Thursday, February 21, 2013

What is Normal - I've forgotten!

Esther trying to smile while in the ER
Poor Baby!
Just when I thought things would get back to "normal" after the flu (upper respiratory kind) swept through our family, Esther got a second round.  She had been doing so much better, and then over last weekend she tanked again.  I ended up taking her into the ER on Monday as there were no openings at her doctor's office.  It all worked well and I even got new instructions/dosage on her ibuterol treatments.  She required steroids to help open up her airways and she was doing better by the time we were headed home.  She still had a couple of rough days Tuesday and Wednesday, but today she was definitely on the mend.  Anyway, normal is over-rated and our family seems to need a new "normal" every few weeks.  I just need to "roll with it"!  I'm getting good at doing that, you know!
On the way home from the ER, we stopped in at Walmart and I found PJs for the girls for just $5 ea, in cotton too!  Esther can't wear polyester,and it can be challenging to find cotton pjs, and I don't think I've ever gotten these two matching outfits yet, so this was fun!

Since I started recovering from my bout with the flu, I have been able to do some preparation for our home study visits.  I was able to move Carese into the big girls room and I found a "like new" rocker that I got for a song.  It was wonderful to rock Esther last night instead of perching on a folding metal chair in the middle of the night!  What a blessing!

Speaking of blessings, I was pondering on the blessing of adult children yesterday and was so thrilled that all three of my older boys are gainfully employed!  Not only that, they are all in the field of work that the love doing!  Jeremy has a custom made position doing website and programming work surrounded by dedicated Christians.  Jason is a machinist and he's good at it.  He was always good with working with his hands growing up, and this job is something he was made to do.  Jonathan's job has just become his dream job.

Jonathan struggled in homeschooling due to a reading disability.  This runs in my family. He has outdone what the reading specialist said he could accomplish.  He worked hard last year studying "the book" on commercial driving and passed the written test with flying colors the first time and was awarded his commercial driving permit!  But the hoped for opportunity to work for a friend of the family did not work out and it looked like his life long dream to drive truck was fizzling.  That all changed this week!  He has been given the opportunity to get his driving experience right where he has been working for the past 3 years!  Praise God, such a blessing! Today he got to drive the "little" truck and he was in such a great mood when he came home.
These two dresses used to be Elizabeth
 and Esthers about 4 years ago -
they were so cute matching the last Sunday
we were able to attend church!

I've been homeschooling now for over 25 years, and I have about 18 to go yet!  But I think my most difficult years are behind me.  I have never been an ideal homeschooling mom as I have been on the more un-schooled type of mom.  Our times of book work would never add up to the amount of hours most homeschooling families put in, but it hasn't prevented my sons from being gainfully employed.  They have excelled in spite of me.  I did give them the tools to learn, and they have the ability and knowledge to learn anything they want to learn.  Jeremy self taught himself several computer programming languages - I could have never taught him that!  Jonathan earned his CDL without any help from me (I encouraged him, but I did not teach him anything!).

I believe that most book work that children are expected to do in "school" is a waste of time. I know, I know...that sounds ridiculous   But let me ask you this - how much of what you learned in a classroom do you use in your everyday life.  If you hear about a country with political strife, do you immediately recall what you learned about politics and that country and it's government from what you learned in school, or are you like me and run to the internet to "research"?  I had an excellent education - one of the best around.  It has been a great value to me, but mostly because I was taught how to learn.  Most of the book work and things I studied I no long remember.  When my children reach high school and beyond, I'm not really going to care if they completed every page in every subject every year, but I am going to care about is whether or not they have learned what they need to know to be a hard worker (chores), care for their family (even boys need to know how to cook and clean), balance the checkbook, make good purchasing decisions...and know how to learn.  When they find the they do not know something, are they capable of learning it without having to take a class on the subject?  I've never taken any accounting training (well, accounting 101 in high school, but that doesn't really count and I've never applied what I learned there), but I now do all the bookkeeping for our family and my small business - including all our payroll!  I do hire an accountant for our year end tax preparation, but I know I could do that if I tried...but I'd probably miss new tax laws.  I hope that my children will also know when it's time to hire an expert - like difficult car repair, wiring in the house and such!

Anyway, that's just my two cents about it.

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