Saturday, October 31, 2015

Prison camp meals

A few have asked to elaborate on this activity.  I started a new game at our house when too many leftovers crop up.  Too many leftovers leave me feeling a bit crazed as I know how much the food cost and even the effort to make it is wasted in my book if the food is by-passed for 'fun' food.  So every so often I instigate prison camp food days where no further food is purchased until the leftovers are eaten.  I am an odd fan of "A Day in the Life of Ivan D" so I make sure to set the scene of hard work and hungry tummies.  Ivan's tummy was beyond hungry but you get the drift here.  The poor little faces show up to meal time and I bring in what is the oldest and still edible and declare it be eaten before its younger refrigerator neighbors are brought forth.  To be fair to my prisoners I hav tried to prepare less food per meal so it is bound to all get eaten at meals before it can become prison camp food but every so often this event has to happen.  If your family members have striped shirts they can wear them to make meal time more exciting.  That is just a side note.....

Friday, October 30, 2015

My Own History. Curriculum

I'm tired of trying to follow plans and curricula that has me tediously plodding along.    This year I've finally succumbed to going with our curiosity and reading books related to the time period we are currently reading.  We are currently working on the 1750's and the French and Indian War.   I decided to start reading biographies of some of the key players of this period out loud to the kids and they love it.  I love it when they recognize the intermingling of people's lives.  I had no idea Daniel Boone participated in the French and Indian War.  He was in the same area as young George Washington.

I have collected so many biographies through the years we will just revel in reading and referencing a DK history outline to see how we are progressing.  I have been grilling them with dates and admitting that until I home educated my own kids some of these time periods were lost on me.

I love history and wish I did this a long time ago.  Perfectionism and fear have kept me from marching forward with this sort of plan.  I cannot wait to start the next book explaining how the French came to New Orleans.  We spend enough time traveling there so it makes sense for the kids to learn more of it's history.  Learning is at a premium this year.  Yay!

Keeping quieter

I have found there are folk who talk a lot.   This is their personality.  Who knows why some of us talk more than others but that's the way it is.  I'm running an experiment on how my introverted personality can better handle talking.  

It has occurred to me that one of the reasons I start to inwardly squirm at 'much great talking' is that the talker is usually not gifted at listening and what I share in the exchange is easily lost or misunderstood which leads to me choosing between explaining or correcting or smiling and waving.  So I have decided to put the brakes on with these interchanges and focus on what the other person is talking about for the sake of comfort.  Since it is already a given that we tick in different ways, sucking in my need to tell my own tales does help me as I have an overt need to be understood.  I.....don'  In love for the other person I can keep my trap shut and listen.  

All of these exchanges stem from a need to be heard and understood.  What the extrovert probably doesn't understand is that the introvert takes longer to say what is on their mind.   So why should I exacerbate the struggle by badly needing to be heard.  Why not just save vignettes for other conversations.  Perhaps it's not true of all introverts but this introvert is simply less stressed by keeping things inside in idle conversation.  Idle conversation can be such a time of discomfort that running this experiment seems worth the effort.

Hopefully I can remember this technique for more than a week so it becomes more of my mold and have less of a struggle.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Vocation as Grandmother

Writing that title surprises me even though she is 17 months old now.  She doesn't live close but as I watch her little self growing and changing I am humbled and amazed by her gift and presence in my life.  She is her parents child.  For me it is a pleasure to watch them bond with her and each other in raising her and in anticipating her younger sibling early next year.  Wow.  

I've puzzled over hearing other grandma's view of their children parenting their grandchildren.  Meddling and sticking one's nose in where it isn't vocationally needed comes to mind.  I try to bear this in mind as I float along with my family.  Acting like adults together I think helps the kids realize that is how they are viewed.  Our own children cease to need monitoring or advice and need more of an open door policy and respect of their choices.  We moms and dads don't have to fix things for them.

I'm writing this bit down while basking in the amazing gift of adult children.  Daughter dear and I enjoy each other.  I enjoy spending time with my son-in-law.  I enjoy my other kids no matter what age.  I enjoy my granddaughter so much. They are all individuals and that relationship of respect began young.  Care and attention shifts and changes.  Even as I revel in my granddaughter I am aching to see my own children.  They are all the individuals God created them to be.

I am having a had time putting into words what it means to cherish each offspring for who they are and to be able to rest in the confidence that they will learn and mature at their own pace and my attempts to put any pressure on them to be people they aren't will not help them as their various vocations change along the way.  Pressure and unwanted advice is mostly patronizing as I look back on some conversations pointed at me as a young person.  I hope that I can hang onto taking an interest in my children's lives which will not invade and harm our relationship.  Respecting the parents is one way I see my role as a grandmother.  Idolizing the grandchild will not help the child.  If my grandchildren want their parents and not me I give thanks.  I love it.  She has been a delight to watch as her parents are a delight to watch while they go about their vocations. Christ has them covered and that is all that is needed.  I love them so and look forward to seeing them again and look forward to the next grand baby and any more I am blessed with in the future.