Monday, October 19, 2009

Days Such As This

... and how I hate them! {{Beware! Long story, not made short!}}

Before anyone can understand how a day can get so off track, you first must know the dynamics I'm working with here:

In total, we have 5 children. I have two from my first marriage who are 18 and 16. They are responsible, well-rounded individuals who have taken ownership of their educations, despite being brick-and-mortar kids all their lives (I say that like it's a bad thing?!?). No, really, part of their success is probably due a little bit to my having supplemented all their lives with homeschool-type activities. These two are in and out of the house, splitting their "home" time between my house and their dad's during the week, and trading off every other weekend. They are also in and out during the day because: the oldest attends a nearby college and is close enough to come home between classes; the second child attends a tech center north of home in the morning and our local high school south of home in the afternoons. Mom's house and food happen to be in between.

In the middle of the family is my stepdaughter who does not live with us, but is with us every other weekend.

Then we have the two "little ones" who aren't so little anymore. They are 8 and almost-7 and are the ones I'm responsible for homeschooling. And let me just put this out there one more time (not the last time!) ... we are still new to this and trying to figure it all out.

We have varied weekends ... one weekend we'll have all 5 kids here, the next it's just the little ones and mom and dad.

This past weekend was one of the maniacal ones with all 5 present. Oh, I forgot to mention the boyfriend of the oldest ... I love him and count him as one of my own, but it's one more big body in the house!

Anyway, there was a lot to do this weekend: shopping for fall dress clothes and a winter coat for young ones; soccer game for an older one; special day at church for one younger one; surprise date night for mom and dad thanks to the oldest and her boyfriend. Top that with the adults being exhausted on Sunday afternoon, and the kids all being full of energy with nowhere to go ... it was not a good combination.

This is all to say that it was a very unproductive weekend by the standards of these two adults. My goal for the weekend: put together plans for this week's schooling. Get organized! Hubby's plans? No idea, but I'm sure he had something in mind. Let me just be clear here: I HATE starting my Monday without a plan.

So, I awoke this morning. Generally I prefer to sleep until I awaken. Today the alarm was set because the 16-year-old is a heavy sleeper and I'm always afraid he will oversleep. I went downstairs, as is my routine, started my coffee, and watched the news. I thought I heard the boy awake upstairs, only to come to find out he wasn't. At the time that he should've already been on the road to school, I abandoned my coffee, woke him up and sent him on his way. I don't think he brushed his teeth today. Hmmm.

This should've been my first clue for today.

He left and I was free to pursue my plans at least for today, since I knew there wasn't time to plan the whole week, like I had hoped to do on Sunday.

But alas, of all days for my creatively-minded, night-owl, late-sleeper 8-year-old to get up early, fully refreshed and ready to get busy (with anything but schoolwork - which I wasn't ready to give her yet anyway).

The 6-year-old followed and we proceeded to fall back on my cheating-school: I let them watch The Magic Schoolbus, etc. I finally said "Turn the tv off!" and sent them off to do morning chores (buying myself just a few more precious minutes).

No sooner did they show back up than ... drumroll please ... the 16-year-old called. His battery had died at the tech center and he might need picked up. Ok, I can handle this. I asked if he had jumper cables in his trunk. He got out to check his trunk, the door blew shut, and he was then locked out of the dead car.

My morning then became picking up the boy, bringing him home to get the rest of his belongings, and taking him out to the high school. By the time I got back home, the morning had disappeared into thin air. (I might mention that we live in the country, with miles in between, well, everything.)

I could mention at this time that I "started" today also, and I have cramps. But I've learned to use the laptop as a heating pad!

Accomplished today: next to nothing (though the creative 8-year-old has accomplished about a million things!). And thanks to the cramps and frustration, I still have no plans for tomorrow's schooling. But the oldest shouldn't be around until evening (thus no distraction from her) and the big boy is staying at dad's tonight so it's not my job to make sure he gets up. If I go to bed NOW (8:12 pm), maybe I can get up earlier than the young ones and get something planned for their day.

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