So hard to believe we’re already in 2019! Before we move forward towards the New Year let’s have a quick recap of the Old Year, like all years since forever it was jam packed with life. My new refrain is ‘boring is great, I love boring’ though there were not many boring moments in 2018. It was a fantastic year, so much happening, many special moments, although there were times we barely held on by our fingertips. Let’s get to recapping the old so we can begin the New.
Since we began moving into life with older teens I find my time and energy is more limited, so alas blogging for the past few years has suffered, these days you’ll find more ‘day to day’ snippets at our Instagram account, so the following moves between blog highlights with a few instagram links to round it out.
- Our 18 year old officially left Home. I wrote: “Bittersweet day, I admit tears were shed, by me. From the moment of his birth we knew this day would come but truthfully it’s rushed upon us. Exciting possibilities are opening up for him in the Big Smoke. Whilst his eyes are on the road ahead, he’s aware he’ll miss his younger siblings, though he’s living with his older brothers. We’re confident he’ll soar, us, we’re going to miss him” Well that all did eventuate, he did miss his siblings and they and us he, but he also soared in his electrical apprenticeship, going from strength to strength and is highly regarded by his boss.
- I spoke for the second time in an online Summit, this time for the Start Homeschool Summit, what fun, I felt more confident second time around!! I discovered I love this medium, no surprise really to those who know and love me. I chatted about Maintaining Balance and Preserving Sanity. In a nutshell chatting about the realities of home educating and mothering ten children. Sharing the struggles, the constant juggling and ways we can meet the massive challenges we face. Essentially some of the tips and tricks we have learnt over 24 years of home educating 10 children.
A dear friend and newbie homeschooler sent this to me, it meant the world:
“I just want to say I loved every bit! I adored the photos of your journey, really encapsulates your mission and engaged me, I felt inspired. Loved how you were able to list your ideals but also honest about your realities, so much judgement these days and it was so refreshing. I adore the concept of loop scheduling and will attempt that! Bonus downloads brilliant! Just awesome advice that is so practical and helpful. I enjoyed hearing your tips and sanity savers for home life can’t say enough good about it all well done! ”
That talk is still available if you are interested.
And… first time sharing…drumroll…. we’re hosting another Australian Homeschool Summit in February, 2019!! Yes next month!! this time I’ll be talking about Centering Your Education Around Australian Living Books, a topic I’m rather passionate about. Tickets and chance to win tickets just opened yesterday, so this is hot news off the press. I’ll be back to share more over this week.
- I attended my first booksale of the year, so blessed to be able to access Free Children’s Books.
- PC, our two youngest and I took a quick trip to Sydney to see our City boys.
- My Daybook in March reminds me of events that month, I obviously need to be more consistent with writing these posts. I’m a moderator for a fantastic facebook group, Reshelving Alexandria, which is dedicated to assisting families in creating their own personal “Library of Alexandria” with books that are ‘true, honest, lovely, virtuous and of good report’. In March the incredible creators of the group launched an impressive website, Reshelving Alexandria. As a mod I was privvy to a bit of the process and was honoured to share in the excitement.
- Attended another booksale, this time in my own town, free books again!
- Our teens participated in a Rowing workshop on our Incredible River.
- We had all our children home for Easter, always Treasured Time, a highlight being a day on a Mighty River nearby with PC and all our children, even though four are now ‘grown up’, playing happily together, anchoring one another from being towed downstream.
- Attended The Best Book Sale ever!! First time at this Sale, the books were not Free but oh my!! I’ll be back in 2019, countdown…
- Spent lots of lazy days at our River kicking back, with friends and just us. It’s only 3 minutes away, best life really.
- Got our ‘skids on’ regards the house and began laying flooring throughout, yippee!! Beginning on Anzac weekend in April, moving into May we began with the Dining and Learning Rooms, check out that Girl Power and backed up nicely by our then 11 year old son who stepped up wonderfully with all older brothers now gone. In a groove we then swung into Flooring the “Pool’ Room. Incredible what a change floorboards make, so thrilled.
- Attended yet another book sale and our Shopping Centre opened a Free Book Exchange really it was a year of book opportunities.
- Another opportunity occurred for Jack Jack when we gained access to EV3 Robotic Kits for a few weeks. Our coding lad was in alt, so grateful.
- Our eldest son proposed to his girlfriend and she accepted! We are now excitedly looking forward to her becoming his wife and welcoming a new daughter and sister into our lives.
- Bass (7) made his First Confession on the same day!
- Jack Jack (11 at the time) and PC created a trampoline garden together.
- Continuing on with the house makeover we laid floorboards in the Loungeroom.
- Michelangelo came home for Birthday Week (3 in one week) as a surprise for the children. The screams from Jelly Bean (14) on her Birthday Morning when she saw her brother were rather exciting 🙂 🙂
What an incredibly huge month was August.
- We began the month with our youngest two sons’ receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation . An especially precious weekend with many memories imprinted on my heart, an event all our children were able to be present for.
- We enjoyed a lovely afternoon in the bush which became a solace, as later that week we were evacuated due to a bushfire wherein 85% of our property was burnt!!! We shall never forget that entire week!!
- Was thrilled to finally publish Homeschool Burnout and Recovery , a piece near and dear to my heart and years in the making.
- We finally finished laying the floor in the Hallway which was actually begun back in May. We then began laying boards in the three bedrooms left to do. We began with floorboards in the younger children’s Bedroom, then continued with flooring Jelly Bean’s Bedroom then, I was so excited we finished flooring the Last Room, Our Room! Every day I still look with pleasure at my floorboards, the room has been transformed.
- My sister became engaged, as did our nephew a week later.
- I ran my 50th Parkrun Milestone!
- We put in a new and extra steel clothesline, it’s amazing how one ‘little’ thing can make you so happy, it still makes me happy.
- Einstein drove home 7 hours from the City and surprised Jem with a visit on his birthday!
- Bass made his First Holy Communion 🙂 He made it at the Carmelite Convent, the Sisters were so excited for him and afterwards eager to meet him, as they are an enclosed Order they had to receive special permission for this and he is guaranteed prayers for a lifetime I daresay.
- Mid October 48 of PC’s family members plus his 7 great aunts and uncles descended on the Gold Coast from around Australia to celebrate family and my m-i-l’s 80th year. PC’s parents are blessed with six sons and a daughter, their family has expanded to include 7 spouses, 24 grandchildren, 7 grandchildren in law with 2 in the wings and 7 great grandchildren to date. We were only missing 8. It was a total surprise for my mother in law, a year in the making and I still cant believe we pulled it off!! A week long party, not long enough.
- We turned our attention to our long neglected gardens and spread woodchip, the trees are now thriving. We also found yet another Koala sick and dying with Chlamydia.
- Shared a post on Australian Picture Books for Remembrance Day, a post I’d long wanted to write.
- Term 4 we enjoyed our 6 year tradition of Leaping into Literature and I managed to share a couple of posts about our reads. Leaping into Literature: A Tradition Returns and Leaping into Literature: Animals and Anthropomorphism
- The whole family ran in local Fun Run, our 10th year!
- Jack Jack (12) was blessed to participate in a workshop with @indigenousdigitalexcellence, a huge boost to his confidence and was thrilled that shortly after we were able to begin weekly visits again to the Aboriginal Resource Centre where he is able to access their EV3 kits , and nurture his coding passion.
- Princess(17) passed her driving Test and received her Ps
- PC and I celebrated 26 years of Marriage
- Our youngest, Bella turned 5. Still rather in shock that our youngest is 5, that we have no babies, toddlers or pre-schoolers, rather surreal.
Of course these are only some highlights and snippets of our life, we have sorrows and anxieties, joys and triumphs not shared, but rest assured our life is full to the max and overflowing.
2018 we Farewell Thee, 2019 we Greet Thee, and somehow with a Wedding in the mix I’m confident it won’t be any the less Full.