Friday, January 30, 2009

Bridget and Her Girls


...at her 10th birthday party.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Waiting for the Boredom

Since I took over with the kids' homeschooling, I've been practicing "radical unschooling." The basic idea is that all kids want to learn and explore their interests, and if you just let them go with the flow, they'll find out all that they need.

Part of it is relaxing enough to *really* let them do their own thing, even if they just seem to want to play computer games and go sledding and watch movies. I mean, we do things together like read aloud to them and go to various events, but here I'm talking about their unstructured time.

So I've been waiting patiently to see what will unfold. I've been providing materials that they mention an interest in, and giving ideas of stuff that we could do.

Last night, after a very snowy day, Bridget asked if she could read to me. I said "sure," and she mentioned she had a boring day and was sick of computer games. She practiced her reading by reading to me, then reading to herself in her room (which I know because she asked me about a few words). This morning, I offered to help her with writing practice as well. She was psyched, and her first journal entry was a list of goals.

Her goals are based on the ones I have written up on my white board: art, drumming, writing, love, and reading (the last one is her own; mine says yoga). She did a big art project with Sash today, and some knitting. She is playing computer right now, while her brother's at basketball, but I'm sure we'll be reading together later this evening. I love it when a plan comes together! :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Spotlight on Yoga

So, my brother tells me I'm a terrible blogger, and I guess he's right. That is, because I've neglected this poor site so much! But life goes on, and so now I'm here to tell a little about it.

My Dad had a heart attack on Christmas Eve, followed by triple bypass surgery, and has been in the hospital ever since. He suffered several complications, and it took a while for him to even get out of the ICU. He's doing much better now, and should be coming home soon. Our family has, understandably, been under a lot of stress. For me, yoga has helped.

I'd been doing yoga regularly (4-6 times per week) from late July through early December, then for various reasons I'd stopped. Starting with the new year, my dear friend LM and I decided to do yoga together once a week (rather than attending a weekly class together as we'd been doing). We're also undertaking a study of the founding texts of yoga, Hinduism and Buddhism, and have committed to a daily practice which includes certain poses, meditations and breathing techniques that we decide on each week.

How is it going? Fabulous! I'm really enjoying devoting 45 to 60 minutes to yoga and meditation each and every day. Since we began on January 5th, there has only been one day when I didn't make time to practice. It's great exercise, and helps me to de-stress and center myself. I'm really thankful for yoga!