Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Home Education Week Post #4: A Recipe For Success

It is also National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day! So share a recipe…figuratively, as in two parts love, one part creativity, or literally, as in a super quick, nutritious meal your kids scarf up. Think about what you do in the day, what helps keep it organized and you sane (or how you got past that need for organization and saneness!), and curriculum materials you find effective.

Today as I was thinking about what I would post for this question, I thought about how I really had nothing "successful" to say-- and certainly wasn't feeling like the fount of wisdom in that department as I dealt with fussy, cranky children who are tired of being cooped up with a crippled mom, and a foot that is not healing as fast as I would like, etc. I thought of being really witty and posting something about all of this being a recipe for disaster, not success. But then, well, that would just be depressing now wouldn't it?

And then today, as I sat around the table with my children and made myself do school with them, I remembered something my friend Lysa used to always say: Time means "Take Initiative for Meaningful Experiences." And I realized that today, that was my recipe:

Initiative for

Whenever I give my children the gift of my TIME, I never regret it and I always reap far more than I sow. Without exception. And yet, I am a slow learner and get so caught up in the daily busyness of life. Even with being laid up these past few weeks, I have still found distractions that keep me from focusing on them. I forget that right now I have TIME-- to play games and cuddle on the bed, to read book after book after book and have long conversations. We might not be taking elaborate field trips or making messy, involved crafts. But, I am finding, I don't need to.

I just need to sit around the table with them and read about Jesus feeding the five thousand and why He told us not to worry. I need to read books about how robins come in spring and reminisce about the day we pulled into the driveway a few weeks ago and there was about fifty robins (no lie!) in our yard. And how that's when I knew spring was here to stay. I need to help a little boy look up hot air balloons on the internet so he can get some ideas for how to decorate one on paper for his art lesson. I need to request some books on hot air balloons at the library because just searching for them has ignited an interest-- a bunny trail for us to go down. I need to be present in their lives, appreciating the now I have been given and investing all I have to give while I can. I need to take TIME, which is so, so precious and fleeting and the one thing we all have the same amount of, every day.

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Dana said...

Very beautiful insights, Marybeth. And that is the one thing we always seem to clutter up, too.

Julie said...

I am enjoying all of your posts on Home Education... and can relate to so much of what you expressed. Especially "seeking approval", "not having it all figured out" and "using the gift of time"-- wonderful things to work on!

Marye said...

I loved this post..thanks.

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

So very true! I have been finding it easier and easier to let myself be distracted and to not give them my time and attention.
Thank you for your beautiful post, it really spoke to me.

Marybeth said...

Just testing to see if I can post on my own blog... I got a note that someone was having trouble so I thought I would get on and try for myself!

To all who might read this, thank you so much for reading and for commenting. I read every one and savor every word. It's good to know you all are "out there" and that something I write hits home.