September is well upon us now and we began school last week. I debated about whether to wait another week, but decided to go ahead and get started. We're doing a somewhat abbreviated approach for a couple of weeks as we get back into the swing of things. I'm enjoying that, because it feels natural to ease back into the rhythms of our school year.
This year we start with "together time" which is a time for Bible, prayer, hymn singing, poetry, Shakespeare, history, geography, Scripture recitation, composer study, picture study...but not all on the same day. :) Next we do the table work--math, grammar, handwriting--whatever requires sitting at a table. Finally, it's time for books--Finn's independent reading and narrations, and Annie's reading with me.....
This is a rhythm I have used for a long time, and it works really well. We'll throw snacks or lunch in there. Sometimes we break away and take a walk if a good opportunity presents itself. But that basic, predictable rhythm, is what we follow.
Now that Finn is taking two languages, his work often extends way past lunch. In fact, yesterday he basically worked until 5:15, counting his Spanish class. But not every day is so intense! And on Fridays, we plan to only do "together time" and math, and then have lots of freedom for tea time, walks or hikes, errands, visiting friends, or field trips.
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We spent a week at the beach in late August. It was rejuvenating and relaxing. My goal at the beach is to get onto the island and not leave it! I achieved that goal this year, except that we did cross back to the mainland once because our friends wanted to go to the ice cream shop. I packed ALL the food we'd need for the week (my husband was staggered the night before we left, wondering how we'd fit it all into the car with all of our other gear, but we did it!). At the beach I get up half an hour or so before sunrise each day to walk by myself. I usually walk between 4-6 miles. It is the most peaceful, wonderful time of day for me and helps me tremendously when staying in a house full of other people. Those quiet minutes by myself on the beach set my introverted personality at rest so that the remainder of the day can be happily spent with a house full of friends or relatives!
It's easy to "physically distance" at the beach. :)
One morning I woke my children and husband early so that they could walk with me at sunrise. We ran into a baby loggerhead making his little way out to the sea, a straggler who hadn't made it down the night before. We called the Turtle Patrol and spend an hour cheering the baby on as he fought his way against an incoming tide. Finally the patrol showed up. These baby turtles are adorable!
And of course, the after-dinner walk is always a joy.
I want to say thank you for anyone who prayed for my husband's beloved uncle, who had covid19. His condition worsened. We were beginning our last day at the beach when my father-in-law called, and I had to walk down to the beach to tell my husband the news. Jim had died at the age of 67. He was the first of our aunts or uncles to die, and it is so strange and surreal. And, of course, it's sad, because he left a wife (who was so stricken with his death that she wound up in the hospital for a week from sheer exhaustion and dehydration) and two sons. We gather at their home every Christmas night for a feast, and I can't even begin to imagine Christmas without him. If you think of it, say a prayer for his wife and sons. He was a dear soul.
"Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away."
We are holding our loved ones a little tighter these days.