We started back to Co-op today for the 2nd semester. We were supposed to cover TOG Y2 Wks 18 & 19. Well, not too much school work got done over the Christmas holidays, what with traveling to Massachusetts, then coming home and cleaning and visiting with the college kids and enjoying some r & r.
So, okay... we were going to buckle down and really work hard this week, doing a lot of reading about the Reformation in northern Europe, the Counter Reformation, and the reign of Elizabeth I; filling in maps of the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and the British Isles; learning about the beliefs of John Calvin and Ulrich Zwingli. That in addition to math and grammar and music and literature and art... with science and Latin kicking in next week. We were ready.
Ah, what do they say about the best laid plans?
The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry
( FYI: The saying is adapted from a line in “To a Mouse,” by Robert Burns: “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.” - you get that one for free - can't help it, I'm a homeschool mom! )
We're not very good at getting up early, but Monday morning we did pretty well, and got started on our Bible study, math, and reading... but then I needed to run errands for the college kids, who although having been home for at least 3 weeks, remembered that they needed stuff before heading back to campus this week. And then there was basketball practice. And we were still having car issues. And I was waiting for the new clothes dryer to be delivered. And everyone had headaches. And I can't even remember what all else was going on at the beginning of the week... but I was thinking," Tomorrow we'll catch up."
Tuesday night, my dear friend Eileen called to tell me that her father, who lived with them and had been failing for quite a while, had taken a definite turn for the worse and was in his last hours. Family members were on their way from Florida and other far-flung places. You know what? There are more important things than doing schoolwork. Eileen has 3 older children, ages 24 (married w/ a baby), 18, and 15, and 5 adopted littles, ages 5,5,4,2 and 2. So Wednesday morning I drove my 15-y-o daughter, Amanda, and her friend, Emily, over to help with the little kids and then got on the phone and email to help other friends arrange meals for the family for the next few days. By mid-afternoon, Eileen's dad had left this life to walk through the gates of heaven, and shortly thereafter my 10-yr-old and I were on our way over there with 2 trays of chicken divan and a big bowl of salad, as well as homemade bread baked by my friend, Tammy. Other friends were heading over there as well, laden with hugs and sandwiches, Chick-Fil-A nuggets, and cake. We are Christians. We are moms. We live in the South. This is what we do.
Eileen's 3 little boys love my J, and so he played with them while I visited with Eileen and her mom and helped feed the toddlers. We left around 7:30, but at that point, I was tired, so... forget about reading or trying to squeeze in anything "academic" in the evening hours. Nope, not happening.
Thursday we worked for a few hours, but had to leave at 3:30 for basketball games in Oxford, and didn't return home until after 9:00 PM.
So here it is Friday. My Co-op Rhetoric class (9th & 10th gr) was going to spend this morning in dress rehearsal for a play we were to perform tonight at our Unit 2 Celebration. But Eileen's family is part of our Co-op, and Ellie has a main part in the play. It was easily decided mid-week to postpone the Unit Celebration until mid-February. So I pulled together a quick lesson on writing Bibliographies ( a great weakness I discovered in the research papers turned in before Christmas!) and my co-teacher, Tracy, gave a brief overview of John Calvin, and then we held an abbreviated play rehearsal. You know what? It is REALLY good that we have a few more weeks to rehearse this play. :-)
We are homeschoolers - we are FLEXIBLE!!!!!
I have always maintained that education is not just about academics - it is about LIFE. This was one of those weeks when we concentrated on LIFE. In the grand scheme of things, it is our relationship with the Lord and with the people in our lives that matter the most. If we don't cover everything in the lesson book this week, or this month, or even this year.... so what? We are serious about learning and about setting high standards and preparing our children well for the future.... but not at the expense of relationships and service and showing love and compassion to those in need.
Next week looks like a good week to hit the books.