So we've been quite busy around these parts! But I am happy to report that all has gone back to normal on the playground. The little girl has gone back out to play with my boys and there have not been any more issues. We are a thankful bunch over here!
I'm going to post more about this on another post but, in addition to learning to homeschool, like I mentioned in my last post, I am trying to learn as much as I can about Rodan + Fields skincare. I have two goals with this business-my first one is outrageous but possible. I want to be able to earn enough to pay our rent in Albuquerque while we are in Colorado so that we can keep our house on the air force base.
There are many reasons for this. One is that it will simplify our moving so much. It is such hard work to move! Right after we got here, we started thinking about how we could keep this house. We have to be able to store our stuff somewhere. And since we'll be coming back to New Mexico within nine months, it'd be so nice to just take a few things to CO and then come back to an already unpacked house. But there are also practical reasons for it too. The reason we've been able to get on base in the first place is because occupancy dropped below 95%. But if occupancy is back up, we will not have this option anymore. We'd have to buy Steve a car, and live further away. So that is another big reason to keep this house. But we're not sure we can afford it.
Anyhow, my next big, HUGE goal is to earn enough to pay rent and also to put the kids back in school next year. Tuition is expensive and even though we'll be applying for scholarships, we'll still have to pay-we have four kids eligible for school next year. And we don't expect a free ride. We'll be living in smaller quarters in Colorado and it will be more difficult to have the kids around each other all day in such a small living area. Plus it snows all winter so they'll be stuck inside a lot! But it is doable. And if we have to, we'll do it and be thankful. So those are my goals. Keeping our house here and putting the kids in Christian school are extras but it'd still be really nice!
I am working on building up my business as much as I can before we go to Colorado! If any of you are interested in Rodan + Fields products or the business opportunity, let me know! Leave a comment or find me on facebook. I'd love to talk to you about it! The products are amazing. My skin looks-wow! I've not ever seen it look so radiant. I'll probably be doing some giveaways on my blog too. Don't worry, this blog won't turn into a Rodan + Fields blog, but I'm just putting it out there to anyone who is interested and who'd like to help support us while we are in grad school full-time! It's a fun way to do it!
Now on to homeschooling. We have just finished three weeks of homeschooling. Yes, we've survived. The first day was tough. I'm not going to lie, I cried. I cried for what my kids gave up for us to come here. I cried for what I couldn't provide for them (like all the extra crafts, fun projects, etc...) in the day to day interactions we have at home. (Yes, I can do those things but, since we are in upheaval right now having just moved, I have to keep things simple). But after a pretty frank talk with Steve that night, I turned my attitude around a bit and tried to focus on the positive things that they are gaining by being at home with me. And believe me, there are many! This homeschooling adventure is temporary for our family. We would like our kids to be in school. But for now, this is what God has provided. We are at a nomadic point in our lives and our kids need the stability of their studies coming from their parents. And there aren't the right Christian schooling options out there anyway for us at this point. So this is where we are.
There are many good things though that I have seen in the last three weeks. Here are just a few. First, my kids are becoming quite tight. When you're around each other all day, there is fighting. However, there is also a lot of playing together and they are actually doing really well with it. It's always been hard for me to integrate Josh with the older two boys. That problem is becoming much less as time goes on. Sometimes they need a break, but really, they have grown much closer in the past month since we moved and I am thankful.
Secondly, I am becoming closer to them. I see them all the time. I get to tell them how much I like them and enjoy them throughout the day. I feel like my relationship with my kids has grown and that's simply because I have more time to look them in the eyes each day. I know it's not going to be like that forever. And really, I want them to go out into the world and be independent. But I am going to enjoy this time I get with them. I really love being with them!
Lastly, I've been able to adjust their studies to their abilities. They came from a great school that has prepped them so well in all their subjects. However, our family is a math/science saturated family. It is in their blood and they are surrounded by it all the time. For example-the other night, at the dinner table, there was a huge debate as to who was the better scientist-Isaac Newton or Albert Einstein? I said Newton by the way. Yet, that's just our family culture. A few of my kids needed to be pushed much more in those areas. One in particular has taken off and I knew he would. He's nipping at his big brother's heels in math. So it's been fun for me to challenge them and introduce them to math that is hard for them!
The actual schooling part isn't hard for me. The grammar, math, handwriting, cursive, phonics, Bible, etc...it's the juggling the four older kids with Nathan running around. I'm still trying to figure that part out. Having a positive outlook on this whole area of our transition has really helped. I definitely need a rest from them on weekends because I am around them 24-7 now and hardly get quiet. But I am learning to get better in that area too. I'm adjusting. God is being faithful to me. And I'm enjoying the ride.
Fridays are fun days and also prize days. One thing that has helped is that I've run things much like their old school so they are used to what is going on. Prize day was a huge motivator for my third son especially at St. Abe's. It's proved to keep him in line at home too. This past Friday we found the Arts and Crafts Center on base and they kids got to paint pottery and then have it fired for them. They loved that! We've been to the zoo and to our local children's math/science discovery museum called Explora. Instead of Christmas gifts this year, since we were moving, we asked for passes to these places. So fun! And we have the flexibility to go do these things on our own time.
We're going to make it. It's not been a perfect transition but I see God's hand and I'm thankful. Always thankful.