Thursday, April 13, 2006

Come Out and Play

We suddenly live in a neighborhood where kids come to the door and ask if Kate and Zack can come out and play. I am so pleased with this! It seemed like people didn't let their kids outside anymore and I'm glad that they do still knock at the doors of their friends.

But it's also driving me out of my mind!

Naturally, now that kids are coming to our door, Kate and Zack want to knock on their friends' doors too. Great, but what exactly is going on at these houses? Are parents at home? How long should they stay? Do all parents welcome knocks on their doors? This is a new world that I'm having to ramp up on quickly.

I also realized that even though I've talked to the kids about the dangers of smoking, I haven't said much about drinking and drugs. I also realized that even though I've talked about the dangers, I never said that these substances are STRICTLY NOT ALLOWED! So this week I took some time to ask the kids what they would do if they were offered a smoke or a pill--happily they said they would say no--and I said in no uncertain terms that they are not allowed to say yes to this. Whew!

Fine, but now they're off by themselves, with people I don't know very well beyond chit chat, doing who knows what!

I am breathing deeply and giving myself some time to get accustomed to this next step into independence. I miss them when they're off playing, but also like the chance to sit and read the newspaper. Will just take some getting used to.

And they are growing up too fast.

Monday, April 10, 2006

No need to rush

I feel like we haven't had a second to catch our breaths lately. What have we been up to? I know there's tons we HAVEN'T been getting done, so I guess it's a good time to figure out what we HAVE been getting done.

Our weekly schedule, despite my desire to keep it open, has filled up considerably.
Mondays--Spanish Class and Brownies
Tuesdays--Try for a field trip and Scouts
Wednesdays--I have yoga, kids have swim class and library
Thursdays--Nature class and dance for Katie
Fridays--Piano and HS group
Sundays--Sunday school

I couldn't resist the Nature class though. It's 10 weeks, cheap, nearby and very hands-on. I also get an hour and 1/2 to myself to run errands.

Last week I tried to take the kids to the Sully Plantation for a field trip but it turned out that they are closed on Tuesdays. We were able to walk the grounds though and we found there were hiking trails on the property. We had a great time. We were the only people on the place and the weather was cool but perfect for hiking around.

Again I had to say over and over to myself "don't rush them, let them move at their own pace." I have to repeat it like a mantra on most of our trips. I have no idea what this urge to rush is about.

I was mostly successful in letting the kids set the pace and the benefit was that they had time to play on a teeter-totter made of a plank over an old tree and they had a terrific time.

Since we didn't go on the tour, we had lunch in the car after our hike and then went a few feet down the road to the Udvar-Hazy Center to see the planes and space shuttle. There is always something new there, since it is very new and they are still putting together their exhibits. This trip there was a display on the current war and the planes being used and also a piece of the Pentagon and WTCs from the 9-11 attacks. The kids had some tough questions about why people would fly planes into buildings and especially since the attackers were also killed. I answered as best I could about bad guys and strong beliefs. I also told them that is was very hard to explain and understand. Told them I felt bad that they won't know a world where this never happened.

Zack has earned another cub scout belt loop in computers that we got at the Blue and Gold dinner. Looks like he will get a swim loop and pin, a Wolf badge and a couple of arrow points by the end of this season.

Next week we are off to Boston to see Pete's brother and family off to their new home in Switzerland. I'm also hoping we can do some of the Freedom Trail if the weather cooperates. We'll swing by NYC on our way back and hopefully hook up with some friends there too.

Today we're off back to Sully to do the tours and get another Time Travelers stamp, then it's math this afternoon and reading our chapter books.

Hopefully this week we can also get into the garden and pull some weeds and start up our Ivy Pull again.

Friday, April 07, 2006


I love TiVo. We are able to watch Liberty's Kids again without commercials (when I sit there and skip them), don't miss ZOOM or Between the Lions anymore and one of the kids' favorite shows is now The Brady Bunch.

Now they can watch and I don't have to wonder what they'll be seeing--and in the case of the Brady Bunch, ofcourse there is always a valuable lesson ;-)