My Thoughts. Right Now.

I wish I had some eloquent, pithy, well-formed thoughts to share with you this evening. But when life becomes overly busy, eloquence and pith (?) take a backseat. So I’m just going to share with you my thoughts as they come . . .

– We had a tornado watch tonight, and when Dolittle found out, she expressed dire concern for her stuffed animals. What would happen to them if we were all in the basement and a tornado destroyed the top of the house? She continued to fret, despite my repeated reassurances of the unlikelihood of that happening. Then she went upstairs, filled six grocery bags, a backpack, and a small suitcase with stuffed animals and her allowance boxes, and brought them all down to the basement. An hour later, she had to drag them all back upstairs, but at least she felt secure for that hour.

– It’s interesting what kids value and worry about. When Dolittle was faced with the possibility of a tornado, the first thing she thought of were her stuffed animals. I’m positive if we had a real pet, that would be the first thing she thought of. Last summer, when The Muse got spooked by a tornado watch, she packed up an emergency kit with band-aids, neosporin, and other first-aid items to keep in the basement bathroom. That made her feel much more secure in the event that we end up holed up in the basement as catastrophe rages overhead. Dolittle is an animal freak. The Muse is deathly afraid of illness and bodily harm. Kids are just so interesting.

– BoyWonder still has me totally smitten. I keep waiting for the delightfulness of his person to wear off, but it’s just not happening. One of his latest antics is that he likes to have pillow fights with Daddy in our bed. He’ll suddenly stand up, grab a pillow (which is bigger than he is), hoist it above his head and yell, “FIGHT! FIGHT!” That wouldn’t be so funny if he knew how to talk well, but since only about 25% of his speech is truly intelligible, the clarity of “FIGHT! FIGHT!” is really cute. And he’s SOO animated. When he gets excited about anything – even a rice cake or a glass of milk – he lets out exclamations of glee and his whole body shakes. He’s just delightful. I can’t use a better word for him.

– I’ve been reading three books, Jane Eyre (classic fiction), Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (modern non-fiction), and The Well-Trained Mind (non-fiction pedagogy book outlining the aspects of a classical education). I finished Jane Eyre last night. I just loved it. That would be a great book to write a paper on. The English major in me still lives and breathes. 🙂 Battle Hymn is good. I’m about half-way through it, and it’s different than I expected. The articles written about it tended to sensationalize all the somewhat shocking aspects of her parenting, but I also think there’s a lot of humorous exaggeration on the author’s part that didn’t translate for some people. I’ll probably write more when I’m done with the book. And The Well-Trained Mind is also different than I expected. I had always sort of steered around the classical education model, believing it to be too stringent and rigid, but in actually reading through this book, I’m finding it a very doable framework that is at once both rigorous and flexible, with plenty of room for creativity. I may just use it to plan out our next school year.

– Lots of changes life changes coming up:

* We’re moving in mid-June, out of my in-laws house where we’ve been living (quite happily) for the past two years. The house and community we are moving into is awesome. My moving mojo was just waiting for this place to come along. We are totally psyched.

* My dad is coming to live with us. He’s currently buried under two decades worth of our family’s stuff, and as soon as he fully unearths himself, he will be residing in the basement of our new place. He hasn’t seen the house, but I know he’s going to like it. I think it’ll be a good change all around.

* With our move, I’ll be taking on two students – some close family friends whose kids currently attend a Montessori school. They’ll be joining our girls in our educational adventure four days a week, and I’ll be taking care of their soon-to-be-born baby brother a couple days a week as well. We are all very excited about this arrangement, and if it all goes as planned, it should be a win-win-win situation. Gotta love those.

* The only thing that’s not a “win” in our new educational arrangement is that it’s going to necessitate some changes in my work for Brilliant Star. Work that I love dearly. With people I love dearly. I just won’t be able to keep up the same work schedule I’ve had. It was actually a really hard decision to make, but it feels like the right move. I’ll still do freelance work for the magazine, but I think working less hours and being able to focus more fully on teaching will be a good thing.

– It’s shocking how much stuff I’m going through. And I feel like I’m generally pretty good at keeping things weeded out. I’m not much of a pack rat. And yet after two years of living here, with half of our stuff in storage, I’m amazed at how much we have. It’s mostly paper. God knows how many trees have been sacrificed at the alter of my kids’ creativity. Countless drawings, paper puppets, half-written plays, lists of names of characters The Muse came up with, paintings, half-finished greeting cards, half-finished homemade scrapbooks (The Muse is very good at half-finishing things). It’s nice to have the move as an excuse to ruthlessly toss the stuff that really isn’t worth saving. I love the idea of living minimally. I’m just not sure how to truly do that while homeschooling three (soon to be five) kids. I suppose our school stuff doesn’t count as “stuff.” But I imagine there are a lot of things I could purge without sacrificing anything.

– I’m so tired. Havarti’s brushing his teeth, and then we’re off to bed.

– Tomorrow we go on vacation in Wisconsin with some friends (my in-laws, plus my brother-in-law and niece are all still here, so if you’re a thief thinking I just announced that our house will be empty while we’re out of town, sorry buddy, you’re out of luck). I’ll write from there, maybe even with some pics. It’s supposed to rain the whole time, which is rather sucko, but it should still be fun.

– I hate packing. For moving and for vacation. The unpacking is fun, though.

– Good night, friends, family, and strangers. Peace to you all. 🙂

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Annie writes about life, motherhood, world issues, beautiful places, and anything else that tickles her brain. On good days, she enjoys juggling life with her husband and homeschooling her children. On bad days, she binges on chocolate chips and dreams of traveling the world alone.

Comments 2

  1. I love this and it might help me when my eloquence and pithy are lacking to use this as a model. YOU. ARE. AMAZING. How in the world do you do it all, seriously, Annie…I’m quite impressed. Peace and hugs to you, my dear, soulful, spirited, competent friend. AND, you still nailed the eloquence factor. XOXO

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