a sense of what they eat. It's just a glimpse, because in the end, they have no idea what goes into providing three healthy meals a day, but they should also retain some of the innocence of childhood. That's what being a kid is all about.

By some miracle, amidst all the chaos, I has also managed to be consistent with our homeschooling. It doesn't take too much time, and you can make it fun by making it interesting. Plug the fundamentals a little bit each day, and make some effort to find fun or interesting projects and things can really move along. We have been focusing on health even though I really wanted to get some national and state history in there. I really need to work on Vermont history.

The problem I have, something that has haunted me my entire life, is that if things are lined up perfectly, I shut down and get nothing done. The beauty is, nothing ever lines up perfectly, so nothing gets done. Subsequently, I fall back on what's easy and familiar, which is not wholly bad since we are getting things done, but I need to deal with this. I wanted to get some more done on the Constitution and the Continental Congress, but I don't have too many resources. Then again, I'm just making excuses and just got an idea-the internet.

My wife and I had a bit of a spat on Tuesday night, and it stemmed from me acting like a big baby. I woke up on Wednesday expecting an uncomfortable home environment, but we usually, not always, but almost 9 times out of 10, wake up hoping to reconcile and work things out. It's actually awesome, because order is restored, we take a long moment to reflect on the conflict, and we work it out. So far, so good. It stems from our love for eachother and our family, because in the end, that is what it is all about. It's a wonderful feeling when you're full of regret and remorse and your wife is on the same page as you. My previous m.o. was always to draw it out and play games, and that is so stupid and such a waste of time, and in the end, we don't have time for that.

Either way, in a strange and perverse way, spats tend to draw us closer together. If anything, they force us to think about life once again, rather than walk around like drones on auto pilot. Having children goes a long way to this effect.

There are times that I feel so unworthy of my family, but it drives me to be the best possible father and person that I can possibly be. But it doesn't happen in a vacuum, you have to be open to the idea that you'll grow as a family, and the only way that happens is to spend time together and acknowledge your shortcomings. And compromise.

Until the next time, thanks for reading.

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