This morning I rolled out of bed around 7:00-ish . . . a little late for me, as I prefer to be up by 6:00, making coffee and reading on the Kindle and checking Facebook and getting in blog writing time. Agent E (age 7), who is almost always the first Agent awake, came out to join me around 8:00, and Agents J (age 5) and A (age 2.5) strolled out about 8:30.
After breakfast (fruit . . . always fruit . . . today with a side of Cheerios) we got ready to go to the pool at 10:00 for Agent J's final swim lesson. Before we left, I managed to get a post up about how Agent J rocks kindergarten.
I stayed with E and A in the splash area while J went off with her instructor. Chatted with another homeschool mom at the pool with her kids. (Public schools here went back last week, so it's pretty much a given that a mom out with older kids during the day is a homeschooler.)
Back home by 11:30-ish and after changing and starting laundry the girls went off to their room to read while Agent A and I hung out and watched a little Blue's Clues. We ate lunch around 12:30, early for us but the girls were starving. A chose to play with my shoes instead of eat. (Later he had some fruit.)
After lunch I spent some time cleaning up the kitchen . . . I've been on a roll with trying to do one room a day, and Monday is Kitchen Day. (Confession: I should have mopped and I didn't. I just cleaned the sink/microwave/coffeepot and straightened/decluttered the counters and finished the dishes.) Then I checked e-mail/puttered for a few minutes while Agent E read, Agent J colored, and Agent A played with a box.
[Insert a few random afternoon meltdowns here.]
School time! By about 2:00 E was ready to start school (we're Afternoon School People here). We used to try to do every subject every day, but lately we've been choosing three instead. Today she chose reading/writing, math, and art. She already spends a good deal of each day reading, so I steered her toward a quick grammar lesson. For math she picked subtraction and then we colored a picture of The Scream and talked about the artist a bit. J worked on her letter pages (tracing and practicing printed letters) and A colored alongside them.
Tea for Momma and more reading time for the Agents. While they were occupied with that I completed a few glamourous tasks, including folding laundry and cleaning out the litter box.
[Insert repetitive demands for snacks here.]
E was done with her work by 3:00, so she went off to read again. (We "do" school every day, even weekends and holidays, so sometimes we spend fifteen minutes on the more "formal" part and sometimes two hours or more. It is all by choice and just depends on the day.)
Speaking of reading, E's current obsession is American Girl books. We have five out of the library right now. She's also very into Magic Treehouse, Cam Jansen mysteries, and Junie B. Jones. One thing I really love about homeschooling is the amount of time she can spend on independent reading. I know she would never have that kind of "free" time if she were in school from 8:00-3:00 (not counting travel time) and worrying about homework each night.
Later in the afternoon we read a book about apples, which led to—you guessed it—multiple requests for apples as snacks. (Side note: We found this particular book over the weekend as we were searching for something in the office closet amid some boxes we haven't managed to unpack yet. Yes; we've been in this house for well over a year and still have some things packed. Sigh. Anyway, it was with several others that somehow got separated from our original collection of Book Party books.)
Around 4:00 E decided she was going to teach J how to play chess. Yeah; I know.
(A little background: This weekend E told Dear Hubby she wanted to learn how to play. I'm not really sure what prompted this. They set it up, and I have to admit I kind of figured it would last about ten minutes before she got bored. Ha! They were at it for hours that day, and she even asked me to download a game to the Kindle so she could practice.)
While they were doing that, Agent A enjoyed having all the Legos to himself and I wrote some notes down for this very post (!) and marinated some chicken.
By about five, the chess game turned into a free for all with the pieces taking on personas of their own (as toys are prone to do in Agent World) and A insisted I log out and build a Lego tower with him. So I did.
Not long after that, Agent A and Agent J disappeared to engage in some sort of Partner in Crime type stuff and Agent E retreated to her room for more reading. (Notice a trend here?)
(Side note: Lest you think we are all about books and educational games and quiet activities, the television is also often on several hours a day. And we don't stress about it.)
Around 5:30 I decide I had better break down and start dinner. I suggest a DVD. After considering Fantasia, Blue's Clues, and Star Wars, they settle on The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.
Since the oven is on anyway, I decide to make muffins, too. (Don't get too excited. I mean from a box. I cracked eggs and everything.)
Relatively uneventful dinner followed by kitchen cleanup. Hubby arrives home as soon as I get everything put into the fridge (of course). At least he's home in time for dessert.
Agents express their usual excitement at the sound of the garage door. (A typical day for him is 12+ hours, and that's with only a 10-minute commute. Part of the reason the Agents go to bed much later than might be typical for 7, 5, and 2 . . . if I were trying to shuttle them off to sleep early in the evening they would never see Dad.)
I can pretty much predict how the rest of the day will unfold: clean up the living room/bed room, bath time. (No one will want to get in, then no one will want to get out. Why does that happen?) A will fall asleep nursing (yes; he still does that ) between 8:30 and 9:00. E and J will play, read, snack, watch a little TV, and hang out with Hubby and I until around 10:00 and then go to sleep as well.
It's hard to include everything when I'm writing snippets here and there and trying to recreate our entire day from memory and cryptic post it notes. I know somewhere in there I also read a few books with Agent J, vacuumed, fed the cat, answered a dozen spelling questions, indulged a request to look at vacation photos, and just talked a lot with all three Agents about whatever popped into their heads.
We're pretty relaxed homeschoolers, so our day-to-day routine is relaxed as well. (You can check out how we plan our year here and a summary of what a typical month looks like here.) It's hard to separate what we would consider "school" from "everything else." We just kind of go with the flow and learn a little every day.