Family, Health, Home Schooling, My Daybook, Uncategorized

My Daybook – May

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW I SEE…the three younger kids playing soccer together.

I AM GIVING THANKS….that my trip to Melbourne for treatment for Jay went well and he now has more good days than sick days.

I AM PRAYING FOR……..sick family members, and friends that need extra prayers.

I AM LISTENING TO…laughter. Beth, Zac and Dami get on really well. Their morning tea play is often some imaginary game, playing on the swing set, or today it’s playing soccer. I love that even though they are ages 10, 8 and 4, the age difference never seems to matter.

I AM THINKING ABOUT….how to add some ‘spark’ into our homeschool routine. While we have been dealing with illness for so long, it has been survival mode here (as can be seen from the lack of blog posts). I want some enthusiasm back in our homeschool again. Maybe the up and coming Australian Homeschool Summit will help with that!

I AM LEARNING….about St Pope John Paul.  What an amazing saint.

IN THE SCHOOLROOM….we are desperately trying to catch up on maths. Most subjects can spill over into the next years work. But maths I like to finish the book in one year. After being away for 2 1/2 weeks, we are very behind.

Also, the younger kids and I are enjoying our Magic School Bus packs. They arrive once a month and have everything in there for each experiment. The kids write up each experiment and draw a picture from it.

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COOKING IN THE KITCHEN….on a keto diet we eat lots of fat. Butter, coconut oil, fermented coconut cream….yum. I am always after ways to change it up for the kids to keep it interesting. The latest are what we call ‘fat bombs’. Butter, cacao butter, cinnamon, mac powder. Yum! Jay can also now have bulletproof decaf coffee. It is by far the best part of his day.

And as always, I am always fermenting!

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IN THE MORNING BASKET…there is nothing! It needs refreshing and reorganising. Any ideas?

IN THE GARDEN… we are still trying to finish off the fence. Now that the weather is a lot cooler and the snakes are not a threat, the kids can go off into the bush to play! Hopefully we can get in some nature walks soon.

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The kids are enjoying playing in the ‘sandpit’ (a pile of sand on the ground 🙂 )

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We also enjoyed hiring a cherry picker to cut off some really high branches on our favourite tree. All the kids enjoyed a ride!

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I NEVER WANT TO FORGET….all the lessons I have learnt with Jay being sick. I know what it is like to have a chronically ill child. It is stressful, tiring and downright hard. Whilst travelling to Melbourne I often thought about the poor parents who might need to take their dying children to doctors far away to try and heal them. Honestly, there were times when we thought that the doctor might even tell us that Jay had cancer. That was scary.  We are so blessed to be able to heal Jay, there are many parents who cannot fix their child. My heart aches for them, I now have a glimpse of what it might be like to be them. I pray that they may have the strength to face each day. One day at a time.

 

In between all the treatments we did manage some fun adventure. Some highlights from our trip;

His 1st meal out in 12 months – an awesome cafe personalised Jay’s meal for him.

A happy boy after shopping at some factory outlets

1st footie match with his uncle

 

Family, Health, Home Schooling, My Daybook, Uncategorized

My Daybook – November

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW I SEE….Beth and Dami playing together. That 3 year old is one lucky kid! He adores his older siblings and they are so good to him.

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I AM GIVING THANKS….. for this beautiful weather at the moment. I can’t get enough of being outside.

I AM PRAYING FOR……..family members who are ill. My Nana, who is 93, has been struggling with her health lately. She never ceases to amaze me with how switched on she is though. When you go visit her in the nursing home she gives you a running commentary  of all the old folk whose poor minds have been lost to them long ago. I think her good brain health is due to her never having her drivers licence so she would walk and take public transport everywhere.

I AM LISTENING TO…the sound of the basketball hitting the driveway – the two big boys are really enjoying shooting hoops together at the moment. They are out there at any chance they get. I can also hear the laughter from Beth and Dami.

I AM THINKING ABOUT….next year! I know it seems like a long way off but now is the time to order books.

I AM LEARNING….as always, I seem to being learning about the gut. I have loved reading ‘Brain Maker’ and now I am reading Pete Evans ‘The Complete Gut Health Cookbook’.

I AM CREATING….neat and tidy bookshelves. Not very exciting – or creative! I needed to give our playroom/schoolroom a makeover. There is still plenty of work to be done…my house looks like a bomb has gone off in it. I hate it how things always get worse before they get better 🙂

IN THE SCHOOLROOM….we are taking it very easy this term. We have enjoyed plenty of excursions, and the kids are planning their own days. All the kids know what needs to be done to finish the school year so as soon as one subject is finished, then they have less work to do. Beth, Zac and Dami are creating pretend food for their Cafe. They have finished their maths, spelling, religion and geography for the year.

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Our Zoo Excursion

COOKING IN THE KITCHEN….as always… our GAPs food and plenty of ferments.

IN THE MORNING BASKET…we are using the Baltimore Catechism each morning. I read from the text then choose one question for the kids to write in their notebooks. It has lead to many an interesting conversions about many parts of our faith.

We are also doing a fair bit of picture study. I’ll keep my method for another post, but it has been a lovely addition to the morning.

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Our morning basket time. Dami is fully dressed for the day but insisted on wearing his dressing gown.

I NEVER WANT TO FORGET….what a blessing it is to be a mother. Every day has its challenges, but also its blessings. I can choose to dwell on the bad, or I can try to see the blessings in each day. Sometimes it is as simple as a walk among the roses, or a cuddle from the three year old.

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This rose was picked and given to me 🙂

I don’t want to wish this time away because I know that in the blink of an eye they will be all grown up and left home.

Australian Curriculum, Family, Health, Home Schooling, Parenting, Uncategorized

The Perfect Homeschool? – or Not!

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It’s planning time again! It feels like only yesterday that I was planning for 2016, and here I am again thinking about what books I need to buy for next year. I was thinking the other day, for the first time since I started homeschooling 10 years ago I am not excited for the next school year. Planning and organising is my passion, so why no enthusiasm?

It took me a while to work it out, but I think it is because I feel that this year was a total flop. So many curriculums which I planned on using, just didn’t happen. Life threw me a curve ball. Term one was three broken bones in the family. Then term 2 we began our huge detox as a family.

Little did I know back then that we would go into survival mode.

Little did I know that Jay would spend most of his days unable to move off the couch. His detox was so debilitating that school was not a priority….his healing was our focus. So one by one, each subject got put completely on the back burner. Our daily plan become this;

Having a good day? Then get as much school work done as you can.

Having an average day? Then do maths and english.

Having a bad day? Then do your easy online subjects (religion, geography) and your textbooks which you can just read (science, history) –  we ditched anything that involved writing for these subjects.

Having a terrible day? Watch documentaries, listen to audio books, rest and relax. Just try to get outside for a small walk and some vitamin D. Even if you have to crawl out there….just get yourself outside.

 

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Soaking up some vitamin D, and some brotherly love.

I was so worried when it was time for our moderator to come (in Western Australia we have a person come out from the Education department to see how our homeschooling is going). Jay said to me, “Mum, I have nothing to put in my portfolio!” After having a little panic, I realised that although we had no concrete proof of learning, I know that he has still been learning and expanding his mind.

I decided to look at each individual subject and list every book that he has read. We also noted down all the tests he has had and what he learnt from them (DNA tests, bacteria tests). He has also learnt a huge amount about the body and how it functions. He is even now thinking when he finished school he would like to be a chiropractor and functional doctor.

So this year was not a waste. His portfolio still looked great, even though it was very different to each of his past 8 years portfolios.

So while I sit here sifting through curriculums, talking to the kids about what their interests are for next year, and thinking about what worked and didn’t work this year, I have to keep in mind that you never know what another year will bring. What challenges will you face? How will your goals and plans change? As I have done for the last ten years, I will search for curriculum that meet the needs of my kids but I will be prepared to change whatever I must as life always takes us in directions which we cannot control.

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The path is long….and hard

What never changes though is the fact that God is by our side. With the help of Mary our mother, the angels and saints we will continue to strive to do our best and even though we fail many times we pick ourselves up and keep trying. Will we ever have the perfect homeschool? No, but we will continue to do our best and that is what we are expected to do.

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My biggest achievement this year, climbing Bluff Knoll