The General was starting 4th grade, and Princess was a sweet little kindergarten student.
This is The General and Princess on the first day of school, back in 2005. They were helping make Sticky Buns. Sticky Buns have been a tradition of our first day of school. A fun way to start the day, and when they were younger it was a great math lesson.
In working on this post, I've had to face some hard realities. First of all, I have only 3 pictures in the past 6 years of our first day of school. (This is actually our 7th year of homeschooling, but the first year we were kind of thrown in at the last minute. So we started "traditional" school that year.) In the beginning it was all fresh and new, and I had my camera out to capture the moment. As the years progressed, no pictures. :(
Unfortunately, another not so nice tradition has crept in. That is my overwhelming feelings of doubt and guilt on the first day of school. My feeling like I'm not a good homeschooling momma. Since we used to be year round schoolers, (It is too hard to make my children school in WA during the summer. When the sun finally shines, I feel like we need to soak every last moment of it in.) we generally do not have "new" stuff in the fall. I buy supplies as we need them. So when the "official" first day rolls around, I feel all sorts of angst and inadequacy at my lack of cool first day experiences. When I give in to this, it just kind of steam rolls into an "I suck" mentality. You can imagine that really isn't healthy. Or true.
When I was blubbering about this to Mr. Nomad, he listened kindly. Gave me my moment of feeling sorry for myself, and then said, "so a field trip to Las Vegas, that wasn't cool enough?" Hmmmm. . . . . I think he has a point.
I'm guilty of the ugly comparisons. I look around and see the cool stuff everyone else is doing, but do not take the time to give myself credit for the great things I do. It reminds me of that Attitude quote I have in my side bar. Life is what I choose to make it. I can line myself up with our Lord, and have peace. (Not saying there aren't going to be challenges.) Or, I can get caught up in feeling sorry for myself.
So today on my third day of homeschooling, in this our 7th season, I will celebrate. I am celebrating the fact that at 13, my son is turning into a young man with great character. I am celebrating the fact that my daughter has a wonderful spirit, and loves to serve. I am celebrating the fact that my children love to go to Mass, and when it comes to the Eucharist, THEY GET IT!
Now Bubby, we're still working on it. He's having a hard time lately, which is probably why I let myself get a bit blue. (Consistently molding a 4 year old really wears on you after awhile.) But, my little man does get Confession. He hasn't officially received this sacrament, but he gets it. Whenever he does something wrong, you can see him cross himself, then mutter a little prayer asking Jesus to forgive him.
This experience has reminded me to zoom out, and look at the big picture. No, I'm not always good at the big splash days. But I am good at the every day. Not so much me, but God working through me. If I keep Christ at my center, and my heart open to the Holy Spirit, the fruits will continue to multiply.