8:30 - I finally wake up again. I should have set a second alarm; this is longer than I wanted to sleep, and after yesterday's very early start at 5:30, it feels ridiculous. The kids give me a spontaneous narration for the tank documentary that Hero(10) picked out for them. I ask Peanut(4) about it and she tells me, "We watched tanks. They blow stuff up." Sounds about right. I put up our lists for the day.
9:00 - The kids spend some time watching Mincraft videos in Japanese. They don't agree on which one they want, so Hero and Peanut watch one playlist in the living room, and Dragon(6) watches another on the computer. I am making oatmeal, and try to also bounce between the two screens, helping the kids decipher an extra word here and there.
Doing these videos -just watching- is surprisingly effective at helping the kids to get new vocabulary and phrases. A number of the things that get said on the videos have become ordinary parts of our family conversations, now, without my needing to push it: the kids do it spontaneously. I'm not the only one that's having a slow start this morning.
9:30 - Breakfast. I made more than yesterday, so we don't run out. The kids are growing, and the amount I used to have leftovers from is not even close to adequate anymore: this is discovered yesterday. Peanut has a mini-meltdown when the screens are turned off, but then pulls it together. We do our scripture boxes over breakfast, until my BFF calls. I chat about 10 minutes, then tell her I have to go and teach the kiddos.
10:30 - Some people are dressed. Hero is practicing his violin, which is sounding pretty good. At his request, I text a copy of the video to my parents. I have the dishwasher half emptied. I need to locate our math stuff for the day. I feel disorganized. Dragon sees the video of Hero, and he wants to be in one, too.
10:50 - I sneak in some yoga right quick. Hero is working on his Japanese and Latin flashcards with the Anki SRS, and listening to (but not watching) various violin songs on YouTube.
Dragon and I finish out his scripture box, then he practices his violin and wants to also send a video to Nana and Grandpa. Then I persuade him to read to his sister while I finally get a shower.
11:20 - When I'm done, I find the kids are exercising. Hero is doing planks, with "help" from Peanut. Dragon is right in there with them.
Then, Dragon does a bridge - his first ever. He's especially delighted when I tell him that I can't do that one.
And Peanut does her "kitty pose". With the crazy hair. That's next. I fix her hair and mine.
11:50 - Our friends will be here very soon (we get a playdate while some of their family goes to a performance). We've done a good job, but we're not quite done with school. Hero sweeps the kitchen, then does a few review problems of 3-digit addition & subtraction with borrowing and carrying; then he does a logic puzzle. Those are a favorite right now. I do math with the younger two. Dragon is practicing buying things. We did a "Two-Thing Store" yesterday, where the store requires that you buy two things -- and only two things, add them up and produce the correct change. Today, he wants to do a "Three-Thing Store". So we do. I take the opportunity to introduce quarters.
Peanut demands math as well, so I get out the rods and our scale and let her play with them. It looks like math, and even though I don't really show her much, she's delighted. She has more or less demanded to be in school too, now that she's "a little bit big". So I'm giving her things more of the time these days. It's pretty amazing to me that she's getting to be about the same age that the boys were when they started doing school, too. My kids are getting bigger.
12:10 - Our friends arrive. Dragon has one problem left, and I'm just mean enough that I make him do it -- and write it himself -- before he can go outside with the kids. He survives this cruel thing that I do to him. I put Peanut's hair in crooked. It's driving me a little bit crazy, but she's happy, so I'm not messing with it. Yet. The dishwasher still isn't completely unloaded, but I head outside, too, anyway. We've all got spring fever.
1:00 - The kids got chilly; it's only 45F. So they're back inside playing Minecraft. Unfortunately, we can't hook up their tablet to our computer's server: Minecraft isn't cross-platform compatible like that. But the kids work it out, and everybody seems happy, so I let them handle it. The youngest two want watercolors, so I set them up while I make lunch. At the end of lunch, we spend a few minutes watching some puffy Mourning Doves that have settled down for a rest on the deck. They apparently think that it's a bit on the chilly side too: I've seldom seen doves look so puffy. All the kids are delighted. When lunch is done, it's back outside. This is an energetic crowd; the house feels really quiet when they've gone. There were supposed to be pictures of the doves, but first they were blurry, and then they didn't download correctly. So you'll just have to imagine the fluffy, puffy birds.
2:45 - The extra kids are gone. It was so nice that their mom had a few minutes to hang out and chat before they had to go back home. Then another friend dropped by and gave me a belated birthday present, which was very sweet. My kids are still outside, but I still want to try to squeeze in a little art lesson before the day is completely over, so I get to setting that up. We're trying out ArtAchieve lessons right now, and today is the day for the very first one.
3:15 - We've got Eilleen Ivers going in the background (Hero and I saw her at the symphony a while back), and the kids are working on their box drawings from the ArtAchieve lesson, learning to really see what they are trying to draw. It goes pretty well. Dragon started out convinced that he can't do it -- since observing is difficult for him, drawing is, too. But by the end, he was happy with his work, and feeling much more confident in his abilities. I like to see that.
3:30 - Daddy's home!! Everybody is excited to see him. He inspects all the art. Peanut writes her name on the painting that she made for him, which is the first time that she'd done that: very exciting!!
3:40 - All the school work is done, except for the kids' chores. Dragon is going to vacuum; Peanut helps him pick up the toys. While they do that, the Daddy and I chat. Peanut got a Moana doll for her birthday in January, but she broke it. Now she wants a new one, but she has to buy it with her own money, so she wants a "sticker job" -- we told her that when she has three stickers on her chart then she can have the doll. But right now, she has to wait for Daddy and me to stop chatting.
5:00 - Daddy and Dragon have gone in search of ink for our older printer. Peanut has done her job, and she and Hero are having a snack. It's super quiet, and I grab a couple minutes to work on some blog posts.
The rest of the evening was very busy: we had a quick, informal dinner, then the Daddy had some things to do, and I took the kids to church for Scouts. Dragon read nearly a whole Magic Treehouse book while we waited for Hero's den to plan out what they're doing next week when they cook on a fire.
One of my girlfriends caught me while we were at church; she's so nice to me: she had been to Japan recently, visiting her parents who are serving a mission there, and she brought back a couple books for us. I'm so excited to get to work on reading them! They're all a little difficult, which means that, in the process of figuring them out, there's going to be lots of growth.
After that it was bedtime. I'm trying to fix my bedtime, so that it's more compatible with an early wakeup, and I did an ok (not great) job of getting there. Part of that was that I didn't attempt to read any of the new books; I limited myself to just looking at the packaging on the chocolates that she brought us.
See what a day of homeschooling looks like in other Homeschool Review Crew Homes: