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For all the best-laid plans

August 11, 2008

Today could have gone better. 

I tell everyone making a plan is the easy part, sticking to it is the real challenge.

Although it wasn’t really the plan, or following it that was the problem.  It was just life conspiring against us.  I actually got to bed at a decent hour for the first time all week, I got up early, I made a good breakfast.  Then we waited and waited for C and D to finish listening to their book on tape who seriously misjudged how close to the end they were.  I guess I can’t complain–my children are reading (in a sense) before breakfast!  We bought a new cd player for them for just that purpose (and so I can listen to my Teaching Company lectures.)  So breakfast was late, but not a problem–we weren’t on a strict schedule today, but oh, I wanted to get started on time.

A did piano practice though and we ended up ok, until I went to turn on the short video I had for introducing the New Testament and realized my new dvd set has two disc 2s and no disc 1.  Then we had a meltdown over new crayons.  We only had two boxes of 24 crayons instead of three, even though I could swear A said he didn’t want a box of 24, he just wanted a box of 96 for everyone to share.  Apparently today he did want his own box of 24.  New boxes of colored pencils for everyone did help to ease the disappointment a bit. 

Then I went to take first day of school pictures and the camera battery was completely dead.  I thought for sure I could coax at least one more picture out of it, but no, except for when I tried the button once more and took a picture of the computer keyboard.  The charger?  Well, it’s somewhere between here and Idaho we think.  We haven’t seen it since our trip.  We didn’t actually use it on our trip (that I can remember) but it is nowhere to be found.  So no first day pictures.  I was ready for a meltdown right about then, and that was before the email about our first orchestra concert which is the same weekend for which we were planning our next little vacation.

The next hour was slightly insane.  We did everything on my list, but it was crazy.  Essentially, it’s math and language arts for A and C, but it’s math for both, letter tracing, Explode the Code phonics (new), and a reading lesson for C, and grammar, spelling, and cursive practice for A.  And D wanted help with his cutting at the same time.  He’s getting more conscientious now and was highly upset that he wasn’t perfectly on the gray line.  I felt like I was being pulled in 15 different directions helping everyone.  And C kept wandering back to a coloring book.  I think this hour will work, but I have to have every book ready to go and coordinate how to order things so I can give each child the one-on-one help they’ll need.  My brain is still trying to wrap itself around that one though.

We went downtown to meet Daddy for lunch and he wasn’t answering his phone, so while we waited, we decided to walk up to the Distribution Center to get a new scripture dvd, one with both disc 1 and disc 2.  But D saw us walking past where we were going to eat, and threw a fit because he was hungry NOW!  So I ended up carrying him 2 1/2 blocks because he wouldn’t walk himself and I didn’t want to eat lunch even later.  He cheered up after that though and I’m so glad it was cooler today with a nice breeze.  I’ve been dying in the heat with the 30% humidity we were having last week.  (And yes, I know 30% is nothing for all you people who live in much more humid climates who are laughing at me right now, but I melt in humidity.)

To be realistic, today could also have gone a whole lot worse.  I suppose I should list what did turn out well.

  • We had a good time pretending we were on a magic flying carpet over the Roman Empire as we read our history chapter. 
  • A loves learning cursive and went through an entire page of A.
  • We started learning the Primary song for August, “When Jesus Christ was Baptized.” 
  • We watched and heard a cricket chirping on YouTube for part of the Outdoor Hour Challenge.
  • We got through math, reading, spelling, grammar, handwriting, and Explode the Code.
  • We started The Secret Garden as our new read-aloud.
  • I read 20 pages of The Fellowship of the Ring while they played at the park.
  • We bought more 2-pocket folders for a penny each plus new binders at Office Max.
  • I found a great new Schlessinger Video Library series on the Middle Ages at the county library.
  • The 5-layer chocolate cake we shared at lunch, while incredibly decadent, was incredibly delicious.

And though we didn’t get to Latin, tomorrow is another day.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 12, 2008 12:11 pm

    I agree about making plans- My whole life has a plan- we came to earth on a plan…to follow through is a different story. What happened to the “Plan of Following Through”? Where are the instructions on enduring to the end? What teaching company are you doing? Do you want me to burn you a copy of the CS Lewis course? I bought it on download last fall for Hillary when she did a unit on him- Let me know and I will be glad to send it out! PS My husband was in SLC this past weekend and said it was unbearable! We haven’t been above 75 in weeks and it is August- Sign of the Times???

  2. August 12, 2008 2:38 pm

    i’m exhausted just reading it. and both invigorated and terrified for our “first day” in two weeks. i think that i need to remember that i can adjust my plans after we’ve tried them for a while to see what needs to change. i am encouraged that you were able to do so much during that math and language arts hour. i have much more time slated for those things, but i have very little free time scheduled, which isn’t what i want for any of us, so hopefully things will take up less time than i’m expecting.

  3. August 12, 2008 3:25 pm

    That hour you decribed where every kid had a different assignment and they all wanted your attention sound sooooooo familiar. I have been trying to have us all sit at the table to do Math or letter practice or something all together but it is hard to teach Sophie a math lesson as well as Ian who can’t read his page and needs me to walk him through it. Henry is often very good during this time. He does color or cut for a while but then when he is done he is very good at distracting Sophie. She has a really hard time with the distractions. So this is something we are working on and trying to work through. I really need patience during this time. It is good for us to all be working.

    I had to giggle when you described the tantrum about passing the restaurant. There are days I wonder If I can make it though another tantrum. My back aches from carrying Henry away to to places or to keep him from taking off on his own.

    I hope your next few days go a little more smoothly. It still sounds like you got a lot done!

  4. Tamaran permalink
    August 13, 2008 2:27 am

    I had wondered why your boys know the primary songs better than anyone else. Now I know the secret. Thanks for helping with that. I was near melt-down when I was called and found out they still hadn’t learned 1 song and only know the first verse of 3 others for the year. I really appreciate the help. It will help to make it easier for everyone else when we get to it.

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