I like having fun, especially with children. A few years ago, when I described one of my classes to the principal of a school where I learned, I received myself with one of my favorite expressions: We have a lot of fun in there!
She smiled and replied, I think so. She felt well.
My husband and I are joking that my mood is permanently purple, the passion color. I tend to be passionate about most things. My family expects mom to be up or above, but Im sorry to say theyve seen my other side too!
I hope my tombstone will read something she had fun. Seems frivolous, but not really. We honor the Lord by embracing life - by using our gifts, enjoying people, squeezing goodness out of our experiences and deliberately living in the will of God. Whether our circumstances are fun or not, we can be happy and offer praise. In the middle of everything we can and should have a lot of fun. Think of it as learning life skills. What can be more valuable than learning to enjoy life!
Does it mean that we have to do a laugh one minute to always keep our children so that they never mumble about their work? No of course not. This means that we will model the correct attitudes and teach them that even untrue tasks can be done with a grateful heart. There is nothing exciting or hilarious about a math lesson, cleaning the toilet or vacuuming, but lazy people take these tasks in their steps and quickly move on to todays more exciting parts. Once upon a time, I had a bitter friend who rubbed the toilet so much that she kicked it every time she cleaned it, which seemed stupid to me. There is no need to kick the toilet. It will be dirty again next week!
Unfortunately, when I was homeschooling, worries and frustrations often took my smile away. The demands of my life routinely rubbed my strength and joy. On these occasions I became a screaming barking, nagging and grumbling.
We need to ease up and give our children and us time to be stupid and non-productive. Recess is not an option; It is important to you and to them. So is the vacation. Plan some common goof-off days. Do not hesitate to cancel the school on an incident, either yours or yours. Plan for rest days they will be more valuable. Give yourself permission to kick back and enjoy!
You must also take time for yourself, have fun away from the daily template of housework, childcare and education. I hope you are involved with other home teachers, either in an organized support group or temporarily with some friends. We must spend time with like-minded people and learn to laugh at ourselves.
I remember a dad like another mom and I performed with our kids for talented nights at a homeschool support group. It was fun. Im still laughing when I think about it. I was the freaky homeschool mom dressed in an old robe, my hair asked. I had slept and felt lazy. Child swallowed the scene; The house was a disaster.
The kids suggested making pancakes. I mentioned carefully that we drove late, we should come to our school work, but hello, we had not done science for a while. Why not make pancakes like an experiment!
Suddenly the doorbell rang. It was our homeschool facilitator, it feared MRS. HOOK NOSE! To my children and my horror I had forgotten our meeting! She was ridiculously strict, her glasses lay at the end of her nose and her hair tied hard in a bun. She hugged a clipboard to her chest, carried a big, thin black briefcase and held a pencil in the air as though she were going to strike. Her voice was high and she clenched her tongue and glared. I was mortified and nervous.
Ironically, I work today as a homeschool facilitator and I am in the role of Mrs Hookno! What a shock! Its at least so I feel a few days, and sometimes Im sure its how others perceive me. I sometimes recognize the nervous appearance and the insecure tone when I talk to mom and I wonder if they do not feel like I felt in our crap. Sometimes I have to tighten myself and say, Light up, Hooknose!
When we begin the last part of this school year, lets remind us that this is also going to be ok and having fun. We all need to light up. Nothing is perfect, but we try to do our best. We do not always succeed, but hello tomorrow is another day. If we want homeschool good, let it go fun!