Mar 26, 2010

The thinkings of a mind trapped inside

I decided today to add up the number of days I felt well in the last month. Unfortunately the number is small enough to add up on one hand. Seriously four days is not enough to feel well in an entire month. Another rough winter for me. Time sucking FB has taught me another lesson though. I post on FB when I am ill, not ever time, but many times. Recently someone messaged me their concerns. Very sweetly they wondered if I had a mold issue in the house, or what else might be going on. My norm is often a little shocking to others. My neighbor and friend once saw me hobble out to the mail box (usually I am better composed before entering into public) and she was on me about what was wrong. I reminded her that this is normal for me and she wondered again what I could do about it. I guess it is a hard concept that sometimes you just have to accept and try to work around issues. Trust me though, I have tried. I fought it with everything I had until the fight had me in a nasty physical state. Everyone has something. My largest problem tends to be my health. New goal: Stop posting when you are ill on FB and remember that it is not just your close friends and family who read your updates. Also, that people do get tired of hearing how much you are sick.

Today I thought I was better. I did more than I have done in the last week in a few hours and then hit the wall. Dang. Of course when the illness is done with my body I will still be left dealing with the symptoms of my ((gulp)) Fibromyalgia and Hypothyroidism (sub-clinical). Labels, labels, labels. I hate using them. I don't ever use those two words. Holistically, and through alternative medicine, I can explain more of what is going on in my body than those words could. They don't explain everything anyways (like my malfunctioning sinus cavities). Day by day I am able to speak what I am feeling. Whether it be the fatigue, a sluggish mobility or pain, I would rather deal with each issue than umbrella these under one diagnosis.

Today I am still ill, and the weather is changing causing quite a bit of fatigue and pain. (Even my fingers hurt.) I have been unable to think away the pain and fatigue and now what do I do? What do I do when I can't mentally overcome what my body feels (aka: ignore it).

Here is what I do: 1)I imagine what it would feel like in my body to have none of these issues. If I rarely got ill, if I never had pain or fatigue. Nick is always joking that I would probably rule the world if I didn't have any health issues! Imagine not having to work past it, imagine going a month (heck a few days would be great) without a sinus infection or an illness. 2) Rather than feeling sad for what I can't have, I now choose to focus on what I have achieved. Look what I get done WITH all my problems. It is really remarkable (yes I am boasting.:)) Look what I have done with my limitations! Blew them out of the water! (Don't gag, just a little positive self-talk.) 3) Remind myself that tomorrow may be better and that I am healthier now than I ever have been. 4) Embrace the pain, acknowledge it, it means you are alive! Tune into it and really feel it. Pain is another part of life that I GET to experience. 5) Remember all those who experience worse and all those who don't get to experience it at all. 6) Bring back the gratitude. I am truly blessed, lucky, and fortunate in life.

This is what I get to work through almost every day and every day is different. Sometimes my relationships suffer (intimate and casual alike) because I can't always be there even though I want to be. And because it is really hard to understand something that you can't see, can't feel, and don't hear about. I am lucky because this has made me so grateful for the things I have. Being able to have children, to be married, to garden, run, bike, etc.. I have to acknowledge that much of the burden of my ailments falls to my husband. I do have days where I just physically can't overcome and he picks up the slack. He does my chores, takes care of the kids, works, does his chores, and carries this family through my bad days. And that is my number 7), the last thing that I think about to keep me from given in: My support!

Mar 21, 2010

Mar 16, 2010

Sample Curriculum

Simple Sample. I created this fill in the blank format to help me organize our weekly curriculum. Lately our rhythms (daily, weekly, dinner, schooling, etc...) have been plummeted into a bit of disorder. Lots of sickness, trips, and Nick's new job have added an element of change. While we are working through the change, the kids love that they have still been able to have a beautiful, rich, soulful, and relaxed homeschool experience.

Here's how I plan our weeks. Usually I try to plan a month to several months at a time. This allows me to fit in every theme that is important to me. I sit with all of my resource books, my master homeschool calendar (which has every birthday, holiday, and special days), my idea planner (with ideas for each season), and the computer.
First I discover if anything special is happening in the week. For example, last week we had St. Patty's Day, the Spring Equinox, and a planned trip to Kansas. This is a powerful time of year, an awakening of sorts. I may need to put together a festival to acknowledge the change.
Next, I see which letter we are working on. Teilee asked me recently to start at the beginning of the alphabet again.
Then I find an appropriate story. Hopefully the story will incorporate the season, the letter, and any other theme happening that week. Stories often come from I also find other picture books that fit the week.
Next come the songs. Having done this for over a year I have some songs, books, stories, and themes already determined. The kids love when they hear a familiar tune, it is something that they can really sink their singing teeth into.
Lastly come any enrichment activities. From crafting to painting to gardening these activities are designed to help encourage a real connection to the lesson.
I strive to link everything together. My goal is for my children to have a deep meaningful connection to their world and its workings. Everything that we do with homeschooling has a purpose and is intentional.
This is a brief overview and it has taken me two years and much support, research, and practice to be able to pull this off. This is for two weeks. Usually it is in a fun, colorful, cheery chart, but it won't format to my blog. (I am seriously bummed that it won't show!!!) Oh well....that's what our imaginations are for!!

SAMPLE: Month March
Week 1
Theme: Letter A & B, Signs of Spring, What’s Brewing Underground
Stories: Bean & Plants, Kate and the Beanstalk, A place to Grow, The Surprise Garden, The Root Children
Songs: Seeds are Stirring,
Supplies/ To Do: Dinosaur Room ABC Banner, Plant Bean Seeds, Apple Necklaces

Letter Walk-A, Slice Apples draw the inside and transform to A
Tues. Apple Necklaces
Wed. Letter Walk B, draw bean seed, soak overnight
Thurs. Draw Bean seed, dissect bean, Plant remaining bean seeds
Friday Nature Walk Day
Sat. Sun.

Week 2
Theme: Spring is Coming, St. Patty’s Day
Stories: Persephone and Demeter
Songs: Spring Songs
Supplies/Activities: Wheat Grass, egg, painting spring scenes

Mon. Wheat Grass, Letter C
Tues. Giant Park, Sally Afternoon
Wed. St. Patty’s Day, Morning networking meeting (playgroup), Letter D walk
Thurs. Spring scenes
Friday Trip to KS
Sat. Equinox

See....wasn't that as beautiful as you imagined it?:)

Mar 14, 2010

Kansas Trip

We had a wild trip! We are back from our two week trip to Kansas. While Daddy started a new job and worked on his big car audio job we had to split town. I had no idea when Nick would be sleeping let alone making time for us and I figured it would be easier for the kids and I to take a long road trip instead. Grandma Lee and Papa have a wonderful home that they were willing to share, awesome meals (all GF) to eat, and a beautiful land to explore. Grandpa Don and Mary live nearby to visit, and we got to see Great Aunt DeeDee. Of course the highlight for Teilee and Landis is always getting to see their cousins! (Thanks to Aunt Kati and Uncle Joe for making them available to us!;)) I love being in Kansas, my mind is less muddled there. I could attribute that to avoiding all other responsibilities except for childcare (no taxes, no finances, no grocery shopping, no organizing, etc...). However, I decided to chalk it up to the clean air, helping hands, beautiful country, down to earth people, and great family!

My new umberella!